STRESS: Make It A Manageable Beast

relax

Question- What’s your stress level on a regular basis?  You are probably wondering, “Tiff, what does that have to do with beauty, style or inspiration?”…well, it has a lot to do with how healthy, vibrant, aware, sharp, peaceful and powerful you feel.  Constant stress is carried on your face and will dull your light and not to mention over time it can cause serious dis-ease in your body. So, let’s discuss this because I am personally checking in with myself and my own stress levels on a regular basis and I find everywhere I turn people are just out-of-their-mind STRESSED OUT!  This is no way to live ladies. LIFE IS SHORT!

I’m about to keep it very real here…

In the past I lived in a constant state of high anxiety because I had not healed through my issues and like many people I numbed myself with drugs and alcohol. A friend convinced me to see a doctor and of course, they put me on anti-depressants, anti-anxiety pills and ambien to sleep because I would be so amped up from the other pills.  WHEW! It’s a vicious cycle with this stuff and I couldn’t function long on all these RX’s.  For me, the only thing that worked to calm the nerves was to turn to God, begin red flagging my stressors and begin a serious spiritual practice of prayer & journaling. As I began to crack open my spirit and face my issues, I was more in tune with myself and the things, situations and PEOPLE that stressed me out. Learning to manage your stress will change your life and the lives of those around you!  It truly effects every area of our lives:

  • Sleep Difficulties
  • Loss of Appetite or Over-eating
  • Lack of Concentration
  • Sloppy performance on the job
  • Anti-social Behavior
  • Abusing Alcohol or Drugs
  • Nervous Habits
  • Short Temper
  • Poor Memory

Does that sound about right? Make it a priority to check in with yourself on a regular basis and deal with the stress so it doesn’t grow into an unmanageable beast.

Stress-img

Here’s 20 tips I have found to help:

  1. Do not keep things bottled up! Talk to someone you trust to help you work through it.
  2. Spend time daily doing an activity you love. (I clear my head with a long powerwalk)
  3. Improve your diet! Eating vitamin rich foods and avoiding junk with preservatives will keep your nervous system functioning properly. Add a B complex supplement too!
  4. Simplify! This is so important but very difficult for “busy bodies”. Stop taking on too many activities at once. You know the popular saying, “my plate is so full”. Well, change that!
  5. Stop rushing! When you feel panicked or rushed, STOP- sit quietly, take a deep breath and regain your composure.
  6. Keep a zen-like peaceful environment at work and at home.
  7. Be present! Don’t put too much thought into the future or the past. Enjoy the NOW!
  8. Avoid unrealistic expectations on yourself and others! Whew- this will alleviate a ton of stress.
  9. Get enough sleep!
  10. Exercise  more! It produces “feel good” chemicals.
  11. Take note of your moods! Ladies, we have those pesky hormones to deal with so be aware of how you’re feeling emotionally and cut yourself a break when you need to.
  12. Explore relaxation methods: Yoga, walking, journaling, listening to soothing music, hiking, etc.
  13. Express yourself! If you feel sad, allow yourself a good cry. If you’re angry, express it constructively. (Breaking plates not allowed)
  14. Love people and use things! Not the other way around. Walking in love is a huge stress reducer. Drop the ego.
  15. Take a techno break! Unplug the phone, stay off the computer, don’t watch TV. Often these things bring major stress into our life and we don’t even realize it.
  16. Learn the power of saying “NO”.  This brings tons of stress on many woman. Being a ‘people pleaser’ will ultimately stress you out and build resentment!
  17. Do not use crutches! Food, cigarettes, drugs or alcohol will also ultimately add to your stress instead of the temporary relief of it.
  18. Avoid boredom! Period.
  19. Surround yourself with positive peeps!  Stress and negativity are contagious so hang out with positive, uplifting friends.
  20. Get in touch with the little kid inside you on a regular basis!  Try to have more fun and find things that give you a good belly laugh every once in a while.

Most important thing of all – GRACE!  It gives you the strength and power to get done what you need to even when you think you can’t. Tap into it.

Have a beautiful weekend sistas!

Love, Tiff

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Free Yourself With The Gift Of Forgiveness

Happy September Sistas!

We have all made poor choices which can leave a trail of emotional destruction…within us.  I know I sure have!  Can you recall making a choice like this? The type of choice that leaves that trail along with wounds of shame, self-loathing, anger and disappointment. When you add all of those things together.. whew, talk about a recipe for destruction! Yesterday, I realized that this week-the week after Labor Day- 15 years ago I made this type of choice. A choice based solely out of fear. I had an abortion. There I said it. The Positive Polly, Style Coach and Spiritual Mentor you all know made one of the poorest choices EVER and is admitting it. I do so freely because I know many of you reading this right now have also made this choice. Often, I share this story with my on-on-one coaching clients and in workshops, but today- I feel it may help many of you here on this community. 

At that time in my life, I had turned my back on God, buried the trauma from my past and was on a path of self-destruction with any type of substance, toxic relationship or emotion numbing activity I could find. The last thing I could do was be a good mother. I had always said, “I will not be a screwed up girl raising a screwed up child.” On my birthday that year, I stood in my bathroom alone and looked down at 2 positive pregnancy tests. Happy Freakin’ Birthday Tiff.  Honestly, I did not even contemplate ANY other option than abortion. I was not in a serious, healthy relationship with the father and I had already planned to move to LA the following January. This was NOT in my plans. The internal butt-kicking began. “How could I be so stupid to have unprotected sex? You idiot! Mama will be so disappointed in you. No, I can’t tell her. I can’t tell anyone! Not even my best friend!” I decided I would carry this choice all alone. I wouldn’t want to shatter their “Miss Perfect” image of me. 

The day came to have the procedure and it was like a bad nightmare. I was dropped off at the front door alone with not a soul to escort me in and hold my hand. This was my choice. Although it was 15 years ago, it feels like yesterday as I recall the whole thing. When I woke up, there were several other girls of all ages in one recovery room. Every head hung low and eyes filled with shame. No one would look at each other directly in the eye. The shame I carried from my past was intensified to a whole new level which was out of this stratosphere. I will bury it. I will add a new mask to my collection. FEAR FEAR FEAR.. the worst F-word there is was officially the leader of the pack now. There was no room for self-love, acceptance, Faith, hope or happiness. They were all shoved to the back of the line for a very long time.

THEN THERE WAS GOD!

As I write this today, I can honestly admit that I am free….yes, one of the greatest F-words…FREE! When I slowly began turning my life back to God, which was just a glance over my shoulder for a while, I began understanding the Power of Forgiveness. “Psychologists generally define forgiveness as a conscious, deliberate decision to release feelings of resentment or vengeance toward a person or group who has harmed you, regardless of whether they actually deserve your forgiveness.” [via http://greatergood.berkeley.edu]  

I asked God to forgive me of this poor choice, this sin- but it was imperative that in order to have true freedom, I had to also forgive myself. I had to…yes, HAD TO release the toxic feelings of resentment and hatred towards myself. A deliberate decision, not half-heartedly, but completely and without restraint- the decision to give myself the gift…the freedom of forgiveness. In order to heal and move on with life we MUST give ourselves this gift. God forgives us so let’s take His example and do the same for ourselves. Unforgiveness keeps you stuck like your feet, your heart and soul are in hardened concrete. When I forgave myself, the concrete shattered. HELLO FREEDOM! I have moved on! That deserves repeating.. I HAVE MOVED ON! 

OUR POOR CHOICES DO NOT DEFINE US!

Many of us allow our past and poor choices to define us. It’s time to redefine YOU! Is there a choice you’ve made that you are holding unforgiveness toward yourself for today? Are you allowing it to destroy you, your life and your happiness? Do you feel stuck? Give yourself Grace today. Give yourself the Gift of Forgiveness. Give yourself Love. Do not allow the unforgiveness to rob you of one more day. You are more courageous than you realize. Take a sledge hammer to the concrete and…..

FREE YOURSELF! 

Love, Tiff

CHILLAX: Stress Management

Hey Junebugs!

Question- What’s your stress level on a regular basis?  You are probably wondering, “Tiff, what does that have to do with beauty, style or inspiration?”…well, it has a lot to do with how healthy, vibrant, aware, sharp, peaceful and powerful you feel.  Constant stress is carried on your face and will dull your light not to mention over time it can cause serious dis-ease in your body. So let’s discuss this because I am personally “checking myself” and my own stress levels more than normal lately and I find everywhere I turn people are just out-of-their-mind STRESSED OUT!  This is no way to live ladies. LIFE IS SHORT!

I’m about to keep it very real here…

I use to live stressed out all the time with high anxiety because I had not healed through my past and like many people I numbed myself with drugs and alcohol to begin with. Then a friend convinced me to see a doctor and of course, they put me on anti-depressants, anti-anxiety pills and ambien to sleep because I would be so amped up for the other pills.  WHEW! It’s a vicious cycle with this stuff and I couldn’t function long on all these RX’s.  For me, the only thing that worked to calm the nerves was to red flag my stressors and begin a serious spiritual practice of prayer and journaling plus there’s nothing like a good old fashioned long walk to clear your head. Learning to manage your stress will change your life and the lives of those around you!  It really effects every area of our lives:

  • Sleep Difficulties
  • Loss of Appetite or Over-eating
  • Lack of Concentration
  • Sloppy performance on the job
  • Anti-social Behavior
  • Abusing Alcohol or Drugs
  • Nervous Habits
  • Short Temper
  • Poor Memory

Does that sound about right? Make it a priority to check in with yourself on a regular basis and deal with the stress so it doesn’t grow into an unmanageable beast.

Here’s 20 tips I have found to help:

  1. Do not keep things bottled up! Talk to someone you trust to help you work through it.
  2. Spend time daily doing an activity you love. (I hike or powerwalk)
  3. Improve your diet! Eating vitamin rich foods and avoiding junk with preservatives will keep your nervous system functioning properly. Add a B complex supplement too!
  4. Simplify! This is so important but very difficult for “busy bodies”. Stop taking on too many activities at once. You know the popular saying, “my plate is so full”. Well, change that!
  5. Stop rushing! When you feel panicked or rushed, STOP- sit quietly, take a deep breath and regain your composure.
  6. Keep a zen-like peaceful environment at work and at home.
  7. Be present! Don’t put too much thought into the future or the past. Enjoy the NOW!
  8. Avoid unrealistic expectations on yourself and others! Whew- this will alleviate a ton of stress.
  9. Get enough sleep!
  10. Exercise  more! It produces “feel good” chemicals.
  11. Take note of your moods! Ladies, we have those pesky hormones to deal with so be aware of how you’re feeling emotionally and cut yourself a break when you need to.
  12. Explore relaxation methods: Yoga, walking, journaling, listening to soothing music, hiking, etc.
  13. Express yourself! If you feel sad, allow yourself a good cry. If you’re angry, express it constructively. (Breaking plates not allowed)
  14. Love people and use things! Not the other way around. Walking in love is a huge stress reducer. Drop the ego.
  15. Take a techno break! Unplug the phone, stay off the computer, don’t watch TV. Often these things bring major stress into our life and we don’t even realize it.
  16. Learn the power of saying “NO”.  This brings tons of stress on many woman. Being a ‘people pleaser’ will ultimately stress you out and build resentment!
  17. Do not use crutches! Food, cigarettes, drugs or alcohol will also ultimately add to your stress instead of the temporary relief of it.
  18. Avoid boredom! Period.
  19. Surround yourself with positive peeps!  Stress and negativity are contagious so hang out with positive, uplifting friends.
  20. Get in touch with the little kid inside you on a regular basis!  Try to have more fun and find things that give you a good belly laugh every once in a while.

Most important thing of all – GRACE!  It gives you the strength and power to get done what you need to even when you think you can’t. Tap into it.

Let’s not be one of those women who constantly whines and complains about how stressed out she is.  You know that gal!  They talk about it all the time, but do nothing to change it.  Make it a priority.  Make your peace + joy a priority.  I promise it will keep away the lines between your eyes and help you to shine your light as you should, my sista! 

REMEMBER: Fun giveaways every week this summer! I’m excited to share my fave self-tanner products with you from Colour Couture and fun unique items from Luscious Soul, a fun eclectic boutique in Thousand Oaks, CA and much more! To participate, you must be a subscriber to this blog (you can enter your email at the top right of the page) and a follower on the Facebook Page. Check in and join the conversation, make comments and each week one “commenter” will be chosen to win. This week is a fun one- I’ve asked “What was the first “fashionable” item you remember loving as a kid?” The responses so far have been so fun. Everything from jellies to patent leather Go-Go boots to Jordache Jeans and Vans!

If you have a friend who you know this post could help, please share it with her! Follow the links below. You can post it to Google+ or even email it.

I’m grateful you are part of this Style Sisterhood!

With love + gratitude,

Tiff