Just Live A Little


Life.

My oh my. 

I’m currently working on making the most of my life. Recently I had someone walk into my life, mind you I showed them the exit… BUT for the brief time they were in my life they caused me to re-evaluate how I was living it. I am the most stable I’ve ever been – this is a fact. But there is more than just being stable. More than just holding the status quo.

I’ve done things in my life, but I haven’t all at the same time. Living was such a struggle for so many years I feel like my life was a bit of a write-off. Perhaps I haven’t completely escaped the mentality of just surviving. 

But I’m here. I’m alive and I want my life to reflect that.

I was asked about my bucket list and I only had 2 things to list off. On top of that the two ideas weren’t even that creative! 

That just won’t do.

Over the course of two weeks I developed a bucket list. Or rather “lists”. One list outlines things I would like to do over the course of 2017/2018, and the other lists things I’d like to do in a lifetime. I’m trying to step outside of my box, escape the mundane routine I’ve created. Add a little bedazzle. Spice things up. You get the idea.

I’m really proud of my list, it took quite a bit of effort to create it. 

It’s so easy to get into a routine, routine is good don’t get me wrong BUT there should be more. More to life. Where did my exploratory nature go? Where is my sense of adventure?

I was going thru a bit of depression the past while, feeling trapped. But I realized I was the one putting myself in the cage or like I referred to it earlier – a box. I was the one restricting myself, no one else.

When you feel trapped you are the only one who can free yourself, whatever that situation may be.

Escaping our box is a choice, and most often it requires that we put in effort and feel a bit uncomfortable. And why must we feel uncomfortable? Because my dear friends, we are stepping outside of our norm and its the price we must pay.

And when I say I want to live life I don’t mean I need to climb Mount Everest or backpack thru Europe, not saying I’d turn down the opportunity.  What I’m talking about is reading books, going to museums and art galleries, taking guitar lessons, joining a choir, going to a paint night (which I just did … my painting was terrible! But I had fun making it, and that’s what it’s all about), simple yet impactful things that will add dimension to my life. 

Dimension that’s my objective. I want to have something to talk about, things to look forward to. I want to meet people, enrich my life with perspective. Expand my way of looking at life and take advantage of the life I’ve been blessed with.

I want to be an actively engaged in my life rather than passively letting it pass me by.

I feel so passionately about this new outlook on life, I feel alive and excited for what is to going to happen because of me making it happen. 

Ask yourself if you are trapped in routine, feeling like life is escaping you – then make a list. Make a list of things outside of your box and start doing them.

It’s been a big year for me. Lots of new chapters with school ending, me getting my dream job, a couple of toads crossing my path. I feel like in my life’s story is picking up its pace and it’s only going to get better! 

Stop thinking about all the things you’d like to do. Take action and do them. Liberate yourself from the box you live in and add dimension to your life. Stay stable but add a little bedazzle. 

– Steph

Advertisements

What Matters Most

There is nothing quite as satisfying as having your dog curl up next to you – in my case my dog often curls up in my arms or by my neck.

There is just something about the love of a dog. 

Nutmeg  (my dog) is 6 years old. It’s been an amazing 6 years and I hope to have many more. Life would not be the same without her. 

She calms me down and has given me purpose. To care for her and in turn care for myself. Having her in my life has been one of my greatest blessings. 

If you have a dog I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. And if you don’t have a dog but are thinking about one I encourage you to take that step BUT only if you are going to commit. Dogs aren’t disposable – when you buy one it should be with a lifetime in mind.

When I bought Nutmeg I knew in my heart she was non-negotiable. When I moved around (which I’ve done a lot) I always picked dog friendly buildings. Even if that meant spending more money. I made a commitment to Nutmeg the day I bought her. She’s a loyal little soul and deserves the same in return. 

Even if you’re not thinking about getting a dog, but another animal instead I encourage you to look into it. I researched for 2 years before I bought Nutmeg. It may not take you that long BUT know what you are getting into. 

Through the good and the bad she’s remained constant. Through all the changes she’s been there, and that my dear friends is priceless. The kind of love a pet (in my case a fur baby) can give you and you can give in return is truly amazing and is one of the simple ways our hearts can remind us that we know what it is to feel.

– Steph

Decisions, Decisions 

Decisions, decisions. Sometimes I’m a bit impulsive and I don’t make the best ones. Gratefully one decision doesn’t have to spiral into another and another and another. It can by all means BUT it doesn’t have to.

You choose who you want to be. Some choices are easier than others but at the end of the day you have to live with yourself so choose to be someone that you can like *correction love.

And what happens if you make a decision that is contrary to your very nature? Do you roll over and die wallowing in the error of your ways? No. You acknowledge the poor choice and remind yourself that it isn’t who you are nor who you want to become.

Decisions are what make or break us. But there is no reason that you can’t take a different path once you’ve already started on one. Perhaps you are going to have to literally back track or go off terrain forging a new path, struggling along the way. But struggling is better than willfully accepting defeat in life – becoming someone who you can’t face in the mirror.

Impulse comes with the territory of being bipolar, but it’s not an excuse to throw all reason out of the window! Although I’ve definitely been guilty of that… We need to set up safety precautions when we are fully aware; road blocks that will slow us down when we start to slip out of a reality that faces any consequences. Becuase in that particular moment it’s hard to think of the repercussions.

 If you have a weakness that you are more inclined to when you are either really high or really low, acknowledge it and look for ways to hinder it’s immediate progress. If you have to stop along the way it may give you enough time consider the consequences of your actions.

I’m not saying it’s a full proof plan, but it’s definitely something that may help you prevent some oopsies otherwise

If you fall off the horse you get back on. But always acknowledge and own what you did, don’t stuff it in a closet that’s going to burst open on you. You’ll feel much better about yourself if you take back control. And if you acknowledge it, your giving yourself the opportunity to prevent it from happening again.

I made an impulsive decision recently and it wasn’t the best one. But it’s not going to define me or erase all the hard work I’ve been putting in to be the best version of me – unless I let it, and I’m not. I know what led up to me being in a position to make that decision and I’m consciously making a plan that will not put me at risk of repeating history.

Live life and love life. Love yourself and don’t let a few poor choices define who you are. You are so much more. 

– Steph  

It’s a New Dawn

It’s the start of a new school year, but this isn’t just any school year this is my last year! I entered into a 2 year program and I’m actually going to finish it completely! This may not seem like much to most people but I graduated high school in 2009 and I have been all over the maps with my post secondary since 2010 bouncing from one thing to the next because they seemed like a great idea… first it was a fashion designer, then it was a speech pathologist, then it was a teacher, a dental hygienist… HR business personnel and finally I’ve committed and I’m completing a diploma to be a legal assistant. My health was a huge contributing factor for my prolonged post secondary experience but you live and you learn and you meet people along the way. 

I finished last year with a 3.8 GPA. I’m not saying this to boast but to point out that having bipolar with all of it’s ups and downs … switching medication… upping my doses of medication didn’t prevent me from succeeding. If you put your mind to it anything is possible, we are our only limit.

I’m excited and nervous for this year, there is a lot to learn and a lot of work ahead of me. I’m excited for my practicum and to experience working in a law firm (I’m pretty confident I’d like to go for law and become a lawyer … but slow and steady wins the race, I want one stable career under my belt first) 

I’m not going to lie I’m worried about entering the real life adult work force, sure I’m an adult but working summer jobs and having the luxury of calling in sick if I was really feeling like I couldn’t function is very different than a stable 9-5 Monday thru Friday. In the legal field there are deadlines and as the legal assistant to the lawyers I’m expected to meet them otherwise what is my value to the firm. I’ll face that hurdle when I get there. This year is preparatory for that, I’m working with my doctors and I’m trying to better myself and that’s all I can do.

I’m so proud to say I will be graduating this year, it’s been a long time coming. But if it takes you longer than most people, so be it. Never let go of a dream and goal just because you have to work differently than most people to achieve it. 

 I hope everyone has an exciting year and challenges themselves to dream big and work hard to make it happen. 
– Steph 

Surprise Yourself

Sometimes you need to step out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself. Reminding your self how capable you really are.

I applied for the posting on of Vice president for my schools club. And to my surprise I was voted in. So I am officially  the Vice President of the Legal Assistant Society. I’m excited to fulfill the role, to work with my peers hopefully make some friendships along the way. 

I wasn’t sure if I was even going to apply but I bit the bullet and told myself I could do it. I was qualified and the only thing standing in my way was me. 

Take a step out of your ordinary. Make a change to be the change in your life that you’re looking for.

I wanted more depth in my life; to be more engaged and I think this is a step in the right direction.

– Steph 

Step One

  
Such beautiful words. With so much truth behind them. 

A new week is upon us, with infinite opportunities and all we need to do is take the first step. We don’t need to know the entire staircase, we don’t need to know how long before we reach the top – all we need to know is that we will reach it if we take one step at a time (sometimes we may even take 2 or 3 steps depending on the day)

Has anyone ever done the stairmaster – it’s a creation designed to torture mankind… just kidding it’s a glorious machine that can create buns of steel BUTT …. I mean BUT in order to do that you need to take the first step on it’s never ending staircase. Sometimes the goal is 50 flights of stairs sometimes it’s 100, sometimes it’s 20 minutes and sometimes it’s until you can’t feel your legs any more. Regardless to the goal, the only way to succeed is to take the first step and then taking it one step at a time subsequently. 

This week take the first step towards a goal you’ve been dreaming about starting. Just do it. Take the first step to loving yourself a little better. Take the first step to going for a walk outside to get some fresh air ( there have actually been studies that tell us having exposure outside for 10 minutes can improve our mood… fancy fact… I’m not saying it will cure the mood but it may help even just a little… Something to do with the uv rays)

Take the first step to change. Take the first step to improve. Take the first step to treat yourself better (and make sure others treat you better too). Take the first step to find your self worth, for yourself. Take the first step and then take it one step at a time after. Breathe and pace yourself. You can do it.

Here’s to a new week of new opportunities, all we need to do is take the first step. And as you go up the staircase just think how strong you are becoming with each new step – each step is redefining who you are and what you are capable of and don’t forget it.

– Steph

Boiling Point

  
We all have a boiling point and truth be told it’s okay to be angry. That’s something I’m working on it.

Perhaps the notions sounds silly BUT without a word of a lie, that was the task delegated to me today from my doctor.

My problem with anger is that I always turn it inwards. I never just let myself be angry at the person or situation. I don’t know how to just be angry without harping on myself. Which ultimately turns into me getting down on myself and getting depressed – not angry.

 Stupid is usually the word that comes to mind once I get “angry”.But I’m not stupid – I have every right to feel angry whether it’s actually a valid reason in the eyes of the world or not. If I’ve felt wronged I can be angry about it – simple as that.

The key is to let the anger in so that you can let it out. That way it’s not festering within you. Anger is one of the steps to grieving. True story.

I thought I grieved and got past my anger but the truth is I didn’t and how my doctor (and I) can tell is, it’s like a boomerang I’m angry at myself over and over again for the same reason- 

Key word angry at me not the person who wronged me … Somehow he alway seems to be off the hook and I’m left with mess all on my own even though I didn’t make it.

Nothing about that cycle tells me that I’ve directed the real anger where it needs to go; otherwise I would be able to let it go. And so far I can’t. It’s been futile.

And let me clarify that feeling anger is VERY different then acting on it. Don’t do that, acting in anger is a recipe for disaster. 

So with this all being said, what I’m trying to do is encourage you to reflect and ask yourself if you’re sincerely letting yourself feel angry (which is healthy) or if your doing what I do – turning the anger inwards (you don’t deserve that) boomeranging and come back over and over for the same reason.

Think on it and make the conscious decision to let it come so it can go. The sooner we learn how to do this the happier we’ll be… so I’m told. But who am I kidding that theory makes perfect sense.

– Steph