Are You Stressed AF? Here's How to Destress

There’s only 24 hours in a day. Believe me, I know. I can be busy and make myself the most jam packed schedule there is. How about you? Can you be busy AF too? If you’re nodding your head, this blog post is for you. 

I’m writing this blog post with a sheet mask on my face, the sun beaming in from my windows, and the one and only Nina Simone playing in the background. This is one of my many ways of destressing. I love face masks, I love to write, I love the sun, and I love Nina. But let’s talk about some general steps in destressing when you're busy AF

Recognize Your Stress - First and foremost, it’s important that you recognize stress when it arises. Your body has its own way of telling you that it’s stressed. When you feel it in your shoulders, acknowledge it. When you feel it with headaches, acknowledge it. When you feel it in your hands, acknowledge it. 

I remember when I would not simply acknowledge that I was stressed. My stress shows up in my shoulders and in my upper back. Years ago, I would keep going through the stress and not pay attention to it until it became a real necessity. Once I could barely move my shoulders or stretch my back, I would begin to slow down or take it easy somehow. 

 Photo taken by Russia Boles

Photo taken by Russia Boles

Today, I recognize my stress when it arises. As soon as my shoulders start reaching toward my ears and my upper back is hunching forward, I know something is up. I no longer ignore it. I no longer push it aside. I’m no longer too busy to recognize my stress. 

We all have different ways of stress showing up in our bodies. Whether it’s a headache, backache, or toothache, it’s important in the destress process to first recognize where that stress comes up. Next, it’s pertinent to discover what our hobbies and passions are that will combat that stress. 

Discover your Destress Activities - You have those things. Those things that you love to do when your brain is jelly. Those things that you love to come to when you’re mentally exhausted. Those things that you appreciate when you need to destress. What are your things? 

Mine took a while to discover. It took until my hospitalization for major depression disorder in 2014 to find out what I needed. Now I know them and do them as often as I can financially, physically, and emotionally. 

My destress activities include the following: talk-therapy, yoga (as a student), writing on this blog, face masking, lifting weights, diffusing essential oils, lighting my salt lamp, reading an inspirational book, talking to ladies in my Self Soul Sport community, and stir frying vegetables in my kitchen. They took a while to discover, especially my love for having a therapist. But they’re now activities that I commit to. 

This second step is all about our discovery. It’ll take some time before we find our go-to activities for destressing. It can mean that we’ll need to try something new or commit to something we need. It’s up to us to find and identify our destress activities. Then, it’s up to us to schedule them. 

Create a Destress Routine - Okay, what are those activities that destress you? Write them down or make a mental note of them. Then you create a routine around them. Yup, that’s the third step in your destressing journey. 

Once I discovered what made me less stressed, I wouldn’t schedule them. I would do them sporadically, without any sort of rhyme or reason. That soon became a problem because I wasn’t balancing out my stress and destress. So I decided to start scheduling time to destress. 

Today, my calendar is full of destress activities (almost daily!). I schedule a yoga, Pilates, or barre class on Mondays. I do a mask or listen to music on Tuesdays or Wednesdays. Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays are my weight lifting, heart bumping days. Saturdays are also my “love days" (date myself or dates with friends). Sundays are my soul days, masking, writing to you, and scheduling my week. I intentionally left out Fridays because those are my days where I work the hardest with either clients or brands. But notice how I’ve still created a routine. 

When we create a routine, it allows us to commit. In order to destress, we need to schedule it or it won’t get done. We’ll come up with better things to do or more stressful activities to add to our schedule. But let’s be honest, sometimes it’s hard to even stick to that routine. 

Stick to that Routine (no matter what) - You’ve created your routine and set your days/times to destress. Now what happens if you get an invite to that event? Now what happens if you get a text for that party? Now what happens if you get that desire to schedule something else? Let’s talk about this, and as always, I’m the guinea pig.

I’ve created my routine and it’s something I’m not moveable on. Literally. No one can schedule with me on nights before I wake up to teach yoga at 4am (Tuesdays to Thursdays). No one can see me on a Friday unless you’re paying for my business somehow. No one can invite me to another workout class on a Monday because I’m not going. That’s it. 

That said, I’ve had to use wisdom sometimes. If a huge brand wants to work with me, believe me, I will realign my schedule. Or if a huge family event occurs, I will be flexible. However, it takes a lot to get to that decision. Unfortunately, it does mean that I have to miss out on things, like spending time with niece or seeing friends more than once a month. I say this to say: it’s all a matter in sticking to the routine. 

We’ve got routines for a reason. Our destress routine is just as important as washing our asses and brushing our teeth. If we’re stressed, we’re rendered useless for any of the other routines anyway. But let’s get to the finisher. The big last step. 

Get Rid of the Stress Culprit/s - I left this last on purpose. This is the hardest step. This is probably the hardest part of the destress process because it means you might have to let some shit go. You might have to say "buh-bye" to that person that stresses you the fuck out. You might have to say “see yah” to that career that gives you no life. You might have to say “adios” to that monthly event that you do because you were told it’s somehow important. 

In the first step, I talked about recognizing stress. Well, I recognized them through my body and noticing patterns after my days. I noticed it stresses me out to be alone for long periods of time. I’m the classic extrovert. I realized not moving my body at least five times a week made me tense. I also recognized that I strongly wanted to work for myself.

So there it goes. I got rid of all of those stressors. I schedule time around or with or people. I move my body almost every single day. And now, I work for myself. I came to the culprits of my stress by recognizing my body after them, then I slow began to get rid of them or implement the opposite of them.

So how do we get rid of our stress culprit/s? We just do. We plan our exit strategy. Whether that’s an email, whether that’s a conversation, whether that’s a whole entire life adjustment, we do that shit. We get rid of it. While we can be as profound as we want about getting rid of stress, there’s nothing to it but to do it. If we need help, we can seek guidance through therapy (I do this) or a coach (I do this too and will offer sessions soon!). 

Okay, it’s up to you to destress! It’s entirely up to you. I’ve laid out these steps because they’ve personally helped me. I wouldn’t steer you wrong. I think we know each other by now, right?! I’m your cheerleader! If you want to destress, it’s important that you recognize how stress shows up for you, discover the activities that you love, plan those activities, and stick to doing them. 

Most importantly, get rid of what’s stressing you! It could take a day, a week, or maybe years, but know that when you let it go, that’s when the best remedy to distressing.

How do you destress? Are there any activities that you’re going to dedicate time to after reading? Share some below! 

-ST

Three Honest Truths about Going Through the Leap toward your Passions

Going through the leap toward your passions isn't easy. I'm here in the thick of it, and I'm going to be honest with you, as always. This leap is both exciting and invigorating but also terrifying and intimidating. 

I'm writing today's post for all of those curious about this journey, who have been through this journey, and who are interested in making the leap. I'm also writing today's post as a my own personal journal entry in preparation for my official last day as a full-time employee for someone else.

My last day is this coming Wednesday, April 18th. Cue all the feels! In this leap, I intend on being as truthful and helpful to all of you. Let's get to the real shit I'm going through in this journey, and you've likely went through or will go through. 

 Photo Taken by Shay Paresh

Photo Taken by Shay Paresh

You're going to go through an emotional rollercoaster. You're going to have moments of pure excitement then you're going to have moments of sheer panic. It's the way it is when you're making a leap.

I'm a hot mess of emotions right now. I'm excited AF to be my own boss. I look forward to setting my own schedule. I look forward to waking up at my own time. I look forward to creating my own workspace. I look forward to dedicating my day to my own passions. 

I'm also terrified AF of what my life will be like as being my own boss. I cannot anticipate all of the taxes I'm going to have to pay. I cannot imagine all of the decisions I'm going to have to make. I cannot anticipate all of the tasks I might need an assistant eventually for (oh my gosh!). I cannot anticipate what this leap will bring, but that's also what's exciting! 

A leap toward our passions is ultimately an exciting one because it's toward what we love. We can spend our days in the emotional rollercoaster, but we can also be aware that these emotions are there because we are courageous enough to make the leap. 

You're going to crunch a lot of numbers to check sustainability. Let's be real. You and I both know that money is an important factor toward this leap. You and I both know that money makes the world go round. If you ain't making money from your passions, you cannot make that leap. In this leap, you're gonna consistently have money on the brain!

I have a confession to make, but first I need you not to judge me. Promise? Okay, well I hate numbers. I hate numbers in spreadsheets. I hate numbers in spreadsheets in formulas. I hate numbers in spreadsheets in formulas in budgets. I've been tested in this journey to crunch a lot of numbers to make sure this leap can be financially sustainable. 

In calculating and poring over these numbers, I've realized how sustainable it is. I had to calculate all of my side incomes from yoga teaching, brand influencing, social media consulting, girlboss consulting, and soon-to-be life coaching. In realizing the sustainability of my passions, this leap has become much easier emotionally. 

You're going to face many questions about your decision. You're going to have people who believe in you, and you're going to have people who doubt you. You're going to face questions from both parties. You'll get questions that range from, "I'm so excited for you! What are you going to do?!" and "How in the world are you going to pull this off?!" Be ready for them! 

I've gotten my fair share of questions about my leap. In two interview podcasts for The Delivery Podcast and Love Your Bodd Podcast, I've been asked many questions. In my conversations with ladies of Self Soul Sport, I've been asked many questions.  In my chats with family members, I've been asked many questions. 

In answering these questions, I've noticed many ranges of emotions toward my leap. Some of have been excited and some have been downright rude. In facing these questions, I've shared only what I'm comfortable with and what I want to answer. Some people see the vision, and that's great! Some people just don't get the vision, and that's okay, too. I've learned to share only what I want. 

We all face questions in on our decisions; that will never change. There's something especially interesting to others about going through the leap toward passions. Whether they want to do it themselves or they're not understanding why anyone would want to leave a secure, cushy full-time job, it's our jobs to answer only what we are comfortable in sharing. It's okay to respect ourselves while respecting others. 

In sharing these three truths, I'm sharing what I feel is important to share with you all. Again, I'm terrified and excited all at the same damn time. Right now, I'm in the excitement phase.

I'm in the phase of being ready for what this journey is going to bring. Right now, I'm in the process of crunching numbers and figuring out how to pay myself, save for the business, and invest in my education. Right now, I'm in the process of answering so many questions by so many people. 

I wouldn't trade going through this leap for the world. Why? Because I'm leaping toward living my passions full-time. I wouldn't have it any other way.

How about you? Have you made the leap? Are you going through the leap? Have you already gone through the leap? Let's make our voices heard and share our own truths! Comment below to share yours. 

-ST

 

5 Limiting Beliefs that are Keeping You From Your Potential

Do you remember one of the first times you decided to move toward your potential? I do. 

The first time I thought of hosting events I was terrified, but I made it happen. I remember planning the very first Self Soul Sport event in June 2017. I was scared as hell when I sent out the invitations by text, email, and DM via Instagram to the ladies that I was inspired and encouraged by.  

I literally broke into a sweat before inviting each lady to an open discussion event with yogurt, tea, and three discussion questions. I didn’t know how the hell the event would be received.  I had nightmares of me showing up with absolutely no attendees, sitting at an empty seat, and eating all the yogurt by myself. 

What on happened the day of the event? On June 25, 2017, fifteen women showed up to chat all about their lifestyles and ready to discuss their #selfsoulsport lifestyles. This month, I’m hosting the tenth Self Soul Sport event and gaining confidence in my hosting abilities. 

There are beliefs that we tell ourselves that limit our potential. There are narratives that we come up with that block our passion. There are thoughts that we accept that foster our procrastination. I have them. You have them. We all have them.

I believe there is power in calling this shit out. So today’s post is shedding light on the five limiting beliefs that I’ve been through, that you’ve been through, and that I hear on a consistent basis, especially from all my girlbosses. 

Please note that this is all love. I have to talk myself out of these too, and trust me when I say: I’m here encouraging you as much as myself. That said, let’s get really real about these top five limiting beliefs that are keeping us from our potential. 

 Photo taken by Shay Paresh

Photo taken by Shay Paresh

"I can start later like next week, next month, or next year." When you succumb to this belief, you limit your ability to get shit done. Starting later eventually becomes starting never when we don’t set clear goals, deadlines, and timelines. When's the perfect time to start? Now. 

As I write this blog post, I procrastinated. It was on my Passion Planner to-do list for the whole week since Monday, I’m here at 11pm on a Saturday night working on a blog post that is set to launch in less about 12 hours. But I’ll tell you this, I have a deadline I need to meet and I’m abiding by it. 

When we set clear goals and deadlines, we get it done. That belief of starting later will become never for us if we don’t set time in our schedule to get it done. What helps us in our journeys and reaching our potentials is the steps that we schedule out. By X date, we need to get X done. BAM. That’s it. Non-Negotiable. 

"I’m not good enough at (fill in the blank)." There is no room for perfectionism when you are reaching your potential. The road is going to get messy, and you’re going to need to just get ideas out there. You're good enough because you’re doing it and because it’s your potential to reach.

Sometimes I think I’m a fraud. I literally feel like I’m Ashton Kutcher and I’m punking all of you, especially in writing. I don’t feel like I’m a good enough writer sometimes. I feel like my writing is too conversational and not formal enough. I feel like I’m not good enough at story telling and introducing blog posts. Blah blah blah. This is when I tune in and tell myself to cut the crap. My potential will be reached by the way that I write and the way I tell my story on these blog posts and my articles for mindbodygreen. 

When we keep up our ideas that we aren’t good enough at something, it keeps us from actually getting better at it. When we start practicing and stop perfecting, that’s when we build confidence. If you look at my past posts like this one from 2017, my writing has strengthened dramatically. Why? Because I keep at it. We all can keep at it too and become so good that we even suprise our damn selves! 

"I won't make money once I reach my potential." You are capable at making money at what you do. It doesn’t matter if you’re a chess player, a fashion blogger, or a damn trophy maker, you’re able to make money at what you do. That belief just keeps you from living your potential as a side hustle or full-time thang (if that's what you want!). 

I remember when I had the idea that I wanted to be self-employed and didn’t listen to myself for a while. This was all due to this belief that I couldn’t make money at it. But I started realizing that I could by seeing other people doing it and by believing my damn self. I could make money from yoga, I could make make money from writing, I could make money from event planning. I could even make money from posting on Instagram. Once I changed that belief into "I won't" to "I will." That's when all the opportunities came my way, and I was confident enough to make the decision to quit my full-time job to follow my passions

When we tell ourselves we cannot make money, we definitely won’t. When we start saying we can make money, we definitely will. From there, we will strategize and figure out how to make our potential profitable. Our potentials can turn into actions, which turn into profits. The first step is letting go of that belief. 

"I don't have enough time." You make time for what’s important to you. I repeat: you make time for what’s important to you. There’s no magic formula to getting more hours in the day. Beyonce is not magical; Beyonce just gets shit done in the 24 hours we all have in the day. 

I’m gonna be honest — I cannot relate to this one. I make time for the things I love with my work and personal calendars (Tiny Calendar is my life). I’ve always been in the mindset of making time for what matters because if I don’t dedicate the time, how in the hell am I going to reach my potential? 

When we keep telling ourselves we don’t have time, we’re really telling ourselves our potential isn’t important. Instead of saying we don’t have the time, how about we make the time? How about we invest in a planner? How about we schedule out time for us to brainstorm? How about we invest in the time we have, even if it’s just thirty minutes? We have the time, we make time work for us. 

"I’m all alone in this." There’s no way that you’re alone and the only person pushing through to reach their potential. Did you know there’s about 7.442 billion people in the world? Shout out to Google for that data. With all those people in the damn world, there's got to be (at least) two or three people who can keep you company in your journey.

I used to think I was alone in my depression and still wanting to function as a professional, especially as an entrepreneur. I used to think I was the only one struggling with this disorder and still pushing through to doing some awesome shit. But I’m not. How do I know? Because I surround myself with people every single day who remind me that I’m not alone. I’ve joined networking communities and even founded a community that reminds me that I’m not alone. 

We all are more connected to each other than we even know. There’s so many people that we don’t talk to, that we don’t say hello to, that we don’t meet with, that are going through the same exact thing. It will help if we put ourselves out there. Either by going to new events that are targeted toward we’re looking to do or networking on social media sites for people who are just like us. Either way, we are not alone with about billions of people on this earth. 

Do you have any of the limiting beliefs above or have any others that you’d like to share? If you’ve gotten this far and are nodding your head or resonating with this post, share what belief you’re letting go of today. Today, I’m letting go of the belief that I’m not good enough. 

I’m good enough to write this blog post and to write for an awesome publication like mindbodygreen. I’m good enough to be chatting with girlbosses on a weekly basis because I have so much to offer. I’m good enough to be doing what I do because I have you along with me on this journey. 

What are you letting go of today? Comment below and let's talk about it. 

-ST

Would You Quit Your Job To Follow Your Passions? I Just Did.

I started Shanna Tyler in June 2016 when I was working full-time at a nonprofit. Shanna Tyler started off as a side project with an Instagram and Squarespace website with little to no direction.

I knew a few things going into it. I knew I loved fitness. I knew I loved to write. I knew I wanted to make an impact. I knew I wanted to connect with women. What I didn't know was that what I wanted would lead to quitting my full time job. 

My journey toward my passions began with a photoshoot on a hot summer day. I remember it like it was yesterday. I was so nervous to meet Henrietta aka H.B. Media in June 2016. I wore a H&M shift dress for professional, lifestyle photos and packed one activewear outfit to change in: a matching black Victoria Secret sports bra and leggings set. 

The photoshoot ended up going great! I loved the activewear portion and loved being able to bring life to poses that I practiced. After that, I decided to make my very first blog post on planking

That was back in June 2016. I've evolved so much since then. 

 Photo Taken by Shay Paresh

Photo Taken by Shay Paresh

The journey toward my passions have led me down paths I never imagined. I’ve become a 200hr Registered Yoga Teacher, founder of the Self Soul Sport community, host of The Self Soul Sport Podcast, contributor for mindbodygreen’s Movement Section, speaker on panels including the most recent, F.I.T 4 All. 

I’ve stayed on my Instagram and been humbled by the many opportunities along the way on @shannatyler_. Just this week, I got to shoot with Blink Fitness for their National Stress Awareness campaign this month.

A few weeks ago in March 2018, I decided it was finally time to quit my full-time job and commit to Shanna Tyler. My name is now registered as Shanna Tyler, LLC and Self Soul Sport is undergoing the Trademark Registration process. In almost two years, I’ve decided to embrace my passions. 

So what are these passions? I call myself a multi-passionate person. I love teaching yoga. I love connecting with women. I love encouraging girlbosses. I love writing articles from my heart. When living my daily life, I could no longer see myself working a job that didn’t 100% align with those passions. 

Was this an easy choice to quit my full-time job? Hell no!

I’m fearful every day until my official last day on Wednesday, April 18th. I’m afraid of the people who don’t understand the girlboss journey. I’m afraid about the usual salary that won't be coming in. I'm afraid of being my own boss and in charge on my own income. 

The choice got easier when I thought what would happen if I didn’t go for it. In the face of fear, I still decide to go for it. The time is now to go for my passions. Doing it afraid is still doing it. Don't get me wrong, I'm excited as hell. 

I’m excited about the people who I will support throughout this girlboss journey. I’m excited about the income that will be coming in from passion. I’m excited about being my own damn boss. I'm excited about my own schedule with my own choices. 

After I fully quit my job and commit to my passions, my life will be completely different. I’ll be teaching Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursday 7am and 8:15am for Just Like Om, a breathtaking studio in the heart of Chelsea, Manhattan. 

I also have an amazing offering that I’m excited to give to all my girl bosses. The big announcement is tomorrow on my Instagram. But all the subscribers in the new Sunday Soulday Newsletter already know what I’m talking about (hehe). Have you subscribed yet? If not, click here

Lastly, you guys know how much I love the Self Soul Sport community. I'm also now able to commit more than ever. I've started Self Soul Sport Newsletters on Fridays and planning the very first event at The Little Beet later this month. If you're interested in joining in on the newsletter with updates on the community, feel free to sign up here

I’m sharing this story with you because I believe you, too, can follow your passions. It might not be quitting your full-time job, maybe your full-time job is already one of your passions. Maybe you need this post to hear that you can stay the course and great things will happen. 

This website and blog will soon transform. It is still about self-love and self-worth, however you'll see how much I'm going to offer all of you who've been on this journey with me. We're going to have more conversations with each other and more opportunities for me to offer you my own gifts.  

Are you ready for this ride? I’ve got some more time on my hands to share with you every single week and become more dedicated in this Shanna Tyler journey.

Have you quit your job to follow your passions? Have you wanted to do so? Are you still discovering your passions? Let's chat below! I'd love this to be an open dialogue between all of us on our struggles and triumphs throughout our journeys. 

Also, stay tuned each Sunday and don’t forget to sign up for Sunday Soulday Newsletters. I’ll be sharing weekly quotes, blog posts, and announcements that only subscribers get. I cannot wait to share with you! 

Have a great Sunday and all the days in-between! 

-ST

What Would Happen if You Said No More Often?

Last year, I said yes to everything. That event? Yes. That meeting? Yes. That class? Yes. That gig? Yes. Guess how I ended up? Burnt out. 

This year, I've been saying no more often. That event? No. That meeting? No. That class? No. That gig? No. Guess how I'm ending up? Energized inside. 

In last week's post on self-love, I briefly mention that saying no can be our form of loving ourselves. It's very true, and I'm proof. Saying no has liberated and rejuvenated my passions, relationships, and ultimately, my lifestyle. 

Why don't we say "no" more often? I believe one of the major reasons is the cycle of "what if." We think of imaginary possibilities and consequences of saying no.  

How about you? Do you get stuck in the "what if" cycle? Let's talk about what would happen if you said no more often. 

 Photo Taken by Diana Davis Creative

Photo Taken by Diana Davis Creative

You'd have more time to say yes to your passions. If you had more time in your schedule, you can fit in the things you love. Whether it's painting, swimming, writing, or fencing, you'd be able to put it in your calendar. It's up to you to make the time for your passion. 

Last year, I said yes to many things that weren't my passions. I fit time in for relationships that weren't building me up and activities that weren't adding to me. Thus, I didn't have time to do the things I loved, including blogging (hence, why I took a break). 

In saying no this year, I've found I have more time to blog and dedicate to Self Soul Sport™. I dedicate Thursday evenings to Self Soul Sport™ podcasting and Sunday mornings to Shanna Tyler LLC, blogging. There are no activities that will come my way during these times, and I simply say no. 

When we are firm in our schedules and calendars in what we will make time for, we have more time to say yes to our passions. It is easier to say no once we are steadfast in that decision to say yes to passion. 

You'd set necessary boundaries in personal relationships. If you're not setting boundaries, you're not likely to be satisfied in your relationships. Saying no will eventually need to show up in either personal or professional relationships. It's up to you to say it. 

As a naturally giving person, it's hard for me to say no. I have a hard time saying no at my job, for the blog, and in friendships. I want to give my schedule, knowledge, and expertise to be helpful. But last year, I learned I needed to set boundaries with a packed calendar and exhausted mind. 

This year, the word no has been showing up in staying late or taking on more responsibility with my boss. The word no has been showing up in taking free products/samples from brand reps. The word no has been showing up in going to a workout class or networking event with friends. It has been necessary to set these boundaries. 

In order to protect our energies, we need to set boundaries in relationships. Saying no is the most efficient way to do so. We can follow our scheduled passions and enlightened instinct to do so. 

You'd listen to your inner voice that is guiding you. Ultimately, you know when to say no and when to say yes. There are just emotions and feels that get in the way (like guilt, shame, fear, etc.). Saying no can mean listening to your instinct, gut, center, or whatever word resonates with you. 

I used to say yes all the time when I had a feeling I should say no. Last year was no different. I committed to say many events and activities that I felt my inner voice telling me to say no to. Once I did them, I felt resentful and out of control of time. 

This year, I've chosen to listen to that inner voice that tells me to say no. I've said no to opportunities that many would gasp at. I've said no to many events that many would dream of. I've said no to many products that don't align with me. It's all because I'm now guided by that inner voice. 

Once we decide to listen to our inner voice, we live more balanced and fulfilled lifestyles. We say yes to our passions and set boundaries in relationships. We fill our calendars with what is meant for us, not what we feel pressured to. 

So what would happen if you said no more often? What if? What if you decided to say no to something today? 

For me, saying no has led to a lifestyle that I'm more excited to lead. Saying no has led to me saying yes to my passions. Saying no has led me to being more firm in my instinct. 

I don't have all the answers and I certainly am still saying no to things in my life. But let me tell you, this year has been the year of no. And it's both terrifying and exciting! I wish you the best in saying no!

-ST

3 Reasons It's Okay to Be Selfish in Your Self-Love

Selfish is the new selfless. That's my new mantra for this year and one I shared at last night's Self Soul Sport™: "Self Soul Sport Feels the Self-Love" event. 

Today's #sundaysoulday post is going to be real short and to the point. After the event, I'd love to share what we uncovered with each lady's sharing about self-love. 

 Photo taken by Diana  Davis Creative

Photo taken by Diana  Davis Creative

  1. Self-love looks different for every single person. Everybody's idea of self-love is different. It can look like staying inside and reading a book or it can look like going outside and sweating it out. No matter what our self-love looks like, it is our own and looks different than any others. 
  2. Self-love means saying no at times. At yesterday's event, saying the word "no" came up many times. In order to love ourselves, sometimes we will need to bow out of our plans and rearrange our calendars. Our self-love can mean that we have to say no to others and it can be labeled "selfish." But it is actually very important we say no. 
  3. Self-love is necessary so we can give back to others. If we don't fill our own cups, we cannot fill up others. We cannot pour from an empty cup, and we cannot give what we don't have. If we want to give to others, we need to be able to engage in our own self-love. Hence, selfish is the new selfless. 

If you're thinking it's wrong to engage in self-love or if you're selfish for doing so, I'd love to encourage you to think of these three reasons why it's okay. 

It's okay to not have the same definition of self-love to others or the same self-care practices. It's okay to say no to others in the interest of loving yourself. Most importantly, we need to give to ourselves in order to give back to others. 

Want more on this? I'm planning a Coffee Chat this Wednesday on Self Soul Sport™ podcast to get really real and touch upon self-love and much more! 

Also, heads up - the website will be under construction this week. There's some exciting changes going down and the Shanna Tyler site is going to reflect them. Stay tuned ya'll! 

-ST

Which Person Are You: A Dreamer or A Doer?

Dreaming is not doing. I'm learning this in 2018. It's now February, and I've finally started on a few of my dreams, including hosting a podcast and returning to yoga instruction. 

But I still have some dreams that scare the crap out of me and I know some of you can relate. So what did I do? I talked to amazing women in my life, including Leslie McDonald, a Certified Health Coach and amazing friend. 

Leslie recommended I read the book Get Your Shit Together by Sarah Knight and now I have to recommend all of you to read it. It has changed my life, and I'm certain it will change yours.  

Between tackling my dreams and reading books like Get Your Shit Together, I'm thinking a lot about the differences between a dreamer and a doer. In my reflection, this is what I've found.

 Photo taken by Diana Davis Creative

Photo taken by Diana Davis Creative

A dreamer has a vision and doesn't make it happen. Either excuses or emotions will get in the way of a dreamer. A dreamer will keep their vision in the mental and not manifest in the physical. 

I remember when I had the idea to start my own podcast. It was around January 2017. I envisioned a platform where women shared their real stories and spoke on topics that we needed to be authentic about. I also dreamed of another medium along with my blog to share my intimate stories. 

This dream lasted for months until I finally created it in December 2017. Before then, I came up with every excuse in the book. I told myself I didn’t have enough Instagram followers, podcast topics, and interview leads. My excuses kept me from creating the podcast.

Excuses paired with emotions are kyroptines for a dreamer, but not for a doer. 

A doer pairs action with vision and makes it happen regardless. Excuses or emotions don’t get in the way of a doer. A doer will manifest their vision into the physical with actions. 

Publishing the podcast took pushing past the excuses. At the end of 2017, I was faced with two choices: bring that dream into 2018 or manifest it at the end of 2017.

I became a doer the moment I published The Self Soul Sport™ Podcast in December 2017. My very first solo episode "Coffee Chat: Who is Shanna?" has now ramped up over 110 listens. I’ve gotten messages from family members, close friends, and Instagram ladies, who all resonated with my intimate story. I’ve also already interviewed three amazing ladies and there’s more to come.

What makes someone a doer is that they continue despite the sneaky emotions and excuses that try to arise. 

A dreamer runs away when the vision gets tough and doesn’t go as expected. A dreamer is not steadfast when the going gets tough. When the road is not exactly as imagined, a dreamer will cower. 

I received my yoga teaching certification on December 2016. I quit yoga teaching in July 2017. Why? Being a yoga teacher wasn’t what I expected.

My attendance in classes fluctuated. I taught in many different studios. I had to be flexible with time slots. My classes ranged from Brooklyn to New York. I usually had to make changes to planned sequences for customization to my student attendance.

Being a yoga teacher wasn’t the cake walk I thought it would be, so I quit. I was a dreamer then, and dreamers run away when the vision doesn’t go as expected. 

A doer embraces when the vision gets tough and makes it work when it doesn’t go as planned. A doer makes it happen despite the challenges that come up. When the road is not easy, a doer will continue forward. 

After quitting yoga instruction in July 2017 and no longer teaching my passion, I became insecure. I developed a serious fear of getting back into teaching because it just didn’t go as expected. I auditioned for gigs and talked myself out of them. 

It’s now February 2018, and I’ve begun actively searching for a space and committing to getting myself back on a weekly teaching schedule. 

I am a doer now, and doers keep going even when it’s not all perfect. The vision I have for my eventual yoga teaching career is worth it. 

Are you a dreamer or a doer? I’ve been asking myself this question, and I’m posing it to you. It’s one thing to have a vision, and a whole other thing to pair it with action. 

A dreamer has a wonderful vision, can talk about it, and can dream about it all day long. They’ll even try it out for a little and when the going gets tough, they’ll quit. 

A doer has a wonderful vision, can talk about, and be about it all day long. They’ll try it, run with it, and stick with it when the going gets tough. 

I’ve shared my stories with yoga instruction and hosting a podcast to share that I am learning how to be a doer. I am learning how to make my dreams happen. I haven’t tackled them all nor am I telling you to. 

What I am encouraging you to do this week is look at the dreams in your life and the person you are. Which person are you?  

-ST

P.S. If you need a little extra push. Again, this is an awesome book!! 

Me as a Black Woman in the Yoga and Wellness Industries

What do you think of when it’s February? Some think of Valentine’s Day. Some think of the Super Bowl. Some think of Black History Month. Some think of them all. 

Me? I'm thinking of Black History Month. As a black woman, I’ve felt closer than ever to my ethnicity and identity. I’ve also been more cognizant of them both in spaces where I’m usually the minority. 

 Photo by Diana Davis Creative

Photo by Diana Davis Creative

Lately I find myself very reflective on inclusivity and diversity. As the first Sunday Soulday of February, I’d like to discuss being a black woman in industries I’m closely tied to: yoga and wellness. 

This past week, I posted on Instagram about my experience at SELF's Race and Wellness Panel. Each panel member was a professional and woman of color navigating their own industries, from fitness to medical to nutrition. It made me reflect on my own experiences with yoga and wellness. 

I often feel excluded in representation within the yoga and wellness industries. Overall, yoga as a lifestyle has become synonymous with a white, affluent woman. Wellness as a lifestyle has also become popular for a smoothie, Whole Foods universe. Neither of those I am nor resonate with. 

When I first started my yoga journey around eight years ago, I felt like I wasn’t included. My economic status was not so affluent and my wellness was not so popular. At the time, what I could afford was a yoga app on my cellphone and a bag of premade salad from my local grocery store.

Today, I still find it hard to find inclusion but have recently found other ways around that lack. 

I gravitate toward black-centric tags, black Instagram accounts, and black-owned publications. When I first started yoga eight years ago, I struggled to find women who looked like me. Either in publications, billboards, or commercials, most of the marketing of yoga and wellness was geared toward white women and a specific culture of eating. 

Once I became active on Instagram a few years ago, I discovered a few tags like #blackgirlyoga and #colorsofohm. I loved looking at these tags where I could see and engage with my fellow black girls flowing on their mat. I also loved reading the captions to discover their journey in yoga, along with versatile options to wellness.

It was the same for when I became a vegetarian around five years ago. Most of the options that I was sold were smoothies and salads. 

Again Instagram allowed me to scour #wellness and finding the occasional soul food recipe with a healthy twist or a post about balancing wellness in a way that wasn't limiting to my love of Jamaican cuisine and the occasional McDonald's run. 

Eventually, I was also led to black influencers in the yoga and wellness industries from these tags. A few of them being Dr. Chelsea Jackson Roberts, Latham ThomasKoya Webb, and Alex Elle. Then I also found peers who were just like me navigating wellness and yoga, who I could directly message (DM) about inclusivity. 

I remember screaming Hallelujah when I stumbled upon Black Girl in Om, founded by Lauren Ash. If you haven't heard of Black Girl in Om, it's a publication, podcast, and community that "promotes holistic wellness and inner beauty for women of color." This community made me feel at home and validate my identity. I got to see beautiful brown women living their life well and woke. 

It also led me to realize that I also need to support places that are getting it right too. I got to see Lauren, the founder, be featured in many places and I began to notice that there is further movement. 

I support larger brands and corporations that are not black-owned or black-centric, but that make efforts to being inclusive. As a current Athleta brand ambassador, I must say that I love the brand for its inclusivity. If it wasn't, there was no way I would be affiliated with them. Outdoor Voices is another brand that has been growing on me lately. 

On the publication side, Yoga Journal has featured many black girls on their magazine covers, and it continuously makes me giddy. SELF has also been one of my favorites for months because they just get it! Mindbodygreen is another publication that I'm happy to support as they expand on inclusion and diversity. 

That said, not everyone is in the wave. So what do I do? 

I refuse to spend money or spread support in brands and corporations that are not inclusive. Investing money and spreading word-of-mouth to places that don't include me is not an option for me.

There are many yoga brands that I refuse to buy my yoga wear with, including Alo Yoga and Spiritual Gangster. When browsing their social media and shop websites, one must scour their site for one woman of color. I challenge you to look at both of their marketing materials and report back.

I will keep Alo Yoga and Spiritual Gangster as the examples for now, in efforts to not deter from the main intent of this post. My intent is to highlight my experience as a black woman and my recognition that more work still needs to be done in these spaces. This is not to slam or bring further attention brands that lack inclusivity. 

All of that aside, if I’m not being included, no brand, corporation, or publication will be funded by my wallet or promoted on my feed. But I aspire to do more on a larger scale. 

I aim to start advocating for more inclusion in the yoga and wellness industries by showing up, speaking on it, and doing something about it. Being a yoga teacher, I aspire to teach classes that are financially and physically accessible to black women. Being a community founder, I aspire to hold open and safe spaces for all cultures, including black women. Being a "microinfluencer" I aspire to highlight experiences that are had by black women in the yoga and wellness industries. 

Ultimately, I want you all to see my color. It exists and it is here. I'm a black woman who is a yoga practitioner, yoga teacher, and wellness blogger. I would love you all to recognize that my identity as a black woman is often not included, promoted nor marketed.  

This February, let's think of Black History Month, even if we usually don't. Then brainstorm how we can be an advocate of inclusivity and diversity in our current industries. Trust, I'm still working on it myself. 

-ST

Why You and I Need to Stop Striving for the Perfect Body

“You are imperfect, permanently and inevitably flawed. And you are beautiful.” - Amy Bloom

As I write today's blog post, I just finished a vanilla chocolate chip scone at Dean & Deluca. There was a point in time I would've chastised myself for this treat and regretted it. I still am fighting a feeling of guilt after finishing it. 

I'm fighting the thoughts I used to have of the ways a simple treat will turn up in my body. Will it go straight to be lower belly pouch? Will it go straight to my thick thighs? These questions are a direct product of striving for the perfect body. 

Do you ask yourself the same questions? Just like you, I’m victim to these thoughts that my body the way it is isn’t good enough. 

In further reflection on my own experiences and observations, I’d love to share my own story of body positivity and what led to me stop striving for the perfect body. 

 A photo I would've never requested but taken by the fabulous Diana Davis Creative 

A photo I would've never requested but taken by the fabulous Diana Davis Creative 

The journey to a perfect body is harmful. The means to getting to the perfect body in our minds is bound to be harmful. Why? Once we start with the harmful thought that a perfect body is attainable, it manifests itself into the physical. 

I used to suffer with anorexia in high school. In my freshman year of high school, it started with saying thighs were too thick, then my ass was too round, then my stomach was too large, then my arms were too big, and then my entire body was too fat.

Once I let those thoughts go deeper into the crevices of my mind, I began skipping dessert, then skipping breakfast, then skipping lunch, then skipping dinner. Soon enough, I barely ate the recommended calories for a growing young woman and picked at my food only eating two or three bites at most.

And guess what? My body still wasn’t perfect in my standards. It came to the point where I found myself in the school counselor’s couch and needed treatment for this journey toward a perfect body.

There is no such thing as a perfect body. This is a hard truth that must be said. A perfect body just doesn’t exist. Perfection means having absolutely no flaws, and there is no such thing in this world. 

After I received therapy from my school counselor and support from friends/family, I was not exactly “cured.” I still suffered with the belief of needing a perfect body that followed me into college. I didn’t have an eating disorder but I began looking at working out as a way to get a perfect body.

In high school and college, I used yoga/Pilates videos to give me a flat stomach and Cardio/runs to keep me at a desirable lean figure. I used fitness as a way to punish myself after I felt I indulged too much. But something happened. 

 A photo of the imperfectly beautiful booty - Photo taken by Diana Davis Creative 

A photo of the imperfectly beautiful booty - Photo taken by Diana Davis Creative 

I’m not sure when, but one day in college, my perspective changed. I didn’t know what perfection was or if it was a real thing. I started viewing many women as beautiful in all shapes and sizes. I then even began looking in the mirror and seeing beauty. 

An imperfect body is what makes us beautiful. Being unique is beautiful and flaws make us unique. Our tiger stripes, our love handles, our face freckles, etc. make us who are we today. 

It’s almost six years after college, and I’m not 100% there with my body, but I do know that I am starting to love it. I’m starting to look at it for the beauty it is. I no longer am anorexic nor do I move my body as a way of punishment. 

I view fitness and yoga as a celebration. I celebrate because I have a body to move. I celebrate because I have air to breathe. I celebrate because I am who I am. I celebrate because I am imperfect. I celebrate because I am beautiful. 

You and I both need to stop striving for perfection with our bodies. Today, let’s make a pledge to ourselves. On this Sunday Soulday, let’s promise ourselves that we will stop striving for perfection, because our bodies are imperfectly beautiful. 

Hell, that’s what beauty is. It’s imperfect, and each one of us imperfectly beautiful. 

-ST

Do You Have the Courage to Share Your Story?

How about it? Do you have the courage to share your story? I definitely didn't have the courage for a long time.

This past Friday, I released this intimate episode about my story on the Self Soul Sport™ podcast. For years, I didn't have the courage to share my story about depression, suicide, and hospitalization. As a result, I felt crippled by my past.

My story began to haunt me in every area of my life, including my relationships and jobs. The past followed me because I didn't fully address it in the present. Do you feel the same? Do you feel heavy when thinking about your story? I'll let you in on a secret. 

 Photo Taken by Diana Davis Creative

Photo Taken by Diana Davis Creative

When I began embracing my truth and sharing my past, I began to be set free. I started with sharing my story with family, friends, acquaintances and coworkers. Then I started sharing my story in interviews, events, workshops, posts, and now on podcasts! 

Most importantly, I realized in sharing my own story that other people were inspired and encouraged to do the same. 

How did I cultivate that courage? I'll share the questions I asked myself in my journey. In turn, it can hopefully hope you cultivate the courage too! 

What is holding you back from sharing your story? Fear, shame, and guilt are a few of the emotions that can hold you back from sharing your story. You can be afraid of what others might think of you. You can be ashamed of the story of your past. You can feel guilty about choices you've made. I know these feelings all too well. 

In 2014, I experienced a major depressive episode that took me to the hospital and seeking inpatient facility care. For a long time afterward, I was haunted with the same feelings of fear, shame, and guilt that kept me from living my life to the fullest.

Holding back my story hindered my relationships, both with romantic partners and best friends. It also hindered my ability to find my true calling in a career. But when I started sharing my story with others, I began to feel lighter. I no longer held a deep dark secret, and at the same time, I noticed I was helping to fight stigma. 

In order to fight the stigma surrounding mental health, I had to open up about about my experience. This blog post from the National Alliance of Mental Illness highlights ways to fight against mental health stigma. The very first way happens to be talking openly about your own journey. In sharing mine, I noticed more and more people opening their eyes about mental health. 

How can your story help fight against a stigma? Maybe your narrative isn't based on mental health, maybe it's on an eating disorder, abusive relationship, or physical disability. Your story is bound to help fight against a stigma. 

When I started sharing my story and fighting the stigma against mental health, people started to thank me. They thanked me for telling the truth about how depression felt. They thanked me for relating to their own personal story. They thanked me for having the courage to speak up about suicidal ideation. 

I didn't realize it at first but my story was helping to fight against a stigma. A stigma that keeps about 80% of people suffering with mental health issues suffer from depression to not speak about or seek treatment (Project Helping). 

With my sharing my story, I'm in the minority of 20% of people who are speaking up about mental health and seeking treatment every day. I see my therapist weekly and my psychiatrist monthly. I tell everyone who wants to talk about mental health that I've been through it. I continue the conversation and encourage the 80% to do the same! 

At the end of the day, who will benefit from hearing your story? Your story can help many people, including yourself.  No matter how small or how big or small, your story matters.

Sharing your story doesn't have to look like how I've shared mine. Maybe sharing your story is enough in a confidential setting like therapy. Maybe sharing your story is enough in a familial setting like home. Maybe sharing your story is enough in a communal setting like work.  

No matter where you share your story or who you share your story with, the benefit is yours too. You'll be able to overcome any feelings and negative self-talk. You'll be able to strengthen relationships and build confidence at work. The benefits it has for you are endless. 

Are you ready to share your story? I'm ready but that doesn't mean you are. It doesn't have to happen today or tomorrow or even at all. The beauty of sharing your story is that it's up to you when you do so. But if you're lacking the courage, I hope this post helps you realize you're not alone. 

I still get goosebumps sharing my story. It took me a year and a half to share mine. It took me longer than usual to write today's blog post. But what keeps me sharing is all of you. I received so much feedback on sharing my own story. 

Below are two Instagram messages that I received from sharing some of my story on the first Coffee Chat of the Self Soul Sport™ podcast. 

"Hi Shanna, I just finished listening to your podcast. Omg, you said some things that I can relate too especially about feeling depressed through the majority of your life. Although I have never been clinically diagnosed. I know it's imperative for me to make positive changes in my life in order to exist in this  world. Can't wait to hear more of your journey. I feel like I know you personally. Keep up the good work. Peace and Blessings." 

"Hey Shanna!! I just listened to your podcast! I've been following you for a few months now and I just want to say that I think you're very inspiring! I love how raw you are in you're podcast, and I think you'll really have an impact on people's lives. I got to your Instagram page when I feel a little lost and need some grounding and a snap back into reality and get out of negative self talk. I believe in you ton!! Keep it up :)" 

If you feel compelled to share your story, you can do so by commenting below under anonymous or you can add your name! Today, I hope you know your story matters. The courage will come someday and at the right time. Talk to you next Sunday!

ST

How I Made Fitness Fit into My Life and You Can Too

It's winter. It's frigid, windy, and straight up disrespectful outside. The most common activities in this season are naps and cuddles. This is also the time being motivated to go the workout classes, hit those dumbbells, or even do an at-home workout can be really tough.  

I know this all too well. I started my fitness journey during a very cold winter. It was January 2015 when I decided that I needed a change. I was at the weakest, unhappiest, and heaviest version of myself. That's when I knew it was time to commit to a fitness routine. 

Today, in 2018, I still stick to staying fit. How did I do it? I made fitness fit into my life, and you can too! 

 Photo taken by Diana Davis Creative

Photo taken by Diana Davis Creative

I stopped making excuses on why not to start to my fitness journey. Excuses are enemies to any sort of behavior change. They appear right when you are making a decision to join a gym. They surface the moment when you choose to buy that class package. It's up to you to push past the noise. 

In 2015, I resisted the excuses when it came to purchasing a membership to my local CKO kicking gym.. Many thoughts creeped into my mind about how much it cost, how I would fit it into my schedule, the list goes on. But I decided to stop making the excuses and just doing it. 

The first day I walked into that gym, my life changed. I began to fall in love with fitness, not just for the physical but for the emotional and mental benefits. Each burpee was a challenge, and each punch was a relief. That first step of pushing past any excuses began my fitness journey. 

I started planning fitness into my daily routine like an appointment. Once fighting any excuse and making a commitment, you need a plan. A plan means no procrastination, which is definitely one of the hardest parts of sticking to fitness.  There's always tomorrow, and the next day, and the next. 

I've stayed on my fitness journey this long all because I started scheduling fitness into my life. Whether it is squeezing in a morning workout when I had evening plans or waking up early on a Sunday morning for a SoulCycle class, I planned to make it happen. My goal was 5x a week so I wrote it into my planner and added it into my iPhone calendar, just like I would a doctor's appointment.  

Once I planned ahead of time, there was no excuse. Once I paid ahead of time, there was absolutely no excuse. I began scheduling time with family and friends around my fitness routine, which was hard but necessary. 

I reached out to people who were just as committed to fitness than me. Whenever it starts getting difficult to stay on track by yourself, you can remember that you aren't alone. The beautiful part about fitness is the community it brings. There are many other people striving, just like you, and why not reach out to them?

In my fitness journey, I started to feel alone. I started to dread cancelling time with the people I enjoy spending time with. That's when I realized I could actually make time for both! I used to see people going to the gym together and scheduling working out like a date. I decided to do that myself. I messaged fitness accounts on Instagram to see if they wanted to take a class with me and walked up to people who I thought would be great workout partners in the gym. 

Now, to this day, I rely on people I've met at my gym, in SoulCycle, and through Instagram to encourage me, inspire me, and challenge me. I've always preferred someone who was more committed than me because they always can teach me something. 

I committed to an account where I practice what I preach. At the end of the day, it's all up to you and your commitment. Whatever motivates you to stay on track will work. You know yourself best. What will get you there? 

For me, it was creating a fitness Instagram account. I loved seeing what other women were doing with their accounts, whether it is posting how they felt about a class or motivating others to get moving too. That's how @shannatyler_ was born. I literally decided to put all of my journeys out there. 

Almost two years later, I'm a registered 200hr yoga teacher, an endorphin-filled SoulCycle addict, and a self-proclaimed BBG girl. And I truly believe it's because of my dedication to my Instagram account. I noticed what I loved, proclaimed it online, and committed to it in real life. Another big part of it was that I always had and still have a community that keeps me strong. 

I started believing if I can do it, well, you can too. You can do this. You can take the plunge into starting your fitness journey or recommitting to your fitness routine. You can add new workout classes if you feel stagnant, or you can make new workout friends if you feel lonely. 

Despite every single step here, I couldn't have done it without believing I could. I visualized I could get to the level that I wanted to reach. I manifested my relationships I have today in the fitness world. I planned my way into dedicating myself to fitness, and I committed to an account that I love to inspire others on! 

I believe the same for you. Whatever you want to do, you can do it. If you need encouragement, this is for you! Has anything been holding you back? Has anything been resonating with you throughout today's blog? Comment below and let's talk about it. I'm here and we're all here for each other! 

-ST

Build a 2018 You Can Be Proud Of

It's Sunday Soulday 

As I write this blog post, I am sipping on my favorite coffee and listening to my favorite song of 2017 (No Complaints - Metro Boomin). I'm also reflecting on 2017 and how quickly this last day of the year came. 

I've been proud of many things and not proud at others. One of my biggest regrets of 2017 is not being consistent on this blog. I couldn't get with a groove and niche and idea and day and time and (insert another excuse). Moving forward, I've learned a lesson just to do it. Today is the first Sunday Soulday of the blog. 

That said, building upon lessons is a goal of mine each year. This year is no different, and I'd love to share the ways that I go about building years that I am proud of. As I prepare for 2018, I do these top three things to ensure that I am going into the year with the right tools and mindsets. 

 Photo taken by Diana Davis Creative

Photo taken by Diana Davis Creative

Write that ish down where you see it. There's something about writing goals down. There's something about writing lessons down. There's something about writing emotions down. There's just something about writing in general that makes it more concrete for us. 

In 2017, I began writing my goals down on strips of paper where I could see them every day. I dispersed them throughout my room - my desk, my dresser, my mirror, everywhere. 

I wrote down that I would reach a livable salary and I got a job offer in a few months. I wrote down that I was going to move out of my parent's house before the end of 2017, and I moved out in November. I wrote down that I would follow through with the Self Soul Sport™ community, and I just hosted December's event last night. 

Let's write down what we want to build this year. And if you're still not convinced, Forbes has this amazing article that proves exactly why you should be writing down your goals. Believe me, ya'll! 

Ditch empty thoughts and relationships. Let's be honest, we hold on to things that we don't need. Each year, we can ditch something. Whether it's some negative self-talk or negative influence, we need to leave at least one thing behind. What is yours? 

Mine? Firstly, I'm leaving behind the perfectionist crap. Perfectionism can hold us back from just following through and making a goal happen. So I'm leaving that behind by writing on this blog today and working on the Self Soul Sport™ podcast

Secondly, I'm leaving behind the deadweight "situationship" I've held on to for two years. We all have that person in our life that we always gravitate back to, even though we know they aren't any good. I've had mine and I'm finally leaving that person behind finally. Mic drop. 

So how about you? I know you have something to ditch, just like me. Meditate on it and I dare yah to write down that you're leaving it behind in 2017. It's not allowed in 2018! 

Celebrate all the ups and learn from the downs. Going into a new year can bring so many emotions: regret, excitement, nostalgia, and joy are few. Living a year is a lot like hosting a party! Let's dissect that for a moment. 

Sometimes, the drinks are flowing and the conversations are banging. Sometimes, the mouths are vomiting and the arguments are rising. Sometimes, the jams are dance-worthy and the folks are vibing. Sometimes, the tunes are cringe-worthy and the folks are hating. Parties have their ups and downs, just like life. 

This year, I had my share of ups and downs. I cried and I laughed. I smiled and I frowned. But I choose to celebrate and learn. Celebrating for me means getting really intoxicated tonight. Learning for me means organizing with my new Passion Planner today.

One of my biggest celebrations is being employed at a job that I love and don't see myself leaving any time soon. One of my biggest lessons is extending myself so much that I barely had time to enjoy myself. 

That said, what are you celebrating and learning from? You know the drill, write that ish down! :) 

Get the tools ready and build your new year! These are some useful tools to building a 2018 that you can be proud of. I do them each year with each year getting bigger and better. Let's write down our goals, ditch what's empty, celebrate all the wins, and learn from all the losses. 

Happy New Year and Build it! 

-ST