Tara Sowlaty joins Ritual's Think Positive Challenge. This year, it’s our mission to help you start a ritual: a small, daily habit that leads to big changes. Learning to practice positivity through daily actions (in spite of tough times) can have a huge impact on your general health, from mood to mortality. Here's how Tara practices positivity.
When I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease in my teens, I felt an urgency to get healthy from the inside out. My household was always about fresh, whole foods — that’s just how we were raised — but after being diagnosed with Crohn’s, I had to look at the whole picture. Eventually, an ideological shift of living mindfully eventually led me to my life’s purpose. Co-founding How You Glow, I really wanted to create a platform that focuses on bringing healthy and positive changes into our audience’s lives. Positivity isn’t as easy as using a healthy product consistently; it takes a consistent and concerted effort, that is at times a challenge to sustain.
More than anything, balance and mindfulness have been the ultimate game-changing health practices I’ve brought into my own life. Trekking into new things at first can always be uncomfortable, but the reward is definitely worth it: balance is all about knowing your needs and limits in every way (food, social engagement, exercise) and mindfulness means being present, positive, and in-tune with your state of mind. Now, practicing mindfulness through meditation and writing down positive intentions are parts of my daily routine. Here’s how I practice positivity on a sustainable, day-to-day basis. You can too.
Wake up & give thanks
When I wake up in the morning, I write down three things I’m grateful for in my phone. It sets the tone for my entire day: no matter what, I can always find three things (big or small) to be positive about. When I’m stressed or busy, this is the key to maintaining my balance — and it only takes two minutes, tops.When you start out, allow yourself the freedom for this to look however you want: use your phone, a journal, or even a Post-It that you hang up. What matters is that you do it every day, not how you do it.
Fake it 'till you make it
While I’m practicing gratitude, I sometimes set intentions via writing down things I’m grateful for, that I don’t currently have, but would love to manifest. For example, if you wanted to buy a house this year, you would write, “I’m thankful for the house that I’ve paid the downpayment on this year and currently love living in.” It might sound silly at first, but this works wonders for me. When we are grateful, we are operating in a flow of positivity and making space for that positivity to attract even more positivity. So when we are grateful for what we do not yet have, we are literally creating neural connections in the brain that know what it feels like to have that thing that we desire — it’s pretty powerful.
Keep it fun & simple
After I’ve practiced gratitude in the morning, I do my cleansing routine, brush my teeth, drink water, and surround myself with incense and crystals when I get ready. This is what makes me feel good. I try to keep my positivity practice as simple and feel-good as possible. If I meditate, I make sure my environment feels good first: I believe that our surroundings are a huge part of our mental states, so if you keep them fun and simple, you’ve already accomplished a lot.
Move it & share it
After my morning routine is over, almost everyday begins with a walk to coffee with my fiancé. It’s truly my favorite part of the day, and it’s an easy way to get some movement in. When you move first thing in the morning — walking, running, yoga, however — you give yourself that mood and energy boost first thing. I try to lead with positivity in my interactions with my loved ones and within my business relations as well. Remembering to put the good stuff first is a way to maintain balance in your social life, and to prioritize yourself and your wellbeing at the start of your day. It works.
For more inspiration on how to turn your New Year's resolution into a lifelong ritual, check out these stories from other amazing women below. When you're ready — and we think you've got this— get started with your own personalized habit bot, here.