Goals for the week (Vol. 4)

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We’re already 9 weeks into the new year, can you believe it? It’s almost spring. Time is just flying by. This past week was a pretty good one in terms of achieving my small goals! How did you do?

Goals I achieved from my last post

  • I’m happier. If you asked me a few weeks ago if I was genuinely happy, I wouldn’t know what to say. But right now I can honestly, and whole-heartedly tell you that I am happy and content with where I am in my life right now. And that’s the best feeling in the world.
  • I (almost) didn’t spend any money! This one’s big for me because honestly, I spend a lot of money. The goal was to not spend any money before I got my paycheck, and after I got paid, I will admit, I did go to Old Navy and buy some new workout clothes. Which leads me to…
  • I’ve been consistently working out, and I don’t totally hate it. Like I said in my last post, I’ve been doing simple things like squats, lunges, crunches and push ups along with my daily walk and yoga session. It’s made me very happy.

Goals for this week:

  • Read more. I am in the middle of so many books right now, and it’s a problem. I want to finish a book, but it just seems like I either don’t have time, or when I do have time, I end up on the computer or doing something completely different. I want to know what it feels like to curl up with a good book and get lost for a while again.
  • Get all my errands done. I have quite a bit to do, and I’ve been putting it off. Mainly because they’re such boring things, like go to the post office, pick up meds at the pharmacy, get nails done, pay bills, etc. They’re boring, but someone’s gotta do it.
  • Get my nails done. Yes, I’m including this in my goals for the week. Don’t judge. I have actually been putting this off for a while now and I really need to get my toes done. Plus, it’s a great stress reliever for me!

This week looks to be really smooth-sailing, but I know it won’t be. I’m gearing up for a huge event this Saturday, so I actually have a lot to get done for that, which is probably why my goals are so simple. But hey, sometimes it’s good to keep things simple.

What makes you feel complete?

While I was putting on my makeup this morning, I thought to myself: Why am I doing this? It’s a Saturday, I’m not going anywhere today, I’m not seeing anyone, I don’t have any plans at all. Yet there I stood in front of the mirror with a bottle of liquid foundation and a pink beauty sponge. As I carefully applied makeup to conceal my “blemishes,” I wondered why/who I was doing this for, yet continued to do it anyway. Why? Because it makes me feel complete. It makes me feel like a whole person, like I’m productive and ready for the day, despite my plans (or lack thereof). Is it a bad thing that I feel the need to wear makeup, to put on a face even though I’ll only be spending the day with myself? What if I told you that applying makeup was almost therapeutic? (Weird? Eh.)

My roommate in college would put jeans on as soon as she woke up in the morning, even though it was a Sunday and in college it’s deemed “homework day.” We stayed home all day Sunday, we usually ordered a pizza and most of the time I didn’t bother putting on a bra. But she insisted that wearing jeans made her more productive. This isn’t to say that wearing jeans makes her feel complete, but without them, she didn’t feel quite right either.

So my question to you this morning, is what makes you feel complete? What’s one thing you have to do in the morning, that if you skipped it, you would be thrown off the entire day?

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Review: Formio Jewelry

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Hey guys! I was recently contacted by Formio to promote their products, and I’m so excited to share this with you! Formio is a company that sends you jewelry pieces of your choice, it’s really affordable, and they’re all high-quality pieces of jewelry as well.

It’s basically Netflix for jewelry. I’m already obsessed, and I can’t wait until I get my next box in the mail! Here’s what I got for my first box:

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When you choose your jewelry pieces, Formio also lets you choose a handbag. I chose this black leather bag with gold detailing. I’m really into anything black, and this bag is just really chic.

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I pretty much went with the whole gold/black look, but Formio has tons of styles and colors and jewels to choose from on their website. And the great thing is, you can just send it back and get new items if you don’t like them or if you get bored with them.

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I seriously recommend this if you’re like me, and can’t decide on one piece of jewelry when you’re shopping, but can’t afford to buy them all. Formio is an affordable way to be fashionable! If you’re interested in this incredible new way to online shop for unique jewelry, click here

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**This is a sponsored post. All words and opinions are my own.**

Health update: Good news!!!

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I don’t think I’ve ever had the pleasure of saying this before but… My doctors gave me good news yesterday! If you remember from my last health update, I was caught between deciding to begin an IV treatment, or stay on the current medication I’m on, or try something else (a medicine that would prevent me from ever having children).

Well, I’m not doing anything I thought I would be doing. My body has made some sort of miraculous recovery and my liver is functioning, my kidneys are improving, my SED rate (SED measures the amount of inflammation in the body) has stabilized, and I haven’t been in pain these past weeks. I almost feel… normal!

I knew it was a good sign when my doctor walked into the room and said, “Wow! You look great!” I thought he was kidding, until he showed me all my test results. He then gave me an ultimatum: I can stop almost all my medications, and begin treating the disease naturally, which is something I’ve never heard any doctor say, but hey, I’ll take it. So for the next 4 weeks, I have to prove that I’m capable of fighting this disease by myself, without relying on all the toxicity of medications.

So what’s next?

I’m off chemo. I’m done. It’s over. I’ve defeated it. *Cue “Eye of the Tiger”* I’m also off Plaquenil (which is the medicine that causes blindness). And I’m tapering off of the steroids. I’m currently only on 3 medicines. THREE. The last time I was on less than 10 medications was sophomore year of high school. This. Is. Amazing.

As for the next month, I’m going to be the healthiest health nut you’ve ever seen. Here’s what my doctor told me:

  • Omega3 oils: Reduce inflammation
  • Vitamin B6: Blocks toxicity that causes infection, further progression of the disease
  • Eat a low protein, plant based diet (no red meats)
  • Exclude milk products
  • No refined carbs (pasta, white rice, white bread, chips)
  • Whole grains
  • Avoid sugar/caffeine

I have 4 weeks to prove medicines wrong. I have 4 weeks to strengthen my body and show my doctor that I can heal and treat myself via health and good nutrition. (Today also begins my journey without coffee. Lord help us all haha)

As always, thank you to the moon and back for being my backbone, my support system, the light in a never-ending darkness. After all this time, we’ve finally found the light. This morning, I raise a glass to good health!

Goals for the week (Vol. 3)

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I haven’t really been keeping up with these posts, but I have been creating goals and accomplishing them (for the most part). Have you been writing down goals for yourself?

Goals I achieved from my last post:

  • I’ve started working out again! And it feels great. I haven’t been doing anything crazy, but I am being more active, which is a step in the right direction. I’ve been walking and doing squats, lunges, pushups and crunches. All of my favorite workouts are here 
  • I picked up a new book! I made my way out to the only bookstore on the island (it’s 40 miles away!), and picked up Jonathan Tropper’s “Plan B” and I’m really liking it so far!
  • I got a second opinion on my health. This was the biggest goal, because well… It’s the most important. I got two second opinions, one from a specialist at USC and one of my past doctors in Oregon, and unfortunately, they both said the same thing. Basically, “you’re sick, you need a stronger treatment, blah, blah.” I’m seeing my doctor on Wednesday this week to tell him what I plan to do, I’ll update you all on this later this week!

Goals for this week:

  • Take a new online course. I love learning, always have, always will. And with my new job, it’s important that I stay on top of current trends with social media and marketing. I just started using Udemy, which is an incredible online resource, and a lot of the courses are free! I’ve taken a few, but my goal this week is to take more and really broaden my thinking and sharpen my skills.
  • Don’t spend any money. This one is weird for me, but I think it’ll be good. I don’t need to buy coffee in the morning. I have a Keurig machine, so I can easily make it at home. I just prefer someone else to make it for me. #firstworldproblems? My goal is to not spend any money at all. At all. Wish me luck hahaha
  • Be happier. I’m already such a happy person, but I’ll admit, sometimes my mood does flip rather quickly. But hey, I’m only human. We all have our days, our moments of frustration. But my goal this week is to let things roll off my shoulders, don’t dwell on negativity because it only breeds more bad feelings and emotions. Be happier, it’s simple, but necessary.

What are your goals for the week?

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Photos: Appreciating the skies and my first week of work!

Happy Sunday! This past week (and then some), was really productive and full of beautiful moments, which I captured with these photos. I hope you all had a relaxing weekend, and are ready to tackle the week ahead of you. Think positively, appreciate your surroundings, and thank your body for hosting your mind and soul. But most importantly: treat yo self.

IMG_6748 IMG_6749 The universe woke me up at 4am and I was able to capture this beautiful sky and tiny moon. Every morning I wake up and I still can’t believe this is the view from my window. I’m so lucky to live in such a beautiful world that surprises me every day. Fun fact: moon in Hawaiian is “mahina” and I think it makes a beautiful name!

FullSizeRender This week was the first week I was off chemo. I’ll write more about this later, but I’ve decided to get off my medicines (some, not all), and treat my disease naturally, holistically. I’m tired of putting so many chemicals in my body. So I’ve been drinking lots of tea, and it’s actually helped me a lot with the pain! Are there any teas you recommend? I’d love to discover new brands and flavors!

IMG_6701 My work is right by the water, so I went for a dip before I started. It was really refreshing and helped me clear my mind. I highly recommend doing out of the ordinary things to surprise yourself every once in a while!

IMG_6690 Painting is quickly becoming a hobby of mine, I think it’s really fun! And it doesn’t matter if you’re good at it or not, it’s just a great stress reliever.

IMG_6703 IMG_6705 Yes, I’m that girl who takes photos of her coffee cups. Sorry not sorry. Have you seen my post on this planner? Also, I told the barista that it was my first day of work and he drew a heart on my cup to wish me luck! It was really sweet (and okay… he was totally cute too).

IMG_6707 I saw this van while I was driving home, and I had to take a picture of it. It says “Radio Flyer” like the little wagons! I thought it was really cute. I wish I’d gotten a better photo of it though.

IMG_6713 IMG_6714 Reminiscing on college days… I miss it a lot sometimes (all the time). I got the 642 Things To Write About book, and I absolutely love it. If you’re trying to keep a journal, but aren’t really good at it, or don’t know what to write about, I highly recommend this book because it has tons of creative and unique prompts that get you thinking and reflecting on yourself. I’m also addicted to the TimeHop app, which shows you things you posted online up to 5 years ago! It’s embarrassing, but I like it.

IMG_6764 I started reading Plan B by Jonathan Tropper, and I love it so far! It’s about a group of 30-somethings who all meet up and complain that their lives haven’t gone anywhere and it basically follows them through their life crises. It’s kind of depressing, but it’s real and I like it.

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Overall, this week was great. I spent lots of time outdoors, with myself and my thoughts and I was able to further understand who I am, which is important. I spent a lot of the week sitting in silence and listening to my body, which is something that I haven’t done in a long time. It was something I had to do, and I’m so happy I finally allowed myself the time to do it. Allow yourself to sit in silence, talk to yourself, be with yourself and your spirit this week.

How to be an optimistic person

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I can’t even believe how many questions I get regarding optimism. “How are you so positive? Why are you so happy all the time?” Want some tips for how to always look on the bright side of things?

Create goals. Having dreams can help to keep yourself in check and give you a sense of motivation, something to get out of bed for in the morning. Once you have your goals in mind, write them down, and that way you always have something to work towards and shape your actions.

Don’t surround yourself with negativity. Limit your exposure to pessimistic people. Is there someone in your life who makes you feel inferior, depressed, unworthy, or anything other than exceptionally special? Cut ties with them, kick them out of your life, because they aren’t helping you achieve optimal happiness. If a situation isn’t serving you, why continue to be in it? It sounds selfish, but putting yourself first is the most vital part of becoming a happy person.

Be grateful, and show it.  In this world, it seems like all we care about is another’s approval. Why do we do this to ourselves? Instead, try to value the non-material things around you, like the sunshine, food, health, people you surround yourself with. Recognize all the amazing things you have to be thankful for, and you can instantly turn a bad mood into a positive outlook.

Give back. We live in a great big world, and the least we can do is help our neighbors. It doesn’t have to be something huge, it can be as simple as a smile or a hug. Just give back, it’ll make you feel good and it’ll really make someone else’s day too.

Do what you love. Lose yourself in your passions. Discover what it is that makes you genuinely happy, and do it! Whether it’s painting (I just started painting and I love it!), playing the ukulele, reading, blogging (hehehe), anything – just do what you love and don’t be ashamed.

Understand yourself. Spend time trying to figure out what makes you sad, or upset, and then cut it out of your life. As the Dalai Lama said: “The central method for achieving a happier life is to train your mind in a daily practice that weakens negative attitudes and strengthens positive ones.”  Figure out what and where your negativity comes from, and then replace that with more positive affirmations.

Keep a journal. I’m THE biggest advocate for journaling and writing, because it got me through some of the toughest times of my life. I was in such a dark place, and I can honestly credit journaling and daily writing to saving me. The best part is that journaling is for you and you only. Only your eyes will ever see it, so it doesn’t matter what you write, you don’t have to be ashamed of anything, because it’s just for you. Record all your notes, reflections and thoughts.

Make a positivity board. I have one on Pinterest, but I also have one in my room! I posted up photos, quotes and fun DIY projects that really make me smile and remember happy memories, and whenever I’m feeling sad, I go to this space in my room and I immediately feel better.

Be healthy. Endorphins are real, and they make you feel amazing, so eat well and stay active. By taking good care of yourself, you are proving that you can take control of your life and influence your own well-being.

Listen to happy music. I have so many playlists filled with my favorite happy songs that immediately improve my mood. Blast it in the car, on your stereo, dance around. Feel the music in your core and let all the bad feelings roll off your shoulders.

Fake it ’til you make it. Easier said than done, I know. But you gotta try. Even when times are tough and all you want to do is curl up in a ball and cry,  putting on a smile can be much more beneficial. Smile like you mean it – even if you don’t! If you’re able to convince others that you’re happy, you’ll convince yourself in the process. Smiling is the easiest and simplest thing you can do to change your mood and the moods of those around you.

I hope this helps you find happiness, because you deserve it. You’re a beautiful person, and you’re even more lovely with that bright smile on your face. So let it shine.