No Excuses; 2017

Well Hi there, I haven’t seen you in a while!

…. I’ve disappeared again. I know. The truth is, I haven’t had much to write about. And without making excuses let me tell you, that things like depression and anxiety make simple every day tasks seem incredibly difficult.

And when it comes to things I am passionate about, like animal rights or the health of our environment and personal health, I’ve lost focus and hope.

I am telling all of you this today because it has been heavily on my mind, and I did not want to come back here and tell you that life got busy, because that is a cop out excuse that requires no real explanation.

I live my life honestly, so here is the honest answer to my absence.

My life is going through many personal changes. I am working two jobs, will be losing my kids a week at a time to their Dad, fighting for a relationship that I believe in with every bit of my being, and struggling with depression and anxiety.

There’s a funny thing about depression and anxiety. There is no cure. It is a constant battle of wills to get through each day. In the winter, this becomes even more difficult.

But this is a new year, and I want to continue this blog site. Here are my hopes and goals for this year, feel free to leave yours in the comments!

1. Take back my health. This includes mental health. Eating clean can have a large impact on both physical and mental health. What we eat literally becomes part of our cells, and can affect all of those feel good hormones and chemicals that flow through our body. It’s time to remember that I am in control of this part of my life, and I can change it.

2. Get outside. Having Raynaud’s (a circulation disorder) makes this a challenge in the winter, but there has to be a way to rise above it. Just dressing warmly often isn’t enough. This is the year I’m going to beat it, because being outside is an important part of who I am. Nature is everything. Being out with nature is the only place I truly feel free and at peace with myself. I’m hoping to fill this year with hikes and adventure!

3. Start following world events again. This is a big one because it really affects what I am able to write about on this blog. I had to stop many years ago because I am so passionate about what is going on in our world that I couldn’t deal with it. But 2017 is going to be a year of following my passions and making it work.

4. Make the guitar a daily practice. Last year I began lightly playing around with an acoustic guitar, with my Dad’s instruction. I’ve already forgotten what the chords are, but it is so relaxing to make music. Apparently the vibrational energy from music is good for the soul.

5. Make meaningful connections. This is the one I struggle with most, because of my anxiety. It’s really hard to put yourself out there. One way that I find is great for making meaningful connections is by volunteering. But to do that, one has to leave the comfort of their home and be willing to say “Hi, here I am. I think we have something in common and you’re a good person. Please accept me.”

Whatever your goals for 2017, they will require work and persistence. You’ve got this, compassionate friends. Let’s tackle this year with confidence and passion, and love. Take the lows with strength and patience. The storms will come, but they leave a beautiful mess and create space for new beginnings. Ride it out.

Ditching The Disconnect

Sometimes when life gives you lemons, it can be tempting to create a disconnect; to put up some walls and mentally withdraw from your life. You manage to go through the daily motions and on the outside everything appears to be okay but inside you feel passionless and empty to the point of complete boredom. And if you’re not careful, you can become lost in a sea of monotony.

If this sounds at all familiar, you may be in a rut of displeasure. But don’t fret; there is a way out!

List Your Passions
A good place to start lifting your way from boredom to invigoration is to consider what you were passionate about before the lemons turned sour. What was it that really got your blood boiling; a specific cause, art, family, health, the outdoors, anything that ‘turned you on.’

A Few of Your Favorite Things

“When the dog bites, when the bee stings
When I’m feeling sad,
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel so bad”

Julie Andrews said it right; think about all your favorite things and find a way to combine a few. Listening to your favorite music while eating your favorite foods and talking on the phone with your favorite person can give you such a mood boost. As long as you’re making healthy choices and paying attention to what makes you happy it will be difficult to stay in that mindless state.

Make Connections Happen
Face it: connections aren’t made on their own. In order to reconnect with your life you will have to do the work. Try looking for local meet ups, groups or activities that are in line with your passions. The more involved you are in the makings of your own life the better you’re going to feel in your soul.

Gather Friends
Surround yourself with people who inspire you, and you will succeed. Who we associate with can have a large impact on our state of mind. Humans are impressionable creatures and moods are relatively contagious so the more positive and forward thinking your social scene is the more successful you will be. While you don’t have to cut negative people out of your life completely, realize how much energy that mindset sucks out of you and try to limit exposure where you can.

Try Something New
Maybe you’ve outgrown your passions and reconnecting with them just isn’t working for you. That’s okay! Try doing something new that excites you to think about or maybe something that you never thought you would do before. Facing your fears and stepping out of your personal bubble can be invigorating to the spirit and leave you feel empowered.

Whatever it is you do, don’t sit around on your rump waiting for change to happen. Take control of your life and add some (vegan) sugar to those sour lemons… lemonade is only a few hard squeezes away.
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“Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
These are a few of my favorite things

Cream colored ponies and crisp apple strudels
Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles
Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings
These are a few of my favorite things.

Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes
Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes
Silver white winters that melt into springs
These are a few of my favorite things

When the dog bites, when the bee stings
When I’m feeling sad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel so bad

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
These are a few of my favorite things

Cream colored ponies and crisp apple strudels
Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles
Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings
These are a few of my favorite things

Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes
Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes
Silver white winters that melt into springs
These are a few of my favorite things

When the dog bites, when the bee stings
When I’m feeling sad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel so bad.”

The Sound Of Music – My Favorite Things (maria) Lyrics | MetroLyrics