Mental Health Check-In

Hi there!

I started this blog to challenge myself to be vulnerable, so here goes: I’ve been struggling a bit in the mental health department. I’m okay & thankfully I have plenty of established coping skills, but my anxiety has been not so great lately. (Edit: woke up in a much better headspace this morning, yay!)

I think this is because of a few things; we’ve had some things going on personally that bring out a lot of feelings, I’m adjusting to being on summer break, & the dreary afternoons lately are the worst when I’m, as both my therapist & John describe me, a house plant.

Thankful to be in a much better headspace!

Typically, routines & my comfort zone is how I keep my anxiety in check. It’s summer break, & while I still have grad school coursework, I’m finding myself with a lot of free time. I’m playing with Theo & watching funny shows, but also feeling guilty that I’m not being more productive. It’s a vicious cycle, feeling anxious about how I’m wasting my summer break feeling anxious.

Here are a few things I’m trying to do this week that seem to be helping:

  • Making a to-do list for the following day. I’m putting even the smallest of tasks on my list right now, so that I feel productive crossing it off!
  • Making fun plans. I have a beach trip planned for Friday, a weekend by the pool with my parents, a weekend trip planned for the 4th of July. Making plans gives me extra things to look forward to!
  • Getting ready for the day. The first few days of summer break, I stayed in pajamas. It made me feel off all day, so this week I’m putting real clothes on & doing my makeup.
  • Moving my body! Those endorphins do wonders. My mom & I have decided to do some fun dance workout videos (Kyra Pro on YouTube is one of my faves!) & hold each other accountable. We just did our first one together & I feel great!

Just a reminder that everyone gets into a funk sometimes. Hopefully we have good support systems, coping skills, & patience with ourselves to start feeling better. Leave a comment & check in, how are you doing?

Love,

Danielle

Don’t Let Others Dim Your Light

I’m sending you love on this gloomy Monday. I hope your week is as wonderful as you are!

Happy (ish?) Monday!

We have NO control over other people; what they say, what they do, how they interpret things you say or do. We can only control our own reactions. That’s easier said than done, but I try to choose grace. Grace for myself & others, in every situation.

People can really suck, sometimes. It’s hard & it’s upsetting, especially for my fellow empaths. It’s difficult not to take on that negative energy; difficult to let it go.

Not everyone leads with kindness, not everyone is mindful of the feelings of others. That says everything about them & nothing about you. Don’t let others get you down, don’t let them dim that beautiful light of yours. Keep shining, beauty!

Love,

Danielle

You’ll Get There.

I hope this post encourages you!

I know I can’t be the only one who sometimes feels like my goals are JUST out of reach; close enough to almost touch & yet so far away, all at the same time.

Working on a graduate degree that will help me achieve my DREAM while navigating teaching during a pandemic feels hard. It feels nearly impossible sometimes. I find myself feeling a little discouraged lately.

But I’ll do it! Progress is progress, & I have to remind myself that I’m further along in this journey than I was, whether it feels that way or not. The late nights & early mornings; the frustrated tears while I finish an assignment. It’s all going to be worth it someday, when I finally reach that goal.

I just wanted to remind you that you’re doing it. Even if you’re at a crawl, you’re still making progress & moving toward your goal. You’re closer to it now than you were yesterday!

We’ll get there!

Danielle

Things I’m Thankful For

This week was hard. On top of going back to school & navigating the craziness that is COVID times, it was also the anniversary of my friend Bekah’s death. I felt my mental health suffering throughout the week; I try to be mindful of when I’m struggling but a sure sign that I am is when my apartment & my car get extra messy. When my anxiety is high or I’m feeling down, chores & cleaning are the last thing I feel like doing. I’m taking this weekend to recharge & take care of myself (also cleaning because it’s pretty bad!)

I had planned on writing about my favorite outfits or an easy makeup look, but found myself feeling unmotivated to film that right now. Those posts are usually fun for me, but I want to again be mindful of my mental health & be transparent about where I’m at right now. I think that vulnerability is so so important, especially right now. I know that there are many others who are struggling; life can feel difficult & heavy some days (or months or years? I’m ready for 2020 to be over with!) Please take care of yourself.

Here are some things that I am so thankful for; things that I clung onto for dear life this week as I navigated an especially difficult week!

I’m so thankful for this sweet puppy who came into our lives at the MOST perfect time!
  • My relationship! I’m not sure how I got so lucky to fall in love with a guy as kind-hearted, loving, & supportive as John, but I’m so happy I did! He always, always knows how to lift me up.
  • Our little family. No matter how hard my day was, or how down I’m feeling, I get to come home to the cutest little family. It’s impossible to feel sad when Theo is suffocating you with his kisses, & Phoebe is snuggled up purring next to you. How did I get so lucky??
  • My parents! I talk to my parents every single day. We always recap our day & compare funny puppy stories; always a highlight of my day.
  • My sister. I’ve said it before but my sister is my absolute best friend! This is the longest we’ve ever been apart (due to COVID we haven’t been together since Christmas) but we talk every day & doing our podcast together brings me a lot of joy. This time apart has made me appreciate our bond even more!
  • My friends! I have the strongest, best friendships with girls who love & support me through anything. Especially during COVID we check on each other & text, especially when we are struggling.
  • Comfy dresses like this one! It even has pockets. So cute, I’m ordering other colors ASAP!

There are plenty of other things I feel thankful for right now, but these things in particular just make me smile so much. No matter how difficult things feel or how bad my day was, these are things that aren’t going away! I hope you find strength in focusing on your gratitude for the little things.

Sending love (& Theo is sending puppy kisses!),

Danielle

Things I do when the weight of the world feels a little too heavy.

These days, we’re all bound to have a day when the world feels a bit heavy. Whether you’re feeling angry with our political climate, anxious over COVID, or just down because you’re lacking a sense of normalcy, your feelings are valid. Our world probably isn’t going back to “normal” anytime soon. Being an empath, I often find myself feeling overwhelmed by the negative emotions of others. I think there is a line between providing emotional support for others, & taking their emotions on yourself. That’s a line that I’m still working on finding. I always say that we can’t control others but we can control our own reactions. Here’s a list of a few of my go-to things to do, when the weight of the world is a little too heavy.

  • Call or text one of my friends, my mom, or my sister.
  • Go for a walk. (John compares me to a houseplant because I NEED sunshine haha)
  • Take a long, luxurious-feeling shower.
  • Put on a favorite song & dance around.
  • Snuggle with my pets.
  • Do something that makes me feel strong & empowered, like a dance workout.
  • Support an organization or cause that I feel passionate about.

These are all really simple things; nothing ground breaking. But I think the most helpful thing to do when you’re feeling discouraged or out of control of things, is to focus on the things you CAN control.

If you’re feeling down today, I hope that you find things you’re able to control to bring a little light back into your day.

Sending light,

Danielle

Picking Yourself Back Up After a Bad Day

Going for a walk in the sunshine (preferably with my pup!) usually makes a bad day seem a little brighter.

Today was a bad day. One of those hold-back-tears-all-day, order-pasta-on-Uber-Eats- and-drink-wine-when-you-get-home, only-watching-Lizzie-McGuire-on-Disney+-will-help kind of days. I’m sure you’ve been there (& hopefully have healthier coping skills than I do!) and it sucks. It really, really sucks. We all have bad days, (albeit hopefully only once in a while!), but it’s how we handle them & what we learn from them that matters most. If you’re having a rough time today, oof girl I feel you. I know it feels awful in the moment, but you will get through it & you will have a brand new start tomorrow! Read on for some tips on how I deal with less than ideal days.

Acknowledge your feelings: You are upset & your feelings are 100% VALID! Bad days are the worst & maybe you’re feeling sad or hurt or angry or frustrated. LET YOURSELF FEEL THAT WAY! Without judgement, without justification.

Talk it out: Maybe it’s a FaceTime with your big sis, happy hour with your best friend, or a snuggle sesh with your boyfriend & pets. Talk to someone about how you are feeling! Trust me, you don’t want all of that negative energy staying pent up inside. I promise you’ll feel at least a little lighter once you vent; and hey, a margarita doesn’t hurt either!

Take action: A lot of the time, bad days are out of our control. Once you’ve survived the day & are in your cozy sweatpants, it’s time to take some of your power back. Do something that will help you feel better! Write down a to-do list if you’re feeling overwhelmed with work tasks, give yourself a facial or work out if you’re feeling anxious, or watch movies with your girlfriends if you’re upset. Choose something that makes your soul happy & will lift you up!

If you are reading this & had a bad day, I’m sending you the biggest hug right now. I hope these tips (that I will for sure be using tonight!) give you some ideas for how to feel at least a little bit better. Take deep breaths, you’ve got this. Tomorrow is a new day!

Danielle