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Wellness

Filtering by Tag: relationships

10 Easy Ways to Show Gratitude in your Relationship

Lisa Eberly

gratitude-relationship

'Tis the season for giving thanks! There's really no better time than November to remember to give thanks and gratitude for the countless people in your life for whom you're thankful. I put together this list (with the help of my handy-dandy boyfriend, Patryk!) to help you think of new, simple, easy ways to show the one you're with how grateful you are for them daily. 

1. Post it notes! My boyfriend and I always leave cute little post-it notes for the other to find throughout the day! I'll stick one on his work laptop to find later, or he'll put mine in my workbag. It always brightens my day and reminds me that he's thinking of me! (They say anything from "Love you!" to "Yep, I'm probably thinking about you, too." to "Go crush it in that meeting today!") They're wonderful. 

2. Make a toast. When we have dinner together, no matter how rushed or crazy it is in our home, we ALWAYS stop for a moment to toast to something. Even if it's just delivered pizza, we always toast. Our toast is either to each other, or something great that happened for one of us, or even just a moment to reflect on the progress of our relationship. It only takes 30 seconds, but feels so good to make the world stop turning for a moment to pause and reflect. 

3. Adding gratitude to our routine. He does things daily for me, I do things daily for him. That's how relationships work, give and take. He wakes up early to take our dog for a walk, I make us dinner. No matter how many days in a row this happens, we always are sure to still thank the other for it. Even if it's routine, never take it for granted. So, a simple 'thank you' and tight hug does wonders, no matter how many times it happens! 

4. Check each other out. I know this is silly, but you're attracted to your partner. Sometimes in relationships, it's easy to take that for granted. You see them every day, and sometimes you forget that you picked this human out of a crowd to be with them! Complimenting their appearance with give them an extra spring in their step and remind them how attracted you are to them. I call my boyfriend 'stud' or 'handsome' all the time, or will tell him how good he looks before he leaves for work in the morning. Always gives him a big smile!

5. Tiny gifts! Similar to postits, I love hiding tiny little gifts in my boyfriend's bag! A piece of his favorite chocolate, a little nick back he'd like, anything, really! It is so easy and simple to do -- I'm at the grocery store and his favorite candy is right by the register -- and has such a big impact! I remember after complaining about not having a good thermos for coffee, I was at work, opened my bag, and found this amazing thermos full of fresh coffee! He had put it in my bag when I wasn't looking! Something so easy to do brought me SO much happiness. 

6. Letters. Written letters are the most romantic and special thing you can do for someone (in my opinion, at least!). My boyfriend and I will write letters to each other to thank each other for something or to just tell each other how we feel. They are always so, so meaningful and special. They should be reserved for special things (we wrote them after traveling around Europe together, or after spending a weekend with my family out of town, or after getting our puppy), but are so very romantic. Hand writing your feelings are such a strong way to show appreciation and gratitude. 

7. Put yourself in the other's shoes. I know we hear this a lot, but it really can do wonders. If you're getting frustrated with your partner, just take a beat to imagine what they're thinking and going through. Sometimes I get frustrated when my boyfriend doesn't rinse the dishes before putting them in the dishwasher, but then I take a step back and think about his day and how tired he must be after work and how happy I am he does our dishes! Or, if I know he's extra tired in the morning after being up with our puppy, I'll jump to make the bed before he can help out just to do something nice. 

8. Personal time. No matter how much you love your partner, if you spend 24 hours a day with them it is nearly impossible to not take them for granted. Spending countless hours with someone else and not taking time for yourself can be toxic in relationships, and makes it difficult to appreciate everything your partner gives you. Taking some personal time to fulfill what you want and love to do allows you to come back to your partner appreciating your time with them and what they bring into your life so much more.

9. Listen, communicate, compromise. Disagreeing is almost inevitable in a long term relationship. However, the way in which you disagree with the other person can be greatly improved with some gratitude. By listening to their side of things without interrupting, clearly communicating your side, and finding a middle ground rather than a winner and loser, you're both able to show gratitude even when arguing! An example of this is when we were moving: he wanted a projector in our living room, I wanted a television. We each clearly articulated why we wanted what we did and listened to the other. We knew we needed one or the other so we tried out each option for a few days. We couldn't find a good spot to mount a TV, and the project actually ended up super cool. Neither one of us "lost," but rather we both "won" and now curl up with an awesome projector to watch movies.   

10. If you feel it, say it. Don't be afraid to share how you feel, no matter how vulnerable! Nobody has ever said, "Gross, he said 'I love you'!" or "Ugh she told me I'm amazing"!! If you're feeling something -- say it! They deserve to hear it and will trust and appreciate that you're always being open and honest with them. Additionally, telling them how you feel or reminding them of your feelings is a great way to show them how much they mean to you. 

Do you have any go-to actions to show your gratitude? Spill in the comments below! :) 

How to Mend a Broken Heart: the healthy way

Lisa Eberly

breakup-couple

The heart is a funny muscle. It's incredibly powerful, most definitely the strongest muscle in your body, yet can be easily broken, with some really sucky side effects. Did you know you can not only feel physical pain from a broken heart, but even have a real heart attack from one? Yikes. I'll skip that ride, thanks.

I'll admit, I'm a bit of a romantic. So, in my life I've been in love, been out of love, been crazy in love, and been hurt by love. Everything is about perspective, and if you are unlucky enough to have been hurt by love it really just means that you were lucky enough to be in love in the first place.

That's not really enough to make you feel better about it though. I've received a lot of emails about love and how to stay healthy when going through a break up, not letting it get the best of you and staying on your game through the process. So, I'm going to share how to handle a break up the right way -- by learning from not only my mistakes, but the ones society deems 'norm.'

Break ups seriously stink. They confuse you in all sorts of ways and make you feel a disconnect with not only your best friend (since your significant other really should be your best friend), but more importantly, yourself. Luckily, they happen in stages, and each stage can really make you better off -- if handled healthfully, that is. I've been through one heartbreaking break up, and this is what I learned. 

The 'OMG WTF JUST HAPPENED' Stage

What I wanted to do: Bawl like a baby in yoga pants eating all the carbs and chocolate I can get my hands on, curled up in a ball watching anything and everything with Ryan Gosling telling a girl he loves her.

What I actually did: Bawled like a baby in yoga pants eating bread dipped in chocolate pudding (yep, you heard me), curled up in a ball watching The Bachelor.

Right after a breakup, at least in my opinion, there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with letting it hit you in a horribly cliche, chocolate-filled manner. As long as this phase doesn't last more than 24 hours, there's nothing unhealthy about it. You need to cry. You need to carbo load. You need to get it all out there. Hit the bottom of how sad you're going to let yourself be, even if it's at the bottom of a tissue box.

The Pushing Forward Phase

What I wanted to do: Pull the covers over my head. Not eat anything. Whine/vent/cry about him to every one of my friends and family members until they start ignoring my calls. Not study or write, but just lay in bed and stare at the ceiling thinking 'OMG what if that was it and I'm never going to be okay again?!' Spend all day on their Facebook/Twitter/Insta/etc. Basically, dwell.

What I actually did: I chose two people (my sister and best friend Meagan) to share my feelings with. I didn't whine, I shared. I know they have my back no matter what and would be there for me to push me forward, not keep me dwelling in the past. I forced myself to go to every class (even the one less than 12 hours after!), and keep up with writing daily. I hustled and tried to focus on working and new projects to get excited about. I just put my head down and made moves. I also filled up on healthy fats and protein so that even if food wasn't on my mind, I was getting all the important nutrients I needed (that can't be found in chocolate pudding). I cut out all social media relationships (to the best of my abilities...man SM can really make modern break ups a bummer!). I let myself be sad, but limited it. I told myself, 'You can only be sad in the shower, but once it's over, you're done being sad for today.' I know the shower is weird, but it's a solid 10-15 minutes which is a good time to limit yourself to.

The 'Oh wait, I'm actually totally better off' Phase

What I wanted to do: Think about all the good times and sort of shield out all the negatives/reasons I broke up with him in the first place.

What I actually did: Any time I thought of a good thing about him or our relationship, I thought of a bad one. I focused on the reasons I broke up with him and realized that it really was for the best. By doing this, you can focus on yourself, your future, and what you want out of a relationship, not what has just become comfortable to you. You'll realize that they really weren't the best fit for you, and that you're going to not only be okay without them, but you're going to be fucking amazing.

The Actually Being Okay Phase

What I wanted to do: I'm sure some of you can relate to the feeling of wanting that closure. That nail in the coffin. Maybe an email? A phone call? Coffee? Something -- anything -- to share with them that you're okay. In my case I had two emails written: one saying a general 'hey thanks for all the good times, we're really better off, best of luck...' and the other beginning with a nice 'F you. I can't believe I wasted my time...'

What I actually did: Deleted the emails. Some things are better left unsaid. And you know what? If you really are great (which I am sure all you healthy, amazing babes will be), you have no need or reason to share it with them. It's your life now, and only yours. I'm a firm believer in unconditional love, so even if I'm not in love anymore, I'll always care deeply about and appreciate that person, as they were an integral part of making me who I am today (and actually a very big motivator for this brand and my writing!). However, they have no place in my life anymore, so there's nothing to do but close the book and start a new one.

Now, years later, I am incredibly happy and healthy. As are they, and we are healthy and happily friends. 

I truly hope this helps you get through a tough time, and I can assure you that no matter what phase you're in, or no matter how hard it is, you will be 100% okay sooner than you think. It totally, totally sucks to be there, but it doesn't last forever. You're not going to be fine, you're going to be friggin' fantastic. Better than ever.