SNOWED IN WITH A CAUSE

Good Evening Fellow Busy Brains,

If you’re from the east coast, you know that we have been hit with winter storm ‘Jonas.’ Jonas came in with a BOOM and he left, leaving my family and I snowed in all weekend long (and quite possible Monday, too). I came home to my parents (about an hour out of DC) to get snowed in because I wanted to be cozy and eat well during the storm (AKA not go grocery shopping), but it looks like I will not be getting back to DC any time soon. The plows have yet to come by and clear our roads, and so I will be stuck here until they do. Being snowed in has really forced me to relax, and I really needed it!

The newest update in my life, is that I am moving out of my DC apartment and into my parents to save money while I begin my yoga teacher training. I found an amazing yoga institute where I will be able to become a certified yoga therapist in a few years. This is all such exciting news and I am ecstatic to finally be chasing my dream, however I still tend to stress and obsess over the moving out, unpacking, and settling back into my parents’ home. That’s why this snow storm came at the perfect time. I have done nothing but: shovel snow, yoga, play with my dogs, drink tea on the sofa over looking the beautiful forest draped in snow, watching movies with my mom and dad, shovel, shovel, shovel, and take a bath. During this time, whenever an anxious thought about the moving process came up, I would quickly remind myself that there is nothing I can do about it now and should, instead, enjoy sitting on my butt and drinking a delicious cup of Egyptian Licorice tea. I was able to fully relax for two days and truly enjoy the simplicity of the days. If I hadn’t been snowed in, I probably would have ran necessary errands and gone back to DC early to pack up more stuff.

In addition to relaxing, I really spent quality time with my parents. The three of us shoveled for a total of 12 hours, and we would try to make it fun by racing with the shovels or jumping in the snow in our sports bras (my dad did not participate in the polar plunge). Spending time with loved ones is also really good way to reduce stress and anxiety, so it’s best to spend your “snow days” together!

Getting snowed in can go either way for an anxious person, but if you can just remind yourself and be conscious of those anxious thoughts that pop up, you can silence them for a bit :). We live in such a busy, on-the-go culture, and being snowed in prevents us from being  workaholics and dwelling on unnecessary “to do lists.”

I hope wherever you are, you can give yourself a “snow day” every once in awhile.

Stay warm, friends!

XoXo,

 

Evysieg

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RESOLUTIONS, REDEFINED

HAPPY NEW YEAR, READERS AND FRIENDS!!

Is anyone else a little shocked its 2016? Time flies when you’re anxious…. haha!

Ok, so I wasn’t anxious all year long, time also flies when you’re working hard and having fun. I hope that that is more so the case for all of you. I feel like this year has really been a time of growth and renovation in my life. I have been struggling significantly the past three years, and feel that I have finally begun to recover and recuperate from the debilitating anxiety, depression, and fatigue. Each day, I continue to work at the recovery so that I will not slip back into my old ways. It is useful to look back at 2015 and see how you have changed. I am not a fan of dwelling in the past, but if you simply just reflect back on positive changes that you made, I think that you will find it useful and encouraging. For example, I began a daily practice of mindfulness-based meditation just a few months ago, but the changes have been so positive. Each time I feel anxious, or even fatigued, I turn to my breath. I first have to notice where it is, because more often than not, in a stressful situation, I am holding it. Next, I start taking deep breaths and noticing them as I breathe in and out. Doing this for a minimum of two minutes (on the metro, in the office, etc.) during an anxious moment has, over time, made me less anxious in general. I encourage everyone to try this because I have found mindfulness to be the most useful tool in general for anxiety.

Mindfulness isn’t the only positive thing I notice when looking back in my year review, I also reduced my alcohol intake significantly. I started to realize that alcohol made me tired and more anxious than normal. For these reasons alone, I completely cut drinking out for one month. I felt much better, but decided to drink here and there on weekends since I enjoy a good brew and I am still at the age where all my friends want to meet at bars (bad excuse, I know). Also, I became much more healthier in regards to diet. After seeing so many different specialists for my fatigue, I really researched the crap out of “foods that give you energy” and “diets that cure chronic fatigue and anxiety.” I am currently eating a 90% plant diet and I am satisfied!

I think that I cured my fatigue 85% in 2015, and this alone makes me very happy and relieved.

The purpose of this post is to focus on the good parts of 2015. Think of all those small things that made it great, the laughter, the joy, the happiest moments. I spent the holidays in Rincon, Puerto Rico with family and friends, and although we fought a little, I felt very happy to be around my whole family for a whole week (and the ocean). It made me realize how lucky I am, despite having other struggles in my life.

If you are having trouble setting a New Year’s resolution, try setting more than one. I think we have such big expectations for the New Year and then it just stresses us out when we can’t accomplish the resolution we set. So instead of pledging to lose 20 pounds or achieving a Kardashian butt, try setting a few realistic ones:

  • One long-term resolution (for me, find a new job by Spring),
  • One short-term resolution (for me, spend less time on smart phone)
  • One self-care resolution (meditate once a day).

By setting a few smaller resolutions, we can more easily imagine and achieve them, producing less stress. I am unhappy in my current job, but do not have the time right now to focus on applications, so it is a long-term resolution. For short term, I chose to delete Snap chat (iPhone app) off of my phone to limit phone use.  I think self care resolutions are beneficial, because any anxious person needs some downtime on a daily basis, whether it’s reading or taking a bath.

Try writing your resolutions you make for 2016 down, and display them somewhere you will see them so you don’t forget about them. You are ultimately in charge of 2016, so make it positive!

I would love to hear some of your resolutions, feel free to comment below!

Stay warm,

Evysieg

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