How To Have A Healthy Mind

Have you ever noticed that you feel different after you listen to your favorite song or motivational audio? What we listen to during the day can have a positive or negative effect on our moods. However, if I’m being honest, who we follow on social media and what we allow ourselves to take in from our “favorite Instagram pages” has an effect on us as well. It’s very important to be mindful of what you’re allowing in your mental space. Start being intentional about everything especially with what you’re feeding your mind. Be very careful of the story you’re telling yourself about certain situations and lastly, do your best not to overwhelm yourself with scenarios that won’t matter 5 days from now.

Always remember that the enemy has a way of easing us into thinking negatively and before you know it, you’re in a full-blown argument and you have no idea how all of it started. 9 times out of 10, it’s because we have allowed something or someone to get into our head and then we’re left to put the broken pieces together and maybe have to apologize. Just be careful! There’s a spiritual warfare going on all around us that we can’t see with the natural eye so the next time someone says something to you that you deem to be blatantly absurd just remember Ephesians 6:12

12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Focusing on having a healthy mind is very important if you’re going to live in the world today. Keep yourself vibrating high. Release all negative energy by journaling, meditating, going for a walk, being with people who bring you joy but mainly, by praying and asking your God to protect your mind, body, and soul.

Be Blessed!

Yoga vs The Gym

I attended Hot Yoga classes at Magnolia Yoga Studio here in New Orleans at the end of January to the end of February. I signed up for their 30 classes for 30 dollars and it was amazing!!!! First off, it was my first time trying hot yoga and I didn’t know what to expect for my first class. I didn’t know how hot it’d be but I wore pants during the first class and that was it for me. The following classes I wore shorts and a sports bra. I have completed my classes but I do see myself investing in more classes towards the 3rd quarter within this year. I decided during that time because I still have my gym membership, which is enough for now.

 

Benefits of Yoga: I wrote a post here about the “7 Healthy Benefits Of Yoga” along with those health benefits, yoga also helps with balance, focus and I found it to be spiritual as well. At the end of each class, each instructor told us to honor ourselves by showing up today and we all said at the end of class, together “Namaste” which means to thank the teacher or use as an expression of relief upon the ending of class.

 

What did I learn from Yoga: Honestly, I wouldn’t say that there’s anything new that I learned while in yoga but there are some things that were highlighted such as focus. It takes pure focus on yourself in the mirror to balance out each pose when the person next to you is falling down or coming out of the pose early. Another thing that was highlighted to me while in yoga class was the power of being your own cheerleader in your head. So many times I had to push myself mentally through poses by being the biggest cheerleader in my head. I once heard a quote by Henry Ford “If you think you can or if you think you can’t, both are usually right.” I correlate that to yoga because if you think you can’t hit a pose without even trying, you’re right because you haven’t given yourself the opportunity to try. While in yoga class, you should do your absolute best to hit every pose. It doesn’t matter if you do the pose and come out of it early, what matters most is you showing up and trying. Honor yourself for that along!

What do I gain from going to the gym? The gym is my place!!! Read here about my Fitness Journey here. I love going to the gym because I am working on the target areas where I feel I need to improve. While in yoga, I’m not hitting those target areas because that’s not what yoga entails.

Overall, I would say that it’s a healthy balance to have both memberships but if you’re like me and you’re focused on specific areas, I would say get a gym membership but if you want to work on your balance and focus by pushing yourself and trying different poses, get a yoga membership. Either one works and there’s no such thing as being too healthy or too active.

 

 

7 Healthy Benefits of Yoga

I’ve always wanted to start practicing yoga and this year I decided to invest in a month worth of hot yoga classes from Magnolia Yoga Studio here in New Orleans. So far, I’ve completed two classes without walking out, lol! The first class was 60 mins and the second was 90 mins. Honestly, the first class I felt as if I was going to fall out but I continued pushing myself to the end. I was very proud of myself for being able to focus and be my own cheerleader in my head. I kept telling myself, “You can do this P! Look around you, everyone’s pushing themselves to their maximum potential. Just keep going.” I pushed myself to do all of the poses and it felt great! I plan to do yoga at least 3 times a week along with going to the gym. Yoga is how I am practicing self-care this year. If you’re not familiar with my self–care regimen read more about it here.

Helps you to focus

An important component of yoga is focusing on the present. Studies have found that regular yoga practice improves coordination, reaction time, memory, and even IQ scores.

Joint Support

By gently taking joints ankles, knees, hips & shoulders through their range of motion, asana helps keep them strong, which researchers say may help keep you moving freely in athletic and everyday pursuits as you age.

Improves flexibility

Improved flexibility is one of the first and most obvious benefits of yoga. During your first class, you probably won’t be able to touch your toes, never mind do a backbend. But if you stick with it, you’ll notice a gradual loosening, and eventually, seemingly impossible poses will become possible. You’ll also probably notice that aches and pains start to disappear.

Increase blood flow

Yoga gets your blood flowing. More specifically, the relaxation exercises you learn in yoga can help your circulation, especially in your hands and feet. Yoga also gets more oxygen to your cells, which function better as a result. Twisting poses are thought to wring out venous blood from internal organs and allow oxygenated blood to flow in once the twist is released. Inverted poses, such as Headstand, Handstand, and Shoulderstand, encourage venous blood from the legs and pelvis to flow back to the heart, where it can be pumped to the lungs to be freshly oxygenated.

Improves your balance

Regularly practicing yoga increases proprioception (the ability to feel what your body is doing and where it is in space) and improves balance. People with bad posture or dysfunctional movement patterns usually have poor proprioception, which has been linked to knee problems and back pain.

Helps you to sleep deeper

Yoga can provide relief from the hustle and bustle of modern life. Restorative asana, yoga nidra (a form of guided relaxation), Savasana, pranayama, and meditation encourage pratyahara, a turning inward of the senses, which provides downtime for the nervous system.

Gives you peace of mind

Yoga slows down the mental loops of frustration, regret, anger, fear, and desire that can cause stress. And since stress is implicated in so many health problems from migraines and insomnia to lupus, MS, eczema, high blood pressure, and heart attacks if you learn to quiet your mind, you’ll be likely to live longer and healthier.

Reshift Your Focus

Focusing on the positivity is so important especially when it comes to your mental health. Nowadays with us having a sneak peek into other people’s lives on social media, we can start to get into the comparison game. Read here about perception vs reality. I’m here to tell you that doing so isn’t healthy and it can have your mind twisted up thinking as if you’re not doing anything or you don’t have much going on compared to others. Remember comparison is the thief of joy!!!

When you’re feeling down, write down a list of things to help yourself to feel better. Start with this list below.

Beach + Journaling LA

When you’re writing, dream big and don’t limit yourself. Write as if you’re writing to your future self. So, make your future self-proud and be honest with yourself about whatever it is that you REALLY want.

    Your Dreams

  • Life Goals
  • What you’ll be doing in the next few years
  • Skills you’d like to learn
  • Where you’d like to live
  • Places you’d like to travel to
  • What will you be doing in the next few years?

      Your Favorite Things

  • Books
  • TV Shows
  • Food
  • Music
  • Podcasts
  • Quotes
  • Songs

      You

  • Favorite Memories
  • Bucket list for things you’d like to do
  • Things that make you happy
  • What you like most about yourself
  • Positive adjectives to describe yourself

Your Accomplishments

  • Things you’re grateful for
  • All things you’re good at
  • Ways to celebrate your wins
  • Biggest accomplishments

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Speaking With Your Partner About Self-Care

If you’re in a relationship, you should speak with your partner about self-care. As women, we are such nurturers to the point where we can do everything for everyone else but when it comes to us, we tend to put our priorities and goals on the back burner. At times, we believe that we have to be everything to everybody all at once and let’s just sit back for a minute and think about how that’s just not humanly possible at all without feeling burnt out, tired or drained. If you find yourself doing this, how about stopping and taking the time to process your thoughts and focus on self-care. Self Care looks different for everyone. For you, it could be taking a 30-minute bubble bath with a glass of wine and a good book or taking the time to write in your journal and process your thoughts away from everyone else. No matter what it looks like, focus on factoring it into your life. Find out here some of the things I do to practice self -care.

I am currently in my 30’s and I know life happens to all of us but when the time comes for me to have kids and get married, self-care will remain apart of my lifestyle. Now I know as a mother my lifestyle will completely change but I don’t see myself letting myself go because I’m now a wife and a mother. Of course, my self- care will look very different by that time but I will not allow things to get in the way of it. I will speak with my partner about my needs and I see us working together as a team to ensure we’re both good as individuals and then as husband and wife and as parents. I believe it’s all about proper communication as well as being with someone who wants you to be happy and someone who takes into account that self-care is important to you. I know women who are wives and mothers and they feel as if they’re losing themselves because they no long factor self-care into their lifestyle. They’re feeling as if they don’t have the time or they feel guilty for taking 30 minutes to an hour to themselves. Personally, I would like for this to stop!!! Think about it, who were you before you were married and had children? I believe your children and husband need to see a happy and loving woman who takes care of herself and fills herself up by taking the time to put into herself. That’s why speaking with your partner about the importance of self-care is so important.

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Furthermore, I am currently in a long distance relationship which consists of lots of phone calls, text messages, and facetime chats but my partner respects my me time. It was something I laid out early while we were just friends. At times I can’t spend all night on facetime because I have to spend time with God, work on my businesses, write out a blog post or anything else I deem to be important. I may not reply to his text message immediately because my phone is on silent and I’m working in another room. Phone calls too early in the morning before I get my zen together doesn’t always get answered because (sorry, not sorry bae) at times I just need to meditate, cook breakfast turn on a good word and then chat with him. It’s not his fault if I was to answer and have an attitude, it’s mines because I shouldn’t put anything before my morning self-care routine. I believe as long as you speak with your partner about the significance of self-care, all should be well but if it isn’t, NEVER allow anyone to make you feel as if what you’re doing for you can wait. NO! It doesn’t work like that. That’s not fair to you. What you’re doing for you is a priority and you need to fill your own cup up FIRST before you can feel up someone else’s cup. You can’t be good to anyone if you’re not good to yourself, first! Imagine how good you’d feel when you accomplish the things you’ve set out for yourself to do for that day and then when someone asks for your help with something, doing it for them would feel even better because you’ve already taken care of your own priorities. Speak to your partner about self -care and start scheduling ME TIME on your planner. Everyone and everything else gets put on the to-do list, why not yourself?

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Fitness Journey So Far.

One of my new year’s resolutions was to do my best to live a healthier lifestyle. I wasn’t always that type that took working out seriously, years ago I had a gym membership and I just wasn’t consistent with it at all. At that time I didn’t have a goal, I wasn’t certain about which machines to use and I felt as if I was just wasting my time and money, so I let the membership go. During that time, I didn’t drink much water or watched what I ate.

Fast forward to now and working out has become apart of my self-care regimen. Since I turned 30, I noticed changes within my body some I like and some I didn’t like but I’m not the type of person to harper on what I don’t like and sit back and complain, I prefer to do something about it so I decided to get a gym membership and this time be more consistent. I do my best to workout at least 3-4 times a week and I’m drinking more water and no cold drinks at all (soda’s). I made a few changes with my meals as far as staying away from pork and fried foods but my diet is still a work in progress because I LOVE to eat!

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I am not all the way there and I haven’t hit my goal of having a 4 pack without sucking in but I am proud of myself for making positive changes and doing my best to live a healthier lifestyle. I know I’ll see results as long as I continue to put the work in and stay focused. So! That’s what I’m doing!!!

Paris Wears:

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How I Practice Self Care

If you’ve been following me for a while, you know that self-care is very important to me. Self-care isn’t a selfish act. It’s just you simply putting into yourself. As women, we tend to put so much into others before ourselves: children, careers, husbands, in-laws, friends, etc but where does self-care fit in? Think about it, if you’re no good to you, how could you be good to others and the obligations we have? You have to take care of you, first, if not, you’ll get burnt out and sometimes that leads to other health issues. Sort of like filling up your own cup and allowing the rest to overflow to others.  Let’s stop making excuses and saying that we don’t have time, but in all actuality, we make time for the things we find important. Shouldn’t self-care be one of those things? Start by implementing at least two things into your self-care regimen and then add more as you grow and get to know yourself.

Here are a few things I do for self-care:

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Digital Detoxing

Taking a social media break can be hard if you run your business solely based on social media but I find it necessary for your mental health. This year, I took two months off from social media by deleting the Instagram app and it was one of the best things I could’ve ever done for myself. Two years ago I took a month off, catch up on that here. This year I didn’t post on social from July 2- Sep 2. During that time, I was focused on getting this blog back up and running. I traveled to DC with my mom and a women’s retreat. Check out both trips here and here. I worked out. I read books and I spent time with family without pulling out my phone. I was very intentional about being present.

Treat yourself to something

Self-care doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to spend a lot of money on yourself to feel good about yourself. One of the things that I do to treat myself is, I purchase flowers for myself along with sushi bowls. I purchase flowers from a local grocery store and there’s usually a sale 3 for $12 and the sushi bowl are usually $10. I love to wake up and see fresh flowers in my room, living room, and kitchen. I also love sushi so purchasing an entire bowl puts a smile on my face.

Fitness

Working out is so important for your health. It’s not about just looking good on the outside but feeling good as well. I have a gym membership and I do my best to work out at least 4-5 days a week. I wasn’t always this person who would go to the gym but once I started noticing the change in my body, how much energy I had during the day and how focused it made me. I added it to my self-care regimen.

Meditate

As cliché’ as it may sound, mediating is very important to maintain self-care. Nearly every successful person talks about how they’ve implemented meditation into their lifestyle. I tend to enjoy meditating in the morning before I get out of bed. I like to center my thoughts and be still for about 10 minutes. During this time, my phone is on silent and I’m focusing on my breathing. I have two apps on my phone that helps me with meditation which is Headspace (LINK) and Insight Timer (LINK)

Read

If there’s something you want to create, you have to research. Reading falls in line with self-care because you’re actually investing the time and knowledge to create something. You’re taking the necessary steps now to care for your future. I tend to read different genres from self-help to business. I am a big fan of audible books and podcasts.

Manicures + Pedicures

I’ve been doing my own manicures and pedicures since 2009. I haven’t worn false nails since then because I just wanted to take care of my natural nails. I care about the look of my hands and I noticed my nail bed was becoming extremely weak because of the constant drilling and filing. I made the decision to just stop, cold turkey and paint my nails myself. Over the years, I’ve collected lots of different nail polishes and now I treat myself to a new mani at least once or twice a week. It saves me money and time and my nails come out really nice if not better than the nail salon. I love to pamper myself so doing my nails allows me that time to put into myself.

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