Self love and self care have not always come easy.  For me it was a journey.  A lot of tears, a lot of anger but most of all a lot of lies.  I found myself lying to myself.  It sounds so silly in theory, you know whats real and whats not- the thing is have you accepted those truths?

Shortly after graduate school I found myself on a downward life spiral.  I wasn't strung out on drugs or struggling to make ends meet but my self care was at an ultimate low.  My self esteem was hurting, my health was hurting, I was nurturing unhealthy relationships with people and food. In 2015 I hit rock bottom.  A break up, car accidents, job loss, health issues, law suits, bill collectors, break in, you name it! 

Guess what? Those same tragedies became my glory! So much "bad" had happened to me but with every story of survival I grew stronger and more confident.  It also pushed me to really look at my life and what needed to change.

The transition took time, some things took months, other years, they may seem pretty common sense but that doesn't make them easy to apply to your own life. 

Here are some of the truths that really changed my life:

1. EAT BETTER. You can't just eat whatever whenever. Food taste soooooo good, but our bodies are a machine that we depend on to break those things down, carbs, fats, sugars all take a lot of work to break down.  Do your body a favor and make the work a little easier, eat fruits and veggies full of nutrients (fresher the better). You'll also notice a change in mood and energy.  The less work your digestive system has to do the more energy it leaves you.

2. EXERCISE MORE. Exercise is more than walking a mile or two and doing a few ab workouts a week.You've got to really get the blood pumping to those muscles especially your heart. I swear by the idea that NO BAD DAY EXISTS when it starts with a workout. Youre not just making your body stronger but your also allowing endorphins to flow naturally sending out happy hormones.  Your happy mood will reflect throughtout the day and radiate on to others.

3. YOU ARE THE COMPANY YOU KEEP. Surround yourself with like minded individuals. There is something in each person we spend time with that we see in ourselves, the relatable aspects allow for a relationship to form.  Be sure that you're relating on positive things. When I was around unmotivated people I too became unmotivated.  When I spent my time around people in financial trouble, I found myself firvously spending and falling into debt.  Choose to be around people that are a refletion of who you would like to be.  I now fill my time with fellow hustlers, health conscious, positive people.  It wasn't easy putting distance inbetween the unhealthy relationships but I can now admit it was best for me.

4. THE LEARNING ISN'T OVER WHEN YOU GRADUATE. This has been a game changer in growing my business.  The longer I've been a business owner the easier some things get however the market is always changing as are my customers and it's important to keep up with these trends if you want to grow with the market. Have a mentor or others in your field you look up to. Seek inspiration from their journey. Skill share, podcasts, and youtube are some of my favorite resources. 

5. SEEK A GUIDING LIGHT. Know that a lot of the things happening around us are out of our control.  There is a God writing your story and its important you listen and pay attention to the signs.  He is guiding you, you just have to be willing to listen with an open heart and mind.  This one may not be easy for everyone, I've found sollace in christianity and love my new home church, Passion City. However, its about finding what works for you.  For me the diverse environment and open embrace of Passion have broken a lot of barriers that I struggled with in organized religion and its allowed me to show up each week with an open mind and heart.

6. COLLABORATION IS MORE POWERFUL THAN COMPETITION.  When you work with others, uplift them and encourage them you invite your worlds to collide. This expands your reach, exposes you to other perspectives and invites growth in so many ways. This has made the life of an entrepreneur so much more fun for me!

These aren't my only truths but they have definitely made the biggest difference in my life. Being honest with myself doesn't get easier, a lot of times when I find myself sad or mad, I have to stop and say, "Hey, are you upset because they're right? Are you scared you don't have what it takes to change?". 

Don't let "YOU" get in the way of your happiness. 

Be open, be honest, most of all be gentle with yourself.  

You are limitless in all that you do. 

Change takes time, the first step is awareness.

Heart,

Mercedes