Saturday, December 31, 2016

Here We Go, 2017... Here We Go.

As 2016 comes to a close, I have recognized how many ways I am blessed and successful.
1 - I am in the best shape of my life so far - I can run harder and for longer than ever before.  I also went the entire year without a surgery!
2 - I have the ability to chase my music dreams and work on my voice every day.  I even wrote songs and performed an original for a live audience - twice!  I also have a job/career currently that I LOVE and am good at doing.
3 - I have an awesome place to myself and am loving living on my own and experiencing "adulthood."
4 - I went to Europe this year and have the ability to travel and see the world, plus see the people I love around the world.
5 - I read some incredible books, wrote some fun songs, created new friendships, and grew as a person.  I really am learning to accept ALL part of myself and love who I am becoming.
6 - I increased my spirituality and embraced what and how I worship and believe in my Savior... and I became okay with believing in my own way.

There was also hardships and lots of learning to be on my own.  I'm understanding how I struggle being alone, and yet need that time in moments.  I've come to embrace it, and know I need to go even further with that skill.  Life changed for the better in so many ways, and yet, has been emotionally hard with those changes.  As the highly emotional individual I am, change is SO good for me, and yet very hard for me.  It's a love/hate relationship...

As I dive into 2017, I have goals and ambitions that I didn't set for the new year, but have already been working on.  I'm just excited to see the change point from where I'm at in the year's time.

1 - I want to be in the best shape of my life- again!  Just further in my goals.  I want a lower body fat percentage and I want to be even more comfortable in my own skin.  I want for of the physical look I desire.  I also want to run faster and play sports with more coordination and quick-thinking skills.
2 - I want to keep improving my voice, and I want to DO something with it.  I want to create an EP album and audition for shows.  I want to use my talent fully and grow in recognition for doing so.  I want to perform all over and increase those opportunities. I want to learn how to market and brand myself as a professional.
3 - I want to go to San Francisco.  Never been, and I want to check it off my list.
4 - I want to grow in my social sphere and meet some other people I can connect with and form new relationships, while I strengthen the old ones. I want to be a better friend by being honest with myself and others.  I want to not put expectations on others and not wait on anyone else to make decisions.
5 - I want all my "wants" to be "WILLS," and they will be. :)

I love the New Year just because it's a visual reset... just remember, every day is that reset.  Every day is a clean start and a new beginning. :)

Friday, May 6, 2016


Expectations are the death of a happy soul.

I was speaking with a friend the other day about my experience in Prague, and I realized something... I had the MOST amazing time and fell in love with that city for one reason - I had NO expectations about the city and the trip. I arrived solo, taking a night train from Koln to Prague city center, found my hostel and checked out local surroundings for a bit before a friend arrived and hiked around the city with me for a day and a half. We ate amazing food, saw the famous castle and city sights, and even went to a Czeck Musical! After that, I spent another two days just taking in the city and wondering around wherever I wanted to go, ate at random places, and watched a lot of street performers... It was lovely, and made all the better because I had NO expectation of how things "should" go on the trip or what I "should" do with my time. Sure, I had a list of the different sights I wanted to potentially see, list of foods to taste while there... however, there was no expectation of the "perfect trip."

After this chat, I read an article in and it said the following:

"What did Epictetus, the great Stoic philosopher, say way back in the first century AD?
 - 'People are disturbed not by things, but by the views they take of them.' 

What did Shakespeare write in "Hamlet"?
 - 'There's nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.'

How about the Buddha?
 - 'We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts we make the world.'"

They are all so spot on... WE create our perceptions and therefore, the feelings we are having of frustration about the way an event turned out, or how an individual is acting. We have a view of how things "should" go, and it ruins our ability to live in the moment and be okay with how things really ARE going. 

Expectations rarely give us happiness, and therefore... I'm giving up on expectations. There are some key things I shall request/demand in my life if someone wants to stay in my life, however, expecting someone to acting exactly the way I imagine it in my mind is only going to lead to disappointment when people make a different choice or mess-up. We're all human - we don't handle situations perfectly every time. Therefore, if I allow myself to experience a situation and react accordingly, I feel as though I can live with a lot less disappointment and unfulfilled desires.

When it comes to things in my life coming to fruition, I work hard to make them happen - I don't expect them to happen because I have talent or an opportunity. I will allow myself to be in the moment and feel the genuine emotions of that experience... not what I believe I "should" feel or want to feel. That's putting your happiness in the hands of a specific situation or person... and I want to choose my happiness and let it be genuinely present. And, how much more real is that?! I'm not anticipating an emotional reaction or response - I'm letting it naturally come forth. Healthier and happier approach in my mind...

There's a difference between advocating for high results with jobs, events, friends, dating, etc.... However, I'm digging this idea of letting life be what it is and having zero expectations. I've read "always have hope, though never expect." I can live by that rule. :)


Song of the Day: Love this song, even if it's over-played to some... and it kinda goes with the topic - "Let It Go" by James Bay, and covered by yours truly. :) Enjoy!

Sidenote:  I'm halfway to 31 today! :)  AND, guess what my fortune said this morning...?  "As soon as you feel too old to do a thing, do it."  DONE.

Friday, January 1, 2016

And So, I Will... My Ode to 2015!

I took some time for self-reflection over this week, approaching the New Year, and realized a few things.  I have a lot of growth left to go in order to achieve my goals.  I have some lofty goals, especially in the areas of fitness and personal/career.  I know what I really want, and it's going to take even more dedication than I have put forward and even greater amounts of work.  That being said, I want to take a moment to recognize I kicked 2015's ass.... I mean, I really brought my own in 2015.  I know that I have SO much more work to do, and I will do it... however, I also want to recognize how far I've come.

During the year 2015, I hit the lowest weight and size I have been since High School.  I do not remember a time I was quite this healthy, in fact.  I have come to recognize that weight isn't everything, and nor is size, but health and fitness mean SO much more.  I do not win some grand prize form being below 200 pounds or being a size 10, but I feel accomplished and driven.  I want to be even further in my goals with fitness - to have the body I really want to have the ability to do certain things without so much strain... and so, I will.  

During 2015, I signed-up for a competitive team sports league... that doesn't start till 2016, but STILL!  That's a huge feat for me... I never believed I would do that again unless it was kickball.  I basically willingly signed-up to go running for an hour straight every Sunday night.  In preparation, I have even been getting up before school at 5:15am to do cardio before work and increase my endurance.  Yea... if you know me at ALL, that's dedication right there... mornings. 

During the year 2015, I grew at lot as a musical artist.  I put a LOT more genuine focus on my YouTube channel and growing in who I want to be as a musical artist.  My voice has improved and gotten back into greater shape.  I made over 40 cover videos and played a handful of live shows.  I sang the national anthem at 9 big events.  I began singing with my worship team at SMCC, and experienced and embraced new kinds of music.  I want to be further with my music goals, and this year I want to release and EP, never miss a #nmm (#newmusicmonday), and play at least one live show a month... and so, I will.

During the year 2015,  Scott Alan picked me as a finalist for his trip to London to sing with him at the Hippodrome.  He named me as his #3 choice and posted my video.  And, although I felt that I wasn't suppose to go for many reasons... I know I am good enough to sing on his stage and many to come.  I want to continue in my dreams with music... and so, I will.  

During the year 2015,  I grew closer to my Savior.  I grew to understand what Christ really is to me as a Savior and comforter... I learned what it meant to put FULL FAITH in my Heavenly Father and trust He had me - that He would guide me.  I began a Bible Study class and have taken to really understanding the New Testament, and how it can help me be a better individual/follower of Christ.  I am STILL working on trusting God in all aspects of my life, but when I struggle, I will always come back to a few moments of 2015 to remind me of His power and my need to trust... 

During the year 2015, I survived brain surgery.  I don't wanna toot my own horn, but that's a pretty bad-ass ice-breaker if I ever heard one before.  The best part, I wasn't even fearful because I sincerely knew that in this instance God had my back... He always does, I simply am still learning to believe that's the case.  I knew what He wanted for me, and knew I had more to give to the world, so I went in with total peace in my heart that whatever happened was His will... and it was.  I am healthier and happier now, and I want to continue to improve my health each day... and so, I will.

During the year 2015, I started to fight Lyme Disease.  It's exhausting.  I put on a strong face a lot in my life - always have and always will - however, I will be brutally honest here for a moment and say that Lyme is draining... fighting Lyme is draining.  I'm tired a lot.  I feel sick a lot.  It makes me struggle to eat or want to eat, and it messes with my weight-loss goals... but I'm gonna defeat it and be the master of my own body.  I recently read a book about how to eat specifically to aid in fighting Lyme - and got rid of a chunk of my food.  I want to learn how to live with Lyme and still function at optimal capacity... and so, I will.  

During 2015, I directed an amazing musical.  
During 2015, I ran SoF with gnarly food-posioning.  
During 2015, I learned to stand up for myself.
During 2015, I showed friends how to lift weights, when two years ago, I had no idea.
During 2015, I had moments of weakness and moments of strength.
During 2015, I overcame unimaginable moments of self-defeat. 
During 2015, I formed more of who I truly am as a human being and child of God.  
During 2015, I tasted success, ran from it, tasted it again, and am learning how to embrace it. 
During 2015, I effed up... and I figured it out.

During the year 2015, I grew a lot.  This was a year of developing and deciding for myself who I really want to be.  We all make statements about what we're going to do, and I've been doing this for awhile now.  I may still be figuring out all the puzzle pieces, but hey... actions do speak louder than words.  I want to be SO much greater in all areas of my life than I am currently in... and so, I will.

Song of the Day: The cover that got me recognized by Scott Alan, even more so than his own song I covered, was "How Will I Know," Sam Smith's version of Whitney's classic.  The nicest part, is I just sang it on a whim... completely what I wanted in the moment.  THAT is my goal for 2016 - to sing whatever the hell I want whenever I want to sing it... Here's a little sneak peak of my first cover for #newmusicmonday in 2016, which I covered that evening simply because it felt like the right thing to sing right then - Justin Bieber's "Love Yourself..."  Enjoy and check out the full video on Monday! :)