How an #EpicLifeFail Can Help You Live Smarter

How an #EpicLifeFail Can Help You Live Smarter

It’s impossible to get older and wiser without doing something that leaves us with a regret. The word “regret” has a nasty connotation but it’s life experience we can glean wisdom from- or not. In my experience, the people I know who, “Live with no regrets!” are generally foolish, or bound and bent for trouble.

Learning from a regret takes away its power over our lives.  It can become a gift of foresight, intelligence, prudence, sound judgement, discernment, and create some good ol' gumption. 

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How to Use Essential Oils to Detox Your Life

How to Use Essential Oils to Detox Your Life

When it comes to health and beauty, the Bible is a handbook that is often overlooked. Essential oils are repeatedly mentioned in the Bible for uses such as aromatherapy, healing, cleansing and anointing. Even the Apostles used essential oils! When God created the Earth, He gave us everything we would need to live a healthy life as well as the tools to keep ourselves feeling fabulous while doing it!

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Better Beauty, The Christian Gal's Guide to Self-Care

Better Beauty, The Christian Gal's Guide to Self-Care

It can be damaging trying to get through a loved one's addiction without learning to practice self-care. If we aren't careful, we will come out much worse than how we went into it. The years of stress and worry will leave their marks behind and we will have little to show for our troubles. 

I'm sure you've heard it said that God can use anything for your good. But what is our responsibility in hard times? What part do we play in making sure that we are healthy, happy and whole? Is passing the buck and trusting God, enough?

Well... not completely. We've got to do our part!  

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Why We Need to Support a Loved One in their Mental Illness

Why We Need to Support a Loved One in their Mental Illness

Finding out you have a mental illness can be a tough pill to swallow. It can also provide relief and answers for those that have struggled with anxiety and depression.

“I’ve always felt like something in me is off, but it’s hard to explain”.

I remember hearing my husband speak those words to me a few times throughout the course of our marriage but I always brushed it off, “Everyone feels like that sometimes. I’m sure you’re fine” (I mean, we all have a little bit of crazy, right?!?).

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Hygge, Minimalism and the Art of Letting Go

Hygge, Minimalism and the Art of Letting Go

For quite a few years now, I have been learning more and more about minimalism. I’ll preempt this by saying that I’m not a true minimalist by any means however I’m also not a huge consumer and have no problem getting rid of what I, or my family, doesn’t need. 

 

My journey of “letting go” began with clothing long before minimalism was a “thing”. 

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"Tough love is a very fine line" [Interview] Behind the Drugs

"Tough love is a very fine line" [Interview] Behind the Drugs

Hello, I’m Jen Underwood, a freelance writer. My friend, Jessie, has struggled with addiction and agreed to let me interview her in order to help others understand addiction. In talking with her, I feel God taught me something as well. Addicts don't want to be seen as addicts but for who they are beyond the addiction. On the other hand, my friend does not see her worth as I see her. She is the kind of soul that others gravitate toward.

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What Panic Attacks Have Taught Me About Strength

What Panic Attacks Have Taught Me About Strength

Weakness. 

There is nothing I have ever experienced; not bullying, not divorce, not even addiction, that has made me feel more helpless than a panic attack. There is a moment where the waves of terror take over my body and hold my thoughts captive.

Though I know the panic attacks comes a resurgence of painful memories my body is the piece of me that loses control. In the midst of the attack, I can tell myself, “This isn’t real, it’s going to end, I will be able to breathe, everything is going to be okay” but I cannot convince my body to relax or find breath.

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Six Signs the Abuse in Your Marriage is Escalating

Six Signs the Abuse in Your Marriage is Escalating

One of the real dangers of staying in an abusive marriage is that abuse generally escalates. Boundaries are nudged, pushed, and eventually outright challenged so that you find yourself submitting to abuse that would once be unthinkable. Humans acclimate to a wide variety of situations, but in an abusive marriage, this adaptability comes eventually at a severe cost. The first time I truly realized I was in an abusive marriage was about nine years into the marriage. Before I used the word ‘abusive’, I generally used the word ‘controlling’. No one likes to face the fact that they are abused.

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(With God!) You Can Overcome Your History of Abuse

(With God!) You Can Overcome Your History of Abuse

I can remember sitting in a women's group hearing the testimony of another woman thinking to myself, "How did she know my story?" As she described the abuse she endured, I became uncomfortable in my seat. Part of me wanted to run out of the meeting and the other part of me felt slightly relieved to know that I was not alone. I had buried the sexual abuse that I had been subjected to and acted as though it had never happened. I often told myself that if I didn't remember it, then it didn't happen. That thinking, unfortunately, did more damage than good both mentally and emotionally.

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What Kind of Abuse is it? Five Traits of a Narcissist

What Kind of Abuse is it? Five Traits of a Narcissist

While it is tempting to equate all kinds of abuse as pretty much the same, narcissistic abuse has a few characteristics outside the boundaries of emotional abuse.  Obviously narcissistic abusers are emotionally abusive, but the goals of a narcissist are significantly different from those of a person who is emotionally abusive.  Knowing the difference is helpful.  Narcissistic abuse requires a different approach to recovery, though the healing path from any kind of abuse is difficult.  

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My First Panic Attack and the Day My Husband Left

My First Panic Attack and the Day My Husband Left

Everything was getting blurry. 

This wasn’t supposed to happen. 

My chest was so heavy. it felt like someone was crushing my chest. It was as if the hand of the enemy was pushing me down. 

I remembered once I had read that if you put your arms up over your head it will help you breath better. I put my arms up as high as I could and went down on my knees. No, it wasn’t helping. I stood up, arms reaching high, maybe I was supposed to be standing? No, that didn’t work either. I sat down, maybe I was supposed to be sitting? It seemed to be getting worse. 

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The Day the Lord Set Me Free from My Marriage

The Day the Lord Set Me Free from My Marriage

Some might think that title is scandalous.  I know that my own fear of divorce kept me from escaping a narcissistic abuser for fourteen years.  Now, seventeen years out from that disaster, my regrets center around not leaving far earlier.  I lived in a lot of denial for years.  One has to cultivate denial in order to survive, much less stay, in a marriage that was as abusive as mine.  And just how abusive it was, did not fully dawn on me until I disclosed, ten years later, details of the torment to my counselor.  The look of horror and grief on her face showed me just how far from normal my first marriage had strayed.

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Want to Know What My Most Important Boundaries Are? Here's One!

Want to Know What My Most Important Boundaries Are? Here's One!

Have you ever broken a boundary- with yourself? 

Tell me if this sounds like you, 

“Okay... today, I’m going to be awesome! I’m going to wake up early, eat something healthier than cereal, do my hair real nice, exercise, be a successful human being and rock my life”. 

And then morning comes. And your bed feels so nice. The covers are warm, you bring out an arm from your nestled cove and the air is cold! Zip! Retreat! 

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Five Things I Want to Share about Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Five Things I Want to Share about Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

When I was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), I was relieved that there was a name for my nightmare. Though, not all who have been through trauma and know the effects of it feel this way. My husband, who also suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, was not as pleased as I to receive his diagnosis. My proactive nature read my “label” and determined to do the work for resolution. My husband, however, said he was fine and had more of an, “I won’t think about it and therefore it won’t affect me” approach.

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If I Were the Devil

If I Were the Devil
“We know [for a fact] that we are of God, and the whole world [around us] lies in the power of the evil one [opposing God and His precepts].”
-1 John 5:19 (AMP)
“Gone are the days when it was safe for kids to ride their bikes outside unsupervised and come home when the street lights turn on…. things were different back then.”

Have you heard anyone say that recently? I’ve heard it way too many times. Yes, things were different. Before the technological era and the media frenzy that have taken over the world, things were simpler. I can totally see it. But evil is the same as it was when it first met with mankind in the Garden of Eden as it says in the book of Genesis. Is Satan “gaining ground” on us? No. I would say he takes two steps forward and three steps back. We just happen to live in a “two steps forward” era. 

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