Just Breathe: How to Keep the Weight of Life from Burdening your Spirit

Just Breathe: How to Keep the Weight of Life from Burdening your Spirit

laurawatkinsyogaheadshotMany thanks to Laura Watkins for today’s post! Laura Watkins is a marketing manager who moonlights as a yoga instructor. She has developed programs for individuals with multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injury and has taught individuals from a wide range of demographics. She is also the former editor for the National Center on Health, Physical Activity and Disability and a certified personal trainer through the American Council on Exercise. Laura is passionate about helping others lead healthy, active and independent lifestyles. She is currently training for her first half-marathon since giving birth to her daughter Ava Grace.

***

The other day I was listening to a friend share how her life has gotten so stressful that she’s had to increase her anxiety medication so that she can focus on her demanding job. Although she is going to therapy, has hired a maid and is exercising consistently, she’s completely overwhelmed. This woman is smart and successful. She has a darling family and a beautiful home in a nice part of town, and yet she can barely get through her day without having a stress-induced meltdown.

Read More

Parental Paradox: Understanding our Love/Hate Relationship with Motherhood

Parental Paradox: Understanding our Love/Hate Relationship with Motherhood

Thanks to the talented Emily Pardy for today’s blog post! Emily is a counselor and founder of Ready Nest Counseling in Nashville, TN. Ready Nest Counseling helps couples prepare for parenthood by caring for their relational wellness as they transition through conception, pregnancy, post-partum, and infertility. Emily has written for multiple parenting publications including Thriving Family magazine and ParentLife magazine. She has her Masters in Marriage & Family Therapy from Lipscomb University and is the author of For All Maternity, a humorous memoir of her own journey into motherhood. Emily resides in Nashville, TN with her husband and three rambunctious daughters.

 

***

 

Parenthood comes with many paradoxes. You may have tried and tried to conceive, only to instantly sense deep doubts or dread once the pregnancy test turned positive. You can pray all evening for your screaming baby to fall asleep and then miss them desperately a mere minute after they are tucked in bed. You might plan a getaway with your spouse in an effort to escape the humdrum of domestic daily life, only to find yourself filled with worries and anxiety steering your heart back home.

Read More

Top 5 Nashville Spots for Work and a Great Cup of Coffee

Top 5 Nashville Spots for Work and a Great Cup of Coffee

MaryCharles

Alee and I are so thrilled to welcome Mary Charles Abbott to the Ink & Well team. She has joined us as an Account Manager, helping with business development, client engagement, and project execution. Her sweet and engaging personality has been such a fun addition to our team and we’ve been so thankful for her hard-working, get ‘er done attitude. We know our clients are going to love her too! Get to know Mary Charles by following her on social media: Instagram | Facebook and check out today’s post from Mary Charles to get to know a little bit more about her and what she loves (hint: she loves coffee and coffee shops!)

5 things about Mary Charles Abbott

  • I’m a southern gal born and raised in Tullahoma, Tennessee. I moved back to Nashville a year ago after spending 4 years living on the west coast.
  • I love to travel but my only international trip was to Costa Rica in college. I’m going to Europe for the first time this summer!
  • I met my boyfriend swing dancing and as a former dance instructor … I may have met my match.
  • My alarm clock has been Whitney Houston’s song “How Will I Know” for the past 3 months and I’m still not sick of it.
  • I may have a slight obsession with coffee, but probably more because I love being in a coffee shop than I do actually drinking coffee. See below for more about my coffee love, including my five favorite Nashville coffee shops for getting a great cup of joe and doing some work too.

Read More

How to Win with Instagram Giveaways

How to Win with Instagram Giveaways

What I love about Instagram is that it brings out the creative side of brands as they design and share evocative images about their business or product in order to gain followers. For me, it is so much more appealing to see pictures of how to use the products in everyday life or beautifully styled lifestyle shots that inspire me to want to create the same look for myself, my kids, or my home. Suddenly the posts seem so much more engaging than what you might see on other platforms – I just love it.

And another bonus of Instagram, running a creative contest is simple. Not only for your customers to participate but for you to set up. And who doesn’t love that?

Here are some fun ideas to get you thinking about contests for your business or brand this spring.

Read More

Savoring the Remaining Month of Winter

Savoring the Remaining Month of Winter

With the end of winter quickly drawing near, it’s tempting to shift our focus to thoughts of trips to the beach, longer days and all the new, spring fashions. I would like to invite you, however, to savor the remaining month of winter. To help, I’m sharing two new healthy favorites that I gleaned from my Whole30 journey(s). The best part about these two recipes is that they are easy, healthy and delicious. Hopefully, you will give them a try, and perhaps they will help you linger in winter mode a bit longer.

Mom Love is the Best Love

Mom Love is the Best Love

There are so many thoughts expressed every day on the web, TV, podcasts, and in the news about the challenges, the pros, the cons, the benefits, and the drawbacks of being a working mom vs. a full-time, dedicated to your little one, stay-at-home mom. Emotions run super high supporting both viewpoints.

I just finished this book, Overwhelmed: How to Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time by Brigid Schulte. It was chock full of thought-provoking discussions about motherhood and the challenges of being a mom in today’s culture. Likely, it’s due to my season of life as a mom of a two-year-old with one on the way, but I feel like I’m forever tripping over the thoughts and opinions of others about the “right way” to do things.

Read More

Begin Again (Again): January Resolutions

Begin Again (Again): January Resolutions

By Laura Watkins

 

Welcome to the second half of January where all your pie-in-the-sky resolutions have already plummeted into a highly caloric – albeit scrumptious – assorted box of 100-layer donuts. Or, perhaps you’re one of those people who has managed to find success and are just catching your stride. Good for you.

To all the rest of us, I have great news:  There’s nothing magical about January 1st.  You can begin living a more healthy, more active lifestyle today. The most important thing is that you begin, and when you mess up, you wipe the dust off your face and try again.

Read More

Pregnancy and the Working Mom

Pregnancy and the Working Mom

While I try as often as possible to keep these posts generally helpful to as wide an audience as possible, sometimes I’m compelled to share from real life mom lessons I’m learning. And these days, it’s real, pregnant, working mom life lessons. Aside from myself, I can think of 6 dear friends who are in my same boat. Pregnant, working moms who in most cases are already chasing around at least one little one.

 

Let me start by saying, y’all this is hard. This season is exhausting and challenging in ways I never could have imagined. Having survived the first trimester of this 2nd pregnancy season, I find myself reflecting on what I’ve learned from this time. I’m making an effort to take note, both for myself, but also for others to learn from my mistakes and my experiences. Here are some takeaways.

Read More

Instagram Stories: Add Them To Your Marketing Mix

Instagram Stories: Add Them To Your Marketing Mix

The start of a new year is the perfect time to look back and analyze your brand presence on social media. It’s always a wise move to take the time to figure out what has worked well for you over the past several months…which posts created the most engagement or best resonated with your audience or on the flipside what fell flat among your followers. It’s also a great time to look into incorporating something new into your feed to keep it relevant.

Read More

Goal Setting: Start Planning for a Successful 2017

Goal Setting: Start Planning for a Successful 2017

I love setting goals. It’s probably related to my love of planning, of writing lists, and marking items off as I accomplish them. Goal setting has a special magic for me because I’ve experienced the thrill of writing down an extravagant idea—no matter how impossible it seems—and then months down the road seeing that dream become a reality. There’s nothing like it.

I’ve written about goals a few times in the past: Goal Setting in November and Work Motivation After a Long Holiday Break. It’s a topic I love to revisit, sharing what helps me stay motivated and what tricks I’m finding to keep my focus over a long stretch of working towards a big goal.

Read More