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5 Things You Need to Start Doing

Posted in Lifestyle by

Pink and red flowers--roses and peonies--are laid out on a concrete floor. Overlaid is the title "5 Things You Need To Start Doing"

Last week was all about 5 Things You Need to Stop Doing. If I left it at that, it would feel like doing bicep curls on just my left arm, or throwing out the trash without putting a new bag in the trash can. Things, big and small, need to be balanced: so if you stop doing some things, you should also start doing other things.

Just like last week, these are lifestyle areas to draw out your inner happiness and confidence, as well as spread some positivity around for others. You will have to work at it and it won’t happen over night, but one day you’ll catch yourself doing one of these things naturally and that little lightbulb in your head will go off, likely accompanied with the realization that you’ve achieved some growth.

 

#1 Start Speaking Up

We live in a time and age when people are being encouraged to find their voice. Some are doing this well, like Emma Watson and Halsey, and others are…well, not so great. There is still a time and place to shut your trap and nod your head while blending in with the wall paper, but those instances are falling into the majority. It’s time to start taking small and big steps towards having your voice heard.

Let’s start little. The next time you’re with a group of friends or coworkers and everyone is asking “where do you want to go for lunch?” but no one is coming up with an answer, speak up! Even if you truly don’t care if your get salads or pizza or just raid the vending machines, you’ll be the hero for giving a definite answer, rather than just keeping the question game alive. It’s so simple, but it will give you a bit of a confidence boost and people will start to pay attention to your existence.

How about a medium step? The next time you’re feeling overwhelmed, say so. Tell your BFF “I’m having a rough week and need a girl’s night”. Go to your boss and say “this project is bigger than I anticipated and I could use more resources to make sure it’s done on time and done well”. Feeling underwhelmed? It’s okay to say “no hard feelings, but this date isn’t going very well. Why don’t we just get the check now, shake hands, and call it a night?” rather than suffering through another hour and then pretending like you had a good time and should do it again sometime.

Now we’re ready for a big step, and it’s going to be uncomfortable. But necessary. And worth it. This is the step where you start speaking up when things are uncomfortable, rather than gritting your teeth and bearing with it because for some terrible reason, you think that’s how it should be. This is where you start challenging voices of authority that aren’t keeping up with the times, that are delivering false information, that can’t defend or rationalize their actions. It’s time to start calling out instances of mansplaining and hepeating and sexism and racism. I won’t lie, it will be hella awkward in the moment. But later, when you’re driving home and reviewing your day, you’ll feel a lot better knowing that you stood up and made a stand.

 

#2 Start Thinking with Confidence and Love

The saying “beauty comes from within” refers to kindness and a good personality. Wanna know where those things come from? Confidence and self love. I’ll wait for you to pick of the pieces of your blown mind at this realization.

But seriously, we’ve got to start learning to love ourselves, and that starts with the way we talk to and about ourselves. Every morning when you wake up and every night before you go to sleep (or as often as you can), tell yourself that you are great, you are worthy, everything if fine. It’s cheesy and you’ll feel silly, but it will make such a difference in how you present and carry yourself.

The best part? You can totally fake it, and it still counts. In the beginning, you might not believe yourself when you think “I am beautiful” or “I am worthy of love”, but you need to say it anyway, and with as much conviction as you can muster. The saying is “fake it until you make it”. And there’s science behind it to prove it works. 

I’ll leave on this note: how you treat yourself sets the standard for how other people can treat you.

Related Reading: 6 Mantras To Live By In 2018

A bike basket is filled with bright pink flowers to symbolize the love of self. Give yourself a gift of happiness and flowers.

 

#3 Start Challenging Your Conditioning 

It’s like Ms. Norbury said, “You’ve got to stop calling each other sluts and whores. It just makes it okay for guys to call you sluts and whores.” We need to start examining our behavior, language, reactions, ideas, roles, and everything and figure out if it’s something we do because we like it and it feel right, or if it’s something we’ve been secretly trained to do. Our words and actions reinforce other words and actions, like the idea that sexual activity it okay for guys but not for girls, because that’s just wrong.

There’s this idea that the first thought through your head is what you’ve been conditioned to think. Things like “ew, that girl is so fat” or “I have a flat tire so I should call my boyfriend to fix it”. But it’s your second thought that defines you: “that girl is rocking her skin; good for her” or “I should call my boyfriend to teach me to fix my flat tire so I can do it myself next time.” It’s time to start rethinking and going with that second thought. That also means thinking about yourself differently (see #2 above!).

 

#4 Start Half-Assing Things

In the wise words of Amy Phoeler, “The doing is the thing.” It’s not going to be perfect the first time you do it, so you have to start somewhere. So it’s just about the doing, not the result.

I am not a fitness person. I do not love the gym or have a clue about what to do when I’m there. But it’s important to be active and healthy, so I go. In the beginning, I went for the minimum twenty minutes, did a little of this, barely touched that, and then went home. And I celebrated! It was an absolutely terrible workout, but it was more of a workout than I had done before. I congratulate myself on going, on just showing up and doing the bare minimum, because I was focusing on building the habit, of just getting out of my shell and doing it. Bit by bit, my workouts started to increase in length and purpose and I’ve improved. If I had tried to be perfect on day one, it would have been too much pressure and I wouldn’t have even started.

So really, this is about “starting to start”.

A woman sits on a stump by the beach, the wind blowing her blonde hair.

 

#5 Start Going For What you Want

Sitting around wishing for something isn’t going to get you anywhere except Sadville. Want a better job? Start applying. Want love? Stop wondering why you can’t meet anyone when all you do is sit in the dark watching Netflix; go out and make the first move! Or adopt a puppy. Either works.

You can start small (see #4), but you have to start. Saying “maybe next year” is just another way of saying “I want it, but not badly enough to do anything about it, so it will never happen.” Get out of that cycle, grab life for the reigns, and start taking control! Because you can do it, you do deserve it, and it is worth it.

 

When you’re ready to start, I’d love to hear from you! Let’s help each other stay on course towards growth, so don’t be afraid to reach out.

March 15, 2018
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7 Reasons Why Being in a Relationship is the Best

Posted in Lifestyle, Relationships by

Photo by Almos Bechtold on Unsplash

A few weeks ago I had a post saying why being single is the worst. By popular request, I was encouraged to write about why being in a relationship is the best! For those of you who have your doubts about relationships or are hesitant of what they have in store for you, let me help put your mind at ease with 7 reasons why being in a relationship is the best. It’s also a list to help you understand why I missing being in a relationship as opposed to being single.

1. Be yourself

When you’re dating, you’re constantly seeing new people while on your best behavior. But in a relationship, you’ve been with this person for a while, so you can start to open up more and be yourself. You can now take your bra off and throw on a baggy hoodie with your favorite pajama pants and forget about putting on make-up! They already know you snort when you laugh hard and always get the lyrics wrong regardless of how many times you’ve heard the song. This is (arguably) the best part about a relationship because your partner loves you for who you are as a person and that’s beautiful enough.

2. Plus-One

You’ll always have friends that can be this as well, but now you always have a go-to for your plus-one for work events, weddings, or any other social events. The best part about having this person be your partner is that everyone is already expecting it! Now your friends won’t get butt-hurt if you choose one over the other, you have a default.

Related Reading: How to Handle Getting Hit on at a Bar

3. Feeling the love

Photo by Becca Tapert on Unsplash

One of the greatest perks of a relationship is the physical aspect, and you all know what I mean… Not only is sex fun, it’s good for you! All that dopamine in your brain is the ultimate high, but it’s even better when you’re sleeping with someone who appreciates you for more than your physical appearance. The entire mindset is altered, making the experience that much better. Not to sound like a love guru or preachy, but it is an experience where you’re selfless; you become a team in wanting to make each other feel good! It’s probably the best team bonding experience you can have.

4. Feeling appreciated

Dates are great, I will always be a fan of free food and movies, but being in a relationship is more than that. Once you’ve opened up and let someone in, they know your biggest dreams, fears and stresses. All those things become priorities to them too; they want to see you succeed, be happy and pick you up when you’re feeling down. I’ve bought flowers for guys before just because I wanted to, and they loved it! The little things can add up, even if it’s just a compliment on how you look that day or someone telling you they love you.

5. You always have someone to talk to

From my perspective, your partner should be one of your best friends. If there’s something on your mind, you have someone you can talk to about it and they’ll give you their honest opinion. They’re comforting or give you a reality check when you need one. But mostly, they’re there to listen. And that in itself is extremely important.

6. There’s someone to fill your time

Remember all that time you had to swipe left and right on those dating apps? Now you have time to spend with someone instead of doing that. Someone who will do whatever you want to; hike, go to dinner, a movie, a museum, or Netflix…and chill… You now have options to fill your time with more entertaining things with someone who values you and your time.

7. You learn

Photo by Kate on Unsplash

Something in you also changes. When you have someone you’re crazy about, and they’re crazy about you too, it bumps your self esteem, making you happier overall. When you’re happier, you also want the people around you to be happy, so you give more and it makes you feel good! Being in a relationship teaches you a lot about yourself: your interests, priorities, what makes you happy, mad, sad. But it also teaches you that about other people; and with that comes empathy which enforces honesty, trust and dedication.

 

There are so many things I miss about being in a relationship. I realize a lot of these things can also be fulfilled by friends, but it’s not the same. There’s that intimacy aspect to being in a relationship that is so special and makes you feel and think differently from others around you. I’m a fan of being in a relationship, but only when it’s with the right person. If you’re hesitant to enter into a relationship, you should think about all the benefits it has to offer before you dismiss the thought.

 

What are some of your favorite things about being in a relationship? Did I miss anything?

March 12, 2018
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Share the Love <3

Posted in Lifestyle by

Red confetti hearts are photographed against a white background. The title "Share the Love" is overlaid.

 

I love….

In lieu of Valentine’s Day, we thought it would be appropriate to create a post about 14 things we love. I’m not talking about the standard things that you say you’re grateful for around the table at Thanksgiving, like loving your family, friends, and your dog; we already know you have love for them. This post is about the little things we love that are less obvious, but still important in our lives.

 

Elena

I love…. the smell of rain

I love…. getting compliments

I love…. a good book

I love…. cuddling

I love…. laughing and making others laugh

I love…. feeling smart

I love…. feeling appreciated

I love…. the beach

I love…. the silence of the snow

I love…. wearing a big sweater and pajama pants

I love…. not caring about my appearance (not wearing make-up or doing my hair)

I love…. to travel

I love…. trying new things

I love…. helping others

 

Related Reading: National Sex Day (Guest Post by Deanna Samaan)

 

Belle

I love….sleeping in

I love….not wearing pants

I love….being silly with friends

I love….finishing a project

I love….when the thing I want is on sale

I love….making new connections and friends

I love….trading travel stories

I love….having my back touched/a good massage

I love….that women value community over competition

I love….new inspirations

I love….green landscapes

I love….fluffy alpacas

I love….next day compliments

I love….no-judgement dancing

 

Related Reading: 13 Ways to Celebrate Galentine’s Day, 3 Reasons to Love Being Single

 

What are the little things you love? Comment below! We’d love to see the two, five, or fourteen things that you love <3

 

Red confetti hearts lie on a white surface. The title "14 Things We Love" is overlaidRed confetti hearts are photographed against a white background. The title "28 Things We Love" is overlaid
February 15, 2018
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National Sex Day: A.K.A. Valentine’s Day

 

Valentine's Day

 

Valentine’s Day, A.K.A. National Sex Day, is celebrated on February 14th. Why force love on one day, how about making any other day of the year as your Valentine’s Day? If you’re not ready to break from the traditional Valentine’s Day, then Cheers! Let’s enjoy a chocolate Cherry Cha Cha Cocktail. Chocolate Covered Cherry Cha Cha is a wonderful cocktail that you love that has both cherry and chocolate in it. The recipe is available at the end the post.

 

There is a holiday coming up called Valentine’s Day. Love it or hate it there is no escaping the hearts and Cupid’s that pop up in the stores. In fact, we see this red decor love fest displays right after Christmas.  The hearts and cupids are all around in the stores reminding you about February 14th.

Valentine's Day

What is Valentines Day? A day to profess your love to someone with chocolate and roses? Let’s not forget all the lingerie that men buy their sweethearts. My sister calls Valentine’s Day national Sex Day. Why? Well give a woman roses, chocolate and sexy panties, and they expect to get lucky. So as a woman, we are expected to shave our legs, don these panties and give our men this wild night of passion. All because of some little Cupid with an arrow says it is Valentine’s Day. In reality, that scenario just feels forced.

 

Valentine's DayI don’t know about you, but sex feels better when wild and passionate and unplanned. When it’s planned nothing seems to go right, either you are so stressed out, feels routine and boring, you’re just simply not in the mood. Now, these chocolates and fancy panties are supposed to make all that stress and not feeling in the mood stop for 20 minutes of sex? I say celebrate Valentine’s Day on a day you’re not expecting roses, like March 3rd. Why? Because it isn’t forced, and if it is, sex that day it would be mind-blowing!

 Pick a day and own it, be the sex goddess and enjoy YOUR Valentine’s Day.

Now some of you will say, “but I have kids”. Yeah, I get it, wild, passionate, spontaneous sex with kids might not work. Well, when the kids are in bed, go to your room, put on some hooker shoes and surprise your man.

 

Tonight you are not a mom, instead, you are some wild and exotic woman turning Valentine's Dayhour man on. Don’t come up with an excuse like, “I can’t wear those shoes”. Look, you’re not walking in them, just put on, sit on the bed and call him in. If you do it right honey, those shoes will never see pavement. It’s called the art of illusion. If your man asks what you’re doing, say “I’m giving you a surprise for Valentine’s Day”. When doing something unexpected and out the normal; you’d be surprised at how much you really enjoy it. It’s good to step out the little box we are in. It is all about the illusion, own some shoes that will never see pavement!

Bottom line is, sometimes it’s better if we call the shots when comes to National Sex Day, oops I mean Valentine’s Day. Don’t settle for the forced gratuity of pleasure in exchange for flowers and chocolate on February 14th. Pick a day and make that your Valentine’s Day. Pretend you are a teenager and do something out the ordinary and most of all, make something you enjoy. Trust me, tune into your inner sexy goddess, we all have it within us, and own Valentine’s Day, on any day you want to celebrate it on.

Valentine's Day cocktail

Chocolate and cherries in a bubbly cocktail! Oh, My!

Ok so maybe you’re not quite that ready to break from Valentine’s Day Traditions. That is okay, but the thought is in the back of your head, and that is good.

So let’s relax now with a wonderful cocktail, the Chocolate Cherry Cha Cha:

What you’ll need:

  • 1 ounce of Cheery Rum
  • 1/2 ounce of Whipped Cream Vodka
  • 1 ounce of Chocolate Vodka
  • 1 ounce of Club Soda

 

Meet the Author

Guest PostPour yourself a drink, put on some lipstick, and pull yourself together.” – Elizabeth Taylor

Deanna Samman (Dee) is a native to Pittsburgh, living in Cleveland, OH. Her first blog, Seduction in the Kitchen, has built Dee’s appearance on the internet in the blogging world. When she discovered she had a niche for lifestyle and relationship posts, she decided to create a Wine and Lipstick, a blog meant for bringing single women together over cocktails. We are honored to have Dee as a guest author and hope you look into her blogs in the future!

 

February 12, 2018
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