A Woman in a Man's, Corporate World...

Teetering between personal and professional-life.

Teetering between personal and professional-life.

Ladies, I know we all can relate to situations where our partner says something that makes us angry, depressed, confused and sad (and maybe all at the same time). It’s true, nobody’s perfect and these comments usually don’t come from places of hurt, but regardless, they can get under our skin. Today’s post is dedicated to one of those situations I experienced, last night, and the reminder (that I had) of the constant struggle women deal with, personally and professionally.


Ironically, last night (on our way home from the movie), I told Ryan I wasn’t sure what I wanted to write about, today. Once we got home, we were talking about the wedding I officiated, recently, and the pilates classes I had just taught. He told me he was proud of me (which was really nice to hear). But following that comment, he rambled off something about how it would just take time for me to become “established” in my career, and that if I wanted to go back to working a corporate job (and making as much money as he did), I’d be able to do it; it’d just take a lot of more work.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I adore my boyfriend. He’s my best friend, and loves me, with his entire heart; I know this.

What hurt were the comments, in themselves. “If you want to make as much money as me”. “If you wanted to go back to working a REAL, corporate job.” “You’ve got the education to do it.” “You’re good at anything you do… you’ve just got to become more-established.” For a woman, this is painful to hear! But unfortunately, it’s something we hear far, too often (and usually, from our own minds, as well).

Women work hard!

We do work hard, don’t we?! But the unfortunate thing is, often, it goes unnoticed. We’re expected to pick up the pieces (and the laundry, the dishes, the chaos), while usually juggling a full-time job, and maybe a side-gig (that brings us more joy than the full-time job does). But to so many, when that full-time job doesn’t bring in as much dough, or has as much status, it’s NOT as glamorous, not as respected, not as “good”.

Women Want to Be Independent

This is something I’ve been struggling with, internally, for a long time. I’m capable of doing things on my own; I’m capable of making my own decisions. However, for the majority of my life (up until very recently), I’m not capable of balancing it all, financially. And for any man who might be reading this, THIS IS A HARD PILL TO SWALLOW, for your woman! Sure, the idea of staying at home, while you provide for everything, is great! But usually, that’s just because we, as woman, are freaking exhausted and daydream about the idea of rest, almost always. The truth is, we WISH to be independent, on our own. We WISH to be able to balance it all, while making enough dough; unfortunately, this usually isn’t the case. So, we try to offset things by working more, trying more “hats” on, and often, biting off more than we can chew.

Climbing the Corporate Ladder

I’ll be the first to say it: our country is made up, primarily, of money, work and success-driven individuals, and in turn, it’s screwed up our mentality, entirely. Instead of measuring success, or happiness by joy, or gratitude, or love, we measure it by the promotions we get at work, the new house we’ve purchased, or the new job we’ve secured. We’ve become zombies. For women, this is another struggle. If we decide to work to climb the corporate ladder, we almost-always have to give something up, in order to do so. If we decide to stay at home, with the kids, or take a more non-traditional route, we’re not living out our full-potential; frankly, we’re screwed either way.

For me, just because I work from home, doesn’t mean I’m not a part of the “corporate-culture”. I constantly feel the pressure of “moving up”, in the company; never wanting to become stagnant, for fear of how it will look to my company leadership. Another internal-struggle.

Women Compare

I know, I know. I loathe even writing the words. But in truth, WOMEN COMPARE THEMSELVES TO LITERALLY EVERYONE! The high school and college classmates, the friends who are years older, and in completely different careers, the spouses, or significant others, who, again, are older and in completely-different careers… even the exercise instructors, or the small business owners we really know nothing about… we compare ourselves to everyone. Because truthfully, we always want to better ourselves; we always want to find that perfect “balance” of joy and career, even though it might be unattainable, and non-existent.

Women Don’t Quit

You ever wonder why you see so many women doing so many things?! It’s because unlike most men, we continue to have that drive to be more, do more and enjoy more. Sometimes it’s because we really are looking to become more involved, but honestly, I think a big part of that has to do with never really feeling like we contribute enough. Internally, it’s as if we tell ourselves the more we do, the more-appreciated we’ll become.


Screen Shot 2019-06-26 at 11.34.17 AM.png

Do I have suggestions for ways to overcome this constant, internal-struggle? Honestly, no. I feel it, often, and even more so when I’m reminded of my non-traditional, different career path. More than anything, I’m writing this, today, to remind you (reading this) that you are enough. I see you. I appreciate you. Your wealth doesn’t equal your worth, even though we live in a society that makes it appear like that.

Never lose sight of what brings you joy, but don’t burn yourself out, from all ends, attempting to do enough, and prove something.

A lot of society (even those men you adore) won’t always understand your career-choices; that doesn’t mean they’re wrong, or not enough. Unfortunately, as long as we continue to live in a society that promotes overwork, being bigger and better, we’ll always feel that pull from both sides.

You do you, and do what you love, and give only as much as you can.

xoxo,

Screen Shot 2018-01-16 at 8.38.15 AM.png
 

Things I Wish All Women Knew...

What I think, I create.

What I think, I create.

During my career, I’ve had the opportunity to have wonderful conversations with women. Many of them are just like me; we struggle with time, with weight, self-care, and hormones… and relationships… and love… and self-love. The list seriously goes on, and on. While each woman is currently experiencing a situation all their own, I find that every scenario is similar: Women are totally and completely burnt-out, and unsure of how to move forward.

Instead of taking the time to write out a list of questions, to help you “dig deeper” and answer your own questions (which usually, as a coach, is important), today is not the case. Today, I’m sharing a list of things I want to tell all women. Ideas, reminders and tips that I find myself repeating over, and over. Maybe one (or a few will resonate with you); and maybe you can use them to spark something in your own healing journey.


Eat your veggies!

There are so many different diets and trends out there, and I’ll never be one to promote, or recommend a certain way of eating (bio-individuality is glorious). Everybody and every BODY is different, and while everyone might eat differently, veggies should hold a sacred space in EVERYONE’S diet! Veggies are full of fiber, antioxidants, nutrients and WATER. They aid in hormone health, detoxification and more. Try more veggies; incorporate them into each meal, (half of your plate, if you can).

Gut health is essential to good health.

The gut really is your “second brain”, and in fact, I could argue it being your first. All health stems from the gut. From hormones to brain health, the health of our gut determines the health of everything else. Are you pooping twice a day, once soon upon waking? Are you eating probiotic-rich food, and filling up on fiber? Can you eat without feeling bloated? Leaky gut affects so many of us (myself included), and often, the root cause of any health concern should be addressed with the gut, first.

Your microbiome is a huge determining factor as to how many calories you will absorb from your food. The best way to create a healthy and diverse microbiome is to eat more plants and gut-friendly foods!

Restricting and depriving are two words to erase from your vocabulary.

Both words just sound sad, don’t they? I’m amazed that in this day and age, so many women continue to think that depriving themselves of something means they’re being “healthy”. Depriving means you’re leaving something out, and if that something you’re leaving out is something you really enjoy, that deprivation can be causing more negative effects than enjoying it can. Sure, not consuming the wheat-crust pizza (when you have a gluten allergy) is important, but that doesn’t mean you should be depriving yourself of pizza, all-together. YOU HAVE OPTIONS, WOMAN!

“Calories in and calories out” is not the secret to weight-loss.

This goes with restriction and deprivation. Weight-loss has much more to do with finding harmony with your hormones, and your gut, than it does with restricting your food and overexercising. Calories are a metric of energy, not nutrition.

Calories in do NOT equal calories out. Most people count calories when looking to lose or maintain weight, but this isn’t always safe because the way we assimilate nutrients, and absorb calories, depends on the quality of the food and the makeup of your microbiome (the “gut health” I mentioned earlier).

YOU are your own healer!

Lately, I see so many women struggling with disorders or issues that lifestyle could greatly influence. We live in a society where it’s so much easier to go to a doctor, take a pill, or fill ourselves up with synthetic-hormones, than it is to change our lifestyle. How’s your stress-level? Are you consuming chemical-filled foods? Not getting enough exercise or rest? Drinking more than you should? Girl, I understand. But those pills you’re pumping into your body won’t erase the bad lifestyle you’re living! Remember that the greatest healer you possess is your body! Sometimes, it just needs the proper tools.

Constant positivity is unattainable, but constant negativity isn’t great either.

I know we’ve seen both sides of the coin: women who post nothing but “positive vibes” all over the world wide web, and then the women who always seem to be “woe is me”. WHERE IS THE MIDDLE (WO)MAN?! Life isn’t all roses and rainbows, nor is it all thunderstorms and daggers. Remember to be relatable. We all have our turn for the super-great, and the less-than-ideal; that doesn’t mean we need to shout it from the rooftops. Yes, don’t bottle things in; get them out. But don’t let your circumstances define who you are.

Gratitude really does help.

Last year, I created a Gratitude Challenge, which allowed me to practice being grateful for something different, each day. Little did I know how much that ONE change, daily, would affect my month. When we take the time to focus on what IS going well (rather than what isn’t), our mindset changes. Being in a funk is something I know we all can relate to (maybe especially lately), however, when you put more thought process into something positive, positive things happen.

Supplements ARE helpful.

It’s sad but true: our soils are extremely depleted, and nutrients do, in fact, come from the soil. It’s extremely likely that most of us have nutrient deficiencies of some sort, meaning, we can’t get all of our nutrients from food! Even if our soil was nutrient-dense, what are the chances you consume enough fresh fruits and vegetables, from the earth? Yeah, I didn’t think so. This mean that supplements ARE IMPORTANT! They can take you from feeling “just okay” to “wonderful”. But WAIT! Before you jump down the never-ending “supplement rabbit hole”, take a breath. Not all supplements are created equal, so don’t call up your friend who’s selling the “latest and greatest” thing! A lot of supplements out there are a waste of time and money (and filled with a lot of not-so-great fillers). Get help in choosing high-quality, practitioner standard supplements that are indicated for your particular health journey, and need.

Love your liver.

Did you know that a TON of PMS-symptoms are related to liver-health? The liver, like the gut, is one of those essential organs we can’t function optimally without. Lately, I’m recognizing that a lot of my health issues stem from a sluggish liver, and it’s harder to detox than we think! Speaking of detox: be wary of detox programs that promote optimal health after a week of cutting out something! Sure, you’re working to rid your body of some negative toxins, however, incorporating them right back in (after a week of not) isn’t going to do much help. In this day and age, we need to live with a mindset of “constant detoxification”; working to routinely be taking action at detoxifying our body, so it can function well.

Reach out to a naturopath, or TCM practitioner if you’re struggling.

Everyone needs to be alone.

This is one I often want to shout from the rooftops: YOU DON’T NEED A PARTNER TO BE COMPLETE!!! My mom once told me that everyone needs to be alone, at some point of time, because later on, down the road, chances are we’ll be alone, again. And this is so true. Girl, I know you’re pining for a man (or a woman), but don’t let that be the measure of your worth. Repeat after me: “I don’t need to be with someone else to be complete”!

When I was single, a few years ago, I had such a hard time; being alone is hard. We’re vulnerable, insecure, unsure… but chances are, we’re not really feeling these feelings because we’re not with someone, we’re feeling them because our self-love isn’t there. Take some advice from someone (me) who’s been there: use this time being single to work on yourself. Take yourself out to dinner; dress up for you; work on pleasing yourself (physically and sexually); go on a trip, by yourself. Being in a relationship doesn’t complete us; loving ourselves, fully, completes us.

Yoga makes everything better.

I know yoga isn’t for everyone, but this practice is more than just a means of exercise… trust me! Yoga has helped heal my anxiety - bringing me back to calm (from that fight-or-flight mentality that causes hormone, endocrine and nervous system distress). It works to flush fresh blood back into your body, and reminds you to breathe.

Our bodies need to move, yes. Sweating and elevating your heart-rate is important, but so is unwinding, stretching, breathing and flowing. Bonus? Yoga can be done anywhere and everywhere!

Over-caffeination keeps you awake, but that’s it.

This is a pet-peeve of mine: “over-caffeination” being glorified. Yes, coffee is delicious, but the reasons for drinking multiple cups of it, a day, are less-than-desirable…. seriously. Coffee (and too much caffeine, in general) will upset your nervous system, adrenal glands, and hormones (especially when stress is already present). Just practice moderation, okay? And remember to eat some food before going to town on gulping it down!

Your “busy life” ain’t impressing anybody!

This seems like a good one to follow over-caffeination. We live in a society that glorifies being busy, which I believe, is a cause of depression, anxiety and feelings of “not being enough”. Everyone seems to be doing it all - working 40+ hours a week, with another “side hustle”, and enough time to exercise and meal prep. WHAT?! Usually what you don’t see is a severe lack of sleep, depleted adrenals, nervous systems and wonky hormones. You don’t need to do everything, girl. In fact, prioritizing your health usually requires doing less. AND THAT’S OKAY!!! Slow down, and trust.

It’s okay to quit.

This is a good one to follow the “busy life” mention. In order to slow down, and find happiness, sometimes that means no longer doing something that no long suits you; THIS IS OKAY! Quitting doesn’t equate failure - not even in the slightest. Sometimes quitting is the very best thing you can do for yourself. You’re allowing yourself time… and instilling that something is no longer working for you.

Comparisons aren’t healthy. Period.

Comparisons are hard to avoid, especially with an always-present social media presence, but they aren’t healthy. Remember that social media doesn’t portray real life; everyone’s “shit stinks”, and thinking that your life is any less because of what someone else’s might appear like isn’t good! Remember, you are not that person! Your life, your appearance, your job, your relationships, your health… it’s completely, 100% different from anyone else out there; it’s what makes you you. The next time you find yourself comparing, ask yourself why: what are you wishing was different in your own life? How would that benefit your own life?

Eat real food.

I know this should go without reminding, but we are a society that consumes so much processed food! Just because something has little calories, or is “sugar free” doesn’t necessarily mean it’s healthy. Do you read ingredients, aside from other label information? Can you pronounce the ingredients? Do you know where they come from? Remember, real food gives us nutrients, fiber, water, and more! Remember, the health of your microbiome determines what you actually absorb, so filling your body up with chemicals might be fewer calories, but those ingredients can have other, more-serious effects on your body later.

Stand up for yourself. Stand up for women.

We’re living in a scary time for women, and it’s more important, than ever, to think about yourself, as well as your children. You have rights. You have a voice. You are powerful. Remember your power and use it, often! Stand up for what you believe is right, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

Get inspired. Get happy.

Repeat after me, “Do what you love. Do what you love. Do what you love.” If there’s nothing, in your life, that’s feeling inspired, let this be your first priority. Find something that brings you joy, sparks excitement, sets your heart on fire. Remember, this doesn’t need to be your job, or a career, or hustling so you can work from home and “be happy”. This means doing more of what makes you happy, and brings you joy. Maybe it’s going on more dinner dates with friends that make you laugh for hours. Or volunteering for an organization you believe in, and support. Maybe it’s making a point to paint for one hour, each day, or play an instrument more. Inspiration comes from doing the things we enjoy, and getting happy is essential for health.

Believe in yourself.

This doesn’t require much description. Trust your intuition. Follow your dreams. Do more of what sparks excitement. Believe in yourself, for you can accomplish anything!


Which of these resonates the most with you? What areas need more attention?

What plans do you have for moving forward? Comment here, or let me know!

xoxo,

Screen Shot 2018-01-16 at 8.38.15 AM.png
 

Period Products

Photo:  Body & Soul

It seems like more people are starting to become conscious of what they put IN and ON their bodies.

After all, our body is a temple… we should be cautious of what we’re filling it up with, and plastering on it. I’m sure you’re familiar with the Dirty Dozen; the EWG’s annual list of the 12 most pesticide-filled produce items. This list is meant as a helpful guide; allowing you to focus on which produce items are most-important to purchase organic, versus the ones that aren’t as essential to buy organic. The EWG has also created Skin Deep, a database that rates how safe your skincare products are. People are becoming more aware about the chemicals found in the food they eat, as well as the products they use, and that’s great! However, there is one area that I don’t believe to be looked at, as frequently, and that’s feminine products. As a topic that’s, unfortunately, not discussed often enough, today, I plan on going into detail about your lady parts, and why it might be time to look into alternative products, for your time of the month.

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I’ve been making an effort to talk more about periods, in general. After all, as women, they’re something we deal with often enough; they deserve to be discussed more than they currently are. We ALL bleed; it’s no secret!

What’s cozying up to your cooch?

Did you ever hear of that crazy phase teens were going through, where they took alcohol-soaked tampons, and shoved them up their vag (in order to get drunk)?! I know, I know. It’s ridiculous, in every aspect, right?! But you know what’s not ridiculous? The fact that those teens DID, in fact, get drunk. That’s because as our largest organ, our skin is super permeable, and absorbs anything!

In the same aspect, whatever goes up our hoo-ha is also, in fact, absorbed, by our bodies, and bloodstream. No, this doesn’t mean that you should worry about your body magically absorbing your tampon! But it does mean you should worry about your body absorbing whatever gross chemicals are in that tampon.

In a “Goop” article, written by Maggie Ney, N.D. she mentions, “Because over 90% of the cotton produced in the United States has been genetically modified to be resistant to Round-up (i.e., glyphosate), which is a very powerful herbicide used to kill weeds that compete with cotton for growth. This means that instead of spraying herbicides at the beginning of the growing cycle, crops can be sprayed repeatedly without harm. So, most cotton tampons—at least 85%, certainly any cotton that is not organic—contain glyphosate, which is problematic because it is a known cancer-causing agent.”

Scary stuff, right?! Research shows fragranced feminine care products may raise a woman’s exposure to phthalates, a class of suspected endocrine disrupters some research has linked to developmental issues like lower IQs, higher rates of asthma, hormone issues and even cancer.

Dioxins, which are another group of chemicals, are byproducts of the bleaching process involved in the manufacture of tampons. Dioxins are also a big concern; the World Health Organization calls dioxins “highly toxic” and categorizes them as a “known human carcinogen.” (Time).


Photo:  Your Period

Tampons aren’t the only culprit. In 2014, Women’s Voices for the Earth, tested Always band pads, and found the sanitary napkins contained chemicals such as styrene (a carcinogen), chloroform (a carcinogen and reproductive irritant), and chloroethane (a chemical known to cause issues with muscle coordination). (Your Healthiest Healthy).

Most tampon and pad companies mention that the levels of dioxin and bleach aren’t high enough to cause any issues, and the FDA has cleared these products to be sold. However, we’re not talking about single tampon/pad exposure; we’re talking about thousands of tampons/pads, during a woman’s menstrual “lifetime”.

It’s important to consider our exposures to toxins, in other areas, too. Food, water, body/face products, clothing, receipts and cleaning supplies, etc. These chemicals and pesticides build up in the body. IT CAN BE OVERWHELMING! Instead of worrying about becoming the next “bubble girl”, I recommend taking small, realistic steps.


Perfect Your Period Routine

Chances are, you’re reading this and sending me a big, “WTF?!” Girl, I hear you! At first, I was confused, pissed off and unsure, too! But that’s what I’m here for. Remember, there are easy ways we can work to reduce our toxin-exposure, when it comes to monthly visits from Aunt Flow.

I, recently, got a copy of, “Your Healthiest Healthy”, by Samantha Harris, and LOVE that she has a few pages dedicated to period-health! In her book, she recommends a few steps to “polish your period routine”:

  • Swap out your toxic tampons for 100% organic cotton

  • Try 100% organic cotton pads at night, when a little extra bulk won’t bother you as much

  • Pop an organic pad into some period panties (more on that below!)

  • Go fragrance-free (wipes, sprays, tampons, pads… all are worse with fragrances, as they are endocrine-disrupters)


Period Products

Better Brands (pads and tampons)

Chemical-free products are becoming more popular (and readily-available). Here are a few suggestions:

Period Panties

Period underwear might sound gross (at first), but I assure you, these panties are anything but gross! Whether you’re a free-flowing sista, or just want some additional coverage during night-time (like me), these panties are bound to become your period-BFF.

Menstrual Cups

I know, the idea of sticking a silicone cup up your baby-shooter sounds intimidating (and scary), but trust me, it’s definitely not as bad as it sounds. Menstrual cups are amazing to track blood-flow (and things like clots), as well as save yourself some money, BIG TIME! As you get more comfortable, it’s easy as pie to insert and take out.


Most women have nine-twelve periods, a year, that last roughly five-ish days. It’s a significant amount of time, and definitely an opportunity to practice using safer products! Like I mentioned earlier, don’t get overwhelmed. Take a look at some of the products mentioned earlier, and reach out to me with questions! Women are superheroes… together, we’re capable of so much!

xoxo,

Screen Shot 2018-01-16 at 8.38.15 AM.png