HELLOOOO beautiful people! Today I have decided to write about a topic that is very important to me and that is happiness. My life has been a complete rollercoaster ride of events and emotions while trying to create a life that I love. I have to admit that my social media accounts do a good job at highlighting the high points of my life but as many others, I tend to stay away from social media when my life...well...is not going too well. 

I am a perfectionist at heart. If you are one too then you know how hard it can be to handle situations when life does not go as planned. Throughout the years I have learned that life is all about BALANCE (of the good and the bad). Without the bad, wouldn't life just be boring? We can all learn from our mistakes and the obstacles we face are part of what makes us...US.

With all that being said, I believe that life is a continuous journey and health is part of the journey. We can always be healthier, smarter, more successful and there really is no end. The first step to a happier, healthier lifestyle is accepting that your life is a work in progress. I am trying to better myself every single day and wanted to share what has worked for me in terms of my mental and physical health. 

1. Reach Out- Something that has been extremely hard for me my entire life is initiating conversations and plans. I think that this is mostly me getting inside my own head and thinking that I am annoying someone by texting them. I have had several conversations with friends about how they feel the same way in that there are tons of people with the same nervous instincts. It is OK to feel this way and it is completely normal! It is important to stay connected to at least a couple people per day so that you do not feel disconnected and isolated. Although alone time is good once in awhile, one of my favorite things in life is spending time with my friends and family who always make me happy.

2. Keep Busy- Now that it is the summer time, I have found myself having a lot more downtime which is a blessing and a curse. I'm not one to stay in bed all day watching Netflix (nothing wrong with that though!) because it makes me feel super lazy and unproductive. If you are suffering from summer boredom I recommend getting a job! Working can be daunting for some but I have met some of the nicest, coolest people through my job plus I get a little extra cash to do more fun things throughout the week. Even if you don't want to get a job just yet, take up a new hobby like cooking or painting.

3. Declutter- Haven't worn that dress in a year? Give it away! Go through all of your jewelry, clothes, makeup, and food and declutter because a clean house is a happy house. :)

4. Exercise- I know everyone tells you that running will help you lose weight and you'll get that six pack from lifting weights, but while those are all good things not all of us love working out. My fitness journey has taken a very long time but I've learned that I look my absolute best when I do physical activity that I enjoy. Running for more than 15 minutes is not my thing so now I do HITT cardio which burns more fat and is pretty fun when you have a bumping workout playlist! I try to force myself to stay at the gym for an hour 4-5 days a week trying new exercises. I always look up leg/butt day workouts on Pinterest which changes up my workouts so that they don't become boring. I highly recommend trying out different fitness classes and routines on Pinterest to see what works best for you.

5. Diet- I hate to break it to y'all but if you want to be healthy, you can't have Chick-Fil-A everyday. I've been through the real ringer with my diet from trying fads, to restricting and binging, it has been a process. While I still struggle with my relationship with food from time to time, I have learned to follow the 80/20 rule. This rule states that to maintain a healthy lifestyle, you eat 80% clean and 20% whatever you desire. I have cut out dairy and gluten because of how I feel after I eat those foods. By completing the Whole 30, I have learned that dairy makes me breakout like crazy and now my skin is more clear than ever and gluten is very hard for my body to digest, making me very bloated. Everyone's body is different though which is why I suggest trying the Whole 30 to find out if you have any intolerances and what foods make you the best you. 

6. Drink Water- Thought you got rid of your mom constantly telling you to stay hydrated? Well I'm here to tell you that after all these years, she's right and staying hydrated is one of the most important aspects of being healthy. I try to carry around a Starbucks tumbler everyday that I can re-fill when need be. One tumbler is 24 oz of water so I try to drink about 3 per day. That puts me at 72 oz- right above the recommended amount of water per day which is 64 oz. You can also make drinking water more enjoyable by adding fresh fruits or getting a fun water bottle.

7. Find a Hobby- Wether you like fashion, sports, video games, makeup, photography...THERE IS A HOBBY FOR YOU! It's never to late to try something new that you've always wanted to do. For me, making YouTube videos and writing helpful blog posts is a great de-stresser and it keeps me motivated (aka not lazy binge watching Queer Eye (btw great show, highly recommend)). Besides the point, taking time out of your week to do something you enjoy will for sure make your self-esteem skyrocket!

8. Limit Social Media- Set a time limit for yourself everyday of how much time you will spend on your phone. You will be surprised how much we miss out on by looking at what other people are doing! I find the most effective strategy for having a productive day is to not check my phone until after I have gotten out of bed and worked out. 

Sooooo...these are my top tips on how I stay happy and active everyday. Now everyday is not going to be this perfect but having a general guideline in your head of what will make you a better you is always going to be beneficial. This was a broad outline of generic daily tips but if y'all want me to dive deeper into any of these subjects, please let me know and leave a comment!

Have an amazing week,
Rachel Noelle


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