My Charge To You In 2018

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You did it! You made it through the first week of the new year.

How was it?! Was it exciting, a fresh start, full, overwhelming, no different then the last week of December, what changes did you make? 

I always love seeing if people actually can feel the shift from one year to the next. It is like endless opportunities are just buzzing in the air. In one minute, from 11:59pm on December 31st to 12:00am on January 1st, everything becomes possible again. Why is that? 

As I took the last 5 weeks off social media I had a lot of time to think. I thought about the overview of my life & things in between, I sat with myself and with others, sometimes hours on end and just chose to be present in the moment. And it was honestly the best decision I could of made to close out the year. 

I am not a huge "new years resolution" fan, as you can read here.

But what I am a fan of is taking some time to close out the previous year and prepare myself with vision for the next. I love to evaluate themes, successes, and disappointments by seeing how they actually changed who I am. From there, I write out areas I want to see continued change, goals, prayers, and victories.

It's a whole process and yes it is time consuming but here's the thing, it is better to form a new lifestyle rather than short-lived, extreme resolutions. I talk all about it in that post linked above. 

But ANYWAYS, back to 2018.

So, just like that the year is over. I always wonder how it went so fast yet every year I long for things to come sooner. It is this continuous tension of being excited about these moments to come but when they pass wishing we could re-live them again. 

2017 was absolutely an amazing year for me, not because I achieved these crazy dreams or accomplished multiple goals but it was because of one simple thing. 

Being present. 

Yes y'all. This simple thing of actually being mentally present where you physically are is what changed the course of my 2017. And what is truly awesome is that the shift really happened around the final quarter of the year. The last four months of 2017 were so significant that they shaped the entire year for me and it was all because I chose to be fully present. 

There is something about being a planner, a doer, and a dreamer that can get my mind a month, a year, or a decade ahead of me while my body is over here just trying to do daily life. And that was majority of last year. I fought being where I was because I didn't fully believe I was where I needed to be. For some reason my mind believed I was supposed to be further along then I was, so that's where I always went. I didn't realize it but I complained a lot, always asking God why am I not there yet. Thinking if I worked a little bit harder I would get there faster not knowing the answer lied in me doing less and being more. 

It seems so simple, to be present. We talk about it all the time, but how many of us are always living in the excitement of the next thing rather than just enjoying what's in front of us. Or always saying, "let's get coffee," but never having time do it. Oh but wait, this one's my favorite... we can't put our phone down at a party because we need to add "all the moments" to our instagram story.

I am guilty of it all.

But as I have come to this place of fully leaning into the present all that I was looking for was right in front of me.

So after all that build up, here's my charge to you in 2018...    

With all the resolutions, preparing, vision casting, and goal setting I simply say do what's in front of you. Allow yourself to be fully set in the present, in each moment, and taking in at that God has for you, now. If you were supposed to be somewhere else, you'd be there. If you were supposed to have more, you'd have more. Until that comes, challenge yourself to find joy for what's in your hands and for the people right in front of you. This my friends will make all the things, worth while. 

rd. 

See You Soon Friends.

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Sometimes things don’t go the way we planned. 

These past few months has been absolutely amazing but how many of you know that the way we see things happening in our minds sometimes isn’t what actually plays out.

I’ve had multiple writings lined up to share with all of you beautiful friends of Living Dreamer but as September hit much of my focus went from outward productivity to inward replenishment. If you know me you know that this is not easy for me! I've got that go getter, busy bee, and doer part of who I am that is like, rest?! 

God has had me on a journey of laying things down for a time and I have had an inward conflict where I want to keep holding onto it because it seems like the perfect time but truth is it just isn’t. 

See productivity is wonderful and I have been made to get ‘ish done! But I’m learning how to be okay with laying down one part of who I am for a short time to build up the other. Learning to take in more rather than to always be giving out is actually harder than I thought. 

I love all the beautiful people that have been surrounding me and been wanting to connect with me but the curse of being too busy has kept me from developing deeper connection with them. So I’m taking some time to give more opportunities to have space. Space to rest, receive, connect, and reflect. 

I’ve found that these moments in life don’t just happen because there is always more to get done, but they must be intentionally carved out. So I am taking the remainder of the year away from blogging, social media, and business networking. On the 1st of January I will then re-think my vision for the new year for each of these things. 

I’m looking forward to going through the holidays not worrying about my next blog, instagram post, networking event, etc. But just being present with family and friends, becoming even more thankful for all the beauty around me. 

Until then, see you in the new year loves :)

Let's Just Call It Like It Is

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Okay here we go friends, talking about a very downplayed and vulnerable topic. 

One that even in Christian circles is hushed and covered up by, despite what someones going through calling out the gold in them, rather then taking the time to sit and discuss the true root issue first.

The whole reason I started this blog is to encourage people to live their full selves, to dream, love, trust, hope, and to not get stuck where they are but to journey to where they want to be. 

I wanted to let people in on my life, the process. All of it. 

I don’t want to be the person who is ghost when life gets challenging due to the shame of not having it all together. Because what is life without the challenge, the struggle, the growth. That is the reason we get to celebrate when we finally begin to see change. We all go through different kinds of deep process in life, and guess what…they don’t stop. We don’t just come to this place…welp I’ve processed it all, no more stretching, growing, and learning. I’m perfect. (Ooo, let me break it to you that this doesn’t ever happen) 

The only difference about my process is that I’m letting the world in. I’m choosing to show up, speak up, and grow up, because I know that my process isn’t something for me to only learn from. So, I asked myself what does that look like today. 

Well…it looks like me telling people how I've been battling self-hatred (ooo, just saying it seems harsh and I want to use another word to tone it down so people don't think I'm suicidal or something, HA!). Stings a little huh. Don’t know why it’s so uncomfortable to talk or read about but this whole self-hatred thing is one of the most common struggles people deal with. 

I always used to completely disassociate myself with the word self-hatred. (Oh no, I LOVE MYSELF AND MY LIFE!) It’s what I claimed and, to be honest, firmly believed. But it was slowly over time that I realized the dislike I had for things about myself were so familiar and set in my thinking that they masked themselves as being a part of me. The moments of sitting with myself minus all the distractions is when I began to realize, why do I give myself more criticism than praise? Why do I spend so much time unpacking the mistake I just made and how I could of did it better? Why is it sometimes hard to celebrate the victories of other people? Why do I sometimes not even try because of the fear of failing? Why do I apologize for being me? 

All of these questions and more began to rise up in me as I processed that there is a lack of love I had for myself and for the life I am living. 

Many people don't want to say their dealing with self-hated because honestly we're a little too self-righteous to admit we're struggling. But let's just call it like it is. 

Self-hatred is simply disliking certain characteristics or traits about ourselves to the point that we believe it lowers our worth. 

It is the negative self-talk, the criticism you give yourself so other people don’t have to, the “I’m my own worst enemy,” setting your hopes low to minimize the chances of failing, all the high-stake what-if’s, dwelling on the moments you made a mistake, and so on and so forth. And it doesn’t always come from negative actions. Many times it is covered up by constantly saying we’re okay, things are great, I love my life, because we think that if we say it enough maybe that will change how we really feel. 

I don’t believe everyone deals with this but I do believe it is more common then we truly want to address. At some point every single human being has gone through these things of self-doubting, body image (oh, that’s a whole separate post, just wait), self-sabotage, you name it. But what are we doing to help other people get out of it. Other than casting them off to the side or just “keeping them in prayer.” 

The problem with self-hatred and the reason people don’t want to talk about it is because many feel guilty for even feeling hatred towards themselves. But here’s the thing, for most people it starts as a child. Not because you were a depressed kid growing up but because as children we believe EVERYTHING. We are like sponges, we suck up information. And any adult who comes along and begins to tell us something opposite to who we really are, what do we do…believe them. I wish I knew why the few negative comments we hear stick with us more then the 1,000 comments of praise we receive as children but they do and many times they form into our way of thinking and become the lens in which we see ourselves and others through.

It is completely okay to want change in your life, to challenge yourself, and to call yourself to a higher standard. But many times these goals we put on ourselves are actually not for ourselves but for other people. If we don’t come at change in our lives from a place of loving ourselves, no matter what progress we make it won’t mean much in our eyes. (I swear we’re coming to a close) 

So here’s the thing, self-hatred is not something to be ashamed about. It is actually something to acknowledge and counteract by telling yourself the truth, the real truth. Not as a cover up, but just as you would praise a child for trying and tell them their scribbles are beautiful art, because you never know who that child will become. You never know who you will be in 5 years, there is amazing potential in you but if you don’t begin to believe it you will never see it happen. We must change our belief system about ourselves. 

And so this brings me to the end (if you stuck with me this long, you are the REAL MVP!) Below I given 5 simple steps that I’ve discovered help set me on the road of fully loving myself. I will most likely do another in depth blog about this but for now, here is something to get you started. 

  1. Write down the areas where you experience the most negative thoughts/comments about yourself
  2. What lie are you believing about those areas? And what is the opposite of that lie? (that is your truth)
  3. Write down a list of things you want to believe about those areas? (These are your goals)
  4. Give yourself 3 tangible and reachable goals that you can do this week to begin the process of change
  5. Print out the below graphic, hang it up where you will see it everyday, and let it be a reminder that it gets easier. 

Your not alone in this, and that is the best thing to know during this process. I am still one who continually reinforces the truth of who I am because let me tell you, some days it gets hard, but you got this. Until next time. 

rd.

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Becoming Okay With The Process

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I’m back. 

It’s been a while, I know. About 5 months to be exact since the last time you all heard from me, but finally it’s time for me to get back to sharing this beautiful journey that I’ve been on. 

I think a year ago I would feel too prideful to say I was actually on this journey. There’s been a lot of change in my heart since then, because back then I felt like I should of already had life figured out by now. 

I'm slowly realizing that this isn't a reality…not in my life and not in anyones life. 

I mean come on, even the folks at the elderly home are still trying to figure things out. Even with all the experience and years of wisdom they still would tell you that they don’t know it all yet. We all still have more to discover and learn and I am coming to know…this is OKAY. 

I think as I come to recognize these things more, it liberates me from the pressure of producing for the sake of positive opinions from others about my life. I didn’t know, but I used to be so worried of other people’s opinions about my life. Though I would swear for days that I wasn’t, I cared. Many of us do care, though we will not admit it, but we care. It may not be about random people’s opinions but we all have at least that one person that their opinion truly matters. If not for anyone else we would like to have our lives be just a tad bit together in front of them. 

Yea, and I am okay with admitting it now. As I have been able to be honest about this I’ve slowly but surely been giving up the idea of keeping my life all neatly together for the sake of their opinion. It’s too much work, more than being honest and just walking through the process I’m on. 

I took a long but well needed break from blogging, though I never stopped writing. Actually, I believe I began to write more because I was in a deep process. One that had kept me from sharing publicly because I needed to first get to this place of articulating it and at least knowing for myself what was going on. 

I have had this false view in my late 20’s that people are way further along then me and have things figured out already. Many are married, starting or well developed with families, have solid careers, and ya know all those other wonderful life events we see posted on social media. And well me, I honestly was still coming to a place of full recovery from heartache, trying to move into full time entrepreneurship (which let me tell you sounds way more glamorous then it is), living with my lovely parents who give me so much grace to “figure things out,” and shuffling through what the next step in life is. 

I saw my life as something of lesser value, I saw it as if I was behind. Like there was someone standing on the sidelines of my life saying, “come on Bekah, you should be at the 5 mile marker by now.” Sounds ridiculous but many of us go through these moments of comparison. Which yes, that is the actual root of questions our positioning in life. We see someone else a little further and then we begin to think, well dang…should I be that far too? But the truth is if we actually kept our eyes on our own story we wouldn’t need to worry about catching up with Mary Jane over there. 

These past 5 months of stepping back from sharing my process publicly gave me the space to be completely raw and vulnerable without censorship because the idea of sharing it online next week in my blog wasn’t a factor. I didn't have to hold back with the deep process that happened over this summer. 

My journal has been filled with page after page of raw and real life process. Sometimes we just need that.

Much of it isn't pretty, bits were easy, others were like slap in the face “get yourself together” moments, and then there were those few life revelations that will never be forgotten. 

I didn't know what would come out of that process but now as I begin to start sharing again I'm seeing a glimpse of how it will be used. I've realized over this past year and more over these past 5 months that as I have become okay with my process, I've given space for people to become okay with theirs.

I'm finally over hiding behind a facade, trying to be okay with everything in life because that makes people feel more comfortable when we answer, how are you with "good!"  The “life is good” routine has become was too common in our culture. I’m giving up on it and becoming a more raw and real version of what I believe others need. 

So that’s who you get now, I’m here writing from a deep process of recognizing the beauty of struggle and growth, of transition and change, and of redemption and grace. There is beauty in it all. So I dare you that whatever point you are in you search for the beauty that is waiting oh so badly to be found. No matter where you are in life it’s exactly where you need to be. 

rd.

Hello Spring Time

So it's been a while since the last time I posted a fashion blog but here we are again, this time pulling out the spring fashion. Here is Northern California we have had peaks of sun in the midst of all the rain but the moment I see it I take full advantage of breaking out some of my spring favs.

First, am I the only one who sometimes loves wearing clothes that your slightly drowning in? Don't get my wrong, I love my shape and don't mind accentuating it every now and then but I absolutely love buying my clothes a size or two bigger. It's weird I know but I love it, so I'm wearing my boyfriend jeans that I was able to snag at H&M in Switzerland last year and this blouse, oh how I love it! It came from MANGO Barcelona and if only I had space in my luggage I would of bought out the whole store. Seriously though, it's a good thing I only had five days there. This outfit is what I would classify as dressy casual. Good enough to wear on a night out in town but casual enough to wear to lunch with a friend. You can switch it up and wear the same outfit with some flats for a less dresser look, but hey I am a girl who loves her heels, so they will always be my first choice. Check it out yourself, try it, and please share with me!

rd. 

Shirt: MANGO Barcelona ||  Jeans: H&M || Shoes: Target || Watch: Michael Kors || Purse: Steve Madden

Photography: Rachel Marie Photography