Finding the Right Kind of Love Can Be Life-Changing

Finding love isn’t terribly difficult, but finding the right kind of love can be life-changing. We’ve all been in one of those relationships where things look so great on paper, and yeah, you get along, but there’s still something missing. You can’t quite put your finger on it, but deep down in your soul, you know it’s not enough…

This type of love ends up being the worst because you’re constantly trying to avoid that nagging feeling that something’s missing, which causes one to make excuses for negative feelings or bad treatment. At this point you might wonder if this is what true love is actually like? It’s definitely not.

When you finally find the right kind of love, you’ll know it. I used to laugh when my happily-coupled friends would give me the “when you know, you know” speech. I seriously thought it was a joke—until I knew. Being in love isn’t always enough, but being in the right kind of love is key.

So, what makes love right? This is something that varies from person-to-person, but I do believe that there are some general themes we, as a species, need to feel safe and happy.

What makes love the right kind of love?

When love is easy

Loving your partner is easy. You literally love every single thing about him, and you would never want him to change. Perfectly flowing and vibing with another person is unbelievably rare, and it is a definite sign of being in the right kind of love.

Feeling fulfilled

You wake up every morning not wanting anything more in life. Having this person by your side is all that you need. Nothing is missing. Nothing is lacking. Your heart is full.

Feeling safe

Sharing your life with someone you respect, value, and trust, allows you to feel safe. You know that you are there for one another, to care for and support each other. You feel a sense of stability that allows you the comfort to go out into the world and live your own life, but know you have a happy, positive life waiting for you at home too.

Reliability

Knowing that you can count on your other half is vital to the success of any relationship. If your partner is there when things go downhill, he’s a keeper.

Support 

No matter what happens, good or bad, your partner is by your side. This needs to be a two-way street, of course, but knowing that this person will be by your side through thick and thin, is incredible.

Openness

When you and your partner are able to speak freely about anything, all while knowing that the other will listen with open ears and an open-heart, is the epitome of healthy communication. She will hear you, and you two will engage in a discussion rather than a fight. This is gold.

You can be yourself

The beat part of being in a relationship is having those inside jokes. You can be super goofy and weird together, and it’s totally okay. You guys always have fun, even when you’re doing nothing. You want to do everything with her because things are more fun when she’s around. It really doesn’t get any better than that.

Teamwork

Not only is your partner your best friend, but you guys also make a great team. You two are a force to reckon with. No matter what life throws your way, you work together to move past it. Not only that, but you overcome barriers in a way that is supportive of one another, and has the others’ best interest at heart. Nothing can break the two of you…

Loyalty and honesty

You know that your partner will never do anything to break the trust and bond that you share. It’s deep-rooted in your soul, and there is no doubt in your mind that your partner will always be truthful and loyal. Having that peace of mind is priceless.

Loving selflessly

Last but not least, the love that you have for this person is different than any other love you’ve experienced. It’s selfless, it’s wholehearted, and it has no bounds, and it’s mutual. When you find someone who can love you just as much as you love them, if not more, it’s the ultimate blessing.

A love like this is meant to be cherished and nurtured. It is beautiful. It is patient. It is kind. It is life-changing. Treat it as best as you can. Love it like Kanye loves Kanye. And once you find it, don’t let it go…

love | life changing | relationships | support | trust

Still not sure you’ve got the right kind of love? Check out how travelling with your partner before tying the knot can help!

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xx,

Paula

Millennials and the Transition from Twenty to Thirty

The transition from twenty to thirty has proven to be rather special for millennials. Unlike previous generations, millennials have had ample time and opportunity to live out dreams and adventures. Although the desire to explore life still exists among those in their thirties, there is definitely a drastic shift in lifestyle between twenty and thirty. Whether it be the way millennials in their thirties socialize, make lifestyle choices, or love their partner, it is not nearly the same as being twenty.

I was definitely one of the millennials that had the opportunity to move away for college, travel, develop friendships that will last a lifetime, and really figure myself out. The way I lived when I was twenty is very different than the standard of living I desire now. It is possible that this is due to societal norms and expectations, but also, I think people grow out of certain things.

Growing out of things, or growing up has a lot to do with sense of self, the stability one creates, and maturity. Over that decade, each person is able to discover the direction in which they would like their life to go. Regardless of being single, or married, in a career, or in school, or living in your parents’ basement—we all make choices that allow us to best convey our values.

I believe that as a person, we remain the same. I am who I am, and my age will never change that. However, as I grow up the things that I find to be most important shift.

What the transition from twenty to thirty looks like…

Big dreams

The things we desire in our thirties are significantly different than those in our twenties. The dream is now owning a home, or starting a family. Again, this is a reflection of the life one envisions for themselves, but as we get older, the dreams get bigger and bigger—literally and figuratively.

Time and convenience

Thirty makes it much more difficult to find a reason to engage in an inconveniencing task. Those tedious, awful undertakings, like finding parking in LA, or waiting in line at the hottest “it” bar, can cause one to reconsider whether to pursue that activity or not. Time is of the utmost importance, and wasting that time is not the business.

Health

More than ever before, leading a healthy life in all aspects—mind, body, and soul—is a top priority. Having a burrito every day is no longer okay. Drinking your liver away every weekend is no longer okay. As you grow up, you realize that you only have one body—it’s beautiful, it is a gift, and it’s important to take care of it.

Balance

Balance is crucial to the success of any adult, whether twenty or thirty. Life pulls us in so many directions these days—not to mention, stress levels are higher than ever before. Finding balance in order to sustain wellness is pertinent. Meditate, stop answering work calls when you’re off the clock, get a massage every month—whatever it takes, find balance.

Fun

Ah, fun. The things that change the most. Currently, I enjoy staying in, taking my dog to the park, watching TV with babe, and going to bed at 10PM. In my previous life—my twenties—we would just be starting the night at 10PM. I look back and can’t even imagine how I used to keep up with that lifestyle. Regardless, I wouldn’t change a thing, past or present…

Graduation parties vs. wedding parties

Literally everyone and their mothers gets married around thirty. It’s so exciting to see my closest friends find their soulmates and begin a life together. Marriage is a pretty big deal, even though it may not seem like it. We’re not in college anymore, Toto…

Family

Spending time with family isn’t at the top of your list when you’re trying to figure out who you are, and where your place in the universe is. Twenties are meant for solo time. Thirties, however, are meant for rejoining the family dynamic—or creating a family of your own. Spending more time with your parents and siblings, really getting to know your nieces and nephews, and possibly having your own child, become such a substantial part of your life. It’s quite lovely…

The hott guy vs. the good guy

Choosing a partner is always a task, whether you’re in your twenties or thirties. The difference is, however, that what you’re looking for in a partner changes. You start to consider the long-term: Do you want the same things? Have the same values? Are you compatible? Do you enjoy the same activities? Do you like your partner’s family? All of these things become important. I mean, this is the rest of your life we’re talking about, not just a date to the school dance.

Yes, thirty seems to be more serious, but it’s also a time to cherish all that you have accomplished—you owe it to yourself to live the life that you want, no matter what others say…

millennials | growing up | transition | lifestyle |thirty | twenty

Feel like you’re missing out on all the things you used to do? Check out why it’s important to unplug…

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xx,

Paula

Get Healthy: How to Best Care for your Body

Having a healthy body is so important. There are so many campaigns running right now with a Love Your Body theme, and I adore them. I think these campaigns are providing many women and men with the courage and ability to feel comfortable in their own skin, regardless of shape, size, color, or ability.

Our bodies are a beautiful thing, and we should always be grateful for them. Yes, loving the way your body looks is crucial, but loving the way your body works is important too. The way in which our bodies function, move, and thrive is miraculous.

Think about it: our bodies are so complex, and can accomplish so much. From digesting food, to fighting off colds, to being able to chew and swallow, to running, jumping, stretching, and engaging in all the activities we love. They are just spectacular.

Due to working in the medical field, I have grown to appreciate my body more and more each day. I feel that as a young, spry person, I have taken my health and wellness for granted. Luckily, I have pulled away from this ideology and now truly value both the simple and complex things that my body can do.

It can be difficult to appreciate the “simple” things our body does like breathing, mobilizing limbs, or having our hearts beat into our chests, because those things seem so normal. Isn’t crazy to think that our lungs remember to breathe all on their own. It’s an automatic function, and it’s part of this beautiful system that keep us alive.

This system, however, is very intricate, and it can fall apart in an instant…

Having to watch patients struggle with the essentials of staying alive, such as breathing, has helped me see how important it is to take care of my body. I want to be healthy, I want to be strong, I want to appreciate my body each and every day. And I definitely want to dance the funky-chicken at my 97th birthday celebration.

I want to live. I want to thrive. And I want to experience all the joys of life while at my best health.

Here are the ways in which you can best care for your body:

1. Stop taking your health for granted 

As mentioned above, we take these “simple” functions for granted, but they keep us up and running. Every single part of your body has a purpose, and you should value and cherish that no matter what. Love your body for what it looks like, and for what it can do.

2. Eat well

Although this doesn’t mean that you always need to eat all organic, grass-fed food (although that would be ideal), energize your body with healthy food that has adequate nutrients. Eat fresh food. Cook at home so you know what ingredients are going into your body. Have a fridge packed full of veggies, fruits, yogurt, nuts, etc. Nourish your body, and it will work even harder for you.

3. Limit sugars and processed foods

This includes soda. Yes, I love that delicious bubbly too, but it’s really not the greatest thing for your body. Sugars are empty calories and have little to no health benefits.

Processed foods also contain lots of sodium, and typically have a ton of preservatives. Man-made chemicals are exactly that, man-made. Try to consume foods that are produced by the earth.

4. Exercise

Whether it’s every day or once a week, exercise. Allow your body to feel good and strong. Exercise is also great for your mental wellness, as it increases serotonin levels in the brain and can elevate your mood. Make sure to do something you enjoy. Running on a treadmill at the gym is not fun for me, so I go for a run outside instead. Again, whatever it may be, have fun!

5. Limit substance use

Hey, a cocktail or glass of wine now and then is totally fine. But remember that too much of anything isn’t healthy, especially alcohol or other drugs. While you may enjoy using recreationally, make sure that using doesn’t start to affect your health and/or ability to function and participate in daily tasks. If you happen to find that this is the case, for you or a friend, there are plenty of ways to get help.

6. Love your body

If you mentally love your body, you will have more reasons to care for your body. Each and every single person has been blessed with the body they were given. Yes, it’s a blessing. Love yourself, love your healthy body, and be comfortable in the skin that you’re in. The happier you are within yourself, the better care you can take of yourself.

YOU. ARE. PERFECT. JUST. THE. WAY. YOU. ARE.

7. Respect your body

Try not to put yourself down in front of others, or even when you’re alone. Remember that your body is a gift, and it provides you with a safe home. Both body and mind should be connected, so if you struggle with self-esteem, try to say three positive things about yourself each morning. Positive affirmations will help you mentally connect to your body, and also help you accept your body. Aim for a well-rounded love of your body and mind. You are worth it.

Ever have a health scare? Check out some tips on how to cope here.

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xx,

Paula

Minimalism: How to Cleanse Your Space

Ever feel overwhelmed in your space? Ever consider cleansing your life of unnecessary objects? Ever wonder what a life of minimalism would feel like? I definitely do.

I live in Los Angeles where housing costs are seriously a joke, so as you can imagine, my space is quite small. My home is a studio apartment, and always feel like the walls are closing in on me. Why, you might ask? Because closet space is limited, I have the tendency to buy a lot of things I don’t need, and finally, I haven’t been proactive in cleansing my space of things that are no longer useful.

When I was nearing my 30th birthday a few weeks ago, I realized that I just couldn’t live in a space that was literally consuming me. It felt like the things I owned were taking over, and I didn’t have any space to move around. How could the things I own now own me?

So I started to wonder, why do I need all these things? What would life be like if I only had the bare essentials? Would a physical cleanse help? Could a life of minimalism be what I needed?

This is how Project Closet Cleanse came about.

This was one of the best decisions I’ve made in my adult life. The overall process is still in the works, but starting on my walk-in closet literally changed three things: my perspective on my home, seeing how many things I actually have, and realizing how many things I don’t need anymore. 

Throughout the process, I utilized concepts taught by Marie Kondo. I took the time to go through each and every item, hold it in my hands and ask myself, as Marie recommends, “does this bring me joy?” I found this very helpful, and it assisted me in moving through the motions. Focusing on that philosophy of minimalism was definitely a key component…

Before starting Project Closet Cleanse, I was terrified. The results, however, provided me with so much relief. We had done so much work! Overall, it felt so great to know that I have options in the way in which I can utilize my space. I had enough room to be able to add or change things. My space was cleansed of everything negative, and it was now organized. This was the gift of all gifts, and I was so grateful.

With the positive impact of this significant change, both on my mental and physical wellness, I am now working on other parts of the apartment. I cannot wait to continue cleansing my life of things that are unwanted and unnecessary. And maybe decorate a bit!

Are you interested in cleansing your life?

Check out my method for Project Closet Cleanse:

1. Dedicate time

Dedicating a time will allow you to stick to making this change. Whether it’s 30 minutes each day, or a whole weekend, set time aside. It will make all of the difference, and you (hopefully) won’t have any distractions.

2. Have a plan

Before you start to throw things all over the place, make sure that you have a plan in place. Consider starting with a particular section, or a particular room. Regardless of where you begin your cleansing journey, plan out how you are going to attack your space. Start with one room, or even a section of that room.  Bottom line, don’t overwhelm yourself!

3. Disposal

As you’re separating all of your things, you need to decide what you plan to do with the items you are going to cleanse your space of. Will you utilize boxes, bags, or bins? Be sure to have them ready so you know how to separate your things. Will you donate? Recycle? Sell to a second-hand shop? Swap with friends? Whatever it is, think about it beforehand!

4. Does it bring you joy?

Touch it. Hold it. Does it make you feel happy and put a smile on your face? Does it remind you of a moment in time that was so great your heart was going to burst? If you answered “no,” that’s a problem. If any negative feelings exist, let it go. Negative associations can mean that this piece is no longer meant for you.

No one has room for negativity—literally and figuratively.

5. Is it useful?

It’s simple: if you will utilize this item, keep it. If not, get rid of it. Bye, Felicia.

6. Will it somehow contribute to your life?

If an item no longer contributes to your life, it’s time to say goodbye. Remember, it’s important to focus on the bare essentials during this space cleanse. Less is truly more!

7. Does it add value to your life?

Whether it is an everyday item or a special item, does it add value to your life? Is it of significance to you?

8. Donate, donate, donate

Just because an item (in good condition) is no longer valuable to you doesn’t mean that it won’t benefit someone else. If you plan to donate, do some research beforehand. Is there a particular group or charity you hope to support? Reach out and see what items they accept and what their process is. Many of these agencies also pick-up items, which can be very helpful in the cleansing process.

Also, most donations are tax deductible!

9. Reorganization is key

The primary aspect of a project such as this is to feel free in your space. That includes decreasing clutter and being organized. Time is also of the essence, so being able to find your things is really important. Maintaining shape, condition, etc. is helpful in making your items last, too. Be sure to spend time reorganizing your space so that it best fits your needs and can appropriately house your things.

10. Space isn’t Everything…

Remember, even a small space can feel large enough when the right plan is in place…

Happy cleansing! 

xx,

Paula

The Fear of Loss and How To Cope

Love and loss. Have you ever loved someone so much that you can’t imagine life without them? So much that living in a world where they no longer existed just wouldn’t make sense? I have. It’s one of the most terrifying thoughts, but even worse, one of the most horrible things to experience. So, the question is, how would one cope with the fear of losing someone they love? Let’s talk about it…

When I was seven, my family and I unexpectedly lost my mother. Not only that, but I almost lost my life too. While growing up, I was always close to others, but never allowed myself to get too close. As I entered adulthood, I realized that this needed to change, and I had to learn to cope with the fear of letting someone in, loving them, and then potentially losing them out of nowhere.

Obviously, this was all driven by trauma and anxiety. Nonetheless, it didn’t make those feelings any less real. And I’ve come to find that as soon as I stop worrying, and feel safe, something happens. So basically, my fear also kicks in when I’m happy and not constantly feeling worried. How is that a way to live, you might ask? Yeah, I ask that too…

Just this last week my boyfriend had gone in for a very simple procedure, however, he did it across the country. Per usual, I was feeling worried, but very hopeful that the procedure would be successful.

I woke up to a text that all had gone well, and my babe sounded like his cheerful, normal self. I felt so much better, and was able to finally breathe. Then, I wake up the following morning to a text that he had fainted and was now in the ER. Literally, my world felt like it flipped upside down.

I was able to remain calm and ask for all the facts, but working in the medical field allowed my mind to wander to all of the worst case scenarios. Is this really happening? How serious is this? What if something happens to him? OMG, could I lose him?

I literally couldn’t bear the thought of losing him. The fear kicked in. I was in fight or flight.

Flight was not an option because I’m not that kind of person. So, fight it was.

Regardless of how much fight I had in me, I felt helpless. The fact that I was so far away was literally killing me. But worst of all was knowing that sometimes bad things happen and there’s nothing we can do about it.

So again, that fear of losing someone important kicks in, and it’s stronger than ever. What’s next?

So rather than drive myself crazy with fear, I focused on these ten things:

Some things are just out of your control

This is just the way life works. We can’t predict everything, and we can’t prepare for everything. No matter what you are capable of, certain things happening is inevitable.

Worry only about the things you need to worry about

You’ll literally drive yourself crazy worrying about every possibility. Yes, there are things to worry about—finances, possibly losing your job, when the next earthquake is coming—I know it’s easier said than done, but you have to let go and say goodbye to those worried thoughts.

Live

Because you don’t know what’s coming, live. Live and love as though it were your last day on earth. Enjoy your experiences and the time you spend with your loved ones, even if they’re not always the most pleasant. Know that the time you spent with each person is valued and special.

Say I love you

Tell the people you love that you love them. Often.

Stay positive

Make sure to end a conversation or interaction on a positive note—if something were to happen to that person, would you regret ending things the way you did?

Talk it out

Share your thoughts and tell the people you love how much they mean to you. Share the things you love most about them. Tell them how much joy they bring to your life.

No regrets

Live life to the fullest—I know, so cliché. Make sure to live in a way that will allow you to be proud of how you treated others and yourself. Again, if your life ended tomorrow, would you have any regrets?

Make amends

Loss isn’t just about losing people that are actively involved in your life; it can be the loss of someone you haven’t spoken to in years. Make amends. Don’t let important relationships end on bad terms. If not on a positive note, neutrality can be a good option.

Let go of the anger

People make mistakes, and it’s okay to be upset and angry. But after a while, you need to let it go. Not only for the sake of salvaging the relationship, but also because holding on to anger is not the healthiest thing. Let go, forgive, and move forward. 

Don’t worry until you have to

 Yeah, just don’t do it…

If you enjoyed this piece, check my article on how the secret to happiness is letting go!

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xx,

Paula

What Turning Thirty Feels Like for a Millennial

Wow. I just turned thirty. Who would have thought turning thirty would come as quickly as it did…

I can still remember my twenty-first birthday—it literally feels like it was just yesterday. Twenty-one is always the golden age you really wait for because you finally get to go out drinking and things. You know, the fun stuff, lol.

As I look back on all of the crazy shenanigans my friends and I got ourselves into, and how much fun it was, I realize that I could no longer engage in those types of activities at this point in my life. Growing up entails so much, and until you hit a huge milestone, such as turning thirty, you don’t realize how much you’ve changed.

The change I see isn’t a negative change. It’s a change full of memories, successes, adventures, and many mistakes—mistakes that I learned from. It’s so hard to believe that I’m letting go of my twenties and moving on to a new chapter.

I think the transition from twenty-nine to thirty isn’t just about another year, but rather, the end of your childhood. The end of your young adulthood. Your ability to make mistakes and still have an opportunity to come back from that. It’s about resilience, and heart break, and growth, and learning to love yourself.

Holy shit. Did I really go through all of that and make it out alive? Whoa. 

Yup. That’s what turning thirty feels like to me—knowing that I experienced some of the most difficult, life changing, yet amazing years of my life. This is why I am who I am today. These are the experiences that got me to thirty. These are the lessons that helped me stand on my own two feet and be successful.

This is turning thirty.

So yes, I’m feeling super anxious, but also super excited. I couldn’t imagine starting a whole new decade and chapter in my life without being where I am now. Without being who I am now. Without being comfortable in my own skin, loving what I do, and loving the person I share my life with. Not to mention, having the sweetest pup on the planet.

I seriously couldn’t ask for much else…

Turning thirty, especially if you’re not where you had hoped to be, may not be as easy. However, I am still a firm believer that timing is everything. Maybe you need to be stronger before you are handed your big moment. Maybe you need to be wiser. Maybe you need to have hit rock bottom first.

Regardless of the scenario, remember that life gives you what you need when you’re ready and able to accept it. So roll with the punches, focus on the positive things, and let life take its course.

Each year brings us new excitement, love, and adventure. Embrace. Every. Single. Moment. Take it in like it’s the last thing you’ll ever see, hear, taste, or feel. Appreciate everything that you have been given, and remember that you are not only one year older, but also one year wiser and one year stronger.

Aging isn’t about getting older, it’s about all the things we learn along the way.

Even though I am nervous, I couldn’t be happier to be turning thirty.

Thirty is the time when life is stable, things are comfortable (but not boring), and staying in on a Friday night with a box of pizza and bottle of wine is cooler than going to the club.

Wait…so I never technically have to go clubbing again!?!? Hallelujah!

Thank you, thirty, for a beautiful welcoming filled with an abundance of joy and laughter…I really couldn’t have asked for more…

xx,

Paula

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