VFW FW 2017

This past week I volunteered at the Vancouver Fashion Week and I am still feeling the buzz. Shows, interviews, the fast pace, meeting tons of cool people...I just loved it. 

should have worn sunglasses

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I attended 5 out of 7 days of the week and helped out on the media team- big shout out to Jalila, Ariene, Lexie, Nancy and Julianna for being the best team ever and showing up for the challenge every day. Wish I'd taken more photos with you :D Next time!

team "chips on the front row". so happy to have met you lady

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Some of the shows left me breathless - collections were captivating and very well thought-out. VFW is truly a platform for any designer to showcase their vision - there weren't themes on specific days and collections varied from experimental to classical to eco-fashion to niche designs like hats and lingerie. 

Throughout the week I've learned what kind of aesthetic inspires me the most: it is the combination of minimalism, grunge, soft and translucent beauty, geometric shapes and lines, innovation in garment design and eccentric attitude in both design and presentation. Lmk in comments what kind of aesthetic inspires you! 

Since I was volunteering, I did not bring my DSLR with me (honestly I would not have time to take pictures even if I did... running from runway to backstage to the media room left only the time to send snapchat updates and insta stories (haha I did indulge in those though... follow me @ekky_m or ekkym on snapchat !). But here are a few pics I did manage to take.

these slippers by @alex.s.yu I want them, like now

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3/3 ... something about these sleeves... @alogon_official @vanfashionweek

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favorite look by Moskal last night. So airy 🌬

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I am so lucky to have had my first fashion week volunteer experience at VFW because of strength of fashion community here in Vancouver, something that I seek everywhere I go and value deeply.

FYI - definitely will be writing more on fashion since now I am addicted to Fashion Weeks. I would love to hear your thoughts about it though!! Let me know if you found fashion interesting :) In my opinion fashion = self-expression and a way to reflect on the outside what you are on the inside. Do you agree? 

🙃

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I am going to be at Eco Fashion Week this weekend so stay tuned for updates about it (most likely will be tons of insta+snapchat combo hehe)

Sending lots of spring love your way! 

xx Ekky

love yourself some meditation

Meditation is one of those things you know is really good for you but finding the time and, more importantly, making the effort, is usually terribly challenging. At least for me it has always been the case.

However, recently more people are talking about it, friends are trying it, it’s in the news, it’s practically everywhere. So I began to feel a true real FOMO and decided to give it an honest shot.

Without setting a set plan or goal to meditate x times y times a week (for the first time ever),  I simply allowed myself to perceive meditation as a self-care practice and just do it whenever I felt inclined to.

I meditated probably ten-fifteen times since December, just for up to 10 minutes every time. I enjoyed it, learned to notice my breath, but most times was just thinking about my day unable to let the thoughts go. Yet it has always made me feel better at the end so I continued to peacefully sit or lie down every once in a while.

And a few days ago, at a group meditation class at my office (another reason I love my job), I felt IT for the first time. I made my way back to my desk and anxiously (it was a very peaceful type of anxiety - 20 min of meditating do that to you) scribbled down what I felt and I am so excited to share it with you!

I laid flat on my back with one blanket underneath me and one on me. There was a bolster under my knees and I felt strong connection to the floor through my lower back region. I breathed in through my body like a wave. On an inhale, I sent the wave from legs to head and then on an exhale I sent the wave through my back, from head to legs.

With each thought coming, I kindly let go, without judgment, just accepting that thoughts will keep coming. There were maybe ten of them, not too many overall...

And then it started. I would describe it as a galaxy dance outside of my body but inside me. It felt as thought it was both inside and outside, and the only connection to my body I felt through my low back.

I wasn’t scared to continue that dance. I wasn’t scared at all. In fact, I wanted that dance, that spin, to continue, and most importantly, I wanted it to continue at the same pace.

The pace was perfect. It was fast but felt so perfectly in control. I was just in the state of joy from existence of that dance, knowing and accepting that eventually it will end.

But not yet.

Through darkness and blinking lights that felt like strokes of falling stars, it took me to a place where I’d never thought I’d be. It showed me a vivid, juicy image. Many images and moments, as if they were real. And they were, I knew, they were real and true.

That place it took me…It was unexpected. I never thought I would be there. Yet I was, there, loving, happy, true to myself and to the world. Aligned. Challenged. And really, really true. Images kept changing in a perfect speed, but they were all in that time and place and I was just there in them.

Coming back to the room, I had to put in a little extra bitter sweet effort. Opening eyes took few extra seconds …but now I knew.

And all of a sudden it became so easy to be.

I am so hooked now! 

I really hope you try meditation as your self-care practice and give yourself some love through it, it really is the time where you can be just you! And please, let me know your experience with it - I am so curious about this practice – I think it unlocks something divine in us and I am so excited to learn how it is for you.

Also – if you have blogs, resources or suggestions about meditation please let them here too!

One that I wanted to share that is not purely about meditation, but about eternal self-love all of us so desperately need is Zen Habits. Make sure to subscribe – every single one of Leo's letters shift my perspective and help me understand myself and the world better.

Sending you lots of Valentine’s Fire & Love ❤

xxx Ekky

perfect job series: introduction

Finding a job is tough. Finding a perfect job is tougher. Finding what constitutes a perfect job seems like a daunting task, and sometimes takes decades. But it doesn't have to. Let me explain my.

I want to start these series with a little introduction into my job-searching-landing background. 

I've worked at three companies in the past year and a half. Every time I started a job, it felt perfect. It felt like stars lined up for me to get the opportunity I was getting. Sometimes I had to do a push - think four 1.5-2-hour interviews in four consecutive days with the same company to get those stars to line up. Sometimes, it was a natural "yes" on both ends after a 30-min conversation and things just worked out naturally. 

But it was always perfect. For that particular season of my life.

  • My first job taught me complicated corporate words and structures, showed me that work can be fun.
  • My second job made me tough and helped me become strategic and realistic. It allowed me to experience various leadership styles and helped me shape my own identity as a leader. And, frankly, made me realize that you can truly dislike your job and love the experience anyways, because you simply learn so much!
  • It's too early to evaluate what my third job teaches me as I've had it just for over a month...But it's too hard not to share :P Two teaser words for you: culture & integrity.

So if you are a good between-the-lines reader, you can notice that some descriptions above seem far from perfect.

But they are. My philosophy in finding a perfect job lays fundamentally in loving the crap out of each and every experience you get, staying true to yourself and looking at every opportunity through the lens of discovery.

So if you are searching for a company to get passionate about, don't know whether your current job is serving you, considering switching fields, can't decide on a specific role, looking to define your destiny, find your dream career path, or already having the most perfect job - please join me in this conversation during this series! I would love to hear your thoughts on the topic and learn from your experience!

Have a fabulous day!!

hiking and positive thinking

truly important concepts are simple
and could be explained with truly simple examples

There is no better way to explain the power of positive thinking than with a simple hike on a BC trail.

Try thinking "I can't do this, it sucks, why am I doing this" while pirouetting from one slippery rock (or root) onto another and you'll inevitably hit your head in a painful slow-motion fall

It was raining all day yesterday, but a few friends and I went on a mini-hike regardless. The trail was slippery, I wasn't dressed for it but I was in a stellar mood.

I was stepping on all of the dryer rocks, loving the sights around and was having tons of fun.

Then a lightning-speed thought of slipping creeped into my head and I fell.

It wasn't a big fall but it was enough to hit my brain with a century-old thought of wisdom:

when you are trying to climb a mountain, or reach the top, there is no room for negative thoughts

so, few lessons learned:

- negative thoughts block creativity and cloud consciousness. fall is inevitable!

- the closer to the top you get, the more important that your mind stays clear and positive

- hikes are awesome!! let's go on one ;)


What has hiking taught you? What are other ways that help you get back to positive thinking? What hikes would you recommend in BC (or anywhere else)?
 

P.S. huge thanks to Eric and Mariel, my first-year roommate, for taking us on one amazing scenic drive, and doughnuts and Deep Cove and all the BC insights. Super stoked for Mariel to be living her dream and moving to LA, I'll be there visiting oh so very soon xx

P.S. huge thanks to Eric and Mariel, my first-year roommate, for taking us on one amazing scenic drive, and doughnuts and Deep Cove and all the BC insights. Super stoked for Mariel to be living her dream and moving to LA, I'll be there visiting oh so very soon xx

10 tips to love your 30-day yoga challenge

When I was fifteen, my mom made me sign up for a gym membership, hoping to transform me from a sneaking out party-lover to a somewhat healthy and responsible teen. I despised exercise with all my heart so I found the most low-key type on the gym menu - yoga. The condition was that I go twice a week, and so I went.

And it stuck. It wasn't a love at first sight, and it does seem like an arranged marriage, but hey, here I am eight years later adventuring through my fourth 30-day yoga challenge, and absolutely loving it. Thanks mom <3 

30-day challenges are awesome though: they taught me so much about myself; they open up channels of acceptance, love and compassion in me; they balance my mood, my life and help me become who I believe I am destined to be - a pretzel. 

If you haven't tried, I really hope you consider doing it - you will be amazed what it will do for you. I also want you to be ready for this experience so here are a few tips on loving your own 30-day challenge.

  • Celebrate your commitment! 

And not just in the beginning. The challenge, this act of kindness you are doing for yourself and those around you, really deserves a constant celebration. By celebration I don't mean going out or buying something new (although you are totally welcome to! Reward yourself ;)Just turn your mind to a celebration mode. Imagine a feeling of a Friday night. It's like, yay fireworks, you are doing it! 

  • Plan ahead.

I know that if I don't put it in my calendar - it won't happen. Every week on Sunday I lay out the schedule of my yoga studio, sit down with my iCal and map out my yoga week.

  • Do it with a friend. Or not.

I've done two of my challenges alone and two with a friend. Both experiences were enlightening in their own way. Doing it with a friend provides motivation to go, it's easier to get up at 5:30am to go to class for sure. So if your goal is to connect your practice with your day-to-day life, then doing it with a friend is ideal. But if you want to train your commitment muscle and dig very deep into your personal practice then doing it alone is the answer. It all depends on your goals. Speaking of goals...

  • Have a goal. Or not.

Usually we associate goals with work, with deliverables and deadlines. Or with something specific and achievable in our personal lives. But play with this one here - there are no rules! It is your challenge and you can have any type of goal your heart desires.  It doesn't need to be SMART; it just has to be something you want to feel.If your goal is to have fun, go for it. If it is to build your core strength, or something even more specific like "do a handstand without a wall by the end of the challenge" (my goal) - it is all great. Just focus on how you want to feel at the end.

  • Mix up class styles. 

There are so many class styles, and many studios have different names for the same kind of practice so it does get confusing. But don't let it turn you away from trying - usually instructors provide options and modifications if you need them.  Here is a quick reference of classes from the most relaxing to the most intense: restorative/yin -> hatha -> vinyasa/flow -> ashtanga/power/bikram/any hot class.

  • Track classes you attended.

It is my first time tracking this challenge and I love it. I have a page in my notebook where I dedicate a line per class naming the teacher, the type of practice, the time, location and I also rate my classes. 5 to which I would be back; 3 to which I would be back if it is at convenient time and 1 if hmmm.. it didn't work out for me. The page grows every day, I see my progress and I also can always go back and see which class and instructor I liked.

  • Try yin.

Feeling exhausted in the middle of your challenge? Yin is here for you. I would describe it as laying on the floor with blankets and bolsters and feeling extremely comfortable but I am sure there is a more spiritual sophisticated yoga definition for it. It is seriously the best. Usually mid-challenge I do yin 3-5 times a week - that's just what I need. Listen to your body.

  • Go crazy and do a yoga day.

Energized? Do a few classes a day.  I love doing a power followed by yin, or 2 flow practices, one in the AM and one in the PM. Make sure to count them all towards your challenge. That's what usually happens mostly in the beginning of the challenge for me - I like feeling like I am ahead of the game. Then it feels so good to...

  • Take a break. 

Sometimes things come up and you have to miss a day. Embrace it :) Guilt should never be a feeling you experience during the challenge. Take extra few days after the challenge to finish it or do a few classes a day. Most importantly - don't ever, ever stress about it. 

  • Nourish your body.

Yoga challenge is the best opportunity to get back on track with a healthy lifestyle and to develop more healthy habits. Don't forget to eat well, learn some new recipes, drink a lot of tea and water. I love kombucha as a post-yoga drink - bubbles add an element of celebration and we circle back to point one.

namaste

Studios I've done challenges at and highly recommend:

If you want to do it at your own pace and don't know where to start- check out Yoga with Adriene.Adriene, witty and laid-back yoga instructor is so much fun to follow along!

Great resources to check out:

If you have any questions about yoga or want me to elaborate on something I mentioned above in a separate post please feel free to message me or leave a comment!

Have you done a challenge yourself? What was your experience like? Where did you do it? Share share share!