Musings from My Moleskine: “You”

How truly remarkable to be the only “you.” And yet, this fact doesn’t seem to be enough for us; We spend our time trying to figure out our purpose, trying to figure out the meaning of life, trying to figure out how we can leave an impact on the world when in actuality, the mere fact that you are and will forever be the only you created is value enough.

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Why are we the ways that we are?

It truly is a wonder to think about all of the individuals in the world and remember we are each crafted to represent the many visions and images of a higher being (otherwise known as “The Big Man”).

How truly remarkable to be the only “you.”

And yet, this fact doesn’t seem to be enough for us; We spend our time trying to figure out our purpose, trying to figure out the meaning of life, trying to figure out how we can leave an impact on the world when in actuality, the mere fact that you are and will forever be the only you created is value enough.

That is your impact.

Who you are and what you do is your life’s purpose. It is enough to just be you. In fact, it’s more than enough – being you is a huge responsibility and honor!

And, guess what, YOU’RE KILLING IT.

No one does it like you do, and the world is so thankful. So the next time you start questioning yourself, your life, and ultimately falling into a tailspin of though garbage, remember that you are a value-add to this world just by showing up.

Keep showing up.

xx

happily Haleigh

27 things I’m welcoming into my life

I’m a big fan of New Year’s, but actually, I think your birthday is an even better time to set intentions. After all, it’s like your own personal anniversary. I’ve been really big into manifestation lately, so I’m clearing mental space for the following to come into my life this year. So without further adieu…

Yesterday, I officially turned twenty-seven. I celebrated with a few girlfriends and lots of food I’m “not supposed to eat” because of my health stuff, but hey, it was my birthday! A few days ago I reflected on 27 things I want to let go, and now, I’m reflecting on 27 things I want to WELCOME into my life, because I think it’s important to start the year off on a positive note πŸ™‚

I’m a big fan of New Year’s, but actually, I think your birthday is an even better time to set intentions. After all, it’s like your own personal anniversary. I’ve been really big into manifestation lately, so I’m clearing mental space for the following to come into my life this year. So without further adieu…

1. Alignment:

I spoke about misalignment in my previous post, so naturally, I’d like to welcome alignment into my life. Aligning my thoughts with my words, my words with my actions, so that everything is symbiotic for what I truly want in life.

2. Abundance:

I also spoke about letting go of a scarcity mindset. Enough of that. I want ABUNDANCE. Abundance of love, happiness, health, money, friends, family – everything. No need to deprive yourself.

3. Health:

SO, SO IMPORTANT FOR ME. If you’re not up-to-date, I’m having a few health issues (you can find other posts about this on my blog if you’re interested!). It’s draining, but I absolutely need to get it in check this year. So, I’ll be working on truly switching my mindset and making the right moves to welcome health in. And of course, I’ll continue to document on here πŸ™‚

4. Freedom:

Freedom – health freedom, food freedom, mental health freedom, etc. I’ve felt very constrained by a lot of these things in my life, and I’m hoping to move away from that mindset and feel more free.

5. Acceptance:

Acceptance is just a great feeling, don’t you think? The word itself just makes me feel less stressed. Learning to accept your past mistakes, accepting other people, accepting that we cannot control everything – I think this mindset will be helpful for me.

6. Meditation:

This is hard because it takes practice and I’m just not great at it, if we’re being honest! It’s a very disciplined practice, but everyone swears by it. With my stress levels, I know it’s important.

Something I actually have been loving is this app called “Beatfulness“. It’s binaural beats (learn more here) that can focus on different things you’d like to work on such as deeper sleep, stress relief, etc. I have been using it to fall asleep to, and I can honestly say that I have started to feel more rested! It’s not exactly meditation, but it’s been helpful, no doubt.

7. Mindfulness:

Somewhat similar to meditation, but what I mean by this is being mindful in the moment. Making sure to be present, instead of letting my mind wander to the past or future.

8. Getting Weird:

Okay, only my family and closest friends know this, but I was a WEIRD kid. Just super quirky – always making faces, being goofy, etc. Somewhere along the way, I grew out of that, but honestly, I miss that little girl. I miss her carefree attitude, her zest for life, and silly nature. I want to get back to that because life is too short to be serious and boring.

9. Spontaneity:

I’ve never been great with this, but I hope to work on it! As a Taurus, I love plans, structure and consistency. I don’t mind change, but it definitely makes me feel a little anxious and pushes me out of my comfort zone. BUT growth doesn’t happen by staying where you are! I’m looking to make some awesome memories this year, and sometimes the best memories come from things unplanned.

10. Discovery:

Like I said, I want to make some awesome memories. I’m looking to welcome in discovery – discovering new things I like, new places, new events, new people. I want to discover more of myself.

11. IRL Living:

“In Real Life” Living: I mean this in the simplest of ways — less time on social media, more time in the real world.

12. Community Engagement:

Going along with the “IRL” theme, I want to become more of a citizen of my local community – attending more local events, actually learning about the community I live in, etc.

13. Deeper Relationships:

I have some AMAZING people in my life. Truly – sometimes I sit and wonder why I have been so blessed with my friends and family. But I have to admit – I sometimes feel like I could do a better job of deepening those relationships. So, I’ll be working on that this year. (WARNING: Friends and family, if I start loving on you TOO much, just let me know – I won’t be offended).

14. More time with girlfriends:

See the above point – I want to spend more time with all of my favorite gals because they are always my ROCK. For instance, yesterday on my birthday, I was standing in line at Sprinkles to get some more cupcakes (duh), and I started to feel really sick. I almost passed out, and my friends Emma and Haley were the MVP’s and literally were pulling my jacket off of me, patting my head with a water-drenched napkin, pulling my hair back, warding off boys who were trying to flirt with me while I’m literally dying (WHAT), and coming up with a master plan to get me out of there ASAP. AND, they still got my cupcakes for me.

Girlfriends are the family you weren’t born into, but somehow found you along the way because God knows you need them. It’s so important to maintain those relationships and hold them close.

15. New Relationships:

While I love all the people in my life already, I am always open to welcoming new friends in! Also, seriously wouldn’t mind meeting a guy one day, ya know, organically, like in one of the movie scenes like I talked about… LOL.

16. Family Time:

Family is everything. I spend a good time with family already, but I’m always happy to spend more time with them. I have nieces and nephews, and I love watching them grow up and getting to know them as they get older! Auntie life is the best.

17. Continued Learning:

I’ve always thought about going back to school, getting a certification in something, or learning a new skill. I’m not sure what this exactly looks like yet, but I definitely want to find something where I feel like I’m continuing my education.

18. Art:

The fine arts – I used to be so obsessed with musicals, dance, music, etc… and somewhere along the way when life’s responsibilities crept in, I pushed all of those passions to the back-burner. Recently, I’ve been able to see two musicals (Jersey Boys and Hamilton, both great!), and it reminded my how ignited my soul becomes when I experience art in that way.

This year, I want to see MORE musicals, go to art exhibits, etc. I always feel so culturally engaged and my soul is happy when I am experiencing art.

19. Color:

Black is a color… right? No? Oh… I want to bring just a liiittle more color into my wardrobe… but it’s just so hard because neutrals. are. life. This will be a struggle.

20. New Hobbies:

Similar to continued learning, I want some new hobbies! It’s always fun to introduce something new into your life – coloring? puzzles? knitting? The opportunities are endless! (Okay, now I just sound old).

21. Traveling – for real:

Finances, health, work… I’ve had a lot of excuses not to travel. But now that I have a very generous vacation policy, I MUST take advantage of this! So excited to travel more this year… where should I go?! Comment below πŸ™‚

22. Writing:

I actually really enjoy writing. I often don’t know what to write about, but when I do write, it is so cathartic. I love the feeling of my fingers whisking across the keyboard, and my internal thoughts suddenly becoming visible. I often wonder if writing is a dying art form – I mean, who needs to read blogs when everyone has a podcast, after all?! (Not bashing, I’m an avid podcast fan). But there is something to be said for the written word – a homage to both things that have passed and things that are to come.

Anyway, I hope to continue writing more this year, whenever inspiration strikes.

23. More Cooking/Baking:

I’ve really started to appreciate trying to recipes. There’s something adventurous about it: will it look like the Pinterest picture? Or better yet, will it be edible? The anticipation is real, people!

I think it’s so important to learn the art of cooking and baking – it’s something that you can always take with you, and you can share both the food AND knowledge with others. A gift that keeps on giving!

24. A personal trainer?:

I’ve been debating getting a personal trainer. I’ve come a long way on my fitness journey, but in terms of form and lifting, I’m pretty much self-taught. I’d love to work with a trainer to perfect form and improve, because I’ve been feeling pretty stagnant lately.

Chicago friends, any good recommendations?!

25. Strength:

Going along with the personal training aspect, I really want to improve my strength! I took a [solidcore] class this morning, and even though I’m in the gym 4-5 days a week lifting weights, this class KICKED. MY. BUTT. It was different than anything I am used to doing, and humbled me big time. It just goes to show you that your body has different modes of strength, and I still have improvements to make!

This is important to me because I have chronic pain issues due to arthritis in my back (guys, I swear I only turned 27), so improving your overall strength is imperative to pain management.

26. Creativity:

I want to tap back into my creative side this year – I think this will come naturally along with some of the above points, so I’m excited to open myself up to that side of me again.

27. Fresh Flowers:

Honestly, I just really love fresh flowers.

I’m so excited to see where this next year of life takes me. I was feeling somewhat blah about it this past week, but I shifted my mindset. I made it another year, I have so many blessings to be grateful for, and I have the opportunity to continue to live an amazing life. Can’t ask for anything more!

xx

happily Haleigh

So, I’m turning 27…

(on May 11th – mark your calendar)

And for some reason, I suddenly feel inexplicably old.

I know I still have three years until 30, but approaching 27 feels like a final countdown. Maybe it’s because I’m 26 and don’t feel like I’m where I should be by society’s standards. Or maybe it’s because I’m 26 and am dealing with health issues that steal much of my life and energy. Or maybe it’s a combination of things, but I’m having somewhat of a hard time with this birthday.

I normally do like my birthday, after all – it’s supposed to be a day all about you with a bunch of friends, cake, and celebrations. But this year, when I think of indulging in treats, I just think of my health problems and how I should’t be eating a cupcake or donut or whatever (but you know I will be LOL). When I think of celebrating with friends, I run into scheduling road blocks and distance road blocks because a) May is busy b) at 26, I still have not cultivated a unit of friends that mirrors the Sex and the City girl gang and c) a lot of my dearest friends are not even in Chicago. When I think about celebrating, I think of the money I’m spending on one day that I could be putting away for something else.

Basically, as an almost 27 year old, I feel like a boring old lady, and it’s almost causing me to be down on myself, which, is SO sad.

You should feel awesome on your birthday! But I don’t feel super awesome. But then I try to remember this: I’ve made it to 27 years on planet earth. That’s pretty neat. Nothing guaranteed me making it here, so that’s a great birthday present in and of itself.

Thinking forward, I know 27 is going to be another huge year of growth. Working through health issues, continuing in a new job, some other big life moves, vacations to take, upcoming weddings, friends having babies – there’s going to be A LOT happening.

Knowing this, the rest of this week I’ll be taking time to reflect and look forward to reset some expectations and goals, and to appreciate all the good and lessons I’ve experience thus far.

Stay tuned for some more posts throughout the week! πŸ™‚

How do you celebrate your b-day? Still taking suggestions over here!

xx

happily Haleigh

The Waiting Game… #slayingSIBO

Have you ever been told you’re a ruminator?

Well, I have been one all. my. life. I was born a type-A, worry wart of a child — truly, I tell you it’s a miracle I’ve made it to age 26 without becoming a total basket case. The self-induced stress I have put my body through has probably primed me for SIBO!

Have you ever been told you’re a ruminator?

(I’ll give you time to google “ruminate”)

Well, I have been one all. my. life. I was born a type-A, worry wart of a child — truly, I tell you it’s a miracle I’ve made it to age 26 without becoming a total basket case. The self-induced stress I have put my body through has probably primed me for SIBO!

At 26, almost 27, I will say that I have made VAST improvements in my almost obsessive ruminating behaviors. I mean, I no longer spend hours on hours on WebMD… just short half hour periods here and there (hey, old habits die hard, ya know?)

But I swear I’m not a hypochondriac – I am just innately in tune with my body, and I know when something’s not right. And finally, my persistence and “worry” has brought me some bonafide truth and answers.

Unfortunately, the time between when I received my test results and my follow-up with my doctor on Friday is a week. ONE WHOLE WEEK. Do you know how much time that is for me to think about this, worry about this, and GOOGLE THIS?

A lot. But the waiting game is to my favor, really, because I have been deep-diving into the world of SIBO and how I am about to kick this thing’s butt. Receiving this diagnosis can be overwhelming. The scarcity yet vastness of information on SIBO can be truly mind-boggling.

Because of this, I wanted to share a comprehensive short list of resources I’ve found in my research that I have found extremely helpful thus far incase anyone else feels lost in the midst of a SIBO diagnosis! I am by no means an expert (yet), but I’ve already learned a lot. I still want to do more research on more areas, and as I learn, I’ll post on the blog.

You can find that list HERE πŸ™‚

While I wait for Friday to come (two more days!!), I have already started to make some changes in my life to start truly healing and get my life back. It’s amazing how news like this can really spur you to assess your life.

  1. I’ve spent a lot of time reflecting this week – – thinking about what and who causes me stress, and better yet, what and who brings me joy.
  2. I’ve been extremely self-aware. I’ve taken care to notice every feeling and thought that I’ve experienced this week to help me notice things like stressors and dark places in my mind (so I can work on fixing them!)
  3. I made an appointment with a therapist – not for anything specific, but from what I’ve been reading, stress management will be VITAL in helping cure SIBO, and honestly, I’ve never really been that great at stress management… I like to think I’m a rockstar at suppressing it though πŸ™‚
  4. DANCE PARTIES: Yes, I’ve started having a dance party to music I used to love in my teenage years (think Hannah Montana and Jonas Brothers) every morning before I leave for work, and honestly it just MAKES. YOU. HAPPY. Try it.
  5. Gratitude. Through all of this, I’m trying to be grateful. I’m trying to be grateful for the fact that it could always be something worse, and I’m trying to be grateful for the fact that maybe this will lead me to a better quality of life in the long-run.

I know we all love a weekend, but especially this week, Friday can’t come soon enough!

I’ll be sure to update the blog after my appointment.

Until then,

xo

happily Haleigh