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conscious living mental health mindfulness self discovery sobriety

Sober Vegetarian Cat Person

Dating is a funny thing.

Dating is awkward as it is, but it’s even more awkward when you’re sober.  I used to drown my discomfort in a glass of wine, telling stories my date couldn’t follow, but since moving to Boston in 2016, I’ve barely dated at all.

Well, compared to when I lived in New York City, that is.

Sure, I’ve met people in various ways- traveling back from NYC on the Megabus, substitute teaching, through recovery circles, and on an app here and there.  Each interaction lasted for a very short while, most likely because I detected their bullshit and realized I was something much different than what they created in their mind.

Next.

This morning I noticed that The Fix quoted me in their recent article, “Are You Ready To Date Sober?”  Ironically, I’ve been thinking about that question a lot lately.

My default answer the past year or so has been “I’m not interested in dating anyone at all.”  That’s actually not true, though.  I would be interested in dating someone- but only if they were interested in a sober vegetarian cat person.

I’m done with pretending I am someone I am not.

I’m also done with changing for someone, switching my views, or doing things I’m uncomfortable with doing- and I’m certainly not going to pick up a drink just to make you feel more comfortable.

Part of recovery is learning to love and accept yourself for who you are- loving yourself for what your heart says, not the world around you.  Despite being someone who prefers to stay in on a Friday night, sautéing up vegetables while drinking a seltzer, I’m confident there’s a lid to every pot…

and mine will be here when I’m ready.

Categories
conscious living mental health mindfulness self care

More Meditation, Less Medication

0In this day and age, there seems to be a pill for everything.  Not only are people running to their doctors for relief, the providers themselves are over-prescribing, patients are misusing their prescriptions, and often times, they become addicted to their medication.

Depression and anxiety are two of the most common disorders, which are treated by a variety of medications- some addictive, some not.  Although antidepressants and anti-anxiety pills can be helpful, they don’t solve the biggest problem- the root cause of the discomfort.

Researchers and a growing number health care professionals are encouraging patients to practice meditation in addition to their medical treatment and therapy.  Although many disorders are a chemical imbalance, most don’t consider how meditation can help re-wire their brain.

What if treatment facilities and doctors prescribed more meditation, and less medication?

I’ve had anxiety throughout my life, which is something I’ve never been treated for.  My social anxiety was so terrible growing up that it caused me to eat lunch in the library when I didn’t know who to sit with, skip classes or school events, and, as soon as I began college, I started drinking heavily to self medicate.  I may not have taken pills to relieve my discomfort, but I drank my worries away so I wasn’t aware of my surroundings.

I eventually went to therapy and tried antidepressants to keep my depression in check.  I didn’t take the medicine long enough to know whether or not it helped me- life situations had improved and I was abstinent from alcohol- but I also added something else to my life:

Mindfulness and meditation.

Between therapy, group support, and meditation, my anxiety and depression have been alleviated. I learned that spending more time inward was the solution to my issues.  If you break down depression and anxiety, it’s quite simple:

Depression is living in the past, and anxiety is living in the future.

Living in the present is being happy.

Whether you choose to medicate or not, consider adding meditation to your daily routine.  There are many apps that can get you started if you’re a newbie to the practice, such as Calm and Headspace, and even a variety of YouTube videos to guide you along your way.  Meditation has changed my life, and I know it can change yours, too.

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Categories
conscious living mindfulness self care

Simple Pleasures

The best things in life are free.

The older I get, the more I enjoy time to myself, strolling the streets, and taking in all the beauty around me.

As a city dweller, it’s easy to become conditioned to more- more action, more material things, and more excitement. However, with so much to see and so many beautiful things to take in, it doesn’t take any money or resources to have a wonderful day- just simple awareness.

I’m grateful to be able to stop and smell the roses- with a little mindfulness and gratitude, you’ll see that the simple pleasures in life truly are the best.

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conscious living moon phases

Stop and Smell the Flowers: New Moon in Taurus

Happy New Moon in Taurus!

This cycle’s energy is all about balancing work and play, giving and receiving, yin and yang.

Remember to stop and enjoy the beauty all around you, skip down the street, and sing along to your favorite tune! Life isn’t as serious as we can make it out to be.

Remember to charge your crystals, sage your home, and set your intentions. Now is a powerful time to harness this grounding Taurus energy!

Categories
conscious living spirituality

Sacred Space: The Significance of the Number 4

Yesterday I had the day off for Patriot’s Day- a holiday celebrated in both Massachusetts and Maine- and decided to spend my afternoon recharging in nature. Although I was tempted to watch the Boston Marathon runners along Beacon Street, I knew it would be best for me to connect my mind, body, and spirit with a dose peace and quiet.

We are a society on the go, and often times we neglect to honor our natural rhythms and cycles.

The number 4 represents the state of being- “things are as they are.” Through planting myself in nature, I got back to my roots and centered myself.

4 energy also represents a sacred space, a sanctuary, and embodies security- which is exactly how I felt sitting along the Charles River, breathing in the warm air and listening to the birds chirp all around me. I have my own sacred space in my home, but there’s nothing like being one with nature, allowing all feelings and thoughts to flow.

There are 4 seasons, 4 elements, 4 directions; 4 is an instrumental number, symbolizing a strong foundation and the natural cycles of life.

Since April is a 4 month, I’ve been focusing on developing my own solid foundation by taking small steps to build a peaceful and purposeful life on a daily basis. Whether it’s meditating by the river or being mindful of what you eat, consider what you’re doing today to honor your mind, body, and spirit.

You’re worth it.