New Year.. New Health.

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Me and Mike on New Years

Welcome 2015,

I am sure you all have been inundated with new blog posts, articles and videos with “resolution ideas” for 2015. As a self-help junkie, every year I can not wait to start thinking about the new resolutions I will take on. However, this year is much different: I have no interest in resolutions at all…

About a week before New Years I felt very sick: I was incredibly lethargic, my skin looked terrible and I had trouble falling asleep. Unfortunately, this is the usual for me, except this time it was a bit more extreme.

I had spent the day at my Uncle’s beautiful dinner party filling up on my favorites: baked mac n’ cheese and various sweets. I came home and could barely stand. It wasn’t that I was full, I had sharp pains. I recalled these pains from when I was only 13 years old in Middle School. At that time it became clear to me that I had a weak immune system and most likely had what my nutritionist called Candida. Ever since then I have been researching nutrition immensely and have learned quite a bit.

Since there is an unbelievable amount of information, I tried to keep it simple for myself: my body does not want gluten, dairy or sugar. I knew this due to various health issues I had and the inflammatory issues these foods caused. And believe me I tried everything. I went to various doctors who offered treatments and medications. These would only work temporarily- if at all. What I did notice was I would feel immensely different when my diet changed. However, I knew the only way I could do this was by completely cutting out all the foods I loved (pasta, bread, cheese, chocolate, chai, and even rice). I wanted to beat all of my issues and wipe them out completely for optimum health. The nutritionists I spoke to said it was possible- but I needed to eliminate the foods 100%- at least for a prolonged period of time.

This idea scared me a lot– I felt there was pressure always in the back of my mind. I could eat healthy all day, then screw up at night and it was ruined. Not to mention in school I was so exhausted that I thrived on instant yummy foods and the energy the sugar rush would give me. I always knew it was horrible for me- but I just could not push myself to quit the bad foods.

Flash toward to last week, I remember waking up in the morning. I believe it was the 27th, I started journaling again and wrote down 10 things I was grateful for. This is something I don’t usually do, if I am being honest. That whole day I felt at peace with my body. I didn’t crave wheat or dairy or any form of sugar. But I also didn’t pressure myself, that night I wanted a hot chocolate and instead of stressing myself out, I allowed it. The next day it was a lot easier for me to continue my healthy eating. Why is this? I sort of have an explanation..

I am a perfectionist. I know this because I have been told multiple times. Not in an OCD kind of way, but I expect myself to do the best and sometimes try to be the best. This can be incredibly stressful. I have a mentality that life is tough, so you got to be tough right back. Everything needs to be thought out, planned and executed perfectly, or you will be a step behind someone else. I am a 5″3, privileged female living in NYC with a dream to be a well-respected actor and to help others. I don’t have the mental capability to not be a perfectionist. I truly believe my dream is attainable, it is possible for me (even though I look like a million other wanna be actresses), I just have to be one step ahead. And this is exactly how I have gone about my health. It needs to be perfect. If I failed, oh well, just curl up in bed eating pretzels and watch The Office all night. (That show always makes me feel better about my current life circumstances.) ALTHOUGH, I have begun to realize this not only detrimental for my mental health, its purely unhealthy and I will never succeed at curing my health issues.

I said above that I do not have any resolutions- this is true. If I have a resolution for myself I will not be able to expect anything less then perfect- and you know where I am going with that one. Down, down hill to failure-town. Every year I have resolutions that I write down and every year I look back and say, “oh wow I didn’t keep any of these resolutions, shocker”. I have decided for 2015 I will gradually, at my own pace, begin to break my bad health habits. Now this does not work for everyone, but not only does it loosen pressure for myself, it makes me happy at the small progress I make throughout each day, which encourages me to try harder. In a way its like I am tricking myself.

So that’s that. I will try my hardest to refrain form gluten, dairy and sugar. I think the best way for me to do this is by finding delicious, alternative recipes online. I am really excited for the New Year. I have a lot of new ideas, hopes and dreams for myself. I want to stop thinking and start doing. What about you guys?

Happy New Year,

Olivia xx

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How To Get Happy and Succeed in Spring

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Well….. almost Spring..

Its still freezing in NYC, and apparently its snowing tonight! WTH? Its almost April. But it must mean that with such a rough winter.. will come a beautiful Spring. I am so excited for Spring!! Its the season of renewal: flowers bloom, the sun comes out. Winter was a time to conserve energy and with Spring we must detox and fill ourselves with happiness once again !

And I don’t know about you, but this was a pretty rough winter.. So I have come up with some ideas to get you back in track and feeling amazing!

1.) Get a Haircut.

It may sound simple but getting a haircut makes such a huge difference in how you feel and look. I always feel like I can take on the world with a new haircut !

2.) Make Goals and Act on Them.  

Its hard to get things done when its cold out. And with little sun you become vitamin D deficient. With Spring coming around there are so many brilliant ideas out there to help act on goals.

Here are some of my favorites:

Mindbloom – a creative way to track and make life improvements.

Learnvest – a powerful website that will set you up with a financial plan- for free!

Clear – (app) I love this app! It is so simple, easy  and fun to use.

Lift – (app) This app has helped me out immensely. You can input accomplished daily goals and interact with the apps community.

3.) Express Gratitude. 

I can’t say it enough: gratitude is everything. Did you see Matthew McConaugheys best actor Oscar speech?

Heres some things to remember about gratitude :

806852c7493fbd7b3e8dc22d40ba8cce4.) Gain Energy

 I am a firm believer that happiness comes from energy. When your tired or feeling sick, do you feel happy? Probably not! Here are some tips on keeping your energy up ..

  • take an epsom salt bath- this helps detoxify the body
  • get acupuncture – yes, it can be expensive, but it will help you immensely.. even once every two months.
  • eat healthy and especially green food. – cut back processed foods, wheat, dairy and sugar.
  • exercise regularly- even if its a small walk, especially around nature!
  • take vitamins- find out which would benefit you.
  • meditate- at least once a day.
  • sleep– nuff said.

5.) Don’t Be Hard on Yourself 

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Success can only be defined by ourselves. This Spring I encourage you to be kind to yourself. Save up and go to a spa, take regular walks in the woods, maybe even take a road trip. When we do the things we love, we have more love for ourselves- creating success.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I hope everyone is having a lovely week!!

 

xx Olivia

The Treehouse in Costa Rica!

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My Dad went through this strange phase a year ago where he wanted to be more adventurous.

My family loves to travel, I have been fortunate to travel since I can remember. However, our trips have never been exactly venturesome, due to the fact that they consisted of us getting around on a boat and having everything taken care for us (Royal Caribbean).

I love my parents, but they are getting to that point in time where they find everything to get on their nerves. They just want to lay on a beach and do absolutely nothing for the entire vacation. Which is understandable at their age.
Now why did my father – whom hates to do anything strenuous- decide to put a payment down on a treehouse in the middle of the rainforest? That is a question I still ask myself.

Well the time had come and the day after Christmas my sister, brother, mom and dad caught a five hour plane to San Jose, Costa Rica.

From San Jose we had to catch a tiny 10 person jet for an hour to a small town called Puerto Jimenez. The jet ride was scary but amazing, so many great views.

The treehouse was incredibly designed. It was four stories high- wrapped around a beautiful, large tree. It had three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a kitchen. Everything was wide open, except fortunately the bed rooms were screened in. There was no TV, and the wifi wasn’t working.
Our days consisted of being woken up by 20 titi monkeys at 6 am every morning (they would bounce around the trees right next to us!) Then we would wait for breakfast which our lovely caretakers made for us every morning….

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Then we would take a half hour walk to a very clean water river where many locals use the mud for facials and search for gold…

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Then most of the day we would just lay around and read.
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They also had a large garden growing nearby with lots of fruits and veggies growing. I picked up a cucumber everyday!

My dad did not want to drive into town because the roads were so dangerous. However, I also got to go zip lining and that was riveting. It looked terrifying, but it was liberating being able to do it. We were very high up in the rainforest going 60 mph.

One of the most exciting trips is when we decided to take a boat to the animal reserve. On the boat ride we saw a thirty foot whale shark, hundreds of dolphins, and the second most poisonous snake in the world!

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We then arrived to the reserve, apparently they filmed some of Jurassic Park there.. I am not surprised!

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I got to see monkeys, parrots, sloths and lots of birds. The woman that worked there was sweet.. I can not believe she lived there by herself.

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The scariest part of this whole trip was not the fact that everything went black at 5:45 pm every night, or how there were 8 bats living with us in the treehouse, or even how one night I was cleaning the dishes and a huge rainforest animal- called a kinkajou– jumped into the kitchen, stole my fruit and ran off. The scariest part of this trip were the roads. Here in NJ we got pretty nicely paved roads. Puerto Jimenez, Costa Rica has the most terrifying roads I have ever been on. The road leading to the treehouse took us 20 minutes. It was completely made out of dirt and on the left side there was a huge trench you could not get out of, on the right side was a cliff. You fall off you die. We had to do this anytime we wanted to get to the treehouse, or get to the town. This made it very difficult to go anywhere. Even when we wanted to go to the beach it took an hour and a half on very bumpy roads and at times we were driving through rivers and going up cliffs!
It was worth it though…

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On this trip I was able to have bonding time with my family as well as eat healthy and read a lot. I really felt it was the perfect place to spend the New Years, right in the middle of nature. Every morning I woke up the beautiful jungle, and every night I would go to sleep terrified, but it was a great experience.

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Heres some extra pics if you guys are interested in what it looked like. I highly recommend taking the trip if you can. Heres some info on it if you would like!

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I hope you all are having a lovely week. And any Jersey/New York folk are staying safe in this crazy blizzard. It looks beautiful outside!

Soon I will be uploading me and Mikes 2 year anniversary trip to NYC!

xx Olivia

Graduation week!

I have finally graduated from high school. I can not even explain how happy this makes me. I realize one of the easiest parts of my life is over (haha) but I’m just so ready to move on and try something new! My high school experience taught me a lot:

1.)Dont judge others, you do not know what they’re going through

2.) How much my generation is obsessed with themselves and materialism

3.) How surprisingly kind some can be

4.) How to handle much rejection and not let it affect me

5.) Spirituality

6.) Do not care what others think of you

7.)Over-thinking will kill you

8.) Health is so so so important

9.) I appreciate who I am

10.) I can do anything I want in my life as long as I work hard.

So I was thinking lately, I really want to work harder I do. But why can’t I? My mind is always foggy, I’m always so tired. I am about to start my new life and I want to start on an excellent note. Recently I keep finding, seeing, or hearing things about juice detoxes. I know how good it would be for me to do it, I am just nervous I’ll fail and be extremely disappointed. I also…. love… food. A lot. Fortunately I am not over weight by any means, but I do have several immune related health problems. And I know changing my diet will help me with everything. Quiet honestly I think its inevitable and I should just go out and buy a juicer now. My sister is even willing to join in with me! Maybe Ill try it out and post how its going everyday, and include pictures.

I feel like my diet has also affected me emotionally, and its been taken out on others :/

I hope you’re all doing well. Summer is here and I am so happy for that and thankful!!

My crazy life, Valentines Day! and new tumblr!

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How is everyone?

My life has been extremely hectic, between college auditions and school in general. But I can’t complain. I haven’t been posting often because we found out my brother had a brain tumor in December. He is absolutely fine now! They got the tumor out and he turned out to be cancer free. It was a serious miracle if I have ever seen one. The tumor was 80% cancerous (the doctors told us). The results came back and it came out to be cancer free! It was a huge blessing and I am so thankful for it. Its amazing what life can throw at you. My whole life turned upside down but now its like nothing happened. He’s back to normal and life is back to normal. Although I am stressing about college, I still find a way to keep the peaceful thinking. At least I try. I think through the experiences of my life the last couple months, my goal in life is really just to be happy and live stress free. And the best part about it is that happiness is a choice. Just a hard one for humans to make at times.

Anyways, its almost Valentines Day guys! A day of love love love. Lucky me this is my second year of having someone on Valentines Day. Since I am 18 year old high school girl all I hear is the same “forever alone, going to sit at home and eat ice cream and scream at the tv, la la la” from all of my friends. Strangely I was never like that when I was single, I’ve always been excited about Valentines Day. Its always made me cheerful :). Probably because I find love extremely fascinating. Its amazing that we can feel so powerful for another human being. And not just a partner but our family too. I felt so much love for my brother when I thought he was in serious danger, even though we havent been very close over the past year. And thats why I’ve been yelling at all my whiny, single friends: Valentines day is not just about love for your boyfriend, but love for your family as well. And friends and life ! Just spread love to everyone that day! Life is so precious and we need be positive as much as we can.

However…. I know i know, Valentines Day is mainly special with your boyfriend/girlfriend. I have never understood the need to spend humongous amounts of cash on Valentines Day. It is almost as if the more you spend = the more you love. NO. Soo silly. Thats why I say cook at home ! Do simple, special things that are about each other. All I know is that this Valentines Day I will remember how happy and lucky I am to have such an amazing person come into my life. I love him for his faults and triumphs. I could go on and on about how he has completely changed my life. But I won’t bore all of you with that.

BY the way…. I have revamped my tumblr!!! : sundaysbreeze.tumblr.com

It is now filled with positivity and things that inspire me 🙂

Hope everyones week is filled with love and excitement!

Olivia ❤

The Shift

I hope everyone  had a wonderful Monday.

I had a very calm one. However, today I started letting the anxiety of college come over me. That feeling where you believe that life is  slowly closing in on you… ever have that? I have been having it daily due to the fact that college auditions are coming up. And I have some very important decisions to make. It is very frightening. But I still remember that life is bigger than that. You can not worry your life away..

One thing I know that always gets me back on track with positivity is the wisdom of Dr. Wayne Dyer.I happened to stumble upon his teachings from a friend who was giving me advice on meditation and new age thinking. Dyer is a self-help author and motivational speaker. I really learned a lot from his segment and was particularly drawn to his speech of “I Am”. Being able to tell yourself, “I am capable of accomplishing things”. You have to believe in yourself. His suggestion is to “run through as large an inventory as you can of the things that you would like to define your life. Then make the shift in your imagination from an I am not or I am hoping to become to I am. You want what follows I am to be congruent with your highest self, which is God.”

I love reading his blog because it helps remind me everyday not to take life too seriously. We have the ability to choose who we are.

And I close the night with some of his quotes:

  • “How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.”
  • “Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change.”
  • “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.”
  • “You are not stuck where you are unless you decide to be.”

p.s. check out his film!

Going gluten-free?

So I have been reading an incredible book by a woman named Kris Carr. She is a New York Times best-selling author and “wellness warrior.”And she has got to be one of the healthiest people on this planet. Physically, mentally, and spiritually. About nine years ago she was diagnosed with a rare and incurable stage 4 cancer. And ever since then she has changed her diet, mind and basically entire life. Kris is an incredible inspiration to me. And I really think all of you should check out her book I am currently reading, Crazy Sexy Diet.

It got me thinking, should I really try to pull of this crazy diet for school? Its literally gluten-free, sugar-free, dairy-free. And i’d have to cut out a lot of food that may seem healthy that is actually too acidic. However, I have tried this diet before. (and inspired friends to try too!) and it was really difficult. But I really want to give it another try.. maybe I can!

Here’s her website…

Here’s an article about a girl living gluten-free for life!

First day of senior year tomorrow! Ah, wish me luck!

The Secret to Happiness?

I recently read an article on Womens Health about the secret to happiness. According to a new study in Psychological Science, “making a good, respectable name for yourself leads to the most satisfaction,” as opposed to having lots of money. The articles mentions that researchers studied 80 college students happiness levels. They then calculated the students levels of “respect” through peer ratings and how many leadership positions the students had. When they asked about the students income the truth came out: money did not make them happy- respect did… Womens Health then goes on giving some tips to help raise you respectfulness…

  • Be honest—and be open to others’ honesty. (Wise words of Donald Trump..)
  • Believing in yourself, Setting firm goals and following through. (Maria Rodale, CEO and chairman of Rodale, Inc.)
  • Instead of hyperfocusing on other people, look to yourself (John Mackey, co-CEO of Whole Foods Market) My moms a big fan lol.

I think these are great points however… here its goes…. you need money for respect. (unfortunately) You need appropriate clothes and materials. However, with respect you can work your way to get those things I guess. Its a never ending cycle.