Birthday Run Goal

I just logged into my blog and saw that I have a dozen or so posts sitting in drafts! I know we are in the age of 150 characters and dizzy transition videos…but I love long form media just like I love my spring bound planner and books from the library. So I’ll keep blogging until the internet is taken off line LOL

Today was mothers day and I for some reason was feeling exhausted. So a little story time. I’m still recovering from this crazy thing that’s taken over the globe. Two areas I’m trying to get back to base level are my workouts and my mental concentration. I’m giving myself grace but lets just say that 2km is the most I can do and skipping journalling for scrolling mindlessly are what I’m trying to work through.

With that said, I’ve decided to set my run goal for the year. (Read last years goal here)

My goal is to run 5km in less than 30 minutes.

And to keep me disciplined and remind myself what i’m capable of…here is a little inspiration!

Things in your control right now

I’m trying a new thing with my workouts, including using a paper journal to write down my fitness routine. Staying optimistic but hoping that using a different strategy to track my workouts (ie: not digital) will keep me more honest and consistent with resistance training and challenging myself.

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And I feel that holding power over my workouts, romanizing it and even disrupting my usual exercise regime (within a controlable “blast radius) makes me feel like I have a little moe control in my life given the current socio-economic-politico environment…

But it’s more than my workouts, I feel like I have control when I take the time to put on a cute outfit to have dinner with the fambam. Annnndd because I loved all the depth and texture of the outfit, I took a little more control by taking a whole bunch of pictures of me in said outfit #FashionBlogger :)

May sound a little cheesy but it’s all about that #MainCharacterEnergy – and we all need to acknowledge that energy in our own life now and then…

If you are feel like not yourself, that something is just off or need to change things up a bit because you feel like you are just being tossed around …consider taking control of what you can to feel more like yourself…and to start…here are some ways:

Your thoughts: Replace negative self talk with the action of writing down positive affirmations or statements about about yourself!

What you eat Eat When was the last time you ate healthy whole foods, drank a full glass of water or switched up your coffee with an herbal tea.

How we spend our spare time: Give you mind a break from work/Netflix/unproductive activities (scrolling, gossiping etc) and do something creative, active, journaling (ie: to do lists, gratitude, brain dump)

How you react to things: Before immediately giving someone or a situation your attention give yourself a moment to pause before immediately reacting, it might actually change how you respond.

What content you consume Put down your phone and pick up a book. Unfollow and mute accounts that don’t lift you up. Learn or study instead of mindlessly watching. Create more than you consume.

Who you spend time with Surround yourself that build you up and inspire you. And it’s OK to spend time on your own as much as you need.

How we treat others Don’t waste energy treating people badly. Use that energy to focus on improving your well being or hanging out with people who matter to you.

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This reminds me of blogger me circa 2011

Boots – Amazon | Dress – Joe Fresh | Vest – M Boutique | Purse – Aldo

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February Reads

Well I took it a little easier with February and decided on a fiction read that I knew was already streaming ;) 

Little fires everywhere by Celeste Ng

Usually when I start a book, it takes me a few pages or at least a chapter before I start to connect the dots and actually start to “listen” (read: pay attention) to what’s going on. Which means I don’t always get the story line right away.  I also didn’t follow the story until Moody was watching Pearl from afar after biking to her new home.   What really drew me to the story initially was Mia’s story line.  I loved that she is a mixed media artist and a photographer in the truest sense. This book was full of little twists and turns but in a way that wasn’t too abrupt or aggressive.  Seeing the juxtaposition between privilege and humble family lives was both lovely and painful.   I enjoyed how the author made little links between Mia and Elena’s life (as mothers, women creating careers/pursing their life’s work and as humans living a traditional and not so traditional North American life). Another small detail I love about this book – it’s set in the 90s!      

In my head I imagined Mia/Pearl to be Asian (in the book their race is unspecified but not in the show adaptation). And it wasn’t until we learn that Lexie is in an interracial couple that I noticed that race was an underlying theme of the book.   I really appreciated that the novel talks about race, biases and the way a community my think they are “doing better” than the rest of the world/country.

If you need a weekend read or a vacation read.  Or just a break from the business/strategy/self development books (like me) I would definitely suggest picking this book up!

Find Little Fires Everywhere at Chapters Indigo (Canada)

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Camera Settings Explained!

I’ve had my DSLR for about 10-11 years. And although you’ll find me with my “big camera” glued to my face – I’m embarrassed to admit that I don’t always [insert: *G A S P*] shoot in manual.

I did take a photography 101 course around the time I bought the camera, and the settings I learned about in that course are the most important and particularly the only ones I will use to this day.

So in the spirit of “sharing is caring” I’m sharing – here are the TOP TWO camera settings explained.

ISO – let there be light!

This setting is so great to create drama (less light) or to add more calm to a photo (more light). The ISO is a number, if you need more light select a higher number, when you lead less light, turn the number down.

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Shutter: The thrill of speed

This is probably my favourite setting. I use it (with a tripod or steady hand) to capture motion (like water or fast lights) or even the craters of the moon. Here we are working with fractions of a number to large whole numbers (ie seconds). The higher the shutter speed (ie: a whole number) the more crisp the photo. The lower the number (ie: a small fraction) the more crisp the picture will be. You have to play around the ISO here, meaning if you want to keep the shutter open for longer, you may want to reduce the ISO to prevent overexposure.

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5 things to quit this week

A few days ago, I realized that it had been some time since I picked up my camera and take some creative shots.  So I set up some items around my house, put on a cute outfit and cleaned up my desk to get some photography.

Sometimes I hold myself back from 1) actually taking the time to create with my camera and then 2) sharing it here on instagram. And I’m not entirely sure why. I think creativity was meant to be shared with the world. That doesn’t necessarily mean friends and family will like it or even agree with it – which is OK (I’m being taught this lesson over and over by different situations).

Also part of the creative process is taking some rest so you can come up with the crazy ideas that you plan to execute on. So picking up my camera after a few months of rest is something I need to give myself grace about.

With all that said, most times it’s the voice in our head is what’s stops us from doing the things we know will nourish our soul. So I’m sharing 5 things to quit this week which helped me get out of my creativity rut!

Staying in your comfort zone: Sometimes I think “it’s just easier to not shoot photos because then I don’t have to worry about them looking terrible”. And although this thought can be comforting, it’s actually creating more harm than good. Be consistent and be comfortable getting out of your comfort zone.

Overthinking: Ruminating, spinning, wondering why you did something a certain way or wishing all together you hadn’t done something at all. Such a terrible habit and so defeating to your self esteem. Instead, let your mind think about the thought/situation, ask yourself if it will matter in 5 years (in most cases it won’t) and then let your mind consider what was one good thing that came from the experience.

Sacrificing your own happiness/mental well being for others:  This is a simple and obvious one. It takes time to realize that you don’t need to be responsible for anyone’s happiness but your own.

Being afraid of being different: If you want to wear the hoop earrings – do it. If you want to compliment someone – go for it. If you want to be off camera during a meeting while everyone is one – don’t let it stop you. This one came in waves this week but you accepting yourself/your decision is the most important thing.

Ignoring your purpose: Whenever you hear that voice in your mind saying “you should pick up your camera/paint brush or take those dance lessons or spent an hour writing” don’t ignore it!