Welcome to A Blended Balance! The idea of this blog has been an idea floating around in my head for some time. I have wanted to get it going but wasn't really sure how to start. Honestly, intimidation of putting myself out there was definitely a big factor. I decided to start with Instagram and Facebook to get a little content under my belt but, alas, here we are and it's finally time to get this blog really launched.

So, that being said...Hello, I'm Ali and welcome to my new blog where I will be sharing my journey at understanding, living and maintaining a well-balanced life.

Throughout all my life I have struggled with anxiety and worry. Stress, generalized anxiety, hypocondria, OCD...they have all reared their ugly heads at one time or another. I am a recovering patient of Dr. Google. He's the worst. Quite often my anxiety is at bay and all is well but other times it is there in full-force and my head becomes so clogged full of what if's and then what's that I can't focus or think clearly at all. I don't talk about it openly often. In fact you may have known me for several years and are just hearing about my anxiety struggles for the first time. I had considered anxiety as a negative personality flaw and I didn't like to admit it was there. I mean, really, how often do we want to share those parts of ourselves we don't always like for all the world to see, hear and understand?! If I didn't admit it, then I didn't accept it.

After completing a second round of Whole30 in February of this year, I was amazed at how clear my mind was and how my stresses and anxiety had disappeared almost completely. It wasn't just Whole30 and how I was eating though. I have always been huge into physical fitness and often times it was my anti-anxiety drug. Crazy enough last year, I was even getting anxiety after exercise where perhaps I simply had pulled a muscle but had myself conviced it was something much, much worse (Thanks Dr. Google. See told you). The gym, my main stress reliever, was causing me grief and I knew I had to do something about it. I re-evaluated my current workouts and decided to add back in yoga practice after a much-to-long hiatus as well as meditation. With those additions as well as changing up the intensity and variety of my workouts, it made all the difference. But, that wasn't the complete answer either. Through therapy sessions, I was learning that Whole30 played a huge part, the way I was exercising definitely did but accepting my anxiety and figuring out how to control it rather than try to suppress it was the comprehensive answer. Also, understanding and believing that anxiety is not a flaw at all. Everyone has anxiety to some degree but how we manage, understand and what we do with it makes all the difference in the world.

For the majority of this year, 2018, my anxiety has been at bay way more than it ever has the last ten years of my life and I feel empowered to share my journey with you. As mentioned previously, it hasn't been just one thing and it was not as simple as just accepting it. Through food, nutrition, exercise, reading (lots of self-love, self-confidence and self-help reading), yoga and meditation I have begun to live out a new life. A happier life, one with a mostly clear mind, confidence and the ability to take on whatever lifes throws at me in a much more accepting and understanding way. Still far from perfect, I feel like the best version of myself this year and I am excited for things I have learned, applied and continue to learn.

I hope that sharing my insights and learnings will continue to benefit me in this lifelong journey and if I can make a difference for at least one other person out there then I am doing something right.

Thanks for joining me on my never-ending journey to a more peaceful, centered and balanced life.