My Top Four Wellness Tools

I have this habit. It’s not a good one. In keeping with my “all-or-nothing” personality, I tend to have difficulty doing life at a slow pace. I run full speed ahead, charging at life with my sword drawn. Have you ever seen a movie or TV show with Scottish Highlanders running into battle, screaming like a banshee (side note: any Outlander fans? Are you not completely obsessed? My husband reads this, so I probably shouldn’t share my thoughts about Jamie. But let me just say: Oh. My.)? That’s pretty much my approach to life.

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The Problem With Meditation

I have a love/hate relationship with meditation. I don’t think I’m the only one. I strongly suspect there are others like me, who love the benefits of meditation, but force themselves to sit on their cushions because they could easily put it off forever if they didn’t make themselves do it. To put it simply, it’s much easier to SAY I have a meditation practice than it is to ACTUALLY HAVE a meditation practice.

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The Truth About Anxiety

My name is MacKenzie and I have anxiety. I was asked to write a guest blog post for my dear friend Amy about my journey discovering, understanding, and coping with my anxiety and I must say, the thought triggered the very issue itself. But, if my story can help someone else understand the things that they are going through or make them feel as if they are not alone in their struggle, it is well worth the anxiousness. I want to preface with the fact that I am in no way an expert on the subject. I am not a certified mental health care provider, I hold no official degree or any kind of expertise in the field of mental heath. I cannot tell you what you should do, or how you should cope if you or someone you love has issues with anxiety. All I can tell you is my own personal experience. So here it is.

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The Bridge

**This is not an easy read. This deals with trauma, abuse and depression.

When I was a kid, my world completely fell apart. My adopted sister was spiraling down a deep black hole. She was violent, she was doing drugs, she stole thousands of dollars, and she hoped in and out of lock-up facilities. She was terrified of being in a permanent family after years of being bounced around foster homes, combined with all the abuse she suffered in her birth home. Turns out she was a violent sociopath, meaning she had no conscience, no awareness of or concern for the feelings of others. This was the result of experiencing physical, emotional, and sexual abuse at the hands of her biological family. She was never shown love, and so she had no idea what love was. To her, love was the scariest thing in the world. Fear and anger and violence were all she knew. By the time we figured this out, she was already in our home, and officially adopted. By the time I was 11 years old, she was not allowed to live with us because she was threatening to kill us.

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Being Bullied Changed My Life

When I was in middle school, a classmate of mine started a rumor about me. This is not unusual. It happens in middle schools all around the world, every day.  While this particular rumor appeared to be about me, it actually said quite a bit about the person who started it. This is also not unusual.  My classmate told a few people that I was staring at her in class, apparently with great longing and desire. I wasn’t, but that is beside the point. By the end of the day, half the school was whispering that I must be a lesbian. 

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Everyday Miracles

There are moments, everyday-nothing-special moments, that stick in my memory.  I don't know why those moments stay with me and other things, bigger things, don't. But one morning, several weeks ago, I woke up and in that transition between asleep and awake, I suddenly remembered a moment from 26 years ago.  And then I started to cry, when I realized how that one everyday-nothing-special moment has shaped my life. 

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It's Really Okay To Be A Mess

   My husband told me something one day that completely changed my perspective. I was going through a challenging time, and I told him I felt like no one was supporting me. He told me that since I am normally so strong, and work so hard on making it look like I have it all under control, that he forgets that sometimes I don't actually have it all under control. That I'm actually having a really hard time, and I'm just not showing it.  The implication was clear--for me to get the support I need, I have to be honest about the fact that I need support.     

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The Broken Vase

     Perfection. We want it. We admire it. We aspire to it.  If we purchase something that is broken, we return it. If something we already have breaks, we fix it or throw it out. And according to some social media profiles, some of us appear to have achieved perfect lives.  Everywhere we look, there is the assumption that if something is flawed, it is unworthy. So what does that say about us? If we are not perfect, are we unworthy?

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