advice

Video: Create Your Self-Love Toolbox.

Hello kittens!

I decided to do something a little bit different for today's blog post and recorded a video. Partially because it's fun and also because some things are easier to explain when you can actually see and hear me.

This is an incredibly simple strategy that's allowing me to keep track of all of the rituals, strategies, tools, mindsets, and exercises in my self-love toolbox. Plus it's been so empowering and helps me get through difficult times when I feel scared or helpless.

I'd love to hear if you have your own method for keeping track of your personal development "tools" or if you decide to give this a try, I'd love to hear how it works for you. And leave a comment below: what tools are helping you on your self-love journey?

LOOK INSIDE MY NOTEBOOK!

Click below to download a mini guide to my favourite self-love tools. These notes are straight outta my notebook, baby!

Ask Me Anything!

My weekly newsletter is where I share exclusive content with my girl gang - those badass babes who are kind enough to share their email address with. These weekly love letters are my expressions of adoration and gratitude for you. And it's my hope that they'll be exactly what you need. Words of encouragement when you’re feeling stuck. A reminder of your greatness when you’re doubting yourself. Tips for living with flair when life feels dull. Strategies for defining your dreams and plotting a course for making them a reality when you’re feeling lost. Invocations to step up and create the life you want. They’re a cheering squad, agony aunt, and gentle kicks in the ass all rolled into one.

If you've signed up recently, you might have noticed that my newsletter has been quiet lately. But don't worry, you haven't missed anything and a new dispatch will be sent out on Sunday.

I've just been working on a new format because I want to make sure that when I grace your inbox each week that I'm dancing in with valuable insights, inspiring stories, and practical tips to help you fall madly in love with yourself and design a life you love.

So I thought, what better way to find out what would help you most than to ask?

So these new weekly love letters will feature an Ask Me Anything column! Do you have questions about anything from self-love and lifestyle design to being an expat or my favourite lipstick? Just leave me a comment or pop me an e-mail. I'll answer 2 or 3 each week, along with sharing the books, rituals, activities, and simple pleasures that have been lighting up my life or helping me create major shifts. I promise, it's going to be good.

If you don't get my newsletter already, you can sign up over here and you'll get a copy of my Define Your Dreams workbook right away. It will help you get clear on exactly what it is you want, so that you can make your reality match your daydreams.

To give you a taste of what you'd be signing up for, below is a copy of my love letter from March 8th.

Hello gorgeous,

Is there something about your life that is driving you crazy? Is there something you're yearning for?

Too often we think about how we wish our lives could be instead of how we can actively shape and mould them.

Maybe you want to be adventurous but haven’t been on a vacation in years and your bank account isn’t letting you go further than the other side of your own city.

Designing our lives and taking complete responsibility for our own happiness means showing up everyday and creating magic with the universe. It means stepping up and recognizing that you don’t have to wait for any arbitrary event in the future; your life can look and feel how you want it to right now. It might just require changing your perspective and getting a little bit creative.

That’s why I wrote my list of 50 ways to have an adventure without leaving town.

Adventure might bring to mind images of trekking through the jungle, exploring far off cities, or starting a new life on the other side of the world. But you can be adventurous each and every day. It’s just matter of making small choices that infuse your life with the feelings you want to dominate your life. And pretty soon those small choices add up to a whole new way of being.

Maybe it’s not adventure you want but glamour or comfort or creativity. Could a false pair of eyelashes, a nourishing bedtime routine, or a weekend painting class help you inhabit those feelings you’re craving?

Maybe reading a really challenging book will help you feel more intelligent or signing up for a volunteer program might bring you a sense of connection.

Decide what you want your life to look like and then figure out how you can create that right now, without having to change yourself, learn a difficult skill, or save up tons of money.

My challenge for you is to sit down today and think of 50 ways you can design your life to look more like that fantastical vision in your head.

I was surprised that when I sat down to it, it actually didn’t take me very long and it ended up being a lot of fun.

For bonus points, share your list with someone else and inspire them to do the same. I’d love to read it too, so feel free to reply to this email, leave a comment, or send me a tweet!

Believing in you always,

Photographs by Warren Burke and Ana Flávia Cador.

5 Ways to Get Back on Track.

January starts off full of resolutions and good intentions, but according to one study, only 8% of us will stick with the goals we've set for 2015. Those don't seem like good odds, do they?

I always find it much easier to stick with something new at the beginning. I'm motivated and inspired, doing lots of research and making action plans.

Yet if life gets in the way and I get knocked off course, I find it a lot harder to get back up and take another step forward. I've lost momentum and I struggle to find it again. The self-doubt kicks in and I start questioning if I can even do it and why I started in the first place.

But what sets apart those who achieve their goals from those that don't, is they know how to get back on track. Here are my tips:

Don't Wait for a Certain Date

In the past I've been guilty of waiting for a certain date to start something or get back on track, whether it's a Monday or the first of the month or another time that seems symbolic. Recognize that this is procrastination and start NOW.

Start with a Bite-Sized Chunk

I love Shauna's post on creating manageable goals by breaking them down into a small action that you can perform consistently. If you got off track with your exercise routine, just focus on putting on your trainers and getting out the door everyday. If it's your diet you're struggling with, give up the restrictions and just add one really healthy meal per day. Look over Shauna's ace tips for breaking your goal down, especially if you're wanting to learn a new creative or lifestyle skill. Once you've stuck with this smaller goal consistently, think about how you can start ramping things up.

Change Your Self-Talk

Instead of berating yourself for 'failing,' remind yourself that you've just gotten off track. Concentrate on the next step and remember what motivated you to start in the first place. What feeling were you trying to create? What goal did you want to reach? Stay focused on that. Boil it down to a short and snappy mantra that you can remind yourself of when you feel discouraged. You might even want to put an hourly reminder in your phone to keep repeating it to yourself.

Find an Accountability System

Figure out what will keep you motivated and accountable to your goals. I like having an accountability partner who's working on similar projects to check-in with daily. I'm more likely to follow through when I know there's someone else who is expecting me to get it done. And it's great to have someone to bounce ideas off of or ask advice from when I'm feeling stuck. You could also try being your own accountability partner with 'The Seinfeld Method' - let those rows of Xs motivate you to not break your streak.

Amp Up Your Inspiration

When we start out with a new project, we usually feast on inspiration. Get back into that mindset. Read motivational books. Scour Pinterest. Follow inspiring people on Instagram. Create a vision board. Surround yourself with visual reminders of your goal.

Do you have any great tips for getting back on track? I'd love to hear!