I Vow, 2017.

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I vow to worry less about others love for me and work harder to give that love to myself.

I vow to breathe through anxiety and put myself first.

I vow to say no without an explanation and feel comfortable doing so.

I vow to love fiercely in every way possible.

I vow to be vulnerable and real.

I vow to not let the fear of judgement control who I am.

I vow not to measure my success by the amount of likes on a picture or the amount of compliments in person.

I vow to keep some goals to myself and smash the hell out of them.

I vow to let go of could-bes and things that don’t work out.

I vow to truly take in the moments that make me carefree.

I vow to say what’s on my mind even if it isn’t what someone agrees with.

I vow to minimize the “stuff” I purchase and save it for the experiences I can live.

I vow to be open and genuine.

I vow to never numb myself to joy for fear of feeling pain later on.

I vow to say sorry less, to stop apologizing for who I am.

I vow to keep feeling every single emotion fullly and showing the world how it should be done.

I vow to call myself beautiful and believe it.

I vow to work through rejection in an effort to better myself.

I vow to have more courage to tell someone how I feel only for the sake of them knowing.

I vow to always find hope in any incredible amount of darkness I face.

I vow to accept that which I cannot change and move forward in the direction I’ve been pushed and pulled.

I vow, for one year, to give every ounce of love to myself so that others know how it should be done.

I vow, for one year, to be exactly who I am in the most kind and genuine way possible. 

I vow, for one year, to put my happiness utterly and completely before anyone else’s. 

I will always keep pushing, keep striving and keep growing.

I will never give up.

Love,

Anna Marie

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What are you doing?

I’m going to tell you something.

In this moment, no one cares about what you’re doing.

No one cares if you’re reading a book or watching Netflix.

No one is wondering if you’re deciding to put on make up or going to curl your hair.

No one wants to know if you went on a 6 mile run or walked ten steps to the bathroom.

These moments, every moment, is about you.

I’m giving you the freedom to understand that you are allowed to be selfish.

I’m also telling you that it is completely up to you what you do.

If you choose to watch Netflix while munching on the nearest snack food for 8 straight hours, is that going to get you to your “dream life” that you ponder every so often?

Is skipping class going to give you satisfaction?

We tell our friends, family and strangers our plans, our goals and our dreams.

I want to lose weight, I want to read 20 books this next year, I want to put my phone down more often.

In the end though, we find ourselves stuck in this place that is stagnant and comfortable.

We are laying in bed thinking how much EASIER it would be to just not do anything.

It sure would, wouldn’t it?

That’s the difference between creating a life full of pushing boundaries  or staying where you are. 

The need to be able to push yourself and motivate yourself every single day.

The hunger for success whether it be to eat more vegetables or smile at strangers.

The satisfaction upon completing a goal you’ve been working at for months.

No one cares what you are doing right now.

But these days that you stay stuck will turn into weeks and those weeks into months and those months into years until you realize that this is your life. 

We have all thought about where we want to be in a few years but it doesn’t just magically happen.

We have to strive and push ourselves every single day for it.

We create our lives by doing things that make us happy.

So what are you going to do today that will make you happy? Not comfortable, but happy.

Until Next Time,

Anna Marie

The Spoil Yourself Project

If you live your life in any way, shape or form that resembles mine, you are a giver. You constantly are trying to console, advise or listen to those around you and sometimes you completely forget about the person who might need all of those things the most- you.

It’s not that we don’t love being there for others because believe me, it’s built into our DNA. However, I have been told quite a few times that I should just take a breather and focus a bit on what I want out of life and begin to do certain things just for me.

We have our dreams but are we doing anything to get us there? We have the ideal person we imagine ourselves to be but you will never be that person unless you start to work at it right NOW.

So here are a few simple things you can do to start something I have named the “Spoil Yourself Project”. Simply because I keep forgetting to do things that will make me a happier person. Therefore if I write them down and PLAN them, I do it and take that step closer to the person I want to become.

IMG_78711. Make a list of things you love to do or things that make you happy. I wrote down everything from painting my nails to laying in bed with the Christmas lights on and candles lit. Make it endless. Do you love walks by the river? Reading books? Make a giant list of what you love that makes you happy.

2. Do you have a planner? Schedule an item for EVERY day of the week. That’s right, you should be doing something for yourself every single day. Write it down so you can cross it off and feel good about accomplishing something simply for YOU that day. Maybe even just schedule a time you want to do something for yourself and then take a look at your list and choose. It’s truly up to you.

3. When you are doing whatever task you want, make sure you relish in the moment. Don’t treat it like a chore because it will defeat the entire purpose of spoiling yourself. Now is the time to focus on YOU and it’s important to appreciate the small joys that are a part of your being.

4. GO! Hop to it and eventually, you won’t even need a penciled in reminder that you should be doing something for your well-being every single day.

Best of luck with the ones who need to be spoiled by themselves.

Until Next Time,

Anna Marie

Summer Days, New Ways

It is officially summer for those college kids who have been crying over their last finals and praying for the projects to end.

This summer, I have a lot of trips planned and memories to be shared and cannot wait to see what the sunshine brings. To start, I have decided that this summer is going to focus a lot on myself. I am going to start new habits and new routines that will make me feel like the days I have nothing to do are filled to the brim with relaxation, learning and happiness and I feel like you should do the same if you have the opportunity to.

Starting off small, I created an imaginary list of things I enjoy and how I can incorporate that into my summer.

Here are a few hobbies I am adding to my list. I feel like by doing a few things I wasn’t able to do during a hectic semester, I will feel a lot better about how I am making use of my time. Take ideas from me or add to them, either way it’s time to take advantage of the better weather and abundance of hours.

Reading plenty of books: Have I ever mentioned what I book worm I used to be? I can’t say I still am because I honestly haven’t had time in the past school year to pick up a new novel. However, summer is the best time to reconnect with novels I have wanted to read and to get lost in stories that aren’t my own.

Yoga/Fitness: Ahhhh the excuses I was able to make during school. Most of them were true, but this summer I want to amp up my work out routine now that I have plenty of time for it. I am hoping to hit harder into yoga and find other fun activities at my local campus fitness building (free group classes!) or just even taking a walk by the river.

Photography/Videography: I have had a few friends ask me to do some projects for them which I know will keep me busy before I head on these sporadic trips I have planned throughout the summer. I will be honing my editing skills and looking for new ways to challenge myself because this summer is all about advancing what I know I can do.

Cooking: My mac and cheese game is strong but I need to learn how to cook an actual meal. I plan on looking up a few simple recipes and mastering them by the end of the summer. This has never been a strong suit of mine but I figure that if I have time on my hands I won’t mind learning a new skill.

Blogging up a storm: with YOU! That’s right. Now I am able to focus more on Inspired She Lives and amp up ideas, content, engage with you all and so much more! I am excited that today is the start of an incredible summer ahead. I am looking forward to what it will bring.

What are your summer goals? Think of them in your head and hop to it!

Today isn’t going to make itself great, you’re going to have to push it along.

Until tomorrow,

Anna Marie

The Art of Being Thankful

In a world that demands more, more, more, it’s hard to appreciate how hard we’ve worked and the accomplishments we’ve made. As soon as we complete something, there’s another goal ahead of us, another milestone to reach or another level to advance to.

Let’s just stop for a second and do what’s forbidden. Let’s take a look at your past, even if we aren’t headed that way.

In the past year, what goals did you meet? What did you get done that was a weight off of your shoulders? Are we allowed to high five ourselves for staying sane in world that demands continuity in everything we do? If so, high five to you, if not, under the table fist bump.

We don’t get enough time to reflect on what we do well and appreciate the time we had to get where we are right now. The bad part about the future is most of us are always looking there instead of just being here. I don’t know about you but here is a great place to stay.

Let’s keep this short, sweet, and to the point, eh?

Today, I want to be grateful and thankful for the struggles I’ve been through and the goals I’ve met. I want to raise a toast to those of us who keep reaching for more even when we’ve done so much. Let’s say cheers to the people we’ve become because of the roadblocks we’ve encountered and the hurtles we’ve cleared. It’s a special day to be alive and we won’t get another day like this one.

Let’s live today a little less seriously and allow a breath or two. In a fast paced world, we deserve it. Call your mom or grandma and say I love you because you can. Thank your significant other for being the peanut butter to your jelly. Let your dog give you a sloppy kiss because you know how much he loves you. Even if it’s just for five minutes. Stop and appreciate how far you’ve come.

thankyouAnd now for my huge thank you, it goes to all of you reading this and those who have chosen to read what I have to say before and were amazingly kind to follow Inspired She Lives. In the past few days, Inspired She Lives published their 30th post and reached a few milestones pictured over there. Thank you for your readership and I hope you have a fabulous rest of your day.

Until Monday,

Anna Marie