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

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Just A Little Bit More 


This is so important!

Believe in yourself and what you are worth and what you are capable of.

You are priceless.

And you can do anything you put your mind to. 

So often we under sell ourselves. 

But we need to believe in ourselves just a little bit more. Love ourselves a little bit more and then we will achieve so much more. 

I have been anxious about finding a job. I’m a new graduate with no experience aside from my practicum, and after I finished my practicum on May 26th I felt overwhelmed looking at all the job postings, because they were all requesting years of experience – which I don’t have. 

I applied anyway, I’m not going to lie and say I had bucket loads of confidence in myself BUT I did believe I had something to offer. 

Lo, and behold I got a call for an interview! I was super happy and excited. I went to the interview and I was super nervous BUT before I opened the door I put a big smile on my face, told myself I could do this and that they would love me and then I walked thru the door.

It’s all about how we talk to ourselves. If you tell yourself you are going to fail, you will fail. If you tell yourself you are going to succeed you will – even if it’s not on the first try.

I thought the interview went well and walked away proud of myself for giving it my all.

I’m happy to announce that this morning I was offered the position! This is my dream job and I couldn’t be more ecstatic! 

Believe in yourself and anything is possible.

Don’t give up hope. Believe in yourself just a little bit more and you will be able to get thru anything.

– Steph

Empty Promises


Last week was a whirlwind of emotions. So pardon my lack of posting.

Just when you think you’ve got it all figured out. Lo and behold you don’t. 

When is enough, enough? 

When is someone’s behaviour no longer acceptable? At what point do you reach the end of the line where their excuses aren’t good enough any more, and you aren’t going to take them.

When do we check out? 

I honestly don’t know. I’d like to say as soon as we know we are being treated wrong. 

But that’s the thing – 

We stand up for ourselves when we know we are being treated wrong. We go thru that motion, that expression of self. But then what? 

We give them another chance and they hurt and disappoint us. We stand up for ourselves again demanding a change – to be treated better and then we accept their apology and BAM we go right back into that cycle. And for what? Love? But can it really be love when its one sided?

Sadly, yes it can be. For you it can be. For you it can be a pure love felt for the other person BUT the reality is they arent loving you back the same – if at all. It’s not healthy. Not for you. You give and give and give and you get nothing in return except emotional torment.

Yet, here we are trying to convince ourselves that we aren’t allowing ourselves to be suckered into some sort of toxic relationship – because how could we be when the other person knows that we know we should be treated better. That can’t be toxic, everyone is aware of what’s going on. 

But guess what?! 

They don’t care! It doesn’t matter that they know you know your worth. As long as you let them into your life. Time and time again nothing is going to change. 

Why should it? 

They can do as they please, apologize and everything will go on like it did before.

But when is enough, enough?

How do you let them go?

How do you choose pain? Because that’s what it is. Letting go of the person you love, turning away from them as they beg you not to go. Turning away from them as they profess their love for you, that you so desperately want them to give you. How do you turn away when they are telling you that they know they are in the wrong – acknowledging everything that you’ve been trying to have them see. Doing all of these things. Talking about change. Begging you to not leave them. How do you walk away? 

You just do. You cry most of the time. But the pain is part of the process. That’s why it’s called a broken heart.

All of those things they say are just words. Words at the end of the day that mean nothing. Words that are never applied to action.

And you can’t live a life waiting on words.

It gets you no where. No where other than hurt and disappointed.

When is enough, enough?

How do we stop ourselves from going back? How do we break out of the cycle?

We try. That’s all we can do is try. Try and try again. 

It’s not easy. I’m terrible at it. 

When your heart is set on something it’s hard to let it go. 

But like my sister said. You either choose to be hurt by them over and over again, or you choose to leave and temporarily hurt knowing the pain will eventually go away.

It’s just so hard. 

– Steph

 

You Are Limitless

You are capable of anything. Anything at all. I believe that with every fibre of my body. 

You are capable of achieving any goal so long as you put in the work. There are no limits aside from the ones you set. Yes, you may have to go an unconventional route to obtain your goal if you have a mental illness that affects the “normal route”. But detours are what make life interesting. 

It’s all about what we want and how much we want it. There is no reason you can’t achieve it. 

Write it out. Write down want you want – physically commit to the thought. A goal that’s not recorded is just a dream. When you write it out, it makes it that much more tangible and you will be that much more likely to invest time towards achieving it.

Everything takes time so be kind and patient with yourself. Dream big and turn those dreams into goals.

Never underestimate what you are capable of, and never tell yourself you can’t do something because the reality is you can. 

When I was first diagnosed with bipolar I thought my life was over and that I’d be limited with what I could do – come on its bipolar…but in actuality my life finally began after my diagnosis, because, come on its just bipolar. I finally got the help I needed and in turn started getting a grip on my life which made achieving my goals realistic. Things I thought I’d never do, I’ve done and there is more yet to come. 

Marriage, babies… all things that I want but terrify me because I’m not sure how my bipolar will affect me. But I’ll face my fears when the time comes because I know its worth it. I believe in me. And respectively I believe in you. Don’t put yourself in a box on a shelf, give yourself some credit and do great things, heck – do simple things. My point is just do things, for yourself and for others.

Be happy and live life in all of its glory.

– Steph

 

Just Try

Trying is the bravest thing we could go.

With so many reasons not to try, finding the courage to go for it deserves a pat on the back.

Just go for it! Think it thru of course (I’m not encouraging any brash behaviour that you might regret) but don’t let doubts dwindle your self-belief and infringe on your ability to go above and beyond. Don’t live with “what ifs”.

Be a bit of a mess and try.

There is nothing wrong with not having it all together when you try.

Trying = Learning = Growth.

Who doesn’t want to grow. Even if we try and don’t get our way, there is always something you can take away. And sometimes we need to try specifically for the reason that we need to see its not for us… again taking the “what ifs” out of the equation.

I’m presently trying at something in my life, I’m trying with everything I’ve got and presently I don’t know if it’s right for me and if I should move on or give it a bit more time (I’m leaning towards giving it a bit more time). It’s fair to say I’m a bit of a mess. But I do feel brave. I feel brave for putting myself out there regardless to the outcome. I feel brave that I started something and I’m going to see it thru to the end.

And like I said, I’m a bit of a mess. There are some days I’m not sure I can make it BUT I keep on trying. I’ll know soon enough whether or not the outcome is in my favor or an extra special learning lesson.

And that’s another important factor. Know when to try and know when you’ve given it your all and there is nothing left to give (which doesn’t equate to quitting). Know when it’s the end. Don’t kill yourself over wanting to achieve a specific result that you lose yourself. Sometimes the answer is NO, and we need to recognize that and accept it. It doesn’t mean we didn’t give it our all, it just means it wasn’t for us. And that’s okay. Sometimes we can try with everything we’ve got but it’s not going to cut it because it’s just not meant for us.

A prime example of that situation is in a relationship. You can try but you can’t be the only one trying – that’s not how a healthy relationship works. You’ll make yourself sick trying to put in the work and effort of two people. That my dear friends is when you can tell yourself you tried BUT it wasn’t for you. Even if you love that person, it doesn’t mean they are the right person for you. Some things require that more than one person try in order to be successful.  And when you’ve put in the work and the other people constantly falls thru – take up your courage and walk away.

Try, but know your limit (it’s all about balance). Give it your all but don’t give in to being taken advantage of.

Try, but don’t make yourself sick over not wanting to be a failure. “Failing” only occurs when we don’t learn something. Learn from your efforts whether or not the answer is yes or no.

Try.

Be a mess.

Be brave.

Learn.

Grow.

And be happy. Don’t live in fear of trying anything, whether that’s the start of something new or ending of something old.

– 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