A New Era
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Student Life

A New Era

As Taylor Swift says, Call it what you Want.

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A New Era
Kellen Hanley

For the past few posts, I’ve talked about my journey of self-love.

And a journey is called so for a reason. You start somewhere, and there is the end. But my goal isn’t to have my journey to be a few months, weeks or even a singular year. It’s a life journey. A life of personal growth. For me, this isn’t just a weight-loss journey, or me vowing to start something and letting it die off (like the blog I started my junior year, but more on that later).

For me, this is a life journey. A path that started when I was awakened a few weeks ago to the vastness of this world, this Earth, and the Earth beyond us. A whole life journey and spiritual awakening that all started with deciding to get my hair cut. And now, I am moving towards working on the other areas of my life that I feel need personal improvement—diet, exercise, self-awareness, the art of mindfulness, and living. Below, because I’ve been told the internet has some sense of accountability, here’s what I’ll be writing on for the next couple of months intermittently.

1. Veganism (or Mindful Eating)

My friend Elise told me about a documentary called What the Health. To say watching it opened up my eyes, would be the understatement of the century. Not only did it change how I view food, it changed how I viewed almost everything we consume—either allowing it inside of us, or even just buying it. I’ve been doing decently well with veganism over the past few weeks, but we all slip up and I’ve been slipping a little bit more recently, but as with all new lifestyles (yes, it’s a lifestyle, not a diet), it takes time, practice and patience with one’s self. Nobody is perfect.

2. Minimalism

I saw this lifestyle a few weeks ago and instantly felt my mind go “ah!”. It was like a warm hug from an old friend. Minimalism is a “millennial” trend, but it really deals with only having what you need and what makes you happy in your life. From the physical to the psychological, you choose what you want to have (or who) to have in your life. This allows freedom and joy and a focus on the here and now.

3. Exercise

As I have been relatively open about, I am just starting to get a grip on my body—or rather, appreciating the curves and the bumps, but that doesn’t mean that I want to treat my body in a poor fashion. I’ve recently started yoga and I’ve found that watching my episodes of Grey’s Anatomy on the Elliptical are far more productive than lounging across my bed (although, life’s about balance so sometimes I will still lay across my bed).

4. Spirit

Find what you believe in (even if it’s nothing). Find peace with that belief. Practice that belief. Screw what everyone else says about you/it. (That’s all I have to say about that).

5. Mindfulness

This is something I’ve become particularly conscious about in the past few months. Mindfulness is complex—I’m still a novice at it, honestly—but the gist seems to be able to consciously recognize a thought, emotion, or action and understand why you are doing it. And if it’s negative, understanding the changes you could make to make it a positive, and if it’s a positive, being able to understand how you feel from it. It’s more complex than that, but if you have any questions on it, shoot me a comment below and I’ll direct you towards the train of thought with it.

I hope this all makes a modicum of sense, and if it doesn’t, well, it makes sense to me. And I’ve come to realize that this is my singular life. For almost two decades, I’ve walked this Earth. But I don’t want to just walk. I want to run, dance and laugh—I want to live this lifetime, not just survive it—and I’m taking everyday as an opportunity to change how I view my life, and impact the lives of those around me.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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