Life Update | Car Accident

IMG_4565Hey guys!

I know it’s been a while since I posted but don’t worry I have some exciting stuff planned for you guys so stay tuned!

This past month has been painfully busy – emphasis on the painful. As some of you may know I’ve been competing in pageants for years and currently hold the Miss California U.S. Miss title. (I’m flying as I type this to Clearwater Florida for the national pageant!)

If the craziness of juggling work and preparing for a national pageant wasn’t enough, my mom and I were in a pretty bad car accident just three weeks ago and that put everything on hold. Between our physical injuries, and the mental toll it has taken on the both of us, I had no idea how to get on with life, let alone prepare for a pageant.

I’ve always been anxious on the road and worried about these kinds of situations and I have always thought about how I’d react in the situation, but nothing could have prepared me for the harsh reality of a car accident.

If I close my eyes I can still feel my heart sinking as our car was sent spinning. I remember feeling the wind knocked out of me and feeling like I couldn’t breathe.  I can smell the smoke filling the car, and more than anything I can vividly see all of the glass and blood all over the inside of our car.

It was a real life nightmare.

Even three weeks after the accident I’m still in some physical pain but the mental side of it, is so much worse than I could even describe. Between the constant flashbacks, the grueling nightmares, the anxiety of getting back in a car, and so much more, these have by far been the most difficult three weeks I have ever experienced.

I’m not going to go into too much detail of the accident, mainly because I’m still processing everything and struggling to deal with the whole situation myself, but I just wanted to give you all an update on where I have been.

I know this post is short and not too fun but please bear with me! I have some posts planned that are a lot more exciting and happier than this one so be on the look out for those! 

And to everyone that heard about the accident earlier, whether you know me personally or found out through my social media and reached out, thank you so so much! 

Your love and prayers mean the entire world to me!

Xoxo, Juliana 

20 Lessons I Learned In 20 Years

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Guess who’s 20 today?! I’m finally an official adult. How crazy is that?

You know what else is crazy though? The responsibilities that come with being an adult.

Let me tell you, this whole “adulting” thing seemed so much more fun when I was little. Little me didn’t take into account the bills that needed to be paid I guess, but as stressful as it may be at times I am so ready to officially kiss my teen years goodbye and start this new chapter of my life.

With that being said, here are 20 lessons I learned in 20 years.

1) You are what you DO

It’s easy to talk the talk, but talk doesn’t always matter. Actions speak louder than any words you could possibly speak. If you have something you want to do, then DO IT. Don’t waste time planning it or waiting for the “perfect moment”; that perfect moment is now.

2) Losing weight isn’t everything

Stop putting all your focus on losing a certain amount of weight. Rather than putting all your focus on weight loss, focus on being healthy. Eat healthy and exercise regularly because it’s good for you and your body, not because you’re trying to punish your body.

3) Stop comparing yourself to others

It’s easy to fall into the comparison game-especially with social media-but it’s also dangerous to your mental health. As great of an outlet social media is, it’s played a big part in damaging self esteem in many people. Scrolling through countless posts of all the exciting things people post make it easy to feel the envy and start comparing your life to theirs. However, it’s important to realize that what you see on social media isn’t always real. We all post the best parts of our lives on social media and conveniently leave out our struggles. Stop comparing yourself and your daily life to someone else’s highlight reel.

4) Don’t ever let anyone make you feel bad about yourself

This past year especially I was faced with a few situations where I let people and their rude comments get me really down. It made me question everything I did, but now as I look back I’m finally able to realize that there was no point in that! The people that hurt you aren’t the ones suffering as you continue to punish yourself for whatever mean things they said about you. As much as it hurts, let it go and move on.

5) Own Your Self-Worth

You have to learn to love yourself, and realize that you are worth so much more than you may realize. Once you learn that you are good enough, and that you matter, no one else can steal that from you.

6) Life is all about progress, not perfection

We all have things we want to change in our lives, in a perfect world we can make those changes happen overnight but life doesn’t work like that. Chances are whatever you’re trying to change didn’t occur overnight, neither will the solution to it. Make small goals and continue to grow and make progress.

7) Don’t take yourself too seriously

For years now, I have struggled with the need to be perfect, and to get people to like me. I thought about it so much that I would take every little thing I said or did so seriously that it stopped me from enjoying my life. Stop overanalyzing everything you do and taking your life too seriously. No one else does, so why should you?

8) Agree to Disagree

We all like to be right, but sometimes it’s just not worth the argument. You have your opinions and others have theirs. It’s okay to disagree sometimes.

9) Life is too short to waste time hating anyone

This past year especially has been hard with this one. There were a few people in particular that made my life horrible and made me question everything, and I hated them for it. In the end though, all it did was hurt me more. I wasted almost a year on hating these people. Don’t make that mistake, if someone hurts you forget about them and find people that value you.

10) When life pushes you over, you push back harder

Life gets you down sometimes, but you have to be strong and fight through it. If you really want something, fight for it no matter who or what stands in your way.

11) If it feels wrong, don’t do it.

Growing up, you’re always trying to fit in with others, in desperate times you may even forget your own instincts and go along with whatever someone wants you to do for the sake of being friends with them. Trust your instincts. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t do it. It’s better to lose a friend than put yourself in a dangerous situation.

12) Investing in your skills is always beneficial to your future success

Lets be real, nothing in this life is free, thats for sure. If we have to pay for things though, shouldn’t we invest in something that can help us in the future? No matter what skills or talents you have, we all need a little training. Invest in your skills and do whatever it takes to perfect those skills to help guarantee your success.

13) If they do it often, it isn’t a mistake it’s their behavior

We all make mistakes, that’s life. However, if someone continuously lies, or makes the same mistakes and hurts you, it’s not a mistake no matter how sorry they claim to be. It’s who they are as a person, and they will more than likely do it again.

14) When in doubt, just take small steps

If you’re feeling unsure of whether or not you can achieve the goals you’ve set for yourself, don’t just give up and put your dream aside, make small goals, and continue to work towards achieving your goals one small step at a time.

15) Losing someone is tough, but you’re tougher

The loss of my great grandma is something I carry with me every single day. Sometimes I even forget she’s gone and find myself wondering when she’ll come visit next before I get that sickening feeling in the pit of my stomach as I remember she’s no longer with us. It still hurts me, every single day. The pain of losing a loved one doesn’t fade away, you just get stronger.

16) Follow your heart, but use your brain

Dating can be complicated to say the least. It’s easy to get caught in the excitement of meeting someone new, and falling in love with the idea of love. When someone new comes along that you think can make you happy by all means go for it like you’ve never gone for anything before, but don’t forget to take your head along with you. It’s important not to compromise yourself and your morals to make a guy happy. If he really cares about you, he’ll respect you and your decisions, even if they differ from his own.

17) Your thoughts are powerful, make them positive

It’s so easy to let your thoughts get the best of you. The more negative you think, the more negative you are going to feel. Keep your thoughts positive and always look on the bright side of things.

18) Its okay to adjust plans

Most things don’t turn out exactly the way we planned. Even if we end up getting the results we wanted in the end, chances are something along the way didn’t go exactly as you thought it would. Having to change plans up isn’t as bad as you may think it is in the heat of the moment. At the end of the day life has a funny way of working itself out and giving us what we ask for, it just may not be in the exact form we originally ask for.

19) Make peace with your past, before it gets in the way of your future

You can’t move forward if you keep living in the past. Whatever good or bad might have happened before needs to stay in the past, so you can start building your future.

20) Dreams require sacrifice 

Nothing in life is going to be handed to. Creative people are some of the best people in my opinion, but creative careers are not always typical or “safe”. If you have big dreams, you’re going to have to make big sacrifices to make those dreams your reality. You’re going to have to work day and night, you’re going to have to work when working is the last thing you want to do, and you will consistently have to make short-term sacrifices to get where you want to be. The people who go the extra mile are the ones on track to fulfill their dreams and be successful.

There you have it, my 20 lessons I’ve learned in 20 years. The two decades I’ve been alive have taught me a whole lot of good, and a whole lot of bad, but even through the bad it’s what’s made me who I am today.

Even through everything I have experienced, and everything I have learned, I still have so much room to grow and so many places I want to be.

I can’t wait to see what this next year has in store for me!

5 Steps to a Healthier Body Image

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Body image.

It’s something we all struggle with at one point or another. Today, we live in a world full of filtered, photoshopped photos on Instagram that show us what we are “supposed to look like”. You can’t scroll through any social media without at least one post about weight loss, or a photo of an unrealistic body type. Whether it be bigger or smaller than you are, there’s always a post somewhere telling you that you need to change. That you aren’t good enough.

It’s easy to get caught up in these posts and fall into the self-comparison game, but how healthy is this? Even if those of us that are older are “mature enough” to handle it there are young, impressionable girls and boys looking at these posts and comparing themselves to unrealistic standards. It’s things like this that play a part into leading teens into life long struggles with eating disorders.

It’s because of this that something has to be done.

If you know me or have followed me on social media over the years, you probably know that I have struggled with an eating disorder for years. Having a positive and healthy body image was basically a foreign concept to me. I hated everything about my appearance from my height, to my weight, to the color of my hair. I didn’t like anything about myself.

I had a horrible relationship with food, being in a constant cycle of not eating, giving in and binging, feeling guilty and purging. I hated every minute of it, but I just couldn’t stop. It was like my brain would shut off until after the fact.

I’m now working towards my third year of being in recovery. Has it been easy? Not even close. I have struggled, I have slipped up, I’ve cried, and wanted nothing more than to give up at times. Although I am better-“recovered” if you will-I’m definitely not in the best physical or mental shape. I’m still working hard towards achieving both.

I still have down days. I have days where I want to slip back into old habits and give up on the whole “recovery thing”, but I don’t. Even when the dark thoughts start slipping back, I keep on fighting! Why? Because I’ve realized that I am worth it. I am worth recovering. I am worthy of happiness, and so are you!
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Two years ago I found myself doing something I never thought I’d have the confidence to do; I got on stage…in front of everyone…in a bikini?!?!

Yeah 12 year old me never saw that one coming.

If you told me a few years ago that I would be on stage in a bikini I probably would have laughed in your face, because there was no way, feeling as insecure as I felt that I would be able to do that, and yet here I am.

 

28618704_1847716021907277_3185484370552243955_oFast forward to this year, I modeled fitness wear for Jewlz Fashion Boutique! Just like the swimsuit it’s not something I thought was possible for me to do. Honestly I almost backed out of shooting the look last minute, but now looking back I am so glad I pushed through and got the confidence to rock that look!

Building up the courage to compete in swimsuit, shoot in fitness wear, and really learn to embrace my curves definitely was not easy. I had to work on my body confidence every single day, using little tricks that ended up helping in the long run!

Here are 5 of my tips to help you improve your body!

  1. Write down something you like about yourself each dayI know this one probably seems pointless, but try and find little things that you like about yourself that aren’t related to your weight! It could be something as small as your nails or your eyebrows, or even your personality! Just find something unique that you love about yourself!
  2. Stop comparing yourself to others!You are you! There’s no one else in the world that is like you, and that is an amazing thing! Don’t try and be a copy of someone else, just be you!
  3. Erase all negativity from your life, focus on the positive things!It’s time to tell the negative committee that meets inside your head to have a seat and be quiet. Get rid of any items, thoughts, or people that bring negativity towards your life. It’s time to start fresh, and think only positive thoughts!
  4. Look at yourself as a whole, rather than focusing on just one areaThere is so much more to you than your insecurities. Look at yourself as a whole and realize how truly amazing you are, regardless of what you weigh.
  5. Realize that beauty is not defined by a number, true beauty comes from withinIt might sound cliché, but it is so true! Beauty really does come from the inside. No matter what you weigh or what size you wear, you are beautiful!

Try these tricks out and you’ll be surprised to see that it actually does help! It’s going to take time to build the confidence and healthy body image that you deserve to have, but trust me when I say that it is SO worth it!

If there’s anything I’ve learned over my years of struggling with an eating disorder and body image insecurities it is the importance of loving yourself. So many years of my life were wasted hating myself and only now that I am 19 years old have I finally realized that the most important thing is self love.

It doesn’t matter whether you are a size 2 or a 22. Just know that You are beautiful. You are talented. and You are so loved.