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I’m so excited to tell you about my friend Ashley. She’s got an amazing attitude of gratitude, abundance, and joy.

Ashley is a mom of three young ones. She’s part of a successfully blended family where her daughter lives most of the year in Florida with the dad and visits Ashley and her husband and family in Idaho. She shares her story online in a powerful blog.

She’s very open about the challenging custody battle, yet she never bad mouths anyone or stops feeling gratitude. Although she started out depressed, Ashley made the choice to live with joy.

Naturally, she was overwhelmed and felt lost, but she made a choice to live healthier. There was a great deal she wasn’t in control of, but what she could control were her mindset and self-care. Understanding that her life and her happiness was up to her began the process of creating her perfect life.

Social media played a role too. Ashley found other people who were being open and honest about their journey and found it inspirational in her own path. She started reading self-development books and felt empowered to share her story in an effort to helps others the same way social media connections helped her.

Ashley also talks about how being around other positive women gives her a huge mindset boost. For her, that means group fitness classes, but it can be anything that helps you connect with positive, upbeat women.

If socializing and group fitness doesn’t resonate with you, there are other ways to give yourself a mindset boost and be wildly successful.

To pull yourself out of depression, the first step is learning to understand yourself. Try new things. Put yourself out there and allow yourself the grace and space to try and fail. You never know what you may discover. Take joy in this process of discovery. Knowing what you don’t like helps you hone in on what you love.

One of the most amazing things about Ashely is her ability to find joy in every situation. Here’s the thing – it doesn’t start that way. She’s an emotional person and knows she needs to feel those upset feelings, validate them, and then let them go.

What she does not do is allow those feelings to dictate her happiness or feed them with more negative thoughts. She gives them the space to process and makes a conscious decision to release it.

This isn’t always easy. There are times when it’s worth fighting the battle. Again, this is a conscious choice and even during the battle, it’s vital to never lose sight of the long-term goal – joy, and happiness.

With everything she feels and thinks, she runs it through a filter of “is this benefitting me” and moves forward from there.

Try it yourself! You’ll be amazed at how your mindset shifts and how much easier life feels.