Posts

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How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours – Wayne Dyer

 

Relationships are everywhere. Work, home, pets, friends, family… Everywhere you look, turn, and run there are relationships there to support you or there are relationships there to dethrone you.

Something that has been difficult for me to understand and grasp fully, is that you can never control the other person. You may not understand or know how the other person is feeling. You can’t always understand why the person does what they do. You can’t dictate how they react. Most importantly You Cannot Change The Past.
[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row custom_padding=”60px|0px|60px|0px” _builder_version=”3.0.105″][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb title=”Listen” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%132%%” icon_color=”#b09b6d” _builder_version=”3.0.106″ header_font=”Montserrat|500|||||||” header_text_color=”#b09b6d” header_font_size=”20px” body_font=”Montserrat||||||||” body_font_size=”16px” text_orientation=”center” locked=”off”] This is an artform that we forget that we have. When talking with someone you can learn a lot by listening
[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb title=”Let Go” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%373%%” icon_color=”#b09b6d” _builder_version=”3.0.106″ header_font=”Montserrat|500|||||||” header_text_color=”#b09b6d” header_font_size=”20px” body_font=”Montserrat||||||||” body_font_size=”16px” text_orientation=”center” locked=”off”] We cannot change the past. It is time to let go and forgive. Yet this is the hardest task of all. Forgiveness
[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb title=”Love Yourself” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%257%%” icon_color=”#b09b6d” _builder_version=”3.0.106″ header_font=”Montserrat|500|||||||” header_text_color=”#b09b6d” header_font_size=”20px” body_font=”Montserrat||||||||” body_font_size=”16px” text_orientation=”center” locked=”off”] It is cliche, yet loving yourself before you can love others is true. It may be something we do not want to hear
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Find joy in everything you choose to do. Every job, relationship, home.. it’s your responsibility to love it, or change it

-Chuck Palahniuk

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_image src=”https://iamjennaclark.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/pexels-photo-179909-1024×683.jpeg” _builder_version=”3.0.106″ filter_brightness=”107%” /][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section bb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.0.106″ prev_background_color=”#000000″ next_background_color=”#000000″][et_pb_row custom_padding=”|||” custom_margin=”|||” _builder_version=”3.0.105″][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Title” _builder_version=”3.0.106″ text_font=”Montserrat|300|||||||” text_font_size=”16px” text_line_height=”1.8em” header_font=”||||||||” header_2_font=”Montserrat|500|||||||” header_2_text_align=”center” header_2_font_size=”30px” header_2_line_height=”1.4em” text_orientation=”center” max_width=”700px” module_alignment=”center” animation_direction=”right”] I was in an extremely toxic relationship for roughly five years. It was on and off, if you can relate. It was not physically abusive, though mentally and verbally it fit the bill.

It broke me.

I kept going back and kept thinking there was something wrong with me. I felt that this person, just like I was doing for them, had my best interest at heart.

I would only feel secure when he showed me affection. When it was absent I would spiral into deep dark depression thinking “What am I doing wrong to not receive his love?” Yet, as I look back his love was only empty promises, empty lines, empty “I love you’s”, “I will never leave you”, “You are everything to me”

Then, after the second time I caught him speaking to one of his exes, I realized how I was walking on eggshells. How I was living a fraction of my life. Most of it in fear. The other half in false hope. Every time we would break up, or I felt the strength to walk away, I would come back because I wanted to feel that love, appreciation, affection. Only to feel like I had made the worst decision and wondering if he was messaging anyone else.
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Some of us think holding on makes us strong, but sometimes it is letting go – Hermann Hesse

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I remember the times we would separate or argue. I wasn’t able to eat, sleep, I felt scared, and I felt alone. I know I had so many people in my “corner” telling me how this was better for me and he had done me a favor. All I could think of was how desperate I felt to get him back or figure out why I wasn’t good enough for him.

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section bb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.0.106″ custom_padding=”32px|0px|6px|0px” prev_background_color=”#000000″ next_background_color=”#000000″][et_pb_row custom_padding=”|||” custom_margin=”|||” _builder_version=”3.0.105″][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Title” _builder_version=”3.0.106″ text_font=”Montserrat|300|||||||” text_font_size=”16px” text_line_height=”1.8em” header_font=”||||||||” header_2_font=”Montserrat|500|||||||” header_2_text_align=”center” header_2_font_size=”30px” header_2_line_height=”1.4em” header_4_font=”Montserrat|500|||||||” header_4_font_size=”20px” text_orientation=”center” max_width=”700px” module_alignment=”center” animation_direction=”right”] I was scared to be alone. I was scared of only having myself. I didn’t have many close friends any more due to isolating myself throughout the relationship. Also, loosing many disapproving friends. Though, through these times I would start to work on myself. Lean on books by Louise Hay, Gabby Bernstein and Wayne Dyer. Started exercising, eating well and feeling much happier. Which is usually when the timing came for him to come right back into my world.

Finally the end…

It was December 2015, he was distant, abrasive, and short with me. He stayed out with “friends” and slept on the couch. The inevitable happened. He broke it off with me. I remember that Thursday night. Crying and begging him to work on things and that I was sorry for whatever I may have done. That Friday morning driving his kids to school saying goodbye for good, my things in tow.

Not realizing that this definitely a God send.
[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section bb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.0.106″ custom_padding=”0|0px|32px|0px” prev_background_color=”#000000″ next_background_color=”#000000″][et_pb_row custom_padding=”|||” custom_margin=”|||” _builder_version=”3.0.105″][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Title” _builder_version=”3.0.106″ text_font=”Montserrat|300|||||||” text_font_size=”16px” text_line_height=”1.8em” header_font=”||||||||” header_2_font=”Montserrat|500|||||||” header_2_text_align=”center” header_2_font_size=”30px” header_2_line_height=”1.4em” text_orientation=”center” max_width=”700px” module_alignment=”center” animation_direction=”right”] I  slowly started to improve yet again.  Even though I was feeling better about myself, I still had a long way to go. Which then I noticed I was trying to use other relationships as a safety net. My heart has been broken many times. My mind is still broken. Which tends to spiral me into the black abyss.  All of these distractions that add to the depression that overlays my external persona.
[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Title” _builder_version=”3.0.106″ text_font=”Montserrat|300|||||||” text_font_size=”16px” text_line_height=”1.8em” header_font=”||||||||” header_2_font=”Montserrat|500|||||||” header_2_text_align=”center” header_2_font_size=”30px” header_2_line_height=”1.4em” text_orientation=”center” max_width=”700px” module_alignment=”center” animation_direction=”right”] I still battle with anxiety and depression and it can create tension in all relationships that I have. Fear of not being good enough. Fear of responding incorrectly. Fear of hurting someone. Fear of acting like I am better than someone else.
[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section bb_built=”1″ _builder_version=”3.0.106″ custom_padding=”0|0px|32px|0px” prev_background_color=”#000000″ next_background_color=”#000000″][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.0.105″][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Title” _builder_version=”3.0.106″ text_font=”||||||||” header_font=”||||||||” header_2_font=”Montserrat|500|||||||” header_2_text_align=”center” header_2_font_size=”30px” animation_style=”fade”]

There’s an important difference between giving up and letting go – Jessica Hatchigan

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.0.106″][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text _builder_version=”3.0.106″ text_font=”Montserrat|300|||||||” text_font_size=”16px” header_font=”||||||||” text_orientation=”center”] These thoughts are on a negative reel that plays in my head daily. It affects me the most when I am romantically with someone. I lash out when I feel down on myself. I break out in tears when I feel overwhelmed. I am accusatory. I have nights I want to curl under the covers and ignore everyone and maybe sleep for two days straight. Then be upset that I wasted valuable time. I hate myself because I can see my anxiety causing issues yet I can’t control it as easily as I would like.

 

So this is where I am – trying to make sense of things that don’t make sense. Working with a therapist and trying to use other outlets, such as blogging, to help release these negative thoughts and hopefully reaching someone else. Maybe shedding some light to others that are close to me. Which when reading this they will go “That is why you are doing that” It is me trying to be strong and transparient, loving and compassionate, supportive and brave for all those other struggling with similar situations.
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Four Health Benefits of Marriage

 

A camera is a save button for the mind’s eye 

I began my journey within photography three years ago. Needing an outlet for my creative side it fulfilled just that. Loving the experience as well as the final product photography is a process that will always be apart of my life. When Jodi Lynn of Photography by Jodi Lynnpresented this incredible opportunity to become an Intern at Le Boudoir Studio, I jumped right in!

Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep. -Scott Adams

What brought me to enjoy photography?

Photography was something I have had immense passion for since High School. I received my first digital camera in 2009 and annoyed everyone with taking their pictures and took pictures of everything around me.

Boudoir has definitely been the one that has caught my attention. Even when I was younger I admired all of the beautiful women, the makeup, the outfits, the poses.

Who doesn’t want to feel like an Angel in the Centerfold?

 

It tells such a gorgeous story through the eyes. The way someone can be captured with not only outer beauty yet also inner. My favorite person, whom I’d watch movies as well as look at her photos, is Marilyn Monroe. No matter, what she could catch anyone’s eye and tell a story through her own!

I will continue to practice photography and better my skills. I cannot wait to continue sharing with you the incredible things I capture.

You should check out some of my other posts such as Felicia Day Book Tour! Enjoy!

XoXo,

Four Health Benefits of Marriage

By Jenna Clark

A good marriage would be between a blind wife and a deaf husband.

At times married life can be less than exciting and making you feel very testy towards your significant other. Yet, even when your partner is driving you up the wall, it turns out they might actually be improving your health.

It is true! Turns out that those that are married may have the advantage of health benefits over someone who is single. Now, that does not mean that tying the knot automatically creates a happier healthier you. Clearly divorce rates have sky rocketed. Though some studies show that relationships are at the root of finding joy.

 

“Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.”
― Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Health Benefits Of A Happy Marriage

Numero UnoLower Risk of Cardiovascular Disease. Considering heart disease is one of the main causes of death this is a pretty important factor.

Your stress levels will be lower. It may not seem like it at the time of an argument, but being married actually creates a hormonal change that directly affects stress levels.

Beat it Cancer! This is a bit dramatic yet equally as important, being married boosted survival rates of cancer patients in one study.

You will live longer! Finally, getting hitched could mean that you will live a longer life.

Downside of Marriage

Not to be all against singles by any means. There is one case which marriage doesn’t help: OBESITY. People who tend to be married suffer from higher rates of obesity than singles do. Now we all know obesity is connected to so many health concerns so this can create the opposite affect. It is always important to make healthy choices once you are married.

 

Final Thoughts

  • Being in a safe, stable marriage can help you live longer, reduce risk of heart disease and reduce stress levels.
  • For those with cancer, being in a healthy loving relationship can increase the odds of you living longer.
  • Con of relationships increases your chances of being obese. So make sure to adopt an active, healthy lifestyle and motivate each other!:)

What are some positive benefits within your relationship? Make sure to comment below and also check out How to Identify & Release a Toxic Relationship.

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The Narcissist doesn’t want your love, they don’t know what love is. They want your admiration and your obedience as a player in their fake make-believe world.

This is a topic that hits close to home. As I researched about human behavior, I realized that the Narcissist was someone I used to date. I noticed some of his characteristics that were alarming, yet was not strong enough to leave, I decided to write this blog post to hopefully help out others that may be in the situation I once was in.

To begin,narcissists lack the basics levels of empathy for others. This includes a constant need for validation, a willingness to control people, and a ruthlessness in getting their needs met. That being said, the narcissist thrives on other’s fear.. Narcissists haven’t learned that the only true power is love-of self, others and the universe. And if you have ever fallen in love with someone like this, you know how painful it can be. 

Now painful relationships can be blessings in disguise. They unwrap our deepest wounds for us to heal. They can free us by helping us reclaim our own power.

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So, how do you know for sure if you’re dealing with a narcissist? Here are 9 signs to look for:

  1. A narcissist will often call you “crazy” (and slowly start to convince you that you are!)  They are known to use “gaslighting,” which is a form of psychological abuse used to create anxiety and confusion. Which creates those to lower their own trust in themselves and their ability to discern what is real and what is healthy.
  2. He or she use your personal insecurities or struggles to make you feel not good enough. Personal insecurities that you may not have otherwise been aware of seem to be a constant source of tension and are often pointed out critically and insensitively.

and she was made to appear crazy by the man who drove her there

-r.h. Sin

3. You’re constantly being blamed. It is NEVER their fault! Narcissists don’t accept that they create their own reality. Instead, they are constantly hurt by your behavior and project the blame onto you. Their responses are triggered by unhealed wounds, so they’re trying to relieve pain, subconsciously, through harmful emotional abuse. DO NOT FEEL SORRY FOR THEM.

4. Are they hot and heavy in the beginning… The beginning of the relationship is like all of the scorching scenes in Sex and the City! They are all about you and the relationship seems like a fairy tale. We love being pursued and showered with attention by someone charismatic and charming. Whisk us away Prince!

5. Hot and cold. When they have your trust, they will flip on you, pull back, making you feel crazy. Vulnerability? Ha! That would shatter their poor ego.

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Narcissists will destroy your life and erode your self-esteem and do it with such stealth as to make you feel as YOU are the one that is letting them down.

6. Trophy Complex! Does your love interest seem to always come at the right time? Fixing problems like a hero or heroine? Do they have a sense of false image convincing everyone they are truly better than who they really are?

7. You start feeling obsessive, needy or codependent after spending time with this person. Seriously this one is a huge red flag and I know from experience. An em-path’s light is bright; highly sensitive individuals have a high love quotient. We are always there to love and support. Though if you are feeling obsessive, comparing, needy, codependent and definitely drained, JUMP SHIP!

8. Lashing out and behaving like the narcissist. You’re not being heard so we tend to lash out or become reactive in ways similar to the narcissist themselves. Scary!

9. They are genuinely damaged yet not open to healing. They are phenomenal at appearing they are damaged or need our help. It is not your job to save or fix someone! DO NOT FIX THEM!

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Why are we Attracted to Narcissists?

Well, for one, society does a wonderful job of glamorizing these personality types. The Narcissist is the “charmer.” Feeding off of drama and romanticizing over the pain of love.

Connection through pain is the new sexy. 

If you are attracted closely to Narcissistic patterns, You may have childhood trauma you need to heal.

As we grow, we attract partners who reflect our wounds until we heal them. Deep stuff I know, this we can go over in depth in another blog. We create relationships that mirror our past hurts so vividly that we can no longer ignore them.

These relationships show up over and over. They can be romantic or not. This is true when the relationship feels and has similarities to someone you have dated or been in contact with before yet it is a new relationship. 

Time to get down and dirty on healing those deep seeded pains. 

These are growing opportunities, which can allow us to heal so that we have the ability to move into relationships rooted in love and service.

If we are still trying to prove our worth, we attract narcissists.

How do we get out of this mess?

The way out of a narcissistic relationships is not easy, especially when there are deep feelings from your end. They are also manipulative. Yet, it begins with awareness, which if you are reading this I hope that is enough. Follow the awareness by taking responsibility for our actions and feelings learning how to love ourselves enough to LEAVE. What happens when we blame the narcissist for our pain is that we become even more needy and codependent. They will also make us feel bad about ourselves so that we feel we can never do better.

Blame keeps us trapped!

The narcissist is not responsible for our wounds. They may trigger our wounds. What we decide to do with this information is up to us. It is time to gain self love and rise above!

XoXo,
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I refuse to be subject to your mind games and lies. I will not play a part in your constant drama. You will not manipulate me, nor will you control me.

How do you spot a manipulator?

It started so easily and effortlessly. He was witty, thoughtful, charming, passionate and a professional liar. Yup! Liar! Yet, for some reason I could not walk away. I tried. It took me way to long to realize what the relationship was doing to me. Though when it ended, I felt so pure, free, and myself again.

So, how did this happen and why did I feel so poorly about myself? Here are some easy red flags to know you are dating a master manipulator and you need to get out before you loose yourself and it is too late!

  • This is probably the most prominent one I noticed once we separated. Not only did I never make plans with friends, which mind you I lost many through the years of being with him, my emotions were affected so greatly by how he showed me affection. I was ecstatic when he was loving and appreciative towards me. Yet, when he ignored me, treated me poorly and blamed me for making him feel bad I felt the worst I have ever felt in my life. I was nervous, anxious, and downright depressed!

  • My friends were annoyed. Clearly this one is linked to the previous. I cannot blame anyone for being so annoyed. I had friends and family telling me…begging me to leave him. Looking at the situation from where I am now, who wouldn’t be pissed off at a friend constantly complaining about the same problems over and over with their disrespectful significant other? No one understood why I was still “wasting my time” with him and honestly I didn’t know why either.

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All I kept saying was, “I love him!”

  • He was more emotional than I was. I swear he had a menstrual cycle and PMS worse than a teenage girl going through puberty! Granted there were times he showered me with love. That is when he was in a good mood or wanted something. If he was in a horrible mood, no matter what the reason, I suffered. Usually, he made it my fault somehow.

  • Efforts were one sided. Based off of the last  number, when he was upset I tried so hard to make him happy. I was always putting forth effort to better our relationship. Who wants to be the only one emitting love? Texts? Plans? He would give only when he felt like it or noticed I was starting to fall out of interest in him.

  • Unwilling to compromise. Never was it halfway. It was always his way or the highway. I heard his thoughts, wants and needs. Was any of that reciprocated? Answer was… at times, when it was beneficial to him!

  • Living in fear created self esteem. The emotional abuse I endured was tremendous. We had our highs and lows. His feelings for me changed randomly. One day he would tell me he loved me the next he would be talking to others. I feared everyday that he would break up with me. Looking back, I wish I would have done the honors.

  • Great sense of speech. As I mentioned before, if I was starting to come to my senses, he knew exactly what to say and when. Every word out of his mouth was meticulous, yet usually a lie. He created some of my weaknesses, knew how to target them and use everything against me.

  • He didn’t “change” until I left. The second I finally called it quits in my heart, he changed his ways (or so he claims). The first time we separated and he finally realized I was done, he flooded me with affection, like I stated he always came back when I was falling away. Unfortunately, he was already with someone else at this time.

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.0.47″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”1_4″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ parallax=”off” parallax_method=”on”][et_pb_blurb title=”Hypnotherapy” url=”https://iamjennaclark.com/hypnotherapy/” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%103%%” icon_color=”#eb2ef2″ _builder_version=”3.0.65″ header_font=”Walter Turncoat||||” header_font_size=”22px” body_font_size=”14px” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” text_orientation=”center”]Change that lasts a lifetime!
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The damage has been done and there’s no going back!

Despite the feelings, emotions and torment I went through for years, this was a blessing in disguise. Why you ask? Well, once I fully separated and cleansed myself of all this I met someone so incredible! Someone who supports me, loves me unconditionally(which sadly is really hard for me to accept from how I was treated), and tells me how beautiful I am daily. Isn’t this what all of us are looking for? So, when people told me there are many fish in the sea or that there were great guys who will love and treat me with the respect I deserve, they were correct! 

I FOUND HIM! WE FOUND EACH OTHER:)

The first day we met we instantly fell in love! A couple months later, as I was driving to grab us some food, I realized mid drive that I was driving all by myself. Now this sounds funny to say. It sounds funny to read! If anyone knew me and my past relationship they would know that I didn’t feel comfortable leaving to get gas or even to go to work! I was fearful that he would be talking to someone else like I caught him numerous times before. That fear is something from the past!

I have someone who loves, respects and adores me! Who allows me to do those things I love and they help me which betters us!!! But that is for another post:)

I know this is a difficult topic and many women struggle with this. The amount of times I had thought about leaving to better myself, I couldn’t. Don’t beat yourself up. Do not ever lower your self love. Yet, as many told me before “You will not change unless you are ready.” Be kind to yourself and make sure you have positive support. Even if it is with a professional.

Hypnotherapy is a great way to gain more self love and confidence to aid in these situations! Head here for more information! Click Here!

Make sure to comment below. Hearing other’s situations or hearing our own stories as we write it can help us release or clarify what we are dealing with.

 

XoXo,
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Tell me about your energy.

Statistically speaking, Americans feel 44% more stressed than they did 5 years ago. Then, 1 in 5 Americans experience “extreme stress” and 3 out of 4doctor visits are stress related ailments!

This brings us to energy zapper numero uno!

Mistake #1: Stressing out.

Everyone feels it, experiences it, yet very few of us take our stress seriously and understand the true threat it has on our overall health. When we go day in and day out with stress, it sends our cortisol through a roller coaster. This in turn weakens our immune system and wreaks havoc upon our energy.

Have no fear! We can learn to relax!

Learning how to relax can be a powerful tool. We can even train our bodies to handle stress with more ease. Meditation is one of the many tactics I utilize to reduce stress. Check out my article on 4 ways of Meditation Here!

Mistake #2: No Movement. 

Our bodies are not made for inactivity. Back as far as we can research, man was hunting, running, gathering, etc. Our cells contain spunky little engines called Mitochandria. These tiny powerhouses are responsible for turning our food into fuel.

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Now this is truly important:

The quality and quantity of these engines, determine the quality and quantity of energy we possess.

So, how do we build these little guys up? Through healthy lifestyle practices, duh! Exercise is right at the top of the list. What is one small change you can make that will add movement to your day?

Some examples you can find are within this article I wrote about Yoga to energize your mornings!

Mistake #3: Ignoring your gut.

In my most recent article, 5 ways to maintain gut health, I discuss how important the gut is to our overall well being. This is also directly related to our energy.

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row _builder_version=”3.0.47″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”1_4″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ parallax=”off” parallax_method=”on”][et_pb_blurb title=”Hypnotherapy” url=”https://iamjennaclark.com/hypnotherapy/” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%103%%” icon_color=”#eb2ef2″ _builder_version=”3.0.65″ header_font=”Walter Turncoat||||” header_font_size=”22px” body_font_size=”14px” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” text_orientation=”center”] Change that lasts a lifetime!
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There are 5 simple ways you can

start to heal your gut.

#1 Eat your fruits and veggies! Think of your gut as a garden. It needs proper care to thrive. The fertilizer that feeds your garden is fiber. So, eating more of a plant- based diet helps the good guys do their job and you feel fantastic in return!:)

#2 Reduce inflammation. This is a bit more difficult for our Standard American Diet (SAD). Honestly, there are way to many processed foods and especially refined sugars. This creates an imbalance in your gut which leads to inflammation. Replacing those foods with plant foods keeps harmful organisms at bay.

#3 Drink WATER. I couldn’t begin to tell you how important water is. This means ZERO soda, NO energy drinks. Rock that H2O!

#4 Chew your food! Beyond popular belief, your stomach is not equip with teeth. *Mind Blown* Use your teeth to help your stomach out. Digestion actually starts with the enzymes secreted within your mouth.

#5 Move your body. We already mentioned this one. Exercise actually increases the diversity of probiotics and also helps you poop! Woo Hoo:)

Now it is your turn. What is one thing you will do this week to begin healing your gut? 

Mistake #4: Chasing Perfection. 

This has to be my personal struggle. There is nothing fun or pleasurable about perfection. It is controlling, boring, and rigid. In fact, it is not even doable because perfection is a myth. What is one thing you’ve been beating yourself up for not doing “perfectly”?

Write it down and then cross that shit out! You’ve got more important things to do than worrying about being perfect.

It’s not about getting more energy. It’s about uncovering the innate energy and well-being that’s already inside you.

Again, make sure to leave a comment on how your energy has been feeling as of late and the things you will be doing to help increase it.

 

XoXo,
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Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. -Albus Dumbledore

It is finally here! I have been waiting for JK Rowling to continue the series that had filled and shaped my childhood. The continuation of this story grows with the characters and also us as readers.

Harry Potter is back!

This book came out when I was in fifth grade. I remember, back in Sheboygan, WI, having my parents drop me off at the Walden Bookstore. There, I had met some friends from school and we were picking out the next book for our “book club”. We were walking to the register when it had caught my eye. What was this? A boy on a broomstick!

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

When I read the back of the book, it had created excitement and wonder. I begged for us to read this one instead of the utter crap we probably picked out. And so I traveled home with a book that would forever change my life!:)

Now, my fellow wizard mate is back!

The eighth Harry Potter story is finally out. Though it is not a novel, it is a rehearsal script for an actual play that has opened in the Palace Theatre in London’s West End. It has been said that a regular script will be released later this year. *Squeel*

The book has upset, confused and disappointed many people. It is just a small part of a whole experience that Rowling is envisioning. Even though it does not feel connected with the glorious story that Rowling created within the last seven books, it does, however, provide an interesting sight into what adventures Harry and his mates will unravel in the future.

Honestly, I cannot wait to finish my copy. It is intriguing to see how much I truly missed this story.

Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.

-Albus Dumbledore

Terrorism, our country turning on itself, and violence is everywhere we turn. Yet, it is empowering to see that we are still able to be dreamers, wishers, and adventure seekers (pun-intended) through the pages of our favorite books.

If you have yet to get a copy of this book, wait for no further click on one of the links below:) ACCIO POTTER!

XoXo,

Jenna-Clark-Signature

Dear Stomach, You’re bored, not hungry So Shut Up!

We have all been here! The pint of ice cream, the chocolate chip cookies, the liters of soda taunting you from the kitchen counter. Yet, is it the actual food that is pestering you? NO! it is the CRAVINGS!

We all have them, yet do we really understand why? Better yet, do we know how to curb them? I have struggled and failed miserably being controlled by my cravings! What about you?

You probably are already aware that cravings are not a result of being hungry. But you may not be aware of how these damn things work. Cravings have a biological and a psychological influence.

The most common foods we crave are sugar, carbs, chocolate, salt and for some, cheese. First, let’s walk through the main causes of these cravings, and this will give us a better understanding of why this happens!:)

5 Causes of Food Cravings

Leptin Resistance

What the hell is Leptin? Well, Leptin is a hormone in our bodies that produce in our fat tissues. Its primary job is to stimulate your appetite and also tell us when you’re full. Clearly, mine is not working! This works harmoniously when our brains and stomachs are on the same page. But, it doesn’t work that way when constant surges of leptin trick your brain into feeling hungry even when you are not. Why does this happen? Well, one culprit is having too much body fat-more fat means more leptin produced. Simple enough.

Another cause is eating a diet high in sugary foods and processed crap. The sugar triggers fat cells which releases leptin. Whatever it may be, constant surges of leptin can lead to leptin resistance.

Eating a healthy, balanced diet is the best way to keep a normal balance of leptin in your body.

Serotonin Low

Most have heard of this incredible neurotransmitter. Yet, did you know that it is mainly produced within, none other than, the gastrointestinal (GI) tract? It is directly tied to our mood, appetite, and digestion. *Mind Blown*

This is a pretty important one. I have witnessed this one in action quite often especially in children who have eaten high carbohydrate and sugar products. When we consume these foods our mood increases for a short while. Then we come crashing down causing our brain to think

“I need more!”

Low serotonin can also be caused by poor gut health, alcohol consumption, depression(which can go hand in hand with many of these others), anxiety and OCD. You know what I am talking about! How often do you feel crumby and you want that comfort food? Or you convince yourself that it is okay to eat because you are feeling down and out?

Moving right along!

Endorphins

This is another big word, what does this have to do with cravings? First off, endorphins are basically opiates that help us relax. Eating sugary foods and especially salt increases the production of this hormone. When we eat these foods we experience a relaxing feeling. Obviously, we crave more! And with this, it can create addictions.

There have been recent studies that sugar can actually have more intense feelings of reward than cocaine. Clearly, this is not good. No wonder we have such issues with Obesity and mental illnesses. They are all closely related to food addiction. There have been many studies also indicating the addictive qualities of foods found in highly processed foods can cause addictive eating because of the rapid rate absorption.

The more you can avoid packaged and processed foods, the more control you’ll have over your food choices.

Sluggish Gut

Previously mentioned, serotonin levels are directly linked to cravings, and your gut is the epicenter of serotonin production. Unfortunately, in order to maintain those feel-good levels of serotonin, your gut needs to be in impeccable shape! This allows you to absorb nutrients from your food and pump out serotonin through your GI tract. Only this act is based on having a gut that is healthy with a proper balance of good bacteria.

Emotions

This one is the big kahuna! All emotions can prompt you to peruse the pantry! Who doesn’t want to bundle up on the couch and mow down some chips, cookies, and ice cream when you break up? Most cravings often disappear within an hour, choosing a healthier option or even better choosing an activity you enjoy may give you just what you needed!

Now that you understand a bit more about where these cravings begin, let’s discuss some ways to stop them!

5 Tips for Tackling Food Cravings

  1. Drink water. I am so sick of hearing people say “I don’t like water” Well, that is just stupid.. We are made up of 80% water. For our organs to function, you must be drinking roughly half your body weight in ounces DAILY. Do the math! Literally, thirst and dehydration make you feel hungry. Once you consume more water this will help control your hunger.
  2. Avoid sugary foods and processed carbs. Clearly, this is one I have been stressing greatly throughout this article. Avoid these as much as possible. I am not saying you cannot enjoy your sweet indulgences, just whip them up with lower amounts of sugar, higher fiber, and higher protein ingredients! Examples of these are dark chocolate (yay), almond flour, cassava flour, and bean flour. These will not trigger cravings and feed an appetite that just won’t quit.
  3. Exercise and plenty of rest. Within our society we are so high strung and exhausted. Truly not a great combination. Sometimes as we come home from our stressful days of work we head straight to the kitchen to seek out comfort and relax. Rather than relying on frenchfries and Oreos to help us relax, go for a short walk or go to bed earlier! These habits produce endorphins that are just like Hershey Kisses. If you do choose to exercise it boosts your serotonin levels. Any time I choose yoga, hiking or weightlifting I never want to ruin it with crap foods.
  4. Meditation and daily sunshine. Taking a few minutes, even at lunch, to get some fresh air and quiet your mind also boosts your serotonin levels. I know personally when I walk outside and the sun is shining a feeling of peace rushes over me. Meditation doesn’t have to be a complete silence either. I use journaling as my meditation as well as listening to music and just staying still!
  5. Avoid trigger foods for 21 days. It has been stated that 21 days is how long it takes for a habit to form. Clearly, we have enforced bad habits and now need to tough through 21 days without our trigger foods. You will be fine! Find healthier options to grab when you’re craving. Great choices are low-glycemic smoothies and desserts, fresh berries, guacamole or hummus with veggies, rice cakes or raw cashews.

Does this mean you cannot have your favorite treats anymore?

No Way! Yet, if you feel like your food cravings are running your life, take back control by understanding them more.

Do you have any tips for overcoming your cravings? Comment below because others may be in the same predicament that you are and could use your help! Oh! And another thing: brush and floss your teeth. It helps train your brain that you are done eating when your mouth feels all squeaky clean!

XoXo,

Jenna-Clark-Signature

Strong Is The New Sexy

It is easy to consume fat burners, supplemental shakes, or even starve ourselves. Fast and unhealthy weight loss is a growing obsession these days. Society bombards us with unrealistic body goals on social media, we are part of judgments focused on physical appearance, and we are pressured to be a size zero every time we look in the mirror.

This is all harmful. I felt this pressure even in fifth grade, more so as I got into high school and it even happens now. There was a point of time I became bulimic to try to change my image faster. It wasn’t until I had food allergies and leaky gut syndrome  tearing me up that I realized I can’t do those “quick fixes” and “fast result” weight loss. It isn’t even about weight loss. It is all about gaining health.

I am still trying to heal my relationship with food.

Being a female myself, I know that it is difficult to think positively of ourselves. One thing I have observed for myself is having positive thoughts and feeling good about myself made me feel more confident and much easier to be around.

You are gorgeous! and totally amazing!

Number One: Shoot for no more than 1-2lbs of weight loss per week

It may be upsetting. I know we want instant gratification, especially if there is 50 to 60lbs you want to lose, yet shedding 1-2 per week is going to get you to your goal and help you to stay there. Let’s break it down for ya… One pound is basically 3500 calories. If you lose one pound per week, that means you’ve eaten 3500 fewer calories that week or essentially burned an extra 3500 calories, or a combination!

Two: Weigh yourself no more than once a week.

I have tested this before and noticed that I can weigh myself in the morning and by lunch time I am usually 2-3 lbs heavier! WTF! This can be caused by sodium intake, water loss, dehydration and even hormones. I am aware of this yet there is something about seeing those damn numbers go up and down that my mood takes an emotional roller coaster. This can create a lot of inner turmoil and sabotage your progress. So Quit it! Pick one day a week and time to do your weighing sessions. This will be more reliable.

Another thing to remember is usually the scale starts to go up due to building muscle.Just don’t jump on the scale at all.

Three: Consider taking your body measurements and a photo.

This is way more accurate then a scale. It could take weeks for the scale to reflect your work. Fat cells are  decreasing in size while your muscle cells are growing and getting more dense causing the scale to be higher. If you take your before hip thigh waist and arm measurements as well as your body fat percentage you will more than likely see results on a weekly basis.

Four: Beware of the things that can hinder your success.

We know what we are suppose to avoid. Stress is probably the biggest culprit though. Being stressed about your weight is one of the top reasons we slow down our progress. I know it is difficult. Look into some relaxing techniques such as hypnotherapymeditation, yoga, or even essential oils. Practicing these techniques will help calm your nerves and promote balanced and long-term weight loss!

Also, rapid weight loss is a weight loss killer. It is not healthy to loose 3-4 lbs a week. It lowers your metabolism significantly and PERMANENTLY! Your nutrition becomes depleted which causes energy crashes and cravings, yet also means your weight will be quick to find you again and increasingly more difficult to lose the next time.

With a well-paced approach to weight loss is the first step in developing a healthy relationship with your body. Now that you have the building blocks, we must shift our attention to increasing our self-love and positive self talk!

Want extra guidance to reach your weight loss goals? My weight management hypnotherapy programs are exactly what you need to find success! Message me and I can get you set up after a quick interview so I can find what will best support you!