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5 things to do while you’re sitting in your sh*t

“Disappointment, without anger, is the mark of an old soul. Not being disappointed, Liz, is the mark of a really old soul. And trusting life so thoroughly that every step on its path is valued more than where it was supposed to take you, is the mark of eternal youth.”

You hottie,
The Universe (14 may 2015)

yesterday i got a rejection email following up on an interview i had aw week or so ago. they said it was stiff competition between me and another person. i felt pretty good about the job. or did i? i don’t know these days. it’s hard to not let my desperation to find a job and make money not override my sense of who i am and how i want to live my life. in any case. it feels sucky that they decided to go with the other person.

now, i can choose to focus on the things that go wrong, or scare me, or make me wake up in the middle of the night and fill my head with anxiety, or bring me down.

or, i can choose to focus on things that make me feel good. whole. complete. and down right ok with everything, choosing to trust that things will work out.

by focusing on the good, i am not eliminating or running away from the bad. nope. i still feel it all. and i let myself feel it for a bit.

my brother likes to call it “sitting with it.”

you sit with your shit. just let it be. just let yourself cry. or curl up into a ball. let yourself have a bad day, a day when you feel off. let yourself unwind. admit to yourself how things really are. all of which i did last night and this morning.

and while you’re sitting with it, might i suggest a few things to help you get through. just so you know, friends, these are 5 things i’ve done this week. 5 things that have reminded me to smile + to breathe. even though i’ve not been feeling tip top. even though disappointment + stress are following me around. still, these 5 things, have helped me to maintain as much balance as possible.

1. express yourself (talk. express what you are feeling, or not. just get some positive people around you.)

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wedding planning with lina’s brother + his fianceé. lina + i are the reception emcees!

2. get inspired (listen to music, play music, read, create art, write, look at art, take some photos, cook/bake)

kitchen-work

my work space for the past 2 weeks: writing my book always refocuses me.

dinner

made a yummy dinner!

3. watch something on netflix/tv (just veg for a little bit)

wine-tv

a glass of wine + some tv. yesssss.

4. go inside (and by inside, i mean, inside your self. light some candles + meditate.)

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my little sitting place for morning meditations.

5. go outside (get moving. exercise. change your environment. fill your wild soul with some nature.)

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a walk by the river in downtown uppsala

neighborhood

the sun was shining, so i had to get out + walk in my neighborhood.


there is a fine line, though, i think between letting ourselves just sit with it, and getting stuck.

there is nothing wrong with redirecting our attention. you know, avoidance. by going to exercise, or surrounding ourselves with someone who lifts our spirits, or obsessing over beautiful things on pinterest, or watching our favorite netflix series, or just sleeping. anything that calms us down and gives us a little sense of peace of mind for a little bit is a good thing.

but there’s a deeper way of “sitting with it”. once we’ve gone away from the pain and disappointment for a bit, then i believe it’s time to deal with it. and by that, i mean to reflect on it, analyze, ponder, question, and yes, feel whatever feelings bubble up. the point is to understand what is going on and why we are feeling this way. and, of course, this can be done alone or with someone else. i personally prefer a little of both. but, it needs to be done.  it is a necessary part of moving on.

then, it’s time to stand up again.

there comes a time when we just need to choose to say that we are done with this shit for now. and that’s when the action starts. that’s when everything changes. that’s when we begin to move on.

sitting with it is healthy i think. it means that we admit that things are not great. and that we don’t run away from those feelings and thoughts of things being not great. but, sitting with it means that we also take an active role in making it better. we don’t just sit there, like a lump on a log, crying “poor me!”. we admit that we feel that way, and we don’t judge those feelings, but then we begin to wonder why we feel that way and what we can do to move past those feelings.

so, whenever you feel like crap and you’re having a day from hell. admit it. feel it. and don’t feel bad about it. redirect yourself towards something that you enjoy, something that makes you feel calm. and then, do the work to help you get yourself out of the shit. figure stuff out and know that you will not feel like this forever.

and then, stand up, brush yourself off, and start moving forward again.

sending you lots of love + courage + strength.

onwards + upwards! xoxo

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flowers trees blue sky

40 | may 2015: the sky is smiling (a playlist!)

 

oh, may! it is the prettiest month of the year in sweden, i do believe. blue skies. sunshine. flowers. warm weather. it is the perfect month to be outside as much as possible. and that’s pretty easy to do, considering that the sun sets later and later. by the end of the month, it’ll still be light at 11pm.

it’s a month that makes me feel alive. and in love – even if june is usually the month reserved for lovers. for me, may has not always been an easy month, but i think that is what makes it all the more sweeter. my love was very, life-threateningly sick for 2 mays in the past. and, so, now, we celebrate life + love + health every may. all month long, we focus on living life to the fullest. being in love with each other. soaking up the simple moments. and enjoying the beauty of the earth during the late spring.

so, all of that was my inspiration for this month’s playlist. it’s a playlist made for lovers + gardens. sunshine + blue skies. it’s all about laughing + being together. taking it easy, dancing, rejoicing. and squeezing every ounce of beauty + happiness out of every single moment.

so, go ahead. click on the photo below and follow the link to the playlist on spotify.

go outside, twirl in the sunshine, smile, give away free hugs, hava a picnic, gaze at the clouds, and remember that life is precious. let’s make the most of every single minute. there’s no time to waste!

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happy may!

onwards + upwards! xx

you can also click here to get the playlist! 

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look up on this earth day

it’s earth day, lovelies. and i could do post after post about how much i love nature. this tree-hugging, water-loving nature girl, however, has decided to focus her earth day celebration on the beauty of the sky.

first thing every single morning and last thing every single night, i gaze out my window + up at the sky. i can’t help but do it. i look up to see the clouds, the sun, the stars. i look up to remind myself how tiny i am and how great this world is. i look up to think about all of those who are far away from me, and remember that we are all standing under the same sky. i look up and wonder what it’s like way up there past our sky. i dream of the stars, of floating on clouds, of flying free. i look up just to breathe.

so, in order to honor this life-giving, awe-inspiring piece of nature on earth day, i have gathered 5 quotes. quotes that i’ve never heard before, but that are so inspiring and beautiful. take a moment, read these words, and then look up.

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“In the sky there are always answers and explanations for everything: every pain, every suffering, joy and confusion.”
― Ishmael BeahA Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier

“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.”
― John LubbockThe Use Of Life

“I let my head fall back, and I gazed into the Eternal Blue Sky. It was morning. Some of the sky was yellow, some the softest blue. One small cloud scuttled along. Strange how everything below can be such death and chaos and pain while above the sky is peace, sweet blue gentleness. I heard a shaman say once, the Ancestors want our souls to be like the blue sky.”
― Shannon HaleBook of a Thousand Days

“The sky is not my limit…I am.”
― T.F. Hodge

Look at your feet. You are standing in the sky. When we think of the sky, we tend to look up, but the sky actually begins at the earth. We walk through it, yell into it, rake leaves, wash the dog, and drive cars in it. We breathe it deep within us. With every breath, we inhale millions of molecules of sky, heat them briefly, and then exhale them back into the world.”                                ― Diane Ackerman, A Natural History of the Senses

wherever you are, my friends, take one little moment and look up. gaze. ponder. breathe. wonder. blink. dream. observe. slow down, just enough to take in all that you see up there. and give thanks for the beautiful earth that holds us and cradles us and gives us life.
isn’t it time that we give a little back? happy earth day, fellow flower children!

onwards + upwards! xoxo

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sweden in the spring

hello lovelies! happy tuesday to you, wherever you are. unfortunately, as the beautiful swedish sun is shining, i find myself laying under a blanket on the sofa at home this afternoon feeling puny + yucky. it’s cozy, but not at all the day of writing and working at a café in the sunshine that i had planned.

oh well. a lot has been on my mind lately. about the present moment, and the direction i wish to go in, and what “my thing” is. looking for jobs, and searching any-and everywhere has been making me feel a little all over the place. and completely clogged up. however,  i feel as if i have had some amazing moments + times of reflection lately that seem to be tying a lot of things together. however, i am not rushing into anything. i feel like it’s time to be very grounded, very deliberate, and very focused in how i create the life that i feel called to.

so, perhaps my not feeling tip top is just nature’s way of giving me a day to let a bunch of stuff sink in.

in the meantime, spring is arriving in sweden. colors are beginning to creep back into our nordic world, the air is warming, and life is returning. lina and i have done our best to soak up the sunshine and the beauty over the past couple of days. we even made a quick trip to stockholm just to see the cherry trees in blossom. of course i’ve taken lots of photos and it’s time for me to share them with you!

so, here’s a little burst of spring for you… swedish style! enjoy!

kungstradgarden-stockholm-cherry-trees cherry-blossom pink-tree sky-cherry-tree home-window-spring uppsala-spring-river green-buds-tree
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hope you are enjoying the changing of the seasons in your little corner of the world!

onwards + upwards! xoxo

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meditation mondays: the girl + the sea

“In still moments by the sea life seems large-drawn and simple. It is there we can see into ourselves.” ― Rolf Edberg

what is it about the sea? that mysterious, powerful, peaceful, ferocious, wild sea? is it because it is a perfect balance of untamed freedom + calming stillness? what is it about the sea that makes me feel so alive and connected and in complete speechless awe? why do i always stand by the sea and feel so huge + so tiny, so important + so insignificant, so connected + so alone all at the the same time?

it simply must be that mystical, magical, ancient connection that we have to it. that sense of living life truly as it is meant to be: a journey through ups + downs, rough times + peaceful times. and it’s constant presence. the feeling that the sea has been around since the beginning. there’s history and spirit and power and life in her waters. and what a privilege it is so simply gaze across her to the horizon far away. what comfort + adventure she provides all at the same time.

yes, i cannot live without being able to feel her waters. or sail on her waves. and breathe her fresh, salty air. i don not live right beside her, but when i can, i visit her shores or ride her waves and i remember who i am. i give thanks for her life-giving qualities. for her range of emotions. and for the balance that she brings to my life + the entire planet.

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my family grew up by the sea. my ancestors were the first to land + live in the US, after crossing her mighty atlantic waters in 1620. more ancestors lived on her coastline, loving her beauty + warning coming sailors of her rough + dangerous north carolina shore in the mid 1800s. i myself have returned to her again + again with my family throughout my entire so that i might be inspired to continue the life of adventure + journey that my ancestors began.

the sea is in my soul. a symbol of sailors + seamen sits permanently on my left ring finger reminding me to sail on. to journey on. to adventure on. to let my life + my family’s life become a life inspired + sustained + balanced + anchored by the sea.

i have many places in nature that inspire me + make me feel connected… where do you find inspiration in nature? what places are powerful to you? share with me!

onwards + upwards! xoxo