Since the weather is getting warmer (yay!), I’ll soon be spending more time outside wandering around Colorado’s countless paths, trails, and lakes. Which means it’s time for a new workout playlist! If you’re also looking to mix things up, here’s what you’ll probably find me listening to these next few months.
Stout explains that most resolutions centered around giving something up are destined for failure because the psyche is not bound by deadlines and doesn’t work on shortcuts. The process of quitting needs to be a long game, he says, one best approached with self-love as opposed to self-loathing.
We’re already aware that what we put in our bodies affects our skin as much as the products we put on it. This knowledge often puts us on the defensive—we know to avoid certain aggravators like alcohol and sugar, for example, since they can contribute to acne and dullness.
For one, she posits that while we tend to fixate as a culture on flight-or-flight, there are actually three other beneficial and physiologically positive types of stress; and that harnessing stress to work for you is as simple as changing your mindset, i.e. choosing to believe that your body is simply revving up in support.
(☝🏻 this one is super exciting because it features one of my favorite Stanford professors, Kelly McGonigal! I actually used to take yoga classes from her while on campus.)
Not how much is in your 401(k). Not how many conferences you spoke at–or keynoted. Not how many blog posts you wrote or how many followers you had or how many tech companies you worked for or how much power you wielded there or how much you vested at each.
No, the biggest predictor of your happiness and fulfillment overall in life is, basically, love.
One thing I’ve realized about myself over the years is that, despite my best efforts, I am indeed very influenced by other people. Whether that’s someone else’s bad mood killing my good mood, a negative comment on social media setting off a flood of anger, or a criticism from a coworker cutting into my confidence, there are far too many times where I make choices and feel feelings based on someone else’s energy.
It’s been something I’ve been working on especially hard since entering the working world, but it wasn’t until recently that I felt like I made any great headway (even though there’s still progress to be made). I’m currently entering a time of great transition in my life. A career transition that has set off something inside of me that’s made me realize what’s truly important in life, and has forced me to reevaluate my hopes, dreams, goals… My purpose. To get there, I’ve been spending a lot of time brushing off the pressures and expectations of the outside world, and that effort has started to pay off.
Yes, at first I was apprehensive to go to a studio called “Hot Mamas.” Was it one of those places where moms bring their kids to class? What exactly was “Sexy Sweat?” Would a place with a class called “Skinny Jeans” really be that challenging? I had no idea what I was getting myself into, but after a glowing review from one of my friends, I decided to give it a try.
And let me tell you, yes there is childcare, and yes there are some – and sometimes lots of- mamas, but this is NOT your typical “mom” workout. These classes are HARD! My first hint really should have been that their website literally says, “If you’re looking for easy, you’re at the wrong place.” I can get through most classes at most studios without taking any extra breaks, and a lot of times even do the more advanced modifications, but I have yet to get through a class at Hot Mamas without stopping in one way or another. (Don’t let that scare you though! There are people of all fitness levels in every class. It is a very welcoming studio!)
Today, as I sit here on the first day of 2016, I’ve been thinking a lot about the past. I started this blog a little over two years ago as a way to bring some joy back into my life after the most challenging year of my life thus far (thanks, 2013). I was stuck in what I perceived as personal and professional failures – which reflected with the gift of perspective turned out to be incredible learning lessons – and I needed a way to get myself out of that funk.
In my 2014 resolutions post, aside from talking about my obvious love for goal setting, I said that, “The new year is the spark I needed to relight the fire within, the passion for life that 2013 stomped out just a bit.” I was clearly at a low, searching for a way to pull myself up and get back on track. My resolutions: Be Happier. Be Healthier. Be More Chic. I made it okay to invest in myself and to admit that I wasn’t happy. That the Facebook-ified version of me wasn’t quite my reality. I went back to my core values and found that with a little effort, I could overcome the sorrow of my circumstances and create my own happiness.
In last year’s resolutions post, I was clearly back on the right track, but still didn’t feel like I fully hit my stride. I was itching to keep pushing forward. My resolutions: Live in the Moment. Get Fit. Get Hobby-ing. Like Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, I’d finally met my baseline requirements for feeling like a productive, loved human being and was ready to take my self-actualization to the next level. In my quest for happiness I moved from escaping depression to appreciating my blessings. For my health, I moved from healing sickness to improving aesthetics. And as for general self-improvement, I went from the make-over show like basics of wardrobe enhancements to Renaissance (wo)man like skills enhancements. I think maybe that means I’m growing up!
If there are two things my family loves, it is eating and finding ways to be grateful, so clearly Thanksgiving is one of our favorite days of the year! Aside from spending hours chowing down on the feast that my dad spends 3-4 days cooking, we also like to decompress with each other over TV specials, like the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, National Dog Show, football, and as kids (mostly…), cartoons.
One of the specials I VIVIDLY remember from my childhood was the above cartoon in which two kids shrink down to mouse size, hangout with dancing food, and then battle a yeast monster. I’ve been searching for it for years and finally found it! It is more depressing now that I’m older and understand what it means for the two children to be living through the Great Depression… but that’s just another reason to be grateful for what we all have, right?
While I love wearing a crisp white button up, I absolutely hate having to re-tuck it throughout the day. Which is why I was so excited to hear about TUXE Bodywear on Levo! The “untuckable workshirts” are basically professional bodysuits that have been touted by everyone from Oprah to Rachel Zoe. Plus they even come in Tall! So for you ladies over 5’9 (like me), no need to worry about needing to push up your sleeves or fidget with other uncomfortable pulling (ahem).
It’s been a whirlwind past month but I am officially back in the USA after working the Sochi 2014 Olympic Games! Despite some negative press leading up to the event (and during for some of the media hotels), I had an absolutely amazing time – and dare I say it, but I actually miss Krasnaya Polyana and the USA House in the center of the Coastal Cluster.
I plan on making a full post about some of my experiences, but as I arrived in last night after almost 30 hours of travel, I think I’m just going to take a few days to relax in the mountains, catch up on all of the shows I couldn’t watch while in Russia, and of course SLEEP!
This morning after lazing around in bed for an hour or two (which hasn’t happened in a long time) I decided it was definitely a pancake makin’ type of morning. This is probably a good time to mention that although I’m technically still trying to eat plant strong for the next week, it really has been on and off – deciding to try to do this before leaving for the Olympics was not the best choice. Plus I’ve realized that while I feel GREAT without dairy, I feel much better with some fish and meat. Regardless, I am trying when I can so this morning my pancakes of choice were vegan buckwheat banana!