Those closest to me, know that this last year has been challenging to say the least – and it makes me sad that people automatically assume that that has to do with having a baby. TBH, having my baby was the least of it. Having my baby was the purest, most blissful, amazing experience, and I’m so lucky to have such a happy, affectionate, go-with-the-flow kid. When it comes to my family unit; me, my husband, our child – that’s honestly what brings me the most peace and happiness. That kind of chaos is welcomed.

I have found that pain and chaos can sometimes also come from the people closest to you. I never once thought to be vocal about what I’m experiencing, until it hit me that it’s probably way more common than I’d like to think, and it’s probably not the worst thing expressing what’s going on, in case someone hears it that needs to. Sometimes (unfortunately), blood does not prove to be thicker than water and you just need to keep your peace and focus on yourself – that’s why I’ve come to learn what works for me, what doesn’t and when to implement these best practises in order for whatever is going on, to not totally take me down. In the past, when drama would ensue in my private life, I would compartmentalize it to the side so I wouldn’t have to deal with it, but that only goes so far. When you’re put in a situation where you keep trying to express your feelings, but are constantly and deliberately met with deaf ears, it gets hard not to feel like you are going insane. These types of things take time to process, in order to even begin to heal.

I guess I wanted to write this because I’m also very proud of how much i’ve had to work at that. At not letting other people, rip down the walls I’ve so carefully built with time and care, over many years of hard work, discipline and dedication. My self-care and wellness routines are a practice, not only for vain purposes such as appearance, but for my mind and it’s well-being.

And I guess the moral of this post, is just to become aware of what sucks up your energy, figure out what little things you can do to make whatever’s going on in the background fall to the wayside, so you can pick yourself back up and focus on your self-betterment.

These are a few, simple things that I keep coming back to, to keep my peace and mental sanity strong, even when shit is hitting the fan in my personal life:

TIME-OUT[SIDE]: coffee, read, sit in quiet. I do all three. I gauge my mood for that morning and decide what I need. I’ve found that even 5-10 mins of time outside to enjoy a coffee can entirely shift my energy. Bad mood, be gone.

SKINCARE & TOOLS: taking care of my skin is something I take a lot of pride in. I’m not against anything, but I have yet to do any injectables, botox, or fillers. I’m 36 and believe in a smart skincare routine, using good quality (science-backed) products, and yearly facial treatments at Project skin. My mom taught me at an early age to take care of your skin with good products (she started me on Clinic – remember the sets?!), so I’ve never thought any differently. If you’re new here, you can read about my skincare journey here & here, or just search under the Skincare tab.

5 MIN MEDITATIONS: never in a million years would I have thought that meditation would be for me, but here we are. I always felt like more than 5 mins was a big commitment so I’ve stuck with 5 mins and I actually crave more now. The mental shift and clarity I’ve felt since starting, is pretty remarkable. No plans in stopping anytime soon and coming this fall, I want to challenge myself to go for more time. I subscribe to the Melissa Wood Health app (for killer workouts, flows & guided meditations) so I just started with her. I love Melissa’s energy, so it’s a good match for me. If you know of any others that I might like, please leave them below!

WALK YOUR NEIGHBOURHOOD: I love doing this with Ryder & the dog. There’s just something so quaint and comforting about strolling around the neighbourhood. I find that walking really helps me get clarity and work out most stresses. I guess it’s the combination of movement and being outside. I felt kind of stuck after moving into a rental when Ryder was 3 weeks old (while we were waiting for our renovations to be completed), so I made a point of taking daily walks, early in the mornings just to get out and it’s our favorite thing. We still do it every morning, now. I find it sets the tone of our whole day and I like to use the time to set my intentions for the day, to think through anything that’s bothering me, work out any logistics for the week etc. it just helps!

MOVEMENT: after my cousin died suddenly, I felt desperate to escape so I turned to the gym and ran my grief right into the ground. I literally would blast my music in my headphones and run on the treadmill as hard as I could. Then I was introduced to boxing circuit, 30 minute hit and was forever changed. I miss boxing so much, but we will be setting up a gym in our garage this fall, so I’m definitely planning on putting some bags up in there. Many people go to therapy, I went to the gym and it did help and still does help me work through challenging times, as they come up.

NATURAL LIGHT: I am someone who very much feeds off of my environment. I need my space to be tidy and to feel warm and welcoming. Those things are important to me, they aren’t to everyone! I need lots of bright, natural light flooding my space. It honestly makes me so happy. We loved our old apartment (so much, we stayed for 8 years), but if there was one complaint I had about it, was the lack of natural light. It made it feel kind of dungeon-like, without it. You know?? That was one of our MAJOR points for our home, was to make sure we could have max natural light. It also just makes my job so much easier (when taking photos/video) because I’m not having to rely on using artificial lighting.

HYDRATION: flooding my body with water each morning makes such a difference. Again, I find that everything is like a domino effect. For me, doing things like moving and drinking water, naturally make me want to keep going with other healthy choices. Hydration is also the number one way to a healthy, glowing, complexion. When your skin (or hair for that matter) is dehydrated, it causes your skin to wrinkle and dry up. When it’s hydrated, the skin smooths those lines, resulting in a more healthful look/glow. When things get boring I like to add fresh fruit, mint or a squeeze of lemon.

NUTRITION: I’ve become much more aware of the foods I put into my body with time + age. I use to be careless about how I ate, but now all I care about is making sure I’m giving myself everything my body needs to take on everything I put it through, daily. I took a hard looks at what we were buying, cooking, using etc. and have created a weekly system that works for us and allows us to prepare foods ahead of time. What I put in my body is directly linked to how I feel and I want to make sure that I am being healthy from the inside-out.

BATH TIME: some people get fancy bath tubs and never use them. I am not one of those people. I loove nothing more, than to run a hot bath with the window cracked so I can hear the rain, and read something to stimulate my mind (bookclub, here). I’m still currently finishing ‘How to Change Your Mind’, it’s good. Baths let my body melt away, while I can relax my mind in a good book. I try to take a bath at least once a week, when I can. Products I love to unwind include: ouai bath bombs, hermit himalayan salt soak, and either the hatch belly oil or Mifa body oil, which I drop a few drops into the water & it’s heaven.

Obviously, I can only speak from my own experience. Everyone is different, everyone’s situation is different and everyone’s going to have different things that work for them. This has been what’s been working for me, so much that I’ve integrated these habits into becoming part of my lifestyle. I hope that by being a bit vulnerable, my story might relate to one of you, and make you feel a little more heard + seen.
If you’ve been through it, you know what I mean!

Anyways, love to you all + protect your peace!

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