I was so fortunate to celebrate my birthday with some of my favorite people this weekend. I wanted to express my gratitude for those of you who wished me a happy birthday and allowed me to take a much needed digital detox. I had an epiphany of what I was hoping to finally release as my last moments of my 20s wrapped to a close. That epiphany was to work a heck of a lot less. I’ve been working multiple jobs for as long as I can remember and with the obvious physical side effects of overworking it also was a bit of a cover up for me. If I overwork that means that I can live in a cycle of overworking followed by much needed escapism. Escapism is basically an avoidance of self care masking as a reset time. Like binge watching tv, online retail therapy or avoiding exercise with the excuse that it’s a necessary day off. A little escapism here and there is totally fine but the most important thing to remember is to actually tune back into your needs when you’re off. I’m lucky enough to have a job that is so fulfilling but this decade I’m dedicated to practicing what I preach a little more. This means taking my days off and being just as nice to myself as I advise all of you to be. Let’s see how this goes! 

Part of my newfound epiphany came up after I started working with Lacy from Free and Native. I have followed her work for years but finally decided to dive in deep in her programming this past year. While in a recent deep meditation I had a reflective moment of acceptance. I used to be a dancer where if I set my mind to learning a new routine or push the limits I would have absolute certainty that I would be able to accomplish it. It was probably my best and worst quality as a person. Meaning that I would get incredibly upset with myself every time a performance wasn’t perfect. And I mean, PERFECT. The level I wanted to push myself to was never going be acceptable for my standards. If I look back on some of my dance videos or photos I am just in awe that I was able to do any of those movements at all let alone do them in front of people and on repeat. The only thing I look back and regret is that I didn’t allow myself to enjoy it more. My soul was filled whenever I would dance for hours on my own with no audience or team because I just let myself go. The level of mind, body and spirit therapy I was getting every time I moved was what got me through my teenage years and parts of my 20s. But like most dancers know, you have to practice every day to maintain any sort of ability so I’m long past the times where I could fuete into a jump split and my kicks could touch my head. I’m currently working with Lacy on shifting some old belief systems and in my latest meditation, I saw myself leaping in the air and appreciating moments I had missed. It dawned on me that I am finally starting to accept myself for exactly who I am, was and will soon become. Letting go of the idea that I would never be able to obtain my unreachable standards and start loving the process as it unfolds is all I need.

embrace your whole self and don’t hold back!

Whenever I look back at the acne I struggled with my teenage years I express such gratitude for the experience. I know for a fact that if I didn’t go through that trial I would never be able to treat and tune into my skin the way I do now. And how I help others to do so as well. Part of the journey is trusting in the unknown and once you have acceptance of yourself fully, regardless of the “flaws” or “imperfections”, it all starts to come together. You realize the beauty in every part of it because it starts to puzzle itself into the life that you are lucky enough to get to lead. After the acceptance hits that’s also when the gratitude starts pouring in. Once you have the gratitude for your experience you will no doubt start seeing the person you deserve to be reflecting back in the mirror. Those little skin imbalances will barely bother you and work as markers of your strength and resilience instead. 

Thanks again for reading and until next week! xo – Hayley


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