Lifestyle

Let's Talk About Self-Doubt and How To Overcome It

One thing that I’ve had on my mind lately has been the feeling of not being good enough for this blogging world. With social media and everyone blogging, it can be really tough to not fall into the habit of comparison. You always hear that social media is a highlight reel of people’s lives, and frankly, we all know it. But there are still plenty of times where I find myself saying, “Why would these people want to follow me and see my content?”, “I’m not pretty enough to have a big following”, and so many other destructive thoughts. Lately, I’ve been having a lot of self-doubt in my creativity, my skills, and my overall success in life. So today, I wanted to share a little bit about those feelings and what I try to do to over come them.

When I’m starting to have these self-destructive thoughts, it almost always comes after I saw someone who seems to be living an incredible life. Maybe it’s an influencer who’s gone on an amazing trip or just bought a house or had an amazing career opportunity. Maybe it’s someone I went to college with who got engaged or stayed at a fancy hotel and I’m wondering how they can afford it. Sometimes it’s just seeing someone who’s really well dressed walking around, honestly. For me personally, it’s really easy to slip into those self-destructive thoughts. As I’ve said a few times in previous blogs, I feel like I struggle with authenticity sometimes because I’m still figuring out exactly who I am and who I’m meant to be. Sometimes, I don’t feel like I’m creative enough or have good enough style or do anything special that makes people want to follow me, and those thoughts make me spend a lot of time trying to appeal to my audience. Usually when I’m trying to appeal to my audience, I get the complete opposite result because they can see that I’m not being my authentic self.

Because I’m still figuring a lot of things out, being authentic can be tough. It’s tough to remember that I’m creative in my own way and I have my own style that might be different than other people I see on the street. It causes a lot of doubt in me and what I can do, but I move past it. Yes, sometimes I have to wallow in self-pity before I get over it, but I always get over it and get my groove back.

Some of the most important things I do to help myself get over my doubting feelings are to talk to someone that knows me well and I feel comfortable sharing that information with. Getting an objective opinion sometimes feels like they are just being nice, so you have to trust that the person you talk to will always tell you the honest truth and give you the feedback you need to improve. For me, that person is my boyfriend. Yes, he loves me and will tell me all the good things I need to hear, but I also know that he will give me his honest opinion and tell me straight up when I’m being dramatic or having a pity party for myself. So it’s really important to find a good person to talk these things out with.

Another thing that has been very helpful to me is to pray about it. I haven’t talked about this in a long time, but I do still pray often just to say thank you or to ask for help on certain things. Sometimes I feel like I get an answer right away, and sometimes it feels like He went on vacation and I had to leave a voicemail for the tenth time. One thing that it comes down to with prayer is just trusting and believing that God has a plan for you and He’ll show you what you need to know when the time is right. But that doesn’t mean to sit back and relax until you see a sign from the heavens. You have to keep working on your own, because being faithful is great but God’s not going to do the work for you. He’s just there to show you the way, but you still have to put in the work to get there.

Last but not least, it sounds silly, but you have to just take a step back and remember where you came from. When we start our journey in blogging, we usually have no idea how to set up a website or plan content or use a tripod, but we learn. We get better at writing and styling and posing for photos. We learn what angles look best for us and which coffee shops let you take photos inside and how to change in the car without being seen. It’s all a learning curve, but there are a ton of resources and along the way you figure it out. I remember starting from nothing and being so nervous to share my content with my friends and family for the first time. I remember struggling so much to get my first 100 followers and 200 followers on my blog. Getting to 1,000 followers on Instagram felt like torture, but I did it. Stopping to think about where I started and where I am now is usually the biggest help to me when I’m doubting myself. Maybe I’m having a bad week for engagement or all my photos turned out horrible, but I’m way further than I was a year and a half ago when I started. Reminding myself where I came from is always my motivation for moving forward because I know so much more now than I did back then and I’m still learning every day.

Sweater, Turtleneck, & Shoes: Target / Jeans: Topshop

P.S. Keep up with me on Instagram: @karenmauritzenn

Standard
Fashion

What I Wore This Week: 2/17/20 – 2/21/20

We are off to start another week and my goodness, it’s off to a rough start. It’s a holiday week this time and hopefully that makes it feel a little bit better, but we shall see. Right now, it’s a weird time where I’m totally over winter and the cold, but it’s just not anywhere near being warm yet. All I want is to go on a nice warm vacation and relax on the beach for a few days to recharge. It’s not really that I’m feeling burnt out or anything, but maybe just uninspired. I usually love dressing for the cold and I feel like that inspiration can take me well into the spring, but this year feels different. I’m sort of slowing down on my creativity after about 2-3 months of nonstop creative thinking. That’s why I’m thinking a nice warm vacation would come in handy, but unfortunately, I don’t think there’s really a chance for that until June. So let’s wait and see I guess! As always, I linked as much as possible in the caption of each photo, as long as the exact item or something similar is available!

Monday

So it’s President’s Day today, which apparently everyone and their mom has off for. I truly thought it was just a school holiday and didn’t realize corporate America also decided to give you time off for it. Anyway, so this morning I thought I was going to have a super easy commute but BOY, WAS I WRONG. On the LIRR, I couldn’t take my normal train because they are running on the weekend schedule for the holiday which means it stopped at EVERY SINGLE STOP instead of being an express train and I had to wait out in the cold for an extra 10 minutes before the train came. That should have told me it was going to be a rough day, but I just kept on pushing thinking everything would be fine. Then I got to Penn Station, swiped my Metrocard and found out that my subway is also not running today because they are on a weekend schedule. So I had to get out of the subway, walk one block over and go back down to a different subway, paying double the subway fare of course. Turns out, I got on the wrong train and so I had to get off about 10 blocks from where I originally intended to get off so I could stop at Fedex on my way to work. Luckily, Fedex was open which is the best part of this story honestly. After I stopped there, I went to Starbucks to get my coffee and ended up spilling it all down the front of my coat. I just about cried for the day I was having, and it wasn’t even 9:00am yet. I hope you’re having a better day than I am. Here’s a picture of my outfit.

Sweater: American Eagle (similar) / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Steve Madden (similar)

Tuesday

I know at the beginning of this post that I said I’m not feeling burnt out, but I am feeling something. I’m just exhausted all the time and I think it’s a combination of traveling, commuting 3 hours a day, and trying to balance this blog and work and a social life. I was thinking today about how I never take the stairs up from the subway because I know that I am so exhausted by the end of it because I have zero stamina after about 6 months of not going to the gym because I just can’t prioritize it into the rest of my schedule. As we inch closer to the spring and the idea of moving starts to look more like a reality, I’m realizing just how tiring my current schedule is and it feels like I’m slowing down as I get closer to the light at the end of the tunnel. And it’s not so much out of nerves or fear or anxiety, it’s just pure exhaustion. It’s just something I’ll need to be more conscious of over the next few months and to make sure that I’m giving myself personal care and breaks when I need them.

Sweater: Target / Jeans: American Eagle / Shoes: Sam Edelman (suede version)

Wednesday

One thing I want to say is that I was really into my outfit today. It was so incredibly comfortable and I was so happy to wear it. The next thing is that I was incredibly tired today. I made the mistake of going to bed at 12:00 am last night and I woke up to my normal 5:30 am alarm. Needless to say, it was a rough day for me. I woke up feeling like I didn’t really want to talk to anyone, so I just buckled down and focused on some work. I didn’t check my phone or anything either, I literally just did some work and it was good. I felt productive even though I was tired and I think I really needed the break from social interaction to focus. Later in the day, I had some errands to run and I had a ton of work to do, but I just wasn’t really in the mood to keep working so once I got home, I made dinner and watched a little bit of the Democratic debate and then got ready to go to bed. It was a day that could have been a really bad one, but I just didn’t feel like having a bad day and it ended up being pretty okay.

Sweater: Mango / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Target (similar)

Thursday

So today, I was feeling tired and had a lot of anxiety running through my body. I had something going on today that made me overthink and doubt myself and it was such an interesting experience. I was feeling really down on myself and thinking that I wasn’t good enough but once it was all over, I realized that I was making it a million times worse than it was! It actually went really well and I had done an excellent job after all. It’s such a crazy thing to be self-doubting and not believe in ourselves. It just feels so silly after the fact. It made me realize that I’m really hard on myself and I need to realize that I’m good at things and I deserve good things. I also realized that I need to be patient and more positive when things get hard. Having a negative attitude made my situation yesterday seem so bad when it was really very good. My negative attitude had been causing me a lot more stress and hardship than I really need and I need to refocus on what my goal is. It’s nearly impossible to reach your goals when you have a negative outlook and yesterday was a big realization of that for me.

Sweater: Mango / Pants: Target / Shoes: Sam Edelman (suede version)

Friday

Oh boy it;s Friday! Yesterday, I thought today was going to be Thursday, so I’m extra excited that it’s Friday. It’s been a long week, and honestly it’ll be a long weekend too but I’m feeling good today and hoping that will carry me through the rest of the weekend. Today should be pretty light and easy! It’s super cold so I wanted to dress comfortable today, but I also have a party to go to after work tonight for a friend’s birthday (but I still decided sneakers was the way to go). Tomorrow, I’m super excited about finally getting back to shooting some photos (that I still haven’t planned out yet, oops) and my first blogger meet up! I have had it on my mind for s few months now that I wanted to find some groups of bloggers in NYC to meet up with for networking and to build connections, share tips, etc. I found a few groups back in December that I wanted to try out but the timing didn’t work out for me for a while. This weekend I’m finally getting to go to my first one and I couldn’t be more excited or nervous. I get nervous about new social situations, but I think the benefit will make it worth it. I can’t wait to come home with some new tips and tricks on improving my social media presence after the panel they are having!

Sweater: Abercrombie / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Fila

P.S. I use affiliate links so the retailer may pay me a commission for any purchases made via the links above at no additional cost to you!

P.S. Keep up with me on Instagram: @karenmauritzenn

Standard
Beauty

How I Style My Curly Hair with Flexi-Rods (Heatless Curls)

Recently, I started styling my hair with flexi-rods that I got from Amazon for a few reasons. The main reason is that I miss having curly hair. I have been getting keratin treatments twice a year for almost 10 years now and only recently is my hair finally loosing it’s curl. It dries almost completely straight now without having to blowdry or use any heat on it. Now 10 years ago, this would have been a dream for me because I wanted straight hair so badly because curls were just too much work. These days, I’ve grown to appreciate and admire curly hair and wish I had just stuck it out and learned to love it. The second reason is related to the first in that, I don’t want to use excessive heat to actually curl my hair, so I found that this is a great heatless curl option. Sure, it’s not at all similar to my natural curl pattern, but at this point I’ll take what I can get. I also saw another blogger on Instagram (@stylishlylivinglife) share how she styles her hair with flexi-rods and loved how it turned out for her and knew I should give it a try. Keep on reading to see how I’m styling my curly hair with flexi-rods!

To start things off, the rods that I use are linked here for you and I use the 3 largest sizes (blue, pink, and yellow). I make sure to start with freshly washed hair and I put all my products in before using the flexi-rods. For shampoo, I’ve been using the Suave Rosemary Mint shampoo and the Suave Keratin Conditioner. For my products, I’ve been using the JAS Deep Repair Treatment Spray (that I have recently run out of and need to buy a new one) and the Miss Jessie’s Leave In Conditioner. After applying all of these, I part my hair the way I would like and make sure it is completely detangled.

Then, I start by sectioning off the front part of my damp hair. For the front, I usually wrap the hair around the flexi-rod away from my face. For the rest of my hair, I usually alternate the direction of the curl so that they look a little more natural and don’t clump together when I take the flexi-rods out. I take a medium size flexi-rod and get the top of the rod as close to my roots as possible. Then I wrap it away from my face all the way through to the end, leaving a little bit of space between the spirals as I wrap it around the rod. Once all the hair is wrapped up, I twist the top end of the rod down to secure the hair and I twist the bottom part of the rod up, making sure the end of my hair is tucked securely in the crease of the rod. It feels a little insecure at first, but I’ve never really had any issues with them falling out! I repeat these steps on each side of my head, until all of my hair is wrapped up in the flexi-rods. See photo examples below!

I usually go to sleep with them like this because I don’t usually have 5-6 hours to sit and let them dry during the day. However, if you do have some time during the day, I find that the curls usually look better when they haven’t been slept on. For this blog post, I ended up sleeping on them. It can be uncomfortable, but it’s not the worst!

In the morning, when I was ready to take them out, I started by selecting one of the rods and untwisting the ends so it was mostly straight again. After that, trying not to pull too much, I simply just unravel my hair from around the rod. I repeat this step all the way around my head until all the rods are out. Then I flip my head back and forth and side to side to loosen the curls up. I’ll also go through with my Gisou Honey Hair Oil to smooth out my ends and help separate the curls. On this particular day, the curls were not cooperating with me so I ended up combing them out with a wide tooth comb and it helped a ton! I also don’t feel like I need to wrap them up when I sleep because I like how they look on the 2nd day the best because they fall out really nicely.

And that’s pretty much it! Here’s some photos of the last few steps and the final product! I hope this was helpful and I would love to see if you try it out! Make sure to follow me on Instagram @karenmauritzenn and tag me when you try these heatless curls out!

P.S. Keep up with me on Instagram: @karenmauritzenn

Standard
Fashion

My Top Five Outfits For A Rainy Day

Honestly, rainy days are always the ones where I feel like I have no idea what to wear. Rainy days are sometimes really warm and sometimes really cold and of course, really wet so there’s not always a lot you can justify wearing. They always stump me so I thought I would try putting together five rainy day outfits for you guys. One thing I realized while putting this together was that I probably need more sneakers or rain boots and a rain jacket! I’ll link as much as possible or something similar for you also so keep on reading to see what I cam up with!

Outfit #1

I got this cute pink cardigan from American Eagle (similar) a few weeks ago and I love that it’s a muted pink instead of a bright pink! I like cardigans for a rainy day because it’s so easy to just wrap yourself up in! For a more put together look, I decided to add these mid wash jeans from Topshop and of course, my Dr. Martens 1460 Boots because they are essentially weather proof. However, I think would be really cute with Chelsea boots if I had them!

Cardigan: American Eagle / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Dr. Martens

Outfit #2

I love a good turtleneck sweater for a rainy day because its’s perfectly cozy while still looking put together. This pretty cream color one is from Mango and I paired it with my favorite black Jamie jeans from Topshop and of course, my trusty Dr. Martens 1460 boots. This outfit is so simple but it’s a great way to look good on a dreary day!

Sweater: Mango / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Dr. Martens

Outfit #3

I think this pretty purple sweater from & Other Stories is a great subtle way to brighten up your rainy day. The color is just gorgeous and I thought it would look great paired with the same mid wash Jamie jeans from Outfit #1 and my Dr. Martens. It looks like every outfit will feature my Dr. Martens because they are great for the rain and I frankly don’t have any other boots that would be good for the rain!

Sweater: & Other Stories / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Dr. Martens

Outfit #4

One thing I know for sure about rainy days is that you can’t go wrong with an all black outfit! I love to be comfy and cozy so this one is probably my favorite out of all the looks. I love this black & Other Stories turtleneck so much, although it can start to feel really tight on the neck after a full day of wear. I also added some leggings from Target because obviously I want to be comfy and my tried and true Dr. Martens again!

Sweater: & Other Stories / Leggings: Target / Shoes: Dr. Martens

Outfit #5

This last outfit is the comfiest and most casual of all the looks but it’s probably one that I’m most likely to wear on a rainy day that I have to step out for a little bit. I love wearing long cardigans like this one from Urban Outfitters (similar) because they are so cozy and comfy and again, I like to wrap myself up in them! I just put this white tank from Old Navy underneath and paired with the same leggings from Target. Last but not least, my trusty Dr. Martens boots again!

Cardigan: Urban Outfitters / Top: Old Navy / Leggings: Target / Shoes: Dr. Martens

Please note: this blog post includes affiliate links from retailers who may pay me a commission for any purchases made via the links above at no additional cost to you.

P.S. Keep up with me on Instagram: @karenmauritzenn

Standard
Fashion

What I Wore This Week: 2/10/20 – 2/14/20

Hello everyone! Sorry this one is super short and there’s not a ton of links because literally nothing I wore is available anymore! It’s been an absolutely insane week with traveling and Valentine’s day. I’m finally feeling like myself again and ready to take on this week! I had a wonderful time in Arizona and coming back to NY, made me feel ready for spring time. I’m hoping this weekend that I’ll get to finally start planning my spring wardrobe and planning my spring content. How exciting! Keep on reading to see what I did this past week and don’t worry, I’ll get back to regular content next week I promise!

I pre-shot the first 2 outfits in this post because I was still in Arizona for work and I just knew I’d forget to shoot them in the morning. So here’s two more work outfits before we get back to our regular outfits on Thursday! These links below are affiliate links so the retailers may pay me a commission for any purchases made via the links!

Monday

Dress: Target / Shoes: Steve Madden (similar)

Tuesday

Dress: Zara / Shoes: Target (similar)

Thursday

I had off on Wednesday so I didn’t get dressed or do anything so here’s Thursday for you! I was back at work on Thursday and feeling tired but good. I think the stress of finishing up this huge program did actually get to me before hand because I was MISERABLE. I feel better now and not to be negative, but I’m trying to keep in mind that this may be a temporary feeling. Anyway, I’m ready to get back into things at work, starting on our next program and finally getting my personal life back in order. I have tons of comments and work to catch up on which I’m excited about! Andrew and I also booked a little mini trip this weekend, so that’s something to look forward. Overall, today was really good but I’m just feeling tired and a little stressed about not quite being back in my routine yet. I probably won’t get back into my routine this weekend, but hopefully I can at least catch up on a few things!

Sweater: Something Navy / Pants: Zara / Shoes: Target (similar)

Friday

It’s Friday, but for me it feels like Wednesday or something after having a busy week! It’s also Valentine’s Day which is fun! Tonight, Andrew is being the sweetest man ever and making me a yummy dinner and I’m so excited to see what he makes! I’m supplying the wine, of course. I also get to leave work early today, which was a nice little surprise also. I feel like I have a ton of stuff to do when I get home, like pack and prep for the weekend. I feel unprepared because of this very last minute trip (we booked it on Monday or Tuesday this week!) so I need to get focused on that when I get home. But otherwise, I’m just trying to enjoy a really easy day and great weekend with my sweet man. Let me know in the comments what you did for V-day!

Sweater: & Other Stories / Jeans: American Eagle / Shoes: Sam Edelman

P.S. Keep up with me on instagram: @karenmauritzenn

Standard
Beauty

My Easy Valentine's Day Makeup Look

For those of you gals who have big V-day plans, I wanted to share a pretty makeup look that you can wear day or night to go on a date or out with your girl friends! You know I love a simple make up look, so of course I made this one really easy and simply for you. I also wanted to make it wearable but still feel like it’s a special occasion by adding a fun lip, although you can adjust the look to whatever makes you feel comfortable! Keep on reading to see how I put this look together!

Ever since I posted my Winter Makeup Look, I have been loving using my Smashbox Photo Finish Radiance Primer for a glowy look. I love how it made my skin look! Next I use my Maybelline Fit Me Matte and Poreless Foundation in 322 Warm Beige for foundation and My Too Faced Born This Way Concealer under my eyes in the shade Natural Beige. I use my hands to apply my foundation and concealer because I like the way it looks better, plus the clean up is easier. To set everything I use my Laura Mercier Translucent powder, my absolute favorite setting powder and the only one I’ll use!

For my bronzer, I always use the Too Faced Dark Chocolate Soleil bronzer to give my skin a little bit of a glow. For blush, I really love using the color Blushed Copper from Becca lately. It’s such a pretty bronze-y color and it’s got shimmer in it so I can even ski[ highlighter and still get a pretty glow.

For my eyebrows, I always use my Anastasia Brow Definer in Ebony and set them with a clear mascara. I like this to fill my brows in better than a thin pencil because I already have full brows, so they don’t need to be filled in very precisely.

For my eyelids, I went back and used my Morphe G35 palette that I love so much. As my base, I started off with the color Sandy because it’s just the perfect all over color. For my lid, I used the color Paradise which is a pretty shimmery, pinky, tan color. Then in my crease, I used a little bit of the color SPF and the color Deserted to finish off my look. I also did a thin-ish line along my top lashline using my Maybelline Line Stiletto eyeliner. Of course, for my lashes, I used my favorites: Diorshow Lash Primer, Diorshow Volume Mascara and my L’Oreal Voluminous Carbon Black.

To really finish everything up, I used my MAC Spice lip liner and an old Maybelline Matte lipstick in the color Toasted Truffle . I also sprayed my entire face with my Urban Decay All Nighter Setting spray. Since they changed the packaging, I feel like this product works so much better than it did before!

P.S. Keep up with me on Instagram: @karenmauritzenn

Standard
Fashion

Four Affordable Outfits to Wear on Valentine's Day

This year I wanted to share some V-day outfits that are not necessarily all pink and red, but when I was putting them together, I realized that I wear pink too often to count it out this year. So if you wanted something that did not involve pink, red, purple this is probably not going to be the most helpful. Another thing to note is that I’m not really a dress kind of girl in the winter so these outfits all have pants because that’s what I would and probably will be wearing on Valentine’s Day this year. Now that all the disclaimers are done, keep on reading to see what I came up with for four affordable V-day outfits! Everything will be linked below as long as it’s available or I can find something similar!

Outfit #1

To start things off, I had to share this hot pink American Eagle sweater (similar) because it was on clearance when I got it and second, it’s such a pretty color to celebrate your love. I kept it simple by pairing it with a pair of dark wash Jamie Jeans from Topshop and these pretty patent red heels from Steve Madden. I love pairing pink and red together and I thought Valentine’s Day was a perfect fit for this outfit!

Sweater: American Eagle / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Steve Madden

Outfit #2

I had originally planned to wear this outfit for my birthday, but with the snow I didn’t think it was the right fit for that day. However, I do think it’s a perfect fit for Valentine’s Day! As you know I love wearing cardigans as tops and I’ve shared this white cardigan from Target a million times on here already. I also shared these pink corduroy pants from Target and I love them too! I would recommend sizing down in these pants, because they run big. I normally wear a 4 or 6, and ended up getting a 2 in these. I’ve had these pinky purple heels for about a year and they are so comfortable that it really surprises me every time I wear them! They are from the brand Botkier and I got them at Nordstrom.

Sweater & Pants: Target / Shoes: Botkier

Outfit #3

This is my one outfit that does not include a pink, purple, or red item because I knew I had to include at least one. I got this pretty satin wrap top from Abercrombie (similar) a few months and I think it’s a perfect date night top. I decided to pair it with my tried and true black faux leather pants from BlankNYC (similar). I got these about 2 years ago and I love them because they are comfortable and they don’t fall down like most leather leggings! I paired them with my favorite suede mid calf boots (similar) because I love the way leather and suede look together.

Top: Abercrombie / Pants: BlankNYC / Shoes: Something Navy

Outfit #4

This last outfit is another more casual look for when you’re not doing something too fancy. I found this gorgeous jewel toned purple sweater at & Other Stories and knew I had to have it. It’s the most gorgeous color! I thought it would look so nice tucked into my black straight leg jeans from Topshop and this black belt I got from Target to define my waist a bit more. You know I’m really into my white Jeffrey Campbell ankle boots so I thought they would look so good with this outfit.

Sweater: & Other Stories / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Jeffrey Campbell

Please note: the links above are affiliate links so the various retailers may pay me a commission for any purchases made via the links above at no additional cost to you!

P.S. Keep up with me on Instagram: @karenmauritzenn

Standard