Self-Care Saturday: Making a Mental “Shift” for a Healthy and Profitable Life

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Your success, whether in your business or in your personal life, is completely dependent on what you believe. You could be just one mindset shift from the success you dream of in all parts of your life. It was true for me just a few years ago and today I am realizing so many dreams that my mindset was keeping me from. Here’s what I mean… tobi before and after

It’s been two years since I finished losing over 30 pounds and almost 2 years since I revealed my getting healthy process here on the blog for all the world to see. It took me almost 2 years to lose the weight, 18 months to be exact, and thankfully I have kept more than 30 pounds off to date. And trust me, the keeping it off is much harder than losing the weight.


But it’s not the weight loss that has been the big deal in my life. It’s the mental shift I made way back in June of 2010 which was over 4 years ago. That is when I was feeling awful and working myself to death. I was in my late 30′s and was burning the candle at both ends and in the middle to build a business and be a mom of a young child. I was filling my body with sugar and carbs to have the quick energy to keep working those 14 hour days, I was getting very little sleep and I was doing ZERO exercise. I just didn’t have time, or so I told myself. And when I wasn’t working my day job, I was at home writing this blog in all my other “free time” to help build a business and a following so I could grow my company into something profitable for my family. My intentions were right, but my mindset wasn’t.


Here’s what I looked like in June 2010 and seeing this picture is what made me say enough is enough. When I look at this photo I remember how awful I felt–my whole body hurt, I felt about 20 years older than my 38 year-old self and I was a walking ball of stress waiting to melt-down at any moment. I was SITTING at my desk or on my bed with my laptop for hours every day and there is a reason that Arianna Huffington addressed the top designers and architects in the country last November at the Design Leadership Summit by saying this…”Sitting is the new Smoking”. To be healthy, my body needed to MOVE, not sit!

healthy tobi

Thankfully this is what I look like today. When I look at this photo I see a healthy, happy and much more balanced forty-something gal. But for me it’s not about constantly fitting  into some tiny size of pants. It’s being a healthy size that’s right for me and more importantly feeling good on a daily basis through healthy food, regular exercise, yoga and meditation and a most importantly, maintaining a healthy mindset. Just last week for my Mastermind Consulting Group‘s monthly tele-call, my topic was Stay Healthy AND Make a Profit. Those of you who are entrepreneurs and small business owners like me know that these two things are often mutually exclusive.

your body

It is so difficult to have the time and energy to build and maintain a profitable business and have time to exercise and eat right, not to mention the difficulty of eating and working out when you travel often for work like I do.  And then there are the  many work-related social events where there are always so many things to tempt you like high-calorie foods and alcohol.

In my Mastermind Tele-call last week I spoke about why I believe that being both healthy and profitable not only can co-exist but why I think they actually MUST go hand-in-hand. And why when I made the mental shift that helped me finally get healthy, it was the same mindset shift that also made me disciplined enough to REALLY get my finances in order with my business and become dedicated to taking both my design and consulting businesses to a level of success I had previously only dreamed of. Today I am seeing all the things I have been working for now for over 15 years fall into place and I credit it all to that mindset shift over 4 years ago. the body will follow This week, I was reminded of another successful entrepreneur and business woman who has made this same sort of shift. My weekday morning show of choice is ABC’s Good Morning America. And I have loved watching Tory Johnson, their guest contributor of the Deals and Steals segment, get healthy over the last few years. Tory founded two multi-million dollar companies herself and spends time empowering women like I do, and she struggled with the same challenges of losing weight and getting healthy for years. But she has now kicked her bad habits and kept her weight off too as featured this week on GMA.

the shift

Her book (which I am now reading by the way) is called The Shift. And Tory inspires me to continue to make being healthy a priority in my life. So much so that I am ordering this treadmill desk for my office. Well I have ordered it and I am just waiting for the glass desk top to get re-stocked because Tory inspired so many people this week with her segment that the glass top for the desk is currently sold out. But I can hardly wait to have this desk as another excuse not to SIT all day, every day. 090414AtWork09CJ

So on this Self-care Saturday while I await my new desk,  I am going to take today to re-enforce my healthy habits. It takes time each week to relax, replenish and make sure you aren’t falling off the “healthy mindset” wagon. Yes, it’s self-care Saturday so I am going to the spa for a facial and a massage. I will be doing my daily 3.5 mile walk and I am enjoying healthy food like a yummy green smoothie filled with nutrients for breakfast. Plus I’ll be cooking some healthy recipes with my family this afternoon, all because almost 4 years ago I made a big “shift”.


Do you need to make this shift in your life to become both healthy and profitable? I hope I’ve inspired you to do so and let me know how I can help. Leave me a comment here if you’ve made a similar shift and let me know what tips and tricks for staying healthy AND profitable have worked for you.

I am always looking for new ways to maintain my healthy lifestyle. Happy Saturday friends! I hope you will spend the day being both healthy and happy.

Now I’m off to the spa. xo,

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New House Diary: The Breakfast Table

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New House Diary

Thanks to a very busy day with a special client, I’m just now getting to my New House Diary. And since in just a few short hours I’ll be eating breakfast again, why not join me in a discussion about choosing the perfect breakfast table for my new home?

insta breakfast

If you follow me on Instagram, you know I love to eat maybe even more than I love to cook. And what makes for the most glorious meals whether I am making a healthy green smoothie or my weekend ritual of Saturday pancakes? Well a lovely table on which to eat of course.

Here are my top 3 options for a new breakfast table and I need your help deciding on which one to choose…

lonny saarinen

The iconic Saarinen Table is always gorgeous as seen here in Lonny Magazine.

dering hall  old plank

I love this vintage brass beauty from Dering Hall.

Ashley Goforth design

And I never grow tired of a classic wood table like this one from Ashly Goforth Design.

Help! They are all fabulous and I just can’t decide. Which Breakfast Table do you think seems like the best fit for me. Leave me a comment and let me know.


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Preparing for Autumn with the Daily South

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Find me over on Southern Living Magazine’s Blog The Daily South for a quick interview. We’re talking about how to get ready for Fall.  And I talk about my favorite hostess short cut. Here’s a hint of what it is…

tomato jam

So check me out on the Southern Living Blog and I will see you back here soon!



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Tobi TV: Mixing the Masculine and the Feminine in Your Bedroom

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Today is the day we dismantle our lovely room at the Hampton Designer Showhouse. It has been such a successful Showhouse and an honor to be a part of this event. I am especially grateful to Traditional Home magazine and Duralee Fabrics for the opportunity to create a gorgeous design in the Hamptons with them this summer! And though I hate to see it go, I am happy we have gorgeous photos and videos of this space so we can continue to use it for sharing my favorite design tips and ideas to design lovers like you. So in honor of this space, let’s take a look at it again for today’s segment of Tobi TV.

tobi hamptons2

One of the key ideas in my Hampton’s master bedroom was a mix of the feminine and the masculine all in one space. That way, no matter which you prefer, you can find something to love in this room. This approach is perfect for a room like a Master Suite where there are often 2 people who might have 2 distinct ideas for design, living there together. So first lets take a look at the video…

And now, a recap of my Tobi’s Top Tips for Bringing Masculine and Feminine together in your space…

1. Use the color palette to achieve both of these ideas. Here I wrapped the room in masculine shades of gray from the lighter linen color to the darker charcoal. And then I popped in a bit of a more feminine orange with the sherbet colored toile.

2. Pattern and texture help mix the feminine and the masculine. Here the handsome textured solids and geometrics like the grasscloth wallcovering lean towards the masculine, and then the floral toile in a linen texture blends in a bit more feminine sensibility.

3. Shape and form are a great way to bring in both the yin and yang of masculine and feminine energy in a space. The glamorous curves of the overscaled wing chairs and the shapely and tall headboard are more feminine, and the sleek and simple lines of the sofa, the ottoman, and other straight-lined pieces in the room bring the masculine in, too.

4. Don’t forget art as a way to mix both ideas into your space. The abstract art in this room is decidedly more masculine, while the flowers and feminine figure in the photography certainly lean more feminine.

5. And finally, use a statement piece or two to sway the emotion and feeling of a space one way or the other on the masculine-feminine scale. The smart and tailored orange chest definitely gives a masculine punch to the room.

I hope you loved these design ideas for making any master bedroom work for anyone and everyone who uses it! And I hope you’ll share this video with all your design-loving friends who may need help designing for more than one person in their space. Do leave me a comment and let me know what tips I’ve given here resonated with you, or if you have any other great ideas for making a master bedroom, or any room, fit the needs of all who use it.

I’ll see you next time on Tobi TV! Happy Tuesday and Happy September!


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New House Diary: Thermador Appliance Love

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New House Diary Ok, so I know I said I was moving to the Breakfast Room for New House Diary (and I sort of did last week) but as I mentioned in Sunday’s post about my love of cooking, I have to go back to the kitchen for a bit and talk about appliances. Tobi-Fairley-interior-design1 So my mom, who taught me everything I know about cooking, has a fabulous Thermador Range with a fantastic, large single oven below that she’s had for years in her beautiful mint green kitchen. Not only is it handsome to look at, it also makes great meals whether Mom’s cooking her delicious beef tenderloin, her homemade lasagna or her signature “Bebe Eggs”. Her oven has been responsible for many a happy holiday meal and lots of my family’s full and happy tummies.

So I finally had the time to go out and do some research on what appliances I want for my own home and I am happy to report that I too fell in LOVE with all things Thermador. Now I already knew I was fond of their new offerings from recently using them in 2 clients’ homes, but after learning more about what Thermador offers, I am totally convinced.

cook quote First, Thermador is an appliance line for cooks. Real cooks. And that’s exactly what I consider myself to be. But have you seen their Steam Oven? So I never really understood the tiny ovens that I often see under the left side ranges and certainly I didn’t realize that some these made by Thermador were steam ovens. therm blueSo though I would have never thought I’d want a steam oven, now that I know what all a steam version can do and I’ve seen one in use, I’ve had a change of heart. So if I get this range above that I have been eyeing, I will definitely have a steam oven included. range top But I am starting to lean towards a Thermador range top with deep “pots and pans” drawers below. I think I may opt for those gorgeous blue knobs still, but then I’d add Thermador wall ovens–1 regular and 1 steam. I just love the convenience of wall ovens. And like many of you said in response to this previous NHD post, since I’m used to wall ovens, I might miss them. I agree. steam Eek…just the thought of brand new wall ovens, one of them steam, makes me ready to cook Thanksgiving dinner right now! Or how about baking some yummy desserts with my daughter? I’m so excited.
grille and griddel And next, I never really wanted a grill or griddle in the house, but after seeing the clean-ability of Thermador’s grill with its ceramic briquettes and their griddle with the easily removable grease tray, I am ready for those too. No more pulling out a $30.00 griddle that I got at a local discount store for my Saturday morning family pancake ritual. No Ma’am, I’ll take my griddle built in thank you very much!  And yes, my hubby is great on the charcoal grill outdoors, but what about when I want to grill fish or steak for my daughter and me and he’s traveling. No more going out in the dark to fire up the portable kitchen, I will be grilling right inside without smoke filling up the room and easy clean up as a bonus. Aidan Then there is the piece de resistance (or a few of them)–the Thermador refrigeration columns. I mean SHUT UP already, right?!? I’ll take a fridge, a freezer and a couple of lovely wine columns please! I love the way the wine columns look in this recent feature in House Beautiful. Traditional but updated and OH SO CHIC! warm Then I plan to wrap it all up with a Thermador Microwave Drawer, Warming Drawer and Dishwasher. Thermador can now be my one-stop shop for a brand new kitchen. I just outfitted one of my favorite clients’ (who happens to be my contractor) home with everything Thermador and they are SO happy. And they’ve definitely had an influence on my new-found love of Thermador too thanks to their rave reviews. Because it’s word of mouth from people you trust that can have real influence on whether a product will work for you, right? star So there you have it, friends. The wait for deciding my kitchen appliances is over. And yes, I’m going “matchy-matchy” and I’m proud of it. Thermador has won my heart and with their patented star-shaped burner, I hope they can become the star in my kitchen soon. They’ve also won the attention of my pocketbook (and my husband) with their 1-2-Free promotion. Now if I can just get started on the demo  of my current circa 1990′s kitchen I can be cooking with Thermador before we know it.

So come on all you cooks out there. Leave me a comment and tell me what you think about Thermador’s latest products. And I especially want to know what your favorite steam oven recipes are.

Happy Cooking! xo,
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