5 Podcasts Every Millennial Female Needs to Listen to

Podcasts are my favorite way to start the morning. It is the first thing I do when I wake up. I find one in my library that interests me the most on that day and hit play. I listen to it as I wash my face, do my makeup, and get dressed for the day. I love listening to them first thing in the morning because it allows me to start my day off by learning something new. Shouldn’t we all start a new day with learning?

Podcasts ground me a lot more than music does. Music has the tendency to get me in the mood of whatever song I am listening to. And, I don’t know about you but starting my day on a roller coaster of emotions isn’t effective in creating a clear, positive mindset for the work ahead of me.

Please keep in mind that I love to learn about health and wellness and the best ways to take care of my body, so a lot of these podcasts are focused on just that. Each one of these is informative in its own unique way. Here they are.

  1. The Skinny Confidential Him & Her

skinny confidential him and her

There is something about Lauren Everetts and Michael Bostick that is real and magnetic. I love listening to their conversations with each other and the guests that they have on the show. They interview all different kinds of guests from entrepreneurs to media personalities to doctors. I can always expect to learn something new through their podcast since they ask the most unique questions. A few of my favorite episodes are #163: Dr. Steven Gundry- Are Vegetables Bad?, #160: Ed Mylett- Peak Performance, #144: Shannon Dellimore- Founder of GLAMGLOW, #143: Paul Fishman- How to Self Love, and #129: Rachel Hollis- Prioritizing Time & Maximizing Results.

2. Mind Pump: Raw Fitness Truth

Mind Pump podcast

This one may be surprising to many people since it is a podcast primarily aimed at males who lift weights and body build. However, the three men that run this podcast are not only highly educated in strength-building, but also economics and politics. I like to hear them discuss different current events in the first hour of the podcast before answering fitness questions for the remaining time. They are all libertarians, giving listeners a very unique and real perspective that isn’t left or right-winged.

3. Ed Mylett Show

Ed Mylett podcast

I actually discovered Ed Mylett from the Skinny Confidential podcast and had to subscribe to his podcast after hearing him talk on success and relationships. He is an extremely successful entrepreneur who brings inspiring guests onto his show and also talks about his own success. He gives real, actionable advice for every entrepreneur which is why I enjoy his podcast so much. If you want to become a marketing guru listen to episode “How to Market Like a Genius with Billy Gene” and take lots of notes!

4. The goop Podcast

goop podcast

The goop Podcast focuses on interviewing different celebrities, doctors, and female entrepreneurs. Everyone that they interview somehow connects to overall wellness or female empowerment. I particularly enjoy listening to the psychologists and therapists that come onto the show to talk about different meditation and mental-wellness tips. I recommend “Why ‘Doing it All’ is a Con”, “Gweynth x Chrissy”, and “What ‘Problem’ Kids Are Trying to Teach Us”.

5. The mindbodygreen Podcast

mindbodygreen podcast

Again, this is another wellness podcast which interviews doctors and entrepreneurs in the wellness space. I like listening to a few different wellness podcasts, even though the guests often overlap, because each interviewer asks different questions and offers a different point of view in response. Some of my favorite episodes include “Daily Harvest Founder Rachel Drori”, “Dr. Frank Lipman On The Mitochondria”, and “Max Lugavere on Brain Fog”. However, my absolute favorite episode is “Bulletproof Founder Dave Asprey About Why He Thinks Kale is Bad For You”. Asprey has such a unique view of health and the entire episode kept me so intrigued. His thoughts on health are unlike anyone else’s.

You may be wondering, why do I need to listen to these podcasts as a female millennial? I am a true believer that success and wellness are intertwined. You can’t succeed if you are mentally or physically unwell. Taking care of our body and mind is necessary in order to accomplish goals and move forward in life. As skeptical as you may be, you cannot run a business, succeed in work, or form meaningful relationships if you aren’t properly taking care of yourself.

I hope these podcasts help lead you towards success in some way, whether they spark a business idea, encourage you to make healthier choices, or motivate you to overcome obstacles life throws your way. Let me know what you think and be sure to leave me a comment sharing your favorite podcasts!

Affording a Designer Bag Right Out of College

So I did a thing. To some people it might not seem like a big deal, but to me it represents all that I’ve worked for the past 22 years of my life.

 

I bought a bag that I’ve been lusting over for months. As someone who has grown up admiring the large fashion houses and the beautiful creations that come from them, buying my very own piece from one of these designers has always been a dream of mine. Models in magazines wearing these designer items were more than just images or cliches to me. They represented something to strive towards. Not because I was a superficial little girl wanting to show off a designer logo but because of the impact these designers have had on the fashion industry and what it means to be able to afford such an item.

Harrod's Gucci

Of course not everyone regards a designer bag in the same way. Some people see it as any other bag with a big name and high price tag. Some people see the person wearing it and automatically jump to conclusions about their life and how they got that bag. Other people think it’s a ridiculous financial decision. I’m not going to argue with any of these opinions because they are mere opinions, and in some contexts, they are probably 100% valid.

Gucci Sylvie

However, to me, my bag will remind me everyday of the long hours of studying I put myself through in high school and college. And not only the countless hours repeating math equations or figuring out lines of code, but the countless resumes and cover letters I’ve written, hundreds of internships I applied to, and the extracurricular activities I participated in those 8 years. You don’t earn nice things by sitting on your butt, cheating off the person next to you, or going out to bars and getting wasted on weekends (unless you’re racking up credit card debt or have rich parents, but that’s another story). You earn them by waking up at 6am to catch a train into the city, working a full 9-5 day, running to a networking session right after, studying on the train home, tutoring for 2 hours as soon as you walk in your door, and THEN heading off to a meeting for one of your clubs. Yes, this is what most of my weekdays in college looked like. However, it’s also not just making the most out of your weekdays but also sacrificing your weekends to work on your own business or attend a weekend-long hackathon in order to broaden your coding skills.

So at the end of the day, why not treat yourself to something you truly earned? When you make sacrifices you deserve to reward yourself for them. I’m excited to tote around my bag knowing that I bought it with my hard-earned money. Unfortunately, lots of people do judge others for making expensive purchases like this. Everyone has different priorities with their money and it’s not anyone’s place to judge them for it. Sure, it is not a smart decision to purchase an expensive item with a credit card or sacrifice your retirement savings, but you never know the sacrifices someone makes in order to afford a luxury. They could be someone who put in blood, sweat, and tears to earn that money, just like me.

Gucci Sylvie

I wanted to write this blog post to show my readers what hard work can earn. Whether you’ve always wanted to buy a designer bag like myself, or maybe a dream European vacation, you can make it possible by sacrificing some things in the present in order to make for a more enjoyable future. I recently read “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos” by Jordan B. Peterson and rule number seven discusses how the successful sacrifice in order to succeed in the future. He says, “the successful among us delay gratification. The successful among us bargain with the future”. I could not agree with this more. In order to be successful we must give up certain things in the present, like choosing to study for an exam rather than go out to the bars, in order to thrive later on. While having a designer bag does not mean success, it certainly is a byproduct of it. I will continue to give up certain things in my life in order to create a successful future for myself. While sometimes it doesn’t always work out, you never know unless you actually try.

Let me know what business, financial, or fashion advice you would like to hear me write more about. Be sure to follow me on Instagram for frequent updates!

5 Things “Switch” Taught Me About Setting New Year’s Resolutions

I recently read a book called “Switch- How to change things when change is hard” by Chip & Dan Heath. The book discusses various businesses cases and change situations, drawing out the important steps that were taken to make that change successful. While reading this it really had me thinking a lot about my New Year’s Resolutions and how to actually turn them into habits.

Every year myself and many others set new goals, hoping to adapt habits that we haven’t been the best at achieving in the past. What can we do to finally make these new habits stick? Reading this book gave me a lot of insight on to why certain change efforts do not work and how I can finally make them work.

This New Year I am making it my goal to become a morning person. Maybe not enjoy the mornings so much, but to not dread them. I want to workout in the mornings before work and set a solid routine so that I can set myself up for the best day ahead. I’ve tried to make this happen for the last few months now but it just hasn’t happened. I feel like I’ve tried everything- from making my boyfriend call to wake me up to motivating myself with a good cup of coffee. Unfortunately, nothing has worked. I am going to adapt the things I’ve learned in “Switch” to create a successful habit and I hope you will to.

What I’ve Learned:

1. Find a way to achieve your habit in a way that influences not just your thoughts, but your emotions.

Throughout the book the authors discuss the concepts of “the elephant” and “the rider”, or our emotions and our rationality. The rider can rationalize all he or she wants but will not be able to move the elephant if he or she doesn’t really want to. It’s important for us to follow the pattern SEE-FEEL-CHANGE if we want to be successful. So before trying to change a habit, make sure you really understand WHY you want to change what you are currently doing. What is this helping you achieve? How will this impact you?

For me, I think about all the free time I lose after work from having to head to the gym, complete my workout, and shower. I feel unproductive and like I have no time for myself after a long, hard day of work. I’m appealing to this feeling of unfulfillment and lack by changing the time I wake up in the morning.

2. Shrink the change.

According to Chip and Dan, “People find it more motivating to be partly finished with a longer journey than to be at the starting gate of a shorter one” (127). By taking small baby steps to making a change and succeeding at these steps, we are growing confidence in ourselves and proving to ourselves that we really can make this change. The authors call this a “miracle scale”; we are focusing our attention on small, attainable milestones rather than the far final destination.

I plan to start small by waking up 5 minutes earlier one week, then 10 minutes earlier, then 15 minutes, and so on. If I can wake up a little bit earlier each week then I will gain confidence that I can achieve the end goal and this end goal won’t seem as drastic. After I achieve the habit of waking up early, I will add small workouts into my routine. I will start with a 5 minute workout one week, then a 10 minute one, and so on. After all, big changes come from many small changes.

3. Tweak your environment to make change easier.

Changing different parts of your environment can help make your change efforts a lot easier. We often get stuck in certain routines or ways of doing things because we associate them with specific environments. Make it a little easier to create a habit by setting yourself up for success. Change your environment in small ways in order to make this new habit easier to adapt.

I will be laying out my gym clothes every night before bed in order to make getting up and working out in the morning a little bit easier. Or maybe for you changing your environment means joining a gym that’s only a short walk away rather than a 15 minute drive. If you make your goal to eat 20% less sugar in a day than you normally do, don’t keep high sugar foods in the house. Think about all the way you can change your surroundings to make change a little bit easier.

4. Create action triggers and checklists.

Action triggers motivate us to do the things we know we need to do. They help us determine when to act on what we want to change. They help us do things that we may be putting off or avoiding. For example, if you make an action trigger to go to the gym right after you get out of work, you’re not leaving any room for you to NOT go to the gym since you leave work everyday (or let’s hope). I’m going to make it my goal to workout right when I wake up since I wake up everyday. I will know waking up means it’s time to go workout.

In addition to action triggers it is important to create checklists. According to Chip and Dan, “Checklists educate people about what’s best, showing them the ironclad right way to do something… Checklists can help people avoid blind spots in a complex environment” (221). By creating a checklist of everything you need to do to accomplish your goal, you are getting rid of any possibility of forgetting what you have to do to make that goal successful. It could be as simple as writing a list telling yourself to set up your clothes for the morning, fill your water bottle with cold water, and preparing a post-workout smoothie. Checking things off your list will also be like small little accomplishments!

5. Make your goals clear, precise, and specific.

The more ambiguous our goals are, the more room there is for us to stray from our original goal. If we don’t include ways to measure our goals, we often don’t end up achieving what we originally intended. An example they used in the book was a goal many people set for the new year; “I want to eat healthy and workout more”. While this is great, it includes nothing you can measure. While you may start out strong, it will get to the point when you begin to justify eating ice cream because you ate broccoli earlier in the week. Or you eat McDonald’s for dinner because you ate a salad for lunch. You are justifying your decisions because they technically are “healthier” than what you were doing before, even though they aren’t actually healthy decisions. I encourage you to make goals like “Eat lunches and dinners consisting of 30% veggies, 50% protein, and 20% grains” or “Walk at least 30 minutes each day”. These are goals that you can confidently say you accomplished or not, without room for ambiguity.

I highly encourage everyone to read “Switch” by Chip and Dan Heath. It is a book that gives great insight in making change on a personal, organizational, or world-wide level. It is not only extremely inspiring to hear so many stories of successful change, but it is extremely educational in a practical way. Let me know what your New Year’s Resolutions are in the comments below. Follow me on Instagram to see everything I’m up to on my holiday break!

Holiday Sale Items You NEED to Buy

I am a huge sucker for a good sale. Truth is, I rarely buy anything for full price. For most items, they tend to be discounted at some point, so why not wait until then?

I’ve looked at all the best sales and pulled some of my favorite items from them for you to shop for with your holiday money. Here they are!

I love Aritzia but they always have 2 major sales a year where literally all items are somewhat discounted. I always wait until these sales to splurge on the pieces I’ve wanted all season long. Since Aritzia sells basic, minimal pieces, even the sale items will still be in style.

Babaton KARL JUMPSUIT

Aritzia jumpsuit

I LIVE in my basic black jumpsuit from Aritzia. It’s polished enough to easily throw on for work, but can also be worn on a night out when paired with some fun accessories. It’s a staple in my wardrobe.

Adidas Primeknit Sneakers

Adidas sneakers

Everyone needs a cool pair of sneakers for heading to yoga or just running errands around the city. I recently found these ones at Barney’s and am obsessed. They’re so cool and make any athleisure look instantly trendy.

Marc Fisher Chelsea Boot

Marc Fisher boot

If you follow me on Instagram then you’ve definitely seen me wear these boots. They are my staple shoe any time of the year. They’re great quality and last me through the winters and summers. Better yet they’re nearly half off!

Alo Yoga Teddy Coat

Alo Yoga Teddy Coat

If you have yet to give into the Teddy coat trend then now is the time! I swear they’re just as warm as they look, not to mention the most fashionable way to protect yourself from the cold. Saks has free shipping and 10% off your first purchase.

Varley High Waist Leggings

Varley leggings

If if you’ve never tried on a pair of high waist workout leggings, you just haven’t lived. They are seriously such a game changer in the world of comfort. Varley is one of my favorite workout brands- high quality, high comfort, high style. If you’re trying to workout more in the New Year, these will definitely make that a little bit easier.

Embellished Blanket Scarf

Blanket scarf

It’s safe to say that I wouldn’t survive winter without my blanket scarves. I depend on them to cover and shield my face from the freezing wind. This black one is a staple and 40% off until December 26th with the code “WRAPITUP”.

Hue Low Cut Socks

Low cut socks

These are a best kept secret if you’re a huge sneaker wearer like myself. They keep your shoes from getting stinky without the ugly look of socks sticking out. Get them 20% with code “JOY” until January 1st.

Cashmere TurtleneckCashmere turtleneck

Turtlenecks are essential for keeping warm in the winter. I love them for layering underneath pieces or to wear by themselves with other basics. This cashmere one is on great discount for the holidays! You even get an extra 15% off your purchase.

Henri Bendel Coin Purse

Henri Bendel coin purse

This past week I lost my wallet, so I’ve been working on replacing my cards and IDs; but I also need to replace the wallet itself. I’ll be buying the same one I had before but this updated version. It’s the perfect size for all of my cards and a little bit of cash. And it’s on sale!

Let me know what awesome deals these holiday sales bring you! Be sure to follow me on Instagram for all of my looks styling these items.

 

What I Wore From Rent the Runway (November)

Another month, another new wardrobe provided by Rent the Runway! If you’ve never heard of Rent the Runway, it is a subscription service where you can choose from hundreds of designer pieces to rent each month. I have the unlimited subscription which allows me to continually trade out any four pieces I want throughout the month. Its allowed me to have the vast designer wardrobe I’ve always wanted without the vast expense on my bank account.

For Work…

tuxedo jumpsuit

The Reagan Tuxedo Jumpsuit by Greylin has to be one of my favorite jumpsuits of all-time. It’s so sophisticated and stylish yet perfect for a corporate job. Unfortunately, working in tech things are pretty casual so I only had the chance to wear this jumpsuit once on a day where I was feeling super fancy. I am normally a size 4 and wore this in the size SR, which fit perfectly.

ruffle blouse

This is the Ivory Margo Top by Tularosa in a size small. It was honestly nothing special, so I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it. However, I was able to wear it to work one day with some jeans.

For Date Night…

I rented the Robyn Parker Dress by Parker for a fancy night out on the town with my boyfriend. I wore it with tall brown riding boots and absolutely loved how it looked. The dress seems a bit sheer at first but it surprisingly covers everything. Unfortunately, I was having such a great time at dinner that I forgot to take a picture in it! I wore a size medium which was just right for me. Highly recommend!

For Exploring the City…

western jacket

western jacket

This Koshova Jacket by Rebecca Minkoff was one of my favorite rentals of the month. I loved the dark blue indigo color, which I wasn’t expecting since it looked black online. I absolutely loved the corduroy fabric and western-inspired hardware, two major trends this season. I wore a size medium which worked out perfectly.

tibi sweater

Another one of my favorite rentals! I mean how beautiful is this bright kelly green color? This is the Green Rib Pullover by Tibi in a size medium. I loved how it was a little cropped and still showed some skin when wearing high-waisted bottoms. Tibi is quickly becoming one of my favorite brands; I fall in love with the quality and cut of each piece!

floral blouse

floral blouse

This is the Ditsi Print Smocked Blouse by Nicholas in a size 4. This is the perfect floral blouse for any girly girl out there. The fabric-covered buttons really add a special touch.

furla bag

This dark green bag paired with the kelly green sweater was a knockout combo. I loved the monochromatic greens! If you want a structured, lady-like bag, this one is for you. I’m a sucker for any bag with a top handle. This one is the Teal Metropolis Small Top Handle Bag by Furla.

free people tie blouse

I rented this tie-front blouse by Free People for casual wear while I was home for Thanksgiving. I wore it out on Thanksgiving Eve and also to the mall. It was cute but nothing crazy special. If you need a cropped black basic, it is a good staple to pair with more elaborate pieces. I wore this in an xs which fit just right.

gold metallic jacket

gold metallic jacket

I think it’s pretty clear that I’m saving the best for last! I may or may not still have this jacket hanging up in my closet… I didn’t expect to love this jacket as much as I do but it is truly a show-stopper. I get compliments on it wherever I go and seriously feel like the biggest diva. I am a sucker for anything metallic so this Metallic Foil Faux Jacket by Avec Les Filles is perfect for me. I’m considering buying it in order to make it a permanent piece in my collection. What do you think?

Want to see more of what Rent the Runway has to offer? Check out the pieces I wore in October.  Already sold on the idea of an unlimited designer wardrobe? You can get $30 off your first order by signing up here.

What I Wore from Rent the Runway (October)

If you’ve been wondering how fashion bloggers afford so many new, on-trend, designer pieces, I’m gonna tell you a little secret. Or better yet, give away the secret of all fashion bloggers. We all rent our clothes and accessories from Rent the Runway!

I just recently signed up for an unlimited subscription with Rent the Runway now that I’m earning an adult income. Lets be real, what college student can afford spending $180 a month on rented pieces!? However, as an adult, this is pretty affordable for an unlimited wardrobe filled with pieces for work, date nights, exploring the city, and special occasions.

I figured I should show each piece I rent in a month and share my review of it, how I styled it, and where I wore it. So here it is!

For Work…

Rent the Runway skirt

Here I am wearing a Faux Suede Flare Skirt by Slate & Willow. I ordered a size 4, my typical size, and it fit like a glove. The color was a beautiful rich brown and the length was just perfect on my 5 foot 7 frame. This is perfect with a black top and black accessories, emphasizing the chestnut color. It is the perfect piece if you have a corporate job and want to look professional but still in touch with the fall trends.

Processed with VSCO with a1 preset

Here I am wearing the Plaid Crop Flare Trousers by Derek Lam. I ordered a size 4 and they fit me to perfection. It amazes me that the pants I find on Rent the Runway fit me better than any of my own pants! You can’t quite see it in the picture, but the bottom of the pants are a bit darker in color than the top, making for a fun detail. Although these pants say flare, I wouldn’t call them that. They fit a bit looser around your calf but don’t necessarily flare in a dramatic way. As you can see in this photo, not only are they great for work, but you can dress them up for a night out.

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Here I am wearing the Unending Wrap Top by C/MEO Collective in a size medium, a size up from my normal size. This was one of my favorite pieces I rented this month because of the statement that it makes. The polka dots are super on trend and the puffy sleeves create some drama. I was able to wear it with some black slacks to work and even make it more casual for a day hanging around the city.

For Date Night…

denim dress- rent the runway

Here I am wearing the Denim Sammy Dress by AMUR in a size 4. This was another one of my favorite pieces I rented this month. I got tons of compliments on this dress because of the unique sleeves and ruffles. I wore this to a concert and it’s surprisingly super comfy. The denim was soft and stretchy, not stiff, which I often fear with denim.

rent the runway sweater

Here I am wearing the Maxwell Sweater by Parker in a size medium. Go a size up! I loved how simple yet flattering the slight v-neck and poofy sleeves were. I wore this to a Washington Capitals game, making me the most stylish fan at the game. I just HAD to rent this for the occasion since the colors matched perfectly!

For Exploring the City…

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Here is that same top by C/MEO Collective. This is the more laid-back look I created using the top. When paired with some sporty pants, sneakers and denim it becomes casual and fun.

Rent the Runway denim

Here I am wearing the Selena Mid Rise Crop Jeans by J Brand. While I did try these on in the New York City Rent the Runway store, I was surprised to find they fit me perfectly. I ordered my normal size, a 27, and they fit just right! I have such a hard time finding jeans that fit me so this was nothing short of a miracle. I kept these jeans for a good 3 weeks, integrating them into my everyday wardrobe.

Rent the Runway sweater

Here I am wearing the Multi Colorblock Sweater by Jil Sander. I sized down to an xs and it fit just right; but if you want an oversized fit order your normal size. This is one of those sweaters that is so ugly it’s cute. I loved the different colors weaved throughout it. It was super warm and the perfect crop for wearing with low-rise jeans. Definitely a good staple for everyday wear!

plaid- rent the runway

Here I am wearing the Plaid Dexter Top by Peterson. I ordered a medium, a size up from my typical size, and I’m happy I did. The waist wasn’t too tight and restricting, a complaint many people had. The flowy sleeves were super fun for a fall day at the pumpkin patch. I like to think this shirt was my version of a fall flannel.

plaid bomber- rent the runway

Here I am wearing a Checked Bomber Jacket by J.O.A. in a size small. I loved the style and pattern of this jacket, perfect for pairing with any basic pieces in your wardrobe. However, I did find this jacket to be very itchy and often uncomfortable. However, it may be fine to wear with long-sleeve tops or turtlenecks where it isn’t touching too much of your skin.

For Special Occasions…

sequin dress- rent the runway

Last but not least is the dress I wore for my Halloween costume. An alien, very original, right? This is the Sequin Sestina Dress by Nanette Lepore in a size 4. I loved the shape of the dress- bell sleeves and an overall loose fit. Sequin dresses are often itchy but this one wasn’t at all! I would highly recommend renting it for New Year’s Eve.

Sold on Rent the Runway? For the fall season you can subscribe to the the Update plan (4 pieces each month) for $69 each month or the Unlimited plan for $99 each month. Sign up here and let me know what you think!

Also be sure to follow me on my Instagram for more outfits featuring my Rent the Runway pieces.

Land A Job You Love Right Out of College.

I’ve been wanting to write about career-related topics for awhile now, but have never made the jump. My career is something that is extremely important to me and drives many of my life choices. I love attending events, networking, and reading more about business and entrepreneurship. I’ve learned a lot in the past few years of college, and even from when I was a teenager and had multiple businesses. So why not share this knowledge I’ve gained?

In this post I want to discuss the proper and improper ways of landing your first job out of college. Or landing a job even if you didn’t attend college! The idea of graduating and moving right into a job can be daunting, and for most people it doesn’t even work out that way. Many people are trying to scrap together interviews months after graduating, hoping some employer will hire them. I’m gonna give you some advice on how to avoid that rat race because I don’t think anyone wants to graduate not knowing where they’re going to be, what they’re going to be doing, or, most importantly, how they are going to be surviving with minimal or no income.

I want to start off by saying something so important. YOU MAKE YOUR OWN OPPORTUNITIES. This is the biggest lesson I have learned throughout college and the beginning of my career. You can’t just wait for people to come to you and hand you what you want. There are few people that are lucky enough to be recruited into companies, but for the most part you need to seek these companies out. By seeking companies out I don’t mean simply hitting “submit” at the end of a job application and attaching your resume. This is the biggest mistake people make when trying to get hired. When you simply submit your resume on LinkedIn or a job-hunting site, your resume is getting lost in hundreds or thousands of applications. Nothing you do can or will stand out. You’re leaving it up to an algorithm to parse through key words on your resume and possibly spit it back to HR, IF you’re lucky. So if you want to have a job when you graduate, DO NOT depend on applying for jobs in this manner. Just don’t do it.

The key to anything in your career is simple. It’s networking. It’s who you know and how you know them. After all, we are all humans and looking to form genuine relationships. For this reason, someone is more likely to hire you when they have a personal relationship with you and can put a face to a name. Your face and personality is more likely to be remembered than some random words squeezed onto a piece of paper. People want to hire people that they like and want to surround themselves with in a work environment. You really can’t pick up on this through words written in Times New Roman font. So even if you submit a resume to a job posting and have everything that employer needs, that employer is more likely to hire someone they’ve met before and know they vibe with rather than someone they only know through a piece of paper.

Auriens Hackathon London

Hopefully you understand what I mean by the importance of forming personal relationships. For this reason, when finding your first job, rather than putting all of your effort into applying to jobs online, go out and make your presence known. Attend local events in the area, job fairs, and even happy hours. I find all of the events that I attend on Eventbrite or Facebook. On Eventbrite you can filter through events by your city, keywords, and the range of dates. Sign up for events you are interested in attending, even if you don’t end up going. You are often added to the email list of the company hosting that event, a way to receive exclusive opportunities that could lead to a job. However, you should make an effort to attend most of these events in order to meet new people and grow your connections. You never know who you will talk to and what they could be looking for. When meeting new people at these events be sure to always follow up with a LinkedIn request and personal message. After forming this important connection, you will automatically come to their mind when they are recommending people for a position or hiring someone new.

So now you may be wondering, well, what if I HATE networking and talking to new people? I hate to tell you, but if you want to be successful in life then this is just something you need to get over. If you hate networking and avoid it at all cost, you are holding yourself back from growing in your career. This could mean never getting hired for a position that you love or never moving up in the company you currently work for. Believe it or not, going into college I also hated networking and introducing myself to new people. I would get so nervous that I’d make myself sick, but I stilled forced myself to do it because I KNEW I had to. 5 years later and it is much less daunting and has given me so many great opportunities (80% of them if we are being honest). Once you keep pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone, it will feel normal and become second nature to you. I used to shake and stutter at these events because my nerves would overcome me. But never the less, I persisted in my networking endeavors and look where I am now!

With all great things in life, you need to work hard and push yourself past your points of comfort in order to achieve your goals. Do you think the woman who is CEO of her dream company stays inside, scared to go to industry events? Of course not! She is out pitching her business to investors, meeting top talent all over her city, and sharing her ideas with complete strangers.

Do you think the student who landed his or her perfect internship at a huge technology company earned it by watching Netflix every night? No! These successes take hard work and determination, and often cannot be achieved without putting yourself out there, talking to new people, and learning new skills.

So now for those of you looking for a job, specifically those still in college, start the hunt NOW. So many students wait until the last two months of school to start looking for jobs. This is a terrible move. Programs specifically designed for new graduates are already filled way before this point. The fall before graduation is the most critical time to be accepted into these programs. These post-grad programs are your best shot at landing a more-than-ideal first job. They are designed to slowly transition you into the company culture and expect for you to not yet be accustomed to the 9-5 life, leaving lots of room for you to learn from your mistakes. Not only this, but most programs are a guaranteed two years with many opportunities to network, grow your skills, and gain amazing experiences. Prioritize these programs when applying for jobs! 

Throughout college I had many different internships, ranging from internships in marketing to fashion to information technology. I landed my second internship at a social media company from my cousin’s girlfriend. Networking! I landed my third internship by attending an event hosted by my school’s Career Center and introducing myself to the speakers. Networking! I landed my fourth internship by attending my school’s career fair and introducing myself to the company’s recruiters and then following up by connecting with them on LinkedIn. Networking! See a pattern?

Lastly, I earned my current job as a software engineer in Capital One’s Developer Academy by attending a Women in Tech Demo Days sponsored by Capital One. I signed up for this hackathon on Eventbrite, paying the $10 required fee to participate, and showed up to the event for a few hours. I distinctly remember almost not attending this event because my cousin was also in the city that day and I wanted to meet up with her. However, I still went because I knew it would help me transition to a job in technology after college. Little did I know I would meet a recruiter form Capital One and she would introduce me to CODA, a program designed to train post-graduates with an interest in tech (but no coding background required) to become software engineers for the company. Shortly after meeting her I began the interviewing process and eventually was offered the job. If I had never attended this event and met this recruiter, I would not have the amazing job I do today. I am being paid a full-time salary to learn to code! Does it get any better than that!?

Capital One Developer Academy (CODA)

Not only did I not even know about this program before attending this event, but if I did, my resume would’ve just been sitting in Capital One’s system with thousands of other applicants. If I had not formed this personal relationship with this recruiter, I would’ve been surpassed for the position along with everyone else who simply submitted their resume through LinkedIn. Now I have an engineering job for the next two and a half years with an amazing company, being paid to learn and grow in my technology skills.

If you’ve taken anything away from this post, I hope it’s the importance of networking and forming personal relationships with people. You never know who you can meet until you put yourself out there. Nobody gets anywhere by closing themselves off from all of the endless opportunities available in the world. So go on Eventbrite, find some events that interest you, and take the initiative to go! You never know the opportunities that could come from simply showing up.

Vegan Nights in London

Walking down Brick Lane you see a lot of street art and posters advertising local events. On my first night in London I was lucky enough to stumble upon a flyer advertising an event called “Vegan Nights” taking place in Shoreditch the next night. Being that I love vegan food and anything having to do with Shoreditch, I immediately bought a ticket for £10.

vegan nights

“Vegan Nights” is a monthly event that takes place in Shoreditch, showcasing vegan eats from all across the city. It first came to be in September of 2017 and now happens on the first Thursday of every month. Each month there are different vegan vendors, so you’re never trying the same thing twice. These vendors range from baked goods to nachos to korean-italian fusion. You can seriously find any food you’re looking for in vegan form.

Shoreditch vegan nights

Not only is there amazing tasting vegan food, but there’s awesome music from all different kinds of DJs. My favorite part of the night was watching all of the local hipsters dancing to the tunes and challenging one another to dance-offs. Unlike in America, people have no problem acting a fool with their singing and dancing. Nobody judges one another but rather joins in on all of the fun. American music and dancing has nothing on the English!

vegan biff's jackshack wings

After stalking the event’s Instagram, I knew the first stand I wanted to head to was Biff’s Jack Shack. They use jackfruit to make all different flavors of “chicken wings”. While all the flavors looked delicious, I opted for the “bang” and “jerk mango” flavors. Both were so delicious! I love jackfruit but have never seen wings made from it in the states. I might just have to attempt this creation on my own…

vegan spice box doffles

Still feeling hungry, I headed over to Spice Box for some “doffles”, as they like to call them. These are waffles loaded with some indian-spiced goodness. I ordered the Aloo Gobi Doffle because Aloo Gobi is my favorite indian dish! These doffles were the perfect combination of savory, spicy and sweet.

(Btw if you’re a design or tech nerd like me, be sure to visit their website. All the design and animation elements are so cool! I’d like to pick the mind of whoever designed their website.)

vegan black mylk ice cream

Lastly, I had to end my delicious vegan meal with some dessert. Vegan ice cream, especially one with a good cashew base, is my weakness. There was an ice cream stand called Black Mylk Ice Cream offering different flavored scoops and waffle sundaes. I tried the matcha and cardamon flavors and topped them with caramel popcorn. The cardamon was such a unique and yummy taste. Add it with the caramel flavor and you have a winning combo.

vegan1

In conclusion, if you love vegan food or just food and good music in general, be sure to spend your Thursday at “Vegan Nights”. I went solo and had an amazing time with good food, good music, and people watching. So whether you’re alone or with friends, you’re guaranteed to have a great time and leave with a very full tummy. It’s also a perfect event to attend as a tourist because it really gives you an insight into the local Shoreditch culture, which is unlike that of any other neighborhood in any other city.

For more posts about London be sure to read London’s Best Coffee ShopsLondon’s Best Restaurants, and Hidden Gem of London: Cafe Miami

Sewn by Me: Denim Bustier Top

Have you ever seen a clothing item on Instagram that you absolutely love and want to buy, but don’t necessarily want to drop hundreds of dollars on it? This is the question that spurts most of my creativity with sewing. I love having the ability to see something and make it my own, at a much more affordable price point.

Simplicity #8130

In the beginning of the summer I saw Reformation post a picture of a lace-up denim bustier top. I loved it but knew it wasn’t wearable enough to spend $200 on. What do I do when this happens? I make my own and I make it even better!

I’ve had Simplicity #8130 in my stash for a while and figured I could alter it to mimic the silhouette of the Reformation top. I used view D of the pattern as a base for the top and then added on different features to make it more unique.

sew a bustier top

The first thing I altered in this pattern was the front of the top. Instead of sewing the front seam together, I left the two pieces unattached, but with finished edges. I then added rows of grommets down each side in the center of the front pieces. While grommets are a pain in the butt, they add a really cool detail that retailers really make you shell out the big bucks for. Grommets are only $3 a pack, and other than them themselves, all you need is a hammer and a little bit of elbow grease.

After hammering the grommets onto the front of the top, I created a string to loop through them. I decided to go with a light denim fabric I had laying around my sewing studio in order to add a little contrast. I think it adds a fun little detail that the Reformation top doesn’t have.

IMG_5757.jpg

In addition to the grommets, I added 4 lower panels to the crop-top, in order to give it that flared look on the bottom. The top part is very fitted but then the bottom panels flow out, creating a peplum like effect. I simply measured the length of each of the top pieces and widened the bottom edge of each piece. I then made these into trapezoid-shaped pattern pieces. The trapezoid shapes will create the peplum when sewn together.

The top should naturally open up under the grommets due to its shape, exposing the perfect amount of skin.

sewing with denim

Lastly, I added an exposed zipper to the back in order to match the silver metal and light denim lace-up design in the front of the top.

My favorite way to wear this top is with a lighter denim bottom. These shorts match perfectly with the light denim details on the top, creating the coolest look. I also make sure to pair it with silver accessories because of the silver hardware all throughout the top. This look is seriously the most casual-cool summer look for concerts, coffee, or even going out!

trendy young sewer

Similar Looks: Madewell Denim Bustier Top, Cropped Denim Top, Nordstrom Denim Top

Now that summer is coming to an end, I’m beginning to brainstorm ideas of what to sew for the fall season. I already have a few ideas but if you have any suggestions, please leave them down below. Let me know what you think about this top and if you’ve sewn this pattern before.

If you enjoyed this post, be sure to read Sewn by Me: I AM GIA-Inspired OverallsSewn by Me: Zimmermann-Inspired Floral Mesh Top, and Sewn by Me: Cutout Jumpsuit.

My Favorite Summer Adventure

It’s been a hot summer, there’s no denying that. However, it is never too hot for me to get outside and explore the outdoors. Yes, Central Park is considered the “outdoors” of New York City. One of my favorite things to do is bike around the city, stopping for food and sights along the way. First stop? Brunch of course.

upper west side brunch

It’s only natural to start off any adventure with a delicious brunch. New Yorkers just love their brunches and the restaurants here never disappoint with the endless benedicts, avocado toast, and pancakes. My friend and I started by renting Citi bikes and biking along the Hudson River, up the Upper West Side. Today we headed to Good Enough to Eat for the perfect southern-inspired brunch. Each dish comes with homemade biscuits and strawberry butter. This alone is worth the trip!

spring romper

After brunch we walked to Central Park and picked right back up on our Citi bike adventure. Biking through the park makes for some beautiful scenery and some great people watching. The best part about summer is seeing all of the people emerge from their cozy apartments into the bright sunshine to enjoy themselves and just relax in the park.

city bike style

I must say, it is pretty difficult to dress for the heat and lots of physical activity while still trying to look stylish. I opted for my most easy, comfy romper from Target (check out “Is Socioeconomic Status Still Limiting Style?” for a discussion on their clothing). Accessories are truly key with simple looks like this!

straw bag

I added my favorite new straw bag from Forever 21 to lighten up the black romper and make the look more weather-appropriate. I matched the bag with my comfy nude loafers, although they are definitely not the best for biking. Go for sneakers instead! My Raybans were a must because of the sun shining in my eyes. Not only do they make the look but they protect my eyes. And, lastly, I accessorized with a simple silk scarf from Zara. This is my first time ever wearing a scarf as a headband and I really loved it. The look reminds me of women in the 1960s sporting retro swimsuits and vintage scarfs wrapped around their heads.

fashion blogger nyc

If the heat is discouraging you from living your best life, going on adventures and enjoying nature (or the city skyline in my case), just remember fall is right around the corner! Enjoy the bright sunshine while you can.

 

Straw Bag          Silk Scarf Headband            Black Romper            Ray-Bans                 Loafers