Yes. The Gym Should be Considered an Essential Business!

When lockdowns hit earlier this year the gyms were one of the first businesses to go, and as we started to reopen, the gyms were one of the last businesses to return.

While, some of us invested our money in home workout equipment and others of us sought out online workout classes, a good amount of us need and craved the ability to get our workouts in at the actual gym. There is something about your level of productivity and clarity, when you aren’t distracted by the kids and pets at home.

With the winter months upon us, and restrictions causing fitness centers to once again close their doors or turn to outside workouts only, we face the realization that the weather is going to be a factor that is well out of our control.

It’s hard enough being happy and healthy during the winter months, as it is, and the gym is needed to help maintain mental and physical well-being for those of us who would like the option.

The thing with the gym, is that if you don’t feel as though its a safe space, you don’t have to go, but for the people who use it to reduce stress, and need it stay healthy and active, it should be our choice to make. There are so many precautions the gyms were already taking, for example, people are required to wipe down their own equipment, the staff goes through and sanitizes the equipment every few hours, there is sanitizer in every corner, you are required to wear a mask, social distancing is encouraged. I feel safer at the gym than I do at the grocery store to be honest, which says a lot.

Mental and physical health is so important especially during a pandemic.

People who are moderately obese have a 30% chance of dying from COVID and according to one study obesity increases the risk of death by Covid by 48%. Obesity alone kills about 300k people every year in the U.S. Going to the gym and maintaining a healthy and somewhat active lifestyle can help reduce your risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, as well as, help people who struggle with depression and anxiety.

Given that so many people have developed Covid depression, are struggling with the Covid weight gain, and are finding themselves unmotivated being locked in the house.. Its hard to believe that fitness centers are not considered an essential business at this point. People need to start talking about the other preventative measures that surround this disease. Like how we have kept fast food places open, but close indoor dining at restaurants, with healthier options for those nights we don’t feel like cooking at home. No one really talks about the healthy diets and foods we should be eating to boost our immune systems and stay healthy, or that we should get up and walk for at least half an hour a day. When you turn on the news it’s a lot of scary numbers, with no real solutions! Simply stay inside and wear a mask. What about some life tools that could truly help us during this time. Because to be honest the majority of us.. are depressed, lonely, going stir crazy, are terrified do to shitty reporting, and fear mongering political agendas, meanwhile other people are exercising their right to protest and potentially spread the disease, keeping us locked up. This is ass backwards.

The people need to be able to make the choices for themselves at this point. They know the risk, they know the safety precautions, and they know the symptoms to look out for. So let them make the choice that they see fit, and stop depriving the majority of us, who aren’t in those risk categories, to get out and live a healthy live.

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7 Tips to Gather Responsibly This Thanksgiving!

I cannot believe Thanksgiving is a week away…. It’s crazy. For most of us Thanksgiving will look a bit different this year. It might be a bit smaller, a bit sadder, it might be missing some important people, and if you are following California’s rules, then you might be freezing your butt off outside for dinner.

I don’t think most people are following the rules and guidelines for Thanksgiving, but if you truly are worried about this years Thanksgiving… here’s some tips to remember going into next week.

  1. If you haven’t done so already make sure you quarantine for 14 days before visiting your family. Especially if there will be elderly people in your house, or those with pre existing conditions that tend to be more susceptible to Covid 19.
  2. If you haven’t been quarantining… I suggest you start and get a Covid test ASAP! No later than Monday and that could be pushing it. Although I believe they have some rapid test now in some areas… Don’t know how accurate those are though. Most tests results get back to you within 3 days, but there have been an increase in people at the testing locations, so hopefully they can keep up. A Covid test is going to be the most secure and reassuring way to spend time with your family during this holiday season.
  3. If you’re truly scared and worried about bringing Covid home, then opt for a zoom Thanksgiving. ( I know a few families who are doing that this year). You can try to make it memorable, and interesting, whether you all get take out and eat together or maybe play a game.
  4. Be sure to practice social distancing when you are around your family.
  5. Be sure to be open about what to expect. Talk about if you want everyone to wear mask, communicate with how you’ve been feeling the over the last week, and really listen to your body for those of us who might be silent spreaders.
  6. If you really want to exercise caution, and people didn’t get their Covid test or quarantine for 14 days, then you can always keep Thanksgiving closed to you and your immediate household. Thanksgiving for two might not be the ideal way to spend such a large family holiday, but it’s best to keep an open mind and make the best out of the situation.
  7. You can always bring the heaters out, dress warm, and gather outside as well to reduce some risks… If the weather permits.
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Gather responsibly! Eat and be merry! Don’t forget the pie!

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Xoxo, Bri

11 Amazing Self-Care Remedies You Could Be Doing

Why should we practice self-care?

Well.. because.. when you forget to bring balance to your life you become drained, overworked, miserable, unhappy, stressed. Which can cause your health to decline. Then you find yourself with stress induced ailments, which are not fun.

You need to make yourself a priority, make your health a priortiy, and remember it is okay to work hard and play hard(or relax hard). Do whatever brings balance between your work and your life.

Okay. Here are some of my favorite self-care remedies/activities:

  1. A weekend escape. I love just escaping for the weekend, and coming back feeling rejuvenated for the work week.
  2. Going horseback riding. So much fun. Horses are awesome. You can make it a family outing as well.
  3. Spa day. Anything from facials, to a massage, to a mani-pedi, teeth whitening(not really relaxing), but I love having white teeth, because it makes me smile more.
  4. Spend a day doing absolutely nothing. Sleep in… play video games, binge watch a show you have been wanting to catch up on.
  5. Try out new hobbies. Perhaps a cooking class??
  6. Go hiking. (bring snacks… One time I went hiking and it turned into more of an adventure than I had anticipated. I had no snacks, and I just about died…. 11 Miles. Send Help. My stomach was growling.
  7. Declutter a room. Spring cleaning doesn’t just have to be done in the spring. Throw out some stuff you’ve been hording. It’s good to let things go sometimes.
  8. Go for a drive. Blast some music. Sing your heart out.
  9. Meditate. You should do this anyways. It improves mood, reduces stress and all that jazz.
  10. Volunteer… Sometimes doing things for others helps you appreciate what you have in life, and it brings you joy and happiness. Kindness is good for your soul. You can also volunteer… and spend a day with dogs/puppies.
  11. Unplug. Unplugging from social media is good to do every so often. Delete people who don’t bring you joy or happiness.

Do whatever makes you happy at the end of the day. Just remember it is important to take care of you and make you a priority.

In a Funk? Here are Some Tips and Tricks to Perk You Back Up

Oh FUNK. I’ve fallen and I can’t get up (Haha, not funny….)

That’s my life right now. Trying to find my way to the light after falling into a fairly intense funk.

I think it’s the season. We hit the ground running with motivation and then we get stuck pumping the breaks from exhaustion.

I bet your thoughts are somewhere along the line of… staying in bed forever… curled up in a ball.. not in the mood to leave your house??

Maybe it’s just because it’s Monday and adulting is hitting extra hard, or maybe it’s because it’s freezing outside and winter has me snuggled up with my favorite plush blanket.

WHO KNOWS.

So. How do we get the pep back in our step??

Well.. we take a long hard look at our goals, and push through, because it’s all we can do.

Easier said than done. I am well aware.

Here are things that I do when I hit the dreaded FUNK.

  1. Unplug from social media. Social media is the worst mental health culprit. So, I find that taking time to unplug and ditch the screen brings me mental clarity.
  2. Obviously I meditate, it tends to improve my mood, I actually meditate with some sage scented candles, or I burn some sage and turn on my meditation playlist.
  3. I rearrange my house….. because something about a put together house, makes me feel like a put together person. You can always tell if I’m in a funk, because the furniture will have been rearranged.
  4. I take time to rewrite my goals, to remind myself that my funk is temporary and I do have a plan in motion. That usually helps get some rhythm going.
  5. I talk to some one, who is, usually a close friend and if I don’t feel like talking to someone I write it down. Journaling can be very helpful and healing.
  6. I write down at least five positive things that happened in the last week, to help myself avoid the negative thought process that comes with being in a FUNK.
  7. I write a task list every morning. To make sure I am being productive, and not falling into a non-productive black hole.
  8. I try to do something nice for someone, because kindness goes a long way and it’s good for the soul.
  9. Self- Care (I will be posting my favorite self care practices later this week)
  10. I find things that make me laugh. (comedy shows, movies, podcasts, an old video, Ali Wong’s Book perhaps?)

I think the hardest part is understanding that it is temporary. Everything is temporary.

People need to learn, that it is okay to not have it together all the time. It is okay to take a break. It is okay to not be okay for a minute or a day. Sometimes life gives us lemons, and we make lemonade, and sometimes that lemonade will still taste like shit. You just have to keep trying till you get the recipe right.

Adulting is hard. Don’t feel bad. Rise above the FUNK, because you are better than the FUNK.

Happy Monday!

xo Bri

The Millennial Struggle: Authenticity.

Authenticity is something I think people in general struggle with throughout their life. Which is fair, because people spend a lot of time trying to find or figure themselves out.

It takes time to figure out what your beliefs, passions, wants and needs are.

It takes time to figure out, who you are as an individual.

It takes time to figure out what direction you want to take in life. Somehow your body has a good way of telling you, which way is right and which way is wrong. Sometimes, we fail to listen to our body’s instincts.

So many of us get consumed with life, and the hustle, and work, that we forget to live in the moment. We forget to smell the coffee that gets us through our day.

And then one day, you wake up and go who am I? What am I doing with my life? Why have I wasted so much time?

Or one day you wake up and realize that,

You find yourself in a world surrounded by people pretending to be something their not. – Pretty sure that’s from A Cinderella Story.

And then you go ugh… wth.

The more people I meet and the older I get, the more I notice that people don’t care about being real. In fact they have developed this mentality of “why be me, when I can be someone else?” Which, is very possible with modern medicine.

I think social media has a lot to do with this, because we idolize people and we want their life.

People spend less time worrying and working on themselves and more time worrying about everyone else.

The world right now is full of inauthentic people. I feel so lucky, and blessed when I get to meet real people. People with a personality, who aren’t mindless sheep.

Don’t be a mindless sheep!

The Merriam-Webster definition of authenticity is being true to one’s own personality, spirit, or character.

What does it mean to be true to one’s personality, spirit, or character?

It means understanding that you’re not perfect, but owning your imperfections. It means being open- minded, even if you have your own set of beliefs. It means listening to others without judgment and living your life for you and no one else.

Put yourself first, stay in your own lane, don’t worry about the accomplishments of others. Focus on your journey, because everything else is just noise and a distraction from a fulfilling life.

You are supposed to find yourself, not get lost in all the BS. I know it’s hard, especially, when you can compare yourself to a million people with the swipe of your finger. Stay true to you.

xo Bri

“authentic,” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/authentic. Accessed 12/18/2019.

The Truth About Social Media: Depression, Reality, and Acceptance

Social Media is a great place to network, to keep in touch, to stalk our exes, to reconnect, and to promote business. It has provided us with a world of endless possibilities.

The Problem

Unfortunately social media has led to a lack off authenticity.

This lack of authenticity has created a void.. a pit.. of depression in a good amount of the us.

Social media has created a sense of distrust among the people who use it.

Between the Photoshop fails, the marketing and the get rich quick schemes. It is getting hard to tell what is real and what is fake. Luckily most of us are a good judge of character and can spot it a mile away.

People are becoming so unhappy with themselves, because they can not stop comparing themselves to other people. I have struggled with this same issue time and time again.

An Inside Look

A lot of my friends have taken the Instagram model route. They boast about how much money they or other people are making on a post. They get paid to post watches, they get paid to be at events, they get to travel often. They are also glued to their phones and obsessed with their following.

Half of them are promoting products that do nothing. Most of them fail to do much to make the world a better place. They boast about all of the gifts they receive and we follow them, because we want to be them, or because they are good to look at.

To be honest. I was jealous at first of the money my friends were making on the side. It was a car payment for crying out loud, but then I also realized nothing on social media is REAL.

You never get to fully see behind the curtain and social media is definitely a curtain.

Most of the people in an Insta Model’s life are going to be creeps. From their photographers, to their followers, at least in my experience.

Most of these people are just as unhappy as the rest of us. They too fail to be honest with themselves. Everyone is competing, everyone has eyelash extensions, fillers, hair extensions, Botox, boob jobs, because they too were unhappy with themselves at some point in time.

I hopped on the extension hype for a while, but god it was exhausting, and extremely expensive.

It is exhausting to look attractive, be fit, happy and perfect all the time.

Fooling the World and Ourselves

Every time my friends were posting on Instagram “the happy couple” in Disneyland or “never going home” in Hawaii, they were texting me how miserable they were on the side.

Fooling the world and fooling themselves in the process. We all do it.

Everyone edits their pictures, creates the perfect photo-shopped post, because they do not think the original is good enough.

We as humans are so self critical.

We as people have entered into a society that is more concerned with having a pissing contest, than helping create a COMMUNITY, of helping, encouraging and sharing success.

What Does This Mean For Future Generations?

We have fallen into a hole of likes, half naked pictures, and a lot of future children asking their Mom, why they are half naked on a swan in the middle of the pool?

The scary part is wondering if our kids will follow in our footsteps? Have we created a world where privacy does not exist? Have we lost our morals and our boundaries?

I don’t think it is necessarily a bad thing, because it has empowered so many women. I think the women who are out there doing this are beautiful and brave. I also feel as though I have to encourage it, because who would I be if I did not support my fellow women?

I feel like half of them are putting up a facade.

People are honestly just out there doing whatever made someone else really popular.

Is There Room For Improvement?

Sometimes, we have to put the crazy world of social media aside, and focus on what really matters.

Which is….

Worrying and improving ourselves not anyone else. We should be spending more time routing for each other and encouraging each other, instead of being self absorbed in our likes and following.

Everyone could use a little improvement. You do not have to put on a fake face every day in hopes people like you. You just have to make sure you like you.

If you find that you don’t like you, then be honest with yourself and figure out what needs to change. Change is not always a bad thing, if you are changing for the better.

Social Media has the ability to bring out the worst in the best of us.. the jealousy monster in most of us, and distracts us from the things in life that really matter (our friends, family, pets, life).

Acceptance is a key part of happiness. If you can accept where you are in life, what you have, and who you are, then happiness will follow.

If social media is causing you to be depressed. Don’t be afraid to take a break, clear the clutter, and practice self-care. There is more to see in this world than what is on your screen.

Five Things I Would Tell My Younger Self

Dear Younger Me,

Friendships

You don’t know this yet, but over the next ten years of your life you are going to have a revolving door of people that come in and out of your life. Most of which never stick around, and a few that stick around to long.

This sucks, but you get good at weeding out the people who are bad for you. You also become a great judge of character. First impressions are going to be key, so remember that. You could save yourself a lot of hurt, by trusting your gut instincts on a few of these people. You are going to have to learn to nourish the good relationships too though. You let a lot of people slip through the cracks, because you are kind of selfish and mean. So kill every one with kindness, and adopt that into your life, you cynical bitch.

Men

All of the men in your life are temporary, so stop crying over them, in fact avoid men in general, because they make you put your life on hold and keep you from pursuing your dreams. You’d be a lot farther by now, had you not wasted so many years jumping from one toxic relationship to the next. Also, no man is worth ruining a friendship over, you encounter a lot of women who think this a thing, you’ve also done it yourself, and it always ends poorly. Use your brain.

Love

Love will find you, but you need to find you first. You’re a hot fucking mess and you are going to have to spend a lot of time trying to better yourself. If you think love found you… you need to check the definition of love, because what you found is another person just trying to take control. Oh, and when someone leaves you, let them leave you, and if they come back run as fast as you can. Like to another state. Change you name, change your number, and get the fuck on with your life. You deserve so much better than the strays you keep bringing home.

Most of the “good” guys in your life only stick around for the honey moon phase, then shit gets to real for them and they bounce. So focus on you and the rest will come when it is time. You love to learn and you learn quite a few lessons from love. So, keep your head up and keep on moving.

College

Go away for college and steer clear of Berkeley. That place is a hell hole of idiots and all it did was bring you misery. We meet… maybe three decent human beings there?? The rest were shoving pictures of dead fetus’s in our face, making fun of white culture, which is not a thing. White is a skin tone and I am half Hispanic and PALE as fuck.

You almost slapped the stupid out of some entitled prick, who was sitting in the back of the class that day. Then you called your dad and told him you were quitting college, and that you should have gone to Davis or UCLA or any of the other ten colleges you got into, while you were walking to the nearest bar.

I went on a tangent about how he said “all I know about white culture is that they can name all the dog breeds, and don’t like spicy food”. Well, as an animal lover and someone, who had multiple dogs growing up… Yes, I can name quite a few. Avoid this place at all costs. It’s not worth the stress.

Success

Anything you need to succeed you already have. Everything you want is possible. Any dreams you dream, you have more than enough drive to make them a reality. You will accomplish anything you put your mind to. Trust your instincts.

The world has so many things to offer you, so stop living life on the side lines. Get out there. No matter what you do, you are on the right path. Some ways are a little longer than others, there are a lot of bumps in the road, a lot of bad decisions, and a lot of talking to yourself. That’s okay though. I hear that people, who talk to themselves often, are supposed to be more intelligent.

Also give yourself some credit and learn to take a compliment. You are SMARTER than you think and you are STRONGER than you think. Chase the light until you become the light.

XO,

Bri

Are You a Negative Nancy? Tips and Tricks to Overcome Negativity.

If you asked my direct family members or my closest friends, if they thought I was more of a positive person or a negative person…. The majority of them would tell you… without hesitation that I am a Negative Nancy.

When I was first starting my journey for personal growth, I dove head first into a sea of self help books. My dad had given me YOU ARE A BADASS by Jen Sincero for Christmas about a year ago. I finally decided to crack it open, after I graduated college, and had more time to actually read books that I wanted to read.

After reading YOU ARE A BADDASS, I started to realize how negative I was or had become. I also started to realize that the people around me were also extremely negative. Then… I realized I hate negativity… and negative people. So I have started to do everything in my power to become a more positive person.

Trying to be a positive person, when you are surrounded by a sea full of negative people is draining. I had to limit time with everyone, and slowly make my way back to the shore, on the island where people do not suck the life out of you. My options were drown in the negativity with everyone else, or live out a life I can actually enjoy.

The choice was an easy one to make. The hard part was killing the person I was or the person I had become. Reversing years of damage, years of bad influences, years of anger that was fueling my negativity, was not a walk in the park. I’d do well, then I’d get depressed, then I’d start to fall back down a rabbit hole where everything was just dark.

The worst part was feeling alone through the process. The best part was becoming a stronger and better person.

Signs that you are negative person

  1. You complain a lot ( I complained about everything)
  2. YOU DON’T ACCEPT COMPLIMENTS( Something that would bother me to my core)
  3. You are a pessimist (automatically thinking the worst of all situations)
  4. You opt out of going to fun things ( because god forbid something terrible happens when you are there)
  5. You have a hard time maintaining relationships
  6. You are told you are draining (people stop wanting to be around you-or feel like they are walking on egg shells)
  7. You have a million problems, but no solutions, because you don’t care to fix the problem you just want to complain about it.

Ways to stop being a negative person

  1. Identify things you contribute to the problem ( stop one upping people with your misery)
  2. Start coming up with solutions.
  3. Start practicing gratitude
  4. Start appreciating the lights in your life that get you through the day
  5. Start nourishing the relationships you have left
  6. Understand that misery loves company(its better to be alone, and working on yourself than surrounded with energy sucking wolves. You won’t be alone long just trust me).
  7. Adopt some positive affirmations
  8. Recognize the moment you have a negative thought.
  9. Meditate to promote self awareness
  10. Exercise
  11. Eat healthy
  12. Practice self-care

The road is long, but so worth it. You don’t want to stay bitter your whole life. You want the most out of your life, so worry less and live more. A positive mindset will get you farther than you think!

Treat Yourself To Some Positive Affirmations

Affirmations encourage positive thinking. They consist of anything you repeatedly say to yourself, whether it be out loud, in your head, or written on a page. Affirmations can inspire us, motivate us, or help us overcome those negative thoughts that may be poisoning our minds.

Some of my daily affirmations:

Everything I need to succeed I already possess inside of me.

I am honest and constructive.

I rise above those who are trying to break me down.

Happiness is a choice and it comes from within me.

My drive can’t be stopped. My ambition will help me reach my goals.

There is no obstacle that I cannot overcome.

I am exactly where I am supposed to be and the universe has my back.

I am taking steps to better myself every day.

Photo by Plush Design Studio on Pexels.com

Writing down affirmations was just one step of many, that I have tried, to help me be a more positive and self aware person. Affirmations have helped me change my initial thought process. Doubting yourself is painful. Negativity does not make you a person other people want to be around. Be a light. Be a person of gratitude. Most of all, be a person, who practices self care and learn to love yourself. You are unique and you are worthy.

My First Time: Falling Asleep In My Meditation Class

A few months ago, my stepmom and younger sister asked me if I would be interested in attending a meditation class with them. I had been dying to try meditation for quite some time, but I was having little success doing it on my own.

Anyways, I decided to go to the class.

The class was an hour long… and the instructor let us lie down. During the first 20 minutes all I could focus on was the kids screaming down at the pool. After those first 20 minutes, I began to fall asleep… I was dreaming.. and coming in and out of consciousness.. and THEN the snoring started.

Not someone else snoring… ME. I started snoring. Every time I would wake up I’d look over at my sister, who was laying next to me and she would start giggling to herself quietly.

I’d go back to closing my eyes, and begin to drift off again and again.

I could not stay awake… Finally the class was coming to an end.

I wake up to the sound of people shuffling around.

Everyone but me was already sitting up on their mats ending the class with some positive affirmations.

My step mom and sister were sitting there on their mats holding in all of their laughter.

I’m starting to think the worst. I assumed that I was probably snoring, but was I snoring excessively loud… Was I just snoring? Was there more??

I finally leaned over to ask them, because I kept waking myself up from what I assumed to be heavy breathing.

The just laughed at me, and chimed in with, “I’m glad you had a good nap”.

I have yet to try another hour long meditation class, but I do practice mediation at home, and on my lunch breaks, for 5-10 minute sessions to relieve stress and anxiety daily.

Meditation is still a work in progress for myself, but practice makes perfect and the benefits are worth it.

Learning to clear a mind that is always running is a difficult task.

Feel free to comment some helpful meditation tips if you’d like!

Or your first meditation experience.

I know I am not the only one who fell asleep during a class. 🙂