The urge to hit snooze every morning is strong, I know. I’d much rather sleep those extra ten minutes than get up and get dressed for the day. But, I also know that taking those ten minutes for yourself and getting dressed and looking your best can really make a difference to your day.
There is a drastic difference in those days when I don’t put an effort in dressing up and those days where I do. Being well-dressed and feeling good about myself gives me the confidence to have the best day. Getting dressed in the mornings is seriously underrated; it is the easiest hack for having a good day.
If you need some convincing about this life hack, here are five ways in which dressing up can drastically change your day.
It will give you something to look forward to: Picking out an outfit that you love the night before, gives you something to look forward to in the mornings. It can make you more excited to take on the day and give you confidence to face anything even before you’ve woken up in the morning.
It can also motivate you to wake up earlier and put more effort into getting ready in the morning.
Wave goodbye to Monday blues: Mondays are tough for everyone, especially after you’ve had a good weekend. Picking out a killer outfit for Monday morning gives you the confidence you need to face the dreaded day head on. Pick out fun accessories and bold makeup to add a kick to your look.
Helps with confidence: When you look good you feel good too. If you have a big presentation, an important meeting or even if you’re just having one of those days, putting on a good outfit, doing your makeup and hair can help you change the map of your day. It can put you in a good mood and even build up confidence.
Make a good impression: Even though, it might seem superficial, being more put together and being dressed for the occasion, can help you make good impressions on people and also make them take you more seriously. If you look like you’re in control, exude confidence and have a strong, bold, body language, people are more likely to take notice and be more attentive to what you have to say.
Ready for anything: Imagine you’re at work, you put on the first thing you got your hands on this morning, your hair’s sort of a mess, but it’s okay, because you didn’t have any important meetings today. But then, all of a sudden you get pulled into a meeting that has been moved up or get called to have lunch with some important clients or workmates. Your entire day comes crashing down and you have to make excuses to get out of these plans or worse present to your team while you feel awful and are a complete mess inside. The same scenario can have a very different ending, but only if you take that extra time in the morning and put some thought into your outfit and makeup. With the right clothes, you can be ready for absolutely anything.
Giving yourself ten minutes in the morning to get dolled up, not for anyone else but just for yourself, is the secret to having happy, good and stress-free days, every day.
My mother has always been the one who influenced my idea of beauty. Today, I thought I would share some beauty tricks I learnt from her through the years:
Using lipstick as a blush and an eyeshadow
I used to watch my mother get ready every morning. The one thing I was always amazed by was how she used her lipstick an eyeshadow and a blush. This was way before the internet or the social Media age where we have been bombarded with DIYs. It was her way of speeding up the “getting ready” process.
Ghee / Butter as a body lotion
My mother always told me that the reason why I have smooth skin is because she used to massage my body with butter as a toddler. She said thats one of the reasons why skin looks and feels so moisturised until today. Its indeed a natural way to keep your skin looking moisturised, though the fragrance may not be meant for all.
Castor oil for thicker eyebrows
My mom always applied castor oil to her eyelashes and eyebrows before she went to bed.
“This is the only way I can make my eyebrows thicker” she said.
Surprisingly, the castor oil trick worked and the density of the hair in that area increased to an extent.
When my mom dressed me up for dandiya when I was barely 1
Have you ever had a day when you were frustrated turning on the screen and staring at your WhatsApp or Instagram messages only to find no one in particular had texted you? Or you jumped to every message tone or call ring on any phone in vicinity? Just hoping… hoping and wishing someone, anyone for that matter would call you or message you for a chat, round of gossip, asking to meet up or just saying hi? And do you remember the feeling every time your screen went dark with you still staring at it or when you flung the mobile instrument in utter frustration? Loneliness… that’s what the feeling is. Gnawing at you, making you feel unwanted and left out while the rest of the world, seemingly, indulged in great companionship.
But is the phone responsible? Or the people? Or is it that the whole world is conspiring against you? Why are you really lonely?
Are you lonely for that matter? Alone? Maybe, but lonely? We do have someone for company, even when we are alone, it is just that most of us do not love that company and crave for someone or something else, and hence the frustration of loneliness. I don’t mean the dog or the grandmother or the house help. Who else? You may ask. You can’t see them right? Well, that is what I am talking about. This person is so unloved and uncared for that they are almost invisible to us. And ironically this one person can be the only one who is most interested in us, loves us more than anyone in the world can knows us better than anyone ever can- warts and all.
If you still haven’t figured out, I am talking about us. Me as my best friend, you are yours. The best company we can ever have, provided we learn to acknowledge and love them back.
I have gone on that path and come a full circle. From waiting for someone to rescue me from my boredom to being absolutely blissful in my own company. Trust me, never have loved any other company as much. I mean I am the only person with whom I can be who I am- I know my lies, my deepest of secrets, my dark thoughts and most sinful desires and yet I am not afraid of being judged or ignored. I love myself the way I am and (though I may decide to filter a lot of it for the world) I and me, we both delight in even this secret filter game we play with the world.
I can cry with myself and I always have a very special, rather cunning smile for myself when I am indulging in something that the world doesn’t have to know about. Later we think about it and laugh some more in our own private world.
Of course I enjoy the company of others too. But when no one is around I am not craving for or getting frustrated in lack of another company. Together me and I we have discovered what we like to do the most. We read and then ruminate over the words. We reminisce the good moments and feel the pleasure together. Sometimes we miss some old times and share the nostalgia. Then we take walks or simply enjoy something mushy on Netflix while sharing a tissue. Together we marvel over the nonstop busy schedule of the ants and even delight on the sight of an aircraft in perfect flight. We both enjoy it because neither of us judges.
Since I have been aware of and learned to enjoy the company of Me, I have not felt lonely, I have not fretted over friends not messaging, I have not developed ill feelings for people who have the right to have a life of their own and understand that they do not have to take the responsibility of keeping me company. Neither do I give others any power to control or manipulate me emotionally or otherwise. I like their company but I am not dependent on them for my happiness. And hence when I do get together with them I am not complaining or cribbing, we have some great time together making another set of memories.
Have you met your self yet? Try today. Spend some time to know them more, their likes and dislikes and secretes and quirkiness. Share stories with them, involve them more in your life. Find out what you have in common and add that activity to your daily life.
Start today and this will be the last day when you feel lonely or left out.
Mumbai is the city of dreams and everyone from all over the country dreams of visiting this fast city at least once in their lifetime. This lively city has a plethora of things to do, for both new people and the natives. You can never find a dull moment in this city.
Like we all know Mumbai is a fast city and people who live fast lives in this city need a break from the action every once in a while. Mumbai has many ways in which people can unwind, the city is dotted with plush resorts and luxury hotels, and finding a hotel in Mumbai with a price suitable to your budget is not very difficult. A popular way to unwind for Mumbaikars is to take a short trip to places like Lonavala, Igatpuri, which serve as resort towns, but if you don’t want to go that far, we’ve got you sorted too. Here’s a list of things to do for both, people who live right here in Mumbai and those who’re visiting for a few days.
Boutique hotels and staycations are the new “IT” thing in Mumbai. You can find a number of pretty places on the internet, around the city, that you can rent for a couple of days. Boutique hotels in Mumbai with prices ranging from a couple of thousand rupees to even lakhs are dotted all over the city. From the quite crevices, to the hustling bustling business district, you can definitely find something that suits your needs.
Check out the music scene:
Every weekend Mumbai has a hoard of music gigs happening all over the city. Doesn’t matter if you’re a classical music fan, a jazz junky or a rock aficionado you can find a gig for each. Places like Bandra, Khar and Lower Parel always have a lot of options to choose from, a quick search on the net will get you many options.
Shop, till you drop:
There is literally nothing that you can’t find in Mumbai. Be it designer clothing or knock offs, outlet shopping or luxury shopping in malls, there are just so many options. The famous Crawford Market will get you anything you want for your home, from fake plants to exclusive cutlery. You can also find unique fabrics, stationary and homeware. Just a few kilometres away from this market is the famous Fashion Street where you can find the latest trends. If you want to go street shopping you can checkout Colaba Causeway for lots of trendy junk jewellery, cute shoes, bags, belts and also the latest clothes at the Hill Road Market in Bandra.
Go on a heritage walk:
Not a lot of people know this, but Mumbai has a rich history and heritage. There are a lot of heritage walks that you can go on, that’ll show you a very different side of Mumbai. These are arranged by history aficionados and are great for those who enjoy history. You can also opt for a cycling tour of Mumbai, these are generally arranged on Sunday morning and are a great way of exploring this colour, beautiful city. There are some packages and hotels in Mumbai with prices that include these tours and activities, you can call them before hand and arrange a tour during your stay.
Whether you want to relax and rejuvenate or explore even nook and corner of the city, you can find something that suits you needs in this city. A quick search for hotels in Mumbai with prices will give you lots of options. So get your bags packed and get ready for a fun adventure in the city of dreams.
When you think of fashion, the first place that comes to mind is Paris. It’s a well-known fact that Parisian women are some of the most well-dressed people in the world. Parisian fashion is inspiring, sophisticated, and chic and everyone wants to replicate it. However, replicating Parisian fashion in India, isn’t the easiest thing.
Fashion in India and fashion in Paris are very different. French women, don’t believe in following trends, instead they believe in investing in quality and high end pieces and working with a really small wardrobe. Consumer culture is very different in France. Since Parisian fashion is all about high-end, timeless, fashion, their looks never go out of style.
Here are some tips that will help you replicate a bit of Parisian fashion, right here in India.
Keep it simple:
If you look up Parisian fashion on the internet, you will see that all their looks are super simple. They don’t believe in over the top accessories, bold colours, or prints. But that doesn’t mean they don’t have bold looks. Parisian fashion is all about basics.
Invest in good basics:
Basics are the building blocks of your wardrobe and hence you should not be cheap when it comes to these. Basics include, solid coloured basic tees, a well fitted pair of jeans, a fitted blazer or jacket, a dress and a belt. As for shoes, you should invest in a good pair of sneakers, a pair of nude heels (they go with everything), and a pair of tan sandals. If you have these things in your wardrobe, you can master any look.
Don’t buy, invest:
If you ask a French woman how she shops, she’ll tell you that she doesn’t buy, she invests in her clothes. Parisians don’t just buy a piece because it looks good, they think long and hard about how that piece with pair with other things that are already in their wardrobe, and how the piece goes with their overall look.
Don’t match, coordinate:
Matching and coordinating are two very different things. No matter what people say, matching your outfit head to toe is not good look for anyone. Coordinating on the other hand is all about mixing colours, prints and textures. Do a little research on colour blocking, because coordinating is the key to Parisian fashion.
Less is more: When it comes to accessories, less is more and that is the key to Parisian fashion. Keep your necklaces dainty, your earrings small and your rings to a minimum.
The most important thing though is to wear any look with confidence, that is the key to mastering any look.
This week on #AskTheExpert we have a fitness bringing you some exercises that are easy and can done at home if you are one of those who doesn’t like going to the gym or if you work from home. Let’s see what she has to say.
Hello, my name is Priyanka Bagai – I am a Personal Trainer & a Nutritionist. My expertise lies in weight loss and fat loss, helping individuals achieve their desired goals with the correct exercise routine along with a customised diet plan to sync both together. Fitness and health is my passion & I enjoy training myself and others, including different forms of workouts like functional, strength, body weight exercises, core training etc. I have been working out for about 16 years myself and changing others life for last 6 years. My goal is to create value and love for fitness in other’s lives.
Is it necessary to do some sort of exercise every day?
Yes, absolutely. To keep your body fit and active it is important to exercise daily. This not only helps you keep your excess weight off but complements your daily chores and makes you feel more energetic.
5 Different full body exercises
Exercise 1: Squats
How/ which part of the body does it focus on – Lower body – Legs and butt, core
How many reps should you do for beginners. – 15-20 reps for 2 sets
Dos and Don’ts if any – Focus on keeping your chest up, back engaged while keeping it straight (no curling or hunching) and pushing butt down and back, making sure knee isn’t crossing your toes.
Exercise 2: Shoulder Taps
How/ which part of the body does it focus on – Upper body and Core
How many reps should you do for beginners. – 10-15 reps for 2 sets
Dos and Don’ts if any – Body should be parallel to the floor, arms in line with shoulder, keeping core engaged, back straight.
Exercise 3: Modified Push Up
How/ which part of the body does it focus on – Upper body and Core
How many reps should you do for beginners. – 10-15 reps for 2 sets
Dos and Don’ts if any – Knee on the floor, arms in line with shoulder, back flat and chest up, pushing down towards the floor using support of your arms, shoulder and chest. Elbow should point towards your knee and not sideways. Breathe in while moving down and breathe out while coming up.
Exercise 4: Jumping Jacks
How/ which part of the body does it focus on- Full body
How many reps should you do for beginners. – 20-30 reps for 2 sets
Dos and Don’ts if any – Keep your body upright, hands by your side, jump while taking legs wider than hips width and arms flapping up to shoulder level
Exercise 5: Ab Curl
How/ which part of the body does it focus on – Abdomen
How many reps should you do for beginners. – 10-15 reps for 2 sets
Dos and Don’ts if any – Lying down on the mat, keep knee bent on mat, arms straight above the head, lift up your shoulder neck head and arms reaching up and slowing moving down again. Breathe out while coming up, breathe in while going down. Do not jerk or twist your neck – keep it neutral, also do not shrug your shoulder – keep it relaxed while doing the ab curl.
We’re living in a time where time is everything. There are so many things to do in a day, nearly not as much time. Time management is something we don’t take very seriously and that is part of the reason why we can’t seem to find the time for anything. We work too much and don’t have the time to spend with our family or friends, we’re so over worked by the weekend, that we can’t find the time or the energy to finish the chores that we set aside for the weekend. Time management is the key to finding time for everything that we want to but can’t seem to find the time for.
Here are some tips on time management that’ll help you find time for everything you want to do.
Setting a time aside for all your important tasks in a day and give them a set amount of time. By giving each task a set amount of time, you can limit the time you utilise in procrastinating, or the time you spend putting things off. Investing in a daily planner can really help you with planning your daily duties and also sticking to them.
Create a board:
If you’re someone who has a lot of chores to complete in a day, you should create a calendar or a board that you can place at your work desk or in your room, so you know can have all your tasks in front of you. This can also help you prioritise important tasks. You can colour code your tasks according to the most important to least important tasks.
Set a routine:
A set daily routine can really help you make time for everything. You can set aside slots for all the different tasks. If you have a set daily routine, you will find it much easier to find time for small tasks. Waking up and going to sleep at the same time every day, not only will you have a healthier life you will also be better at finding time for everything you want to do.
Procrastination is one the main reasons why people can’t find the time for anything. Although sometimes procrastination can be very productive too, most of the times its more unproductive than not. Limit the time you spend on social media, or set aside a time at the end of the day to check your Instagram and Twitter, this way you are less likely to be distracted by it through the day.
Time management is not very difficult, a bit of planning, and being mindful about how you spend your time can really help you find the time for everything that you want to do.
Dr. Sapna Sharma is an International Counselor, Life Coach, Motivational speaker,
Counseling Skills trainer and an Author.
She runs a Counseling Center where she guides people in pain and confusion concerning Relationship problems, Stress, Addiction and Co-Addiction, Illnesses, Professional issues etc.
She also conducts Online Counseling and Coaching for her clients based all around the world.
An Acclaimed Motivational speaker and Behavioral trainer, she is invited across the country and abroad by key educational institutes, corporate houses and many NGO’s.
She is Certified Psychometric tools assessor.
As a tribute to her childhood dreams she has ventured on to a take experience as an Air Hostess with an international airlines in between her medical education. These and other experiences in varied fields give her the authority to counsel and coach on various aspects of life
Last week in my counseling chamber I witnessed, again, the ugly effect of social media dependence. It was a suicide survivor. A young house wife who believes she is not liked by anyone. The reason? She has been posting her pictures ever since her honeymoon and though the responses was nice and sweet from her friends to begin with, they simply stopped one fine morning. The fact that she was not very willing to get married did not help. Over a period of 2 months she convinced herself that she should never have gotten married in the first place and it was because of her married status that her so called ‘friends’ had deserted her. When the family tried contacting a couple of her friends after rescuing her, they were shocked to know that due to some glitches this young woman’s posts were not visible to others and that the friends had been wondering where she had disappeared!!
Too many things to learn and understand here, I will list down a few:
Many of us are using the social media as a means to get the attention and praise that we had always wanted.
In the absence of positive self esteem a lot of importantce is attached to the empty words and impersonal smilies on the social media.
We have given technology the status of God and do not even wish to consider the option that that something can go wrong with it.
Giving all our power to the social media, many of us have stopped putting efforts into bettering our qualities, achievements and relationships thus making the media our only source for the ‘feel good’.
Social media has glamorized the concept of ‘friends’ to the extent that only the people who complement and hail us are counted in the friend category, many a times neglecting other more substantial relationsips.
There can be many more inferences to be drawn but situations like these are increasing at alarming rate and that should be a cause of concern. We have young children around not just following us but taking all of the above to a new height every day.
Media is unavaoidable and technology is here to stay. I believe that parents are making futile attempts and wasting precious moments of relationships in trying to keep the younger generation from the social media. That is impossible. The social media and technology is their truth. So no, I will not recommend that we stay away from the media or try doing that for the youngsters. What I would rather recommend very strongly is:
Let us work on building up our Self Esteem and that of the youngsters around us by shifting some of our focus from the castrating effects of traditional education to confidence and Esteem building activities and life style.
Let us educate ourselves and ours in the ways to use the social media to our benefit in a fun way rather than making a monster out of it.
Let us not forget the effect of having real people in our life and deliberately add real people to our life at every stage.
Let us learn to communicate face to face once again and learn to give real complements and motivating words to the people whom we really care for.
And let us also learn to ask for complements and positive strokes when we think we are low and we really need it- from real people.
Today we thought of bringing you an expert’s opinion/recommendations and so here’s Nikhil Merchant taking over the blog. Check out what he has to say…
At the age of 12, curious about all things food, I started by cooking my very first dish. A resident of Mumbai, India – a land rich in culture and cuisine I started my journey on the culinary trail quite early. Beginning my food career in journalism where I still write extensive on food and the people behind it for luxury publications, nationally as well as internationally. My love for cooking and thirst for knowledge opened doors to some of the best kitchens in India and abroad where I got to interact, cook, learn and execute finest cuisines of the world from culinary masterminds. My inexhaustible penchant for simplifying fine dishes and turning spirits into potent potions are an expression of my culinary sensibilities, picked from travels around the world and my fervent liaison with the food world. Thus, was born Nonchalant Gourmand, a space where I relive my experiences and share my cooking escapades with the world.
Places I love.
Coming back to Bombay’s go-to, Insta-worthy cafes, all these cafes have some form of quirky old world, nostalgic and dreamy charm. Most of them have an Al Fresco (a rare sighting in Mumbai) as well as large frontage windows which allow in a lot of natural light. Thus, making it easier for it to be superbly photograph friendly. Light interiors, pastel shades or monochromatic design flow with a smart well thought of themes make it easier on the eyes and highlight the food even more so. Each of them also have a lot of whites in their backgrounds thus making colours stand out even more as also make the walls reflectors for light in daylight. Of course, the buzz and cacophony add to the drama of the place and I think they each individually have some very interesting spots to easily take pictures.
1) Teavilla Cafe
2) Verbena Brewpub & Skygarden –
3) JamJar Diner
4) Homemade Cafe
5) Brooke Bond Taj Mahal Tea House
What I love from the menu of these places is-
1) Churros at Teavilla Cafe
2) Desserts at Verbena Brewpub & Skygarden
3) Edible Muddy Dessert in Flowerpot at JamJar Diner
4) Fondues at Homemade Cafe
5) The high–tea setting at Brooke Bond Taj Mahal Tea House
In addition to the café and the food, an important part of them being Insta-worthy is a good flat-lay. I dabbled into proper flat–lay quite recently. My work for Kelloggs actually made me rethink the way I should work with flat lays. You need a large background – could be a piece of plywood, wood, paper or any flat material which is not too glossy and ideally Matt finish, Then it is all about layering – start with twisted pieces of fabric snaking around the space, then add the vessels in rounds and squares or other shapes and start by placing them in a puzzle format (about to be fitted together but with space in between), these vessels could hold your food or liquid – meanwhile ensure the bigger ones which are to be in focus start in the center and then move to smaller around it (maybe condiments?). Add ingredients in raw around the space. Maybe flowers or dried plants, bright greens or leaves to bring freshness. All this while ensuring the colour schematics match and not become too rainbow style (sometimes those work too but I prefer to remain in a colour palate of 3-4 colours). Add metallic or shimmer to glam it up, or pastels to soften hues. Always try and pair contrasting shades to highlight the entire picture. Last but not the least – invest in a proper good tripod to hold the frame steady while you go about rearranging the products / ingredients for the best possible flat lay you can achieve. I usually don’t work with lights and prefer natural light so will pull up my layouts near a window or balcony with sheers so I can control the amount of light entering and yet draw the sheers if I want to soften the lighting.
What makes a good flat-lay?
With that creating a good flat lay is keeping all the points I made above intact and being creative with your backgrounds and yet retain a particular style of showcasing your photos. A bad one can be identified with a lot of unnecessary shadows and hidden ingredients which tend to get lost in the layering of fabric or vessels. Too much of flora and fauna can also make one lose the essence of the product to be highlighted so try and keep it simple.
Summer 2019 is upon us and we’re just not prepared on the onslaught of the extra hot months that lays ahead. What can help is a wardrobe refresh, so that you can stay ultra-stylish even when the world around is melting in the heat. A summer wardrobe refresh is essential, especially after the freezing winter we’ve just had. There is no way we’re going to survive the summer with all those sweaters, jackets and thick scarves in the way.
So, here are some everyday work outfits that you need to add asap to your wardrobe, so that you can look fabulous all through the summer.
There is no way you’re going to be able to wear your tight jeans and leggings to work this summer. Invest in some stylish, flowy dresses to replace them. Shirt dresses make for great work wear, they are casual and yet not too casual to look off at the office. They’re also very “in” this season. Dresses are an easy way to look more dressed up than usual, so that two birds with one stone.
A-line and skater shirts:
A-line and skater skirts can easily replace your jeans this season. They are easy to style and look fabulous. You can pair your skirts with simple t-shirts, shirts, and even with kurtis. They are also more flowy and not form fitting, making them ideal for the hot summer.
If you’re not comfortable with skater skirts or your office does not allow short skirts, opt for midi-shirts instead. Midi-skirts too are very “in” right now. You can opt for the button down ones, pair them with a casual shirt and slick back sandals for a chic summer day look.
These pants just never go out of style, they are ideal for every season. This season too, cotton palazzo pants are here to stay. Pair them with long or short kurtas, opt for high waist ones and pair them with crop tops, there are a million ways to style these. You need to have one in your closet this summer.
Culottes and cold shoulder tops:
Culottes make for ideal work wear pants. They’re loose fitting, comfortable and also very stylish. They can be styled to look formal as well as casual. Pair your culottes with a cold-shoulder top and let your shoulders breath this summer.
No matter what you wear, just remember that you need to be comfortable and feel good, because this summer style is all about comfort.