What our strengths do for us daily

If there is one thing I have learned in life, especially during the last few years it is we are born with internal strength. There are times we are fighting with a strength we did not realize we had, and it shows itself when needed the most.

Times we lose a loved one that we held dear to our hearts is painful. No matter how much we want to aid in their struggles, we are always left helpless. In 2013, I lost my grandfather who I idolized. Due to his graciousness and selflessness, I was unable to see him in his final days. I understand he did not want me to see him in the ways he was, as he was losing his fight with cancer. All these years later it is still painful, but I can carry his strength and will to fight in my heart.

Of course, it was beyond painful as I held our sweet cat, Chloe, as she took her final breath. We watched her grow and share so much love for almost sixteen years. Seeing the strength and fight she had internally, and refusal to give up was amazing. I believe she waited until she heard me tell her that she did not have to fight anymore, and it was okay to let go. I swear fifteen minutes after those words left my mouth, she listened and let go.

The years of dealing with all the pandemic stress have been exhausting. Many people I know and care about have had COVID, but thankfully are doing well. They are all continuing to take all precautions necessary to avoid getting the virus again. It has not been easy to feel like we have been under intense house arrest for nearly two years, but so far, my husband and I have avoided getting COVID. Missing out on vacations and celebrations out at a restaurant has been slightly depressing, but we view this as our chance for survival. There will be future vacations and celebrations in the years ahead!

As I have explained in a few recent posts, I did not take being laid off well. This was not a life-ending situation, as I am still alive. I continue having a roof over my head and many other blessings life has offered me. Regardless of whether some might think being laid off is not a big deal or not, it was extremely difficult for me to handle. I enjoyed my job because of the clients I worked with. The strength I know I have inside my heart took control of me without me realizing it because I did immediately start applying for jobs after the layoff, which I am assuming was because of my strength and refusing to just give up!

One of the most unexpected and challenging situations I have encountered was being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. I was still so young back in early 2013 when the doctor broke the news to me. Living with an unpredictable illness has been terrifying but has also forced me to embrace it because I know the MS is not going away. I believe this is the main reason why I am can roll with the punches in life and normally not miss a beat! I feel it is critical to look at life and any struggles we may deal with but understand that there are many things we do not have control over. When we identify what we cannot control, there is no need to stress about them.

Most recently, I have learned more about someone that has been in my life for years, but I hardly knew this person. My relationship with this person in my adult life began a little rough because I was not understanding or fair. I am thankful that I have had a chance to get to know someone I sort of knew as a child because as an adult I see him in a new light. I see how understanding, caring, kind, accepting, selfless, and giving this person is, and I am glad he is in my life. I am sharing this to help others learn when we give people a chance, they might surprise us and better our life!

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope you enjoyed what I have shared with y’all today and I am looking forward to your comments. I promise to respond to all comments as quickly as I can. I hope you have a great day, and your week gets better with each day. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

How to overcome a negative mindset

Since December 9, 2021, when I was laid off from my job, my mind has been on a continuous and endless downward spiral with negativity. It has been an incredibly frustrating and discouraging month. Logically, I do understand that there was nothing I did wrong to deserve the layoff, but that is not making this situation any easier.  Considering I have always tried finding the positive in all situations in life, it is difficult for me to process all the negative emotions I have been experiencing.

One month of struggling to not allow the negative and disappointing thoughts circling in my mind has been exhausting. Too often I feel as though I am drowning in the fierce rapids that continue pulling me down. I was good at my job and the clients enjoyed working with me and I enjoyed them as well. I keep reminding myself that my job did not define who I am and that I deserve to be treated better and with respect while at work.

I find it a little insane that I can be somewhat logical about some things, and it is impossible to let go of the illogical emotions surrounding the layoff. I have been applying for many jobs daily, all have been remote because I am still nervous about COVID. From what I understand, the latest variant Omicron is extremely contagious but does not appear to be as life-threatening as the other variants. I have read that those that are vaccinated and get COVID are just having mild symptoms. The symptoms of Omicron are similar to that of a common cold, which includes cough, fatigue or tiredness, and congestion, and a runny nose.

I am going to work towards trying to find my way out of the negative and draining mindset. I always used to do say it takes more energy to be negative than it does to be positive. Through the rest of this post, I am going to share ways to deal with and break free from negative thoughts. We are human and it can be easy to fall into the negativity quicksand. There are always ways to break the cycle before drowning in our pessimistic mind, it just takes time and determination.

Surprisingly enough, one of the most beneficial ways to clear our heads and refocus is to spend time alone. It tends to be easy for introverts to spend time alone, but even extroverts can find this to be useful when they try. Under normal circumstances, I am an extrovert and enjoy the ability to meet and talk to others, but even with that said I do value time alone to get a better understanding of my thoughts.

Spending time alone helps me to contemplate life and any events that have occurred. It is especially helpful to focus my attention on the good aspects of life because even when they are challenging to see there are always good things that life offers all of us.

Remember to try keeping things in perspective. We are all going to face dilemmas or ordeals in life. During these times it is easy to feel overwhelmed and even defeated. It is in our human nature to fall into a negative mindset. The various struggles encountered in life can cause anyone to lose perspective.

We all tend to focus on the problems, instead of focusing on the solutions. This is when it is crucial to look at the bigger picture. No matter how difficult any situation is, there are still positive things happening around us. When we can focus on these, it will be much easier to overcome the negative mindset.

When we are going through troublesome times, it is important to talk to someone that is trusted. Sometimes, we may just need to vent our frustrations. This will help to lift the weight off our shoulders. Once we have talked openly and honestly with our trusted confidant, that person may help to keep this situation in perspective and eliminate negative emotions, which may help clear our negative mindset.

If I am being 100% honest and transparent, talking about what is causing me to feel negative is not easy for me. I do not like feeling as though I am burdening someone else with what I am going through in life, so I end up keeping my feeling buried deep down and all that does is cause problems to become worse and possibly create other issues. I can speak from experience when I say trying to ignore feelings is the most unhealthy way to be and I will urge you to try talking do someone!

Another concept that is important to understand is, we cannot expect everything to be perfect. If we convince ourselves through illogical ideals anything can ever be perfect, we are depriving ourselves of happiness. Trying to escape from a negative mindset will require us to fixate on realistic goals, instead of impracticable ones.

If you have never tried or even heard about the Displacement Theory, it might help to try this out! This is ending the patterns of negative thoughts by trying to replace the thoughts with something else. It is impossible to think of two things at the same time, simply choose something you would love to do and begin working towards only that! Allow the pursuit of a dream to replace the negative thoughts that are consuming your mind.

Thank you for taking the time to visit my site and read this post. If anything, I have mentioned resonates with you, I would love to hear more about what you have gone through and how you handled things. As I have already mentioned, life is not easy, and it can take effort to overcome. Like always, I am looking forward to reading your comments and I promise to respond as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Bad News Week

I hope y’all have had a wonderful week and you are looking forward to the weekend. I managed to fall behind with my blog and still have a few comments to respond to. The past few days I have been consumed with either a migraine or back pain that was so awful I could hardly do anything. Wednesday morning, my back pain was in a different location than normal. On a typical day, it is my mid to lower back that is in pain, but Wednesday morning it was only in my lower back and it took me at least fifteen minutes to pull myself from the bed. This pain was like nothing I have experienced before and had me mildly concerned. I did not lift anything in the previous days, so it did not make sense and I detest when things do not make sense.

I started having another mean migraine on Wednesday that nothing would help it to ease up. Having a migraine and the unusual back pain was extremely frustrating and nothing was making any sense. I detest when things do not make sense because I am the type that needs logical answers. I guess with Multiple Sclerosis, answers are one thing I may never get.

I would assume I know why there were so many issues with pain and a migraine. I do believe I could make an educated guess because after dealing with this unpredictable and hateful illness and knowing my body better than anyone else. My assumption for these issues is none other than stress. I feel like I continue getting bad news daily almost like there is a sign on my head saying, “Please do something that is going to create more problems in life” on my forehead. I mean getting laid off on December 9th and two weeks later having my truck in the shop with an expensive repair, and then on Wednesday learning that my former company is not paying out for the PTO I did not use threw me into the worst stress tailspin.

I was counting on the PTO payout for bills, my husband’s birthday, and a few other things. I cannot say I am surprised that my former company was going to screw me over again. Apparently, my former company thinks it is perfectly acceptable to basically steal money from me and it seems they can do that legally.

I have been constantly looking for another job and it has been beyond frustrating. Many places are hiring for remote positions, but it has been almost a month and I am still unemployed. Being unemployed is causing my personality to change and I do not like it. I feel like my anger about what has occurred and keeps happening is causing me to be a little hateful. I love my cats more than I can explain, but my mood even has me being angry with them and not wanting to be anywhere around them.

I am trying my best to stay positive, but it is becoming harder every day. I keep trying to tell myself that everything happens for a reason and the perfect job is out there for me and will surface when the time is right. I do not know what I did wrong in a previous life to have to continue dealing with challenges, but whatever it was I am so sorry. I just really need a break and have something, just one small thing happen work out.

I am working on another post and will hopefully have it completed tonight. I have also been working on a short story to help build on the creativity I know that I have inside. Writing has been an outlet for me and even though two of my cats are doing everything possible to not let me write because they want my attention, it is still the only thing that lets me escape from reality.

Thank you for visiting my site today. I appreciate your time and look forward to reading your comments. I will be responding to comments today and tomorrow, so I will be caught up soon. I hope you have a lovely and safe weekend. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Tips for searching for remote work

There are things I did not think were possible and I never thought I would think or say. COVID has created numerous hardships but also brought on some positive outcomes, such as the opportunities to work from home. Obviously, there are some types of work that are impossible to do from home, but many are easy to do from home.

Searching for a job can be extremely frustrating. Even though many employers have a new understanding and realize remote/work from home is a fantastic option, it is still a challenge. Considering I am actively trying to find a work from home/remote job, I want to share some information about why I want a work from home/remote position, the pros and cons about remote/work from home jobs, and ways to be aware of scams. It is crazy to think there are scams when looking for a job, but they are out there.

Of course, I am fully vaccinated as I did get the first two vaccines and the booster (3rd vaccine). It has been permanently ingrained into my mind how dangerous and deadly the virus is. Also, the fact I did not have antibodies after the first two vaccines is concerning. Who knows if I have antibodies now? Given what the facts are, I do not feel it is safe for me to work anywhere onsite.

The pros of remote/work from home are endless. Truthfully, everyone is going to have their views on this type of work. Not everyone will agree with what I think are the pros and some may have additional pros to add. The following are a few of the pros to remote working:

~You can feel more independent as there is not a supervisor dictating over your shoulder, telling you what needs to be done.

~Increased productively because you do not have co-workers distracting you.

~Work hours and the flow can be more flexible.

~You do not have to commute to work and deal with traffic, which helps offer fewer expenses.

No matter what we talk about, there are always pros and cons. I already share the pros and will now share some of the potential cons working remote can cause.

~Working remotely can cause loneliness as you are always working alone.

~Depending on your work ethic, you may overwork or underwork. It can be extremely challenging to separate work life and home life when you work from home. Often working from home can result in a never-ending workday.

Many think of remote/work from home as an amazing benefit and a luxury. However, not everyone is going to excel working in the way. Before beginning a job search for a remote/work from home position, it is important to ask yourself and be honest with your answer, is remote work right for you. Do a little self-reflection and write down a list of your pros and cons. Once you complete your pros and cons list, go through the list to determine if the pros outweigh the cons or vice a versa.

With remote work, you will not have anyone standing over your shoulder telling you what you need to do. This means you need to love or at least enjoy your job to become comfortable and productive. You are going to know how to be and stay motivated. If you do not already know what motivates you, it will be crucial to figure this out before accepting a remote position.

You need to understand the important factors remote employers are looking for. The two most common things are they want individuals that are trustworthy and love or enjoy their work. No one, especially remote workers do not like working with someone that micromanages their team. Employers need to be able to trust those they hire are going to do the work they were hired to do and will not slack off on the job.

Unfortunately, there are scams out there, even when you are searching for a job. The following are ways to avoid those scams:

~Do NOT respond to text messages, phone calls, or emails from unknown and or suspicious addresses.

~NEVER provide sensitive personal or financial information via email, text, or phone calls.

~Do NOT click on links via text from unknown numbers. ~Due to the countless numbers of spam via text, consider adding your number to the National do not call registry, using the attached link https://www.donotcall.gov/.

The following are a few ways to determine if a work-from-home job is real or a scam:

~Trust your instincts when you feel the work-from-home job seems too good, trust yourself. If you feel the job a fake, you are probably correct!

~When you try researching the company with the work-from-home job available, you are unable to find any valid information. Any legit company is going to have a website and an online presence of some sort. Most companies have Facebook, Twitter, or some type of social media

~A MAJOR red flag is when the employer appears overly eager to hire. Legitimate employers are busy with their other work and do not always have time to respond immediately. Genuine employers make people they interview feel comfortable when making an offer, but scammers pressure you to decide on their offer right away.

~Another common scan is when the employer claims you must invest money into work before starting. We all know we want to work because we want to be paid and do not pay the employer to work.

~Real and true employers communicate professionally and are well-spoken. When words are misspelled and punctuation is off, it is a sign it is a scam.

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope the information I have shared was helpful for you. If you have any other tips, I would love to know them. This not working thing has become VERY old and I am eager to get a job. I am looking forward to reading your comments and I will respond as quickly as I can. I hope you had a nice weekend, and you have an amazing week. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

New Year with BIG Changes

~Welcome 2022~

Happy New Year y’all! This post is a little later than I had planned for, but I guess better late than never. I hope you had a great and safe New Year’s Eve. I stayed at home and watched the ball drop with my husband and three cats. Nothing exciting, but I do not enjoy large crowds because they make me extremely uncomfortable.

Most of us see the start of a new year as the “magical” time to make changes and transform into an entirely new person. It is something instilled in our mind and mostly due to social standards or views. Changes or improvements do not need to only happen once a year or at any specific time. This is something that we can decide to do or not do. Typically, the motivation we felt when we made our New Year’s resolution wears off fast, the following week we forget all about the resolution.

Whether or not you are looking forward to 2021 ending and ecstatic about the exciting opportunities 2022 has in store for us, it has arrived. Besides all the New Year’s festivities, we think about what our resolutions will be. We may have many passed resolutions we did not achieve. We may begin thinking about everything we feel we need to do, which adds too much pressure and can result in us giving up.

We can learn from the resolutions we made in previous years that did not stick or last through the year. I am hoping that 2022 will be a better year with many positive changes. I am going to share my thoughts on resolutions and some tips on how to follow through with our resolutions.

I am sitting here trying to make sense of how 2021 which was not a great year, passed by so incredibly fast. Of course, I am not complaining because I have been ready to put 2021 in my rearview mirror and NEVER look back. In addition, I also have a strong and tight hold on the hopes for better times in the future. I learned a very valuable lesson a long time ago, which was NEVER say something could not get any worse because things can always get worse. I obtained this knowledge the hard way which created frustration and a massive number of continual disappointments.

It is important to know who you are and what you want in life. There has been research done on the Self-Determination Theory. This theory indicates that feeling capable and competent when reaching our goals, is one of the most substantial reasons for success. Most successful individuals set goals according to their strengths and abilities. What this means is that even though our goals “should” be a challenge, they need to also be with our abilities. Too much pressure will only lead to failure, stead of success because we might not have evaluated things accurately.

Think about a person who says they want to lose 50 pounds within three months and another who says they want to eat healthily and lose 15 pounds in six months. Which one of these individuals and their goals is achievable? Which one of these makes the most sense and can be viewed as with enough effort can be achieved?

Once you set your goal, OWN it. The meaning behind our goals is the key aspect that keeps us pushing forward. Intrinsic goals are the goals that encourage human growth and make a difference in this world.

How many New Year’s resolutions have you made that were small and mild lifestyles changes? If we are being honest, most of the resolutions we have made in previous years ended up being long-term and intimidating. The intimidation fact and time it will take may cause us to give up. If we decide to make a massive resolution and know ahead of time it is going to take more than a few days to complete time and effort to accomplish, we might need to take a hard look and reevaluate. With the challenging resolutions, they might require us to break them down into smaller sections, so it is manageable and remains organized. The chance of success is much will increase massively!

Everything we do in life will include some type of obstacle. Although it might be difficult, we need to try to visualize the obstacles we may face before we even are confronted with the obstacle. This can help us to have a plan in place, so we will not be slowed down too much with achievement and pushing past all obstacles.

I think it is safe to say that everyone has failed with one of their New Year’s resolutions. I do think the two most important tips regarding New Year’s resolutions is if you are going to make one, be realistic and do not go over the top with things that will take months or years. The other key point in my mind is, we can make changes anytime during the year we see fit and we do not have to wait until a new year to start.

I normally do not share what my New Year’s Resolution is because it puts too much pressure on me. This year, I am going to share it because of how much it means to me, and plan to never give up on this. I always try to avoid confrontation because I loathe arguments and will avoid them as much as possible. However, there is going to be a slightly new me in 2022. When I am upset about something, instead of holding it inside to avoid unpleasant conversations with anyone, I am going to be very transparent and upfront with how I feel. I have already implemented this and so far, things are not getting too chaotic. This part kind of goes hand and hand with the first part, but if someone does not bring anything but negative into my life, they are going to have to be eliminated from my life because it is too emotionally draining. I am going to have to You do not have to share, but do you have a resolution for 2022?

Thank you for visiting my site today. Let us all hope that 2022 is going to be a better year than the past several. Hopefully, COVID will also go away, and we will not hear anything more about it. I hope you enjoyed what I have shared and I look forward to reading your comments, which I will respond to as quickly as I can.

Always, Alyssa

My Open Letter to 2021

Dear 2021~

I wish I could say that I am sorry we will be parting in a few days, but I cannot do that and mean it. The truth is, it is not just you because there have been a few problematic years. It began at the beginning of 2020 when the pandemic invaded the world. I do realize it was not just the United States that experienced this, but the states certainly did not handle it in the best way for the country. I am not a politician, but if the Commander in Chief of the most powerful country in the world took it seriously, there would not have been such a massive amount of loss.

2021 did not begin most atrociously, but it certainly did not end well. We still endured many issues with COVID because many people refused to get a vaccine to prevent the spread. This never made sense to me because the vaccine was free and did not take but a few minutes to get. Yes, two vaccines are needed and to be done two weeks apart and now there is the booster (3rd vaccine). I understand people being hesitant because it was new, but the vaccine did not kill over 800,000 Americans and over four million people around the world as the virus did.

In 2021 we all had to deal with various issues due to the virus. One of them was the lockdown. Many people were only able to leave their homes to go to work and other necessities. Of course, this was a challenging couple of months, but it was also what we needed to do to stop the spread of the deadly virus. Staying home and not doing anything enjoyable was extremely isolating and frustrating. Now with that said, if everyone would have complied with this, is it possible this would have saved lives?

I am fully aware the massive amount of hate was nothing new, but it seemed to have been viewed more mainstream. I pride myself on being fair and equal, and never cared if my views were looked down on because this is something I am very passionate about. The levels of violence have been increasing over the past few years and I feel incredibly disturbed by this. We are almost in 2022, but many are behaving as if it were 1922, which makes no sense at all to me. Why are there still so many people that refuse to treat others as equals? Are we not all simply human beings? As far as I know, there is no one alive that is perfect, can walk on water, or do something else that is magical.

Of course, there was then that dreadful day of December 9th, when my company laid me off two weeks before Christmas. This was a very unpleasant and lousy situation to put on someone. During the miserable and appalling meeting, we were all told how much we were appreciated. How can someone lie like this and in the next statement say we were being laid off? It amazes me how some people can behave like this and still sleep at night. I will never understand how anyone can feel okay when they take someone’s livelihood from them. Yes, I know it is just business, but what a disgusting thing to do to someone.

I know you were just a number and that 2022 might not be much different, but I can hope for improvements. I used to say that it cannot get much worse, but things can always get worse. At this point in life, one thing I find to be crucial is to try being understanding and tolerant with others. People are always going to find a way to upset another, either intentionally or unintentionally and we cannot hold grudges. If everyone around the world could unite and try to help another when we can, the world would be a lot happier and more tolerable.

Thank you for taking the time to visit my site today. I know this post was not the most positive, but it is real and the way I have been feeling. I think it is extremely important to only share honest posts because I do not think I am the only one that feels like this, and we can help one another through these crazy times. I am looking forward to reading your comments and I will respond to all of them as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Last Monday in 2021

Today is the last Monday left in 2021. Can you believe it is almost 2022? It surely has been a long and extremely challenging couple of years. There have been a limited number of improvements and or changes, so I am hesitant to be overly hopeful that 2022 is going to be much different than the past few years. If you think about just the last year alone and think about everything that has happened. Yes, there have been some good moments and we need to be thankful for our life. Not to be negative, but does the good and bad experiences in the past year balance each other?

Of course, the issues with COVID are slightly better, safer, but could still be much better. The positive thing is, there has been a decrease in new cases and fewer deaths. There are still breakthrough cases and even though they are mostly unvaccinated, some fully vaccinated people are still getting COVID. Unfortunately, 815,000 people in the United States lost their life to COVID and more than 4 million worldwide lost their life due to COVID. I am fully aware that there are some that will disagree with me on this, but I do strongly feel that if everyone would get fully vaccinated, we as a world, not individual countries would be in a much better and safer place to be in!

This past weekend was Christmas. After last year when we were all encouraged to stay at home, not participate in large gatherings, and basically survive on house arrest without being officially arrested. Living in fear of a deadly virus was exhausting and insanely frustrating. It was hard on me because not too many people understand what it is like to have a weak immune system, so most cannot comprehend why I do not leave my house often and when I do I wear a mask and sanitize everything! I do hope you were able to enjoy a relaxing, safe, and lovely Christmas with your family!

I do believe December has been one of the most difficult months for me. A lot of this has to do with being laid off from my job and searching for a new job. I was working for a mortgage company when I was laid off and I did know it could happen. The crazy thing is even after this not-so-fun experience, I am looking at other mortgage companies. Most people would probably try finding a job in another industry that is more stable, but I worked with mortgages for many years at two different companies. It is just what I know but I enjoyed what I was doing.

I was already aware that I do not do well with not working because I like to stay busy and have a schedule. A lot of people like not working because they have limitless free time, but free time makes me feel like I am losing my mind. I think the reason is that work occupies my mind and prevents me from thinking too hard about other issues in life. 

We have all heard that old saying “When it rains it pours”, right? This could not be truer! My husband and I were on our way home from Christmas dinner, and we had to stop for gas. After my husband filled up the gas tank, he went to start the truck so we could head home, and that darn truck would not start. I am not mechanically inclined, but my husband is so while I went from calm to panic in less than a second, my husband analyzes the possible reasons. I did not know this at the time, but he slides under the truck and hit the fuel pump, got back in the truck, and it started right up. Apparently, I need to get the truck to the shop for a new fuel pump to be installed. Of course, I have to deal with car troubles a little more than two weeks after getting laid off. 

Thank you for taking the time to visit my site today! I know this is not one of my typical Motivation Monday posts, but I had so much the has been crowding my mind I had to get some of my thoughts out. Clearing our minds from unnecessary and increased stress is best for Mental Health. I hope you and your family had an amazing holiday and you are ready to tackle the last week of 2021. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

December 21st already

It is already December 21st, the Winter Solstice and Christmas is only a few days away. There are several reasons it does not feel like Christmas to me. One reason might sound silly, but I grew up in the north where it was always a white Christmas. Even though I have been in the south for over twenty years, and it rarely snows, I still miss snow blanketing the ground on Christmas day. In a way it is good it does not snow in the southern state I am in because the smallest amount paralyzes the city and has people bombarding the stores for canned goods and leaving the shelves empty.

Another reason it does not feel like Christmas is that I am unemployed. This is not because of anything I did wrong, but due to my company thinking it was a great idea to lay off nearly 300 people two weeks before the holiday. As I already said in a previous post, there is never a good time to be laid off. I cannot help but think about those that had children and lost their job. Parents want to provide their children with a Merry Christmas and not have to consider returning gifts to be able to have a roof over their heads. They might also be deeply concerned about being able to have food on the table for their family.

In previous years, prior to the pandemic, we spent Christmas eve with my family and Christmas day with my husband’s family. Of course, last year we spent the holiday at home with each other and our cats which may have been a little sad. In the past two years, my mother has relocated and lives approximately 1,100 miles away so we will not be going to her home for Christmas eve. If it were not for safety reasons due to COVID, maybe I would have been able to fly to where she lives, but I am not risking my life to get on an airplane. Please understand this though, I think my mother is happy where she is now and the life, she is building is a good one for her, so I am over the mood happy for her.

Considering I am what some would call an overly emotional person, my heart breaks for the many people dealing with the loss of a loved one, a job, their home, or anything else meaningful to them. There has been far too much tragedy around the world. There is too much needless violence that continues to cause massive amounts of devastation. I do not and never will understand violence or selfishness because it does nothing good for anyone. I guess the way I view things is, it is almost 2022 and we should be evolving, but instead, it seems like many are devolving.

I do understand this post was not very positive, but I am just being open and real with you because I feel that is the only way to be. I have been told that I can be too honest and transparent, but I disagree. However, I would like to know what you think. Do you think anyone can ever be too honest? I had a phone interview yesterday, which I think went well. When the interviewer asked me questions, I told him that I am completely transparent and will always be honest anytime I am asked a question. I have told people before if they do not want to know what I think about something or how I feel, do not ask if you do not want an honest answer.

Thank you for taking the time to visit my site today. I do encourage you to leave a comment and I will respond to all comments as quickly as I possibly can. I hope you are doing well and staying safe as you prepare for the upcoming holiday. How are you planning to spend the holiday and are you ready for it to come? Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Better days ahead

We have all been trying to survive life and our new norms. Countless emotions have surfaced during the last eighteen months that we have never felt before. It became easy to feel hostile because of isolation and confinement to our homes. Even to this day, we do not know if the normal life we were used to before the pandemic will ever return. It is almost impossible to remember what life was like before the pandemic or at least I can hardly remember what it used to be.

Granted, even though the pandemic made it unsafe to go out to dinner or the mall or anywhere not inside the four walls of our homes, was it ever safe? I mean think about all the violence the exists in the world. It was starting to feel like anywhere we went we went might encounter a mass shooting. Do I think guns should be outlawed? No, not outlawed but regulated much more, yes. I think a lot of the gun violence was due to mental illness and the truth is, mental health in the United States is terrible.

I know there is going to be a day when COVID is a painful and distant memory, but no idea when that will be. Even after COVID is in the past, the violence might still linger, and we should always be aware of our surroundings. Life should be a balance of good and evil because it helps us to be a lot more grateful for our life.

On a more positive note, we need to remember life is a gift and something we should cherish! Once the pandemic is over and it becomes safer to leave our homes, have you thought about what it will feel like? What are some of the things you missed during these challenging times? What are some of the simple pleasures in life you are excited to have return?

I do not mind being home most of the time, but it does get incredibly isolating especially because I work from home. I either feel like I am always at work or just never go anywhere to add happiness and excitement to life. It is crazy to think of going to a doctor’s appointment as a fun outing! I love my husband, our cats, and our house, but I do enjoy seeing the world! I think travelling is exciting because it provides insight to other cultures. Even though there are many terrible people in the world, there are many fascinating people as well.

I know I have mentioned this before, but while I am on the subject life getting back to normal, I cannot wait to visit the ocean again. The beach has always been one of the happiest places for me to be. I find the ocean to be relaxing and calming. The way the water crashes down on the beach is soothing. Considering I am someone that is a walking and talking stress case, the ocean is the only place I never feel any stress

I have had groceries delivered since the start of the pandemic, which has been amazing. I never did enjoy grocery shopping because it feels so unbearable at times. Although most of the time I do not miss grocery shopping, there have been times I did miss it because I felt helpless. I think one of the main reasons I never enjoyed grocery shopping is because crowds are overwhelming.

Another thing is I am beyond tired of wearing masks anytime I do get to leave the house. I know they are necessary to stop the spread of the virus, but they are extremely uncomfortable and suffocating.

I look forward to the day when the pandemic is behind us because life is too short to live in fear. I do wish this was all in the past now, but until it is I will continue to do what is necessary to keep myself and family safe. I hope the way things have been for the past eighteen months has taught people to be understanding and kind to others because even though we might not know it, everyone is going through something in life. People tend to behave in negative ways when they are struggling, but if they are shown a little compassion, they may lighten up and be kinder. It often takes a simple smile to make someone’s bad day brighter.

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope you had a lovely and safe holiday! I do look forward to reading your comments, which I promise to respond to as quickly as I can. One important thing learned over the past few months is, we are all going through the same challenges and need to work together to make it to better days! Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Ways to handle challenging family at the holidays

The holiday season is approaching us at what feels like supersonic speed. The holidays can induce many kinds of feelings for everyone. When I was younger, I loved the holidays because they were filled with joy and visiting with family. As I have gotten older the holidays are not as exciting as they once were. It may have something to do with the way holidays were the past two years or the dread of challenging family and friends. It is only natural to not always agree with our family because everyone has their opinions and that does not always line up with our family.

In this post, I am going to share with you a few ways that may help with the anxiety of family, friends, COVID, travel, and anything else that could be weighing on our minds. Family is important and we do not get to choose our family is but should try to eliminate any potential arguments that might come to the surface. We only have one family, so making the most of it is the best option.

1. Take control of your expectations: Many times, keeping expectations low helps avoid disappointment or resentment. Consider what your expectations are for those you feel the least comfortable with. Start by trying to observe others and not reacting at the moment. If we try changing others instead of accepting them it can create higher levels of defensiveness and reluctance. If at any moment your emotions become overloaded, excuse yourself and walk away for a few minutes for a short break to release those negative emotions. I have always found it to be easier to walk away when tensions become too high, and a conversation goes in a circle without an end in sight.

2. Plan ahead of time: Remember past family holidays and any patterns that occurred. Expect that unhealthy patterns are going to occur again and have a plan in place to avoid or prevent them from controlling and ruining your holiday.

3. Modify your mindset: We can decide to worry about things that could happen, which will cause unnecessary or think ahead of time how to reduce this type of stress. Instead of getting caught up in the negative traits of family, recall and focus on the positive traits, our family members have in them.

4. Defend your truth and integrity: A family holiday get-together can cause people to feel like they are walking on eggshells. There are several ways to navigate the circumstance when we know what our reactions will be and how others will react. A few standards to engage in during stressful exchanges are to state your experience, defend your truths, and calm yourself. It may be helpful to make note of your emotions, reiterate the faces, and appreciate your peace.

5. Discover common ground: The holidays provide joys of family get-togethers and create fond memories to admire. However, holidays can also include disputes with family. Regardless of those difficult family members, it is more important to focus on what matters the most instead of insignificant matters. It can be hard to find common ground, so try being slow to speak and quick to listen. You can gain more from listening than jumping in to say what you are thinking.

6. Avoid situations and people when possible: We all have at least one family member that wants to invade into our business, questions our every decision, and reminds us of the negative things in our life. Often, this is because misery loves company. The three most important things to remember are: you know more than anyone else what is best for you. Hold onto advice offered that is valuable and kindly ignore what is not valuable. Warmly divert the conversation by asking questions about how they are doing. Alter the atmosphere with positive language and awareness of being together.

7. Keep yourself grounded: Although the holidays can be a delightful time spent with family, they can also generate anxiety especially when there is an exasperating family member. When dealing with this type of person, it is crucial to provide yourself with gentle self-care to help keep you grounded. Avoiding hot topics such as politics and religion that can cause disagreements will be important. When topics known to cause a difference of opinion being, changing the subject to a common interest will help deter the disagreement from getting out of hand.

8. Form and maintain boundaries: Understand what topics or behaviors are unacceptable or reasonably out of bounds and state them upfront, so there is no confusion or question. Some people will know ways to bait you into a conversation causing conflict, NEVER take the bait! Immediately put a hard stop to the conversation. Determine how much time you are going to spend with family and politely say your goodbyes when it is time.

9. Always be on the same page as your significant other: Be open and honest about concerns and expectations of holiday gatherings. Discuss openly ways to handle potential conflicts. Preparing ahead of time and remaining a united front will help control the stress. Determine a signal word to let your partner know you are ready to leave or when stress has increased too much and have an exit plan.

10. Know your mind and body: Keep alcohol intake to a low amount because it can create issues with logical decision-making and escalate emotions. When overdone, alcohol can increase stress and fatigue causing more opportunity for an argument to irrupt. Alcohol in moderation normally does not cause too many issues, but it is important to know your limitation. Trust your instincts and pace yourself with conversation as well.

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope this information will be useful to you during the upcoming holidays. Not all families are incredibly close and there is friction in some. It is not always easy and not all the tips in this post will be helpful to everyone, so if there are other ideas you have that helped you and you are willing to share, please do. I hope you had a nice and safe weekend! Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa