Body Confidence

Health & Fitness

With the end of May approaching, I have been thinking a lot about things I have done to better my mental health this month. May is mental health awareness month, and while I think we should bring awareness to it everyday, I love that there is a month dedicated to it. One of my goals for this year has been to be more confident in my skin. With May being the start of summer, I decided to really focus on how I was treating my mind and my body, because I was so tired of spending countless summers hating the way I looked. I want to share some things that have helped me in the past couple months, and while I am still not where I want to be in my “body confidence” journey, I am making huge progress and I am so happy.

The first thing I learned, was that you have to learn to love your body at the state it is in now. This was hard for me, because I am always looking for things I want to change about myself. It is good to have goals for yourself and your body as far as health goes, but if you learn to love it how it is first, you can grow the love even more from that. Remember, you were made so beautiful and so unique! 

Second, I had to decide what my goals were. It is okay to want to change our bodies, but make sure you are doing it for you and what is going to make you feel the best and the happiest! For me, my goals were to gain muscle, strength, and confidence. My boyfriend is extremely talented in the field of fitness and nutrition (its what his college degree is in) and was happy to help. He helped me with meal planning and wrote me up a fitness program that was specifically tailored to my goals. (side note: If you are interested in starting a healthy lifestyle and need help obtaining your goals he is the best and would love to help! Feel free to comment for more info). 

Third, you have to stop comparing yourself to others! (something I am still definitely learning) These days with social media, it is so easy to compare ourselves to how others look. While I have gotten better at it, I still find myself guilty of it every now and then. Instead of comparing, we need to focus on our own goals and the progress we are making in our own lives and trust me, it makes your mindset so much better.

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Lastly, remember that slow progress is still progress! If you are starting a journey to a more healthy lifestyle and body confidence, patience is a huge part of that journey. I used to get so aggravated when I didn’t see progress or results right away. However, I learned that you will see it overtime and the feeling of seeing your hard work pay off is so amazing!

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I have struggled a lot with body confidence over the years, but I am slowly but surely learning to love my body and be confident in the skin I am in day by day. Never forget how beautiful and unique each and everyone of you truly are. If there’s something about your body you are unhappy with, its okay to make goals to change it, but be kind to yourself in the process.

-Taylor

5 Tips For Picking Yourself Back Up When You’ve Been Knocked Down

Devotionals

Life. Will. Kick. Your. Butt.

That my friends, is one of the most true statements you will ever hear. Life is beautiful and one of the greatest gifts God has given us, but sometimes it feels like nothing is going right. A little over a month ago I felt like life had truly knocked me on my face. My whole world did a flip flop and I didn’t know how I was going to get back up again. In the past few weeks I have learned ways to help pick myself back up so I wanted to share them incase any of you all are in the same boat:

  1. Let It Out– Whatever you do, do not keep your emotions bottled up. This is one of the worst things I ever did. I am here to tell you that it is 100% okay to feel. Sometimes you need to sit and cry it out, and that’s okay! Don’t let anyone make you feel bad for having emotions, it is normal I promise.
  2. Pray– Not only is God with you through the good times, but He is right by your side through the bad as well. Let him know what is on your mind and He will ease it.
  3. Focus On Things You Are Passionate About- This has helped me so much in the past couple months. Focusing my time and energy on things that I love put me in the best head space.
  4. Exercise- Not only will this focus your mind on something besides the situation you’re going through, but it actually releases “feel good” endorphins in your brain. It doesn’t have to be anything serious, in fact I recommend trying out yoga if you never have. It is so relaxing and really helps you get in tune with both your mind and your body.
  5. Get Out Of The House– I know this one may seem hard. Trust me there are plenty days where I wanted to stay in my pjs all day and binge Netflix (this is okay every now and then of course), but getting dressed up, putting makeup on, and going out helped me so much. Look good for yourself, take a few selfies, and be the most confident you that you can be.

Those are the 5 things that have been helping me the most lately, and I hope they can help those of you who made need it as well. Even though life may kick our butts sometimes, like I said it’s still beautiful. Life is meant to be enjoyed and God wants us to do just that. He knows we will endure hardships, but He is right there to help us through every single one. When life knocks us down it is hard to see the good in things, but we have to have faith that things will get better because I promise, they will. As the verse below says, we have to walk by faith and not by sight. Things may not always be looking up in life, but God is working in ways that can’t be seen and we have to trust that.

“I will walk by faith even when I cannot see.”-2 Corinthians 5:7 

So, if life has got you down lately try these tips and see if they help. Remember that you are a son/daughter of the king of all kings and you deserve everything that this beautiful life has to offer. The struggles we endure are part of what make this life so beautiful, because many times beautiful things bloom out of disaster. Keep your head up and know that you always have a hand to hold.

-Taylor Johns

Healthy Mindset

Devotionals

Happy Monday! I used to dread Monday’s, and every now and then I still do. However, instead of looking at them in a bad light, I look at them as a new start. A start to a new week and a chance to start new habits. One of my goals lately has been keeping up with a healthy lifestyle. I tend to forget that not only does this mean getting my body healthy, but my mind as well. Having a healthy mindset has always been hard for me. Surprisingly it is a lot easier to get your body healthy than your mind. Our minds are one of the most powerful tools we have and if we don’t use it for good it can really harm us.

A lot of times when I wake up in the morning, I don’t wake up with a cheerful heart and mind like I should. I automatically start thinking negative thoughts. I am sure many of you all can relate to this as well. This is a bad habit I would like to change and this Monday was the perfect time for me to start a new one. I have been wanting to start waking up earlier, so last night I set my alarm and was ready to wake up bright and early. Well, come alarm time I must have turned it off because instead of waking up at 8:30, I woke up at 10:30. Instead of beating myself up for turning off my alarm or being angry that I slept most of the morning, I said “You know what it’s all going to be okay, I got some extra rest, I’m thankful to be alive another day, and I’m going to have a great day”.

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You see, things aren’t always going to go right. You may wake up late, or mess something up and that is just life. We can’t let small inconveniences ruin our whole day. If we start the day and the week with a cheerful mind and a cheerful heart it makes these inconveniences a lot easier to handle. It will be easier to recognize them for exactly what they are (minor inconveniences) and to move on from them.

“A cheerful heart is good medicine.”-Proverbs 17:22

Let’s start thinking more positive thoughts than we do negative. It’s a new day and a new week, so you have a chance to start fresh. Having a healthy mindset needs to be at the top of your to-do list, and I am so glad I have put it at the top of mine. I’ve realized that if my mind is healthy it will aid in getting my body healthy. A cheerful heart means a cheerful mind, so let’s work on getting our hearts and minds in the right place.

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Here are a few things to kick start a healthy mindset: 

-Start the day with positive thoughts instead of negative ones

-Don’t let minor inconveniences ruin your whole day

-Be kind to yourself, and to others

-Cheerful heart, cheerful mind

Say this prayer with me to start off your week,

Jesus, thank you for this fresh start. I ask for your guidance as I practice a healthy mindset. Let my heart be cheerful as it will be medicine to my mind. Give me patience to handle the inconveniences in my life. Thank you for the mind that you have given me, I promise to use it for good. Help me Lord to recognize when the devil is trying to get in my mind, and allow me the strength to overcome it. I thank you and I love you, Amen.

-Taylor Johns

Chia Seed Pudding

Health & Fitness

Lately I have been into making some new healthy recipes, and chia seed pudding has become my go to! It is so easy, delicious, and great for your health. The main ingredient (chia seeds) provides your body with nutrients such as fiber, antioxidants, protein, and Omega-3 fatty acids. Not only are they great in this recipe, but they are a good little item that you can add to smoothies and other meals as well! Now, lets get back to the pudding. As soon as I tasted it, I was more than excited to share how I made it so you all could experience it as well. The pudding is dairy free and gluten free.

For this recipe you will only need 3 ingredients: 

  • Chia Seeds
  • Unsweetened Almond milk
  • Low Calorie/Sugar Free Syrup

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Directions:

  • In a bowl combine 1 cup almond milk, 1/4 cup of chia seeds, and 1 table spoon of syrup.
  • Stir the mixture and let sit for 5 minutes
  • After 5 minutes, stir the mixture again
  • Place in the fridge and allow to sit overnight
  • You can eat it plain, or top it with whatever you choose! I went with granola, a banana, blackberries, and a drizzle of honey and let me tell you…it does not disappoint.

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That is all it takes to make this chia seed pudding! It is easy, fast, and the perfect breakfast to start your day. I have been really looking into more dairy and gluten free recipes and this has been my favorite so far. I hope you decide to give it a try, if you do let me know how it turns out in the comments!

-Taylor Johns

Why Self Care Days Are Essential

Beauty

If you have never taken a self care day…girl…it is time to start! Life can get so busy sometimes that we forget to take care of our bodies. I used to feel like I had to be doing something productive every single minute of the day, but I have lately realized that it is okay to take a day to destress. These days help not only our bodies to recover, but our minds as well and that is so important. We need to make sure that we have a healthy mindset and aren’t constantly overloading it.

A healthy mind is key to living a productive life. When our mindset is down, so is our bodies. It makes you feel sluggish and all you may feel like doing is laying in the bed. This is how I would feel all the time until I started implementing a self care day into my weekly routine. This is just a day or night where you can take some time for yourself and relax.

I usually like to have a self care day/night at the end of the week on Friday or Saturday, just depending on what I have going on. What you include in your self care routine can differ just depending on what helps you relax. These are just a few things that help me:

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The first thing I like to do is take a warm bath, add a bath bomb, and listen to some relaxing music (Billie Eilish on repeat). Bath bombs not only smell amazing, but they help your skin feel amazing to.

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After my bath I throw on some comfy pjs and a face mask. One of my favorites is the L’Oreal Pure Clay Clear & Comfort Face Mask. This helps comfort stressed skin while also cleansing it. Leave this on for about 10 minutes and you’re good to go!

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Lighting a candle and reading a good book are some of my favorite ways to keep my mind from racing. I love poetry books. They are so calming, the one I am currently reading is “The Sun and Her Flowers” by Rupi Kaur

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Oh, and if you have never cuddled with puppies to destress 10/10 recommend it…

-Taylor Johns