At the time I felt misunderstood and lost, but I explored the city for comfort, gazed inside glistening windows, and treated myself to a bachelorette holiday, complete with pizza and shopping. It sounded pretty good at the time, but since that week in 2016, I’ve grown leaps and bounds… and have come a long way.
When I started Mindful in Style, I began to accept myself and share who I really was.
It wasn’t an easy three years- I struggled with anxiety, letting people get close to me, alcohol, and pains of the past. While living in Boston, however, I learned to let people love me, to feel comfortable in my own skin, and to be vulnerable. While it used to be easier to keep others at arm’s length, I’ve learned the power of connection- and how embodying my authentic self attracts people who appreciate the true person I am.
Since moving home, I’ve been filled with gratitude for the person I became while living in Boston, and I’ve forgiven myself for the mistakes I have made. Even though it was a wonderful experience, I know I’m right where I belong- and I finally became ready to buy some furniture and give the cat a name.
This Thanksgiving I’m extremely thankful to be with family, to have a home of my very own, and to have the newest member of the family, Ollie, to share it with me.
No longer feeling misunderstood and lost, I know I am right where I belong.
It’s a beautiful day here in Massachusetts- the land of the very first Thanksgiving. Just over a year ago I never would have guessed I would be settling in New England… but here I am.
Yesterday I wrote about being thankful for growth and self-acceptance, which has been a daily practice for me in 2017. I usually don’t give much thought to the holidays- being a (recovering) nomad and forever a free spirit, I’ve spent Thanksgiving by myself or with friends these past few years. I have always felt more connected to spirit than to places or people- I am fine being alone and can make a home anywhere. Both of my parents have their own lives and places to go, so I haven’t had a “home base” since my mother sold the house I grew up in back in 2014. To me, holidays are simply just days; although it’s nice to have a reason to share it with family, I think it’s even more important to acknowledge gratitude 365 days out of the year.
Even on the darkest days, there is always something to be thankful for.
There has been endless negativity in the media this past year (although I refuse to watch TV, I can’t escape internet headlines), from our presidential administration to the Hollywood accusations. Each time I hear about another scandal, shooting, or attack, I am finally able to turn my fear into faith and my anger into gratitude. It all infuriates me, but it also motivates me to speak up and do my part to be the best person I can be each day.
It can be difficult to stay grounded in a world that has become so chaotic- which is why I am especially grateful for the spiritual foundation I have developed this past year. Am I religious? No. Do I follow anyone else’s guidelines or rules? Never. But, I have the best guidance there is: my own intuition, which is a manifestation of source energy. Through this year of growth, I have learned to let go of the day- to-day earthly minutia and connect with something much greater.
This year I have also learned I am what some may call a lightworker (the link to the video is awesome) and an empath. These are gifts that we don’t learn we have when we are growing up; instead, people like me are considered loners, overly sensitive, temperamental, and even ADHD. Empaths are prone to addiction and unhealthy behaviors to numb out the world around us, because the stimulation and energy can be too much to handle. As someone who takes on the vibrations of everyone around me, I used to either stay home to avoid others or drink too much to tolerate the people around me.
Today, life is all about balance.
I no longer spend time with people who drag me down- most of my friends these days also consider themselves lightworkers. We have the need to help others, have a strong sense of purpose, and know we were put on this earth to carry a bigger message.
This year, I am thankful to see the light.
No matter what you are thankful for this year or where you are spending the holiday, please remember to remind yourself each and every day of the gifts in your life. Even when this world feels crazy, know that you are protected.
It’s hard to believe that this time last year I was getting ready to move to Boston!
Last Thanksgiving I flew into Michigan to plan, pack, and purge. As I mentioned in my second blog post, I packed extremely light before my move and was well on my way to becoming a full-blown minimalist. People always laugh and think I am joking when I tell them I consider myself a minimalist, but I don’t know many others who have lived a full year on just one small closet of clothes and no TV, car, or computer (my laptop died a while back, so I’ve been writing on my WordPress app or at the library). Less has certainly been more… much more.
I used to think “things” made people happy. In today’s society, how could I not have? As our nation seems to become greedier, I am more and more turned off by money and excess “stuff.” After living with what I actually need and nothing more, I’ve become more responsible with my money, time, and space. I’ve learned to truly appreciate what I do have and treat everything with care. Minimalism has taught me to be happy with myself- not stuff.
Not only do I treat my things with care, I’ve learned to treat myself with more love and compassion, too. It has been a fulfilling year of being my own best friend, but also a bit uncomfortable and lonely. As we go through a spiritual awakening and become the people we are meant to be, we shed old habits, views, and relationships. It’s been a year of ups and downs, but it’s also been a year of strength.
I have better learned who I am, what I actually need, and what matters in life.
Before moving nearly one year ago, I spent much of my life listening to outside influences- not my heart. My intuition always had an answer for me, but I was too nervous to follow its guidance in fear I wouldn’t fit in. It’s true that I have always felt a little “different,” but now I consider my differences gifts, not flaws. TodayI wouldn’t want to be anyone else.
I used to spend my energy concerned about what other people thought of me- instead of using my creative talents, I hid them. Instead of continuing projects, I stopped in fear of failure. Conflicting views and opinions left me confused, anxious, and depressed- so when I moved last year, I decided it was time to stop. Nobody knew me in Boston, so what did I have to lose?
I can’t control what others say, think, or do- so I might as well stay true to myself.
Although I am staying in Massachusetts this year, I will have my “family of intent” to share Thanksgiving with. We all have the family we are born into, but we also have special people who are in alignment with our souls. I consider this my “tribe;” the friends who have encouraged me to write, to be myself, and to follow my heart. Once I learned to value myself, compatible people and opportunities began appearing in my life. While much of my past has been shed this past year- old pain, fears, insecurities, and habits, I am so grateful for the new relationships that have helped strengthen and guide me along the way.