Friday, November 18, 2016

wear your happiness for all to see

I was told I wear my happiness well, you can see when I am truly happy because my face reveals it to the world. It is true though. My face radiates my emotions and I wear my smile from ear to ear for all to see. The reason is because I am happy!
I feel fully connected with myself.
What I mean by that is for the longest time I wasn’t connected to who I truly was, because I was so occupied with being this person the world wanted me to be.
I was always dimming the light of who I was more and more until I was fully in the darkness and couldn’t make out the person reflected back at me in the mirror.
There was a time in my life where I thought it was normal for friends to be insulting of your weight, for them to be disrespectful of your feelings and your pain, for them to offend your culture, and for them to criticize every part of you that was different.
With time that changes you, it makes you distance yourself from who you truly are deep in your heart.
You go into life pretending to be this person that your surroundings have influenced you to become. I was not living my truth. I was living the life or persona that others wanted me to be and I was f**king miserable.
It took a break up years ago that shattered me and made me realize how far away from myself I was.
I was completely in the dark, and disconnected entirely.
I was guided to a book at the time I needed it the most, that catapulted me into this journey of self. A week after finishing the book, the author was in Florida and I knew I needed to see her speak in person.
Driving home from the talk in the darkness of Alligator Alley, I had all my windows open and blasting MIA thinking, “I can do whatever I want, I can conquer the world”.
From that day on I have had pure dedication to be the best version of myself.
Whenever I doubt myself I remember the power and strength I felt on that drive home.
I don’t allow anyone now to dim my light. I don’t pretend to be another person.
I am myself; loud, rambunctious, inappropriate and pretty weird at times.
But I am me and I am happy as can be because I am being true to myself.
Don’t allow others to tell you to change. Don’t give them the power to dim your light.
Do things that bring you joy and do them often regardless of what other’s think.
Surround yourself with positive people that appreciate your light.
And above all, be authentically you because there is no one greater that you can be other than yourself.
Wear your happiness for all to see.
(It’s pretty contagious)

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

my story for the world to see

Follow the path that is being shown to you.
Two months ago a good friend tagged me in a post on Facebook about contacting Insider with travel stories. I opened an email and started writing. Once I was done my ego crept in and started questioning who I was to be sending a famous site my story. My ego won in that moment and I minimized the email. After the growth of traveling for two months I decided to send that email.
Within a few weeks I was called and interviewed for a post on Insider.
Within a few days my post was on the homepage!

Here is my story:

After quitting her corporate job, this 26-year-old took a whirlwind solo trip through the Middle East

Don't ever let your ego take control. You are worth far more than you give yourself credit for. I am practicing this every single day. Shine light and love on the fear and doubt in yourself.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

love your damn self

Traveling alone is an entirely different experience. I didn’t expect it to be so transformational.
I decided before I left to wear no make up. I am not a huge make up junkie to begin with but I was getting used to the habit of covering my face a few times a week.
We all go through trials and tribulations in life that take us away from who we are. We stop giving our self the time we deserve. We put our needs, health and care at the bottom of the list. We tend to drain ourselves in our work, relationships, and anything that takes the focus away from caring for our self. We put every person before us.
Self-care and self-love are necessary. They are not selfish but required for you to feel balanced and centered.
So the reason for going makeup free while I traveled was because I did not want to hide my face anymore. I wanted to be able to see every flaw, every pore and every unfortunate zit. Seeing my skin raw and uncovered to be able to love myself with no mask on. Seeing your skin that often with no ability to cover it up is very intimidating and honestly not easy. I made sure not to pack any make-up with me at all so that I would not be tempted.
You want to know what I realized after two months of no make up?
I am beautiful. Excuse my vanity for a second, but I never realized until now.  My face has been glowing for months. All my friends have been informing me that since following my gut, they have seen my face radiating. I never saw what they were talking about until now.
It took me flying across the world, sans makeup and doing things for me; that made me see this shine they have been speaking of. I took the time for me, and I was by definition selfish. I left my home, comfort, friends and family to travel by myself for two months. To escape my routine and the endless search for a job, just to be with myself.
I dedicated this time to myself. To follow my intuition to find what lights a fire within me. I have fallen in love with my strength, my bravery and myself. I have been nothing but raw and unfiltered in my skin and in my writing.
I am being me. 100% Natasha, no filter, no lies and no cover-up.
Take the time to fall in love with yourself! It is vital for your happiness. I have never felt happier and more in love with life than I do right now.
Begin small. Start with positive self-talk. The conversations we have with ourselves is usually harsh and very critical. The voice inside our head can be judgmental and mean. We would never speak to a loved one in the manner we speak to ourselves. We need to change the conversation to more positive and encouraging. Speak to yourself the way you would speak to a close friend. Shower yourself with compliments, it feels silly at first but it is more transformational than you would expect.
Two months of traveling with no make up and no diet has made me fall in love with all the shapes my body is. Instead of being unkind to myself for the weight I have gained or the fact that my skin isn’t flawless, I see it all as practices to deepen my love. I am not model thin and my skin has a tendency to break out while I travel but I am okay with that. I love my body and what it is capable of. I love my face for its ability to always shine when I am following my heart.

So be selfish and just love your damn self! 

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

I appreciate you.

I appreciate you.
Three words that are rarely ever said.
Three words that could heal a relationship if ever spoken.
Three words that speak magnitudes but are never muttered.
Why is it that we don’t let people know that we appreciate them?
Their energy, their presence, their words, their smile, their laugher.
Relationships and friendships end because of lack of appreciation.
The words can be said or shown in many ways.
But still we avoid letting those around us know how much they mean to us.
We avoid being raw and letting others know that they actually have an impact.
I appreciate all those around me. I surround myself by those I am grateful for.
The ones that want to bid you farewell before you set off on your trip.
The ones that contact you multiple times to let you know they miss your presence.
The ones that make the effort to let you know their successes and their downfalls.
People show you appreciation in many ways. Maybe not necessarily in their words but in their actions.
Be honest. Be open. Let those around you know that you appreciate them.
I was told before I left that I was appreciated and it blew me away because no better words could describe how I felt about that person.
Surround yourself by people whose energy you can appreciate.  
During my travels I realized how grateful I am for the people around me and the life I am able to live.
I started to realize all the things I appreciate.
From people to small things I took for granted before.
We don’t truly realize the things we have until we take a step back to see and feel the power of them.
The friends that text you each week with a countdown of your arrival.
The family that gets together to have a lunch by the sea in your honor.
The mom that listens to your every word and is always encouraging you to be your self.
& all the people that opened their doors to me and allowed me to live with them for however long I desired.
So here is to you all, my friends, family and beautiful souls I come in contact with.

I appreciate you.