Posts tagged life advice
Stop with the Negative Self-Talk

For the month of April, I did 30 days of prayer and fasting. I focused on trying to find my identity in Christ and figure out where my relationship with God is. If I’m being honest, it has been a struggle. Finding my identity in Christ has been such a journey. One thing I want to say to all the people reading this is… finding your identity and who you truly are takes time. You’re not just going to discover who God created you to be overnight. Hair, makeup, clothes, and stuff like that is NOT your identity. Your identity is who you’ve chosen to be in life and who you’ve decided to be in Christ.

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Unrefined, but Loved, Creation in Progress

There are dozens of versions of me I imagined as a child. Research scientist, doctor, gymnast, and a dozen more before I graduated high school. Even when I thought I had figured things out in college, my path changed again. The older I got, the more reality hit, and the more I worried I would see myself as a disappointment. I wasn't in med school. I wasn’t on my way to six figures. I didnt know how to reconcile the dreams I had as a kid with the reality of my desires and abilities as an adult. How could I look at myself in the mirror if I just became "this?” Who would care about the girl who does "that" for a living?

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Cultivating the Habit of Happiness

Happiness hasn’t been my best friend lately. I’ve been walking through a pretty gloomy season of grief, loss and some might even call it depression. Although, even in the darkest moments, happiness finds me like a ray of golden sunshine. When it does, oh my goodness do I cling to it, girlfriend. Times of sadness are unavoidable, and frankly, we can’t be happy every hour of every day. So, what am I saying? While we might not be able to control the times when we experience real happiness, we can begin to nurture and love ourselves into it. Becoming aware of the importance of being happy is the first step to allowing the light to obliterate the darkness.

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5 Keys to Developing Healthy Habits

Be honest about where you are currently at. What is holding you back from developing this habit? Don’t pretend to be better at it than you currently are. Lying to yourself will only delay the development of the habit. Often times, we judge ourselves on our intent to do something. We give ourselves credit for wanting to change, but we never actually take the steps to change. This can hold us back from actually developing the healthy habits we want to make a regular part of our lives. Give up the excuses. Recognize you alone are responsible for the outcome. You can’t control every circumstance in your life, but you can control how you respond to those circumstances.

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How Not to Become a Creature of Habit

There’s that age-old phrase about being a “creature of habit.” We all know someone who gets into one routine—one way of thinking, one way of doing—and neglects trying new things. Whether it’s trying spaghetti squash for the first time in place of noodles or spending every night the same as the last, it’s easy to leave forward-thinking behind and keep from trying something different. But when you break out from your usual mold and try things that aren’t familiar to you, you’ll find your life and entire being will be better for it. The key to happiness is finding the things that excite you most. If you’re stuck in your ways and unwilling to try anything new, you may spend your entire life missing out on the one thing you were meant to do.

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A Better Life, One Day at a Time

This is my year of habit changes. I decided I wouldn't start a new diet or begin journaling again. Instead, I would change my habits, trusting these new behaviors would snowball into a better quality of life. Though it may not work for everyone, I like to give myself timeframes. A month is usually a perfect amount of time to stop or start a habit. You also get that rush of renewal that comes from new beginnings, and I need any inspiration I can get. I don't look beyond that month. I don't let myself get in over my head. I just dedicate myself to the decided time. I've grown too comfortable in my bad habits, and I am flush with hope they can be changed. 

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Good Habits Build a Strong Foundation

It’s really important to have good habits. Our habits reveal what our life is built upon. One question I’ve really focused on this week is, “What is the foundation of my life?” I’ve asked myself, “What am I building my life on?” For me, I’ve realized lately I might be building my life more on people and electronics. For example, last month my iPad permanently died. I thought it was the worst thing in the world! But I realized when things happen like that, it might be God trying to give me a wakeup call. Maybe He is reminding me to rely more on Him, instead of electronics and screens.

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Series Introduction: Habits

We are creatures of habit. Routines are unavoidable as we are naturally drawn to repetition and the familiar. It’s comfortable, predictable and safe. Have you ever considered just how odd it truly is for us to find belonging and purpose in the rhythm of routine? What cadence carries you through your day to day? Is it slow and harmonious, or frantic and high-strung? At times, perhaps it’s both. I would hope if you’re in a constant “go, go go” state of mind, you find moments to decompress. If not, that’s a whole different topic we can cover later this month. Since the beginning on this year, no… not even… let’s just say, lately, I’ve been really into the power of a routine and how the ebb and flow of a day can transform our ability to live fully.

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The Fine Line Between Ambition and Obsession

Ambition is a word that has been tripping me up quite a bit lately. Standing at a complicated crossroads of sorts, I have had a lot of time to think about my own ambitions, the things that are important to me and the kind of woman I am still striving to become. Caught between others’ expectations of me, pressures from my job, and the need to finally strike out on my own, these thoughts have found a home in my brain over the past year. How does ambition shape our lives and how do differing interests and motivations affect the way we go after our dreams?

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Does Ambition Lead to Success?

I grew up believing ambition led to success. In school, if I studied and did the work, I would get an A. In sports, if I practiced hard, I was rewarded with more playing time. When I worked my first job, hard work equaled higher pay, more hours, and the admiration of my boss and coworkers. My achiever personality thrives in that environment! I can finish a project in record speed. When I set a goal, I don’t stop until that goal is completed. I love making lists and checking things off. (I’m one of those crazy people who writes something I just did on the list, just so I can cross it off…don’t laugh, I’m know I’m not the only one!)

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Passionately Ambitious With No Regrets

After a variety of internships at a magazine, two television shows, a radio show and a stint at the university TV station, I  was ready to back up my journalism work experience academically with a master's degree.  What followed was an accelerated year and a half strenuous program that allowed me a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to report at the London Olympic Games, and I've never looked back on my career choice since. That doesn't mean there weren't stumbles along the way. A year after graduate school, my radio news job wasn't able to offer me more than a part-time schedule and I simply needed to be able to pay my bills, so I made the difficult decision to leave and accept a full-time position with a marketing start-up.

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Series Introduction: Ambition

We are only a few days into this new year and I don’t know about yours, but my social media feed is consumed by cliché resolutions and novel-length reflections of the year gone. Sure, I’ll appreciate the idea of a fresh start as much as the next girl — but so what? Setting goals to better yourself and pursue your passion is great, but at the end of the day it’s not enough. The bottom line is: you cannot have ambition without action. Period. End of story.  So, if you’ve set a resolution for yourself in the new year, then you’ve got ambition, girl! That’s the first step.

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Leaving Apathy Behind

Getting caught up on the stress of life produces a wide range of terrible emotions. I get scared I'll never catch up. I get sad that I might never feel like I'm enough. But I think the worst thing I often feel in those moments is nothing. Apathy is a frequent opponent of joy. It's also one of my favorite modes of survival. Just a few days ago, I noticed I get frustrated a lot less than I used to. I used to cry when my son woke me up at 3 a.m. for the third night in a row. I used to contemplate the meaning of my life and get a little snippy with God. At face value, the level of calm I've managed to reach seems like a positive change. However, after a few minutes of thought, I realized I hadn't matured in my ability to process.

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Sharing the Joy in Your Heart

Don't take joy for granted, but keep growing your relationship with God and you will have more and more joy throughout your life. Of course, following God doesn't mean you're going to live the perfect life. You're still going to go through tough times and hard struggles, but at least you're not doing it alone. Share your joy and blessings with others, because you don't know how much that could change their day.

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4 Ways to Let Go of Comparison and Hold onto Joy

How often our thoughts are consumed with the belongings and blessings we lack. What we don’t have, another does — that’s just the way the world works. But, we grow consumed with the idea, in order to be happy in life, we must have everything we desire — even if it isn’t for us. So, we bow down to envy and unleash this terribly ugly part of ourselves we should have just kept hidden to begin with. And, all for what? So deep down we can feel better about our life because we’re at least “holding onto” a dream or goal that sure looks good on someone else — so naturally, it’d look good on us.

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How to Find Joy in Every Season

In those early parenting years, I experienced God’s strength and grace to operate on torturously few hours of sleep — and yet, I was able to because God’s grace flowed through me. I was able to love a screaming child after he had bit me, slapped me, and screamed bloody murder just because I was trying to wipe the dirt off his face. That was God’s love flowing through me. I think the key to finding joy in the difficult moments is not a guilt trip that “you better enjoy these moments because someday you’ll miss them.” All that ever did was make me feel bad — and real joy doesn’t make you feel bad.

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5 Reasons Why You Should Be Joyous During the Holidays

Tis the season! The holidays are here which means everyone is struggling with something. Whether it’s the shopping, the cooking, the travel or even just a pesky cousin, everybody feels pressure around the holidays. And as impossible as it may seem, you can find some joy… even in the moments that seem most trying. At the end of the day, holiday celebrations are just that: a celebration. It’s the end of yet another year—remember this time of year gives you the opportunity to relax and get a little space from your everyday routine.

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In My Identity, I Am Grateful

It’s easy to take something for granted — most of us do every single day. Think about it. Your morning cup of coffee or the four wheels sitting in the driveway patiently waiting for you. We take things for granted because they are those things that are always there, until one day they won’t be. I often lose sight of just how precious my health is. When my body is able to keep up with my non-stop schedule, I forget the value in its strength.

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Find Happiness, Gain Thankfulness

Despite all the chaos of everyone’s day-to-day life, I believe there is always something to be grateful for at the end of the day. Whether it’s the fact you have a roof over your head or the fact you have a job, or a family, or even a good friend you can rely on, there will always be one thing in your life you can cherish and be thankful for. In the midst of a hectic work week, a stressful project or even a slight existential crisis at age 23, I always try to find time to look at the world around me, pay attention to my breathing. and just be thankful for the fact that I am alive and well.

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Choosing to Be Grateful

I woke up crabby this week. Nothing was really wrong, but nothing seemed right either. I just wanted to sit on the couch and do nothing, say nothing, be nothing. Have you ever had one of those days? Where you just feel blah. You can’t really put words to it, but you just know that you don’t feel right. If I’m not careful, those types of days can take me down a dangerous rabbit hole of emotions. Suddenly things that were a little annoying are world shattering. Emotions I had been keeping successfully at bay, are right on the edge of eruption. Tiny failures become gigantic roadblocks. Missed opportunities feel like throw-in the-towel, it’s-never-going-to-get-better, why-do-I-even-bother-trying, do-I even-have-a-purpose-on-this-earth moments.

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