Posted in Events, Keep Moving: Motivation and Inspiration, Mental Health, Potential and Worth, Reflection, Self-Care, Self-Talk, The Mighty, The Pencil Case on The Mighty

Roots to Leaflets/From Roots to Mighty Leaflets: A Reflective Exercise

From May to July, I’ve hosted a few virtual events centered around the theme of goals and goal creation. “Roots to Leaflets” or “From to Mighty Leaflets”, two names that were given to this activity, allows us to visualize and articulate our goals and growth using the image of a tree. 

What makes goals and the representation of a tree suitable for this reflective exercise? Let’s dive into how to create growth cycle trees.


Yes, goals are what drive our ambitions — but they can also be the reason why we procrastinate or become intimidated by the possibilities of our future selves. How can we create goals that help us feel good and motivate us to notice our growth?

A tree has three main parts: the roots, the trunk, and the leaves. Each part of the tree, however you draw or collage it, will represent a different part of the goal and growth process. Check out the example below.

Drawing of Nina's

Here is how you can draw your tree using guided questions:

The roots represent your goals. What do you want to accomplish? What makes you feel good? You can also include habits you want to take up or routines that’ll help you feel more refreshed.

The trunk represents your needs. What do you need to do on a daily basis that helps you feel good? What do you need in order to accomplish a particular goal?

The leaves represent your accomplishments. What have you done lately that made you smile and feel proud?

No matter how big or small your goals, needs or successes are — whatever you accomplish is worthy of celebration.

Note: You can create your trees however you envision. Your trees are a reflection of you!

Make your own tree and share it with me! Here is my Mighty group The Pencil Case or Instagram page.

Here is my tree!



From the water running through the soil to the fruits growing alongside the leaves, I’m proud of my growth and accomplishments. Using my goals and needs I can continue to work toward achieving all I know I can achieve.


This activity was featured in The Mighty #CheckInWithMe newsletter which you can subscribe to on the TheMighty.com or Mighty app.

 

Posted in Creative Writing, Keep Moving: Motivation and Inspiration, Potential and Worth, Power, Reflection, Self-Care, Self-Talk

My Little Seed

I remember planting this seed and thinking it would never grow. Pressured by the expectation that I’m doing something wrong, I was plagued with thoughts that if it didn’t show it’s growth it would be my fault.

But, although my expectations were low, it grew anyway and the tears I shed when it showed its little leaves made me realize I’m okay.

I’m okay because the seed is planted and as long as I have even the slightest hope that it would grow, it just might grow.

I just might grow, too.

Posted in Keep Moving: Motivation and Inspiration, Mental Health, Potential and Worth, Power, Quotes, Self-Care, Self-Talk

You Are Valid

Stand firm and know that what you feel and experience is valid. There is no checklist or standard to what makes your story enough to cause pain, growth, or transformation. Wherever you are in your journey, whatever frustrations, confusions, turmoil, or changes influence how you are perceiving the events that happen to you is your call to make. There is no shame in feeling what you feel.

No need to compare yourself to anyone, downplay what you are feeling, or over-explain any part of your story. You are valid in whatever stage you are in. Receive the support or help that is necessary to get you where you need/want to go in your growth and healing.

Posted in Keep Moving: Motivation and Inspiration, Love, Mental Health, Potential and Worth, Power, Quotes, Self-Care, Self-Talk

A Series of Quotes: Recycling Pain Through Our Behavior

Growth and Transformation Through Awareness: Pain and Toxic Traits

We all have a way in which we think and act based on our beliefs and ideas. Sometimes, however, our judgment and growth are clouded by the pain and trauma we often recycle through our toxic habits and behaviors.

The tricky thing about pain is how deeply rooted it is. We don’t see our behavior as toxic or hurtful until it’s too late and we’ve already hurt someone we might care for.

In order to identify those toxic cycles, we must grow in self-awareness. The more self-aware we become, the more we are able to catch ourselves and understand why we act the way we do. Although some behaviors may appear harmless, like numbing our feelings and trying not to cope with our pain, if repressed for too long, will eventually appear in our behavior.

Projection occurs when we place how we treat ourselves onto the people we love or want to love. Often unconsciously our own self-abandonment is how we begin to treat those around us.

The first step in feeling our pain is to accept that we’ve hurt someone and forgive ourselves. If we hold onto the pain and regret, it will stay with us and lead how we treat those who enter our lives.

Once aware, begin the process of identifying in what ways we can improve and begin to love ourselves in that process. Although we can’t undo another person’s pain, we can improve and heal through our own. We must learn who we are and the pain that guided our past self.

The growth that self-awareness brings can resurface memories and thoughts that created the original pain, but that process will birth a transformed perspective.

We learn through experiences and wanting to do better. Without the urge to do better, the pain will validate itself and remain how we see ourselves.

Important note: This process can be difficult to do on our own but I found therapy, self-help books, meditation, writing, reflective exercises, support groups, and mental health resources to be a great help in beginning this process.

Posted in Keep Moving: Motivation and Inspiration, Love, Mental Health, Potential and Worth, Power, Quotes, Self-Care, Self-Talk

I’m a Recovering People-Pleaser

This Sticker will be available this week on Etsy.com/shop/MotivateBySWT

For 2020 and beyond I am prioritizing self-care and self-love that is defined by me and only me. With each week reflecting on various ways to reflect and process my feelings, this week is redefining my worth to MYSELF.

Having a past of people-pleasing is hard to realize and even harder to overcome. Not seeing myself as valuable or worthy of love has influenced a history of constant “doing” in order to prove myself to those around me.

This habit ends now.

So, I’m saying no to:

  1. What is not for me.
  2. What makes me uncomfortable.
  3. What doesn’t serve my needs.
  4. What I don’t have the energy for.
  5. Being available to everyone.
  6. Feeling unimportant.
  7. Giving away all of my energy.
  8. One-sided interactions.
  9. Seeking validation.
  10. “Fixing” other people’s problems.

And, I’m saying yes to:

  1. What fills me with joy.
  2. Solid boundaries.
  3. Building lasting connections.
  4. Healthy vulnerability.
  5. Feeling good about myself.
  6. Expressing my needs.
  7. Allowing myself to be seen.
  8. Reaching out to others.
  9. Being happy.
  10. Feeling peace.
  11. Doing things for fun.
  12. Smiling.
  13. Being open to love.

Affirmation: I am open to loving myself unconditionally and unapologetically.

Posted in Keep Moving: Motivation and Inspiration, Mental Health, Potential and Worth, Power, Self-Care, Self-Talk

Unpacking Your Emotions

Allow yourself to feel even when it gets uncomfortable. Experience your emotions. Understand what is happening and grow in self-awareness.

When experiencing uncomfortable emotions ask yourself questions:

  • What am I feeling?
  • Why am I feeling this?
  • Have I felt like this before?
  • Do I need some help processing this emotion?
  • Who can I ask for help?
  • Is creativity helpful? (Should I write this down? Maybe draw it out? Make a collage?
  • Is this emotion influencing my behavior? Is this behavior helpful or harmful?
  • What does self-care look like for me when I feel this emotion?
  • How can I increase my mindfulness when feeling this emotion?
  • What are my next steps?

**Question graphic! Sticker set will be available in my Etsy shop.**

Experiencing certain emotions can be scary, but allowing yourself to feel shows you how best to support yourself or ask for support.

Feel and not dismiss, reject, or ignore how your body is reacting to your environment and experiences. You can learn so much about yourself by reflecting on what is happening.

Practice self-compassion by giving yourself permission to feel.

Posted in Confessions, Defying Shadows Articles, Keep Moving: Motivation and Inspiration, Love, Mental Health, Other Publications, Potential and Worth, Power, Reflection, Self-Care, Self-Talk, What Just Happened: Personal Anecdotes

Defying Shadows Article: Why I Choose to Talk About my Mental Health

You see me express myself, I wear my emotional wounds for all to see. I’m building my self-awareness through my healing and it’s because I choose to write about my mental health.

“I write and talk about my mental health because I know what it’s like to feel alone, unwanted, worthless, hopeless, and unaccomplished. I know what it’s like to feel invisible, to worry to the point of a panic attack, and to feel trapped. I write and talk about my mental health because deep down I wish I can hug and show all those who suffer silently that they don’t have to suffer alone. I write to share and motivate others to keep going even if they feel they can’t.

I neglected my mental health and thought I wasn’t good enough or worthy of love and life unless I proved myself to be so. I didn’t understand my intrinsic worth or purpose and because of this lived in a constant state of depression and anxiety.

If you are reading this, know that you are more than. You are full of purpose, power, and worth and nothing and no one can strip you of this. No matter what those negative thoughts said, you are doing a great job and I’m proud of you.”

Link: Why I Choose to Talk About my Mental Health

Posted in Defying Shadows Articles, Keep Moving: Motivation and Inspiration, Mental Health, Self-Care, Self-Talk, Tips

Defying Shadows Article: Facing Recovery After Hitting a Low Point

Growth and healing are a continuous process. While we may want our recovery journey to look linear, always progressing and improving, that is not what reality teaches us. Recovery, even when we see ourselves in great shape for long periods of time, sometimes come with low moments.
Learning how to accept sudden stumbling blocks can be discouraging, but those moments are what builds and crafts what recovery really looks like.

Link: Facing Recovery After Hitting a Low Point

Posted in Challenges, Confessions, Creations, Keep Moving: Motivation and Inspiration, Potential and Worth, Power, Reflection, Self-Talk

8-Day Reflection Card Series Day 7

What are you overcoming? What are you resolving within yourself? Is there any progress in parts of you that you wish to improve? What does that progress look like?

In overcoming obstacles or challenges, it’s important to be gentle with yourself and the process. Relief will follow the more comfortable you become with the discomfort of change. Overcoming is the continuous work that comes with adjusting to growth.


Reflection: Of the major obstacles I work on daily, building my self-esteem, improving in confidence, and establishing that I’m important are the top three. I’m constantly working on and overcoming the urge to isolate myself because of these obstacles and I’ve come so far!

Goal: Getting to a place where I don’t hold myself back in any way. I want to be able to exert confidence in a way that reveals the power I know I have.


You can find this reflection card on my Mighty page here.

Posted in Love, Making Sense Analysis, Notes, Self-Care, Self-Talk

Note 36 For the Highly Sensitive: Molding Love in the Wrong People

Sparkly is a space where I not only write to inspire and motivate, but it’s also a space where I make tangible the obstacles I face in hopes of finding balance and understanding. With that being said, I’ve been experiencing an inner battle with myself (and often see it in others who I care about).

Love in the Wrong People…

Finding love and acceptance is difficult in the 20 something ages. We often feel like we have to find love and begin the process of building bonds with anyone who comes our way and sparks even the simplest of interests. The issues in this process, however, especially those who are caring, sensitive, and good hearted is we let our guard down in hopes of making that interest work even if that person is not good for us.

As we fear being alone, rejected, neglected, abandoned, or even starting over, and in pursuits to “fix” the broken pieces of potential love, we often forget self-care, boundaries, and our worth. We convince ourselves that our “love” for that potential is what will somehow change and evolve the toxicity of the relationship that’s been built. We create this love with the small growth we see in something that we want so bad to work.

We care too much about the other and not enough about ourselves.

The Reality of it is

With even the most common of sense, or the conversations that we think will help the other understand us, not everyone has good intentions, not everyone is good for us, and not everyone can/wants to change. Some people see no issues in what they do.

Whether it’s built up trauma from childhood, their own defense mechanisms, or “just how they are,” we are not responsible for igniting growth or enduring pain and abuse from anyone. Just because we can see how much someone can grow does not mean we have to be the stepping stones to that growth, if that growth is even authentic.

Letting Go and Moving On…

While we ourselves are responsible for our own happiness, growth, and self-development, so are the ones that we take up that responsibility for. If they see that they are hurting someone and continue to hurt them, let them go. You are way too valuable. They need to grow on their own, without latching on to anyone to guide the way for them. Making them feel good or allowing their toxic behavior to persist without consequences will enable them to continue in their destructive nature.

In the slightest moment where you feel uncomfortable, or confused listen to your body signals to understanding what to do. Stop ignoring the signs of doing better for yourself.

I know we have so much love to give, and we want to be accepted in order to nurture another (as it may nutures us and our trauma/people pleasing tendencies) we have to find peace and acceptance within ourselves. We can attract those who are hurt and in your conflicting intentions and personalities create something unhealthy.