Are you a confident people pleaser?

Confidence

What is confidence?  According to the dictionary, confidence is a feeling of self assurance arising from one’s appreciation of one’s own abilities and qualities.  What it doesn’t say is, a feeling of self assurance arising from what OTHER people think or OTHER people’s opinions.  I know lots of women, myself included, that claim to have confidence but their confidence relies on how other people react to them.  So, I am confident if I’m getting complimented by others.  I feel confident when people praise me.  Does this sound familiar?

I’ve managed to spend most of my life wanting to be confident while simultaneously trying to “impress” those around me. And just when I do something that makes me proud and feel confident, I allow someone else’s judgement to knock me back down. I’m sure I could trace these behaviors back to childhood but not sure what good that would do me.  You see I’ve always had all the signs of a “People Pleaser,” for as long as I can remember.

Signs of a People Pleaser
  • Pretending to agree with everyone around me (getting better at this though)
  • Taking responsibility for how other people feel. (ALL THE DAMN TIME!)
  • Apologizing often
  • Can’t say no
  • Feeling uncomfortable when someone is mad at you (this is a HUGE one for me!)
  • Need praise to feel good (sometimes)
  • Go to great lengths to avoid conflict (100% ME!)
  • Don’t tell anyone when you’re feelings are hurt (Yep, me again!)

I guess the ironic thing is that I always “preach” on my social media about how other people’s opinions of you don’t matter.  But as my husband so eloquently put it recently, I “need to drink my own kool-aid.” The truth is that I absolutely believe those words, that Rachel Hollis (among others) taught me.  Other peoples opinions of me, should absolutely NOT affect me. And more often than not, they don’t.  That’s obviously easier to say though, during the times when you have no conflict in your life, right?

But what about the times that there is conflict?

I’ve spent the last few years trying to quit my inner mean girl because she can be a real bitch to me sometimes.  She’s always bullying me, trying to tell me I’m not good enough, smart enough, Christian enough, worthy enough…I’m working hard to kick that bitch’s ass!  But she’s tough, resilient and pushy!

Here’s what I know.  I am a good person with a huge heart and that can make me vulnerable, vulnerable to the people that disagree with me or my choices, and the people that can’t see my worth.  But I’m choosing to let go.  I’m letting that mean girl go and am going to fight to silence her.  Instead, I’m going to focus on staying true to myself, even when others disagree with my choices.  I’m going to show myself the grace that I so easily show to others because we all make mistakes.  I can not be responsible for how other people feel and I’m choosing to let it go.  Will this be easy?  Not at all and I will need constant reminders to shut that bitch up.  Will I fail? Surely I will because none of us are perfect.  Will I continue to try to be MY best version?  Absolutely!

“Not everyone will understand your journey.  That’s okay.  You’re here to live your life, not to make everyone understand.”

Making a mental shift

It’s transformation Tuesday! Yes, that’s a thing in the fitness world!  But, It isn’t the physical transformation that I love, though it is a nice bonus.  What I really, really love is the mental shift that happens when you start focusing on working on yourself.  That kind of transformation takes time but is so worth it.  It is the reason that I love what I do as a health and wellness mentor.  My heart is so full, when I see women gain a new confidence that they had lost for so long.  Watching women succeed fills my cup.

The start of my transformation

I had a physical transformations fairly quickly after starting my wellness journey.  After doing my first ever Beachbody program, the 21 Day Fix, I lost 11 pounds in my first round and felt great physically.  But I quickly fell off of that wagon and spent the next 9 months or so making excuses as to why I couldn’t commit to a program for longer than a week or so at a time.

That summer, I continued to hide my body under baggy clothes, one piece swim suits (I was always a bikini girl!) and behind my daughter.  Even though I was at a very healthy weight and even fairly toned, I still had no confidence.  My motivation quickly left and I didn’t know where to find it.

Insert, my first ever online challenge group!  This was the accountability that I needed in my life. These women in this group lifted me up and made me want to do better.  I got back to my daily workouts and eating healthy and felt so much better.  But that group soon ended and I was left with no one to motivate me or push me.

That’s about the time, I decided I needed to be my own motivation.  I can’t depend on others to lift me up and push me. If I wanted to succeed,  I had to learn to do it myself.  So I signed up to be a coach with no experience, no clue what I was doing, still very little if any confidence and not at my ideal fitness level.  At that point in my life, I was still consumed by other peoples opinions of me and I certainly didn’t feel worthy of helping any one else.  But I jumped in!

Why?

I jumped in because I knew I needed a change-something to challenge my mind, something to do for myself, outside of my family, something that would keep me accountable to my own goals.

So, I jumped in with both feet.  Well,sort of.  I jumped in with both feet and then started to tip toe back out and then in again and then out and then in again…But I slowly learned to start facing my fears more often.  I quickly began devouring all of the personal development that I could get my hands and ears on!  And you know what happened?  Every damn time I faced one of those fears, every time I tip toed out of my comfort zone, I became a little stronger, a little more confident, a little bit better person.

Who I am now

Who I am now, is NOT who I was five years ago!  And I hope that in five more years, I’m even stronger, more confident, more alive and even more joyful than I am today!  Because I never want to stop growing as a person.  I still have a lot of work to do but I now know how to do it.  Each day, I face the day with a positive attitude and an open mind.  Every day, I start the day with a grateful heart.  I find a way to do something scary and out of my comfort zone on a regular basis.  It’s not always easy but I know that in the long run, it always pays off and I become better for it.

Stop being afraid of becoming who you are meant to be.  Make TODAY, the day you DECIDE to take ACTION on becoming the best YOU, that you can be.

Who’s with me!?

If you’re interested in learning more about coaching, how you an help others while bettering yourself, fill out this form and we can chat!

Happy Tuesday, friends!

xxoo,

Tammy

5 Habits You Should Start Now

With a new year, often comes change- a new routine, stricter diets, more exercise, less clutter, bigger income, raise, etc.  You get the point.  Most people vow to make some type of positive change with the new year.  The best way to do this is starting with your daily morning habits.  I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “Motivation is what gets you started.  Habit is what keeps you going.”  This could not be more true and I’m proof of it!  There are 5 daily habits that I added to my morning routine 3 years that have had such a huge impact on my life.  I’m going to give you a glimpse into my morning routine and the 5 habits you should start NOW.

Not a morning person!

I’m not nor have I ever been a morning person!  In fact, just the opposite, ask my hubby.  People who know my morning routine and what time I wake up each day, like to assume that I am, in fact a morning person.  But they are wrong.  I’ve just created some habits that have transformed my mornings and make things run so much smoother.

A question I get from my followers all the time is, “How do you stay so motivated to workout and get up so early?”  Here’s the thing, motivation has very little, if anything to do with it.  I have just created these habits which include working out, that have become a part of my daily life.  So for me to sleep in (I do on occasion) or skip a workout (very very rare) feels odd to me because I’m so use to doing these things.  They are habits!

So, how do you create these habits?

First, you need to decide what new habits you want to start and jot them down.  I’ll post a picture of the ones I recommend and you can screenshot them.  Keep that list somewhere that you will see it everyday when you wake up.  Next, you need to create your “why.”  It may sound cheesy but if you don’t know why you want to create these habits, it will make it that much easier for you to just skip them.  Your why needs to be strong, powerful and make you want to jump out of bed.  Write it down and post it with your daily habits.  Read it every morning!  This all sounds easy so far, right?  NOPE!  Of course it’s not easy!  If it were, everyone would do it.  Nothing worth having comes easy.  It takes work and dedication.

Now, it’s time to get your emotions out of the way.  Emotions are great when they are pushing us to do something hard.  But what about the emotions that so often prevent us from reaching our goals?  Those are the ones we have to recognize as emotions and learn to release them.  It’s okay to feel emotions like, “I’m too tired, I don’t want to get up, I don’t feel like working out, I’m too sad to do it today, too stressed, too busy….”  Those are emotions that so many of us let control us and keep us from reaching our full potential.   But it’s time to put your big girl panties on and LET THAT SHIT GO and do the things any way!  It’s time you had some tough love!  Feel it and do it anyway!

We become what we repeatedly do

Read that again!  We become what we repeatedly do!  If you are always making excuses- that is the person you will become.  And no one likes that person, come on!  The good news is that you always have the choice to replace those excuses with new, positive habits that will actually benefit your life.  YOU have that choice!  You choose the kind of person that you become.  Today, decide what kind of person yo want to be and create the habits that will support that!

My morning routine

I’m a huge believer that how you start your morning sets the tone for the day.  That’s why for the last 3 years, I’ve made a conscious effort to wake up each day before my kids for my momma time.  I’ve had a very similar routine that I have been following for these last few years that has been a game changer for me.  As I mentioned before, I’m not a morning person so having this time to myself before having to deal with everyone else’s issues is priceless.

Gone are the days of waking up, rushing around to get 3 kids ready for school and out the door before I even have a chance to breathe or have coffee (I need coffee!). It doesn’t mean that my mornings aren’t very stressful.  I have 3 kids, so of course everything doesn’t always go as planned.  But now, when they wake up, I’m in a peaceful, fully caffeinated state of mind so that I can handle what they throw at me.  I’m telling y’all, major game changer!

I’m going to share with you what my mornings look like.  I highly suggest you read the book My Morning Miracle and really learn how to take back your mornings.  You can thank me later!

5:00- Alarm goes off TIP- Place your alarm (phone) in your bathroom.  It will force you to get up.  Seriously, do it!

5:05- Walk/stumble to the kitchen, start coffee and drink 16 oz water while coffee is brewing.

5:08- Sitting in my favorite chair I meditate for about 10 minutes.  Sometimes I use a guided meditation but not always.  Here are my favorite guided meditations-  Meditation Minis Calm

5:20- Read my daily scripture and spend time with God.  This is the app I use Inspirations

5:30ish- Read person development- You can check out a few of my favorite books here.

5:45- Quickly jot down things that I need to do for the day and list the in order of priority

5:50- Time to get the boys ready for school

6:30- Boys are on bus and now I make my “Momma Crack!”  This is my life line and I can’t workout without it!  Here’s what I use for my pre workout drink, “momma crack.”

6:45- Workout!

After that it’s time for Stella to wake up and be on her way to school and my day really starts!

Take a screenshot of the picture below and make these 5 habits a part of your new routine in 2019.

 

 

 

 

A New Year, A Blank Slate

Does anyone else get as excited about a new year as I do?!  I know you don’t need a new year to start over, set new goals and make big changes.  You can do that any day of the year!  Mondays have always been my favorite for that reason too.  But there is something refreshing about a blank slate, a whole new year to dream big and make things happen.  And as I have for the last 5 years, I have big plans for this new year!  I have set some pretty scary goals but also have committed to changing myself for the better.

I’ll be honest with you, I started to get really down the last few weeks of December.  I had set some big goals last January and I didn’t reach them all.  It can be very disappointing, for sure.  So, I had two choices, I could let those define my future or I could learn and grow from those failures.  And thanks to a dear friend, I decided to NOT focus on the goals that I didn’t reach but instead, focus on what I did accomplish in 2018.  And the list was not that shabby.

Here are a few of my favorite accomplishments from 2018

80 Day Obsession

I started and completed an 80 day program that completely transformed me physically and mentally.  It also challenged me in a way that I had never been challenged.  I’m not gonna lie, it was HARD!  But I stuck to it, stayed committed to my nutrition and my workouts for 13 weeks and the results spoke for themselves.  I literally  cried on the last day because I was so proud of myself and felt so accomplished.  It was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.

Photo Shoot

In January of 2018, I set the goal to complete 80 Day Obsession.  As a reward for completing the program, I promised myself a fitness photo shoot.  This was something I’ve never done before and completely out of my comfort zone.  But I knew at 41 years old, I was going to be in the best shape of my life.  I decided to celebrate that as well as document it!

As the end of the program approached I set the date and scheduled my photo shoot. I was seriously a nervous wreck!  That morning, I went and had my hair and makeup done and showed up for the shoot 20 minutes early, in true Tammy fashion.  My photographer was amazing and put me at ease.  I had such a great time and left there feeling so confident!  It was definitely a highlight of my year and the pictures turned out beautiful.  There is truly no feeling like overcoming your fears and stepping outside your comfort zone.

Earned Vacation

The week following the end of 80 Day obsession and my photo shoot, Chris and I left for Mexico!  How amazing was it going to the beach at 41 years old and in the best shape of my life!!  I had never in my life been more confident strutting around in my bikini!  The best part of this vacation (besides spending it with the love of my life) was that it was a trip I earned by helping other people get started on their on fitness journey.  How cool is that!?  Another highlight of that trip- running into Autumn Calabrese (the creator of 80 DO) and her telling me she liked my outfit and that I looked great!  I died!

Mexico
Modeling

Yep, you read that right!  All 5’3 of me signed on with an agency as a model.  I have to laugh at that a little.  The truth is, ever since I was in middle school, I dreamed of being a model.  I pursued it a few times with little outcome.  To be honest, I don’t think it was very good for my self esteem.  I wasn’t in a place to be able to handle rejection at that age in my life.

Here’s how it happened.  After I received the pictures back from my photo shoot, on a crazy whim, I sent them to a local modeling agency.  I really didn’t expect much but I thought what the hell do I have to lose.  Well, they ended up signing me on and I was even able to book a few gigs over the summer.  I have no plans to become rich or famous from modeling but it sure has been a fun experience so far.  The biggest thing that it has done for me, is boost my confidence.  Not for the reasons you may think.  I’m not getting jobs because I’m the prettiest, in the best shape, etc.  They’re not runway or catalogue jobs!  Remember I’m 5’3 and 41 years old!  It’s the fears that  I’m overcoming fears that has me feeling so proud.   Every time you do something outside your comfort zone, you boost your confidence a little more!

Modeling
Insanity & PiYo Certified

This was a big one too!  For the last 4 years I’ve talked about getting certified to teach Insanity and PiYo classes.  For 4 years, I’ve made excuses for why I couldn’t.  But not this year!  This was my year to face my fears and do all the things!  I had an absolute blast getting certified to teach Insanity with my brother at our annual Beachbody coach event over the summer.  I even got to meet my “girl crush” and one of my fav coaches, Danielle Natoni!  Not gonna lie, I was a little star struck especially when she commented on my abs!  Whaaatttt!!

And then in the fall, I was able to get my PiYo certification from the comfort of my basement.  Turns out that class is a lot harder to teach than I imagined but I look forward to working on it in the new year.

The gang at our annual BB event
Danielle and our master trainer for Insanity certification
Facing more fears

One of the gigs that I booked happened to be at an amusement park.  When I agreed to do this photo shoot, I had no idea  that I would have to actually ride the rides.  See, I have a major fear of heights and I get motion sickness.  While I love taking my kids to this particular amusement park, I never actually ride the roller coasters.  I stick with Stella in the kiddie area and watch the excitement on the boys faces when they come off of the rides.

Not this time.  I had to do it!  I was getting paid to do it!  So, I took my Dramamine, prayed really hard, took several deep breaths and even cussed a little.  But I did it!  I rode the scariest and highest rides at this park.  And I had a blast!  I did get a little sick on day one and may or may not have had to go lie down in the first aid tent.  I rallied though and finished with a bang!

Me! On a roller coaster!!
Growing my business

While my coaching business didn’t end where I had hoped it would.  I had to appreciate the fact that it is still growing and thriving.  Also, the fact that I love what I do and am able to fit it in on my time makes me appreciate it even more.  The last 6-8 months of the year had been really crazy for me with Stella being home all summer, the change in Stella’s school schedule and her added therapies.  The truth is that I didn’t make the time to work my business like I would have.  And I could feel bad about that or accept that this is the season of life that I’m in.  It won’t last forever.  I also have to be super proud of the fact that I may have put less hours into coaching than I would have liked but my income still grew this year.  That is the beauty of this business!  There are few jobs out there that would accommodate my current schedule and still have room for me to grow.  I’m feeling very blessed.

It was a good year!

My word of 2018 that I chose last January was AUTHENTIC.  That word was important to me because I wanted show people the real me, all of me.  No more of just the highlight reel but the good, the bad and the not so pretty.  It was a very freeing year, following this one word.

Though it looks like my theme for last year should’ve been overcoming fears.  I was a bad ass at that all year long!  My plan for 2019- to continue stepping outside my comfort zone and being authentically and unapologetically me.  But my new word this year will be- BECOMING.  This year I will work on becoming my best version, becoming who God intended me to be and becoming the kind of person that gives value to others.  With that I will be focusing on letting go- legging go of other people’s opinions of me, self doubt, things that I can not control, my own limiting beliefs, my excuses and things that do not make me better.

2019 I’m coming for ya!

Happy New Year!

Life-Changing Books

If you guys know me or have followed me for any amount of time, you know how much I love personal development!  Like, seriously, I’m an addict and can’t get enough!  Before I’m even finished with one book, I’m already ordering my next.  I’ve read or listened to countless books, but there are a few that hold a special place in my heart and that I would consider life-changing books.  Since people are always asking me for recommendations on what to read and since they’ve had such a positive effect in my life, I decided I would share my top picks with you.

It was difficult to narrow down my top picks, but I decided on 5 books that I really wanted to share with you guys.  These 8 books have truly had an impact in my life, some I’ve read or listened to more than once.  Some of them I still go back and reference.  Some have helped me with my business, some my personal life, some my financial life and most, my overall mindset.

If you are ready to get inspired, check out my top 5 picks for personal development

 

The Compound Effect

The Compound Effect

The Compound Effect was one of my very first personal development books.  If you haven’t read any of Darren Hardy’s books, you should probably read them all, but start with this one!  Also, I highly recommend you subscribe to his daily emails, they are amazing!  You can register to receive his awesome emails, here. In this book, he shares the principle that small actions that we take consistently can add up to greatness.  Darren shows us how to live our dream life by changing little, daily decisions that we make. These little decisions can either lead to reaching dreams or to disaster.  It’s our choice.

Darren Hardy is one of my favorite authors and mentors.  I’ve had the pleasure of hearing him speak live and he truly is inspiring.  His book, The Compound Effect is one of the first books I always recommend my new coaches to read.  And honestly, I think no matter what you do for a living, everyone should read this book.  You can apply it to anything in life, whether you are an entrepreneur, a stay at home mom, trying to get organized, you are wanting to lose weight, get fit, whatever changes you want to make in your life, you can use the information from this book to guide you.  Pick up a copy here.

My Miracle Morning

My Miracle Morning

Well, if you’ve followed my social media at all over the last 2-3 years, you’ve probably heard me talk about this book.  This book is a game changer!  As someone who is not a morning person AT ALL, it took me some time to accept the challenge Mr. Hal Elrod was asking of me.  But once I did, wow, everything started to change and change for the better.  No, I am not a morning person now, but my mornings go way smoother and I’m much happier since putting these techniques into place.  I get so much more done in the first hour of my day then I ever have and I’m so much more patient as a mother.  If your mornings are full of chaos, rushing around, spilling your coffee on yourself, shoving your kiddos out the door then you need to order this book now!  Seriously, go!  You can pick it up here.

No Limits

No Limits

John Maxwell is one of my very favorite authors!  I have read several of his books and have even had the privilege of attending a live conference call with him last year. His books are all about how to achieve your full potential, how to be successful in business and in life and how to change your mindset so that you can reach that potential.

No Limits is packed full of little nuggets that will help you get the most out of life by “blowing the cap off of your capacity,” as he puts it.  One of my favorite points that he touches on is how to really connect and build relationships with people.  Our successes and failures in life are typically traced back to our relationships so it’s important that we figure out to build strong ones.  I learned so much about how to be more productive, responsible and how my attitude (good or bad) effects so much in my life.  If you are wanting to achieve more, reach your full potential and really maximize your capacity, read this book! It’s GOLD!  You can get it here, if you wanna.

 

 

You are a Badass

You Are a Badass

Don’t be offended by the title of this book.  Jen Sincere is sure to make you feel like a Badass after you finish reading it.  I spent so many years of my life thinking that I was not good enough and doubting my true potential.  Reading her book, helped me to realize that I am truly capable of way more than I’ve ever given myself credit for.  She shows us how to change our self-sabatoging beliefs and behaviors so that we can start getting out of life what we truly deserve.  You are capable of creating a life that you love.  If you are ready to improve your mind and your life, you need to read this book.  It is by far, one of my favs and I’ve read more than once! Go get it now!  And because I buy everything on amazon, here’s a link.

Girl, Wash Your Face

Girl, Wash Your Face

If you haven’t seen or heard about this book yet, well, you must be living on another planet.  Girl, Wash Your Face is all the rage and if you spend 5 minutes reading it, you will know exactly why.  Rachel Hollis speaks to every woman in this book!  I honestly felt like she had been in my head, reading my diary or stalking me!

In this amazing book, she shares with us the lies that we have been telling ourselves and believing, for years.  And then she explains to us why they are indeed lies and how she has overcome these lies.  From the lie that you are not good enough, that you’ll start tomorrow, that you are a bad mom to the lie that there is only one right way to be.  She digs deep and shows how to overcome these self sabotaging lies and to live our best life with the truth.

This book, if you choose to read it, soak it in and allow it, will change your life for the better!  Not overnight, but if you take the time to really let each chapter sink in, and apply her tips that she shares at the end of each chapter, it can have a huge impact on your happiness.  Go get it now!!  Here‘s where I ordered mine.

Choosing your book

When choosing a personal development book, my best advice is to think about the stage of life that you are in.  What do you need to work on most?  How do you want to improve your life at this very moment?  Become more organized?  Work on getting healthier, fitter, more focused?  Are you trying to learn to love yourself?  Are you trying to realize your true potential?  Personal development is just that, it’s personal.  Your time is precious, so choose something that you most need to work on at the moment.  And if there’s no time to sit down and read a book, Audible is amazing!  Listen in your car, while your folding laundry, traveling, at the airport, etc.

If you decide to take any of my recommendations, let me know!  I would love to hear your thoughts on these books!  You can always find me over on Instagram!

Finding Strength Through the Hard

Life is so full of lessons!  Most of them, I think we totally overlook or it takes us a while to see them.  I use to think that when things didn’t go my way, or something bad happened in my life, it was a punishment.  I believed that I deserved it for all of the bad things that I had done in my life, for not being a better Christian, friend, daughter, mother, wife, etc.  Imagine that, me thinking that God would punish me for not being enough. It took some time for me to realize that I am enough, even when I sin, even when I fail, even when I do bad things.  God loves me through it all.  Finding Strength from the Hard, takes time but it is possible.

One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned in my adult life is that there is always an opportunity to learn and grow from our experiences-both good and bad ones.  Tragedies happen, hard times happen, there are times where we want to give up and throw our hands up in the air and ask God, “WHY?!”  Those are the times that we have to dig deep and look within to really see what blessings God is trying to reveal to us.  It is one of the hardest things to do in the moment.  If we can take the time to just breathe and talk to God, He will reveal to us the lesson to be learned.  But we have to listen.  We have to be patient.  And we have to have faith.

There are definitely times in our lives where its easy to do that and times where it seems impossible.  Having faith in midst of tragedy or heartache is one of the hardest things that you will have to do.  Tragedy will test your faith.  It’s up to you go stay strong and decide that your faith is stronger than whatever you are going through.  And when it seems impossible and that you can’t go on, turn to Him, let Him lead the way.  Ask Him for strength, but be patient and listen.

Lessons through my personal loss

I always think back to some of the hardest times in my life to remember how far I’ve come.  My faith was tested to the limits back in 2006 when my mother suddenly passed away at the age of 52.  I talk about this a lot because it was a pivotal moment in my life and it completely changed me.  My mother was my best friend and we spoke by phone daily and saw each other  a few times a week.  She was my rock, my biggest supporter, and my biggest fan.  Her death was by far the hardest thing that I had ever gone through at that point in my life.  I thought that there was no way, any good could come from such a tragedy.  I was angry with God for taking her!

As awful as losing my mother was, it also grew me as a person.  It took time, lots of time but eventually I was able to forgive God and find the strength to move on.  I had two choices when she died.  I could crawl into a hole, continue to feel sorry for myself and spend the rest of my life sad, lonely and in my own pity party of one. Or, I could pray for strength to move on, never forget, grow, become the person God intended me to be, learn from it and thrive.  I eventually chose option 2, but it took time, lots of time.

Losing my momma forced me to become more independent, a freer thinker, a more present mother and also taught me the importance of taking care of this one body that I have.  Her death eventually made me want to LIVE my life to the fullest!  It made me want to soak up every minute with my children and husband because you don’t know when your last day will be.  This tragedy also brought my siblings and I closer together.  While some relationships were lost after her death, the important relationships remained and became stronger.

Tragedy or a Blessing

Then there was the diagnosis of my daughter with Down Syndrome.  You’ve probably heard me talk about this many times.  Having each of my 3 children were life changing events, ones that I hold near and dear to my heart.  Stella’s diagnosis was life changing in my faith and in my relationship with God.  Just when I thought I had my shit together, I get this diagnosis that I thought, at the time, was tragic.

I’m pretty sure that day we received the news, I went through every emotion.  I cussed God, I pleaded with God, I told Him that He made a mistake, He chose the wrong person.  I prayed that the test was wrong.  I cried, I was angry, I was terrified.  I didn’t understand why this was happening.  I blamed myself.  The emotions were real.  They were raw and they changed every few minutes.  I let myself have a pity party for about 2 weeks and then I pulled my big girl pants up and did the things that I needed to do.

I continued to pray to God but I changed my prayers.  I began to ask him for strength, for guidance, for unconditional love.  I thanked Him for entrusting me to take care of another one of His children.  I listened for His guidance.  And as you can probably now see, I’m pretty darn thankful for our Sweet Stella.  She is exactly what I needed and she has taught me more lessons about life and being a good human then I could’ve possibly learned without her.  She has helped me develop a strength inside of me that I never imagined I could have. Her and her brothers make me want to be better and do better every day.  Yes, I still fail, I still fall, but because of them, I always get back up.

“God does not call the qualified, He qualifies the called”

I have learned to trust God in a whole new way.  He will provide you what you need if you let Him.  As one of my sweet friends always says, “God does not call the qualified, He qualifies the called.”  And He continues to do that for me.  I am His work in progress but what is so wonderful, is that He never gives up on me.  And He won’t give up on you either.

I’ve realized that all of the hard times that I’ve gone through in my life, have brought me right to where I am now.  God is using me to share my story, to share His story, to hopefully keep someone else from giving up and giving others the strength to push through the hard.  I use my mistakes and my past to guide and help others.  God doesn’t always reveal His plan to us, but He always has one. Listen and don’t be afraid to follow His plan even if it isn’t always the same as yours.

 

Positivity Not Perfection

It’s easy to look at my social media and make assumptions or judgments about the kind of person that I am or what my life is like.  My social media is typically filled with positive, upbeat messages, advocacy for my daughter, gratefulness and lots of fitness.  One could concur that I have it all together and that my life has always been easy, wonderful and perfect.  You could assume that I’m happy, joyful and positive everyday.  You could, but you shouldn’t.

Now, that doesn’t mean that my social media is a fraud.  It’s actually not at all.  I made a pact back in January, to be myself, to be real, authentic and 100% me on social media.  If you follow my IG Stories, you will see a lot more of that realness.  But I decided to let go of the people pleasing, the trying to win everyone over, the speaking to the people that weren’t even my people and just be me.  Let me tell you, it is so freeing!  Yes, it’s scary at first but oh man, people pleasing is a lot more work.

 

 

 

So, why are most of my posts so positive and upbeat?  Well, I made another pact to myself a couple years ago, that I would begin to work on letting go of the negativity that I’ve carried around most of my life.  I decided to be intentional with my thinking and only hold onto positive thoughts.  Obviously, this is not a perfect practice.  It takes work, time and constant growth.  Social media is filled to the brim with negativity.  You can find it on every scroll!  So, I choose to spread love, positivity, value and hopefully inspiration.

 

When I decided to change my mindset and focus on feeding my mind with positive thoughts daily, my life began to change for the better.  What we think and the thoughts we hold in our mind, we become.  Our feelings that we carry, are what we attract.  I see women every day on social media or in real life, who have held on to negative thoughts for so long, they feel lost, unloved and unworthy.  I know how they feel because I have felt it too.  What I want is to help them realize their true potential.  The only way to do that is by changing the way we think.

My point is this, social media can be a tricky thing.  It can suck you in and cause you to compare your life to what others portray as theirs.  But it can also be a source of learning, growing, starting new friendships, spreading love, advocacy and inspiration.  That is what I choose to use it as.  My life is far from perfect but I choose to be grateful for every minute of it and I encourage you to do the same.  Find the positive people on social media to follow. But understand that we all have our own struggles and we all choose different ways to handle them.  And I encourage you to be the voice of positivity in someone else’s life.