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Freedom Friday

Freedom Friday #3

February 15, 2018 in Freedom Friday

Friends, this series makes me so so happy. What does it all entail? Freedom. Whether this freedom encompasses letting go of your eating disorder, removing yourself from a toxic relationship, freeing yourself of depression or anxiety, breaking away from orthorexia or exercise addiction… I want to hear your story. And I want to share it. Your story is precious and deserves to be heard. If you want to be featured, email me, DM me on Instagram, contact me in some way, and let’s chat. I have a set of ears that’s willing to listen and a blog that I want to use to share your journey to freedom.


My sweet friend @vanessapalencia15 is sharing her story today.  I have had the privilege of meeting up with her before and she radiates nothing but positive energy. I hope you all enjoy her story on her journey to freedom!

**A few years ago, when I thought ‘freedom,’ I pictured the Boston Tea Party and the Declaration of Independence. I still imagine that sometimes, but lately whenever I think ‘freedom,’ I picture a life of happiness, a life free from the destruction of my mental and physical health that was caused through the hatred of my body and subjecting it to extreme ways.

I find it ironic because I never thought that I needed to be set free from this lifestyle. I thought that I was free from the tangles of being deemed ‘unattractive’ or ‘fat,’ but I only sunk myself deeper into the pitfalls of self-hatred. You see, I had a phase in my life where I was considered the “chubby girl” at best and it was during that time in my life that I had convinced myself that the only way I could be seen as socially acceptable and be considered worthy of love was to lose weight. And so began my spiral down into the world of orthorexia, obsessive exercising, and body dysmorphia.

It wasn’t until over a year ago that Nick, the love of my life, sat me down and tried to slap some sense into me. While I considered it briefly that there might be something wrong with the way I approached food and exercise, I decided to brush it off. In my head, there was no way that I had an unhealthy relationship with food and exercise. I was simply doing what everyone else was doing. I was doing everything I ‘needed’ to be doing to stay ‘fit’ and ‘healthy’ in an effort to obtain my ‘ideal’ body. It wasn’t until a few more episodes of me not eating because I ‘didn’t deserve it’ and a few more intense conversations about my mental health with Nick that I knew something was very wrong. I didn’t quite know how to handle it because I went through a pretty big paradigm shift. My belief system in everything regarding health and fitness had been shattered. But regardless, I took the first step towards recovery by abandoning my regimen of macro and calorie counting. Thus began my journey to a newfound freedom of self-love and mental health.

It’s been a struggle ever since. You would think that the road towards loving yourself and embracing your body would be such an easy road to take, but it isn’t. It isn’t easy because the beauty and diet industry have spent countless years trying to highlight what the perfect body looks like and offering products to help us get there in a subtle attempt to tell us that, unless our body resembled the ‘ideal body,’ we weren’t enough, and we needed to fix ourselves. Unfortunately, I was one of millions of girls who readily took to this distorted perception of beauty and self-worth. And let me tell you, it can be extremely difficult to break free from many years of brainwashed ideologies; difficult, but not impossible.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve cried because I’ve lost count. I can’t recount the thoughts I’ve had during bad days because they’re too gruesome to pass onto someone else. What I can tell you is that it took a long, arduous journey to get to where I am now. But even then, I’m not finished yet. I’ve found freedom in truth, so I’m no longer bound to the shackles of restrictive dieting and severe over exercising, but I’m still fighting to keep this freedom. I fight everyday for my right to love myself exactly the way I am. I fight to remind myself that I deserve to eat and that my health doesn’t depend on spending long hours at the gym. I fight every single day to ignore and challenge the diet and beauty industry’s perceptions of beauty and to love every supposed flaw on my body. But regardless of these continuous fights, I know I’m free because I am no longer blinded. I’m free because I know my value and my worth are far greater than anyone on this earth can estimate. And once you realize that you are in charge of yourself and that you worth so much more than what others say, then you will find freedom, too. **

Keep working towards a life of greater freedom friends. Happiest of weekends friends. 🙂

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Freedom Friday #2

February 9, 2018 in Freedom Friday

Another Freedom Friday. Friends, this series makes me so so happy. What does it all entail? Freedom. Whether this freedom encompasses letting go of your eating disorder, removing yourself from a toxic relationship, freeing yourself of depression or anxiety, breaking away from orthorexia or exercise addiction… I want to hear your story. And I want to share it. Your story is precious and deserves to be heard. If you want to be featured, email me, DM me on Instagram, contact me in some way, and let’s chat. I have a set of ears that’s willing to listen and a blog that I want to use to share your journey to freedom.


The second post of this series is from a lovely friend of mine, Sophia, @sophia.sun.wellness on Instagram. Sophia helps women awaken and work towards intuitive eating. She offers coaching for food and body wisdom on her website here and has a lot of beautiful knowledge to share. I hope you give this human some love as she opens up about her journey to freedom with us!

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My eating issues began in Kindergarten.

I was a sensitive & Intuitive little girl, who felt like her dream world was taken away the moment she was put into the school “system”. I was told I had learning disabilities right away; it crushed my sense of self. I began stealing snacks from a girl in my class. It became an everyday thing, I became a food addict at age 7.

My eating issues only got worse, binge eating, sneaking food, obsessing over food, my whole mind was consumed. I began gaining weight in 3d grade and started to hate my body. My body changed faster then the other girls in class. I was heavy. At age 17 I weighed almost 300 pounds. I couldn’t stop eating. My mom came to me one night and shared her concerns about my weight and eating issues. We decided it was time for an intervention – I went to a weight loss camp. This began my weight loss journey.

I lost 140 pounds going into my college years, and instead of over eating, I went into the other extreme.

I never learned to tune in to my body.

I was still trapped in my Eating Disorder.

After years of obsession with being thin I had a breaking point, I had become sick from over doing it. I burned myself out.

I wanted my LIFE, a life without eating disorders.

I began a spiritual path & discovered Intuitive Eating, I enjoyed this because it took me into myself, whereas before I was always seeking on the outside.

My Intuitive Eating journey healed my body and my relationship with food. Total food freedom, while still being aware of my Body Wisdom. I began to love my body as she decided who she wanted to be, and what size was healthy for her. It became a beautiful process. This is what I teach in my program Food Body Wisdom. I am now a coach for young women on the healing journey with food & eating disorders.

Intuitive eating gave me freedom, and gave me my life back! Now I can explore the beauty of this body, food & life! It’s wonderful.

If you’re on this journey, drop my a heart, & I’ll send you back a million.

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Keep working towards a life of greater freedom friends. Happiest of weekends friends. 🙂

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Freedom Friday #1

February 2, 2018 in Freedom Friday / Recovery

Happy Friday friends! I’m super excited to be posting this today, and starting this new series on my blog. This has something I have been wanting to do for a while: giving others a platform to use their voice. I am so fortunate to have this space on my blog and Instagram to use my voice, and I want to give other humans a chance to do the same. So, I’m starting this series on my blog: Freedom Friday. Whether this freedom encompasses letting go of your eating disorder, removing yourself from a toxic relationship, freeing yourself of depression or anxiety, breaking away from orthorexia or exercise addiction… I want to hear your story. And I want to share it. Your story is precious and deserves to be heard. If you want to be featured, email me, DM me on Instagram, contact me in some way, and let’s chat. I have a set of ears that’s willing to listen and a blog that I want to use to share your journey to freedom.


Freedom Friday #1 is actually a story from my good friend Leah who I have the pleasure of going to college with. This girl rocks and has a lot of knowledge and wisdom to spread to the world. Thank you friend for being so vulnerable and using your voice.

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Freedom. The dictionary defines it as “the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint.” It is also defined as the “absence of subjection to foreign domination”; “the state of not being imprisoned or enslaved.”

For a very long time, I believed my illnesses enslaved me. That my brain’s natural fixation to overanalyze defined my quality of life. That my heightened responses to normal situations meant my wiring was done so wrong that I somehow failed the basic test of human functioning.

Beliefs control us. Whether you find this to be relative or not, it is universally seen through our actions as a species. We fight wars over beliefs, vote against the rights of poor people over beliefs, and we continue to fight battles to win the freedoms that we believe we deserve. Our beliefs have control over our actions, their own state of input, however, paradoxically, we get to choose the beliefs we follow.

I believed I was subject to my anxiety disorder. I believed that I would have to sacrifice important aspects of my life to something I thought I could not control. I believed I had to part with my potential for happiness because of the genetic cards I had been dealt.

Sometimes our beliefs are wrong.
We never really expect them to be, it would go against the principle of believing them in the first place. But there come times in our lives where, with a clear mind and an open heart, we realize that sometimes we’re wrong. And that is okay. It is okay to be wrong. It is okay to change your mind about things that maybe you used to believe with your whole heart because it shows your capacity for growth and that ability to grow is what has adapted civilizations. Willingness to change, to try new things, is what started movements like the Renaissance, the industrial revolution, and so much more.

Above it all, this is something that we all have the ability to harness and practice. And it was in my ability to do so, that I found my freedom. I didn’t just decide one day that I was going to be happy, or that I wouldn’t feel anxious, or that I didn’t have a mental illness- no, that wasn’t it. I decided one day that I was open to change. I believe we get so trapped in our diagnoses and the effects of illness that we don’t leave enough room to let the light in. I started looking at small changes as big victories. I began working on accepting my panic attacks rather than despising them and fighting them. Fighting a panic attack is like swimming against the tide, the more you struggle, the farther you get swept out into the ocean, but if you allow the waves to take you, the storm passes with time. I’m going to share with you one out of two of my favorite quotes, “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” A lot of my friends laugh when I say this, I often say it when I go to the gym and decide I only really want to work out for about 10 minutes. And that’s fine. It’s 10 more minutes than I did yesterday. Self-care is the same way. 10 minutes of meditation, one yoga class that week, a healthy meal once a day, or just taking time to slow down- these are all steps to a bigger picture. Rome was the capital of the world for thousands of years, masterpieces take time to build and so do you.

So if I can give any advice to those struggling right now, I would sum it up in three points. The first one being something close to my heart. When I was at my lowest point in my mental health journey, I told myself to give it three years. My reasoning being that things change a little bit in a year, still recognizable after a second, and by a third you’re living a completely different life than you were three years ago. It may seem like a long time, but I promise you each year goes faster than it seems. Three years ago I was a senior in high school, I thought the truck I drove was the coolest thing (it wasn’t), I thought I would never do well living away at college (I have), and I thought I would never be able to travel anywhere due to my anxiety (I did.) Today, I drive a Chevy Cobalt (still not that cool), I loved living away at college, and in the past year I have traveled overseas to both Italy and Ireland (once by myself). My second advice is, that if you make little changes towards acceptance of yourself and your disorder, you will find that little by little a little becomes a lot. I am not perfectly “cured” by any means, but I have learned to accept the bad days. The beautiful thing about goals setting and progress is that progress is often a snowball effect, once it takes off, it builds. Laying a sturdy foundation of acceptance with the thing you cannot change is a platform to build up towards goals you may have never thought you could have achieved. Lastly, I’m going to share my second favorite quote, “With our thoughts, we make the world.” This is a Buddhist quote that I found my freshman year of college that really resonated with me. Our attitudes are important; they build our beliefs. In our beliefs, we find our potential for freedom- I sincerely hope you find yours.

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Happy weekend friends! I hope you enjoy it and can relax a bit 🙂  xoxo

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