Sunday, November 19, 2017

LADY DIOR

Sunday, November 19, 2017

LADY DIOR





I always look forward to my European holidays. So when we got a chance to go again in October this year, it got me very excited. Even though it was a work trip as well, we did manage to have the last weekend we were there to explore places besides Sweden. It got me really wanting to get one of the designer bags I fell in love with in Paris. All this time I have avoided it because it just didnt fit my budget and I felt ' How can I put in that kinda money?' but since its been over 5 years since I did get another designer bag I decided to get a gorgeous Lady Dior. 

I know my pictures backdrop have my sons bikes and I just felt it just adds a little charm to my blog. The weather this week wasnt favorable enough for me to shoot outdoors as we have had rains and the sunlight time has reduced a lot in winter. Austin winter is well not really winter. So I need to probably going forward plan my shoots earlier and try to get back from our weekends to make sure I can get better lighting. I am also getting a remote for my Canon G7X as getting the perfect shots is a struggle right now on a timer. So hopefully going forward my focus and outdoor shoots will help give the pics more justice.



I have done a video to share my overall review on the Lady Dior so I will upload that soon on my youtube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/fashionistaera. Here is a link if you want to see my channel and I also will add my travel vlogs soon which I haven't been doing for a while now. Sorry about that. Totally my fault. It dawned on me as the new year is coming that I want to continue blogging it is something I have really enjoyed and I love sharing my stories and I want to maintain this online diary for the same reasons. So look for my Lady dior review below. Hope you like it! 








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Wednesday, November 15, 2017

GETTING A FRESH START

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

GETTING A FRESH START


Every year I try to start with a new resolution. Now I know this sounds pretty lame and redundant but still new goals mean new motivation. If you don’t take the time to work on your issues and what you want to achieve in your life you will find yourself looking through your albums or your years going by without much difference. Does it help to get focus? Yes. Do new goals help you get some direction. Yes. Okay, now I feel its getting a little annoying so lets just jump right to some of the things I have added to plans for the upcoming new year.




1)   YOGA

This is one of the best things I have actually had in my life. Meditation especially was amazing and in Sweden it was one of my favorite things. It has gotten busy but there are no excuses. Atleast take out 20 mins in a day to do a routine and I will keep a tracker and reminder daily to ensure that I do my Yoga until it becomes a habit like it used to be. The most important thing I feel with yoga is a sense of purpose and relaxation. That is something I definitely miss a lot of now.

2)   DETOX DIET


This upcoming year will have a lot more fruits and veggies in my diet. I am a totally big eater, which most people don’t believe. (Unless you have seen me binge on my favorite food and you probably will have your mouth drop in shock) So anyways, back to this. I have started green juices. Something of a habit from Sweden but besides that I have added carrot juice and salad everyday. Indians don’t really believe in salad, it looks like grass or something that we shouldn’t be eating. So basically I went ahead and started this. But i need to be more consistent. The key to good health and looking and feeling good is definitely the diet and I want to ensure I am getting enough nutrients in my system to be able to make it look good as well. I don’t want too much of stuff which is what I have been eating very unhealthy. Esp with my travel I tend to eat a lot outside and not necessary have like a balance diet which isn’t good. So a routine is a must.




3)   RESTART THE MIND

I know this sounds like a very strange headline right. What is restart the mind mean? Well my definition was the ability to get my thoughts and refocus them. I attended a Franklin Covey conference and it really got me back to my training days. Some of the best things about training I feel is that it reconnects you and makes you focus on what matters rather than anything else. I would say that the most important things that we look at is the ability to work with the people and learn from them. So it has got me thinking to reprioritize some of my focus points and make sure that I have got what I need to achieve rather than worry about things that I have focused on for too long.

4)   ORGANIZE MY CLOSET

Recently, I did a lot of shopping in Europe and I came back t a chaos filled closet. Totally madness. No space because there is no organization in my closet. There is just too much stuff. So though I have donated stuff but I wanna make sure that I prioritize my wardrobe. Something that I haven’t worn beyond 2 years at least is out or  re-evaluate.

5)   HOLIDAY RETREAT

It is so important to get away. Going on a vacation—or more specifically, a retreat—can help you to leave the mayhem of the day-to-day behind so that you can reconnect with yourself and what really matters to you. As much as I can, I try to make sure to take a break every few months. A few days at a retreat can help you to clear your mind and gain new perspective.


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Monday, November 6, 2017

TRAVEL EASY

Monday, November 6, 2017

TRAVEL EASY





I had the opportunity recently to spend sometime in my favorite places in Europe. Sweden. One of the most beautiful places with equally lovely people. On our way back we decided to see some other cities as well. So with all the travel I thought it would be a great way to share my travel tips. The most challenging part of travelling is when you shop and then try to fit everything in 3 suitcases. We had some 10 bags of shopping and how to now fit everything in those suitcases. So expecting my shopping these are few things I did. 



1.    PACK LIGHT

Make sure that you have the most essential clothes that you would need for that holiday. So lets say its 10 days, would you need how many shirts or pants/dresses overall? What can you do without. Look at your wardrobe and identify what exactly you want to carry with you. I have often times made the mistake of packing too much. Now when I go to holidays I know I will anyway shop, so what is the most probable things I will buy and can wear there rather than carry it. Think it through. Make your packing as basic as you can and you anyway have your shopping bags to help with the rest!


2.    HEAVY ITEMS AT THE BOTTOM

I never realized how much heavy items don’t really help keep things as basic as we want. The toys, shoes, accessories, bags all should be ideally placed at the bottom of the suitcase, this way you can add all the light stuff between them and make more room accordingly. If you put clothes first and then the heavy items, it will cause more work for you trust me. 



4.    FILL UP SPACES

There are various pockets in the suitcase especially between the various areas of it. Socks, light tops, shirts, anything which can be adjusted should be used to fill up these spaces. I use all the corner space coz its been always the biggest issue. So make sure to see the most of the places are like the same way.  

5.    ESSENTIALS CHECKLIST

I always have my checklist for the travel. The clothes, toiletries, kids list, my list etc..this is a great way to not worry about just making sure that the list is taken care of. I always try to pack a day before or earlier as much as possible. After that I am relaxed and don’t need to worry about what I forgot. Eg: my straightener is one thing I always forget and I ended up with a nightmare situation of having no time while on holiday to go to parlor and my hair was such a mess! (more than usual ­čśŐ )

6.    ACCESSORIES WHICH MATTER

Don’t take too many accessories in your suitcase. Nightmare. So carry the big bag, small bag for travel and medium size. Shoes as well try and get a little limited ones too, what kind of place are you travelling. Is it gonna be hot or cold? Beaches? I love carrying my sandals, one pair of heels or 2 depending, and match your outfits to your shoes, really important. Always make sure to see if you can have a more important ones like watches, belts, etc. 



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Saturday, October 28, 2017

JOURNEY SO FAR

Saturday, October 28, 2017

JOURNEY SO FAR


Education. The fundamental learning that we go through in life. Not only in classrooms but with every aspect of what we learn from our day to day experiences to meeting people. Learning from mistakes, from other stories that we hear. Education can be found in all these ways. Still I think today we place so much emphasize only on education in the classroom. I fundamentally realized this when I took a break from working. I was always busy and it made me combine my time and prioritize things. Always know that what you fundamentally learn is the most important thing and basis for what you become and who you choose to be. 

It becomes about what school you attended, what university you did your degree from. Did you achieve the highest grades, were you an A player in school. The list is endless. I am guilty of this as well. When I was in college I wanted ot join the best schools in the city and I did. Everyone would say, its great to join the top schools and I achieved a lot of awards and recognition. But I always felt incomplete. I felt that I should have got more marks in math or in economics. I should have studied harder. Nothing was good enough. I got good grades. Everyone was happy with me and I went through bad grades too. Its when I got good grades that I actually started putting more pressure on myself.

That is why I say education is not just in the classroom. It not about the Harvards or the IIM’s of India and its definitely not the grades. Education is PART of your learning which comes with classroom. It what you do with your education that really makes you a true success story when you get into the real world to work and build a career. Spirituality taught me more about education than anything else will. These are some of the lessons that I learnt early and hopefully will help you in some way that it helped me grow.



1)   STOP JUDGING

Biggest mistake I have done is value people more because they studied in the ‘better’ colleges or got ‘better’ grades or where more ‘accomplished’ because of those things. Would it still matter if you were the most successful person you knew, and at the sametime the most crappiest? Nope. I learnt that I respected someone who no education but was kinder, nicer and was better to know. Most success stories if you see today are not people from reputed colleges but who don’t even have degrees. They had something more, the understanding of prioritizing and hard work and focus on the right things. They had the skills already in them that they didn’t need a degree to feel more accomplished.

2)   KNOW-IT-ALL

Don’t get me wrong. I respect anyone whos studied and done well and I fundamentally believe that it is very important to study. It gives you the tools and learnings. But all my point is that if you have all the education in the world and are the most annoying/arrogant or rude person to know. That really is a waste of a person. That wont get you far, it probably will take you ahead because of your knowledge but not to the greatest heights of success and joy because of who you become.

3)   BE LIKEABLE

One of my biggest learnings about success. The higher your grow or the promotions or you start a company and you become the CEO that al is great. But the most impressive and amazing leaders that I met or worked with are likeable. It is something what people look for. A manager might not have a lotta experience but if you are likable you have a more edge over the person who have many more number of years of experience. Be likeable. Genuinely care about people. Go a little out of your way to see if you can assist someone. Doesn’t mean you need to brag or like them or do things you don’t want to do. But do a little extra and it will be something people like about you. Leaders who think about others are the real leaders. The ones who want to get ahead on expense of someone else are just disliked and people start observing and it goes against them.





4)   SELF-REFLECT

So you got your education you are really good at what you do. But training is fundamentally very critical. It is like polishing your silverware. I know bad analogy. But I mean its actually quite refreshing to attend trainings to see what you can learn that can help your process and develop what you are and who you are. Its very important to apply your learnings and attend to get more creative. It has taught me to be open to development and how to improve your process. Its my favorite field in the world to learn and to grow and teach and evaluate yourself. A true leader has the ability to self reflect. That is what training is all about.


5)   GUIDANCE

Often times the most hard and fast rule is to give feedback. The most important thing though is how you give it. Respect and genuinely caring about the person helps you give better feedback. Now, I mentioned this in my earlier points but I am repeating this as I think the struggle we have today is so much focus on meeting the numbers, we forget people. You forget people and that’s when the cracks start. You cant find people. People are the reason you get things done. They are the people who will help you. So don’t worry about always trying to be right. Guidance is what people need, not feedback. Don’t get hung up on trying to fix everything. Be the mentor be the coach be someone that people look forward to giving them guidance not just forcing it.

6)   THE RIGHT WAY

Now you might wonder. Well there are people who get ahead without doing any of these things. I agree. I have seen it. They back stab, they play games, they steal ideas, they think they will get ahead coz they are ‘smarter’ as a result of doing all these things. Some of them do get ahead. But people catch on. People know when someone goes behind them and does things. Eventually. For those who play the game and no one comes to know, great for them. Great manipulators. It’s a choice actually. If you want to be a follower and do the wrong things, its fine. The sad part is most of them don’t think they are doing anything wrong. So that is the real problem. The reason is simple. 

Its harder to do the right things. You need to wait, you need to work hard, you need to win people over, you need to be able to get more information. These are the right things to do. But they are the longer route, they take more time. The wrong ways take less time, someone elses ideas, someone elses ways, someone elses promotion etc…its shorter and easier. So its your choice. Your conscious will be happier if you achieve them on your own. When I bought my first car with my salary and my own loan without taking anything from my parents, that feeling was so amazing. I felt like I had conquered the world. Could my dad have just bought me a car? Sure. I wouldn’t feel the same exhilaration that I did when I bought it on my own. That is what I am talking about. Be self made. But that is the tougher path. And its your choice.


CONCLUSION

I just wanted to share few pointers to kinda give you guys a feeler f what you might be going through at work or even your personal life where people love to criticize, or tell you what to do. Those are not bad things, only if its suffocating or something your not looking for so just be aware that you don’t need to always put up with people or listen to people and believe what you feel is the most important for you. Guidance is good, even important. Not if someone forcing it to you.

The biggest lessons I have learnt is to stop wondering and worrying about people. I have lesser people today in my life and more happiness as a result of it. We met some friends in Sweden and one of them said something that really stuck with me. They said they have a lot of people they know, but very few friends. Too many friends is not a good thing. I finally understand that. I always had people in my life and learnt from them and I am ever grateful..but with time, you start maturing and you want to be surrounded by people that matter. I did just that. Filtered out a lot, and find myself better off. More focused, less waste of energy, less talking, less botheration and more determined. So my advice would be just that.


Don’t listen to anything I have written unless you believe in it. Lol!!
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Saturday, September 9, 2017

DISCONNECT SOMETIMES

Saturday, September 9, 2017

DISCONNECT SOMETIMES

Social media is probably the most powerful tool of communication. With just a press of a button you can reach out to someone living in a different continent. I was so excited about all the apps and the new devices that has come across us. Whatsapp, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, youtube…and the list goes on. Trust me I love all these apps. Great way to share your life and be able to speak to people and share your life. I know its important to connect with but I am probably the most disconnected person in the world. I have always been very selective of people who are in my inner circle. Possibily because I have experienced a lot of drama with people and its important now for me to prioritize my time with people I enjoy and who are mature and fun to be around. Probably also because I have seen its not worth having so many friends and its actually in my past been exhausting. So this route seems to make me more relaxed and I am happier. 



OVER SHARING

Well, unfortunately for me I guess the media became OVER sharing. I started realizing I was posting pics about my walks, to my food, to just looking outside the window. Every moment had to be captured as I had to update it and put it into all my various social media feeds including my blog. If I didn’t take pics, how would I share what happened in the last week. All kinds of weird thoughts started over the last year. Would it seem I am not posting regularly, that I don’t care…the thoughts turned WORSE. I started worrying maybe it would seem I just don’t have a life.

HOBBY

Everyone was posting pics it was NORMAL. I was not doing it and I almost started to STOP living in the effort to Share. And then suddenly one day I realized what is happening?? I went back to the time I started the blog. Just as a hobby. The hobby turned into great opportunities to work with such great brands and love the sponsors and they were really supportive and send me great products and dresses. It was just effortless. Suddenly, I realized what is happening. I just didn’t want to do anything but just about keep updating my life and posting all the information.I stopped enjoying blogging, but I started hating the process. It was becoming a huge process.



MORE WORK

Gradually I realized, it was not fun anymore. It was WORK. I already had work, and this was supposed to be a hobby. So I disconnected. Just decided to reduce all my usage of the social media outlets. I focused on them being able to do things and wanting to get things done my way. Relaxed. So I stopped using more than 50% of all apps related to social media. I felt better. It wasn’t fun anymore.

SPONSORS BREAK

The moment I realized that something isn’t working and especially isn’t fun, it was a waste of time. Its not worth spending your time day and night. I took a break from sponsors and promotions. Its one of the best decisions for me now. I went back to what I like, blogging. Just writing about what I like and my experiences. Only in the recent weeks I have started to observe I am going back to feeling that I am enjoying it again. This is what I started to do.

Put the camera down.
Smile more, enjoy the moment
More family time and play time.
No  make up, dress up, looking picture perfect for that shot

No more posing, outfit of the day, any kind of look day, just natural pics going forward. 


SWITCH OFF


So sometimes, I recommend don’t listen to people. Switch off your mind. Don’t get caught up in views, opinions and gossip. Do things for you and that is most important thing in life. The more time you spend pleasing others or doing things for others, the more you will become miserable. I enjoyed blogging, not getting sucked into the need to please and do things FOR blogging. Just the simple thoughts and time that I took to express my views. So anything you take up in life, you need to make sure that you enjoy it more. 


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Sunday, August 27, 2017

BE YOUR BIGGEST CRITIC

Sunday, August 27, 2017

BE YOUR BIGGEST CRITIC


As we get older, things in our mind tend to move to become more straightforward and direct. The toughest part of accepting change is adjusting to it. Most of the time it sounds easier than usual but I have come to find that the hardest part is trying to accept faults in one self. We find it so easy to criticize others and analyse, gossip and find fault in other people. How many times have you actually said, 'Yes I need to improve my way of being and how I react to people'. Self analysis is probably the biggest and most important lesson we all need to learn to start doing. Even as I say to try and be your biggest critic, it still doesn't mean that you need to keep analyzing yourself all the time. Its helpful to keep few things in mind. 

1. DON'T BE TOO HARD ON YOURSELF

Well, I have been on both sides of this. I also have seen friends who tend to beat themselves up for things. 'Oh, maybe I should have made more effort for him and he wouldn't have left' or 'I didn't study hard enough and its always me who fails and it has to be me'. Being your biggest critic doesn't mean beating yourself up so badly, that you start hating everything about yourself. It is a balance, once you have identified the problem, DO SOMETHING about it. Not just analysis and then push so hard at yourself you get demotivated. Realize and find a solution. 

2. SOLUTION MODE

I am sure you have heard the saying, 'Out of the problem, and into the solution' So try to do just that. Over the years, I started making the 5 min rule for my issues. This meant, that I would probably discuss any issue or express it for 5 mins which gave me oppotunity to identify it. Then moved to the solution  mode. What can I do to make sure this becomes easier process. This strategy i applied in my career mostly, so i started using the same idea for my personal life as well. Dont keep dwelling on the same issue repeatedly, get into solution mode. If you dont find a solution, google it, ask friends, go to someone you trust who can give you good advice.








3. NO ONE'S PERFECT

This is probably the toughest thing for us to understand. You are NOT perfect. We tend to look at our lives and compare it with others. I remember when I got active on social media, I would see all these fashion bloggers and wonder, it would be so cool to be travelling the way they do and see the world and attend all the fashion shows. Then i tried to understand that it literally is their job. We get caught up in the perfection of it all, but the constant travel, jet lag, being pretty all the time, trying to look content and happy and constantly being on schedules on mad travel and crazy attending arent things we all can do. I am sure it sounds fun, but the effort and work isnt easy. Then I realized its a lot of work and isnt easy to do. Its more peaceful t o appreciate what you have and work hard instead of constantly comparing your life to othes when you dont know their struggle.


4. BE HONEST

Its of no help to you or others if you don't admit if you have any issues. I have seen people including myself who refuse to analyse they have any issue and that the reason for all their problems is because of someone else rather than them. I always thought that I was hilarious. Seriously, that I can make anyone laugh and I'm great company. However, until the day that when my good friend said, "You are really funny and its great to have you around. But honestly, sometimes you can be insensitive and almost seems like you are making fun of us, rather than us having fun" I stopped that day the way I was communicating and then realized that the information I provided was to make others happy. But never considered that my humor might not be coming across the right way. It made me realise that I need to evaluate myself. 










5. IF YOU DONT GO FOR IT, YOU HAVE TO BLAME YOURSELF 

Often times, self criticism can limit us. It can become so limiting that we might even lose chances or opportunities to be able to live a higher and better lifestyle. 
I dont have the skills to get that job.
I dont think I can be that strong to push myself to get that done.
I dont have the ability to convince him/her to make effort for me.
I dont think its my time to achieve this.

So many donts. Bottom line. Finding out what you need to work on is great. But give it a shot anyways. Realize what you need to work on make effort and then GO FOR IT. If you dont even try, you limit yourself. Test your limits, dont worry about people what they will say. Just do it. Go go for it now! :) 


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Saturday, August 27, 2016

AMUSEMENT PARK TIME

Saturday, August 27, 2016

AMUSEMENT PARK TIME



Its was the weekend and we decided to catch up with our friends from New York. Even though we lived in same city and now have all moved...I still loved the time we had as friends. Esp for my son, he loves meeting people and making new friends and it was the same today! The kids had such a great time in the amusement park and they just about spent time trying the rides. But the very first time for Vignan and he was totally psyched yet was so hesitant to try the rides. We were sitting there and he just agreed to two rides whereas our friends kids were literally trying every ride! They were like fearless but since his nature is hes very careful and likes to analyse things. So he was super excited once he tried the rides.

We had some ice cream to beat the heat and just sat around and just about relaxed a lot more. The heat was so much gosh, we were almost exhausted running and managing the kids around the situation and seeing the kids having fun. So we just about relaxed and finally after an hour of playing I couldnt ride the many games there and Vignan was like he wanted to go and then once kids were done we headed for a lovely lunch and spend a gorgeous day spending time at home and catching up on updates on us. Then we all cooked together and had fun. We were also having a great time eating and playing around and having a lotta fun. I always cherish moments with family and friends and its important to be with them and value time you have had. Its easy and important to be able to feel the same and enjoy the time u have that is something that you wont get again. The time is most precious. My biggest lesson in life. People tend to take time for granted. 









ALWAYS, ALWAYS SMILE - There is always a reason to frown. Just take sometime in a day to read something funny or what something which really cracks you up. 

ONE GOOD DEED - Donate some of your old stuff, it could be anything. I have made it a habit for us to do it as it inculcates the habit to appreciate what you have. 

WRITE 5 GOOD THOUGHTS - Always try your best to write good thoughts and how you enjoyed your day. It could be as simple as if your friend left you a thank you note. 

SHOP LITTLE - Most of the time people always spend too much, including me. So i made this rule to shop within certain amount. The amount needs to be habit and then you enjoy the experience without worrying about how much you spent.


TIME WITH PEOPLE - Always spend time with the people in your life. Its not about partying, or the need to always be out socializing with people. Its just about giving them time, if its for a few hours or a few moments. I still remember moments like having milkshake or making french fries were my favorite moments. 

The amusement park was supposed to be for the kids. I found myself going to more rides than the kids! I guess we all have a inner child who does come out once in a while and wants to enjoy themselves immensely. The kids hesitated to go through all the games, one would and then the other wouldn’t. It was just pushing them to try some rides which looked scarier than others. It was a fun day. We had an opportunity to also just enjoy the day but then to beat the heat we got some ice cream and a great dinner. We enjoyed cooking and spending time as going out would have been noisy and this way we got to discuss what was going on with our lives. We spend the next day going out again and eat out eventually but I guess the simple moments of enjoying the time and seeing the kids bond and have fun is priceless.





In our busy lifestyles, its important to take out the time for giving them that time and importance. The heat got the better of us for sure and spend the day at home and evening went to the park while they raced and ran everywhere. The most relaxing thing for me is to sit on the grass and take in the surroundings and the sounds. Even though we were so new to this city, its always people who make you feel at home. I have often times been in situations where I've been surrounded by people and yet there has been completely moments I would want to get away coz I didn't choose to be surrounded by those people. Now, I feel lighter away from noise, people who dont really make much sense to have around and just appreciate what I have around.  




There was an incident that really annoyed me. We newly moved to the city, and naturally we were still in the process of buying a car and figuring our way around and thank god for Uber. However, the 2nd day we were in the city we decided to go and explore in an Uber and we didn’t have a car seat, we planned to buy it on the weekend so we just about thought to enjoy the experience as well. While we were in transit the driver decides to say since we didn’t have a car seat for our kid, we would need to exit the car in the middle of the ride. I think I almost lost my cool, but we did explain that this should have been said at the beginning of the ride. Some people just don’t have the consideration to understand how a situation can really affect and bother. People are stuck up and that’s just how it goes. Dont let people bother you too much. If they bother you, it affects just you and not them :) 




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