Yesterday was my last day working as the Audience Engagement and Social Media Intern for Girls’ Night In. I feel like I didn’t take the opportunity to share much about what I worked on with GNI this semester, but here’s a link to my LinkedIn, go catch up.
If you follow me on social media or have even spent a millisecond talking to me in the past three months, you know how much I fell in love with the company, team, and mission of GNI. The self-care themed newsletter and community for millennial women in DC meant more to me than my Ky-lighter (french vanilla shade obvi), spin classes, and Trader Joe’s Everything But The Bagel Seasoning combined. Okay, maybe an exaggeration, but still… Enamored with it.
I think one reason that I hold this internship experience so close to my heart is that before it, I didn’t understand the concept of self-indulging. I’m an extremely type-A person; I like control, order, and all the Google Calendar reminders along the way. It’s always been extremely hard for me to take time for myself or admit that I am on the path to burnout. Self-awareness is only so productive when you lack the resources to save yourself from over-work.
Girls’ Night In’s focus on bringing self-care to women, letting them slow down and face-mask it out, changed my own wellness philosophy. Over the course of the semester, I’ve learned to push what feels urgent to the side for a necessary second and give myself permission to not be productive 24/7.
And, because sharing is caring: here are three parts of self-care that I now cherish, celebrate, and skip many social events in the name of.
1. Always Have A Book By The Bedside
Don’t fret, a full list of this semesters’ reads is coming (and it’s a good one), but I made it a priority to always be in the middle of a book. From celebrity memoirs to mysteries that are impossible to put down (no matter when your accounting homework is due), I let books be an escape from both bad and good days. One of my favorite things to do is kill off a “bad vibes day” by stepping away for an hour and entering a different, fictional world. It brings new light to once overwhelming problems in a way that mindless Netflix binging can’t. #bookwormstatus
2. Diversify How You Digest Wellness
It’s easy to follow a fitness blogger on Instagram for work-out inspiration and call it a day, but this semester I challenged myself to move deeper into the world of wellness media. I started by connecting with Instagram Influencers that add to my own wellness journey. Some accounts are focused on body positive content or daily affirmations, like Chinae Alexander and Alex Elle, while others serve the purpose of welcoming more art to my feed, like watercolorist extraordinaire, Riley Sheeney, and illustrator, Marian Andrews.
I also unfollowed purposeless accounts and went for more pro-women powerhouses, like the Founder + Chief Creative Officer of Band.o, Jen Gotch (who also happens to be an iconic mental-health advocate + all-around total girl crush of mine). Other ways to explore wellness off social media, podcasts like GirlBoss Radio, Call Your Girlfriend, and That’s So Retrograde.
3. YOU CAN SAY NO TO PLANS- IT’S OK.
Guys, I don’t know if anyone has ever told you this, BUT LIKE, YOU CAN SAY NO TO MAKING PLANS WITH PEOPLE WITH NO REASON OTHER THAN, “I want time alone, today.” This is my new guiding philosophy, and let me tell you, pre-internship Homebody-ness aside, it has changed me. I am a go-getter and never-let-them-downer, and now I know that turning down plans isn’t the tragic, “you’re going to lose all your friends,” situation I always thought it was.
I can watch Parks and Rec in bed on a Friday night. I can put on a face mask instead of going to a dinner party. And, I really have Alisha Ramos and Girls’ Night In to thank for that newfound, self-love. As long as I’m putting effort into the relationships I want to maintain, saying “no” because you don’t have room on your plate doesn’t mean you’re a failure, it means you’re realistic about your time.
Self- care is a hard concept to grasp. To learn more, subscribe to Girls’ Night In’s weekly newsletter (Fridays will never be the same) and check out their content. And while you’re at it, follow them on Instagram. And Twitter. Okay, and Facebook. And buy tickets to the book club.
Thank you to Alisha and the GNI team for all they’ve taught me. Definitely owe them all a tall mug of green tea sometime.
Stuck in my head: Pictures of Girls // Wallows
Snap it: Colada Shop, 14th St, DC