Moving to Martha’s Vineyard
~ Photography by Hannah Marlin ~ ~ Outfit Details (more…
~ Outfit Details: Drop Waist Dress with Bows on Sleeves (Available in Tall, Medium, and Petite…I’m wearing the Petite!) ~ Heels ~ Necklace ~ Sunglasses are sold out, but love this similar pair (on sale!) ~ Similar Clutch ~ Pearls are Vintage ~
Ok, so I just decided to do this. By “just decided,” I mean it happened a few hours ago. So many of my friends have done one-month work out challenges or challenges to better their daily routines, thus better their lives. I’ve had friends really commit to one daily practice to help them mentally (such as daily morning meditation), and have heard such amazing positive life-changing stories. I want to better myself, have better balance, and improve my health and focus over the next month with a one-month challenge.
First, there’s good news to share, which is that I’m getting back into the studio next week to start freelancing for a favorite department store of mine, styling for their e-commerce site! I love styling and being in the studio and am so grateful for this current opportunity. I’ll be working from their new studio in PA, about an hour from my parents house. I honestly am kind of looking forward to the commute! I’ve got my marketing/ influencer podcasts all lined up!
Speaking honestly, I think that being in PA is…
so great, I love it really hard. I feel displaced. I have friends in so many other locations, but hardly know anyone in the town I grew up in. (“I’ll go anywhere, West Virginia, Baby I don’t care…”) There’s no sailing. There’s no skiing. There’s no Whole Foods….the list could go on. I need to spin this negative into a positive over the next month and plan to do just that…with a one month challenge.
November is about new beginnings and about making the most of the open time I have. I want to get my body on a SCHEDULE (I am craving a normal schedule). Get enough sleep and get up early. Be as productive as humanly possible during my parents’ big move into a new and bigger house. AND stay on top of blog work heading into Q4 and holiday season! Below is a list of things that aren’t easy for me, but are really necessary for my personal growth and personal sanity while doing the “solo” thing here in PA….solo time = time to focus on myself.
1. Have a Specific Morning Routine
This is really important! I am a late night creative & morning snooooooze button addict who loves to sleep in. But, I know that the early bird really DOES catch the worm. Most successful CEO’s wake up before 6 AM. Richard Branson gets up at 5:45 AM and Apple CEO Tim Cook gets up at 3:45 AM. This is a a BIG struggling point for me. I’ve even been hiding my Italian phone and setting alarms on both phones recently…non bene. On the days that I have to commute to the studio, I want to wake up at 6 to give myself an hour to be on the road by 7. On the days that I don’t have to be in the studio, I challenge myself to wake up at 7 and make the most of blog work/shooting/packing etc. Each morning, I challenge myself to start off with my 10-minute Headspace meditation app. I’m a little bit obsessed with podcasts that feature female entrepreneurs, and each girl boss accredits meditating with helping their focus throughout the day. I’M GETTING ON THIS TRAIN. Next, I will practice gratitude (I’m doing a 28 day workbook for that!) and then head downstairs to get my coffee and do my morning quiet time. I think starting the day with God sets my heart in the right place for the rest of the day. I’m currently doing Tim Keller’s daily devotional on Psalms and I love it. After that, I’ll write 2 to-do lists (one for “personal things” and one for “blog things”). I KNOW this morning practice will change my whole day. I got this!
2. Make it to the Gym Every Day and Master Lifting Like a Pro
Is it just me or does having a gym to go to make you feel more like a human in general? When I lived on the Vineyard, I joined the Y for the month and it helped me feel like I had a routine, even if I really didn’t. I like my new gym here in PA. Everyone is so nice and all the equipment is brand new. I know that once freelancing starts and the hour commute starts, it’s going to get difficult, but working out helps me mentally SO MUCH. I’m always in a much more positive state when I work out.
As for the lifting part of this deal…when it comes to lifting, I mostly get my workouts from Pinterest (it’s seriously ok to laugh at this ridiculousness). I’ve always wanted a personal trainer to teach me how to do things the RIGHT way for my body (with 2 ACL replacements and all), but in CT at Equinox, that was definitely out of my budget. At my new gym, they have small group classes of 3-4 everyday called “STRONG Training.” It’s more affordable than a trainer and each day is an hour and works on a different muscle group. Yesterday was my first day and today I feel like a total NOODLE – aka I definitely need this. I hope to make some friends (pretty please?!) and really “master” lifting. I’m not really into skinny, I’m more into STRONG. I challenge myself to get as strong as possible and to start consistently this month.
3. Get Back into a Meal Prep/Healthy Eating Routine
In Italy, I had a deal with myself that was pretty simple: Eat as clean as possible while cooking in my flat, so that I could balance out all the times I was out eating with friends or eating EVERYTHING in sight while traveling. Being Celiac, I’m already limited for sure, but being back in the states and living with my parents…I feel like there are gluten-free temptations everywhere! I do well when I meal prep for the week. Plus, I really LIKE eating healthy so it’s easy for me when there are no temptations around. It will help that I’ll be working and needing to pack lunch everyday! And the whole “not knowing anyone” thing definitely limits the alcohol intake, so that’s a plus! I want to perform as best as I can in the studio and in the gym, and this is a key part of that I know!
4. Schedule, Schedule, Schedule
I’ve never been great with keeping a firm blog schedule (*unless it’s a brand partnership, then I drop everything in life to make that 100% high quality and on time). But now, with freelancing and with my parents moving, I really need to figure out each day and schedule out blocks of weekend time to get ahead (which I have also historically been bad with). It’s Q4, and even though my gift guides and Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale guides take A MILLION BAGILLION hours, I love doing them so much. I just need to plan for them. Stay tuned for those and please e-mail me with any requests for posts for the coming months (firstname.lastname@example.org)!
Have you ever done a one-month challenge? Do you want to do this one with me? I would SERIOUSLY love it if you did! I’m also a great cheerleader, so e-mail me or DM me if you do! I’ll be sharing updates on instagram with the hashtag #WBSonemonthchallenge, stay tuned!
Gratefully with love,