Food For Thought · Personal Growth

The Lessons I Learned, AGAIN

Five Minute Journal App

Not gonna lie. 2021 really challenged my @fiveminutejournal attentiveness.

For the first time in three years I was not very good at doing my daily gratitude. I found myself trapped in a depression I couldn’t “Gratitude” Practice my way out of and everything I was in the pattern of doing for over 2 years came to a screeching halt.

I know what it’s like to feel stuck in a dark, unrelenting place. I was so burnt out from work, world noise, and the everyday negativity that seemed to permeate everyone and everything around me that I couldn’t see a way out…not even a way through. I got stuck in the “quicksand” of my hopeless thinking and all my positive practices slipped away.

  • First to go: yoga.
  • Then art/creativity.
  • Months later by my Daily Gratitude Practice.
  • Last was my daily water consumption (I always hit 64-80oz).

I finally admitted in October that I had hit bottom.

Here I have to say my therapist kept me from totally drowning. Weekly sessions, working on tiny “No’s” was truly my first step.

I had lost all sense of boundaries. I was an empty shell trying to still get through increasing stress at work, failing to be there as the mother, wife, and friend that I so love being. All because I had stopped “filling my cup.”

Peeps, I cannot stress enough the importance of caring for yourself FIRST.

I continue to learn this lesson the “Hard Way.”

Please, if you take away anything from my experience, let it be this:

  • BOUNDARIES
  • Acts of SELF-CARE
  • GRATITUDE

Keep these ALWAYS.

Then GROWTH is possible. And growth is necessary to our human experience. Growth keeps us moving forward. Keeps our minds elasticity and our body strong.

I pray that I never give up my desire and joy in learning new thing: skills, lessons, practices.

May 2022 bring you back to yourself, if you were lost; bring you positive energy, if you are feeling stuck; love, if you are feeling alone.

Blessings❤️

Personal Growth

Life Lessons 2021

Instagram @anxiety_wellbeing

Work in Progress…

These are HARD! All the lessons I’ve been learning in 2021 are around self-care and healthy boundaries.

Glad to know I’m not alone ❤️.

WHAT WILL 2022 BRING?

Personal Growth

The Old That Is Strong Does Not Wither

I’ve felt very low of late, and not at all inspired to share.

Then THIS. A beautiful Sunday afternoon at the beach with my loving partner, Don; and the cold, brilliant blue sky. A beautiful walk and time spent in meditation on the beach. Even a RAINBOW (not pictured).

Photo by Angelic Westfall, Cozy Beach

And today THIS. A quote from J. R. R. Tolkien found on Pinterest.

We all know that first line: “All that glitters is not gold.” Personally, I’d never heard the whole quote or knew it came from R. R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings series.

Today I am feeling inspired.

For the first time in quite a long while, I FEEL the sunshine.

I am emerging from the darkness and coming into the LIGHT.

Love and Light to all who are struggling. May you see the Light at the end of your tunnel ❤️.

Personal Growth

It’s Not Forever, Just For Right Now

Flipping through favorite pictures on my phone and came across this.

Zentangle by Angelic Westfall (Me) circa 8-2019

I drew this. This beautiful zentangle piece came from ME. The same me who’s been feeling like I’m failing at everything this week.

Just one of many reminders that just because I’m struggling right now, doesn’t mean it’s forever.

I will be this version of me, actually, a BETTER version of ME again. AFTER I walk through this uncomfortable, sometimes painful, challenging time I’m in right now.

I will create beautiful things.

I will be happy.

I will be in a better place. Once I have learned the lessons needed to get through NOW.

Food For Thought · Personal Growth

I Am A Recovering People Pleaser

Barry M Sherbal

I’m doing it! One step at a time. Sometimes I falter. Sometimes I backslide. Sometimes I’m completely successful and walk away… knowing I will be ok.

This lesson of “I am Enough” is a hard one to learn when I’ve spent a lifetime pleasing others to gain acceptance and love.

Today, I do have unconditional love in my life from the people most important to me.

STILL, I haven’t completely put to rest those voices of my childhood that told me through repeated actions, inactions, verbal and nonverbal cues that I had to earn love, earn attention, earn worthiness.

If anyone feels this way now or has struggled with it in the past, my heart goes out to YOU.

YOU are Enough!

YOU are worthy of the life you want.

You are worthy of the love you want.

You are worthy of the career you want.

Whatever you can dream, you are enough for it!

We are always a “Work in Progress” and at the same time ENOUGH.

We are Enough to meet that challenge that scares us.

We are Enough to take that opportunity we secretly tell ourselves we don’t deserve.

We are Enough to be loved flaws and all.

We are Enough to walk away from relationships and situations that no longer serve us well.

As I type this, I say these things to myself: A reminder that I AM ENOUGH!

YOU ARE TOO ❤️

Food For Thought · Personal Growth

Taking A Much Needed “Time Out”

I’m in Athens, Georgia for 2 weeks to help family. I love them and I’m happy to have a job that allows me to work from anywhere so I can be here to help when they need it.

Those who are in the Healthcare profession or are caregivers for loved ones know what this means. It’s an act of love, done gratefully and (hopefully) gracefully. It is also emotionally, mentally, and physically draining.

This is a reminder that it’s time to take a BREAK, or as I call it a “Time Out.”

I’ve been here a week and today I needed that “time out.” Luckily, the weather has started to turn for Autumn and the temperature/humidity has let up and cooled. So today, my time is being spent outside.

The Georgia Botanical Gardens has always been a favorite place for me, when I lived here and now when I visit.

Botanical Garden Beauty
Water Feature at Visitor Center Entrance

As I sit by this beautiful water feature at the entrance to The Visitor Center, I feel my stress, sadness, anxiety and exhaustion melt away…

I hope you take a “Time Out” if you need it. Remember: you’re no good to anyone if you’re not good to yourself ❤️

Blessings.

Personal Growth

Are You Getting the Affection You Crave?

Of course we all want affection and attention.

By Bill Watterson

PLEASE! Tell me I’m not the only person who struggles with this conundrum!

What do you do when you want attention?

What if you don’t want to ASK for attention?

We want attention. We want certain kinds of attention. We want others to know what we want without having to ASK.

Sound Familiar?

The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman, deals with this issue from the marriage/relationship aspect. If you haven’t read it, I highly recommend it. Discovering your “love language” can be a HUGE boost to your relationship. More importantly, knowing your partner’s love language could completely transform the way you communicate with each other.

With friendships, I find this “need” for reciprocal attention, time, or interest much harder to figure out. A lot of MY problems in this area can be attributed to my “people-pleasing” tendencies. This bad habit has blurred the lines and been ineffective in developing reciprocal relationships with others.

So…I reach out to YOU, dear readers, for your experience, expertise, and resources.

HOW do you get your needs met with friendships?

How do you determine: when to stay or walk away?

What traits tell you THIS will be a friendship worth investing in?

I’m looking for honest experience and honest answers, especially if you’ve overcome a “People-Pleaser” personality issue.

Food For Thought · Personal Growth

Fall Down… Get. Back. Up!

Pinterest

Fall down, Get back up!!… even if you need to rest first.

That’s ok.❤️

Life is hard. What makes it a blessing is what you do with your experience!

Use your challenge as opportunities to learn and share your experience!

Food For Thought · Personal Growth

My Daily Prayer

Thank You, Pinterest!

Personal Growth

The Real Me and the “Me” You See

I’ve been gone a while. From my Blog, from the “Me” I want to be, from having anything I felt I could share. For this, I am sorry.

I know that the writings of others often help me when I feel low, and yet that is when I am least likely to share. I don’t like to show the ugly underbelly of my depression and anxiety and where it takes me. The flip side of that is that I know these are the things that people need to hear and see… my very HUMANNESS.

I only want to share when I’ve figured something out, or had a new revelation.These are important too. Still, others also need to see the struggle. So again, I’m sorry for not being here to share mine.

I promise to do better at showing up. In the meantime, here’s a bit of wisdom (from elsewhere) that struck me recently:

I am posting my picture with this list because:

  1. This picture is not me, and yet… it is me.
  2. The REAL ME needs that second picture. That list of “Reminders.”

I am this picture… sometimes. I am often NOT this picture. I am the same mess you feel like. I struggle to do those “healthy things.”

Some days I can’t get out of my pajamas. Some days I can’t get organized. I don’t have energy or make time for self-care: exercise, Art, journaling, writing that “To Do List” (or doing it!).

Don’t be fooled by this first picture. She looks like she’s doing everything right… all the things you think you “should” be doing.

The ME behind the picture needs people like YOU. You remind me it’s ok to be a “Work-in-Progress” the same way you need ME to remind you that this list of Affirmations are important.