Remembering our fallen heroes... Happy Memorial Day!
"You let time pass...You survive the days. You float like a rabid ghost through the weeks. You cry and wallow and lament and scratch your way back up through the months. And then one day you find yourself alone on a bench in the sun and you close your eyes and you lean your head back and you realize you're okay."
So, remember this... No matter how difficult things may seem sometimes, no matter what you're going through, there is always hope. Things will be okay... I am okay and you are okay. #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth
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Cosplayer: Enako [@enakorin]
Game: Genso Shin'iki -Link of Hearts-
..and I mean anyone, including yourself. Because you are enough. You are worthy.
And you sparkle all on your own.
Just rest for a little bit, it's okay.
It's Friday and you made it through the week... So whatever plans you have in the next 3 days, make sure you make time to take care of yourself. Have a great holiday weekend!! xo
A few more (long-winded) thoughts before #mentalhealthmonth ends. // For so long so much of my writing has expressed the troughs. Despite being a perfectionist, I've never wanted to be someone who only showed the highlights, the pretty parts, the things you want everyone to see on the outside. I've never wanted to write for the sake of relevancy, but rather, relate-ability. That somehow, somewhere someone would know they weren't alone.
Yet, there's been this fear of expressing ALL of the good, as if it would somehow disappear in an instant. And by doing so, it's often held me back from experiencing (and sharing) the highest emotions of joy.
Depression has held so much of my story in its grip, but that's not the one I want to keep telling. The one I want to keep telling is one of release; of surrender. One of wholeness, abundance, prosperity and peace. THAT'S the story and the life God has called me to.
Talking openly about depression matters because pain and sadness aren’t always fleeting emotions, or quick fixes for some - they’ve become entrenched as states of being. But you don't alleviate the disease by simply continuing to talk about the symptoms. You lift the fog by changing the conditions. There will never only be highs, but come and go as they may, I will use my voice to rejoice. The lows are what give everything room for redemption and create a cause for connection.
It's hard to feel whole until you first know what it means to be broken. Beautifully broken, fully alive, and wholly restored. And once you (continually) experience that restoration, you will be found to never be the same again. JOY is your true identity. Claim it, guard it with all your heart, and know where your help comes from.
🖤🖤🖤 #Hesinthewaiting #Hesneverfailing #gritandvirtue#nami #breakdepression#linkofhearts #talkmore#givegrace #discoveringwhole#todayisthedawn
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This little elephant charm... it's more than just a bracelet. It's a wearable piece designed to symbolize many things like, how we avoid talking about mental illness, and to remind us that mental illness, the "elephant in the room," will only remain an issue if we don't talk about it. It reminds us...you, me and everyone else - to talk about mental illness with love, understanding and compassion; and that there is hope, there is help and that you are never alone.
This bracelet will also help fund high school and university programs through the initiatives of @bringchange2mind, to encourage and engage students to reduce the stigma surrounding mental illness.
This elephant bracelet is meant to be a #symbolofhope. And with your help and support, we can all make it happen and make a difference. #TogetherWeStand#TogetherWeCan #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth
As we go on with #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth, let’s continue talking about #thegreenelephantintheroom, because the first step in addressing #mentalillness and fighting the stigma is talking about the elephant in the room.
"Elephant in the room” is an English metaphorical saying for an obvious truth that is being unaddressed. The expression also applies to an evident problem or risk that NO ONE wants to discuss…which inspired this campaign.
For every purchase of an elephant piece, we will donate 25% of the proceeds to @bringchange2mind, a nonprofit organization built to start a conversation about mental health, by creating PSA’s, and university and high school programs that engage students to reduce the stigma surrounding mental illness.
Hope you will join us in this movement and help us support the new high school programs of @bringchange2mind. #TogetherWeStand#TogetherWeCan .
Check out our elephant pieces and shop now by clicking the link in profile.
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Every morning is a new beginning. And if you have stumbled or fallen, let's take this opportunity to rise up and make the most of this new day.
So, here we go. Let's do this.
One step at a time.
One moment at a time.
You got this!
Today I choose acceptance.
When things get rough and I don't feel so well, I normally react by going through different phases, before I can let go and accept things. You know, I start with the usual crying-anger-resistance-resentment-frustration, and after going through that vicious cycle numerous times, it's only then I start to breathe and finally ease up.
I read this quote once and it says, "Don't try to understand everything. Sometimes, it's not meant to be understood, just accepted.".... And this is so true. Maybe, some things happen simply for a lesson to be learned. Or sometimes, we battle with an mental health issues or an illness and we question why. We may not understand it or we may not make sense of it nor know the reasons why, but if we just keep our faith and trust that life is happening and things are unfolding the way they're supposed to, then we can learn more and practice the art of acceptance.
So, today let's choose our truth, accept what simply is, let go of what was and let God do the rest. And I hope that you carry this through the week and days ahead, because you deserve to enjoy every moment and take each breath filled with love and grace. Happy Soulful Sunday! xo
Life is all about balance. You don't always need to be getting stuff done. Sometimes, it's perfectly okay, and absolutely necessary, to shut down, kick back and do nothing.
Kick back, relax, do nothing- and have a wonderful weekend.
PANELIST ANNOUNCEMENT: we’re over the moon to have elizabeth, founder of @linkofhearts, join us on stage for panels this year! elizabeth is one powerhouse women who is honest, vulnerable, and inspirational! after battling anxiety and depression for six years, she is now sharing her story with the intention to connect with people dealing with depression or anyone in need of inspiration. her mode of connection: #linkofhearts, a jewelry brand with a mission! throughout elizabeth’s own journey, she realized the power of wearing an inspiration message. and say, that wearing jewelry that had a message kept her going during her years of struggle. today, after championing to the other side of depression, elizabeth is creating jewelry and product that she hopes will help and inspire someone in need.
check out what they are doing over at @linkofhearts this month to bring awareness to mental health! it’s amazing!
the past twenty-four hours i’ve really been reminded of the never failing truth — WE’RE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER.
i posted on instagram last night a glimpse into my experience with depression— and, my gosh! i never could have imagined that it would spark so much within so many people.
after receiving messages from so many people, i felt like i should write a blog post — for the one person who may be out there that didn’t feel like they could or should write in — but wanted to say “me too!” or “i’m in the darkest hole of my life and don’t know how to get out!”
so, NOW ON THE BLOG: “getting to the other side of depression: my personal journey” and the 7 things i did as i champion to the other side. (link in bio 🏼) _
“you’re going to get through this. and when you do, you are going to be so much stronger. i know it hurts, i know it’s hard, i know you feel stuck — i’ve been there. but, God is good. he hasn’t left you. he hasn’t abandoned you. he hasn’t forgotten you. he hasn’t taken back his promises to you. they are still there. all of heaven is working on your behalf. there is light at the end of the tunnel. keep walking towards it. the shadow always proves the sunlight.” _
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"You don’t need to say anything. I just want you to be there. Please be there and help me feel that I am not alone in this. Your presence is all I ask for. Not your words, not anything else but your full presence-next to me, and that is enough. You don’t even need to give me any advice, because I won’t hear you. I won’t understand what you’re saying, because I am so consumed by my own thoughts and feelings. Darkness has overshadowed everything within me and you giving me advice on what to do next, makes me feel even more alone. So, if there’s one thing you can do for me…. Just please be there.”
I recently wrote an article for @gritandvirtue on #mentalhealth and I shared some ways on how you can help your loved ones living with depression. As I was writing it, I actually went back in time and put myself back in that position, when I was really in deep my #depression, #anxiety, and #bipolardisorder. I shared some things I secretly wanted to tell my own family and close friends back then… because just maybe, the same things are being wished for by your loved ones today dealing with their own battles. If so, maybe, you can do something about it now.
Head over to @gritandvirtue to read my full article (and enter the GIVEAWAY). I hope it helps you in some way, in case you have any loved ones battling with mental illness. xo
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"If you have the ability to love, love yourself first." -Bukowski
I am real and flawed and broken in places I didn't know were broken. I am also kind and gracious and do the best I can, every day, with what I have, where I am. Yet I still fall short of my own expectations. Being a human is hard sometimes. Being an empath makes it tougher still. Add in depression and some days feel utterly impossible. And yet.
And yet here I am. Pushing through and climbing onward and rebuilding the bones of my self out of the dust of the woman I used to be. The skins that I have shed.
I am a work in progress. I always have been. Lately that progress is painfully slow, and some days it's wholly absent. But I'm still here. And I suppose that's the important part. Kicking and fighting and learning how to love myself first.
The struggle is real, darlings. But the fight is - and has been - worth it. Despite it all.
Here's to another day on this rock. Another chance to breathe in and out and put one foot in front of the other and try - again - to do and to be and to become.
It may not seem so, but hang in there. Soon, the sun will rise again. And very soon, you will start to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Im on day 3 of this "down episode". I was not able to work today and my anxiety and weakness continued to worsen. But I am not giving up, I am holding on and I am praying, for my strength and for my patience. I will continue to rest and just be coz I know and I believe, soon, it will all be okay.
So, don't you dare give up in whatever it is you're going through. Hang on and just keep going. I am #hereforyou. xo
For #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth: I'm wearing @linkofhearts Green Elephant charmed necklace to promote discussion of #thegreenelephantintheroom, which is the subject of mental illness... •
Each of us have been impacted by mental illness in some way, yet so much shame is associated with it. As a psychiatrist, my daily goal is to support my patients & normalize the experience of being in treatment & the strength it takes to live with it and gain control of it. Having been in therapy for years myself, I know firsthand the courage it takes to sit in the patient's chair...and it's scary, it's nerve-wracking, it's emotional, it's exhausting, and it's liberating at the same time. Many people ask me how I'm able to be so open about my own struggles with anxiety. And the answer is simple -- I'm not ashamed of it. My anxiety is a part of me, but it doesn't control me...and with the help of my amazing therapists, I grew both personally & professionally to become the kick-a** psychiatrist that I am today . #mentalhealth#letstalkaboutit#linkofhearts
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We had beautiful, breezy, sunny days here in LA, but this weekend was rough for me as I felt gloomy and heavy inside. I encouraged myself to go out and enjoy the weekend, so my husband and I went somewhere, but soon enough, I wanted to go back home. I then decided to spend the afternoons out in our backyard hoping the sunshine would do me some good. I read for many hours and I did most of the things that normally help me feel better... from aromatherapy, to movie, brunch, and just being outside- but nothing worked this time. I did a lot of things but it was almost just mechanical. I felt tired, no energy and I didn't want to talk much (which I later had to explain to my husband why). My heart and my whole being just continued to feel heavy...
Tonight, I'm okay but I'm also NOT okay. I'm still not sure of how I feel. I ended up canceling some previous work engagements for tomorrow. I feel bad but I know I need to let myself rest and just go through this ride... the irony is, it's been crazy busy at work this #mentalhealthmonth, and here I am, having my own kind of episode. I felt the need to share with you all, so you know that this is all part of my journey, and a part of #linkofhearts story. The ups and downs continue and there are times like now, that I am not feeling okay... it can feel disappointing and frustrating, but I am also okay with that. I want you to know that I am not just here giving you inspirational quotes in most days. What I do is all part of my own healing as well. In this moment, I am choosing to rest and give myself love and grace during this rough time and just let myself be. Tomorrow is a new day, and I know this week, these next 7 days will give me time to get #stronger.
If you're going through a rough time right now, please know that I understand what you're going through. I get it. I know there aren't always the right words to say to make you feel better, but just know I am here, and you are not alone in this. Make sure you talk about it with someone, or even message me here if you want and I'll be here for you too. And remember, this new week and the next 7 days will also make you stronger. Sending you lots of love. xo
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To all you mamas out there... we salute you. Because we know that a mother's #braveheart...
Gets tired, but keeps going.
Worries, but is full of hope.
Can feel overwhelmed, but never quits... And overflows with selfless acts, unconditional love and compassion.
Today, we honor you and we thank you.
Happy Mother's Day!
And to all the women out there who are wishing, praying and waiting to conceive and be a mother, I am thinking of you and this message is for you too. Your undying strength, inspiring perseverance and endless compassion deserve to be honored just as much this Mother's Day. Because you know, in your heart, you are a mother and you embody a true mother's braveheart. #infertilityjourney#ttccommunity
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God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time; Enjoying one moment at a time; Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; Taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it; Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His Will; That I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with Him Forever in the next. Amen.
-The Serenity Prayer
It's not selfish to do what is best for you. And as this week comes to an end, make some time to take care of you. Do something that makes you happy, or do nothing at all.
This is your time. You do you, and enjoy it. Happy Friday! xo #selfcarematters because YOU matter.
#ourstoriesofhope by Joanne Encarnacion, @gofitjo.
"I didn’t want to live, no one understood me, my feelings or my thoughts, and I thought maybe just maybe the world would be better without the worthless girl I believed I was.
...It wasn’t until I recognized the affect that my depression and lack of self worth were affecting my daughters that I knew changes needed to be made. So I took control of my health, my life, and began a fitness journey. Exercise has been a lifesaver for me, its my antidepressant, my stress relieve. It is in those moments when I’m working out where I can regain a sense of self worth by challenging a side of me I never knew was there. In some ways I would envision my old self ripping apart as I worked out hard in the gym and the soreness I felt was a new me breaking through. I began to see myself as a work in progress and one I could be proud of..."
For #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth, we are sharing stories of people who have courageously shared their stories with us. Because we believe that sharing a story can be a powerful inspiration to someone.... Hope you find hope and strength within the honesty, courage and vulnerability of Joanne's story. You can read more on our blog, by going to bit.ly/2linkofhearts
Photo credit: @gofitjo
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Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much. [Helen Keller]
For #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth, I know I can't do this alone, so I am asking for your support. Please help me raise funds for @bringchange2mind, in order to create more high school programs that engage students in honest conversations, reducing the stigma surrounding mental illness.
For every purchase of an elephant piece, we will donate 25% of the proceeds to @bringchange2mind . Your purchase provides an opportunity for teenagers to openly talk about their feelings, their struggles and battles, with no shame. Together, we can help those who are in need of support. Together, we can make a difference.... together, we can continue talking about #thegreenelephantintheroom!
You can SHOP NOW through our link in profile. 🏼
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OMG!!! Elizabeth/@linkofhearts I got my #elephant bracelet today! I love it so much. I almost didn't want to open it because the packaging is so beautiful!
* #LinkOfHearts seeks to raise awareness for depression and spread hope one gift at a time! For #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth, LOH started their #thegreenelephantintheroom campaign! For every purchase of the elephant charm bracelet $5 is donated or every necklace $9 is donated to @bringchange2mind!
* #ElephantInTheRoom is a metaphorical saying for an obvious truth that is being unaddressed or that no one wants to talk about. And often time, mental illness is the elephant in the room. This elephant charm is meant to be a conversational piece that can encourage discussion about mental illness in a lighter, more comfortable manner.
For every purchase through Link Of Heart's shop on their website (linkofhearts.com), LOH gives a piece of jewelry to someone who is struggling and needs a bit of hope!
Check out their website and get an elephant bracelet or necklace for yourself! They also have other great pieces of jewelry if you're not into elephants! #warriorforhope
You and me. Today. Hand in hand.
Everything is going to be okay. In fact, it will be more than okay. It will be great... Because you got up. You're breathing. You showed up. And that is enough. But you don't have to do this alone. Let's do this together. xo #youarenotalone#mentalhealthawarenessmonth
Tag a friend and let them know you are doing this together.
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