My 5 Tips to Get Healthy + Happy

Hello Beautiful,

Getting healthy means more than just eating a salad or going for a run. Getting healthy includes having a healthy mental state and healthy relationships. Being healthy also means being happy. When you restrict yourself to a diet or counting calories, you can damage your perception of what being healthy really means.

When you begin to research ways to be healthy and happy, you have to accommodate yourself. It’s easy to look at someone super fit and healthy and say I am going to do that. But, you have to be aware that everybody is different. Literally, every “body” functions differently and must be nourished in various ways.

Disclaimer: I’m not a health expert and I’m not perfect. These things I am sharing are things I continue to work on everyday. I’m not a pro, but that’s the point of working on yourself. You don’t ever stop, it’s a continuous exercise until it becomes a habit. Nobody is perfect. We are all working towards becoming the best versions of ourselves.

With that being said, I just want to share the top 5 things that helped me get inspired to live a more healthy lifestyle. Once again, I am still working on these things daily until they become a habit.

Eat Yummy Food!
Wait! What? Yes, I said eat yummy food. Yummy food that will nourish your body and give you energy. Food is a key factor to becoming healthy, what you put into your body determines your overall health. You want to eat foods that energize you and are filled with good nutrients. Foods that are fresh and not processed. I know how difficult it can be to eat clean on a college budget, but it is possible. (grocery shopping haul to come!)

The key to eating fresh and clean is finding recipes you like, and finding meals that work for you. Everyone has different tastes and learning to eat healthy takes some trial and error. Do research, try new things and repeat.

Progress is still Progress
Something I have learned in my healthy living journey is that no matter the progress you make, it is still progress. Every baby step will eventually add up to big leaps. The little victories should still be celebrated because when you put any journey into perspective, you realize that every piece counts. It all adds up to equal the final product.

Celebrate your small wins, and never lose faith because you aren’t “making progress” because you are!

Listen to your Body
Learn what your body wants and how it reacts to different foods and exercises. I sort of explained this in the first point, but this practice is the best way to achieve a healthy lifestyle. I’ve mentioned the YouTuber, Sarah’s Day before on my blog because she was part of my inspiration to get back to working on myself. Listen to your body is her motto. She lives by this method and I believe it is an effective method too. I think this because our body tells us how it feels in different cues, think about when you’ve ate a really sugary donut or something, how did you feel? I know when I eat too much sugar in a day, my tummy hurts. That’s when you listen to your body. How is it functioning? Are you properly digesting your food? How do you feel?

All of these things describe what it means to listen to your body. You don’t have to count calories to be healthy, you can simply buy good food and see how you feel. Same goes for working out, you don’t have to follow a plan; just do what feels best and works for your body. If you need a day to rest, relax and enjoy some tea…do it. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY!

Do What You Want
In regards to exercise, do what you want. What I mean by this is you do not have to follow everyone else. Sure, there are millions of workout plans on the internet and videos to buy. But, just do what feels right for you and works for you. Everyone is different and our bodies can react differently to certain workouts. Of course, you can still do your research and try out new methods but don’t hold yourself to one regimen. I personally enjoy high-intensity exercises! I’m not much for lifting weights, but sometimes I do it to change up my routine.

When it comes to being healthy and exercising, just know that your lifestyle is completely up to you. You do not have to be or do anything you don’t want to.

Love Yourself + Your Beauty
Trust me, I know what a battle it can be to wake up everyday and just be obsessed with yourself. It’s not possible. We all have insecurities we struggle with and we must face them everyday. The trick is to realize the everyone has them, even the most perfect people. You may think it’s just you, but there are thousands of people who probably struggle with similar things.

I’ve explained this in recent post, but you have to realize that beauty is different in everyone’s eyes. Flowers are pretty, but so are sunsets. Flowers don’t take any beauty away from the sunset. Same goes for you. Just because you don’t look like the models you see on social media, doesn’t mean you’re less beautiful.

In order to truly live a healthy + happy life, you must love yourself and work on becoming comfortable with who you are. You are so unique and beautiful. Embrace your flaws, know that they make you who you are. Fall in love with the process of getting healthy and being happy. Find new ways to make yourself happy everyday. Never stop learning more about yourself.

I hope from this post you can takeaway a few things. One being to get to know yourself and learn what is best for your body. Do your research, try new things and keep working hard. Another takeaway is loving yourself through the process. Every day throws something new at us, learn to go with the flow of things and trust the process. Some days will be quiet days spent in a cafe and other days will be spent smashing a workout in the gym. It’s about balance.

Lastly, remember that part of being healthy and happy includes taking care of your mind too. Don’t overwhelm yourself with a strict schedule or crazy diets. Take time to journal, drink tea and read a good book. It also means finding time to spend with people you love, people who inspire you. That may not be a point above, but it’s equally important. Your health goes beyond muscle tone.

Looking for more posts like this? Check out 20 Things to a Happy + Healthy Life, Farm Fresh Salad Recipe or I’m not Perfect, I Know.

Thank you for reading PYM today. I know some of this may have been slightly repetitive but these are the things that have helped me understand what it meant to be “healthy”, and hopefully thy can help you too.

xo, Lyss

10 Tips for Traveling Abroad

Hello Beautiful Souls,

It’s hard to believe it’s almost been a year since I left for study abroad and spent about two months in France. It feels like only a few months ago that I was hopping on a plane out of here. I think about my trip everyday; it’s no joke when people say traveling changes your life. This study abroad trip was not the first time I had been to Europe, but it was definitely the most memorable and longest I have ever been overseas.

Over the past couple of weeks, I have had a bunch of friends jet setting and reaching out to me for some tips and tricks about overseas travel. I love answering and giving them any advice that I have because I am so passionate about traveling and I want everyone to know how to fully experience life abroad. So, since I have been thinking a lot about my trip lately and offering advice to my friends, I thought I should construct a post to give you a list of my favorite tips for traveling to Europe.

My Top 10 Tips for you:

  1. Utilize cash: Exchange rates differ all the time and the value of the currency can change often too. Banks can sometimes charge you when you use your card overseas, this can also differ too. When you withdraw cash there is usually a fee but if you withdraw large amounts it makes it more worth your money, rather than getting charged each time you use your card. This also allows you to split restaurant bills with friends and avoid being in an emergency situation with no money.
  2. Take videos: Pictures are wonderful and I took over 1,000 on my trip, but videos really capture the moments. The sounds can bring back lots of feelings and memories. I took so many random videos abroad and I love them all. They help me relive some moments and it helps me share the vibes with others. It’s also lots of fun to make a cool video after your trip.
  3. Collect little things: When you’re traveling, you will probably stop at a lot of different places. Throughout my trip I collected business cards, coffee cup wraps and other little things. I kept these things in my journal and now when I look back I am able to remember the names of the places I visited and it retains the memories associated with it.
  4. Enjoy the moment: It’s easy to want to post constant snap chats and Instagram stories, but don’t forget to be present. Don’t get wrapped up watching what people are doing at home. You do not want to miss a moment during your travels. Take a little time each night to update social media and check in with home, but don’t waste time on it when you are out and about. Enjoy where you are, fully!
  5. Say yes!: Okay, so you are taking an adventure of a lifetime, now is not the time to be hesitant to new things. Obviously don’t do anything that will put your life in danger or get you into legal trouble; but, take this magical opportunity to live a little. Say yes to adventures and new things. Crush your comfort zone and live to the fullest.
  6. Talk to strangers: Your parents have probably always told you the opposite of this but talking to strangers abroad can teach you a lot and enlighten you on other cultures. There are few things to be aware of when doing this though; be aware of the situations you are in, what your surroundings are and who the stranger may be. Avoid chatting with people on public transportation, it’s best to keep to yourself then. But, if you see other students out and about, try to strike up a conversation with them. If you are taking classes abroad, meet people in your classes and around your school.
  7. Don’t over pack shoes: This one may seem a bit random, but for the ladies, it’s easy to think you need 100 pairs of shoes for every occasion abroad. Honestly, three pairs is probably enough. Take shoes for everyday wear and that are comfortable. Take a pair for going out and looking super cute, and throw in a pair of tennis shoes or flats.
  8. Don’t buy too much for others: I may sound a little harsh with this one, but don’t over buy gifts for people at home. They didn’t take the trip you did, therefore they won’t cherish the gifts as much. Of course you should get your family something small and get your closest friends something too! Just don’t spend too much time or money worrying about what to get everyone and their mother back home. Get things that will help you remember the trip.
  9. Shop locally: It may seem comfortable to stick to what you know, but try to expand your horizons abroad and try locally made things. I know when I stayed in Nice, there were a couple clothing stores that we had back home (H&M, Zara, etc.) and those can be fun to check out, but make sure you hit up some new places and explore what the country has to offer. You will find so many unique styles. Why would you want to buy something you can buy in your native country?!
  10. Eat native foods: This relates to the last one, but try local favorites. When traveling abroad, food can be tricky because flavors and cooking techniques may be different. This makes stepping outside of the usual a little more difficult. Do what is best and healthy for you, but don’t forget to experiment and try what’s out there. I recommend French wine and Escargo (snails), if you are traveling to France.

These are just a few of my favorite tips to share with those who ask. Traveling to new places is fun and exciting. If you are about to take a trip, near or far, I wish you the best in your travels. Seeing new cultures and being in a sea of strangers is life changing, in my opinion. You will become so open-minded and life will become much more valuable.

If you have a tip for traveling, share it in the comments below! I’d love some advice for my next adventure.

Thank you for checking out PYM today! I am working on another post for this week too, so stick around for more from me.

Bon Voyage, darling!

xo, Lyss

The Intern Files

Hello Pretty People,

I recently started an internship with a local boutique in Grand Rapids, Michigan called Parliament. I am the Public Relations + Social Media Intern for this store and studio space. So far, I am loving it! The space is so aesthetic and inspiring. The shop owners are genuinely good people that have been so welcoming and helpful. The store offers handcrafted goods and accessories, as well as workshops and demonstrations.

Since I am now officially an intern, I thought it would be fun to start an intern series on my blog called “The Intern Files.” In this series, I will share tips and stories from my internship experience. I thought it would be a fun way for me to share and document my experience, as well as offer tips and support to my readers.

To start, I want to highlight the importance of time management skills. That is my biggest struggle on a daily basis; I must pay attention to where and how I spend my time because if I get behind on certain tasks, I may miss a deadline. I am currently juggling 15 credit hours, regular retail job and an internship. My free time is limited!

My tip for you today is to utilize an agenda and a work journal to keep track of all your tasks and information on those tasks. I use two agendas to keep up with my work, internship and school schedule; along with homework, meetings and internship duties. I make a to-do list daily to make note of the tasks I must accomplish. I utilize a small journal when I work at my internship to document information on the business, as well as document my hours and accomplishments.

Being a social media intern, I must keep track of many things. I use my journal to write down popular hashtags, usernames and content ideas. Whenever I sit down with my supervisor, I use this journal to take notes of our discussions; this later helps me produce great content for the store.

This past month I assisted the Parliament team in the campaigning for their Grand Reopening, which took place this past Friday. Some of the responsibilities I have worked on include building social media content, curating a content calendar, sending email blasts and taking photographs. I also learned how to write a press release.

So far, my experience has been amazing and I can’t wait to see where this next month takes me. I am looking forward to learning more about the business and gaining marketable skills for my career. I encourage my readers to find an internship that will best educate you on your desired field. Internships lead to opportunities, and opportunities lead to careers.

Thank you so much for reading today’s Internship Files, and if you have specific questions feel free to comment your requests. I will utilize this series to offer advice on internships and share memorable stories and experiences. My goal is to write two of these each month. Stay tuned for more! I hope your Monday is wonderful and your week is grace-filled.

Enjoy today!

xo, Lyss

 

How to Boost Your Confidence in 3 Steps

Hello Babes,

Feeling stuck? Skin feeling dry from the harsh winter air? Motivation running low? You may be falling into a slump, and it’s okay, I am too. I know how difficult it can be to stay confident & positive all the time. Being a young woman in a judgmental society is already a challenge, then adding personal criticism on top of that is almost inevitable. How can you feel your best when the universe is all wrong? Well, this may be the root of your problem. I know what it’s like to fall in this “poor me” slump. You blame the universe for all your problems.

I understand it can sometimes feel like that, but the moment you start blaming outside sources for your feelings, that’s the moment your confidence will start to tank. You have to keep an open mindset and disregard the negativity that is trying to break you down. When you are confident, you begin to vibe at a different frequency. People and things below you may try to knock that because they will see your happiness. The key to being confident and staying at this level is to continue loving yourself and spreading positivity.

So, if you are feeling stuck in this rut and need to reconnect with the universe, here is my advice to you:

Be Positive & Spread Kindness: 

It’s a lot easier to be confident when you are positive and kind to others. Whenever I am overly sassy and walking around with a “poor me” attitude that only influences more negative energy. The negative energy then feeds my soul and makes me feel more “blah.” Being kind to others makes your heart feel good, and it also makes you feel happier overall. When you fill your thoughts with positive vibes, you will allow for more positivity to enter your life, and how can you be insecure when you are constantly positive?! It’s all about your mindset and understanding that your happiness is your choice.

Create a Daily Mantra:

Finding an inspirational and positive mantra to start your day with is really great for keeping your confidence levels up. You can then refer to this mantra/quote throughout the day. I love a good quote, and I decorate my life with them. I put them on my vision board, as my phone background and in my agenda. They keep me inspired and positive! I challenge you to find three mantras or quotes that inspire you.

Surround yourself with happy souls:

This is one of the most important steps to keeping yourself inspired, and though I encourage self-love and self inflicted happiness, it’s good for you to surround yourself with inspiring beings. When you are surrounded by other inspiring people who are killing it, this inspires you to be better and encourages more positive vibes. I have found myself in situations where I am living with, or surrounded by very negative energy, and I can see its impact on my mood. But, when I have attended a workout class or grabbed coffee with a good friend, I find that my positive energy rises. Trust me, that feels much better than negative energy.

Something to remember with this step is never be discouraged by someone elses successes, envy feeds negativity. When you choose to surround yourself with motivated individuals, you may sometimes feel less than them but that is a poisonous way to think. Think about all you are accomplishing in the present, you must focus your energy on that not on envying others. Allow these people to inspire you and keep you motivated, not discourage you and create jealousy.

If you are able to follow these three steps on a daily basis, you will find it a lot easier to keep your confidence up and your positivity flowing. I know this time of the year can be a struggle for many, but keep calm and be confident, you’ve got this!

Thank you all for reading today’s post! Remember that you can subscribe on the right of the page to stay updated with PYM.

Stay positive!

xo, Lyss

December Cafe Chat: A Letter to My 17 Year Old Self

Hello Beautiful People,

Last night I finally got to meet with the Cafe Chat girls again, which was much needed. We had a wonderful girls night enjoying conversation and exchanging thoughts. This month Ally chose our topic, and with the new year upon us, she thought we should reflect a little. Her idea was to write a letter or give advice to our past selves, giving them advice on life and what not. I think this idea is a perfect way to ring in the new year and reflect on the lessons we’ve learned.

If I could talk to my 17 year old self I would tell her a couple of things. To start, I feel like I had a pretty good high school experience and I did well. But, if I had to give advice to myself here’s what I would say:

Live a little: During high school, I was always known as the good girl who never did anything crazy. I was always super focused on Cheerleading; cheer was life for me. Looking back on it, I do not regret the focus I put into cheer, but I do wish I would of stepped outside of that from time to time to enjoy high school kid activities. Therefore, I would tell my seventeen year old self to lighten up and get outside of your comfort zone.

Stay up late: Connecting to the one above, I would tell my younger self to stay out late on a school night. I was often such a home body and I never did much on school nights. I would tell seventeen year old self to go make some memories. Make a taco bell run late at night or go night swimming, something spontaneous! I have recently learned this lesson and it is actually really valuable. I usually go to bed fairly early, but when my friends offer up a fun opportunity, I try not to pass it up. You will remember the memories made far more than the sleep you missed out on.

Stop worrying about what other people think: This is my biggest weakness, I care far too much about what others have to say about me. I still allow other peoples thoughts to impact me to this day, but I am way better than my younger self. People are always going to have their two cents to throw in but you should just ignore it. I would tell myself at seventeen to not care. It’s easier said than done, but especially in high school you shouldn’t care because many of those people you will never see after school is over. Just be yourself and do what makes you happy, everything else will fall into place.

Although I would offer this advice to my younger self, I do not regret anything from high school because I made it this far. Without focusing on cheer I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to cheer in college. Everything is a lesson in life, and even though I didn’t live on the edge in high school, I still have had some amazing experiences since then. The main idea I want my readers to take away from this post is balance. School and sports are important and they can lead you into amazing things; but living for yourself and doing things that set your soul on fire is equally important. The goal, and hardest task, is finding the balance between the two.

This past semester I focused on finding that balance. I have always been one to over stress about things like school and work, but this semester I really focused on doing what made me happy. I still worked hard on important school work and studied for exams, but I allowed myself some grace when things didn’t go the way I planned. You can’t change some things, so you must move forward and adjust as needed.

From age 17 to now (20), I think I have learned and experienced so much. These years have been some of the most busy and crazy years of my life. This topic was really fun to do because I had never really thought of what I would tell my seventeen year old self. In the end, I would tell myself to relax and just enjoy life a little more. The future is going to come whether you’re ready for it or not.

Since this is a Cafe Chat style post make sure you check out the other girl’s blogs to read their post. We all work really hard to create an awesome collaborative post, and it only works if you check out all the posts. I will share their links below.

Paige | Where The Wildflowers Are

Tessa | Simply Tess

Ally | A Touch of Tulle

Thank you so much for reading this little chat! Make sure you check out the other girl’s post. I thought the last post would be my final one of 2016, but here we are. I wish everyone a Happy New Year & I can’t wait to see what 2017 has in store. The girls and I discussed continuing Cafe Chat in the new year, possibly calling it something else. So, keep a look out for new content from all of us. Thank you again for always reading PYM.

Sending positive vibes into the New Year.

xo, Lyss