a fresh beginning

*while this isn't a post specifically aimed at skin care, i believe that our whole body, mind, lifestyle and environment affect our skin. therefore, i'm passionate about occasionally incorporating more "lifestyle" based posts, like the one below. enjoy!

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the beginning of a new year marks a time of hope, promise, and excitement for what the future may hold. at the same time, coming down from the holidays we're also faced with a lot of to-do's and catch-up (not to mention feeling a little weighed down from all of the christmas cookies). so with a weird mix of feeling those extra five pounds and a desire to take advantage of a fresh start, how should we move forward in a balanced way? below i've outlined a few things i'm personally putting into practice this month to help set me up for success for the rest of the year:

1. setting practical intentions.

i took some time over the holiday break to unplug and reflect on 2016. i realized that i'm proud of the personal and professional growth that happened in my life over the year, and for it i'm incredibly grateful. however, coupled with this satisfaction i also recognized some patterns and habits that i desire to improve in: this required an open heart and mind to realize (and it's incredibly humbling), but growth doesn't happen without a little pain. the reflection stage was essential in order to form the positive and practical intentions i have for the upcoming year.

2. de-cluterring. 

there's something so mentally refreshing about clearing the excess from your life, especially when it comes to the clutter in your house, office, bathroom etc. (places you spend the most time in). i have made a habit of going through the clutter on a quarterly basis, and every time i do i feel like a brand new person: my thoughts are clearer, i don't feel as stressed, and my spaces look more beautiful and clean. 

3. self-care. 

making habits of caring for yourself are essential to a healthy body and mind. yet between work, family, chores, bills, and the dog that needs to be fed-sometimes it can feel like there's not enough time in the day. i would argue that finding those moments in the day where we stop to breathe and take care of ourselves should be at the very top of the to-do list, not at the bottom. we have to take care of ourselves! schedule it on your calendar if you have to. here are some weekly rituals that i've adopted that make me feel like a healthy human again:

  • daily tea time (ideally accompanied by a book).
  • working out. i take barre3 classes a few times a week which help reduce stress and make me feel more balanced and happy overall. in the summer and fall when it's not freezing cold outside, i go on daily walks around my neighborhood.
  • a hot bath or sauna.

what are some of your go-to's for starting out a new year on the right foot? i'd love to hear. cheers to a brand new year; i hope this one is full of beauty for you!

from my heart.

monica