My Heart’s Desire

Travel. Happiness. Success. Laughter. Positive energy….and a little wine.

That’s a short list of things my heart desires. What’s on yours?

Travel

Although school and my busy schedule keep me from traveling as much as I would like, I have big plans. I feel there is so much of the world to see and I want to see as much as I can. My philosophy is that not traveling is me limiting myself, and I never want to limit myself in any area. Some people may think that they are not able to travel, and really it is as simple as you putting in the effort to make it happen. I set a goal and make it happen.

The Design Museum, London, England

Yes, that may mean missing 6 months of nail and hair appointments, but to me it’s worth the opportunity to expand my mind through new experiences. 

It doesn’t have to be far away, international, or even expensive. Every area offers something new, I love meeting new people, and with that comes learning about cultures and customs other than my own.

Oh! I can’t forget the food!!!

By far my favorite – Borough Market, London

There are boundless destinations outside of the states I’ve lived in.

One of my 2020 goals was to travel to three new places this year. Although, COVID19 had other plans for me, I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to travel to London during my Spring Break, with my grandmother, Courtney, and her mother (literally just in time LOL).

Funny story actually, we flew out the day before the travel ban was put in place. In case you’re wondering, it has been a month since then and yes, we are all safe and healthy!! Anyway, I thought traveling to London was just an unattainable dream, but I made sacrifices, I budgeted my money, and I turned that dream into a reality.

Once this pandemic is over, the next locations on my list are Cancun, Atlanta (to see my girl, Court), Thailand, and Miami (I told you they don’t all have to be far away). Do you have any suggestions? The sky is the limit…

Success

Woah, this is a big one for me. Failure is my biggest fear, but also my  biggest motivation. At times, I put so much on my plate to the point where I’m overwhelmed because I am SO hungry for success. I would say that’s my biggest strength and weakness, because I am so hard on myself…sometimes a little too hard. I am definitely my #1 critic, but that pushes me to do better, to be better and let me tell you, I am a much better person than I was last year. Not because I was a bad person or anything, but I measure my success in growth and boy have I grown.

A little background: I received my Bachelor of Science in Physical Education, with a concentration in Exercise Science, and a minor in Dance. Long story short, I thought I wanted to be a Physical Therapist, but I realized I chose that career to make the people around me proud, when in reality they were going to be proud of me either way.

I realized that working with the higher education population was my passion (other than teaching dance, of course), and it took some self-evaluation, deep thinking, many pros and cons lists…and then I decided to move from Virginia to Florida to pursue my Masters in Higher Education/Student Personnel.

Move 12 hours from home? Long distance relationship? What about my family? Will I like the area? Who will I call if my car breaks down? Random roommates? There were so many uncertainties and “what ifs,” but you know what kept me going….determination. I knew I needed to reach outside of my comfort zone a little more. I knew I needed to take a risk to reach my goal. I knew I needed to experience life independently (my undergraduate institution was in Virginia). Honestly, when I first applied to my current institution, I laughed because I thought moving to Florida was a dream, I only go there for vacation, right? WRONG. I got accepted and it was like another dream came true. I am almost a year in and I am so proud of myself for taking the leap into the unknown because it one of the best decisions I’ve made,…for ME.

Forget your fears, you got this! 

I am the graduate advisor for our dance marathon, Knight-Thon (KT)

July 2019-My first visit to Epcot.

The beach. Probably, my favorite part of the move. Oh, and getting in the hot tub in December.

Happiness 

Happiness….my ultimate goal in life. Yes, I understand that “bad days” are a part of life, and sometimes out of our control. On the days that I am in control though, I try my hardest to find any moments of happiness. I think that comes with being grateful for what I do have, rather than for what I don’t. It comes with pointing out the things that make me happy; things that I wouldn’t normally recognize.

Oftentimes, especially when I’m having one of those bad days, I have to point out and remind myself of those things, especially the little things. I challenge you to write down a light of 10 things that make you happy and incorporate that into the rest of your day. Here’s mine: 

  1. Laughter
  2. Good Conversations
  3. Sunny Days 
  4. Doing homework on my balcony 
  5. Drama movies with a good story line
  6. Dancing with my little brother 
  7. Facetime calls with my mom (especially when she doesn’t want to)
  8. Cooking 
  9. Sunday Fundays with my boyfriend (even if that means binge watching movies all day)
  10. Wine, LOL

Laughter

If you know me, you know I love to laugh. You will probably catch me laughing 75% of the day, even if I’m laughing at my own jokes. Sometimes it is a coping mechanism, but it sure does make me realize that whatever I’m stressing about, it is not too detrimental, if I can bring myself to laugh about it. I genuinely believe that, “A day without laughter is day wasted” -Charlie Chaplin. Surround yourself with people that make you laugh until your face and stomach hurts.  

Positive Energy 

You attract the energy that you give. From my experience, this is not always the case, but giving off good energy never failed me. You are also in control of the energy that is around you. Focus on yourself first, to ensure you are being the best you, for others, and then evaluate those that you surround yourself with. You do not have to keep unhealthy friendships or relationships, because of longevity. Now I am not saying, cut off all of your friends, but if there are people in your life that bring you constant negativity, and it is beginning to affect your mental health, let them go. Well first, take a step back and use that time to self-reflect. Have you been the friend that you expect others to be? If the answer is no, spend time improving yourself, and see if the friendship/relationship improves.  If you are not ready to let that person go, or you have never expressed your feelings, let them know. If ya’ll are meant to be in each other’s lives, I believe it will just make the friendship stronger. Maybe, they also need time to work on themselves. It may take a while, but I believe it will happen if and when it’s meant to. Some people are in your life only for a reason and/or season, and that’s okay. It took me a while to recognize and be able to implement that advice, but I now try to only surround myself with supportive, uplifting, and genuine humans, and I do not regret that change one bit. Shoutout to my amazing friends, family, and mentors…you know who you are ❤️

Travel. Happiness. Success. Laughter. Positive energy….and a little wine

That’s a short list of things my heart desires. What’s on yours?

LIVE.LAUGH.LOVE yourself first. Until next time. Mwauh 💋 -Alex

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