5 Ways To Boost Yourself After January

5 Ways To Boost Yourself After January

Tips to help you for the other 334 days of the year.
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2018 has already started and I know that some of us have already quit going to the gym! That’s okay, we got 2019 in the bag. But for now, we are still in 2018 and we all have this general feeling like it is going to be better than 2017 (hopefully) so here are some ideas that can add some positivity to your year and make your life overall more uplifting than before.

Build a reflection jar

Reflection Jar, Memory box, whatever you would like to call it is fine, because it is yours. The concept of it is for you to sit for 5 minutes a day and then on an index card or half sheet a paper you would write 1-2 good things that happened to you that day. Then on the back you would write 1 not so good thing that happened that day (if any!). By the end of the year when you look back on all the good things that happened to you, there will be a giant smile on your face. When you read the not so good things that have happened, you can remind yourself that it is in the past and that you have grown since then and that it is not a big issue to you anymore.

Start every morning with an upbeat song and end the day with a song with deep meaning

This for my big music lovers! For me, music is a big part of my life and it molds the entirety of my day. By playing an upbeat song in the morning, you are already kicking off the day in a more positive attitude and you’ll mostly end up putting more a ‘pep to your step’ when you’re on your way to work/school. When it is time to wind down and get settled, try playing a song that gets you to think, or brings some emotion to you. This would allow for your brain to distract itself for a bit and let all the worries of the day wash away as you are powering down for the evening.

Buy something big for yourself and yourself only

As we get older, many of us tend to forget ourselves and only worry about the people around us. In 2018, try to look out for yourself more often. Splurge every once and a while. Buy that music festival ticket, go to that fancy restaurant, take up the mani-pedi you’ve wanted for weeks. Do not put yourself off. There is only ONE of you!

Clear out living space

This can happen anytime of the year, but I fully recommend in between spring and summer so you could hold a yard sale and sell all the stuff you do not want. Clearing out your living space is a great way to recollect and focus on what is important in your life. This will also give you a chance to figure out what needs to be replaced, or fixed; as well as figuring out if you want to rearrange the place. I personally believe that you can get tired of a space after a while, so it always cheered me up to see my room in a new perspective and it makes me want to keep the room positive.

Believe in something

Believing in something does not necessarily mean God. It could mean multiple things, whether it be an organized religion, a spiritual idea, or a life guide book for examples. Try to find something that you could go to in a time of stress or struggle. Doing this could benefit you in the way of bringing some relief into your life. This would also bring you some reassurance and a type of safety that a lot of us try to get in our lifetime. 2018 shall be a time of growth, change and passion and having belief in something could help bring you to the next level of your own awesomeness!

Cover Image Credit: Deb Greengold

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I'm A Woman And You Can't Convince Me Breastfeeding In Public Is OK In 2019

Sorry, not sorry.

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Lately, I have seen so many people going off on social media about how people shouldn't be upset with mothers breastfeeding in public. You know what? I disagree.

There's a huge difference between being modest while breastfeeding and just being straight up careless, trashy and disrespectful to those around you. Why don't you try popping out a boob without a baby attached to it and see how long it takes for you to get arrested for public indecency? Strange how that works, right?

So many people talking about it bring up the point of how we shouldn't "sexualize" breastfeeding and seeing a woman's breasts while doing so. Actually, all of these people are missing the point. It's not sexual, it's just purely immodest and disrespectful.

If you see a girl in a shirt cut too low, you call her a slut. If you see a celebrity post a nude photo, you call them immodest and a terrible role model. What makes you think that pulling out a breast in the middle of public is different, regardless of what you're doing with it?

If I'm eating in a restaurant, I would be disgusted if the person at the table next to me had their bare feet out while they were eating. It's just not appropriate. Neither is pulling out your breast for the entire general public to see.

Nobody asked you to put a blanket over your kid's head to feed them. Nobody asked you to go feed them in a dirty bathroom. But you don't need to basically be topless to feed your kid. Growing up, I watched my mom feed my younger siblings in public. She never shied away from it, but the way she did it was always tasteful and never drew attention. She would cover herself up while doing it. She would make sure that nothing inappropriate could be seen. She was lowkey about it.

Mindblowing, right? Wait, you can actually breastfeed in public and not have to show everyone what you're doing? What a revolutionary idea!

There is nothing wrong with feeding your baby. It's something you need to do, it's a part of life. But there is definitely something wrong with thinking it's fine to expose yourself to the entire world while doing it. Nobody wants to see it. Nobody cares if you're feeding your kid. Nobody cares if you're trying to make some sort of weird "feminist" statement by showing them your boobs.

Cover up. Be modest. Be mindful. Be respectful. Don't want to see my boobs? Good, I don't want to see yours either. Hard to believe, I know.

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Please Know That Being Diagnosed With PCOS Is Not The Same As Living With It

I was diagnosed with PCOS in 2018, but it wasn't until months later that I realized what it’s actually like living with it everyday.

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In October 2017, tired of counting calories and never seeing the scale move, I decided to try the latest fad diet: Keto.

It worked.

I lost almost 40 pounds in half the time it had taken to lose 20. I had lost nearly 10 inches from waist and hips. I went from a size 18 to a size 12.

Getting into ketosis was hard, but once I was there, I felt incredible: better mental clarity and focus, astronomical amounts of energy, regular body functions. Don't get me wrong, this diet is hard. No carbs, no colorful vegetables, no pasta. The struggle was real. But what it was doing for my body was worth it.

Except for one little thing: my periods had lost their minds. I'm talking bleeding for three weeks straight, no break. Coming and going in particular pattern, sometimes twice a month. Side note: this is not normal. In the world of Keto, it's supposed to help exponentially with fertility and hormone balances; people use this diet as a way to reverse hormone imbalances, PCOS, and infertility. This was virtually unheard of in all of my support groups.

Months and months go by with no relief. My doctor can't figure out why everything is so wonky. She takes me off the pill and things get better - slightly. Any improvement at this point was a victory.

She finally gets my ultrasounds back and she says "Well that's a surprise!" Cue my questioning look of confusion. "Umm care to share?" "Your ovaries have the characteristic look of PCOS. But you don't have any of the usual symptoms. I'm guessing the Keto diet was helping in it's own way. I recommend staying on the diet, let nature re-regulate your natural hormones, and we will re-evaluate in a few months."

I was frustrated, but this was totally do-able. I had been living this lifestyle for months, so I didn't foresee it as an issue. But then my kidneys starting reacting to the diet, and that doctor recommended I come off it. Obviously I wasn't going to jeopardize my health, so I started a low carb version of the Mediterranean diet.

I went in fully expecting to gain some weight back, because I was reintroducing carbs when I had gone largely without them for over a year. I knew that this would happen, and I didn't let myself get discouraged when the scale started going forward.

What I did not expect was to have my PCOS start running lose with my entire life and sanity.

Don't get me wrong — my periods were normal again, but everything else went AWOL. My hormones were going up and down of their own volition, we are talking sobbing hysterically over a butterfly commercial one minute and then fuming with anger over a car ad the next.

I started experiencing pelvic pain that feels like cramps only not all the time and without rhyme or reason.

My hair became uncontrollably oily to the point where I had to wash it everyday like clockwork; it started to thin and fall out.

I also started getting darker hair everywhere. I'm naturally an incredibly fair-skinned person so having black hair anywhere stands out like a sore thumb.

I felt like I wasn't in control of anything going on with my body. I felt like a hairy, unattractive monster. Everything that made me feel attractive and desirable was slowly being taken away from me piece by piece.

I had been living with PCOS for nearly six months, but I hadn't realized what it was like to actually live with it. I thought it was just irregular periods, but it is so much more than just a weird period.

I went back to the doctor, and she explained to me again how PCOS works, and how she didn't think traditional treatment options were the best thing for me. "Go back on the Keto diet. You were having incredible success with managing your symptoms. Go back to that."

Going back has not been easy. When I first started Keto, it wasn't easy, but I got into it quickly. I've been trying since January 12th to get back into it, and it hasn't worked.

I'm now in a place where I need to do it — for my health, for my sanity, for my self-esteem — and I physically can't. I do exactly everything the same as before, and it's not working. I'm trying to move away from the mentality of doing it for weight loss, and move toward positive thinking about how it's what's best for my body and my health.

My PCOS has forced me to have militant control over everything I eat. I can't simply enjoy food anymore. Everything that I chose to eat directly relates back to my PCOS and what that particular food can do for me. I think about everything that I put into my body, and the potential it has for either healing my body or harming it.

I see a piece of cake and I smell it, and picture in my mind what it tastes like. But I know that if I eat that piece of cake, I will bloat, get a stomach ache, and have to start back from square one the next day.

I cut out the carbs. I say no to cake. No potatoes. No pasta. I eat only green vegetables. I drink coffee that has nothing but heavy cream. I try to do intermittent fasting for 15 hours a day.

And I hope that it works. I hope that today will be the day I can get my life back on track. That today will be the day Keto works its magic.

I hope.

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