Self Care

Life As An Introvert

Growing up I was definitely more of a reserved kid. I was a TOTAL bookworm and threw myself into my homework and art projects. I loved playing make-believe in my treehouse, or accompanying my mom antique shopping. And I was happiest either one on one with someone – or completely alone. I loathed group activities and projects. They stressed me out, exhausted me. And I felt like I couldn’t get anything done with everyone talking over one another. Please No Summer Camp!My parents forced me to do group activities though – everything from softball to swimming, volleyball and track. I lasted about 1 year in each sport and would beg them not to make me go back. I wanted to take art classes (which were always calm + quiet). Or focus on my studies from the comfort of my home. I realize I’m making myself out to sound like a total nerd…welp I still am! My sister on the other hand, was SO outgoing. Obsessed with club volleyball, soccer team captain, always blowing off her homework to have huge choreographed dance parties with her friends in our driveway, and would go to sleep away camp for months over the summer. I can’t even begin to talk about how much I hated camp lol…. A Fish Out Of WaterMy best friends in middle school were semi introverted, but not on the level that I was. So I always felt like a fish out of water amongst my peers. That feeling stuck with me throughout high school, college and beyond. I somehow always gravitated to a more outgoing friend or group of friends (maybe because I so badly wanted to be seen as outgoing and also didn’t fit in with the “shy” crowd), and this left me feeling constantly out of place, confused and misunderstood. For basically my entire life, I tried to hide my introversion. It was impossible though. Like clock work, after I’d done too much socializing, I’d eventually get insanely drained and make up an excuse that I had to go home to grab something, had to work, didn’t feel well, couldn’t make it to the party because of X,Y,Z etc… Stigma Around IntrovertsI was always embarrassed to admit I was an introvert because society certainly doesn’t celebrate introverts. Introverts have been mislabeled and misunderstood forever. People think introverts are shy and reclusive, but that just isn’t the case. I’ve never thought of myself as shy – I love meeting new people and feel very comfortable walking into a room full of strangers and striking up conversation. I also LOVE to travel. Exploring new places and discovering hidden gems is one of my greatest passions. A Book About IntrovertsIt wasn’t until I read the book Quiet last year, that I came to fully understood and embrace the definition of an introvert. Susan Cain, the author behind Quiet, defines introverts as having “a preference for a quiet, more minimally stimulating environment. Introverts tend to enjoy quiet concentration, listen more than they talk, and think before they speak, and have a more circumspect and cautious approach to risk. Introverts think more, are less reckless and focus on what really matters – relationships and meaningful work.” Cain shares that between “one-third and one-half of Americans may be classified as introverts, though individuals fall at different places along an introvert-extrovert spectrum.” Those people are called ambiverts. Yep, I’m A Textbook IntrovertUp until this quarantine 51 days ago, I considered myself pretty 50/50 on the introvert-extrovert spectrum. I mean, I love going to a good party, catching up with friends, being out + about in NYC – it excites me and makes me feel alive! However I also really love my downtime at home reading, writing, creating and dreaming. Whether I go in or stay out really depends on my mood or the situation. BUT the majority of the time, as in about 90% of the time, I am perfectly content – actually over the moon – staying home by myself or with one or two people I love. I would choose staying home or doing something intimate and quiet, over a loud event, dinner, or party any day. Embracing IntroversionThe blessing and silver lining behind this quarantine for me personally, has been that after all of these years I’ve finally come to terms with just how introverted I really am. I feel SO grounded and content after this time at home, away from the pressure I have felt for years from both myself and others to go out, out, out and do so.many.things! In reality, my fun is recharging at home. Immersing myself in creative projects, cooking, teaching myself new things, and having low key movie nights cuddled with Charlie and T. May I add that I feel very fortunate to even have the option to stay home while so many others don’t! Anyways, when this is all over, will I be sooooo excited to throw on my heels and attend a fabulous party, dine out at a restaurant, and hug my friends? YES OF COURSE! DUH! But, knowing me, I will probably be ready to kick my heels off, throw my sweats on and get cozy about an hour or two in ;) To My Fellow IntrovertsTo all of my closet, or not-so-closet introverts and ambiverts, out there I feel you and I get you! Let’s change the stigma around introversion and be proud of what makes us who we are. If you haven’t already, do yourself a favor and read Quiet even if you’re not an introvert. My friend Grace wrote an amazing review on it in case you need more convincing. It’s truly an eye opening read that will help you understand not only yourself, but the people in your life.
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My Favorite Loungewear

We’ve all been spending way more time at home than usual, so I wanted to share some of my favorite loungewear pieces. These are all affordable, soft, and flattering! Best Cozy Loungewear Workout/everyday black leggings These ALO leggings are a DREAM. They’re high waisted and legit the best leggings I’ve ever worn. They run true to size (I wear a small), although if you’re short, I would size down. I wash them normally and even put them in the dryer, and they’ve held up beautifully. I LOVE that they don’t slip down when I’m being active and don’t squeeze your waist in the wrong places like so many other leggings do. Loungewear set I lost the top of this set, but I wear the pants ALL the time. They feel like pajamas (the material is SO soft), but look like nicer than your typical pajama bottoms so I don’t feel guilty wearing them around the house during the day. They run true to size! Cozy joggers I have 2 pairs of these because I wear them 24/7. They’re the perfect soft, cotton jogger that doesn’t pinch at the waist. They run true to size, and are acceptable to wear out in public for a casual grocery run or to walk your dog! Sherpa jacket This fuzzy jacket sold out at Nordstrom, but it’s still in stock in multiple colors here! It’s so thick and cozy. I LIVE in this on chilly days. The fact that it’s cropped makes it 10x cuter than any other sherpa jacket! This is a less expensive option. Long cardigan I have this cardigan in grey and it’s the perfect, basic long cardigan to throw over leggings and a t-shirt. Long sleeve bodysuit I have this bodysuit in 2 colors and it’s beyond flattering on and goes with everything. There’s something about wearing a bodysuit that makes me feel more put together – especially when I’m home working. The V-neck version is great as well! Crew neck sweatshirt You can’t go wrong with this $10 crew neck sweatshirt. It comes in tons of colors and is a best seller for a reason. And this cream crew neck from Stripe & Stare has quickly become a favorite – it’s legit the softest thing I’ve ever worn. Henley shirt I bought this shirt in the short sleeve white version, long sleeve white version, and white sleeve tan version. Such a classic style, that looks perfect tucked into sweats or jeans. Slippers These slippers are to die for. Your whole foot is covered in warm, soft shearling – YES PLEASE! Also love these! Nip covers I’ve been wearing these for years, and usually opt for them over a bra. They’re seamless, comfortable, and hassle free. I cannot recommend them enough! Shop the rest of my favorite cozy loungewear pieces below!
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Binge-worthy TV Shows

Who doesn’t love to watch Netflix and chill? ;) This post is a loooog time coming, and I’m sure I’ve forgotten a few shows that are binge-worthy on here, but this is a great start if you’re looking for something new to watch! I put this post under my Wellness/Self Care section because it’s just as important to rest and recharge as it is to go-go-go! Best TV Shows to Binge Watch Sex and the City I can watch this over and over again and never tire of itLOVESO witty, takes place in LA, centers around quirky dating scenarios that you can totally relate to if you’re a millennialSchitt’s CreekYou will pee your pants watching this – the bestStranger ThingsI only watched the first season and loved it, haven’t gotten into the other seasons TBH, but first season was REALLY goodSex EducationThe second season JUST came out, this is a hilarious British TV show based on awkward sexual high school encounters SuitsThere are 9 seasons of this so you’ll be occupied for a while! Really good show that’s easy to watch – I wish this series hadn’t ended!Royal PainsHappy, cheesy, and easy to watch, there are 8 seasons so it’s a great mindless show that takes place in the beautiful HamptonsLaw and Order SVUThe old Law and Order SVU episodes are so good, so twisted, and so easy to bingeGame of ThronesINTENSE action packed series, that I had a hard time getting through because I get scared easily and have nightmares LOL, but incredible acting and productionYOUAddicting, twisted, creepy and yet the main character who is a murderer is somehow likable. Takes place today in NYC and LA – season 3 is coming soon!DexterA murder mystery series that has lighthearted moments that balance it out – intense but so well writtenMarvelous Mrs. MaiselAn award winning show for a reason. The acting is amazing, the 1950s costumes are gorgeous, and it will make you laughThe CrownA captivating series about the Royal family. The first seasons were way better than the current one – in my opinion!Money HeistYou’ll be on the edge of your seat (in a good way) watching this series. So many twists and turns – adventure packedGossip GirlA classic series that I can watch again and again, XOXOLuciferOMG Tom Ellis the main character is so gorgeous – if anything watch it just to see him shirtless LOL!!! He plays a devil reincarnated on earth living in LA. SO good and it’s coming back for another season!Mad MenThis series captured the 1950s in NYC’s ad world perfectly. The sets, the costumes and acting were all on point. Such a unique, special showScandalTBH I only watched a few shows on and off, but the ones I did watch were so good. Kerry Washington is incredible and I’ve been meaning to sit down and watch the series from start to finish!HomelandSame thing with this series, I only watched the first few seasons, but they were really good. VERY intense, and drama/action pack filled but great if you love crime, action, mysteryBodyguardCan they please come out with another season?! Thrilling series following a high profile government bodyguard saving London from terrorist attacksDead to MeThis was AMAZING! I don’t know anyone who didn’t like this show – SO goodThe Assassination of Gianni VersaceVery dark and extremely disturbing, but fascinating nonetheless. The actor won an award for his performance – which was truly well deservedRussian DollQuirky and weird, but really well done. This is a short, quick series to watch one weekend LovesickThis British show is a feel good series that follows the lives of 3 friends who live in a flat and 2 of which are secretly in loveTales of the CityTakes place in SF, about a group of friends who reside in an LGBTQ community home. Heartwarming and captivatingOzarkA small town accountant gets caught up with drug lords who are controlling him and his family. A thrilling and ironic storyRiverdaleA murder mystery show centered around a group of high schoolers – so many good twists and turnsMorning ShowI’ve never watched this but had to include because everyone’s been raving about it! I need to watch it ASAP!Breaking BadI watched this entire series front to back and was SO sad when it ended! A small town professor turns into a drug dealer and has a complete mental breakdown – this show will keep you on your toes!ImpostersI feel like this show ended way too soon! Can they please bring back one more season?! Playful and mysterious with comedy mixed in, this series follows a con woman and all of the flings she picks up along the wayBillionsA billionaire who lives a fast, lavish lifestyle is fighting to stay in control of his life, family and companyThe Girlfriend ExperienceRiley Keough was only in 1 season of this and I wish they had continued it! Her acting was perfect and she nailed the law student turned high end escort partAnimal KingdomThomas loved this show. I had a bit of a hard time watching it all because of the violence (yep I am a scaredy cat!!!) but it was REALLY well done. It takes place in California and follows a family who is involved in some serious shady businessSuccessionA billionaire news mogul and his seriously dysfunctional family fight each other for power, back stab, and jet set around the world. So exciting, well written and award-winning for a reason Home For ChristmasThis popped up on our Netflix when we were in Paris. It’s a cute Norwegian show that follows a girl who is in her 30s and pressured to find a boyfriend to bring home to meet her family for Christmas. Such a sweet, feel-good seriesBelow DeckI’m a sucker for a BRAVO reality TV show! Below Deck is one that both men and women will be able to appreciate!Real Housewives of Beverly HillsAnother ridiculous reality TV show that is so bad it’s good ;) Beverly Hills is my favorite out of all of the series What are some of your favorite TV shows to binge watch?! Any that I absolutely need to watch? A few that I didn’t include but am “reviewing” hehe and seeing if I actually like are…Fleabag, Modern Love (not loving as much as other people do), and Black Mirror (pretty dark the first few episodes are good.) Happy binge-watching!!!
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How To Be Your Authentic Self

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” -Oscar Wilde It’s taken me 30 years to fully embrace my authentic myself. It has certainly not been easy getting here, but it feels so liberating to be where I am right now. Today, we are constantly bombarded with an influx of messages and images telling us everything from what to say, to what to eat, what to wear, and even how to feel. It can be extremely challenging to weed through all of the incoming stuff – and just get down what WE as unique individuals, actually WANT. So, What Do You Want? That’s the first question I ask myself everyday. What do I want to do? What do I want to wear? To eat? To read? Who do I want to see? Where do I want to go? I prioritize and put myself and my needs first before anything else. I put my mental and physical health above everything because I know that will help me be the best version of myself, and will allow me to think clearly and logically, and most importantly make decisions based off my intuition. Intuition Is Everything We all have an inner voice and a sense of intuition, however most of us sadly don’t listen to it. We listen and do what others want us to do, or what we THINK other people want us to do. We are influenced by magazines, ads, social media, our parents, our friends, coworkers, significant others – hell, even strangers! When was the last time you took a step back, and made a decision completely based on YOUR intuition without caring what anyone else thought? It’s not easy to do, is it? It’s so brave – and you have to be extremely strong, but exercising this muscle will ultimately allow you to become your authentic self. Stop The People Pleasing Doing solely what YOU want to do, can sometimes result in others disapproval. It may even cause an uproar, and be looked down upon – but would you rather have other people’s thoughts and opinions dictate your life from afar, OR would you rather live the life YOU want right here, right now? I have a friend who became a lawyer just because both of her parents were lawyers and they forced (OK strongly pushed) her to be one. They basically made it clear that any other job wasn’t good enough or acceptable. She went through YEARS of law school, internships, and jobs working insane hours and after all of that, is absolutely miserable today. She is always complaining about her job, her coworkers, her hours, lack of a social life, etc. I’ve known her my entire life and to see her so unhappy and drained truly breaks my heart. She’s a 30 year old grown woman, and yet she’s allowing her parents’ opinions to dictate her life which is stifling her true self. Her parents aren’t bad people, and at the end of the day they only want the best for her, but only she knows what’s best for her. You cannot let anyone, even loved ones, tell you how to live your life. It is your responsibility and duty to your SOUL to listen to and follow your intuition. You Do You If I had listened to, followed, or been swayed by every ad, article, friend, family member, and/or stranger that I encountered, I would not be where I am today. I cannot tell you how many people thought that blogging was a silly, frivolous hobby when I started it 9 years ago!!!! So many people looked at me like I was an ALIEN when I told them I had a blog in 2011. And do you know how many so called “industry experts” and managers I’ve met with over the years who have compared me to other bloggers they felt were relevant and encouraged me to do crazy/outlandish/new things to stay “cool?” They actually DISCOURAGED me from being consistent, classic, relatable, and well, MYSELF! If I had listened to ANY one of them I would not be in this position! It has NOT been easy to drown out the minutiae – especially as a young woman in a new industry that is still not taken very seriously! But, I am thankful for the doubters, the naysayers and the boxes that people have tried to put me in. I am thankful for every struggle and adversity I’ve faced because it helped me develop grit and determination which every single entrepreneur needs. Over the years, I dug deeper and leaned even harder into myself, my desires and my dreams. Doing so helped me cultivate a strong inner voice. I’m here to tell you; Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something. Don’t let anyone try to push you to be someone you’re not. Don’t let anyone put you down, belittle you, or manipulate you. And remember, take nothing personally. Hurt people only try to hurt other people period. Purge The Negativity One of the most important things I’ve done for myself is heavily filtering out the people I surround myself with. Gone are the days of “the more the merrier”, and in are the days of “quality over quantity.” People come in and out of our lives for many reasons. Some relationships don’t always last forever, and some go in ebbs and flows depending on where we are in our lives. Learn something from each and every relationship, and cultivate a positive, uplifting tight inner circle. Pull away from anyone who drains you, makes small digs/backhanded compliments, or simply can’t be happy for you. Life is too short! Be clear about what types of qualities and characteristics you want in friends, business partners, coworkers, and significant others – and you will slowly start to meet more people with those exact qualities. This is called manifestation and something that I do on a daily basis. Ask, visualize and you shall receive! Love Your Uniqueness We are all unique and we all have something special to offer the world. When we hone in on that, surround ourselves with good people, and listen to our intuition – everything starts flowing from there. That’s not to say there won’t be hard times, hiccups and barriers along the way. There will always be ups and downs in life, but if you create a solid foundation for yourself you’ll be able to handle anything that’s thrown at you on your own terms, with grace. “There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful, than a woman being unapologetically herself; comfortable in her perfect imperfection. To me, that is the true essence of beauty.” -Dr. Steve Mariboli
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