Savoring The Last Days Of The Season

August 15, 2021



Wow, I'm in awe at how fast this year is racing by. Fall is just around the corner, and although I absolutely adore the crisp air, beautiful leaves and fall fashion, I can't help but be a little sad to see summer coming to an end. Luckily, we still have a few more Summer Fridays on the calendar to indulge in before the chaos that comes with Fall unfolds. 

In order to soak up all the summer vibes I can, I am focusing on romanticizing my life in small, but meaningful ways. I have two more summer trips on the books - but with the delta variant sweeping the globe, a week-long getaway is no longer a guarantee. So this week, my summer goals are simple: 

1. Create a magical space to enjoy my meals outdoors 

2. Turn my backyard into a faux-tropical oasis 

3. Spend more time outside while working on creative projects, quietly reading or flipping through an inspiring magazine (preferably in the backyard hammock or in the shade in the neighborhood park).

I'm not setting any crazy, unattainable goals or creating an overwhelming bucket list for the end of fall. I'm simply just trying to enhance my surroundings and enjoy what I have and where I am. We are going to blink and it's going to be the holidays, so we might as well savor these long, warm and slow days while we can. I hope my little list encourages you to make one for yourself. And I'd love to learn how you plan to embrace the last days of summer. 

Here are a few things on my wish-list/I've recently purchased to help me take my spaces to the next level and feel like I'm on a luxurious vacation. 

For backyard entertaining, poolside fun, leisurely reading 
 


Thanks again for reading this post. Your support means the world to me. Wishing you a relaxing and magical end to the summer season. 




Weekend Self-Care Scavenger Hunt

July 31, 2021

Photo by Shayna Douglas 

Another glorious weekend is here! The closer we get to fall, the more I value having a soothing and restorative weekend. Life seems to be picking up pace quite quickly. Our schedules are filling up again. Our time is in higher demand, but I think we all learned the beauty of slowing down over the past year. Unfortunately, it can be really easy to forget to make time for (or strickly feel like you don't have the energy) the things that bring us peace and replenish our cups.  


Hence this weekend's self-care scavenger hunt. I'm using it as a fun and simple way to romanticize my weekend before heading into another chaotic and busy work week. Whether you're job hunting, grinding away at a corporate job, building a business, or dedicating your days to raising a family, we are all working very hard and giving so much of our time, energy and love to others. We deserve to show up for ourselves in the most loving way possible too. 


 

I'm dying to know what's on your self-care checklist this weekend! Let me know in the comments or over on IG! And thank you so much for taking a moment of your day to read this post. Your support means the world to me. And please share this post with anyone whom you think would enjoy it. The more positive people in our virtual circle, the better. Until next time my friend. 






Weekly Pick-Me Up: Vol 1

July 13, 2021

Photo by Will Truettner 


Idk why (well actually, I’m 99% sure it’s because it’s almost that time of the month for me) but I have been in a pretty bad mood ever since I got back from Italy. Because summer is so short and sweet, and I don’t want to spend another week feeling down and out. After all, this is supposed to be hot girl summer, not sad girl summer or mad girl summer. I just want to feel all the positive vibes... but positivity is something I'm really struggling to hold on to right now. 

Although we are all for processing our emotions, staying in a funk for a week+ is not the vibe I want right now. So I’m surrounding myself with a lot of positive quotes, books, podcasts and people. Here are a few quotes I found last night that reminded me to take a moment, breathe, and accept that life is messy and sometimes uncontrollable and everything will be ok. I hope these quotes add a little inspiration to your week like they are for mine. 




And here are a few books I'm leaning on this week to reset my attitude and see the positive side of life right now. 


Thanks for spending a moment of your day to read and support my dreams. Sending you lots of love! Until next time my friend 

Summer Muses: Vaccinated Edition

June 26, 2021

Photo by Igor Oliyarnik


 So I took an unintentional break from writing. You know when you get in those moods and just can't find the energy to do the extra things you love? Well that's the vibe I had for most of May, but now that Summer Fridays are in full swing,  I'm in my friend Vondell's amazing creative/career/entrepreneur course and have a few vacations on the books to look forward to, I feel revived! Summer is so sweet. The relaxed nature of work, the excitement of being able to internationally travel again, reuniting with friends whom I haven't seen in over a year! This summer is in full swing!! And I want to savor every moment of it by making more time for the things I love. Here are a few things that are inspiring me to have an invigorating summer. From simple pleasures to normalizing luxury in my life, there's a wide range of things I am focusing on consistently doing this season to find more joy. After all, I think 2020/ the first part of 2021 was hard for most of us. We deserve nice things (even if we are on a strict budget) this season. Cheers to a magical, fulfilling and inspired summer! 

Photos by: Martyna Bober, Will Truettner, Heather Ford, Angelo Pantazis,
Mathilde Langevin, Annie Spratt 


Summer 2021 Muses 

  • Leisurely drinking coffee and tea in the morning
  • AM workouts
  • Feeling confident in my body, especially through dance
  • Embracing the jet-setter lifestyle
  • Oranges, pinks, yellows, pastel blues, and emerald greens! These colors are dominating my wardrobe right now. I keep gravitating towards them. 
  • Tennis outfits
  • All the water destinations
  • Alfresco dinners
  • Long lunch breaks while WFH
  • Morning dips in the pool
  • Fresh seafood
  • Chilled rosè and posh outfits
  • Cookouts with friends
  • Flipping through a glossy magazine
  • Reading outdoors under the shade
  • Turning my outdoor spaces into an oasis
  • Long walks with good friends or podcasts
  • Dancing in the mirror daily
  • Fresh mani pedis
  • Fresh picks from the farmers market
  • Seaside escapes to remote areas
  • Luxury handbags and accessories
  • Friday nights in, curled up on the couch, snuggling with the one you love

And here is a little bingo card I made to encourage us to make time for ourselves this summer. 


What's inspiring you this summer? Leave a comment below and tag me on IG if you make a muse/mood board of your own! Thanks for spending a moment of your day reading this post! Your support means the world to me! Until next time friend. 



Mental Spring Cleaning

April 16, 2021

 

Bianka Csenki 



I love that spring usually brings a new wave of energy and a sense of new beginnings. I am so eager to leave the past versions of myself right in the freaking past... but I’d be a bold-faced liar if I tried to pretend like I wasn’t still struggling to overcome a lot of counter-productive (and sometimes straight-up toxic) behavior while constantly freaking out about the future. It ain’t a fun mental place to live at, let me tell you that. There are so many self-sabotaging habits that I am to leave behind such as (drumroll please)
  • Overspending/ignoring my budget - like Nia STOOPPPP IT!!! 
  • Wasting each weekend away by drinking and over socializing instead of focusing on my dreams. I want a healthy balance of socializing and having fun while also setting aside time to focus on my goals
  • Smoking weed or drinking instead of dealing with my problems. Weed is legal here, so in moderation, it's great!  But when I use it to avoid my emotions... then it becomes an issue.
  • Emotionally eating... yeah, this has always been an issue for me, but it really ramped up during covid. 
  • Procrastinating on my dreams. This is the worst bad habit of them all because it is the catalyst that leads me to all the other terrible habits I turn to in order to distract myself from feeling disappointed in myself... lol, oops. 
  • Giving guys who don’t act like gentlemen or are just not good fits for me a second chance. As each day passes, the more appealing it sounds to just start a family on my own in 5 to 7 years and just avoid the dating drama. And if I get a puppy, then I won't feel lonely. 
  • Staying up past my bedtime on weeknights! I know that staying up late is like a domino effect for disaster. Because then I wake up late, destroy my room looking for everything in a frenzy and skip my morning routine. Then I spend money on unhealthy food because I don't have enough time to make food before running to the office (I go into the office 2/3 of the week) and maybe skip the gym if I'm too tired after work. Yeah... I need to break the cycle. 
I mean, the list could go on and on. There are lots of things about myself I’d love to work on so I can make myself happy and show up as the woman I want to be in this world. But as I grow older and wiser, I’m learning that the only way to grow into the next vibrant, successful, fulfilled version of myself, I have to be patient with myself and give myself way more grace than I think I deserve. And more importantly, I need to nurture and protect my spiritual energy and fuel my soul with the right people, places, and things.

So I sat down and made a list of the things I need to prioritize weekly in order to feel at peace. But unlike in the past where I create these unrealistic expectations for myself and then feel disappointed with myself when I don’t meet them, I’m making a rule for myself that I only have to do one thing a day to move in the right direction. Just one!!

And then once I am in a space where I have more energy and more self-trust, I can kick things up a notch. But for now, slow and steady is the only way I’m going to win my race. Fuck everyone else on social media. Fuck comparing our journeys, our timelines, our milestones to theirs. We don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes and tbh, focusing on them is just distracting us from focusing on our own fabulous lives!

I love creating little brain dumps of things that bring me joy and that keep me on track to becoming the woman I know I can be (aka a woman with healthy habits). These are the things that I need to do each week in order to feel proud of myself:

  • Dance class (by far one of my favorites!)
  • ⁃Cardio workout class like Pilates, Ass & Abs or a HITT class
  • Biweekly photoshoots (plan shoot one week and create content the next week)
  • One blog post a week. I miss proving to myself that I can be consistent with something that brings me so much joy and moves my career in the right direction. 
  • BUDGET!! It’s time to be an adult and say no to overspending and yes to focusing on my financial freedom journey.
  • Weekly bedroom clean-up; the messy chaos I’ve been living in does not breed a tranquil environment.
  • Weekly meal prep - this is imperative for my fitness journey and my financial wellbeing. 
  • Daily morning and bedtime guided meditations/short inspiration sessions through sanity and self. I actually can’t fall asleep without this app. It helps me ward off my nightly anxiety spirals about being poor, homeless, or single for the rest of my life (lol anxiety is a hoot, isn’t it).

We will experience so many chapters in life, and not all of them are comfortable. But that’s just a sign that we are on the path to greatest and growing... because growth in itself is uncomfortable. We are being pulled to a higher level each time that pit in our stomach tells us to run towards that thing that terrifies but also energizes us. Our new sense of self is right around the corner. I can’t wait to step into the version of myself that smiles every time I look in the mirror... in fact, I think today is that day.  Yesterday I was 100% ready to smash my mirror because I didn't like what I saw, and I don't like treating myself that way. I'm done with the self-mistreatment  Loving ourselves the right way is a full-time job, but it’s the most important job we will ever have.


What’s on your mental spring cleaning list this season? Sending you all the love and self-care in the world today. Welcome to our new season of loving ourselves to the fullest. We're in this together. 



Spring Decor from Amazon I'm Dying to Buy

March 23, 2021

 

Ella Jardim 

Thank the lord it is finally spring here in the city! The other week, we had 3 days of glorious spring, then it got cold again, but now it's back in the 60s! I hope this glorious weather is here to stay because I'm too deep into a spring mindset to turn back now. I really want to prioritize turning my place into an inspiring little haven this season, and Amazon is killing the game right now. 

Clearly, I love pink and like having a feminine space. It just makes me smile from ear to ear when I look up and see pink flowers everywhere. Plus, drinking water out of a beautiful glass truly makes the water taste better. I'm pretty sure it's been scientifically proven... right? Sounds like a study Harvard would conduct if you ask me lol. 

Anyway, this is the first round of home decor I'm treating myself to this season. Although it would be extremely fun to binge shop and get everything on my wishlist at once, that's not the most responsible thing to do, so little by little, I will transform my apartment ... and backyard into an oasis. What's on your home decor wish list this season? 


Shop my favorite finds below


Thanks for taking a moment to read this post. Your support means the world to me, and I hope we can all create an inspiring and tranquil space for ourselves this season. 



March Muses: This Spring is about to get Sprung

March 8, 2021

Photo by Ellieelien 


Yay!! It's finally spring... or at least the weather is acting like it's spring, therefore I will act like it's spring. 60 degrees weather in NYC basically means it's time to hit the streets in a bomb outfit and embrace the glamour that this city has to offer. Ah! I'm so excited. I can't wait to embrace this spring and become more of the woman I want to be. I always have more energy in the spring which means I can...
  • Commit to my morning and evening wellness routines 
  • Get back in a healthier fitness routine
  • Put effort into my physical presentation before heading into work or running errands... cuz let me tell you, I can't even get coffee in NYC or JC without running into really cute guys
  • Have the energy to cook healthy and delicious meals 
  • Explore the beauty of this city on foot without freezing my ass off 
  • And enjoy al fresco meals in the warm sun. 
  • Plan a nice vacation for the near future - I am optimistic that things will be a lot safer this summer/fall, and I am itching to spend a weekend sailing and drinking wine in a nice, sunny isolated spot. 




I can't wait to just be in nice, warm weather - it really is such a game-changer for mental health. Here are a few more things I'm currently inspired by this month.



 Cheers to a magical new season! Let's hope it's a lot better than the last. Stay safe, and thanks for taking a moment to read this post.





Positive Quotes For When Everything Just Feels Off

February 24, 2021

Photo by Ellieelien 


Disclaimer: the intro to this post is very honest and raw. If you only want to see the positive messages, I recommend scrolling down until you see the first image. We all have days where we can't take in anything other than positive messages, and this post is meant to help anyone who's feeling off, feel less alone. I want everyone who reads this post to walk away feeling inspired or uplifted so take the messages that are right for you and leave the rest. :) 

Do you ever get into a funk where everything just feels kind of meaningless? I'm clearly not a doctor, but it feels quite different from my typical depression episodes. I know for me, I can still experience joy and even random bursts of motivation when I'm in this mood that unfortunately has been visiting me way more than I freaking appreciate. Even when I seek out joy or fun, something still just feels... off, and the joy feels like a distraction from what's really going on beneath the surface. 

Luckily, I have dedicated a lot of time (and freaking money - hello NYC psychology bills) to investing in my mental health. Seeking out help has prepared me for these darker episodes so I always know in the back of my head that just because I'm thinking negative, toxic, self-deprecating thoughts doesn't make them true. And I know that these dark spirals I get into really all stem from the same damn place. Anxiety. 

Anxiety helped our ancestors stay safe from lions or tigers or slave owners who were hunting runaway slaves seeking freedom and asylum (yeah, I went there) because it helped them run away from danger. But living in a constant state of anxiety no-longer serves us because modern society doesn't possess the same sense of continuous, urgent danger that existed for our ancestors. You don't need to take my word for it, I'm just repeating what multiple psychologists and psychiatrists have said about the history of anxiety. 

For me,  hearing this breakdown about anxiety helps me to beat myself up less for feeling this way. It doesn't mean there is something inherently wrong with me or broken about me; it just means this is my brain's fucked up way of trying to keep me safe from the unknown. And the reason I'm being this honest on the internet and painting myself as a pretty little target for anyone to stumble upon and make fun of me for is that I know I'm not the only person who feels like this. The last thing we all need right now is to feel lonelier than we already are. So instead of sinking deeper into a toxic mindset, we are going to pick ourselves up out of our dark spaces (when we are each ready to do so) and take baby steps to get our zest and hope back. 

Tackling anxiety looks different for everyone. It's a long process that can't be fixed overnight. But I think we can all benefit from adding positive messages into our daily routine. It's simple, it's free and maybe it's the stepping stone someone needs to take the next step in their wellness journey. No matter what place you're at in life right now, I hope something in the quotes below resonates with you and helps you smile today. And if you have a beautiful quote you'd like to share, feel free to leave a comment below or DM me on instagram. It would be fun to share everyone's favorite uplifting quotes in a post. Sending you lots of love, and thanks for taking a moment to read this post. Your support means the world to me.







The Art of Romance: Dating Myself

February 1, 2021

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez 

This might sound crazy (or maybe even basic bitch-esque, whatever idgaf), but after getting through all of 2020 and a long-ass, draining January (although we had a few wins - shoutout to Georgia voters and Biden/Harris in the House!!) without a significant other to lean on as an additional support system/intimate connection, I am in this mindset of saying "fuck it! I'm going to build that intimate relationship with myself! I'm going to treat myself like a queen." Embracing the whole self-love club movement that's been sweeping the internet for the past few years has always been somewhat challenging for me. I know that's terrible to admit, but as a natural perfectionist, loving myself when I fail to show up for myself has never been an easy task for me. 

But as I reflect on 2020, it becomes more and more apparent that enjoying the here and now is sooo soo sooo important. And yet, in a year where loneliness, isolation, depression, and the mundane wfh lifestyle have swept the globe, enjoying each day has truly become a hell of a lot harder to to achieve. That's why I'm embracing February, the designated month of love, to dating myself. 

Yep, that's right. I'm officially jumping on the bandwagon. The challenge is pretty simple tbh, each day, I just have to do one small, romantic, indulgent or decadent thing for myself to make my day. Anything that will put a smile on my face and remind me that I'm that bitch. A minimum of 28 things for 28 days. And of course, we are going to do this the frugal way. 

I have a running list of ideas that I'll keep adding to. That way, I'll have a constant bank of inspiration to lean on during the days that I feel burned-out out or just unfulfilled with life. The beauty of this list is that I keep reminding myself that even the smallest things can bring me the highest form of joy. Things like buying myself a beautiful bouquet of flowers from Trader Joes, treating myself to a cute new necklace from Anthropologie, sleeping in satin pjs, and exploring a new, chic cafe just to pick up a delicious dessert are all extremely simple and affordable ways to show me how much I appreciate myself. It takes a lot to show up for ourselves every single day, and we deserve to celebrate that win. 



And I already got a head start this year; I bought myself some beautiful, affordable lingerie and valentine's themed pjs. Then, just to take things up a notch, I found the cutest valentine's day decorative pillows for only $4! Like I said, the smallest things put the largest smile on my face. Here are a few of the things I purchased last week and things I have my eyes on for the next month or so. 

So cheers to a year of making ourselves smile and reaching a whole new level of intimacy with ourselves. I'd love to hear what you're doing to treat yourself this month! Leave a comment or shoot me a DM. It will be fun to keep each other accountable 


My Treat Yo' Self List 



New Year Check-In: Still Burned Out but Workin on it

January 2, 2021

Photo by Ellieelien 


Usually, I am so excited for a new year to begin. The glimmer of hope, the unknown opportunities that come out of nowhere, the rush of excitement that comes from reflecting and mapping out new goals. But this year, mapping out my new year resolutions just feels, well, a little silly. Because truth be told, I'm just not excited about much these days. 

Although I'm incredibly grateful to be blessed with the opportunity to see a new year and another day on this earth, I can tell that I'm still really burned out. Unfortunately, being burned out doesn't help pay the fucking bills or help me live a vibrant life. Aka, I have to figure out a way to find my way back to myself and learn to actually be happy. 

So instead of resolutions, I'm setting a theme for the year. And that theme is fulfillment. I just refuse to spend another year of this gift we call life as a miserable person. I'm not, fucking doing it. I deserve to be happy. You deserve to be happy. We deserve to be fucking happy. 

But here's the problem, a lot of things that make me feel fulfilled cost money (cooking lavish meals, my dance classes, paying off all my debt, craft projects, fun photoshoots, creating a cozy home, traveling post-pandemic, therapy. etc.) And one of the main reasons why I am always so anxious is because of money lol. Isn't that ironic. Time for little miss Nia to suck it the fuck up and get a second job again and stop spending on frivolous things. Oy. 

One amazing skill I've developed during this season of social distancing is learning to really love my alone time. It's a Saturday night and instead of spending the evening overdrinking and overeating with friends (although in moderation, that's a fun freaking time), I'm finally sitting down and writing again. Working on my dream... well part of my dream because yall know a bitch is multi-faceted. I'm building the foundations for something that will one day be a major source of income for me. And that is something to get excited about. 

I'm starting to realize that to live a well-rounded, fulfilling life, I have to eliminate more distractions and make sacrifices while also making time for fun. My problem is I tend to focus on one without making room for the other. Balance has never been a strength of mine, but no time like the present to learn a new skill haha.  So, I guess, I have two themes for the year: fulfillment and balance. Now that I think about it, they do go hand in hand because you can't be fulfilled without balance. 

I know I'm not just going to wake up tomorrow, or one day next week, and feel like a brand new bitch who magically has figured out a way to solve all her problems, but I am determined to take the slow and steady road and actually appreciate this one life I have been granted. So cheers to finding happiness this year - even if it looks nothing like what we thought it would. 

Let me know your theme in the comments below! I'd love to go on this journey together so we can root each other on. May this year be full of blessings, adventures, and bliss for you. Thanks for taking a moment to read this post! Your support means the world to me. 



Latest Instagrams

© Nia Maria. Design by FCD.