Start Your Day by Focusing on Gratitude and Positivity (DAY #24 OF STOP YOUR INNER NAYSAYER WITH SELF LOVE SERIES)

Gratitude is an underrated virtue. Feeling thankful for the wonderful things in your life can do a lot to improve your mood and your view of yourself. It’s easy to forget all the blessings in our lives when things get difficult or when our inner naysayer is being particularly loud. Taking time to remember the good things can bring an entirely new and positive perspective to a negative situation. Starting your day by focusing on gratitude and positivity is a practice that can have a tremendous effect on every aspect of your day.

Gratitude is an underrated virtue. Feeling thankful for the wonderful things in your life can do a lot to improve your mood and your view of yourself. It’s easy to forget all the blessings in our lives when things get difficult or when our inner naysayer is being particularly loud. Taking time to remember the good things can bring an entirely new and positive perspective to a negative situation. Starting your day by focusing on gratitude and positivity is a practice that can have a tremendous effect on every aspect of your day.

Giving thanks can get you started on the right foot. You’ll leave the house feeling more optimistic and content than you would otherwise. That feeling can last throughout the day, and it can also serve to insulate you from any stress or obstacles you encounter in your regular routine. Let’s consider some easy ways to get started each day with a practice of gratitude and positivity.

Start a Journal

A gratitude journal is one of the easiest ways to keep your blessings at hand. Start your day by writing down three to five things you’re grateful for in your life. You can expand upon that and write details about each, if you choose. This simple act starts your day on a positive note. You can also look back at past entries any time you need a pick-me-up about just how great your life is.

Repeat Affirmations

Affirmations are concise, positive sentences. Usually, they’re personal statements about yourself and your life. Affirmations are meant as a reminder of your gifts and abilities. They’re an awesome tool for reminding yourself just how wonderful you are as a person. You can really boost your self-confidence with this effective practice. Create an affirmation and repeat it out loud several times. Soon, you’ll absorb the message and carry it with you as you go about your day.

Reflect on Your Blessings

Sometimes, just sitting in quiet contemplation to reflect on your blessings can be enough. This type of meditation focuses your thoughts and grounds you in mindfulness. It’s a way of centering yourself and purposefully beginning your day with gratitude and positivity. Sitting with a cup of tea in a quiet place is sufficient, or you can choose a more formal meditation position of sitting on a pillow placed upon the floor. It doesn’t matter, as long as you have privacy and can be alone with your thoughts.

Keep these techniques in mind if you’re looking for a way to begin each morning with purpose and to guide your day in gratitude. You’ll notice a shift in your attitude and in the ways in which you manage obstacles you encounter. Problems won’t seem as significant when you create a morning ritual such as this.

See you back here tomorrow where I will be talking about failure and mistakes and how they are a key component to your success!

XOXO,

Ashley

It’s Ok to Ask for Help in Defusing Your Inner Naysayer (DAY #23 OF STOP YOUR INNER NAYSAYER WITH SELF LOVE SERIES)

Shutting up that inner critic can be hard. You’ve learned some great strategies so far on our journey together. However, these tactics are all things you must do on your own. Sometimes, pushing past your negative self-talk requires some help. Seeking assistance from an outside source doesn’t make you weak. In fact, you’ll probably find it strengthens you and possibly even some of your relationships, too.

Hi Beautiful! 🙂

Shutting up that inner critic can be hard. You’ve learned some great strategies so far on our journey together. However, these tactics are all things you must do on your own. Sometimes, pushing past your negative self-talk requires some help. Seeking assistance from an outside source doesn’t make you weak. In fact, you’ll probably find it strengthens you and possibly even some of your relationships, too.

We don’t always see ourselves as others see us. It’s particularly easy to overlook our positive qualities. When your inner critic is bombarding you with negative messages, it may take an outside perspective to help you see the reality of a situation. You might not be able to get the push you need on your own. There’s no shame in asking for help.

There are lots of ways to look outside yourself when it comes to shutting down your inner critic. Take a look below for some strategies. It’s important to understand that it’s okay to ask for help in defusing your inner naysayer.

Consult a Trusted Friend

Reach out to friends or even family that you trust. Those who know you best can offer you honest feedback when you’re feeling unsure about things. Ask someone who will be honest, yet sensitive, in their approach. This way, you’ll be sure they’re not just trying to be nice. These types of folks can provide you with a realistic view of you and your situation, helping you to make an informed decision about your next steps.

Seek Therapy

Your inner critic has probably been around your whole life. There are a number of complex reasons for our negative self-talk. Sometimes working through these issues requires the help of a professional. Seeking therapy is a great way to start to see for yourself what is real and what has been falsely ingrained throughout your life. When you begin to work through these deep-seated issues, you start to heal and to see your own value.

Do Some Reading

If you truly aren’t ready to talk to others about your self-criticism, it’s okay. A good place to start is by researching the issues you’re facing. For example, if you’re regularly telling yourself that you can’t achieve great things or that you’re not enough, do some research on self-confidence. Read books and blog posts that can show you how to gain more of it. If your internal messages tell you it’s not safe to trust others, read up on the topic of building trust. You get the idea. Take note of any patterns coming from your inner naysayer and then search for resources to help you defeat them.

These tips should help you find help overcoming your inner critic. Sometimes it’s not possible to work through these negative messages on your own. It’s perfectly acceptable to look for help.

Join me in the HB SQUAD group where a community of ladies are waiting to support you on your journey toward self-love and manifesting the life you desire! See you in the group and meet me back here tomorrow to talk about gratitude.

MyDailychoice pre-enrollees – Steps to get your free affiliate account

Awesome news! Until May 1st, MyDailyChoice is waiving the $20 one time fee to upgrade from a pre-enrollee to an affiliate so that you have access to the back office filled with tools to get your CBD business started during all that is going on right now in our world.

Awesome news! Until May 1st, MyDailyChoice is waiving the $20 one time fee to upgrade from a pre-enrollee to an affiliate so that you have access to the back office filled with tools to get your CBD business started during all that is going on right now in our world.

Here are the steps to upgrade your enrollment:

First, CLICK HERE to go to HEMPBEAUTIFUL.WORLD

Then, click the login link in the right hand corner.

CLick the pre-enrollee tab and enter the email address you used to enroll with my daily choice

Once, you get into your account, click get started now.

Once you get to the page with all the products, scroll to the very bottom.

CLICK ON the blue box that says become an affiliate without a product purchase

Fill out the information to create an account

*****Once I get confirmation that you completed the process, I will then send you some awesome resources, invite you to the facebook training groups (including the one with sandi Krakowski (Did you google her?), Announce that you are a member of Team #HempBeautiful on social media and will connect with you personally to make sure you have everything you need to start off with a bang!

XOXO,

Ashley

The Connection Between Self-Love & Confidence (DAY #7 OF STOP YOUR INNER NAYSAYER WITH SELF LOVE SERIES)

In yesterday’s post, I discussed ways that obtaining a sense of purpose can lead to greater confidence. Understanding your priorities and what matters most to you in life can help you to feel more secure in yourself. Confidence is an important component of self-love. If you don’t believe in yourself and your worth, it’s hard to love yourself. That’s why I’d like to explore the connection between self-love and confidence in today’s post.

In yesterday’s post, I discussed ways that obtaining a sense of purpose can lead to greater confidence. Understanding your priorities and what matters most to you in life can help you to feel more secure in yourself. Confidence is an important component of self-love. If you don’t believe in yourself and your worth, it’s hard to love yourself. That’s why I’d like to explore the connection between self-love and confidence in today’s post.

About Self-Love

Self-love, as we’ve discussed, is having positive regard for yourself. It’s being able to put yourself first and feeling that you deserve just as much compassion as the people you care about. Self-love is the belief that your own happiness can take priority and that you aren’t selfish for taking care of you. Taking care of your own needs and refusing to settle for less than you deserve is also part of self-love. You aren’t a narcissist, and you aren’t self-centered for loving yourself. Just the opposite, in fact. Having positive self-regard is healthy and essential for being an emotionally intelligent person.

About Confidence

Confidence is simply believing in yourself. It’s the understanding that you are a capable human being and that you can manage regular daily occurrences or challenges you encounter. It also involves transferring those beliefs into actions that reflect how you feel and demonstrate your capabilities. You don’t want to overestimate your abilities however, as this could cause you to come across as arrogant or could affect the quality of your work.

The Self-Love/Confidence Connection

Self-love and confidence are definitely connected. There is likely a circular relationship between them. When you love yourself and have positive self-regard, you’re more likely to be confident. That’s because you have a healthy view of yourself and honestly feel you possess value. When you feel worthwhile, why wouldn’t you have faith in your abilities? You know you’re a person worthy of care and deserving of good things. You should be confident you can achieve such things. Likewise, when you’re confident, you are demonstrating your positive regard for yourself. You are confident in the belief that you’re capable of achieving the things you desire because you also feel you are worthy. These two concepts are closely tied together.

As you can see, confidence plays a strong role in self-love. In fact, they’re both closely related. That’s why it’s important to build your confidence regularly in order to strengthen your feelings of worthiness.

Join a group of women who want to support you on your journey at http://www.hbsquad.com and don’t miss tomorrow where I will talk about the destructive nature of labels in our lives.

XOXO,

Ashley

10 Things To Do When You Hit Rock Bottom

Sometimes you have to hit rock bottom to move ahead to the next level in your life. I am here to tell you that it is not a fun place to be in, but there are some things that you can do right now to help you get to the light at the end of the tunnel.

If you feel like you are in a rut and don’t know what to do next, here is a starting point.

1) Accept responsibility for where you are.

The decisions you made in the past somehow played a part in you being in the space you are in right now in your life. Own those decisions and understand where you went wrong so you don’t face those same lessons over and over again.

2) Let go of everything.

Sometime you have to shy away from everything to regain yourself back. Let go of the negative habits, the naysayers, the bad influences, and even your own negative thoughts. It won’t be easy, but it will damn well be worth it.

3) Stop playing the blame game.

Even if it wasn’t ALL your fault, you played a role in it. Even if it was just your reaction to something that happened, it still played a part. Even if you listened to your friend and things didn’t go right, you still played a part in it. You will NEVER move ahead in your life if you are constantly blaming others.

4) Use rock bottom as your foundation to rebuild.

You have a new opportunity, a second chance, to get it right. Build a strong foundation and you will weather any storm that comes. A weak foundation can seem stable for a while and when the littlest storm comes can crumble in an instant.

5) Allow yourself to feel what you are feeling.

It probably won’t feel good and it may even hurt a bit, but when you allow yourself to feel, you allow yourself to start healing. When you mask your feeling they only get worse and even unbearable.

6) Make peace with where you are.

I am not saying accept where you are and get comfortable, but I am saying embrace the space in your life where you are at this moment and acknowledge that you are working to grow and move to a better space.

7) Stop comparing yourself to everyone else.

Few people live up to the Fasad they portray on social media. While you are comparing yourself to someone else’s end, that exact point may only be your starting point, but you feel you are behind or not enough because you are not there yet. Your journey is your journey….and no one else can compare to that.

8) Stop closing yourself off from others.

A solid support system will help you stay motivated and accountable.

9) Realize this darkness won’t least forever.

There is light at the end of the tunnel. This is just a page in the book of your life, it’s time to turn the page.

10) Recreate your life.

So what your life in the past went to hell. This is a new chapter a blank page…What are you going to fill it with?

This blog post comes straight from my YouTube video that goes more in-depth on each of these ways you can start rebuilding your life from rock bottom up. Watch the video here…

Watch Now!

#METOO – My Story of Being Sexually Assaulted

#METOO – It happened when I was 14. He was a deacon of the church I grew up in and still attended regularly. He was well known in the community. He assisted in church and was at some youth group activities. He tried to rape me with my grandmother and his wife in another room of the house. I fought like hell to get away from him as he was literally trying to rip my clothes off of my body. He touched me in places that weren’t for him to touch. His saliva still wet on my shirt after I finally got away from him by literally digging my nails into his hand with every bit of my might. I had never even kissed a boy, yet this grown man in less than 10 minutes tried to take every bit of my innocence away.

I spoke up and told my mom and my grandma only because my grandma heard him scream as I was running away from him and she made me call my mom. From the police to the church, I felt like they made him the victim and I was the perpetrator. His wife said I was lying and that her husband was an honorable man that would never do anything like that. The police and church both asked what I did to provoke it. I felt dirty like something was wrong with me. I started thinking that it was my fault, like somehow or someway I caused it. I stopped going to church for a long time because they still allowed him to attend there. Apparently being a high up deacon at the church somehow made him not accountable for his actions and it made him immune to any repercussions. The 14 year old girl who loved church and was in everything from youth group and Sunday School to Bible Drill and Choir who felt like church was a safe haven and place where she could go to worship God now felt it was a place of pain, destruction, abandonment and lies. I already felt like I didn’t have a voice from the bullying I experienced growing up and this made me close off myself even more from the world. I felt like no one cared to listen. I didn’t matter. This experience caused deep self-hatred for many years and made me resent churches. It took me years to go back to one. This wasn’t my only experience being sexually assaulted or harrassed, but it is the one that had the most impact on me.

I share my story because I want other women to not feel so alone because it can feel really lonely . Here are 3 things I learned from being sexually assaulted:

1.) It is not your fault. Do not let anyone (including yourself) try to turn it around on you. Your body is the body God gave you and someone forcing access to it is them in the wrong. You did not “deserve” what happened to you. You are not to blame.

2.) Your experience can help others (and the process can help you begin to heal yourself). For years after feeling like it was my fault, I refused to talk about it. I hid it deep within me praying and wishing it would just “be erased” from the timeline of my life. It didn’t go away. Not sharing it made it embed even deeper within me and led to depression and self-hatred. When I decided to finally speak up, I found that I was not alone and sharing my story and the release it gave me led to me creating platforms to help other women share their stories (from bullying to sexual assault to overcoming divorce and illness). Everything I have gone through in my life has prepared me for what I am doing now with the #IAmSimplyBeautiful Movement and Fearless Poets.

3. There is life on the other side. In that moment, you may have felt like your life was over and you just wanted to die or for everything to just go away, but you still have your life. Life will continue on. Sometimes you may have to pause and that is okay, but know that this is not the end of your story. God is not done with you yet.

Please #Share this because someone you know needs this and if it is you, know that whether or not you are ready to share your story at this moment in your life, your story matters and YOU matter. You are enough just as you are. I turned my mess into my message and so can you. You are stronger than you know and you are simply beautiful just as you are. Period. Your story is still being written…

#IAmSimplyBeautiful #SexualAssault #SelfLove #YouAreEnough #NotYourFault

Authenticity Shines in Today’s Social Media Driven Society

One thing I have learned about today’s social media driven and crazed society is that AUTHENTICITY stands out more than anything. People have uber amounts of choices when it comes to who they follow, engage with, and purchase products and/or services from. While social media has given everyone the opportunity to connect with others around the world like no other time in history and become an expert on any and every topic imaginable, it also has flooded the online marketplace making it harder to stand out among your competitors. 

In a time in history where you can connect with an audience with the press of a button, what makes you stand out from the crowd is you engaging regularly being uniquely YOU!

As a Digital Media & Visibility Specialist, I have seen and assisted many brands in showing up and growing their engagement across social media platforms and one of the MISTAKES that I see often is canned content. Yep, I said it. Content that is too impersonal, not shareworthy and doesn’t show the person or company’s personality. People want a personal connection with those they follow. They want to feel like they know you to a degree and resonate with you as a human…not just a brand, service or product. 

Why do you think so many top entrepreneurs and businesses are now utilizing Facebook Live and Periscope to chit-chat with their audience? Many times the broadcasts have little to do with the service or product they sell but more about them, what’s going on in their life and behind the scenes footage of a project they are working on. 

It’s fun. It’s interesting. It builds a trust and connection between them and their audience. 



Here are my Top 3 Ways to Authentically Show Up and Engage with Your Audience

1) Be clear on who YOU are. 

It’s kind of hard to show up in the world authentically if you aren’t even sure who you are. 

If you have a hard time with being clear on who you are, then I suggest you take sometime to talk to yourself intimately and you can start by asking yourself these questions:

  • What are you passionate about?
  • What do you enjoy? 
  • What are you most grateful for in your life? 
  • What are the most important things in your life? 
  • What are your values? 
  • How would you describe yourself? 

Keep a journal of your thoughts and feelings focusing on the most powerful question, “Who Am I?”

2. People connect with your struggles and flaws.

Perfection is highly overrated in today’s world. As I browsed through my Facebook Newsfeed earlier today, I pondered on what drew me to certain people that I follow over others. I, like many (I would almost bet you to be able to say MOST) people, follow people who aren’t afraid to admit their flaws and struggles and don’t put up a persona that they are perfect. Vulnerability helps people connect to you on a whole other level. 

Plus, honestly it is just plain too darn hard to keep up with trying to be someone that you’re not all the time. It’s easier to just be yourself from the jump. 

3. Use the power of video to your advantage. 

Video gives you the opportunity to show up as you are to you audience at anytime on any day. Share your experiences, the good and the bad. But also be sure to not make your videos a pitty party of everything going wrong in your life or a drawn out sales pitch either. Connect your story to your message. 

What experiences in your life can you connect to the topic of your video? Don’t try to be someone your not by showing up as who you think your audience wants you to be. Be genuine. 

For years people tried to tell me to change my accent because it’s too southern and would say that the only people who make it out of New Orleans (where I’m from) are rappers…which is so not true. If I had of listened, I would have put out a message that I don’t value myself just as I am and as you may already know, I am all about self love and knowing that you are SIMPLY BEAUTIFUL without any apologies. 

See this is why it is KEY to know who you are FIRST and show up just as you are whether it’s online, in video or in person! 💋

…..

Enjoyed this post? Follow my blog and connect with me on social media at @iamashleyalove. 

I Jumped — And got the girls bunnies and got peed on in the process!

Bunny 3Sooo, although I love animal pictures, watching animals from afar and even chill-axing with some animals for a minute or so, I haven’t really (besides our dog Buddy and that little turtle named Cupid) had many pets recently.

Last week, I was in an UBER good mood as I headed out to Phoenyx’s 4H Fun Day where we got to hold and pet a slew of different animals and welp, you may have guess it already but I fell in love with the bunnies. So cute. So cuddly. So well behaved. Yep, let gets one. No, lets get two. And in that moment, we added two baby rabbits to our family. After my good mood wore of, I started second-guessing my decision to get two, but it was too late. I had already paid for them and was to pick them up a week from that day (yesterday made a week) when they were ready for their new home.

We went and got them from a wonderful young lady who started raising bunnies as a 4HBunny 5project when she herself was in the program during school. We got one black one and named her Leylee (my nickname growing up) and a gray girl that we named Niomi. Well, once all three girls got home and started playing with them, I realized I had done something horribly wrong.

I had TWO bunnies and three girls, so one would always be left out. After contemplating it and my aunt saying something about it as well, we went and got another baby black bunny and named her Evie. Three bunnies for my three princesses.

After we picked up the third bunny, my Awe got kind of spoiled when all three bunnies decided to start pooping at the same time. Three girls yelling, “Help, what do we do?” at the same time. Poopy pellots were shooting out everywhere in the car. On the seats. On the floor. On their laps. Umm….Yikes. I didn’t have a solution, but to throw something under them quick. As I turned the corners to get home, the poopy pellots were rolling around everywhere in the car and just when we though the bunnies had nothing left inside of them, it started shooting out  again.

Call me naive. Call me uneducated on the bunny digestive system, but it was a little bit of a shock to me. I ran to the local pet store to get food and hay for them, but was now like maybe I should have asked them “Do they make bunny diapers??”  LOL Needless to say, the princesses are so happy to have their new friends and just in time to enjoy then on Easter (their one month birthday).

Ohh and how did I get peed on? Well, I had Leylee ( Amiyah’s Bunny) on my lap after I just took a bath and put on my brand new nightgown with coffee cups on it. Leylee was running around the couch and jumped on my belly and I felt something warm and wet and I froze. Wait one second…Did this bunny just pee all over my new gown? I stripped naked in the living room, got cleaned up and needless to say, the bunnies were put up for the night.

This is going to be an interesting journey…Stay tuned for more!

{Interview} The Total Tutor Neil Haley interviews Fearless Poet/Visionary Mompreneur/Activist Ashley Love. 04/07/2017

Total Education Network Syndicated 120 Plus Stations 2.5 Million Listeners a week including #iHeartRadio.

//percolate.blogtalkradio.com/offsiteplayer?hostId=144841&episodeId=9932021

{New York Times} A Dream Come True

unnamedAs a child growing up in New Orleans, I always loved to write. I would ask for pens and journals instead of toys on Christmas and my birthday. Besides the desire to have a  book published (and now I have 5  of my own and 2 that I  co-authored under my belt), I always dreamed of being in The New York Times and recently I was interviewed regarding my activism work to bring home the #MissingDCGirls and the fact that it was trending on Twitter at the time. The reporter reached out to me first after I was actively tweeting using the hashtag. Hashtags are POWERFUL! When the article came out, I was so super excited just to see me, my name, this girl from Louisiana in The New York Times!

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Click here to read the full article!