Thursday, July 16, 2015

Level Up.

Last week was a busy one for me, I've been playing catch up these past few days.  I'm a bridesmaid in a dear friends' wedding next month, and over the weekend we had a bachelorette celebration for her in San Francisco, it was a weekend to remember!  We stayed in a modern flat overlooking the city, enjoyed delicious Caribbean and Peruvian cuisine and Senegalian dancing.  How I love love love spicy, fresh flavors!

As for my outfit in this post, I find myself reaching for this Everlane sweater, Mansur Gavriel bucket bag and ASOS flatforms on the daily.  They're just so comfortable, effortless and look good with everything in my closet, it's ridiculous.  And I love how these buttery leather J Brand pants edged up the look.

These past few months have been full of internal growth and personal victories for me.  The overall theme would be me developing into a more whole, healthy woman.  I've come leaps and bounds freer from unhealthy auto-responses and familiar anxieties.  Many days I feel like my fears and restrictive ways of thinking kick my ass, and then some days I have clarity and significant breakthroughs.  What may not seem like a big deal to someone else is a triumph in my life!  Last week I was in a couple situations where I was being accidentally overlooked.  In the past I typically would've withdrawn myself emotionally, felt rejected and an outsider and justified putting up walls because "they don't really care about me, they don't actually want to know me."  All those familiar voices came up, like they usually do.  But instead of agreeing with those voices and shutting out everyone to protect myself from more pain, I spoke up and verbalized what I wanted and needed, trusting that the overlooking was unintentional and that someone would care that I was missing out.  It was so opposite of what I usually do, to speak up like that in the moment when I feel hurt.  I'm so used to shutting down and withdrawing, agreeing with thoughts that are self destructive.  But this bold, courageous Jenna came out of me that I didn't know was there!  I hadn't been practicing or mentally preparing myself for this situation, my response wasn't rehearsed.  But I realized that something had changed inside of me - I had less fear of rejection, and more confidence in how I'm an awesome person and have so much to offer, and if I don't speak up then others won't experience that.  That I'm worth getting to know.  I'm beginning to understand that all this battling inside of me, the good days and the bad days of fighting back against my demons and prohibitive thinking instead of letting them run me, is affecting other areas of my life that I haven't even been focusing on.  And that is incredibly encouraging!  I was totally unaware I went up a level in this area.  My old response to that situation (even from just a few months ago) feels like an old pair of shoes that don't fit anymore.  I didn't even realize I got new shoes until I encountered that rejection again.  And boy can I tell you that these new shoes feel so much better to walk in!  Don't forget that your personal victories, no matter how small they seem, affect more areas of your life than you may be aware of.  Believe me, there is a payoff to your pain! 

Thanks for stopping by.

Photos by Megan Walton

Sweater: Everlane
Pants: J Brand
Flatforms: ASOS (cute options here)
Bucket bag: Mansur Gavriel

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