Tips to stay positive \\\ Trucs pour rester positifs

(version française plus bas!)

It’s this time of year again: the winter seems to drag on, Christmas is over, the next holidays are miles away, and everything seems a little bit grey and mush. As the news are not helping, I find myself having trouble staying positive. I wanted to share my tips on how to stick to the positive side of things and get going when things are hard.

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  1. Take care of your body: I find that when I’m in a sad or negative mood, the first thing that goes away is my self-care routine. I don’t want to cook, I don’t want to sleep, and I don’t want to exercise. I basically just want to binge watch shows and eat popcorn. By pushing myself to eat whole foods, to have a regular sleep schedule and to stick to my exercise routine, I generally find that my mood gets better.
  2. Stay informed but don’t dwell on the news: Like for many people, the news have been a giant source of anxiety and frustration for me in recent weeks. That’s why I have limited my intake of news. I strongly believe that it is important to stay informed and to know what exactly is going on. However, I also don’t see the value in dwelling and spending extended periods of time on the news. That’s why I just give myself 10 minutes in the morning or in the car to read the papers or listen to the radio and that’s it.
  3. Invest in yourself: Particularly when things are difficult, I think it’s a good habit to go back to our personal passions. If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I recently picked up my calligraphy again. Giving myself time to do things that I truly enjoy are a great way to bring joy into my life.
  4. Go back to books or movies you enjoy: By this, I mean Harry Potter! For me, reading the Harry Potter books is like going back to a safe and warm place. Going through all the books again is giving my mind a rest while also lifting my mood up.
  5. Remember that you are not alone: It sometimes is really hard to remember that other people share the same positive, hopeful, compassionate and constructive ideals and values than me. If this is your case, I have two documentaries to help you see the positive sides of things, get you inspired and let you know about other people who are working to make a positive change. A Quest for Meaning and Tomorrow are amazing films. Both teams are looking for solutions and present amazing role models. I have a soft spot for Tomorrow as it really covers many spheres of society and brings alternatives for every single one. Now, that’s encouraging. Every time I watch these movies, I feel energized and ready to keep going.

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I really hope these tips help you get some positive vibes back in. Let me know if you have any tips and share them in the comments bellow. Be patient with yourself, and know that things will get better. Good luck!


C’est ce moment de l’année : l’hiver semble interminable, Noël est fini, les prochaines vacances sont vraiment loin, et tout semble un peu trop gris. Comme l’actualité n’aide vraiment pas, il peut être difficile de rester positif. Je voulais partager mes trucs pour se concentrer sur le côté positif des choses et continuer à avancer lorsque les choses sont difficiles.

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  1. Prendre soins de votre corps : Je trouve que lorsque je suis d’humeur morose ou négative, la première chose qui disparaît est ma routine bien-être. Je ne veux pas cuisiner, je ne veux pas dormir et je ne veux pas faire de l’exercice. En fait, je me contenterais bien de regarder des films toute la journée et de manger du maïs soufflé. En me poussant à manger de la nourriture de qualité, à avoir un horaire de sommeil régulier et à aller au gym, mon humeur se porte beaucoup mieux.
  2. Rester informé, sans plus : Comme pour beaucoup de gens, l’actualité des dernières semaines est une source de stress et de frustration. C’est pourquoi je limite maintenant le temps que je passe sur les nouvelles. Je suis convaincue qu’il est important de rester informé et de savoir ce qui se passe, mais sans plus. Je limite maintenant mon apport quotidien en nouvelles à une dizaine de minutes pour lire des articles ou écouter la radio, mais c’est tout.
  3. Investir en soi-même : Particulièrement lorsque les choses sont un peu plus difficiles, je pense qu’il est important de se recentrer sur nos passions. Si vous me suivez sur Instagram, vous savez que j’ai récemment recommencé à faire de la calligraphie. Me donner du temps pour faire des choses que j’aime est un moyen certain d’apporter de la joie dans ma vie.
  4. Retourner à ses livres et films préférés : Harry Potter! Pour moi, relire encore une fois cette série me ramène dans un espace réconfortant et confortable. Repasser à travers ces livres donne une pause à mon esprit et me met de bonne humeur.
  5. Se souvenir que l’on n’est pas seul : Il m’est parfois vraiment difficile de se souvenir que d’autres personnes partagent les mêmes valeurs de positivisme, d’espoir, de compassion et de changement que moi. Si c’est aussi votre cas, j’ai deux documentaires à vous proposer pour vous aider à voir le côté positif des choses, vous inspirer et vous faire rencontrer des gens qui travaillent au changement. En quête de Sens et Demain sont des films à voir. Ces deux équipes ont cherché et trouvés des solutions et nous présentent des modèles incroyables. À chaque fois que je regarde ces films, je me sens énergisée et prête à continuer.

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J’espère vraiment que ces petits trucs vous aideront à retrouver des ondes positives. Partagez vos trucs dans les commentaires et soyez patients avec vous-même. Bonne chance!

A clutter-free mind

As we moved recently, I have been witness to the incredible amount of junk and clutter we can accumulate without noticing. These unused items take place, are magnets for dust, and make our living space smaller and cumbered. It’s fascinating to see how much more comfortable I feel when I enter a yoga studio where there are only a few objects, or how free and clear my mind seems to be after having cleaned up my desk. Of course, it’s easy to see how a clear space can help create a clear mind, but how can we keep a clear mind?

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Many things can make my mind feel foggy, negative, in a rut, dusty or disorganized. I feel like it’s my responsibility to take care of my mind, just like I would take care of clearing up my desk, bedroom or living space. However, it’s not always simple to know how to do so. I wanted to share my few bits on that today. Here are a few principles that I apply to make sure I don’t feel like there’s too much going on between my two ears too often.

  1. Your mind is like Hermione’s purse: The amount of information that our brains can contain and remember is incredible! I like to imagine that my brain is like the famous magical purse: you can pretty much put everything and anything in it, and it will stay there. The great thing about this is that you can choose what you want to put inside of your mind-purse most of the time. For example, you can decide to watch a heartbreaking documentary on Indian orphans or the documentary on the amazingly inspiring doctor who works with these kids. You can decide to look at pictures of tortured animals, or focus on the wonderful initiatives that exist all over the world to help animals. I strongly believe that no one needs to consume negative images, texts or films in order to be informed. It’s not denying any situation, it’s simply making sure that you take in positive information that will nourish your creativity and motivation. This is particularly important when you consider point #2.
  2. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat: According to many studies, 90% of our thoughts are repetitive. Wow! This is impressive. We think all day, every minute of every day, and yet we are almost devoid of originality when it comes to these thoughts. We repeat, mull over, come back, and look again over and over and over again. The way I understand this combined with point #1 is that if I subject my mind to negative images, for example, these images will come back to me again and again, influencing me even days after I saw the original images. I might as well nourish my mind with positive information.
  3. Unplug: I love the internet. You can find anything on the internet. But you can also find many of these same things in the real world. Libraries are still there, the sky is still there, people are still there. As a kid, before the internet took over the world, I used to spend entire afternoons curled up in a corner of my local library exploring books in different languages, discovering new possible hobbies and cultures and challenging my librarian to find the next book that I would bring home. Unlike the internet, my library was peaceful and commercial free. I didn’t have to like everything I saw, and I could be alone with my thoughts without sharing them with the world. This time alone gave me the chance to settle down and relax from days spent surrounded by noise and people. It gave my mind a chance to move at its own pace. So, I like to unplug completely regularly to force myself to go out and explore the real world.

These three points don’t seem like much, but they have helped me incredibly to choose what information to consume and what to do with my free time. As a vegan especially, I feel like it’s easy to be overwhelmed with information about animal welfare that is little more than horror stories and gruesome pictures. However, this type of information don’t help me become a better person, they don’t motivate me, they just make me feel unhappy and uncomfortable. Same goes with all the rest of the media. Anyways, I could talk about this for hours, so let me know what you think!

 

 

2 books to make you feel good!

I’m not big on self-help books, but this week-end I found a new one that is really funny, and rediscovered an old time favourite. These books are the perfect books if you are looking for quick reads as they books that you can pick up, read a few pages, leave and come back to a few days later. They’ll give you a push in the back to get out there and do you!

cours-toutoune-happiness-project

The new one: Cours Toutoune, by Geneviève Gagnon: Unfortunately only available in French, this is a simple, colorful and super down to earth guide to running. Geneviève is super funny and lives by a simple philosophy: just get out there! Her tone is really encouraging while shattering all the excuses you might have for not exercising and taking care of yourself. Each page is a different tip so you can easily read a page once in a while when your motivation lowers and say goodbye to all those silly excuses!

The favourite: The Happiness Project, by Gretchen Rubin: This books hardly needs any introduction. For the little story, Gretchen decided to give herself a year to increase her happiness. This book is her tips, tricks and experiences with happiness. Each chapter tackles a different aspect of life and is filled with anecdotes, steps and ideas to make your life easier and ultimately make you a happier person. Her 10 rules are filled with common sense, yet are so relevant. I really recommend this book because there is something for everyone!

Let me know what are your favourite motivational books or if you’ve read any of these!

Brand-new name, brand new attitude (hopefully)

On this lovely and sunny Monday afternoon, something fabulous happened: I found my new blog name!

Why “My Lighthearted Kitchen”?

Well, for the last couple of weeks, I have been thinking about my life, my beliefs, and my attitude. From this introspection came the realization that I used to be a lot more lighthearted, but that somehow with stress, work, stress from work, and growing up, this quality has started to crumble out of my personality.

This is not a good thing. (see what I mean?)

So, in an effort to show more lightheartedness, I decided that working with a name that was scary and limiting had to stop. Why scary? Well, try telling someone you barely know, like a colleague for example, that you are vegan. When I did, I certainly was welcomed with fear, misunderstanding, teasing, concern, and often anger. Not very lighthearted words.

This was taken last summer, when I was working with kids and really channeling my inner lightheartedness. Look at these wonderful Montreal grown figs! They were delicious!

This was taken last summer, when I was working with kids and really channeling my inner lightheartedness. Look at these wonderful Montreal grown figs! They were delicious!

Also, I really want to share my recipes and show others that it can be easy and simple to switch to a vegan diet. Of course, I cannot do this with a scary name. As I didn’t want to go with the new vegan (plant based) word, I tried to focus on a quality that I wish my work here to stem from.

So, yes, my recipes will still continue to be vegan and gluten-free. However, the spirit in which they will be done and shared will be different.

So, in all lightheartedness, I hope you enjoy the new content, and let me know what you think!