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The Gratitude Journal: Sep 19′

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Hello love,

The topic of this month’s Gratitude Journal is LESSONS

Some obstacles are blessings in disguise. Obstacles help us to be redirected in the path that’s in alignment with our highest good. Other obstacles are a test of our endurance and perseverance. Without obstacles, we wouldn’t be who we are today. Those obstacles that exist in your life are teaching you something about yourself and your current situation. All challenges are apart of the human experience.

Declaration:

I am grateful for the times that I was redirected and pointed towards a better path. All the things I have been through have been lessons that I needed to learn to become the person I am today. Resilience, love, and peace were built as a result of the things I’ve overcome. Through the lessons I have learned, I can help others on their journeys so that they don’t have to make the same mistakes.

Reminder:

If you are going with a difficult challenge in your life currently, the lesson you need to learn may not be clear to you. Have patience as all will be revealed to you eventually. Utilise each obstacle to flex your resilience muscle. Declare that no matter what happens, you will overcome it because you are a fighter. Even if it takes you time to move forward, you will be a better person as a result of your current pain. Have unwavering faith in your ability to manifest the life that you want no matter what obstacles that come your way.

Monthly Meditation:

“I am grateful for God/Universe using me as a vessel to learn this hard lesson. I know that I have a higher calling on my life. I choose to use this knowledge to become a better person and to give back to others.”

Questions to ask yourself when experiencing obstacles:

  1. What is this obstacle teaching me?
  2. What do I need to pay attention to?
  3. How can I overcome this?

Question to you NOW:

What are you grateful for today?

I’d love to hear from you!

Love Ash, xx

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FEAR OF MISSING OUT: SOCIAL MEDIA WOES

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Have you ever been on social media and saw people having the time of their lives and felt like you were missing out? The fear of missing out aka (FOMO), often derives from feeling like others are experiencing better things than you are. It has become more prevalent in the age of social media where you are constantly paraded with the highlights of other people’s lives.

Social media exacerbates this feeling of missing out. It leads people to compare their ordinary lives to others online who they perceive to be leading more abundant, fulfilling lives. Sites like Instagram and Facebook place emphasis on the reel highlights of someone’s life. People use it as a tool to brag about all the amazing things they are doing, intentionally leaving out all the very normal things that most people experience. This creates space for people to feel envious and dissatisfied with their own life’s.

You suffer from FOMO if you do or feel any of the following:

 

  • Feeling like everyone is having more fun, and experiencing more joy than you
  • Overcompensating by posting content to make you feel better about your life and to convince others that you have it all together
  • Constantly watching what other people are doing and keeping tabs to feel like we are a part of the action
  • Feeling pressured to be visible on social media
  • Feeling like no one can relate their struggles

This fear of missing out can harm people’s self-esteem. It can make us feel like we are not good enough and unfortunate in comparison. The constant wave of picturesque pictures and celebratory statuses can make us ungrateful for the life that we lead.

I think in some way many of us fear missing out. If you are a content creator, the pressure to be constantly visible and produce content can keep us in a constant hamster wheel. I know I’ve felt like I can’t take a social media break or that I must engage in certain conversations in fear of missing my window of opportunity to promote my brand. As humans, we have a desire to be valued and loved. Experiencing joy is fundamental for self-preservation and being a part of something makes us feel less lonely. However, the feeling of missing out leads us to seek validation in unhealthy ways by constantly ‘performing’ online. It brings us back to the very school-like dynamics of feeling left out and trying to fit in.

The reality is even if you were able to acquire the things you envy from others (i.e. a relationship, a great social life or material success), it doesn’t guarantee that your life will be more fulfilled. You may end up in a loving relationship but may not be enough because you lack self confidence. Also, things aren’t always what it seems online. There have been times when I posted myself going out but wasn’t feeling that great about myself. You can’t make assumptions based on what you see online.

If you are suffering from FOMO I want you to remember this: 

People are online showing their reel highlights. We all have them. Comparing ourselves to other people’s highlights is unfair and unkind. You never know what others are going through. All that matters are that your life is in alignment with what you envision for it.

Remember, you get to live life on your terms. Your life is incomparable to others and you slay in your own lane. Nothing can fill a void that’s within you other than you. Find peace and joy within your own life and make a declaration that other people’s lives will not disrupt that peace.

Now over to you! Questions for you: 

Do you suffer from FOMO?

What are your thoughts?

Much love, Ash xx

 

Copyright © 2019 AshAlves All Rights Reserved

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The Gratitude Journal: August 19’

Happy August,

For this month’s gratitude topic, I want to talk about uncertainty!

When we are uncertain about a decision we need to make, it can make us feel stuck and unsettled. The fear of missing out or potentially making the wrong decision can be very daunting. We all feel uncertain at times and somehow we always figure it out. If you are currently feeling stuck, just remember that it will not last forever.

Perhaps we need to feel uncertain at times to get us to pause and really think. When we are sure about where we are heading, we are less inclined to take time out to observe all areas of our lives. Uncertainty allows us to take a birds eye view at our life and begs us to ask the questions; What area in my life do I need to pour more energy into?, Am I happy?, What needs shifting?

Uncertainty doesn’t last forever so take advantage of the need to pause in order to re-evaluate your life. Consider it as an opportunity to prioritize self care and put joy at the centre of your life. Don’t feel compelled to make an instant decision if you have the privilege of stalling it until you’re more certain. Life isn’t about getting to a destination “fast” but it’s about enjoying the ride. Maybe you’re uncertain because you need to show more gratitude for where you currently are in order to invite in something new and abundant into your life.

So whilst you’re feeling stuck, frustrated and uncertain, remind yourself that it won’t last forever and allow your intuition to guide you into making the best decision for you. Don’t be so attached to the outcome. And remember that you can always make another decision.

What are you focusing on this Month?

Have a great one!

Love Ash, xx

 

Copyright © 2019 AshAlves All Rights Reserved

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How to overcome feeling not good enough

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Are you struggling with feeling not good enough? No matter how much you accomplish or try, you still feel this lingering feeling of not being enough. You might be in a perpetual cycle of doing things to fill a void to distract yourself from feelings of unworthiness. 

Typically the narrative we tell ourselves about not feeling good enough derives from our upbringing. If you are fed messages by your caregivers that you are enough and valuable, you are more likely to have that foundation of self-acceptance and worthiness. If you were raised in an environment where you were criticised and felt like you had to shrink parts of who you are, you’re more likely to struggle with low self-esteem. However, it isn’t always this binary. Some people come from loving backgrounds who still suffer from not feeling good enough because of other negative experiences such as social media, bullying or even academic pressures. We are not born with feeling not good enough, we are taught to think that way about ourselves as a result of negative experiences we go through in life. 

Overcoming feeling not good enough is a process that takes times. When we’ve become accustomed to that feeling for such a long time, our brain convinces us that it’s a part of our reality which is non-fixable. By letting that narrative of unworthiness win, we cheat ourselves out of opportunities that will make us feel loved, valued and that invites emotional healing.  However, just because you don’t feel good enough right now doesn’t mean that you can’t change the narrative. You can choose to take control of how you think about yourself. 

Three reminders for when you don’t feel good enough:

1.  You are enough- You were born enough and nothing can take that away from you. Sometimes circumstances arise which make us doubt who we are. When we are used to disappointment, it reinforces that narrative that we aren’t enough for good opportunities, love or abundance. We believe that if we acquire more things, or become more of something else we would become more worthy. In a society where our value is closely tied to our status, material possessions, it’s normal to feel like this. Just because you don’t feel good enough in the present moment doesn’t mean that you always will.

2.  Comparison is the thief of joy- Not everyone has it all figured out. No one is in your lane and no one is your competition. When you compare yourself, you’re unfairly putting two completely different lives and human beings in competition with the other. You do yourself a disservice when you compare yourself. They don’t know the challenges you’ve endured. Your progress does not have to look like anyone else’s. This is your life and you are in control.

3.  Give yourself love- You’re deserving of love and compassion even when you feel like you aren’t enough. Shower yourself with appreciation and love always but especially when you don’t feel good about yourself.  Nothing is inherently wrong with you just because you feel this way. Acknowledging that you are struggling is the first step to transformation. 

Five tips to help you overcome feeling not good enough:

1. Inner Child Work- Inner child work is an opportunity to resolve your childhood emotions and experiences. Go into a quite space and write down all the negative experiences you remember in your childhood. Then reflect on how they may have impacted you by asking yourself; has this experience shaped the way I think about myself now?  When you start to see a direct correlation between not feeling enough and your childhood experiences, you’ll start to see that the way you feel is a narrative that has been taught to you but can be changed. If this work is too much for you, I would suggest seeking help from a therapist who would be able to offer you professional support. 

2. Get intimate with your inner critique- In order to fully understand why you don’t feel good enough, you have to unravel your thoughts. Next time you find yourself not feeling good, interrupt your chain of thought and ask yourself the following; How you are feeling? Why do I feel like this and what triggered those feelings? Then start to think about alternative ways you can look at the problem.

3. Separate yourself from your negative thoughts- When negative thoughts about yourself arise, try to separate yourself from the thoughts you are experiencing. For example; if you feel not good enough say “my thoughts are telling that i’m not good enough”. You will begin to gain better perspective and start to realise that we can change the narrative we tell ourselves. 

4. Mantra- Write down anything that can trigger you into feeling like you’re not good enough. For example; being rejected from an opportunity. Find or create your own affirmations that you can refer to when those feelings arise. Find some comforting words that help you feel good and refer to them when you’re feeling low. 

5. Talk to someone- The hardest thing is going through it alone. Talk to a friend or family member tell them how you’re feeling. If you need extra help, look for a support group near you or call your GP and ask for to get in contact with a therapist service. 

Questions to you:

Do you ever feel like you’re not good enough?

What advice would you offer a friend who feels like this?

I’d love to hear from you! 

Love, Ash xx

 

Copyright © AshAlves 2019, All Rights Reserved

Realignment

Hello guys! 🍃

As August comes to a close, I’d like to send out a gentle reminder to you all ~~

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How was your August? 

What lessons have you learnt over the past few months? 

Love Ash, xx

 

 

Copyright © 2019 AshAlves All Rights Reserved

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Impromptu Post: My Terrible Day!

I spent this morning deep in prayer. I prayed for my negative thoughts to be replaced with positive ones. I asked my higher power for confidence and more self-belief. I topped off my grounding ritual by writing a gratitude list, burning sage and listening to Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday.

An hour later, my phone was stolen whilst I was outside. I felt so good after my morning spiritual practice but shortly fell into feeling extremely saddened by the fact I was phone-less. All I could of think is “I have such bad luck” and “My photos are gone”. The worst thing is I had to go to work shortly afterwards, leaving me no alone time to grieve the loss of my phone ha!

After I calmed down, I started to reflect on my day and something came to me. I prayed for my negative thoughts to be replaced with positive ones, NOT for my challenges to be removed from my life. I began interpreting losing my phone as a test to see whether I was going to succumb to the “woe is me” mentality or commit to overcoming this challenges.

“No one said life was going to be easy. You can start your day off on a perfect note but an obstacle may come in your way to knock you off course. The test isn’t about how well you perform without adversity but whether you choose to stand tall in the face of it.” – Ash

If your phone was stolen like mine (doubt it lol) or you are currently going through some adversity, I want you to remember this: No one guaranteed the road would be easy! What matters is what we do in the face of adversity.

Anyhoo, enough about my day!

Question to you:

How are you doing?

Much love, Ash xx

 

Copyright © 2019 AshAlves All Rights Reserved

 

Legal Action against your Abuser UK

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Hi all,

I created a document for Domestic Violence victims with information about how to get a Non-Molestation Order against your abuser. I have a couple of years experience within the Law Sector and have utilised the knowledge I have gained. This is applicable for those under UK law.

PDF document can be found here:

LEGAL ACTION AGAINST YOUR ABUSER UK

 

There are a list of charities that you can contact for additional support and guidance. Here’s a few charities that you can contact:

https://www.refuge.org.uk/

https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/family/gender-violence/domestic-violence-and-abuse-organisations-which-give-information-and-advice/

https://www.victimsupport.org.uk/crime-info/types-crime/domestic-abuse

https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/guides-to-support-and-services/abuse/domestic-violence/#.Wscw-qKdCvU

http://www.reducingtherisk.org.uk/cms/content/support-services-and-agencies-victimssurvivors (additional directory) 

https://www.buttleuk.org/ (for children affected by domestic violence) 

http://www.niaendingviolence.org.uk/

www.havenrefuge.org.uk

 

LGBTQIA Charities 

http://www.galop.org.uk/domesticabuse/

https://lgbt.foundation/

http://www.stonewallhousing.org/

 

Black women and Women of Colour

http://www.bawso.org.uk/our-services/women/

https://southallblacksisters.org.uk/

 

Refugees/Asylum Seekers

www.niaproject.info

www.havenrefuge.org.uk

www.refuge.org.uk

 

Copyright © AshAlves 2019, All Rights Reserved

The Sunshine Blogger Award

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What is the Sunshine Blogger Award all about?

It is about recognising the community of fellow bloggers for their creativity and positivity. I want to specially thank Buloka Orry for nominating me for this award. Her blog posts are inspirational and they have been so encouraging to me.  Kindly check out her blog here.

I remember when I first joined the blogging world and saw these awards but never thought I’d be nominated for one. I am so thankful for this platform and being able to connect with so many amazing people. I am continuously inspired by you all. This platform has truly transformed my life and helped me find the light out of my most darkest days. Thank you all for continuing to inspire me!

The rules of this award are as followed:

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you.
  2. Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.
  3. Nominate new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  4. List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award in you post.
  5. Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.

The questions I was asked:

  1. Why did you start a blog? I created my blog as an outlet to talk about my struggles with low moods and low self-esteem & my other general interests (politics, relationships, travel).
  2. What inspires you to write? Writing for me is like going to therapy. It’s healing and it connects you with others who are going through similar things. I am inspired by the fact that being authentic about my journey can help someone else in theirs.
  3. How has blogging changed your life? It has changed my life for the better! I have connected with so many amazing people and it has afforded me opportunities that I did not expect such as doing workshops on challenging low self-esteem. It literally helped me overcome my low moods and helped me love myself more. It’s something that occupies a lot of my time too so my life looks much different than before. I am so thankful for this platform.
  4. What is your favourite thing about your blog? That my posts are about having a conversation. I love that they sparks dialogue which I find necessary for collective healing.
  5. Are there bloggers that inspire you in a certain way? So many bloggers inspire me honestly, including Buloka Orry
  6. If you could leave everything and move to another country, where would you go? There’s so many places to choose from but I’d say Johannesburg. That was one of my favourite places that I visited.
  7. Who inspires you to be better? My boyfriend, my Sister and friends. I am inspired different people, including those I don’t know (Bell Hooks, Iylana Vanzant etc) and everyday people.
  8. What songs do you love listening to? I’m a Neo-Soul and Hip Hop gal! Favourite song at the moment is Cleo Sol- Sweet Blue.
  9. What’s that one thing you can’t do without? Quite time. I need it to function lol.
  10. What has made you happy recently? My little sister graduated with a degree in Law with Criminology from a top UK university 🙂
  11. What advice would you give to aspiring bloggers? BE YOURSELF and write in your own style. Also focus on enjoying the process of blogging and don’t equate numbers with how valuable you are.

Here are my nominations for the award:

  1. Let It Go Coach-  https://letitgocoach.com/
  2. K E Garland – https://kwoted.wordpress.com/
  3. K. Phoenix-  https://pamhsc.wordpress.com/
  4. Adekula Writes https://adekunleadewunmi.wordpress.com/
  5. Kelley – https://black-burgundy.com/
  6.  Black Princess Diaries https://theblackprincessdiaries.com/
  7.  Ihagh G.T https://motivation-environment.com/
  8. Kamran – https://topeducationhub.com/
  9. Dark Purple Tales- https://darkpurpletales.wordpress.com/
  10. Lance Sheridan – https://lancesheridan.com/
  11. Embracing Awkwardness- https://bocc.live/

Questions for the nominees:

  1. Why did you start a blog?
  2. What inspires you to write?
  3. How has blogging changed your life?
  4. What is your favourite thing about your blog?
  5. Are there bloggers that inspire you in a certain way? Mention them.
  6. If you could leave everything and move to another country, where would you go?
  7. Who inspires you to be better?
  8. What songs do you love listening to?
  9. What’s that one thing you can’t do without?
  10. What has made you happy recently?
  11. What advice would you give to aspiring bloggers?

Let’s build a bigger tribe. Visit these bloggers and show them some love ❤

The Gratitude Journal: July 19′

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Happy July! ❤

Sending you gentle reminder for this month:

Trust and believe in your growth. No one can take that away from you. You know your heart and what goodness it carries. The only time you become a prisoner to the older version of you is when you decide to make that choice. Trust yourself and don’t take on other people’s negative perceptions of you. No one can bound you to that person but you!

Don’t be ashamed of who you once were because they laid the foundation to who you are now. You did your best with what you knew, and you’ve learned from those experiences. When people try to bring you into the place you once were, it is a test to see whether you are embodying the change that you talk about. Rise above the naysayers and show them who you are!

What are you focusing on this July?

Love Ash, xx

 

Copyright © AshAlves 2019, All Rights Reserved