For those of you who follow me on Instagram, you know that I just went to the Well Summit in Boston. The Well Summit is a wellness conference the focuses on everything related to wellness: healthy eating, mental health, non-toxic products etc. I absolutely LOVED this conference because I learned so much, met so many amazing people and was introduced to so many different brands.
Some of my favorite moments from the Well Summit was:
Yoga with Sara Divello. Sara started the day with a gentle yoga that was absolutely beautiful. I totally needed to stretch, meditate and wake up my body in a loving manner. I really love practicing yoga because of the way I feel post-class. I’m totally going to work on adding more yoga into my morning routine.
Agapi Stassinopoulos was the keynote speaker and she was FABULOUS. Her energy is absolutely infectious. Everyone was radiating happiness and dancing after she discussed her book Wake Up to the Joy of You: 52 Meditations and Practices for a Calmer, Happier Life.
Lastly, I loved meeting some of my role models. Tara Foley, the founder of Follain is an absolute delight. She empowers women all around her to live a healthier and happier life. I aspire to lead a toxic-free and socially conscious life like her. Additionally, Kristina Tsipouras is the Founder of Boston Business Women and Moroccan Magic and another idol of mine. She is an absolute #girlboss and I love how she not only is a trailblazer in her industry but also helps support those around her. // Tara and Kristina, if you are reading this it would be my dream to get coffee with you ladies, or potentially do an interview for my Women Who Work series. *manifesting this into the world*
So many of you DM’ed me on Instagram asking about the biggest lessons I learned at the Well Summit so I’m going to share them all here. Bookmark this page and take notes because this information in invaluable. If you have questions or want to expand on any of these lessons please reach out via email, comments or DM. I would love to continue this conversation with you all.
1- Follow the 80/20 rule when it comes to toxic free products
We all know how important it is to get rid of the harmful toxic products that we use everyday. There are toxins in our laundry detergent, cleaning supplies and beauty products. The annoying thing about this is that products don’t disclose what’s inside them. There is no ingredient list on your cleaning products, hairspray or mascara… so how do you know if it is toxic-free or not? Honestly, you have to work for it and do lots of research on the brands you are supporting and products you are buying. Being an intentional shopper is a lot more work but worth it in the long run.
When you put a product on your skin whether it is lotion, foundation etc. it is being absorbed directly into your bloodstream. When you clean your house the fumes are being inhaled right into your body. Even the experts in the industry understand that it is impossible (and incredibly expensive) to one day throw out everything and buy all new toxic-free products. Start your journey with the products you use most and the ones that you use on the most surface area of your body: lotion, body wash, foundation and lipstick (since you inevitably eat it).
What I loved about the conversations at the Well Summit was we didn’t list off a list of good brands and a list of bad brands because honestly, things change over the years and one brand doesn’t work for everyone. A foundation that works for you may be terrible for me. Everything is so individualized so we focused this conversation on 1) learning that toxic products are all around us and 2) you must do research on what you are buying and find the proper apps to track if the product if safe. (I’ll be posting a tutorial here on Style by Liv soon…)
2- The importance of turning it off
Society tells us that we need to do more, make more and achieve more but sometimes all you really need is to slow down. Frequently, I’m complimented on being a #girlboss and getting so much done but at times working full time as a nurse and running a blog can be extremely draining. I frequently need to take a break so that I can come back even more creative, productive and refreshed.
I could not live without my planner telling me exactly where I need to be next. At the Well Summit, I learned the importance of penciling in time for myself. The skills I’m going to utilize to do this are: turning my phone on airplane mode, turning off all notifications from Facebook, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and meditating more.
3- Be intentional with what you allow into your space
This is huge! I’m not only going to be more intentional when it comes to my food choices and products but also with my time and who I bring into my life. I want everything in my life to be happy, motivating and inspiring. If anything doesn’t fit those, I’m going to let them go.
If someone doesn’t support me, I’m distancing myself. If something doesn’t inspire me, I’m going to change it. If I find myself comparing my body to an account on Instagram, I’m going to unfollow them. If a brand doesn’t align with me or my message, I’m unfollowing them. #CuttingAllTiesToNegativity
It sounds simple but this concept is something I’ve been realllly struggling with lately. For me, it’s circumstances that I cannot easily cut out so I’m going to protect my energy and what I let affect me. I’m going to take care of myself and allow myself to have space from these circumstances. Why should I let someone or something affect my energy?
4- Judgments deplete our immune system
Agapi shared this message with us and I immediately wrote it down all over my journal because I just never want to forget this. As a human, I’m not perfect. I judge books by their covers and people before I get to know them. I’m embarrassed to share that with you all, but it’s true. I struggle with judgment of others and judgment of myself.
Agapi shared the mind-body connection between judgment with a weak immune system and joy with a healthy mind and body. We are all on our own journey and none of us are perfect so I’m going to stop judging others and let them find their way. I may not agree with everyone that I encounter but I can be respectful and loving.
Support and love are infectious so I will radiate these in every area of my life so that I can help everyone around me to have a healthier mind and body.
5- Graciously accepting compliments is a form of self-confidence
I met Rebecca Casciano, who is the women behind the #SacredBeautyMovement. She is a brilliant toxic-free makeup artist who focus on inner and outer beauty. She had us do a few exercises that were life-changing. She had us compliment strangers and when we received a compliment from someone we had to say “Thank you, I know.” It felt so strange to say “Thank you, I know” when someone complimented my bright spirit. I learned just how easily I brush off the compliments of others and how hard it is to take it to heart.
I’m going to start complimenting myself while doing some mirror-work: sitting in front of the mirror, looking myself in the eyes and complimenting myself on the things that I like. While I probably shouldn’t say “Thank you, I know” to every compliment I get from a stranger, I should accept that compliment and file it in my heart. Because if someone went out of their way to compliment me, they must mean it.
6- Actually care about the brands you work with
For all the bloggers out there, this is a huge thing. Stop saying ‘yes’ to brands that don’t respect you. Stop working with brands for free things. Know your worth and then add tax. Charge for your work. Work with brands that make you smile.
Take inventory of the brands you are currently loving and make a list. Then, use the law of attraction to nail down a partnership. YOU CAN DO THIS.
7- Try to eat things with less than 10 ingredients
Nutrition is such an important topic because eating is something that we have to do every single day to survive. We have to eat yet some of us just don’t even know how because everywhere we look a new ‘trend’ is contradicting everything we thought we knew about food.
I learned that eating everything as close to it’s natural state is best. When you eat something with over 30 ingredients it has been chemically modified and changed so it is not as close to it’s natural state, meaning it’s not the healthiest option. My new rule is that I am checking the ingredients on everything I eat and trying to eat anything with less than 10 ingredients. Of course, I’m not cutting out anything but just being more mindful of what I’m nourishing my body with.
8- When it comes to food/dieting: if you won’t do it for the rest of your life, don’t do it
Diets don’t work. They never have. I truly believe that if you want to become vegetarian or paleo go for it but don’t just do it for 30 days because that is not a healthy lifestyle. Wellness is all about making better overall choices rather just cutting out food groups entirely. When cutting out food groups/certain foods it is even harder to digest those foods after you finish your 30 or 60 days. I highly recommend that all diets should be eliminated and we should we talking about healthy sustainable lifestyles.
9- Self-care is the beginning of self-worth
I’m a huge cheerleader for self-care because once I added this into my daily routine I saw HUGE shifts in my mood, productivity and self-confidence. Self-care is often seen as selfish because our society’s standards tell us we should always be ‘on the go’ and taking care of everyone else around us. I believe in taking care of others (I’m a nurse) and I also believe in being a #girlboss but in order to be a better person I need alone time to recharge.
You don’t let your car run on empty, so why should you?
Self-care isn’t just about bubble baths and face masks, it’s about learning what makes you feel rested and recharged. I’m an introvert so being at home meditating, deep breathing and reading my book is the perfect way to recharge. Some people get their energy from others and therefore, self-care for them may be a date night. Find what makes you relaxed and happy and do more of it.
These lessons are so important and I’m so incredibly grateful for the opportunity to learn from some of the leaders in the health & wellness industry. To me, wellness is a lifestyle. Wellness is about my mental, physical, spiritual and external space. Wellness is about listening to and understanding my body better.
Gianne, the found of WELL Summit asked me what my #1 takeaway to-do list item is and honesty, I don’t have just one. My goals from the Summit are to:
- Say “no” more. #SelfCare
- Reduce my waste. Recycle. Reuse products. Buy less plastic.
- Take an inventory of my home products and start buying toxic-free products.
- Be gentle with myself (I may or may not have just had a cannoli for breakfast but it’s fine because I know I am having Sweetgreen for lunch. #balance)
- Protect my energy from toxic people and toxic things.
Do any of these lessons resonate with you? Do you want to expand upon these, comment below or message me!