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Filtering by Tag: self awareness

The stories we tell ourselves...

Jamieson Van Loan

Last week when I was in Charleston, I was chatting with a friend of mine and mid-sentence she stops me and goes “are you creating a story right now?” And I tried to justify my side of the conversation by explaining that I know the situation and person so well that I knew what was happening. And she goes, “Nope, sorry. That’s a full blown story you’ve created.” She completely shut me down. But I thought about it and had to agree. I was basing my future prediction on my past and what I think I know but the reality is we never no anything but the facts.

We innately create stories, majority fictional, based on past experiences in order to come to terms with our present and future situations, as a part of our inherent internal defense mechanism. If you seriously pay attention to your thoughts, you will realize that you are constantly doing this. These stories tend to feed into our anxieties and insecurities.

When someone doesn’t text you back, what are you thinking? When someone is late to meet you, where do your thoughts go? When your partner stays late at work multiple nights in a row, what do you imagine? When someone is silent in your presence? When someone doesn’t respond to your email? When someone doesn’t answer your phone call? When someone stops talking when you walk in a room? Or when you say something then assume someone took it the wrong way? When someone gives you a strange look? When your boss calls you into his/her office? We automatically jump to conclusions without taking into consideration the actual facts.

Or better yet, what about the narrative we create for ourselves? What limitations are we holding over our heads? I always tell myself I’m not athletic therefore running, CrossFit or any high intensity workout is just not my jam. But in reality, I am fit- I mean I can hold a freakin’ plank for more than six minutes (I just timed myself a couple weeks ago and to say I’m proud is an understatement, yee haw!). So why do I tell myself that I am not something that I actually am? When you say “I’m this sort of person” or “I can’t be XYZ” you are creating a personal narrative that is not necessarily true. This type of construct is limiting ourselves. You are putting yourself into a box and then living according to that. Realizing that our personal faux narratives exist can free us from becoming victims to limitations.

Our interpretations of current situations is typically based on our past. When we don’t truly heal from past traumas, their influence will always be an undercurrent in our present situation and our future choices. This makes us victims of our past. Do not be a victim to your past! Do your best to figure out your issues, work through them, heal from them, shift your perspective and move forward. Just because you feel ok about your past does not mean you’ve healed from it.

Since we are always creating these fabricated stories, how is this serving us?

And that’s the kicker, the stories we tell ourselves rarely serve us. They actually can be quite damaging. Our subconscious minds are trying to protect us by creating a story that will put up a wall between ourselves and the situation in question. They create more anxiety, more insecurity, more frustrations and lead to deeper rabbit holes. The story you are telling yourself serves no one but the ego inside.

Next time you find yourself creating a story, stop and ask yourself: what are the facts? What do I know to be 100% true? If all you know is that your text wasn’t responded to- stop there. That is it. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200. Accept your reality for what it is. 

This demands a level of self awareness beyond your norm. Even just calling the person who cut you off while driving a jerk is creating a story. A tiny story but still not reality. Do your best to recognize when you jump to conclusions or when your imagination begins to float on down to crazy town. Reel yourself back into the present, breath and focus on the facts. This will only serve you better. 

My advice is to do your best to not fill in the blanks in your head. Do not take what you have experienced and project that on others. Realize that we are complicated beings and the complicated mind is controlled by you. Assumptions serve no one. Most of all, be kind to yourself within your mind. That negative chatter is the worst story teller of all.

Be and live the truth,

Love hard today.

Jamieson Van Loan

A reoccurring theme in my life lately is loss. I could give you a laundry list of these impactful losses but that is not my focus today. I discuss loss and grieving a lot with friends and family. I am a person who benefits from open ears and generous minds. Some like to keep personal thoughts close to their heart, but I like to explore and learn from others. 

We all deal with loss constantly. Sometimes it is as trivial as losing an earring and sometimes it's a loss that rips your heart and soul apart. The old adage that what does not kill you, makes you stronger could not ring truer during these tribulations. 

I have learned a great deal of lessons during the past few months but here are some that have stuck out for me.

1) We do not truly own anything in this world. This Buddhist idea of impermanence is something that I grapple with. From our relationships to material items, nothing is permanent. Everything will evolve. If you can wrap your head around how temporary every aspect of your life is, you not only appreciate more, but it can sometimes soften the blow of a loss. 

2) With loss comes growth. If you do not take the time to dive deeply into your self during a major loss, you will lose much more than you started with. Grief is not only a time to reflect on the past, but a period to do a full life scan. And not a surface scan but to get to levels that help you recognize what has REALLY brought you to this very moment and how you can move forward as the best version of yourself.

3) You are not alone. Now we all know this, but sometimes it takes a lot of strength to reach out for help. Someone in your life can empathize and show compassion and light during your difficult periods. Trust me, my friends have forced me through days I wasn't sure I would survive. Find those compassionate people and love them hard. They will keep you going. They are the light at the end of a very dark and lonely tunnel. Return the favor: be the light for others.

4) Feel all the feelings. It is so important to not mask your emotions or run from them. It is ok to cry or yell or break down. Let it happen. Your mind needs the release. Do not avoid these feelings. It will come out in one form or another so let them. Pretending you are A-OK will not solve anything. Feelings fester. Liberate them.

If you know someone dealing with any fashion of a loss, reach out to them. Love them hard. They need it!


Our menu for next week is below and don't forget on Fridays you can use our discount code: FRIDAY5 for 5% off your order.

I hope you all have a healthy and beautiful weekend!
Jamieson xo

Birthday Reflections

Jamieson Van Loan

Thank you so much to everyone who wished me a happy birthday this week. I am so grateful. Time is our most valuable asset and using yours to send me well wishes for the year ahead is greatly appreciated. Thank you! 

Birthdays are always a time of reflection and intention. For me, they are a time to reminisce on the past 365 days. To see what I've learned, how I've grown, how I've regressed and to forgive myself for any moments that weren't true to myself.

I have to be honest, I find my birthday to be a tough time of year. I have always been a very goal-oriented person and birthdays were always a reminder of what I hadn't accomplished yet, coupled with this underlying fear that I am running out of time to complete said goals. Every year I try to move away from this rigid structure of thinking but it's difficult for me. Don't get me wrong, I am not unaware of all the things I have accomplished and yes, I am proud of those. But the unfinished list tends to outweigh the accomplishments in my mind. This is part of my evolution. I am a work in progress. 

What are you internally working on? 

Whatever it is, keep at it! 

Our menu for next week is below. If you're ordering on Friday, don't forget your FRIDAY5 promo code. 

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! 
Jamieson xo

Are you a giver or a taker?

Jamieson Van Loan

This past week I posted an image on my personal instagram that said "some people will only love you as much as they can use you. Their loyalty ends where the benefits stop." I got an insane amount of responses to this, mostly high five emojis and "so true".  

I had posted this because I understand this unease with unbalanced relationships. There are people that you can give and give and give to and never receive anything back. There are also people who do use you to fulfill a void in their life and then drop you once it's filled. That being said I do not think those humans are aware that they are doing this. No one actively seeks to use someone. The question is why do we let it happen? Why do we allow ourselves to be used?

Part of me thinks it is this desire to "change" someone. That if I give enough, eventually they will realize how amazing I am and give back. Part of me thinks for certain people, being the giver in any relationship is a part of their genetic coding (me!). And the other part is that we don't value ourselves enough to demand a balance. 

This is where the work comes in. We need to know our worth and demand the respect it deserves, in any and all relationships. This is not limited to intimate relationships but across the board with friendships, family and work. 

Reading this quote really made me reevaluate relationships in my life. Am I the one always putting in the work? Or am I the one sitting back on my laurels and benefiting without giving? Either way, it stops here and now!

Who is with me?

I hope you all have a beautiful (dry!) Memorial day weekend! Please take time to acknowledge all the beautiful souls that we have lost in the armed services.

Maikana is closed on Monday but we will see you Tuesday!

Jamieson xo