What brings you to these neck of the woods? #workworkwork

This year being Canada150, seems only appropriate for me to do a full Canadian tour – every city, every province… okay okay I’m exaggerating a bit here, ain’t nobody got time fo’ that! Do you know how big Canada is?!

Before I get ahead of myself, I must admit, I did not plan to do a Canadian tour this year… it just kind of happened #iknow #boujeeright

All kidding aside, I’m lucky enough to have a job which allows me to do a bit of travel across Canada. Normally I’m jumping from one conference centre to the another, putting up booths, taking them down and rarely seeing much of the outdoors… but I always come prepared (to EVERY city) with a list of all the things I’d like to do, see, eat, and experience, that way I’m making the most of the time I have in each city.

So with that said, I thought I’d put together a list of all my favorite things to do/see/eat in 24 hours or less, in each Canadian city I visited this year – let’s jump right into Part 1!

Vancouver

  • Granville Island – it’s a must, you can quickly walk through or take your time and stop at the brewery for a tester or two
  • Water taxi – it’s the best way to see the city while just putting away… it also saves bit of walking #savethosefeet
  • Gastown – great for shopping, lots of one of a kind boutiques… again, depending on time you can window shop or go into each shop and spend a few $$$
  • After all that walking and site seeing, head over to Miku Restaurant for the best sushi in Vancouver
  • To walk off the sushi, take a stroll over to Canada Place to see the waterfront at night
  • And once you’ve walked off the sushi, hit up the world famous gelato, Bella Gelatorialavender & earl grey was one of my favorites!
  • If you haven’t had enough or you’re preparing to head to the airport for a red-eye, head over to the Fairmont Pacific Rim for a final beverage in the swanky lobby lounge

Winnipeg

  • Start your day with a one of a kind doughnut from Oh Doughnuts
  • Then walk off the donut (or down a second while walking) over to the Forks National Historic site and as always, if you’re feeling thirsty, taste a beer or two at The Common
  • After shopping and eating, it’s time for a nap – take a few Zzz’s along the Red River
  • Then make your way to Osborne Village for some shopping and a top secret dinner location, it’s called Sous Sol (tell no one..)

Hmmm as I read through my list I see a pattern here… almost all my suggestions and/or activities surround the idea of either food or drink – not sure what’s about #ilovefood

Hopefully you find these lists to be helpful when you’re on a work trip, a layover, or just passing through… try something new, go off the beaten path… find something worth sharing, let me know in the comments below!

Keep an eye out for Part 2 which includes Calgary, Kingston, and Saskatoon!!

Twitter:

So what brings you to these neck of the woods? #workworkwork #Canada150 http://bit.ly/2wcH3li

Facebook:

So what brings you to these neck of the woods? #workworkwork #Canada150 – Find out what to do/see/eat in some of Canada’s most beautiful cities http://bit.ly/2wcH3li

 

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Minimalist lifestyle – is it just a (smaller) load of crap?

I don’t know about you guys but I’ve been hearing a lot about this new buzzword “minimalism”. I first heard it while watching a YouTube video by one of my many favorite bloggers (Shout-out to @ZoeyArielle).

And I’m not going to lie, it spoke to me… I’m not sure if it was this need to clear out things in my life or my mind but regardless I was curious and wanted to find out more. This of course, brought me to social media… I started searching out different people who were living this so-called minimalist lifestyle – who were they – a bunch of hippies living in a van? How can all of someone’s prized possessions fit into a single bag?? I was scared… but oh so intrigued.

So I thought I’d share with you what I found.

First, a bit about this so-called “minimalist” lifestyle – what is it? Essentially, it’s the idea that you cut down all the items you own and keep only what brings value to your life. As stated by the minimalists guys, Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, “Minimalism is a tool that can assist you in finding freedom. Freedom from fear. Freedom from worry. Freedom from overwhelm. Freedom from guilt. Freedom from depression. Freedom from the trappings of the consumer culture we’ve built our lives around. Real freedom.”

Sounds a bit too far out? A bit too hippy dippy for you? I know, I initially thought so too. Soooo then I watched a documentary, because of course all things that cannot be solved by social media, can be solved by a documentary. Which brought me to… Minimalism: A Documentary – a film which explores the lives of minimalists from all walks of life.

Okay okay… you want the hard facts – what are the benefits of selling all my crap and renting a home with a single chair and a lamp? Let’s explore.

The goods

After looking through a ton of benefits, I narrowed down a list (based off a list shared on becomingminimalist.com) which I found to resonated with me the most.

  1. Spend Less | Choosing to accumulate only the essential often results in financial freedom.
  2. Less Stress | A minimalist home is significantly less stressful.
  3. Do Work You Love | Own less stuff. Choose work you love.
  4. Freedom From the Comparison Game | Our culture begs us to own more.
  5. Time for Things that Matter Most | The more stuff you own, the more your stuff owns you.

The bad

Now of course, with this new buzzword being on the rise, I thought it would be difficult to find disadvantages but many people had an opinion on the topic. After reflecting on what was said, I gathered a list I felt would effect me most.

  1. Change is hard | It can be difficult to apply this new lifestyle to your current life.
  2. Spend your time wisely | Having lots of free time doesn’t mean you’ll spend it productively.
  3. It becomes all-encompassing | You can become snobbish because of your “unique” lifestyle.
  4. Go too far | You might miss the real meaning of minimalism and go out of control in paring down leaving you dissatisfied with life and feeling deprived.

So, you’d think after doing all this research I’d have a stance on whether or not I agreed with the whole “minimalist” lifestyle, but instead I was even more confused? How can owning less bring more happiness to my life? Is there a deeper meaning behind this minimalist lifestyle? Are we as a society happier with less?

So I ask you – would you do it? Could you do it?

32a7752596e098da3bd2aaeeb617ae77--minimalist-quotes-minimalist-lifestyle

Source: Pinterest image

 

 

Share your thoughts and comments below.

Interested in finding out more…

Social media:

Twitter – Minimalist lifestyle – is it just a (smaller) load of crap? Read more: http://bit.ly/2vHGVdx

Facebook – What is this so-called minimalist lifestyle all about? Want to find out more, read my newest blog post: http://bit.ly/2vHGVdx

Are you all about them “likes”?

Do you ever get that feeling when you post a photo to Instagram and your heart starts racing and all you can think about is… was that a bad photo? Should I have used Valencia instead of hefe? Was the caption witty or just lame? Hmmm maybe, the ten hashtags were too much… why aren’t people liking my photo?! And then all of a sudden, ding ding ding – the likes start pouring in! Yes, I won… people like me… oh my, 10… 20… 40… oh look at me go!

A little over-dramatic? Maybe. But in all seriousness, this inherent need to be a part of social media is a topic I’d like discuss further. Beginning with the concept of social media itself, which in its basic form is the idea of being “social” online using a variety of tools to do so. But are we really being social?

By taking photos and tweeting with friends, does that not take us out of the present moment and instead remove us from this so-called social gathering. Have you ever been out with friends and all of sudden you look around and everyone’s strolling through their Instagram feed and not talking to one another? Again, is social media not just distracting us from actually being social IRL?

Now I may appear to be siding with this idea of not using social media and instead immersing yourself in real life social settings. But I myself am also a social media user and have definitely grown addicted to feeding the beast (i.e. social media). So I thought it would be worth exploring both sides – the pros and the cons of contributing to the world of social media.

First, let’s start with the pros.

Become a socialite – Okay, maybe not a socialite but by contributing to platforms like Facebook, you’re able to see events that are posted by your friends and members of your community. Meaning, if you choose to partake in such events… you may have a very full social calendar.

Become suuuper popular – Again, maybe you won’t become as popular as Beyoncé but by contributing to social media (i.e. having a profile/account), you open yourself up to networking opportunities – whether that be for financial gain or to just to build a bigger (broader) group of friends.

Now, comes some of the cons.

FOMO (Fear of missing out) – Yes, it’s a real thing… and it effects all of us at one time or another. By not contributing to social media you may feel you’re missing out on what’s being discussed at the office or within your friend group. Picture this, you’re in the office and two of your colleagues are hovering over their phones saying, “Did you see that insta pic of Joe in accounting from last weekend?” “Yeah, I can’t believe he posted that!” It’s opportunities like these and many more that you may miss by not being on social media.

“Oh sorry, you didn’t get the Facebook invite?” – Again, there is a real possibility that by not contributing to social media you may actually miss out on events and activities, especially if they’re not advertised or shared with you IRL. I’ve noticed more and more that people are utilizing social media to gather people for more than just birthday parties, they’ve begun using social media to gather like-minded people who want to stand up for what they belief in (i.e. a protest).

Now, I said before I didn’t want to pick sides. And really how can I? At this point in my life and my career, I can’t imagine cutting myself off from the opportunities that social media provides me, however I have begun to cut down on the number of hours and days spent scrolling through my phone.

To conclude, the biggest takeaway I can provide is to decide how you want to incorporate social media into your life. Don’t let it control you. Instead see it as opportunity to share, without worrying about the number of likes or followers you have – just share, because the world needs more pictures of you and puppies 🙂

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Photo taken from my personal Instagram account

Let me know how you choose to use social media? Have you been able to strike a healthy balance between sharing and not worrying about the likes?

If you’re interested in learning more about the pros and cons of participating in the world of social media, check out some great articles:

 

 

 

 


 

Social media posts

Facebook – Thinking about taking a “break” from your relationship with social media? Read through a few pros and cons before you do http://bit.ly/2f0XcDP

Twitter – Are you scrolling through that news feed a bit too much lately? Maybe it’s time for a break. Read my newest blog on the topic http://bit.ly/2f0XcDP

Instagram: Can your daily creep make you healthier?

Do you ever have those days when you’re in need of some fitness inspiration so you turn to your Instagram account in hopes of finding some new-found motivation? Something to help you put down the pizza and pick up the kale. If you’re like me, you do this on a regular basis. It starts with Instagram and then I turn to YouTube, often spending hours watching short videos to help get myself off the couch. But as I sit on the couch watching my seventh consecutive video, I start to question these so-called “health gurus”… who are they to tell me how to work out, how to eat, how to live my life!?

But in all seriousness, how are we to take advice from social media on health and fitness when these people are often just “normal” people like you and I. Yes, some have an education in health and nutrition or are certified personal trainers – but in my experience, most do not. This is why I decided to dig a little deeper into this new trend of so-called health and fitness gurus.

After doing some research (*cough, cough… creeping) I’ve narrowed down some good and bad on the effects of this social media trend. Let’s start by jumping into the goods!

The Good

“Oh I can’t, I don’t have a gym membership”

By having videos and resources online that everyone is able to utilize, it makes the health and fitness world more accessible. Meaning, everyone has the opportunity to utilize the tools available – whether that be fitness videos, meal planning guides, tips and tricks on changing your eating habits, etc.

“But I’m curvy AND petite”

With so many people online starting their own health and fitness profiles (and channels), you’re bound to find someone you can relate to. And when I say relate, that could be in reference to their lifestyle choices (busy on-the-go or you work from home), their body type (tall, petite, and curvy) or even their fitness regime (active, sedentary and in-between). All it takes is a little research and you’re sure to find someone that speaks to your inner fitness goddess!

“Being healthy is good, right?”

Finally, what could be bad about promoting good health – it helps to strengthen your mental, physical and emotional well-being. If you’re able to start making healthy changes in your life, then you’re definitely making a step in the right direction… you go girl, you go!

The Bad

Now as I mentioned, we can’t explore the pros without the cons. I know what you’re thinking, how can there be cons when people are working towards new health and fitness goals?! Keep reading to find out some of the negative effects of this new health and fitness trend.

“Doctor, doctor give me the news”

When consulting on new diets and trends, you’re always instructed to “consult with your doctor” before trying a new diet – but online this is not the case. The danger of that, is that anyone can give advice on health and fitness without any education or qualifications. That’s not to say that all health and fitness profiles don’t have any education or certification on the topic, it just means you need to weary of the information that’s being shared. Just remember, “don’t trust everything you read on thee Tweet’er and thee Facebook!”.

“Why can’t I look like her?”

Now, I know I said that everyone can relate to one health and fitness guru or another but that doesn’t mean we always pick someone with the most realistic body shape. Social media is constantly changing and adding with new features. One of those features being filters and editing options – meaning that people can alter their photos. So how are we to compete with filters, Photoshop and the insecurities of not looking like the people online… you just gotta keep yourself in check! Easier said than done (I know!), but we all need to remember that social media is not always (…rarely) displays a realistic portrayal of peoples lives. Don’t lose motivation, just unfollow and move on!

And the take-out (I mean… takeaway!)

Finally, in my opinion I’m a fan of this new health and fitness trend. One of my current favorite profiles to follow is Sarah’s Day who’s an Australian fitness and health guru. Like many other fitness guru’s, she’s come out with a fitness e-book (Sweat it to shred it) that’s available online. I’ll be honest, I have not purchased the e-book and likely will not, but I feel she does provide mw with motivation and new insight into different ways of changing up my normal fitness and health routine.

Now, to wrap up – with all things on social media (and internet as a whole), we must learn to take it with a grain of salt… and remember, not too much or you’ll get puffy! 🙂

Salt bae - a man sprinkling salt in the air

Let me know in the comments below if you follow any health and fitness gurus? What’s your opinion on the topic? Are they good? Bad? I wanna hear from you!

Social media posts—

Twitter:

Can your daily Insta creep make you healthier? Or it is just a bunch of baloney – read more here #fitspo #FitnessMotivation #NowImHungry

Facebook:

Can your daily Insta creep make you healthier? Or it is just a bunch of bologna, I mean baloney… oh no, now I’m hungry! Get the full story here. *

*Note: I would insert the following GIF