Soul Searching

The last couple of days have reminded me of why I love psychology enough to spend the next ten years studying it. Being able to see just how resilient and powerful the mind is in ways we can’t always see is inspiring.


The mind holds on to thoughts that appear as they choose, yet those thoughts are still a part of us.


I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching and it could just be the sugar withdraws speaking, but it has been turbulent. I’ve been faced with a lot of my fears that I thought I was far beyond, and answers I wasn’t even looking for. Thoughts that have always been my own are just now appearing to me, and dealing with them can be tough. I have had to face my fears of being hurt in ways I never would’ve imagined I could fear pain. I have had answers on how I choose who I choose years after we split, and been able to redirect my need for that dysfunction.

I am growing. Between being a constant over thinker and obsessed with psychology, I am always thinking and tweaking my life. I feel fortunate to have the ability to analyze my life and see where I went wrong. Most people don’t see what I have until it’s just too late and they’re married to someone who is all wrong for their true selves, and maybe even slightly miserable. So I’m glad I’m only twenty, and I’m glad it’s only taken one true heartbreak to get me to the core of figuring out what and who makes me tick or crumble.

I’m sorry this is all so vague, I have an anonymous blog for the gory details; but I figured I have let you all come a long for this ride called my life through all of my ups and downs for a year, I might as well make you aware of this moment of crazy. I am evolving, and as flowery as that sounds, it is a very emotionally confusing time, and I am just taking the thoughts as they come.

Much love,

Lucy Loves Life… and cliché amounts of soul searching xx

Advertisements

Meant To Be

Today I learned that I need to focus on trusting myself and a realistic version of “destiny.” I spend so much time planning, analyzing, and critiquing, I often forget that I ultimately can’t control everything. I have learned to give in to the things that are “meant to be” and accept the things that aren’t. I have learned that regardless of my efforts, someone up there has different ideas, and they’re usually better than mine, even when they hurt a little bit.

There are days I want to know how my life will play out. Who will I fall in love with? Will I get to spend my life with them, or will it hurt? Will I ever know what it means to be completely content? Will I be successful, or will I be a waste of talent? Am I majoring in the right subject? Are my dreams too big…what if I fail?  At 20, I feel like I am so young, and yet, life is flying by, and I want to know what it all means.

Today I realized that even though I can influence the outcomes for each question, I cannot answer them in all certainty; and today, I am content with that. I don’t want to think about what it all means, because eventually I will find out. I have to trust that as long as I do my best, life will turn out the way it’s supposed to, and I’m just meant to enjoy it.

Much love, 

Lucy Loves Life…and hot yoga epiphanies xx 

Deep Down In My Jostled Mind

202508_448799178485895_1967755440_o

For a few weeks, I thought we were less than strangers to each other. It was a really odd feeling. To think that someone who meant everything at one point, meant less than nothing now. I began to accept that there was much more to the end than just a distance. After all, we got into the same university, and I couldn’t even tell him. It just seemed like a reality I didn’t want to face, an admittance that I spent a year avoiding. The whole ‘we love each other but we are far away’ idea was clearly not true, and the doubts and questions that flooded my mind were just too much to handle at the time…

So in typical me fashion, I dealt with the difficult realization, combined it with every other conclusion, built a bridge, and got over that sh*t.

I got over it so much that I just assumed that we were meant to forget about each other and move on, so I did. It was probably the first time in years that I went weeks without thinking about him in some way… Until I got into an accident the other night. I woke up asking for him (this is actually a long story, and not at all romantic), and in a way, it kind of reminded me that deep down in my slightly jostled mind, he was not forgotten.

 A few hours after that initial “where is he?” We spoke to eachother, and as usual, conversation flowed and it sounded like two old friends who really loved speaking with the other. There was no awkwardness, no hard feelings, nothing… 

It hit me, that I had done such a good job of convincing myself that we were nothing, that I had made him even less than a friend to me. I just assumed that if it wasn’t distance, it had to be a lack of giving a damn (on both ends), and I was okay with that. It wouldn’t have even dawned on me to tell him I had been in an accident, I just kind of assumed it wouldn’t matter. 

Over the last couple of days, I have had nothing but time to think. In that time, I’ve realized that some things aren’t all or nothing. Just because we are not eachother’s cup of tea anymore, doesn’t mean he would be emotionless if something terrible happened to me. 

Does knowing that everything happened as we planned it, except for the “us” part, suck? Yeah, sometimes that stings.  Is it easy to get wrapped up in psychology land and forget he’s human? Yeah, sometimes I forget that there is a difference between dealing with emotions differently and being emotionless. 

But for the last couple of days, it’s been nice to know that there is a gray area. Those plans and acceptance letters don’t mean what they used to and he may be a little bit of an emotional idiot… but he still has feelings, I still mean something, and I should probably consider telling him the next time I get into an accident, because that’s what friends do. 

All of that to say… Knowing he cared, makes it okay for me to care. It doesn’t make us weak, it just means we matter. 

Much love, 

Lucy Loves Life… And gray areas xx 

Whole 30 with a Student Who Never Sits Still

If you haven’t done so already, check out the Whole 9 (the brand and basic ideology behind the diet) and Whole 30 (the diet). This is the diet/lifestyle change I have taken on for many reasons ranging from weight loss to better skin. I figured this would be a cool adventure to take you guys on as I not only follow the program, but do it while keeping kosher, traveling, and going to school full time. I am a busy girl, but what good is a diet if I can’t follow it and live my life?

To the fun part: What I ate today.

Without too much fluff, let’s just jump right in!

For breakfast, I feel like I ate an unbelievable amount of food

Avocado baked eggs, sautéed kale, and an entire mango made up the ultra satisfying breakfast I had yesterday (I’m still dreaming about making that again).

IMG_0698

For lunch, I was in the blogging zone enough to take a picture, but here is a recipe for the beautiful burger I had, along with a side of sweet potato wedges.

 

Dinner was also very exciting, and after a workout, even more exciting! Salmon with avocado and mango salsa with asparagus to top it all off.

IMG_0702

Though you’re not supposed to snack, I did have 4 dates before a workout as I was feeling a little hungry and needed the energy to get through it.

To the even funner part: How I felt today.  

One word, incredible. Granted, there is still time to go through withdrawals, but I’m going to say that today my healthy-ish diet before the Whole 30 has paid off and lessened the blow. The only thing that really reminded me that I was doing this whole sugar-free lifestyle was the awesome headache due to caffeine withdrawal. I don’t miss coffee yet, but my body really did.

I have gone into this with a very positive attitude as I really agree with the ideas presented by the Whole 9. I love the emphasis on doing things you enjoy to workout (even if it’s just a walk), being outdoors, spending time doing activities with your family/spouse, and really focusing on being healthy as opposed to taking the quickest (most painful) route to skinny-land.

So, I’m not sure if it is my attitude or the true effectiveness of the Whole 30; but it’s day one and I feel amazing.  I didn’t spend the day feeling miserable as I worked towards fixing a body I hate. I felt like I was fueling a body that I love (and want to improve) on a level greater than just a number. I didn’t spend any time hungry today, I got through a decent workout (that I actually enjoyed), and I really felt like I was in tune with myself.

I won’t be doing a day-by-day of this whole thing, just because I myself wouldn’t want to read that. But I will update weekly with progress, thoughts, and my favourite recipes!

Much love,

Lucy Loves Life..and mangos/avocados xx

When the Word “Different” Became Scary

IMG_7600

 

I comforted myself with the idea that loads of people fall in and out of love all the time. Because of that, I assumed that love we had, the love I felt for him, would surely happen again. However, as I start to delve deeper into social psychology, and the minds of more mature, post-first-love adults, I realize something that has scared the crap out of me.

A lot of these “happy” couples are just people who settled much more than the hopeless romantic in me would like to acknowledge. I’ve talked to countless people, single, married, somewhere in between, and if they’re not with the one person that left a mark on their life, they can always name the one that did. Regardless of whether they split a week ago or twenty years ago, they were memorable to them, and never far from their mind. Even though these women used a million different words to describe that one person, it usually boiled down to that super cliché word that makes me cringe a little, soul-mate* (PLEASE refer to disclaimer).

A woman knows the face of the man she loves as a sailor knows the open sea. – Honore de Balzac

People and research say that it is possible to fall in love many times, but also that each time is quite different (even on a neurological level). It was this realization that shifted my fear… I am no longer afraid of never falling in love, I am no longer afraid of being alone; I am now terrified of being with someone, being in love, and still missing the one whose “different” I loved the most. I am scared of being that woman who remembers that one boy she would’ve given the world to, that she’ll never tell her husband about (I was depressed all day after that one).

Don’t get me wrong, in the many people I have talked to during my year-long search for post-breakup success stories, there were many who married or were currently with that one person… but for those that weren’t, the bittersweet stories of “what if” and “this one time” just seemed to be endless. The idea that it could be me some day is now all I can think about.

The very essence of romance is uncertainty ― Oscar Wilde

Luckily, I am young and the chance that he wasn’t that “one” is pretty high. It’s very possible that I end up one of those lucky women who will never have to deal with the decades of missing him. Yet, in the illogical, hopeless romantic part of my brain, I also know how possible it is for me to be the woman I met with a husband of twenty years, three children, and a photo of her high school sweet heart still tucked away in her wallet (annnd now I’m crying). My deepest fear is that those BS stories of true love, soul mates, and happily-ever-afters, are indeed real and I may have lost mine.

My soul can reach   ― Elizabeth Barrett Browning

What do you guys think? Do you have that one person? Are you one of the lucky ones? Do you believe in that one person? Do you have an pearls of wisdom for me? Let me know!

Much love, 

Lucy Loves Life… and “different” xx

P.S If you had any type of mushy emotion towards The Notebook, Titanic, or even Twilight …do not become a psych major… you will need counseling and gallons of ice cream. You have been warned.

*Disclaimer: I do not use the word soul mates in the sense that most would consider it. Believing that you can’t be happy with anyone but “the one” and that fairies and pixie dust will keep you together forever, that’s insane. When I use the word soul mate here, I am speaking in the context in which the people I spoke to used it, which is that one person they always remember. They were speaking of a person they worked through a relationship with that left a long-term love in their mind, they referred to the love “they loved the most,” or their biggest “what if.”

 

Just Happy

I had a pretty bad habit of only talking about my feelings when I’m upset, or hurt…but I think now is the time to change that. As you can see by the title, life is good right now, and because I write about the good in my journal, I’ll share that too.

Just Happy 11/18/2014

It has been an incredible weekend/early week…busy, but incredible. I feel complete, happy. I feel like life is exactly where it is meant to be right now.

School is going incredibly well. I am wrapping up the last project for my honors program, and I’ve already began making plans for next semester. I’ll be running for president of the honors society, leading a few of our charity events, and taking over a few group projects in order to make my resume as shiny as possible.

My honors coordinator has been handing me opportunities she thinks I have the potential to succeed in and I couldn’t be more grateful. She’s so confident in me, and I think it may be contagious. From being kind of dumb on paper to Ivy League? I. Can. Do. This.

My room is finally decorated the way I want it (thanks mom), my job is really great  (thanks dad), and I have wonderful friends (the kind that volunteer to leave a party early so that she can attend/host my birthday shin-dig, thanks friend).

I went on a lovely date with the one who was always there. An incredible night that ended with an incredible present. The actual gift was beautiful, but what made it so special was the attention and care it took to know that it was the perfect gift. He listens to what I say, he takes it to heart, and he tries (and succeeds) to make me happy in the cute, little ways that every girl wants.

I’m not even sure if life really got better, or if the world is just a brighter place after letting go of my little piece of misery…I don’t know, but I’m content with not knowing, because I am happy. Just, happy. Life really is exactly the way I dreamed it would be (at this point in my life).

I feel very blessed…B’H.

Much love,

Lucy Loves Life, for real this time xx

Give Me Your Advice!

Hey Guys! So as you might know, life has been SUPER crazy since I got home! Because of that, I have so many things to write about, and no idea where to start! I am hoping you all can get me over my writer’s block.

I have gotten person request for a tutorial on how I tame the beast other wise known as my hair, how I keep life so balanced with school, and even why I think everybody should write. So many awesome request, but I can never get to many personal opinions from you, my readers! So PLEASE let me know what you want to read. What do you want to see me add to this site? What would you like more of? Let me know! My favorite part about blog land is getting feedback from you all!

Thanks for voting! I look forward to chipping/writing away at all your awesome ideas.

Much love xx

 

Failure in Perspective

 

Failure, one of my biggest fears. The fear that has been getting the best of me. One pretty insane down side to having such huge dreams, is the occasional thought that there is SO much room for failure. This whole growing up thing is new to me, and I, like many ‘kids’ my age, am just now learning how to cope with all the pressure (mostly self induced) that comes with growing up and and realizing that all those dreams I’ve had are now becoming goals and realities.

As I learn to cope and maybe even thrive, I find it useful to keep everything in perspective. I do so by asking myself a few crucial questions that I will be sharing with you all today with the hope that it may help silence your panicked brain too.

   Image

The most crucial question I ask myself is, what would I want to do with my life if failure wasn’t a factor?

In the next five years, I want to go to school in the UK, I want to have a successful blog, I want my fairytale to end happily ever after, and I want to finally find my happy place with health and fitness. The possibility for failure is insane, and acknowledging that can overwhelm/scare the crap out of me.

Some days that fear gets the best of me, and sometimes it fuels me to work harder and be even better. Either way, I’m not giving up. I choose to see that failure is not an option unless I allow it to be. Without that burden, I can see clearly just how amazing it would be, if and when I accomplish those things.

So what makes you tick? What would you do if failure didn’t exist? Would you leave the country?  Would you apply to Harvard? Would you start a new diet/exercise regime? Would you work towards that job promotion? What crazy, over the top, dream would you turn into a goal?

Image

Another important question is, why do you want your dreams to become reality?

I want to go to school overseas because I want the challenge,  to be on my own, to find out who I really am, and to gain the experience of studying in one of the biggest cultural hubs in the world. I’ll only be young, single, and free for a relatively small amount of time, so I might as well do it right!

I want a successful blog because it will allow me to form a little online community, use my passion for writing to express myself, and even give me a source of income without working a 9 to 5 or hassling with an international work visa. How awesome would it be to work from home, in between classes, and make enough money to independently fund my little European adventures? Uhh, you’re welcome mom and dad.

I want to fall in love and live happily ever after (preferably with someone that’s okay with the fact that I’m a wanderlust) because who doesn’t? I’ve already got someone in mind, but that is one of the few things I’ll leave to fate/destiny/ all that other crap love makes you believe in. Last but not least, I do want to get to the point where I can stop wrestling with my body. I want to finally strike the perfect balance when it comes to my health and fitness that will truly me allow me to have a lifestyle instead of a chore.

When I put into perspective why it is that I have such huge, failure prone dreams…they become less scary and more awesome which makes them all goals worth working towards.

Image

Another thing to ask yourself, but NOT to dwell on: What’s the worse thing that can happen if I fail?

One of the hardest things to keep in mind is that I may fail. In fact, I probably will somewhere along the line. But does that mean I’m just a failure and I should give up? If I had to take a guess, I’d say no.

So what if I do miss a step in the UK university process, or my blog doesn’t take off as well as I want it to, or something really does go terribly wrong? What is the worst case scenario? Will I be miserable? Will the world end? Will I suck at life forever? Will I be 42 years old, naked, in a bean bag chair, eating Cheetos? Chances are, the answer is also, no.

Keeping in mind that failing doesn’t actually make me a failure puts SO much in perspective. I have loads to gain from trying and only succeeding in half of my ventures and so much to lose from just giving up now. I have nothing to fear, because even the worst case scenario is still pretty good, so why not risk it and shoot for the best case scenario?

Screen Shot 2014-06-25 at 11.39.03 AM

Last but not least, what is my overall goal for life?

My biggest fear is getting to the end of my life and feeling regret for the things I didn’t do, and the people I didn’t love enough. I don’t want to sit in a hospital bed (or wherever I am when I go) and think about how much I wanted to travel Europe but I never did because I was scared, or how much I loved my first love but I gave up on my ‘once in a lifetime’ because sometimes it hurt to love him. I want to live life to the fullest because I only have one. My overall goal is to do everything I love, and to find my happiness with the ones I love.

At the end of the day, I want to be a wife, a mother, and a lover of the life I have created/been given. If I can do that, there is no failure or regret, only happiness, and that’s all I could ever ask for.

 

 

Happy, Healthy, and Freakin’ Fabulous

Image

It’s been about a week since I began the Whole 30 (discussed in previous blog), and I’m not going to lie, it wasn’t easy. An entire week of clean eating which basically means no legumes, no dairy, no added sugar. That doesn’t sound too crazy until you realize those three things are literally in EVERYTHING. Salad dressing, protein bars (makes post workout a real challenge),  and obviously…all things yummy. It sounds intense, and it was… but I do have a few tips for surviving the first week.

Tip 1: Get all the crap out

Make your kitchen a temptation free zone. Don’t set yourself up for disaster by having bagels, ice cream, and all things junk food hanging around your house. Anything you can shove in your face during a moment of weakness (cupcakes) has got to go!

Tip 2: Go shopping for the good stuff

Image

Few things in life make me quite as happy as planning and making list (It’s a problem), so this part excites me just a little bit too much. Making a little bit of an ordeal out of planning and shopping will take the guess work out of clean eating, and anything that makes it easier is a huge plus! So plan meals that actually sound appetizing, write out a list of everything you’ll need for said yummy-ness, stick to it, and avoid buying any tempting foods.

Tip 3: Get your hands on some Your Tea, Tiny Tea.

Image

Seriously. You have probably seen this tea somewhere on instagram, as a magical tea all the fitspo girls drink. It sounds like one of those gimmicky diet teas that just makes you lose 10 pounds due to pooping your intestines out…but it’s not. This tea was a life saver this week as it really works with your digestive system to cut cravings, increase energy, decrease bloat, and clear up your skin. It is the bomb.com. Speaking of .com, go to www.yourtea.com and get some, you will thank me during this Whole 30 hell week.

Tip 4: Get excited about good food.

It’s easy to get bored with clean eating, but there is a way to switch things up a little bit. Go to the farmers market, go to  cool restaurants that offer clean food (they are out there), and/or try new (semi insane) recipe.

Perfect example of this: I went to on a little field trip to a family farm to pick up a massive amount of fresh strawberries. They were picked that morning, super tiny, and SO sweet. They basically became lunch and snack and dessert and…you get the point. They were just strawberries, but something about doing something special to get them made the whole fruit loving ordeal, way more exciting.

Image

Tip 5: Remember you do not have super powers.

Chances are, you are not eating nearly as many carbs as you were before and that changes things. And by things, I mean workouts. This diet requires a pretty serious cut to the major energy source known as carbohydrates which can make exercise a hell like experience if you don’t plan ahead. You are not super human, and you cannot workout on broccoli alone. I made the mistake of running for half an hour and lifting for a full hour, which, long story short lead to a full on barf feast. It was attractive, let me tell ya.

Tip 6: Avoid cravedom.

There is literally nothing worse than being struck by a craving AND boredom (let’s call this cravedom). Cravedom is a recipe for disaster. Stay. Busy.

I read, walked, kayaked, went to the gym, called a friend, braided hair, went for a drive…you name it, I did it. Boredom is my worst enemy and after letting it get the best of me once, I avoided it at all cost for the rest of this week. I’m really glad I did this…Being on a mission to stay busy led me to some pretty awesome adventures, such as my first kayaking trip…

Image Image

WAY better than cravedom. So go explore something… it will keep you from spartan kicking everyone and/or devouring ice cream.

Tip 7: Cheat.

Yep. That’s right. The Whole 30 program says that if you cheat you should start over from day one. Um, no. Although I see their point as far as breaking bad habits, and living a healthier lifestyle…I also see my point as far enjoying life and not torturing yourself.

Now, I have never been a junk eater, it wasn’t how I was raised, and I never developed a love for crappy food. However, I am very much so the girl that always wants what I can’t have. That to say, I am fine with eating completely clean, I enjoy it 95% of the time, but every once in a while…this girl NEEDS ice cream. By day five, I was becoming the ice cream seeking monster. So what did I do?

First…I panicked because I was on the Whole 30 and cheating meant starting over. So I denied myself, because quitting is for quitters. Later in that day I found myself sitting in the park (avoiding cravedom), hating on my body for not allowing me to enjoy food without being a fat slob, AND contemplating how bad it would be to punch a five year old in the face and steal his ice cream. This kind of made me realize that I was depriving myself way too much and I was no longer just craving, I was obsessing and frustrating the crap out of myself.

I bought the ice cream, a box of cones, had a very clean day of eating, kayaked for like 23 hours, and ended my day with a nice, mint chocolate chip ice cream cone.

IMG_4257

It was a magical experience. I was seeing ponies, and rainbows and life was better. I wasn’t shaming myself. I knew that one cone was going to be flippin’ amazing and I was not actually going to turn into a hunk of lard over one serving of ice cream.

Cheat. Go ahead, just make sure to follow through with tip 8.

Tip 8: Don’t go insane, get back on that train! (yep, that rhymes…you’re welcome)

I do believe you should cheat a bit, but at the same time, you do have to get back on the train. If you can’t handle having one bad meal and then following it up with another week or month of clean eating, I would really consider not cheating very often.

So if you’re dying and you need to give in a little, have something small (under 400 calories or so) at the end of a good week. If you can hold out, treat yourself to that burger and fries (800-1000 calories) at the end of a good month. I know that sounds a bit insane, but trust me, it will keep you on the wagon for more than five days and/or your first real craving, unless of course, the first sentence applies to you.

 

IMG_4080

I am proud to say my post cheat meal was two eggs with salsa and sliced avocado. I successfully quenched my ice cream thirst, and today the Whole 30 is my best friend again. It’s called moderation, and it is a B-E-A-UUUTIFUL thing.

Tip 9: Enjoy life. The most important part of it all.

Food is meant to be enjoyed, life is meant to be enjoyed, and both can be done in good health. Love your body before you love a diet or the gym. Those things are meant to better you, not to make you a slave to them. You’ve only got one  body, so treat it kindly and it will return the favor.

I will never be stick thin, and maybe that’s because I need ice cream once a week and I’ve got the metabolism of a lasagna noodle. But I would rather indulge my love of mint chocolate chip ice cream and enjoy life, than be a cranky bitch who hates on my naturally curvacious body and wants to punch five year olds all day. I’ve been at my “goal” weight and I’ve been at my “okay” weight (where I am now), and honestly… I prefer my “okay” weight. People still  love me, hot guys still think I’m  hot, I still feel like a curvy boss in my bathing suits, and I enjoy ice cream from time to time without the need to guilt myself into going to the gym for three hours (that’s not an exaggeration).

It’s not always about skinny(especially if you’re not naturally that way), sometimes it’s just about happy, healthy, and freakin’ sexy.

 

 

IMG_4165