Be The Heroine in Your Life, Not The Victim

If we want change to happen, we can't just vent about it. There needs to be action.

Welcome to The Roundup, a Monday series featuring THE BEST OF in Mental Health + Motherhood + Fashion + Relationships


Gooooood Monday morning, everyone!

I just got off the phone with a fellow lady entrepreneur, and I forgot how good it feels to speak to someone who gets it. Someone who is as passionate about creating a fun and fulfilling life as I am. It was capital R Refreshing, and is giving me hope that there are! Likeminded people out there! You just gotta put yourself out there to find them. Good energy breeds more good energy. That’s your Feel Good reminder for today.

This issue talks about the importance of an energizing mindset, what lying to your kids may do to them down the road, why you should be wearing the color orange, and how to maintain a sense of self when you feel like you can’t escape your partner. I hope you enjoy.

Mental Health

Latest theory: Mindset is the problem and solution to all of life’s problems. Sort of like alcohol!

The mindset shift that made me stop acting like a victim of my life’s problems — aka kicked me in the ass to stop feeling sorry for myself and start taking responsibility for how my days were panning out, was (and is!) to lead with excitement instead of fear.

Instead of waking up in a panic thinking, “What do I have to do today?” I wake up calmly, my mind now trained to think, “What do I GET to do today?!”

Do you see the difference? When we act like our days are comprised of nothing but a series of tasks to mark off, it wears us the hell down. But! When we act like our days are fresh opportunities to do better, feel better, and move the needle closer to what we really want out of life, it is a GAME-CHANGER, friends. Game-changer.

The lesson: Stop feeling sorry for yourself and start living in the moment. Be the heroine in your life, not the victim. In essence, be Samantha, not Carrie, here.

Motherhood

Is lying to your kids ever alright? Experts think not, and I agree.

In an article from Mom.com, Is It Ever OK To Lie To Your Kids? various parenting authors and experts provide common scenarios where parents lie to their children (That bug is just sleeping!…Santa’s not going to come if you don’t pick up your toys…), and offer “truthful alternatives” that are simple for them to understand.

“Parents lie about death, divorce, disasters, and the list goes on — to protect their children — but kids are very perceptive and may end up not trusting what they say in the future," says Julia Cook, parenting expert and author.

The lesson: We should motivate instead of threaten, and explain things to our children as simple and straightforward as possible. Be it not wanting to go to the park (just say you don’t want to go to the park vs. telling them it’s closed), or telling them how the neighbor died, just give it to them straight.

Fashion

Spring has sprung and it feels almost too good to be true. After the hellscape of a year we’ve had, we all deserve a vacation, and we definitely deserve a damn good wardrobe.

Eileen Lee, founder of the portraiture Aura Aura, swears that wearing bright orange tones can help us get to a better emotional state. In the latest Spring issue of Marie Claire, Lee explains why we should incorporate more orange into our lives right now:

“Orange is about rolling with the punches. The color embodies spontaneity, creativity, and most significant, adaptability. Spring tends to be a season in which we are awakening from Winter, craving new experiences, and embracing spontaneity — all of which is very orange energy.”

The lesson: Wear orange to brighten your mental health spirits.

Relationships

In a recent article from The New Yorker, This is What Happens To Couples Under Stress, therapist, author and podcast host Esther Perel offers her wisdom on navigating romantic relationships under quarantine.

Needless to say, when I came across this on my Instagram feed, I stopped scrolling.

During the interview, writer Rachel Syme asked Perel the questions all of us want answers to, including how to fight with your partner, how to go on dates from home, what to do if your partner’s habits are driving you insane, and how to maintain a sense of self when you can’t escape each other.

Here are some juicy tidbits from the piece:

Syme: You’ve often pointed out that too much is expected of modern relationships: your partner is supposed to be your best friend and your lover and your psychotherapist and your child-care co-worker and, you know, your dishwasher.

Perel: There needs to be a separation between daytime and evening, week time and weekend, working time and idle time, family time and individual time. When we’re going to eat, are we going to reset the table or just push our work stuff away a little bit so we have room to put a plate down? I think that, more than ever, the routine that creates a structure, that brings a certain sense of order in a world that feels so chaotic and so unsure, is crucial. The ritual is what separates the ordinary and the mundane from something that becomes more elevated, more separated, more sacred.

On fighting, make a request, not a protest. Example:

Tell your partner, “I really wanted you to do this. I counted on you. Can we agree you’ll do it by twelve o’clock today?” Fight from a place of enlightened self-interest, as family therapist Terry Real says, not just to get it out of your system. To get it out of your system, call your friends. Vent as much as you want. And then go back to your partner and be strategic about it. Because you don’t just want to get it out of your system. You actually want a change.”

On keeping your sense of self when you’re both working from home:

Hypothetical scenario: Your husband has a newfound love for the banjo. You are happy he has found a therapeutic outlet he enjoys! But let’s be frank. Listening to the banjo gets annoying. How can you tell him to turn his country musician fantasy off without crushing his creative spirits?

Create a loose schedule/hard agreement where he only plays in the evenings, once you’ve gotten your work done. Ah the beauty of marriage — compromise.


Actionable Tip of the Week

Go on social media for inspirational purposes only.

Thank you for reading today!

Let me know what you want to read about next. Send me your burning questions on style, self-care, happiness, and your mid-life crises, and I will help you navigate. I’m here for you today and every day.

PS. Maybe if you wear an orange dress while you’re productive-fighting with your partner, you will have a relationship (and self!) epiphany. Good luck.

Thank you for being here. We are in life together. Give the gift of mental health support by letting your friends know about the Take A Sip membership. They can subscribe here. I so appreciate each and every one of you :)

Be you.

Xo, Ashley

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