Lifestyle, mental health

My Journey: Day 1


Today starts the serious effort needed to lift myself up from the haze of depression. Today starts the movement to regain my life back from depression. This is a bold statement, yes, but I have every intention to recreate my life without depression. And I want to take you all along with me on this journey. 

First, I want to get you all updated on how life has been these past few months. I have stopped writing previously, so there’s a bit to catch up on. 

It started in the beginning of June 2017. I did not want to get out of bed. And almost every day since then I have spent the majority of my days laying in bed. They started out terrible, with me just laying there doing nothing but sleeping. Eventually, and I’m talking more than a month of time, I started to at least look at Facebook. More recently, I’ve been spending my days watching various videos on Facebook. Everything from the serious and motivational to the stupid and light-hearted. While I’m probably going to continue this habit after I write this, I’m proud to say that I’ve at least acknowledged the bad habit and am attempting to accomplish some things throughout my day today as well. 

There have been many bumps in the road. Adopting new fur babies, having to give up fur babies, anger and frustration for no reason, and jealousy. I’d say that my biggest struggle coming from this would be the jealousy, as much as I fucking hate to admit it! I’ve been jealous of my boyfriend. He has a full time job, friends who invite him to spend time with them, and a chance to do a little bit of travel for work. I’ve instantly gotten angry every time he is invited to do something fun. I mean, I’ve been spending my days isolated and sad. Of course I’d be jealous but, that didn’t give me the right to take that out on him. I feel terrible about it. However, it’s no one’s fault but my own. 

Over the past 8 months I’ve lost my friends. No one talks to me anymore, no one invites me to spend time with them anymore. I know this is at least partially my own fault. I’ve pushed everyone away, especially within these last few months. I rarely even get the chance to talk to my best friend anymore. Not because I don’t want to but because I feel as though I bother her and add on unnecessary stress to her life with my own problems. It’s just felt easier to keep to myself and not bother others with the way my life has been going. 

On the bright side, I am grateful. I have an amazing boyfriend that has stuck by my side through this all. Through all my moods, self-pity, and just emotionless days. He has been there to make my coffee every morning, he has been there to walk our dog every day, he has been there to hold me through my rough times. He is a blessing. 

Now that you’re caught up a bit, I want to share with you how I plan to make my two goals come true. The first, to recover from this depression. And the second, to inspire others with my story. I made sure to set realistic goals without a time attached to them. They may take years to accomplish, and that’s okay. The important thing is that I don’t give up again. The important thing is that I keep fighting. Daily. 

Recovery From Depression. 

  1. Make the bed every day. 

This may seem a little silly but, it’s actually shown to be a great motivator. This idea came to me quite a while ago, back when I actually had a bed frame and it was easier to make the bed. But, even with the mattress on the floor in the living room, I’m going to give it a shot. My boyfriend first suggested this as it was something he learned in a sober living environment. I heard this idea again yesterday while watching a video of a former Navy man giving a speech. The point is, you wake up and you complete this first small task and it encourages you to then complete another task. If anything at all should go wrong, at least you have a clean and made up bed to crawl into at the end of the day. Another benefit for us struggling with mental health? It’ll help us to stay out of bed as to not mess up the task we completed. 

    2. Set daily goals. 


This is the list of things I have to accomplish today. It’s small, extremely small, yes. However, it’s best to start small and work your way to the bigger things. We all know something as simple as doing the dishes can be a challenge when you’re struggling with life. So, take baby steps and eventually you’ll get there. 

    3. Daily gratitude list. 

This has been one of my go to tasks when I’m struggling with depression. I usually write 10 things I’m grateful for. Some days it’s hard to come up with something. Other days, it’s easy. But this will help to remind you what good there is in your life. Here’s mine: 

  1. God’s patience
  2. My loving boyfriend
  3. Coffee
  4. Cigarettes 
  5. My fur babies
  6. Dinners with my boyfriend
  7. Today is Thursday, almost the weekend
  8. I’m writing again
  9. It’s not too ridiculously hot to sit outside even though I’m starting to sweat like crazy
  10. Taking the first step to recovery 

      4. Wake up earlier. 

I’ve been waking up around noon, smoking a couple cigarettes, and then heading back to bed to watch videos. Mostly, I want to wake up earlier so I feel better about myself, can write before it gets ducking hot as hell outside, and have more time to spend accomplishing my goals. 

These are just a few of the goals I have set to help me overcome this depression. I look forward to the outcome of this journey and I hope it inspires you to get up and make a change in your life as well. 

-Liz

Advertisements
Lifestyle, mental health

Stay At Home Dog Mom


I love the title, “stay at home dog mom.” It puts such a positive spin on my life. It makes it sound like I’m actually doing something, taking care of something. But, I’m not. Not really. My boyfriend feeds the dogs, he walks them, and does everything else for them. But I’ve got the cuddles. 

See, for the past year, I’ve been a stay at home dog mom. Not a very good one by any means, but one nonetheless. 

A year ago depression hit me hard. It left me in bed binge watching Friends for a month straight. Depression made me leave school, again. And I was actually doing well that time. I can’t help but look back and feel helpless. Why couldn’t I just find the strength to keep going? Why in the hell couldn’t I just get up. If I had known the impact of my choices, would I have gotten out of bed? I would have a life right now, I would be working and have friends and be a human. But, I feel as though I’m none of those things. Not anymore. 

These days, I do good to get up and go to a coffee shop for a few hours. Hell, lately I do good to get up and make it to my front porch. I slept until 2pm yesterday. 

I feel as though the outside world may be judging me. When they ask what I’ve been up to, I’ve got nothing to say. I mean, I could say I’ve been working on my depression, but that’s not an “appropriate” response. 

I wish there had been something else I’ve fully committed myself to working on. I wish I were selling things online, starting a business, traveling, doing SOMETHING. But, there’s not.

I feel ashamed. I feel like my life isn’t mine anymore. I wake up, take my boyfriend to work, come home, and sleep the day away until it’s time to pick him back up. I don’t do things around the house like I should, I don’t clean up messes, I do good to shower and change my clothes. My mind and my body and tired. I can’t find the energy. 


I know what I should do. I know what I’m capable of doing. But I don’t do those things. Some days, I purposefully don’t even try. Like yesterday, I didn’t try. 

What does it look like when I do try? Well, it looks like my day so far. 

4am: I wake up to my boyfriend telling me that we slept through his alarms, we should be leaving right now. I yelled at him, turned over, and sarcastically asked if he’s made coffee yet. The poor man is sitting there with a coffee mug full of coffee just waiting to love me. 

4:30am: I put my shoes on, grab my wallet and keys and we head out the door. This morning, we had to pick up his coworker who was out of the way. I wasn’t thrilled about this, and I made that known. I complained the whole time. 

5am: I drop off my boyfriend and his coworker not even a mile from our house. When I leave, I notice they end up driving past our place anyway. There was no need for me to drop him off this morning. They could have picked him up. I was upset. 

5:30am: I’m finally in bed going to sleep. I’m tossing and turning because I’m awake enough to stay up but not awake enough to get rid of the terrible hungover feeling I had from such a little night’s sleep. 

7am: My alarm goes off. I could have gotten up. I didn’t. I turned it off and went back to sleep. 

9:30am: I finally wake up and get out of bed. I pour some coffee and head out to the front porch. I look up subscription boxes for mental health. I read an article about what it’s like to have an illness that requires you to stay home. I scroll trough Facebook. 

10:18am: It’s currently 10:18 and I’m writing this. My dogs are laying in the shade outside and I’m already smoking my 5th cigarette from just being out here since 9:30. My coffee is almost empty and that leaves me with the choice to make more, or get ready to go to the coffee shop. 

I want to accomplish so much today. I want to get work done at the coffee shop then come home and clean up the house which is such a disaster that it’s probably contributing to my bad moods. 

I want to do so many things, I want to be “normal” again. I don’t mean normal as in other people, but normal as in myself again. I want to strive and be ambitious. I want to live a life again. 

-Liz

Lifestyle, mental health

You Fucking Got This


I am the type of person that, unfortunately, has bad days often. Whether it’s due to my mental health, my ever-changing moods, or just lying in bed all damn day, there never seems to be a shortage of bad days. It fucking sucks, guys. 

However, one of my biggest problems is that I hold on to a bad day.

Oh, I had a bad day on Monday? Well, I’ll try again next week. WEEK. Not, let’s try again after some coffee not, let’s try again tomorrow no, let’s try again next week. 

Yesterday was fucking miserable for me. And I’ll be open and honest and explain it all. 

First, after dropping my boyfriend off at work, I came home and went back to sleep. I then proceed to sleep until noon. That alone usually sets off a bad mood. But wait, there’s more!

Secondly, I had some weird-ass fucking dreams. Like, I can’t even admit these to my best friend type of dreams. They were that bad. But, to give you an indication of how they were, they were sexual dreams. Mainly focusing around the feeling of doing something “wrong.” Those are the worst because then I wake up feeling like I need to act out on it and do something “wrong.”

So, in an effort to rid myself of these thoughts and dreams I watched porn. It’s wrong in my mind, but it still wasn’t enough. Thankfully, I didn’t act out on anything else. 

Thirdly, like stated above, I watched porn. This always sends me into a spiraling out of control bad mood. I beat myself up, I hate myself, I’m disgusted with myself.

To top it all off, I felt like something had taken over me and I wasn’t myself. I wanted to post risqué photos of myself on Instagram, I wanted to do anything for those “likes.” When did I become this person? What was happening?

I spent all damn day in bed yesterday. I allowed myself to have a shitty day because I just didn’t know how to get myself out of it. The part of my day spent alone ended with me sitting in the bathtub after a shower crying and listening to music. Thankfully, it wasn’t long after that that I needed to pick up my boyfriend. 

I talked to him about it a bit, and I let it go. We ended up laughing and having a good night. It was a great way to end such a shitty day. But, I was still left terrified of repeating yesterday. God, I still am terrified of it. 

How do we break away? How do we move on? Especially when you spent an entire day feeling like someone else? Like, yesterday my only goal was to become a vape model on Instagram, that’s all that mattered. And that’s not me. I run deeper than that, I think deeper than that, I have more to offer than that. 

How To Turn Things Around And Have A Good Day After A Bad One

1. Wake the hell up

For me, my problems started when I went back to sleep. So, even though my mind and body are telling me that they just want to crawl back into bed, I’m not going to. This is something that will take a lot of effort from me. Just one look at my bed and I could be back in there. God, I want to crawl into bed so badly. But more than that, I want to start having good days again. 

Grab some coffee, tea, or whatever the fuck wakes you up and spend some time being nice to yourself this morning. If sleeping in is your problem, try setting an alarm. If going back to bed after waking up is your problem, force yourself to go outside to wake up. And just relax, let yourself take the time you need. 

2. Remind yourself of who you are

This one is more specific to how I felt like a totally different person. But if you’ve had a day when you’re down on yourself, this could help, too. Write down 20 things that are you. Here’s mine:

  1. Loving
  2. Caring 
  3. Thoughtful 
  4. Deep
  5. Meaningful
  6. Happy
  7. Beautiful 
  8. Creative 
  9. Lively
  10. 80% coffee
  11. Good
  12. Deserving
  13. Human
  14. A writer
  15. Inspirational 
  16. Helpful
  17. Chill
  18. Respectful
  19. Feminist
  20. Funny

3. Have an Opposite Day

Best way to avoid having another day like the day before? Do the exact opposite. 

Lay in bed all day = Stay out of bed

Watch porn = Don’t watch porn

Stay home all day = Get out of the house

Wallow in self-pity = Take care of yourself

You see where I’m going with this. 

4. Your thoughts control your moods

Lastly, be aware of what you’re thinking. Force yourself to think more positively. Instead of being afraid today will be a repeat, be excited for the new day ahead! Find something you can get excited about. For me, it’s going to my favorite coffee shop. 

How do you have a good day after a shitty one? Love to hear ideas!

-Liz

Lifestyle

Quit These Things For A Simpler Life


Life gets crazy. Whether it’s our busy schedules or busy minds, we could all use some time to simplify our lives. Previously, I gave you all a couple lists of things to do to simplify your lives. Now, here’s a list of things to quit to make your life a little more simple. 

1. Trying to be perfect

Whether you’re trying to look perfect, be perfect, seem perfect, or do perfectly, just stop. Art is beautiful and each piece has its flaws. No one on this planet is absolutely perfect. Even Kendall Jenner makes mistakes and stars in terrible soda commercials. 

2. Comparing yourself

I have a hard time with this one. Lately it seems like all I do is compare what I look like, what I have, who I am, to what I see on Pinterest. It’s terrible. And, has only made my life more complicated. To make things more simple, just accept who you truly are and be happy with what you have. 

3. Dwelling on the past

This is another huge one for me. I tend to dwell on my past. A lot of bad things happened back then. But, the only way to enjoy a simple life is to accept what happened and enjoy the moments you’re in. 

4. Complaining

Just don’t. Be grateful for what you have. Be grateful for this life. I complain to myself all day, but if I put it aside like I’m doing right now, I’m able to do what I truly want to. 

5. Waiting

This one I’m working on right now. I stopped waiting to feel like writing and just started writing. I don’t know if I’ll make it to the end of this post and publish it, but I’m trying to make shit happen. Don’t wait around for motivation to strike, just start doing it and motivation may come. 

6. Lying 

Pretty much, don’t be an asshole. Don’t lie to others, even if it’s a simple, “how are you” question. Speak the truth, always. 

7. Pleasing everyone

You will never be able to make everyone happy. I learned this while living in Tennessee. Everyone expected so much from me and I was under so much pressure to be perfect for everyone. Just try and make yourself happy and those who truly care won’t mind. 

8. Thinking you’re not ready

I have this habit of thinking I’m not ready to write. It’s not clean enough, I don’t have a desk, I’m a mess how can I help others, the list goes on. Put aside your doubts and just start trying. Start working on what you think you’re not ready for. You may surprise yourself. 

9. Buying things you don’t need

I had a huge problem with this. I kept buying and buying thinking I needed it all. I don’t. And it turns out, most of it is heading to Goodwill. Buy only the things you need. 

10. Blaming others

I could sit here all day and list the reasons why others are to blame for my problems. But truth is, it’s my response to the actions of others that caused my problems. We’re in control of ourselves, if something is wrong we need to look at us not them. 

11. Overthinking 

I’m fighting this one off right now. I’m overthinking that this piece isn’t good enough, funny enough, or sarcastic enough. I haven’t been able to write in two weeks because I keep overthinking everything. Hopefully this will get me back into writing again. 

-Liz

Lifestyle, mental health, travel

Packing When You Have A Mental Illness Part 1

We leave for our Flordia trip in the morning tomorrow and I couldn’t be more excited! But, packing now that I have a mental illness in need of attention has changed my packing a little bit. While this post includes that, it’s also a great post for anyone who doesn’t have a mental illness. 

Packing can be stressful, I know I almost had a panic attack yesterday. I’m used to packing the night before a trip but, as with any relationship things change. And my routine was changed and I was totally forced to start packing yesterday! Oh, the horror! But seriously, that little change upset my anxiety so much because now I’m half packed and it’s driving me crazy! Hence why this post is split into two parts. 

Packing With A Mental Illness (Or Just In General)


1. The Checked Bag (Suitcase)

  • Clothes

Obviously, you need clothes. But, how much is too much? I ran into a problem yesterday. Suddenly my wardrobe titled, “I have nothing to wear” turned into, “I have too many clothes!” It was crazy, I always feel like I have nothing to wear but, as soon as I started going through what I wanted to bring my pile was huge! My little fur baby loved it, though!

Here’s what I suggest bringing:

  • Pack clothes you will feel confident in
  • Pack 3 extra shirts, if you’re anything like me, there will be coffee stains
  • 1 pair of extra pants. I’m bringing white pants, definitely need a back-up for those
  • 1 extra dress or nice shirt, you never know
  • A few extra intimates (boxers, for the guys)
  • Don’t forget socks, just don’t
  • Pack a sweater, I’m bringing one on the plane but, I have an extra for a little shoulder coverage, I am going to visit my grandparents after all
  • 2 swimsuits, always always pack a swimsuit, again, you never know
  • 3 pairs of shoes, two in the suitcase one you wear at the airport
  • Pillow case (for dirty clothes)

I suggested clothes you feel confident in because I know what it’s like having a mental illness, sometimes it just destroys your self-esteem. You don’t want to feel like crap on your vacation! You want to look hot as hell for all those pictures you’re going to make your boyfriend take of you. Oh, that’s just me?

  • Make-up (this is for the ladies, and maybe some of you men)

I always forget something makeup related. So I just wanted to throw in a little list to help you remember. 

  • Primer
  • Foundation
  • Concealer
  • Setting powder
  • Contour kit (if that’s your thing)
  • Eyeshadow pallet (makes it easier to keep track of all your eyeshadows)
  • Brow things
  • Couple lipsticks 
  • Eyeliner
  • Mascara

But, bring what you need.

  • Self-Care Items

Self-care items are a must. I know most of us almost always forget something. 

  • Face wash
  • Moisturizer 
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Hairbrush
  • Comb
  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Leave-in Conditioner (especially if you’re going somewhere humid
  • Body Wash
  • Flat Iron, Curling Iron, Hairdryer, whatever

Other self care:

  • A notebook to write in when having a rough time with your thoughts
  • A good book
  • A comforting item (blanket, stuffed animal, whatever makes you feel at home)
  • A coloring book (if that’s your thing)
  • DVD’s (if you’re bringing a laptop)

So, most of this stuff is pretty obvious. I’ll get more into the mental health tips in my next post. 

-Liz

How To, Lifestyle

Simple

“Keep things extremely simple.” This is my new mantra for life. It’s good to sometimes switch it up. I love everything about this, it’s so easy to over think and over plan, I know I’m doing it right now. My boyfriend and I laid down for a nap and even though I wanted to sleep, I just couldn’t. It wasn’t happening. I had so many thoughts racing through my head. What to write about, what to pack for vacation, what to wear, daydreaming, everything. I was getting anxious just laying there. Plus, he was drooling on my head. Anyway, he’s still asleep on the sofa and I’m outside in the sun writing. 

Life can get very complicated, even when it’s not. This happens when the thoughts in our heads start to go crazy. And, when you have anxiety it can make it so much worse. We get busy, we over think, we over plan, we come up with crazy scenarios in our minds, the list goes on. So, how do we make life more simple? How do we act on “keep things extremely simple?” Here are my ideas.

How To Keep Things Extremely Simple

1. Give yourself a deadline

When making decisions or working on a project, give yourself a deadline to have it done.

  • Making a decision 

Give yourself 30 seconds to make a damn choice. For the small things, anyway. If you’re like me you’re wondering whether you should write or if you should clean. I could spend hours trying to decide. But, I gave myself 30 seconds to choose. And now I’m writing. For the bigger things, set a time you think appropriate. If it’s something like, whether or not to buy that sofa from Ikea, give yourself an hour. If it’s something like, going on vacation, give yourself a day. Just whatever you do, make that choice by your deadline. 

  • Projects

If your project doesn’t already have a deadline, create one for it. Whether it’s studying or whatever, create a deadline to have it done by. For me, I like to repaint furniture. So, I usually set a deadline to have it done by the end of the day, or the next day (depending on the size of the project). If I don’t do this, I could spend all month painting an end table. 

2. Simplify your home (or apartment, bedroom, etc.)

When our living spaces are messy, our minds can be messy. It’s kinda like a back and forth thing. A messy living space can create a messy mind. But, a messy mind also tends to create a messy living space. Just, get rid of the clutter. 

3. Three box (or pile) decluttering

Boxes keep things more organized, but I can’t currently get to any of my boxes. So, I’m using piles! When going through things, set a box (or pile) for things to get rid of, things to keep, and one for maybes to go through again at the end. I’ll be doing this today, if I can get my ass going. My best friend’s daughter is raising donations to earn a party for her class, the kid with the most donations gets a gift card. So, there’s my motivation to get rid of as much as I possibly can. I’ll probably go through my closet a third time, just to be sure. 

4. Ask yourself this question when going through things

“Do I truly love this thing?” I truly love my sign that says “Good Vibes Only.” Okay, I spent $70 on that damn sign, it ain’t going anywhere. But something I do truly love would be, well, I can’t think of anything. Damn. Guess I’ve got a lot I can get rid of. The only things I can think of that I truly love are my photographs on the walls. 

Anyway, ask yourself that question with EVERYTHING. Get rid of the things that don’t bring you joy. My rock collection brings me joy, but only certain pieces so, some of that can go. Things I’ve painted bring me joy, but not all of them. Then, there are books I’ll never read, they can go. If something doesn’t make you happy, set it free. Donate it. It could make someone else very happy. 

5. Keep on cleaning

While you’re at it, clean out your closet. Go. Through. Everything. Even the pile of junk on the top you try to ignore. That crap you’ve stuffed in a box (or in my case, a suitcase), go through it. You never see it, obviously you never use it, get rid of that shit! For some reason, I decided to keep a box of cheap ass Valentine’s decorations. Those can go. 

6. While you’re at it, might as well do this

I mean, by this time you’re on a fucking roll. Might as well clean the kitchen! And I’m talking CLEAN it! Go through the pantry, go through the fridge. Get rid of old food, donate the things you can. We’re all guilty of having that one thing in the fridge that expired ages ago but we ignore. Go through the damn food. 


7. Okay, so now you’ve got some free space

Or, maybe you don’t and you need to clear out some more space. Sorry, guys! But, there’s a reason “Man Caves” are so popular. Everyone needs a place to escape to. So, create your own little space within your home. Even if you live alone, create a space that’s relaxing. Right now, I’ve kind of made the patio my own space. It’s where I spend most of my time. It’s where I do 100% of my blogging. It can get messy, but I’m working on it. 

However, when we move into our new townhouse we will have a spare bedroom. I’m freaking out about this. I’m so excited. I tried to convince my boyfriend to let me turn it into a giant closet or fully my office, but we shall compromise (I’ll still have the patio to myself mostly). We’re going to share the space, but have our own spaces within the room. This works for us because we get along so well and I honestly like hearing him talk to the TV when he plays video games. As of right now, the plan is to turn the closet into a game room. That way, I can hide it when I don’t want to see it. I’ll do a whole blog post on this when the time comes, but for now, we plan on putting a tv in the little closet and we will have a sofa and coffee table outside of the closet. I might put something decorative on the doors so it looks nice when they’re closed. On the other side of the room will be my desk and my vanity. Win-win. 

8. Okay, we’re done with the cleaning. So, write a list in your new space. 

Write down a small list of things you love to do. Mine would be:

  • Writing
  • Spending time with Steven
  • Browsing DIY projects
  • Doing DIY projects
  • Shopping at Goodwill

Keep it somewhere you will see it. Return to it when you say you’re bored or you need inspiration. It can be as long or short as you want it to be, but remember, we’re trying to keep shit simple here. 

9. When you’re feeling overwhelmed 

No matter what is causing you to feel overwhelmed, family stress, work stress, anxiety, depression, whatever it may be, start saying “no.” Take a week, yes, an entire week and say no to everything. Any requests anyone wants from you, any plans wanting to be made, say “no.” It’s okay to plan them for the following week if you want, but think of this week of “no” as your own little mental vacation. You’re not fucking available. Sure, stick to the things you already agreed to if you want, don’t be a flake, but for anything new, the answer is no. Simple. 

10. Take some time to relax

Start each day by relaxing. This may even give you something to look forward to if it’s hard for you to wake up. I’ve been doing this for months now. No pressures, just relaxing and giving myself time to wake up. Even if you have to get up 30 minutes earlier, do it. Even if you live in a house with a ton of other people, wake up before them. Or, let them know you need to be alone during this time.

Here’s what I do to relax on a normal weekday:

  • Up at 5am
  • Coffee in hand
  • Ass on patio chair
  • Boyfriend sitting next to me
  • We look at Facebook and StumbleUpon and share cool shit we see
  • I get more coffee
  • We continue to chill
  • I take him to work
  • I come home and keep on chilling
  • Then, I start my day. 

My boyfriend does this, too. He gets up about half an hour before I do and walks the dogs, makes coffee, and watches the news. He likes his news. I love that. 

11. Take a break

This is something I don’t hardly do, but really should. Take a break from technology. Turn it off, put it in another room, whatever. I don’t know what there is to do while doing this, maybe read a book, take a nap, go for a walk, sit there silently staring at your turned off phone until the hour is up. 

For me, there isn’t much else that interests me to keep my mind busy enough while my phone is off. Plus, I never know when my boyfriend gets off of work and I have to pick him up. Sometimes it’s 5pm, sometimes it’s 9am. It’s always a surprise. Which is actually really frustrating when I’m trying to work. But, for me, I take a break from stupid Facebook. Facebook just stresses me the fuck out sometimes. There’s so much stupid shit on there. Sorry, passionate about this one. I’m actually tempted to create a new Facebook just to clean it up a bit. But, I like all the photos I have on it. So, just take break from it, and don’t be an ass and announce it all over Facebook. Nobody cares. Take an hour break, take a week break, whatever. I usually just try not to go on in general unless I have a notification or something really important to share. Or, if I’m just super fucking bored. 

12. The three things

Make a to do list, only list three things. This one is super popular, and I love it. I’ll be honest, sometimes it takes me three days to do those three things, but it helps. Like today, my three things are:

  1. Make a grooming appointment for my fur baby
  2. Do laundry
  3. Deposit a check 

Keeping with honesty, it took me until 1pm to call the groomer’s. I was over thinking and made it seem like this giant task that I just couldn’t do. I went to fill out my mental health bullet journal and decided I wanted to add that to my daily done list. So, I called and made that appointment and added it to my done list. I have yet to do the laundry or deposit that check (which I can simply do on my phone). 


13. Focus on one thing 

When life gets complicated, or you’re making it complicated, focus on one task. Just one. Pick something off your to do list, or something else, and focus solely on that thing. For me, there are two things I can focus on one at a time. Writing and painting furniture. Find something you can focus on and do it. Ignore the bullshit. 

14. Zone the fuck out

When life is overwhelming, zone out from it. Escape reality, in a healthy way. I’m not talking go get drunk or high but, something mindless. Video games, a book, a nap, writing, painting, walking, running, watching tv, whatever the hell you want to do. My favorite way is to write posts like this one. Just zone out from life, ignore every little thing, and just enjoy your time. Reality will always be waiting for you when you return. 

What are some ways you like to make life more simple? Let me know in the comments!

-Liz

How To, Lifestyle

Realistic Ways To Start Your Day (Other Than Working Out)

Lately I’ve been reading different lifestyle blogs and self-improvement blogs and I’ve seen a lot of things like, “What successful people do in the mornings.” Honestly, I haven’t read them because I know what they’ll say. Get up earlier, drink water with lemon, work out, blah blah blah. 

But let’s cut the bullshit here. No matter how much lemon water you drink in the morning, it’s still the morning. So, if you’re trying to start your days off on a better foot, here are my ideas for better mornings. 

1. Get Up On The Right Side Of The Bed

Start your day with a positive mantra. Something you tell yourself first thing in the morning other than, “ugh, I have to do *insert annoying thing here.*” Make it something simple, something that really gets you motivated, and make sure it’s positive! 

For me, this morning my mantra was, “Awh, he made me coffee. Now, wake up and drink the damn coffee.” My mornings usually start out slightly lazy. If I have it my way, I wake up energized and instantly go make coffee. But that usually only happens on the weekends. During the week, my boyfriend is up before I am and I usually lay in bed while he takes the dogs on a walk. This morning, I remember waking up and him telling me he was going on a walk, then I fell back asleep for a while. 

Some good mantras would be, 

  • Keep things extremely simple
  • I’m beautiful 
  • Today is my day
  • Have an open mind and open heart

2. Don’t Hit Snooze

Yeah, you caught me. This morning I technically hit snooze instead of getting up when my boyfriend woke me up. Some days I wake up to his alarm, others it’s not that easy. 

But just don’t do it, get up right when you intend to. It’ll make you feel accomplished first thing in the morning, and that’s a great feeling. A little tip: set a second alarm for 5 minutes after that first one just in case you fall back asleep. Also, have your alarm clock far away enough that you at least have to walk to the end of the bed to turn it off. 

3. Relax With Some Coffee

Or tea, if that’s your thing. But take some time to relax first thing in the morning, give your brain a chance to catch up and wake up. 

  • Spend time with your significant other

Set aside some time with your partner to enjoy that morning coffee together. Steven and I usually drink some coffee and scroll through social media showing each other cool shit. This morning we had a competition to see who could find the cutest dog. Also, he tried to convince me we need another dog. 

  • Spend time alone

Even if you have to wake up first, spend time alone. Or, if you live alone then, yay, wake up whenever the fuck you want (or need to).  This was one thing I always thought was awesome about my dad. He would always wake up to have enough time to read the Bible before going to work. And with me and my mom under the same roof, that alone time was necessary for his survival. 

  • Spend time reading 

Set some time to read while drinking coffee. I probably won’t do this, if I lived alone I might. Alright, who am I kidding. The first two hours of me being awake my mind can only process memes on Facebook. But, in a perfect world, reading sounds nice. 

4. Watch The Sunrise

This will forever and always be on my lists of things to do. I’ve mentioned it before, and will keep mentioning it. There’s just something about the sunrise that is so peaceful and beautiful. Enjoy it. Do it every day, or at least once a week. I usually catch the sunrise on my way to dropping Steven off at work. But, sometimes on the weekends I accidentally wake up with enough time to catch the sunrise. I didn’t used to be a morning person, but having to wake up at 5am every day has made me one. Ah, the things we do for love. 

5. Turn On The News

Logically, this is probably a shitty way of starting your day because, I mean, hello, the news is horrible! But, there’s something about learning gardening tips on your local news station at 6 in the morning that’s oddly satisfying. Also, you’ll feel more knowledgeable (did I spell that right?) watching the news and learning what’s going on in the world. That is, until you hear Trump speak and then your IQ drops 10 points. 

6. Fill Out Your Mental Health Journal

If you started a bullet journal or mental health journal, spend some time in the mornings checking in on yourself. It’ll help you feel more connected throughout the day. 

7. Journal Your Hopes For The Day

You can’t really journal about your day first thing in the morning, but writing out your hopes or goals for the day may be nice. A little reminder of what you want out of the day in order to feel accomplished. 

8. Plan Your Day

I haven’t done this in a while, but it’s one of my favorite things to do. I love writing to do lists and making plans for the day. Helps you stay on track and know what to expect so you have a little fewer surprises. And that helps with anxiety. But, don’t over do the planning, because that can bring anxiety as well. Try sticking with the three most important things to do that day, then add on any other little things you need to accomplish. 

9. Check Inspiring Social Media

This one is more my style, it’s a lot simpler than reading a book. Find an app that has motivational quotes, or follow interesting things on StumbleUpon, or even follow some inspiring people on instagram. Get your day started on the right foot by being inspired first thing in the morning! Or, you know, looking at cat photos. 

10. Get On Pacifica

This is something I need to start doing more often. Pacifica is an anxiety and depression app. Mostly, anyway, a lot of the other users have different mental health issues. I love this app because they created a hope Board to keep track of your hopes and there’s a place to combat negative thinking. You can set goals, post to a community, and track your habits. And no, this is not sponsored. I have no sponsors. Anyone wanna sponsor me?! Kidding (but, seriously). 

11. Eat A Good Breakfast 

If you can, try and have a big breakfast in the morning and a small dinner at night. But, realistically, only a 1950’s housewife (or moms on TV) will have pancakes and French toast and fruit and shit out for breakfast. Eat something healthy, fruit, yogurt, a bagel, whatever. 

12. Write Down 10 Things

This is something I swear by, and used to do all the time. I’ve gotten lazy. But, starting your day out listing 10 things you’re grateful for is an amazing way to get in a good mood in the morning. You can also do this at night and make it day specific. 

13. Listen To Music While Getting Ready

This one is pretty self explanatory. Just put on your favorite motivating music and get your ass ready to conquer the day! 

What are your favorite ways to spend the morning? Let me know in the comments!

-Liz

How To, Lifestyle, Uncategorized

Ways You Can Show Yourself Some Love


Recently I wrote a post asking you if you love yourself. In, Do You Absolutely Love Yourself, I mentioned ways you can tell if you’re loving yourself or not. I also included a few tips as to how to start loving yourself. Well, I felt like expanding on that for you all and giving you a few of my ideas on how you can show yourself some love. 

Loving yourself is so important. I mean, you spend 100% of the time with you, so, why not love yourself? It can be such a hard thing to do, a lot of us are very critical of ourselves. But, sometimes I wonder why. Like, if you’re doing the best you can, what else is there to expect from yourself? But, trust me, I’m so incredibly hard on myself. Especially when I’m depressed. So, I need to be listening to my own advice as well. 

My ideas for loving yourself

1. Accept yourself for who you are

Just do it. Just accept yourself. Flaws and all. It’s the flaws that someone else just might love. I didn’t have a great relationship with my ex boyfriend but, one thing that was good was that he admired my fucked up teeth. Something I hate about myself. He liked them because I didn’t care what other people thought of the tooth that never fully came down or what others thought of my crowded mouth. 

Accept your physical beauty, and your inner beauty as well. Accept the passion you have, the things you love, the ways you express yourself. Accept and love yourself for who you truly are, and then be that person. Don’t be someone else. I tried that once, I tried to be someone I wasn’t because I thought she was so adorable and I wanted to be like her. It hurt me in the long run and then I ended up having to rediscover myself. Turns out, I don’t really like old classic movies and I’m not obsessed with Audrey Hepburn. Although, I should be. 

2. Enjoy the time spent with yourself 

For a long time, I hated being by myself. I couldn’t stand to be alone with my thoughts. And sometimes, I still fucking can’t. And that’s okay. But, I’ve come a long way. Today, I was actually kind of excited for my boyfriend to go to work because I now have guilt-free time to myself. Sometimes, I feel guilty for spending all day on the patio alone while he plays video games. But, hey, it’s cool that we can just hang out by ourselves while in the same place. 

3. But don’t isolate yourself 

Sometimes, I like being alone a little too much. And I tend to isolate myself. This has cost me a lot of friendships. Still remain in contact with people, go out and have some fun, get your mind off of things and keep your relationships strong. 

4. Eat Well

Eat those greens, eat that protein. Take care of yourself. As I’ve said before, I totally suck at this. I could sit down and eat a whole pizza to myself, and have before. But, we all need to work on getting in our fruits and veggies. 

5. Still eat that cake though

Just because you’re eating better doesn’t mean you can’t have that slice of cake, or bowl of ice cream, or cookie. Plain and simple, still enjoy life. 

6. Do some yoga

I also totally suck at this. You know, a body at rest stays at rest. Well, it’s super hard for me to get going. But I’ve done yoga daily before and the benefits are so worth it. My go to for yoga is the YouTube channel, Yoga With Adrienne. 

7. Pamper yourself

I mean other than shopping, because shopping can become a bad habit to feeling better. I’m talking stay at home pampering. Or, if you can afford it, go to a spa. My favorite way to pamper myself is to put a badass bath bomb in the tub and give myself a facial while soaking in the warm water. But, pampering yourself can also mean taking a nap. Whatever you feel like doing. 

8. Quit that damn bad habit

I got a lot of bad habits, I’m no stranger to them. And I bet you had at least one pop into your head as soon as you read that. Quit it. Mine would be to quit chain smoking. Especially while writing. To be honest, I don’t think it’s possible to quit fully anytime soon. But, I do have a plan for the future. When we move into our new townhouse I’m going to turn the spare bedroom into a half office, half game room (I want to turn it into a giant closet but, no my boyfriend won’t let me do that). But, I’m hoping if I have a pretty enough office, I’ll spend less time outside writing and smoking and more time inside and writing. Also, switching to drinking more tea and less coffee might help. We shall see!

9. Actually do the things you love

Just make time for it! For me, I love to write so I’ve made plenty of time for that. But, I also love painting furniture and things. I need to make more time for that. 

10. Talk kindly to yourself

Simply put, if you wouldn’t say it to your best friend, don’t say it to yourself. 

How do you show yourself some love? Let me know in the comments!

-Liz

Lifestyle, mental health, travel, Uncategorized

Taking You With Me

“Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” – Ibn Battuta


I’m so excited to be writing this post! This is the beginning of my series on traveling with mental illnesses! Don’t worry, I’ll still be bringing you some non-travel related content. But, for the next little over a week, be prepared for lots of travel posts! 

It’s 4 days until we leave for Florida. I’m counting the days and anxiously waiting. You can look forward to posts about:

  • Preparing for traveling when you have anxiety 
  • Ideas to fight pre-vacation anxiety 
  • How to pack for vacation when you have a mental illness
  • Flying when you have anxiety
  • How anxiety affects traveling

       And,

  • Updates on how we’re spending our vacation 

I’m not gonna lie, mental illness can make traveling very difficult. Especially when you suffer from anxiety or depression. I mean, the fear of flying is totally normal for people who don’t normally have anxiety, so just imagine that fear in someone who does. It can be devastating. And if you’re in the middle of a Depressive Episode, just imagine doing something for days on end that society tells you you have to enjoy, but you just can’t find happiness in anything at all. 

I’ve got a couple anxiety related stories to do with travel. I also have a couple depression stories for when returning from traveling. 

1. Renting A Car

I don’t remember this very clearly. I guess I may have blocked it out of my head. I called my dad to ask to verify but he didn’t remember either. My mom’s phone was turned off so I couldn’t ask her. 

Anyway, if I remember correctly, I was about 12 or 13 and in order to fly from Phoenix to Los Angeles you had to fly on a pretty tiny plane. I made it out there with some anxiety, but the thought of flying back on that plane scared the shit out of me. That whole trip was anxiety filled because we went to Disneyland and I was afraid of the majority of the rides. The Jungle Cruise gave me anxiety. Everything but the train around the park, The Haunted Mansion, and Autotopia gave me this incredible fear. I think one day my parents even had to put me in a wheel chair so I could try and relax. 

But the thought of that small plane, I wasn’t going to do it. My anxiety was so bad that my dad had to rent a car in order to take us home. Yeah, that’s right, the plane tickets were already booked and we didn’t fly. I’ve been flying my whole life, since I was a baby. By this age I had already flown to Hawaii. There was no logical reasoning as to why I could not get on that plane. Anxiety can be a monster. 

2. I got my wings

One time, I was so anxious before getting on the plane that the pilots had to talk to me before boarding. I was so scared. I don’t really remember much about this instance, but I remember how nice those pilots were. I will always love strangers who go out of their way to comfort someone, especially a child, with severe anxiety. They also gave me wings as I got on the plane. 

3. I lost my house

A little backstory, when I was with my ex I made the stupidest decision ever, I bought a house with him. My grandparents paid the down payment, so the guy at the bank suggested that I put my name on the deed. Thinking this only gave me rights to the property. Only, it didn’t. It just made me financially responsible should my ex not be able to take care of it any longer. 

So, when summer came his AC broke. In order to get it replaced I had to take my name off of the deed so it didn’t go against my credit. I just did not want to fucking deal with this shit. Eventually, I had had enough and I said screw it and booked a ticket out there. Honestly, I could have done the paperwork from Arizona, but I was pissed. 

However, when I got back home I fell into a depression that cost me my education and any chance of having a job any time soon. I couldn’t leave the bed for a month and this depression is what caused me to start medication. At first, I thought it had to have been the fact that I gave up the house and I no longer had any reason to talk to my ex. It was officially over. But now that I think about it, while I’m sure that had something to do with it, it was the returning to reality that I couldn’t handle. I missed my friends out in Tennessee, they were the best friends I’d ever had and now I was so far away from them again. I missed life in a small town, where you know everyone. I didn’t want to face my reality of going to school with a bunch of fake people and being alone in my apartment. So, I stayed in bed binge watching Friends for a month. 

2. My most recent trip

My most recent trip was to Florida to visit my grandparents. I spent 10 days hanging out with my cousin. I had such a great time. I was surrounded by people who truly loved and cared about me. When I got home, I was afraid to face reality again and found myself in another month or so long Depressive Episode. I hadn’t been keeping up with all my mental health studies and journals, I wasn’t tracking my depression on the trip. It hit me hard when I got home. I sat outside on my patio and chain-smoked all day every day. I couldn’t do anything but just sit there, I started drawing hands almost constantly. Eventually, I got a medication change and that helped. Plus, I started online dating and that got me out of the house. Although, all the rejection from that eventually added up. 

Another problem I have with travel is that I’m just so damn excited I can’t contain myself! I’m so anxious to get to the airport and show such an important part of my life to my boyfriend who has never traveled anywhere. Dealing with this is tough, it takes a lot of patience which I’m not good at. Every day I’m watching the clock, “is this day over yet? Am I one more day closer to my trip?” I’ve been trying to keep myself busy, but it’s been hard. I’ll post more on this subject later. 

What’s your biggest issue with traveling? Whether you have a mental illness or not, what brings you worry or fear? How do you deal with it? Let me know in the comments!

-Liz

How To, Lifestyle, Uncategorized

Do You Absolutely Love Yourself?


Loving yourself is so freaking important. Although, I’ll be the first to admit that I struggle with it. A lot. Especially when depression has its grip on me, or it’s that time of the month. So, you know, almost always. But when I’m with a clear mind and I’m being grateful for all around me, I’m pretty happy with myself. 

My biggest challenge is to accept the way I look. I don’t look the same as when I was 16 (see picture above) and I don’t even look the way I did a year ago. The biggest change is gaining all my weight back that I had just recently lost. I fell into a pretty bad depression and basically stopped eating anything at all. I was surviving off of half a pop tart a day. That was it. Caffeine and nicotine kept me alive. But, I lost all the weight I had gained in Tennessee. It was great. Then, I got into a relationship with a man who loves to eat. Helloooo tummy! And fuller face, bigger butt, and bigger boobs. I ain’t complaining about that bigger butt, though!

So, how can you tell if you’re loving yourself? Sometimes it’s hard to tell. You think you’re loving yourself but then you take the time to think about it and you realize that maybe there’s more you could be doing. 

Signs You’re Not Loving Yourself

1. You don’t feel free to be yourself

I’m partially dealing with this right now. It’s hard to explain. I’m just not allowing myself to be as passionate and open as I once was. Honestly, I think I’m holding back because I’m still in a newish relationship. While it feels like we’ve been together forever, we’re still learning about each other. And I’m kind of afraid he’ll make fun of me for how passionate I am about photography. Even though there’s no logical reasoning as to why I think he’d make fun of me. He’d more than likely smile and think it’s cute. But, we’re going on vacation soon so, he’ll be seeing that side of me. 

2. You don’t spend time with yourself

You just don’t. Every minute is spent with someone around. Whether you’re at work, with your family, or hanging out with friends. Alone time has helped me love me. Being with my thoughts after a busy day keeps me connected to myself. If you can’t stand to be alone with you, you might need to work on some things (advice below).

3. You’re not respecting your values

This one I’ve struggled with a lot in the past few years. I’ve done a lot of things that go against my values to make people like me. I started drinking to make people like me. I started smoking pot to make people like me. I started sleeping around to make people like me. I did drugs to make people like me. I’ve gossiped to make people like me. The list goes on for miles. The truth here is, those people aren’t worth it. No one is worth disrespecting your values for. And I’m glad I’ve learned this. 

4. You’re not eating right

Whether you don’t eat at all, like me, or you only eat junk food, it’s a sign you’re not loving yourself. I’m going through this right now. I stopped eating for a few days because I thought it’d give me the bikini body I want for my vacation next week. It won’t. I was starving myself for nothing. And that’s not okay. You gotta love yourself, you gotta feed yourself good things. Today, I had to force myself to eat pizza. At least I ate something. 

Now, you’re probably wondering where the hell do I go from here? If you’ve realized you may not be loving yourself, that’s okay. I got your back. There are long lists of ways to love yourself. I’ll be posting a piece on that soon. But, here’s some tips that go along with what I’ve said so far. 

How to start loving yourself

1. Express yourself (be free)

Forget what others are thinking! Express who you truly are. If deep down you’re a total metal head, go out and buy a Memphis May Fire tshirt (or any other band, they’re just my favs). If you love to paint, paint something and share it on Facebook! Do something to express yourself, and make sure people see it. Let them know you don’t give a fuck what they think. It’s time to be you! Unapologetically. 

2. Quality time (hang out with yourself)

Spend some time alone. Just you. Don’t go out shopping alone, don’t go to a coffee shop, there’s people there and who wants to be around people? Sorry, love/hate relationship with the human race. Anyway, lock yourself in your room, go sit out on the porch, wherever you feel like being yourself. And then, do something to get to know yourself. Journal, write, do whatever. I’ll be posting a journaling piece here soon as well. 

3. Respect yourself (keep with your values)

Don’t lower yourself to please someone else. What matters is how you feel about yourself at the end of the day. Can you truly be happy with the choices you’ve made? Think about it. 

4. Make yummy food (eat right)

This is the hardest one of all, especially if you’re me. I mean, who the hell wants to start eating right when you’ve been indulging in Fritos and cake and so much coffee? But, I heard you feel better when you eat right. I don’t have any tips for you here, when I do eat, it’s not perfectly right. But, I’m more focused on making sure I eat something, anything. I am cutting back on the junk, though. 

-Liz