In the midst of so much happening in the world, I thought it fitting to talk about what living “La Bella Vie” means to me. Although we are all indoors, separated from our loved ones and out of our routine, it may be more important than ever to recognize how we can find beauty and joy in every aspect of our lives, regardless of what is going on in the world around us.
La Bella Vie means “The Beautiful Life.” But what is that? What does a beautiful life look like? It’s about what is beautiful to you. Not perfection, mind you, as that can be so overrated and soul-stealing. It’s about putting into your day that which lifts you up and gives you life. It’s about keeping things pure and simple. La Bella Vie encourages you to live wholeheartedly with authenticity and find the joy in life that you richly deserve.
For me, indulging in all things creative brings me immense joy and peace. I love to create beauty in everything I do, whether it is cooking, baking, gardening, interior styling, or designing… that’s what gives my spirit flight! So, living artfully can be as simple as putting your heart and soul into anything you decide and allowing that to take you on a creative journey–with your heart wide open, ready to receive.
Having these moments, quarantined together, can bring deeper connections, but it is also extremely stressful. We find ourselves in unchartered territory. Some of us are way too together, and some of us are way too apart. However, creating the time and space to put the journey into motion is essential.
But here is the thing: trying to carve out some personal time is no easy feat. I mean, let’s face it… Some of us are hanging on by a thread. I can find a million and one excuses for why I can’t take care of myself right now–today. Believe me, I have all of those excuses in my hip pocket, ready to pull them out at a moment’s notice. I’ve earned expert status at excuses! However, I’m here to say that if you don’t round out the parts of your life that are jagged, it’s going to be an exhausting ride. And exhaustion is what happens right before burn out.
Take it from a mom and a serial entrepreneur–burnout is real. And it begins from not taking the time out from the ever-pressing to-do list to create some space for yourself. And I get it, it’s not always easy to slow down. But to hear your soul speak, you must set aside some time to shut out the noise and listen to your inner voice.
For me, it has also been about having a space of my own–a sacred space if you will, but not in a traditional sense. Oh, sure, I have my candles, aromatherapy oils, Native American flute music, yoga, and meditation (after all, I did grow up in the ’70s). But moreover, my space is an area where I can lose myself and all track of time. It’s where I can create, where I can have a moment of reflection to dream and be present with my thoughts and feelin
gs while noticing the world around me. What I have learned about myself over these last decades is that when my life is going off the rails, it’s usually because I have given my personal time slot away to someone or something else. I know that most of you can relate to this, and at the risk of sounding cliche, if you are trying to figure out when you can fit it in–the time is NOW!
Everyone has an idea of how their space would feel right to them. It can be as simple as an area in your home where you have your morning coffee or tea, allowing you to breathe in some silence and make an affirmation for your day. For some of you, it could be creating a place to exercise or dance, giving you the freedom to clear your mind and set your intentions. The key is setting aside space that is just for you.
My hope is that you uncover what brings joy to your life and understand that we are all a work-in-progress. Sometimes, it’s as simple as seeking small pleasures–less, not more. Surround yourself with the artifacts and rituals that can bring peace to your heart and help you live artfully. Because when you nurture and care for yourself, you are allowing yourself to imagine, dream, and create.
So that is what living a beautiful life means; knowing that putting the oxygen mask on myself first makes everything in life work better, including me. When something requires more of you than you have to give, then that something needs to change. Give yourself permission to make that adjustment and live a life that is beautiful and supportive to you! And remember, baby steps; put your foot on the path and begin.
Live, La Bella Vie!