Confidence: Superwoman, Starfish

Many people say “confidence is key,” and in many situations it is true. Every day you may be faced with challenges, decisions, and opportunities. And every day it is your confidence that drives you forward; that lets you face those challenges, make those decisions, and take chances on new opportunities. Without confidence, risks would never be taken and we would always be stuck in our own little circle of repetition.

Even when times are tough, having confidence can help guide you through. I personally feel that everyone should find their own inner confidence every single day in order to make it from point A to point B, or simply go to bed with a smile on your face. That’s where superwoman, starfish comes in!

As you may have heard, our body language can have a major impact on our mood. For example, it has been proven that if you smile you will begin to feel happier. When you smile, even if it is fake, your brain believes that it is a reaction out of happiness. It then releases more chemicals into the brain which actually makes you happy.

When you stand in a “superwoman” position, legs shoulder width apart, hands on hips, chest up, you begin to feel more confident. The superwoman position allows you to feel powerful and therefore makes you more confident. The “starfish” position does the same thing. In the starfish position, you stand firm with your arms and legs spread. Extending and opening your body is associated as a power position throughout many species. Think of it as claiming what is yours and reaching for everything around you.

If you stand in these positions for a few minutes every day, your mood will increase and you will feel overall more confident. I encourage you to start every day as a starfish, live every moment like superwoman, and fall asleep with a smile on your face. If you need more confidence in your life, try standing in these positions and see how it works for you!

Drinking More Water

Hello everyone! Sorry I’ve been MIA for a while but its finally time for another self improvement post!!

Drinking enough water is something that I have personally struggled with my whole life. When I was younger I used to HATE drinking water because I would always get stomach aches. As stupid as it sounds, the problem  was that I wasn’t drinking it correctly. In fact, it wasn’t until a few years ago that I realized I should change the way I drink water. On the rare occasions when I would drink water, I would chug a cup as fast as possible. This would always make my stomach hurt and made me believe that water just wasn’t for me. I would do some sort of physical activity, drink a lot of water, and then find myself with really bad cramps. That is when I finally learned the secret to water; SIP!!

Even if you never went through the same water struggle I did, I bet you don’t drink enough! Every day you are supposed to drink 64oz of water to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Staying hydrated allows your body to naturally detox. Its also well known that drinking enough water improves skin, prevents headaches, and increases mood!

Even though I still don’t always get my 64oz every day, I have gotten a lot better at managing my water intake. One thing that makes drinking water easier is to get a cute water bottle or tumbler! Always having water available is the first step to getting closer to 64oz. If you keep water at eye level you are guaranteed to to drink more of it!

Another important step you should take towards improving your water intake is to cut out all other liquids. Although I was never a soda addict, I would have a Sprite here or some juice there when going out to restaurants or hanging out with frineds. Now, the only things I drink are water and decaffeinated green tea (which counts as water with added antioxidants). Even if your not drinking enough water, its a HUGE step towards improvement if you make water the only beverage in your life.

There are also lots of cute and helpful apps that are great for motivating and keeping track of water intake! Some of my favorite include “water my body” and “plant nanny.” Give one a try if your looking for that extra reminder to get some sips in.

So lets give it a try! Even though I have been working on my water intake for a while, I still have been struggling to drink enough. Try drinking more water and cutting out other beverages for the next month and see how it affects you! So start sipping!

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The Secret to Healthy Hair

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Hi everyone! After years and years of living with frizzy, greasy hair I have finally discovered the secret to healthy hair! Nothing!

Its true. The secret to perfectly healthy hair is to let mother nature take care of it for you. I know everyone knows the general healthy hair mantra “Less heat! Less product! Thats the secret!”And it’s true that using less of these hair damaging materials will give you healthier hair, but I have found that taking it a step further and limiting the use of ALL things is the true secret.

I’m sure many of you have heard the “no-shampoo”fad that people have been begining to get really in to. And I also bet that half of you cringing at the thought of living with dirty, unwashed hair for long periods of time. But let me be the one to tell you: IT WORKS! Whether you have heard it a thousand times and refuse to believe it or this is your first time hearing about the no-shampoo routine, I HIGHLY recomend it to everyone! I have been washing my hair only once a week for about three or four years now and it has honestly completly changed my hair quality. In the years before I changed up my haircare routine, I used to have really bad friz that was impossible to mannage. I got into the habbit of wearing my hair in a pony tail every single day just to avoid the halo of stray hairs around the top of my head. I also suffered with having hair that constantly looked greasy no matter how often I washed it. A few months after switching from washing my hair every day to once a week, my hair had a entirely new personality!

When shampoo cleans your hair, it lifts up your hair cuticals on the hair follicle in order to get inside and remove any dirt or grease. This allows the shampoo to clean hair, however it strips away all of your natural oils and also leaves all of your hair cuticals open which creates more fragile and brittle hair. Washing your hair less allows your natural hair oils to stay where they belong and give your hair that natural shine and strenght! Also, when you constantly strip away your natural oils by using shampoo, you hair produces more natural oils to make up for the loss witch will cause your hair to get greasy faster.

Just to warn you, if you are thinking about switching to a no-shampoo lifestyle, it will be difficult at first. Instead of imediatly switching from washing every day to not washing for a week, try slowly washing less and less over time. At first, your hair will be very greasy since it will be replenishing your natural oils from your years of constant washing. But there is hope! After washing less and less, over time your hair will stay cleaner longer since it will not be producing any extra oils. Although it may take a few months, you will be able to go longer and longer without washing and looking like you don’t own a shower! I am able to wear my hair down for half of the week and then in some cute up-do’s the rest of the week. I also use a simple diy dry shampoo after the second or third day near my roots to avoid a major grease build up.

When I said the secret to healthy hair was to do nothing I wasn’t kidding! Besides washing, it is also better for your hair to brush it less often. Brushing your hair, especially when wet, can cause major breakage and lead to split ends. try leaving your hair natural more often and avoid the brush. Sometimes all you need is a quick comb near the roots and you have a simple, beach wave look. Just like giving up washing your hair every day, this also takes a little bit of time to see results. At first you might hate your hair after skipping your usual brushing routine, but over time your hair will show its natural waves or curls and will grow healthier and stronger!

I bet many of you are skeptical, but changing my hair care routine to “lazy and simple” is honestly one of the best dicisions I have ever made. My hair has never been more healthy!

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Self Improvement: Posture

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Hey everyone! I’ve decided to start a new little series about self improvement. Now I know everyone is all about the “health craze” that has been going and I absolutely agree that people should be healthy. But I also believe that not everyone needs to make drastic life alterations and change their entire lifestyle to be healthier. My goal is to develop new habits to better my own life one piece at a time. It takes 21 days to develop a habit so once a month I will try to improve one new thing about myself. Although each little habit may be minor, together they can have some major impacts on your lifestyle. So I hope everyone will join me in trying to develop new habits (or break old ones) to overall become better, healthier people.

So my first little challenge that I think everyone can improve on is better posture. Not only am I talking about sitting up straight, Im talking to everyone out there who puts their weight on one side when they stand.

Having a better posture helps reduce back and neck pain caused by muscle strain from slouching. Sitting and stannding up straight also helps work out your core and allow better blood flow through your body.

For my job at a local Japanese restaurant, I end up doing a lot of standing. I’ve recently gotten into the habbit of turning my feet inwards and putting my weight on the outer sides of my feet. Now I know everyone says that good posture is better for you and no one listens, but I know standing like this can’t be good for me. So I encourage all of you to flatten those feet with me. For the next month, try standing with your feet parallel to eachother with your weight balanced between both legs. At first this will be difficult but standing with my feet wider (about hips width apart) is really helpful for keeping my weight ballanced. The farther apart you have your feet, the harder it will be for your to put all your weight on one side. Trust me your hips will thank you.

Now for the hard part, sitting up straight in a chair. My biggest advice for mastering sitting up straight is to flatten your feet on the floor. I have a habbit of crossing my legs which causes me to sink down in my chair a little. I can usually sit with my feet flat for a few minutes before it gets uncomfortable. For some reason, when I sit with my feet flat it makes me feel like I need to get up and move around. If you feel the urge to cross your legs try getting up and walking around to loosen your legs up and try again. Its better to take breaks without reverting back to your old sitting habbits. But if you aren’t in a place where you can just get up and walk around try tapping your feet! Even though most people tell you not to tap your feet, its been shown that any movement is better than no movement. Not only will you be working on your posture, but also be burning a few extra calories from all the walking and tapping you’ll be doing.

I’ve been trying to work on my posture for the past few days in preparation for this post and its honestly really hard. But trust me! If we keep it up, and work at it we will get used to it! Let me know in the comments below any tips you have for mastering good posture!

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Having a Competitive Nature

Growing up having an older sister has caused me to become a very competitive person. Every day I try to be the best at everything. For my whole life, second place has never been an option. When people ask me what my greatest strength and greatest weakness is I often say that my competitive nature is both. I personally believe that being competitive is a great quality to have. Being competitive causes you to work harder in order to get on top and be number one. Competition is what pushes me forward every day and forces me to be the best person that I can be. Seeing life as a competition gives people something to work towards and creates a goal that people become determined to reach. However, like any great trait, being too competitive has its major downside.
For me personally, I am not simply a little competitive, my life revolves around competition and each little task becomes a race that I have to win. It is actually really hard for me to accept the belief that “it’s not a race” or “not everything is a competition,” because for me it is. This weakness causes me to have major jealousy which has become one of my biggest personal problems. It happens so often that if someone seems one step ahead of me I can’t help but feel my blood boil.
People always say that what other people do doesn’t affect you and shouldn’t bother you, but it always does. How can I be okay with being second place? My competitive nature and jealousy is something that I continue to work on each day. Instead of being in a competition with the rest of the world, I try to keep the competition within myself. I challenge myself to be better than yesterday. To exercise more, to eat better, and to work harder on every aspect of my life.
The fear of being second best causes low self-esteem. By comparing yourself to everyone around you, you can easily put negative images of yourself in your head. I believe that anyone can do anything they can set their mind to, however, you cannot be the best at everything. In reality, there aren’t many top body builders/astronauts/presidents/chief of police people out there. It is impossible for you to be everything all at once, let alone be number one at it. Therefore, it is important to find what you are good at and what you love doing and work on being better at it. Somewhere in the world, there might be someone better at it than you, but you can’t base your success off of what others can and can’t do.
Although controlling my jealousy and working on my own personal self-esteem is very challenging, I try each day to improve and break away from that part of me. I encourage you to take the first step by noticing the little things. Just by noticing what makes you jealous will already start to change how you see the world around you. Make a personal goal for yourself, and each time someone begins to beat you at the imaginary competition in your head focus on what place you are in for your own race. Ultimately, if you try to be number one for every single little thing you will never come in first place for the race that really matters: being truly happy.
Use your competitive nature to drive you forward and make you work harder, but never let your life revolve around being better than everyone else. Because ultimately the only person you have to please is yourself.

I Pick Things Up and Put Them Down

I am a person with many interests. From cooking, baking, photography, health and fitness (sometimes), to fashion; I want to do it all. I’m the type of person who gets the great idea to start a business and will do it the very next day. I am easily inspired and want to do everything. But in today’s society, I find that wanting to do everything makes everything a little bit harder. Many may agree with me that loving everything makes you an indecisive person living in a world of decisions. How can I choose what I want to do with my life if I can’t even decide what I love to do the most?
I pick things up and I put things down. This comical phrase from some gym comertials seems to describe my personality perfectly. I get so easily motivated that I jump right into tasks. Then some day I just stop and the new hoby, goal, or dream, never lasts or is completed. I never would have noticed that simply pick things up and put them down until I realized my mom was the same way. A few years ago she got into jewlery making and did it for a month or so and hasnt made any since. She had a phase when learned to play the ukulele and would play every day, and one day it just stopped. Now shes into knitting and I can only imagine how long that will last.
Now, part of me lives in fear of putting things down. I believe that if I skip a day of my new hobby or great idea that I will let it slip away into the black hole filled with jewlery beads, ukulele strings, and candel making equiptment, and be lost forever. This fear has actually prevented me from starting stuff. Why start something if you are never going to finish it?
But, as my mother said, “I’m not just going to never play the ukulele again.” Whether or not thats true, I’m begining to discover that picking things up is the important part even if you do eventually put them down. It is the ideas and new creative thoughs and plans that fill our lives with joy. Finding new things us people with many interests love to do is just one of the many benifites of living. So I wont choose. I refuse to choose the one thing I love because I love so many things. I will choose to continue to pick things up and know that I will put some down. I will always try to hold onto every new idea and new “phase” and most of all live for right now instead of worrying if it will last in the future.
Today, my mom picked up the ukulele and played. Maybe it’s true that you can pick things up and put them down and pick them back up again.