Learn to Love Yourself. 4 self-love tips!

For the ones who ever doubted their worth, this post is for you. Today I’m sharing 4 tips to accept and love yourself more! We often spend so much of our time berating ourselves. We wonder how we could have done things differently in the past so we could be more successful today.. or comparing ourselves to other people, especially ones who are our age, and wondering why we haven’t achieved what they have yet.

Always remember that you are enough! Smart enough, talented enough, fit enough. You are a powerful being with a lot to offer.

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I made a YouTube video about this here. I would love if you checked it out where I go more in-depth on the 4 tips detailed below:

1. Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

  • No one is you and that is your power
  • You are unique and equally as important and valued as anyone else
  • Being anyone other than yourself is a loss for the world

2. Speak Kindly to Yourself

  • See yourself as your mother, best friend, or an innocent child. How would you speak to them if they were having a bad day?
  • Try referring to yourself as a term of endearment like “babe” or “dear”. Yes, it may sound creepy talking to yourself like that.. but only if you say it aloud 😉

3. Post-it Notes of Affirmations

  • Think about an inspiring quote, your favorite trait, or any words that may resonate with you.
  • Write them on a post-it note and stick it where you can see it as a daily reminder

4. Let it go

  • Ask yourself, “How is this thought helping me towards my goal? How does this thought serve me in a positive way?”
  • Let go of these self-doubting fears. Make room for self-love instead.

I go a bit more in depth in my video that still manages to be less than 5 minutes long. Love if you’d check it out ❤

Hope everyone’s having a fantastic Thursday 🙂

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Start Living Freely! How to Deal with Insecurity

We all know what being insecure feels like. It prevents us from being the genuine, fun, loving people we really are because we’re all in our heads. Today we’re talking about 4 ways to not care about what others think of us so we can live more freely!

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  1. Love Yourself

Get to know yourself, both your strengths and your weaknesses. Once you’re able to fully accept yourself, then you can have unwavering belief that, despite your flaws, you are currently living life the best way you know how to right now. We can always be richer, smarter, prettier, etc. but things can also be a lot worse. Trust yourself that you’re currently living life to the best of your ability. No one can take that from you. And anyone who wants to judge your life decisions can skedaddle ✌🏼

2. Don’t Take Things Personally

When we feel like we’re being insulted, we immediately jump into defense mode. We have such a strong desire to prove someone else wrong until we can “win.” But know that whatever someone says to you or about you is a direct reflection of them. If they say something hurtful, it goes to show the possible discontentment, jealousy, or unhappiness that they’re currently experiencing. Whatever someone says about you actually has nothing to do with you at all.

Check out my video where I go more in-depth with this one 🙂

3. Life is Temporary

Sometimes we forget that life is temporary, therefore precious. Spend your time wisely pursuing things that make your life more vivid and passionate instead of caring what others think. Because again, what others think of you is a reflection of them. Not you. Take risks and be bold for things that make you feel alive. And if you’re scared, then ask yourself, “what is the worst that can happen?” The answer is probably tiny compared to the possible reward of that action 🙂

4. Insecurity is Invisible

Insecurity is simply a feeling we create and then build up in our heads. Remember that no one can see it. No one knows you have it. This is where “fake it until you become it” can be applied. Next time you’re walking into a party where you don’t know anybody and are super nervous, just walk in there pretending you know exactly who you’re looking for. And chances are – people are just as nervous as you if not more.

I made a video on these 4 tips and went a little more in depth. I’d so appreciate it if you checked it out here! ❤

Top 3 Pilates Moves for Toned Abs

Ah, Pilates, my first fitness addiction. I began practicing almost 5 years ago and teaching just over 4 months now. Today I’m sharing 3 classical Pilates moves that never fail to work. It takes 5 minutes to do this routine, so find a small spot on the floor and enjoy! single leg stretch.jpgimg_9840img_9841

  1. Start by lying on your back. Knees pulled into your chest.
  2. Lift head and shoulders off the mat
  3. Grab right shin with both hands stacked one on top of the other
  4. Extend left leg to a high diagonal
  5. Inhale as you switch legs
  6. Exhale as you pull left knee in towards chest
  7. Continue to switch. Do 10 on each leg.

Modification: head and shoulders rest on the mat. Continue to switch your legs.

Challenge: lower that extended leg closer towards the mat and/or lift another inch off your shoulder blades
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  1. Start by lying on your back. Knees pulled into your chest
  2. Lift head and shoulders off the mat
  3. Inhale as you extend arms and legs go to a high diagonal
  4. Exhale as you circle arms around grabbing your shins while hugging knees into chest
  5. Do 8-10 reps

Modification: arms and legs are at a 90º angle instead of a 45º angle

Challenge: Lower your extended legs closer towards the mat while keeping that lower back on the mat

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  1. Start by lying on your back. Knees pulled into your chest
  2. Lift head and shoulders off the mat.
  3. Hands go behind your neck and extend legs straight to the ceiling at 90º
  4. Bring your feet into Pilates stance – heels together, toes apart
  5. Inhale as you lower legs to a place where your lower back remains on the mat
  6. Exhale as you lift your legs back to 90
  7. Do 8 reps

Modification: Create a triangle with your hands (index fingers and thumbs connect) and place it under tailbone to support your lower back

Challenge: Lower your legs closer towards the mat while keeping your lower back pressed on the mat to prevent injury.

Do this routine every day for a week and you’ll definitely feel your abs tightening.

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Let me know if you want to see any other Pilates-related posts! Would love to share.

Why I Yoga

When I was first introduced to yoga at the beginning of college, I saw it as a way to workout and nothing more. I left my first class feeling achey, confused (like who thought it was a good idea to balance on their triceps..?), and not “zen” as everyone makes it out to be. Even though I didn’t really enjoy it, I kept on taking classes off and on because I always heard about how “good” it was for us. With a more consistent practice in the past 10 months, I’ve grasped something invaluable: to live with mindfulness.

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With each conscious and deliberate inhale and exhale, we become that much more mindful and in control. I’ve learned to become present by matching movement to breath.

There tends to be two type of people in this world: one who is running around like a chicken with its head cut off or one who is living out a mundane routine everyday. I fall more on the latter. It can suck to be a creature of habit because you start to look at life through dull eyes. But yoga has taught me to be still, acknowledge, and appreciate. Even if it’s for a second, stop to genuinely enjoy the beautiful crisp autumn air. Stop to watch the squirrels playfully chase each other around a tree. Stop mindlessly scrolling through your phone while waiting in line and compliment the stranger behind you. Continuously be in awe of the seemingly “little” things in life because only then will you begin to see the “bigger” blessings appear.

We are often focused on figuring out the future or dwelling on the past that we don’t recognize the precious blessings in front of us at this very moment.

Just remember – What’s in the past has passed. What’s in the future is written. Let go of things you can’t control. Have unwavering faith that the universe will always be there to support and guide you through this crazy ride called life, as long as you call onto it. As Paulo Coelho said, “When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”

So many jumbled thoughts that I have in my head, so apologies if this post sounds like nonsense. If you liked this post, make sure to check out my 30 Days of Yoga: What I’ve Learned post!

Happy Sunday! Hope we all have a productive yet mindful week ahead.

Skincare Routine for Acne-Prone Skin

I will forever be in pursuit of beautiful skin. Our skin is truly the foundation of our entire face. Without a great base, all the makeup in the world can’t help us look beautiful AND feel comfortable & confident. I have combo and acne-prone skin, so I can definitely empathize with skin struggles. I’ve used so many products throughout the years that I want to share my current routine using my absolute favorite products. By no means is my skin perfect or this will work for everyone, but just sharing my experience 🙂

Before I share the products, I want to talk about the foods we put in our mouths. Without a balanced diet, we can’t have beautiful skin. Eat more foods rich in alkaline like greens and fruits and less acidic foods like meat and alcohol. And most importantly – increase your water intake! It flushes our system and leaves our skin glowing. It’s recommended to drink at least 2.5-3 liters a day. I personally drink about 4-5 since I’m apparently a walking fish. Now onto the products –

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Cleanser
I’ve used Purity off and on for many years now. It is super gentle (perfect for sensitive skin) and takes off every inch of makeup. There’s not a single bad thing I can say about this cleanser. It also has a nice, subtle herbal-ish scent. You can buy Purity at most beauty stores like Sephora and Ulta.

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Cleanser
I have acne-prone skin so when it’s “that time of the month”, my skin totally freaks out. Every single month. I use this AcneFree Purifying Cleanser with benzoyl peroxide to control my acne. This product WORKS. I can see a clear difference within 24 hours and it prevents future pimples from coming since it has slow releasing benzoyl peroxide.

This cleanser is apart of a 3-step system, but I don’t use the toner and moisturizer since it’s too drying for me. Next time I’ll buy just the cleanser. You can find AcneFree at most drugstores including Target and CVS.

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Moisturizer
I’ve been using coconut oil religiously all day, err day for the past 4+ years. I’m convinced I have coco oil running through my veins by now. Right after I wash my face, I lather this on my skin for a good 30 seconds. I then give a quick rinse and gently pat my skin dry. I like to keep a thin layer of the oil on my skin to act as my moisturizer. I do this every morning and night. Coconut oil is perfect for any skin type since it’s so gentle and incredibly moisturizing. You can find coconut oil just about anywhere nowadays. Try and pick up an extra virgin and organic one if possible.

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Moisturizer
After I have a nice thin layer of coco oil on my skin, I use a pump or two of this Aura Cacia Rosehip Oil. You can Google the benefits of rosehip oil, but I’ve personally seen my skin tone appear more even. I was sold when I read that Miranda Kerr promised by this oil. I use this every night. This little bottle is about $8 and lasts 4-6 months. You can find them at most health food stores including Whole Foods.

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Moisturizer
Colder weather = drier skin, so I’ve been reaching for products super rich and moisturizing. Weleda White Mallow Face Cream is perfect. I bought this product on a whim last year after my skin turned into leather from using an incredibly harsh product that completely dried my face out. Although this is geared towards people with eczema, I haven’t found any issues since it’s so gentle and made with 97% organic products. So if you battle with eczema, this is perfect for you. If you don’t battle with eczema but want baby soft skin, this is also perfect you. I apply this at night before bed and in the morning under my makeup. It comes out thick, but so easy to blend in and doesn’t feel thick on your skin. This is about $14 and I found mine at a local health food store (Mom’s Organic Market). You can also order online.

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Mask
Masks are so important! They’re basically nutrient-densed food for your skin. I’ve been using Algenist Algae Brightening Mask since May and love it. It leaves my skin appear more radiant and glowing while leaving it baby soft. It completely improves my overall complexion and texture. I use this mask about once a week. Although it’s a little pricy ($62), a little goes a long way. I bought it almost 6 months ago and only used half the product. Way more bang for your buck than buying individual sheet masks for $8. I picked this up at Sephora.

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Spot Treatment
I want to sneak this guy in here, too. Tea Tree Oil is great for acne since it basically dries the pimple out. I use this oil as a spot treatment at night and my pimple is usually improved by the next morning. I picked this up from Trader Joe’s for like $3 or something super cheap.

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Cleansing Brush
I think anyone who appreciates good skin considers the Clarisonic a must-have. I mean, what was life like before we discovered this? I’ve been using my Clarisonic for about 5+ years now and never looking back. This guy thoroughly cleanses the skin far better than our hands can do. It scrubs away dead skin cells revealing better complexion and texture. Your skincare products will also absorb better for more efficiency. I use my Clarisonic about every 2 days since I don’t want to over exfoliate, but find what works for you!

 

Now awkward selfies –

Hashtag no filter so you can see the imperfections, too!

Comment below any skincare products you recommend 🙂 I love hearing what people are raving about.