The Gratitude Journal: May 19′

I'm thankful, grateful, appreciate (1)

Happy May guys!

I wanted to send out a humble reminder for this month-

In a world where we are constantly told that we need to change who we are in order to fit into societies standard of success and importance, it can be difficult to resist succumbing to everyone else’s expectations. I want to remind you that it is your birthright to be yourself. You don’t need to mould yourself into someone else in order to please others. The people who are meant to be on your journey will show up for you. Claim your space and follow your dreams. You have something special to offer this world and it is precisely your uniqueness that makes you so valuable. There is no other version of you and that is your superpower!

A Note to Self:

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Have a blessed month ❤

Questions to you:

What are you grateful for this month?

What are you looking forward to?

Much love Ash, xx

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Comparing Yourself to Others: Tips to Help and Affirmations

Copy of The ugly truth about self love (1)

 

 

Have you ever looked at someone’s social media account and found yourself comparing your life to theirs?  Suddenly your weaknesses are amplified and what you have is not good enough. Or maybe you have that one friend who seems to have it all together and reminds you of all the things you lack in your life.

Yes, I’ve been there! Plenty of times actually. Unfortunately, it’s something that many people experience and social media has made it even harder to escape this need to compare ourselves. We usually feel comparison the most when we perceive someone else as having something we want. For example: wanting a particular career and constantly seeing Tweets from people celebrating their achievements in that field. This can trigger us into feeling inadequate and lead us to wonder if it’s even going to happen for us.

Reasons why we compare ourselves:

  • Unsatisfied with your life
  • You feel like you’re working hard but not getting the results
  • Pressure from society; market capitalism telling us that everything that we lack in life can be remedied by buying products thus causing us to feel like we are always in a deficit
  • Lack of trust in your ability to receive those things someone else has
  • Your definition of success and happiness is based on other people’s perceptions

Sound familiar?

Here’s why you should stop comparing yourself:

Unfairly fleshing out your weaknesses and judging yourself based on someone else’s strengths is unkind and unfair. What you are failing to do in those moments is appreciate the blessings that are currently in your life.  Just because someone has what you want right now doesn’t mean it won’t happen for you eventually. Trust that things will fall into place when the time is right for you. Just do your best and continue to have faith that things will work out eventually. 

You might be comparing yourself to someone else’s middle. We are all at different stages of our journey called life. You never know the hurdles and sacrifices that person went through to get to where they are now. The majority of the time there’s a whole struggle behind what we see.  Even if you think or know that things came easy to a person and it feels like you are constantly struggling to obtain what they have, it’s a waste of time comparing yourself to them. Unfortunately for most of us, things don’t come easy and we have to go through plenty of obstacles to get to where we want to be in life. Don’t make those small examples (even though social media has a way of making them look like the majority) distort your reality. Don’t lose your ability to appreciate where you are now by solely focusing on the next destination.

Practical steps to help you stop comparing yourself:

1. Take social media breaks- I can’t emphasize this enough. Social media is a distorted version of reality with people trying to outdo the other. More importantly, taking breaks is good for your mental health. It makes you realize that there’s a life beyond social media to explore and nurture. Taking breaks allows you to gain appreciation for the little things in life.

2. Stop yourself when you start comparing yourself- When you find yourself sinking into comparing yourself, say to yourself ‘stop’. Grab a pen and paper or even your notes on your phone and answer these questions: 1. What happened to make you feel this way? 2. How do you feel? 3. What can I do to make myself feel better about this? If you do this every time, you will train yourself to deal with those feelings much better when they arise or even let them go completely.

3. Tune out the noise and focus on you- You need to be so focused on what you need to do and appreciate each step of the way that there’s absolutely no room for comparison to derail you. Imagine yourself in a bubble doing whatever makes you happy and pursuing your inner passion- focus on doing that or at least working towards it. Say no to any thoughts or people that ruin your peace.

4. Affirmations- Find affirmations that make you feel better about the insecurities you have about yourself and keep repeating them on a daily basis until you start to feel their positive effect. Affirmations are an excellent way to put things into perspective and will provide you with that reassurance that things will work out fine.

Affirmations:

“You alone are enough. You have nothing to prove to anyone” – Maya Angelou

“Don’t compare your life to others. There’s no comparison between the sun and the moon. They shine within their own time” – Unknown

“Admire her beauty without questioning your own” – Ashley Welborne

“Compare yourself to the person you were yesterday”- Unknown

“Comparison is and will always be the thief of all joy.”  Lisa Nichols

 

Questions to You:

Have you ever compared yourself to others?

 

Thanks for reading Love Ash, xx

 

Lack of Self-Belief: Personal Confessional and Tips to Help

Copy of The ugly truth about self love (1)

 

Is your lack of self-belief holding you back? You might want to create a wonderful life for yourself but a part of you feels like you are not good enough to achieve it. As 2018 is coming to an end I think it’s the perfect time to talk about something that can really have an impact on the upcoming year.

Low self-belief comes from an overarching message that you aren’t good enough. Suffering from low self-belief takes different forms in a person’s life. For example; avoiding pursuing your dreams because you don’t believe you can pull it off or feel uncomfortable to talk about yourself at social events. For some of us, self-belief doesn’t come naturally and is one of our biggest obstacles coming in the way of manifesting the life we want.

A lack of self-belief does not come in a vacuum. Many of us who suffer or have suffered from low self-esteem can trace the root causes back to our childhood or a negative experience that has affected the way we see ourselves. This is definitely true from my experience. I can trace this back to my school experiences. I always I tried hard in school but I would never get the grades to reflect my efforts. I didn’t have the experience of teachers who believed in me- in fact, they would usually undermine my capabilities by giving me low targets to meet. I believed I had the potential to do really well but my efforts were never acknowledged nor rewarded. When you’re the only one in your corner fighting to be better, it can be isolating and debilitating to one’s self-esteem especially when you put effort behind what you want to do. This experience ultimately created a sense of doubt in my ability to pursue my dreams.

At the end of 2017 I decided to embark on a journey of self-discovery which became the catalyst for working on my self-belief. I wanted to be self-confident and have believe in my potential to pursue my passion. I began searching for information that would help me and I remember coming across a video. She said something so simple yet it shifted my way of thinking: “ No Matter What”. For me those words mean having unwavering faith in my potential and capabilities no matter what obstacles I faced.  No matter what means believing in myself when others don’t recognize my potential. Those words mean that negative experiences are simply adding character to my journey and not evidence against my capabilities.

I wrote down a few declarations at the beginning of 2018 to help me on my journey towards truly believing in myself and they’re working extremely well. If you’re currently going through this battle, they should help you too.

Here are three declarations to make to yourself:

  1. No matter what- No matter what you go through you have to believe that you will make it through anything and be victorious. You have to make a declaration that nothing is going to take you out of this thing called life, despite how painful and hard it can be at times. Even if it takes you a long time to achieve your goals, you will not give up on yourself and will continue to take steps towards manifesting your dreams. The failures that you experience are lessons and teach you important life lessons that will ultimately lead to your success.
  2. If others can do it, so can I- There’s so much information available now that you can create a life for yourself unimaginable before. There are people out there who have experienced similar obstacles as you but have still been able to live their dreams. Even if you’re still figuring out how (I’m in the same boat), just know that we all start somewhere and sometimes you’ve just got to do it anyways and figure it out along the way. You possess all the qualities within you to live your version of success and happiness. There’s room for all of us to win, and a spot has been made for you to fill, if you put in the consistency and patience required.
  3. I am deserving of a great life- You deserve to wake up every morning and feel grateful for the things you have in your life. You deserve to live the life you’ve always envisioned for yourself. This is your world! Look at all the obstacles you’ve had to overcome to get to this point. You’re not on this earth to suffer but to live your best life.

And finally…

Having self-belief certainly does not come overnight. It’s still something that I struggle with and just like any other part of self-development, it’s a process which takes time. If you’re struggling with this, I want you to know that it’s not too late to start now. Even if you don’t fully believe in yourself, try living like you already have self-believe and trust me your life will change. Why not try a new feeling outside of doubt, worry and lack of self-confidence?

10 Affirmations: 

  • I am my biggest supporter
  • No matter what happens in life I can handle it
  • Nothing is going to take me out of this race called life
  • I refused to believe I am on this earth to suffer
  • I am not going to stop until I live my purpose
  • My faith in self is too big for anything to stop me!
  • In times of uncertainty, I will allow my inner child to guide me into following my dreams
  • I am proud of all of my accomplishments, even when they’re small
  • No matter how it takes me, I will manifest the life that I want
  • I will move towards my dreams, even if it’s a crawl on some days

Have you suffered or are currently suffering from a lack of self-belief? What are your experiences?

What is your personal development goal for 2019?

Love Ash, xx

Fear of not being Good Enough

Copy of The ugly truth about self love (5)

Living in your passion is what many of us strive to achieve in this life. When you decide to take that first step into doing what you love, it can be the most liberating feeling ever. However doing something out of your comfort zone and playing bigger than ever before can evoke unintended feelings of inadequacy. You find that the very thing you’re passion about is shared among other people. You find yourself competing among people who are very established in your industry and appear to have it all figured out.

I’ve had my fair share of negative experiences when trying to finally show myself to the world and step into my passion/s (politics, blogging). One instance that stuck with me was going to a networking event which turned out to be more like a popularity contest. If you didn’t dress a certain way or have a social media following, you were quite frankly overlooked and ignored. As someone who had just started putting myself out there I quickly felt like I didn’t belong and started believing that I lacked the ability to be successful. This experience in particular made me scared to put myself out there in fear of rejection. But by suppressing what I loved I missed out on some good opportunities that could have been beneficial to my personal growth and development.

At the beginning of the year I decided that I wasn’t going to hide away any longer just because I’m new to an industry/space. Even if I’m only recognised by a few I told myself I would produce unapologetically. This gave birth my blogging journey which I put off for a few years. I was adamant not to let anyone make me feel like I don’t belong. To test this new mantra I started going to a few events/talks that I’m passionate about so that I could better my craft. My highlight so far this year was going to my first my bloggers event called #blackbloggersuk where I met some amazing, genuine people.

These are a few words of advice I am interchangeably learning from others and through my own experiences:

1. We all start from somewhere- Whether you’re trying to grow a business, a blog or break into a particular industry, we all start from somewhere. A lot of people who you perceive as successful have been doing the work for many years and built their way up. You can’t compare the beginning or interim part of your journey to someone who’s been in the game longer than you.  And yes there will be people who receive their lucky break overnight or at a quicker pace than you through connections or by chance. However just because someone’s got their quicker than you, it doesn’t mean you won’t either. Our journeys aren’t meant to look the same. Trust that your journey will lead you to somewhere profound.

2. There’s room for all of us to win- Don’t let anyone make you feel like you don’t belong. Conflated egos and huge personalities can sometimes makes us feel inferior and as though we are playing where we don’t compete. Remember that just by virtue of being your true self, you have something special to add to any space you’re entering!

3. Feel the fear and do it anyways- It can be super scary getting out of your comfort zone. You might have to start talking to people you never imagined, or go to that networking event and finally promote that business you’ve been planning for years. The fear of failure can force us into convincing ourselves that it’s not worth stepping into our passion or stalling for the ‘right time’. But remember that any loss you take you can rise back from. You have to believe that no failure is big enough to stop you from living your potential. You don’t want to live your life constantly regretting your inaction so just what you love anyways and have faith that things will eventually figure itself out.

4. Every mistake is a lesson- Your blog layout isn’t the best (coming for myself lol) or you’re unsure whether your mixtape bangs. But who said you’re going to figure out everything overnight? Don’t be afraid to try different things and see what works for you. All the mistakes/ misjudgments you make will be a lessons that can be used to your benefit. Instead of striving for perfection, just experiment. Remember this is a learning process so don’t be harsh on yourself!

Have you ever experienced this feeling before?

What advice would you give to someone who’s starting a new career/hobby and feelings out of place?

Leave your thoughts!