Spirituality and Self-help

FINDING THE STRENGTH TO (ALWAYS) START OVER

December 2017 marked a period in time that I was closing one life chapter and being hopeful for my new beginning. This is when I left my career job to start a new life with my husband whose career takes us to different countries for 10 months at a time. I was eager and excited, but I was also mourning my old self.  As I stepped into this new role I had so many questions of who I was in this new chapter: who was I as an educated stay-at-home wife? What was I suppose to do here?  I was a rosy-eyed newlywed, eagerly looking forward to my new adventure, but what I didn’t see coming was the exhaustive process of starting over and the mindset shift I had to embrace so that I could flourish in this new journey.   Up until this point, my identity was attached to my achievements. From all of the aw...

ESSAY BY E.L. DUBOIS

My silence was deafening…  I was a naïve young woman, not yet schooled in the ways of the world. One raised in a relatively conservative Southern family where my only exposures to domestic violence and abuse were through television and film. I did not know true monster’s like the ones I witnessed on screen existed in this world, until I found myself in the clutches of a truly sadistic one.  I learned very quickly that much like “fight club” the first rule is “not to talk about it.” So along with my dignity, my self-worth and my identity, I lost my voice.  And my silence was deafening…  I spent years as the possession of another person. A text-book case of a victim. With every assault, every degradation and every psychological game, I lost a piece of myself, until one day I felt nothing. We...

TAKES-NO-BULLSHIT WOMAN

One thing that inspires me is meeting a strong, takes-no-bullshit woman. Those who are not afraid of speaking out. Fearless and powerful, these are women who light up a room with the magnetic energy we all should have.    At the same time, these women have a positive, yet different impact on people. We won’t be liked by everyone, so why even try? Let’s be our pure self.    In my opinion, being a takes-no-bullshit woman is all about confidence and being real. As easy as believing in yourself, moving and dressing exactly the way you envision yourself.     I’m still working on my confidence, and doubting is part of life. It makes me feel something… alive. Therefore acceptance is key. Being aware we‘re a whole package (humans in general are) and that package is super aweso...

“I DON’T WANT TO LIVE ANYMORE”

I DON’T WANT TO LIVE ANYMORE! (Can you even handle your truth?) Sound familiar? It was more than familiar to me. It had crept into my thoughts many times in the seven years prior and popped up on numerous occasions later. I was just a month shy of my 21st birthday. I should have been thirsty and eager to show the world who I was, but I was so far from it I may as well have been in another dimension all together. Some days were so dark that my heart and head both hurt so much; it was suffocating. I just wanted to f***ing run, from life and myself. I felt dispensable and like every corner held some kind of pain. I had no self worth or hope for a future free of hurt. I didn’t think I would ever have the strength to be the mother my two beautiful children truly deserved. I honestly...

DEPRESSION AND ME

And it’s back again. The heaviness. For me it comes as a surprise. I never seem to see it coming. It’s like I’m on a stage and the trapdoor opens. I fall only to be submerged in a huge tank of water and there I am swimming with my clothes on. Wondering how this happened. Why is it so hard to swim to the top and grab a breath of fresh air? I’m angry that I didn’t recognize the signs. I am exhausted from swimming. I am tired of trying to fight for air. The people in my life are on the outside of the tank watching me. “What’s wrong?” – “Why can’t you swim to the top?” – “How did this happen?” – my eyes glaze over because all I can think about is swimming to the top and I don’t have the energy...

FALL BOLDLY AND FLOURISH

With the school year starting up, my social media feeds will soon become flooded with the newest learning and teaching styles. While visual learners might connect with infographics more than physical exercises, each learning method shares a common thread. I have yet to meet someone who grew from success. It’s true that success breeds success which helps grow a business, sure. However, how much do we actually learn from winning and succeeding? Failure takes grit to push through, and it’s through overcoming your most frightening failures that you will flourish. Find solace in the fact that you will continue to make new mistakes and continue to learn more about yourself. Seek comfort in knowing that you can teach others about your miscommunications.  Become confident as you learn from your mi...

PAIN IS MY TEACHER

Pain and I have a sort of love/hate relationship. I am no stranger to pain; it’s been a constant, mostly unwanted, companion since childhood. I can still recall, with almost masochistic clarity, some of the most painful moments from my youth. Some were only small wounds, like insults from bullies, falling out of favor with a group of friends, woefully embarrassing incidents. But there were others that left a gaping wound that reopened periodically throughout my adult life; sabotaging relationships, pushing dear friends away, causing me to self-harm and self-medicate. I’ve often sat and reflected on how I am able to relive my pain with such vividness, why the happy moments are so foggy and more difficult to dredge up. I’ve spent much of the first half of 2018 in introspect...

ALL THAT YOU HAVE THE POTENTIAL TO BE IS INHERENTLY WITHIN YOU

If you believe, you can achieve anything. Let those words sink in for a moment. How many times have you seen that phrase and read it quickly, never giving it a second thought? How many moments have you nodded your head, then moved on to the next thing, never once pausing to reconsider the weight of that affirmation in your own life? The power of our minds is strong beyond measure. What we choose to focus on, what we listen to, what we believe becomes our reality, our truth. What we embody, what we follow, what we step towards, that tells our story. And so, what kind of life will we lead when we tell ourselves we can’t, or focus on our failures first? What kind of future are we building if our initial moments are hesitant? Are backwards out of fear? Or are rooted in place, too afraid to mov...

SPIRITUAL AWAKENING: MY JOURNEY TO OVERCOMING DEPRESSION AND ACHIEVE REAL SELF-LOVE

In August of 2005 I asked God to take my life. I was hit with an intense longing for meaning a glimmer of joy and some kind of relief. I wasn’t suicidal, I would not have harmed myself. But I did want out of my personal pain. In total despair, I sobbed and flung myself onto the bed; my body trembled intensely. What happened next was a mystical out of body, near-death-like experience where I thought God was answering my prayer to end my life. My Near-Death-Like Experience was the end of the old me. I felt as though I’d melted into the bed and an immense feeling of inner peace overtook me. Shaking, crying, and desperately praying for relief, I suddenly saw and all-consuming, intense white light. Confused thinking the sun in Cannes couldn’t possibly get any brighter, I squinted, trying to fin...

HOW I STOPPED TRYING TO FIX EVERYONE

When anyone in my life is going through a hard time, I always have the same knee-jerk reaction. I dive into their problems like Hasselhoff sprinting into the waves with an orange floatie and a need to SAVE! Most of the time I get the same reaction: “What the hell dude, I wasn’t even drowning.” One time, I offered to take an online class for my brother just to help him FINALLY graduate college. I used to spend hours each day on the phone with my mom, counseling her through the emotional valleys of divorce. I spent hours at a time on messenger, trying to help my friend through an exhausting mental illness. I felt responsible for everyone’s feelings. In the end, I wasn’t much help. In fact, my loved ones ended up resenting me more. I felt exhausted and emotionally depleted. I felt like a judg...

MENTAL HEALTH: DO I NEED HELP?

I think there comes a point in everyone’s life where they ask themselves if they should go and see a mental health professional. How do you know it’s time? What is it like? What about insurance? Who do I choose? Let’s break all of those questions down piece by piece. I’ve seen a variety of mental health professionals and I’ve never felt a stigma talking about it. I thank my undergraduate degree in Psychology for desensitizing me to the stigma that is associated with having mental health issues. No one knows if it’s really time to see someone, but a good bench marker is if it is impairing your everyday life – even slightly. I don’t encourage waiting until that point. I think we should be proactive about mental health instead of reactive. It...

WHERE IS YOUR VENUS ZODIAC SIGN IN LOVE AND RELATIONSHIPS?

Have you started dating someone and want to know how you match up using astrology? When you are born, each planet is occupying a different part of the zodiac. Venus the planet of love, relationships and attraction will be in a zodiac sign within your birth chart. Using the knowledge of you and your partner’s Venus zodiac sign you can get a better idea of what drew you together in the first place. Was it a case of opposites attract? Or are you almost the same person with the same interests. Your Venus sign may be able to tell you more! Read the description for your Venus signs and then your partner’s to determine what attracted you together! Note: If you do not know your Venus zodiac sign, you can get a copy of your chart at Astrodienst AG. Venus in Aries ♈︎ If you have Venus in Aries you h...

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