Q&A: Surviving A Job You Hate, Dealing With Gossip, Staying Motivated, And More!

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Tonight, Shauna and I fly out to Sydney, but not before spending the day in Los Angeles! I’m amped about eating fresh salads, drinking green juice, and doing a bit of shopping before we drag our tired cabooses onto the plane. It’s such a fun city!

Anyhoo, a couple of weeks ago, I put out an open call on Facebook for questions I could answer on my blog. Below you’ll see a nice variety of topics, ranging from work to entrepreneurship to gossip to creativity. I love doing these posts!

“How do you make a job you hate but can’t afford to leave (for the time being anyway) suck just a little bit less?” — Alison Benbough

Keep your eye on the prize. Remind yourself regularly why you are staying there: is it so you can save enough money to launch your own business? Are you working to become debt-free? Knowing why you’re doing something is essential to staying motivated and keeping your spirits up. There’s nothing worse than feeling hopeless or doing something that feels pointless.

If you don’t know what you want to do with your life, generally, spend time trying new things. Experiment, play, volunteer. I firmly believe that we discover our passions by doing, not by thinking.

Work to develop your life outside of your job. Your 9-5 might be a shitfest, but you can still enjoy your life. Have weekly dinner dates with your friends, work on your blog, paint before you go to bed, work your way through everything your favourite author has ever written. Don’t let your job — and your lack of love for it — consume you.

Make your workspace feel special. Decorate your cubicle with things that make you smile. Ask if you can work from home one day a week. Figure out how to have fun with your workmates.

Be grateful that you have work, a roof over your head, enough food on the table. That is an enormous blessing.

Know when you want to leave. Set yourself a deadline, and start getting your ducks in a row. You deserve to be doing work that you enjoy. We all do!

“How do you go from blogging as a hobby to blogging professionally (making it your job). I know for you it was a case of fuck it I’m doing this but how would you suggest going from one to another without losing an income?” — Amy Bambrick

KEEP YOUR DAY JOB. I would never suggest anyone do what I did, which was start a blog with no back-up plan. I am a born risk-taker and have done many foolish things. I was extremely fortunate that this worked for me, but other people may not be so lucky. Keep working at your day job while you blog in your spare time, and continue doing so until you are making enough money from your blog to match your salary. And check out Blogcademy Home School for plenty of short videos on how to make some blog money, honey!

“How do you deal with BS gossip from others in the most lady-like fashion to prove it is not true what they say?” — Mani C. Price

Gotta go with A Course In Miracles on this one. Lesson 153: In my defenselessness my safety lies. When we’re attacked by gossip, we feel that to stay quiet is weakness, and to hit back is strength. Actually, the opposite is true. When you attempt to defend yourself, you’re showing others that you’ve been hurt and that you are vulnerable. When we refuse to defend ourselves, we find freedom from fear. We don’t feed the cycle. And we demonstrate, both to ourselves and others, that we don’t need to defend ourselves — because we’re innocent. See those attacks as calls for love, and respond with love. (Here’s more info on Lesson 153.)

Another thing to keep in mind is that you will never change most people’s minds, simply because the majority of us are all so stubborn and full of pride that we will never admit we could have been wrong. The best thing to do is go on and live your life, and forget all about them. Living well is the best revenge!

“Hi Gala – I’m feeling really creative just now and want to do something but everytime I sit down to do something, my mind goes blank have you got any ideas for getting inspiration please? What do you do when you’re stuck in a rut and get fed up?” — Chloe McKay

I think our creativity is easily stifled by our need for perfection. When we place unrealistically high expectations on ourselves, there’s no sense of fun or play. That really sucks the joy out of it, and perpetuates that feeling of being blocked and uninspired.

My recommendation is to put aside your expectations, and instead, embrace discovery, making a mess, and see art as something relaxing that you do for fun. Hopefully that will help open up your creative impulses! I also recommend Radical Self Love Bible School: it’s a fantastic way to loosen up around your art, and also create something beautiful which has meaning.

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“I’ve been sick and physically unable to do much the last few weeks, what are some good tips to bounce back after having to take a break from your business?” — Mary Rose

I have to defer to Grace Quantock for this one! She is an amazing, powerful witch babe from Wales, who is also a trail-blazing wellness provocateur. I asked her if she had a post on this very subject, and she wrote it just for you! Check out Chronic Illness Q & A: 7 Steps To Your Business Comeback.

“I need help eating healthy and working out while I work at my job. What do you eat and what do you do to work out?” — Dawn Dubriel

They say that abs are made in the kitchen, and it’s true. Even if you’re working out like mad, if you eat a lot of rubbish, you’ll never see the results you’re looking for. So it all starts with eating the right food.

I eat in an extremely regimented, routine manner. Oatmeal and hard-boiled eggs, grilled salmon or chicken, dark green salads, green apples with almond butter, vegetables, and soup are my everyday fuel. I like eating to a schedule, and I don’t mind eating the same thing over and over again. But I also don’t believe in living a horrible life, so I treat myself, too. One of my favourite things right now is an Earl Grey Creme Latte from Teavana. OMG.

I eat in this regimented way because when I’m not organised and my pantry and fridge are empty, I go completely nuts and end up eating half a container of Ben & Jerry’s every night. (This is not an exaggeration.) Having a good breakfast inspires me to have a healthy lunch, and a good dinner. I’m a sugar fiend, but the less I eat of it, the less I want it… I try not to go too crazy on sweet things in general. (It doesn’t always work.)

I work out 5 times a week: 2 sessions of Pilates and 3 sessions of weight-training. I love it (and I love my trainers) but it ain’t cheap. If you want to try something inexpensive, Kayla Itsines has crazy good workout guides that gives amazing results. Same goes for Tone It Up (I adore Karena and Katrina). The Nike Training Club app is free! I also have a subscription to Yogaglo and I do a couple of sessions a week at home. Nothing crazy, just good stretching and hip-opening stuff. Very satisfying (and $19 a month, I think).

The key is to figure out what motivates you. I am motivated — unfortunately — by having someone waiting for me at the gym and knowing that if I cancel, I still have to pay for the session. Nothing else really sticks. You also have to find something that is fun for you. I love the bad-assery of weight-training and the graceful challenge that I get from Pilates. But I also love dancing around my house. So, find something you really like! As I said earlier, we find what we enjoy by doing, not thinking, so take some classes and see what you like!

“What advice do you have about writing the about section on a product business website?” — Angel London

Check out this Blogcademy Home School video on writing about pages! I got you covered, girl!

“I can tell you are someone who is motivated and driven. How do you keep your long term goals in sight and stay on track? How do you keep yourself from saving things for the last minute?” — Surabhi Jain

You might be surprised to hear this, but I often leave things until the last minute! This is just human nature. Parkinson’s Law states that work expands to fill the time available for its completion. Put differently, the length of time you give yourself to complete a task is the length of time it will take. BOOM! Mind blown!

If you can’t remember your goals, you have too many. Narrow them down. Get rid of half. Focus on the stuff that really thrills you. I keep myself organised with my Filofax, and make daily to-do lists. The top 3 items on the list are the most important, aka, if I only complete these 3 things today, it will be a good day, productivity-wise. Everything else is a “would be nice to complete”.

It’s okay to leave things to the last minute as long as they get done and you feel proud of the end result. But you can trick yourself into doing things earlier by cutting your deadlines in half, making yourself publicly accountable, or giving yourself rewards. That having been said, if there’s something on your list that you keep putting off, it’s time to ask yourself why and reappraise the situation. If it doesn’t light you up anymore, move on to something that does!

“Do you have a favorite beverage? (Alcoholic or otherwise.)” — Meredith Schneider

If ginger beer is on the menu, I will always order it. My second choice would be ginger ale. (I’m a fan of ginger, clearly.) I’m obsessed with hot chocolate (the thicker and chocolatier the better) chai, and hibiscus iced tea. As for alcohol, the only thing I really enjoy drinking is cider. But I probably have between 10 and 15 alcoholic drinks a year. It’s just not my thing!

“What are the most important things when it comes to your writing? What is your writing process? Do you work strictly on the computer or do you work off paper as well? How do you convince yourself that what you are writing is going to “connect” with your readers? Where do you get your ideas for your products?” — Ashley Elizabeth Brooke Peek

That’s a lot of questions! The most important thing when it comes to my writing is that it excites me. When I don’t feel it, my readers don’t either, and why waste our (collective) time? (I wrote about my process here!)

I do all of my actual writing on my computer. I make notes and plan out ideas or products on paper. I also keep a paper editorial calendar. It’s more satisfying that way, and I like to keep it in front of me.

As for connecting with my readers, after eight years of writing every day, I have a pretty clear picture of you in my head. Plus, I feel very connected to you guys; I feel like we’re always talking. Writing for you has become second nature.

My product ideas come from the feedback you give me. When I notice a lot of you struggling with the same thing, I create things that will help you with that problem. It’s really the only way to do it — reverse-engineer what you’re making. There’s no point in creating something that no one needs!

“Where would your second choice be to live anywhere in the world and why?” — Denise Wine

Oh, good question! Somewhere in California, near the ocean. I can’t get enough of the glorious weather or the incredible fresh food. I adore the vibrancy of NYC, but I don’t think I’ll live there forever.

Love always,


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SYDNEY BABES! Don’t forget that the Radical End-Of-Year Party is this week! I’ll be on stage with lovely ladies, and we’ll be showing you how to appreciate and release 2014, and how to manifest magic in 2015. Plus, we get to hang out, take photos, and be ridiculous together! Talk about an amazing way to end the year. I can’t wait to see you there! Click here for the details!

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Radical Self Love Bootcamp: Transform How You See The World — And Yourself — In Six Weeks

Radical Self Love Bootcamp

Every day, my inbox fills up with emails from women who are struggling with radical self love. They feel stuck: in dead-end jobs, in courses of study they’re not sure they’re enjoying anymore, and in relationships and marriages that feel stagnant and suffocating.

They know they should love themselves… But they don’t know where to start.

Baby, I’ve been there.

In 2006, I sabotaged my way out of a long-term relationship and found myself living alone for the first time in my life. I was bouncing from crappy temp job to crappy temp job, doing data entry and working in call centres. I was smoking about a pack of Lucky Strikes a day. I was lonely. I was depressed. I was hardly eating. Mostly I tried to distract myself from my own despair by getting romantically involved with wildly inappropriate people. The rest of the time I spent in bed, drinking scotch, and writing tragic, secretly-autobiographical love stories.

To say I was not in a good place was an extreme understatement.

That could have been the end of my story. If I hadn’t decided to make a big, terrifying leap into treating myself a little differently, I know I’d still be living in New Zealand. Still struggling. Still full of fear: afraid of the world, and afraid of myself.

Almost a decade later, I have made a career out of teaching other women how to embrace life. But until now, I hadn’t created a guide to radical self love for beginners. There was no step-by-step guide to changing your life and learning how to adore it.

Radical Self Love Bootcamp

That’s why it fills me with total delight to announce the pre-sale of Radical Self Love Bootcamp today.

Radical Self Love Bootcamp is a six-week program that will completely flip your perceptions of yourself and the world around you.

I created this course because despite the massive amount of information I’ve written about how to build self-esteem, feel confident, and rock your life, it can be difficult to know where to begin. It’s just like learning how to read: someone could walk you to a library, but you wouldn’t necessarily know what to do first, or where to start. That’s why Radical Self Love Bootcamp is so useful, and so powerful. It’s a step-by-step breakdown of the essential groundwork that leads the way to radical self love.

Radical self love might seem like an abstract, amorphous concept, but this is not some airy-fairy, woo-woo thing. It is a very real way of living your life. And while I’ll be sharing some guidelines and stories — both from my life and others’ — radical self love works best when it fits with YOUR lifestyle. Our definitions of radical self love will have differences, and that’s wonderful. Together, we will create something that works for YOU.

For six weeks, we’ll work together to design a highly individualised, very personal radical self love lifestyle that fills you with joy. You’ll learn daily rituals that will elevate your existence, discover tools and techniques to help you deal with stress and overwhelm, and create your own shortcuts to joy.

I believe life should feel exciting, full of adventure and colour. I believe that when you look in the mirror, you should feel contented, if not downright delighted. And I believe you should have so much confidence that it brings your demons to their knees.

That’s what we’re going to work on, side by side. Radical Self Love Bootcamp will show you, step-by-step, how to transform your view of yourself and the world. Before long, you’ll be the happiest person you know.

Radical Self Love Bootcamp

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

When does Radical Self Love Bootcamp start?
This is a pre-sale. You’ll receive your first lesson on Monday January 12th: just enough time to thoroughly enjoy your holidays, and get your year kicked off on the right foot!

I did Radical Self Love Bootcamp back when you first released it. Is this the same thing?
No. It has been totally revamped and overhauled. The content is all new, and so is the delivery. I was delighted with the results from the first iteration of Bootcamp, but this is a massive improvement! If you did Bootcamp years ago, you will be thrilled with this new course.

Is the price going to go up?
Yes. This is the special pre-sale price which will only be available until the 21st of December. When Radical Self Love Bootcamp starts in January, the price will go up.


All the details are right here! If you have any questions I haven’t answered, feel free to tweet me!

I can’t wait to go on this journey with you. It is going to be so magical!

Big love,

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What Do You Do When Your Past Comes Back To Haunt You?

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Trigger warning.

You know it’s bad news when you see a photo of someone you know at the top of a news article. Last week was no exception. A man I knew when I was a teenager — let’s call him A. — was sentenced to 6 years in jail for trafficking child pornography.

I saw the article and was completely stunned. I emailed an ex-boyfriend who knew A., asking, “Did you see this?” Not only had he seen it, but he had been in court for three days, watching the case unfold. Furthermore, he was convinced the guy was innocent.

It all came back to me in a flash: when I hung out with A., I was 14, and he was almost 30, and there was definitely something off about that. I remembered the inappropriate comments he would make, the things he did, and his reputation among my teenage friends as someone you didn’t want to be alone with.

We had a complicated relationship. Mostly, I knew A. as “my boyfriend’s best friend”, as the guy who always had a house stocked with booze, a bookcase full of great fiction, a supersonic music collection. We would talk for hours online, about books, music, all that High Fidelity stuff. (“Books, records, films… These things matter.”) But sometimes the subject matter would veer elsewhere. I wish that was as far as it went. But it wasn’t.

I remember feeling really special whenever he wanted to spend time with me. A. was much older than most of my friends, and he was smart, funny, and pretty charming. He was a pretty good friend, really: always available to talk. One year he bought me all of Hunter S. Thompson’s books for my birthday, and all of Bret Easton Ellis’ for Christmas. I remember thinking that I must be pretty intelligent, funny, and unique for him to want to hang out with me.

I was intelligent, funny, and unique, but that wasn’t why he hung around me. That wasn’t why he hung around any of my friends. I was at a party once, standing in a group of other girls, and when his name came up, we realised we all had similar stories. There were several instances of “I was at his house drinking, and woke up with his hands on me, and his excuse was, ‘Well, you were drinking my alcohol.'” There were a few accounts of him asking girls in their young teens whether they’d be in the porn film he was supposedly making, getting angry when they said no, calling them prudes. He molested one girl when she was 13 years old, and left her $150 in cash and a note of apology afterwards. As we discussed these stories, none of us seemed terribly traumatised. Instead, we acted as if this was just a thing that happened in the adult world, a world we had quickly become a part of at the age of 14.

I drifted away from that social circle, moved on, and never really thought much about it. (Most people would call this repression.) In fact, years later, when I was an adult, A. maintained a friendship with one of my boyfriends. We would even go out to dinner with him and his wife. I still felt a little uncomfortable around A., and never wanted to be alone with him. I said as much to my boyfriend, but I never went into detail, and my boyfriend never pressed the issue.

When the news broke last week, it was the hot topic of the day among my friends from that time. Most of the women commented along the lines of, “He was always a creep, it was about time.” And the men? An old friend said, “It’s become apparent that it was very different being friends with him as a guy.”

The night that I read the article, I couldn’t sleep. My adrenaline was pumping. I stayed up until 4am talking to my husband about it, freaking out, reeling. I feel like I’ve been processing the news every day since it broke. I’ve been having flashbacks, and I feel tortured by my thoughts. It has been really hard to concentrate on anything else. I usually fall asleep easily, but every night since, I find myself staring at the ceiling.

My ex — who was in court — told me that the whole case was technically shaky. A. got six years, four without parole. He will be on the sex offender registry for life.

I don’t know if he’s guilty or not. While the details of the case didn’t feel like him at all, that doesn’t mean he didn’t do it. Maybe he wanted to get caught. Who knows? What I do know is that the odds of him having a taste for young girls, and later being convicted for soliciting and trafficking child pornography, is too much of a coincidence to ignore. I also believe that even if he’s innocent of these charges, what he did in the past more than warrants his current sentence.

As I process the information, I keep asking myself over and over, why didn’t any of us come forward or do anything about it? Why didn’t the other people we told — our friends who were a little older and wiser — encourage us to go to the police? Or to our parents?

I think we felt like no one would believe us. We were a motley crew: teenage goths, with substance abuse and self-esteem issues. We felt like no one would take us seriously. Maybe we thought we’d be in trouble. Or that if we told our parents, our freedom would be taken away.

This is, I’m sure you can tell, a difficult thing for me to talk about. Like I said, I’m still processing all of it. I think the most important thing I can share is that if you’re ever in a situation that feels off or uncomfortable, it’s okay to back away. I know it’s really hard to say “This makes me uncomfortable,” but it’s important to practice. Please don’t ever feel pressured into doing something that you don’t want to do, and don’t let someone talk you into something you’re not ready for.

At the time, I filed all of my interactions with A. away, thinking that it wasn’t really a big deal, and that I could just move on. I had no idea how much it would impact me in the future. It has had serious repercussions in my life, and has affected how I behave in my personal relationships. I’m taking action to heal, and if you have been in a similar situation, please know that talking about your experiences with a trained professional is very, very important.

It doesn’t matter whether the pressure comes from your boyfriend, your husband, a relative, an employer, or a total stranger, it’s still wrong. It’s your body to do with as you wish. No one has the right to make you feel like you owe them anything… EVER.

I asked a couple of my friends who had experiences with A. if they would write something about it, and their accounts are below. I’ve kept them anonymous. I hope that by reading their stories, it’ll help you recognise the importance of consent.

At the end of the article is a list of links for various help centres. Please don’t be ashamed to reach out.

Love,


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I knew Gala and her friends over a decade ago when we were teenagers trying to figure out where we fitted in. We mixed in the same circles, we all frequented the same internet chat rooms, inner city cafes and parties.

I can’t speak for them, but I was lonely, insecure, with such low self-esteem, and was desperate for people I could talk to about how I was feeling. I had no idea of healthier ways of managing my anxiety and depression, so I drank a lot and I drank often. I deeply disliked myself, and instead of showing myself kindness, I behaved recklessly and destructively. I soon discovered that I couldn’t tolerate being on my own and I craved constant attention and company. The internet is a great place to connect with people, and while I later met my husband online, I also met at least one predator. I am relieved now that he has been sentenced to jail but it has also opened the doors to memories of much darker times.

I chatted with A. a lot online, we had mutual friends, and met up often in the city. I spent time with him at his apartment, usually with my boyfriend and our friends. I was under the legal drinking age, and often when my boyfriend went to bars that I was denied entry to, I would end up at his apartment because I couldn’t tolerate being at home alone. He was always flirty and inappropriate, both online and in person, but it seemed to sit in a grey area which was laughed off by most people, even myself.

The first time he moved beyond innuendo it came as a shock. Was it just a joke? Was I imagining it? I had drunk a large amount of his alcohol and realised he was getting too close physically. I felt really uncomfortable, but he reminded me that he had supplied me with alcohol and I was in his house. I had visited him, he had listened to me and kept me company, and I should be grateful. After all, I had chatted to him a lot online and I should have known better how to keep myself safe. He was right, I hadn’t wanted to be alone and I had been craving alcohol. He had let me talk about my problems and had shown me sympathy and given me advice. He had provided me with what I felt like I needed, and now I had to return the favour.

Twice I can recall waking up after drinking too much and finding his hands under my clothing with him trying to kiss me. This was a man who knew I had a long-term partner and a history of sexual trauma. This was a man who knew I was heavily intoxicated, and in fact had provided me with the alcohol. This was not OK. When I complained again however he reminded me, angry this time, that he had given me what I wanted and made it again my responsibility. I am incredibly lucky that these events never progressed and that I was never again alone with him. It could have ended much worse, however it still had an impact on me.

These events made me believe that I was to blame for how bad I felt, that I was a slut, and that men were entitled to treat me how they liked. He knew I was vulnerable and he preyed on that and made it worse. I was an easy target for a man like him. Any decent human would try to help a distressed and intoxicated person. A decent human would make sure they are OK, get them somewhere safe and call for help. Only a predator will take advantage of their vulnerability.

My experiences alone made me feel like I had done something to bring about what happened. Now, talking with the other women and piecing together everyone’s stories, it is so obvious what he was doing. His behaviour is so typical of a predator, and while it is easy to see this in hindsight, it is much harder when you are immersed in it. He knew I would blame myself for what happened, he knew I would feel dirty and ashamed, and he knew that I wouldn’t tell anyone. I am sickened that his behaviour continued to escalate, and I am devastated that so many girls were hurt by him. I do however feel validated finally because now I know I didn’t imagine it or make it up and it was never my fault, only his.

I wish that I had believed in myself back in my teens, and I hope that these yucky events will at least continue to bring conversation and understanding. If you feel that something, anything, is not right then listen to yourself and tell someone. Keep telling people until you find someone who treats you with the respect you deserve and will listen. Don’t feel like you can’t talk about what is happening, or happened in the past. Abuse thrives on secrecy. It doesn’t matter if you were drunk or had taken drugs. It doesn’t matter if you had been chatting online or even had met up in person. They might tell you that you owed them for something or had led them on. These are tricks predators will play.”


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As Gala has mentioned, we were young, too young to be hanging around with people in their late twenties and early thirties in the capacity we were.

Drinking, partying, sneaking into bars and shadow dancing to The Cure as baby bats. A friend at the time used to jokingly call us jailbait, which I didn’t really think about in depth. Now I hate the term, despise it. Implicit in the title is that as a young woman, a girl, you are a trap by merely existing. As though just by being out of the house, you’re subject to the impulses of people who should think of you as a little sister, a friend, someone to nurture and encourage, rather than someone to sexualise and objectify.

We wanted to live in a Poppy Z Brite novel. Dressed up, going to parties in the apartment of adults seemed perfectly acceptable to us, we were misfits, and our peers who had saccharin sleepovers and wanted to talk about which boy in Hanson was the hottest didn’t quite satisfy our social and intellectual needs.

Reflecting on those times now, as a married woman if my husband was hanging out with girls our age back then (13 and 14 respectively) I would have serious questions about why he was hanging out with young teenagers who are still classified as children by law. When you’re 13, the 30 year olds who hang out with you seem ‘cool’. When you’re 30, you realise that by ‘getting wasted’ with 13 year olds, they were socially defunct at best, and lecherous at worst.

Admittedly Gala and I were perhaps a little bit more informed about the world than some of our peers, but it didn’t negate the fact that we should have been tucked up in bed, in suburbia, getting a good night’s sleep before school the next day.

I had a tumultuous relationship with my parents, and A. seemed like a wise confidant, who had been through everything I was going through. When I had a serious argument with them and decided to make the move to leave home, he offered me a place to stay. As a young girl, who was naive in many ways, it didn’t even cross my mind that there would be an ulterior motive.

Everything is clearer in hindsight, but I can genuinely say the thought didn’t cross my mind. I stayed with him, and he was wildly inappropriate, criminally so, and he knew it. He was guilty about it. He tried to make reparation in a really sad way.

I won’t get into the explicit details, I don’t think that’s helpful, but what I will share is having a vivid memory of feeling like a helpless bug, the way they writhe, powerless when flipped the wrong way. I couldn’t find my voice. I was crippled. That hot, sick, feeling of being in danger rocked me to my core and yet I wasn’t able to scream at him, or communicate boundaries, or ask for help after the experience when I was confused and upset.

Why? The pressure to conform, to submit, is a sick and pervasive part of rape culture. If you object, you’re a prude. They’re a ‘nice guy’. You want to be cool, you want to be liked. Saying no seems like something uptight people do. Teachers say no. Parents say no.

I remember bawling and feeling more alone than I ever have. Why didn’t I talk to someone? Why didn’t I go to the police? Why didn’t I “protect myself” and be so foolish as to drink excessively with this MAN who behaved in such a predatory and inappropriate way with a teenager?

In the rearview mirror I can see the power and control dynamics that rendered me powerless. If he tried that now he would face an entirely different person.

I suppose predators choose their prey wisely, which is all part of the twisted appeal. I don’t like calling him a predator, even now, it feels bizarre. Supposedly he was our friend. He was cool. He was a nice guy. I can completely relate 100% to people who struggle to report incidents of abuse, molestation, sexual violence or statutory rape.

So what would I say to anyone who is experiencing similar behavior?

No matter what you do, how you dress, how drunk you are, who your friends are, what conversations you have, or what signals you may or may not give – your body is your own. No one has a right to touch you without your explicit consent. Saying no doesn’t make you a prude. It makes you strong and determined. It’s your right. It’s your prerogative. No is your default until you give your resounding yes.

Consent is given. Not taken. Talk to a trusted friend, an adult. Talk to rape crisis, talk to the women’s refuge. Talk to someone who you know has the right idea about what is and isn’t okay, because as Gala and I have learned, talking helps. It changes things.

I don’t care whether or not A. did what he has been convicted of, he asserts he didn’t. He did enough to us, and to our friends, to warrant his sentence.

On the flipside of this, if you find yourself attracted, or struggling with your sexuality in a way that would be illegal to express, seek professional help. It’s okay to talk about it and get help, it’s not okay to act on the fantasy. I’m really proud and happy that A. has people who are willing to stick by him, support him, and hopefully ensure he gets the help he needs.

I am terribly sorry for the victims of the crime.

You’re not alone. Do all the talking you need.”


If you need help, RAINN has a space where you can chat online with a trained volunteer. It’s an excellent place to start. Rape Crisis in England and Wales has a lot of resources too. RAINN has a listing of crisis centres in the USA. After Silence is an online support group that is open to anyone who needs it.

Images by Li Hui, Raquel Martins, and Mariam Sitchinava.

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Got The Itch To Change Your Hair? Try This…

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One of the best decisions I made this year was to hold Radical Self Love Salons. Spending a few hours in the company of magical women who are devoted to improving their lives is a huge pleasure, and it’s not something I take lightly.

The invitation says to dress in your Sunday best… And I always bring my A game. I love to dress up for my girls. So last month, I went blue with Garnier Color Styler! (While I love my haircut — the perfect lob — sometimes the compulsion to change my hair makes me a little antsy.)

Despite the fact that I love my cut, the urge to do something fun to my hair feels overwhelming. But I don’t want to go the peroxide route and fry my hair — it has only just started to get healthy again after years of abuse! What’s a girl to do?

Enter stage left: Garnier Color Styler, temporary hair colour that kicks major booty and washes out after just a few shampoos.

I had both Blue Burst and Purple Mania to play with, and play I did. I rocked blue bangs to October’s Radical Self Love Salon, and mixed the two together and streaked my bob for a lunch date. Best of all, there’s heaps of product in the bottle, so you can definitely use it more than once.

Usually, if you’re of the dark-haired persuasion, the only way you’re going to get candy-coloured locks is if you lighten your hair first. Well, the tide has turned! Garnier Color Styler shows up like mad, and I love the way it brought out the best of my blue-black hair colour!

What I love most about Color Styler is that it only lasts for 72 hours, so if your boss is a bummer, she never has to know that you were flicking your magenta mane all weekend long!

HOW TO USE IT

1. Make sure your hair is clean, dry and untangled.

2. Put on the gloves provided in the pack.

3. Section off the part of your hair you wish to color.

4. Shake the bottle vigorously to ensure color is mixed.

5. Gently squeeze out a few drops (3 to 4) onto your gloves.

6. Rub the fingers of the gloves together.

7. Apply a thin coat of the colour in a downward motion while smoothing the hair, starting at the root. Apply it in small sections until you have even coverage. Don’t use too much product, it’s better to use small amounts, and I probably went over each section between 5 and 10 times.

8. After the color is vibrant, wait until the product is completely dry and then comb through using either a wide tooth brush or comb. You can use a hair dryer to speed up drying the color.

P.S. If you make a mistake or need to get to that interview the next day, apply hair oils to help remove the color quickly!

Here were some of the Color Styler looks I flaunted…

Got The Itch To Change Your Hair? Try This...

#TBT to the time I threw some blue into my hair for October’s Radical Self Love Salon (I used @GarnierUSA Color Styler!). I must say, I’m pretty fond of the way this colour matches my faux fur, also known as “the blue ocelot”! (Meow.)

Got The Itch To Change Your Hair? Try This...

Can we call this “athlechic”?! (Ho ho!) I’m on my way to get my ass KICKED at the gym. Hand me your least revolting protein bar, stat!

Got The Itch To Change Your Hair? Try This...

I’m definitely having a blue moment! Now that my hair is navy, the temptation to match ALL of my clothing is overwhelming! Sadly, I don’t own blue shoes. Maybe that would be a good addition to my wardrobe?! #bluesuedeshoes

Got The Itch To Change Your Hair? Try This...

Dancing in my bedroom… YEAH MAMA.

Got The Itch To Change Your Hair? Try This...

Meeting one of my babes for a lunchdate. I forgot how much fun it is to have a little bit of colour in my hair. I think I’m going to be using Color Styler a LOT. Next up: purple?!


Can you think of the perfect time or place to parade your (temporarily) pink, purple, blue, red or bronze ‘do? Visit garnierusa.com/funnestgirl and you could be the next #FunnestGirl.

Kisses from this blue-haired babe,

This post was made possible with the help of Garnier and Style Coalition.

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The Stars, The Surf, And The Magic Of Tulum…

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There are a few things in this world I’ve always wanted to do. For the longest time, I’ve wanted to visit the magical town of Tulum, but it never quite happens. I wish I knew more about astrology, but it seems like there are always more pressing matters at hand. Ever since I started working for myself, I’ve dreamed of going on a tropical retreat, to do yoga and be sublimely relaxed, but it seems to evade me.

That’s why I almost exploded with joy when I heard about the AstroTwins’ Become Your Own Astrologer retreat in April 2015. Tulum? CHECK. Daily astrology classes? CHECK. Yoga, relaxation, and divine reconnection? CHA-YECK!

I am GOING. I am going to take a beautiful break from the craziness of NYC and the hustle and bustle of my everyday life. I am making my health and happiness a priority. I’m can’t wait to get there… And I think you should join me!

7 days and 6 nights staying in a fantastic cabana on the beach in Tulum, listening to the waves from your bed, eating delicious food, swimming in crystal clear blue water, and learning about astrology at the same time… How could it be any more perfect?

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The AstroTwins are good friends of mine, and they run AstroStyle, one of the biggest astrology sites ever. Ophira and Tali write horoscopes for Elle, have a web series on Refinery 29, have written stacks of books, and — perhaps most crucially — are two of the friendliest, most lovely women ever. They’re known for “bringing the stars down to earth” and that’s exactly what they do, by making astrology easy to understand, fun, and super-relatable.

I love the structure of the Be Your Own Astrologer retreat, because it’s really relaxed. (Who wants to be overly-scheduled? You’re on HOLIDAY, for crying out loud!) If you’re curious, here’s absolutely everything you need to know about the workshop, and this is the daily schedule.

Put simply, you have around two hours of astrological study every morning, where you’ll be learning about your own chart, life purpose, money and career, love and relationships, compatibility, and “divine timing” (love that!). The afternoons and evenings are free to do whatever you want. Yoga? Snorkelling? Massage? Exploring the Mayan ruins?!

Personally, I’m excited to do all of the above, plus check out Coqui Coqui (and their amazing spa), buy some bright dresses, eat amazing food, meditate on the beach, and just BE.

God, that sounds so good.

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Want to join us? Earlybird registration is $2900, there’s a payment plan available, and it will be SO worth it.

Included in the price of the retreat: daily astrology classes, room and board, three meals a day (with vegan, gluten-free and dairy-free options), an Aries moon ceremony, creation of a group altar, a detoxifying Mayan clay treatment on the beach, evening movement classes (like yoga or Qoya dance), paddleboards, fresh drinking water, shuttles to and from the airport, and wifi (ding ding ding!).

My magical friend Kitty Cavalier will be teaching 2 Qoya classes and a sacred sensuality workshop, too. Gosh! Talk about spoiled!

And in addition to all that, I’m going to lead a very special Radical Self Love circle! Get ready to shift your energy, leave behind what you no longer need, and draw in magic and positivity! A moonlit ritual on the beach… It simply does not get any better than that, my friend!

It is going to be a DREAM COME TRUE, you guys. I always talk about how desperately I need a break. Taking a rest is so essential for our creativity, our soul, and our sanity, and yet, I never get around to doing it. This is my chance… And it’s your chance too.

What could be better than a jaunt to Mexico in the springtime?! I’m already counting down the days!

Besos,

P.S. Need more motivation to book a flight? Have a look at 36 Hours In Tulum from the New York Times. DROOL. See you there!

Top image by Katie Leighton. Chair photo from A House In The Hills. Beach photo courtesy of Shambala Petit Hotel.

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