Dustin’ That Ass Off

When I’m feeling bad about anything in my life I use it as motivation. I use my emotions to push me towards the things I need to do in order to succeed. There will always be experiences, people, and tragedies that will occasionally knock you down no matter what you do to prepare. But there has not been one single instance in my life where I have been knocked down and just laid there. I take a moment to breathe and then I get my ass up, dust myself off and I make a plan.

I’m a firm believer in using the bricks life throws at you and building yourself up to be even stronger. “Don’t be pushed by your problems, be led by your dreams.” -Ralph Waldo Emmerson

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If you’re sad, be sad. If you’re hurt, then be hurt. Allow yourself to go through those feelings and witness your fear. But give yourself a deadline to feel that way, because there is only so much one can do when they’re feeling bad for themselves. I like to cry it out, take a hot lavender bath, make myself an amazing meal, and get a full 9 hours of sleep if possible (I realize that’s not always an option for some people..) and then I wake up the next morning and give all my anger, sadness, confusion, and pain up at the gym. It works every time. I leave the gym feeling like a new woman.

Smiths Machine 24 hour

But the biggest thing I’ve learned from the recent let-downs in my life is this: you have to make an effort to be strong, you have to fight back against negativity and self-doubt every day, and you have to disregard anyone’s desire to blow out that flame that you work so hard to ignite within. And the most important thing is that you do all of that with love and grace. Because anybody can be a fighter, but not everyone can go about it in a gentle and loving way.

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My Intention for 2014

Usually I take some time to write a post about my year. Obviously everyone needs to know how I felt about it, right? ;) But this year it feels best to keep it short & sweet — 2013 was many things.. and a year I will never forget. I feel gratitude for the people, experiences, and challenges it brought into my life. But I have shared my thoughts on many things over the last year on this blog & I feel as though it’s time to truly put the good, and the bad, in the past.

With that said, I woke up this morning eager to start the first day of the year. When I first thought about making New Years resolutions I did what I do and got busy over-thinking (naturally) Here’s my first list aka clusterfuck: Get a 4.0 during Spring semester, finish my first half marathon with a great time (or just finish, that’s cool too), improve my performance at work, make my apartment more Pinterest-y, or beat last years time when I compete in the Spartan this June for the 2nd year. But I quickly realized all of that doesn’t really matter at the end of the day. These things are like the sprinkles on top of the cake — nice, but not necessary.

I’d rather commit the year to improving myself all together and putting energy towards being the well-rounded, loving woman I know that I can be someday. I love my life and the adventures I’m about to embark on and I plan on doing the things listed above. But I know there is more to “it” than just that.

So as I sat in my last pose in my last yoga class of 2013 I set my intention for 2014: Create more love and bring it into all the different areas in my life. My career, education, relationships, yoga practice, and the things that bring me pain could all use less structure and more love. Pure, undeniable love makes the cake — marathons, good grades, a nice job, etc. are the sprinkles.

“Forgive others. Not necessarily because they deserve forgiveness, but because you deserve peace.” -Unknown
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I have really focused on coming from love when handling hard situations over the last 2 months. There have been times where my heart has ached, I’ve felt anger, confusion (ya lots of that) and betrayal. Moments where I had 2 options: be an emotional biatch or take a big deep breath and remember it’s better to be happy than right. I reminded myself that it’s not what happens to me in life, it is how I react. AKA I calmed my sassy brazilian ass down and let whatever was ruffling my feathers go.
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So when people or situations bring me pain I will choose to bring compassion, understanding, patience, forgiveness, and above all I will come from love. One of the most important lessons I learned in 2013 was that those who bring negativity and sadness to your life need exactly the opposite in return. They need love. It’s true.. those who hurt others need love more than we could ever truly imagine.

So here we go babes. Another year down where I hope you feel like you kicked some ass, but if not there’s good news… We have 365 days of blank pages and we can choose what we’d like to do with them. Isn’t that incredible?

So if someone is really awful to you and you’re not sure why, just think “Wow, you’re kind of an asshole. Maybe you need a hug?” How people treat you is their karma — how you respond is yours.

It will be hard to always be full of love because unfortunate circumstances are inevitable in life. All I know is that on December 31st when I’m looking back on the days of 2014 it will be impossible to feel regret when all I see is love.

Happy New Year dolls,

XOXO Bailey Mikell 4b6be466786d46c25eda788c9ce64e3a