My 5 Ways to Cope with Anxiety

Hello Lovely Humans,

I’ve recently began to write about my experience with anxiety. You may have read my last post on anxiety called “I’m Anxious Right Now”. I want to follow up with this post by sharing the ways I cope with anxiety. Anxiety is tough and it’s a battle many people fight behind the scenes, everyday.

I don’t think we realize how many people are actually struggling with anxiety because most anxious feelings are mental. Overthinking, worrying, analyzing, etc. Sometimes we break down and then people notice we are having anxiety. But in reality, it never really goes away.

If you’re anxious, I’ve got a couple ways you can try to fight it.

Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender oil is something that I use to calm my nerves and relax. I carry it with me in my purse and I use it every night before bed. You can put a few drops on your pillow or rub on your temples and on the bottom of your feet. When I lay down for the night, I take a few deep breaths and think about releasing the negatives in each exhale. If you’re not sold on it, it’s also great for bug bites and breakouts.

Herbal Tea

It’s not just the tea that will help calm you. Grabbing a warm mug and just taking a few deep breaths can calm your mind. Take this moment to breathe and relax. Think about each breathe and each sip. Don’t focus on your anxiety, focus on your breaths + enjoying the tea. My favorite tea is Lemon + Ginger Herbal tea.

Exercise

This one may differ from person to person but my best coping mechanism is running. Getting a solid sweaty session in helps clear my mind and ease my nerves. I throw in my headphones and just go. It’s not about speed or distance, just clearing my head. Most of the time though, I run my best mile time when I’m anxious. That’s a positive, right?

Hot Shower or Bath

Taking a hot shower or bath can really relax your whole body. When you are anxious you can tend to clench your teeth or tense up your muscles. A hot bath will relax your mind and body. Play some calming music to assist the process.

Sleep

Sometimes the best way to calm your mind and ease the overthinking is just by sleeping. Take a nap or get a good nights rest to take some of the mental pressure off. Use lavender oil to assist in relaxing. Don’t use sleep to avoid doing daily life activities or to shut your feelings out. Use it wisely!

These are my best coping mechanisms when I am experiencing high anxiety. Maybe you have a few of your own, do whatever you can to ease your anxious mind. Although I struggle with anxiety day-to-day, I always try to remain positive and use these methods to fight back. That’s all you can do when you are experiencing this. I know people will tell you to “relax” and “it will be okay” and they’re right, but it doesn’t always help.

Be optimistic, even in the darkest moments. Life is up and down, it’s not a flat road. Accept this, accept your flaws and keep pushing. Everyone has their own demons.

Thank you for reading PYM today! Share this post because you never know who may need this.

xo, Lyss

Farm Fresh Salad Recipe

Hello Darlings,

This past Saturday I spent the morning at the local farmers market in Grand Rapids. I picked up lots of fresh + local goodies. It was such a quaint and quiet morning spent alone, I really enjoyed it.

I thought I would share what I got with you and give you my current favorite salad recipe, made from some of the things I picked up at the market.

First, I picked up a coffee from a local coffee shop that I love (Madcap Coffee for the local readers). I adore the setting and vibes of the shop, and the lattes are always perfect. Then, I headed to the massive Fulton Street farmers market. There were a bunch of farmers and vendors to look through, I was overwhelmed with my options. So, I did a walk through first before purchasing any goodies.

Here’s what I got:

  • 3 zucchini for $1
  • 2 [huge] cucumbers for $1
  • Bouquet of sunflowers for $5
  • A little succulent for $2.50
  • Bag of mixed greens for $5

All adding up to just $14.50 – Talk about a steal!

There were lots of other affordable and fresh items that I chose not to buy this time because I am about leave for a trip. If you would be interested in a full Farmers Market haul, let me know in the comments. For this time around, the salad is made up of a mix of farm fresh and grocery store bought.

My Salad Recipe

Ingredients:

  • Mixed Greens (my fave includes spinach, arugula + romaine)
  • Tuna (or chicken)
  • Half of an avocado
  • Diced cucumbers
  • Baby tomatoes
  • Shredded carrot
  • Diced onion
  • Herb + Garlic for taste (salt-free)
  • Apple cider vinegar for dressing

First, I washed the salad mix I picked up from the market. Then I chopped up all the goodies for the toppings. I added all the veggies to the top, then added tuna. Once that was done, I added seasoning (garlic + herb) and dressing (apple cider vinegar). Voila! Yummy + fresh salad to fill you tummy!

*The green shows which items were bought at the market. Though there are only two in this recipe, carrots, avocado, tomatoes, onion, fresh herbs and even chicken were available at this market. once again, I did not purchase these items this time due to an upcoming vacation.

This salad mix has been one of my go-to’s lately. It’s very filling and tasty.

After eating my salad, I re-potted the little succulent I bought and named it “Hazel”. How cute is she?!

I’m looking forward to my next trip to the market and I plan to buy lots more. Do you like visiting the local market? What’s your favorite recipe to make from it? Share below!

Thank you for reading today + I wish you a week of happiness. Smash your goals and be kind to everyone.

xo, Lyss

 

“Easy for You to Say, You’re Skinny”

Hello Beautiful Babes,

I’ve heard this line many many times in my life. When I start to get healthy and work out more consistently, people tell me it’s easy for me because I’m skinny. I can see where they are coming from, and I understand their reasoning behind it. But, it’s not easy for me because I’m skinny.

I have been working on my health and fitness over the past few months, which you can probably tell if you’ve been following me.

First off, I am not doing this to lose weight or be “skinny”. I am doing this to feel healthy. When I am strong and my body is healthy I feel more confident and happy.

When people start their fitness journey, they usually begin because they are inspired by something. For some it may be weight lose, for others it may just be to build muscle tone. Everyone starts for different reasons; therefore we cannot judge people’s lifestyle based on their size.

Yes, you’re correct. In today’s society, I am skinny. I won the gene pool lottery…?

Not true! 

My background

My family health history is quite lengthy actually. From diabetes and arthritis to even cancer, I am not “lucky”. Everyone has a choice in life though, and how you treat your body has a big impact on your health and future.

For most of my childhood, I did dance and gymnastics. I was also a very active child; always playing outside, riding my bike and running around with my pets. This background set me up for a healthy body. I also never ate a bunch of candy or drank sugary drinks, I wasn’t raised in that environment. My mom didn’t deprive me of candy, I just never was the kid that drank soda and ate candy on the reg. I loved water! (lame, I know)

I began focusing on my health more over the past few months because I was feeling sick after almost every meal. I couldn’t figure out the problem and why I was feeling this way. Then, I did some research and realized my diet could have a big impact on that. Working out has also helped me keep everything moving smooth through my digestive system. Growing up, I was always active and my body still thrives on that activity to function properly.

The eating habits and lifestyle you are raised with can impact how you take care of yourself now. Not everyone has the same background as me, nor does anyone have the same as you. That’s why you can’t look at someone who is skinny and assume they have it easy. The good news is you can always change your current lifestyle. You are not tied to your habits.

Being skinny doesn’t make building muscle and eating healthy any easier for me. I still have to be conscious about my food choices and listen to my body’s needs.

If you are struggling to find peace with your body and don’t know where to start, do your research. Learn about what works for you and what feels good. Keep a journal about how you feel not only externally but internally. Don’t force a lifestyle, just find one that you can find peace and happiness with. Feel free to contact me as well. I’m not an expert but I have battled with some of my own self-image issues, including body shaming.

Women of all sizes deal with these types of issues, you’re not alone. Skinny, “fat”, large or small; we are all just trying to be the best version of ourselves.

Thank you for reading PYM!

xo, Lyss

I’m Not Perfect, I Know

Hello Lovely People,

In a world of picture perfect people, thanks to social media; we are all held to an unobtainable standard. I believe women struggle with this a little more than the fellas, but we all experience it.

“It”, referring to the feeling of never being enough.

We get caught up comparing ourselves and our accomplishments to others. It’s easy to do in a society where everyone shares their lives on the internet. You get a new shirt and you’re happy, but then you see your friend just got a new car. This feeling of envy can kick in.

You were completely content with your purchase of $15 until you saw someone had something better. You then think: “oh, well I can’t afford that, I must not be good enough or successful enough”.

The cycle begins. It’s vicious too!

You don’t mean to be jealous or envious of other people but it’s hard not to be when their “perfect” lives are always in your face.

Truth: Their lives are not perfect. How do I know this?

Well because just like us, they’re human. We all try to post our best pictures and post on our best days, when really, there are a lot of low quality pictures and low quality days. As a society, we like to share the good stuff.

I have anxiety. Many people may not know this about me but they do know that I “like a plan”. It’s not that I like a plan but I get anxiety when I don’t know what to expect. It makes me overthink and worry, why? I couldn’t tell you. It just happens mentally.

I started to share some of struggles (with anxiety) on Instagram and Facebook, being 100% honest and it was a hit. Not in the sense that I got this fancy attention for it and all these followers, but I had people personally message me telling me they struggled with the same things. REAL PEOPLE. The ones that even shared pictures of their perfect lives.

See! No one is perfect, we just like to put on a front that makes people think we are. It’s safer because we’re less vulnerable in that state.

I’m not saying every time you log on to social media you need to share your true feelings. Just be aware that everyone else has similar battles in their lives, we just don’t always see them.

And a side note. Rather than focusing on what people are doing around you and on social media, focus on your goals and your accomplishments. Whether you just got a new shirt or a new car, you are not any greater or less than those around you.

Everyone has flaws, they may not be the same as yours but they’re there. And if you think about it, your flaws are only defined by you. How other people view them is completely up to them. How you define your flaws may be how someone else defines your beauty. One of my favorite quotes that I came across recently, explains this all so well:

“Just because you don’t look like somebody who you think is attractive doesn’t mean you are’t attractive. Flowers are pretty, but so are sunsets and they look nothing alike.”  

Thank you for checking out Pretty, Young and Motivated today! I have officially created a YouTube channel that will go along with this blog. It is under my name Alyssa Waid, but it is an addition to the PYM family. Check it out here!

You too have a picture perfect life, it’s just about the angle you look at it.

xo, Lyss

3 Intense Sweaty Workouts

Hello Fit Babes:

Sticking to a workout routine can really show results and push you in your fitness journey, but that can potentially get boring at times. That’s why it’s important to add in some intense, body shocking workouts. These will break your normal routine and work new muscle groups, which will hopefully show more results. I thought I could share a couple of my favorite intense workouts that I do when I really want to sweat. I also do these workouts when I feel bloated or sluggish, it really kicks my body back into gear. These are great to add to your routine, but they aren’t meant to be done everyday.

Intense Workout #1 | Hey Miss New Booty

You’ll need a gym with a stair master!

StairMaster: 15-20 minutes

3 to 5 minute warm up |  Level: 8-10

3 to 5 sprints for 30 second each | Level: 20 or your personal max

*Break for 30 seconds to 1 minute between each. The sprints truly burn but you have to push through at least 3 to really reap the benefits of this exercise.

3 sets of kickbacks for 30 seconds | Level: 8

*This is a booty burner, simply kick each leg back and step on every other step.

3 sets of 30 second side climb | Level: 13

*Walking sideways on each side counts as one set.

You may also take breaks in between the other exercises, but I usually do a set of kickbacks combined with the sideways walking then take a small break. Do what’s best for your fitness level. I usually complete a few intense ab exercises after too!

Intense Workout #2 | The Girl Next Door

Utilize your neighborhood or local park for this one!

8-10 hill climbs | Try to do this pretty continuous

1 to  2 mile run/walk | Try to run for the whole 1st mile

10-15 stair sprints | Do five then take a 1 minute break, repeat until you reach 10 or 15

Workout #3 | Sweaty Yogi

Attend a hot yoga class!

Hot yoga is actually such a sweaty, intense workout, especially if you partake in a vinyasa session. Vinyasa is a constant movement through different yoga poses. I remember when I first did one of these classes, I left dripping sweat and I was sore for the next two days. It literally shocked my body. I LOVED IT!

Thank you for checking out Pretty, Young & Motivated today. I hope you are able to try some of these workouts and see some serious results. Share your favorite intense workouts with me in the comments! I’d love to try some of yours too. Happy Monday!

Let’s get sweaty!

xo, Lyss