Choose Happiness

I don’t know about you, but I look¬† forward to garbage day. It’s the day that we rid our home of the trash that we have collected over the past week. I always feel more relaxed on those days (Thursdays) because I feel like my life is less cluttered. This got me thinking…what if I could treat every day like garbage day? No, I don’t mean that I want to put trash bags on the curb every day and pretend that the truck picks them up. What I mean is that maybe our physical trash is more like our emotional trash than we realize.

I want 2019 to be the year that I really buckle down and work on myself. I’m slowly learning that the “issues” in my life are largely perceptual. I tend to have a negative perception on certain things in my life and it often results in frustration. So what would happen if I made a conscious decision to not allow those things in my life to affect me so greatly?

Today was my first day toward a less stressful lifestyle. I kept to myself the best that I could – with the least amount of sarcastic remarks that I could handle. Whenever I felt myself getting frustrated, I would close my eyes, take a deep breath in, envision myself breathing in ocean air while watching the waves, exhale, and then open my eyes. And guess what…it worked. When I opened my eyes, I felt calm and knew that I could tackle whatever was coming my way.

It was almost like a mini vacation that lasted only a moment, but helped me to recenter myself.

A coworker of mine has been working on self-peace too. Her uncle recently passed away and she states that has made her feel like a change is needed. Honestly, seeing her at peace has motivated me to be more aware of my emotions. We are both very excitable people and I’ve been thinking to myself “if she can do it, maybe I can too”.

I don’t remember who said it, but I do recall someone telling me at an early age that hatred and anger only hurt the person who feels it. Feeling frustrated in a situation will only affect me negatively and will do nothing at all to change the issue. So here I am, twenty-three-years-old,¬† feeling as if I am learning how to be myself all over again. It’s honestly an exciting feeling.

I can be anyone I want to be and right now all I want to be is happy.

Love Always,

Elizabeth

Friendship Values

I recently bought a book of writing prompts and one of the questions I answered today was about what kind of qualities would I want my personal assistant to have. This got me thinking about the qualities that I look for in a friend and the qualities that others may find in me.

I personally value integrity, honesty, loyalty, kindness, creativity, intelligence, self-motivation, among other things. After realizing this, I spent some time reflecting on myself and my character. If I look for these characteristics in the people I surround myself with, then I should probably be integrity-filled, honest, loyal, and so-on.

When working on ourselves, maybe we should strive to be someone that we would want to be friends with. If you don’t think that you are someone who you would want to be around if you were someone else, then maybe you should evaluate why that is and what you can do to become a better person or change your self-view.

If you value honesty in your friendships, be truthful. If you value creativity, allow yourself to have creative outlets. Better yourself by understanding what being a good friend means to you.

I don’t know if I believe that you become just like the five people you spend the most time with, but I do think that the people you surround yourself with influence who you are. If you surround yourself with negative people, that energy could bring you down and make you a more negative person. It can be extremely tiring for me to be around negative people. I’m not saying I am constantly positive and only have good thoughts, but people who are constantly negative take a lot out of me.

Surround yourself with good people who have similar values to you and work on being a person that you would want to spend your time with. There is no time better spent than the time used to work on your happiness.

Love Always,

Elizabeth

Settling for the Best Life

Today I want to talk to you about not settling for what already is and working toward living your best life. This can start small such as your kitchen cabinets or can be a larger issue like not having the time or money to do what you love.

I recently decided that it was time to reorganize our kitchen. I always dreaded cooking in our kitchen because it was difficult to find the things that I needed. We had most of our spices in a plastic bin in the cupboards over our sink. Some were on a spinning spice rack on a shelf under our kitchen island. The rest were in jars in our dining room where we kept our wine glasses. I hated having to dig through three different places when cooking to find what we needed. So instead of accepting that this is just how things have to be, I decided to move everything around. We ended up moving our canned goods and putting all of our spices in the stacked cupboards on the wall. Having all of our spices visible and in one place helps us to decrease our time searching and increase our time enjoying our food and time together. This is something little that has decreased my stress in a big way.

I have the unfortunate habit of biting off more than I can chew. I love to be busy and, at times, my commitments have overwhelmed my schedule. When I was in nursing school I was not only doing school full-time, but also had a part-time job as a home health aide, part-time over night job as a private aide for a person at a senior living facility, and worked as a photographer part time in my own business. We were making ends meet, traveling, but I never had scheduled time to rest. I ended up leaving my over night job so I could focus on school more and sleep from time-to-time. It meant less income for our household, but we made it work and with the extra sleep I was much less stressed. Ultimately it was the best decision for my relationship, education, and health. Life is all about balance.

Money is something that stresses a lot of people out. My husband is currently in college full time working toward a degree, so we are down to one income at the moment. I have done a ton of research on budgeting and money management which has helped us to not only build our Emergency fund to over two grand, but also decrease debt which in turn helped our credit scores. If money is something that you worry about, it’s okay. There is so much you can do to positively influence this part of your life while still having fun. I am going to be posting tomorrow about budgeting specifically.

Pinpoint what is affecting your happiness and stress levels. Do what is within your control to positively influence and whatever is out of your control, try not to dwell on.

Sometimes it’s the little things in life that can make a huge difference in your comfort and happiness.

You are worth the effort.

Love Always,

Elizabeth