• Recent Posts
  • Categories
  • Archives
  • Tags

  • February 27, 2014

    Factors that may be throwing off your work-life balance

    Living at your optimal potential often means walking the tightrope between constant, unrelenting work or catching up with friends and family.  When you devote too much time and energy into pure productivity, you’ll burn out pretty quickly and your motivation to succeed will fall rapidly.

    On the other hand, you won’t be getting any closer to your ambitions if you spend too much time on yourself and don’t take your work seriously.  Instead of adhering to one of these two extremes, you need to strike the right balance between your career and your non-workday life.

    balancing between work and family

    In other words, what you need is balance.  With a bit of strategy and compromise, you will be able to do your work well and have enough time to train for your 5K run, make your significant other’s birthday extra special, and help mom and dad get on Facebook.  To ensure that you make the most of your time, steer clear of the following traps:

    Unhealthy Sleeping Habits

    It’s no secret, we all need a healthy dose of sleep in order to be both productive and happy (recent studies suggest an average of eight hours is necessary for normal adults).  If you go through your day feeling tired and lethargic, you certainly haven’t been getting the optimal amount of sleep.  Not only will this affect your working habits (decreased productivity and increased errors), but it also effects your health and stress levels – one of the most important aspects of having a successful work-life balance.

    If you find you are getting into bed at a decent hour, but just counting sheep isn’t quite working, you may need to change your bedtime routine.  Instead of check emails right before getting into bed, do this an hour before you lay your head down, no excuses!  Get rid of the electronics altogether before you get into bed.  Instead of playing Flappy Bird on your phone, pick up a book. This has been shown to promote sleep.

    If changing your routine doesn’t seem to be working, your sleep environment may be the problem.  If your budget and space permits, change up your bedroom.  Rearrange your furniture, change your linens (cheap dorm room bedding here, more expensive Italian linens here), strip your wall decorations, and paint your room a cool, calming shade of blue.  These elements could be the only thing standing in the way of a great night’s sleep to rev you up for the next day in the office.

    Overworking to Pay for Unnecessary Spending Habits

    Working overtime during the holidays or when you’re saving up for a big purchase is a great thing – it not only shows your employer that you’re willing to work hard, but I also shows you have the ability to see long term.  However, if you’re overworking to pay for bad habits or pointless spending you can cut, this can not only be having an adverse effect on your bank account, but also your working life.

    Not only could the extra money be used for more important purchases or be put into savings, the time you spend working could be spent for some much needed “me time”.  Consider using apps or services like Mint to keep track of the extra money you make working overtime or odd jobs. Don’t spend the extra money you make and record the time it takes you to make that money. Visualize what that dollars could be used for or what you could do with the extra time over a two month period, and you’ll begin to see the potential in thinking twice of the extra spending.

    Failure to Set Boundaries with Co-Workers and Boss

    Are you constantly volunteering to take on new projects or help out co-workers?  While this may show that you are a dedicated and empathetic worker, you could also be sending the wrong message.  Having a reputation as the workhorse of the office could lead to having too big of a workload on your back, causing extra stress.  What’s more, if you are loaded with too much work and fail to meet increasingly difficult goals or deadlines, it will only make you look worse.

    DO offer help and volunteer to try one-off projects at work, but DON’T forget to set boundaries and make it clear that you can’t be constantly be responsible for areas outside of your expertise. Setting boundaries will ease stress at work and free up time to focus on your personal life and goals.

    Allowing Your Work to Follow You Around

    Are you still working after you leave the office?  Does your work follow you wherever you go?  If this is indeed the case, you it’s obvious that your period for rest and leisure is obviously tainted. Even though it’s important to keep track of what’s happening with your clients on the weekends, devoting your limited time off to emails does not make for a healthy work-life balance.  Try limiting looking at your email to once a day.

    If you’re aware there will be issues brought up during the weekend, devote a certain period of time to your work (for example, from 12 PM until 2 PM on Saturday), and commit to not exceeding this specified stretch of hours.

    No clear goals

    If your goals for the next year – or for the following few years – aren’t clear, you’ll get stuck in the rut of working aimlessly and to no purpose. This, in turn, will mean that you will be less energetic and not as ready to take on the day.  Concisely define what you’re working towards such that you have a driving reason to go to work – beyond just paying the bills and buying tickets for that football game.

    Consider these possible traps that you may have fallen into, and take the steps to escape from a work-life cycle that is negatively impacting your overall well-being.  Remember, if you don’t take the right steps now, you’ll keep digging yourself deeper in.  Keep in mind, too, that an optimal work-life balance will allow you to take in every moment and have a healthy mental attitude.

    February 23, 2014

    Sophistication Meets Classic Style

    If you look up the word “chic” in the dictionary, chances are you’ll find a photo of a French woman.  French women have an unmistakable sense of style.  And for women across the United Kingdom who have outgrown Topshop but don’t have the coin for full on designer wear, French fashions from Maje provide a salvation.

    french chic style

    The hottest French-influenced fashions are also available online, with names like Nicole Farhi now being a few clicks away instead of a plane ride away.  Click through to your heart’s content until you find that just-right style that speaks to your individual taste yet provides that sense of French chic you seek.  For spring 2014 many of the best French-inspired styles are especially popular.

    Why French Women Always Look Chic

    One reason French women always look chic is because they somehow instinctively know how to look pretty yet individual.  French women are not so much slaves to fashion as fashion adapters and innovators.  French designers create pieces that allow women to take the best aspects of each look and adapt them to their own tastes and wardrobes.

    French women also understand the importance of the right hairstyle.  Whether they wear their hair long or short, French women never allow their hair to go shaggy.  Whether they are sporting neatly coiffed curls or a sleek, side-swept chignon, hair for French women is truly their crowning glory.

    Color Coordination

    If you check out French women’s outfits carefully, you’ll notice something distinctive.  At first, you may not be fully aware of what you are seeing, but then it hits you.  Color coordination.  French designers play to that strength by creating outfits with matched separates such as a solid-color top that picks up one of the colors in a pattered skirt or pleated trousers.  Many French women take the designers’ look one better, purchasing three different blouses, sweaters or jackets in her closet, each of which picks up a different color in he same designer skirt or trousers.

    French women and designers are also frequently bold enough to push the envelope, mixing and matching vivid colors and look-at-me animal prints.  With many French women and designers, fashion is three-dimensional – as much about texture and fabric as color and cut.  Clothes are, after all, meant to be worn, not merely gazed upon.

    The French Take on Jeans

    Nearly everyone loves jeans, and French women are no exception.  However, it is almost unheard of to witness a French woman wearing holey or slouchy jeans.  French designers create jeans that caress a woman’s body and celebrate her womanly curves.  French designer jeans can be dressed up or down for work or for evening occasions.

    Just-Right Accessories

    When is a rucksack more than just a rucksack?  When it’s a designer rucksack that looks more like a proper purse than something to tote around schoolbooks.  For the French, ordinary is never good enough, especially where fashion is concerned.  Whether they are dealing with purses, jewelry, hats, gloves or scarves – French women and designers understand that the devil – and perfection is in the details.  Since many accessories are inherently very inexpensive French women frequently devote more of their budgets toward minor splurges for those just-right accessories that can make all the difference between a blah just-OK outfit and a to-die-for completely coordinated ensemble.

    Shoes, Wonderful Shoes

    Many women love shoes.  But few women have as much of a way with shoes as French women.  Although Paris is a walking city, you’ll hardly ever catch French women slouching around wearing trainers, which are practically part of a uniform in many sections of the United States.  Instead, French women wear stylish gladiators, flats and even pumps.  If their feet hurt, you could never tell from their facial expressions or body language.  In fact, many French women stride about as if they were born wearing heels.

    Pulling Off the French Sense of Chic

    It is not necessary to understand or speak a single word of French to fully comprehend the French sense of chic.  The rules – such as they are – enough.  Sexy does not necessarily equate with baring lots of skin.  Casual does not translate to a “rolled out of bed” thrown-together look. Mixing and matching can often produce a more coordinated look than a stiff matchy-matchy ensemble.  Most of all, fashion is meant to be fun.

    Article written by Francesca Rhode.  Francesca Rhodes is obsessed with innovative, wearable fashion. She loves blogging about chic trends that are fresh and classic on style blogs.
    photos via 1, 2, 3

    February 3, 2014

    Easy breezy biz cards

    There’s nothing fun about business cards – unless you use them as party invitations!  Business cards make great party invitations as they’re easy to fit in wallets and purses, plus people will love the originality of dinky, business card invitations.  instantprint have a Design Online function, which enables you to customize business cards, flyers and posters to design unique printed products, tailored to their individual needs.  You can choose one of InstantPrint’s existing templates, or create your own, then add text and images.

    The Design Online feature means that you can create bespoke business cards, flyers and posters, tailored to your needs.  Also, it means you can get really creative.  Think outside the box. As well as using business cards as party invitations, there are hundreds of new ideas you could explore.

    business cards print

    What about designing a poster to celebrate somebody’s birthday, instead of giving them a card? If its work colleague you could put the poster up in the office, or if you’re throwing a party for a loved one, you could use family photographs to create posters and decorate the room with them.

    Another great idea is to print recipes onto flyers.  If you’ve got scruffy notebooks full of hand-written recipes, why not print them onto high-quality flyers (that will withstand food splatters) and organize them into a box?  Take a look at this example on the Daisy Butter blog.  You could even give them out as presents- a cookie recipe accompanied by all the ingredients presented in a jam jar makes a great homemade Christmas present.

    Parents and teachers could even design their own certificates and print them on to flyers, to hand out for good behavior.  You could also design a good behavior chart and print it off on a poster to stick on the kitchen/classroom wall.  Posters can also be used to bring children’s imaginative games to life- next time the kids dress up as pop-stars, you could stick up a poster announcing their upcoming arena tour.

    There are endless possibilities.  If you’ve got an idea for a printed product, www.instantprint.co.uk can help you make it.

    January 30, 2014

    Decompress with yoga

    As busy professional women we all have a keen understanding of just how difficult it can be to find a work/life balance whether it be finding time to unwind, spend time with the family or engage in activities that help maintain an adequate level of mental and physical health.

    Technology has made our lives more convenient in many ways and has allowed for the working woman to be much more flexible by not being bound by location nearly as much.  However, because we are so closely connected to our devices and because the tech we all carry with us makes it so easy (perspective I guess) to squeeze in a little more work during the evenings or weekends that also means a great many of us do not allow enough time to properly decompress and rest.

    outdoor yoga practice

    Yoga has always been something I have wanted to get much more involved with and I had dabbled in it off and on for the last year or so but really wasn’t able to get into a meaningful regimented routine with Yoga.  Like some of you out that Yoga became a New Year’s resolution for me and I must say it’s been a wonderful experience thus far in terms of physically feeling better but also feeling like my stress is channeled in a much healthier way now because of Yoga.

    Here are the main reasons I would highly recommend Yoga to all of you:

    ●     It’s actually a real workout. In so many ways you cannot beat the physical benefits of consistently doing Yoga.

    ●     Improves focus and clears the mind. Unlike other some other exercise routines out there Yoga really emphasizes breathing and through this focus and concentration of poses the mind is able to zone in if you will.

    ●     Increased flexibility and strength. For a great many of us having a sedentary lifestyle at the office means it’s even more important to get the body moving and stretched out.

    ●     Stress management. By all means Yoga is not solution to all the stress you have in life but it’s a great practice that can potentially reduce stress dramatically

    Now that I have covered why Yoga is so beneficial you are ready to get started or maybe get back to it if you’ve slacked off recently, right?  This site is about fashion so you know I had to cover Yoga clothes at some point didn’t you?  Having functional yet fashionable attire to wear will make you “Workout Chic” and Sweaty Betty has incredible selection to choose from that you will simply love ladies!  Below are my picks.

    yoga attire

    Finally, for those of you that travel or stay on the go so much that you need something on your phone or tablet might I recommend Pocket Yoga as one of the best apps out there with good instructions and quality visuals.

    photo via thewiselatinaclub.com

    October 15, 2013

    Jolt of mint

    This post brought to you by Wrigley’s Focus 5 Gum. All opinions are 100% mine.

    I love mint anything.  Its refreshing yet soothing aroma and taste is quite addicting to say the least.  I like it in my drinks, food (ice cream, chocolate, etc), beauty products and of course, in chewing gum.  Let me introduce you to this new instant pick-me-up!

    best mint gum

    Wrigley's new Focus 5 Gum in minty flavors… oh boy, talking about some serious mint power! The flavor is perfect… hello fresh breath!  It's one of the stronger mint flavored gums, where it opened up my sinuses… lol.  A similar effect to that of a mouthwash, but with a better taste, and less hassel.  It's the first time I've seen gum that comes in a pouch.  The resealable little bag can be easily carried in your work bag.

    best breath gum

    What I really love about 5® Focus gum is the feeling it gives my mouth and afterwards… so clean & so fresh!  These gums not only help to give you fresh breath but stimulate your mind to bring the chewers back on target.  I can see why after that awakening mint jolt!  I tried the spearmint and peppermint flavors.  I prefer spearmint slightly more than the peppermint (a stronger taste).

    Instead of relying on sugary drinks or expensive coffees, give this gum a try anytime you need to perk up your senses at work or school.  Try 5® Focus™.  The intense mint hit!  It's a wonderful way to beat that midday grogginess and haze.

    Disclosure: This post brought to you by Wrigley’s Focus 5 Gum. All opinions are 100% mine.

    Visit Sponsor's Site

    Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

    Filed under: General,Productivity — Tags: , , , , , — Sophie Wood @ 2:45 pm
    Older Posts »

    NORDSTROM - Save up to 70% during Designer Clearance d80d504433ab369493198f0f7615cedf3ad8ab8145061c6cfb