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In’s & Out’s

2 Mar

In’s

-I’m roughly 30% through grad school!

-I secured an internship to be a MFT Trainee! (I still call it an internship because it’s unpaid). I start getting my own clients this summer. Crazy!

-I’m no longer working in the service industry with the public. I’ll miss my team a bunch, but I will miss none of the public or manual labor.

-I got a new job babysitting the most adorable infant!

-Now I can focus on school, my wellness, this blog, everything…

-This rainy/cloudy weather. Love to cocoon under heavy blankets ❤

-Baseball season is approaching. Looking forward to Dodger game days!

-I went to Costco for the first time in over 10 years. I must say, that they have some pretty good food/meal options. I need to go back.

Out’s

-From the craziness of the past few weeks, I have (yet another) cold.

-This month is full of projects and papers.

-I just realized that my cat is 9 years old. How?!

Anxiety Hack

3 Feb

This is me:

Anxiety+Girl

No really..

Anxiety has been something that I have had dealt with since birth. It’s at the level where my therapists and fellow MFT classmates have said that they feel sorry for me because I do not know what it is like to not have anxiety. I’m always picking my fingers, picking my lips, biting the inside of my mouth, pulling my hair out in my sleep, screaming in my sleep, constantly warding off panic attacks, the list goes on… (For those curious, it stems from a long lineage of anxiety on both sides of my family mixed with other difficulties in how I was raised.)

Therefore:

hello-my-name-is-anxiety-670x422

There are a few techniques I have learned over the years on how to better control my anxiety when I start to feel it. Calm music, mantras, designated safety people to talk me down, etc. The most effective is a deep breathing technique that I just recently learned how to do correctly, and it made ALL the difference.

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Ok. You are probably sitting upright in your chair. Maybe on your bed, maybe at your desk.

Take a deep breath in. Notice where the air fills in your body. Are you sucking your stomach in? Is your chest puffed out? This is the first problem.

When you inhale and suck your stomach in and your chest out, you are only utilizing 30% of your lungs. That’s depriving your body of a lot more oxygen- the molecule that can help calm you down when you are anxious.

The image below shows how you should breathe properly. When breathing in, your stomach should expand as if it were a balloon inflating. This uses 100% of your lungs and brings in the maximum amount of oxygen. Also keep all the air travel through your nose 🙂

abdominal_full_deep_breathing

Now, everything I just shared with you so far is things that I’ve been told to do before. And let me tell you, when you’re in an anxious state this is not what would come to mind. I goofed it up whenever I tried out of panic or inability to pay close enough attention to my body.

Here’s my hack: LAY DOWN.

When you are laying down on your back, your body automatically starts breathing this way.

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This simple step has helped me so much. When you are anxious. Just get horizontal, make sure you’re breathing out of your nose, and your body will start to self-correct your breathing pattern itself. Go ahead, try it out. It’s so cool to feel your stomach make that change in your breathing pattern.

Here are some of my further thoughts/theories:

Do you know anyone who can fall asleep super quick once they go to bed? My dad used to, my boyfriend does. I don’t get it. It takes me FOREVER to fall asleep.

What if they were breathing inappropriately (negligent to their breaths- most non-anxious people don’t think about breathing throughout their days) all day and once their body starts using 100% of their lungs, they get so overwhelmed with the calm that they fall asleep easily? Man, must be nice.

With this hack, I’ve started to make it a point to do this type of breathing at least once a day. Lay down and feel your stomach ONCE a day. It makes all the difference!

Once you get to a point where you can do it vertically without a problem, try to remind yourself throughout the day to breathe like that even for just a few times (I know it can make me look pregnant if I didn’t walk around holding my tummy in all day, so I’m not suggesting that). The past 3 months I’ve consciously made efforts to do this, and it honestly helps prevent anxious symptoms.

Salt Baths

8 Oct

I’ve talked about how important salt baths are to me before, but it has been a while, so I thought I would reiterate and add to my preachings.

Therapeutic-baths

Epsom and Sea salt baths have many benefits scientifically  proven. It replenishes your magnesium levels which helps your enzymes work and eliminate toxins, prevents inflection, inflammation, relaxes your muscles, all this super good stuff for you. Google it if you want a more scientific explanation. I’m more interested in how it releases toxins.

For those of you who don’t know, I visit psychics and holistic specialists fairly often. I was taught that since I tend to carry my own and others’ emotions with me, it would be good to release the toxins that build up through salt baths. How do emotions become toxins? Well our bodies are 90% water and water takes on energy. Therefore, anxious energy can end up flowing through you. I’m particularly bad where I will physically feel other people’s pain before I even know that they are in pain. Just call me a reversed human voodoo doll! Especially with practicing psychology in school, I already feel myself needing to detox regularly. The psychic told me that it also helps to clear my chakras. I don’t know everything about chakras, but I do know that I can actually feel when the one in my chest needs to be detoxed. I can best describe it as it gets a heavy, guilt-like, anxious feeling when I know I have no particular reason to feel that way.

You’re supposed to take salt baths for 40 minutes- 20 to detox and 20 to take in the good ingredients. Honestly if I do the whole 40 minutes, my body is so physically exhausted afterwards. I don’t think it’s particularly good to get completely free of all toxins because then the first few that come into your body could throw you completely out of balance again. It’s the same theory as people who need to sanitize their hands every few minutes. A little dirt helps your body remember how to fight it off!

There’s also concerns about keeping up with this while there is a drought. Today I drew a shallow bath and used a cup to cleanse my chakras. It’s still like 100 degrees in LA so I didn’t mind not being fulling engulfed in a hot tub of water.

You also might want to hit two birds with one stone and add some aromatherapy to the mix. Lavender, vanilla, jasmine oils/salt, etc help reduce stress and ease you to sleep at night. Lemon, orange, or nutmeg scents will perk you up. If you want to work on something physically or mentally, there’s probably an oil that can help. (more info: http://www.essentialoils.co.za/essential-oils/)

 

In’s & Out’s

1 Sep

Welp, I’ve been in graduate school for less than 1 week and I’m already super overwhelmed not only with the workload, but with financial stress as well. I’m about halfway through reading the 100 pages of boring research articles  I had set out for today and realized that I have not blogged in quite some time. I decided to utilize my little break to give an update.

IN’s

– Nate’s birthday month! It’s been such a blast doing all this fun stuff. We’ve wine tasted in Paso Robles, gone to a Dodger game, had a big BBQ party with all of our friends, went to a Paramore and Fall Out Boy concert,multiple family gathering celebrations, the list goes on.

-Let’s stay on the topic of Nate. He’s amazing. Especially lately with all that has been going on.

-Central A/C. Can’t be thankful enough these days.

-Finally started the journey of graduate school! Already counting down to when I’ll be out and a psychologist!

-The jacuzzi in my building. I’ve actually started to put it to use and it’s helped with my knees tremendously. Ever since I’ve started working manual labor, I’ve turned into an old rickety lady.

-Nate’s work has moved to Sherman Oaks! No more commuting for him, and no more super late dinner! Also maybe some midweek lunches!

– Actually really enjoying the new Ed Sheeran EP. Am I the only one that misses the singer/songwriter era?!

-Smokey brown/golden eye makeup. It’s a nice break from the glam cat eye. A more soft beachy vibe.

-Not to disregard the last bullet, but Benefit’s new “They’re Real” Push-up Eyeliner Pen is AMAZING for a quick and concise cat eye.

-Pretty Little Liars. HOLY COW it’s gotten good again. But 2 more seasons? Come on. I’m getting old here.

 

OUT’s

-Hourly pay. Not only that but after taxes, it makes me want to cry. Nothing is more frustrating than the fact that I work my butt off for a paycheck that doesn’t even cover my rent, serving people who have nothing better to do than give me problems because they are mentally ill and don’t have to go to work because they are getting more money than I get paid in disability or unemployment. And isn’t it ironic that I am in school to eventually help them?! Not to mention that the tax money that gets taken away from me goes to them too. ANYWAYS…

-Homework ruins the concept of a day off.

-Bell peppers. WHY DO YOU HATE ME NOW

-PMS. I thought it didn’t exist until recently. Joke’s on me.

The “Grad School Budget”

1 Aug

I decided to blog my feelings as they come, so forgive me if this sounds like I’m not making any sense.. I’ve been prepped for “the college budget” earlier on, but no one ever warned me about “the grad school budget.” It’s like the world is saying “Sorry, you won’t have enough time for a full-time job what with all of the classes, homework, and internships, so welcome back to your high school work hours with minimum wage because you aren’t here enough to prove that you are better than the average worker. Also, let’s add in the responsibilities of rent, utilities, other bills you have not had to pay for in the past because you were able to piggyback onto your parents’ health coverage and now you are at the expected age to be able to afford it on your own. And you SHOULD be able to afford it on your own by this age. How long must your parents wait to retire because YOU decided that you wanted to do something? Supporting you well into your 20’s was not in their plan when they decided to bring you into the world. Not to mention, you are older now and need to dress accordingly with more respectable- thus more expensive clothes, and just meeting your friends will not suffice for a worthy friendship unless there are lavish brunches and alcohol involved. All the while, you need to pay for said grad school, or else you’re screwed with school debt when you leave and won’t be able to afford the future you have always wanted for an additional few decades.”

“Sorry future children, mom’s an old toad because she couldn’t afford to have you earlier in life. See, she wanted to be successful and follow her dreams so that she doesn’t end up with a miserable job, but it turns out the whole process is miserable as she prays every month that some kind family member will take pity on her situation or she will come into some kind of lucky jackpot to get her through the next few months. But at the same time she knows she is fortunate as hell to even have the support system and resources that she does because if she were one of those unfortunate public schooled children who had to rely on the government from the start, it didn’t matter if her dream was to become a doctor or help people, she would be shit out of luck to even attend grad school unless she would be willing to spend the rest of her life paying a huge chunk of her earnings back.”

The current generation is not set up to succeed. If one decides to follow an educational path that calls for school after college, they are screwed unless they come from a family that can afford to fully support the individual through school. It is unfortunate because if we were to one day only have doctors that came from such fortune, there would essentially be no empathy or compassion from past experiences and earlier on in life, as they have only been privileged and lack a sort of identification with the people they are helping.

I probably will not keep this post up long, as I do not want this to turn into some kind of political argument. That being said, if anyone knows of any jobs with flexible hours and good pay that I can pursue to help me “beat the system” and come out with my head above water as I am going through school, it would be much appreciated.

Thanks.

Quick Knit/Crochet Project | Koozies!

17 Jul

Koozies have been my go-to quick crochet project for host/ hostess gifts, present toppers, etc. They only take 30 min-2 hours depending if I knit or crochet, the yarn, hook size, etc. Every single one I have eye-balled the size and wrapped it around beer cans or bottles to get the exact chain numbers. If it’s too small, it stretches. If it’s too big, it can be loose or go around cups, whatever. It’s something that shows thought, yet you don’t have to spend money (if you have extra yarn laying around like me).

#bleedblue yo

#bleedblue yo

Here is one that I made for a friend of Nate and mine that is moving from LA to Montana. Attending Dodger games and discussions about the team over beers have been a big part of our friendship. I decided to make it the home uniform colors of blue on white to remind him that LA is always his home! I don’t usually embroider my koozies, but the LA symbol didn’t look hard. FYI if you are a perfectionist about details like me, it takes about 2 hours all together, and it was pretty hard to double up over the symbol and avoid white yarn stripes through the symbol.  It turned out pretty good though!

Warped Tour 2014 | Ventura Fair Grounds

26 Jun

I only found out a few days prior that I got in to Warped Tour fo free! Oh the perks of having a boyfriend in the biz. This was our first Warped Tour together! Also my first time being legally allowed in the beer garden. Celebratory pic below. =^.^=

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We went with his coworker, Rob. Traffic was ridic. But apparently we got there right before it got nasty bad. Apparently their coworker, Rachel (who took the pic below!) had to park super far away and taxi over to the venue.

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It was fun going back and forth from the beach to the festivities. We needed quiet breaks in between seeing the bands we wanted to.

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That lot is where the tour buses are. Literally feet from the sand!

The first band we saw (that we wanted to see) was Saves The Day. They/he is so good!

My creepy angle through the equipment

My creepy angle through the equipment

There were a lot of surprise bands performing. Mostly surprise for me because I didn’t look up who was playing prior to the day of. Linkin Park and Anberlin played at the SAME TIME. The people were pissed. I got to see a little bit of Linkin Park when I was waiting for the bathroom. We decided to watch Anberlin because their time as a band is limited. They did not disappoint. I wasn’t really a fan before, but I think I am now, which sucks now that they are planning on splitting up.

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Here is a pic of Nate and I with the singer of Bad Rabbits. If you haven’t heard of this band, you should really check them out! Super sexy jams.

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Ignore my mid-blink

We were able to get onstage and watch them perform. They do not disappoint live! They have coordinated dance moves and all. super fun.

I could've ran up and danced with them. I seriously thought about it.

I could’ve ran up and danced with them. I seriously thought about it.

We were able to get on stage for Less Than Jake as well, but it was super crowded. The crowd was even more insane. I did not want to be down among the moshing!

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It was a blast but we were sooo exhausted afterwards. After a few mins at In-N-Out and a mandatory cat-sitting stop, we could not get to bed faster! Of course this guy was happy to see me!

Zoolander Mugatu hair

Zoolander Mugatu hair