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Calming Down Before Breaking Down

Calming Down Before Breaking Down

When life gets you down, it’s so easy to get sucked into your emotions. It’s easy to panic, to retreat from friendships and family, to lose your cool and lash out and those around you. It’s easy to get angry and blame it on your feelings later. But it also totally freaking sucks. Who wants to look back on a day or series of days and say “wow, yeah, sorry about that. I was just in a bad mood LOL”. NO. This is not okay. While it is understandable to be upset, it’s so important to learn how to handle those emotions, reign them in, and take control back over your head. (note: it is a much different situation if you suffer from depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, or other severe mood-altering mental diseases. please understand my post is referencing a much simpler form of emotion!)

I have a few fail-safe ways to calm my nerves and my brain after it becomes overwhelmed with stress. I mean, ideally we would be able to counter anything before a total freak out. But let’s be real: you don’t always see the breakdown coming. So, what do I do to calm down?

 

  • Take a bath! There’s nothing quite like taking a long soak after a stressful day, or to just turn around your mood. Add some fun bath fizzies, bubbles, and candles to really set the atmosphere. These Me! Bath bath bombs are my favorite bath bombs from Target! I love the “Love Me!” scent. It’s so fruity and sweet, and my skin feels amazing afterwards too! I usually use two per bath and find that more than enough. Between those and a crisp glass of wine from one of my Winc subscriptions, my mood is significantly better within the hour!

you may be interested in What I Loved In April . Check it out for a review of my new favorite wine from Winc and a link for $13 off your first order! (disclaimer, if you buy, I get $13 off my next order too! Win-win!)

 

  • Read a good book! Reading is so, so important. It helps keep your mind sharp, and it provides a great getaway from reality for a while. Some of my favorite stories feed into my wanderlust, or totally transport me to a different world. I highly recommend Wild by Cheryl Strayed for those of you hiking afficionados. Looking for something more dramatic and, well, fictional? I’m really enjoying this series by Sarah J. Mass. It feels like a mix of Beauty in the Beast, Hunger Games, and a few World of Warcraft references for blood elves that I can’t help but notice! It was slow going at first but I really got into the second book. The third just came out, and I can’t wait to pick it up!
  • Journal! As some of you may know, I’m a journal addict. I’ve loved collecting journals since I was a child, and I’m always using them for some purpose or another! Not only do I use journals for jotting down thoughts throughout the day, but I also use a dotted Leuchtturm1917 A5 journal for bullet journaling! I switched back to this method after using the Filofax for a little while. Never heard of bullet journaling? It’s a great way to mix planning and recording your life into one handy little journal. And with full creative freedom, you can make it look any way you want. Let your creativity soar, or keep it simple. Whichever way keeps you journaling is the best way to go! There are tons of wonderful accounts on Instagram to spark some inspiration. If you’re interested, I highly recommend checking out breeeberry, Boho Berry (who is actually the blog that got me into bullet journaling),  and iamlisajacobs (who has wonderful handwriting and a really pretty Insta feed in general) . Bullet journaling makes me feel organized which really helps calm the buzz of overwhelmed thoughts in my head. If you don’t have to worry about your schedule, that’s a lot less to think about throughout the day.

you may be interested in My Must Haves for FiloFax and Bullet Journaling 

 

  • Hike! Perhaps my favorite recommendation of them all! I love the outdoors. I grew up with my dad taking us to parks on hikes and walks all the time. It’s been one of my favorite things to do as long as I can remember. Pair that with a photography hobby and the cutest dog on the planet (I might be biased), it truly can’t be beat as my favorite way to unwind. Always check the maps at a park to see what trails work best for you, and don’t forget to bring plenty of water! If I’m really in a bad mood, I go on a nice hard trail with a lot of ups and downs and switchbacks. It gets my blood flowing, and it’s hard to focus on negative thoughts when your legs and lungs are pleasantly sore from the exercise. I went on a wonderful hike today with Willow, and at the very beginning is a river. She loves to swim, so I let her go crazy for a while in the water. It warmed my heart and lifted my spirits. I haven’t felt this great in days!

I’ll finish this post here, but keep scrolling if you want to see some photos from the hike! As always, thanks for stopping by!

 

xo, Karli

Treating Mom to Life’s Simple Joys

Treating Mom to Life’s Simple Joys

Mother’s day is coming up, friends! And to those of you who love your momma and want to give her a wonderful Sunday, good for you! My mom has been a centerpiece of my life time and time again. She is always supportive, encouraging, and PROUD of me through all my endeavors. When I told her I wanted to be an accountant like her, she was overjoyed. When I shared my love for photography in high school she surprised me with my first Canon DSLR camera, and still gets me accessories for my hobby. When I mentioned I was starting a blog, she thought it was such a cool idea and discussed ideas she has had about a blog of her own (which I wish she would start because she’s an amazing writer!). All this and much, much more make my mom so special to me. And while I want to give her the world this mother’s day, I’m also a young adult with a starting salary and lots of bills to pay. What’s a girl (or boy, if you guys out there are reading this!) to do with a constricted budget and a mom who deserves diamonds?

One really important thing my mom taught me is that a gift or experience doesn’t have to be expensive to be cherished. So if you’re running on a tight budget, here are some simple, inexpensive ideas to show her your appreciation!

  • Make her breakfast

This one is a given. Who DOESN’T love breakfast in bed? Make your mom a healthy omelette or a yummy berries and yogurt parfait. If you really have time and a bigger appetite in the morning, you should definitely try this amazing looking breakfast pizza recipe from Real Simple! If you do, let me know how it is! I’ve been dying to try it myself, and just haven’t found the time. Bonus points here for a refreshing mimosa and fresh hot coffee!

  • Offer to help clean!

I’m sure most moms will be overjoyed if they walked into a sparkling clean kitchen or living room. Let her kick her feet up while you help handle some of the mundane household chores! Don’t take too long, though! Leave time to spend some true quality moments together.

  • Take her shopping for garden flowers

This one is something my mom and I did for at least three years in a row. We would drive to all the local nurseries and look at all the freshly bloomed flowers. Some years we would buy hundreds of dollars worth of flowers and totally re-do the front gardens, and others we would each get just one little plant and see how long we could keep it alive. These are some of my most cherished days with my mom, even in their simplicity. Flowers can be pretty inexpensive, and it’s a fun way to brighten up a desk or table!

  • Sign her up for a fun subscription box!

Okay, this one could get a little pricey. But how much fun would it be to surprise mom with a box of goodies delivered right to her doorstep? While my subscription box experience solely lies with Trunk Club, the box from FabFitFun looks like a great idea! It runs a little pricier, but it has a nice array of products that anyone would enjoy. They are seasonal, though! So that’s something to keep in mind. If she’s a makeup lover, you could always go for the Ipsy or Birchbox subscriptions as well! There are tons of different themes for subscription boxes now, so definitely look for those as a fun gift idea.

you may be interested in: Trunk Club Review – Athleisure Edit

  • Go for a hike

If your mom is outdoors-y, strap on your hiking boots and go for a nice hike! The fresh outdoor air will make you both feel amazing, and you can fill the time with great conversation and catch up!

While I hope to take my mom on another flower shopping trip and out for brunch, I know she would be just as happy with a big bottle of wine shared on the back deck enjoying the company of her family. And that’s the beauty of some moms, isn’t it? They love you more than any gift you could ever give, because you are their greatest gift.

Happy mother’s day to all the wonderful moms I know. <3

xo, Karli

 

 

February Challenge

February Challenge

My January goals didn’t pan out the way I intended, so in February I’m choosing just a few goals that will be easier to follow and hopefully make me feel more accomplished. One thing I’ve always struggled with is spending. I am a certifiable shopaholic, 100%. Shopping literally makes me happy. I get the same rush from shopping that I do from a triple-espresso latte. I seriously wish I was joking. Something about buying things just makes me…happy. And I know that’s not healthy and it’s not okay. 

This month I’m going to try to tackle my addiction to shopping and see if I can overcome my need to spend. And boy is it going to be hard. The goal is to go the whole month without buying any new clothes, shoes, accessories, or house decor. I’m only allowing myself to spend money on food, gas, and family events. I will only eat out once a week: the rest of the time will be meal prep. 

February is the shortest month of the year, so if you have goals you want to tackle or a challenge you want to try this is probably the best month to do it. Four exact weeks, 28 days. Somehow that seems more manageable than 30 or 31, am I right? 

If shopping is something you struggle with, I dare you to join me in this little challenge of self-restraint. No new makeup, no new clothes, no new shoes, no new purses, phone cases, necklaces, no new ANYTHING that isn’t food, gasoline for your car (if necessary) or expenses for family outings (ie. the occasional breakfast, tickets to a show, etc). 

I’m really hoping this challenge gives me a sense of contentment. I have enough “stuff”. I don’t need more. I want to feel content with my life and myself without needing to buy more and more things. 

I will also take the time that I’m not spending shopping to focus on more important things, like reading. Walking the dog. Working out. Or studying! I’ve officially signed up to take the BEC portion of the CPA exam on March 2nd, so I have plenty of studying to do. I’m hoping to de-clutter and donate some clothes from my closet. Deep clean the house. There are so many things I can do in the time that I’m saving by NOT traipsing through the aisles of stores debating my next great purchase. 

I dare you to join me in this challenge, ESPECIALLY if you think you have a shopping addiction. If going the whole month seems impossible, give yourself smaller goals. Make it one week. Make it two. Make it halfway through the month and buy yourself one little thing (don’t spend more than $10-$20!). Resist shopping by making a physical list of all the things you want to buy. At the end of the month re-visit that list, and see if anything calls out to you still. You might find that by the time we reach day 28, you no longer wanted that t-shirt or those shoes. But maybe something does stand out. Make that one thing your goal. And at the end of the month, if you made it through the whole month (or at least your midway check point!) reward yourself with the most desirable item on that list. Be reasonable, and try to keep the amount low. I’m going to give myself a $50 reward limit. At the end of the month, $50 is nothing in comparison to the damage I could have done (believe me, I’m horrible). 

Let me know if you join, or if you’re going through a similar self-made challenge for February! I’m excited to see where I go with this. Maybe I can break myself of my shopping addiction? That would be a sight to see.

Cheers, and good luck!

xo, Karli

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!

I can’t believe it’s already Thanksgiving! This year has been so long and so full, and I have a lot to be thankful for. Gratitude is an important thing to practice every day, not just on Thanksgiving day. It’s important to remember and hold on to things you are grateful for and things you love. These are the people and experiences that can help you turn around some mildly depressive thoughts and remind you what it is you live for each day. I for one definitely struggle with reminding myself to be grateful for even the little things. So to start Thanksgiving off on the right foot, here is a list of what I am most thankful for this Thanksgiving holiday season:

  • I know this one sounds silly, but I’m thankful that I woke up this morning. It’s so important to look at each day as a blessing and a gift, one where you can choose how it plays out and ends. I’m thankful that I’m given another 24 hours to do what feels right for me in any given moment.
  • I’m thankful for my job, where I am surrounded by supportive people who care about me and my ambitions. I’ve never felt anything less than their equal and that is definitely a blessing in the workplace.
  • I’m thankful for my boyfriend. Even though it’s been a rough year for us, we’ve learned a lot and only through that can we make the decisions that will move us forward. Regardless of the bad, you’ve been there by my side through thick and through thin, and you’re my best friend through and through. I can’t appreciate that enough.
  • I’m thankful for my wonderful amazing family. My mom, dad, stepdad, sister, brother, and two half brothers mean the world to me. I may not be present enough and take enough time out of my days for family, but I love you all more than you can imagine and don’t know what I’d do or who I’d be if it weren’t for your constant love and support.
  • I’m thankful for my health. I get to wake up, get myself ready, drink coffee, drive, and run a Turkey Trot this morning with my wonderful sister. I have two legs that can push me forward and a body that functions well, even if it is out of shape. There’s so much I can do without worrying about limitations, and that’s definitely something I take for granted by sitting on the couch for hours at a time. This holiday season I’m striving to complete the Runner’s World holiday run streak, where you run at least one mile per day every day through the holiday season. 1 mile for me is 10-11 minutes. Just getting up and doing one mile will be a wonderful way to remind myself that I can be active and take care of my body simply by taking the baby steps to get there. And once I get to the gym chances are I won’t just stop at a mile. I’ll run more, or lift, or maybe do some stretching.

I highly encourage you to write out your own list of things you’re thankful for. And try and stay away from being thankful for material possessions. While they are wonderful and fun, it’s important to remember the people and experiences of life more than anything. So yes, while I’m sure many of us are thankful for a wonderful cars or pretty apartments and great technology, remember to give thanks also for the family and friends that support you through the tough times and the good.

Also, I highly encourage everyone interested in starting up running to take a chance at the holiday run streak with me! I think this will be a great way for me to remember my health while I’m consuming all the cookies and drinks my heart desires over the next few weeks. It’ll also be a great way for me to get some good use at out of my new running shoes!

And lastly, perhaps the most important thing to think about this holiday: we are lucky. If you get to go visit family today, sit around a big table and eat delicious food to your hearts content and drink wine and laugh alongside the ones you love – be thankful. But I also encourage you to remember those who aren’t so lucky on this day. It’s really important to remember the battles that are happening RIGHT NOW in America affecting our neighbors and friends. I encourage you to reach out and help today, help someone in need. Whether this be through a donation, an act of kindness, or signing a petition – please help those who aren’t able to enjoy this day like you and me. One particular fight going on really strikes deep with me: the fight over the North Dakota access pipeline. The North Dakota Sioux people really need our help in stopping this destruction of their land. Follow this link to see what you can do to help.

I’ve done my part, now let’s hear yours! What are you thankful for? What can you do to give back today and help someone else in need? Let me hear your part in the comments below!

Happy Thanksgiving!

xo, Karli

Finding Motivation

Finding Motivation

Sometimes, even when things seem to start picking up, life knocks you down.

And then it kicks you. Hard. Multiple times over and over and sometimes it feels like you’ll never get up again. Part of you will wonder if it’s even worth it to get up again.

The past month I feel like I’ve been laying down, letting myself get kicked over and over until my psyche was black and blue with invisible mental abuse. External factors came in to play, but it took a while for me to realize that recently I’ve been the one throwing those punches. When do you decide to fight back? How do you even find the motivation to do it?

I’ve felt disconnected for a while now. And I’m ready to re-connect. I NEED to re-connect. Floating so far away from the things you love doing really takes its toll. When was the last time I sat down and truly enjoyed a video game or a book or magazine? My motions have become automatic and forced. I haven’t enjoyed time as much as I normally do. I don’t jump out of bed excited for that first cup of coffee and breakfast like I used to.

But this isn’t a post for me to treat you like my therapist.

Over on a blog post by Lauren Gleisberg (laurengleisberg.com), I read something that really resonated with me. She discussed the difference between your emotional feelings and the feelings that come from your body as actual needs. While reading her post, I realized that I have been neglecting some pretty basic human and emotional needs. By kicking myself and keeping myself down, I haven’t been allowing myself to feel joy. Workouts were no longer fun, they were a chore. Makeup and hair care has been thrown to the wayside, and I’ve gotten by on bare minimum. Even spending time with coffee to pick out my outfit of the day had lost its luster. I haven’t been cooking, or cleaning. My diet has consisted of fast-food and pre-packaged junk for weeks. It looks like a Tasmanian devil had its way with my apartment. All this and more, simply because my emotions were telling me it didn’t matter. And I was listening to them! I was allowing myself to fall in to this pit and ignore everything else around me that brought me joy.

NO MORE.

Starting today, I’m doing what needs to be done, even if my emotions tell me that I don’t feel like it. Lauren mentioned the importance of doing what benefits you in the long run, even though that “don’t feel like it” vibe kicks in. For me, this means taking better care of my skin and health, exercising regularly, and focusing on my studies every day. It means paying more attention to my animals, and getting outside in the sun a little more (very important as it begins to set earlier each day!). It means doing all of this, even if that nagging voice inside my head tells me no, don’t bother.

Starting today, the mental abuse is over. The bully is getting shoved in the locker, and I’m taking back over.

XO, Karli