Tag: Lifestyle (page 1 of 2)


There’s a word that kept resurfacing in the past few months and I’ve decided to pay attention. The idea of “unbecoming” has been coming to me in internet quotes, books I’ve read, conversations I’ve had. Although, the expression has been adopted in a pejorative way to mean unflattering, it stuck.

Unbecoming is defined as:

: not attractive : not becoming

: not appropriate or acceptable for a person in a particular job or position

What if “unbecoming” was the key to our happiness?

What if unbecoming was the gateway to inner peace?

I think it is. Here’s how I got to this conclusion.

Unbecoming BraveBohemainDOTComThe first few years of our lives are spent “learning”. We learn all our lives, on many levels, but the types of learning we do early on is less aware. It’s much less about who we are than it is about how to function. In the process, we inevitably “become” someone. We’re named a birth, into a family, in a place, with a cultural background. We learn what all these references mean. We situate ourselves. We relate to others from our predetermined, subjective, point of reference; the someone we’ve (been) identified as. As we go through life, this someones’ story becomes heavier and heavier with experiences and this someone’s actions, decisions, and reactions become defined by each other. The frame of reference becomes more defined but also more limited in possibilities. The person (soul) who limits themselves to their identity’s frame of reference, whatever format is used here (cars, jobs, family…), stops listening to their guidance. The truth is, the story we tell ourselves about who we are only matters to our “someones”. Who we are – souls – don’t care about stories or typical forms. Our souls don’t care about our family histories, our jobs, our salaries, the houses we live in or the car we drive. Our souls use these as means to an end. Our souls don’t even regard “reasonable possibilities”. We are so much more than the identities we assume and we tend to limit ourselves because that’s what we learn.

Unbecoming is actively shedding parts of our assumed identities that no longer work for us. (Have they ever, really?) It can be compared to someone’s sense of style; for most of us, it’s clearer through choices what suits us. We decide to eliminate, we actively choose to not participate in trends, we refine what feels right and looks good on us. (At least, that’s the hope!) And of course, some styles work for us at certain stages of our lives and not others… we try on personalities and lifestyles and work our way to what ultimately, is “really us”. I see the process of “unbecoming” like me refining my soul’s personal style by taking away the superfluous, the tacky, the ‘age-inappropriate’, the unflattering and the uncomfortable. In so doing, I’m allowing the classic pieces and the few daring ones that act as my secret weapons to nail the “style” that is just right.

Now, hold the phone, I haven’t mastered this skill yet. There are layers of this to be done, at least in my case!

To me, unbecoming means….

That I’ve declined the invitation to conform, to be nice, to keep my head down just for the sake of it.
That I’m bolder about my life choices.
That I’m more honest in my words and actions, and that I’m firmer in my boundaries.
That I say no a lot, but I also say yes to more of what I want or need.
That my heart feels lighter and lighter.
That my head feels clear.
That my body feels strong and healthy.
That my decisions are in line with my values.
That I’m facing my fears about being apologetically who I am.
That I’m facing my fears about being responsible for my life.
That I’m getting closer to my core.

It remains a process that looks a lot like cha-cha, but its by-product is a beautiful dance of mySelf.

Unbecoming might just become a key word for me in my spiritual practice. What can I shed today / this week / this month / this year? Is this choice honouring me, deep down? What does my gut say?

What does unbecoming mean to you? Do you feel like there are habits or beliefs you could shed to be happier and lead a harmonious life?

How Choices Make You Happier

I’ve learned a really difficult lesson this year. Among many tough realizations, I’ve learned that choices are healthy.

Having many options to choose from, reviewing them, making a commitment to a choice and sticking to it. It’s all part of a very intentional process. It’s a process that fosters awareness and cultivates mindfulness.

I’m someone who likes to learn a LOT, do a LOT, be everywhere, travel to new places, master skills right away… and of course, this isn’t possible simultaneously. Most people need to work at refining their skills, as do I. Most people learn over time and practice. I’m no exception. I often wish I could just *know* something already.

Can’t I just, hold this guide book against my forehead and absorb it?

We can travel many places, but not all at once. We can only be in one place at a time. I think that this “buffer” between our minds and our immediate realities is healthy. It often protects us from wasting time and energy doing things we’d truly regret or it helps us avoid doing something that would keep us from doing something we’d love more. I suppose, this could also be linked to “manifesting”. This teaches me patience and not to “rush” life, because here and now is what I’ve got..

Probably that one of the best examples where I have difficulty choosing in my life is in my relationship with books. I love them! I want to read them all! I want to know the stories of the world! I am easily distracted when it comes to which books to read, because each book is a story that is fascinating and full of adventure, hope and opportunity. I have a reading problem… I read many, many books at once. Although, in itself, this isn’t a problem, what is an issue is that if I start a novel or a non-fiction book, I need to make it to the end. I need to consciously choose to make that my “main” read at one time. Otherwise, I’ll never finish it.

yogagirl_US-coverMy friends have this running joke that I’ll never finish reading Le Parfum, by Patrick Suskind. It’s true! At this point, I’ve given up. I just don’t like it enough. I’m choosing to commit to other books that are either more my idea of “light reading” or more my idea of “inspirational reading”. Right now, I’m reading Yoga Girl by Rachel Brathen (non-fiction) and I’m finishing up the first book in the Beautiful Creatures (fiction) series. I know… Everyone needs variety!

Money, money, money…

This year, I’ve also learned how to properly budget, despite being close to 30. I guess you could call me a financial late bloomer. How did I ever get by without using this basic skill? Apparently, I’m not the only woman, or the only Gen Y for that matter.

Money is a great servant but a terrible master.


You Need A Budget – Great App!

Learning how to manage my own money has been a step in self-care, acceptance and love. I am worthy of a stress-free financial life. For me, this meant re-evaluating my needs, my lifestyle preferences and my medium and long-term goals. For me, it meant making a new habit and loving what it did for me. I guess you could call it my little financial fitness awakening.

We’ve all heard “You can’t have it all”. Actually… real life for go-getters goes more like this:

“You can’t have it all at once, but you can have most of what you want, *if* you think differently about how that looks for you.”

Then what do we want most and how do we enjoy it?

Knowing I can’t possibly be everywhere, do everything, know everything, own everything…it releases the pressure of expectations I set for myself. Without pressure, there’s freedom. With freedom, there’s responsibility. My responsibility is to myself to build a life that reflects who I am and what I love. For me, it means buying less to do more, scheduling less to leave room for spontaneity and tea with friends.

Our choices lead us to experiences that cost us time, energy and limit us to a space in time. No one knows how long they’ve really got on Earth. Some of our choices also cost us in dollars. This seemingly adds another layer to our decision-making. In truth, no matter the factors to consider, the steps should lead back to us, to our centre. Don’t we want our lives to be our works of art? Don’t we want our lives to be a reflection of who truly are inside? In essence, the process enhances mindfulness.

What matters to me right now? Does this decision respect my core values?

Someone who can make choices with which he or she is at peace is leads his or her life artfully, from their heart-centre. Commitment easily follows choices that honour our personal truths. Having to make choices helps me refocus as I come back to my values, priorities and goals.

When we chose consciously, we better appreciate what we have and ultimately, we know ourselves better.

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