Socializing to Improve Your Mental Health

stoneleigh hotel rose garden party

Oh my goodness everyone, it has been a whirlwind few weeks! David and I have been so busy with different things that the days just got away from me. On top of that, this past weekend we had a freak strong storm blow through Dallas and it knocked out our power for 3 days! There were trees snapped in half all over the place, power lines down, fences completely gone, and even a crane fell on an apartment complex and unfortunately someone was killed. With all that said however, I’m so thankful that David and I and our fur kids are safe and sound. Now on to the good stuff!

Socializing and mental health go hand-in-hand I have found! I wanted to share what I’ve been doing in recent months to improve my mind and a few suggestions I have for you to do the same!

getting over my comfort zone

The last few years have felt isolating to me. I moved to a new city, didn’t know anyone, and always felt like I was going to be moving again so why bother. Earlier this spring I told myself “summer is coming and I want to have a summer that is full of laughs with good friends.” So I decided to start making it happen even though it made me all sorts of anxious. I signed up for blogger brunches, started going to networking events and happy hours, and got tickets to local events like the one in the picture above!

This was a particularly fun event! It was at the Stoneleigh Hotel where they hosted a Rose Garden Party! I met tons of people and had a blast! I took one of my friends with me and ended up seeing a lot of people I knew so I got to further connect with them. I normally wouldn’t do this. It’s out of my comfort zone and my anxiety told me there’s no way I could handle it. But I did and it paid off!

How my mental health improved

I felt like a new me! Being around people and sharing in laughs can make such an impact on how you feel emotionally and mentally. Sometimes its really hard for me to go to events that I’ve already signed up for. I think “it would be easier to stay in bed” or “what if it’s awkward?” 9 times out of 10 I end up being so glad I went and so happy when I get home. People are meant to be with people!

3 ways to get social

Finding my “people” wasn’t easy. But the best way I found friends and community is through my hobby: blogging. Start with what you love to do and then go from there. Runners have community. Dog lovers do. Cat lovers certainly do. Whatever it is you enjoy, find your group there!

Join a meet up group! Meetup.com is where one of my friends found her group of gals to hang out with, which she then introduced me to! BOOM. A whole new friend group! Sure, meeting up with a group of people you don’t know can be unnerving but everyone is in the same position as you are.

Establish your local “spot.” Whether its a Starbucks down the street, a dive bar, a restaurant or a gym, find one place where you dig the vibes and start frequenting it. Over time you’ll start to know faces and get to know the people behind them. It’s a great way to slowly overcome social anxiety and be present in your community.

 

Fashion Blogging: the Struggle is Real

Good morning loves! I’m going to dive right into my post today because it’s something that’s been on my mind lately and I think it will benefit all of us to talk and think about. Since I started blogging about 2 years ago, I’ve learned a lot. Starting out, I didn’t know what SEO or keywords were, brand collaborations were a mystery to me, and taking good blog pictures was something I just couldn’t do. Most importantly, I didn’t know how fashion blogging success was achieved. And here’s a secret: I still don’t.

If you’re a blogger like me, you probably spend a lot of time on social media (particularly Instagram) scrolling through your feeds, liking photos, and commenting. There’s always that one amazing photo that catches your eye and makes you want to learn more about the person behind it. When you get to their profile, you see that they have well over 100k followers and have achieved that in the same amount of time it’s taken you to get 1000. You spend the next hour wondering “how did they do that?”. After awhile, that question turns into self-doubt and a lack of confidence in what you’re doing.

Surely I’m not the only one who feels like this sometimes. The other day I found another Texas blogger on Instagram who’s literally living my dream right now. She’s my age and has had her blog for the same amount of time I’ve had mine. She’s been so successful though, that she’s had to hire a full time staff to help her with her blog. It reminded me very quickly that I’m still “the staff” instead of the CEO. *Boom* the self-doubt hit me like a ton of bricks. I thought “How am I ever supposed to see that kind of success when I can barely drive traffic to my blog?”.

Before I started writing this blog post, I was scrolling through my Insta feed and saw another blogger I really admire had gotten a collaboration with a major luxury car company. How on Earth did she score that?! After seeing that, I just laid down and had a good cry. Sometimes those help, you know? The thoughts running through my head were everything from “give up and say you tried” to “just give it a little longer”. Luckily, I’m choosing the latter of those thoughts.

The point of this post is not to provide a million reasons why blogging is hard or ways you can improve, it’s to have some real-talk about how hard it is to make it in the fashion blogging world. Nothing worth having ever comes easily, even though it appears to from the outside looking in. This has been my dream for awhile now and I can’t give up just because the success of others makes me jealous or fills me with self-doubt. I have to keep going until God sends me a flashing neon sign that says “stop”.

For the bloggers who are just starting out, it gets better, just stick with it. For the bloggers who’ve been add it for awhile, keep going. And for the bloggers who’ve achieved great success, don’t hold out on the rest of us, because chances are someone helped you get to where you are. Now, it’s your turn to do the same for someone else.

simple blog layout

Blogger Event in Kansas City

Morning beauties! I hope your week went as quickly as mine. Frankly, I’m exhausted from it. My schedule is usually 9-5 Monday through Friday but on Tuesday my day lasted a little longer than usual. I had the opportunity to meet up with a bunch of great Kansas City area bloggers for hors d’oeuvres and cocktails. It was the first time I had ever gotten to do anything like that and it was such a fun event! The Blog Guild organized the event and Golden & Pine graciously hosted all of us crazy bloggers! Getting a group of fashion-conscious, girl bosses together for an evening of socializing is always bound to be a great time.

window seat ideas

Golden & Pine has a beautiful space in the up and coming neighborhood of Brookside! Exposed wood and concrete floors added a really unique, hipster vibe to the store. Think Anthropologie with a mix of West Elm and you have Golden & Pine! I fell in love with how they styled this window seat area. Big throw pillows are an easy way to cozy-up a space!

spring inspired food

Another great way to make a space warm and inviting is wonderful food! Heirloom Bakery made these amazing treats for the girls to munch on. Pink donuts with a floral garnish satisfied my sweet tooth. Don’t you just adore the pink glaze dripping down the sides? On slices of wheat toast was hummus topped with veggies and a creamy whipped topping!

potted plants in home

coffee table styling

anthropologie inspired

Golden & Pine totally embraces my firm belief that plants and flowers brighten the home! They had so many adorable little packets of seeds to choose from with various combinations of flowers!

homes inspired by anthropology

A styling element they had going on was baskets full of pillows and blankets. The room just made you feel at ease! That’s saying a lot for someone who walked into a social situation where she knew no one and suddenly became friends with everyone. I’m tellin’ you, this group of girls is great!

elegant bathroom soap

There was so much detail that went into every little corner of the shop. Even the hand soaps were beautifully displayed in little wooden boxes. Every time I go into places like this, I come home and want to play interior decorator in every room of my home. After being around girls who are even more creative than I am, the desire to try harder and create beautiful spaces is coming back. Sometimes you just get in a slump and need other people to motivate you. The company you keep really does effect you!

LIZ

 

10 Mistakes Every First-Time Blogger Makes

Mistakes Bloggers Make

 

Hello lovelies! Since I shared a post last week about a few milestones I’ve recently reached on my blog, I wanted to give some unsolicited advice about the mistakes new bloggers make. I started out on my blogging adventure in May 2014 and did so many crazy things that crack me up now. Many of you have commented on other blog posts saying that you’re new to the blogging world. I’d love to help you out with a few suggestions on what you shouldn’t do when blogging!

Blogging Mistakes

Inconsistent Blogging –

I’ve had many bloggers approach me and want to collaborate, which is great! However, the first thing I do is check their blogs to see how consistent they are in their blogging. Why? Because it says a lot about how serious they are, the size of their (potential) audience, and how much my time will be worth collaborating on a project with them. Additionally, your own audience will become disinterested in you if they don’t know when you’ll post next.

Poorly Lit Photos-

The first months of my blogging were the worst for this! Shadowy pictures, grainy photos, and just awful imagery were all over my posts. It was bad. No one likes to look at that! People love pretty pictures that are well lit and taken with a steady hand. The best light is natural light. 

Writing Mysterious Titles-

“Pumpkins and Bicycles.” What does that even mean? Bloggers seem to think that mysterious blog titles will get people interested in what they wrote. It doesn’t do that at all. If people don’t clearly understand the topic of your blog post, then they are very unlikely to click it on to find out more.

Strange Font Colors-

When I first started blogging, I thought it was a fun idea to make my fonts bright and exciting. I actually made some of the font colors pink! Yes, I would write my entire post in pink. Guess what? No one can read that, so don’t do it.

Keeping the .Wordpress-

Starting out, you aren’t sure if you want to invest money in your blog. Believe me, I get it. However, if you want brands and other bloggers to take you seriously and collaborate with you, you have to get rid of that “.Wordpress” in your blog’s url and that means buying the domain name.

Relying on Polyvore for Content-

I love Polyvore, but it shouldn’t be your main source to create content. I use it specifically to help me with illustrations for my blog, but I do not let that become the centerpiece. For example, I might create a little something about a seasonal coffee bar, but I don’t plop that on my blog post and say “enjoy guys!” That doesn’t help anyone or give them ideas. You need to write something!

Writing About Yourself-

Talking about your experiences adds life to your posts, but your blog isn’t your online diary. If you truly want to grow your blog, then you need to have content that somehow helps or inspires the readers.

Promoting Your Blog-

I’ve had people comment on my blog or Instagram saying something like “Great” and then leaving their blog link. Obviously, they’re trying to get me and my readers to visit their blog. Leave a substantive comment and it’s more likely to happen.

Forgetting to Spell Check-

Even I still forget to do this. It’s the thing that can add or take away credibility from your website. Similar to applying for a job, you can’t have mistakes on your resume because no one will take you seriously.

Writing More Than You Promote-

For whatever reason, we think all we have to do is promote our blog posts on our Facebook pages and our Twitters, but it’s so much more than that. Collaborating with other bloggers, writing for websites, and leaving genuine comments on other’s blogs is promotion.

If you have tips, experiences, or advice to share, then please leave a comment! I always enjoy hearing what you have to say and so does everyone else!

witty n pretty

 

 

Very Inspiring Blogger Award!

Blogger_Award

 

I had a few really amazing ladies nominate me and I’m flattered! Morgan from “Wandering Rush” and Lindsey from “Life Love Lindsey” have both nominated me recently! Check out their blogs! Lindsey blogs about glamour and fashion, Morgan blogs about crafts and other crazy things! Its really special to be nominated for these things because bloggers work so hard to bring fun posts to followers and we like to be recognized every once in awhile!

Here’s how it works: (as far as I know)

-Thank and link the amazing person who nominated you.

-List the rules and display the award.

-Share seven facts about yourself.

-Nominate fifteen (I am only nominating a few bloggers) other amazing blogs and remember to comment on their blogs to let them know you’ve nominated them (provide a link to your post).

-This rule is optional – you can proudly display the award logo anywhere on your blog (e.g. on your sidebar) and also follow the blogger that nominated you.

~~~

1. I love to bargain hunt (never pay full price for anything!)

2. I’m a cat person

3. My Mom is my best friend

4. I worked at Disney World for 5 months

5. I love coffee mugs

6. My biggest dream is to start my own business (think Kate Spade!)

7. I enjoy trying new cuisines!

~~~

Here are my nominations:

G from Palm Trees and Pellegrino 

The Preppy Lifestyle

Alice from Live Fit Love Chocolate

Ali from Dear, Ali Grace

Allison from Jersey Girl in Pearls

The Other Iran 

Erish from A Thing Created 

~~~~~~~~~

Liz