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empowerment mindful at home mindful at work

Let’s Write Our Own Life Stories

It’s amazing how many inspiring people I’ve had the opportunity to connect with through my writing. Just the other morning I woke up to an email from a lovely girl named Celine.

She had discovered a piece of mine on Thought Catalog that resonated with her own powerful message:

“When did we start to receive raised eyebrows and concerned looks when talking about our hopes and dreams?

How odd is it to live life as we are supposed to? Like, how weird?

All we get is one life to live. Every day we experience is unique and will never come again. Ever. Time goes in only one direction and it starts running out the second we are born. And yet we spend hours and days and years and maybe even a lifetime trying to live up on other’s expectations.”

I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read her email. It was as if I had met a soul sister- and I did! 💞

After watching her video, I sent her an email to let her know how amazing it was how she is spreading this message at such a young age- although I’ve always lived the life I loved, in the back of my mind I still questioned myself.

Despite following my dreams, I allowed society to make me feel inferior or “weird” compared to those who followed a conventional path.

Here’s a little breakdown of my life, post-college:

  • When I was 21, I thought I needed to get a corporate job to be considered successful.
  • When I was 22, I got engaged.
  • When I was 23, I called it off and moved to San Francisco.
  • When I was 25, I thought I needed a relationship that was on the road to marriage.
  • When I was 27, I created a fashion blog to validate myself to others.
  • When I was 29, I moved to New York City and thought I needed to work in fashion and make a lot of money to “be someone.”
  • When I was 31, none of the above “worked” for me and I finally stopped concerning myself with outside forces, moved to Boston, and became honest with both myself and others.

I started Mindful in Style on December 7th, 2016, and it’s been an amazing journey ever since. I learned vulnerability is a gift, and being different is one of the biggest blessings that I never even asked for.

Life is all about following what is in your heart, listening to your intuition, and enjoying the journey.

It’s not about what others think, what you “should” do, or where you’re at in the timeline of life.

There IS no timeline.

Celine has been a wonderful inspiration to both myself and thousands of others on YouTube. I’m grateful there are many other young women who know that outside validation won’t determine your worth or value to the world.

Your value comes from within.

Thank you, Celine, for reaching out to me. You have been a shining light in my life this past week! 💫

Categories
self discovery

Embracing Playfulness 

If you’ve been following along for a while, you probably know how much I love angel cards.  Just when I need an answer, my intuition (which I like to think of as a nudge from the divine) guides me to exactly the right card I need at that moment.  I’ve also begun to give other people readings, which is even more fun!  My connection with source has been one of the most comforting and clear indications that I am on the right track to living out my purpose, which is to help guide others and carry important messages.  But how?

One of the cards that repeatedly comes up in my readings is “Playfulness.”  Each time I wondered why- why would I get this card?


Then, it clicked.  I’ve been so concerned about the past and the future that haven’t been living in the now.  Instead of embracing playfulness, I have been taking life too seriously.

I needed a reset.

After a decade of working in business related jobs and marketing roles, my heart kept telling me it wasn’t right.  Not only did my heart lead me in different directions, so did my bosses.  They didn’t like when I challenged the way things worked or stood up for my creative ideas.  I knew I was wasting my time and talents.

It can be a challenge being an indigo child in any work environment, let alone in an industry where money and greed takes over.  I didn’t care about “goals” or sales numbers- I cared about authenticity.  

Throughout the years many of my jobs or projects were unfulfilling or seemed unethical, too.  How could I market or represent things I didn’t believe in- or worse, didn’t benefit people?  It was hard to play, live in the now, and feel good about myself when I wasn’t aligned with my purpose.

A month ago I put my foot down and decided to take a break.  I did a lot of thinking, meditating, reading, and praying.  During this time I barely wrote, hardly left the house, and certainly wasn’t social.  It was a very uncomfortable time… until I received the message.

One afternoon I opened my inbox to find an email from a school administrator about bringing me in for an interview.  Even though I applied for the job, had never thought seriously about working in a school; when I was a kid, I spent most of my time with adults.  I was the shy one in class who didn’t let loose and play; I was too embarrassed to show the world who I was.

Until now.

Shortly after, I was scheduled to substitute teach at three different elementary schools.  I was shocked, thrilled, and scared.  Although I grew up in that environment- my mother was an elementary school secretary- I had very little experience with large groups of children.  Yet somehow, for some reason, it felt like it was exactly what I should be doing.  My gut feeling told me I would be good at teaching, although I had never done it before.  However, I knew that my ten years of handling nearly impossible businessmen had toughened me up to effectively communicate with anyone.  You have a much better chance at getting your message across to children than trying to teach an old dog new tricks.

After my first day- despite feeling nervous and a little shy- I felt more alive than I have in years.  For the first time, I felt I was doing something meaningful in the workplace.  The very first time.  Each day got a little easier, and I felt more comfortable.


Spending time in a school environment has also helped to mend my own wounds, too.  Childhood was difficult for me; I was an old soul who was singled out.  I was too shy and insecure to let loose, be a kid, and play.  Today, I am beyond grateful to be able to make even a tiny difference in a child’s life; I can recognize those who are uncomfortable, struggling, or need someone to talk to.  I understand what it is like when you don’t know who to sit by at lunch, how it feels to be bullied, and to be different than the other kids.  Thanks to my own experiences, I can empathize yet also stand my ground with the kids who act out.  Without my childhood experiences and challenges in the workplace over the years, I wouldn’t be as patient and compassionate as I am able to be today.

While I don’t know whether I am going to pursue a full time role in teaching (we can’t plan our futures- we can only be guided), I do know that education is much closer to my destiny than anything I have ever done.  It goes hand-in-hand with writing, public speaking, and philanthropy- all passions of mine.  I know I am on the right path- at last.

I’m also grateful for the opportunity to work in an environment where play is embraced.  Instead of standing in the back of the class and watching everyone dance and have fun like I did as a child, I have started to join in… as an adult.  I could see some of the kids who were hesitant to dance watch me act silly, so they started to dance, too.

Thanks to the children, I am learning what it feels like to be even closer to consciousness- to still have that wide-eyed wonder that hasn’t yet been polluted by society.  It is a magical, warm feeling- and just because I am a grown-up, it doesn’t mean I have to let that magic go.  I will hold on to it each and every day. 💫

Categories
self discovery

Goals… and What Universe Has in Store For You

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There’s a fine line between having goals and going with the flow of the universe.  I used to drive myself crazy worrying about the future, planning, and ultimately beating myself up if life didn’t go the way I “thought” it “should” go.

There was a long period of time where I ignored my intuition and stopped following my heart in order to fit in with the world around me.  That only got me right back where I started: at the drawing board.  Perhaps I am much more of a square peg in a round hole than I thought, because I can only fake who I am for a very short period of time before I find myself irritable and discontent.

Over the past year, I’ve taken baby steps to be honest with myself and others- even when it feels extremely uncomfortable.

It’s been ten years since I graduated from college, and over this past decade I’ve lived in a handful of cities and worked a variety of jobs.  However, my heart has always guided me back to writing, creative endeavors, and entrepreneurial ventures.  Of course, we all need to find ways to make money, but my calling was never to go to school to obtain a certain degree or license to perform specific job duties.  I’ve always been a free spirit.  My degree, entrepreneurship, has left my options extremely open, which has caused me to run in circles, wondering which option to choose.

All I truly want is help people, write, and bring good to the world.

Just the other day, someone asked me where I see myself in ten years.  I answered as honestly as possible: “I see myself as a published author with a little house on the beach.”

Do I see myself climbing the corporate ladder?  No, I never did.  Do I have still have aspirations of being a fashion marketer in New York City, an attorney, or an editor for someone else’s publication?  Not anymore.

I suppose what I’m trying to say is that if you keep doing the same thing over and over, you’ll keep getting the same results.  It’s time for me to do something different.  I am just not sure where to begin: so I’ll leave it to the universe.  

I’m sure she has something even better in store for me than what I could ever imagine.

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Categories
self discovery

Quit Hiding Your Magic

The coffee’s brewing and the sun is shining- it’s time for another work week. After three days of reading, reflecting and relaxation I gave some thought to my life here in Boston and how different it is compared to just a few months ago. I spent most of the long weekend in my new home, snuggling with Clarissa the cat, indulging in Netflix and writing- but most importantly, enjoying each moment. It was nice enjoying me time to recharge.

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Although I have always beat to my own drum, I have actually lived my life looking over my shoulder, always wondering what everyone else had to say about what I was doing. Despite bold moves, impulsive behavior and living a pseudo-nomad lifestyle, I still sought approval from those around me. What a waste of time.

I’ve begun to wonder how I have subconsciously allowed people to hold me back from true happiness- from fulfilling my purpose because I was scared.

I have shied away from opportunities because I was fearful of failure or what others would say about my work. I’ve listened to naysayers who told me that my dreams were too big or that I would never make it. I also wondered, “what do I want?”  Everyone’s version of success is different, whether your dreams are to become a doctor, a parent, an actress or an athlete- if your dream is to travel, to write, to create art… that’s wonderful, too. There’s magic all around us… what is yours?

Variety is the spice of life- so quit hiding your magic. Now is your time.

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Categories
conscious living mindful at work

Seven Steps to Being More Mindful at Work

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The practice of mindfulness is not only beneficial to mental and physical health, but also increases productivity thanks to improved concentration and energy. Since making meditation and mindfulness habits in my everyday life, I have enjoyed coming into work each day, use my time more efficiently and have been able to work better.

Being mindful improves focus and awareness, so following these tips can result in being much more creative and effective in the workplace.

1. Be Present

Focusing on one assignment or project at a time is crucial to being mindful in the workplace. When your attention shifts from one distraction to another, it’s important to remember to go back to where you left off and become present in the task at hand.

2. Make Lists

Start your day with a list of “to-dos” to accomplish. Working on one project at a time will help you increase productivity and stay organized. Re-prioritize your list throughout the day if necessary.

3. Mindful Reminders

Write cheerleading statements on post-it note and stick them on your desk. These simple reminders will motivate you and help to stay in the moment. Don’t know how to get started? Begin with simple statements such as “This is only temporary” or “I can do it!”

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4. Take a Breather

Step away from the desk and enjoy a walk around the neighborhood or short break to re-group. Give yourself time and space to re-energize throughout your day to improve concentration and overall productivity. I always take a few minutes during lunch to grab a coffee, walk down to the harbor or take photos of downtown Boston. Enjoy the beauty around you!

5. Radical Acceptance

This is one of my favorite DBT skills.  Radical acceptance doesn’t mean you have to like everyone or each situation, but it does mean you must accept things for how they are. While you don’t have to agree with someone, it’s important to validate them by acknowledging their thoughts or opinions.

6. Gratitude

Interrupt anxiety with gratitude! It’s so easy to fall into a negative mindset when something doesn’t go your way. Instead of focusing on your triggers, shift your focus to your blessings. Remember: you’re working, you’re fulfilling a purpose, and you’re needed. Try and focus on the positives and have gratitude for your position, opportunity, coworkers or work output.

7. Mindfulness Exercises

There are a variety of mindfulness exercises you can do at your desk to keep yourself balanced throughout your day. The Harvard Business Review gives tips and a guided breathing exercise to keep you present. According to HBR, “Mindfulness helps increase effectiveness, decrease mistakes, and even enhances creativity.”

Learn more about mindfulness at work at Mindful.org.

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Enjoying my lunchtime stroll!
Categories
self discovery

Making peace your natural state

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It’s a Monday morning. The alarm goes off, you make a coffee, hop in the shower, get ready for work and head out the door. Maybe your car is covered in snow, maybe the bus is late, maybe it’s pouring rain. Whatever the case, you’re running behind and you’re irritated. You just wish you could go back home, take off your annoying work clothes and get into bed.

My mornings used to look like this- but not today.

I woke up around 6AM and relaxed for a few minutes. I turned on some music, made my coffee and got in the shower. I enjoyed the sunrise, meditated and enjoyed some morning reading.

I soaked in the moments. I gave myself time. Above all, I enjoyed my morning.

Starting the day off on the right foot is the first step to living in a peaceful state. It sets the mood and begins to create healthier habits, too. Morning rituals have been imperative to my overall happiness, productivity and serenity.

I also started to wonder what the benefit of rushing is. I certainly perform better at work when I am calm, balanced, and in a positive mood. Sure, it can make sense logistically to hurry when you’re running behind- but is it worth it? When I was late on Friday, the entire “false crisis” of a late bus was easily remedied by informing my boss of the MBTA delay- not reacting to the situation through a temper tantrum or anxiety attack.

Every day depends on your attitude- whether you want to live in a rush or a peaceful state. When you’re aware of your surroundings and you enjoy the moment, you’ll be surprised at how pleasant your day can be.

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Good vibes only- all day, every day.