New Year’s Resolution(s): Nothing

Perhaps the title got you. Or is it the curiosity as to why? Why don’t I have a New Year’s resolutions?

Counterargument: Why not?

Why not enjoy the moment? Have goals along the way. But make every day count towards a step towards self-discovery. Resolutions can be binding and cease us from accomplishing spontaneous goals because we believe our value is based on a day-to-day goal. If I don’t lose weight in a month, am I lesser of a smart, kind, and self-efficient person? Do I value my happiness or health?

That’s a tough question. In retrospect, life has been, is, and will be shorter by the minute. I saw something interesting on Twitter the other day about how important time is:

“If you want to know the value of one year, just ask a student who failed a course.

If you want to know the value of one month, ask a mother who gave birth to a premature baby.

If you want to know the value of one hour, ask the lovers waiting to meet.

If you want to know the value of one minute, ask the person who just missed the bus.

If you want to know the value of one second, ask the person who just escaped death in a car accident.

And if you want to know the value of one-hundredth of a second, ask the athlete who won a silver medal in the Olympics.” – Marc Levy

So let me ask you again, what makes you happy? What makes you proud at the end of the day before you go to bed? Did you/will you do something that’s worth the sacrifice of sticking to a rigorous New Year’s resolutions?

Rather than having New Year’s resolutions, I have a New Year’s gratitude list.

I’m thankful for a perfectly safe and unconditionally loving family I have. As I grow older, I realize the values my parents have instilled in me and how different people around me grew up. I’m thankful for the way I’ve been raised. I’m thankful for a healthy family history.

I’m thankful for all the moments God sidestepped my faithless heart and walked with me anyways. I’m thankful He made sure I knew my place in His kingdom and used my friends to show me how powerful, wonderful, and mesmerizing His love is. #neverforget

I’m thankful for all the friends, near or far, who’ve kept me sane in this crazy, and at times dark, world. They light up my way to show me I’m not the only one who feels stressed, tired, or scared at times. Life is simply beautiful with all of my friends in it. Thank you.

I’m thankful to have a safe and small home. A bed and my own room. A working bathroom. Clean water. Good grades (could be better, haha). Wonderful family members to cook great food for me. Good music. Great dances. Clothes. Warmth. Pain. And Struggles. The happy, the sad, and the in-between moments.

Day by day. Second by second. I’m taking this year a moment at a time.

Thank you Lord Jesus for keeping all my family and friends safe; and then, going above and beyond to make us feel loved.

Amen.

Wishing everyone one of the happiest New Years!

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A Dry Season

Hey, guys. I want to encourage you to love deeply.

I wanted you to know that many of us, including me, have loved wide. Letting our hearts reach others…but being untouchable ourselves. Love is not a one-way street or a tilted scale. You are going to be hurt. So badly. Every tear will have to fall before your last breath; just like every laugh has to be laughed just before you fall. Don’t love just enough, but love overflowingly.

Love knowing everything you’ve got is enough. Love every tear. Love every drop. Collect your imperfections and put it on a pedestal. Admire its brokenness, invalidness, or flaw.

Love. Love. Love. Even if not all love is God but God is love. Make that mistake. Dare to. If it has to take you 489 mistakes to learn to love. One mistake makes you 488 mistakes closer to learning to love.

Why? Because hate is exhausting. Hate is too much of a burden to bear. Hate gives you poisoned water when you thirst. Love makes you wait in the dry season, knowing full well you’ll be ok. And when it comes time to drink, your cup will runneth over.

I love you guys and I hope you stay safe. Enjoy my 12 AM thoughts.

Lots of Love,

Thaomi E. Dao

 

5 Things Coach Told Me

Hey ya’ll! I’ve noticed now my blog is supposed to be about faith, fashion, AND fitness but I haven’t made a post about fitness yet. I believe being healthy mentally and physically is a responsibility we all have power over. It’s important to be healthy from the inside out so that you don’t focus on the physical pain and let exterior problems control you.

My biggest advice for anyone, especially other high schoolers interested in or are in a sports team, is that: IT’S ALL IN THE MIND.

My other fitness mantras are:

  • Run fast to finish fast
  • Just fly! (not literally but figuratively)
  • and (not sponsored by Nike)…JUST DO IT.

I genuinely believe fitness mantras likewise to meditating on a bible verse can really help you align your heart with your goal. Accomplish goals with your heart! You’ve got to WANT to do it in order to do it.

As summer slowly but surely is coming to an end, I find myself thinking about Track a lot. I was never the athletic girl in gym class much less anything else. I grew up really LOVING interior design and art.

But when Freshmen year came around, my best friend and I endured the seasons of track life together. NO REGRETS. Everything you go through – the pain in your shins, fear of lifting weights, and battles of thinking you’re not good enough – have all been experienced by EVERY SINGLE ONE of your teammates. How you deal with it is what sets you apart from everyone else.

Admittedly, I have not been physically fit this whole summer. But I do know one thing: Coach has trained me well. I often find myself thinking of all the things Coach teaches us in track practice that really resonates during tough times. Here are some of them:

  1. “Pick your pocket. Feed your face.” – Perhaps, the underlying message is that the position you take towards life’s daily struggles is important. It’ll become a habit so make sure you always have a good stance on every situation!
  2. “Never be satisfied.” – Pretty self-explanatory. Need I say more? By the way, I wrote a blog post about this!
  3. “You have to do what you don’t want to do 1st before you can do what you want to do.”/”You have to do what you NEED to do first before you do what you WANT to do.”
  4. “Character is who you are when no one is watching.”
  5. “How ’bout Dao?” – This one is sort of an inside joke but the overall idea came from this one time I won a 400 meter race. My team coined this phrase off of the “cash me outside how bout dat” girl. I thought that was pretty funny and was a memorable moment.

Since summer is almost over, I’m going to commit to doing one exercise-related work out every single day. This includes stretching, quick abs, morning cardio on the elliptical, walking for 10 minutes, and/or simply doing breathing exercises on my phone. I know it sounds easy but the idea here is to get started and stay motivated, NOT train for the Olympics 😂.

Plus, stretching is underestimated a lot of the times when it comes to sports! It’s an easy way to wake up your body in the morning and unwind at night. And as always, love yourself! Don’t ever let anyone tell you you’re not good enough because you’re more than enough 😊

Happy Tuesday! See you next next Tuesday. Meanwhile, you can check out my YouTube channel every other Tuesdays for cool videos 💜

Lots of Love,

Thaomi Dao!!

 

 

The Time I Sat Next to a German Exchange Student

During the second half of Sophomore year, I sat next to a foreign-exchange student from Germany (who spoke perfect English by the way!) and she introduced me to a whole new world of a student’s life and their culture.

Their president, or chancellor, is a woman! Students in Germany can drink at 16 years old, graduate high school when they’re a Junior and aren’t educated about the Holocaust (the same way American students are). In fact, I remembered asking her if she knew who Hitler was TWICE and to my surprise, she confusingly asked, “Who?!”

Together, we examined Google maps in an attempt to view all of Earth in its entirety. She showed me the places she’s been to including France, Italy, Africa, Spain, the United Kingdom and Greece. On that day, I realized how a girl around the same age I was had traveled to so many places I could only dream of. I thought if she can do it, why can’t I?

She inspired me to believe that anyone can travel, no matter how old you are or how much money you have. We both agreed to visit each other someday and go to Australia – a place we’ve BOTH never been to. When I also mentioned visiting Africa, she told me: Yeah, I can see you doing that too!

It’s truly refreshing to meet someone from a different country who believes in you. She did, however, bring up a good point: countries such as France and Italy were comparative to how Canada and Mexico are to the United States – close.

If traveling was free, I believe people would be much happier. Like many people, I used to think a lot of my dreams and ideas were limited by money. I thought the more money you can make; the more dreams you can accomplish. 

But I want you to know this is not the case. Whether you believe in God or not, God exists. He provides more than what you can imagine, let alone ask for.

In addition to that, don’t have a poor mindset. Dream as if you had a lifetime supply of one million dollar checks. Dream rich. Think big. Regardless of your bank account. As a result, your life will attract what you think. 

Perhaps, the truth is the more dreams you accomplish; the more money you can make. 

YOU are going to do great things. We are created and designed to be GREAT human beings. You were never meant to stay in one place.

To learn more about having the right financial mindset, check out the book: Rich Dad Poor Dad.

 

 

One Step at a Time 

Hey guys!!

I can’t believe it’s finally June!! Sophomore year is almost coming to an end; thus, the dreaded year of Junior year awaits. With that in mind, I would like to share a few tips for my future self and other high schoolers out there:

  • Be kind because you’ll never know what someone else is going through
  • It’s all in the mind
  • Do what YOU want to do
  • Read A LOT: In my opinion, it’s the best way to escape.
  • Who cares about what others think? They won’t matter 10 years from now.
  • You’re not alone
  • Be independent
  • Don’t be jealous, be INSPIRED: This saying really helped me repurposed my negative energy for “jealousy” into a positive energy for motivation. Don’t bring others down just to lift yourself up! 
  • Watch “The Shack” a million times if you have to ❤️ 
  • Work smarter, not harder 
  • Learning is more important than getting good grades: One of my favorite teachers of all time taught me this year that the point of school is to learn; not cram all the information just to get a perfect grade. This has definitely calmed me down when I’m freaking out over 87’s in Algebra and AP US History. You just have to get back up and try harder. The process is sooo much more important than the result!! 💪🏼
  • It’s ok to ask for help
  • Forgive people 
  • Don’t be so hard on yourself 
  • The smartest people ask the most questions 
  • Sometimes the best response is to just stay quiet and listen 
  • Music helps you be happy 
  • Happy Place: Inspired by Lucy Fink’s video, set a time and place for yourself to look forward to every day to unwind and be happy (read, watch a TV show, listen to music, write, draw, etc.)
  • Listen to that right voice: In 9th grade, my English teacher asked the class, was there ever a time in your life when you didn’t know what the right thing to do was? It’s different from not knowing what to do. She then proceeded to explain that there’s always a small voice in our heads telling us what the right thing to do is. Listen to it. 
  • Tissues, Grey’s Anatomy, and food: you’ll need a lot of them to survive high school.

And most importantly, from the words of one of my favorite seniors on the girl’s track team: “Take it one step at a time.” 

You’ll be faced with so much work, anxiety, deadlines, stress, sleepless nights, and family/friend issues; it’s easy to forget everything has a time and place on earth to happen. Control what you can and ignore what you can’t because chances are, you have enough responsibilities on your hand. Also, focus on yourself before anyone or anything else. If you aren’t happy, no one in your life will be if you let out your anger and/or stress on them.

Stay positive. You got this!

Sneak Peak at Sunday’s sweet sixteen OOTD: I promise you it looks better in real life. In case you’re wondering…it’s tropical themed! 🌴🌞🌺

My skirt is from Guess. The shoes are from Macy’s (on clearance for $26.13).

Anyways, I’m wishing you guys the best of luck in your future endeavors. Have a great summer and good luck on finals! See you next week 🙂

Lots of love,

Thaomi E. Dao