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First Step in Achieving our Goals

phnom penh, cambodia, mission trip

Tonight, I just wanted to slow down… my life has been so fast paced lately and I feel like I can’t keep up. So I resorted to youtube and searched up my girl Oprah. I feel like she’s always got something to feed the soul and so I watched a 20 minute speech she made and honestly, I didn’t even watch the whole thing but I cried watching it. I’m still trying to figure out why I became so emotional over it and maybe it’s because the person that has been functioning is so far from who I am at my core. Just rush rush rush to get things done. I haven’t breathed, taken things in to process and really one of the big things is that I haven’t done anything to serve myself nor others.

She shared about her story on building a school and I can still remember at one point in my life where I really wanted to focus in on developing a nonprofit organization that could benefit so many people. I never got around to figuring out what it was going to be… and I thought maybe my blog would eventually become that one day and I’m sure it still has potential to become something big. But I gotta figure out what I want to create, why I want to create it, who I want it for. I know that I want to impact, on a larger scale. I know I want to work with women, I know I want to empower and influence… just don’t know on what. But Oprah talking about her experience going back to South Africa to carry out her Christmas Kindness mission of giving a gift to young children reminded me that I haven’t put any effort in doing anything larger than myself in a really long time. And part of me felt called. Called to come back to that place. The place where I wanted to help, encourage, and inspire. Not sure how, or who or even what… but I know it’s time to explore my options.

phnom penh, mission trip, tonle sap, siem reap, lasalle pothum

First step

First thing that comes to mind is I’d really like to get out of the States and go serve somewhere. The second thing that comes to mind is influencing through my blog and bringing my mission and vision to life. Because the slate is so clean, it can be really intimidating but the first step in pursuing that scares is committing to following through.

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How to Bring Your Life to the Next Level

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I believe that all of the activities we partake in outside of our obligations can essentially be categorized in three different ways. Being able to identify your activities throughout the day can easily show you things you can do to give yourself a little pick-me-up, especially on days they are much needed. So I’ve defined these activities as life-giving, chill or fun activities.

Life-giving Activities

Are things that give you life! Activities that fill your soul up with goodness so that you are full so you can easily share and support others.

Chill activities

Are  just like they sound, chill. They are things you do to relax and numb your brain so you don’t have to think about anything else.

Fun activities

Are things you just enjoy doing that aren’t quite life-giving but they just help  you have a good fricken’ time!

So for me

Life-giving activities – writing, gratitude, reading, working out, church at St John Fisher/Cottonwood, reflection, eating healthy, devotional, volunteering, quality hang outs/conversations

Chill activities – Netflix, social media

Fun activities – blog, photography, planning trips, online shopping, apex, chillin’ with friends

And now that I’ve categorized my daily activities, I have a much better sense of what I’m doing with my time and it allows me to be more conscious of what I do to ensure that I am filling my day with life-giving activities rather than chill activities that make my brain go numb. They say that if we’re not measuring progress, how do we know we’re improving. And if we don’t know, how do we know to shake things up to take things up a notch? So let’s think about what your activities are, and how can we be more conscious of doing more life-giving activities during our day because those are the ones that recharge and rejuvenate ourselves.

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How to Do a Self Check-In Assessment

beach life, dock, pier, santa barbra, ocean,

I believe reflection is a phenomenal way to process life, take a step back and make sense of all the chaos that surrounds us every day . Looking back at my life last year, it felt like a bunch of random events and moments I collected with not much understanding nor connection. Let me tell you, it’s the worst way to reminisce on life. And while I hit a major low last year, it was definitely something that needed to happen to spring me forward into the direction I’ve been wanting to go.

I’m currently reading this book called I am That Girl by Alexis Jones, and essentially it’s a self help book for women to speak truth and find their purpose. It had amazing reviews on Amazon so I figure I’d give it a shot. I’m loving it so far because the author tells her story and intertwines it with other powerful women’s voices and best thing is that it gives you activities to work on (definitely one of my favorite aspect of books that I read). One of the things I’ve really liked so far that I’ve actually completed is a life self assessment that you can do several times throughout the year. It is a way to stop and reflect, figure out where you are so you can figure out where and how to continue to proceed with life to get closer to manifesting those dreams.

Since March is just right around the corner, I decided it would be the perfect time to do this because Q1 of the year will be over next month!

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Self Check-In

Take some time to answer these self assessment questions and it’s ok not to finish in one sitting. It’s best to ponder and provide a thoughtful response than to rush through the process. I’ve also went ahead and shared my personal responses to each of the questions below. I think it’s best to be raw, and real… and feel as much as you can through answering these questions because it’s the only way to get an honest look at life.

So here we go…

  1. What are you most proud of recently? What are you least proud of? What did you learn from your least proud moment, and what can you do to inspire more of what you were most proud of?
  2. Rate yourself from 1-10 on the following attributes: AuthenticitySelflessness

    Kindness 

    Compassion

    Patience 

    Creativity 

    Forgiveness 

    Passion 

    What areas need the most improvement? How can you put them into action? Schedule them into your planner

  3. List out your top priorities (ideally) in order.
  4. Where are you spending most of your time (I’ll list what a typical week looks like?) Where are you spending most of your money? Do your priorities match your actions (bc where you spend your time and money is a direct correlation to your actual priorities)?
  5. How do you feel in general? Physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually? Do you feel deprived in any area, too focused on any area, or in need of serious attention in any area?
  6. What are your current personal and professional goals? Write them down, steps to accomplishing them and schedule them into your calendar
  7. What was the last act of kindness you did? Think of a new one and schedule it

 malibu, malibu beaches, california, beach, beach life, california

My Responses

  1. What are you most proud of recently? What are you least proud of? What did you learn from your least proud moment, and what can you do to inspire more of what you were most proud of?

Recently, I’ve been really proud of my fitness progress. I’ve been eating well, working out 5-6 days a week for the last 3 weeks. I’m definitely beginning to see and feel results.

I am least proud of the way I’ve treated my loved ones, especially in times of need.

Promises are huge. I live in a gray zone, my life is gray, things intermix, change and constantly flowing and I need to learn how to compartmentalize. Be rigid, be strict, it is yes or no, not maybe.

  1. Rate yourself from 1-10 on the following attributes:

Humility (authenticity) 5

Selflessness 6

Kindness 8

Compassion 7

Patience 8

Creativity 7

Forgiveness 8

Passion 4

What areas need the most improvement? How can you put them into action? Schedule them into your planner

Passion, humility and selflessness need the most improvement. Passion, I’m unsure if I can truly say that I am passionate about blogging or nursing. At some points I feel like I have to do it… and of course there will be parts of any job or career that is not fun, but they must be done because they add to the bigger picture. Passion, I need to continue to push through and constantly remind me of the core reason why I began the blog, and why I went into nursing.

Authenticity, and I know I haven’t been incredibly honest and or authentic with others. Partially because I feel I can’t, that I don’t have anyone I feel safe enough to do it with. Isn’t that crazy? Coming from the lady who values it? But that’s it, I need to model it for others. Because this is truly something I believe in wholeheartedly.

Selflessness, I feel like I can be A LOT more selfless for Hoan. Hoan tells me I’m his number one priority and I believe him. I’m going to be more actively conscious of being more life giving to him.

  1. List out your top priorities (ideally) in order

 

  1. God
  2. Hoan
  3. Family/friends
  4. School
  5. Blog
  6. Work
  7. APEX

 

  1. Where are you spending most of your time (I’ll list what a typical week looks like?) Where are you spending most of your money? Do your priorities match your actions (bc where you spend your time and money is a direct correlation to your actual priorities)?

Two days of work, the weekend is usually chillin with church. The other three days, I’ll either work on blog, homework, do online shop, gym, prep food, grocery shop, watch Netflix

I’m spending LITERALLY all my money on food. Good, healthy, groceries, and also online shopping.

  1. How do you feel in general? Physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually? Do you feel deprived in any area, too focused on any area, or in need of serious attention in any area?

You know physically I feel pretty good. I’ve been going to the gym the most I’ve ever gone in ever, I think. The other day, I weighed myself and breaking record I was 118.4, the lightest I’ve been in… like 3 years maybe?! Also, eating really well, lots of greens and shopping a lot more at trader joe’s and whole foods which is phenomenal. I’ve been much more conscious of what I’m putting into my body and limiting the amount of preservatives and unhealthy foods.

Mentally, I feel okay.. definitely not feeling burnt out in regards to school yet because it literally just started and school is actually (I think) going to be fun this semester? I’m not feeling mentally drained at all surprisingly. Probably because I’m definitely having a lot of balance in my life. The other day, I had such a productive day. I woke up around 8 or 9, went to the gym, grocery shopped, cleaned, made my shake, showered, did some online shopping and by the time I started homework, it was about 2pm. I literally cranked it out until 830pm and finished my project! It was such an exhilarating feeling. I need more days like that.

Emotionally, I feel okay. I know for sure that I haven’t quite tapped into those moody, negative, tough emotions yet.. regarding my friendships and healing from my move. I know there’s still a lot to dissect and I’m looking forward to mulling through it with my therapist. She provided me with some homework to work on before we meet again in March.

Spiritually, I feel okay, I don’t think I’ve been fully in tune with God and my spirituality. Lately, it’s just like I know I need to go, so I just attend. I’m not excited about going but it’s just like it is, what it is. The last time I felt really spiritually present and connected was when Hoan and I went to Agape church. Service was okay, but the community was what got me. I definitely felt God’s presence being with them. Their openness and realness was exactly what I needed in a season of stillness. Seeing how tight knit they were as a community of Believers was just so heartwarming. I need more of that in my life.

  1. What are your current personal and professional goals? Write them down, steps to accomplishing them and schedule them into your calendar

Personal goal – Write more. Write down what I’m grateful for every day. Post at least one blog post a week on the blog.

Take my finances to the next level. Hoan and I want to purchase a property by end of this year or next.

  1. How much money am I putting into it?
  2. How much will I have by the end of the year?
  3. How much do I need?

Professional goal – Find a part time nurse educator position that works in NRPs either in Seattle or LA.

  1. Apply for RN in Washington
  2. Sign up for nurse educator jobs on Indeed – CA and WA
  3. What was the last act of kindness you did? Think of a new one and schedule it

7. What was your last act of kindness. Schedule the next one

Last act of kindness… well, I attempted to give the lady next to us at church who was coughing a cough drop this last Sunday.

Let me think of an act of kindness. Being of help to my colleagues at work is normal. With this one, I feel like I need to go out of my way to do something kind. So I decided, I’m going to create care packages and donate them to a nearby women’s shelter once I get my bonus. Stay tuned for more details!

Well, I hope you all have really enjoyed your self-assessment, please let me know how it goes for you!

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How to be Better than Who You were Yesterday

blue ruffle dress, princess polly

summer dress, blue dress, ruffle off the shoulder dress

Life is constantly changing and I think it’s important to be better than who we were yesterday. And while I believe this whole-heartedly, I feel like I haven’t been one to really live by this as of late.

Therefore, in the midst of thinking about what I wanted to do and get out of this summer, I wrote out a list of what I wanted to work on personally and this is when I realized.. this is the first list I’ve written in a while! So here’s what I wrote out:

  1. Be more present in my conversations
  2. Have more zen in my life
  3. Learn how to use manual mode on my camera
  4. Take more photographs/instastories and post to IG

Summer is only about 3-4 months long, of course it feels like it’s longer here in LA… but is there something you want to work on this summer? Would love to hear what you guys want to improve and work on 🙂

 

 

outfit deets

Dress is Princess Polly | Similar outfits below!

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An Honest Confession

laguna beach, beach life, girl, palm trees, so cal, california, summer

i decided to take a little hiatus to regain some clarity in the reason why i began this blog. i originally had high hopes for it and my ultimate goal was wanting to help women all across the world feel simply beautiful. i wasn’t quite sure how i was going to do it… and to be honest, i still don’t… and in the midst of it all, i lost sight of my end goal and i’m so sorry.

i finally decided it was time to take a break after my workbook was released. what came as a huge surprise was when i didn’t feel any excitement in announcing my workbook that i had worked tirelessly to create. it took WEEKS for me to finally announce it on my blog and that in itself was a huge sign. i feel like something with this much  magnitude should have came with much more thrill and yet i felt like it was almost a nuisance for me to talk about it.

i’m unsure where this journey will lead me… but i promise you it’s not over. i just need some time to clear my head and my heart and figure out how and why i’m doing what i’m doing. <3 you guys

 

live simply, love beyoutifully,

ATL

Outfit Deets:

Romper:  ChicWish

Earrings: Charming Charlie’s

Shoes: Similar Kenneth Cole Reaction 

 

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FREE Simply Beyoutiful Workbook is FINALLY here!

exercises, workbook, guide, simply beyoutiful, beautiful, book, guide

I just want to let you Beautifuls know my FREE workbook is finally available for download! If you’re reading this from the blog, on the righthand side you’ll find a form to enter in your info OR on mobile, scroll to the bottom and you’ll see the form! Once you complete the process, you’ll get an email to the workbook link that you can download! 🙂

This has been such a long, stressful, yet rewarding journey. I never knew creating such content could be so much work. But I’m so happy to present to you a workbook with 5 tips on how to feel beautiful instantly! The workbook is meant for you to work through, and reflect on the things that truly make you feel beautiful. The best part? On the days that you’re not feeling exceptional you can pull out the workbook and remind yourself exactly how to feel fabulous instantly!

Feel Beyoutiful!

Feeling truly beautiful can be a difficult thing, but remember that it’s not all about physical beauty, there are so many other things encompassing that word and what’s most important is figuring out what ‘beautiful’ means to you!

Here at simplybeyoutiful, we believe in the beauty that makes you, YOU! I hope we can support you on the journey to feeling beautiful every single day and living your best life!

 

live simply, love beyoutifully,

ATL

 

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On Relationship Agreements

relationship agreements, love, couple, happily ever after, love sign

Hoan and I want to thank EVERYONE who shared recommendations on books to read to strengthen a romantic relationship. The first book we decided to delve into is Relationship Agreements the bookWe chose this book for a variety of reasons:

  1. Chapters are a BREEZE – every chapter is several pages so you can quickly read a chapter a day if that’s all the time you have
  2. The author provides at the end of every chapter homework or exercises you can do. Hoan and I love being able to put words into action so this was perfect. (FYI: the homework assignments are lengthy so we don’t do all of them)
  3. You can skip around – you don’t have to read in a chronological order. Different chapters have different topics, so if there’s one you feel could be of more benefit, have at it.

The Relationship as Its’ Own Entity

The first chapter talks about how you should consider your relationship as a separate entity. Meaning the relationship is something that you and your partner co-create. The author takes it a step further and actually advises to give your relationship a name. This is because it allows for both parties to invest in something you both have some responsibility over versus investing in the person. For example, when you go out of your way to do something for your partner and they hardly notice, you can’t help but get upset with them. But when you’re doing it for the relationship, there’s more pardon you can place on your partner for not noticing because it wasn’t necessarily for them, it was for the relationship.

Relationship Agreements

The second thing we’ve learned is to have agreements that you both have discussed and both agree upon committing to in the relationship. And of course these agreements can change over time as long as you both discuss and agree on them changing. Hoan and I have made some agreements upon regarding day to day stuff, bedtime and wedding planning. Which you know it honestly felt really good to talk about them and to have both of us aware and on the same page.

But yeah so far so good! If you end up reading it, lmk how it goes and what you guys get out of it!

Live simply, love beyoutifully,

ATL

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Goal Setting: What’s Most Important

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I look at my goals and a lot of times I think: how the heck am I going to get there? Reaching the top is such a rewarding experience that a lot of times we want to skip the hard work and just bask in the glory. But of course, that’s never the case. I know especially for a lot of younger people, we want to be successful NOW.  In this post, I want to talk about why it’s so important to enjoy the here and now. 

We live in a world where instant gratification is the new hype. Everything is NOW. But what’s definitely sad about it is that we’re not enjoying nor appreciating the process we must go through to get where we want to be. Psychology coined the arrival fallacy to acknowledge a lot of the disappointment that people experience when we get to our end destination, look around and go, ‘that’s it?!”  And it’s like ‘yup, that’s it.’

The purpose of every goal

Hoan told me something really valuable that one of his mentors shared with him that I want to pass along. The purpose of every goal is not to achieve it. The purpose of every goal is to learn, grow, and become a better person through the process.

 

Live simply, love beyoutifully,

ATL

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2 Keys to a Successful Relationship

successful relationship, relationship goals, couple, happy couple

A lot of people comment on how Hoan and I always look so happy together. While that’s true the majority of the time, like any other relationship there are factors constantly straining our relationship. We’ve only been together over two years so we don’t have all the answers but I do want to share two key practices that have really helped us in our journey together. So here are 2 keys to a successful relationship that I’d like to share with you guys!

1. Open communication

So this can be really difficult to practice, especially when there are a lot of toxic emotions and thoughts. And while you think something might hurt to say (which it probably will), it’s really important to be transparent and let them be in the know so you guys can work through it together.

2. Holding on

It’s really important that when it comes to a successful relationship that each side holds on when the trying gets tough. What I mean by this is when it feels like one person is letting go, it’s the other person’s job to hold on. Whether it be staying on the phone to settle an issue or not letting the other person storm out. It’s definitely a balancing act on both sides.

I hope these two pieces of advice can help you to have a successful relationship. Whether it be with your significant other, your best friend, or whomever is important to you, wishing you the best!

 

Live simply, love beyoutifully,

ATL

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5 Ways to Spark Joy in the Home

home decor, bedroom, teal bedroom,

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become more of a home body. I really do enjoy being home on a Friday night and that’s because I’ve always tried to make home a sanctuary. It’s important that your surroundings lift and brighten your mood not bog you down. Here are 5 things I do to help spark joy in my home.

1. Clean

I always feel so amazing after I’ve vacuumed and have tidied things up. It’s nice to be able to look around and know that your surroundings are light and dainty. They say your environment is a reflection of what’s going on inside which I find so true

2. Decorate

It’s always nice to have a little splash of personality that reflects who you are in your home. It helps to make it feel more cozy and really your space instead of someone else’s

3. Light a candle

This I love! It always feels so amazing to have candle light in the background. I feel like it always changes the ambiance of the room 🙂 it’s even better if it smells amazing

4. Declutter

I always think decluttering and donating things we don’t need is always great to do. Not only are we doing good by donating but it also helps us to feel lighter because we literally have less

5. Have real plants

There’s something about real plants that is so awesome! I do have fake ones too because they are fun to have. But maybe invest in some succulents or something that has little to no maintenance if you’re a busy bee like me

Anyway, I hope these small things can help spark joy in your home as they have mine. Let me know how it goes or if you have any other ideas! Would love to hear them 🙂

 

Live simply, love beyoutifully,

ATL