3 Tips for feeling better

Tips For When Your Not Feeling Well

Some days are better than others but they're all worth it

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I'm sitting at my desk going through all the things that went wrong this week. It has been incredibly challenging for me mentally. It seems as though I've faced obstacle after obstacle and crumbled into a heap of failure. These ruminating thoughts have a tendency to dwell in my mind,

reminding me of all my faults and shortcomings. I can't say it's been helpful. Feeling this way never brought me closer to solving a problem. If anything it's effectively made things worse. Attacking my self esteem and eating away at my confidence. Feeling this way serves no good purpose.

That's why I resort to the three main practices that, in the past, have resulted in a complete shift in mindset. Because negative thoughts happen to all of us. Feelings of doubt, fear and inadequacy come to us all, but succumbing to them is optional. The only way to get past our barriers is to remember that we are not our thoughts. We are the results of our actions, no matter what state. And there are actions we can take to drastically improve our state of mind.

Meditate

This is an easy one, at least in theory. There are many people who, I'm sure will scoff at the thought of sitting in silence for half an hour. They're probably the same people who tried and failed. The challenges of meditation are what makes it so beneficial. You never know how long fifteen minutes is until you have to sit through it. Letting thoughts pass you by and breathing, calming everything down. It's like lowering the volume and acknowledging it as noise.

Move

There is no better exercise for a rummanating mind than walking or running. It's easier than meditating because you're prompted by action. This helps shift the focus from mind to body and allows the thoughts to gentle flow away. Motion is emotion, because it's hard to maintain pent up energy when it's being released through movement. It's also better with a friend; going for a swim, basketball or visiting the gym together is a great way to clear your mind.

Learn

It's easy to deem yourself a failure, and it's even easier to give up. However that means accepting that your best presentation was the worst version of yourself. The version that threw in the towel when things got hard. The version who decided not to fight. Or you can learn from your mistake and move forward. Now that I know better I can do better and come back as a savage.

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I Weigh Over 200 Lbs And You Can Catch Me In A Bikini This Summer

There is no magic number that determines who can wear a bikini and who cannot.
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It is about February every year when I realize that bikini season is approaching. I know a lot of people who feel this way, too. In pursuit of the perfect "summer body," more meals are prepped and more time is spent in the gym. Obviously, making healthier choices is a good thing! But here is a reminder that you do not have to have a flat stomach and abs to rock a bikini.

Since my first semester of college, I've weighed over 200 pounds. Sometimes way more, sometimes only a few pounds more, but I have not seen a weight starting with the number "1" since the beginning of my freshman year of college.

My weight has fluctuated, my health has fluctuated, and unfortunately, my confidence has fluctuated. But no matter what, I haven't allowed myself to give up wearing the things I want to wear to please the eyes of society. And you shouldn't, either.

I weigh over 200lbs in both of these photos. To me, (and probably to you), one photo looks better than the other one. But what remains the same is, regardless, I still chose to wear the bathing suit that made me feel beautiful, and I'm still smiling in both photos. Nobody has the right to tell you what you can and can't wear because of the way you look.

There is no magic number that equates to health. In the second photo (and the cover photo), I still weigh over 200 lbs. But I hit the gym daily, ate all around healthier and noticed differences not only on the scale but in my mood, my heart health, my skin and so many other areas. You are not unhealthy because you weigh over 200 lbs and you are not healthy because you weigh 125. And, you are not confined to certain clothing items because of it, either.

This summer, after gaining quite a bit of weight back during the second semester of my senior year, I look somewhere between those two photos. I am disappointed in myself, but ultimately still love my body and I'm proud of the motivation I have to get to where I want to be while having the confidence to still love myself where I am.

And if you think just because I look a little chubby that I won't be rocking a bikini this summer, you're out of your mind.

If YOU feel confident, and if YOU feel beautiful, don't mind what anybody else says. Rock that bikini and feel amazing doing it.

Cover Image Credit: Sara Petty

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The Lazy Girl's Guide To The Gym

Also, everything else you should know if you're a slightly out-of-shape girl (like me).

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With my freshman year coming to an end, I realized a lot of things. I made new friends, I found new hobbies, and I learned a lot of lessons. One of them being that the "Freshman 15" is very real and very scary.

While my friends and family have attempted multiple times to convince me that I'm just being dramatic (I am), I still want to make a change in my lifestyle or I will, in all seriousness, be on track to the "Sophomore 20".

Here is a list of my best gym and healthy lifestyle tips that I am slowly attempting to live by this summer in order to resurrect Emily's 18-year-old body and health.

1. Increase water intake.

2. Find a gym buddy.

3. Start off with cardio.

4. Don't stop on your cardio until you're dripping in sweat.

5. Chug a LOT of water an hour before the gym.

Do not do it right before, or you will be in pain.

6. Eat light beforehand but just enough to hold you over. 

7. Plan out what your routine will be BEFORE you get there.

My routine: Elliptical for a mile, Stairmaster for 10 minutes, ab HIIT workout for 10 minutes, 5 more minutes on Stairmaster.

8. Buy healthy foods while you're feeling motivated.

9. Find a gym that isn't too far from your house. 

10. Don't get mad at yourself if you don't see results in a day.

I know this is a hard one.

11. Try fitness classes. 

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