It’s 2016!

I am so excited for 2016! After several weeks of rest and relaxation I am ready to begin working again.

Since I will be engaging in my regular work/grad student/multiple forms of activism schedule, it will be important to take some time to slow down and practice self-care.

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Reminder to practice self-care every day of every year
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Hiking helps me connect with nature and myself

 

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Mindfulness and Nature

20151205_160938.jpgOn Saturday I was fortunate to spend the day connecting with the natural elements. I attended a workshop focused on nature and mindfulness.

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As we explored the earth element, I stood in a warrior pose, feeling the earth below my feet and looking at the California oak trees around me. Majestic trees standing strong despite the storms. One particular tree caught my eye. The tree’s beauty took my breath away. I noticed the tree had many bumps and scratches. However, those imperfections didn’t take away from its beauty. Rather, they were indicative of its growth, resilience, and perfect imperfection.

The importance of being grounded resonated strongly with me. I wanted to reach out and hug that beautiful tree — because like that tree, despite every bump and scratch I’ve gotten along the way I’m still standing.

 

Reflections and a New Year

2015.

The beginning of a new year leads one to reflect on the past year.  On New Year’s Eve I visited Fern Dell Nature Center to quietly contemplate 2014.

Surrounded by the smell of fern, the sight of hummingbirds, the sound of running water, and the feel of warm rays of the sun on my skin epitomized a perfect place for thought and reflection.

2014 was a year of transformation.  In order for one to grow, things have to change.   While 2014 did not start off as a piece of cake for me, halfway through the year, and with a lot of work – things got better.

I am so proud of my health: mind, body and spirit. Perseverance, resilience, and taking the time to get to know myself and fall in love with who I am and am becoming are all I could’ve asked for in 2014.

**Sending you warm hugs and happy wishes. Happy New Year!**

 

I leave you with some images I took while at Fern Dell.

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Balance: Setting Self Care Goals

A huge part of feeling good is living a balanced life where the amount of time dedicated to self care, work, and relationships is distributed evenly. There are a few things I want to do everyday that I would consider self care.

Living in a capitalist society, work tends to take over our lives and it’s super easy to neglect ourselves and/or friends and family.

I have set four weekly goals for myself that will make me feel happy and ensure I am practicing self care:

1. Read 50 pages per day everyday of a book of my choice
2. Meditate for 5 mins everyday after choosing a card from Psychic Tarot of the Heart
3. Place at least  3 picture frames for the Xiomara Project each week
4. Practice yoga 3 times per week. Only one of those 3 may be a restorative class – additional restorative classes will be in addition to the 3 classes.

What goals can you set for yourself in the areas of self care, relationships, and/or work that are achievable and will help you balance your life?

A Great Moment

I have had an amazing week. I’ve reconnected with several friends I met in NYC and haven’t seen in several years.

On Thursday, I went to the beach with a friend.

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As I laid there taking in the late afternoon sun rays I felt bliss and gratitude for the opportunity to feel the wonders of nature underneath my body.

I keep reminding myself that living in the moment means acknowledging what’s happening in the present and observing it while being detached. It’s the good events I then immerse myself in, fill my heart with love, and express ultimate gratitude to the Universe for being able to experience a great moment in my life.

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Today, I am having a good day.  Right now, I am happy.

Happy

I recently learned depression is tied to events that occurred in the past. Anxiety on the other hand is tied to events that have not yet occurred.

The problem with depression is that the past has already happened and it’s essential to learn to let it go. The problem with anxiety is that a person gets all worked up by events that have not even happened yet.

This has helped me understand the idea behind mindfulness. Living in the moment, being in the moment,  appreciating the present moment for all it is — especially when everything is fine.

Being present in the moment has been a key goal of mine. Mindfulness combined with my goal to focus on the happiness in my life made it possible for me to have a beautiful and wonderful day.

Today,  I reached out to people, learned about their lives, gave a caring hug to someone, and laughed a lot. I was open, fun,  free spirited, and genuinely human.

I am so proud of the amount I accomplished today and am grateful for the opportunity to live a wonderful day.

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I am happy today!

Whirlwind & Instagram

I have been missing in action because shortly after my trip to Nebraska I went to Chicago for a few days and soon after to Las Vegas. The trips were both eventful and I will write about each one in another post. For now, I want to write about the insane crash I experienced as a result of these trips — mostly because on these trips I was constantly surrounded by people, constantly socializing, partying, and having fun.

When I arrived home from Las Vegas at 4 am on Sunday, I was relieved to know I would finally be home for a few weeks before summer takes a break ’til next year. However, I also began to experience loneliness. On Tuesday and Thursday I fell into a dark hole and struggled to crawl out of it. I happened to have a therapy appointment this week and am so grateful for that visit. I identified some of my triggers  and my homework over the next two weeks is to focus on the happiness in my life.

Today, I went to yoga and after class ordered a large Jamba Juice with a gift card I had received. I sat in the sun and read a few chapters from Law of Attraction before my parking meter expired. It was the most beautiful moment of the day! I was so happy, calm, and at peace. I continually told myself, ” Xiomara, it’s OKAY to be happy.” I am working to want happiness, expect happiness, and realize that happiness is the norm.

So, I will be posting on Instagram @dearxiomara.xo a picture (or two) a day of everyday happiness. Follow me on Instagram! #everydayhappiness