Full Body Yoga Sesh (45 min-ish)

Start in cross legged position: close eyes Inhale shoulders up towards ears, exhale slowly release (Shoulder blades glide in together and down) 3x

Notice breath keep eyes closed forget to-do list or day so far

Deepen breath: inhale, exhale lengthen out

Open eyes, all fours spread palms and fingers wide

Cat-Cow: inhale up to cow, exhale to cat: make it your own!
-roll neck
-roll toes underneath to stretch
-move hips from side to side
-draw circles with rib cage

Curl toes under walk palms forward and send hips back into downward facing dog
-alternate bending knees in stretch both sides of body

Deep breath in long breath out

Bend knees slow walk up to front of mat to forward fold

Walk hands to one side of body alternate to other

Bring arms forward in front try hug nose to knees with straight legs (don’t lock knees)

Inhale slowly roll up through several breath cycles to mountain

Bring shoulders down and neck and head high bringing palms together (tadasana)

Inhale reach finger tips up over head, exhale down through midline

Inhale halfway lift, flat back, exhale to forward fold

Inhale palms wide to the side lift up to mountain arms up above head

Exhale bow through midline to forward fold

Widen fingers bring legs back into plank

Chaturanga to belly on the mat

Inhale cobra hands by breasts circle neck

Exhale release curl toes under transition to downward facing dog

Inhale in through nose exhale out through mouth

Inhale slide right leg up keep hips squared forward

Exhale bring right knee into to center, nose to knee

Inhale bring right leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring right knee forward through arms into runner’s lunge

Inhale up pivot left foot and pull up to warrior one

Hook thumbs together

Inhale open heart to sky, exhale send fingertips to the right (side body stretch)

Squeeze inner thighs towards midline, sink as low as possible into front knee

Inhale back to center, exhale to left

Inhale to center

Exhale down to runner’s lunge

Bring right leg back to plank

Shift weight forward and back to stretch feet

Chaturanga to cobra

Exhale to downward facing dog sending hips back

Drop right heel inhale slide left leg up high to three legged dog

Keep hips squared

Exhale bring left knee into to center, nose to knee

Inhale bring left leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring left knee forward through arms into runner’s lunge

Inhale up pivot right foot and pull up to warrior one

Hook thumbs together

Inhale open heart to sky, exhale send fingertips to the left (side body stretch)

Squeeze inner thighs towards midline, sink as low as possible into front left knee

Inhale back to center, exhale to right

Inhale to center

Exhale down to runner’s lunge

Bring left leg back to plank

Shift weight forward and back to stretch feet

Chaturanga down, inhale up to cobra

Exhale to downward facing dog sending hips back deep breath in, long exhale out

Bend knees generously, belly comes to the tops of the thighs look forward and exhale jump feet between hands

Inhale halfway lift, flat back, exhale soften and bow to forward fold

Inhale curl up to mountain spreading palms wide to either side of your body

Exhale back down to heart and down through midline

(Repeat)

Inhale halfway lift, exhale down

Inhale step or hop the feet back to plank

Exhale chaturanga down, inhale to cobra inhale open heart, exhale release, curl
toes exhale press up and back to downward dog

Inhale in through nose big exhale out through mouth

Exhale bring right knee in towards your right elbow, look forward

Inhale bring right leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring right knee in towards left elbow

Inhale bring right leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring right knee into to center, nose to knee

Inhale bring right leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring right knee forward through arms into runner’s lunge

Inhale up pivot left foot and pull up to warrior one

Inhale, exhale

Inhale carve a line with your nose look up between your hands

Keep heart open and head up as you bring hands to waist

Straighten front leg

Keep a flat back, inhale in exhale bowing forward don’t let it round

Exhale release, round spine, fingertips come to mat, nose to knee

Walk fingertips back

Inhale lift front foot up with heel to the mat

Exhale release

Bring hands to waist

Inhale rise up, bend front knee and return to warrior one, one breath

Drop right arm under left, bring palms together Garundasana, inhale lift up, head facing ceiling

Exhale down

Unravel, inhale arms up exhale release to runner’s lunge then to plank

Chaturanga down and inhale up to cobra, exhale to downward dog

Inhale in through nose big exhale out through mouth

Inhale drop right heel, bring left leg up, bend knee, stack hips

Exhale bring left knee in towards your left elbow, look forward

Inhale bring left leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring left knee in towards right elbow

Inhale bring left leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring left knee into to center, nose to knee

Inhale bring left leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring left knee forward through arms into runner’s lunge

Inhale up pivot right foot and pull up to warrior one

Inhale, exhale

Inhale carve a line with your nose look up between your hands

Keep heart open and head up as you bring hands to waist

Straighten front leg

Keep a flat back, inhale in exhale bowing forward don’t let it round

Exhale release, round spine, fingertips come to mat, nose to knee

Walk fingertips back a little

Inhale lift front foot up with heel to the mat

Exhale release

Bring hands to waist

Inhale rise up, bend front knee and return to warrior one

Inhale exhale then drop right arm under left, bring palms together Garundasana,
inhale lift up, head facing ceiling

Exhale down

Unravel, inhale arms up exhale release to runner’s lunge then to plank

Chaturanga down and inhale up to cobra, exhale to downward dog

Bend knees bring stomach to thighs look up and jump feet between hands to
forward fold

Inhale halfway lift, exhale soften and bow

Inhale roll up to mountain and bring hands to center in prayer

Inhale reach up, exhale dive forward

Inhale halfway lift, exhale bow to forward fold

Hop legs back to plank

Vinyasa to downward dog

Inhale slide right leg up bend knee, stack hips

Exhale bring right knee in towards your right elbow

Inhale bring right leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring right knee in towards left elbow

Inhale bring right leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring right knee into to center, nose to knee

Inhale bring right leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring right knee forward through arms into runner’s lunge

Inhale up pivot left foot and spiral move up and into warrior two

Deep breath in, reach forward up and back right hand overhead like a ballerina,
left hand slides down left leg

Inhale extend through right fingertips exhale extend all the way to extended side angle

Rest right elbow near right knee send left arm high and overhead

Bottom ribcage up toward sky

If you want to be more challenging you can extend your right arm down, right hand on mat

Inhale spiral heart up to the sky

Exhale pivot down to runner’s lunge

Plant palms, vinyasa to downward dog

Drop right heel inhale slide left leg up high, bend knee, stack hips

Exhale bring left knee in towards your left elbow

Inhale bring left leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring left knee in towards right elbow

Inhale bring left leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring left knee into to center, nose to knee

Inhale bring left leg back up to three legged dog

Exhale bring left knee forward through arms into runner’s lunge

Inhale up pivot right foot and spiral up into warrior two

Deep breath in, reach forward up and back left hand overhead like a ballerina, right hand slides down right leg

Inhale extend through left fingertips exhale extend all the way to extended side angle

Rest left elbow near left knee send right arm high and overhead

Bottom ribcage up toward sky

If you want to be more challenging you can extend your left arm down, left hand on mat

Inhale spiral heart up to the sky

Exhale pivot down to runner’s lunge

Plant palms, vinyasa to downward dog

From downward facing dog, slowly lower knees

Send hips back into child’s pose

Inhale rise up to hands and knees, exhale

Inhale up into plank, exhale turn legs sideways to the right stack feet right over left

Inhale Right arm opens up creating a straight line from left hand on the mat to the right hand in the air

Or extend right hand forward creating a line from feet to right fingertips
Feeling tough you can lift leg or come into tree pose

On exhale collapse down

Go to downward dog, lower to knees take it to the left side

(Repeat on left side)

Downward dog inhale and exhale fully, lower knees, extend back into child’s pose

Rest forehead down, send fingertips back, relax shoulders

Roll up transition to flat back

Tale palms to knees open knees wide

Relax shoulders and elbows down, close eyes

Feel free to rock back and forth

Slide hands grab inside or outside arches of feet

Bring soles to sky into happy baby

Bring legs down flat, extend arms up and over head

Walk heels to bottom left edge of mat and shimmy arms over to top left edge

Left hand grabs right wrist and right leg over left

Center yourself

Walk heels to bottom right edge of mat and shimmy arms over to top right edge

Right hand grabs left wrist and left leg over right

Find your breath

Press palms into floor

Hug knees to chest

Bring knees floor on the right, then left and alternate massaging back

Bring center, slide toes down to Shavasana

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I Relate to This Article SO HARD

Giving Up the Bottle: What 6 Years of Zero Alcohol can Do for You.

When You Discover Your Guy Friends Suck Just Like the Rest of Them

so this past saturday night started off badly because all my girlfriends went into manhattan to go out and i couldn’t because i am not 21 for another month. it’s frustrating because i am so damn close and i don’t even drink! anyways, instead i stayed around campus and hung out with some of my close guy friends.

i like these guys because they are kind of nerdy, they don’t seem to feel the need to impress anyone, they aren’t very attractive and they are unapologetic for who they are. up until saturday, they seemed different from the rest and made me feel welcome, appreciated, and good about myself in general. the night started off normal, we hung out, smoked a little weed, nothing out of the ordinary. but then this asshole frank came and the vibe just went from good to fucking awful.

i guess because i was the only girl there and there were four guys they thought “there’s not that many girls around, and natalie is cool, we can turn off our filters.” they started talking about other girls in front of me in the most disgusting and vulgar way. i was grossed out, felt disrespected, but mostly i was disappointed in them. i probably shouldn’t of been surprised and of course it isn’t the first time that has happened to me, but i thought they were different. i thought, “damn what do they say about me when i am not around?” ugh it was fucking awful. i do not even want to get into detail.

they kept it up THE WHOLE NIGHT. they even saw a girl wearing a very revealing outfit at the bar and said “hey natalie, you should wear stuff like that more often” i said it really isn’t my style, and one of them said, “you’re right, she’s not leaving much to the imagination.” another one told me “you smell like weed, you’re probably not going to hook up with anyone tonight.” like fuck you, you are all pot smokers, i smoked it with you, but because i am a girl i can’t smell like it and you can? i got so mad i went home without saying anything and was fuming.

i ended the night angrily eating ice cream and fell asleep watching mad men.

today it has consistently been bothering me and i’m not sure why. i guess because i know now that my guy friends suck.

 

 

Current Thoughts

so far this semster i have been very depressed. i have been feeling alone and so unlike myself. i had my first suicidal thoughts since before i stopped drinking alcohol. my immediate thought was “oh shit, that can’t be good. gotta figure that out.” but what is funny is that the first time i felt this way only a few years ago, i was younger, less mature and i was like “omg this is it. there is no way out. life isn’t worth living, woe is me” but this time, when i had that first thought of suicide, i thought “well something isn’t working. it’s time to go to the doctor and figure it out so i can get back to feeling normal.” rather than feeling sorry for myself and letting the depression fester within me like i would’ve done before. i realized this is a problem i will struggle with for the rest of my life and i just need to take care of it so that it doesn’t distract my goals, ambitions, and my happiness that i know is there. i am a totally ambitious, happy, friendly and caring person. depression takes away from all of that. and i will not let it.  

i went home to maryland thursday night. friday morning, i went to see my doctor and he decided to prescribe me half a bar of xanax a day to finally control my anxiety. that combined with the other two anti-depressants that i am taking should help. if not, i will be going back in six weeks to figure it out again.

later on friday, i decided to go see my best friend molly in salisbury, maryland. i hadn’t seen her since before i left for africa in early january. when i saw her, it was like all that time in between melted away. i have so much love in my heart for her and seeing her. after the semester i have had so far, made all the loneliness i have been feeling seem absurd. i am never alone. seeing her was so incredibly important for me at the time, and i don’t think she’ll ever know how just being around her, and talking how we always do, helped me so much. she is truly the one person outside my family that makes me feel loved. i never feel judged. i feel cared for, i feel supported and i feel good about myself as a result.

seeing my parents also made me feel a million times better. they work so hard to give us all the opportunities in the world, and i appreciate them so much. i don’t hide anything from them, really. they know just what to say to make me feel like everything is going to be okay. they definitely will never know how much i love them and how thankful i am for them, because it is ridiculous. yesterday morning i was riding in the car with my mom we talked about how we need to think about how amazing life is going to be in the future more often. there are so many more places to see and things to learn. more importantly, there are so many people we have yet to meet that are going to join our family and we are going to love them all. us four kids are most likely all going to get married, bring in four new people, and our children will make the family even bigger. we talked about how we can’t wait to meet, get to know, and love them all.

thinking that way makes every annoying thing in life now seem ridiculous. yes there is time between now and when our family will start to grow, but it makes me not wanna sweat all the small stuff that has been bothering me lately because it is just so unimportant in the grand scheme of things.

it also makes me feel absolutely insane to consider suicide.

why would i want to miss all of what is coming?

anyways, this past weekend was super crucial for me. i am always adamant about mapping my future and creating a good life for myself, but i have had such a hard time looking forward to it, or being excited about the hard work i have done and what it will bring to me later.

now i am nothing but excited about life.

mistakes and insecurities

alcohol is my enemy. for two full years it fully consumed me. it was all i talked about, it was all i did for fun, and it was what defined me. after my abusive relationship of nearly two years, i turned to alcohol. i partied every weekend my senior year of high school. i constantly lied to my parents and told them i was going to a sleepover when really i would pick up a bunch of friends, drive to university of maryland, and get hammered at a fraternity party. the next morning i would most likely wake up in some random guy’s bed.

because my parents made me drive everywhere, i am ashamed to admit that i would drink and drive. i’d go to a party, drink a little, go to another party, drink some more, and go to a third. the whole time people would convince me i was okay to drive, most likely because they wanted to get to that next party too.

the alcohol made me feel sexy. i would flirt my ass off with any guy that paid any attention to me. it made me easy, it made me lose all respect for myself and my body. i would let any guy inside me.

i was known as the party girl at my high school. the girl that knew about all the parties every weekend, and the girl you would most likely see drunk and making out with some guy in a corner of a basement party, red cup in hand.

if for some strange reason i didn’t go out for a weekend my fomo was obscene. i felt like a loser if i didn’t make it out. it was pathetic. all of my friends were only friends i drank with. i had one or maybe two real friends, but hundreds of fake friends. i’d meet girlfriends at parties, have drunken heart to hearts when we peed with each other in the bathroom, and would go out together the following weekend. i know all of those girls talked shit about me, but i didn’t care. i had someone to go out with.

the alcohol numbed me from the depression. it was the only thing that would melt that layer of mud-like sadness off me, even if it was only just a few hours. then again, maybe not because i tried to kill myself twice while drunk, which i barely remember.

when i hit rock bottom, it became a question of whether i should choose alcohol (a substance that made me look cool and cause me to throw all sense of moderation out the window) or my happiness.

because i am not an idiot, i chose happiness. i knew that i was going down an awful path because alcoholism runs on both sides of my family. i was showing every early red flag possible. i cut off alcohol after ruining christmas for my family in 2014 (worst year of my life). prior to that night, i didn’t think i had a problem at all. alcohol turned me into something i wasn’t. i became a pathological liar (to my family and myself), manipulative, and slutty. i tore my family apart that christmas, and i still haven’t had a drink since then.

my sisters took about 4 months to forgive me. my parents forgave me right away (they were more worried than mad). my first semester at fordham was full of guilt, but, surprisingly, not depression.

without alcohol, that layer of mud-like sadness melted right off. my mind became super clear. i set goals for myself, joined clubs, figured out my major, picked my hobbies right back up, and became my silly, care-free, positive self again. my mother said that it was like i went away for two years and finally came back.

sure it was hard at first, but i began to love myself and respect myself again.

i dropped all my toxic friends and made friends with people who made me feel good about myself and made me feel special.

i started recognizing the wonderful parts of life that i was blind to before.

i finally became proud of myself and so did my family.

alcohol took all of that away from me for two years.

this is why i’ll never drink alcohol ever again.

 

“the campaigner”

because i have been super bored today i decided to take the myers briggs personality test. it’s pretty insane how spot on it is.

type: enfp “the campaigner”

“it doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. i want to know what you ache for – and if you dare, to dream of meeting your heart’s longing. it doesn’t interest me how old you are. i want to know if you will risk looking like a fool – for love – for your dreams – for the adventure of being alive.” -oriah mountain dreamer

true free spirit, life of the party, less interested in sheer excitement/pleasure of the moment than enjoying the social/emotional connections they make with others

charming

independent

energetic

compassionate

craver of creativity & freedom

wanderlust & exploration

7% of the population are enfp (extraverted, intuitive, feeling, perceiving)

demonstrative & spontaneous, intrigued & distracted by new friends/acquaintances

procrastination & distraction, strong values & viewpoints, short attention span & emotionally needy

tells funny stories, global learner, energized by being around people, ability to make strangers feel like old friends, deep feelings can cause hasty/dangerous decisions

perfect dogs: german short-haired pointer, beagle

sociable people-pleaser

-> shaped by intuition

-> curious/energetic

-> view life as a big, complex puzzle/everything is connected

-> always looking for that deeper meaning

impatience, empathy, sensitivity to others

knows how to relax, connect emotionally with others

strengths: curiosity, observation, energy/enthusiasm, communication, relaxation, friendliness

weaknesses: practicality, focus, overthinking, stress, emotion, independence to a fault

warm, excited, passionate, alluring to others, sexually expressive

perfectionistic, enjoys well-placed compliments

explorer of new ideas, improvements, fantasize about future possibilities

often disappointed by friends. puts whole heart into friendships and expects the same in return.

ideal man that…. can handle excitement, occasional neediness, emotional ups & downs, reciprocates excitement & devotion, must be able to share ideas, listen, talk about life,

-> mutual exploration, imagination, connection needed