Things They Don’t Tell you About Being Single

So, I’ve been getting used to this single thing, and it’s actually not too bad.

One of the things I feel I never got to do when I first moved to the DMV area was a chance to really explore everything I wanted. I have this book that my boss got me called 100 things to Do in DC before you Die. The title doesn’t really do much for me but there’s lots of great finds on things that go on in the city that you can’t really search for on yelp, so very excited to start crossing some things off.

I still haven’t gotten used to the fact that people here are just out and about during the winter days like there isn’t a slight chill in the forecast, but I know I’ll get there. So, I wanted to make my own list of things I feel are benefits to being single.

It can be a time of growth, understanding and challenges but in all it is a point in any one’s life where there is a choice to either accept how things are or continue to maneuver through life still challenging yourself, and becoming a better person as a result of it.

Being just single comes with some great benefits:

  • Your alone time becomes something you care about: Maybe before you had to share this time or had less of it. Now, it’s something that you look to, it helps you think, helps you regroup, helps you feel centered and allows you to know how precious that time is for you. It becomes a space where you get things done for yourself and allows you to do the things you want to do at the end of the day.
  • Things you neglected become more of a priority: You look back on relationships, goals and just other things that you neglected and you make those things more of a priority. Hopefully this next time around you allow it to stick bc you’ve built up an arsenal of things that you know bring joy to your life so regardless of anything new that comes into your space, you know how to balance those things out.
  • Be selfish: To get your mind right, most of these benefits mentioned, require some selfishness which you shouldn’t apologize for.
  • Can make an effort to date yourself: Find who you are, any part of you that got lost in some way, this is the time to bring it out ad nurture it.
  • You can sit back and realize that life milestones can be changed and best suited for what works for you: This is your life and if you choose to do things a bit later than what is expected of you, it is A-Okay, bc this is your path and you have to be ready when you’re ready, not when others want you to be.
  • You have time to gain some mental clarity: You get to think through some things, how do you make yourself a better person, are there some changes you need to make? Being able to have this moment is about being able to make decisions that are best for you. You’re trying to get your life together so you can be ready for any thing that comes your way. The great Beyoncé said on Oprah some years back that what makes her good in her marriage was that she had a life of her own before she started this great journey with her hubbie. That’s the level I’m trying to be at and that’s my focus.

If you have any other benefits, do share. This is a time of enlightenment for anyone in this same space and its all about finding a part in life that is for you and only you, so hopefully you can share aspects of this for any future relationship to come.

 

Thanks for reading

 

Alvina

 

 

 

Calming Yourself Down With Your One

Hey there. Long time no see but I’m trying, just thought I’d poke my head out and let you guys know I’m still here. Being busy at times can be good and not so good, so I’m still trying to find a balance. Plus, I’m working on moving so that’s another layer of things I have to focus on. I think I would like to talk about my calming activity that has been oh so helpful.  As I sit on my couch, flipping through Netflix, not really finding anything. I cut the cord a while back or is it I cut the cable, but anywhoo not sure if getting older but I just can’t seem to find much that interests me on tv nowadays. 

As I like to multi-task oh so well, I’m also coloring in my adult coloring book and that truly is my peace right now. It’s my one. What is this “one” that I’m talking about? It’s really an activity/hobby that you find for yourself that helps create a calming bubble for you any time of the day. 

Coloring for me is my one thing that I look forward to doing lately, just to take my mind off things and just relax. In the midst of the day-to-day routine, this is my one right now. I used to look forward to meditation, which I still do but there’s a calming effect when I’m just sitting and coloring that I like. 

What I’m paying attention to during this process

  • Colors: I want to make sure I pick the right color for this design, do I want certain areas to match? Do I want to shade certain areas and make others more darker? Decisions, Decisions.
  • Staying in the Line: I understand elementary school for me was eons ago but I still find myself trying to perfect this process, not sure if I never fully mastered this but this is a careful process for me to make sure I stay in the lines.
  • Make it unique: We have a sense of how certain things look in our world and these pictures allow me to change that bc it’s what I want to see.

Ok, so why am I just talking about coloring? Because it helps create a sense of control and peace in the moment. Adult coloring books can aid in managing anxiety, improving mindfulness bc you’re focusing on the task at hand and nothing else really matters. I’ve also read how this can be an alternative to meditation, if it’s not quite your thing yet. My boss got me my first coloring book and its been something that has come in handy for me when I need to relax

What It Means to Have A One

Having a one means you’re putting your self-care first. It means you value personal time with yourself and you’re ok with having alone time to get you right. If you need help in letting go of your stressors for a good bit of time, then its about finding your one. 

Be that person that looks forward to doing something else besides flipping the channels and letting technology take over in every aspect of your life. Remember as a child how you may have looked forward to snack or nap time? Well, just think about that feeling you would have, when you had a few minutes until that time. Find something that brings on those feelings.

Your one needs to bring some joy and happiness your way, it needs to be calming and it needs to be something that motivates you in some way. 

You heard about my one, what’s yours?

Thanks for reading

Alvina

See More Than You Want to See Though Self-Discovery

We all hear this infamous word, self-discovery? We may think it doesn’t apply and may not pay it the attention it truly deserves.  A path that at times we dismiss in the midst of life challenges. So this leads me to a few questions:

 

Do you recognize this person you see in the mirror each day? Are you making the changes you want to make? If not, what is stopping you?

We see ourselves in the mirror everyday, we should at least and it’s about paying attention to what you’re becoming and if it fits with what you value.  You know before I even get into that, are you really looking at yourself each day? Yes, we can stand in the mirror but what are you focusing on? Is it every not so great thing about you, is it everything you aren’t right now, or are you slightly looking at yourself, afraid of what you see? I think that right there is the first part of all of this, being able to fully see who you are and being realistic with what you recognize and what needs an overhaul.

Business Plan, More Like A Self Plan

Just like a business, start thinking of yourself as a brand and what components need assistance to make this part of self-discovery something amazing.

  • What’s your self plan looking like? Similar to a business plan but what are some pieces of yourself that you need to take a good look at.
  • Get your goals in check, from today, a week from now, a month or year, what do you want to see for yourself in you?
  • What things do you need to get you in check, what people can help, how can you help yourself in some way?

Being able to take a hard look at different parts of who are, makes the building process a bit easier to overcome.

I’ve questioned that person in the mirror several times and at times being able to be real on where you are in life and if it matches with your values can be tough. There are different aspects of life that take us away from us, but when your values are in check, that doesn’t happen as easily.

I can remember going back and forth on making sure it’s the right time to do something, maybe I’ve just lost myself and life is really taking its toll, or maybe it’s also trying to find my happiness from others validation.  All of this really made it hard to look at myself in the mirror, bc that fear of what I truly would see once I peeled off the exterior and look deep within.

Sometimes you have to get down deep, may have to shed a few tears, may have to re-do aspects of your life to see YOU again, but overall this is where self-discovery starts.

If you want to live a life of purpose, with intention, a life that is yours, with no regrets, you start it by looking deep into that person you see in the mirror each day and figuring out what you need and what values are truly important to you and finding ways to match that in aspects of your life.

Kept this short and sweet, hope this was helpful to you in some way.

Thanks for reading,

Alvina

 

Burnout Is A Thing

Do you ever feel that work or things around you seem like a drag, you’re constantly tired, may not care about the decisions you’re making, mistakes may be being made, you’re losing yourself but you think this is just you, this is life, and maybe it’ll get better. NOPE.These are signs that you need to slow it down, take a break, recognize that your routine isn’t yours anymore and burnout may possibly be around the corner.

Things To Know About Burnout 

People are in positions where they’re overwhelmed with quite a bit and are being pulled in several directions throughout the day and it can get to a point where its too much.

Burnout is not selective, it can happen to anyone in any field and recognizing the signs is essential for you to know when to take that much needed break, because work and other things in your life can truly wait if you aren’t 100% present. There are 3 dimensions of burnout described by Christina Maslach, a leading researcher on this topic.

  • Exhaustion measures feelings of being overextended and exhausted by one’s work.
  • Cynicism measures an indifference or a distant attitude towards your work.
  • Professional Efficacy measures satisfaction with past and present accomplishments, and it explicitly assesses an individual’s expectations of continued effectiveness at work.

Also, noticing the following may mean its time to get some help in some way.

  • Not sleeping well
  • Lack energy
  • Not thinking straight
  • Not really care anymore about things
  • Feel tired
  • Inattentive
  • Not being present in work, class, or tasks that you once enjoyed

This Can Contribute To Your Burnout

There are several things that can contribute to burnout, you may feel like you aren’t being used to your full potential, maybe your values aren’t matching up with your current work/school tasks, or maybe you just have too much work and not a great way to organize your time well.

Whatever the reason, recognize when you’re not yourself and identify what you can do to manage your burnout before it gets to a point where its too late.  A few red flags, if your normal routine of doing things is affected, you no longer have any hobbies in your life, if sleep has become less of a routine, and if you’re just going through the motions of life and don’t recognize who you are anymore, ding, ding ding, its times to take a step back, regroup and identify what you need.

Burnout can creep up on us if we’re not ready, so get a system together to identify if that overwhelming feeling of yours needs to be tended to before you take another step.

Things you can Do

  • Check-in with yourself daily/weekly
  • Take some control over your situations
  • Recognize ways to deal with consistent stressors
  • Make sure you’re making time for hobbies, vacations, self-care, etc
  • Have a therapist on speed dial

This is just a tip of the iceberg on what burnout is and things to look out for. If you really feel like this is a current issue, find a way to get the help you need, this is just a starting point on making you aware of the problem.

Thanks for reading

Alvina

Thinking of A Different Outcome To Manage Certain Feelings You Might Have

We can always expect that we know how a situation will play out. Maybe they won’t like me, or they’ll talk behind my back, maybe I shouldn’t do this presentation because I already know it won’t go great. You see we tell ourselves quite a bit in situations where we’re about to challenge a possible weakness and possibly strengthen this quality about us but our self-talk is hiding out waiting on these moments to keep you in the same space you’ve always been.

We Have Work To Do

This is what can keep us in our heads, strays us away from growing and doing great things with what we’re capable of and just get out of this comfort zone we love to cuddle in. I think what can work is learning to think of a different outcome, when we’re able to be challenged in a way that we aren’t comfortable with.

For every thought we have about what could possibly go wrong, why can’t we have the same thought about how the situation could go good?

See how that can help with shifting your mindset overtime? We at times are so immersed in how a situation may look, we’ve thought about how bad we may do in a situation, how others may comment on how bad we did, we even think of ways that we can negatively label ourselves and what does that do? It just keeps hitting on that self-esteem of ours and this is what frightens us in a way to not challenge ourselves in different aspects of our lives.

What Can Happen?

Now if you were to shift your thinking, what do you think that would do to you? Your confidence goes up, you know you can be in control of situations, and that you have certain strengths in you to do what you’re meant to do in whatever situation you’re about to go in.  To go into situations confident that you will do your best, it starts with how you train your mind to shift to the good rather than the not so good. I’ve yet to meet someone who could tell me whats really going to happen in a situation before it happens so why create that already for ourselves, but if you know of someone I’d like that number, but then again why would you want to know? Experiencing life as it is, is so fruitful because you challenge aspects of you that have been waiting for moments like this to help you grow and discover the greatness in you.

Thinking of A Different Outcome

  • Get your self-talk in check in any moment: This is where it starts. So, be mindful of the things you say and think about yourself in any situation, it helps with knowing what things you need to change, because that self-talk isn’t going anywhere.
  • Start to see the good in moments no matter how big or small: If you can’t do it in the moment, wait until the end of the day and look back and find something you may have missed from everything that didn’t go so well. Find that small ounce of positivity in your day on something that did go well and savor in that moment for a bit. Also, try to think through what you could have done differently to have a different outcome.
  • Recognize the Control You Have: You have an abundance of control over a lot of situations, you feel you don’t.  Like I mentioned above, it starts with what you think and then its truly believing in your abilities, and following through with what you believe. That belief that you got this, is all you need in making sure you can take moments for what they are. Its not going to be about what you create in your head, but how you plan to do what you’re capable of doing to make it known you always had it in you.

So, how will you think of a different outcome to ponder on to overcome situations that keep causing you some form of anxiety, fear, frustratation, sadness, etc?

 

Thanks for reading

Alvina

Finding Your Peace By Having an Outlet

It’s Friday, thank goodness. Cold season is in effect and I happen to be one of the early victims to catch a few symptoms. So I’ll keep this post short and sweet.

Writing has been my peace lately and it’s actually been something I used to do and stopped but I get to release so much unconsciously when I write. It can be relaxing, it can be the sigh of relief at a times that I need, it can also be my best friend in a sense but I just don’t have to open my mouth and the benefits of this relationship is that it doesn’t say anything back, when I really just want to write down all my thoughts. 🙂 To be able to have an outlet at times is helpful, sometimes you just don’t want to talk out everything that is going on with you with others, so how do you find your peace in those moments?

As things occur in our lives, at times we don’t have ways to process everything. We may need to go straight to another task while never fully reflecting on what just happened. We can let things pile up and pile up and may get to a point where boom, we just explode because we never had an outlet to release in a sense. To avoid these moments, to stay present and be mindful and in control of you at all times, make sure you have a way to release things at the end of the day or week. Find a healthy way to get out your feelings, frustrations, etc to be able to push forward instead of being pulled back into past situations, you can no longer control.

Find an outlet and be consistent

This is my short reminder/tip for the week and looking forward, have a consistent activity that you use to release the stressors of your day. Exercise, yell in a pillow, color, write, talk it out with someone who won’t judge, etc. Do something, because you need to make sure you’re making you a priority at all times and like I’ve said before for you to be good in aspects of your life, you’re going to have to be good with you so have a healthy outlet to deal with the ins and outs of what life gives you. The more you handle these moments, the more your mental space is clear to be in the moment of what is occurring. You make a choice to put your mental health at the top and for that, your mind and all the other things it may control will thank you.

Have a good one and thanks for reading

Alvina

Mood Changes Are Coming with The Seasons Changing

This past weekend I was in Brooklyn, NY for the WELL Summit and I really enjoyed it. One of the things I’ve been trying to do is being able to incorporate layers of mental health and wellness together the way I would like to see it. This was my first Wellness summit and I loved everything about it. From the vendors, the variety of foods that were served (since I’m partly vegan, sometimes I don’t want just salad, there are other creative ways to be plant-based), the talks on self-care, burnout, and just focusing on your passion. A nice little boost when I feel I got side tracked a bit.

So, in preparing for moving forward with things in my life, being single again, and the weather changing, I thought I would check-in about mood changes.

Seasons Changing 

I always talk about planning and one of the things I’ve noticed lately is how at times things can sneak up on us to the point where we can feel a bit overwhelmed in moments because we think are unexpected. I guess what I mean is as the days get shorter, we’re getting less sun, our mood changes a bit and we can at least have a plan now on how to deal. As you know, we stay indoors more, and this is a time to be mindful of seasonal affective disorder (SAD). This is still under the umbrella of depression and usually occurs in the late fall towards winter months. The symptoms of depression apply, from low energy levels, sleep issues, lack of motivation, mood changes, etc. To be able to manage this and anything going on in your life as the days start to change, it’s about recognizing the patterns of how you feel.

What I wanted to go into is how we prepare for these moments, when our moods change because of external factors out of our control. What is that plan and how do we stick to it?

Things To Do When Your Mood Changes 

  • Keep track of when your moods start to change or just anything about you starts to be a bit different, collect data to see find possible triggers and keep this as something you use as each month comes on, so you identify the pattern.
  • Get your Action Plan together in how you will continue to push through in some way regardless of how little the task is, so you still feel like an active participant in being able to pull through this change.
  • Build up an arsenal of things that bring you some happiness, keep them in a central location, have a mental note of this and use this when you feel things within you start shifting a bit. You want to get a handle on things before it’s too late and you’re in the midst of chaos or stress. There’s a few self-care boxes out there that can be of help as well
  • Read Heart Talk
  • Schedule some cuddle times with your significant other, pet or just have a moment for you where you take time to just be in the moment doing something that helps you relax.
  • Keep some organization going in your life. Look at aspects of your life that seem to get disorganized around this time and plan a way to keep yourself in line in some way.
  • Make sure your sleep routine is under control.
  • Eat healthy, your diet can play a bit factor in how you feel so make sure your having a healthy and balanced diet.
  • Get rid of things that no longer bring you joy, remove things around your place that no longer serve you anymore and create a minimalistic space of things that you like to look at.
  • Have a look at your routines, what’s going to continue to work now and what needs to change to?

Prepare yourself and be in control of you regardless of how things change around you. Just because certain things can cause mood changes, doesn’t mean you have to let it be that. You can start to take an active approach as the sunny moments start to dwindle away.