Why is staying motivated so damn difficult sometimes? Motivation is something we all struggle with, am I right? For me, I feel like it comes and goes. Some days I feel ALL the motivation and I want to do ALL the things. And other days all I feel like doing is moving from my bed to the couch and maybe to the kitchen for a bowl of ice cream. Lately, I’ve felt less than motivated, evidenced by the lack of blog posts for the month of November. I really wanted to post once a week or at least that’s the goal I set for myself and when that didn’t happen, I said “oh, it’s fine, I’ll just post something tomorrow” and of course, tomorrow came and went and I had written absolutely nothing. It can be discouraging but as I’ve said we all struggle with motivation so here’s a few tips and tricks about how I stay motivated even on days where all I want to do is stay in bed or sit on the couch.
1. Don’t let yourself say “oh I’ll just do it tomorrow.”
I have a reeeeeal bad habit of doing this. Over and over again. Repeatedly telling myself “yah, yah I’ll do it when I have time” but then the time comes and goes and I’ve got nothing to show for it. So don’t let yourself do this. It’s a real sticky rabbit hole to venture down.
2. It’s okay to have rest days. It’s okay to take breaks. It’s okay.
Even though you may feel super unmotivated and sad and lazy or whatever it is, it’s okay to feel that way. And it is certainly okay to take breaks and let your body rest when you need it. But don’t let those rest days consume you. Rest and then get back out there and conquer your dreams and goals.
3. Be proud of yourself for the things that you DID accomplish.
Even if the only thing you did today was get out of bed, applaud yourself for you. You’re doing great, even if you don’t necessarily feel that way. You are. Don’t give up now.
4. Keep your phone/computer out of your hands until you’re out of bed.
Seriously BAD habit that I struggle with. I’ve found that on the days that I feel particularly down or unmotivated are usually the days that I laid in bed and scrolled through IG and Facebook for the first 45 minutes after waking up. Then after that I just don’t feel like doing anything else. But on the days that I wake and get out of bed right away to feed my cat or to go to yoga or whatever it is, those are the days that I feel super good about the things that I’ve accomplished. So definitely give that a try and just don’t pick up your phone until you’re out of bed, dressed, and ready for the day.
5. Get dressed.
I find this one to be a BIG one. It’s so easy to stay in pajamas all day and feel blah. But if you get up and get dressed, then you’ll be ready for the day and ready to tackle whatever monsters you gotta beat that day. I’m rooting for you!
These are just a few ways that I stay motivated and to be honest, they don’t always work. And that’s okay because at least I’m trying. I’m giving it my best effort and that’s all I can really hope for. Living life can be super difficult sometimes and we dig ourselves into these black holes with no way of seeing any light. It can be daunting and frustrating and in every moment you may want to give up. But don’t. Don’t give up. Keep getting out of bed everyday and just try to do one thing for your own good. I am rooting for you. From one human to another, you are loved, you are enough, you can make your dreams come true.
In October, I made all these intentions and goals with the mind set that I would stay on top of ALL the things, and of course, that didn’t happen. Because life isn’t cut and dry and things don’t always happen the way we want them to. November just sorta went on by and I lacked the motivation to write anything down. So here’s December, a new month and a new opportunity to set and attain new goals. I’m ready.
1. Get off your ass.
I have a genuine problem with laziness sometimes, which some weeks I don’t think matter because working in healthcare just runs you down sometimes and that’s just plain and simple. So I need a rest day every once in a while. It’s a problem when one day turns into four. Oops. Regardless, this month I’m dedicating to getting off my ass and taking action in accomplishing my goals.
Struggling with laziness or lack of motivation is okay. We all go through periods of time of high energy and low energy. When you feel your energy is low, I challenge you to at least get dressed. Being dressed, even if you’re at home all day, will help you feel like a) you’ve accomplished something for the day and b) you’re ready to make things happen…even if you don’t. So get dressed, eat a meal, go for a walk, maybe read a book (instead of watching TV). Set little attainable goals for yourself daily that will help you feel successful and confident. Just get off your ass 😉
2. Push yourself but give yourself grace too.
I think sometimes my goals for my future cloud my present. They overshadow everything else when sometimes the most important thing for us to do is just to be in the present moment. I’m ready to push myself and challenge myself. I’m ready for growth and new lessons. Are you? And while I find goal setting so key to being successful, we also have to remember to give ourselves some grace too because sometimes we are our own worst enemy.
3. Say YES.
Don’t let fear of failure get you down. Again, sometimes we’re our own worst enemies. We hold ourselves back and in turn we become stagnant in growth. But challenge yourself to say yes. Say yes to the challenge and face your fears. It’s okay if things don’t go the way you planned, don’t be afraid because all we can do is learn, readjust, and move forward.
Just three intentions this month. I feel that December will be a busy month and I am so ready for more adventures. This month I’ll have more blog posts up for you all because I’m feeling ALL the motivation right now… *hint hint: next topic* 😉 See you all on the blog soon!
Much love, B.
I wrote “Today, I am thankful for…” posts everyday on my Instagram for 10 days. I didn’t realize how much this would change my perspective on my everyday life. Often times we’re so busy that we forget to pause and live in the present moment. I know I’m guilty of that, of being too focused on the future or bracing myself for what’s coming next that I forget to be present and see all that I have in the present moment. These posts have been an amazing reminder that we have so much to be thankful for right now…today. Even if it’s the simplest of things, like a bowl of Cheerios or fun festive socks or the sunshine peaking through the clouds or having the day off to watch way too much Netflix. I am thankful.
I am thankful because I didn’t really realize how much it would change my perspective on my daily happenings. On the last day of this particular challenge, the tenth day, I killed my roommate’s car battery. I think on any other day I would have been super annoyed that I made such a stupid mistake. On any other day my initial thoughts might have been something like, “Seriously, Bridget, you’ve driven her car a grand total of 3 times and you couldn’t manage to turn off all the damn lights before going inside the house?! Apparently that’s too much to ask…” But no, on this day, because I spent the 9 days prior writing down all the things I was thankful for, my mind immediately went to “How can I be thankful for this particular situation? What am I supposed to learn here?”
In the end, I got to FaceTime with my dad and chat with him about car stuff. My neighbor stopped by and helped jump my car after I drove my other roommate’s car on our lawn to jump the battery I killed (okay, hilariously stupid I know but whatever). I made the best cookies I’ve ever made without an actual mixer (mixed that dough with a fork, which is just as difficult and annoying as it sounds). I went to a killer yoga class after my studio’s heater was finally fixed. And all in all, still had a great day, all because my first thought was about how I could be thankful in an annoying situation. Something so simple and easy changed my perspective.
I am thankful for this present moment. There are so many things that have brought me here and so many things I have had to work through in order to be here but I am so damn thankful that I have risen above challenges and looming dark clouds. Every day there are things to be thankful for, we just have to take a moment to recognize all that we have worked for and all that we have been given.
So my challenge to you? With November being the month for giving thanks, take a moment to write down all the things you’re thankful in this present moment. It can be simple things or big life changing things. We have an opportunity to shift our thinking here. I know I’m guilty of taking for granted the things I have whether I worked for them or not. It’s so easy to overlook the simple things that make life so beautiful. Let’s make a conscious effort to remind ourselves of all that we have even in moments we feel are difficult or challenging.
Much love, B.
For more reasons than one, I really dislike public transit. I have had a car since I was 16 years old and I loved not having to rely on anyone to get me where I wanted to go. I lucked out. It happened to be our old family car. By the time I sold it, it had been in the family for 16 years, I had driven it for 9 of those years, and we racked it up to over 360,000 miles. It served us well and I have such fond memories of adventuring in that car. I affectionately named the car Clark, like Clark Kent, because he was a super car, literally my dad revived him SO MANY times and the car just would not stay dead. I sold Clark after a month of living in Portland. The building I lived in didn’t have parking included and it was going to cost another $200 a month to park Clark across the street on top of the $1200 dollars a month for rent. I wasn’t down for that. So I sold him.It’s now been a little over a year without a car and purely riding public transit. I’ve gotta say it’s not favorite. In general, it takes for ever to get anywhere. I try not to complain too much because I am thankful that I have a way around the city without owning a car. But yesterday takes the cake for my public transportation experience.
I got on the bus and this specific bus line seemed to be especially packed that day. So I had been standing next to the back door (I like to be near the doors) and we came to a stop. Three teenagers walked past me to get off the bus, when a fourth came bolting past me nearly knocking me over, laughing all while doing it, and at the same time a woman in the back screamed, “HEY!…STOP…HOLD THE BUS…” and proceeded to blast past me as well.
It happened so fast. I keep trying to think of ways I could have helped but really there was nothing I could have done, besides trip the fourth kid that did the robbing, which again happened so quickly. The woman had been casually texting on her phone when this teenager grabbed her phone and bolted from the bus. She probably won’t see her phone again and that boy probably won’t be caught and therefore there will be no repercussions for his actions. For the woman, her day was ruined because of his actions.
It drives me insane that we, as humans, are so capable of hurting one another and some humans seem to enjoy it. Some don’t have any regard for others. I know, I know. You might be thinking, “Bridget, it was just a phone, there are far worse things that could have happened.” I KNOW THERE ARE and in the grand scheme of things the damn phone doesn’t matter. But what does matter is the fact that you’re so willing to write off what happened to this woman just because it was “just a phone”. Yes, it was just a phone, I get that. But that boy’s actions today still ruined that woman’s day and he laughed while doing it. The real problem is that he does not care how his actions affect others or the world around him.
We, as humans, can do better. We have to do better. Maybe it was “just a phone” today but what happens when that same kid grows up and tries to rob a gas station while yielding a gun, or decides to set a forest on fire with fireworks which said fire threatens the lives and homes of several thousand people (aka the Eagle Creek fire in Oregon/Washington border, google it). And yes, maybe I’m passing too harsh of a judgement on that kid because I don’t know anything about him; he has his own story. But these senseless actions that may same “small” in the grand scheme of things eventually add up; they always add up.
We have to do better to teach other to fucking respect other humans. Not an easy task, I know, but I cannot lose hope. I have to believe that people can be better to each other and learn to respect each other better. It boils down to education, listening to one another, and gaining perspective. Sometimes we get caught up in the argument and spouting off snide comebacks. It’s okay to disagree. It’s not okay to not respectfully listen to another’s point of view. We’ve all had different experiences and we walk in different shoes. There’s no way we can know how each of us sees the world but with education, listening, learning, and gaining perspective, we can start to better understand the reasons for our world view and in turn, I think we can learn to love and respect each other better, and maybe even have a change of heart.
Even with this picture of myself, with my tongue sticking out seemingly carefree, right? But you have no idea what brought me here today. You don’t know my experiences or anything under the surface. I may be sticking out my tongue for funsies (not a word, I know), but you didn’t know about the bus incidence and how it affected me until I told you. And did you know that it was hard to force myself out of bed this morning to get to yoga? Did you know in the beginning of 2016 yoga was my ONLY reason to get myself out of bed? Did you know that I cried at work last week because a patient was being rude but that patients being rude to me or the other nurses I work with happens EVERY DAY? Did you know it wasn’t really the patient that made me cry? Did you know that I had been dreading to come to work that day because again, it was hard to get out of bed…for no reason, other than sometimes my serotonin levels get really low and it’s hard to function? Did you know that for the last several weeks I’ve gotten 3-5 hours of sleep each night and that too is linked to my serotonin levels? Did you know that a lady getting robbed on a bus would lead to all this for me? NOPE. You didn’t know a damn thing until I told you and allowed you to gain a little perspective into my world.
We can’t know what each of us goes through every day. We CAN choose how we treat one another. Yes, sometimes we have bad days and we might be rude or impatient every now and again (we can’t expect to be perfect). But we can at least TRY to love and respect each other better. We can at least TRY to gain understanding of each other and maybe little by little, we can make the world a little better…a little more hopeful and a little more loving.
What are some of your thoughts? Comment below and tell me what you think. I am always up to hear a new perspective and new thought processes. Let’s start a conversation here.
Much love, B.
A portion of my blog posts will be dedicated to studio reviews. There are SO many studios in Portland that I could probably review studios for an entire year and still not get through all of them. Such a task! So as I try new studios, I will create a post and tell you all about it. My first studio review will be for CorePower Yoga. I completed my teacher training at this studio in Portland so it will always have a special place in my heart (which may create a bias review but oh well).
Prior to my yoga teacher training at CPY, I had no idea what to expect. I had never been to the studio. I had never even heard of the studio to be honest. I was at work one night with some down time around 2am and was just searching through the mass of teacher trainings in the Portland area. My sole purpose for choosing CPY was that I could make it to the time & days that the lectures were scheduled on. I really had no other reason for applying to the studio. I knew I loved power yoga because that’s what I started out doing. I went to a Baptiste yoga studio in Cali for about 8 months prior to moving to Oregon. So I knew I would be interested in learning about power yoga. I contacted CPY through their website, got an email from the Portland studio manager, and spoke with her on a Tuesday about my desires to be a teacher. On Thursday of that same week, I went my very first CPY class and the following Tuesday I started my YTT.
It happened FAST. I am very much the type of person that will easily talk myself out of doing something because of fear or lack of funds or feeling like I won’t be good enough, whatever the excuse is…I am really awesome at creating those excuses in my head. But I’m 25 now and I’ve learned this about myself over the last 10 years or so. By this point in my life, I’ve learned to just JUMP, with very little thought about the fears that coincide with jumping. It’s easier to make things happen for myself this way. I take the leap of faith and hope that I land on a soft cushion (which doesn’t always happen). I can pinpoint certain decisions I’ve made in the past to these “leaps of faith”. It’s ultimately how I ended up as a nurse in Portland, 650+ miles from my family and friends. I moved here not knowing a single soul and now I work a steady job and have found my passion in yoga that drives me forward and has taught me so much about myself and others.
CPY has been a part of that journey. I started YTT just around the time of my 1 year yoga-versary. I wasn’t connected to a studio yet in Portland. I found myself in another long distance relationship (a story for another time) and only knew the people that I worked with. I would go to work, go to the gym, and then sit at home and watch Netflix. Ultimately, not a terrible way to spend your days (especially for my introverted self) but eventually that got to be a bit lonely. So I searched YTTs in the area and jumped for it.
I have met some beautiful humans through this studio (I am now roommates with one of them). The studio itself is a corporation (you can find CPY studios in 20+ states in the US) and while there are downsides to the corporation aspect, I don’t think it takes away from the yoga community at all. CPY has cultivated a community of humans that love, support, and teach one another. We flow together as one community and it’s fucking RAD.
As far as studio preferences here in Portland, there are actually three CPY studios in this area. I haven’t been to one the one in Bridgeport (don’t have a car and public transit takes for-freaking-ever). My favorite one has to be the SE studio because I love the huge windows that let in the natural light. The NW studio is where I started and where my YTT was held. The studio rooms in NW are a bit smaller but there are two rooms so more classes are offered at this studio. Pictures below are of the SE studio (told you, BIG windows).
Each of the CPY studios are SO clean even the locker rooms and bathrooms. CPY has a program for students that you can work as house cleaning essentially and get a discount on the membership prices, I believe it’s called “Studio Experience Teams”. It’s a sweet deal really and because of this program, the studios are spotless (seriously) and the community mats are cleaned daily, which is nice if you don’t like lugging around your mat with you.
CPY teachers are so friendly and are always available for feedback and discussion. They check you into class at the front desk and create such a beautiful space to flow in the studio itself. I am proud to be apart of this studio. As of a week ago, you will find me at the SE studio every week for yet another YTT and come January, I will be auditioning to teach there. I am so STOKED on this journey.
Much love, B.
Every month, I will be sharing my intentions and maybe a few goals that I want to incorporate into my life/practice. Here’s my first FIVE:
1. I am content.
I love the idea of having “I am” statements in my intentions. It is a mantra you can easily incorporate into your everyday life. You can use simple words like peace, calm, love, happy, joyful… The options are endless. I tend to use this in my breathing exercises with morning/night-time meditation and repeat it in my head or out loud. It’s a simple reminder to live in the right now and be content with everything you have and everything you work for…even if there are storms brewing around you…
2. Embrace change.
A text from a friend led to numbers 2, 3, and 4. This friend texted me about being unsure about her future and emotional weight that brings with it. I fully understand the gravity of these feelings of being lost or not knowing what step to take next. And my best advice is to just take baby steps and embrace change.
3. Be open.
Along with this idea of embracing change, be open to the growth that change allows. Some times growth can be painful but what I’ve learned is that even in painful situations there is always something to be learned from it. Welcome the change and the growth.
4. Be bold.
Be bold and take chances. Those first baby steps that you take may not be exactly what you want or where you want to go. But take those steps. Be bold and brave. Take those steps and learn from them. You can always decide to take a different direction later down the road.
5. Speak less, listen more, love better.
Being a super quiet person, I understand the importance of just being quiet. So much can be learned from listening and learning about other’s perspectives. Instead of becoming defense when someone disagrees with your opinion, I encourage and challenge you to speak less and listen more. In turn, this will allow us to love each other better.
At the beginning of this month, I found the paints I had been neglecting for about a year. So I’ve been attempting to paint at least once a week and with that came this idea that I should set intentions and goals for myself and for my practice. As a yoga teacher, I understand the importance of setting an intention for my classes but I finally see that importance in my own practice.
My new goal is set at least one intention for myself every month. Join me on this journey! Comment and let me know what your intention is this month for your personal practice or your life in general. Let me know if any of mine resonated with you.
Much love, B.
Hi everyone! Many of you visiting today will know who I am outside of this lovely site but for those of you just dropping by let me tell you a little bit about myself.
Firstly, I love yoga as I’m sure you’ve already noticed. This year I started doing yoga challenges on Instagram and this jump started my interest in sharing my love of yoga, fitness, and general wellness with others.
Secondly, I am 25 years old and am a nurse on an adult medical floor in Portland, Oregon.
Thirdly, I love to explore and have adventures. Mainly I love hiking and being anywhere in the general vicinity of an ocean. My heart is happiest watching and listening to waves crashing against the shore. I could spend hours just being at the ocean shoreline, marveling in the beauty of this Earth.
Follow me on Instagram for daily updates and yoga inspiration. 🙂
So I figure this blog post is going to be a series because I can already tell that this whole starting a website thing is so much harder than I want it to be. Really I think the hardest part for me is the aesthetic. I have an idea of how I want my website to look as well as ideas from all the fancy templates that WordPress has but really, it’s a matter of putting everything (all my content and photos) together in a cohesive and aesthetically pleasing way, that’s going to be the trouble.
I will give an update periodically of how I feel like I’m doing with putting everything together. For now, I want to talk about branding yourself (exciting, I know!).
My advice (for myself and others) is to just dive head first. I thought about my brand for months and months. I couldn’t decide on anything and I felt like nothing was “good enough”. One night at about 3am, the name of my website just stuck out to me as bright as the moon light coming through my window.
Ultimately, when you find the right name for yourself, take about a week and just repeat it to yourself and practice introducing yourself with your brand name. If after a week, you still like the name, then go for it!
Secondly, have a REASON for your brand because in all honesty the “aesthetic” doesn’t really matter. Even though this is how I want to share my thoughts, really the look of it doesn’t matter…the CONTENT matters. Think about these questions: Are you proud of the content you share? Are you passionate about what you’re sharing? What is your brand/content/website/IG’s purpose? What does it mean to you?
I know that if I just met you and you felt passionately about your brand then hell yah, I’d be interested in knowing more about it.
Just a thing or two to think about.
With love, B.
To me, yoga is multifaceted; it is a physical practice as well as a spiritual awakening and self discovery. Yoga has become so much more than a physical practice to me and I am sure that most everyone who has does yoga regularly will agree. It has opened up my world and my heart to acceptance and love of self, and healing of my mind, body, and soul. That sounds cliché, I know. But it’s the honest truth.
So back-story, at the end of 2015, I had gone through a terrible break up. To spare the details, I was devastated and blindsided by the whole ordeal. I was young when I fell in love with him and that relationship was the first real love I had ever felt. I didn’t realize at the time that it was simultaneously the most destructive love I had ever felt (for both of us). Though not all of the relationship was bad, ultimately being so young and not knowing any other love really, we lost ourselves in one another. I couldn’t function without him, because I was solely dependent on him and his feelings and not realizing that I had lost myself along the way.
Around the same time, I had also just graduated college and didn’t have my nursing license so I couldn’t technically get a job. I was in that typical “I have a degree, 30k debt, no job, and am about to move back to my parent’s house” phase that so many millennials go through. And unfortunately, that’s exactly what happened. I felt like I had nothing. I felt worthless. I had SO MUCH self-loathing. I had no confidence in myself or in my abilities. I cried way too much and binge watched way too many Netflix shows. At my worst point, it was hard to even force myself out of bed, because it seemed easier than facing my demons.
My best friend, who is very athletic, upbeat, and headstrong, said to me one day in January of 2016, “Come to this yoga class with me.” It wasn’t a question. So she and I went to this super tiny studio in our hometown, it was a first for both of us. And man, that first class rocked my world. It happened to be a Baptiste power yoga style studio and I had no idea what I was in for. The teacher there was genuine, loving, inspiring, and crazy excited about yoga and the studio was warm and inviting. I started going 3-4 times a week. At first it was merely because it was a reason to get out of bed and up until college I had always been super active. So I loved this new physical strain it put on my body. I was finally being challenged and making new goals for my physical body was the perfect way to challenge myself even more.
Then one day as I was in savasana crying my eyes out on my mat, I realized that yoga was more than the physical asanas; it had opened my heart to healing without my even noticing. Yoga gave me the opportunity to not only grow stronger physically but also allowed me to get REAL with myself. It has taught me not only self-acceptance, but really, self-LOVE. So I practice for all these reasons and more. I have learned love, grace, and kindness through yoga. I practice because I am thankful for what yoga has provided me with and taught me over the last 1.5-2 years. I practice because I know I have more to learn and there is always room for growth.
What does yoga mean to you?
With love, B.
Creating space for yourself can be the hardest part of your day. We are so busy with our everyday lives. We get up and go go go. Rarely ever checking in with our mental and physical health. We get caught up in the busyness of our lives that often times our own health is put on the back burner. Maybe that paper for school or project for the big boss is looming over you at work and everything else doesn’t seem to matter. I beg to differ.
I have found more and more over the last 2 years that in order to stay mentally and physically healthy I have to create space for myself, even if it is only for 5 minutes. That’s the key. It is more than okay to take a “rest day” for a day…but did you catch that? I said, “a day”. It is incredibly easily to just say, “Oh, I’ll do it tomorrow.” How many tomorrow’s are you going to let go by until suddenly it’s been 2 weeks…a whole month?
Spend just 5 minutes in your space. Those 5 minutes will help you create a habit of spending time on your own. Maybe it’s 5 minutes of sun salutations right when you wake up and get out of bed. Or maybe it’s 5 minutes of deep breathing in a seated position right before bed. Or maybe it’s 5 minutes of guided meditation with a meditation app you’ve found. Or maybe it’s 5 minutes of journaling or art. Or maybe it’s 5 minutes of seated mountain pose at your desk at work. 5 minutes may not seem like a long time. But trust me, 5 minutes can go a long way.
A few friends have messaged me a long the way during my yoga journey these past 2 years saying that I have inspired them to get on their mats. That’s beautiful and exactly why I post all my photos on my instagram and why I started this blog, in the hopes of creating a movement for…movement. Every time someone has contacted me with these words, I usually remind them and encourage them to keep creating space for themselves. Ultimately their practice is their own and I cannot be the sole reason for their movement. I remind them to keep at it, everyday, even for just 5 minutes.
Have you created space for yourself today?