Posts Tagged ‘Self Care’

Self-Care Saturday: Living Your Truth

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So you know those days or weeks that are like roller coasters? One minute you’re up, the next not so much. One minute a client thinks you hung the moon, the next minute a different client thinks not so much. We all have those times in our lives, right? And we start thinking what’s the deal? Is there a full-moon or is Mercury back in retrograde? Or am I just crazy? or worse….Am I stupid?


Well I’ve been in one of those periods. And the good news is that this means that there are a ton of “Ups” in my life right now to go with the downs. In fact, things are hopping and happening in my life and career like never before.


So much of what I have been working towards for the past 15 years is falling into place. But that means the stakes are higher than ever and there’s no room for error. My team and I must be on our A-game. No time for under-delivering. This isn’t putting pressure on ourselves, this is the truth. It’s make it or break it time. And at the same time, I must enjoy the journey now, while it’s happening, because in the blink of an eye, these amazing things will be in my past.


And on top of my work expectations, I want to be at my best personally now more than ever. I have worked hard to get healthy and now that I am getting uber-busy with more and more new clients, new partnerships and new business endeavors, I can’t just throw my health and my routines to the wind. I know this because I can see into my trusty crystal ball. Even if I get all these amazing work successes that seem to be lining up and that I’ve wished for, if at the end of them I am back in a place of overworked and overweight, I will be neither healthy or happy.


So then comes the difficult balance of keeping ALL the balls in the air–personal and professional. Why does this work-life balance thing KEEP rearing it’s head? It’s a never-ending challenge right? Right! And it drives me mad.


It’s like this week…One day I rocked a design presentation for some favorite clients who just returned to me 7 years after we did their entire house, sweet right? Well yes until I walked out of the presentation to find another client’s dining table was shipped and installed in the wrong color. CRUD! Then I knock it out of the park in my design workroom on a client’s design for a large Dallas project, so I’m feeling like a design super-star only to come out to find that there’s a problem with my vacation property that I booked a year ago and my vacation is only 6 weeks away. I’ve been depending on that R & R to make it through all this work. But it’s actually the little things, like then sitting down to eat and seeing that my veggie burger is slathered in mayonnaise. That one made me officially melt down. It’s the little things that make me want to go take my daughter to a 9-year-old’s birthday party later that afternoon and push all the girls out of the way and eat the entire cake by myself. You’ve been there, right?


Thankfully, I didn’t eat the cake, ha!  And I know these are all minor things in the grand scheme of life especially compared to those in Arkansas, Alabama and Florida who lost their homes and some lost their loved ones to Tornados and floods this week. We must keep things in perspective. I don’t compare these minor challenges of mine to such devastating circumstances as natural disasters. I am not having a pity party. Or even depressed. I just think “enough with the roller-coaster already”. Why can’t things be easier? Why all the emotional ups and downs? Why does everything seem harder than it should be?


I then I realized I needed an attitude adjustment. I needed to get to my gratitude journal pronto and start focusing on all the GREAT in my life because there is SO much of it. And thankfully one of my favorite teachers, Mastin Kipp, swooped in at that very moment with this great video about “Living Your Truth”.


So one of Mastin’s readers asked “Why is it so hard to live your truth?” And that’s what we’re talking about here, right?–Living our own personal truth. I am asking the Universe why does it seem so challenging to bring my gifts and talents to the world while living in a way I know is right for my health and my happiness? Why is MY truth so hard? And thankfully Mastin gave me a big ole SMACK upside the head. Here’s what he said…”Why do you think it’s supposed to be easy?”


AH-HA! Epiphany! Eureka! Why do we think it’s supposed to be easy? Nothing worth having is ever easy. I don’t even DO easy. Easy to me is boring. Is anything I ever attempt easy? Not really. I am a master at tackling the hard. I am drawn to the things no one else has ever thought of. Or that no ones else wants to try.


I want a challenge. I want to be driven to do more, be more, achieve more than is possible. I am willing to get up an hour earlier (or several) if that’s what it takes. I want to be inspired, required and to perspire to make things happen. If there’s no blood, sweat and tears for me, I’m frankly over it before I’ve ever started. So what in the world made me suddenly want easy? Did someone sneak in while I was sleeping and give me a lobotomy?

Seriously, why don’t I bring that same philosophy “it’s not going to be easy, but it’s going to be worth it” to staying fit and eating right, to daily responsibilities and ongoing maintenance of client projects and office operations–not just to my GIANT entrepreneurial ideas? In fact it’s more important to have this attitude with the little things, because those little things are really the biggest challenges sometimes right? They are those proverbial straws that break the camel’s back.


Well you know what? I heard Mastin, the Universe, God and my Truth all screaming at me loud and clear. I got it! Nothing is easy. Nothing. If it’s worth doing, it’s worth working hard for. And I’m the genius who dreamed up and committed to these things anyway. I am the one who needs to calm down. To get ahold of myself. To settle in because this is the long and winding road. And I decided to take it. I am in the driver’s seat.


My attitude is changed. I am inspired to meet work-life balance head on. I am challenged to kick work-life balance in it’s big, stinking butt! I am not asking for hand-outs. I am not wishing for easy. I am embracing the “I don’t need a WISH bone, I need a BACK bone” mentality. I am tackling this head-on. And nothing makes me more determined than a good personal challenge. Come on back bone, don’t break on me now!

So “bring it” work-life balance. “Bring it” little annoying daily issues and set-backs. I WILL win. I WILL take you down. I WILL pummel you. I WILL be victorious. Work-life balance say goodbye to having a hold over me. Your days of power are over and I’m in charge now! There will be no should, would, could. I am living my truth and there’s nothing you can do to stop me. ROAR!!!!!


Want to start today living your truth? Join me in the fight. It’s the good fight. It’s worth it. Let’s start today. It’s the epitome of self-care.




Self-Care Saturday: Are you Overwhelmed or Underwhelmed?

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3abb2f9731cc463e99b37a8b6a4b21d8So I have a question for you. Are you overwhelmed in your life right now? Is there too much to possibly get done and no time to do it? Do you feel the stress of deadlines? Is everyone pulling at you from clients to employees/co-workers/your boss to your family and friends? Are you lacking sleep and rest and relaxation? And is there no light at the end of the tunnel anytime soon?


Now I have another question for you. Are you sure it’s OVERwhelm that you’re feeling? Or is it possible that you are UNDERwhelmed with too many things? Here’s what I mean. I am not questioning that you have more on your plate than you could possibly get done. But here’s the difference…


Being overwhelmed but passionate about all the things on your plate is one state of being. And for the most part that’s what my days look like right now. There are so many exciting clients and partnerships taking place in my life right now that I am a bit worn down trying to keep up with it all. But I am overly excited about the possibilities of it all in a good way. I am having trouble sleeping because so many big ideas are running through my head and I am pinching myself on a regular basis to make sure all these amazing things are really happening.


And then there are the things on my plate that feel like chores. That feel like a J-O-B. That I dread and try to hide from. And the moments, days, weeks that there are more of those than anything else, or maybe even only those things, that’s where the rubber meets the road for me. Thats when I bring this baby to a screeching halt and reorganize, re-prioritize, and eliminate anything and everything that isn’t A.) making me happy and B.) making me money.

So on this self-care Saturday I ask you this. Are you overwhelmed or underwhelmed by your life? Overwhelm is hard on you but with passion behind it all, it can actually move you more quickly to your goals. I don’t know about you but when I have more to do than I can do, but I’m passionate about what’s on my to-do list, then I get more done than I can imagine. So having a lot on my plate can be a great motivator for me.


But nothing is worse than being underwhelmed with too many things. No one should have to work that hard and be uninspired and possibly underpaid too.


Some of the most important self-care involves permitting self awareness in your life. Being honest with yourself about whether you are happy doing all the things on your plate each day. And if you’re not, be kind to yourself and make a change no matter what other people think. If you are going to work as hard as we all have to they days, you should love your work. And if you love what you do, the money will follow.


Happy Saturday friends. Life is short so don’t spend this weekend being underwhelmed.


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Self-Care Saturday: Spring Forward with Longer Days and BIG Ideas!

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So tonight is that glorious night where we “Spring Forward” to daylight savings time. And after such a long and snowy winter, many of us are yearning for Springtime.

Yes, we lose an hour of sleep tonight, but we gain so much in the way of longer days, warmer temps and lots of sunshine that it’s all worth a sleepy Sunday to make the shift.


I love the Spring Equinox so much that it influenced my theme for my New York Holiday House room with Traditional Home in 2012. I was so excited to celebrate both this first shift into Spring and the idea of being fashion forward, that I named my room Spring Forward – note the colors of budding spring flowers and greenery, and the couture detailing that nods to fashion.


But for me, Spring is about so much more than the obvious. It is a time that not only the flowers bloom, but many of my biggest ideas come to life. With longer days come more waking hours to create, design, and dream. With warmer weather comes more long walks when my BIG ideas come to mind at a faster rate – with every step – so much so that I have to play memory games with them so I don’t forget them all until I get home to write them down.


And it is this time of year that self-care becomes more important to my life and health than ever. Although it may seem counter-intuitive because Spring is the time when exercise gets fun again with hiking and biking and so much more – I have to be SUPER diligent not to let all my work travel and big ideas catapult me right back into my work-a-holic tendencies. Work for me can be an addiction, I love it so.


Springtime is always a super-busy time in my industry. So the idea of a 50-50 balance may be out of reach for me this time of year, but I have to be disciplined to at least make myself an equal priority as my work. It likely means “adding more in to get more out” but thankfully the universe is in collusion with me and gives me all those extra daylight hours to make that happen.

So today, I am grateful for daylight savings time, a rush of creative ideas and moving self-care back to the top of my Springtime to do list. I am filled with energy and passion for all the BIG ideas I am working on that you will see coming to life just like the trees in the coming weeks and months. And I am grateful that I can get outside, breathe in the air, hike our beautiful mountains, and run in the grass with my daughter and our pups to fill me back up after hours on a plane, behind my computer and in meetings with my creative team and some amazing collaborative partners we are working with. Thank you, Spring! You are loved.


Now how about you? What does Springtime do for your psyche, your to do list, your health and your attitude? Leave me a comment and let me know if Springtime is your busiest, happiest or most challenging time of year. Or all three! It takes a village to keep us all going, right? And I for one am just glad that the universe tries to help us out. We need all the help we can get. ;)

Happy Spring, Y’all!

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Self-Care Saturday: Finding Fulfillment in the Ordinary

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Happy Saturday, everyone. Saturdays are the perfect day to take some time out of your busy schedule and enjoy the little things, right?

You know when I was recently talking about the power of our attitudes? Well, I am working hard in 2014 to truly enjoy the small things in life just by changing my attitude about them. Because to be honest, there are many things that I actually like to do, but the story I’ve been telling myself about them makes me form a negative opinion about these things.  Do you do this too?


Here’s what I mean. I love to cook. And I actually enjoy going to the grocery store, particularly when I have plenty of time to scout out new things and especially at a gourmet grocery store like Whole Foods or  Fresh Market. And these adorable grocery magnets would make me want to shop even more. So cute, right?


I also like doing laundry. And I love to organize. I find joy in arranging flowers and in entertaining. And I love walking in my neighborhood for exercise and breathing fresh air and disconnecting from my electronics for an hour. Or reading a book, just for pleasure. But over time, I have formed negative opinions of all these things because I was “too busy” to enjoy them. And I now realize how sad this is. In recent months I have heard myself complaining instead of laughing and smiling and getting excited about some of the things I truly love.


We are so busy in life these days that we forget to be happy. Or more importantly, we don’t even know what makes us happy anymore. And the things we used to enjoy, we have decided we will no longer do. And why? So we can spend more time on Facebook, or complaining and commiserating or one-upping our friends on the scale of how miserable, exhausted, or busy we are. Or maybe we are  sleeping because we are so tired from being on Facebook or from complaining or one-upping. LOL!


Now I’m not trying to be a Negative Nelly here and I’m not even bashing Facebook or sleeping (complaining, yes…I’m bashing that one). But I think it is so important that we are very careful about what we tell ourselves about our lives. We can turn everything we need to do or even once upon a time wanted to do, into a chore. We can find a reason to complain about anything and everything and before we know it, our daily existence is a very unpleasant one.


I think our parents and grandparents and generations before them were happier even though they had many fewer conveniences than we do. Maybe it was the sense of accomplishment they felt when completing their daily routine and obligations that made them more fulfilled than we. I certainly get joy from crossing things off my list especially when I did them well. Do you?


As Americans today, we are spoiled. Of all the countries in the world, we have more than most in the way of affluence and material things and we were recently judged the #17 happiest country. Wouldn’t you think we should be higher? Like #1 happiest country in the world? Maybe once and for all we can realize that things don’t buy our happiness and that we must make ourselves happy. And I think that one of the best ways for me to do that in 2014 is to find happiness in everyday life. To enjoy the ordinary. Don’t you?


So I’m not saying you have to suddenly enjoy housework, fall in love with your uninspiring job, or be giddy about exercise if you truly hate it. But I suspect, there are parts of housework, or tasks at your job, or types of exercise that you DO love. And I challenge you to take responsibility in your life to design your daily existence, or divvy up the chores with your family, or get involved in a type of exercise or activity that feels great, or tailor your job to your strengths, or start looking for a new one (job that is) that would allow you to be truly happy every day – not every moment, but every day.


Sound like a good plan to you? It certainly does to me.  Leave me a comment and let me know how you will redesign some things in your life and make a conscious effort to stop complaining and start enjoying all the many blessing that you have, including housework, cooking and exercise. Because making yourself happy is the ultimate form of self-care.

I’m taking the challenge too. Let’s do this!


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Like all these great images? Find them on my Pinterest Board called Self-Care Saturday.


Self-care Saturday: Feeling Good

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Happy Self-care Saturday Friends.

Today is a great day for taking care of Y-O-U! There’s no accident it’s called “practicing” self-care because trust me, you will not be perfect. You will have to keep practicing until you get better and better at putting yourself first and making choices that make you feel your best.


Remember when I said my ONLY intention for this year is TO FEEL GOOD? Well let me be honest, you’re not the only one who struggles in this area. It’s not a straight line of progress for me either. Yesterday I made a decision to eat a sugary dessert and it wasn’t a good decision for me. I didn’t use my litmus test of “Will this make me feel good?” and so today I am feeling the pains–achy joints, headache and more. It is shocking to me the affects I get from sugar the very next day! Sugar is not my friend.


Through my journey to getting healthy over the last 3 years, I have really learned what foods and exercises are right for me. Are you aware of your own body and what makes you feel good? Do you know if eating bacon and eggs for breakfast, or a green smoothie, or pancakes make you feel best in the morning? It takes awareness. You have to pay attention to how certain foods make you feel, how much sleep you need and what kinds and how much exercise your body needs. And it is actually liberating to learn the parts of your very own puzzle for feeling good. Because then you can be in control of your own healthy destiny.


I keep giving up diets, and then when I fall off the wagon and put on a few pounds, I seem to want to go back to a quick fix. But it never works. The only thing I have found to really make me feel my best is healthy eating and healthy exercise. And doing them consistently. So I have learned to embrace the healthy foods I love, not force myself to eat things I don’t like. And I have learned which exercises feel good to me or which ones are fun and those are the ones I choose. No forcing myself to do exercises I dread, I just won’t stick to them. And when I fall off the wagon like I did last night with sugar, I just get back on the next day. No guilt and no procrastinating. It’s back on the wagon I go.


When I notice food making my body feel bad, I can’t help but think of the long-term food affects on my health and aging. When I can eat sugar one day and feel real pain in my joints the next day, I can’t help but think how so many of the things we put in our body are responsible for the diseases we have as a nation–cancer, diabetes, heart disease. And I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be involved in making my own body sick. Are you feeding disease in your body with the foods you eat? I know I did for years. But it’s never too late to make better choices.


And if you haven’t tried yoga and meditation, today would be a great day to give it a whirl. There are many exercises and activities that I just don’t stick to, but yoga and meditation feel so good, I can’t stay away from them. They feed my body and my soul. They clear my mind, they take away pain in my back and hips and neck, they make me feel strong and in control of my life. And feeling in control is so empowering.


So when it comes to feeling good, I think this is a great rule of thumb…if it’s good for your soul, do that!

Wishing you a happy Saturday full of loving yourself through good food and soul food. You deserve it!

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