I often find myself immersed at the deepest level in conversations with others when we are discussing the things that make us, us. The little known facts, lessons learned, life hacks and new discoveries that help us live our best lives are the things that often leave me inspired. Feeling good in your own skin is something I believe we all find meaning and comfort in – and the ways in which we achieve that are as unique as our DNA. I have curated here my current recipe for achieving wellbeing inside and out, in 5 universal categories. As we enter the New Year, I hope these tips will help you ring in a much anticipated new chapter, with sheer simplicity that leaves you empowered.
An hour of exercise a day is a must for me. It fuels my body to be able to work effectively with a demanding schedule. One hour is a mere 4% of your day that pays off in spades. And since I love to eat, that is another reason to make time for exercise!
In years past, I used to swim every morning for an hour nonstop, 7 days a week. That was my routine for over 6 years – rain or shine. Swimming relaxed my mind and allowed me to concentrate on my body. Nowadays, you can find me early in the morning (or sometimes late at night after work) doing mat Pilates or on my reformer. I have been practicing Pilates since 2000 and it has been transformative in so many ways.
I grew up in a family that recycled before it became cool to do so. We ate farm to table from my mom’s organic vegetable gardens and I watched my family using the leftover kitchen water after rinsing vegetables to water the gardens. My mom and sisters would always cook our meals from scratch daily and the chicken would never go to waste – everything including the bones were used and made into broth which is known today as bone broth. One of many key things I learned from my humble upbringing was that all of the good things in life are basic, and less is always more. To this day, I try to follow in their footsteps so I can embody these lessons for others.
I really admire Pastor Rick Warren of Saddleback Church and this quote from him really resonates with me and is so relevant today...
“We need the value and the beauty of democracy, and the beauty of pluralism is there's a free exchange of ideas. Nobody is right all the time. I'm not right all the time. I don't agree with anybody all the time, and I don't even agree with myself all the time.”
These words I also hold close to heart...
“When you give someone your time, you are giving them a portion of your life that you'll never get back. Your time is your life. That is why the greatest gift you can give someone is your time.”
“Being successful and fulfilling your life’s purpose are not at all the same thing; You can reach all of your personal goals, become a raving success by the world’s standards and still miss your purpose in this life.”
“Without God, life has no purpose, and without purpose, life has no meaning. Without meaning, life has no significance or hope.”
Most of us are always in pursuit of how to achieve great skin. For me, I have found that my face gets irritated with certain chemicals. I have also realized that just like with so many other things, a basic routine is what makes my skin look and feel healthy. I have not had a facial in over 20 years, but drinking lots of water has really helped my skin stay vibrant, alongside eating very clean and little red meat.
Some of my favorite products come from organic lines and include May Lindstrom’s The Pendulum Potion as a face wash in the morning, while I love Chantecaille’s Flower Infused Cleansing Milk in the evening. If I am wearing a tinted moisturizer during the day, I use a dab of Chantecaille’s Rice and Gernanium Foaming Cleanser for a little extra deep clean. It cleanses thoroughly but leaves my skin feeling so soft! My current obsession happens to be face oils - I use Chantecaille’s Rose de Mai face oil in the morning and Augustinus Bader’s face oil in the evening and WOW, they really do wonders for my skin! They say our eyes are windows to the soul so keeping them youthful is always top of mind. I have found that Cle de Peau makes the best eye cream which stays moisturizing.
I have a passionate relationship with fashion. I recently took a survey online and found out that my style is best described as ‘Parisian chic’. What a moment...I used to wear Armani and Max Mara suits to work every day...literally! I have always gravitated towards a classic silhouette but in recent years to give my outfit a twist, I invest in basic but quality t-shirts that fit exceptionally well. I pair them with a structured cardigan or a tailored coat with flowing trousers or a midi-skirt. Plus, a beautiful, statement handbag and classic heels finish the look. I never thought I would say this as I have never been much of a shoe person, but my collection is now my obsession.
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