Be clear about Who You Are!

Hey loves,

It’s been a few weeks since I stopped by. I’m attempting to balance other priorities whilst giving myself space for my creative expression without imposing a deadline. I’m giving myself permission to go off schedule. We are still in a pandemic. I’m letting go of the idea that I need to constantly produce content to feel valued and worthy. I miss posting but these breaks have allowed me the space to nurture other creative expressions.

Anyways back to the purpose of this post. We’ve only got 6 months left until the end of 2020. I feel like there’s a global shift of consciousness happening right now in the wake of Covid-19 and Black Lives Matter. One of the main lessons I learned over the past couple months is that life is short. It’s time to let go of expectations of how we should or shouldn’t live. It’s time to stop silencing ourselves about oppression and speak up. Life is too short to be straggling the fence and playing it safe.

There’s no more time to stay in the shadows, going through like trying to please everyone. It’s time to use your voice to stand for something, whether that’s publicly or privately. It’s time to align your actions with what you stand for. It’s time to let go of these facades that we’ve been holding onto for protection. You won’t be for everyone. Stop trying to be! ⠀

It’s 2020!! You need to start getting clear about the following:

  1. Who are you? ⠀
  2. What do you stand for?⠀
  3. What causes do you align yourself with?

Of course your answers are going to shift overtime as you find new ways to redefine yourself. However you need to start getting clear about who you are right now. When you don’t know YOU, you will lose yourself trying to be for everyone. ⠀

NEW CONTENT 2020 (33)

A Gentle Reminder:

Anyone who doesn’t respect who you are doesn’t deserve you. ⠀

Anyone who relies on your silence to make them feel comfortable doesn’t deserve you. ⠀

Anyone who tried to diminish your accomplishments doesn’t deserve you. ⠀

 

Question to you:

  1. What are you grateful for?⠀

 

Love Ash, xx

Healing is a Social Justice Issue

Copy of The ugly truth about self love (17)

Within a society that is anti-wellness and anti-healing, it’s not enough to avoid talking about social justice issues. Healing is more than just self-love quotes and breathing exercises. It’s a deep introspective look into the social ills that are the causes of people’s pain and distress.

“We have to talk about liberating minds as well as liberating society” – Angela Davis

How does one become their ‘best version’ when they are faced with physical state violence that threatens their right to self-determination? How do you tell someone who lives with the threat of being stopped and searched or even killed by the police based on the colour of their skin that they are ‘in control of their reality’? If healing is about overcoming something that has had an impact on your mental well-being, then we must talk about the root causes. When we talk about healing, it’s not enough to speak only on codependency, boundaries, manifestation, confidence and so forth. We have to consider how economic inequality, racism, imperialism, and patriarchy impacts people’s emotional, mental and physical well-being.

Examples of Societal issues impacting one’s Mental Health:

Institutional Racism 

A black person constantly being stopped by the police and experiencing unfair treatment within the judicial system based on the colour of their skin. Being accused of things you did not do and being labelled a criminal or perpetrator when they are not the perpetrators of violence. This is institutional racism.

Capitalism.

Growing up poor and not being able to afford necessities. A poor child in school can’t afford to go on school trips, gets picked on because they don’t have the latest clothes. Parents have to be at work all the time to keep a roof over their head which results in the child being neglected physically and emotionally. The child grows up with self-esteem issues because of their circumstances. This is capitalism.

Patriarchy 

Having to watch what you wear in public in case you give men the perception that you want their attention. Being questioned whether you’re competent enough to be in a management position because you’re a woman. This is patriarchy.

A young boy being told that crying is a sign of weakness so decides to hide his feelings and suffer in private. Growing up angry and not knowing why. Internalising his feelings of self-hate and anger towards the world. This patriarchy.

Imperialism 

A person suffers from PTSD because of drone strikes. They experience disturbed sleep and flashbacks of relatives dying. Others in their situation have become refugees and experience xenophobia in the new countries where they reside. They battle with their mental health problems on top of being ostracised by society. This is imperialism.

 

Why it’s important to talk about social justice issues?

All of these issues restrict people’s right to self-determination and actualisation. They break a person’s spirit and bring a sense of hopelessness. Healing is something that all humans should do and it’s not limited to people who are interested in personal development. To move individuals towards self-empowerment and healing, we need to acknowledge and validate other people’s struggles. We need to hold institutions accountable for their role in producing an unwell society.

We are all citizens of the world and I believe it is our responsibility to speak out against injustice and do our part in creating a better world. You don’t need to protest to make a difference. You can use your platform, you can educate people around you, you can do community work that helps uplift and elevate others.

 

Journal Prompts:

1. Are you avoiding talking about social justice issues?

2. What ways can you educate yourself on the struggles of black and brown people?

3. How are you contributing to uplifting and empowering your community?

 

Question to you:

What are your thoughts?

I’d love to know what you think!

 

Love Ash, xx

The Gratitude Journal: June 20′

I'm thankful, grateful, appreciate (6)

It’s June,

I’m so grateful to be alive, experiencing a new month. I’m thankful that despite being in a pandemic, I have remained safe and so have the people around me. I know that blessing is not afforded to everyone. 

I wish I could be ecstatic about this upcoming month but we are currently in a crisis right now. Not only are we still experiencing the Covid-19 pandemic and seeing people die at exponential rates, but we are also witnessing a global awakening to institutional racism and structural oppression.

I’m sick and tired of seeing black bodies being killed. This issue has existed for over 500+ years. Despite the changes and transitions, the root problem still exists. Inequality has not disappeared because we never dismantled the systems that continue to perpetuate the issue. Change won’t come from within the system. We need to start again, nationally, and globally.   

Even though this period is very distressing, there are things you can do to actively make a difference.

Here’s a list of things you can do:

 

Write- Release your anger, rage, sadness, and disappointment on paper

Self-care- Meditate, connect to nature, take a bath, read a book, watch a series, paint

Action- Donate to a cause, create change in your community, educate yourself & others

Energy cleansing- Cleanse your energy through dancing, long walks, prayer or exercising

 

I hope you all remain safe and have a great month. 

Black lives Matter! 

Love Ash, xx 

How to Overcome Feeling Envious at someone else’s Success

Copy of The ugly truth about self love (14)

Does other people’s success trigger feelings of inadequacy? You may find that you are genuinely happy for them but can’t seem to stop thinking about what’s going wrong in your life.

I think it’s safe to say that we’ve all gone through a period where we’ve been unhappy or unsatisfied with how things are going in our lives. Confronting our insecurities can be difficult especially when we live in an age of highlight reels. As much as you may try to focus on your journey, it’s easy to get caught up in what other people are doing especially in the age of the internet.

Let’s be real, it can get frustrating when you see other people achieving successful milestones that you want to achieve, especially when you feel like you work hard. I’ll give you an example; you might be applying for countless jobs only to be met by rejection after rejection then suddenly you find out that your friend landed a massive offer in a company you wanted to work for. This can crop up feelings of comparison, inadequacy, and jealously.

It doesn’t make you a bad person if you are battling with negative feelings towards your friend. This indicates that you have personal insecurities that you need to address. You can change how you feel but you have to first become aware of your feelings so that you don’t project your insecurities onto others.

It’s easy to demonise people who find themselves envious at others. I believe that we need to remove those stigmas so we can have more honest and open conversations. The more authentic we are, the better chance we have of healing and creating healthier relationships. Some people genuinely want to celebrate other people’s successes but they find themselves battling with their insecurities.

If you are feeling envious, it’s not okay to:

  • Undermine someone else’s success to make yourself feel better
  • To undercut their success by copying them
  • To throw shade

Equally, it’s okay to:

  • Not feel super ecstatic about their achievements

How to cope when your friend’s success triggers you:

1. Journal- Write down your thoughts and ask yourself the following: How do I feel? What is this situation cropping up for me? What accomplishments have I made? What action steps can I achieve my goals? Or do I need to be more patient and trusting? Get to the route cause of the issue and find a solution to your problem.

2. Celebrate it- If you see that someone’s doing something you love, celebrate it. Tell them how happy you are for them and how much of a major accomplishment it is. Don’t keep quiet- that’s negative and bad energy. Even if your feelings don’t match your words, you are putting out the intention that you want to feel more of those positive feelings towards them. Additionally, making someone else feel good about their accomplishments might even make you feel better.

3. Weekly reminders- Go over your long term goals every week. This is a great reminder of where you are heading and why. When you are clear about the direction that your life is going, it becomes less important about the speed.

Reminders when feelings envious at other people’s success:

Your time will come- Just because it hasn’t happened for you yet doesn’t mean it won’t. If you keep working hard & smart, it’s almost inevitable that you will reap the benefits. Keep focusing on your vision & express gratitude for where you are now.

Gain peace with the present- You are where you been to be right now. There are still lessons that need to be learned, what that has to be done to get to where you want to be. There are still so many things you can be grateful for in your life. Don’t get caught up in another person’s journey that you can’t see the blessings in yours.

Managing expectations- Maybe your expectations for yourself are too harsh. Give yourself time to accomplish your goals and take into consideration other obstacles that may get in the way.

See the lessons- There’s always a lesson that can be learned. How can you learn from what they did? Where they in contact with certain people? Do you need to make those connections? Look at the action steps behind their success. Their success may have been a result of their hard work. What can you adopt (of course in YOUR way)?

A question to you:

What advice would you give someone who’s struggling with this?

I’d love to hear from you!

Love, Ash x 

A Gentle Reminder: You are Valuable

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Sending you a gentle reminder to you all today, 🌻

You can’t wait for others to see your worth for you to recognise that it’s inherent within you. You were born worthy, valuable and enough. You don’t need to do more, accomplish more, be more or less of anything to be valuable.

Give yourself permission to live by your terms, on your conditions regardless of what others think. The people who are meant for you will recognise how worthy you are.

I hope you are all doing well and staying safe during this period ❤

Question to you:

How are you currently coping with quarantine?

 

Love & Light, Ash x

Side Effects of Holding onto Resentment

Copy of Copy of The ugly truth about self love (3)

Do you currently hold resentment towards others?  Resentment typically arises when we feel an injustice has been committed towards us. A person who holds resentment may have felt personally attacked and subsequently allowed a grudge to fester. It’s common to hold resentment, however, when left unaddressed over a long period of time, it can become intoxicating and have a negative impact on a persons well being.

Resentment is a mental resistance to, a non-acceptance of, something which has already happened … an emotional rehashing, or re-fighting of some event in the past. You cannot win, because you are attempting to do the impossible–change the past.- Maxwell Maltz

One of the reasons why we hold onto resentment is in hopes that we never forget how they hurt us. We use the pain they inflicted on us as a memo to not get ourselves into a similar situation with that person or others again. Holding a grudge gives us comfort knowing that we never let them off the hook for what they did to us.

Additionally, we may have been accustomed to hold resentment as a tool for survival. Initially, it served the purpose of remembering potential dangers that can harm us. It helped us to create a blueprint in our minds of what to look out for and what not to expect.

It’s okay to mourn the lack of love you received from your parents or being overlooked by people you deeply admired. You don’t need to feel bad for holding a grudge. It’s difficult to forgive people for doing you wrong. When we trust someone and they do us wrong, it can have a huge impact on our ability to let our guard down with that person and others again.

What you Need to know about Resentment:

It hurts you more than it hurts the other person

You holding onto resentment is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. You end up spending precious time angry over something the other person may have already let go of.

You forget that people are human and are capable of change

 This, of course, doesn’t apply for all cases where you were abused or hurt by others, but in some instances, we hold anger towards people who have the capacity and willingness to change. When we hold resentment towards others, we are holding people hostage to our expectations of how they should and shouldn’t act.

You may be evading the healing process by holding onto resentment for years

 When we focus on what someone else has done to us, we distract ourselves from doing self-introspection. You may need to have an honest conversation with yourself, asking the following questions: Am I still putting these people on a pedestal? Where can I take accountability and ownership for what happened? If it was not my fault (young/ low self-esteem/ vulnerable) then maybe you can ask yourself something like; How can I practice forgiving myself for blaming me for what others did? Be honest about the healing work that needs to be done within you.

Why you must Let Go of Resentment:

You cannot control the behaviour of others

As much as we may try, we can’t control other people’s behaviours. Holding resentment will not change that person. They won’t be shamed into making any changes unless they decide to do that for themselves.

People are simply reflecting their level of consciousness

The person/people that hurt you are reflecting what they think about themselves. People have a different value system and they are just reflecting what they think is right/wrong. People causing you harm says more about them, not about you.

You deserve happiness

You deserve freedom and that is your birthright. You deserve to experience love and the wholeness of life. You deserve to let go of your personal freedom and well being. Resentment is poison for the body and takes up space which can be used to love yourself.

A Question to You:

Do you hold resentment? 

How did you let go of your anger towards someone?

I would love to hear your thoughts

Love Ash, xx

 

The Gratitude Journal: April 20′

I'm thankful, grateful, appreciate (5)

Hello loves,

I hope you are well and staying safe. I haven’t been that active on my blog lately and I miss this space so much. Life has been so crazy. As I’m picking up more responsibilities, I’m trying to balance everything and somehow factor in self-care. I love interacting with you all and reading your posts, so I am going to make an effort to spread love on this platform.

This month’s Gratitude Journal is about finding peace in times of uncertainty.

The quote that inspired this post:

‘If you can’t go inside, go outside’ -unknown

We are going through a turbulent time in the world right now. These times remind me exactly why I decided to create a monthly gratitude journal. At times when it feels like all hope is lost in the world, it’s important to gain perspective and try to find the positives and all the lessons out of devastation. 

The world is changing, and we are being forced to adjust. This period is causing many of us to confront parts of ourselves that were unaddressed. The things you formally identified are being put into question. There are only so many distractions you can depend on to fill a void until you are forced to confront your feelings and reality. We are so used to running on autopilot, going through the motions of life and being consumed with our small selves. This has been a big wake up call for humanity that events may occur that are beyond our control that we cannot always predict or anticipate. This period has caused plenty of devastation that I don’t want to overlook- people losing their lives, jobs lost, economies going down. Society must be reconstructed after this and I hope that we all move towards the direction of creating a more equitable society.

I invite you to see all the blessings at this moment. Go within yourself and use this time to really explore what’s going on inside of you. Do the creative projects you’ve always wanted to do. Explore aspects of yourself that are often repressed through the day to day workings of life. Find peace in your silence. This too shall pass. Nothing lasts forever so use this time wisely even if that looks like resting. See this has as a long vacation indoors. Perspective is everything. You are being tested to make the best out of a difficult situation.

Question to You:

How are you coping with self-isolation?

 

Love Ash, xx

 

Side Effects of Avoiding Negative Emotions

Copy of The ugly truth about self love (12)

Do you typically avoid negative emotions or embrace them? Embracing the complexities of the human emotional experience is a good thing. It helps you to build a healthy relationship with yourself by validating and allowing yourself to feel. Of course, not every feeling needs to be acted upon especially if you find yourself repeating unhealthy behaviours. However, avoiding any negative emotions is an act of violence against your well-being.

I often see that people conflating emotions outside of joy as being a bad thing. In my opinion, I believe that this is undermining and dismissive. It also shames people for feeling genuine emotions over real-life situations. As much as you may do your absolute best to feel great all the time, you are going to have crappy days. That doesn’t make you a negative person. Embracing your feelings and accepting them is a sign of emotional maturity. It demonstrates that you are validating your emotional experience.

Problem with emotional avoidance:

  • The feelings you suppress come out later in life as unaddressed pain
  • You may find yourself experiencing random outburst of sadness
  • You may subconsciously project your negative feelings onto others
  • You may be avoiding finding solutions to your problems

When you approach negative feelings with ‘stay positive’ rhetoric, you end up preventing yourself from feeling your feelings. Behind your emotions may be unaddressed pain that manifests emotions like sadness, anger, etc. When you don’t allow yourself to uncover the truth behind your feelings, thoughts, and actions, you distract yourself from doing necessary healing work.

Additionally, I am a firm believer that you can’t fool the universe. What you avoid will always find a way to confront you eventually. Your negative feelings can manifest in the people you attract, the situations you find yourself in and so forth. Wouldn’t you rather deal with the temporary discomfort of your feelings instead of taking months/ years to clean up the damage caused by suppressing your feelings? I would choose the first option!

Here are some tips on how to deal with your emotions:

  • Learn to hold yourself when feeling low- What would you say to a child who’s feeling low? You wouldn’t shut them down by saying ‘stay positive’ (well I hope not). You would try to affirm them maybe by saying that ‘it’s okay to be sad, but things will be okay’. Learn to comfort yourself just like you would to a child and assure yourself that things are going to be okay.
  • Breathe- Do some breathing techniques to calm yourself down. You could try the 4-7-8 breathing rule or any other ones that you may find useful.
  • Journal- Write about how you are feeling. Focus on writing down the situation and emotions that cropped up for you. Then write down what methods you can try to make yourself feel better.
  • Remind yourself of your values- If you haven’t already, write down your values. Are your actions/emotions currently in alignment with the type of person you want to be? This helps you to put things into perspective and reminds you that in the longer-term certain emotions shall pass.

Life comes in cycles. We must become comfortable in seeing our life that way. Some days are harder than others but that’s life. We truly need to have moments of sadness so we can understand and appreciate life and its joys. Acceptance is where you become emotionally healthy and therefore practice self-validation.

A question to you:

Do you avoid negative emotions or embrace them?

I’d love to hear your thoughts!

 

Much Love, Ash xx

Goal Setting Planner and Wellness Worksheets

LIFE PLANNER (3)Hello guys,

I have a special surprise for you all.

I have made 14 printable planners and worksheets for FREE to download. Get your  printable PDF worksheets here.

Each sheet is perfectly sized to print in A4 or A5 format.

You can print them on whatever paper you’d like including Matte Finish, Card paper.  

These all-encompassing worksheets are made to help organisation different areas of yourself to meet your personal goals. Worksheets are an amazing tool for self-reflection and exploration. Writing is an excellent tool for personal growth, healing, self-exploration and creative expression.

  1. Short Term Goals
  2. Long Term Goals
  3. Goal Setting
  4. Weekly To Do List
  5. The Gratitude Journal
  6. Challenging Negative Thoughts 1
  7. Challenging Negative Thoughts 2
  8. Trash Thoughts
  9. I Keep My Cup Full
  10. Journal Prompts 1
  11. Journal Prompts 2
  12. Journal Prompts 3
  13. Life Improvement Tips
  14. Life Improvement Checklist

Continue reading “Goal Setting Planner and Wellness Worksheets”