A Lil Valentine’s Day Self Love

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I love this rupi kaur poem because it’s such a simple truth. It should innate but the most human thing ever is to struggle with loving yourself. I love Valentine’s Day because I love love. Growing up, it was so much fun to celebrate it in school and with my family. Now, I’m a hopeless romantic so I love seeing everyone’s gushy declarations of love in my feeds. Valentine’s Day should be about love in all forms, including self love.

To celebrate in a different way this year, here are 5 things I love about myself:

  1. I love my name: Katherine Morris Hudiburg but I go by Morrie. Little 9yo Morrie HATED her name. She didn’t like the attention that came with it, having to explain its meaning, and having to tell every teacher/sub that her name wasn’t Katherine. She decided that moving to Tennessee was the perfect opportunity to change her name to Katherine. This lasted all of a few days because changing your name after 9 years on this Earth is no easy task. Fast forward to my senior year of high school when I was struggling to figure out how I was unique for the sake of college application essays. The vauge “personal essay” prompt was driving me crazy. My mom suggested I do mine on how I got my name. I resisted at first but it ended up being the easiest essay I (and probably best) essay I ever wrote. I wish I could find it but my old laptop is long gone and a quick search in my old Gmail was not fruitful. ANYWAY,  writing that essay was one of my biggest “love yourself” moments because I learned to look at it as something cool about me rather than a nuisance. Now, I really do love my name. I love that it’s a conversation starter. I love telling the story of how I got it. I love the insane amount of nicknames my family and friends have for me even though it’s already a nickname (Mo, Mor, Momo, Kathy, Morris, Morrison, Morriesan, Mowwie… the list goes on). Most of all, I love it because it’s my name.
  2. I love my sense of humor. I used to hold back because I thought it was too quirky/sarcastic/dark but I eventually learned to not care what people think and let loose. One of the best feelings in the world is making someone laugh and I just can’t get enough of that.
  3. I love my love for food. I didn’t always “lean in” to it but it comes natural to me. I remember when I found out I had ADD , I deep into internet research, I was so frustrated because I had never felt the state of “flow” that was supposed to be a good thing about ADD. The only time I’ve truly felt that is in the kitchen. Eventually, I started cooking more because I was sick of my go-to easy meals. I threw all rules out and let my instinct lead me. Now that I have time for a hobby, food has become a full time obsession and I love that about me.
  4. I love how deeply I feel. This was probably the hardest one to learn but I did thanks to great therapy. I would have never said that was part of me that I even sort of liked but my therapist helped me see it as a good thing. Sometimes it’s a strength, sometimes it’s a weakness… either way, my feeling spectrum is part of me. I used to bottle everything up and push uncomfortable feelings out. With therapy, I learned that the only way to feel the good feelings is if you feel the bad things too. I started noticing this in my daily life – like how hard I can laugh right after a sobbing breakdown. It’s a flaw just as much as it is a beautiful part of me and I love it either way.
  5. I love my badA$$. It’s perfect because it’s mine. A few years ago, I never would have said that. I’ve never had huge body image issues but I never really loved anything about my body. There was always something I wanted to change and someone who is prettier than me. I will always have struggles but I can honestly say I love my body, flaws and all. I love my glutes because they’re strong from running, squats, and yoga. I love shakin’ it and twerkin’ it when I’m out with friends (especially when everyone’s cheering me on in the club in a dance circle lol). I love how good it looks in a great pair of jeans. I love my entire body (my ~temple~ … if you will) but most of all I love my booty.

 

Celebrate yourself this Valentine’s Day! Post your favorite selfie on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter, write something (or things !!) that you love about yourself and tag @fortheblissofit! I want to see all your selfies ❤

*cheers*

 

How I Make Healthy Easy

I’ve always been interested in health and wellness but I didn’t really get into it on my own until college. For me, I love knowing exactly how my body works and what’s in the food I’m using the fuel it. I’ve always been a nutrition and anatomy nerd, in fact, I wanted to be a nutritionist in high school. My deep dive into nutrition and wellness started when I was dealing with my anxiety in college. Healthy eating, exercise, and self care are now a huge part of my life and the difference is night and day. I’ve put together some tips from my everyday life for eating healthy. My advice would be to continue to make small changes to create a healthy lifestyle. ALSO – balance is everything so while most days I do these things there are also days where I eat out for every meal, don’t exercise, and binge drink. When you take the time to notice how much better you feel when you’re taking care of your body, you’ll be way more motivated to keep it up!

SMOOTHIES

Smoothies pack a ton of nutrients and are easy to consume. A lot of times, I’ll make a double serving and save half in the fridge for later. It melts a little bit but the thick juice texture is just as nice as a just out of the blender smoothie.

  • Frozen Fruit: I like to have a bunch of different frozen fruits in my freezer. I’ve noticed that the fruit bags rip or don’t stay closed so I just keep all my fruit in one gallon sized freezer zip block. It’s great because you don’t have to worry about freezer burn and you’re not taking 5 bags out of the freezer every time.
  • When your fruit and veggies starts going bad, just throw it in the freezer for a smoothie later! I used to always have at least a couple bananas go bad on me but I’ve started putting them in the freezer as soon as they get too brown. Make sure to peel, cut, etc. so you can just throw them in the blender.
  • Try herbs and aromatics! I love parsley, mint, cilantro, and ginger in my smoothies.
  • I think everyone knows this one already with the whole green smoothie/juice craze but throwing greens in a smoothie is a great way to get more in your diet (and use them up before they go bad!)
  • Nuts! I like to add a handful of walnuts for protein and healthy fats. I’m sure other nuts would be good too. I have a Ninja Professional blender so I’m not sure how well they’ll blend in a lower power blender – let me know if you try! (Kitchen Pro Tip: Buy your nuts from the bulk food section and keep them in your freezer. I don’t think nuts go bad too fast but the freezer will keep them fresh and that’s what they do on the Food Network lol)
  • Lemon Cubes: I will blend a couple whole lemons with water and freeze in an ice cube tray. Lemon peels don’t taste great but there’s a lot of good nutrients in the peel. If you just put one or two lemon ice cubes in the smoothie you get the benefits and flavor without the overpowering taste of the peel. This is also a great thing to do with greens and herbs if they’re about to go bad.

BOWLS

I’ve been really into making bowls packed with goods for dinner. I love to cook but most nights I want something easy to throw together as opposed to making a whole meal. One of my 2017 resolutions was to eat more greens but I don’t really like eating salads all the time. I’ve found that if I top greens with something warm and have a good sauce, I’m much more satisfied. I’ve also been into using serving bowls as a personal bowl because you can pack them full of greens and still stir. Salads are also great for breakfast – greens, veggies, and top with an egg!

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Spicy Coconut Sauce 

  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 2 tbs peanut butter
  • couple splashes of Braggs ACV
  • 2 tsps curry powder
  • 1 tbs corn starch
  • Sriracha to taste
  • Salt & Pepper

Blend ingredients and store in an air tight container. I keep mine in a glass bottle and it has stayed good for about a month now.

ETC.

  • Take care of your gut! I drink warm lemon water, Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar, and take probiotics to keep my digestive system happy and filled with good bacteria.
  • Tea. I have always loved tea but in the past couple years it’s really become more of an obsession. I drink green tea in the mornings, Detox tea when I’m hungover (it has dandelion and other liver supporting herbs), Echinacea when I’m feeling sick, and chamomile at night.
  • Stay hydrated. It’s really easy to forget to drink water and I’m pretty bad at drinking it throughout the day. I’ll chug a glass when I remember to do so.

 

End The Stigma: Mental Illness

January 25th was Bell Let’s Talk day. I’m so bummed that I didn’t know about it until after so I didn’t get to participate but I love the initiative so I wanted to open up about my journey with mental illness.

Last year, I was in the worst place I had ever been mentally. I was in a new city, out of school for the first time, looking for a job while being unemployed. One thing after another kept going wrong and I could not catch a break. This is not something I like to talk about but the thought of suicide definitely crossed my mind. The main reason I don’t like talking about it is because it makes things seem way worse than they were. It was weird because the thoughts came knowing that I believe, down to my core, that everything can be overcome. I have a memory burned into my brain of my dad saying “Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.” Even in my darkest times, I knew that this too shall pass and things would start turning around. The thought  of suicide was more “Now I understand how people can do that.” I talked to my therapist about it and we came up with a plan if I ever thought seriously about it. It was in that moment that I decided I needed medication because it was becoming too much for me to handle on my own.

My therapist, doctor, and I talked about my options and we decided on a low dose anti-depressant and blood pressure medication. The anti-depressant to bring my brain back to normal so that I could do life as “normal” as possible. The blood pressure medication for me to take when I feel panic attacks coming on – it slows your heart down so your adrenaline doesn’t spike and put you into fight or flight, kinda like Xanax for your body instead of your brain. I took the anti-depressants for a few months while I dealing with everything then stopped taking them when I felt normal again.

For me, medication was a short term solution. I needed it to make my brain feel normal while nothing around me felt normal. However, the evened out feeling made me feel like I wasn’t myself. I had just learned to love the fact that I can cry and laugh while watching the same 30 sec commercial. My sensitivity and emotional range is just as much a part of me as my sense of humor. I cry all the fucking time, but that’s me. When I was on anti-depressants, I craved the relief of tears but they just wouldn’t come. That’s when I decided that it wasn’t a long term solution for me.

I don’t want to discredit medication as a long term solution, I have so many loved ones who medication has done incredible things for. I also am so thankful that I can talk to my doctor anytime I feel like I’m at rock bottom and have medication as an option. There will probably be more times in my life where I need it. We are so lucky to have a wealth of options.

If you are struggling with mental illness, remember it takes time to dial in the formula to make everything “normal”. For me, I feel in control when I’m eating healthy food I choose for myself, get my body moving, and make plenty of time for myself. I feel more in control of my mental illness, but I still have good days and bad days. Everyone is different so talk to your doctor, therapist, parents, confidants, etc. to figure out how to thrive with mental illness.

Here are some things I do to make things a little easier:

This is the most important one: Talk about it. When I first started dealing with my anxiety, my first strategy was to keep everything inside, it’s a personal problem…right? I viewed it as my responsibility and kept my struggles under wraps. It took me a long time to realize that the only way to truly get ahead of it is give yourself a break. I was so insecure about my mental illness that I would never let anyone (except my therapist) know how I am actually doing. I couldn’t tell you the amount of times I would say “I’m doing great!” while holding back tears. You have to remember that you are human. While not everyone has experienced mental illness, every single person you ever talk to has gone through a rough period in their time. It’s okay to not be “great!” 100% of the time. You will feel so much more free by allowing yourself to be in the bad place. Nothing lasts forever. Don’t compartmentalize yourself. You have flaws and the people you love should see all parts of you.

Gratitude is everything. You have to appreciate the little things, especially when just getting out of bed everyday is a struggle. There is something good to appreciate in every single day, you just have to take a second to do so. Even if it’s appreciating the fact that you made it through the day so that you can get back in bed. It takes a lot of work to shift to a gratitude mindset but if you take it one day at a time, you will start seeing results.

Live with it, don’t try to fix it or get rid of it. I have a very vivid memory of sitting in my therapists office, sobbing about how I hate that I can’t control my emotions and that I cry all the time. She helped me to look at it another way – to see the beauty in it. Whenever I get frustrated with my anxiety, I think back  to that moment. My anxiety will always be there so I want to learn to use it to my advantage.

Love your brain, flaws and all.

Spirulina

As part of my “Eat More Greens” initiative for myself in 2017, I have started taking spirulina supplements. Spirulina is an algae and one of the most nutrient dense foods on the planet. 3 tablets of a Spirulina supplement gives you 70% of your daily Vitamin A and so much more:

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Here is the one I take:

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I was searching for the nutrition facts on my Trader Joe’s Spirulina tablets and found this funny review, so I had to share.

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I can assure you they don’t taste like a lobster’s ballsack. They don’t really taste like anything since they’re in pill form. However, they do smell like what I would imagine a “lobster’s ballsack” smells like.

Sources: 1, 2, 3

A really long post about being sick

It seems like I have been sick off and on since the start of the winter. I typically get one really bad cold every winter, but this year I seem to be constantly sick. This week, I had a real doozy of a cold that came complete with a fever, aches, and a constant runny nose. I wasn’t surprised since I have put taking care of myself on the back burner the past few months. The stress I’ve been under with starting a new position at work and moving has certainly taken a toll on my body. I am disappointed that I let it get to this point but I am focusing on how to move forward.

Side note: Speaking of moving forward… I had a bit of a panic last week at work. If you are unfamiliar with the advertising industry, ad spend goes way down in the first quarter of the year. On top of that, I’m still learning this new role as account manager. In my goal setting meeting with my managers, I ended up in tears/mini panic attack because I’m behind on my goals. I was hyper focused on all my accounts that were down and was at a loss for what to do. Making my commission check seemed daunting and nothing stresses me out more than money. My managers reassured me that there is still tons of opportunity elsewhere in my book and we came up with a plan to reach my goals. I am so lucky to be supported so well at work. My main takeaway is that I need to move forward from my losses and shift my focus to other opportunities.

And that brings me back to the main point of this blog post… being sick! I was really hard on myself yesterday for being sick. As you know if you’ve kept up with the blog, ya girl has generalized anxiety. This means that in most situations, my brain reacts with anxious thoughts first. I stayed home sick on Tuesday but decided I needed to be in the office on Wednesday for many reasons but the main one was that I felt like no one would believe me that I was that sick. I was in a bad mood and didn’t want to be at work so I was really short with everyone and I’m pretty sure the only things I said were complaints. I finished up what I needed to and went home after a few hours. I felt bad about how I treated everyone all day and it ended up being this endless thought loop about how I need to take care of myself so I don’t take my anger out on other people. I couldn’t stop thinking about it until I thought back to my meeting last week and remembered to move forward and look at this as a learning opportunity.

ANYWAY… Here are my tips for getting better while sick and the immune system support I’ll be making habits.

Sick Tips:

  • Nutrient Dense Foods. You want to give your body the best possible fuel for fighting off illness.
  • Echinacea Tea. All my work friends joke about this one since I basically shove it down anyone’s throat who even mentions being sick. But it works! The herb has shown immune boosting and anti-inflammatory functions. You can read more about it here.
  • Lemon. It is loaded with vitamin C and enzymes. Learn more about it here and how to make blended lemon water!
  • Hot Epsom Salt Bath. Epsom Salt is detoxifying and the hot bath gets your body to sweat out the bad stuff.
  • Vitamin E Oil. This shit is a SAVIOR for chapped nose/cheeks/lips. I buy mine from Trader Joe’s.

Immune Boosting Habits:

  • Work Out. A good sweat helps your body get rid of all the bad stuff but I made the commitment because I pretty much need to tire out my body to get a good nights sleep. And good sleep keeps your body in working order.
  • Eat Nutritious Whole Foods. My 2017 food goal was to eat more greens so that’s my focus right now. I have been really into bowls packed with goods for lunch/dinner so I’m putting together a post on all my winning combos – stay tuned! (You can always stay in the loop with what I’m eating on @fortheblissofit insta #shamelessplug)
  • Stay Hydrated. Duh. (& Emergen-C)
  • Shots. I’m not talking tequila – I’m talking Raw Apple Cider Vinegar. I fucking hate taking shots so I’d take these over alcohol any day. My latest has been ACV+water+honey+cayenne.

The other big thing I am doing is dialing back my drinking/eating out. It is so easy to fall into the trap of going to every happy hour, party, etc. I’m invited to and since I suffer from serious FOMO, I have a hard time saying no. One of my 2017 goals was to spend more time by myself so I am working on shifting my mindset from being bummed about missing out to being grateful that I have alone time.

Comment below with your go to sick rituals!

Rollin With It

At work, we get a monthly health stipend that you can use for the gym, yoga, massages, etc. This spring, I saved up my stipend to buy a punch card for a dance studio in Boulder. I had the card in my wallet for months but never made moves to take a class. I would look at the schedule probably once a week, make plans with myself to go to a class, and then never follow through. This week, I finally decided, no matter what, I was going to a class. No excuses. I picked out a beginner hip hop class and went. 

When I got to the studio, I chatted with the lady while setting up my account. “The hip hop class is an adult class, right?” I asked. “Well… no… but the kids don’t care!” She said. For a second, I thought about leaving or waiting for the adult class that was actually later. But I was already there and I wanted to take a hip hop class so I stayed. 


If you know me in real life, you know that when I get embarrassed or all the attention is on me, I get bright red. As I was in the room, waiting for the class to start, I could feel how hot my face was. I felt like everyone was watching me and wondering why I was there. To make myself feel better, I introduced myself to the instructor and told him I was confused with the schedule and thought I was coming to the advanced class so I was just “rolling with it”. 

The deep down reason I was procrastinating going was because I hate feeling exposed. It is really fuckin hard to remember all the steps and add new ones at the same time. Not to mention how bad I am at following instructions. I didn’t want it to be obvious that it was my first class. I didn’t want to feel everyone’s eyes on me. 

In life, things tend to align in weird ways. Going to the kids class taught me that it isn’t “everyone else” making me feel exposed. The kids probably didn’t notice that I was stumbling with the moves. I still felt “exposed”, even after noticing that there were kids in the class at the same level as me. Now that I’m looking back I realize that the kids class was exactly what I needed. The only place those feelings were stemming from is within myself. It was the insecurity of trying something new and having to be vulnerable while learning. 

I’m so glad I finally took a dance class and I’m glad that it ended up bein more uncomfortable than expected. I also had more fun than expected. I can’t wait to go back and get better at dancing. Next time I’ll be going to an adult class though. 

2017 goals

Every time I work on this post, I think of about 3 more goals I want to work on in 2017. But, I’m forcing myself to keep it to the four below. I will of course work on and accomplish things outside of these but these are the ones I’m going to keep my focus on. I’m really excited to work on these throughout the year and blog about it.

  • Spend more time by myself. The past few years I have made it a point to embrace who I am. Now, I actually really like being by myself and crave alone time. BUT I also have major FOMO and have a hard time saying no to things. It’s not a good combo because I tend to over book myself. This year, I want to make alone time plans and actually keep them.
  • Let it go/flow. I’ve noticed that I frequently get in obsessive thought loops. It is so hard for me to just let things go. This is not something I’m setting out to fix. My goal is to make a conscious effort to let things go and let the ups and downs flow as they may.

Last year, I had personal growth goals and a food goal. I’m going to do a food goal again this year and add a goal for blogging.

  • Food Goal: Eat more greens.
  • Blog without thinking. I have a ton of half-written blog posts in my drafts (some of them are still there out of pure laziness) that I stopped writing in the middle of because as I got deeper into my thoughts, I started thinking “this sounds stupid” and stopped writing. I view this blog as a way to document my personal growth but because I know people read it, I can’t get out of my perfectionist mindset. My goal with the blog this year is to just post whatever the f*ck I want and be proud of myself for getting a post up.

If you haven’t read the post yet, I reflected on my 2016 goals here.

Comment below with your 2017 goals!