grat·i·tude 

[grat-i-tood, -tyood]  

-noun
the quality or feeling of being grateful or thankful: He expressedhis gratitude to everyone on the staff.

Thank you Dictionary.com for that excellent definition! Sometimes gratitude is a forgotten trait - in the rush of our lives we forget to slow down and appreciate our lives and all the people that we share it with. 
 
 
Everyone has something that they know they 'should be doing'. Brushing your teeth everyday, showering everyday, working out, that assignment you've been putting off - yeah I've been there. My latest one was going to the Dentist. God, how I loath going to the dentist. 

So, finally, after three years I broke down and went yesterday and boy am I glad I did! The cleaning was horrible, as always and since I hadn't been in so long it was seriously intense. The poor hygienist was sweating! Finally after what seemed like hours of intense buzzing and slight feeling of being water boarded she told me I was done for the day but I would have to return for a second cleaning. So, now, because I waited for so long I have to go back a second time! If I had just taken care of myself and gone regularly like I should ...this could be avoided.
 
Think about what it is that's nagging you, the thing you keep putting off. I want to ask you - what is stopping you? Why haven't you finally done it? What is holding you back? I would like to challenge you to write down in your self love bible all the things you feel guilty about not doing and then write down why you haven't done them, and be honest with yourself. For the longest time I said I couldn't floss my teeth because I was 'too busy' when in reality it was more like I was 'too busy watching star trek'! I eventually got the best of both worlds - flossing while watching star trek! Today I challenge you to take a baby step towards finishing that thing you've been putting off. Just go Nike on it and DO IT! You'll feel so much lighter when you finally do! Remember, an important lesson in learning to love yourself is taking care of yourself - physically, emotionally and mentally. You deserve it! 

 
 
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Geordie was very disappointed by Lt. Barclay's performance and he wanted him transferred off the ship but picard said no, get to know him so Geordie begins to put a little faith in him. Laforge invited him to a morning officers meeting and giving him special tasks and saying “ok, I trust you’ll take good care of it,” and then Lt. Barclay began performing much better, he arrived on time and put his extra foot in and spoke his mind. 

He ended up saving the ship from certain destruction!! - Because he felt comfortable enough to speak up. He felt important and secure in himself. 

We are on a journey to learn how to love yourself - part of that growth is by facilitating others to do the same. 




 
 

Ah, you think you know what I'm talking about! Ha, we can cover that later, eh? 

We all have that thing we’ve been saving. We’ve been saving it for a special occasion or the perfect circumstance, but in the mean time…it’s been sitting there getting dusty! I see you right now picturing it in your head – that special dress in the back of the closet, the fancy china, for me it is a bottle of perfume that is now discontinued. Red Currant and Thyme by Bath and Body Works – it’s my favorite scent in the world and it’s no longer made, so naturally I save every precious drop right? But really, what joy is that giving me? Looking at a bottle of perfume that I’ve had for years that I never use! How am I enjoying that?! So, I took it to Chicago with me and wore it everyday – it was great and I felt great wearing it!

So. Use that thing you’ve been saving for a special occasion and if you can’t bring yourself to – make a special occasion! Set up a date with yourself and enjoy some special time. Take plenty of pictures and scrapbook everything in your self-love bible!

 
 
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It's been a while since my last post - I've been traveling for spring break! I travelled to Chicago to see my best friend and to spend some time away from everything and just relax and enjoy myself - I had such a wonderful time and I am completely revamped now! 

I spent so much time exploring the city; I went to Millennium Park and saw The Bean! I try to see it every time I visit. I spent some time along the lake and a whole day visiting Lincoln Zoo (which is free, by the way). I tried several delicious cuisines, including some Arabian food and probably the most perfect sushi roll I’ve ever had. I toured Columbia College and rode the Ferris wheel – I could just go on and on about how amazing it was. I spent most of the time by myself – and let me tell you that exploring a new area while you’re on your own is the most empowering experience anyone can have. So, I challenge you to explore something new – get outside your comfort zone. Take a trip somewhere new (that doesn’t mean it has to be far away!), join a new club or hang with a new group of people. Get out, experience and grow! When you are finished, make sure to keep a souvenir or two and use a few pages of your Self Love Bible as a scrapbook so that you can remember how much fun you had and hopefully will feel encouraged to do it again.

Engage.

 
 
You have people in your life that you trust - your friends, your family, your teachers, government officials (that's kind of hit or miss...), and others. You trust these people because you respect them and believe in their judgement. It occurred to me last night that one way I could love myself is to not just others, but trust myself. 

Many people in this day are so, like, unsure of themselves, 'know what I mean'? Stand apart and be confident and sure. When someone asks you a question that you know the answer to, reply confidently. If you're in a situation and your gut is telling you something, listen to it. Trust in yourself to make the right decisions and accept the consequences of them - it will be such a relief. 

 
 
This was a note written by an old friend titled "Dear Women". I find it beautifully written and comforting knowing that there are still women out there who haven't fallen into obsession about our perception of beauty. 

Let's do a little compare and contrast, shall we?  Us vs. Supermodels. 

Supermodels get paid tens of millions of dollars to exercise all the time, get plastic surgery, and have someone else do their hair and makeup before they go out in public.

 

We, on the other hand, do not.  We've invested our plastic surgery/personal cosmetologist money in an education instead, in the hopes of bettering ourselves so we can get a job that, while it ironically pays much less, is hopefully less demeaning than one that has us strutting the runways in our underwear in front of millions of viewers.  Mommy didn't give us an eating disorder, Daddy didn't kickstart our stardom with his huge fortune, and with class/work from 9-5, in addition to homework for hours and hours after that, we don't have the time or the energy to do 5 hours of cardio a day on a fig leaf diet.

 

Fuck that shit, ladies.  We're better than that.

 

We're more than vapid, living mannequins.  We're intelligent, we're hard-working, we're ambitious, and we are interesting.  We know how to have fun, and we know it doesn't have to involve Britney-style crotch-flashing or drunken partying of the Lohan degree.  If nothing else can be said about us versus the Jessica Simpsons of the world, at least we know how to do our own laundry.

 

So the next time somebody tries to apply the Judd Apatow rules for relationships to you, tell them to fuck off.  If your boyfriend expects you to look like a supermodel, tell him he's damn welcome to go first.  We have neither the time, the money, or the inclination to preen like peacocks, because we're busy trying to change the world for the better.  You are fabulous just the way you are, and you deserve nothing less than someone who recognizes that.

 

Dear God, I do believe I've gone to bed and woken up a feminist.

 

- J



 
 
A slice of pizza has to be at least 3 inches, right?! OMG and cake is a black hole - run!!! And the evil mashed potato monster is watching us, waiting to spring an attack at the next family dinner....

No.

So many of us beat ourselves up about having a slice of cake at a party, or enjoying pizza with friends on a special movie night. We don't need to be doing this - stop the madness! I promise, it's completely ok to have a slice of pizza or cake or lasagna for that matter. I began thinking of food as a fuel source, since that's exactly what it is. When you are choosing your food, try to make the choices that are going to offer you the best fuel - which of course is veggies, fruits, whole grains, we all know that. But, on the occasion, you come across what have been labeled "bad foods". There are no "bad foods", it's OK to have these things, just remember they aren't very fuel efficient so when indulging, make sure to do so in moderation, and then pat yourself on the back for having restraint and eating one piece instead of 2 or 3. 
 
 
"Thinking about what you can't control only wastes energy and creates it's own enemy." 

-Lt. Worf 



Wise words, eh? This is a tough mantra to remember  - believe me. Stressing about things that are out of my control has always been my downfall. Actually, I'm pretty sure it runs in the family and that there is no escaping it! When you dwell on things that you have no power to change, you are wasting energy and creating an enemy within yourself. I talk aloud to myself to remember that it's out of my control. Feels silly, but it helps a lot...when you're feeling over whelmed try to let go and feel lighter....

 
 
Many of us, without knowing it, cheat ourselves. We cheat ourselves out of time, having fun, and happiness - because we are cheating ourselves this is something that can be reversed (though it may not be easy, it will be totally worth it!) I too am guilty of this - and often! We, as a people need to free ourselves, so let's do it together! 

First, think about all the times you've been so excited to go somewhere. You're headed to a party, a night out with a friend, or a dance. You get ready, you're set and GO - you get there, all still totally stoked, and then you see the girl across the room that is wearing a really, really beautiful dress. You bought yours at a second-hand shop because you're brilliantly thrifty! You feel self- conscious and there goes your night - NO MORE! First, why should you worry about other people and what they think? Secondly, they are probably feeling the same way you are. Just relax, because this opportunity is once, so carpe diem!! (Seize the day!) and don't feel held back. 

You hate the way your hair looks. You have curly and you want straight, so everyday before school or work you spend 1 hour straightening your hair, fair? That's 365 hours, 15 days, OVER TWO WEEKS a year that you spend...learn to feel comfortable with yourself and spend those two weeks traveling or doing something you find enjoyable. 

You think about your Ex, 'what if I had done this? or if we had tried that?' or in general worrying and beating yourself up over it - keep in mind love that none of this is negatively affecting him, only you - you waste so much time trying to change the past, the only thing you can control is the future. 

Try not to listen to your inner retard, and stop letting it cheat you out of time....you only live once, make the most of every moment! 

Please make sure to check out Monstrous Discrepancies, it is so well done and such an eye opener! 

<3 

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Captions: 1) How closely you feel others are scrutinizing you - how closely they are actually scrutinizing you. 2) How self-assured you assume others are - how self-assured they actually are 3) How sexuality is portrayed - how sexuality is 4) How institutions appear - how institutions are 5) How alone you are - how alone you aren't 6) How fortunate you might feel - how fortunate you might be 7) The perceived significance of one - the potential significance of one 8) How it all can seem... but is it just a dream?