Category Archives: Self esteem and acne

Meditation for Acne Part 1

Jill PalmerI had a lot of acne clearing consults a few weeks ago and there were two themes that came up with everyone.

Tell me if any of the following sound familiar:

#1 Your acne seems to come and go a lot, with “good periods” followed by “bad periods”.

#2. You have a lot of stress going on at various points and you aren’t always quite sure how to handle it.

I hear about these challenges all of the time, so I wanted to share something with you that’s become a much bigger part of my life over the past 6-8 months, that’s really changed everything for me.

Meditation.

Before you click away into an internet abyss and say “ I’m bad at meditation” etc. just take a listen to my story, and then take a gander at the 5 minute meditation I put together for you below:)

I haven’t always been very good at meditation.

In fact, I used to be terrible at it. I have pretty high energy levels- and a pretty intense overall “vibe” haha- so asking me to sit down on a meditation pillow is basically like trying to convince a toddler to take a nap after they’ve had 5 oreos.

That being said, before meditation became a regular part of my life, I desperately needed it because I was dealing with some big life questions and stress levels that were through the roof (and as a result, SUPER negatively impacting my skin big time.)

The life questions I was struggling with were very important questions for me to answer, but it was hard to get clarity around a lot of them and the more stressed I got, the worse my skin looked.

When I did actually try to really examine what was actually going on… I’d just feel like I had a “runaway brain”; filled with a gazillion and one thoughts that wouldn’t quit and I’d end up feeling more frustrated than before. (Sound familiar?)

So naturally, being the #nerd that I am, I “went-to-the-books” for some answers after seeing a very popular “guru” chat with Oprah one day.

Her name is Pema Chodron and after a normal married life with kids- and then a subsequent difficult divorce- she gave it all up to live the life of a monk.

She wrote a book called When Things Fall Apart, and it was literally, the best thing I could have read for myself and my life at that point.

Along with giving you a link to the book (I am not getting any type of affiliate income on that btw, I just really love the book), I wanted to share some of the main guiding principles that I found to be the very best, and most helpful, to clear my head.

Here are the 3 most helpful “ideas” that I took from the book that really changed the way I view life, big decisions, and just the idea of being “stressed out” (hint: stress is usually never actually helpful!):

1. It’s just a thought.

As time has gone on, I’ve started to really understand the difference between my soul talking, and my ego talking.

You hear about this your whole life; the difference between the id, the ego, and the super ego (Freud anyone?!) but I didn’t really start to understand it until recently.

I walk around with all of these thoughts all day long. Sometimes they’re awesome, wonderful thoughts, other times they’re neutral thoughts…. and sometimes, they’re downright evil and I wouldn’t share them with another human being if you paid me, haha.

And in the past whenever I meditated, I always tried to like… “control” these thoughts. (I’m not talking about attempting to focus here, that’s a different kettle o’ fish.)

No, I’d actually try to make the thoughts go away. And that, mi amiga, is pretty much impossible.

In Pema’s book she talks a lot about how, in meditation, you just allow those thoughts to exist, instead of judging them or making them into something….. you just allow them to be.

In fact, with every thought that comes up during medtiation, you’re supposed to acknowledge it as a thought and just say “Ok”.

Because here’s what you’ll notice and start to see. The mind, the ego, it’s always talking.

It’s always reacting… and sometimes making an utterly EPIC mess of things.

But the soul, hmmmm that soul man, knows exactly whats up.

However, sometimes, it’s super quiet, too quiet even, for us to hear over the noise of the ego.

The goal here (that I’ve found) is to allow the thoughts to exist as they are (they will NEVER stop existing, they will always be runing around) so as to also allow for more space so that the soul can be heard.

Once you allow your thoughts in, without judgement or any attempt to change/distort/improve them, they do become a bit more “quiet”, shall we say.

Because that part of you feels like it’s being “heard/allowed” and it usually seems to calm down a bit.

It’s usually in that new found space that your soul speaks and when you can hear more of what “she” wants, you’re able to make decisions much more clearly. (This is how I’ve decided to make a huge life change coming up. More on this later:)

This level of relaxation and calm also directly benefits your skin as well.

2.Everything changes. Nothing is permanent.

This one can be hard. If your life is rocky right now, it may be hard to even hear this piece of wisdom, let alone understand it on a soul level.

Things will fall apart, the world will crash down around you, it will all suck.

In the book, Pema talks about how the nature of LIFE, is in fact “suffering” and also just change.

That to try to avoid suffering and change is always going to be a losing battle. The most important thing you can actually do is just sink into whatever is happening in your life and really just…..allow it to be. Because you know and understand that it will be changing soon.

Here’s how to think about this in terms of your acne: Change is ever present and it’s the most important element of our lives. I can almost gaurantee that wherever you are in your acne clearing journey, you won’t be there forever.

It will change. My acne went through so many different “types of breakouts” as I got older (good and bad) so just know that as long as your committed to progress and growth, you will continue to positively impact your skin :)

3. Endless compassion for self is required for a happy life.

I have adored this element. Being again, like I said, a woman with a very “expansive” mind, I think all day long, every single day, about everything (this is not an exaggeration, this is a fact haha) and I realized through my meditation practice that I’m often judging the thoughts.

And then judging myself for the types of thoughts I’m having.

And then judging myself for judging my thoughts. (And so on.)

So for example, in regards to food- my thoughts can sometimes go like this:

Jill’s brain: “ I RUHLLY want a doughnut from Cream” (hahah, have you noticed a doughnut theme?). (I mean, can you blame me?)

Jill’s judgy-brain: “ YOU CAN’T EAT DOUGHNUTS ALL WINTER LONG IF YOU WANT TO HAVE A BEACH BOD. ALSO, YOUR SKIN WILL LOOK LIKE CR**.”

What Pema’s practice taught me was that that second part of that sequence doesn’t serve me, and in fact, harms me.

She talks about this as endless compassion, this kind of deep soul love for self, and it has had such a profound effect on me. And I can understand why.

When you are endlessly compassionate with yourself, wherever you are or whatever you’re going through, you are making progress.

So think about this in terms of your skin. Let’s say you’re trying a new acne clearing routine and you wake up and you have a new breakout and your first thought is:

“UGHHHHHH I CAN’T BELIEVE THIS (whatever new routine you’re trying) ISN’T WORKING I WAS SO STUPID TO THINK THIS WOULD ACTUALLY WORK!!!”

How does that thought feel in your body? It feels bad. And it inadvertently creates more stress because you’re just so upset.

vs. this thought:

“UGHHHH I can’t believe this (whatever new routine you’re trying) isn’t working.”

and then….

“Ok, I see that I’m frustrated about that. If it’s still not working by next week, I’ll start to do some more research on different options. Because I know I’m committed to healing my acne naturally, I’ll find the best treatment plan for me soon!”

HOW different does this feel? SO different, right?

I’ve gotten into the habit now of simply OBSERVING the thoughts (because I’ve been meditating more:) as they come in. I don’t judge them, or act immediately, I just watch. And it’s a game changer.

So now, that doughnut conversation will go like this:

Jill’s brain: “ I ruhlly want a doughnut from Cream”

Jill’s non-judgy-just-observing brain: “Oh. Ok, I want a doughnut. Thats going to be a significant amount of sugar. Why do you want that do you think? Are you hungry? Have you had a doughnut in a while? Maybe it IS time for a little treat? Or… maybe you’re feeling a bit upset about something and are searching for a little pick-me-up? In that case, why don’t you go to the gym instead? It’ll make you feel better overall, most likely.”

See that? No judgement, just total rational acceptance and love for where I am in the moment.

When you have really bad acne, and especially if you’ve started to work on some new treatments, you might have the tendency to like, REALLY want the answers figured out. Right. Now. And that’s totally normal, but not always helpful for you.

NOW, large meditation note. I am never perfect at this. Ever. Actually, the whole point is to be be perfectly, imperfect with the whole shebang. And that’s ok.

So, what can you do now after we’ve discussed all of this meditation love?

Start. Right. Now.

Use the following super short, 5 minute meditation for acne to really start to create a foundation/balance in your day.

(Yes. I’m serious. Stop whatever you are doing, even if you’re at work:), go somewhere quiet, and take five minutes just for YOU.)

Your 5 Minute Meditation For Acne (for beginners/aka all of us:)

Step 1. Grab your ipod/listening device and put your headphones in with a really calming song. I usually go on spotify and search for “ocean waves” and pick some amazing beach sound and I’m off to the races. Make sure it’s five minutes long, at least, and set your timer.

Step 2. Pick two words that you would aspire to feel right now; for example “peace” and “freedom”.

3. Spend the next 5 minutes deeply breathing in and out…. As you breathe in, inhale the first word. As you breathe out, exhale the second. They’re both words you’re aspiring to. So literally: inhale <peace>, exhale <freedom>.

4. Allow alllllllll and ANY thoughts that are not those words exactly, to just exist. Work, your boyfriend, your mom, that fight that you have, just allow them all in. With each thought that appears/bubbles up, just acknowledge it, say, “Ok” and just bring your mind back to your focus words. Soon, the thought will mosey on out of your mind on it’s own, easily.

4. Continue like this for 5 minutes at least.

5. When you’re done with this five minute meditation, seal in the practice by taking a big deep breath in and exhale it out while you think, or speak, “I love and accept myself exactly as I am.”

This is the meditation practice I started with (I now meditate on average for 15 minutes a day, more on this later:) at the very beginning, so I think you’re gonna love it!

I’ll be sharing a different type of mediation next week, so definitely be on the lookout, and let me know how the meditation feels in the comments below!!

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How an oreo, a big hunk of cheese at lunch, and being totally stressed out may actually be causing your acne. No, really.

ComputerlandingSo I made a present for you. A big present. Epic level present. Here’s why.

I know that 3 of your biggest acne clearing questions are:

1. There is so much information out there that you get really overwhelmed by all of it and…. end up quitting and waking up with a new zit anyways. Where do you start? How do you know what’s right for you?

2. You want to really know what is causing YOUR acne. Not everyone else’s, yours.

3. You want to know what specific actions you take that actually fit your lifestyle and will work for you, anywhere. You’re busy, you have a life and everyone has different needs for their body…. you want to find your best and easiest acne clearing lifestyle. Right?

So I took the time over the past month to really drill down deep into these questions for you and give you the BEST answers that I’ve got and combined them ALL in a delicious super in-depth and actionable video for you.

Here’s what we’ll go over in the video:

Part 1:

I talk about my acne clearing struggle and reference the deep and dark google black hole I used to hang out in when I was trying to heal my acne at first (cod liver oil diet anyone?). I KNOW you might be struggling with the same thing too so I wanted to take the “guesswork” out of acne clearing by giving you answers to your biggest questions around acne clearing.

Part 2:

We go over why EVERYONE gets acne (as in, the scientific process) first. This is super important because studying the science of skin and breakouts may not necessarily be “fun”, but if it will give you clues about how you can live your LIFE in a way that supports acne clearing, it’s totally worth it. Right? In the second part, I answer how an Oreo, a big hunk of cheese at lunch and being totally stressed out may actually be causing your acne. No, really.

Part 3:

Things get real. Once you’ve gone through the first two parts, there is a QUIZ attached to the video that you download (see, I told you I was serious about the epic-ness of this present) to answer the questions regarding YOUR unique acne triggers. Then, you come back to the video to get the 2 *completely customized* action steps you can take today to start to heal naturally for your skin.

Amazing, right?

You may have done some research already, or you may be TOTALLY in the dark about your skin, and either one is fine.

I made this video because I know that every body is different and to really help you start to heal from the inside out, you need unique solutions. And to find those unique solutions, you need unique questions.

Also, I should tell you, I originally started with 10 questions in the quiz, but I got really overly-excited (as I am wont to do) and decided to give you 31.

31 questions that will give you deep insights on what may or may not be causing YOUR unique acne breakouts, and then depending on what you’re struggling with the most, you’ll grab 2 action steps that you should take today, that are CUSTOMIZED and based on your unique acne triggers- not anyone else’s-yours. Grab them here. 

Because at the end of the day, it’s your body and you want to clear your acne in a way that works for your life and actually fits your lifestyle.

Grab your questions and action steps here.

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4 steps to heal large pores – from ya’ kitchen!

LargeporesLarge pores used to drive me insane.

When I was a lot younger, I had a ton of them on my cheeks and chin and lemme tell you, they drove me kookoo for cocoa puffs.

I already had self-confidence issues back then–who doesn’t- so having crazy pores all over my face made it so much worse.

Luckily, I’ve been able to heal them over time and I wanted to help you do the same!

I’ll go over the biggest reasons you may have large pores in the first place, and then give you some of my fav solutions.

5 reasons you might have larger pores:

#1: Oily Skin

Sometimes our own body’s “moisturizer” can cause large pores. By “moisturizer”, I mean the oil that is produced in our skin by our sebaceous glands.

Oil is our body’s natural moisturizer, but when there is an accumulation of oil and dead skin cells inside the pores, the pores will get clogged and inflamed, causing them to look bigger.

So, oil + dirt = large pores.

#2: Gender

4 Steps to Heal Large Pores
bein’ a lady ain’t always easy

I hate to include this on this list, because it seems just so unfair, but it needs to be here.

Male and female hormones are different. While we all have the same TYPE of hormones running through our veins, we don’t have the same levels. Men have more testosterone and women have more estrogen; which can both cause issues.

Also, on a chemical level, men generally have larger pores compared to women. Women’s pores, however, might enlarge when experiencing menstruation or any hormonal changes.

#3: Sun Damage

 

4 Steps to Heal Large Pores

I don’t think I’ve touched on this enough but…. I’m a crazy stickler for avoiding the sun (if you want to know why, check out the article on the breakout blues!)

Sun damage can cause a whole host of issues but my main problem with it is that it causes inflammation.

Inflammation is problematic because it can lead to thicker skin which then leads to larger pores, because tiny skin cells collect around the edge of the pore.

Too much exposure to the sun can also speed up the aging process which can cause the loss of your skin’s elasticity. This can lead to sagging and stretching of skin that will make your pores look larger. Total bummer, avoid the sun!!!!

#4: Genetics

Ok this one is annoying to include here (I know!) but I have to do it.

Probably one of the things you can NEVER change (in this lifetime anyways) are your genetics.

There is some research that suggests you can inherit large pores. So if you have parents who have large pores, you may have them as well.

I found this info out first hand when I first started having my acne; my father and his siblings had acne and large pores when they were young as well, so it made sense that I had, too.

#5: Blackheads

Blackheads are caused by the clogged oil in your pores that have oxidized; so it’s actually not dirt, it’s oil that has oxidized!  One key tip to avoid blackheads is to exfoliate more often. Grab one of my favorite exfoliating masks here!

Now that we have acquainted ourselves with the causes of large pores,  I have to tell you that sadly, pores cannot be “permanently shrunk”, but we can minimize the appearance of large pores.

So here, without further ado, are 4 Steps To Heal Large Pores:

1. Avoid pro-inflammatory foods. Pro-inflammatory foods include:

4 Steps to Heal Large Pores

  • Sugar: If you have a sweet tooth, like me, I apologize in advance. Unfortunately, there have been studies done that indicate that a high sugar intake (high glycemic diet) is proportional to sebum (oil) production. And as discussed before, oily skin causes large pores. Why does sugar promote sebum production, you ask? Well according to a study about the correlation of facial sebum to serum insulin, elevated levels of insulin could mean an increase in sebum production. I talk about it here more. The sugar I’m talking about here, by the way, is the added sugars (sugars not naturally present in food) and highly-refined foods such as white bread, pasta, cakes, etc.
  • Fried foods: Foods cooked in high-temperatures (deep-fried foods) promote inflammatory response in the body. They can cause an inflammation of the skin and therefore, larger pores and oilier skin.

2. Eat anti-inflammatory foods/nutrients aka foods that prevent inflammation.

4 Steps to Heal Large Pores

 

Here is a great list of anti-inflammatory foods:

  • Low glycemic foods. If high glycemic diet promotes inflammation, it only makes sense that the opposite, low glycemic diet, will prevent inflammation. A low glycemic diet that includes whole grain foods, vegetables, fruits, beans and legumes which are digested slowly, meaning a slow release of energy and no insulin spikes. No insulin spikes = lower inflammation = fewer breakouts. Win win.
  • Vitamin C. If you’ve been skin-conscious and have done some of your research, you’ve most likely come across vitamin C as a magical vitamin for the skin. (Need more vitamin suggestions? Learn about vitamins for acne here and here!!) Vitamin C is a good –no, POWERFUL–antioxidant. It also promotes collagen formation, skin elasticity, and dirt extraction when applied topically. All of these contribute to smaller pores! Vegetable sources of vitamin C are broccoli, spinach, kale, chives, parsley, etc. For topical application, you can puree or juice vegetables that are rich in vitamin C and include it in your daily facial cleanser to tighten your pores!
  • Zinc. Vegetables high in zinc may reduce the inflammation of skin–therefore reducing the appearance of large pores. Vegetable sources are mushrooms, squash, zucchini, and spinach.
  • Polyphenols. Polyphenols are found in tea. Green, black, white, and oolong specifically. There have been studies that have found that polyphenols in tea have anti-inflammatory properties; which may help you with your large pores as well!
  • Selenium. Selenium helps promote skin elasticity, reduce skin inflammation, and helps in the regulation of glutathione peroxidase, a powerful antioxidant. Selenium can be found in aromatic vegetables such as onion, and garlic. But it can also be found in Brazil nuts (best source), brown rice, chia seeds, sunflower, sesame, and flax seeds as well!

3. Drink water.

4 Steps to Heal Large Pores

I promised cheap, right?! Hehe.

Actually, I talked about this last week, but adding in lemon water is also super good for you too! Try to grab 8 glasses a day; and while this is only a general guideline, I’m pretty sure your hot bod will thank you for it:) Learn more about why water and lemon water especially, are great for your skin, here.

4. Unclog and tighten your pores.

Exfoliation is key here.

You have to handle a clogged pore gently, but also consistently, so I thought I’d share a few of my favorite all natural face masks to unclog your pores if you need some SKIN-inspiration!

4 Steps to Heal Large Pores
glamorous AF over here in #healyourfacewithfood land.
  • Carrot mask. Carrots are rich in vitamin A and beta-carotene. These vitamins act as antioxidants and unclog your pores by increasing the cell turnover.  For application, steam and mash carrots then add some honey for added anti-microbial benefits, apply to your face and let sit for 10 minutes before washing with warm water and patting (gently!) your face dry.
  • Cucumber mask. Cucumber is a great astringent aka a substance that shrinks or constricts body tissues. So instead of those alcohol-based astringent that may irritate your skin, try the cukes! Cucumber also reduces facial oil which leads to minimized pores. It’s like a double-duty summer food; it’s refreshing, and it helps your skin. To create and use the cucumber astringent, peel the cucumbers first, then blend until it is a smooth liquid consistency. Apply a generous amount of it onto your face and let sit for 15 minutes before washing with cold water. Check your skin if the pores have tightened! I bet your eyes would look less puffy, too. #doublebonus (Like cucumber green juice? Grab a delish recipe here:)
  • Egg white mask.  First, crack an egg and separate the yolk from the white. You’re going to use the white part, not the yolk. You can add 1 tbsp. of honey, lemon juice (for skin lightening), and extra virgin olive oil and then whip the ingredients together. After whipping, dip a clean cotton ball onto the mixture and apply it to your face. Let it sit and dry out for 20 minutes or so before rinsing. Bonus of egg whites: they contain lysozyme which is an antibacterial enzyme that can help get rid of the bacteria on your face that causes acne!

So what do you think?

Do these ideas help with some large pore woes that I know we all may have? 

What’s YOUR favorite large pore remedy? Leave in the comments below:)

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4 steps to stop acne-induced depression naturally (+ how I deal with it)

Have you ever been depressed?acne sad

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately- and I know a lot of you struggle with really low self-esteem and depression from acne so I wanted to tell you a bit about what I do when I go through down periods.

 I’ve definitely personally struggled with depression on and off during a few periods of my life. (Totally getting personal today! #scary).

 High school was actually one of my happier times (while I struggled a lot with bad acne, I felt like other people struggled a lot with bad acne as well so it didn’t bother me AS much then).

I’m a TOTAL nerd so I loved taking classes, I had a nice group of friends and I was always involved in a lot of theater/performing arts stuff. Life was DEFINITELY not “perfect” in high school-by any means, but it was definitely one of the “cozier” times in my life.

Then, I went to college, super far away from where I grew up with a TOTALLY different culture, and the people were so different. I grew up in a really liberal southern town in North Carolina, and then went to a super conservative North Eastern college- so it was like night and day and let me tell you, I did NOT fit in in college.

People didn’t get me, I didn’t get them, I said ALL of the wrong things…. and I spent pretty much the first year of my time there feeling TOTALLY off.

After I graduated from college I came to NYC to become an actress.

That was when things really started to get ruh-lly tricky.

First things first, being a 22-year-old in New York City waitressing and auditioning- is every bit as hard as “they” said it would be. There is no sense of stability to your life, no balance, money is always coming and going and it’s almost impossible to feel “stable” financially.

I also spent a lot of time “testing my boundaries” by drinking and partying too much. (Haha, although, my “testing my boundaries” really just means I stayed out late and drank a few too many beers. I’ve never really been into drugs or the hard stuff, just not my thang).

And to be honest- and to get a tad personal- I got involved with some really bad people.

I got involved with people who just… Haha, quite simply, weren’t my people. But moreover, they liked to do things that just didn’t make me happy.

I don’t want to get into too many specifics about what those things were – because I don’t want to offend anyone and because, I truly believe that every person should be allowed their very own, BEST “happy”.

My happiest life is not your happiest life- and vice versa.

For example- I’m writing this right now from bed with ten books strewn around me on a Friday night with Don Quai Tea next to me. I think a lot of people would think it’s weird that I’m working on a Friday night and that it’s 8:30 PM and that I’ll probably go to bed soon.

But that’s my happy.

Life is constantly changing- some days are better than others and I’m better at being true to “my happy” on certain days than I am on others.

As I’ve gotten older I’ve started to put feelings of sadness, depression, low self-esteem, etc. into BUCKETS- so that I can address them as they come and work through them in the most positive and healing way possible.

And what I’ve realized as I’ve gotten older, is that, while depression should always be taken SO seriously and addressed- there are “balms”, shall we say, that I’ve found over the years that have seriously helped me cope with feelings of sadness/depression.

And because I know a lot of you struggle so much with feeling self-conscious about your skin, never feeling confident and generally feeling embarrassed of how you look- which are all pre-cursers to depression- I wanted to give you my:

4 steps to feeling better about yourself, lifting your depression naturally and really feeling good again:

1.Remember your favorite things to do and DO them:

Over the past few years, and especially over the past 6 months, I’ve done a TON of reminiscing about high school. (And NOT because it was “the best time of my life”, but because I was very settled and felt very “aligned” when I was in high school).

In high school, I was ALWAYS reading, always learning.  I didn’t drink at all, I had a close group of friends but that was kinda it.  I did a ton of creative stuff- and I went to bed super early every night.

And for the past 4 years in NYC- I did a lot of partying, drinking WAY more than I truly wanted to, spent time with people who only wanted to party and gossip- and as you can imagine- I sunk lower and lower into the saddest version of me.

I didn’t really read or learn anything new, my creativity and inspiration were at an all time low… it was bad news bears y’all.

All because I was afraid of being rejected or just not “cool”.

Have you done anything like this? “Followed the crowd” just to “fit in”?

Let’s try to change it up a bit.

Your steps:

Go back to any period in your life when you felt the happiest and ask yourself:  what were you doing in that time period?

What type of people did you hang out with? The artists? The nerds? The sports people? The bohemians?

I’m using those generally super broad classifications because I want you to go back to get an idea of what your values were; to remember what was important to you before the world got in the way.

Pick two activities that you used to do that you loved and schedule them in sometime over the next week!

2. Find your people:

As I mentioned, over the past 4 years especially- I’ve spent a lot, a LOT, of time with people who just weren’t like me. And it freaking killed me guys.

I distinctly remember (haha, more like, it HAUNTS me) this group of people I used to hang out with through an ex-boyfriend who, everytime I spoke or said anything, would just stop talking and stare at me.

It literally made me CRINGE every time and it led to me doing and saying all of these weird things all of the time because I was so afraid they didn’t like me/thought I was weird/annoyed them…. etc. I was like this around them, always:

kristinwiig

And I remember I used to think like…. “Oh, it’s not a big deal, we’ll understand eachother better someday” and I thought that feeling- that cringe feeling- was something that I could easily just brush off.

But it wasn’t. When you consistently hang around with people- ANYONE- that makes you feel like you have to “tone it down” OR “be louder” or….. like, you feel like you have to censor yourself at ALL, you’re #1 hanging with the wrong crowd and #2 your self-esteem is going to suffer.

 I remember towards the end of that relationship- I was hanging out with a bunch of his friends and we were watching a movie- and I wanted to say something- but I stopped myself before I spoke and thought: “They don’t care, nothing I say matters to them anyways.”

That is awful and the wrong way to feel.

My beautiful reader- if you are ever in the presence of people who make you feel that way- excuse yourself, leave, and go take a walk to your favorite coffee shop/bookstore/and/or boutique and delete their number from your phone.

That is the wrong way to feel about people you spend time with.

This is truly one of the main reasons that I’ve created Heal Your Face With Food- because I wanted to find and help other people like me.

People who loved learning, holistic nutrition, people who want to grow personally and professionally in super healthy and powerful ways; people who love their bods.

If you’ve ever wondered about our community of people- we are growing and growing FAST.

When we ran an instagram challenge last month for some acne clearing recipes, I had people tag their #hyfwf pics.

Here are just a few of the 100+ pictures tagged on Instagram: Instapics

The reason these pics make me so happy is because I feel like I’ve “found my people”.

Your steps:

Ask yourself right now; with what group of people do I feel the most AT HOME with?

Like- you can be totally yourself with- don’t have to censor a thing- you can be loud/silly/funny/quirky and you’re loved and accepted exactly as you are? Start to move more and more towards this group of people.

And then ask yourself: where do I feel like I need to shrink and be smaller to fit in?

What group of people in my life make me feel almost… Embarrassed to be me? Start to distance yourself a bit to see how it feels. Do you feel lighter when you don’t have to be around them? That’s telling you something right there.

Schedule a coffee date with 1-2 people from the first group- the group that makes you feel deliciously and unapologetically YOU.

3. Move daily:

At first glance this advice may make you cringe, but listen my love.

I think (I hope!) that I give off a vibe of endless optimism, and that “anything can happen”.

But, when I tell you that there have been times in my life when I could barely pull myself out of bed (oh, like that time my house burned down…another day my loves) (or that time that that horrific thing happened when I was 14… another day my loves) I’m not kidding.

I’ve been knocked to my knees a few times in my life- only to then be kicked in the teeth (figuratively and literally at times).

There have been a few periods in my life when I could barely get out of bed because of 1 (or 10) major life events just crumbling around me.

But I started to realize a few years ago that by staying still when disaster hit, I was making things worse.

Because, there is alchemy in action.

Physical movement, dancing to techno music around your room,  running to train for a half marathon, yoga, kickboxing, tai chi… they all change your physical state.

When you’re depressed, you naturally have less of the “happy hormones” rolling around in your brain. But when you work out, endorphins and serotonin are released- which do wonders for your mood.

The key however, is finding movement that you LIKE and that feels good to you.

If you hate running- do NOT run. If yoga makes you want to scream with boredom, don’t go.

Your steps:

Pick 2 types of movement that you can do over the next week and schedule them into your calendar.

4. Ask for help:

Ok. I am including this in this list knowing full well that I am terrible at this step.

I literally believe that I should be able to handle every single thing in life all by myself.

For example, I (just now) got a bird out of my kitchen who had flown in through an open window- and this was after I re-caulked my bathtub all by myself…I must be super woman, right?

BUT, here’s the thing and I think this is majorly important for women to hear: you are not super woman. You do not have to be perfect. You CAN’T be perfect. It’s not possible.

I actually went out to dinner with a friend a few weeks ago and I was really struggling with a personal decision I’ve been trying to make lately- but of course- was carrying it all on my shoulders by myself.

However- this weight had become so big- and I was so confused and hurt and scared- that I ended up bursting into tears at a beautiful candlelit dinner outside on a patio in Brooklyn over bruschetta.

But- because I’ve been practicing just allowing myself to be vulnerable and also just allowing myself to be “imperfect” I ended up getting the most amazing, heartfelt and supportive advice from this friend.

She had insights that I had never considered and her perspective was invaluable.

But I had to ask.

Is there something that you’re struggling with right now that you need support for?

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Self esteem and acne- Day #6 of the #hyfwf acne clearing challenge

day6In day #6 of the #hyfwf acne clearing challenge, we’re gonna chat about self esteem and acne.

Today, we’re gonna do something a bit different with our acne clearing and I think it could be RUHLLY cool if we get a lot of people to participate.

Does having acne make you feel ashamed of your face?

I did for me. I know you may have read my old blog post, but I wanted to do something about it.

I know that when I had acne, I often let it kinda redefine my life a bit.

Here’s what to do:

1. Take out a big piece of paper and I want you to right down 20 different things that you’re awesome at. They could be super general and/or super unique to you. Pick things that you feel proud of,

2. Take one big piece of paper and write down 1 thing, and share on Instagram with me.

3. Share it as: @healyourfacewithfood is making me brag today, so here’s something #imawesomeat.

4. I want to help you understand and really KNOW that while acne may be something that you’re struggling with, it doesn’t DEFINE you.

5. I also want you to know how important it is to really celebrate yourself in a big way, every day. Acne can have such a HUGE impact on our self esteem and I don’t want you to feel that way.

We can NEVER, ever control what happens outside of ourselves, but we can always control what happens on the inside. For more info on that, head over to my scar story to hear a bit more:)

#imawesomeatit

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