Let’s talk: Why INTENTION matters

I always try to lead my life with focused intention on what I wish to accomplish and what energy I want around me. I might not share this on my daily IG Stories but it is something I fully believe in and I think everyone should do the same, why? Because when we are mindful on intention in relation to everything we do, we remain focused on achieving our goals faster and more effectively. Think about it… Intention is the thoughts, beliefs and emotions in which we approach people, opportunities, new challenges (the good and bad kind) and life all together, we basically breathe it in every single day so why not focus on making it strong and beneficial rather than passive or even obstructive?

This is why it is important to be mindful of how we act towards others and ourselves because remember, you receive whatever you put out there so even our feelings become our very essence and energy and you want to make sure it’s not a toxic one. 

It is very easy to spot a person that goes through life as a downer, someone who simply chooses to see everything and everyone out to get them only to sink deeper into their desolation. But just the same we can spot someone who without evidence of circumstances getting better, they still manage to see things for how they could be, see every great possibility out there and sooner or later find themselves living that life. One of these two examples is living life with focused intention to succeed and be happy.

If however you find yourself surrounded by others who do make those life choices… that environment is just as toxic even if you don’t live your life that way. This last example can be particularly hard to be in because you might be close to this person, love them and want to be there for them but hard as you try, it is on THEM to make the effort to change NOT YOU so you should not allow foreign energies to cloud your own. In this case take a step back, reevaluate what you want to attract into your life and take positive action towards that, trust me, in the end this helps the other person too.

Truth is nothing was ever built or existed without intention, so how can we practice being mindful about it?

In small ways but doing it consistently everyday. You could:

  1. Start the habit of repeating to yourself every morning what you want for your life for a few minutes before you even get out of bed. Really, while you’re tossing and turning take a deep breath and let the message sink in. I think this is an excellent way to start your day with the right mindset.
  2. Or try it at night before bedtime as a way to cleanse your mind of negative thoughts and attitudes from others or yourself that held you back that day. Go to bed feeling serene and recharged to wake up feeling truly rested.
  3. Search for clarity while you work out. Whether it’s yoga, boxing class, going to the gym, running, barre class… whichever one you enjoy. Allow in that moment of feeling powerful and motivated to run deep through you and envision that intention touching EVERY part of your life. Do this until you can see it clearly, until it feels like second nature, a part of who you are.
  4. While you enjoy your cup of coffee/tea. In the morning or on your break time, use those few minutes to yourself to practice being aware of your energy, of intention.
  5. Or it can be as simple as while you’re cleaning your home or making dinner. I find it that while I’m doing those familiar tasks, my mind tends to wander off, my body goes on automatic mode and I end up reflecting deeper on whatever I’m dealing with that week. So why not use that productive time to train my mind to be mindful of intention. 

It all starts with an intention, then it’s a behaviour, then a habit until it is the very essence of who you are. So try leading with intention and you will see what a big change it will be on your small day-to-day goals, on your long-term career goals and in your relationships in general.

Hope you found this post helpful! And if you have other ways to practice this please share them in the comments below so we can all learn from one another.

Thank you for stopping by,

xo Erika

My First Video + Youtube Channel

After a very, very, VERY long time of wanting to share video content on YouTube I am happy to say that I’ve finally done it! I posted my very first Video this past Sunday as a quick intro and plan on posting more from now on. I think for the longest time I was stuck in my usual –overthinking everything a million times– type of behaviour BUT I’ve decided this year I just need to go for the things I want to do. And not just that but do them without the pressure of wanting everything to be absolutely PERFECT, I mean hello Virgo here… So I know it will be a challenge but I’m doing my best to put an end to that habit and focus on what I want to get done.

This first video is very short & sweet as I’m still learning the whole editing process but I’ll work hard to keep improving! I am over the moon excited to start bringing everyone along with me this year, so without too much chit-chat here it is…

Let me know what you think and don’t forget to Subscribe! And as always thank you so much for stopping by…

5 TV shows I’ve binge-watched in the past few months and 5 TV shows I’m looking forward to this 2019!

This weekend was pretty gloomy here in SoCal. My life these past 6+ years in Newport Beach have kept me very spoiled weather wise and it turns out I can’t take 2 rainy days in a row –I mean, when did this happen?? I used to live in San Francisco, where I walked literally EVERYWHERE and I’d stay soaking wet for 6 hours straight because I was in college and never remembered to pack extra clothes in my backpack or was too lazy to carry them since I was already carrying heavy art boards all day. But Anyways… where did that Erika go?

Jump a few years later and I’m living back in Cali again (southern Cali) and can’t get my mind straight because the sun didn’t come out this weekend… lame! But that’s how I started looking for new tv shows to obsesses about. I was out at the beach for about 20-30min watching Tom and the guys race Traxxas cars but then we headed back inside, I opened a bottle of Rose, we put the fireplace on and ordered some Thai food (go to Mint Leaf if you live in Newp). And that’s when one of my friend’s recommended the show YOU –I know it’s been out for months but I had never given it a second thought, he did warn us it was addictive but all I heard was “the guy from Gossip girl is in it” and that’s all I needed to hear!

It is now Monday and I have officially finished the first season. Yup, I binge watched the whole thing in like 24hrs. I don’t want to over sell it though, keep in mind crappy that weather does help keep you comfy inside, but in my opinion this show was casted perfectly! It’s also fast paced, creepy but not scary (huge difference + very important if you know me) and it makes you think twice about how much we’re all sharing on social media. The only thing I regret is not reading the book first!

| Shows I binge watched in the past few months, in no particular order… |

  1. YOU (it’s on Netflix). I think I’ve shared enough, it’s up to you now <3
  2. Maniac (also on Netflix). I think it’s a very creative story! And okay, I’m not an expert but I love how it was filmed, it made me feel like I was in the story with them, also kinda futuristic which I’m surprised to be into lately and I happen to looove Emma Stone so this one was not hard to love.
  3. Sabrina (you guessed it, Netflix too). I swear this isn’t sponsored by Netflix, it’s only a coincidence!! Now, this one is a bit for my nostalgic side because I grew up loving Melissa Joan Heart and wanting to dress like her (don’t judge). I’ll admit the romance part of this story is a bit silly, or at least for me BUT I really liked the twist. It’s like a whole new story, but not. Am I confusing you? Maybe I just want you to go watch it too…
  4. The Paradise (on Netflix). The story takes place in the 1870’s in North of England and it is based on a novel by Emile Zola. The show is about the rise of this department store called The Paradise which offers every dreamy little trinket a woman might desire presented in the most aesthetically pleasing way. So what’s so interesting about it? Well, it may not be a big deal to us now we (or at least I) live for the right aesthetics 24/7, but it’s fun to see how this might have first been introduced back then. It’s a light, dreamy and simpler times type of show, not anywhere near as dark as the ones I mentioned above but every bit as entertaining.
  5. The Haunting of Hill House (on Netflix). If you watched my Instagram Stories while I was in Paris this Fall then you watched me getting spooked by this show haha. Basically Tom and I got stuck at our Airbnb for a day and half because of weather so we bought a ton of cheese, wine, pastries, put a pizza in the oven and binge watched the hell out of this!! First I have to say that I DO NOT KNOW HOW HE CONVINCED ME, I do not watch scary shows, movies or anything!! But the show is based on this novel from 1959 that goes through a trauma early on, the cast looked pretty good (I’m always annoying about that) so I gave in! And even though it messed up with my head for the rest of the week, I am so glad I watched it! It’s a thrilling story.

| Shows I’m looking forward to this 2019 |

  1. Game of Thrones (on HBO, season 8). Again, if you ever watch my Instagram Stories then you know Tom and I have been reading the books (or more like he’s reading them to me because he’s read them all), but if you haven’t then I’ll also tell you I LOVE the show! The actors are all to good, so I follow both stories. If you’ve never watched GOT, I’ll say it can get gory pretty fast which I’m not into to be honest, but for once I can move past it because the drama and struggle for power between the characters is that good! Oh and if you’re wondering, the books are 100 times more additive. This new season comes back April 2019.
  2. Big Little Lies (on HBO, season 2). I don’t know where to begin! I adored this show so much. The women in it killed it, just killed it with their performances. The story is based on the book by Liane Moriarty, which I haven’t read but the show is so binge-worthy! I was fascinated from episode one, it’s dark, it feels relatable (no I don’t have kids but we all know these types of people so it’s entertaining to watch) and it basically gave me the chills. I’m excited how they develop the story for season 2 and with Meryl Streep joining the crew I literally cannot contain myself.
  3. Good Omens (on Amazon prime). I guess it’s time for me to sign up because this show sounds like it will be right up my alley. This Fantasy drama tells the story of an angel and demon teaming up in order to prepare for an apocalypse. Honestly the first thing that drew me to look into it was a release photo for the upcoming show of both actors in their full costume –yup clothes and style are enough to get me into looking up anything! Beyond that I just liked the theme of it so we’ll see…
  4. Top of the Morning (on Apple’s first ever show). It first caught my interest because Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon will be in it and Friends came rushing back to me! It looks like this time they will be playing news morning show hosts, but whatever role they play I am all in. So excited for this one! And sure I’m also curious to see what Apple is doing next.
  5. Grey’s Anatomy (on Hulu and Netflix, season 15). Did you think I could make all these lists and not include my favorite show of all times??! I truly hope this show never ends. Shonda Rhimes is genius! I’ve watched other shows she’s been a part of but none compare to this one. I began watching in college about 10 years ago and I’m still here, believe me it’s one of the gooood ones.

 Bonus: La Casa de las Flores or The House of Flowers (en Netflix). Acabo de ver la peli “Perfectos Desconocidos” con la actriz Cecilia Suarez, que también esta en ésta serie y me ENCANTO! Sentí la actuation muy auténtica y te deja queriendo mas. Así que si tienen una tarde libre, les recomiendo que la vean. // I wanted to include this one for those of you who speak Spanish (do not match the english version) because I love that over the years we are getting more options out there not just telenovelas, and this one is so great! It’s funny in a dark way and there’s plenty of drama but not the cringy-type. 

If I’m missing a series you think I should watch let me know in the comments below, I’m always up for suggestions!!

xo Erika

New Diet + FOOD INTOLERANCE TEST

I’m sharing a more personal post this week. I recently went to the doctor because my health was acting up and I couldn’t figure out how to feel better. The doctor convinced me to get a Food Intolerance test and well long story short, it turns out I present high reactions to certain foods –I was shocked! I’ve always paid special attention to what I eat and I thought I knew my body pretty well but I guess we never stop learning about our bodies. So now I’ve been implementing a new diet and I feel better than ever.

When I posted about it on my Instagram Stories I got so many DMs asking me which test I had taken and where, how long it took, how much it cost me and it went on and on… I’m no expert on this, but I decided to share the blog post on my experience in case it helps someone out there. So here it is… I took the General Food Panel: IgG and I was very happy with it. Basically what this test tells you is if you are sensitive to certain foods or food categories through a “Reaction Class” that presents different levels starting from:

O (no reaction), I (very low), II (low) , III (moderate), IV (high), V (very high) and up to VI (extremely high) on the categories: Dairy, Meat/Fowl, Misc, Fruits, Fish/Crustacea/Mollusk, Grains/Legumes/Nuts, Vegetables.

That said, I know there are more tests out there so it all depends on what your doctor recommends for your specific needs and that’s why I would recommend consulting your own doctor or Allergist / Immunologist. As for the place, I had been going to a local Naturopathic doctor in Orange County (this type of medicine is new to me but the results can’t be denied) and that’s when she suggested I took this test. Now as for the price I believe I paid $150 which I wasn’t excited about! But it was super easy, they got my blood sample there at her office (almost fainted like I always do when it involves needles and blood), they sent it to a Lab and about a week or so after I got my results. And I am sooo happy I decided to do it! I learned so much about my body.

*Of course you can ask your own doctor about this test, I just so happened to want to try a Naturopathic one but yours might even be a little less pricey, not sure, the point is that you go to someone you trust.

Before I took this test I was 99% sure I was waiting my money and my time thinking I didn’t have any issues with food… HA! I was so wrong. No I’ve learned that it never hurts to check up on our general health. Whatever your motivation is, whether you wish to find out more about your body, find a solution to a recurrent health problem or simply because Summer is coming up and we want to look and feel our best, at the end of the day being informed about our health is always beneficial and in my case it was eye opening! 

My doctor explained to me that over the years our bodies can present new reactions to things that never harmed us before and vice versa. And now that I think about it, its true! I remember not being able to eat shrimp as a kid because I would break out in what looked like hives (ALL OVER MY BODY) but I loved shrimp, so I would be a sneaky kid and eat it when my parents weren’t looking so back to the hospital we would go. But now I can eat it every day and it does absolutely nothing to me and I never understood why, until now. She also explained that some reactions are not as visible to the eye so they’re hard to catch, that some present as internal problems. Like for example, ever since I changed my diet I have so much more energy, my sleeping patterns have also improved, but even my skin looks and feels better, less acne for sure and so many more aspects that I won’t bore you with and it’s only been about two months. I never realised how food can play such a huge role on all these other matters. Of course, just because I had those results does not mean it will be the same for everyone, but I think it’s so interesting and worth knowing if our bodies are trying to tell us something.

But anyways I now find myself avoiding eggs, mushrooms, pineapple, tuna, casein, whey, amaranth, dairy (still mourning over that one) and some others. But it got me thinking, we are what we eat right? So if these foods are hurting my body then why put it through unnecessary pain when there are so many ways to replace these foods! Some are harder than others, for example I never ever noticed that dairy was a problem so that one was tough, but it turns out it was heavily connected to my acne and some other issues in my body so it had to go. However I’ve learned to replace it with Oat Milk and it is heaven!!! I love it so much. I first tried Almond milk but that makes me break out too and Coconut milk tastes kind of funny, so to me this was a great replacement. It’s all about paying attention to what your body needs, otherwise how do we expect to look or feel the way we wish if we don’t listen to it??

I’m going to wrap it up here but I hope this was helpful and worth your time! If you have any questions about this or any other topic you would like me to talk about then please leave me a comment below and never be afraid to dm me, I always always reply. All the love…

My i.am + BUTTONS Experience

A couple of months ago I got the chance to meet up with will.i.am ‘s team and see all the amazing things his tech company  i.am + is working on, including their latest launch the wireless earphones BUTTONS. And they are amazing! Right away I loved the design and got excited to work together to introduce you guys my new favorite tech + fashion accessory all in one!

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As a blogger and a woman who loves fashion, I always make sure my style is reflected in everything I wear —I’m saying truly down to the smallest detail! So it makes sense that someone would come up with earbuds that actually look good with your outfit right?? Well here comes BUTTONS to save the day…

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That said, I also spend a lot of time on my phone so even thought I love listening to my favorite songs, it’s not just about the music. I mean a girl has to work right?? And that’s why I truly love these. I can take calls on them too, which comes in handy when I’m running around all day, from shoot to shoot and I have scheduled call meetings in between —to which I never get used to lol (that’s just my personality) but this definitely helps the process go by smoother. Plus, the sound is crisp clear! So it’s a win-win.

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All in all I can’t help but love my BUTTONS. And I had the best time shooting with the team. We met up at some of my favorite places in LA, we shot a quick video, took some fun photos and they were all incredibly nice and easy to work with! Which I always appreciate, it made the experience even better. ***Also, I had posted the video we did, but I had some issues with it loading on this page, so I will post it again on a separate one… stay tuned! But I hope you guys enjoy it as much as I did and please let me know what you think!

As always thanks so much for reading!

xo Erika

Disclaimer: I did not buy these, they were gifted to me by the brand. But this as always is my honest opinion <3  Photos and video by: i.am.+

 

SIMON x Vogue Magazine Campaign

If you follow me on Instagram you have already taken a peek at my weekend getaway! But in case you haven’t I will share some of the exciting details with you. I got the pleasure of working with Vogue and SIMON a global Outlet company all across North America, Europe and Asia. They invited me and a great group of bloggers and influencers in the fashion industry on a weekend getaway to Palm Springs for a shopping spree! We got to stay at The Saguaro Hotel (which you probably remember for its colorful sights) and yes, it’s just as beautiful as in the pictures! And got to shop all day at Desert Hills Premium Outlet, a girls dream come true right? I mean we jumped from Gucci, to Prada, to YSL , Valentino and pretty much every single one of my favorite brands, where they were waiting for us with champagne to help us shop.

Now, I have to confess that I had never been to this outlet before so I honestly did not know what to expect, but I swear I fell in love with it! They had every single store I could think of, the deals we found were amazing and everyone I talked to was so nice, which to me is VERY important when Im shopping.

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This was our group! Coming into this I wasn’t sure who I would be seeing this weekend, but I appreciated so much that every person in this photo and every single person behind the scenes taking it were unbelievably nice and so fun to work with! I am truly happy I got to meet them all..

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I got caught snapchatting on our way there! And yes that is my favorite filter (don’t judge) If you don’t already, you can follow my Snaps for behind the scenes on this and other fun campaigns here.. Username: ERIKAVM

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We then checked in at The Saguaro Hotel where we each got our own room and got to enjoy everything this beautiful hotel has to offer. My first impression was how vibrant and trendy this hotel is. I have seen it over an over in other people’s travels but had yet to see it for myself and let me tell you, I loved it! The rooms were very spacious and comfortable, the decor was original and artistic but what stood out the most was how friendly the staff was, they went above and beyond to make me feel welcomed.

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After checking in I got ready for a fun dinner & cocktails “al fresco” style at the hotel’s beautiful gardens!! Just look at the amazing set up they had for us..

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Photo by: Laura Grier

And of course I pretty much died over every single blogger’s outfit this weekend, I love each of their unique sense of style and I’m pretty sure Im not the only one, am I right? We wrapped the night with a group photo with flowers that we may or may not have stolen from the centerpieces at dinner.. Can’t pass a good photo prop right??

But all joking aside, this was one of the most fun campaigns I have ever been in. I loved everything, from the amazing bloggers that came, to The Saguaro Hotel amazing employees and decor, to the helpful retail assistants at Desert Hills Premium Outlets, to the entire crew that made this weekend possible. As a blogger you get good events and not so good ones, but let me say with all honesty that this was most definitely one of the BEST ones! I loved sharing this experience with you and I hope you liked it too.

As always thank you for reading,

xo Erika

4 Key Habits Every Girl Boss Needs To Know

This year is flying by! I can’t believe it’s almost May, right?! Spring just brings a lot of work to my week, so with a full agenda it’s really easy to feel overwhelmed. I mean don’t get me wrong, I love what I do but its a lot of work! So I realised that by implementing these 4 key habits I am able to get things done much faster:

  1. Make Friday your Plan Day: Monday’s are universally hated. That’s a fact. Well then it makes sense to end your Friday’s day work with a list of next week’s To-Do List by prioritizing what will help me move my career/business forward. Why? Because that way even when you have an unbelievably busy schedule, by making next week’s list you’ll have one less thing to worry about at the end of each day and more importantly you will be able to enjoy your weekend without dreading Monday (as much). This brings me to step #2…
  2. Tackle the hardest thing on your list first: Okay so Monday comes and everyday I have my to-do lists. But still, seeing a long list might make you feel stressed, so what I do is I tackle the most tedious and/or most important thing first. Why? Because I’ve realised that by doing this it gives me a sense of accomplishment. I feel the weight come off my shoulders therefore I’m more motivated and the rest of my list doesn’t seem as hard.
  3. Boomerang for Gmail: This is a LIFE SAVER. It works for scheduling your emails. No matter in what industry you’re in, we all get tons of important emails everyday. Now, my biggest nightmare is when I forget to email back during work hours or worse to follow-up! So with Boomerang, you write an email and it gives you options like Send Now or Schedule For Later or you can also set it up to remind you to follow-up in “x” mount of days/weeks if you don’t hear back. Amazing right?! That way I can answer emails at the end of my day and schedule to have them send first thing in the morning! And just like that my morning starts way less stressful aaand helps out with step #4 (keep reading)..
  4. Exercising M-F: I know what you’re thinking WHEN do you find the time to work out during the week? Why not go the weekend instead?? Well let me tell you.. if you make the effort to get up extra early and make it to the gym, the rest of the day you will feel way more energized! You feel more motivated and trust me your attitude dramatically changes. Exercising during the week is the main reason why successful people get every single task done that day. Think about it, the endorphins you realise when exercising keep you focused and driven all day so you see.. the week is WHEN you need that extra push, keep the weekend for other fun activities or hell sleep in! You deserve it Girl Boss! Dont believe me? Try it <3

 

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What I wore:

White Halter dress from Zara | Espadrille Wedges from Forever21 | Sunnies from Ray-Ban

Shop similar looks:

Ray-Ban Rounded Sunglasses $112.50        Forever21 Crochet-Trimmed Halter Dress  $22.90

             Rounded Sunglasses                                   Crochet-Trimmed Halter Dress

Forever21 Faux Suede Espadrille Wedges $34.90          Nordstrom White Flare Dress $198.00

wedges                        Norsdtrom white dress

 

These 4 habits have completely changed my outlook of the day ahead of me. You should start your week eager to keep growing and chasing your goals, not dreading your day’s work! So try them out and let me know what you think! And if you have any suggestions or things you do to better your days please share them below, I’d love to know!

I really hope you found this post helpful.

Thanks for reading,

Love, Erika