growth.

This is gonna be short because I lost track of time.

But tonight, I recorded some spoken word poems, and the friend who helped me record truly encouraged me tonight. After going through both of the poems, he told me that he could see growth in the writing and speaking I’d done.

And he said four words that made me feel on top of the world, if I’m being honest: “Mishy, you’re a writer!”

I can’t express how much those four words meant to me. And even before I heard those words aloud, as I was speaking those words, I could feel it.

#MishyWrites

this season

Tonight, I was encouraged during a dinner I had with some friends. Each friend possesses a different creative spirit – one is a musician, the other an artist/businesses owner – and they both inspire me to continue in my own creative field of writing/spoken word.

We talked about each of our own creative endeavors and experiences, our goals. We also touched on where we currently are in life – one of those friends and I are in the midst of a living transition as we try to find a place to live together. The other friend has this grand idea, and is wanting to execute it within a certain time, and involve as many creative/artistic people she knows. We briefly spoke of our college days, which now seem like a distant memory or even a dream compared to the lives we're living right now.

And as I sit here in my bedroom, thinking about the season I'm currently in and seasons that I've passed through, I am trying to think of the goals I have in mind for the future, and how I can make a plan, and start executing that plan. Honestly, I've been in the planning season for a while, and I've also been trying to prioritize other things, like my health.

But I don't want my goals and dreams to sit on the bench; yes, what I've been trying to prioritize is important, but I also need to make sure that I'm doing something every day to obtain my dreams. I think for the remainder of my night, I'm going to sit here and really ask myself what I want to accomplish / where I want to be this time next week, next month, next year.

It's scary to come up with a plan, sometimes. One of my friends pointed out tonight that there's just something about making an actual plan to reach a goal that seems intimidating, and it sometimes stops us from really thinking through the process and achieving our goals. Maybe it's seeing how many steps we have to take. Maybe there's one particular step that requires us to really get out of our comfort zone.

But if there's one thing I've learned, planning and process is so important. And tonight, I realized that in a way, I've kind of been avoiding the planning process probably because I'm a little fearful of it. I've been focusing on other things I need to focus on, but at the same time, I knew I should be working on my craft.

No fear, though. Time to take advantage of this season.

What kind of season are you in? Are you doing things that are actually productive to you and where you want to eventually be? Ask yourself where you want to be next week, next month, next year; sit down and write those things down. Now write out how you're going to get there, no matter how crazy or scary it seems. Get together with a close friend and share these things with them, and come up with ways to stay proactive within your plans. 

We got this, luvvies!

#MishyWrites 🦋✨

Enough is Enough.

*Disclaimer: I’m not bashing anyone who has said that they are “ugly,” “worthless,” “stupid,” and any other derogatory terms on social media. There is freedom of speech; you can say what you want on your account. I’m only saying that I wish better for those who do say these things (myself included). We are so much more than we think we are.

So…I’m done.

I’m tired of hearing and seeing all of this self-hate, and I’m also tired of being a part of it. Recently, I’ve seen a lot of my friends or followers on social media say in various ways that they’re ugly, unloved, or not enough. And I feel like there are numerous reasons why they say such things…(and this is all just generally speaking. I’m not accusing any of my personal friends or followers of doing any of these things said below. These are just thoughts and observations of what I’ve been seeing and thinking about)

1. A Joke. Some people say they’re ugly as a joke. And while I’m not trying to be that person who’s always so serious, I honestly don’t think calling other people or yourself ugly is a joke. Ugly is a hurtful, heavy word. You shouldn’t use it for others or for yourself.

2. Attention / Assurance. Some say they’re ugly for the attention. They want people to prove them wrong, to give them some positive feedback and attention because they’ve called themselves ugly.

3. Humble. Unfortunately, many people can’t/don’t know how to take a compliment, maybe because they feel like they don’t deserve the compliment being paid to them, or they’re just bashful. So instead of, or even along with, a “thank you,” there’s sometimes a “but…I’m actually [insert demeaning adjective or noun here].” When did we think that humbly receiving a compliment meant that we had to tear ourselves down to deny the positive thing someone said to us? Now, I’m not saying that every single time someone does this in particular, they are 100% serious; but the fact that they think it is a good way of being humble just doesn’t sit right with me.

And I’m not just pointing fingers at my friends/followers/other people. I’m pointing the finger at myself too; I am just as guilty of saying that “I am merely a bean!” to people who say that I look gorgeous or flawless. It’s just something we’ve got ingrained in us; I feel like we can’t handle how amazing we all are, so we have to tell ourselves that we actually aren’t that great compared to the entire population.

But every time I see or hear someone I know say something negative about themselves, I always try to combat it. Because, whether it’s a joke or not, everyone feels ugly at some point, and if they’re talking about it or bringing it up, I want to take the opportunity to assure them that they are definitely not whatever negative noun/adjective they said they are, but they surely are “wonderful,” “amazing,” “worthy,” “loveable,” etc.

Am I angry at the people who keep saying they’re ugly on social media or otherwise? No, of course, not. I tweeted today that I’d fight those people…

…but I mean that out of love. We all go through moments when we don’t feel pretty or handsome or good enough. Some go through these moments more than others. And I am so adamant about assuring people that they are beautiful and worthy, not because I’m trying to flatter them, or because I just want them to like me. I say those things – “You’re gorgeous,” “You’re flawless,” “You’re worth it, luvvy,” – because I truly believe it and mean it. Because I’ve had those moments when I didn’t feel beautiful, and wished someone would look at me, and sincerely tell me I was worthy, beautiful, enough.

I’ve seen way too many physically beautiful people say they’re physically unattractive. I’ve heard way too many people with beautiful personalities wish they were more physically attractive because they feel like their personalities don’t matter unless they are what the world defines as beautiful. There is not more stock in physically attractive people, or in personality attractive people. Both are equal, yet the world wants us to think otherwise.

I’m sorry that the world has established these standards of beauty that are unattainable for most of us. I’m sorry that we may feel unworthy because the person we like thinks someone else – someone who looks nothing like us – is attractive. I’m sorry that we think that taking a compliment means saying we’re actually the opposite of that compliment. I’m sorry that you not getting the attention of someone you love made you feel less than.

But oh, dear luvvy, you are so worthy.

Enough is enough. I stand for beauty of all types, shapes, sizes. No person on this earth is exactly alike, and that is the most beautiful thing about us as humans; as God’s creation. We are each created in His Image, His likeness. We have no idea what He physically looks like, but there are so many adjectives in the Bible that describe His character – good, faithful, wonderful, mighty, powerful, the list goes on. Now, we are not all-powerful, or all-good; we’re still humans who make mistakes, and we won’t ever be perfect in this life. But if we depend on the Lord, we are capable of being as faithful, wonderful, good as we can where He has placed us.

You probably saw this coming…those typical Bible verses that everyone brings out when talking about self-esteem, beauty, etc. Psalm 139:13-14. Maybe some of you didn’t see it coming / don’t know them, but even if you did, I’m still gonna drop them here:

“For You formed my inward parts; You knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are Your works; my soul knows it very well.” (ESV)

You, dear reader, are beautiful, unique, wonderful, enough because the God of all creation created you, a wonderful work, a masterpiece. And He longs for you to know this very well, and to praise Him for it.

I know it’s hard sometimes; listen, I have just as much a hard time as anyone convincing myself that I am good enough in this world, that I am beautiful enough to be considered worthy of loving, that I am unique enough to stand out from the crowd. We beat ourselves up, and we have no reason to.

Also, the problem is not in wanting to be assured of how amazing we are; the problem is us being unable to see how amazing we are. It’s okay to want that affirmation from people, and I pray that there are people in your life to assure you of your beauty and greatness. But sometimes outside affirmation isn’t enough; sometimes that one person you want to hear it from doesn’t tell you what you want to hear. And this is why we have to be okay with ourselves, no, more than okay with ourselves; we have to see ourselves as worthy masterpieces. Not to the point of being prideful, but to the point of being able to see the beauty in other people too.

And I pray and encourage us all to look in the mirror tonight, tomorrow morning, right now, and say, “I am beautiful. I am worthy. I am unique. I am loved. And so is everyone else I come in contact with, be it face-to-face, or over social media.”

Say this with me: “I am amazing. You are amazing. We are all amazing.”

Now say it, and believe it.

#MishyWrites

 

Healing from Heartbreak

"He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds." – Psalm 147:3 (ESV)


This verse stood out to me this morning during my devotions because recently there have been several people who have told me about them hurting, or feeling heartbroken. The situations aren't all romantically related; admit it, when you see or hear the words "heartbreak" or "broken-hearted," the first thing you think about is a romantic relationship. And there's nothing wrong with that at all!

But I think as I read this verse, I thought about the different types of heartbreak, or the different things that can cause our hearts to break – the death of someone close to you, the loss of a great opportunity or of even an item that meant something to you, rejection from a team or group, the list can go on.

Not only are there different reasons for heartbreak, but there are also different ways in which we cope with heartbreak. We cry, we vent to our friends and family, we try to do other things to distract us from our heartbreak, we even shut down completely, unable to handle the hurt we feel.

I can think back to a time when I felt some deep heartbreak. It felt like there was a weight, not just in my chest, but on my back as well. It's amazing to me how much emotions can affect our physical selves. But what was my initial reaction to the heartbreak? What/who did I turn to to try to ease the pain, stop the hurt?

Honestly, I try to deal with the heartbreak that I have alone sometimes. It's not that I'm ashamed for people to know that I'm hurting, I think it's because as a Christian I sometimes feel silly feeling such a heavy weight on my heart over something so trivial compared to other bigger issues in the world. How can I be crying over being rejected by someone when there is someone out there right now without a roof over their head? I don't want to compare sadness or hurts, but I think that's what I end up doing, and I end up believing that my hurt isn't valid or "big enough" to be a heartbreaking thing.

Then, if I feel like I've handled my hurt as best as I can on my own, I turn to my family, my close friends, sometimes to music that will uplift me out of the mess I find myself in. And all of these things are great things to reach out to when dealing with heartbreak. However, I sometimes find that the hole created by heartbreak still isn't

The verse above though is so encouraging. Growing up in a Christian household, I remember my parents telling me to go to God with my problems, and I believed that I could, but I also had some doubt that He even cared about the smaller things in my life, like if I got rejected by someone, or if I lost something, or if I didn't get the job I wanted.

I mean, since then, God has been faithful in so many ways in my life, but I feel like this verse was a great reminder for me; when the things of this world cannot comfort me, cannot soothe my aching soul, I can go before the One Who knows me best, and he can heal my broken heart, and mend my wounds. I know to some that may sound supernatural and religious, but I can't express the peace I've felt simply by bringing my hurts to my Heavenly Father, as silly as they may seem to me, and how much I've seen Him care about them.

This verse is an encouragement piece. A confirmation. An assurance that there is a solution to a broken heart, even if it doesn't seem like there is while I'm dealing with it.

And I hope you find some encouragement in that as well!

#MishyWrites 🦋✨

“The Cycle”

Yesterday, I was honestly in a funk. I had already had a mentally and emotionally rough week, and I think it all just peaked yesterday. As I've grown older, I've become more comfortable with who I am in all aspects, especially physically. But unfortunately, I still have those days – those days when I don't feel very beautiful, or when I don't feel like my personality is enough for people.

But I know that these thoughts are lies; I know that I am so much more than what I feel like sometimes. I am worth so much more than other people's opinions. Yet, I just hate that I still find myself in this cycle of being okay with myself, and then not being content with myself if something happens, or someone says something, or maybe just because I'm just not feeling who I am that day.

So, I just wrote a little something last night to reflect how I was feeling. I'm feeling better today, for sure. But I wish there was someway this mental, self-esteem cycle of mine could just stop, and I could be content with who I am all the time.

"The Cycle"

The cycle is treacherous.

I find myself confident, willing to see the beauty and value in myself for a good while. Able to understand that my worth and value don't lie in other people's opinions, other people's words. Who I am isn't based on the color of my skin, or the music I listen to.

It's based on the mere fact that I am part of the Lord's creation; a unique form to behold. And all that matters is He loves me unconditionally, no matter what happens or what I'm told.

But then as the cycle makes its course,
My esteem is emptied, wasted on caring too much about what others think of me,
Comparing myself to girls who look nothing like me, say things differently, listen to music or are a part of things that are more popular than what I am interested in.
The self I used to love becomes a self I now loathe,  and I can't bear to look myself in the mirror, and admit that I am beautiful.

It hurts too much.

The cycle must be broken – I'm over following this trend of constantly feeling great about myself, and then having something not go my way, or not hearing an affirmation I wanted someone to say, which causes my esteem to be at risk.
I'm tired of the negative, mental list I make about myself, all of it rooted in two words – "not enough."

Luvvy, that's a lie, and you know it.
The stuff you want to focus on is nothing but distractions wanting to chip away at the masterpiece you are. You're worth more than those empty declarations that want to crush you beneath those awful statements.
Break the chains of those harsh judgments that bind you to the cycle of loving then loathing then loving yourself. Be free to continue to love who you are, and who you're becoming. Why wait for someone to fall in love with you when one of the most beautiful things you can do is fall in love with yourself, and the Creator who made you?

Be free to believe these things – You are worthy. You are loved. You are enough. End of story. 💙

#MishyWrites 🦋✨

“Today I Affirm…” with Alex Elle: Day 5 – Have Patience, Be Brave, Restart

"Today I Affirm…"

"I have the courage to restart and the patience to work for it while I wait for it." – Alex Elle

Words: "Courage," "Restart," "Patience"

The nighttime mantra that goes along with this is: "I am courageous even in times of doubt. I am patient even when time doesn't seem to be on my side. I am capable of restarting because it's never too late to make changes." – Alex Elle

The mantra that goes along with this is hard for me to affirm, if I'm being honest. Because it's been hard for me to be courageous when I'm in the middle of some serious doubts. I thank God that lately, He's allowed me to push some heavy doubt aside, and it's caused me to cling to Him even more than I would have before. My initial reaction to doubt is worry and fear, so I have noticed that my bravery has increased as my journey has continued.

As for patience when time isn't on my side? Mmm, I'm still really working on that. I definitely still get upset with myself when I realize how much time I've wasted on certain things instead of getting what I need to get done accomplished. I'm trying to learn that I need to make most of the time I have, and if I am unable to do everything I need to do, it's okay; it isn't going to kill me, or cause my plan to completely de-rail.

And being capable of restarting things? I find it hard to do this because of my perfectionism – once I start something, or think about something, I want it to be done perfectly the first time, or I want the plan that I create to be perfect so that no mistakes are made in the process of getting somewhere. Because I've been going through this process of updating my site, my blog, and the #JustStartWriting site, I've been learning a lot, and well, failing a lot. And I've definitely had to restart on some ideas I originally had, or adjust some parts of my plan. It was sort of painful at first, but once I realized the necessity of being flexible, adapting things I needed to became quite easy. It's almost painless at this point, and I thank the Lord for shaping me more into a flexible person in this area of my life. I definitely am not perfectly flexible; but I see so much growth in myself now than before.

So let me answer the journal questions Elle has for this self-affirmation journal…

Are you scared of starting over? If so, why or why not?

I sort of answered this already, but in some cases, I am scared to start over because I feel like my original plan was perfect to begin with, and I don't want me changing things to ruin the outcome of what I had in mind. But starting over can be so refreshing; I've realized a lot of times if I'm bogged down in all the writing I've done for a post, it's just easier for me to scrap the whole thing and start all over than it is to go back through and try to edit. So maybe in some cases, I'm not too scared to start all over.

How can starting over benefit certain aspects of your life?

A fresh start can change my perspective of something instead of seeing it happen one way. When I start to get frustrated with a project, I tend to start all over instead of trying to fix the small mistakes in the middle because sometimes it's just easier to start making the changes you need to make from the very beginning.

Where can you exercise more patience + courage in your journey?

I need to be willing to be patient through my creative process. I want everything to happen for me all at once; I want to write a book, I want to release this poem, this EP, I want people to start spreading the word more about my poetry. But all of that can't happen without the proper little steps towards that. I can't just take giant leaps, I need to focus on the small things as well, and perfect them so that the bigger things can also be perfected.

But I also need to not be so hesitant when it comes to releasing things or doing things. I tend to not want to write, release, or say things until they are extremely perfect and full-proof, but sometimes I just need to take a leap of faith, and go for it.

Well, the weekend is here, and I don't know about you, but after the week I've had, I think now is a good time to really focus on restarting, on finding the patience to perfect my craft and perfect my way of life, on being brave enough to make the moves I need to make in order to make my dreams a reality.

Happy Friday, you guys! I hope your weekend has started well!

#MishyWrites🦋✨

“Today I Affirm…” with Alex Elle, Day 4 – Despite the Failure

"Today I Affirm…"

"my failures will not stop me from enjoying the journey." – Alex Elle

Words: "Enjoy," "Journey," "Failure"

The morning mantra for this is as follows: "I am allowed to fail. I am allowed to succeed. My worth is not contingent on my ability to avoid shortcomings. I am worthy through my good times and my bad. I will enjoy my journey fully, truly, and without apology." – Alex Elle

This is honestly perfect for today because from the moment I woke up this morning, I encountered a few small failures.

The first one? Forgetting to take my contacts out before going to bed last night. So I woke up wondering why my vision was slightly blurry, and why I couldn't really open my eyes fully. That would be why.

The second one? I got to work and, after thirty minutes of being there, realized I should have been there an hour ago. Oops. It was my first week with this new schedule change, and I'd completely forgotten. And I felt terrible because I'd let my co-teacher deal with seven one-year-olds for a solid hour or so all by herself. Oh boy.

And the last one? I was expecting to record a new spoken word poem tonight with a friend, and when I went to text him to make sure he was still coming, I realized I never answered his text from earlier this week about pushing back our time. So, who knows if that's even happening anymore tonight.

On top of those three failures, I haven't gone to the gym nearly as often as I normally do, and my eating habits have been total crap all week. If you were to ask me what I think my main source of food has been this week, I may answer chocolate. Whether or not that's true, I can't tell you. I just know that a whole ton of it has been consumed, more so than in the past few weeks. And I don't feel good about it.

You're probably reading all of that and thinking, Mishy, what. Okay, so what you did all those things, it's whatever.

But I don't take failures well because, as some of you already know from reading past posts of mine, I'm a perfectionist. Ever since I was a child, and realized the difference between a success and a failure, I vowed to myself that I'd be the one making all successes, and taking no "L's" ("losses" for those who don't know the slang), and it wasn't a good time for me or those around me when I failed. As I've grown older, I've done way better at accepting failures, but I still have my moments. Like today's three little failures didn't really affect me much; I did mentally kick myself a little though.

One of the failures I still take really hard though is when I repeat a mistake. Have you ever done that? Have you done something, failed, then tried again later in a different way, but then it still resulted in the same failure? I'm not talking about if you're trying to achieve a good goal and you try different ways to get there, and you fail in different ways. That's a part of learning and growing; it's a part of the process, the journey.

I'm talking about making a mistake, thinking you learned from that mistake, and vowing to yourself that you'll never make it again, and then getting yourself back in the same situation only through a different route. Even though you avoided the way in which the failure happened the first time, you somehow find yourself back at the same failure, only through a different outlet. Does that happen to anyone else? Is what I'm saying even making sense?

Anyways, even if I'm not making sense, I will say that I think failures are crucial to the journey. Elle says that "Just because we fail once, twice, or a few times, that doesn't mean we lose sight of the chances to start anew," and it's so true. I sometimes feel like when I fail, I've missed the opportunity for anything good to come out of that attempt, when really, I can still attempt again, and I can fail or maybe I'll succeed. It doesn't hurt to try; I can't be afraid to fail, or I'll never reach new heights in the things I want to accomplish.

And it's hard to sometimes push past the failures I've made. Am I the only one who sometimes sits there, and suddenly thinks of a time when I failed miserably at something, and I physically cringe because it hurts for me to think about it? I don't do this quite as often, but it still happens every once in a while. But again – without the failures, I would have never learned anything, and my journey would have never brought me to where I am today.

I also believe the Lord uses our failures to draw us closer to Him. If we never failed, we wouldn't have to rely so heavily on Him for direction, peace, wisdom. We are only human; imperfect beings in need of a perfect Savior. And failures are a major part of that journey! That doesn't mean we should want to fail; it just means we can expect to, and be okay with it, and be okay with learning something from it.

So, as I sit here, embracing my failures of the day, I am committed to enjoying the time I had today to live my life, and to take some major steps towards this journey of mine. Despite my failures, there were some successes: I was able to bring in a couple of more people into the #JustStartWriting family today. I got to run my errands after getting off of work at two o'clock. And even though I don't get to record my spoken word piece tonight, that means I get more time to practice saying it, and making it what I want it to be and sound like so I can perfect it when the time is right. And I get more time to do other things tonight!

Still so much to be grateful for despite the failures of the day. It's all just a part of life, and I thank God for it all.

#MishyWrites 🦋✨