Why Quitting my Job Helped me Lose Weight

I am not, what one would call, the healthiest of beings. I do eat a pescetarian diet out of medical necessity, but beyond that I am probably one of the least healthy people I know. I’m a Carb Queen, Keto’s existence makes me sad, and I make no apologies.

Now before I get into the nitty gritty, I’m not telling you that quitting your job is the insta-cure for losing 100 lbs, because I didn’t lose 100 lbs – I didn’t even lose 50 lbs. I did however lose many inches and some decent poundage in the 30 days after I left, because by quitting my job: I changed.

Photo courtesy of StockSnap.io via Oluwasen Duncan

Let’s take some responsibility here as I explain my reasons:

  1. I cope by being an emotional eater. I eat when I’m happy, I eat when I’m angry, I eat when I’m stressed, I eat when I’m sad, and so on and so forth. Now, the job I used to have could make me feel all of these emotions within a 60 minute time span. As an effect of that, I ate all the time. If I didn’t have food at my desk, people were bringing food to me. I was even known in the office as “the food bully” (an affectionate term, I swear) because I could guilt people into getting me food.
  2. Cortisol was running through my veins almost constantly. When you are at a constant state of stress, cortisol runs through you 24/7. This causes you to feel hungry when you’re not, slow your metabolism, skyrocket your blood pressure, and increase your heart rate. Therefore, I was eating more, my body was holding onto the food for dear life, and I felt drained almost constantly…which turned me to eating sugar to “wake me up”.
  3. I didn’t take responsibility for my mornings. What I mean by this is that I was not getting out of bed at 6 AM when I actually naturally woke up – I’d roll over and moan and groan about having to get up, and would just lay there. Why? I didn’t want to go to work, because I disliked who I was there, and I didn’t enjoy the stress that it caused me. Now that I work freelance and started my own business, my mornings are my own and I am excited about the day. I get up, turn the kettle on, open the curtains to see the beautiful sunshine, and get to work on my own time table.
  4. I was lazy. Yuppers, I said it. I was lazy any time I was not at work. Why? I gave everything to my job, 110% every single day, when I wasn’t at work I didn’t have anything else left to give. I truly do wish that I was the extrovert that I was when I was in my younger years, but I’m not anymore, and being around people (some of whom were causing me constant stress) for 9 hours everyday exhausted me. So, when I got home, I wanted to eat a pizza on the couch, drink a vodka lemonade, and then go to bed. Which leads me to my next reason on the list…
  5. I haven’t drank since I quit my job. I was not a drinker, due to medical reasons, before I started my job, and I really wasn’t up until the last year I was there. However, once that last year hit, it was a daily occurrence. In the month I haven’t been there, I’ve had one drink and that’s only because family came to town.
  6. I didn’t take responsibility for my stress. Yes, that’s right, you heard (read?) me. I could have left at any time, and in truth I stayed too long. I didn’t leave because I was scared, lazy, and even though I was sad, I was comfortable in the routine of it all. No one forced me to stay at that job except for myself. Once I owned up to that after leaving, I felt invincible, and the need to eat myself to comfort just sort of went away.

What I hope you take away from this post is that I was the reason I lost weight, and I was also the reason I had gained the weight. A lot of us like to put blame on others, because it’s easier that way. I think that truly, deep down, we know that we shelter at least some of that responsibility and it scares us.

The only person who can change anything in your life is you. Once you acknowledge, accept, and live that truth, your life will change for the better. I promise.

Photo courtesy of StockSnap.io via Helena Lopes

Spiritual Journeys: Why They’re Important and What I Believe

At some point, we have all questioned what we believe in; if we never questioned what we believed in, we would have blind faith for our entire life, which I truly believe no higher power would want us to have. Whatever religion you believe in, all religions can agree that humans have free will for a reason.

I have always felt conflicted about being ‘religious’ in my life, instead referring to myself as ‘spiritual’ when allowed to use the term. I am a ‘split brain’ thinker – I’m a Gemini, blame the Gemini – I need fact, I need to be able to prove something, but even more so, I need something that is believable, I need something that I can soar in, I need something that I can emotionally connect with. Again, Gemini.

Photo Courtesy of Garon Piceli

What I’ve found throughout my journey of faith, mental health, happiness and spirituality, is that no one religion fits me. In an effort to find where I belong spiritually, I’ve created a list of my beliefs.

I believe there is a Higher Power

I believe there is a higher power, God – if you will, that has helped set you in on a path for life before you’re ever even born. (S)He has created you with purpose, and puts you on Earth to do better, be better, and learn lessons to evolve.

I believe in Reincarnation

I believe in Past Lives. I do not believe in the phrase “you only live once”, although I – like almost all Western Peoples – use it as an excuse for my choice or behavior when I do something out of the norm. I don’t necessarily believe in Past Lives in the way of the Buddhist or Hindu tradition, though. I believe that when you die, you go to the afterlife to be with family and enjoy happiness with God, and when you so choose, you come back. Or, if you’ve done something against humanity (such as, premeditated murder), you’re sent right back, to try to atone for what you’ve done.

I believe God is Kind and Just

I do not believe that the only way into Heaven is by accepting Jesus Christ as your Savior. Wow, it’s taken me years to even get to a point where I can type that out, put it out somewhere publicly, and not feel immense shame by saying so. Let me explain here, though, before you burn me at the stake. I’m not saying that Jesus is not God’s son – don’t misinterpret me. I am saying that I don’t think that God or Jesus would ever deny someone entry solely based on that fact. This belief has stemmed from me growing up with Jewish and Agnostic friends who have been more of a blessing to this world than a lot of Christians I’ve met, and I refuse to believe that these wonderful people wouldn’t be allowed to reunite with their loved ones simply because they didn’t worship Jesus; I don’t think God or Jesus is that selfish or cruel.

I believe in Psychics, Mediums, Reiki, and more

I do believe that Psychics and Mediums can speak with the deceased, and I believe that Reiki Master’s can change, absorb, and redirect energy in a way to help heal your soul.

I believe in Kindness

I believe that if you are a good person, do well, and support others, you will be allowed to live a peaceful afterlife regardless of religious affiliation.

Photo Courtesy of David McBee

I believe we are all Connected to Earth

I believe that we are all connected to the Earth, it’s beings, and it’s landscapes. We are to respect what has been created and celebrate what is given to use by Earth.

I believe in Asian and Native ‘Ancestor Worship’

In these cultures, forms of Ancestor Worship are present. What portions of Ancestor Worship that I would like to practice, are Ofrendas and 제사 (Jesa). Personally, I find it incredibly rude to our elders and ancestors that people in most Western cultures do not practice some form of remembrance or ritual in their honor. I am very invested in my genealogy and learning about my ancestors, and I believe that I should honor them as often as I am allowed.

I believe that we have more Control than we think

While I believe in Fate, to a certain point, I also believe that we have more control than we give ourselves credit for. We can manifest positivity and negativity.

I believe Abrahamic Hell is Real

I believe that Hell, as told by the Abrahamic religions, is real. I believe that demons reside there and that the Devil does too. Now, where I disagree on it, is that I don’t believe humans end up there. I honestly think that when “bad people” die, they are not allowed to move on and are instead stuck on Earth as ghosts for eternity, or they are allowed to move on but instead experience a karmic justice by living a miserable life in their next life cycle.

So what’s the point?…

I feel strongly that I have had 3 “life phases” so far in my life, which would make sense given that I’m in my late 20’s. I feel that each of these phases have changed who I am, what I believe, and what course I am on. Exposure to all different types of people, beliefs, and cultures throughout my life have added or changed views that I’ve held.

This shows that life itself is a spiritual journey. Our entire life we are supposed to grow, learn, and adopt practices so that we can include them in our lives. Spiritual journeys are incredibly important so that you can understand life, your purpose, and enjoy everything that has been given to you in this life.

But enough about me…what are your beliefs? What do you practice?

It’s OK to be a Financial Hypocrite

I’m sure you’re wondering why I’m saying that it’s okay to be a Financial Hypocrite…or at least I assume so, because you clicked the link and here you are.

Photo courtesy of JP Valery Photography

I know and everyone that tolerates me knows that I can get a little obsessive (#OCDftw) when it comes to finances. There is a reason for my madness though, and the reason is that I grew up in a lower middle class family who thought they were the Joneses; for example, we couldn’t afford food, but they’d have no issue going to Best Buy on a whim and charging a $1000 television for a room that no one uses. No child should have to learn from her mother how to field off collection companies when they call, and how to lie to family about how we “don’t go to check into cash”. I knew early on that I never wanted to be like that. It makes a little more sense now, right?

So here I am, this crazy financial person freaking out over saving pennies, and that’s been part of my identity; in a sense, I’ve been proud of it. This is who I’ve been for my entire adult life, until recently.

Recently, I’ve realized that my quality of life matters more than a paycheck.

Recently, I’ve discovered that I would be happier as a poor person than as a person who can buy whatever I want.

Those realizations are not easy for someone like me. These realizations are difficult and they are life-changing. You know what else they are? They’re worth the change.

So yes, it’s okay to be a “financial hypocrite”. Life gave you lemons and you had to make lemonade. So take a deep breath, realize that it’s okay to sometimes just have to charge it on a credit card, for your sanity.

Courtesy of Lisa Fotios Photography

It’s okay and everything will work out that it’s supposed to.

Growing Your Own Food: The Ultimate Food Savings

Photo Courtesy of Stocksnap.io via Brad Stallcup Photography

I’ll admit it…I don’t have the biggest green thumb. I’m also that person that hates grass but still, for some unknown reason, wants to live on a farm in the middle of nowhere; and hey, did I mention I’m like ‘My Girl‘ level allergic to to bees?

Photo courtesy of Stocksnap.io via Studio 7042

So yeah, this girl, has decided to grow her own food. This means I had to do a lot of researching…a lot. I had to find fruit trees that would grow indoors without the need to be pollinated by bees, and needed full sun, due to where I have to put them inside.

I went to my local Tractor Supply Co. and picked up two trees that I hope to feed me within the year. They deliver the trees to my house for free. I figured it’s worth spending $50 total on two trees, and be able to get years worth of fruit.

My research led me to:

  • Meyer Lemon Tree: The Meyer Lemon Tree is a common lemon tree – but I’d say mine will look more like a very large, tall lemon shrub.
  • LSU Purple Fig Tree: The LSU Purple Fig Tree will provide a lot of figs and grow to be almost as tall as my ceilings. Fig jam anyone? I’m starting to collect recipe for the figs now because I don’t know what else to use them on, so if you have anything, let a girl know!

I’m also looking at what food (vegetables, maybe some strawberries, garlic, herbs for tea?) I can grow in small containers to save money. If you have any ideas I’d appreciate it.

Photo courtesy of Stocksnap.io via Studio 7042

Have you grown your food indoors? What was your experience like?

Challenge Series: The Dishwasher Challenge

Challenge Series: The Challenge Series is a money saving challenge that I have found online, and challenge myself and you to do, in an effort to save money.

Photo Courtesy of StockSnap.io via WDnet Studio

It costs roughly $60 a year for the electricity usage of your dishwasher, if you use it daily. Did you know that the average dishwasher uses 6 gallons of water, per cycle? If you wash dishes everyday in your dishwasher, you’re also using 2,184 gallons each year. Lets not even get into how much gas you’re using to heat the water, if you have a hot water heater…

The Dishwasher Challenge is a challenge where you only wash dishes once a week. So, instead of using 2,184 gallons per year, you’d use 312 gallons.

Photo courtesy of StockSnap.io via Catt Liu

I have to be completely honest: I am nervous about this challenge for multiple reasons. I am nervous that my dishes sitting around will begin to stink; and, I am nervous how intentional I will have to become with my meal planning and my dish usage.

I will be keeping everyone up to date about this challenge: Will I see a difference on my electric bill? Will I see a difference on my gas bill? Will I see a difference in my water bill? I hope so. I hope it’s enough to make it a permanent change, and make all the work worth it.

Do you think you could hack it?

Sprint Reward Series: Free Class with Shaw Academy

Sprint Series: The Sprint Rewards Series will be similar to the Amazon Series, where, as long as you’re a Sprint Rewards user, I’m going to show you how to utilize the Sprint Rewards app to get free items, rewards, cash back, and enter to win vacations and cash prizes. Let me show you how to let your phone “pay for itself”.

Everyone wants something free, right? Well, if you’re a Sprint user like I am, you can get free items each week with the Sprint Rewards app. As someone who loves to get a deal, I take advantage of all of them.

Over the last year, I have received free gift cards to Coldstone Ice Creamery, Pizza Hut, iTunes, Amazon, Krispy Kreme, Lenovo, Papa Johns, and many, many more, all ranging from $2 to $10.

This week my opportunity was to redeem a coupon for a 4 week free course through Shaw Academy for a professional diploma – worth $49.95! You know your girl wasn’t turning down that opportunity. Shaw Academy has classes on everything from Financial Investing to Wedding Photography to Digital Marketing.

I chose the Professional Diploma for Social Media Marketing course. I was able to choose which times I take my class based on my schedule, and I’m very excited that I am going to get a professional diploma that I can add to my resume.

As always, a successful week in the land of the Sprint Rewards App. Along with the cheapest unlimited everything plan I’ve ever seen, I’m happy this business also rewards it’s customers.

Sprint Rewards Series: Free $50 Cash per line each year

Sprint Series: The Sprint Rewards Series will be similar to the Amazon Series, where, as long as you’re a Sprint Rewards user, I’m going to show you how to utilize the Sprint Rewards app to get free items, rewards, cash back, and enter to win vacations and cash prizes. Let me show you how to let your phone “pay for itself”.

Well, this post is actually little different. It’s not exclusively through the Sprint Rewards app, instead it’s a reward for being a Sprint user as well as a Credit Union member. As long as you belong to a credit union anywhere in the United States, you will get a yearly deposit of $50 into your credit union savings or checking account, courtesy of Sprint and Love My Credit Union. I have my auto loan through a credit union, so I use that account as my membership verification, and they pay $50/year, or $4.16/month to my car payment. It’s not a lot, but it’s $50 less I have to pay on my loan each year.

Also, this $50 per year? It’s not per account, it’s per line. So, on a family of four, you’re getting $200 back each year, not $50.

Sprint and Love My Credit Union also currently have a deal that if you don’t have Sprint, and you switch to them and get $200 for free in addition to the $50 yearly deposit, as well as getting the 3rd, 4th, and 5th lines added to your account for free.