Go with the Friendship Flow

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friends-1272735_640It’s been about five years or so since I started to dabble in the realm of personal growth, and within the past year I’ve really leveled up my commitment to my own journey of self-discovery. The concept of connection has been on my radar more and more, and I’m beginning to realize not only the importance of connection and our relationship with others, but also how it can spawn revelations when it comes to personal growth and authenticity.

Over the years, like everyone, I’ve experienced an ebb and flow with my friendships. None of my current friends are people I knew before college, and I’ve shed two of my longest tenured (think at least 10 years) and deepest friendships over the past two years alone. Losing those two friendships was really painful, but it also made me realize how important it is to let go of relationships that no longer serve you, especially if they’re toxic. Each of us deserves to be treated with love and respect, and if that isn’t something that you are receiving in your relationships, then it’s time to let them go. It’s also important to realize that sometimes you just outgrow people. I know for me, once I opened myself to authenticity and personal integrity and really took inventory of my personal values and beliefs, it was extremely difficult for me to settle for friendships that were unbalanced or shallow.

Looking past the pain of those lost friendships, I realized that the connections that I still maintain are bonds that truly light me up. I have quality friends. I am surrounded by people who genuinely love me and care about me and my life. They want what’s best for me. They encourage me to chase my dreams and explore my potential. They support me in good times and bad, and they love me for me. Really, at the end of the day, that is all any of us want, right?

The awesome–and unexpected–result of shedding toxic relationships is that it made me really invest in my relationship with myself. I began to realize that I deserve better. I deserve to receive the same quality of love and support that I so freely offer to others. Self-love was a big theme for me this year (in case you couldn’t tell ;), and it’s the reason I decided to dive into the amazing group coaching program that I’ve mentioned before.

And you know what happened once I did that?

friends_handsI received an influx of new and beautiful people in my life. These amazing earth angels share so many of the struggles and aspirations that I experience, and it has allowed us to bond quickly and on a much deeper level than I was used to. Bonds like that, particularly ones that accompany hardcore soul-searching, force you to be better. It’s because of that program, those ladies, and these new connections that I continue to dig deep and explore who I am and all of the things of which I’m capable.

When you live your life constantly inspired and excited for what could be, it’s like you’re living on a magical plane of infinite possibilities. And yes, that is probably too froo froo and woo woo for lots of people, but for me – it’s epic. It makes me smile. It makes my heart beat faster in anticipation. I know that I am aligned and being authentic to who I am, and I think that’s one of the reasons why I’m here – to shine my light and give others permission to do the same. That revelation and the feeling that goes along with it would never be possible if it wasn’t for the amazing, beautiful, soul tribe worthy friends who are part of my life. So thank you. All of you. I love you more than words are capable of expressing, and you know that from me, Little Miss Writer, that says a lot 🙂 ❤

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Daily Soul Searching

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lotusSoul searching is a daily practice of mine, not because something is missing from my life and I’m trying to find it, but because I love personal growth and self-discovery. I love peeling back the layers of the most authentic version of myself and uncovering what truly lights me up as well as the areas in my life that I could change, strengthen, or improve.

My soul searching journey began over five years ago when I reconnected with an old work acquaintance. We were both struggling with painful personal issues, and began to lean on each other for support and inspiration. From there, what had only been a friendly work relationship blossomed into a beautiful friendship that is still thriving and changing my life for the better every single day. Daily lunches turned into weekend girl nights, where we began to experiment with tarot cards and meditation. These activities combined with just being together created a bond and a sense of peace and happiness that we both desperately needed.

We practiced meditation consistently, even when apart, and we also began to collect various tarot card decks to share. We were curious about any form of spiritual practice and soul work that we could get our hands on, and this interest eventually led my friend to The Secret and The Magic by Rhonda Byrne. Both books revolve around the concept of the Law of Attraction (like attracts like), but The Magic was more of an activity book – a 30-day daily practice of gratitude. For me, The Magic  was…well, magical. That book changed my life and catapulted me to a completely different level of soul searching and self-discovery.

As I mentioned, I had been struggling with deeply negative and painful personal issues at the time, and practicing daily gratitude and learning more about and believing in the Law of Attraction greatly shifted my attitude and perspective. I began to see inspiration and joy in small, everyday things. I was able to acknowledge that although my life wasn’t perfect (who’s is?!), I had so much for which to be grateful. From there, my life significantly changed. I was able to distance myself from my personal struggles in a healthy way. I moved into a new apartment that I loved. I was able to quit a job that made me deeply unhappy and move on to a new position that offered more money. I accepted and celebrated my writing talent and began to actually aspire to hone it and share it with others. I am not exaggerating when I say that it felt like good thing after good thing just kept falling into my lap.

This shift was so uplifting and life changing that it prompted me to continue to seek out things, people, places, and whatever else affected me on a spiritual level. This practice of daily soul searching stuck with me, and I still, to this day, seek out experiences that touch my soul and leave a lasting impression. External things and possessions can be great and fun, but when you are impacted on an internal level, when you feel something in the core of your very being, those are the types of things that can change your life. Those are the moments that inspire you to be better, do more, and share your experiences with others who need inspiration or motivation.

Every single day, I find something that lights me up. It’s often something small and inconsequential – reconnecting with a friend, seeing a quote on social media that moves me, having some time to write and just getting absolutely lost in the flow of creativity. Daily soul searching has just become a part of who I am. I enjoy learning and personal development, and more so, conversation about all of the above. I enjoy sharing my experiences, and–hardly shocking, I’m sure–sharing my story and seeking the stories of others. I think that to some, soul searching may seem like an overwhelming, complicated (or never-ending?), or spiritually froo froo task, but I believe that at its core, soul searching is rather simple – it’s about connection. Connection with yourself, connection with others, and connection with new ideas that light you up from the inside out.