I am often impressed when someone says they’re a “self-made ______.” But I am more impressed when someone I look up to says “I am nothing without my team/friends/family”. Being able to ask for support and lean on others when needed is brave and a coveted skill in all areas of life.

The people you look up to didn’t get to where they are by themselves, and although we may not see the favors, late-night convos, and encouragement that made that person who they are, we know a strong community is essential for success and overall happiness.

Being an entrepreneur and moving to different cities throughout my life, I have always put extreme emphasis on finding my people. Like-minded humans who help me grow and learn and become the best version of myself. This has not always been easy but nothing worth it ever is, right?

There are lots of powerful neuroscience-backed benefits to community (including the fact that it’s WAY more fun to do things together than apart).

Here are a few reasons why your brain (and life!) need the power of positive community:

  • Community helps your brain function. Studies have shown that positive community can improve our cognitive vitality -- in other words, community keeps our brain active and engaged and decreases our stress. Spending time with others can help our concentration, memory, and decision making — as well as causing lots of activity in the reward circuit parts of our brains that make us feel good!

  • Community helps you learn better. Learning is just different on your own, but there’s something about learning with others that motivates us to do better and helps show us our blind spots. Our friends can be our greatest teachers and our minds tend to absorb information better when processed with others.

  • Community helps you face challenges with optimism. A professor at the University of Virginia had his students stand at the base of a hill and assess how steep it was. The people who stood beside their friends have low estimates, while those who stood alone gave high estimates. The hill didn’t change; the perception did. Community support can shift our mindset and make mountains look like molehills.

  • Community improves your happiness. Leading happiness researchers found that the happiest people had strong relationships — and that those relationships were fundamental for happiness. And happiness is contagious! A Harvard Medical school study showed that having a happy friend improves your chances of happiness by 15% -- and the effect can last as long as a year!

If you are looking for a community of like-minded people to help you learn and grow, we are launching something soon for you! More details to come on how to become a part of the Mindfulness Matters community right here in upcoming weeks.

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” - Helen Keller

Do you ever feel like you’re just surviving? Perhaps your life sounds great on paper— but it doesn’t feel aligned with who you really are or what you really want. Before I started Mindfulness Matters, my life still seemed great; tons of work travel, glitzy dinners, free clothes, climbing the corporate ladder— but the truth is, I was miserable.

I had a deep knowing that there was something more - I just didn't know what that was or how to get there. I learned that choosing to say yes to the things that made me the most uncomfortable was how I learned to thrive.

If you are feeling out of alignment with the things you fill your life with daily, it is time to shake things up. It will most likely feel scary, let’s be real— it is. But for those who know that there’s more to life than merely surviving the daily grind, it’s necessary to take that risk.

Here are 3 signals that mean it’s time to change your life in a major way:

1. You’re stuck in the past or dreaming about the future.

If you can’t seem to remain present to what’s right in front of you, it could be a sign that you don’t enjoy your life very much. Romanticizing the past or constantly thinking (or obsessing) about the future is a sign that you need to make those future dreams your current reality.

2. You feel jealous or insecure when others succeed.

We shouldn’t need other people to fail to feel like we’re a success. Happy and thriving people get excited when the people around them tap into that flourishing too! If you get upset when someone around you (especially someone you love) gets a win, it should tell you that you’re stuck in the comparison game and need to change your situation.

3. Your intuition keeps telling you: “There’s got to be more than this!”

Whether you believe you have intuition or not, you know when something doesn’t feel right. If you wake up every day thinking about where you’d rather be, it is probably a sign you’re not in the right place. Listen to those gut feelings.

If you relate to any of this, apply for a Clarity Coaching Call with me and let’s discuss the major life changes you want to embark on!

Practicing mindfulness can be uncomfortable. It brings awareness to systems we're part of or things inside of us that we're eager to shift. And that change is so, so possible, but not without the discomfort that comes with transformation.

Deep internal work will certainly cause difficult feelings to arise — let us welcome those as learning partners. If we address ourselves with curiosity instead of condemnation, we can move into action from a whole-hearted place rather than a fearful one (thank you, Brené Brown)!

As we've been learning and becoming more conscious of our own privilege and the lack of diversity within the wellness industry, we wanted to amplify a few BIPOC ladies in wellness that we hope will expand your vision:

1. Latham Thomas

Named one of Oprah Winfrey’s Super Soul 100, Latham Thomas is a celebrity doula and maternal wellness maven. Latham is the founder of Mama Glow, a global women's health and education brand serving women along the childbearing continuum. Mama Glow supports women and families during the fertility period, pregnancy, birth as well as during postpartum offering hand-holding through their bespoke doula services. Her book, Own Your Glow: A Soulful Guide to Luminous Living and Crowning the Queen Within (Hay House) released on paperback on June 16, 2020. We love she that identifies as a “self-care sorceress”!

Follow Latham and Mama Glow on Instagram for holistic motherhood wellness!

2. Chelsea Williams, MPH + CCPH

Chelsea Williams is a plant-based public health nutritionist, digital content creator, and wellness writer based in Los Angeles, CA. And let me tell you— her content is gorgeous and full of clean-eating inspiration! She serves as 1 of 6 Board of Advisors for The Well, a social brand by Samsung Mobile USA and POPSUGAR Fitness that focuses on wellness content and experiential events. Chelsea’s work has been featured on various media outlets such as TV One, Fox 45 News, ABC 7 News – WJLA, News Channel 8, ESSENCE, PR Newswire, and Beauty Independent — you name it. Chelsea possesses a Master of Public Health Nutrition (MPH) and is a Certified Communicator in Public Health (CCPH) through the National Public Health Information Coalition.

Follow Chelsea on Instagram for all things beauty, wellness, nutrition, and fitness!

3. Dr. Naika Apeakorang

Dr. Naika Apeakorang is a trailblazing naturopathic practitioner, acupuncturist, and herbalist currently practicing in New York City. As a graduate of Brown University and Bastyr University, Dr. Naika runs a successful private practice (in a very gorgeous plant and light-filled office) where she offers mindfulness-centered, culturally connected, and accessible care. Dr. Naika’s integrative approach includes modalities such as acupuncture, nutrition, lifestyle coaching, supplement therapy, and herbal medicine. Passionate about community health and education, Dr. Naika regularly facilitates immersive workshops, lectures, and community healing events around the globe. She has lectured at educational institutions and non-profits, partnered with premiere cultural establishments, and provided corporate wellness activations with global brands.

Follow Dr. Naika for all the natural healing vibes!

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