15 Life Lessons to Live By

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking these past few weeks. It always seems that right before a big transition or move in your life, we reflect a lot on the past and where we are presently…and what it all means to us moving forward.

In this past year and a half, I’ve learned a lot. About myself, about others. What I want to do, what I don’t want to do. What I like to do, what I really don’t like to do. What’s important to me and what I couldn’t care less about. I’ve been happily single, happily not single. Felt completely fulfilled and then completely empty and lost. Cried tears of joy, tears of anger, tears of sadness and tears of laughter. Had countless new experiences and countless days to realize I actually like my routine. Made some bad decisions and some good ones. Drank tequila like it was my job and chugged water the next day as if my life depended on it. Had moments where I knew exactly what I was doing and moments where I couldn’t find the strength or motivation to move from my “beached whale” position face down on my carpet pondering the meaning of life.

All in all, I’ve learned a lot this past year. Here are the 15 things I’ve come to realize:
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1. You find happiness and fulfillment from within, not outside of you. Finding yourself is an inside job and won’t happen by constantly jumping from one place, job, person or thing to another. If you are feeling unsettled, vulnerable and like there is a void in your life, it won’t be solved or filled by changing your external environment. It may help for a while, it may ease those emotions and provide temporary relief, but those kinds of feelings need to be settled from within, not outside of you.

2. Everyone has a different version of happiness. What makes me happy from the inside out can be completely different from the next person. And that’s a beautiful thing. If we all were made happy by the exact same things, where would our unique energy for life go?  Remember this lesson when you are giving advice to someone about their life and what you think they should do…their path to happiness may not be the same as yours. And remember this too when receiving advice from another person…What made and makes them happy (decisions, actions, experiences) may not be what makes you happy. That’s ok. Find and create your own happy.

3. Peace comes from within you, not from outside of you. Sure, it’s easier to be zen in a zen space, but you can still experience chaos in your mind when you’re in a tranquil environment. Same goes for feeling calm and at peace when you’re in a hectic, stressful environment. Not ideal for the long-run, of course. But when you’re seriously at peace with yourself, your life and present situation, sirens, shitty bus rides, crazy people yelling at you and long, slow-moving lines at the grocery store don’t screw with your zen. Find silence and peace within you and not only will you see it outside of you, you’ll react to things with that peaceful mindset, no matter where you are.

4. Go with your gut. Always. Whether it’s a feeling about a person, place, thing, job, experience, environment, decision…ALWAYS. GO. WITH. YOUR. GUT. It’s that tiny, intuitive voice that comes from your heart and belly. It NEVER steers you wrong. Even if you can’t explain it or justify it to someone else (although you shouldn’t have to justify your feelings to anyone, ever), don’t go against it. It is divine, intuitive, Universe-sent wisdom that will have a profound impact on your life. It’s there for a reason. Like, I’m seriously wanting to put the fear of God in you right now to never abandon those gut feelings. Your intuition/gut is your first brain. Your real brain is, well, second.

5. Revealing and sharing your vulnerability, even if it’s in hopes to inspire and help other people, can make those closest to you uncomfortable. That discomfort can be manifested in anger, misunderstanding, worry, control, patronizing, disrespect and scorn. Anything that brings you down. Even if those reactions are meant out of love and protection for you, it can hurt. So share your heart and vulnerability wisely, with an audience and community that you hope to inspire and that you know will support you and raise you up even higher. On our path to greatness and happiness, we don’t need those kinds of negative ego-triggers (i.e. people who don’t understand or appreciate your vulnerability and message.) There will be a time when you can share with them, or maybe not. But don’t ever dull your shine to avoid negative reactions from certain people. Block their negativity, whether it’s through your sparkly energy field or the Facebook privacy settings, and keep doing YOU. #forrealztho

6. Self pity gets you no where. Wallowing in your shit without doing anything to clean it up is about as productive as drunk texting. (Read: not productive at all.) You can feel bad, be sad, be angry and resentful…feel those feelings, you’re human for God’s sake. But then, move on. Take action to make changes. If you’re upset about something in your life or if you’re wallowing in self-pity over how things never work out for you, you don’t like your job, you can never lose weight, you don’t have self-control, you had a bad childhood….figure out those feelings and do something about it. You and your life are worth so much more than a crappy song being played on repeat. Here’s my opinion: If you’re constantly complaining about something(s) but not doing anything to change it, shut up and stop complaining. #realtalk But if you complain (again, we’re human) and then DO something about it, great. Keep going.

7. There is no one right path for everyone. There’s the societal/family norm and expectations and then there is your path. It is yours and yours alone, so follow it. Everyone’s path is different, and whatever they do is right for them in that time. Just because society dictates a certain way you should go about your life, doesn’t mean that’s necessarily right for you or even what you want to do. But sometimes it is! It’s all up to you. Your life, YOUR path, your decisions. As long as you support yourself, do good in this world and are happy and fulfilled, you’re all set (IMHO). Take time to find out what path is right for you…journal, meditate, talk to a objective third-party, but make sure to clarify your voice. No matter how well-intentioned those other voices, expectations and opinions are in your mind, clear them out, you don’t need them. Don’t go through your life based on what other people expect you to do. Last I checked, it’s YOUR life…go have fun with it!

8. Limitations are in our mindset, in our emotional experiences and what we’ve been taught by family and society (consciously and subconsciously). If you want to work past those limitations, you have to go through the process of poking around in those sometimes deep/dark places that we’d rather leave alone. It may not be a walk in the park, but in order to heal, transform, grow, be happy and fulfilled and see your life flourish, you have to get your hands dirty. Consistently. But you know what else will be consistent then? Your happiness and self-awareness, growing and growing. Everyday. Read personal development, see a counselor, attend seminars, listen to podcasts, seek spiritual advice and surround yourself with an uplifting community…this will raise your vibration and support the inner work you do. Don’t mask those deeper feelings and limitations with booze, food, shitty relationships and self-pity. Your potential for awesome is too strong to do that.

9. You can’t make people change. They have to want it themselves. You can provide the tools, the support, the loving supportive environment, the real talk, the inspiration and kick in the ass…but they aren’t going to change until they’re ready. And that usually comes when they’ve worked through their emotional limitations and self-pity. Be there when they’re ready, but don’t expend any extra energy on people who aren’t ready to change or grow. It’s not cold and unfriendly, it’s respectful to both of you.

10. When you go through periods of growth and you honor and follow your intuition (aka stepping outside of your comfort zone to get closer to your zone of fulfillment) your ego, or brain, goes cray cray. Like, it throws psychological shit fits and tries to tear you back down to a place of comfort and familiarity. A place of safety. It may throw a tantrum by creating a series of unfortunate events in one single day, pummel you with negative self-talk, put relationships on the fritz, give you a nasty cold, fill your head with self-doubt…but this mental chaos actually means you’re shifting and growing. You’re doing something right. So keep going, despite the shitiness that may come around temporarily. Thank your ego for wanting to protect you, but don’t listen to it. Follow your intuition and  your ego will quiet down once it realizes you’re actually safe and know what you’re doing.

11. The greatest gift you can give yourself in life is the gift of finding, following and honoring your true voice. Owning your true voice, speaking your mind, following your heart and staying true to YOU is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. Finding your voice and listening to it will lead you to life-long fulfillment.

12. Dating and relationships are a two-way street. If you’re always left wanting more, wondering if they like you, worried about where you stand, confused as to “what are we,” continually doubting yourself, your story, your job, your voice and dulling your sparkle because you feel less-than…hell to the no girl. If a relationship (even if it’s just dating) is constantly creating anxiety and you’re expending more energy worrying about why they haven’t texted you back, when you’re going to see them again, etc., end it. If you’re compromising something that is important and necessary for you in a relationship, walk away. If you’re always making time to see them based on their schedule, but they aren’t making time to see you on yours, WALK AWAY. This sort of thing will eat away at you, cause anxiety, build resentment and begin to chip away at your self-worth. Don’t settle. You accept the love you think you deserve. And you deserve someone who will lift you up, believe in you more than you do, be equally as interested in your life, passions, hobbies, ideas and opinions as much as you are in theirs, they will make the next date with you during your current date, MAKE time to see you, adore you, disagree and fight with you but want to mend it and grow together. A relationship does not (and cannot) fill a void in your life. A healthy relationship is a positive addition to your life. If you and your partner aren’t providing each other with all that you want and need in life and more, I have two words for you: BYE FELICIA.

13. Everyone has their own battle. No matter who they are. For example, I dated a guy for a short time who was working on his post-doctorate with one of the best pharma companies out there, made good money and was setting himself up for a successful career. Shit, he was valedictorian of his college class at a very good school. On the outside, and to society, he was successful. He had all his shit figured out. But you know what they didn’t see? His crippling OCD. His need for order and control. The fact that his entire identity was wrapped up in academics, career growth and success. If someone took all those very “material” things away, he would have no fucking clue who he was. His identity would be lost. This may just be me, but I’d rather be going against society’s idea of “success,” than be living with that kind of pressure and control my entire life. To me, that doesn’t lead to true fulfillment and happiness. Again, that’s an inside job. And coming at this from another angle: if someone is mean, angry, talks down to you, acts entitled and all-around awful…that’s their deal. It has nothing to do with you. It’s coming from deep insecurity and unhappiness on their end. Let it roll off of you. Find your peace and security from the inside out, and then you can deal with everyone’s crazy much better. lol

14. Dealing with adult stuff. AKA: how to survive getting your car towed (when it still had your wallet lying on the passenger seat), paying a $750+ ticket and making it back to your apartment in one piece. Then making an incredibly strong drink. And then not vandalizing the apartment of the crotchety old woman who said you were “blocking her driveway” (my ass), because you know Karma will come around and do its thang.

15. It’s ok to not know what you want to do. It’s ok to not have a clear path or direction. It’s ok to write your story in the moment as you’re living your life. Do what you have to do to support yourself, but give yourself love, space and respect to figure out your purpose and path. It will come to you. And in the meantime, before that lightbulb moment happens, do what fulfills you. Do what makes you happy. Pursue your passion because that will lead you to your purpose. Whether it’s doing theatre, volunteer work, a pottery class, writing a blog, going skydiving…do what fulfills you and makes you happy. Because you may realize, your passion is simply to pursue your passion. And your “work” is to do something that you enjoy and something that supports your passion-pursuing. In the end, if that makes you happy, then keep doing it.

<3

 

What do you believe about yourself?

12289642_10207804085036185_3305789669791416043_nOur beliefs about ourself are incredibly powerful.

They may seem like they just float around our heads, hidden from the world, but in reality, they actually create our reality. What we think and believe about ourselves is a direct reflection of how we carry ourselves throughout life.

Your thoughts become things, actions, decisions and beliefs.

If you want to start feeling happier or creating radical shifts in your life, look on the inside. What stories are you telling yourself (and believing) about YOU?

Do a little digging and reflecting on those beliefs, find out where they’re coming from and switch that shit up. Life is too precious to tell yourself you’re not good enough. Because you are, in fact, incredible.

You hold so much power as a human being…power to diminish yourself or lift yourself up. So respect that power and use it to brighten your life and the life of others.

Start with little affirmations that you say on a daily, consistent basis.

Here’s an example: I am strong and smart. I believe in myself.

Alright, Happy Monday. *Gets off soap box*

A picture is worth a thousand words (almost)

Girl in the woods

Girl in the woods

A picture can be worth a thousand words. Evoke specific emotions. Stir up feelings from deep within. To me, this picture says:

chance, precipice, waiting

beginning, start, new journey

awaiting, open doors, discover

fear, hesitation, expectation

wonderment, anticipation, bewilderment

timid, stepping, crossing

beginning, carrying forth, starting again

continuation, journey, open arms

strong, strength, holding

step forth, begin, listening

hearing, seeing, opening

creating, leading, following

wondering, uncertainty, adventure

breath, depth, silence

breathe.

What does it mean to you? 

One-Word Inspiration: A little goes a long way

Lindsey

I was given these words as a prompt…what do each of them mean to me? Well, let me tell you below.

HOPE
REGRET
HOME
CHOICE
ABUNDANCE
SECRET

Hope is the flicker of light that warms your soul and keeps you moving forward, even when you feel like you’re falling backward. Hope turns to abundance and truth when you firmly believe in your hope and know it will manifest into being.
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Regret is the thing I am scared of the most in my life.
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Home. It’s where my heart is and always will be. Home is where I am the puzzle piece fitting exactly into the puzzle. Home is on stage performing. I feel more at home when I am open and vulnerable on a stage that when I am sitting in an audience watching.
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Lindsey in SevillaChoice. I believe (almost*) everything is a choice. Our emotions, mindset, thoughts, patterns, actions, decisions, reactions, words we say and write. The words we choose to hear and believe, from ourselves and others. We always have a choice. There is always a way out (or in.) There is always a choice that you can make. If you make the “wrong” one, you can make a “right” one again. We all have a choice. It is one of the most empowering and powerful things when you realize you have a CHOICE. Don’t like your job? Make a choice to realize that you deserve to do what sets your soul on fire and what makes you feel happy and healthy. Make a choice to make a change and do what is aligned with your truth. Make a choice to take action in that direction. Make a choice to not accept anything less that what you WANT and dream of. Choice. You have a choice. So make one and know you’re making it. And know you can un-make it as well. But don’t sit in limbo waiting for other people or the Universe to choose for you. It’s your life, YOU choose what you want to do with it.
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*I know not all things, including emotions and certain circumstances, are not our choice. I do believe however, we have a choice in how we react to those emotions and circumstances…what actions we take and what we believe. 
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Abundance is waiting for you around every corner. You just have to see it in front of you. You have to believe that it is there and will always be there. You will always have abundance (whatever that means for you), even it feels like it’s out of reach.
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Secret. The secret to happiness is living your truth. Living your life on your terms and in alignment with your voice and what ignites your soul from the inside out. There’s always a way. There is no right path for everyone- that’s the secret. The “right” path for you is what you know is right for you…not anyone else.
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What do these words mean to you? Did anything resonate with you?

I write because…

Song inside you
I write because…
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“I want to be as vulnerable and raw as possible so people feel less alone. I want to make people happy or laugh, even if it’s at my own expense.” Alexi Wasser, from “I’m Boy Crazy,” excerpted from #GIRLBOSS
Song inside you
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There is a voice inside of me that needs to be shared. Openly, plainly, honestly and humorously. What is the point of hiding your voice? Be bold and share it with the world. Do good and good will come to you.
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Writing is also a way for me to find and understand my true, authentic voice. To help me follow my truth, my dreams and my heart.
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I’m especially excited to write at this point in my life because I’m going through a huge transition period. I am moving from San Francisco, where I’ve been the past year and a half, back to San Diego (my hometown) in December. I’m so happy with this decision. It was bittersweet to make, but it was so plainly and easily the right choice for me.
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I don’t have a job or an apartment yet but, as nerve-wracking as that is sometimes, it’s more exciting than anything. I have a completely new, blank chapter in front of me. One that I can completely write with my own unique voice and truth. One that I can design on my own. I have an outline and idea of what I want my life to be like and what I’ll be doing, but honestly…nothing is set in stone. I can do anything.
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Again, nerve-wracking and exciting at the same time ;)
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Expect funny, self-help and self-empowerment topics, personal adventures and stories, wisdom and my own musings on life and fulfilling our purpose. At the very least, I want to put a smile on your face, to make you laugh and feel familiarity.
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Lindsey Social Media ManagerI want to be an encouraging and supportive voice for any young person going through a transition period or who need a little inspiration and motivation to make things happen…things THEY want, dreams they want to achieve, adventures they want to pursue.
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I hope to grow a large, engaged, positive and hilariously badass audience. I love connecting with new people, so comment away!! I want my blog to be a platform for people to learn, connect, share with one another and feel they are in a supportive, safe environment.
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My goal is to write consistently and grow a strong community on this blog, but to also branch out into writing books, selling merchandise, guest posting, writing for magazines, hosting weekly podcasts and vlogs and speaking at events.
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Come along for the ride! :)

Finding Yourself: It’s An Inside Job

Spiritual Badass

Lindsey in SevillaI have a chronic fear of being stuck. As in, this (relationship, career, home, job, city, environment) is sucking my soul and how will I ever get out of it?

Up until “adulthood” (aka post-graduate life), most of us live in the distinct time frame of a school year. Semesters, quarters, summer breaks…if a class is miserable, you know you’ll be done with it in December. If your roommate and apartment suck, you know you can move at the end of the semester. The chapters are short. There is always an end date.

But after graduation, at least for me, it was a wide-open expansive land of time and I guess it freaked me out more than I thought. I’m always afraid of being “stuck.”

Physically, in a relationship, a career, a city, in a certain environment. It’s not fear of commitment. Hell, I’ll 150% commit to something I believe in and if I think it’s a good thing. But it’s “stuck” in the sense of believing there is no way out of a situation that drains me of energy, positivity, passion and strength. A stagnant, negative relationship. A energy draining, anxiety-filled job. Scares the crap out of me if I ever think of getting stuck in either of those things.

But at the same time I have to laugh at myself. If I ever got myself in those situations, I get the hell out. I’m just that kind of person.

So what am I afraid of?

Being vulnerable enough to stay put for more than 6-months and see what happens? Being at peace and open to whatever the Universe brings me, whether that’s tomorrow or in 5 months? 

It’s the no-end-date lifestyle that I need to get used to. In the past, I probably forced those end dates a little too soon and a little too often. I would get restless and scared that I wasn’t going anywhere or that I didn’t know what I wanted to do…so I would try and solve that by moving. Again.

Spiritual BadassI feel as though part of my restlessness is coming from the false sense of security I get when I move to a different city or job or apartment. I think that by picking up and moving, everything will be figured out. I’ll have left my problems and emotional angst in the last city. I’ll be in the right place…finally. I’ll find my true purpose…finally. 

But it doesn’t work like that.

I realize that when I have those emotions to pick up and leave, to travel and explore (if I got a dollar for all the times I went on Hipmunk to find the cheapest plane ticket to Spain, I could pay for the damn ticket), it’s because I’m outwardly searching for answers I can only find on the inside. It’s a sign that I need to explore inwardly to find what I’m attempting to discover while on those daring, romantic adventures. I need to explore what is currently and presently surrounding me. Be present and real with it in that moment.

I’m where I am for a reason. The Universe is giving me all the tools to “find myself” right where I am. So by drastically shifting and moving my environment to “find myself,” I prolong the whole experience. Because finding yourself isn’t really a destination. It’s an everyday journey that we’re continually on. Yes, I believe one day we can discover our higher purposes and innate reason for being, but until then, finding ourself is being present with ourself. Where we are in that moment.

So as romantic as it sounds to “find myself” in a small cafe at the end of a winding cobblestone street in Italy or on a sunny beach in Greece…I’m not going to find myself any more than I would at the coffee shop down my street. Certainly, I can have grand discoveries or epiphanies or light-bulb moments while in those dreamy places, but it’s not going to lead me any closer to that forever elusive thing I’m trying to find.

Maybe if I stop searching, I won’t need to find anything. The answers are always here anyways.

Journaling to clear your throat chakra

journaling

“To be open and aligned in the fifth chakra is to speak, listen, and express yourself from a higher form of communication…Often it’s easier to say what the other person may want to hear instead of speaking your truth. Fear of not being accepted, or judgment from the other may hinder your truthful verbal expression.” via Chopra Center.

I’m on a mission to “speak my truth.” And I share this story in hopes of it helping, supporting or inspiring someone else (because I think a lot of people will be able to relate).

In some areas and aspects of life, speaking my truth comes easily to me. But when it comes to speaking truths to myself and others I love and respect, like *really* being honest with what I want and what is true to me, I can falter. I am fearful of stirring up the waters, of the possible confrontation and judgment. It is safer to people please sometimes.

But someone I greatly respect and trust said to me the other day, “What you are worried about is an illusion.” And in order for others to be ok with my decisions, ideas and actions, I have to be ok with it first. I have to fully accept, love and believe in *my* truth, own it and then that same energy will be spread.

I’m not saying I have anything radical or crazy going on behind the scenes in my life, but this is something I’ve been thinking about and noticing. One of the ways I am “opening up my throat chakra,” (yes, I’m getting woo woo, just go with it) is by journaling. Free writing in the morning. You can free write any time, but morning is the best because it clears the crap out of your mind for the day and it’s also when you’re not toooootally, fully conscious yet, so your brain doesn’t have as many filters holding you back. Just dump all the crap that’s swirling in your brain onto paper. You can write about ANYTHING. Write about how stupid it is to be writing and then a minute later, I guarantee your hand will be scribbling across the page writing out something completely different that you didn’t even know you needed to address.

I did journaling this morning, even though I didn’t want to, and I feel 150% better right now than when I woke up. Seriously, this shit works wonders. JUST TRY IT.

Get a notebook, grab a pen and set your timer for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, you’re done. And yes, you have 10 minutes. That’s like 3 BuzzFeed videos. Do it.