A passionate, driven soul who is addicted to podcasts, Ted Talks and thrives off of intelligent, stimulating conversations. A Psychology alumni from the University of Oregon, currently pursuing the search for her masters in social psychology researching mindfulness, positive psychology, anxiety & self esteem. Loves a good run, chocolate, traveling & discovering new music whenever possible. Positive things happen to positive people. Follow my blog at | bintransition.com | or connect with me at bwilcox3@gmail.com

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I can’t be the only one here.

Mindlessly scrolling through social media feeds without running into heaps of beautiful models, makeup tutorials, fashion icons and lavish travel websites on the daily. Convincing us that by completing steps 1, 2 and 3, spending hundreds of dollars on beauty products, fragrances, lotions and name brand makeup will bring us one step closer to reaching our #instafamous #makeupgoalz #bodygoals or simply transform us into looking like clones of Kylie Jenner, with the handcrafted contouring, playful pout along with the social media success all tied in with money beauty and fame.

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At the tender age of 26, I am starting to notice my late teen, early 20’s glow that seems to be a tad bit harder to maintain than before. All of a sudden, eating an entire pizza by myself, having a few glasses of wine, skipping the gym for a week, or not getting enough z’s really makes a difference in my appearance and mood. The social reminder that I’m not getting enough sleep or perhaps falling off the train of self care (gym, healthy eating, mindfulness) is the ever-so-lovely statement, “Oh wow, you look tired.” In other words, ‘you look like someone who was dragged, kicking and screaming out of hades.’ It’s sweet really, reminding me that not only does my body feel a difference, but others notice on my face sooner than you’d imagine.

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Well baby girl, I’m here to tell you the simple steps to looking beautiful, naturally and holistically. And truthfully, it is nothing we haven’t heard before, but occasionally, we need a refresher and a light spritz of Sephora/Ulta/drugstore affordable finds that highlights our already beautiful, genetically predetermined temples.

Internal Beauty

  1. Sleep*
  2. Hydrate
  3. Learn to de-stress*
  4. Meditate*
  5. Exercise
  6. Organize
  7. Eat nutritious meals (your body is a temple, not a rubbish bin)
  8. Socialize
  9. Simplify
  10. Be kind, always*

Sleep | When I don’t get sleep, the people around me seem to suffer the most. 1 in 3 people in America do not get enough sleep. Humans vary in sleep requirements, but most need at LEAST 7 hours of sleep at night to repair the body naturally overnight.“Research has shown lack of sleep is associated with greater risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, mental illness and other chronic conditions.”

Sleep repairs the brain, the eyes, hormones, skin, immune system, breathing, the digestive system and more. Prioritize sleep. It’s wildly underrated. Interested in more? What Happens to Your Body While you’re Asleep 

Learn to de-stress| This can be anything from engaging in a favored hobby, going for a run, playing Pokemon Go, removing yourself from a screen, playing football, basketball, having a cup of tea, coffee, reading a book, walking your dog to being fully present wherever you are in that moment. For me, I enjoy making To-Do lists on the daily to help organize my priorities and jumbled thoughts. Reading, running and writing are gratifying for me, clearing my mind and the ability to engage in creativity soothes my overanxious mind and calms the heart.

Meditate | This topic varies in interest, relaxation and religion. My favorite book from Eckhart Tolle in the Power of Now, describes being present, and realizing deeply that the present moment is all you ever have. Our busy minds are forever thinking about the next step, how to make more money, how to work harder and how to shove more things into our already-daily-packed lives to make us feel more successful, when success is truly being content with your mind, body and soul by reconnecting with the present moment. Even 3 minutes of intentional thinking of absolutely nothing is immensely difficult and surpassingly rewarding.

Be kind, always | True beauty radiates from within. Compassion is so often the solution.

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External Beauty

Now that we’ve covered the root of beauty | inner beauty | here are a few affordable finds to highlight your already-beautiful self.

For those that do not know me well, I am a woman of comfort and simplicity. If I can get out of the shower and let my hair air-dry without looking homeless or shower-less, I win! And I often stick to that trend, especially when the summer air dries my beachy waves naturally, chemical free and heat free.

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|Hair|

Shampoo/Conditioner: Pantene Pro-v, Pureology, or John Frieda $4-$28+

Dry Shampoo: Psssst! for about $7 (Hands down my favorite) or batiste dry shampoo for $6

Curling Spray: John Frieda for loose curls with virtually no frizz and the best smell and flexible hold $6

For hair cut and color: I go to the hair goddess of all time Rylee in Salem, Oregon | The only woman I trust my wild, beachy balayage hair with!

Make Hair Apt Here

Lotion/Spray

Deodorant: Dove advanced care $4.40 that leaves you with moisturized under arms with a soft, feminine aroma.

Perfume: Dolce is my signature scent, again, soft and sensual. Definitely not overpowering at all $70-$160 depending on size.

Body spray/lotion: Victoria Secret Sheer love is a beautiful scent and great moisturizer/body spray. Fresh, fruity, light and happy. Favorite summer smell $10 + depending on size.

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|Face|

Foundation

I have ALWAYS been a fan of Clinque, their lotions, face wash and makeup line is a high quality brand and affordable. Due to hormone imbalance, my face has had it’s fair share of breakouts, redness and uneven skin. Clique acne solutions soothes and heals acne when applicate and gives a moisturized glow and beautiful coverage $27

BareMinerals has been my favorite powder since I was in high school and their brush promises medium to full coverage depending on preference and never leaves me with an embarrassing makeup line. Whenever I wear it I always get compliments on my skin and how well it matches.

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|Eyes|

Eyebrows: There is nothing more important than the eyebrows. Especially in 2016. Eyebrows frame the face, and can make a fashionable statement with brows alone. It has taken me many, many months to achieve full brows (thanks to genetics too) and not over plucking. To keep the shape and color, my favorite eyebrow pencil I use DAILY is by Anastasia that is a little bit pricey but lasts me several months and with fleeky brows and an overuse of Snapchat $23

Brow Gel: Maybelline brow gel to hold brows in place $6

For a fresh start on your brows, I recommend Monica Ninh in Portland, Oregon. That woman can do no wrong when it comes to keeping your full shape, waxing, brows and tint!

Make brow appointment here

Mascara: 

Better than Sex from Two Faced has been my favorite mascara to date, delivering full, intense lashes that remain soft and put throughout the whole day $23

And when I’m not in the mood to spend over $23 on mascara, Lashblast Volume from Covergirl is a close runner-up at $7.

Eye Shadow

I favor Clinque’s eyeshadows that bring out my hazel eyes, Bareminerals sandy colors are both beautiful, shimmery and very natural $15

Lastly and most importantly, practice self love, confidence and compassion

“Elegance is when the inside is as beautiful as the outside”

xx

B

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We’ve all been there.

Working a job, to get to the job you’re passionate about.

And then there are those jobs that you never imagined yourself in, yet the opportunity to succeed and grow present itself in a charismatic way, tugging onto your dreams with its sticky fingers in a way that you simply cannot resist, creating a shiny new path that you never thought possible.

However, we live in a world that demands fast paced, high adrenaline living with over crammed calendars, and stressed out minds, making this job hunt more difficult than ever. Living to popular, but false belief that we need to work ourselves into the ground daily to achieve this “American Dream.” This mindset, paired with nonstop focus, dipped and spun in high stress regimes, forces our attention to become self-focused, thinking this will lead us to happiness and success; the recipe to a societal approved lifestyle. Stress causes us to become more self-interested, and as a consequence, we have less of that natural ability to connect with others as our empathy declines in the process.

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So here we are, working the 9-5 grind, making money, pushing our deep connections with others and our health to the side while we delve into something that seems essential to maintain success and happiness. But what if I said there was more to our existence? More than responding to the pace of life that has become increasingly faster with a constant overabundance of information as soon as we wake, partially due to the implementation of technology in America over the decades, that gives us more of a long term happiness compared to the fleeting, “I have to be stressed in order to know I’m doing the right thing” mindset. We are becoming overwhelmed and have lost touch with reality. According to psychologist Dr. Emma Seppälä, living an open hearted life, having compassion for yourself in order to have compassion for others can accelerate our success to BE. Our deep connections with other people, while becoming more compassionate for those outside of ourselves gives us more meaning and depth to our temporary lives. We don’t need to make ourselves mad, exhausting our nervous system, creating imbalances in our bodies, living these impossibly crazy lifestyles to make us more productive, when the social relationships we experience are as important as food and shelter on the scale of human needs.

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As I write this, I can’t help but reflect on my current job. I work 60 hours a week, 10 hours a day with an individual with a traumatic brain injury. He is overly aggressive, a body builder and has hypersexual tendencies. We have lost 6 staff in two months due to his hazardous behavior and we are now closing the program due to liability, physical and mental stress pressed on the staff and his inability to be safe in the community. Do I feel a sense of compassion when I work for individuals who have a hard time helping themselves? Absolutely. Have I lost connection with who I am and the deep connections in my personal life due to stress? Unquestionably. I DARED to be a beacon of hope for this individual, but now that the program is ending, I have to DARE to be something I’ve never been, that perhaps I’ve always wanted to be. These brief 4 months working with this individual has shown me that life is too short, that I have to 100% authentically and genuinely pull from the passion within myself to DARE to dream and push forth the effort into a new occupation that may not have immediate successful results. But I know one day, I will have my Ph.D. in psychology and I will write a book on positive psychology and make a difference in this world by being a light many of us have yet to unveil. Miniscule or not, my goal in life is to BE something bigger than the 9-5, risk failing and falling hard on my face to achieve something bigger than what society offers us. “When you do what you love with passion, success won’t be far away.”

xx

 

 

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Queen B does it again, how eloquently, and beautifully well done this video is. Every raw emotion, sharp word and story she expresses, embodying the true, unpolished human feelings we all experience at some point in our temporary lives.
Beyoncé – Lemonade (The Visual Album)
Musically, intellectually, beautifully and powerfully brilliant. Queen of pop releasing an hours worth of stories, setting a new bar for every artist out there. Slay.
xx
B

Creativity is messy. The hair, wild eyes, enamored thoughts, uninhabited vulnerability, love, relationships. Facets of light with glimmering spouts of happiness, bartering unexpectedly with dense, grey clouds of dismal despair. It’s messy, but there is no greater drug than creativity in its entirety. Have a way with your brokenness, take the pieces and make them into a beautiful story
xx
B

 

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Over the past week, I kept a journal for my intimate relationships and family relations psych class, recording how many lies and what types of lies I told each day. I had to reflect on what I learned from it, calculate the number/type of lies I told, and ruminate on why those fabrications came from my filthy, lying mouth.

Apparently the phrase, ‘liar, liar pants on fire’ stems from young children screaming at each other, trying to get the other in trouble whenever they were telling a lie. So why don’t we have something to keep us adults on track when it comes to honesty?

Research has shown that lying is surprisingly common, and that nearly all of us couldn’t go a day without lying at least once or twice a day. The lying doesn’t necessarily have to be a dark, deceptive lie. It can be as simple as someone asking you how your day is going and you reply “I’m fine,” when you’re in fact having one of those God awful days. Or someone asks you if an outfit looks okay on them and you respond, “That looks great!”, when maybe you’re just hoping to get them out of the house to get somewhere on time. Perhaps you overslept, but you call in at work exclaiming that traffic is heavy, because sleeping past your alarm would be considered irresponsible, when the traffic excuse is sometimes unavoidable and an excusable offense.

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These little lies are what we would call “white lies.” Mostly to shy away from conflict or hurting someone’s feelings. Let’s say a friend paint a portraits in which what they believe to be their most prized piece of work, and you simply don’t care for it. You probably wouldn’t tell them “Ehh.. I’ve seen better!” Because you know they are proud of it and it probably isn’t the ugliest thing you’ve ever seen. There is a definitive difference between “saving face” and being deceptive.

Deception:

 Intentional behavior that creates an impression in the recipient that the deceiver knows to be untrue. Outright lying in which people fabricate information and make statements that contradict the truth is the most straightforward example of deceptive behavior, but there are various other ways to convey misleading impressions without coming right out and saying things that are untrue (Buller & Burgoon, 1994). For instance, people may simply conceal information and not mention details that would communicate the truth, or they may divert attention from vital facts, abruptly changing topics to avoid the discussion of touchy subjects. On other occasions, they may mix truthful and deceptive information into half-truths that are misleading (Miller, Rowland 2015).

Because… what would life be like if we were totally and completely honest all the time? And we had no choice in the matter? Maybe some things are better left unsaid, because sometimes there are no constructive ways to build from brutally honest words, and often times, those words can be simply unneeded or just plain rude, and make life a bit more difficult for yourself and others.

In no way will I agree that lying is a good thing, but As Jim Carrey displayed here in Liar, Liar, his painfully honest comments were probably not helpful for anyone’s self esteem in the office, or allowed him to maintain successful social relationships in the workplace. Some things are just unnecessary and would induce chaos in our world if we acted as silly as he did, suggesting that some lies are obviously undertaken to promote polite, friendly interactions with others.

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My Personal Lie Journal

Day 1:

Someone asked how my day was and what I was up to. I told them I ran 3 miles, went to work, did some grocery shopping and got some writing in.

Truth: I ran 2.87 miles, not 3. Did I round to make it easier? Or did I say 3 because it looked better than admitting to just barely under 3 miles? I think it could have been easily both conclusions at once.

Day 2: 

I had a long day at work and due to issues outside of work, I was under a decent amount of stress. A customer walked in while I was at the register and asked how I was, I responded by saying, “Oh, just absolutely wonderful, thank you! And yourself?” They responded happily and I continued with the transaction. Did I really feel absolutely wonderful? No… but I felt that it was unprofessional to have a therapeutic conversation for myself with a customer just because they were being polite in asking how I was. Is that technically a lie if someone asks how you are and you say the opposite of how you feel? It’s not an evil lie, but a fib nonetheless.

Day 3

I moved out of my apartment, my dad helped me move my bed out from Portland back to Salem for a new job I start in a few weeks. We had a discussion that if I am to be living rent-free with him, I need to stop going on trips and start focusing on graduate school and saving money. Completely logical, and fair enough. A few days later, I was asked to fly to Memphis, Tennessee with a friend for an all expenses paid trip for a donation process and a chance to tour St Jude’s Children hospital. My first thought was, “My dad’s going to kill me,” my second thought was,”Well, I am officially done working in Portland, I don’t start my new job in Salem until the 17th, meaning that I will have two full weeks with a few winter classes in between. If I didn’t have to pay for a dime, it doesn’t really count as a trip does it? Oh absolutely it does. It took me a long time to confess this to my dad, but I called him last night explaining that this was my week of honesty, and not only will he most likely read my post, but if I am to practice what I preach and learn anything from this lying assignment, this is where I should start.

And you know what? I felt a world of relief I didn’t even know was pressed on my shoulders, and telling my father something that was EXACTLY the opposite of our agreement was not fun, but made the honesty between my dad and I genuine and felt true and real.

Day 4

I caught myself telling a half-truth. A friend asked me when I was moving back, I said the 20th of this month. When really I come back the 17th, but because I am busy as far as dentist appointment, a new hire orientation and wanting some time to catch up on cleaning and organizing the room I just moved into, I gave myself a few days to relax before being social again. So, yes, I will be back the 20th, I should’ve just admitted that I would be back the 17th. But since I knew I wouldn’t be available, it was a convenience lie.

Day 5

I can honestly say I don’t remember being dishonest in any way today. That is not to say that it may have happened unintentionally, but today I feel far more aware of the words flying out of my mouth than normal, and the importance of being honest to myself and others is crucial for trust, and being a genuine human. It weirdly makes your heart and soul smile too.

Can we tell when others lie?

There is no clear cut clues to deceit (Frank & Svetieva, 2013) However, careful attention to what people are saying – not just how they are saying it – can alert us to inconsistencies in their statements (Reinhard et al, 2011) And there may be discrepancies between their verbal and nonverbal behavior that give them away. Ultimately, there is no person or technology available to us to detect lies that are 100% accurate as of yet. The only true test is the truth/lie teller themselves, only you know the truth with your own deceptive or sincere heart.

There is a difference between being deceptively malicious and telling a white lie, but in the end, a lie is a lie. I’m not sure how to fix one’s habits of lying, but for me, journaling these little fibs over the last few days had me reflect on my own consciousness and hold myself accountable for the half-truths and small fibs that were documented. If we can learn to be aware of our habits and hold ourselves accountable for these day to day fabrications, perhaps we can choose honesty over convenience of a sweet covered lie. As silly as it may sound, I passionately recommend keeping a journal for yourself over the next week to become mindful of your own lying habits. I wrote mine down and called me dad to confess to him that I didn’t quite tell the whole truth because I didn’t want him to be disappointed or angry with me for going against his wishes. If you can’t practice what you preach, isn’t that in itself a falsification of genuine truth? Something to think on.

 

xx

B

 

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You’re gonna miss your friends.

A lot.

And your family. That’s what FaceTime, iMessage, Skype and social media is for.

If you’re lucky enough, one may come visit you and get to see all of the behind-the-insta details of the unbelievable life you’ve been living.

Ultimately, you will leave completely heart broken.

Years down the road, and you will still get misty eyed thinking of how much you miss the sounds of children fighting, the silence at the end of a hard day, baby snores softly escaping from their door-opened-while-sleeping-policy, in case they need to reach you.

The tipper tapper of toddler and children feet quickly darting down the hallway to awake with the 6am sun.

You will miss these humans more than you could ever imagine possible.

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If your heart desires genuine experience through travel, if you crave new music, your stomach yearns for novelty foods, if you enjoy shopping in a different part of the world, revel in making new friendships and relationships that will last a lifetime, if you want to surround yourself with new beautiful accents and gain experience that most only dream of (and of course, you are fond of children), then being an au pair might be a great fit for you!

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However, before you embark on such a journey, let me fill you in on the basics of starting this type of career.

  1. You must love children | I cannot stress this enough, if children make you want to pull your hair out, if changing nappies or dealing with body fluids makes you ill, you may want to reconsider. Being a nanny is not for the weak, you are in charge of loving these little nuggets that are not your own, and ultimately, caring for them is your main job. It will only make your life miserable if you do not enjoy little ones.
  2. Know what you are getting into | How many children are you capable of caring for? Are you willing to care for a children with a disability? How about ages? Children with severe allergies or learning disabilities? Communicate with your host family about personality traits, behavioral concerns, the children’s interests such as horse riding, soccer, volleyball, swimming, gymnastics, basketball, art, instruments, etc. Get a feel for the family by Skyping, emailing, MULTIPLE times before you decide to purchase that plane ticket, get to know them and listen to your gut when deciding on a good match for both you and the family of interest.
  3. Don’t be afraid to talk specifics |  What will you be getting paid? Weekly, biweekly? Set days off in advanced. Set boundaries for both you and your family, will you be using a vehicle when you are there? Research around the house and see what type of transportation is available to you. Will you be the house cleaner, the cook, and the caregiver? [Recipe Ideas Here] What is an amount you can both agree on? Feel comfortable enough to interview each other on your strengths and weaknesses as far as personality goes. Will these be a make or break when it comes to living with this family for a long period of time?
  4. Set dates | How long will you be staying with this family? These programs give you guidelines to help determine length of stay, but once you are living with your family, agreements are now determined between the two of you. I personally stayed 6 months longer due to an agreement with my family and I. Some only want to leave their country for 3 months at a time, others for 6 months or you have some au pairs who have decided to stay for years at a time. Having an end in sight can help with homesickness and always remember, everything is temporary!
  5. Do you qualify? | The website I chose to go through allows ages 18-30 to register online and find a family to match with. Do you have the funds? Some require at least $5,000 in your bank account for traveling/personal expenses. Do you qualify for the country-specific visa? For myself to move to Australia, I had to apply for a Holiday Working Visa and it was accepted within days!
  6. Respect each other | Remember that you both belong to different parts of the world, you won’t agree on everything, in fact, you may have completely different views on raising children, and this is opportunity for growth for everyone involved. Respect each other and be open to new ideas and views on the world.

The website I chose to go through is called Aupairworld.com

The website outlines many questions you may have, create a profile and be honest and genuine, I promise, you will get HEAPS of emails. At first, it may seem a bit overwhelming, but options are better than the alternative!

  • Register as an Au Pair
  • Choose your country of interest
  • Find a family
  • Communicate, communicate, communicate (get a feel for a good fit)
  • SAVE, SAVE, SAVE. Trust me, funds dwindle the more you travel, you will never regret having extra money for cushion
  • Book your flight and prepare for the adventure of a lifetime!

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Do you see yourself living by a bay? Close to the city? Countryside? All of these are things to consider when finding a family. Location can be key when trying to find friendships outside your family. I lived in a suburb about 35 minutes away from the Opera House in Sydney, 3 miles from the beach and had a pool and bay in my own backyard.

Granted, not everyone will have this opportunity, but it was a perfect fit for me!

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Now, don’t get the idea that being au pair is pure bliss. If you are an intelligent human being, you know that life always has its ups and downs. Here are some adverse side effects that were not listed on the bottle of being an au pair:

  • Weight gain
  • Culture shock
  • Loneliness
  • Tears
  • Sleepless nights
  • Temper tantrums
  • Early mornings
  • Poopy diapers
  • Homework
  • Laundry
  • Sick children
  • Money comes and goes as consistent as sunrise and sunsets
  • Deep awareness of self
  • Enlightenment
  • Part of your heart will be forever occupied and touched by every human you meet

I can tell you from experience, going from a college student to a caregiver of 3 children, I gained about 30 pounds. That obviously won’t happen to everyone, but my body decided to take on the challenge. I didn’t quite notice until I was bungee jumping in New Zealand and they proceeded to put my weight in Kilo’s on my hand. It looked so tiny compared to the American usage of pounds, until I later googled the conversion and my jaw dropped. I had never imagined my body could hold that much love, food and experience all in my gut. Do I regret it?

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Absolutely not.

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The people you meet will forever change your life. And when you come back, you may even experience a thing called reverse culture shock. It’s a real thing, and it is something I wish we had more information on for those of us who take the leap to travel and immerse ourselves into a different culture, only to try to adjust back into our own. But that’s another post for another time.

If it’s one thing that you get from being an au pair, it is the chance to travel with people from all over the world. There is no better time to embark on the this journey than right after college when you have no strings attached to the world. No children, your classes are over, you have yet to obtain your big girl/boy job yet, it’s the time to swim into wanderlust, make a plethora of mistakes, date, eat, surf, dance, eat some more, and meet your soul mates you never knew you’d have the pleasure meeting.

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You’ll also fall in-like many times, blame it on the Aussie sun, the brews, or the accents, there’s potential everywhere (cue heart-eye emoji’s).

But ultimately, the love you experience from true, genuine relationships, will stay with you forever.

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Whether it’s first hair cuts, or first words, nothing can compare to these moments

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These kids have taught me more than any class could ever instill in me. Apart of me will always belong in Australia, and I hope more than anything they will remember how much I care for them, always.

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If anyone has any questions on the process, or just wants to pick my brain from my experience, feel free to comment below and I will do my best to reply! It makes my heart so happy to hear people wanting to step outside of their comfort zones and immerse themselves into a completely different culture. There’s no other way to learn more about yourself than flying into a new world, stripped from your ethnocentric taught ways, and create a new form of yourself for the better.

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Thank you to my host family for everything you’ve done for me, I love you guys more than you know!

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xx

B

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I totaled my car a few weeks back & cracked a cute little rib, so I ordered pizza last night, had heaps of tea and watched meaningful movies on Netflix trying to find an easy fix for comfort from my fuzzy zebra blanket, a hot cuppa and background noise from the television, drowning out the worries and stress bubbling and bouncing from the corners of my brain.

I allowed myself two full days to entirely dip my feelings and baby my emotions, then swallowed my doubts and fears this morning and put my energy into something worthwhile.

I started taking classes to help me prepare for the GRE for graduate school! As long as you’re in transition to improve your life, that’s all that really matters.

And now I’m trying to fit my winter body into some swimmers for new digitals at my agency. I’m smiling because I am happy I’m alive.

Positive things happen to positive people.

And as long as you centralize your dreams and passions, work hard and choose optimism instead of crippling underneath the heavy, formidable, uninviting sadness and fear that seems to linger and reappear at the most inconvenient times, you will be okay.

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New year, new experiences and new perspectives. Thank you for everyone who has been there for me, I am so lucky and so loved.

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Surrounding yourself with good people, nature, good music, good books and challenge yourself in ways you never thought you could, it’s beautifully refreshing.

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xx

B

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We live in a generation of humans who are flirting with the idea of being together, yet 100% available. In case something better comes along. Yet, the unspoken rule is that you can no longer date anyone else, because that would be similar to cheating, yet, we see it all the time. Hence the reason we often find ourselves unsure of our relationship status until we have “the talk”. These stipulations of being together yet single, but also expectations to not see anyone else can be disheartening. And honestly, super confusing.

It’s convenient for the one’s who are trying to play the field and not wanting to get into anything serious. But what about the other player in The Game? The one getting unavoidably attached and getting their hopes up for a potential relationship?

Because truly, how embarrassing is it to show that you actually care and have your pride utterly crushed.

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What a way to live right?

And don’t believe the “I’m So Busy” excuse. People make time for the things that they want.

Feelings come and go like waves when it comes to dating, but delving into the biological and societal background of why and how we experience emotions outside of the newness of relationships is what I find intriguing. I am interested in what “normal emotions” look like in daily life, excluding the dating scene. As a psychology major, there should be no surprise that I gravitate towards science when it comes to relationships and compatible personality traits. There are a variety of different “feelers” out there. What I mean by that, is that there are personalities that are studied to help you better understand your emotional wellbeing and learn to adapt to other personalities that seem to clash with your own. I took the test below and got ENFJ, extraverted, intuitive, feeling, prospecting, and assertive.

Free Personality Test

This information helps me understand how my feelings affect my daily decisions, while enlightening me how my brain works when it comes to my emotions, and how to possibly navigate these feelers before I succumb to the overwhelming confusion and anxiety they often carry with them.

Because of my “intuitive and feeling” characteristics, I tend to absorb other people’s emotions and find ways to please them, putting others before myself. Which can be a wonderful trait, but sometimes I find myself bending over backwards, draining myself, physically and emotionally, whether it’s with work, relationships or friendships. I absentmindedly go overboard trying to please everyone until I am worn and physically ill. Generating a colossal breakdown at the most inappropriate of times, like the workplace, somewhere in public or to stranger with an open ear. After bottling those emotions for months on end, it leaves me wondering why I feel so depressed, sensitive, angry, crazy and lost.

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The Psychology Of Emotions, Feelings and Thoughts couldn’t express emotional states any better than this;

“An emotional state is a very complicated thing. If someone knew completely their emotional state, they would know everything they were feeling right then. Then they wouldn’t really have any “unconscious” emotions, because they would be perfectly conscious of what they were feeling. But then again, it is impossible to feel the full force of all your feelings at once, so it is not possible to be completely conscious of all your feelings. Your unconscious feelings must be dimmed down, or only large in a way that isn’t completely conscious. Like you know you have a large emotion, but aren’t in touch with it.

Emotional states are complicated, it would be easy to say, “my emotional state right now is really messed up” because that is what emotional states are like, people have several emotions they are experiencing all the time, it is just hard to identify that this is occurring because I would say that people can only identify when they have a large, clear emotion that they can understand.” 

When you hit rock bottom, there is no better time to fully rebuild yourself and use your emotions as guidance and useful signs, rather than to write them off as psychotic or crazy.

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Why was I feeling angry? Possibly frustrated at myself for taking on too many hours, 85+ a week, with too many jobs. Leaving myself grasping for hours to chase sleep or have enough energy to exercise. I exposed myself to unrelenting pressure, allowing my emotions to burst into vulnerable sadness, tender from the rawness of pure exhaustion, letting my immune system weaken and leaving me sick for multiple weeks in a row. No amount of money is worth that!!

Trying to figure out a way to build a solid foundation for your future in the 20-something stages when you’re trying to figure out your place in the world can be unruly, comfortless and dismal.

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This past week has been a week full of tests for me. What I mean by tests is that the universe put everything in its power to disrupt my mindfulness and inner peace.

Due to abrupt unforeseen events, I lost my job. Two days earlier I was struck on my passenger side in an intersection in the middle of downtown Portland in Chinatown around 1am, the driver didn’t see anyone coming, and I happened to be in the wrong place at the right time. Having worked both jobs that day feeling exhaustingly sick, as a barista from 6am to 1pm, then rushing to my waitressing job from 2pm to 1am since no one could cover for me. The last thing I wanted to deal with was a car accident. Luckily, she was super sweet and we both ended up tearing up and hugging each other in the middle of the night, both two souls looking for comfort from life, even if we were complete strangers. And I am thankful, because it could have been far worse.

At this point, losing a job that was my main source of income was not ideal. That day, as I turned my burning red face away from my now ‘previous bosses’, cliche rain falling from the dark clouds above, trickling down my even cloudier mind. I managed to hold my tears until I reached the comfort of my door handle of my recently-damaged car with a $60 parking ticket on my windshield, leaving me with an even deeper sense of affliction in the crater of my being. Could anything else possibly go wrong? I realized at that moment, I could rise above my emotions, pretend everything was fine, or I could fully immerse myself in these dismal, raw emotions my body was shaking from, and begin the process of overcoming them with faith that life will get better. I have the strongest emotional support system I could ever ask for. The best of friends, roommate, and family I wouldn’t trade all of the cinnamon rolls in the world for.

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However, sometimes it’s not that simple to transfer your emotions to thoughts of logic. I would be lying to everyone if I said I was fine. I am the absolute opposite of fine. In fact, I feel like a failure. The one job that I had to save money for my future endeavors such as graduate school, a new car, and living expenses is gone. How would I be able to afford my apartment in Portland? How was I going to explain this to everyone?

Regardless of my embarrassment and feelings of failure, this job will never reflect my character or change who I am as a person. Resilience and coping skills have never been my strongest traits, but these last few years have changed that. You can ride with the waves, or drown in them. Perspective, perseverance and faith are the key factors to surviving when you’re broken. And broken is okay, feeling broken cloaked in vulnerability are the most beautifully real feelings we can experience as humans before we can understand success and discover pure, divine peace.

That night, I could hardly lift my head from my pillow. I undressed, peeling the clothes from my cold, palmy skin. With a clouded mind, I hazily made my way to my walk-in closet and laid my body onto the neglected piles of clothes that have been begging for my attention to be folded or hung for weeks. I couldn’t feel anything.

The shower continued to pour out of the shower head without caring it wasn’t being used for anything but adding cushion to my electricity bill.

Minutes went by, maybe hours. I couldn’t be sure. I pulled myself from my needy clothes and realized I had one of two options.

  1. I could suppress these emotions, pretend that everything was fine, shower off the day and continue to live my life as the bubbly Brit who never seems to have a care in the world. Wait until the breakdown happens, most likely during a stressful time at work, or during rush hour traffic. Allow the stress to invade my immune system, lose sleep and wait for sickness to seduce my body bed, offering the only comfort in the world. A way to hide through slumber.
  2. Fully immerse myself in my emotions, allow them to flood my blood stream, spread into my veins and let the salty liquid fall from my eyes. Try to understand them. Make peace with them. Find the tools I need to move forward. Taking it one day at a time. Focus on my passions and heal through physical exercise and mindfulness, giving my body time to heal.

I don’t have all the answers. I can only go off of what I have experienced. I wish I had the answer to what would make you feel happier after you lose your job, that completely isolating yourself from the world actually helps. But it doesn’t. Maybe for a short amount of time, sure. But months pass by and my only comfort is the 4 walls of my bedroom with the blinds closed, suppressing feelings such as feeling unlovable, undesirable, lost, and completely dejected, living a life to merely get by, to pay bills, doing what society suggest, living colorless and vapid.

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As I said, I don’t have the answers, but the one drive that fills my soul is passion. I love to write, I love to run, find new music, meet new people, read and research, and travel. I know if I am immersing myself in any of these activities that I will no doubt have a smile plastered on my heart soon enough, thanks to resilience.

However, sometimes you have to do things you don’t want to do to get to your envisioned destination. Nothing is always butterflies and smiles.

Don’t let anyone hush or judge your emotions. Expressing your emotions and fully allowing yourself to figure out what they mean will only help you heal sooner. In fact, I find people who take care of themselves and take the time to be mindful and honest about their feelings are confident and healthier.

To read a beautiful, enlightening article written by a brave, talented friend of mine on her struggle with depression, I recommend reading ‘the girl behind the mask’ here on the link below.

The girl behind the mask

“I think people need to be more open about their flaws and broken parts. Scars tell stories. Scars mean survival. Scars mean you showed up for the fight instead of running from it.

Life requires guts. It requires bravery and courage… It requires vulnerability.

It’s time that we bring mental illness to the table.

#BeVocalSpeakUp | #BreakTheStigma”

xx

B

rocksbox, starbucks, pumpkin spice latte, psl

Fall is peeking its shy face out from around the corner, I can smell the pumpkin spice latte’s, witness the trees transforming from their luscious greens to patches of gold, yellow and ruby red hues. Jumpers and zip ups trying to make a comeback, yet the weather is desperately grasping onto summers final days.

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Regardless of the season, Rocksbox has been impeccable for adding sass and flavor to my outfits. Celebrate fall, grab yourself a latte and go to Rocksbox.com, add my code bwilcox3xoxo to get your first box for free. I’ve been praising this company and the jewelry to my sisters, my coworkers and friends so I wanted to share my excitement with anyone else who wants to change up their style a bit for the perfect price.

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Pumpkin spice latte cheers to finding this charming company and the breathtaking jewelry that comes with it.

Goodbye summer, you’ve been glorious

xx

BB

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Ordinarily, I like to imagine my level of patience is comparable amongst the composed Thailand monks. However, as of lately, that seems to be furthest from the truth.

Recently, I was told I have a hard time being told what to do, and that I also do not like to be wrong. But then again, who really does?

A situation arose at work, a slight miscommunication mixed with high strung emotions and a clash of personalities.

It all started when I proceeded to get yelled at by a coworker in front of other customers. A) I am not a fan of being yelled at to begin with, it hurts my feelers and B) Do not disrespect me in front of other people, if you need to have a chat with me, pull me aside and talk to me in private opposed to exploding and making a scene.

I responded the most immature way humanly imaginable, being a smart ass and   asking what she would like me to do to make her heart content, and that this encounter with her has seemed to be a repetitive trend as of recently.

I reacted childishly, reacting defensively and quite honestly, a bit snappy. I was being a hypocrite. If I didn’t want to be disrespected, why was I reacting in the same way in return? With hot tears stacking behind my eyes and heat rushing up my neck to my cheeks, I was furious. Without going into detail of the situation, it was a not a work situation that should have escalated the way it did.

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Zero to 100 real quick

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She ran to the back to speak to the manager about my behavior, saying that I was being argumentative and was talking too much while working…

My question is; how can I implement a pause to my frustration and anger, collect myself and be mindful opposed to being reactive.

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Notice; strong feeling, feelings come and go. Neither good or bad feelings are permanent.

Both my coworker and I were both frustrated and angry at each other. Excluding the miscommunication and no matter how petty the argument was, anger was still profoundly prominent.

Anger is a completely normal human emotion, it’s healthy to feel the emotion, but the way you react to it before it becomes destructive and problematic is 100% up to you.

I found helpful strategies on my favorite psychology website American Psychology Association (yes, nerdy… I know).

  1. Relaxation: Breathe deeply from your diaphragm, repeat a calming word such as “relax” and imagine a relaxing experience, practicing daily.
  2. *Cognitive Restructuring: This one is my favorite. It means changing the way you think. Angry people tend to swear and curse, and when you get mad, it’s easy for your thinking to become overly dramatic and exaggerated. Tell yourself, “it’s frustrating, and it’s understandable that I’m upset about it, but it’s not the end of the world and getting angry is not going to fix it anyhow.” Ultimately… Logic defeats anger. Because even justified anger can become easily irrational.
  3. Problem SolvingSometimes frustrations come from personal issues going on outside of work or relationships, causing other areas of your life to suffer. Once you realize that these problems are existing in your mind, it becomes easier to compartmentalize what you’re frustrated about. Make a plan and track your progress.
  4. Better Communication: This one is huge. Human language is made to help make the world go round. As mentioned before, it’s easy to let frustration get the best of you and lead you to jump to conclusions that are not necessarily accurate. I was frustrated that my coworker started yelling at me in front of other people, and she was frustrated because the things she wanted to get done at work felt stuck on her shoulders. I was working on another project and we both were under the impression that no one was helping each other out. It’s natural to get defensive, and that’s exactly how I reacted. Leading to more lashing out from my coworker and more emotions escaping my feisty mouth. This may require breathing space and a lot of patient questioning, but this part is vital in solving arguments.
  5. Using Humor: This one has to be my favorite. I am pretty awkward when it comes to expressing my feelings to others, especially if it hovers around frustration or anger, so I tend to joke more than anything instead of admitting my tribulations. One way to use humor is to imagine the person of interest who is frustrating you as exactly how you think about them. If you think of them as a dirt bag, imagine a bag of dirt when you see them to help make yourself laugh. The more imagery you can conjure, the more you can help yourself relax and realize that life doesn’t always have to be so stressful. And lastly, do not fall into the trap of being overly sarcastic or harsh because that is another form of unhealthy anger.
  6. Changing your environment: Sometimes giving yourself a break from the place you work, your house, your car, etc, can feel repetitive and can get old real quick. Getting yourself out of your environment and into a new one can help ease your mind and give you some personal time to readjust. Even if it’s for 10-15 minutes, each second can be therapeutic in these situations.

To get more information or read more on this, go to Controlling Anger to visit their website.

So, instead of getting like this:

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Imagine yourself somewhere like this

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Mind over matter always.

Maybe it’s not other humans, but the way you handle yourself in these difficult situations.

Give yourself a break too, know that you have these emotions for a reason and recognize them. Use them to help you, not to be used against you.

The more you practice mindfulness, the easier it will be to be the “watcher” of your thoughts, rather than be your thoughts.

Lastly, I’ve posted this one before, but this video will never get old for me and has helped me each time I’ve watched it.

Ultimately, as Eleanor stated, no one can make you feel inferior without your consent.

Here’s to communication and peaceful interactions

xx