Setting Monthly Intentions

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September, already? It’s hard to believe that it’s another new month.

I try to set intentions every month to help keep me on track.

When I set my intentions, I focus on making them more about how I'm feeling, truly tapping in. Intentions are what fuel what I do everyday. They get me to actively think about my life and how I want to feel, my goals and the habits I am making to get to those goals. They're the little things I want to keep in mind within that particular month. 

Is intention setting new to you? Maybe you need a refresh. Here are the main 6 I focus on:

Think about what you're eating.

I love this intention. It's not super strict like "Don't ever eat carbs again" or “only eat vegetables and healthy things”, but will allow me to make conscious decisions about what I'm eating. Eating healthier has been something that is always my main focus. Since the start of Summer, this has been my focus because sometimes we all fall out of balance and our eating habits shift, so I'm going to make it an active priority this month.

I feel like this is something a lot of people struggle with. I want to make healthy eating a habit and something that I enjoy!  

Do something everyday that's just for YOU!

September is going to be a crazy busy month for me. I’ll be moving out of my apartment in Portland, OR to travel a bit and relocate back to San Francisco. Shocking! I know. I’ll get more into this in a late post this month to not shift the focus from this post.

With all of these changes, this intention is to make sure I pick up a good book, try a new food, bake if that is your thing, have a dance party or snuggle my dog everyday. Making time for myself to do something I love is a way I practice self-care. 

Get moving 3x a week.

Ok, it doesn’t have to be 3, it can be whatever number it is for you. For me, 3 is my magic number; it is doable when I’m bouncing back into a routine.

This month, I want to get back into a routine. I had sprained my ankle in July and have been slowly recovering from that. A lot of the normal workouts I would do, I had to take a break from. I didn't want to make it something like "go to the gym everyday" cause that's probably not going to happen. I just want to keep active by doing something like taking a yoga or Barre3 class, trying a new workout on ClassPass, or going for a run - keep those endorphins going!

Disconnect in the morning and before bed.

I am totally guilty of waking up, instantaneously checking my phone to read email, post on Insta, and so on. I’ve made it into a habit to go to bed early, and wake up at 5:30 almost every morning. I give myself about an hour to fully wake up, drink water, brush my teeth, write in my gratitude journal, and make coffee. I cherish the ritual of making coffee in the morning. There is something about this one hour in my day that I love and is special. It’s probably because there are zero distractions, and I can really focus on setting my day.

Maybe the challenge for you this month is to try and limit the constant need to be connected and save your phone time for something that really matters. Do you open your phone and read something that bothers you that it effects your sleep and how you start the day?

Focus on your missions!

Don't compare yourself to others. Not to me, your best friend, your neighbor, the woman that seems to have it all in spin class, not to anyone. TBH, this might be really hard. Gotta put those blinders up and FOCUS!

Do things from a place of love; not fear.

This intention is kind of the same thing. Am I posting on my blog today because I'm scared I won't have a successful business if I don't? Or am I doing it because I want to connect with other people?

Mindset is everything. 

What are your intentions for the month? Share them here, I’d love to know!

The Beauty of Essential Oils For Skincare

Essential oils can be used for just about anything, but it can be kind of overwhelming to figure out which oils to use, and for what. Essential oils can give you the mindset shift you might need.

Just like certain foods help nourish your skin from the inside out, essential oils are great for your skin as well. Some of these natural aromatic compounds offer amazing benefits. 

I never heard about essential oils and their benefits until a few years ago, but really started to incorporate them into my everyday life after connecting with Kayla Monson (aka @mywelloiledlife) via Instagram and a few others.  I now use them whenever I workout to relieve sore muscles, an overall mood-booster, and as part of my skincare routine.  

If you’re looking for a new way to renew and protect your skin, why not try some of these essential oils for skin? As it turns out, pretty much, everyone can benefit from a boost of oil. Essential oils can benefit all different skin types and can work into the deeper levels of your skin to feed new, developing skin cells. The trick is finding which ones work for you because, like any skin product, different types have different functions. 

Keep reading below to experience all the benefits my five favorite essential oils for skin can do for you!

BERGAMOT

Bergamot is one of the top essential oils for skin, but you’ve probably also seen the name in some of your favorite perfumes. Bergamot is not only a fragrant oil, but it also has many benefits for your skin! Bergamot has antiviral properties which can help fight off cold sores as well as reduce oil, acne, and bacteria on your skin.

ROSE

Rose oil is a fantastic skin care oil for sensitive or aging skin. Rose oil, which can be expensive and difficult to find, has astringent properties that help repair broken capillaries and improve the overall condition of your skin. Rose oil can also help scars, acne marks and stretch marks fade away and ease common symptoms of PMS!

ROSEHIP

If you’re looking for a good and unique skin care oil, look no further than rosehip oil! This essential oil contains Omega 3,6 and 9, vitamin C, lycopene and linoleic acids. All of these elements help regenerate skin cells, minimize the signs of aging, reduce fine lines, boosts collagen and moisturizes skin leaving it feeling soft and pampered!

CLARY SAGE

I’d never heard of this essential oil before, but now that I know about its impressive benefits, I wish I would’ve discovered it much sooner! Clary sage has been known to decrease inflammation, revitalize skin and balance your skin’s oil production. It also helps ease pain from your period and childbirth and enables you to relax, so it’s ideal to keep around during that time of the month!

GERANIUM

Geranium is a multi-purpose essential oil is capable of doing a multitude of wonders, like helping eliminate body odor, heal wounds, promote cell growth and fade unsightly scars and spots on your skin. It has a calming, flowery scent that’s perfect to unwind to.

The beauty of these essential oils is that you can use them for so many other things besides just a skin care oil. Remember to always test oils out before applying them to your face and if you have sensitive skin, consult your dermatologist before you try them out. Depending on the formula of the oil, you might be able to use it as is or mix it with another oil. 

Do you use essential oils as part of your skincare routine?

Brain Dump 101

Does your mind bounce between things you have to do, and things you "think" you should be doing? And, let me guess you're a bit overwhelmed with hundreds of new ideas, but no time to implement any them all? Ugh. Meeeee too.

The thing is, our brains aren't wired to hold onto multiple strings of information at one time. It's like your internet browser with 30 different tabs open… (and I am totally guilty of having a lot of tabs open.) You can't concentrate, because you're constantly flitting from tab to tab, never accomplishing anything of true significance.

A way to untangle your mind is through "Brain Dump."  What? A brain dump is exactly what it sounds like—an opportunity to get everything out of your brain and onto paper. The header you need to create, blog pages you need to revise, grocery list, scheduling an appointment... all those random thoughts that create mental clutter. You not only create room in your head but you process and organize exactly what you need to do moving forward.

Brain-dumping is merely creating a list of unconnected thoughts on a page. I tend to do this every single morning. A million miles a minute is exactly how my brain works too, and I'm sure you can relate to this as well. The process is simple. I like to make a list of bullet points, then write an idea/thought or sentence next to each one. If I have more to say regarding a specific bullet, I keep writing. If I have something to add a little later down the page, I will draw an arrow back to the original thought.

I've discovered that this has helped me with staying productive and getting things done -- once you’ve emptied your brain of this extra mind clutter, you make room for new ideas and thoughts to take root.  If you're the type of person that has more thoughts entering your mind in the evening, I suggest brain dumping at night, and revisiting it in the morning. 

Do you practice brain dumping? What other productivity tips work for you? Share with me here - @valeriefidan!