Friday, January 20, 2017

The Workout

I've had a bad week and on top of that the weather hasn't been very nice lately so outdoor workouts aren't an option. My workouts have still gone surprisingly well this week thanks to great workout DVD:s and Youtube videos by some of my favorite personal trainers.

Cardio kickboxing is one of my favorite workouts during this time of the year. Kickboxing is fun, gives me a great workout and I can do it in front of the TV or computer. If you want to try a new fun workout at home this weekend I recommend this kickboxing workout from Karena and Katrina's Youtube channel Tone It Up. Enjoy!

It's Friday!

All dressed up for Date Night with the man in my life on Monday.

Good coffee + a good book = Self-care

The week started on a good note with a fun Date Night with my hubby on Monday evening, then the rest of the week was mostly difficult, painful and included a lot of sadness. This is life, sometimes it’s wonderful and sometimes it hurts. My main goal for this weekend will be self-care. After a hard week I won’t make any big plans for Saturday and Sunday, I just want to rest and be kind to myself. I plan to spend some time at a coffee shop somewhere in the city this weekend, enjoying a latte and taking the time to read “Find Your Brave” by Holly Wagner. I’ve only read half a chapter in the book so far and I already love it! I wish you all a fun and relaxing weekend!

How we view our problems matters

When we are in a season of confusion and pain in life our perspective becomes very important. God's perspective and my own perspective will be very different. Most of the time I aim for an easy and trouble-free life so it's not surprising that I get frustrated when I hit a roadblock in life. When I find myself in a painful season in life it's always tempting to blame somebody else for my pain, but I can make the choice to let the circumstance make me better rather than bitter. What looks like a problem to me might just be God's provision for my life. What may look like a failure to me might just be what God brought into my life as the training ground where he will make me stronger and better than before.

Pastor Charlotte Gambill from Life Church in England teaches us what we can do when we find ourselves in a confusing and painful season in life. The thing that can save us during a difficult season is the people we surround ourselves with. When we are going through a painful season we are always tempted to isolate ourselves, but in isolation we will only get more angry, more frustrated and more sad. We need to surround ourselves with people who won't only tell us what we would like to hear, but the things we need to hear. It's also important to not let certain people speak into our lives during a painful and confusing season in life. There will always be people who will be quick to tell us why we don't have what it takes to overcome the challenge we are faced with. We need to make the choice to surround ourselves with people who can encourage us during the difficult seasons of life, not people who add discouragement and help us stay stuck in life.

It's important to remember that although the problems we face in life can be really frustrating God's perspective is much bigger than ours.What we view as our life's biggest mistake might just be what God will use to shape us into someone who can help others more than someone who hasn't made that particular mistake in life. What we view as a threat to our plan for the future might just be God redirecting us toward a direction that will bring more good things to our lives than we could ever imagine.

Josef's story in the Bible is one filled with roadblocks but God used all the hard stuff in Josef's life to build incredible character in him. Josef was quite arrogant as a young man but after years of struggle he had become a man of great character and integrity and that's when God gave him a very influential role in the land. Josef's older brothers viewed Josef as a problem and decided to get rid of him, little did they know that the same person they viewed as a problem was going to one day save their lives. Perspective changes everything. If we keep staring at our problems all we will ever see is pain and hardship. We can choose to lift our eyes and trust that God is working in all things for the good of those who love Him. What the enemy sent our way to try to destroy us God can turn around and use it for good.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

I Can Handle It

I love this video! Every time I'm starting to get discouraged by my own negative thoughts this video can get me back on track again. I'm reminded that I don't walk through this life alone and that I have access to everything I need to be able to handle every challenge that comes my way in life. This year won't be easy, because life isn't easy, but I can handle it! Future challenges of year 2017, I'm ready for you now!

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

New Healthy Habits in January

Healthy eating is one of my goals in January. My favorite healthy snacks right now are: organic granola bars, clementines and apples with peanut butter.

I don't have a lot of appetite in the morning so I usually have a small breakfast, in January I'm choosing Greek yogurt and a bowl of fruit for breakfast.

My goal is to not eat any sugar during the weekdays in January and then on Friday, Saturday and Sunday I can enjoy some sweet treats. Last weekend I treated myself to a Peppermint Hot Chocolate on Saturday.

On Sunday I treated myself to four big macaroons, I think macaroons will become my favorite dessert during the month of January.

Two of my New Year’s resolutions for this year are self-care and self-preservation. Self-care for me in 2017 will be all about prioritizing exercise and a healthy diet. I also want to make sure I don’t let my life get so busy that I don’t have time for enough exercise. If I want to live for 70-90 years I can’t afford to not exercise on a regular basis. A few weeks ago, a friend of a friend died of a heart attack, which once again reminded me that life can’t be all about success on the expense of our health if we want to live beyond 50.

I also want 2017 to be the year when I learn some important lessons about self-preservation. During 2016 I was reminded of how important it is for me to not be afraid of disappointing others. I have no problems with setting boundaries in my personal life but I’m becoming more aware of my pattern of being a "people pleaser" in work relations, which sometimes lead me to step outside of my personal boundaries. I want 2017 to be the year when I clearly define my personal boundaries and stick to them, no more sacrificing my personal boundaries to “keep the peace”. When you become "a pushover" to keep the peace you quickly enter self-destructive behavior. I think one of my mantras this year will be: “I know my boundaries, and I will protect them.”

It’s not fun to become aware of self-destructive or negative patterns that we have in life but there’s no other way to learn and grow in life, is there? Every new year brings new lessons for us to learn. We don’t stop learning and growing when we graduate high school or university. I think it’s helpful to realize that our weaknesses and faults are not something we need to beat ourselves up for, they are a natural part of life. There is not one person on this planet who has nothing to work on in life. We all need to keep growing, but we can do this while being kind to ourselves. We need to give ourselves (and others) grace.

After You

I'll be honest with all that I've been through
I've been runnin' after everything but you
And I'll be honest
Nothing satisfies
Like the love I find inside your eyes

There's nothing sweeter than your love
It's all I want, it's all I need
There's nothing sweeter than your love
You gave it all, poured out for me

So I'm not after the world
I'm after you

My Story

Britt Nicole talks about the story behind her song "After you". Britt shares a bit about her own struggle with staying focused on what matters most in life. It's always tempting to chase after different things in this world and try to find satisfaction in things that can never satisfy the soul.