Tag Archives: self-help

Working with intentions instead of resolutions

I’m not a fan of making resolutions at the start of a new year. Resolutions are easy to forget and give up on. Many people often make goals or lists that are unattainable or unrealistic. Or they lose momentum and motivation within the first month of the year.

A good example of this, is how many people buy gym memberships in January and start training, only to quit after a month or two. As someone who prefers home workouts, I’ve never understood this mentality. It just sets you up for failure.

A few years ago, I started off the new year by making a list of goals that I want to achieve. Sometimes, I’ll break the goals down from month to month or I’ll assign deadlines which help keep me motivated.

This year – I’m trying something new and letting go of old habits. Instead, I want to focus on INTENTION – and what that means for me.

What does the word intention mean?

That’s a good question. Intention is one with cause and effect. It determines the outcome of any situation. If you’re stuck, and not moving forward in life, you need to check the thought and action that created your current situation.

Creating a list of intentions for you to focus on – may help you get “unstuck”.

As part of mindfulness and healing, I sat down and asked myself some hard questions this past week. This is part of shadow work – something I’ll write more about later. It’s a form of deep healing that some people do to let go of trauma bonds and emotional grief or disappointments.

Some questions that came up for me were:

  • What are some things I want to accomplish this year?
  • What are things that will help improve the quality of my life?
  • What are things that bring me the most joy?
  • What are some areas that I can improve on?
  • What did I learn last year, that I can carry on to this year?

These questions will help me determine goals that I want to set for myself and aspire to. Instead of focusing on negative, I’m looking at things (even small things) that will help improve the quality of my life.

What are my intentions for the year?

Now, that’s a very good question. My first intention, is to focus on improving my current state of depression and learning to let go of past hurts. Moving forward with lessons learned from what went wrong last year. The year wasn’t all bad. I made some great new friends and had some amazing first experiences. But – there was also a lot of heartache that I’m still recovering from.

The key is to take lessons from those experiences, so you don’t make the same mistakes twice.

Education and spiritual practices

My main goal this year is education. I want to learn as much as I can, and absorb as much knowledge as I can so that I can share these learnings with you. Areas of focus will include: spiritual practices, languages, arts and crafts and learning more about my ancestry – the Nordic roots.

This means getting back into reading. I’d like to read at least ONE book per month. I think that is a pretty attainable goal.

Improving overall health and wellness

This will happen in various stages through the year. Since Christmas, I’ve mostly been catching up on sleep after months of serious sleep deprivation. It means, trying to regulate my sleep patterns.

This means continuing to eat healthy, cook more meals and stock up the freezer for summer months with meals that can be reheated. This means sitting outside more on warmer days and using the balcony daily in warmer months. This means going for nature walks as my knees allow for it. Going for coffee with friends. Attending workshops and events that will help me connect with likeminded people and make new friends.

Practicing daily mindfulness

This means writing more – here in this blog and in my journals. Researching new topics to cover and track my moods. Practice daily gratitude and mindfulness techniques so that I can appreciate the here and now -and what I do have, rather than focusing on what was lost.

Working with my hands

Part of the issue of not working, is that I have a lot of time on my hands. I’m not able to hold down a job due to physical disabilities. The pain is too much at times from arthritis and fractures that I live with. On those good days where I have good energy, I intend to keep my hands busy. Work on bracelets, artwork and create digital products for Etsy. This is a hobby for now. It brings me joy and keeps the mind distracted.

Learning new skills would be helpful so that I can expand my current capabilities in jewelry making. I’d love to make necklaces and sell them to friends.

Staying connected

This is a hard one for me. When I hit depression, or low periods, as I call them, I just do not have the energy or stamina to be around people. I need time on my own to recharge. This often means losing friends and or unintentionally pushing people away.

Something I need to work on is repairing those connections that went awry – and that are meaningful to me. Staying in touch with friends that I want in my life. And – opening up my heart again to the possibility of new friends. This might be the most challenging thought of ALL.

Live with intent and follow up on actions

I think that’s a pretty good list. I try and keep intentions or goals to 3-5 for the year. I tend to revisit my list each month and create a progress report for friends to read if they’re interested.

My main goal is to live with intention. Follow up on promised actions. Make amends. And heal. However that looks from month to month, we’ll just have to wait and see what comes up this year.

One thing I do believe in is – the energy you put out there, often comes back at you. The three fold rule of attraction. I’m working on hard on trying to attract only good things and people in my life. While not tearing down those who may be struggling as well.

What are your intentions for the upcoming year? Let me know in the comments!

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Thank you for reading! Yes, I’m writing almost daily now and have a lot of ideas and ways to improve this blog. I want to make this a place where people can come for uplifting and messages of support, while sharing my experiences with emotional abuse and toxic relationships. I also want to document my healing journey, and what I’m learning through this process to help inspire others.

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Self-care: why crying is good for you

The other week, I responded to a question in Ask Reddit and for once, it was a really good question. I’ve lost track of it now, buried far deep in dozens of comments and replies. But the gist of the question was this:

I can’t cry. I want to cry. I know I should cry. But I can’t cry. How can I teach myself to cry?

My response was fairly short, as I was on my phone. If I’m commenting using my phone, responses are short because I’m all thumbs when it comes to texting. It’s legitimately painful. I’m better at a computer with a keyboard. And so, I kept my response to short, but to the point. And then, like many other comments, I walked away from it and forgot about it until the next day.

Well, my phone had blown up with over 30 comment responses overnight. I had received a couple of rewards and over 1000 upvotes. It’s crazy how fast those things can add up over comments you don’t think are important.

What fueled my response was thinking back to my mother’s death. The days leading up to her death, spent with the family curled up in her hospital room – I was comfortably numb. To coin a phrase. I didn’t cry on the day she died. I teared up. But the tears dried quickly. They were more like dry sobs. If that’s a thing.

The funeral came. I let out one heavy sob when my dad started crying. And then nothing. For weeks, no tears would come. I remember chatting with Greg about it one night and I said, “I think there’s something wrong with me, I can’t cry.”

Greg had known me during my worst years, when I could cry over dropping a glass of milk. That was due to a hormonal imbalance. I know that now. I remember he called me and said, “They will come. Just be kind to yourself. They will come. And when they do, I’m here for you.”

It was – one of the sweeter moments of our relationship.

So, what was my comment that received so many upvotes?

Crying is therapeutic. It’s a healthy thing to do that helps to release emotions. Just pop in a feel good movie and have a good, ugly cry.”

I had no idea the comments section would spark so much – healthy discussion about crying. I received so many suggestions for movies that made other people cry. There was a good amount of Pixar movies in the mix and people were shocked when I mentioned Toy Story.

I’m telling you – as an older person, that movie hits hard at times. Especially the last installment. Or maybe it’s the soundtrack.

This discussion left me with lots of thoughts about crying. Why is crying so good for us? Why does it feel so good to finally cry after a long period of not being able to?

Crying is cathartic. If you see someone crying sit by them pat their back  or leave them alone. When you ask th… | Romantic quotes, Inspirational  quotes, Life quotes
Found on pinterest.com

Crying is a cathartic release

Crying is a way to release emotions through a healthy and natural response. It’s a way to purge ourselves clean of emotional baggage that may bog us down. Whether it’s a response to emotional or physical trauma, grief, loss of a loved one, or just an extremely stressful day – crying can be a good way to release those feelings that you weren’t even aware you had.

A more scientific mind would tell you that crying releases endorphins. These are feel-good chemicals that can help with lessening of emotional or physical pain.

But men aren’t supposed to cry

My father was one of those proud men that never seemed to show his emotions in front of us. He rarely got angry and the few times he did shout – you knew you were in real trouble. I’ve only seen my dad in his younger years, cry twice. Once was at his mother’s funeral. Later, it was his sister’s funeral. That was hard to watch. My mother couldn’t be with us that day, and I had to be his “rock” or shoulder to cry on. It was a position I gladly accepted, for he had held my hand many times when I cried. Now with late stages of Parkinsons, he can become very over emotional and cry at a memory. It doesn’t take much with him. It’s really hard to watch.

Dad grew up in the era that “real men weren’t supposed to cry” and we got used to not seeing men cry. I’ve only seen my brother cry a couple of times too. One of those days was when my mom died.

(please continue reading…before commenting).

“I know a man ain’t supposed to cry,”

“but these tears I can’t hold inside.”

– Marvin Gaye

It’s okay to cry

What I’ve come to learn as an adult, is that it’s okay for people to cry. No matter what age, gender, or what the reason might be – we should ALL be able to tear up or cry without judgment from others. I mean, if anything, holding in all those emotions for all those years, can’t be good for a body. If crying releases endorphins, then just imagine 50-60 years of emotional trauma trapped inside.

I used to be one of those people. I found it hard to talk about my emotions or feelings without getting angry about them. This blog has helped so much with that. It is my therapy. My cathartic release. And sometimes, reading comments can even make me cry. But that is a very rare thing.

How can I learn to cry

For me, these days, with anxiety and dealing with health issues, I find crying easy to do. Maybe a little too easy. All I have to do is think about my mom. Or my dad. Or anyone I’ve lost over the years. Sometimes it’s a good romance movie like PS I Love You or While You Were Sleeping. Or Disney movies like Lion King and Wall-E get me every damn time.

If that doesn’t work, try listening to music. I have entire playlists dedicated to those rainy days. I have songs that remind me of my mom or another special moment in my life. Songs like “Say Something” or the one that I played at my mother’s funeral, “Wind Beneath my Wings,” or the Danish song, “Day by Day” – these are all songs that evoke emotion in me and make me tear up.

Find that one song that makes you think of that moment in your life. Whether it was the loss of a friendship, the loss of a pet, loss of a loved one. Or just a really bad day that you had. Sometimes stress can make us feel over emotional, and crying can be a good release for that.

If those methods don’t work, then meditate. Think of what makes you really emotional. Clear out all other thoughts and just focus on those memories. Think of other people that you care about.

Just be still with your emotions.

The tears will come. When they’re meant to.

And if none of these tricks work, then this one almost always does it for me too. Eight years later, still makes me cry.


It would be irresponsible of me to post a disclaimer. While crying is a healthy release, crying every day – might be an indicator that something is wrong. If you are grieving, consider talking to a healthcare professional. Grief comes in many forms. I’ve written about this before. If you think you are crying more than usual, please consider seeking professional help.

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Recharge your soul: reconnect with nature

Today is the best day I’ve had in months. Months! I woke up migraine free with good energy. A sore stomach but I think that it’s because I’ve been snacking at night time – I need to stop that. A good mood – even though it’s pouring with rain outside.

Why does it seem that the one day you have to go outside – it rains? And not just a drizzle – it’s been pouring non-stop since last night. Not that I mind, I love the rain. But really? On the one day I need to go out into the world?

I just came back from a short visit with my new family doctor. I really like him. He asks a lot of good questions. We reviewed some paperwork. He’ll fill out any form and charge me only $40 for it which I can write off. I have a note that will cover me to the end of summer and have some benefits coming in – so that is a relief.

I’m currently writing what feels like a book on my medical history with migraines. It’s interesting to try and recall really important dates. Like the time a migraine sent me to the ER after puking for 13 hours straight. Sorry, but I was traumatized. I think paramedic was too. Good thing he was quick with a bowl.

The worst part of the migraines is the nausea and vertigo. He finally asked me today about all the symptoms. I had asked him for a referral months ago – and he said he was working on it. But then asked me again today if I wanted one. So…. I hope he actually submitted one. Referrals can take up to a year.

I saw my good faithful friend Wally today who picked me up from the doctor’s and drove me home. We had a month worth of catching up to do. Sometimes I make up excuses to go out just so I can see him. He used to drive me to work daily and so I’ve missed that casual friendship. He’s happily married with three kids. He’s Polish. From time to time, we’d exchange things like baking, or treats during the holidays. He also helped me with my move out and I’m grateful to have someone I can rely on.

Contrary to what some people believe, living alone isn’t lonely. The pandemic has made it tough for sure – but I have friends that I can see for lunch dates or drinks. I have a bestie who reads this blog often and we talk daily. I have my sisters and talk daily with them. That was why I moved closer – to be close to them. And it’s really helped. To the point that my anxiety- it’s not even really an issue right now.

Dating? I don’t need to date to be happy. Fuck that logic and those who think that way. Relationships made me miserable. I over-thought everything and it drove me mad – and my partner too. Plus I was magnet for emotionally unstable men. Greg, for instance, had PTSD from the military. We had a strong connection because of it. We loved each other. But the relationship was never meant to be. And I’m okay with that. I don’t hate him. I don’t hate any of my exes. I learned to FORGIVE and let go. Which I think a lot of people struggle with.

Where am I going with this? I don’t know. My tummy is growling so I should get some food. But mostly – I just wanted to say.

I absolutely fucking love my life. I love the people I have in my life. Could things be better? Yeah, I mean – things could always be better. More money would be amazing. But I have a nice, clean and quiet home. I have friends I can count on. I have good relationships with some of my ex-partners – we’re even “friendly” on social media. I have good relationships with my family. I have lots of hobbies and interests to help fill in the days.

Daily Positivity #3: Recharge your soul

Life is too short to dwell on the negative people in life. Remember all the good things you have in your life. Family. Friends. Your home. Your job (if you love your job). Your pets. Focus on creative outlets. Hobbies. Go for a walk or run. Get out in nature and get lost (metaphorically) in your surroundings.

Take a break from social media. Go out and breathe some fresh air. Reconnect with Mother Earth – for she is always ready and will be there for you too.

Painted by – me!

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