On the road with...Daisy Dagg

I had a chat with the lovely Daisy - foodie, traveler, mum, entrepreneur and wife to Izzy Dagg - New Zealand rugby union player.
Whatever our story is, we get to choose what our experiences mean for us. We get to choose who we are from what we’ve been through. Your life journey is your own and it is determined by the choices you make. Daisy shares her beautiful journey with me…I felt like I was listening to my own similar story with social anxiety.
We talk pregnancy, hormones, balancing being a mumma to the gorgeous Arlo and Tilly, life in Japan, the connection between nutrition and mental health and her secrets to staying mentally and physically healthy.
Pregnancy can be a physical and emotional roller coaster— everyone can seem like they don’t have problems, but everyone’s human. Everyone can feel yucky on the inside at times.
So if you’re reading this and you’re having a hard time, no matter how big or small it seems to you, I want to remind you that you’re not weird or different for sharing what you’re going through. Just the opposite. It could be the most important thing you do. It was for me.

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How do you achieve balance as a mum and businesswoman and wife? 
The business side of things has gone downhill slightly but I am lucky to be self-employed so I can choose what workload I take on. I also have a family friend currently helping me with the kids which allows me to do my work, exercise and just basically get out of the house especially with the hubby being away all the time with rugby. Balance is key and routine and organisation help you to achieve this. I love organisation and routine but I'm also happy to adapt to variation and change. I definitely have my moments but it's all about being able to recognise these moments before shit hits the fan basically. Stress is good, its healthy and enables you to build mental toughness and resilience. 

In a nutshell, what’s your food philosophy? And the connection food has with wellbeing and / or mental health? 
In a nutshell I basically have two food philosophies – “Everything in moderation” and “Eat right for your body type”. I love food, I love eating it and experimenting with recipes and different cuisines from different countries. I'm not big on dieting fads or cheat days. I'm a fairly balanced person and I eat a balanced diet but I do believe that food and mental wellbeing have a huge connection. They say “you are what you eat” and I totally believe this. You need to find what works for you, listen to your body and what it responds well to. If you have a bad day then just be aware of what you eat the next day, if your body responds badly to certain foods then avoid them. Everyone's bodily systems are completely different so what works for one person might not necessarily work for you. Don’t copy or envy others in what they eat, find you own balance and your own food journey.

Have you experienced anxiety, depression, and hormone imbalances throughout your adult life? 
I have always been a fairly anxious person. I love to be busy and organised so I think a lot of anxiety I have stems from disorganisation and chaos. I tend to internalise my feelings which can ultimately lead to anxiety also, but this has always been very mild and manageable. It wasn’t until my second pregnancy with Tilly where I found myself suffering from anxiety on a much higher level, potentially due to hormone imbalances. I have never been shy, always fairly outgoing and I absolutely loved meeting people. During my second pregnancy this completely changed. I'm not sure how it really came about but I found myself wanting to avoid people at all costs. I hated big crowds of people and I freaked out being around people I didn’t know. I would go into full panic mode and conversations which usually flowed easily were awkward and horrible. It was like that feeling of being stuck in an elevator with someone, that’s what I felt like continuously. I hid in toilets or made excuses to would leave events or gatherings. I didn’t tell anyone, not even Izzy as I was terrified it was the beginning of post-natal depression. I had to really focus on the fact that this wasn’t me, it wasn’t who I was so it was clear that there was some hormonal imbalance due to my pregnancy which had led to social anxiety. Lucky for me it did not turn into anything more severe and it went away after I stopped breastfeeding. I got myself back and became my loud, bossy, self again. 

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What do you do to ‘reset’ the balance button when life gets a bit hectic? Or when certain struggles arise to find balance? 
I think the first step before you aim to reset is acceptance, accepting that potentially things are getting a bit much or life is getting too hectic. In saying this don’t get too caught up with the fact that you shouldn’t feel like this, like you're not in control or not feeling happy. Accept how your feeling and then you can work on some realistic expectations for yourself to reset. Don’t treat it all like a threat but something you actually have to work on, a challenge to be embraced. You just have to be proactive and change your mindset. Find out what works for you – but to help me clear my mind so I can focus on resetting I go for a walk preferably somewhere around water, do a yoga class, cook, read quotes or poetry, listen to a motivational speaker, ring a friend for a good chat, run a bath and have a red wine or just sit down and a have a cuppa tea. Make this time for yourself, its important.

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How did becoming a mum change you as a person in your outlook or view on life? Being a mum has changed my life in so many ways. I definitely do not attend the parties I used to or travel as much I used to but I'm completely at peace with that. I would take hanging with my kids over hangovers any day. I always tried hard not to get caught up in any drama or anyone else's business but my kids have given me a pure platform to focus on and I have learnt a lot more about prioritising my time and energy on those that truly matter. I no longer have time or patience for some people or certain things. In the words of Meryl Streep “I lost the will to please those who do not like me and to love those who do not love me. I believe in a world of opposites and that’s why I avoid people with rigid or inflexible personalities”. The love I have for my children cannot be explained simply in words and I really hope to teach them so much about the world, kindness and embracing an open mind outlook on life.

What would be your message to first time mums / mums in general going through a period of struggle in their life? 
Everyone out there are on their own journey of struggles. Life is one big stressful struggle. Again, learn to recognise and accept when things are getting a bit too much, don’t treat it like a threat and learn to embrace the challenge of finding what helps you reset. Don’t try to take on everything yourself as this will only cause you damage which will ultimately affect your kids. Take time for yourself, communicate with those around you, delegate and allow others to help you. Being a mum is the most challenging yet rewarding journeys you will ever go on. Don’t wish away time, for their hands will never be that small again. 

What are your thoughts on social media in regards to mental health & well-being? Social media is the platform against which we all judge and compare ourselves these days. Unfortunately, that’s just the way of the world at the moment. Social media is out there and has fast become the world's advertising platform with everyone blaming models and influencers for increased depression, suicide rates etc. Instead of looking at this in a negative way and hating on it all, I think we need adjust our focus as parents of the next generation and aim to accept this as part of evolution because it is out there whether we like it or not. We have to change our mindsets and focus on building strength in our children to be able to handle this brutal, materialistic world. Teach them the importance of self-love, self-acceptance and beauty from the inside out. As individuals we need to keep open minds and have an “each to their own” mentality whilst staying true to our own values and morale's. I totality believe in freedom of speech but not if it at the expense of another human being. If we all encouraged each other instead of trying to bring each other down then it would be a much greater world. Stop comparing yourself to others and what you see on Instagram and focus on your own journey.

What are your views on The Simplistic Road as a platform for others going through challenges or chapters of struggle in this journey called life? 
I think it’s a fantastic platform for inspiration and the realisation that you are never alone in your struggles. Yes, you are on your own journey and the choices you make are your own but there are so many people out their battling their own demons just like you. The Simplistic Road can help put in to perspective that even though someone else's life might seem perfect through the rainbow coloured world of Instagram, they too have everyday struggles, mental health issues, body issues, health problems and just general life struggles. 

How do you practice self-care / love and why do you think this is so important?
On the physical side of self-care, I will take a walk, do yoga, exercise or take my kids on an adventure. Mentally I will take time off, for myself to sit and evaluate what I have and all I am yet to achieve. This is time without technology, so no phone in front of you, no laptop playing Netflix, just you and your own mind pondering over your thoughts and dreams. This is so important to help find your zen, or inner peace.

Favourite book / podcast? 
To be completely honest I haven't really got into listening to podcasts yet but it's something I really want to start as I have heard some can be extremely inspiring. As for books, I actually haven't read a book in so long but I love reading! I'm a total dreamer so I am into any love story, anything Nicholas Sparks. I also love reading poetry and my favourite poet is Lang Leav so I read a lot of her work. 

Have you found it challenging to find balance moving to a new country? Balancing a new life with your 2 beautiful children? 
Obviously, routines of both myself and the kids have changed a lot but I haven't found it too difficult to find the balance. I have definitely had far less time to myself but I learnt fast to accept this and be grateful of the opportunity to live in Japan for four months. The kids have adjusted really well but I think Arlo is just pining for our backyard in New Zealand. I wouldn’t want to live in an apartment forever and I'm really looking forward to returning home but I have lived and learnt a new way of life and I'm extremely grateful for the experience. 

What does a typical day look like in Japan? What have you learnt about life / wellness being around a completely different culture and way of life? 
A typical day in Japan is basically centred around the kids. We try to get out of the apartment whenever we can to go on walks, or to the many indoor playgrounds they have over here. We are super lucky there is lots to do around us. We have been on family adventures to Mt Fuji, Kyoto, Osaka, Hiroshima and all over Tokyo. We have been to Disneyland and Universal Studios and to other amusement parks. We have indulged in a lot of Japanese food and immersed ourselves in this amazing culture. 
The Japanese people are beautiful, with a very different way of life to us kiwis. They never seem to rush and always seem very content in their own journeys. Sometimes I look around and it feels like everyone has found their own inner peace and are just happy on their own paths. They are so respectful of their elders and are extremely helpful, especially when I have been lost on numerous occasions.

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Lastly, what is your favourite quote or mantra you like to live by and why? 
I learned a few years ago that balance is the key to a happy and successful life, and a huge part of achieving it is to install rituals into your everyday life - a nutritious balanced diet, daily exercise, time for yourself and acceptance that life sometimes just does not go on the path that you want it to. Your life journey is your own and it is determined by the choices you make. The question is... What sort of life do you want to live?
Here is the mantra that I live by... 
“Balance is key. In everything you do. Dance all night long and practice yoga the next day. Drink wine but don’t forget your green juice. Eat chocolate when your heart wants it and kale salad when your body needs it. Wear high heels on Saturday and walk barefoot on Sunday. Go shopping at the mall and then sit down and meditate in your bedroom. Live high and low. Move and stay still. Embrace all sides of who you are and live your authentic truth! Be brave and bold and spontaneous and loud and let that complement your abilities to find silence and patience and modesty and peace. Aim for balance. Make your own rules and don’t let anybody tell you how to live according to theirs.” ― Rachel Brathen

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Thank you Daisy!

For more on this amazing lady check out @daisydagg or www.daisydagg.com


On the road with...Lewi Brown

LEWI BROWN – The Simplistic Road

I had the honour and pleasure of chatting with ex-kiwi second rower and NRL star Lewi Brown and now creative director at Earl’s Collective where he shared with me his raw, real and heartfelt journey.

Everyone is going through something that we can not see, the thing is...because we can not see it, we don’t know who’s going through what.
Mental health is an invisible thing, but it touches all of us at some point or another.
It’s a part of life.

Mental health is not just an athlete thing. What you do for a living does not have to define who you are. This is an everyone thing.
No matter what our circumstances, we are all carrying around things that can hurt deep, and they can continue to hurt us if we keep them buried inside.

In my chat with Lewi we talk about the stigma surrounding mental health which can make it difficult for professional players to engage with support, Rugby league players can handle the tough stuff on the field of play, but they can too face mental challenges that threaten to overwhelm them.

However, there has been a rising demand for help, especially when high-profile, experienced players take a lead.

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Lewi, people know you as a rugby league player. You have played for New Zealand and the NRL what was your first experience with mental health?
My first experience with mental health would have been when Twitter first came out. I guess I had played a bad game, and someone sent me an article written about me. It gave me anxiety and it was the first time I had really had to deal with that level of anxiety. Playing on such a serious stadium what other people take so seriously was so stressful.
I had heard and read stories of other players who had talent, that some mental illness had got to them and in the way of their future. Till then, I didn’t really understand. I always thought…mental health? what has that got to do with playing footy? But at that moment I realised, what some random had written about me...that’s when I too started to experience the anxiety.

Do you think mental health can affect relationships around you? What do you do to practice your personal wellness?
Massively. I am still learning to deal with these relationships to the point where I am only starting to open up more than I used to. It is huge in this day and age to have somebody to talk to. Sometimes I will just speak to a stranger and that can make me feel so much better.

I currently go to a psychologist, not because I have depression but because I am trying to break the cycle. My dad committed suicide because he was depressed for three years, my grandad also and my great-grandad committed suicide too.

For me, when I lost my dad, it didn’t make me depressed I was grieving and I knew I needed to break the cycle before it could get to that point for myself.

Some days I will wake up and I have anxiety and I guess in life everyone goes through anxiety. It's about speaking up and going to talk to those people that you trust and feel connected to and just feel comfortable talking too.

Now I am starting this brand I set myself tasks to keep myself busy. It stops my mind from wandering and thinking about other things.

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What are some of the fundamentals you practice for your personal wellness?
Basically, for eleven years I played NRL straight; playing the top grade and that was always where I would go to take my mind off my mental health. That was my zone.

This year for whatever reason, I had, not a bad run-in with the coach but he decided to not play me this year and I was put into reserve playing for the year. So, for me, it was the first time I had ever experienced that after playing the last eleven years in the NRL.

So here I was living in Sydney training at Manly and at night having to go train all the way out at Blacktown, which is an hour and a half away with people that are part-time players who work part-time and come and play.

That was a real struggle this year mentally because Rugby league turned into a job as opposed to a passion. This year has been really tricky. I was going through a lot in the last few years, suffering from a lot of mental health issues when I lost my dad and I had Rugby league as my place to escape and now it had almost been taken away from me.

I got set back massively, I was going to bed worrying about everything, what I was going to do financially, I had not been to university. Overthinking, I was always worried, I was embarrassed that I was not playing first grade, I was embarrassed to see my family. In my mind, I had always played and I had deserved to play but for whatever reason (which happens to a lot of players) it was in my last year and I didn’t know how to deal with it.

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Do you think that was a big drive to you pursuing and starting ‘Earls’?
Massively, I had always collected sneakers and I have always been into high-end fashion, and for me, its become more realistic actually wearing those brands in the last 5 years. I had always wanted to start my own label or be a stylist but was too afraid to do it around 5-6 years ago because once upon a time you needed your life savings to start a clothing brand, but now because of the power of social media, you don’t need that.

As opposed to having Rugby league as my escape this year I would find myself up at night till 2 am, not because I had to be up but because I could not put the laptop down; putting this idea in my mind, with starting my own brand. That became my escape this year because I just wanted to get my own brand off the ground so badly.

My biggest fear about playing rugby league is that I was so passionate to play NRL, I did anything I could to get there, and I did everything to get there and I was not going to give up until I got there.

But my biggest fear whilst playing was when this finishes am I ever going to be this passionate about something else again, like this. Because when you are not passionate about something it becomes a job for you. I tried personal training courses and other things and nothing was for me because I just did not have the passion.

Now all of a sudden I have this brand, I am so passionate about it, it took my mind of rugby league this year and I would play on a Saturday and I would just have fun. I would think to bugger this, there is more to life than Rugby league.

After playing professional footy for over 12 years and going to the gym every day, and getting paid to go to the gym every day. Having the clothing brand Earl’s in progress and come to life for me really took my mind of Rugby league.

What are your views on social media when it comes to mental illness and well-being?
When I grew up, I was bullied as a kid at primary school but from someone in my sisters year, she was five years older than me so she was ten at the time and I was five, he had a crush on her so he would bully me to get attention from her.

I would get bullied at school but I could go home and escape it but for me I see social media now, I have a little niece who is 14 and if she goes to school and if she gets bullied there, she then can go home but can be bullied online so you can't escape it.

It’s all well and good teaching kids about history and the past but its also about teaching them to stay in the present moment and current mental health is a massive issue.

Playing sport as a kid you would just play it for the love of it but nowadays yes you play it for the love of it but you get criticized from so many angles, not just by your coach but by all public expectations and social media avenues.

Throughout your professional career, how have you managed to balance a working career, public expectations and your mental health?
That has been quite a hard one for me, because I have the characteristics, like my dad, where I hold everything in because I do not like to be a burden on other people. So I used to really struggle when I first came to the big stage, with the Warriors and I was living in Auckland. At times, when we would play on a Friday or a Saturday, if we had a bad game or we lost we had this thing that everyone would call head noise and basically It would get to the point where I just would not leave the house the next day because I was too worried about what other people thought or what other people would say to me.

It took my father taking his life for me to start dealing with this and opening up more.

It has only been the last few years where I have started opening up and talking about my feelings about football.

I know that with my sister and my mum really worry about that with me, not speaking. I probably am only still learning how to speak my feelings. I have been getting help lately on trying to break that cycle on keeping it to myself and thinking that I am a burden on other people.

It has definitely taken up until the last few years for me to stop giving a crap about what other people think about me.

Do you feel that professional sports players get the support they need with mental wellness and coaching in dealing with the public spotlight and public expectations in this social media driven world we live in?
I find that there is a massive stigma towards Rugby league, so many people are telling you to speak up. but I think slowly in the NRL they are getting people in place to help players deal with it. It has improved compared to when I first started. There have been players that have come out about there mental health not just on a Rugby league level. For example, Kevin Love who plays for Cleveland Cavaliers he wrote an article about how he had a mental break down in the middle of a game where he felt like he had that much anxiety he had to leave the marina at halftime. He spoke out about his mental health and I feel that is helping break down walls.

When you see someone on that type of level go through that, you think, they can have everything in the world but mental health can still affect anyone.

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Do you think that the transition from professional sports to normal life for players can be tough in regards to mental health?
I can not speak for other sports but I think with Rugby league there is a major issue in regards to mental health. Since I have been playing there have been possibly 8-10 suicides and numerous stories about depression.

You start out with this dream that you want to play NRL and a lot of these Aussie boys that are playing, they are getting into the league when they are around 12 years old, same for me back in New Zealand and you are driving for this goal. I started professionally when I was 19 and for the last twelve years, that is all I have known. My life has revolved around it, I moved countries for it, had relationships that were dictated by it.

For some people, I think when its pulled out from underneath you, a lot of people do not know what to do. It is your life.

But, then you may need to almost restart your life at the age of 30 or you may get injured and have to start it at 25. I just feel that Rugby league there is a big issue there, its certainly getting better because of the RLPA (Rugby League Players Association) where they are doing a massive job to make the transition from professional league to normal life much easier.

I personally think its a massive issue, what has happened for me this year, I found myself with a lot of hate towards Rugby league.

There were times I didn’t want to play anymore, at the moment finding a passion in having a brand, that has really helped me. I have not really felt that true miss of Rugby league just yet.

I don’t wake up every morning and miss going to training. I know for me, I am very stubborn and if my heart is set on something I know I will go to any extent to make it work and that’s what I did with rugby and that’s what I am doing with this brand.

What are your future plans, careers and aspirations?
I have a new apparel brand ‘Earl’s’ in progress.

For me, the name Earl is my middle name, it's my father's middle name. I did not grow up with my dad in my life. I grew up with a single mum and a sister…my mum was like my everything. That is where the connection comes in with Earls. I did not have that relationship with my dad when I was younger but I kind of have that connection with him now through the name and that is helping me drive and helping me feel better about that.

I had not spoken to my father in 8 years and the hardest thing for me was not being able to reach out to him when he was suffering from his depression because nobody told me and my sister. I think the biggest regret I have is that if somebody had of told me then I could have reached out.

I feel like with the name Earls it brings my dad with me, at the end of the day he is still my dad and we didn’t have the relationship that I had of hoped for when I was a kid but I hopefully can continue one with this brand. The aspiration for me, when I was a kid all I wanted to do was play NRL and wear the kiwi jersey, but I think now a big goal for me is just seeing someone wear my brand. That’s really motivating thing for me, it gets me excited.

I have never come from a designing background and have never worked for a brand, so I am teaching myself as I go. I am not really in it for the money, I am in it for the passion of the garment, the design. I am not just putting stuff on a t-shirt, mass manufacturing and trying to get rid of it. It is more about small pieces and trying to learn about myself and the brand and the industry as I go.

This coming year, the goal is to just do it full time and take a year off everything. Financially I have put myself in a position where I can do that and just have some time off and focus on it and get that started.

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What would be your messages to others going through struggles in their life?
For me its quite easy for me to say “speak up” but I guess for me my message is when you are going through this and you don’t speak up it feels like you have a weight on your shoulders and more importantly like a weight in your heart, like damn this won’t go away.

I found for me when I actually spoke to a stranger, I found that easier for me than someone who knew me, someone who knew nothing about me. After speaking to somebody I broke down after an hour and a half and I walked out feeling so much better.

I think it just breaks down that wall by letting somebody know that you are struggling and I feel like that is the first initial step.

Obviously, going through what you are going through is very hard but speak up, its an old cliche saying but it really does work. If you can, speak to family and friends but don’t be scared to speak to a stranger. I feel like that has really helped me.

What mantra or quote do you like to live by and why?
Like I actually learnt with my dad “ life’s too short to hold regrets”. For me, I learnt that because I regret not reaching out to my dad whilst he was going through his struggle with depression. That is something I am going to live with, but that was the whole reason why I went to talk to someone because of the guilt I hold inside of me and living with no regrets is so important.

I would often say to myself what if I start my brand and it doesn’t work out?

But my mum said '“well, you will never know unless you try!” When you regret something that will always play on your mind, that is the stage I am going through at the moment with my dad, I regret not reaching out to my dad earlier because that may have stopped him from getting or being depressed. I also think to myself well if he was still alive…would I have reached out by now?

I think I would have, I feel like that adult conversation was coming with my dad and now that he has gone I kind of regret that it didn’t come sooner.

But regretting that has opened me up to not regretting anything else in life, and that is what has made me work so much harder on everything else in my life and also got this new clothing brand Earl’s off the ground.

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Thank you Lewi!

For more on Lewi you can check out @lewi_brown and @earlscollection

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On the road with...Lauren Camilleri

Today I have a fabulous treat for you - On the road with my friend Lol,
A woman on a mission to make the world a Kynder place.
Lol is the co-founder and delicious recipe creator behind Kynd Community. A fully plant-based cafe in the heart of Seminyak, Bali. Offering you all your favourite dishes you would usually find on a cafe’s menu but, made vegan.
Laurens mission being to spread Kyndness and change peoples perceptions on vegan food and show them just how good cruelty-free food can taste!
Lol’s story is a true testament to her philosophy on life, what you see is what you get. Recently opening another Give a not for profit cafe that gives back 100% of profits to the people and places that need it most. Lauren has a very special place in my heart and is a continuous source of inspiration to me and I couldn’t be more honoured to have her share a glimpse of her wisdom, knowledge and Kyndness over on The Simplistic Road.
We talk Laurens journey to Kynd, The connection between nutrition and mental health & her secrets to staying fit and healthy.

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Can you tell us a little about your business, yourself and how you got to where you are now in the food industry and your philosophy behind Kynd Cafe?
Let me start with the real basics. My name is Lauren Camilleri. Lol is a nickname that I got when I was a grom and it is now part of me. I’m 27 years young. My mother is Balinese and Dad is part Australian part Maltese. I grew up in a little coastal town in Australia NSW called Gerringong and have been living in Bali for almost 10 years now.

I left school after year 10 to go and explore what the rest of life had to offer.

I always seemed to end up working in hospitality. I love people and I love food. So it was a good fit. Since leaving school I always tried to start little brands and businesses that usually lasted a couple of months or years but none of them really ever took off. I knew from a young age that I wanted to be my own boss. This gave me the motivation to keep trying until something worked and eventually one did. I opened a sandwich and juice bar in Bali when I was 19 with my boyfriend at the time. It was great fun & a success but our relationship didn’t work out so after 4 years of operating he bought me out of the business and again went on searching for the next project.

I worked in a cafe consulting here in Bali where I met my current business partner/superwomen friend Corryn. We share the same passion for hospitality and jokingly over lunch one day we said we should one day open a cafe together. Little did we know it would actually happen.

About 1 year ago Corryn & I introduced our little but sort of big now baby to the world. Kynd. A fully plant-based cafe in the heart of Seminyak, Bali. Offering you all your favourite dishes you would usually find on a cafe’s menu but made vegan. Our mission is to spread kyndness and change peoples perceptions on vegan food and show them just how good cruelty-free food can taste.

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My main role is to cook the food and make the menus and Coz is an absolute wizard when it comes to marketing and everything else business. We are yin and yang but we work so perfectly together. I am by no means a chef however like I said before I just love food and with a lot of hours searching for recipes and watching Youtube cooking videos I managed to pull together a menu that brings people from all over the world to eat our food and dine at our cafe. So we must be doing something right.

When you made the change to your diet by becoming vegan, what did you find the most difficult?
Any type of change is challenging at the start but after doing a bit of research and watching several documentaries I had a solid reason why I decided to do what I was doing. This made the transition a whole lot easier. However, because I was so accustomed to eating dairy, meat, and eggs on a daily basis sometimes even 3 times a day it was challenging to know exactly what I can and can't eat and what to replace things with. They say your taste buds expire and regenerate every 2 weeks so once you stick it out for a while you start to look at all the animal products no longer as food.

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Do your friends and family eat a vegan diet? How do you adapt to social gatherings?
Both my sisters and my dad are vegan. It was actually my sister Tanya that first encouraged our family to be vegetarian after a book she read called ‘Skinny Bitch’. My boyfriend tries to eat only plant-based however has the occasional slip up. A majority of my close circle of friends are also all now vegan which is really cool. I guess that the overall consciousness of the population is changing and people are starting to become more conscious of the energy they put into their body and the energy they put out. So more and more people are adopting a plant-based lifestyle.

Social gatherings are easy, there is always something to order on a menu even if it means you have to eat all the sides or a plate of french fries. As long as I am not sacrificing another beings life for my meal then I’m sorted.

How do you manage your resilience and mental health / well-being?
Self-love and spiritual connection is key for me. Self-love is a word that gets thrown around a bit, we are always told to just ‘love yourself’ however although it seems so easy as we are never really taught exactly how to action it and it becomes a difficult and confusing journey for many of us.

Self-love to me is connecting with your real self. Your spirit, your soul and learning to not attach yourself with your mind and ego. As our minds and egos are what is causing us the pain. They create stories, make us believe we are our emotions, want to bring everything down, make us unhappy etc. The more work we do to connect to our real selves the more tools we can learn to get out of our heads and into our hearts. I have always been quite consistent with actioning out activities to focus on my physical health but never could see the importance of doing the work for my mental health. Now I realize that it is actually just as important if not more. If you have a banging body but mentally not very stable you are almost guaranteed to experience forms of dis-ease within the body. Focus on a healthy mind and watch the changes it has on your body. Reading books and audio books about these topics were my way of gaining new tools to live this life.

In a nutshell, what’s your food philosophy? And the connection food has with well-being and / or mental health?
Everything in life is energy. Your body is made up of billions of atoms. These atoms are continuously giving off and absorbing, light and energy, all the time. It is SO important that we are conscious with what we are putting into our bodies because essentially that is where your body finds its fuel and what your body is creating from. You can't expect to eat processed foods or foods with a low vibrational frequency and expect to feel great. I learned that before an animal is slaughtered it releases fear, adrenaline & stress into its body and we then go and eat that very same flesh and wonder why the population is so sad and angry. What you fuel your body with is integral to your overall well-being and happiness.

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What do you do to ‘reset’ the balance button when life gets a bit hectic?
Breath. Stop and take one BIG deep breath. We take our breath for granted and forget that breath is life. Breath is your anchor that brings you back to the present moment. If that is not enough I take a little trip to the mountains here in Bali and get around nature which to me automatically hits my reset button.

What are your top 3 tips for staying fit and healthy?
Movement of some type every day which is either muay thai, gym or I have recently started CrossFit with my man. Daily mindfulness and meditation whether it be 5 minutes of breathing, a mindful beach walk, sitting in silence and being still & present or really taking time to connect with inner me. Eat wholesome foods as much as possible and drink lots of water. Oh, that's four…haha.

Have you experienced depression, anxiety or hormonal imbalance in your life? How have you managed this or overcome it if it arises in your life?
I am blessed to have never really ever experienced such emotions however many people close to me have so it has been a part of my life that way. As its hard to relate to someone going through those emotions I have done what I can to do as much research on the topic as I can so that I can try and get a better understanding of what they are going through and ways I can help. However when I hear someone say ‘I am depressed’ it hurts my heart. As my perception is that no one is depressed and identifying yourself and attaching yourself to that label only makes it harder to work through.

My perception is that depression to me is caused due to a bunch of different emotions, situations, experiences that have occurred in our life. Whether it be this life or past ones. Instead of learning how to work through them we de-press them inside of us in hope that they will go away but they don’t until we make the effort to bring the darkness into light. Acknowledging these feelings, having faith that you can work through them and taking steps to action more self-love I feel is a major step in the right direction. Talking to someone also is a game changer, finding someone that you trust that can hold space for you and give you a different and higher perspective on what you are going through or what you have been through could also help. You see, we operate 5% conscious mind and 95% unconscious mind.. from the day we were born until the age of 7 these years were the most integral part of our personal development. It was these years we build the foundation for our life. Our beliefs, our view on the world, how we give and receive love etc.. In saying this half of the time we are unconsciously reacting to the situations happening in front of us with no idea why we act or feel a certain way and even most of the time not even conscious of what we are actually feeling. We grow up with trust issues, abandonment issues, love issues and all the rest of them, that a majority of time stem from our childhood however if we don’t do the inner work and peel back the layers then we will continue to live a life of fear instead of a life of love.

I went on an emotional roller coaster journey with my anxiety/ health, as you know. What have you found to be most helpful in handling the darker days?
Presence. Being in the moment and acknowledging what you are going through without judgment. Heres the thing, we all have our shadows that we need to work through, it is an essential part of life. In life, everything is in opposites. The black and the white, the tall and the short, the hot and the cold, the happy and the sad. We need the good to appreciate and understand the ‘bad’. We need shadows to find our light. Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional. Its how you decide to use your ‘dark days’ that makes all the difference. Will you become victim to your pain or will you let what brings you down give you the power to rise you up? Mindfulness, acceptance, non-resistance, and presence is what helps me get through my shadows.

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Walk me through a typical Lauren day… (Body, mind, spirit and FOOD)
I wake up at usually around 6am as it is my favourite time of the day. I love mornings! I action my mindfulness morning task then my man and I usually take my dog Sammy down to the beach and jump in the ocean. If we get time we do a little workout or if not I head into Kynd to start my workday. I have been trying to intermittent fast so I usually have my 1st meal around 12pm. I'm usually mucking around in the kitchen until the afternoon then head to a muay thai class to get my sweat on. Then comes the biggest decision of my day? Where to eat? In Bali, we are fortunate to have so many amazing cafes serving delicious food. We eat some dinner, watch a doco on Netflix and go to sleep around 10ish ready for the day ahead.

I know you are a big fan of podcasts; in-fact you actually got me into them! What would be your go – to podcasts you would suggest to someone who is going through a chapter of struggle in regards to managing a better well-being?
I have so many I actually have a list. But a few of my fave podcasts are:

  • Rich Roll

  • Oprah Super Soul

  • Aubrey Marcus

  • Addicted to Success by Joel Brown

  • On Being with Krista Tippett

I also love audiobooks and books and have many of those that I love and recommend also. Some of the main ones are:

  • Conversations with God

  • The Untethered Soul

  • The 7 laws of Spiritual Success by Deepak

  • Non-Violent Communication

  • Tears to Triumph by Marianne Williamson

  • Many Lives, Many Masters. 

What are your thoughts on social media in regards to mental health and well-being?
Like everything with social media. It's a great tool if used correctly, however, most of the time its not. Comparison is a quick way to feel miserable and a majority of time we spend on social media, we are comparing our lives to others. If you want to use it minimize the amount of time you spend on it and unfollow everyone that makes you feel shitty.

What would be your message to someone going through a period of struggle in his or her life?
Every single thing that happens in our life is happening for you, not to you. It is happening for your own personal growth and spiritual development. Know what you are going through is impermanent and it will pass. Find the higher meaning and learn more tools to help you through what you are going through.

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What are you goals for the coming year? Do you think goal setting is important?
Yes, I do think its important to have goals and a direction of where you want to take your life. Don’t attach your self to your goals as that will not bring you the happiness you are looking for. Having goals also helps set your intention and puts it out to the universe what you are after.

My goals are to open another Kynd here in Bali. Connect more spiritually. Give back more. Focus on my physical and mental health. Adventure, and just have fun.

Do you have a favorite affirmation or quotes you remind yourself of when life throws you a few challenges?
There are so many quotes that I love and are so powerful and dependent on what I am going through or feeling they all resonate at different times in my life. One that I read recently that I feel is powerful is this one by Wayne Dyer:

“Each experience in your life was absolutely necessary in order to have gotten you to the next place, and the next place, up to this very moment. With everything that has happened to you, you can either feel sorry for yourself or treat what has happened as a gift. Everything is either an opportunity to grow or an obstacle to keep you from growing. You get to choose.”

Thanks Lol,

For more on Lol check out @kyndcommunity @givecafe & @lolbali xx

On the road with...Rebecca Storey

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On the road with…Rebecca Storey – The Simplistic Road.

The rewards of sharing my personal journey keep on coming. The most recent being reconnected with a friend from high school, who contacted me and opened up about her own story, one strikingly similar to my own and how she resonated with my own journey so much.
The truth is at high school we’re only just starting to figure things out, who we are, what we stand for – and we sure make a tonne of mistakes in the process. This interview has really highlighted that we’re far from who we used to be and have really come a long way.
Rebecca shares her journey on what it’s really like living overseas and how the tiles on your Instagram page don’t really portray how isolating and lonely it can be at times.
Something I have realised recently is that you are not who you were 5 years ago, you are not even who you were 5 minutes ago.
We are constantly changing and evolving and growing as human beings.
Don’t be so quick to judge someone else’s past or life journey, no one lives there anymore.


Can you tell us a little bit about where you live and what you do?
After finishing school, I left for London to pursue a Fashion Journalism degree at London College of Fashion. In 2016, after 6 years in London my partner and I contemplated moving to Monaco as it is where a lot of sports people reside and lets be honest, the sunshine of the Riviera sounded much more appealing than the grey skies of London! So, we packed and moved to Monaco, where we have been for two years now. I have just launched my photography business, where I sell prints of my travels.

What is your philosophy on life?
I used to plan my life vigorously and isolate myself to try and focus and plan my future. That got me nowhere, and I ended up anxious and lonelier than ever. So now my philosophy is that I take each day as it comes, try not to force things or put pressure on myslelf...and never ever take good company and friendships for granted.

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What has travel and living abroad taught you?
A couple of months after moving to Monaco, the high of settling into an apartment and making it a home wore off and I hit a real low. I was slowly getting lonelier each day as my partner was away a lot and we didn’t have any true friends or family close by. I got myself into such a bad state I didn’t physically think I could fly myself anywhere to be around people. One morning I woke up and realised I had a whole day to fill in with nobody, doing nothing. My whole body went into a state of panic and was the scariest experience ever. Since that day I have become a little dependant on surrounding myself with people I love. Living abroad and being so lonely taught me how important it is to create meaningful relationships, and hold them close always. Followers on social media aren’t going to keep you company when you’re lonely!

What are you thoughts on social media when it comes to mental health and wellbeing?
I believe social media is great for building a business or spreading a positive message but on the whole I think it should be held accountable for a lot of the depression out there these days. Its easy to see peoples lives for something its not. You can see a skinny girl who’s been photoshopped and then you compare it to how you look in the mirror and instantly feel shit... that part I cant stand. When I was at my lowest, someone I confided in said to me ‘oh but you’re living in Monaco and it looks so good, sunny all the time, how are you sad?’ I think that was my biggest wake up call. We need to share the truth on social media. Its healthier for all of us.

You got in contact after I shared my story on birth control, anxiety led depression...why or how did this relate to you and your life?
The moment I read that I felt a huge sense of relief as I could 150% relate. After feeling very low and suffering from major anxiety (among many other things) for over a year I decided to do a full blood panel. I chose to do this as I knew my isolated situation was a cause for my emotions, but I also knew it wasn’t the only reason. It turned out that I had an extremely under-active thyroid, with the main symptoms being low mood, weight gain and lack of interest in life. Jackpot, I thought at this point I was FINALLY getting let off the rollercoaster of anxiety that I had spent years on. But after a year of thyroid treatment, my superficial symptoms like dry skin had cleared but my deeper issues certainly hadn’t budged one bit.

After endless nights of research, I was left with one final option - to stop the pill after 5 years. 4 months off the pill and I am slowly but steadily seeing the return of the old Bex.

Have you suffered from anxiety, depression or both before? What do you think brought this on for you?
For sure the root course of my anxiety came from the expectations I had put upon myself since leaving school.I am a perfectionist who thrives in having a routine, so leaving the routine of school really messed with me. I felt lost and thought life would flow more easily for me. My twenties have been my toughest years.. nobody tells you how hard it is to grow and blossom into the adult you always imagined yourself being, while being lost and vulnerable all at the same time. Attempting to tick all the boxes I dreamt of for my future has caused a lot of anxiety and depression over the past few years and its sucked the fun out of day to day life for me personally.

How do you overcome this and how do you manage it if it arises in your life?
I have started to be kind to myself, let myself live every day as it comes with no expectations, and surround myself with my family and people close to me. My emotional tank was literally running on empty when I arrived home from Monaco a few months ago, and its slowly starting to fill up again. I cant even explain how important family is when you're feeling low!

What is your secret to a better mentality, clarity and wellbeing?
RUNNING. I take my brain for a jog everyday - and more often than not, I don’t listen to music, I just think.

What are your views on birth control or the effects it can have on wellbeing?
From personal experience, my body reacts terribly to foreign hormones or any kind of hormone imbalance, especially because of my added thyroid problems too. The effect of the pill for me was very gradual, it wasn’t until my 5th year taking it that I stepped back and realised “i haven’t been my happy self in years!”

What does happiness mean to you? And how do you find balance in your life? Happiness is a state of mind, it has nothing to do with what you have. I have met the wealthiest people while living in Monaco, and 99% of them are miserable because nothing will make you happy unless you choose to be happy. Once I realised this, I was content and happiness followed.

What are your thoughts on The Simplistic Road being a platform to many others going through similar struggles in their life?
ABSOLUTELY AMAZING - the best idea ever, and very much needed!!

What would be your message to others going through hardships in their life?
Do not compare your life to those you follow on social media, surround yourself with family and TRUE friends and love yourself always.

What is your favourite quote or mantra you like to live by and why?
“Be where you are; otherwise you will miss your life." I have wasted so many years living in an anxious state, depressed about yesterday and worried about the future. My main focus is to now just enjoy what Is infront of me today.

For more on Rebecca and her beautiful photography and travel prints check out www.rebeccaimogenkate.com or @rebeccaimogenkate.

Much love,

Soph xx

On the road with...Breakfast Babes

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On the road with Olivia Murphy, the beauty behind Breakfast Babes.
Olivia and I connected through social media when I spoke out about my own struggles with anxiety, coming off birth control which then led to depression. Olivia and I have had a very similar journey in many regards. Often sharing each other’s ideas, supplements, mindfulness and wellness methods. Social media definitely has its positives and can be a great medium for connecting like minded people.
Dotting mumma to beautiful Luca, Oliva shares her journey with us about her own struggles with anxiety, PND (post natal depression), her concept and theory behind Breakfast Babes and why wellness, mindfulness and nutrition is such an important and vital part of her day-to-day lifestyle.

Can you introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about you and where you come from?
My name is Olivia Murphy, I am a mum to the most beautiful but cheekiest 1 year old boy, Luca. I live in Mount Maunganui with my partner and son, but I am originally from Dunedin. I love teaching and practicing yoga, long walks while listening to cringy music and food, I love eating and creating healthy but delicious food.

Tell us more about where you live and what a typical day looks like for you.
A typical day starts at around 6am when our little alarm clock yells from his cot for us to get up, I usually head out for a little walk before my partner leaves for work in the morning.
Breakfast and lunches made for myself and the wee man. Kohanga drop offs at 9 am and I start work at about 10 am.
On days when I’m working I try and head to the gym or to a yoga class, my partner and I take turns for afternoon activities during the week, so at least once or twice a week I will get a night off cooking and get to something for myself.
On my days at home with Luca, I love getting out for a big walk and or play dates in the park with the wee man, then home for a nap for luca and I will play around in the kitchen making something yummy to share on Breakfast Babes.

When was the first time you thought about starting Breakfast Babes and why?
It actually all started when I was working away on yachts, a few girls i worked with loved making yummy breakfasts that looked cute and tasted delicious, it was to inspire other yachties to stay fit and healthy, as it can be pretty hard going at times making the right choices nutritionally. I ended up leaving the yacht to go travelling with my partner and I decided to keep sharing some of the things I would make, we lived off smoothie bowls while we were in central america, (thank god for our freezer and blender at the surf resort we worked at) I carried on purely because I feel like when you’ve discovered something that’s delicious and healthy, you just have to share it, plus I love it when people use my recipes it’s such a nice feeling.

How would you describe the content and philosophy of Breakfast Babes?
That’s a very good question. Our content and philosophy is pretty simple, I love sharing Recipes I have tried and tested, recipes that you can make when you’re in a hurry, you have minimal ingredients or you just need a little inspo for your next raw treat. There are so many amazing health blogs, instagram accounts and websites that are oozing with great recipes, but you start reading the instructions or the ingredients list and realise there is items you’ve never heard of and it’s probably going to take two hours to make. I think health doesn’t need to be so tricky or so expensive, you don’t need every superfood under the sun to make a perfect smoothie or smoothie bowl, perhaps just start with one and go from there. you also don’t need a million followers or the latest protein to start, these recipes come from a messy kitchen made by a busy mum with a one year old clung to her leg, with probably half the ingredients she thought she had. If I can inspire people to just start somewhere or to make small steps on their road to health, then that’s all i could ever hope for. Seriously when someone tags me in a picture using one of the BB recipes it’s the best feeling ever!

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What impact do you think social media has on your career with Breakfast Babes Life?
Without social media I don’t think my breakfast babes journey would have begun, i have always loved making yummy healthy food, but I don’t think I would have ever had the courage to start a blog without having started with instagram. As my journey has progressed I have realised my passion for being in the kitchen, but more so being able to share with others.

What part or impact do you think social media plays on mental health and wellbeing?
Another very good question, it makes me really worried for the new generation of girls and boys who have all these glossy pictures at their fingertips of perfect people and their perfect lives with all the great things they have, there are so many photo shopped girls and guys with perfect skin, hair, teeth that are encouraging the most unhealthy things like skinny me tea or fat blasting injections for your chin, it’s insane, it makes me think back to that awkward flat chested 15 year old trying to figure out her body and why her boobs haven’t grown yet, now that I am older I can joke about having tiny boobs but for a teenage girl looking at social media’s idea of what perfect should look like is scary and really sad. but then there is a really great side to social media, like awesome quotes or inspiring people to help get you through tough times.

What are your personal key things to having a better mentality, clarity and wellbeing?
For me it’s doing things that i love, like walking or yoga and on days when I just cannot be bothered, having someone to help motivate me, my partner, I always tell him if i don’t get out of bed for my walk unless I have a really good reason he has to make me go. Meditation is a great tool for me and also just having a good chat to a friend or family member, someone who just knows you.

What did having your first child have on your personal life and wellbeing?
Another very good question, best blessing I have ever been given but holey moley, you really just have no idea what it’s like or what to expect until you’ve had a baby. I’m such an independent person. My partner and I live away from both of our families apart from his dad who we lived with for the first year of luca’s life. Learning what having a baby actually means and ways to look after myself as well as my new babe was the biggest challenge I have ever had to go through. I was in denial for a long time about having PND or symptoms and was too scared to get help, now I am very proactive and I am not as scared as I was to talk about it, it is so common for new mums and it’s such a huge thing, for any mummas who have gone through or are going through it, I so feel you, you will get through it and if you’ve been brave enough to ask for help well done.

What are you thoughts on birth control and the impact it can have on your mental health, hormones and wellbeing?
Oh my god!!! another really good question, again I go back to my teenage self popping into family planning to go on the pill, without any idea of what that actually meant. It can be so tough, for me I am terribly sensitive to any kind of hormone altering birth control, so that’s pretty much all of them. I decided to get the Copper IUD which after 4 months is finally starting to simmer down, but I definitely believe it had a major impact on my mood and mental health, resulting in low iron due to heavy periods which makes it incredibly hard to stay motivated to keep moving or to exercise which is so important for mental health.

Have you suffered from or experienced anxiety and/or depression?
I have suffered from mild anxiety throughout my life and with the arrival of my son I have been dealing with severe anxiety and postnatal depression.

How have you learnt how to cope with it better when you experience it?
Talking is definitely a good place to start, if i’m feeling a little bit off or somethings on my mind, talking it over getting it off my chest. maybe a meditation if i have time or a walk, can always help calm things down.
I am also apart of a group called Mothers Helpers, which is a lady in Auckland who started a program for women with PND it is a free 10 week course, for ladies who do not live in Auckland, we do a big online session each week.

What would be your message to others going through a period of struggle in their life?
There is help out there and if your first try for help didn’t work, just try again until you’ve found someone or something who’s on your level, and when you’re in those dark times, when it’s the hardest time to remember, know that it is going to get better.
look after yourself, take a long bath, go to the yoga or gym class you’ve been meaning to try and for me little things like keeping a journal by my bed and writing things im grateful for… even if it’s being grateful for the pjs you have on it’s still something.

What are your thoughts on the impact health and fitness play on general health and wellbeing?
Health and fitness are such a big part to your wellbeing, make it fun, get outside, find that thing you love to do and make time to do it, on days when you couldn’t think of anything worse, that’s probably the best time to do it. Even if you’re a busy mum with little ones at home, look out for those mums n bubs exercise groups or head outside to run around the back yard. Food is just as important too, whenever I am cooking I always make sure there’s enough so that I can eat leftovers for lunch, which saves so much time and money. buying food out can be so expensive and there might not always be the healthiest options about, so a little prep really does save you.

What is your favourite quote or mantra you like to live by and why?
For me something I think I live by is knowing that life works in mysterious ways, all things happen for reasons, good or bad we are always learning something, and also a mantra a friend told me is ‘this too shall pass’ an amazing thing to remember when you have been up half the night with a teething baby.

Thanks Olivia! x

Check out more on Olivia Murphy and her beautiful journey at www.breakfastbabes.club or @breakfast_babes. She is one to watch!

Much love,

Soph xx

On the road with...Jaime Ridge

First on the road with is Jaime Ridge - my best friend, maid of honour and oldest and dearest friend.

We have been through heartbreak, marriages, divorce, sickness, health, utmost happiness, love and despair.

Having a history and friendship like ours is pretty rare. Our mums were best friends and if you heard them talk about us and what we have been through you would understand just how special but also equally weird and hilarious our friendship really is.

As you get older, you really just want to be surrounded by good people, people who are good for you, good to you, and good for your soul. 

Hard times will always reveal true friends and Jaime has always been the epitome of loyalty and shown me the utmost truth in times I have needed to hear it in order to grow and push through hardships. 

Friends who genuinely want to see you do well are the ones you need to surround yourself with in life.

At the end of the day, you don’t just lose friends, because real friends can never be lost. You lose people masquerading as friends, and you’re better off for it!

The last 2 years have been some of my most informative, happiest, hardest, most challenging, growing, moulding, powerful and accepting years of my life!

I'm not a perfect person, but I believe the friendships and people you surround yourself with are what make you the best version of yourself and having a friendship as strong as ours has been part of the reason I am where I am today.

I spoke with Jaime a little about her day-to-day challenges, thoughts on social media in regards to wellbeing and her views on mental health, and trying to manage a balanced lifestyle.

Can you tell us a little bit about what you do and how you got to what you are doing today?
Of course! To put it very vaguely I’m a fashion stylist, content curator and producer. I absolutely love creating and I love what I do, I’m very lucky - something I need to remind myself regularly!  

What is it like living in the public eye? Social media makes it look very glamorous…is this the case all the time?
Living in the public eye undeniably has its difficulties, however when it’s all you know you just work with it, as everything has its challenges and along with those are benefits also. Oh yes! Social Media is very good at making life look super glamorous, and some of the time it is, and as I said I’m very lucky however no one lives in a perfect world, and I think that’s something we all need to remind ourselves. We are all perfectly imperfect!

What does a typical day look like to you?
I don’t really have a typical day! My career is very demanding and requires a lot of travel so I don’t often get to spend longer than a couple of weeks at home. I do however try to keep some day-to-day normalities such as my ritualistic skincare routine, my morning coffee and email routine and my daily walks. These small things help keep my mental state in check and help me feel I’m in charge of my life, rather than my life being in charge of me. 

Have you been through hardships and struggles in your adult life due to work stresses, anxiety, mental health?
Absolutely, my life is far from perfect, and I do have immense stress and anxieties at times, and that’s something I have learned and am learning to manage. I think everyone experiences some form of stress in their life, however, it’s how we deal with these that determine the impact it has on ourselves. Self-care is so important, and it’s undeniably something I need to implement more of in my life!

How have you managed this? What do you do to cope?
Talking and sharing my worries and concerns is my main coping mechanism. A problem shared is a problem halved. Compartmentalising is also something I’m learning to implement; it’s tough but very powerful. 

Do you find the industry to be challenging at times? Do you ever feel like giving up?
Absolutely! I do find the industry to be tough at times, but at the same time I absolutely love it and I couldn’t imagine doing anything else. Everything has its ups and downs; it’s how you work with these that make the difference. 

What is your secret to a better mentality, clarity and wellbeing?
Talking, exercising, healthy eating and loving. Talking and sharing your thoughts, exercising and maintaining a healthy lifestyle and lastly loving. Loving yourself, those important to you and what you do. 

What were your thoughts on me posting so much about my struggles and journey with anxiety, birth control, and depression knowing what I have been challenged with lately? What are your thoughts on The Simplistic Road?
Darling, I thought you were so brave. I wholeheartedly admire you for what you did. Such an incredibly strong thing to do. I’m so proud of you. We all are. 
I think The Simplistic Road is an amazing platform for those going through hardships in their life, knowing they are not alone and that tough times will and do get better! 

Have you struggled as a woman to find balance in your life, hormones, etc.?
I have, I think balance is hard in every area of my life. I’m a workaholic and success is my life’s driving force so balance is something I’m still learning! 

What natural remedies help you find balance in your life?
Tea! I love tea! A cup of tea fixes everything. Also, a great podcast which we both love!

Being based in LA and travelling so frequently for work how do you manage balance in your life?
In all honesty, I haven’t really found balance since moving here, it’s something I’m working on – promise! 

What would be your message to those going through a period of struggle in their life?
That you’re absolutely not alone, everyone has struggles and these struggles allow you to prove to yourself how strong you really are. 

What is your favourite mantra that you like to live by? What is your philosophy on life?My philosophy is everything happens for a reason because I truly believe it does. 

For more on Jaime check out www.dillondot.com or @jaimeridge.
- Soph x

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