Life Update

I haven’t updated in what feels like forever. 2013 was a great year for me emotionally. 2014 started off a bit rocky and it’s been up and down ever since. I feel like blogging helps put me back into my happy place so that’s what I’m going to focus on. I’ve recently distanced myself from someone who I thought was a really close friend. He was, at one point. This friend was there for me through my ups and downs but things changed, as they do in life unfortunately. I just wasn’t getting the same amount of energy I was putting into our friendship and it started to feel one-sided and unauthentic. Sometimes space and reevaluation is all you need. I don’t do well with broken relationships or friendships. It takes a lot for me to open myself up to people and allow them in my life – to give them unfiltered trust. I felt hurt, almost betrayed, by this friend because I felt that I have been there for him through all the rough patches he had been through in terms of school or relationships for as long as I have known him and vice-versa. Whether he feels the same way is entirely a different story. It started to take a toll on my happiness. I was conflicted between letting go or trying to work on it. I tried to communicate how I felt but it resulted in no change. Thus, I made the decision to close our chapter no matter how much I really didn’t want to. This continues to be a uphill (but sometimes a downhill) battle for me.

Getting over friendships are just as hard, if not harder, to get over than romantic relationships. Giles from Livestrong.com shares some steps on how to get over a broken friendship:

How to Get Over a Broken Friendship

Oct 21, 2013 | By C. Giles

For many people, friends are more like family: they’re there through all of life’s ups and downs. This can make losing a close friend as devastating as breaking up with a long-term partner. Sometimes friends simply grow apart and find they have little in common anymore. Unfortunately, a friendship may also end due to a disagreement or betrayal. Getting over a broken friendship takes time and patience, and may require facing up to some difficult truths about yourself and your behavior.

Stay Away

Seeing or speaking to your ex-friend is not going to help you get over your broken friendship. This may be difficult if you decided to end the relationship and she is repeatedly trying to contact you. Stay strong and remember the reasons the friendship broke down, advises Irene S. Levine, Ph.D., psychologist and author of “Best Friends Forever: Surviving a Breakup With Your Best Friend.” Focus on other friends and embrace all opportunities to make new connections that come your way.

Take Responsibility

Accepting the role you played in the demise of the friendship will help you get over what happened and move on. Blaming the other person for everything will only make you feel more angry and bitter. Think carefully about what caused the friendship to end and consider how you could have acted in a different way. This may help you when it comes to future relationship problems.

Share Your Feelings

Don’t suffer in silence if you’re struggling to cope with the loss of your friend. Talking to other friends, relatives or your spouse about what has happened can help you come to terms with it. Try to get things off your chest without complaining or portraying your friend in a bad way. This won’t help you to move on or help others empathize with what you are going through.

Seek Closure

After you have given yourself sufficient time to emotionally detach yourself from the relationship, seek closure by sending your ex-friend a message. Leaving things on a bad note will make it more difficult for you to complete the recovery process. Send her a message, either by phone, text or email, to let her know you bear no hard feelings and you wish her the best in the future. Recall the good times you shared and the ways your friend enriched your life, suggests Levine. Remembering the friendship in a positive way is much healthier than viewing it as a failure.

Source: Livestrong

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Warby Parker

Most people know that I’m a sucker for sunglasses. I think my collection contains a little over 15 pairs. Excessive, I know. But who can say no to a good looking pair of sunshine blockers, right?!

Warby Parker is a name to be reckoned with in the eyeglass industry and I’ve got some pretty exciting news to share! They’ve actually just launched their new Beacon Collection and I wanted to break down some of my personal faves with all of you. But first, here’s what they have to say about the collection:

Our Beacon Collection is inspired by impromptu, can’t- duplicate-them all-nighters, when having no plans brings endless possibilities. To set the scene, we called on photographer Petra Collins, whose snaps of unsupervised thrills and sweetly private moments reveal a lot of smarts and humor. Petra joined us one June evening on a detour through downtown Manhattan’s Doyers Street, an elbow- shaped alleyway dotted with preserved neighborhood remnants and modern businesses.

The collection name is a hat-tip to the morning star, which you can catch just after sunset or just before sunrise, depending on the time of year. We designed our Beacon Collection frames to make a similarly fine companion to late night dates, rooftop sunrises, and everything in between. There’s something just as unexpected about each new frame: they’re repeat contenders, no matter the hour.

So now to my favourite pair from the entire collection… Nancy (in Lemon to be exact!). You can see the female model wearing them below.

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Do we love these or do we love these?!

It’s fairly obvious this collection is a definite must have. I know the selection of sunglasses can be overwhelming but the right pair takes you a long way! Find something that suits your face shape and puts a smile on your face. Sunglasses and eyeglasses don’t have to be boring. They’re the perfect complimentary accessory to any outfit. And, if sunglasses aren’t your thing (especially for prescription eyeglass wearers), the McKee style is my personal favourite.

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Take a little risk, switch it up! The collection is available at WarbyParker.com/Beacon. Explore for yourself!

Peace & Love,
M.

Statement Jewelry

Statement necklaces are still going strong. I don’t generally accessorize but when I come across a piece that sticks out, I know I need to grab it! Forever 21 has been releasing some pretty cool stuff in recent months. There are hits and misses but I want to share two necklaces I found there for under $20!

Necklace 1

Necklace 1

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Necklace 1

Necklace 2

Necklace 2

Necklace 2 is probably my absolute favourite. It reminds me of traditional South Indian jewelry. Love x 100. Both pieces can be worn with solid colours. Of course black is my colour of choice but don’t be afraid to mix things up!

Here’s a picture of me wearing necklace 1 with an all-black outfit I wore to a show I co-host (excuse my flustered expression!):

Wearing Necklace 1

Wearing Necklace 1

 

Peace & Love,
M.

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12 Things Happy People Do

By Jacob Sokol via Huffington Post 

1. Express gratitude. — When you appreciate what you have, what you have appreciates in value. Kinda cool right? So basically, being grateful for the goodness that is already evident in your life will bring you a deeper sense of happiness. And that’s without having to go out and buy anything. It makes sense. We’re gonna have a hard time ever being happy if we aren’t thankful for what we already have.

 2. Cultivate optimism. — Winners have the ability to manufacture their own optimism. No matter what the situation, the successful diva is the chick who will always find a way to put an optimistic spin on it. She knows failure only as an opportunity to grow and learn a new lesson from life. People who think optimistically see the world as a place packed with endless opportunities, especially in trying times [3].

 3. Avoid over-thinking and social comparison. — Comparing yourself to someone else can be poisonous. If we’re somehow “better” than the person that we’re comparing ourselves to, it gives us an unhealthy sense of superiority. Our ego inflates — KABOOM — our inner Kanye West comes out! If we’re “worse” than the person that we’re comparing ourselves to, we usually discredit the hard work that we’ve done and dismiss all the progress that we’ve made. What I’ve found is that the majority of the time this type of social comparison doesn’t stem from a healthy place. If you feel called to compare yourself to something, compare yourself to an earlier version of yourself.

4. Practice acts of kindness. — Performing an act of kindness releases serotonin in your brain. (Serotonin is a substance that has TREMENDOUS health benefits, including making us feel more blissful.) Selflessly helping someone is a super powerful way to feel good inside. What’s even cooler about this kindness kick is that not only will you feel better, but so will people watching the act of kindness. How extraordinary is that? A side note is that the job of most anti-depressants is to release more serotonin. Move over Pfizer, kindness is kicking ass and taking names.

5. Nurture social relationships. — The happiest people on the planet are the ones who have deep, meaningful relationships. Did you know studies show that people’s mortality rates are DOUBLED when they’re lonely? WHOA! There’s a warm fuzzy feeling that comes from having an active circle of good friends who you can share your experiences with. We feel connected and a part of something more meaningful than our lonesome existence.

6. Develop strategies for coping. — How you respond to the “craptastic” moments is what shapes your character. Sometimes crap happens — it’s inevitable. Forrest Gump knows the deal. It can be hard to come up with creative solutions in the moment when manure is making its way up toward the fan. It helps to have healthy strategies for coping pre-rehearsed, on-call, and in your arsenal at your disposal.

7. Learn to forgive. — Harboring feelings of hatred is horrible for your well-being.You see, your mind doesn’t know the difference between past and present emotion. When you “hate” someone, and you’re continuously thinking about it, those negative emotions are toxic for your well-being. You put yourself in a state of suckerism (technical term) and it stays with you throughout your day.

8. Increase flow experiences. — Flow is a state in which it feels like time stands still. It’s when you’re so focused on what you’re doing that you become one with the task. Action and awareness are merged. You’re not hungry, sleepy, or emotional. You’re just completely engaged in the activity that you’re doing. Nothing is distracting you or competing for your focus.

9. Savor life’s joys. — Deep happiness cannot exist without slowing down to enjoy the joy. It’s easy in a world of wild stimuli and omnipresent movement to forget to embrace life’s enjoyable experiences. When we neglect to appreciate, we rob the moment of its magic. It’s the simple things in life that can be the most rewarding if we remember to fully experience them.

10. Commit to your goals. — Being wholeheartedly dedicated to doing something comes fully-equipped with an ineffable force. Magical things start happening when we commit ourselves to doing whatever it takes to get somewhere. When you’re fully committed to doing something, you have no choice but to do that thing. Counter-intuitively, having no option — where you can’t change your mind — subconsciously makes humans happier because they know part of their purpose.

11. Practice spirituality. — When we practice spirituality or religion, we recognize that life is bigger than us. We surrender the silly idea that we are the mightiest thing ever. It enables us to connect to the source of all creation and embrace a connectedness with everything that exists. Some of the most accomplished people I know feel that they’re here doing work they’re “called to do.”

 12. Take care of your body. — Taking care of your body is crucial to being the happiest person you can be. If you don’t have your physical energy in good shape, then your mental energy (your focus), your emotional energy (your feelings), and your spiritual energy (your purpose) will all be negatively affected [4]. Did you know that studies conducted on people who were clinically depressed showed that consistent exercise raises happiness levels just as much as Zoloft? Not only that, but here’s the double whammy… Six months later, the people who participated in exercise were less likely to relapse because they had a higher sense of self-accomplishment and self-worth.

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The Black Bruins [Spoken Word] – Sy Stokes

Sent shivers down my spine. Something to ponder… Enjoy.

Peace & Love,
M.

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Chennai — Day 27

Today is day 27 in Chennai. I should honestly do daily blog posts but I am literally burnt out during the weekday. The past three (three and a half?) weeks have been surreal. I’ve been to India a couple of times but this is by far the most unreal experience. I’ll elaborate on it as I go on.

Growing up in the west, you’re accustomed to a certain lifestyle, no surprise there. But India has kind of shook me in a way that I’m finding it difficult to describe at the moment. I mean, it probably has to do with living on my own in a totally different country that doesn’t live up the quality of life Canada trains you to expect, but it’s weird because there’s literally almost two whole different worlds in this country — at least in Chennai and other major cities like Mumbai and Delhi. I feel as though I have so much to talk about but it’s all coming out completely jumbled right now so let’s walk through a timeline of my move here so far.

My first week here was not all that exciting. I went to work, met a few people, fan girled over a couple of hotty shotty movie stars and tv personalities… the end. My second week here, I was joined by a friend Thusi who is here for a month working at Apollo Hospital. Since the city really is a bit difficult to explore in by yourself (a female who’s a foreigner, especially), I was excited to have him join me on all the things I wanted to do here. We went to a few places that my coworkers highly suggested we vist. They were apparently the ‘high end’ restaurants and bars of Chennai and would probably make me feel at home. So, off we went to the Radisson…

OCTOBER 3, 2013 UPDATE:

I’m back in Toronto! It’s been almost a month since I’ve been back (Sept. 8) and I know I’m such a huge fail at updating my blog but I will be back with a lengthy update… I hope!

Peace & Love,
M.

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Chennai — Day 4

Can we discuss why I’m sitting at home instead of sitting at work, nursing a damn sore throat and stuffy nose? Holy jalabees. You can’t live with AC, you can’t live without it.

All I’ve done so far is work, work, and more work. Definitely not as easy as I thought it’d be but it’s a nice change. I’m being forced to be a lot more creative and step out of my comfort zone (let’s not discuss how terrified I was during my presentation). The work just doesn’t seem to stop though — I’m currently *working* as I speak… or type.

On another note, I’ve made 2 little kitten friends. I don’t know where they roam during the day, but I can always find them at night when they’re hungry. Last year I took in two dogs, this year’s for the cats I suppose. I’ve also set up a volunteer meeting with Blue Cross, Chennai Chapter. Excited to see what I can do to help out.

It’s currently 12:55 PM. I’m going to go blow my nose and go back to getting some work done so I can free up my weekend and finally go back to my yoga class. I’m in dire need of it!

Peace & Love,
M.

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An Evening in Chennai

It has officially been 3 days since I’ve left Toronto and 2 days of being in Chennai. I’m in one of my favourite cities, surrounded by the richest culture, and working a dream job a lot of people would kill to have but yet… I feel absolutely miserable.

My internet is slow, my cell phone sim still needs to be activated, and my jetlag is making an eight hour work day feel as though it’s much longer. I feel like transporting myself back into my bed in Toronto, after a big hearty hug from my mom.

But alas, this is all apart of growing up. Nothing a (few) good night’s rest and a big kick in the butt won’t fix. There’s only 2 more months to go after all.

NTS: Snap out of it and kick-start that bucket list this weekend.

Peace & Love,
M.

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Personal Pep Talks

Note: Sorry about being so MIA recently. I have so much to write about but I can’t seem to get the right words out. I suppose this is my writer’s block. I have quite a few drafts saved on here that just need some editing and publishing so here’s the first one! xx

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The root to happiness is not money… Or so they say.

I disagree. Although I don’t believe money should dictate your life or be the utmost priority in your life, it’s a much needed necessity to live life the way you want; stress free and burden free. Yes, having too much money can result in other types of stress but that’s not the point I’m getting at.

This morning, my friend Amy and I were giving ourselves a pep talk. Sometimes pep talks are necessary. They give you that extra push you need or re-motivate you when you’re feeling down. Amy is my number one girl when it comes to pep talks. We have the most in common in terms of goals, dreams, visions and financial ambitions. We talked about how society plays up this image of being able to drop everything and ‘find yourself’ but let’s be honest — that’s not realistic now is it? It’s the whole Eat, Pray, Love shenanigans. We’re made to think that we can just up and leave our lives behind so that we can make a new one for ourselves. If only it were that easy.

Life is a struggle in itself. Money makes it that much worse. Do work that reaps benefits and work hard. Life doesn’t get any easier. Love is great, but money helps keep it great. Far too many families are torn apart because of financial burdens. You don’t need to be swimming in wealth, happiness will fill that void. But try to get to a point in your life where you don’t need to think twice about how you’ll pay next months rent or mortgage. And please, please don’t have children if they’re going to grow up feeling your hardships and go through it themselves once they hit post-secondary age. So many parents put their blood, sweat and tears into providing for their families (a lot of times that’s the only option). It’s admirable, respectable and forever cherished. But no child wants to see their parent go through all that because they’ll know. They’ll know that everything you’re going through is because you want the best for them.

So next time you have a bright idea about dropping out of school, spending your last five dollars or having kids because you were careless and adventurous.. think about the future. Life can be scary but we’ve got this.

Peace & Love,
M.

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Quick Update

I hope all the mothers and mother figures had a great Mother’s Day. It’s the hardest job in the world, no doubt about that. I’ve been trying to eat a lot more healthy recently (minus this weekend, horrible Mother’s Day dinner and party temptations), and I’ve started to go back to the gym too. It’s a nice addition to my regular yoga. My legs are unbelievably sore though, but that’s a great feeling! Here are some of the snacks and meals I’ve been incorporating. I’m not a chef or creative with food, so this is the best I can do. I also don’t believe in cutting things completely out of your life. Live the life you love. That includes eating the things you love, just in moderation and smaller quantities.

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Peace & Love,
M.

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