I Hope You Stay You.

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I hope, at the end of the day, you’re you.

I hope that the fire in your soul fuels your bravery and the criticism of society burns in the flames.

I hope you love so freely that it scares people away and attracts the deepest friendships of your life.

I hope you spike your hot cocoa to stay warm and breathe in the crisp winter air because the contrast is sacred.

I hope you fall in love so bad it hurts and he only stays if he let’s you be exactly who you are.

I hope you always stay exactly who you are.

Never a dimmed light-

never a watered down version-

always, 100% you.

I hope you eat french fries and skip the salad once in a while.

I hope you call yourself beautiful.

I hope you look in the mirror and accept yourself for your own beauty ideal.

I hope you talk to yourself like you would talk to your best friend.

I hope you practice kindness and stay genuine.

I hope you aren’t afraid to feel sadness and learn how to carry it with you.

I hope that you inspire yourself to be brave and believe in yourself to be fearless.

I hope you know that you can do anything.

Whatever you want, just do it.

I hope that you care for others in a way that makes them love you to the ends of the earth and fight like hell for what you believe in.

I hope your beliefs are never shoved down the throats of others.

I hope you listen to the silence for all that it says.

I hope you listen just to listen and not to respond.

I hope that you are missed by the ones you love and miss those you adore.

I hope you remember to smile.

I hope you aren’t too hard on yourself.

I hope that someone finds that light of yours and let’s it shine as bright as ever before.

I hope no one tries to take away your spirit.

I hope you never let them.

I hope you never apologize for what isn’t in your control.

I hope that you share yourself if only so you feel more confident in who you are.

I hope you never change.

I will always hope, at the end of the day, that you are you.

Stay you.

Love,

Anna Marie ❤

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To Be Inspired

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To be inspired is to laugh so hard your body shakes. 

To hug someone who has continuously given you their time and love.

To breathe a sigh of relief after a big test.

You know that feeling when you can feel something inside you building?

Courage, determination, strength or pure happiness?

And then you finally approach that person or run that extra mile and you just feel… good.

Not good- inspired.

Inspiration is driven from chalk being twirled and pressed into concrete.

From 26 letters of the alphabet creating a novel that erupts passion.

From that one person you couldn’t live without whose presence sends your mood to the moon.

It’s biting into a piece of pizza and closing your eyes because the combination is just right as it dances on your tongue.

It’s that wave of heat that encompasses you as you step from painfully frozen air into a heated building.

It’s the excitement of a stranger saying “Good Morning” or smiling at you just because they are  swallowed in their own happiness.

Inspiration comes from new eyes searching the world around you.

From appreciating the moments that we so easily forget.

Taking our pants off.

Falling into a warm bed.

Stretching sore muscles.

It’s the way we look at ordinary days.

Because those ordinary days make up our lives.

That’s how we will create an inspired life- by living and breathing the beauty that goes into simply waking up in a comfortable home that was created by you.

Until Next Time,

Anna Marie

 

 

For The Ones Who Can’t Control It

ameDon’t you always just want a little more zest or a little less fear?

I was talking with my childhood best friend about how we both need to borrow a few qualities from one another. I tend to be the gal who’s feelings never ask my permission to start growing and developing and she tends to be the one who runs at any sign of attachment.

“I wish I could feel as much and as quickly as you do, it’s brave.”

“I wish I could think through people and reality before deciding the best way to go forward with someone.”

We all have our vices, we all have our strengths.

 

And I often care much too quickly and far too much.

I can’t help it. 

I can meet a stranger in a line to get our coffee and hear all about their awful day, go home and think for hours about how they are hopefully turning their night around.

I am an avid lover of stories and when people trust me with one of their tales, I instantly want to help, encourage or push them.

It’s truly an uncontrollable urge for me to get involved with every single person I meet. (Unless you’re really that awful.)

So when it comes to falling for someone in the romantic setting, I intimidate myself.

I didn’t choose the waterfall of emotions life, it chose me. 😉

Below I wrote a string of words about how falling feels for the ones who can’t control it.

I Fall. 

With the same inhibitions of a violent rainstorm, I’ll fall.

And if I fall, know that it was not my confidence that lead to every thought and feeling pouring out of me.

Know that I fell without knowledge, with subtle reluctance, with weary prayers and hope that I’ve clung to for years.

Know that I can’t help but fall for kind words and sweet memories and good mornings filled with laughter.

Know that I fall hard and quick, never pausing to recognize the fear my heart pumps through my veins or the caution my brain is trying to engage in.

With the same control of a raging river, I’ll fall.

Until next time,

Anna Marie 🙂

Impressing Women: Matured Adult Version

Do you want to know how to impress me?

Show me your mind. 

Tell me stories of your favorite places and why you love the music you do.

Share with me fears that drive you or keep you at bay.

Tell me what you think about religion and politics.

I want to see your eyes when you talk about what you believe in.

Tell me your biggest dreams.

Do you want to skydive over the ocean?

What brings the biggest smile to your face?

Share with me a piece of you that is beyond favorite colors. 

Tell me why the color blue resonates with you.

Is it the ocean? Is it your favorite football team?

You’re more than just your age.

Tell me how many struggles you’ve faced to make it that many years. 

Explain how your zodiac sign predicts your future and why your parents named you what they did.

Laugh with me about the memories you’ve created.

Cry with me about the hardest roadblocks you’ve had to overcome.

Have a conversation with me that is more than just asking about my major. Ask me WHY I chose it.

Do you believe in ghosts or heaven?

Tell me WHY you wish you could have the super power of invisibility.

Give me reasons to get excited. 

Share your passion with me.

Impress me with your depth of mind.

Make me THINK.

Don’t be afraid to dive into topics that show me how your mind works.

This is so much more impressive than a six pack or sculpted arms.

A great conversation is worth so much more than money or good looks.

It is a window into what makes you who you are and THAT is what I’m interested in.

I care more about the person you are then about the clothes you wear or the neighborhood you’re from.

Most importantly, I want to know WHY you became that person.

I want you to wonder the same thing about me.

Until Next Time,

Anna Marie

Dear Allie

“I’ve never gotten a real love letter, I’ve always written them.”

Every girl deserves a love letter, Allie. Especially you.

Dear Allie,

It’s not fair is it? That someone has never taken the time to sit down and write, carefully and thoughtfully, about how special you are. It isn’t fair at all and so here it is, your very first love letter. It’s not from someone who is in love with you or will ask for your hand in marriage but it’s from someone who considers you such a close friend and THAT says more than a boyfriend ever will.

I know every struggle, every tear, every shred of doubt you’ve faced and I plan to stick by your side for whatever comes in the future- just like you’ve done for me.

You have this light that cannot be described. When you walk into a room- your energy ignites warmth. It is kind, creative and filled with passion. You feel and love so deeply, Allie. Never stop opening your heart to people in this way. It is a strength that is learned and a fear so many people never challenge.

The way you embrace someone is inspiring. It is fierce and all at once. It is full and intricate. You see someone through their love for what makes them happy. You take that and you fuel them to become something beautiful. You stand by their side as if to never complete them, only to hold their hand if they start shaking.

That is beautiful.

And I know it’s left you broken.

Because sometimes people don’t know how to handle those whose passion is simply life.

But don’t you dare stop loving everything you do. Your art, your poetry and your creativity deserve the crazy fire you put into it. It spreads inspiration and cultivates the fire in others.

Your flame doesn’t go out by lighting others, you only create more light.

Never stop sharing your light, Allie.

Love,

Anna Marie

You Can Shine in Darkness

Shine

When it’s dark outside, demons have a way of crawling in-between the spaces I have created happiness in.

They take shape in memories and what if’s… always preaching about what I could have done or how I’ve failed.

They whine like wolves to my heart strings, screeching and howling until I bleed from the sound.

My demons slither beneath my skin and swallow any light I’ve found within me.

But I once heard you have to friend your enemies.

And I slowly deceived the demons. 

I let the wounds bleed and would dab at them with reminders of what I love to do when they were not looking.

I got to know them and their plan to control my happiness and I quietly learned the reasons behind their savageness. 

I crept silently into their world only to befriend the enemy and discover strategies of all different calibers. 

Only after the enemy tore my spirit limb from limb did I blast through the scars with a light so bright my eyes couldn’t remember the sight of darkness.

And I shined.

And I healed every wound with a petrifying force that created a warmth so compassionate the demons started weeping.

I started weeping.

And I won’t ever forget this feeling of what it once was to feel so dark inside that only my own happiness could cure the shadows.

Because I thought that every ounce of light had left me when it was always patiently sitting, waiting for when I was ready.

I’m ready now.

I’m shining.

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

The Terror of Leaving Home

11373964_164868337184836_54135550_nIts scary isn’t it?

You’re used to the way your bed fits in your room, the weird quirks of the microwave and the neighbors surrounding you.

You’re used to the neighbors and the dog that is constantly barking.

And now you want to move somewhere new. 

Why?

Maybe it’s the memories you have in this town or maybe you’ve just outgrown it’s borders.

Maybe you crave a new lifestyle or different weather.

Maybe you want to move to the mountains or the oceans.

There really is many reasons why you can love your home so much but still want to leave.

I’ve been fighting with this dilemma for a while now.

And to be honest, I don’t know if I want to stay because I’m scared, realizing I could really have some great opportunities here or just terrified of leaving my family.

On the other end, I don’t know if I want to leave because I’m running from something, naive or in love with the idea of starting over in a place I choose as everything I want out of a home.

It’s terrifying and exhilarating.

I have nothing and no one holding me back and that is the beauty and danger of being on your own.

You get to decide exactly what you want to do and it’s a lot of pressure when it comes down to it.

I have 9 months to decide where I’ll go and I don’t have any idea what my decision is yet although I’m leaning.

I’ve wanted to leave for even just a couple years, ever since I was little. I’ve wanted to go anywhere different from where I have been.

I think, but I’m not sure, that it is what I truly need to do. Maybe.

This plan has changed and twisted several times due to people and experiences and that’s okay, but now that I can dwell on me, myself and I, the clock is ticking.

I’ve grown a beautiful cocoon in this place I call home, but I think it may be time for me to spread my wings and fly somewhere else.

After all, I can always fly home.

Until tomorrow,

Anna Marie

Do you like you?

I love writing but some days I have to remind myself that I started doing it for my own growth and expression. So yes, depending on where I am in my life, I will be writing about tough times or insanely hilarious moments. I will be sharing stories and mysteries that race through my mind.

It’s kind of beautiful to get to know someone through their words and I believe that Inspired She Lives, in it’s purest form, is me. 

So enjoy as more words continue to flow out of me!

Raindrops drip purity 

They slide slowly, always lurking at our deepest flaws as if to spend the most time trying to understand them

Because they only know innocence

And are confused by what we call imperfection

Don’t you know what you’re worth?

Sunshine fights shadows to warm up how calloused we’ve become

It feels a lot like fighting ourselves to stay loving and kind

Oceans calm thousands just by washing our toes

Is that why waves retreat back into their selves after touching our pain?

Depths that were never explored and creatures left undiscovered

Maybe that is where all of our secrets go after crying to the sea

Tumbling through forests until we can finally hear our own thoughts

Is this how getting lost finally allows you to find yourself?

Dreaming of futures that we are scared to chase

Maybe this is what it’s like to get stuck in quick sand

Fighting and climbing until we create ourselves

Do you like the person who blinks at you through mirrors?

I don’t know how this passage came out of me but if I had to analyze myself, I’m sure I’m going through a lot of self-evaluations at this time in my life. I’m graduating college in the next year and with that, comes SO many big girl decisions! So at this exciting time in my life, I must consider what I want and who I am at this very moment.

I just can’t think too hard.

Happy Monday!

Until next time,

Anna Marie

This is What Strength Looks Like

Strength

Strength is tear soaked pillows and piles of crinkled tissue.

It’s hot tea filling up empty hands and warming up a heart gone cold.

Strength is taking a bite when you want to waste away.

It’s saying hello after the hardest goodbye.

Strength is good days and terribly awful minutes.

It’s writing a song or painting canvases full of splattered heart beats and memories.

Strength is pulling yourself out of the warmth of a blanket cocoon.

It’s peeling your heart off the sidewalk after an earth shattering quake.

The pieces will never fit back together but they remember the familiarity of what used to be there.

And you change.

Strength is saying yes to new adventures and fighting for everything you believe in.

It is loud and boastful or quietly accumulating.

It withers and swells each day.

Strength is feeling something so deeply it drowns you.

Strength is floating up from the abyss.

It is answering questions you’re scared of and letting someone hold your heart with their bare hands.

It is loving a place you’ve never been and leaving behind everything you know.

Strength is adventuring into the world.

It is embracing strangers.

It is curiosity for something beyond ourselves.

Strength is trusting yourself.

It is trusting others.

It is holding up those who are struggling to move forward and carrying on with them.

It is never forgetting the people who made you love.

It is always loving those who have made you who you are.

Strength is creating a better person when the air is filled with temptation.

It is forgiving when surrounded by betrayal.

Strength is constantly giving away kindness.

It is letting go and holding on and fighting in between.

Strength is forks in the road and lonely trails.

It is loving yourself and becoming your own friend.

It is acceptance.

It is fear.

Strength looks a lot like the reflection in the mirror.

Strength is YOU

– Anna Marie 🙂

P.S. This is dedicated to the ones I love who are struggling a little more than others today. We have good days and bad days when dealing with pain but as long as you are surrounded by love you will shine. I’ve been there and some days I’m still there but you always have to look forward to what might happen next with a big smile and an open heart. It’s easiest when you do what you love and forgive what you can’t control. You are STRONG!

All of my love.