6 Lessons learned during my Year of Me

6 Lessons learned during my "Year Of Me" | Sedruola Maruska

Last year, 2017, was the “Year of Me”. . . This year, 2018, is the “Year of Kindness”. Throughout 2017 there were lessons learned that directly contributed to the kindness theme for this new year. I’d like to share a few with you.

I’ve never been good at resolutions. I’m not sure why, but they never appealed to me. But at the end of 2016  I wanted and needed to do something to counter the sadness, pain and disappointment I felt. So, after reading Shonda Rhimes’ book Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person I decided to focus on “me”. After all, we are the creators of our reality right? We determine what happens in our lives by the actions, reactions or non-actions we take. So I focused on me. Which forced me to focus on my family, friends and immediate circle of influence.

When you decide to do something like that, there are going to be lessons along the way. My mom always told me “you don’t have to make your own mistakes, you can learn from someone else’s.” So I’ve decided to share some of the lessons I learned last year (and some I learned right before).

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

Lesson 1 – You are not alone

You are not a singular entity. I know it sounds weird, but it’s true. No matter how much you’d like to think that some things you do will only affect you, it’s not true. You are connected to those you love and those you come into contact with regularly or randomly. The decisions you make for yourself always affect someone else so decide wisely.

Lesson 2 – Taking time for yourself is wise

I love going to the spa. I love the solitude of the space and the ability to fully be taken care of so I started getting a quarterly massage. Why? Because when I’m not connected to myself or taking time for myself, I’m not very good for others. I’m more irritable, withdrawn and resentful of the people around me. So whether it’s taking half a day at the spa, thirty minutes to read a book or 5 minutes to close my eyes and breathe I count it all “me” time. I enjoy it and then allow myself to continue in all my responsibilities.

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6 Lessons learned during my "Year Of Me" | Sedruola Maruska

Lesson 3 – Be fully yourself

Do you ever feel strangled by your own need to say, be or do something? Then, instead of getting out of the situation you put on a mask, robe or aire? Yeah, stop that. Authenticity is when you tap into yourself fully and allow that person to express themselves. It’s a journey I began in 2017 and will continue along my journey. The more honest I was about myself, what I wanted, didn’t want, liked or disliked, the freer I felt. “Authenticity” seems to be a buzzword, but there are so many truths in simply being yourself and embracing who that is. It’s something that will grow, but to begin try siting with yourself for five minutes without distraction. Focus on the moment and see who and what develops.

Lesson 4 – Forgive, yourself and others

There’s a quote from the Buddha that says “Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and hoping the other person will die.” It’s incredibly true. The more I decided to release my anger toward any situation, circumstance person etc. the better I felt, the clearer my purpose was and the more authentic I could be in any given situation. The more I released my critical self talk, the better I could express myself. Forgiving is one of the hardest things to do, but it’s so necessary to moving forward in life. Sometimes it’s as easy as just whispering “I forgive you” and walking away knowing you’ve let it go.

Now’s a great time to follow me on Instagram 🙂

Lesson 5 – Stay open

Stay open to love, kindness, understanding, counsel, critiques, people, places, foods and everything the Universe has to offer you. Stay open to being fully yourself and present in your life. In every situation you have the opportunity to decide how to react. Take the time to think, consider then act according to the authentic person you are and stay open to the lessons. There’s opportunity for growth and learning everywhere but to see it, you have to be open to seeing.

Lesson 6 – Allow your greatness to flow

Lastly, one of the biggest lessons I learned was to allow my greatness to flow. To not only offer and give my best self in all situations, but to allow others to give and offer themselves in return. Receiving is one of the hardest things we do. We feel, at times, that it shows we’re in “need” or “weak” or “incapable”. Funny thing is, all those things may be true. We may actually be in need, weak or incapable of doing for ourselves in a given situation, but it doesn’t make us less. Once we begin to realize we’re all connected and to help one is to help many, allowing the flow is easy. Today may be my turn to give to you, tomorrow may be your turn to give to another. Keeping the flow going, making sure that when we’re in a position to give we give, and when were in a position to receive we receive graciously.

Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy

Conclusion

It’s this final lesson (there are others, but we’ll stop here) that inspired my 2018 theme of “Kindness”. 2017 ended with my breast cancer diagnosis, an amazing trip to Turks & Caicos and deciding, moving forward, how I was going to keep my theme. . . I’ll talk about that next time.

For now, I hope these observations have helped kick start some of your own. What lessons were triggered for you while reading this list? I’d love to hear your ideas on how focusing on self can actually heal and mean embracing others.

8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt

8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt | Sedruola Maruska

I love a beautiful maxi skirt! It doesn’t matter the season because they are so great to style in different ways.

However, I have to admit, the first time I saw Lularoe I was underwhelmed. I think it was because I saw tons of leggings and t-shirts with crazy patterns and wondered, ‘how are those stylish?’. I hadn’t seen the maxi skirts, or any skirts,  so I wrote it off.

Grab The Best 2017 Fall Fashion Deals

One day my cousin invited me to her group on Facebook. I didn’t know what it was about exactly, but she was wearing some super cute dresses and skirts so I checked it out. Turns out Lularoe wasn’t just about leggings and t-shirts! They have dresses, skirts, and dusters, who knew?!

To make a long story short, I won a pair of leggings that felt like butter. So I bought a maxi skirt that stood out and thus my love for styling the maxi skirt!

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8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt | Sedruola Maruska

Maxi Skirt As A Dress

Wearing the maxi as a dress is the easiest way to throw it on and go!

8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt | Sedruola Maruska

Maxi Skirt With Jean Jacket

If you have a jean jacket, or any jacket, it’s a great way to casual it down or dress it up. The style is all up to you.

8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt | Sedruola Maruska

Maxi Skirt Under Wrap Top

This has to be one of my favorite ways to wear this skirt, under a wrap around top! As you can tell my skirt doesn’t have any purple in it, but orange and purple are best buds on the color wheel so this looks fun! Remember, you don’t have to be “matchy” to look amazing. Complimentary colors together gives you a “I know color” type of look. Besides, style is about you and no one else!

12 Ways to Feel Sexy Instantly

8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt | Sedruola Maruska

Maxi Skirt With Tank

For summer fun, wearing the maxi skirt with a tank top is breezy and beachy! I matched my tank to my skirt, but remember, you don’t have to. You can decide to wear a contrasting or complimenting color and coordinate your sandals. It’s all up to you. (sneakers would look great with this style too!)

8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt | Sedruola Maruska

Maxi Skirt With Tank & Jacket

Remember that jacket? You can layer it on top of the tank for a great “ready for anything” type of look. Breeze starts to pick up, no worries, you’ve got a jacket at the ready.

8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt | Sedruola Maruska

Maxi Skirt With Tank Underneath

Now let’s really have some fun! Instead of over your skirt, why not under giving you a longer look?! I love this look because it turns a regular tank into a skirt top and that’s so fun!

Now is a great time to follow me on Instagram

8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt | Sedruola Maruska

Maxi Skirt With Black Off Shoulder Over Skirt

This look is just a top switch up worn over the skirt. Why wear a regular t-shirt when you can do an off-shoulder T that looks super sexy!

8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt | Sedruola Maruska

Maxi Skirt With Black Off Shoulder Under Skirt

Finally, my last style is taking that cute off shoulder top and making it a maxi top! Wearing it underneath with the skirt pulled up high is the ultimate in fun and sexy.

8 Fun Ways to Style a Lularoe Maxi Skirt | Sedruola Maruska

Your Turn

How do you style your Lularoe Maxi? I’d love to get more ideas as I move to get more skirts. . . they come in handy with boots, sweaters and jackets in the Fall and Winter too!


Grab The Best 2017 Fall Fashion Deals

Grab The Best 2017 Fashion Deals | Sedruola Maruska

It’s back to school time which means everyone’s looking for fashion deals! Well, look no further because I’ve compiled a list of deals from fun retailers across the web.

When I was going to school it was exciting to grab new clothes and imagine how cute I’d be for class. Although I’m no longer in school, I get excited when the weather begins to turn because I love Fall! I love the layering and wrapping of sweaters and drinking hot cocoa. Beyond that, I love fashion deals!

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Grab The Best 2017 Fashion Deals | Sedruola Maruska

I don’t have an endless budget for clothing and I imagine you don’t either. When I find a deal that’s awesome I love to take advantage of it, especially since I’m not an “all the time” shopper. That’s why I thought I’d bring the deals to you.

My quick disclaimer is this: Yes,  some links are affiliate links, but not all. I’m sharing what I think would most benefit you. I’ll let you know which retailers I’ve actually had experience with.

JustFab

The first retailer is JustFab! I LOVE them because they make it so easy to buy super cute stuff almost every month at a great price. I HATE them for the very same reason! When you join their VIP program you’ll pay $39 a month into your account. If you don’t use the money, it stays in your account. When you’re ready, you can use the money in your account to purchase anything on their site. If it isn’t in the budget for you to pay the $39, you can skip a month by going to your personal style area.

It’s like having a personal shopper!

Well, they’re currently doing a $10 promotion (which is how I got a pair of super cute boots last year) for your first style. Just click here, on any link or the image below to get started.

Azbro

I’m going to send you down the fashion discount rabbit hole that is Azbro! When you get there you’ll find so many amazing dresses at wonderful prices, you may not find your way back to say thanks. So, let me just say “you’re welcome” now! Azbro is a sister store to Oasap (we’ll talk about them later) so I have a bit of experience with their items. I was very pleased with everything I purchased (see this post & this post) from clothing to jewelry.

All over their site are back to school, Labor Day and Fall discounts so let me just list a few to make it easier for you:

Labor Day Sale!Up to 85% Off!$8 OFF $65 with LBD8
Labor Day Sale!Up to 85% Off!$18 OFF $115 with LBD18
Labor Day Sale!Up to 85% Off! $4 OFF $35 with LBD4
Save $13 off $105+ Orders with code:SCHOOL13+Free Shipping WW with no minimum purchase
-Use DAY15 to Save Extra 15% Off

ModCloth

Last year when I was looking for the right bikini I stumbled across ModCloth. Not only did I find my bikini, but I fell in love with their slightly retro look and feel. I also fell in love with the fact that they have clothing for all sizes. Super cute clothing for all sizes to be exact! So, I had to share a few of their current deals with you. Please be warned, some are JUST FOR THIS WEEKEND so be sure to grab them while you can (8/26/17 – 8/28/17).

Buy More, Save More Labor Day Sale! 25% Off, 30% Off $150+ ,40% Off $250+ Starts 8/31 @ Midnight EST, Ends 9/4 @ 11:59PM EST.

30% Off Fall Flash Sale – 24 hours only! Starts 8/28 @Midnight EST, Ends 8/28 @ 11:59PM EST

19% Off Select Work Appropriate Items For Women’s Equality Day! Starts Saturday 8/26 at 12am EST Ends Sunday 8/27 11:59pm EST

Fab Friday Deals! Each Friday ModCloth Will Feature Select Styles At 40% Off. Starts Every Friday @ Midnight EST, Ends Every Friday @ 11:59 PM EST

Oasap

As I mentioned above, Oasap is a sister company to Azbro but with a slightly different, more adult, feel. When I browse Oasap I’m always drooling and making plans to pick up a dress or top or earrings for anything that’s coming up. Their styles are fun, classic and affordable. It also helps that they always have tons of sales going on at any given time!

As I’m looking for a few new pieces for Fall, this will definitely be one of my stops. Here are a few deals you’ll find irresistible:

Labor Day Sale! Save Extra $19 Off $119+ Order with Code:LABOR19

Labor Day Sale! Save Extra $9 Off $69+ Order with Code:LABOR9

Labor Day Sale! Save Extra $5 Off $39+ Order with Code:LABOR5

Oasap B2S Maxi Dress Sale:Save Extra 16% Off Using Code: MAXI16

Set up new trends with those styles from the 80s & 90s?

Miscellaneous Deals

Here are a few random deals you may love:

Sally Beauty Supply: $10 off $40 with code 888114. 8/25-8/28

TBDress: Summer Clearance Sale: $5 Off Over $69 & Free Shipping Over $99 Ends 9/4/17

This is fun, I may need to do it every season, what do you think? Let me know in the comments below if getting exclusive fashion deals on a quarterly basis is something you could get used to, I know I can!