Trader Joe’s Macro-Friendly Shopping List

The grocery checklist below is the same one I use on my weekly Trader Joe’s haul. The list is not in order because I’ve added and deleted items over time. On the right column, I list the macronutrients (Fat, Carbohydrates, and Protein), and cost for each item.

What are Macronutrients? Macronutrients (macros for short) are what makes up the calorie content of food. The three categories of macros are fats, carbohydrates, and protein. Getting the right amount of protein, fat, and carbs will determine whether you are building or losing muscle and whether you are putting on or losing fat. We all have different fitness goals, so it is essential to track your macros according to what your goals are. For more information on how to calculate and count macros, please click here.

TJ's Macros list

10 Ways To Find Your Purpose

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1. Live in the present.

Living in the present is difficult, especially for those who are adamant about being in control about all aspects of their lives — living in the present means to live in the moment and concentrating on what is going on at this moment.

2. Reading self-help and spiritual books.

Reading self-help and spiritual books have been a tremendous aid in figuring out your purpose. So many authors have gone through similar experiences. It is refreshing to read about it because it gives you a piece of mind– you are not alone– you are not the only one on this planet going through problems. See the bottom of the page for a recommended list of self-help and spiritual books and podcasts.

Read:10 Reasons Reading Everyday is Important

3. Knowledge is POWER!

The more you educate yourself, the more your general awareness becomes clearer. Reading is a powerful tool because it exercises, challenges, and stimulates your mind and imagination.

4. Meditation

Meditation may be difficult to master at first, but after you put it into practice every day, you become better, and eventually, it will become part of your daily routine.

5. Stay away from negative people.

I am going to share one of the best advice my mom said to me many times growing up: stay away from negative people. They are miserable people that like to make others miserable like them. From what I have experienced in my twenty-seven years of life– my mother is right. I’ve even lost friends because of how pessimistic they view life. I couldn’t bear listening to constant negativity, so I distanced myself. If you have to do the same, do it!

6. No more excuses, be consistent.

When you find excuses not to do something, chances are, you will never come around and follow-through. The key is to be consistency and push yourself. You will notice that after, you will feel good about yourself because you accomplished something. So next time you decide not to do something force yourself and see how good you will feel.

7. Stop comparing yourself.

If comparing yourself know is a problem for you, try to detach yourself from the source, even if it’s ending a relationship or deleting your Instagram for a while. Because at the end of the day, nothing matters, but yourself. Become your biggest fan!

8. Stop trying to impress others.

Of course, you have to impress others at some point, for example, an employer on an interview. But, to always worry about what others think, negates you from living the life you are meant to live. It makes you do things that are not genuine, not you. The only person you need to impress is yourself.

9. Practice Gratitude

Life is not easy, and you should know that by now; however, be grateful– you are alive! You are given the opportunity to live in this universe– take advantage of it. Be thankful for the little things you have. When you practice gratitude, it makes wholesome and leads to feeling peaceful, content, and in the moment.


The Five Minute Journal: A Happier You in 5 Minutes a Day

Read: 4 Reasons and Ways to Practice Gratitude

10. CONCLUSION: Love yourself, no matter what!

Loving yourself is most important in finding your purpose. You are unique and know there is a reason why you are here– hone who you are and flourish.

SUGGESTED SELF-HELP/SPIRITUAL BOOKS:

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change


The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life



Girl, Wash Your Face: Stop Believing the Lies About Who You Are so You Can Become Who You Were Meant to Be



You Are a Badass®: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life

PODCASTS TO LISTEN TO: 

  1. Melissa Ambrosini 

  2. PURSUIT WITH PURPOSE PODCAST by Melyssa Griffin

  3. Do It Scared by Ruth Soukup

  4. RISE Together Rachel & David Hollis

 

6 Ways Push Yourself to Eat Healthy and Exercise Regularly

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What sparked the ideas to write this blog was a text I received from my best friend Amanda (not her real name) that said, “I’m so unhealthy. I miss the days when I was healthy and 125 pounds.”  Amanda looks great! She weighs between 135 and 140 pounds (5’5 in height) — perfect weight for a twenty-eight year old. But Amanda has the misconception that being thin correlates with being healthy.

Being healthy does not mean you have to be skinny or be a certain weight. Being healthy means that you eat the right amount of nutrients daily and exercise regularly. Fitness trainer and model, Anna Victoria, states in her blog, “Why I don’t Weigh Myself:”

you cannot always tell someone’s health by looking at them from the outside. Someone who is skinny can be even more unhealthy than someone who appears overweight on the outside…”

It took years for me to realize that weight does not matter–that looking skinny does not mean that I am healthy. We all have a different figure, height, and weight; what matters is what makes you comfortable.

Below I share six guidelines to inspire and push you to start living a healthily.

1. It is the 21st century. Many inspirational bloggers could suggest ways of living a healthier lifestyle–and it is all free!

These bloggers share their personal experiences on what they’ve learned and are passionate about it. Find an influencer you could relate. Below are some of the girls I follow that knowledgeable about healthy eating, working out, and more.

2. Start counting Macros.

Macronutrients (macros for short) are what makes up the calorie content of food. The three categories of macros are fats, carbohydrates, and protein. Getting the right amount of protein, fat, and carbs will determine whether you are building or losing muscle and whether you are putting on or losing fat. We all have different fitness goals, so it is essential to track your macros according to what your goals are. For more info, click here.

I learned how to calculate macros from lifestyle blogger and influencer, Claire Guentz. I highly recommend you to read her blog on  “How To Figure Out Your Macros Should Be,”  because it was her blog that influenced me to count macros. I never knew how important it is to calculate your macros, (not just your calories) because WHERE you’re getting your calories from is so imperative.

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3. Start slow and make gradual progress.

It is never okay to start something out rapidly and expect results. Doing that will only make you feel restrained and discouraged. Begin doing what you can. The great thing about counting Macros is that you can sometimes have cheat meals, as long as you eat the right portions.

4. Accountability

Some suggestions to help you be accountable are, writing a contract to yourself, journaling your progress, or promising yourself something that you truly want and then getting it once you have accomplished your goal.

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5. Making delicious recipes and having fun when exercising.

Look for delicious, healthy recipes online. Your diet should not be tasteless or boring. Also, find workouts that you enjoy doing. Don’t force yourself with exercises you dislike. For example, don’t begin running three miles because it is a fast way to lose weight. Other cardio exercises are also practical.

6. Listen to your body– take your time.

Often when starting any diet or health change, your body needs time to adapt. So give it time while it does. Everyone is different, and if your body is taking longer to get in better physical shape, it is okay, don’t give up — be patient and keep working on it and promise you will see results.

CONCLUSION

Living a healthier lifestyle is choice you have to make, but once you do, I guarantee you will look and feel amazing. It is your life, and it is up to you on how to live it. I suggest you become in sync with realistic goals that are right for you and your body.

 

 

Are Subscription Boxes Worth It?

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What are subscription boxes?

They are boxes that contain an assortment of products – typically with a common theme, such as beauty boxes, pet boxes, or food boxes.  Your subscription automatically delivers to you periodically for the length of your subscription. The majority of the services keep each month’s specific box items a surprise and allows you to set subscriber preferences to personalize your box.

Did I do the right thing subscribing to subscription boxes?

Yes! I signed up for very reasonably priced subscriptions, and so far I love it. I have no regrets because it is exciting to receive packages and to try something new every month! Plus, if you need or want to cancel for a while it is easy, just go to your account settings and click cancel my subscription. Some may ask for a reason, but they are just doing that for customer service purposes.

Below are six subscriptions services I recommend:

Stitchfix 

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Stitch Fix is an online styling service that delivers a truly personalized shopping experience, for you and your family. Fill out your Style Profile and a Personal Stylist will handpick pieces to fit your tastes, needs, and budget—and mail them right to your door. Each box has a curated choice of clothing, shoes, and accessories for you to try on at home. Merely keep the items you love and send back the rest in a prepaid USPS envelope. Shipping and returns are always free—even for exchanges!

Athena

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Athena club is all about convenience– known to make your period simpler with high-quality feminine products.  When subscribing, you can select the product, assortment, quantity, and frequency; then wait for it to get delivered to you every month. Prices vary, depending on the number of tampons in your order.

Splendies

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Splendies is a company selling comfortable and affordable underwear, costing just $13.99 a month for three pieces. You begin by choosing your size and style– whether panties, thongs, or a mix of both. The undies are cute and of good quality.

Sephora Play Box

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For $10 each month Sephora curates a selection of new and best-selling products from makeup, hair care, skincare, and fragrance. When subscribing you have to answer a ten-minute survey questionnaire that helps determine what you will receive. Sephora Play is ideal for anyone who cannot afford some of their expensive products, like me. LOL. Or anyone who likes trying new products and makeup.

Walmart Beauty Box

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At just $5, you’ll receive a beauty box, four times a year with an assortment of new beauty products. Every seasonal box varies, you may sometimes receive a box with just foil packet samples, and there is the season you will get full sized items. It is a hit or miss, but for $20 a year, why not try it?

Earfleek

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EarFleek is an online subscription service that sends you a fun and trendy pair of earrings every month for $3.49. You select one of four personality subscription options, and a stylist makes sure to send you something you will love that reflects your personality. Also, they have a feature that allows you to swipe through their trendy styles, letting them know what you like and dislike.

FAQ

Would Subscription Boxes work for everyone? 

No. It all depends on the person. If you are a person unwilling to try new things and does not like surprises, Subscription Boxes may not be for you.

 

 

 

 

5 Benefits and Practical Ways To Clean Your Home

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Let’s be honest; cleaning isn’t anyone’s favorite thing to do. Often we find it a waste of time or don’t have time at all. However as tedious as it can be, having a clean home is extremely important. Not only is cleaning good because it freshens up your home but also it helps maintain both mental and physical health.

I grew up in a clean household and never really considered the benefits of it until moving out and living on my own. My mom was very strict about it and made sure to teach my brother and me how to clean thorough and well. She always stressed that you could not entirely live happily at home if your house is messy and unclean.

Cleaning does not take up too much time or effort. If you are still skeptical and saying to yourself that you are too busy to squeeze in time? You are making excuses; I am 100% sure that you can schedule time. Below I share five benefits and practical ways of maintaining your apartment clean. I guarantee that once you begin to clean your apartment frequently, you will reward yourself and feel relaxed, energized, and accomplished.

5 Benefits

1. Enhances the aesthetic of your home.

Having nice things in your home is not what makes your home look nice– it is maintaining it clean. Cleaning refreshes your home and makes it feel and look vibrant.

2. Improves mental clarity.

Of course living in a clean environment stimulates mental clarity, but even more so while doing the cleaning itself. For example, something as benign as washing the dishes can become a mindfulness activity.

3. Deters stress

Notably, cleaning can serve as an outlet for mental and emotional well-being through its ability to relieve stress. It is a simple routine that can positively redirect your thoughts, revitalize your mental state and order your mind.

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4. Great Workout!

Think about it; mopping the floor, arranging seats, dusting and cleaning dishes involves a lot of movement. You can burn a lot of calories while cleaning!

5.Makes your home feel homely.

Cleaning your home makes it feel homely and welcoming– a place to kick back and relax.

5 Practical Ways

1. Focus on an area.

By focusing on an area at a time, makes it easier to clean and does not take too much of your time– as suppose to cleaning everything at once and exhausting yourself. Start by cleaning your bedroom on Saturday morning, and then go on to clean the living room the following day or week.

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2. Declutter

When your home is cluttered; you can often feel a sense of anxiety or confusion from the state of disarray. Improve your condition by getting rid of things you no longer need. Decluttering will bring order to your surroundings and effectively order to your mind.

3. Maintain things organized!

Once you declutter, keep your home organized. You can do so by purchasing storage boxes, putting things right away, making your bed every morning, never leaving your dishes unwashed, folding and placing your clothes neatly in your closet or drawer, etc.

4. Use products that make cleaning easy.

The following list of items is what I use to clean my apartment and highly recommend for you to try them out:

5. Clean every week.

I know you may say that you’d hate to clean every week. But do it! Why? It makes it easier and takes less time.  If you let your furniture and floor collect dirt and dust for extended periods, it will take longer to clean. Duh!

CONCLUSION

Cleaning has many benefits because the time you spend cleaning, you are deploying energy and invigorating yourself physically in spirit while revitalizing your mind and emotions. Your sadness and anxiety will blow away, and you’ll be inspired to seek out joy and peace. You will feel renewed, energized and ready to take on any challenge in life.

FAQ

How often and how long do you clean?

I clean weekly. I usually clean the bedroom and Living room on Friday evenings and the Kitchen and Bathroom on Saturday mornings. Each room takes 30 to 40 minutes.

~GB~

4 Ways to Cope with your Spouse’s Annoying Habits

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I love being married– waking up next to my husband every morning, coming home and expecting him to arrive a little after I do from work–sharing, and doing things together–our daily routine. Marriage is a commitment and a journey two people agree to join in together for the rest of their lives. While it is wonderful, marriage is also hard. What makes it hard? Having to understand and cope with your spouse’s habits for the rest of your life!

When my husband and I first moved in together, we never argued. In the early stages of our relationship, the positive feelings outweighed the negative, and I turned a blind eye to my husband’s faults. But over time I noticed his annoying habits which drove me crazy and caused us to regularly argue. After an awful disagreement last spring, I figured out the cause to our arguments– our different habits.

Habits are rituals and behaviors that we do every day that allows us to carry out essential activities. We all have habits, and it is what makes us who we are. And when married for a long time, it is inevitable to sometimes become annoyed with your spouse’s habits–it is normal. I share below some guidelines my husband, and I’ve tried in the past year that helped understand and cope with each other’s habits.

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1. Communicate, Understand, & Compromise  

Voicing your opinion respectfully is the best way to communicate. If my husband and I hadn’t, we wouldn’t have figured out the reason for our arguments. It took several disagreements before actually sitting down and having a constructive conversation. But, immediately after, we had a clearer understanding of what was annoying us and worked through it to avoid future arguments. Discovering that we have different habits, we were able to compromise and work together to change the habits that can be changed and learn to accept those habits that can’t.

2. Make a list

Next time your spouse annoys you or have a disagreement, make a list of all the things you love about them. And every time you become annoyed, read the list and think about the positive aspects of your spouse instead of the negative.

3. Seek advice from someone you are close to and trust. 

I suggest that you seek advice from someone you are close to, trust, and have your best interest. Stay away from those who are negative because their opinion will be subjective and not helpful in making your relationship better. My mom is who I speak to for advice. She had me realize that many of the arguments my husband and I had been nonsense and all would’ve been avoided if we’d sat down and talked.

4. Spend time apart– ‘me’ time

Spending time apart does not mean a marriage break. It means that it is okay to have time for yourself and do things without your spouse. I recommend that you find hobbies and/or do activities that exclude your spouse and have ‘me’ time.

Conclusion

Habits are difficult to understand. But, if you love your spouse and can’t imagine living without them, there is nothing else to do but to try to work it out. The best way to start is by respectfully communicating being honest because it leads to understand and compromise with your spouse.