Reflection

IM BACKKKKKKK!

mural

Here is a picture of my looking over my shoulder nonchalantly in front of a mural Downtown Fort Smith.

After a small break, I am here typing my two tiny broke finger nails off! I broke TWO nails this week, but thankfully they were the same nail on each hand so it works.

Last night me and Angela enjoyed a ladies night with good conversation and an AMAZING apple salad. LITERALLY apples sliced with cheese and lemon juice…I cant tell you ho much I wanna eat that again. As we were talking she said “This is a time of year I like to reflect.” I thought HOT DOG we are totally friends because that’s EXACTLY what my blog is going to be about this week! reflection. Memories if you will.

memories

If you cant hear this Picture and see the bubbles coming out of his mouth…Do a little 90’s movie education and you’ll thank me later.

Before we dive into my reflective ramblings, lets reflect on the past few weeks.

kas wedding

Here comes the bride, all dressed in champagne!! (that was her dress color) Shes a married lady! Her wedding was so perfect and the best reflection of who she is! (I’m going to keep using that word apparently) Halloween themed with a classy fall touch. The day was so exciting! We drank mimosas laughed and looked amazing in our pictures! (seriously tho, my friends are hot!!)

One memory that stands out in my mind, was when we were taking group pictures and Kas placed her head on Austin’s shoulder. It was a moment so sweet and so natural. I cant express the pure happiness I feel watching my friends marry their true love, Someone I know they will share the best life with!

kas wedig

And can we talk about how GORGEOUS she was. OMG A PRINCESS!!!!!! I told all my married friends I want to have pics of them on their wedding days in my home. weird? Maybe, but they just look so perfect and happy! I want to look at those pictures forever!

The cold has set in here in Arkansas and I’m afraid its here to stay. Last weekend I purged my closet and made room for big sweaters and jackets. I have been complaining  about the cold the last couple of days but as I got out last weekend and felt that crisp air, I was reminded of how much Joy this time of year can bring.

And Lets be honest Fall and Winter fashion is the best! I found this amazing leather jacket with lots of colors….its my new best friend. I feel empowered wearing it. Amazing what an outfit can do for your self-esteem.

With cold weather we get Holiday parties!! Me and my girls of course already have holiday plans in motion and first up is friends-giving. Last year our friends-giving was the best time I feel we have ever had. Some of my favorite memories with my friends are gathered around a table sharing a meal. And last year was perfect. There was so much laughter and food. SO. MUCH. FOOD. To avoid having so much food this year, Dani has orchestrated a list. An electrical list at that. (she hosts this event and even sets the table, like we are fancy people…ITS AWESOME) The planner in me LOVES the list to keep track who is bringing what…but I don’t have the heart to tell her we will in fact still end up with SO. MUCH. FOOD. Why? because we cant be trusted when it comes to delicious things. none the less we are becoming more organized! (whoop)

Now that we are all caught up, back to Ladies night with Angela. As we sat there talking and making friends with our server, we started…to reflect. (If this was an old movie I would have looked over my right shoulder longingly into the distance as the screen goes black and white and wrinkles to my thoughts..Imagine this with me)

At the beginning of this year I was happily working as a dental assistant and no desire or thought of leaving the office. My boyfriend was gearing up to start a business with his best friend and I was feeling like I needed something more in my life. Me and my family were gearing up for another major surgery for dad, and I’m still struggling with wanting more. Two of my best friends turned 30, One got married, One celebrated a one year anniversary and stated building a house, One had her first baby ( who I am so obsessed with! She brings so much joy into my life! as well as her mom!), and I’m still feeling like I need more in my life. Notice a pattern?

God has been placing this need for more on my heart for a long time. If you keep up with me, you know God sometimes needs to push me into plans he has for me. (I’m working on faith over fear) But thank the good lord above he never gives up on us and always so faithfully places me right where I know he needs me. I say needs me because I believe God places us in peoples lives because maybe they need something from us, or maybe we need something from them. As followers of christ we go where we are needed, or in my case pushed lol.

As all of these wonderful milestones around me were being reached by the women in my life, It forced me to sit down and think WHAT DO I, ME, LETHA MORGAN STEWART want out of life? And as Angela also said last night “You’ve got to be able to speak your mind for yourself.” Or something along those lines..Maybe not word for word.

Here’s what I came up with.

  1. I want to buy a house and make it my own. Decorating, organizing and remodeling has always been a passion of mine. Me and my dad have spent many Saturday mornings watching Chip and Joanna Gaines tackles the worst homes and make them beautiful again. I WANT TO DO THIS! I want to stop listening to people when they tell me “Its hard to do alone” “Its a lot of work and costs too much money” “do you even know how to do….”.  I have let so many opinions keep me from doing things i have a passion for in the past, but I will not let 2019 be filed with others opinions. I will fix my house, but I can bet money I wont do it completely alone. My support group is amazing and will do anything for pizza and wine :). I love hard work, Its the core of my personality and I’m a savvy shopper. I never take the first price as real…I can always find a better deal, ALWAYS. Lastly, I do not know how to do a lot when it comes to fixing things up but I do know the art of Google and YouTube.
  2. I want to finish school, And I DO NOT want to work in the health field. I know I touched on this in a previous blog, but we are reflecting so stay with me. I cannot stress enough how OKAY it is to change your mind about a career. Its okay to go back to school for something so different. For a long time I stayed where I was because I thought I didn’t have a choice. There is always a choice and its always yours. A little update, I will graduate December 2019 and I start a new Job January 2019 more inline with my new degree! I’m so excited for this new journey I never knew I wanted.
  3. I want to be more educated on worldly issues. As much as I trust friends and family, I want to form my own opinions. Its one thing I’m a little ashamed of, I have never really researched important topics. Things we all need to be educated on. We do after all live in this world.
  4. Number 4 goes with number 3, I want to be able to speak my mind and be able to back up my opinions with cold hard facts!
  5. Faith over Fear. Stop worrying about what i cannot control and focus on what I can. I touch on this in my blog Controlling the uncontrollable, if you haven’t yet read it you should!

Reading this you may be wondering why I’m writing a 2018 reflective blog in November instead of the end of December. The answer is simple, this time of year is blissfully busy and the new year will come faster than we can believe. If we start reflecting on who we have been now we can better know who we want to become in the new year.

  • Did we like ourselves in 2018?
  • Did we overcome something we thought we never would?
  • What can we do to improve ourselves?
  • How can we support and uplift those around us?
  • Who do we want to become?

We have two months left in this year! TAKE ADVANTAGE. Don’t let any moment go unnoticed. No word left unsaid. Play the Michael Buble Christmas album at the highest volume, Be super extra at your holiday party’s and make your family take matching PJ pics! I LOVE THOSE!!! Also stay tuned…me and my friends have started a tradition of holiday pics..last year was onsies..this year will be sooo extra ;).

Whatever your holiday season looks like, live it so extra and so loud! And dont forget to reflect on what this year has brought you, good and bad. In the mist of our struggle we find our hustle! (also from a previous blog titled the Hustle, a fabulous read)

I’m so excited for the weeks to come and even more excited to write about them!

Until next time

XoXo

-Letha

Peacefully Chaotic

Ironically I think embracing chaos might be the path to finding peace.

-Rachel Hollis

Good Morning and welcome to Friday!!!!!

This blog is coming at you from one of my favorite places…On the couch next to my father watching the Andy Griffith Show. Friday mornings are my favorite because I get to spend them with him. My life has been so busy lately I have hardly had the time to slow down. But don’t worry it has been filled with lots of fun and exciting things!

Last night me and a few girls took over a local brewery’s tap room (fort Smith Brew Company) and cleared our minds and lifted our girl Kas up with some yoga. ITS WEDDING WEEKEND FOR HER!!!! I’m so excited to share in this time with her! This week I have come to a couple of realizations, one being that Sometimes God brings distractions into our lives to help us navigate through the tough parts.

Last weekend was just as full with love and laughter as we whisked our bride away for a spa weekend in Hot Springs. First LET. ME. TELL. YOU. The spa experience was one of the best things I have ever done for myself. Two and a half hours of pure relaxation! If you haven’t checked out Hot Springs and all they have to offer, please do!

As I’m reflecting on the weekend My favorite part wasn’t the spa, it wasn’t the wonderful gift baskets that were prepared… it was the conversation. More specifically the conversation that was had by 10 women sitting at a dining room table in a beautifully restored Victorian home.  We talked about everything under the sun ranging from miscarriages, new journeys, crazy memories with one another, and of course our bride to be! I remember sitting at the table for bunch and dinner all weekend and just being so thankful for them and their friendship. I cant even put into words the pure joy I felt.

Friday night was my favorite (besides the spa experience of course), We put on out PJ’s (or if your Maddie..a MOMO….seriously I need a momo), played games, turned on some tunes and danced the week away. We were talking over one another with laughter and no surprise good conversation.

This house was so perfect! It was a Victorian home restored with a little modern charm and a vintage feel. Its name was The Queen Anne Manner and how fitting since our girl is about to marry a King (not a real one his last name is just King…but he is her knight in shinning armor). More than one of the gals had mentioned that they had slept so well that weekend. I couldn’t help but wonder if it was because there is just something about having all of your favorite people under one roof that makes you feel so safe and so at peace.

After the weekend was over and I was back in town, driving home I started thinking about all the things going on in my life. Grief, stress and worry started to set in. Until it hit me….I had not thought about one single life problem all weekend. Not once did I think of school, work, or just the everyday stress I’m dealing with in this season of my life.

I started to cry heavy tear as I thanked God for giving me a weekend filled with pure joy. Something I haven’t felt in a long time. I cannot think of a time I didn’t wake up with a heavy heart and a stress ridden brain. Its as if God used last weekend to show me that life still goes on. And he will not in fact give me anything I cannot handle. Right now I am in chaos, but I am finding so much peace, love and beauty in the middle.

Our lives will never be perfect. We have to find ways to find the joy in a season of endless grief. I know God is preparing me for something greater. And I am going to survive this season and come out stronger in the end. This past weekend showed me that.

At one point Kas (the bride) was so emotional over the fact that we all keep showing up for her even with all the struggles going on in our lives. And let me tell you WE ALL HAVE A LOT GOING ON. LIKE A LOT! But what I have come to realize and I think my girls will agree, sharing in her time of happiness and growth has given us an escape. A reason to keep showing up for one another, a reason to step away from the struggle and celebrate.

If your in a hard season yourself, I encourage you to take a step back and look around. If you look, you will find blessings. If you grew up in a southern gospel home as I did, you probably heard the song “Count your blessings” every Sunday morning your entire life. But now as an adult when I start to feel those negative feelings creep in I just start to count my blessings name them one by one, when your down and out you’ve got to count your blessings.

Well I’m pumped up and off to start my weekend full of events! Pedicures with the girls, rehearsal dinner, and a wedding to remember. (I wish I could put all the heart eyes and crying emojis here…but I cant so just imagine them please)

Let me know what some of your blessings are! I love to hear how God works in others lives! If you don’t already follow me on social media, give my icons a click and follow along in my crazy, beautiful, peacefully chaotic life!

Until next time Queens!

XoXo

-Letha

October Blessings

Pay attention to the season of life you’re, God may be preparing you for something bigger.

SO. MANY. THINGS!!!

My 27th birthday and one of my best friends 29th birthday was last week! Sharing a birthday week with her has been a blessing. We have so many memories of cookouts and cakes! This year it was a brewery and brunch! (almost better than cookouts and cakes) This month has been so busy for us all but we still find time to celebrate. We may want to stay home on the couch, but when we arrive and laugh for hours its never a wasted night!

birthday27

My favorite part was watching Kas open her gifts. She is the most grateful person I know. You give her rocks and shes ecstatic! And I mean that literally. she loves rocks! she uses them to decorate, so when one of us gave her rocks as a present…well you can see the excitement! Ya’ll Get you a friend who is so gracious any gift will make her happy! She is a inspiration!

Now that we are caught up on life..lets dive on in!

Last week I celebrated my 27th Birthday! 27 years of life!!! Sometimes when I really sit down and think about it,  my head starts to spin. What have I been doing for 27 years and how does time go by in a blink!

I can remember wanting to rush my years to my 20’s. I thought those “women have it all together.” I’ll have an amazing job, own at least 2 pairs of LV shoes and have a closet so big I could have a party in there….Well, I’m 3 years from 30 and I have none of those things.

BUT fear not, because I am on the path to having all of those things. I got my motivation a little later in life. Looking back I sometimes find myself wishing I would have been smarter and finished my degree sooner, moved out sooner or just all around got my crap together in a timely manner. Having those thoughts takes me to a sad place sometimes. As I have mentioned, I AM IMPATIENT.

I start to think because I am pushing 30 I need to have more experience, more money, my degree or more space (a house) to put my things in (I have a lot of things). I cant tell you how many times I have seen friends reap benefits of their hard work and although I’m happy, I’m also a little jealous.

WELL!!!! The only person keeping me from reaping those benefits is myself. This is a lesson I have forced myself to recognize this year. I have also learned that not everyone’s journey is easy. In fact, the most amazing journeys I have heard had so many obstacles you almost wonder why they didn’t give up. LADIES AND GENTS, I am one of those. Sure I gave up a few times, but I have always picked myself up and went straight back into the fire. 26 was a YEAR…I mean a YEAR. I have felt emotions I never knew I had. I’ve felt defeated more times than I can count. (writing that statement now I feel tear in my eyes) I’ve been let down, I let others down, I developed anxiety, I realized I need a career change, I’ve had to watch a friend loose her father, watch friends battle depression and anxiety. SO. MANY. THINGS.

HOW DO YOU GET PAST YOUR CRAP WHEN THOSE CLOSEST TO YOU, WHO YOU CARE SO DEEPLY ABOUT ARE IN A HARD SEASON AS WELL?

Let me just tell you how…You watch your friends rise above their struggles and pain. You start to realize just how strong you really are. With all the hard things I have watched them go through I have also watched them blossom! I have watched them put their fears aside and enroll in a masters program, decide to see a holistic doctor (super jealous of this I hear they are awesome) , Watch them become SUPER boss babes and rock their company’s like they own them.

And ME? I’ve discovered strength I never knew I had. I’ve found ways to find joy in the mist of chaos. My life will never be perfect. There will be seasons of joy and seasons of sadness. How you choose to spend those seasons of sadness is up to you! In the beginning, I chose to run, hide and just not deal. That was until I discovered…(and hold on this ones a dozy) I AM NOT THE ONLY PERSON WHO HAS GONE THROUGH THIS.

Yes I know..its hard to believe, but I am not the only one who has had to walk through a hard season of life. At the risk of sounding like an idiot, until I started seeking out podcast and books about how other had overcome their obstacles I felt alone. Its so easy to feel alone when your walking though the fire. But God gave us the gift of speech for a reason. OPEN up. call a friend, crack a book, download a podcast. (I have a few I love and I’m happy to share.) Men and Woman all over the world are walking through the fire and coming out untouched by the flames. YOU CAN TO!!!! The only thing standing in your way is you.

Until you find your strength reach out to friends and family. They are in your life because they love you. They want to be there for you! Let them! Let them water your fire and dim the flames until you can control it. Reach out to others who have walked though this battle. Take comfort in the fact you are not alone. YOU CAN COME OUT OF THIS STRONGER. and I promise, if you choose to, YOU WILL!

On my birthday I made a promise to myself, I will NOT live 27 in a state of fear and anxiety. I decided to have a birthday resolution. I will face things head on and be untouched by my flames.

What promise do you need to make to yourself? Today is a perfect day to start. In one year who will you be? What goals will you have achieved? I cant wait to tell you all about mine!

If your still reading my ramblings about my thoughts, feelings and life, Thanks for sticking with me!! Writing is a passion I never knew I had and I’m excited I get to share it with you!

Happy Friday!

Do something this weekend that makes you happy!! This weekend I will be enjoying a spa get away with my best girls in a gorgeous Victorian house! I cant want to relax, laugh and make so many more memories! They are truly my tribe. And whether they like it or not…they are stuck with me! 🙂

Until next time!

XoXo

-Letha

FALLing into change

WELCOME TO FALL YALL!!!!

Its time to immerse ourselves in everything pumpkin, wear leggings for days straight and hide the winter pounds with big comfortable sweaters! CAN I GET A AMEN??!!!

This blog is coming to you on a Tuesday because I’ve realized my life is too crazy to commit too one day! So now it will be a nice little surprise. This also allows me to write as soon as I feel inspiration. I’m so scatter brained that I would have this AMAZING topic and by Friday…y’all I would have ZERO clue what I wanted to write about 😂. So welcome to Tuesday! Tomorrow is Hump day, and the next day is Thursday then your on your way to the weekend! It’s all about perception people!!

These weeks have once again been filled with joy. We celebrated my friend Danielle’s birthday we laughed and yelled over each other to the point of soreness the next day! I will never stop expressing how thankful I am for them.

We are gearing up for a BUSY October. My best friend will get married at the end of the month and we will celebrate with a spa get away the weekend before. I CANNOT express how excited I am to enjoy a relaxing weekend with my best gals!

I have been killing it at school but spending most of my time in bed with books, my computer, kindle and note cards spread all over the sheets. -AHH- Online classes really are the best. To be able to learn from my bed with Netflix in the back ground…YES MAAM.

Now that we’ve gotten caught up let’s dive in..shall we?

Last week I was listening to a podcast and the subject was on change. How we should always be seeking and embracing change. I have never been one for change. If the lord wants something to change hes going to have to push me.

As I was listening to the words they said and the experiences they used to make them stronger I found myself thinking, how am I going to willed my current situations into something better? How can I embrace change?

Little did I know God had been working already. Like I said if he wants me to make a change he was going to have to push me…and that he has. A situation or should I say ultimatum was placed in front of me that very day. The ides of change were upon me. -A little Shakespeare for ya. Like the ides of March..get it?-

When I was listening to that podcast I had no idea by that afternoon I would have to apply that knowledge to my life so soon.

One of the scariest aspects of change is lack of control. More times than not when you decide to make a change or when you are forced to make changes, its due to a lack of control in a situation or not being able to control the outcomes of the said situation.

Let me just tell you…I AM A CONTROL FREAK. I want to have control in all aspects of my life and when I start to lose control in one area I try to compensate in the next. As you can imagine this is a VERY healthy lifestyle…-insert eye rolling-.

My biggest uncontrollable situation in my life right now is my dad. As much as I would like to I cannot control his cancer. This has been a hard realization. One that I’m still struggling with. But by the grace of God, I’m dealing.

So what now?

I could just ignore the situations and hope things get better, but in the words of Mr Dave Hollis “Hope is not a strategy”. You don’t reach goals or overcome obstacles because you hoped they would get better. You work your tail end off and MAKE them better.

Here I am change brewing -ha- trying to find control in uncontrollable situations. Trying to embrace, appreciate and willed these situations to make me stronger. I may never have it all together, or be able to control every aspect of my life, but I can however control how I react to them and in some instances the outcome.

One way I have decided to embrace change and except loss of control, is focusing on what I CAN control.

I CAN control my physical health. Mornings When my alarm goes off at 5:30 and I don’t want to get out of bed, I think “I could sleep for one more hour.” BUT the second thought I have is the promise I made to myself to be better and do better. A promise that I have COMPLETE control over. Sure one more hour might be nice, but you know what else is nice? Completing that 30 min jog. Being able to do 15 push-ups instead of 8. Going to work with energy and a positive attitude because I chose to get up and get moving before my day began AND I kept a promise I made to myself.

I CAN control who I surround myself with. Having the great group of friends that I do, this is not a hard situation to control. Recently me and a couple friends talked about this exact thing. If someone is in your life and you are getting nothing out of it, why are you wasting your time? And when I say getting something out of it I DO NOT mean physical things. I’m talking emotional. SUPPORT, ENCOURAGEMENT, LAUGHTER, EXCITEMENT, someone who pushes you to be the best version of yourself! That’s the people who are worthy of your time. Not Debbie downer who can’t get her crap together so she’s gonna bring you down too. NO MA’AM. Get otta here!

And finally I CAN control my happiness. Every day when you wake up you have the choice. A good day, or a bad day. Some days this is easy, some days this is hard. But ultimately it’s YOUR decision. Choose wisely.

Having control and enforcing that control over certain aspect of our lives gives us perspective on those situations we can’t. I know that no matter what life throws my way I am healthy, I have amazing friends and every morning when my feet touch the ground I’m going to CHOOSE happiness. Because happiness is in my control. Rachel Hollis says “suffering is a choice.” I’m starting to realize just how true that statement is.

Ladies Enjoy this fall season! As we watch the leaves turn colors and start to fall, let’s think of our lives. How can we become better at embracing change? What will we allow to fall in and out of our lives? And as always how can we make a bigger impact on those around us?

Thanks for reading and following along on my journey!

Until next time

XOXO

-Letha

Pumpkin Spice and everything nice

When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be

-LAO TZU

Good morning caffeine lovers!

Today’s Brew: K-Cup with pumpkin spice creamer        Location: The couch

Its PUMPKIN SPICE season ya’ll!!! Can I get a big white girl WHOOP WHOOP!!!

Its been a crazy couple of weeks here in Letha land, and because of that I took a little hiatus. And for that I apologize!

One of my best friends turned 30!! We had so much fun celebrating her and this new decade in her life! –We can never get it together for pictures! But that’s why I love her–jakie I got an opportunity to see Taylor Swift in concert! FLOOR SEATS! To say it was amazing would be an understatement! I don’t think Ill ever be able to sit in nose bleeds again. Although my bank account would beg to differ. taylorLast Night Kim (A wonderful woman) gave some of us a yoga class. She is studying to be a yoga instructor and killing it. We all left uplifted and stretched! yogaAfterwards we all sat on Aimee’s back deck had a glass of wine, enjoyed the weather and talked. there are many things I enjoy doing with my friends, but the most important memories are the ones where we get lost in conversation and start to realize how far we’ve come.

So ya, its been a pretty amazing two weeks. Looking back now I don’t even know how I’m going to write what I’m about to. Writing these blogs are a constant reminder of how blessed I truly am. And for that I am thankful! Although the last couple of weeks have been amazing, I have been struggling with my anxiety.

As we have talked about in other post, I’m an over thinker and a lot of times that causes me to have anxiety. My 30-day challenge has helped a lot. Every time I would start to feel anxious I would tell myself three things.

  1. God has placed you here for a reason. This is a hard pill for me to swallow. My ambitious little spirit thinks I should be much further in life by now. I am working on being grateful and thankful for the path I have been given. and I want more than ever to walk it with grace and peace.
  2. You have over come far much worse than this. This may be odd but when I start to spiral down into my anxiety rabbit hole, I start to think of all the trials I have faced. For some this may make your anxiety stronger, for me it reminds me that I am strong. I have over come the darkness before and I will again.
  3. You NEVER give up. Every morning I wake up and start my day. No matter what I’m feeling or what trial I’m facing, My day goes on. I REFUSE to let my anxiety control this amazing life I have been given. I REFUSE to let a little self doubt keep me from running the race and I REFUSE to keep my strength locked down.

When I had the idea for the 30 day challenge, I had no idea how much I would need it in the weeks coming up. Please know, just because I told myself these encouraging words, I still broke down. More than once. I still went to bed feeling defeated. But every morning when I would wake up I knew I had a choice. I could give in or fight. And if you have ever tried to scare me by jumping out of a room, you know my first reaction is to fight. I DO NOT FLIGHT. (fight or flight–anatomy look it up)

This weekend is going to be an exciting one. Its my dads Birthday and are celebrating with a cookout. My father is truly and inspiration. He has had every reason to quit and give up on life. But he keeps fighting and keeps surviving. He is my inspiration. I don’t know how many more birthdays we will have with him, but I also don’t know how many more birthdays I will have for myself. We are not promised tomorrow, but what a blessing to know as Christians we are promised an everlasting life.

If your still following me on this journey in self discovery, Thanks for hanging out! And if you ever find yourself spiraling down into anxiety…what three things will you tell yourself?

Until Next time caffeine queens

XoXo

-Letha

30 Day Challenge

Bonjour les amateurs de cafe

Today’s Brew: K-Cup   Location: My bed

sept01

Translation: Hello coffee lovers! Or if your reading it in order, hello the lovers of coffee. I decided to spice it up a this week with one of my favorite languages, french! I took a class once in high school and can still say a select few phrases. Most of them having to do with coffee (of courses) and finding a bathroom. #Necessities. French is also known as the language of love and this week is all about self love!

-Did anyone else notice how smooth that transition was? A little forecasting into today’s topic if you will. :)-

Show of hands…who has negative thoughts daily? Who gets so caught up in their emotions that they start to spiral into anxiety attacks, depression, or other non fun things??

THIS GIRL RIGHT HERE! I am an over thinker mixed with an obsessive planner. Its hard for me to deal when things don’t go as planned or when I’m uncertain about a situation. But my main trigger is when I feel someone disapproves of me. This will send me straight down the anxiety rabbit hole.

For a long time I thought this was normal. Everyone feels like this. That what I would tell myself, so its okay. Although many people may feel like this, it is not in fact okay. Life is so much greater than what I was prepared to accept as my normal.

That was until now.

I have this friend who has struggled with anxiety for years. She tells me stories of her attacks, how she feels no one wants to be around her and worst of all how she isn’t happy with her body.

First let me start by saying that this woman is one of my favorite people to be around. She is hilarious, looks cute in anything (though she would OF COURSE not agree, but she does) has recently become a boss mom, and has the same if not better body then she had before!! She is able to laugh at herself and isn’t afraid to make herself look weird.

The problem is she laughs at herself to cover up her insecurities and she isn’t fully confident in her weirdness. Isn’t this all of us? I know it’s been me a time or two. We make jokes about ourselves to cover up the insecurities we have. But what if we could joke and laugh, all while actually feeling amazing in our own skin?

She tells me that she is always thinking these negative thoughts, and my first instinct is to tell her how amazing she is and that she is better than those thoughts. I also find myself telling her me too. I do the same thing.

Encouraging our friends is a wonderful thing, but until we believe those positive and encouraging words, they are in fact just that…words. In one ear and out the other, am I right?

This week I decided to tried yoga for the first time. It was a beautiful experience, and at one point the instructor told us to say something positive about ourselves TO ourselves. She explained that she could say these positive things, but until we heard them in our own voice from our own persons we would doubt them.

After that class I left feeling so refreshed with my next blog! A 30 Day Challenge. Some of this idea came form Rachel Hollis’s podcast on anxiety and how she dealt with it. She stated that our brain will go to its normal. And right now our normal is self doubt and fear of rejection.

It take 30 days to form a habit. And ladies we are going to take 30 days to retrain our brain. We are going to train ourselves to push those negative thoughts of our heads and force positive ones instead!!! We will embrace our weirdness and all its glory!

Step 1- For every negative thought you have, write down something positive. Grab a note pad and write down things you like about yourself! Cant think of anything? write down what others say they like about you! Maybe after the 30 days you will believe them too!

Step 2-Get active! Physical activity does wonders for the mind. Release some of that serotonin.

Step 3- Give yourself a little pep talk. I do this A LOT. sometimes its in my head, sometimes its a full blown conversation. Either way I am my biggest cheer leader.

Take these three steps and apply them to the month of September. Take control of your life, your thoughts, and your self image! Suffering is a choice. I refuse to let my anxiety take over this beautiful life God has blessed me with!

I am so excited to start this journey of self love! I’m even going to try yoga regularly! There is something so relaxing about twisting your body in ways you didn’t even know you could.

Good luck on your journey! I cant wait to hear your positive thoughts!!!

Until next time!

XoXo

-Letha

An unexpected journey

Someone else’s opinion of you is none of your business.

-Rachel Hollis

8-24-18

Today’s Brew: Lavender and honey latte     Location: Fort Smith Coffee Co

I first had this latte because they were out of chi, and their spiced chi latte’s are AMAZING! So when the barista asked what I would like instead, I said surprise me! And that he did! I now have a new favorite! I love coming to this place my coffee always looks pretty and the staff is ALWAYS nice and ALWAYS in a good mood.

-I credit this to the fact they probably get to drink all the coffee they want and who isn’t peppy with a little caffeine!-

This weeks lesson -I guess we can call it that- is one I should have learned a long time ago. “Someone else’s opinion of me is none of MY business.” If you have read or are reading Rachel Hollis’s book you’ve seen this quote before. -If your not reading her book…GET ON IT GIRL. Its incredibly inspiring.- When I first looked at this sentence, my first thought was I struggle with this so hard. EVERY move I make I’m trying to please someone around me.

WHY DO I DO THIS???

1) Im afraid to say the wrong this because what if I’m not accepted and

2) I like to make others happy!

But as some point we have to look at the bigger picture.. and that’s our happiness. For the past few months I have been searching for what will make me happy. I’ve been grasping at anything and everything. Like buying a house, finally running that 5K -still training and its going well- starting an event business. -I WILL TOTALLY DO THIS ONE DAY! ITS MY DREAM CAREER- But in reality none of these things will make my truly happy until I’m happy with myself.

I knew what I was going to write about this week before today, but events that happened today have just pushed me that much further.

While training for this 5K I’ve been using an APP called couch to 5K. I’ve used it before but as we all know…I quit. I think…NO I know it was because I pushed myself way to hard. I would try and do more than the recommended amount of running and get burnt out. Obviously the people that made this APP knew what they were talking about…BUT DID I LISTEN?..NOPE.  -Classic Letha..as my friends would say- I wasn’t finishing my goals because I wasn’t doing them the right way.. I was trying to rush.

But when I decided to start training for another 5K I told myself that I was going to do exactly what the APP told me too. AND YOU KNOW WHAT? Its not that bad. I have actually started to enjoy running and the progress I’ve been making! I had successfully slowed down and let myself gradually grow.

Why did I need to accomplish everything in one day?

Along with trying to rush my 5K abilities, I also did this when I was in college. I have always wanted to graduate with a college degree, but like most people I didn’t know what in. So like any young shoe loving 20 year old…I picked a degree that would make me -what I thought was- the most money. Instead of taking a good look at what was out there I chose a major because I was slightly familiar with the field. I was majoring in Dental Hygiene.

I had been an assistant for a while and thought this is my next step. I went back to school with a vengeance. Because the hygiene program is VERY competitive my GPA needed to be on point! -My GPA was not on point…in fact it was (and this is embarrassing) barely even a 1.0- My first two years of college I was lost and didn’t know what I was doing..and my grades reflected that. So when I decided to go back I had to get in gear! And that’s exactly what I did! I took my measly 1.0 GPA and turned it into over a 3.0! I was so proud of myself.

UNTIL I didn’t get in the program.

-It is important to note that I have always wondered if hygiene was for me, or was I doing it for the financial stability.-

After I spent a good few days crying I decided to get certified as a dental assistant. I got a job before I was even done with my certification. -When GOD opens doors GOD OPENS DOORS!! can I get a AMEN!- I have been at this job for a little over a year now and I love my co-workers! But once again I’m finding myself wanting to do more with my life and realizing that maybe hygiene isn’t my true calling.

This is a hard pill to swallow for me. I worked my tail off for those grades! How could I not go to hygiene school?

Well if you’ve been keeping up..ITS NOT WHERE MY PASSION LIES.

I had always thought, a business degree wasn’t for me. I did not want to be in a office all day dealing with peoples problems, complaints..ect.

You wanna know what I do now? I sit in a office all day, dealing with people (and I love our patients) helping them through problems and trying to address their complaints.

you wanna know what else? I LOVE IT!!!

-Also can I note..that I thought cleaning plaque off teeth would make me happier than a job where I could organize..WHEN I’VE ALWAYS WANTED TO BE AN EVENT PLANNER. COME ON LETHA!!!!-

Although I love my job..I still want to do more. And to do more I need a degree. So I took my happy self to the University this morning to apply for my associates degree. Granted a Bachelors was the main Goal, I knew I had enough hours to at least get an associates and move forward from there.

While talking to the adviser I asked what all I would need to finish a Bachelors.(not in hygiene) I had looked into this before and thought it would be at least 2-3 years to finish…I DID NOT want to think about school for 3 years when I had already put in almost 5. BUT as fate would have it, I had the adviser look into what all I would need to finish…YOU GUYS I only need 45 hours!! 45 HOURS!!!! That’s 3 semesters and 2 summer classes!!!!!

I couldn’t believe it! I could have my degree this time next year!

After a couple of hours I promptly went back and signed up for classes!

I will graduate From the University Of Fort Smith AR Winter of 2019 with a Bachelors in Organizational Leadership!

I am so excited for this new journey! I woke up this morning with no clue what the day would bring. And I still have no idea what tomorrow holds but I do know whatever it is..it will be amazing!

I will finally accomplish something I have wanted to do for so long!

And this is most defiantly going to give me more inspiration for my blog posts! I cant wait to share this journey with you!!!

Considering classes started this past Monday I should probably get some school supplies, Because I’m already behind. And as we have all learned…Letha does not like to be behind!

I’m off to organize my calendar and purchase some books!

Until Next time Caffeine Queens!

XoXo

-Letha