Featured
Posted in Happiness & Inspiration

Sister-sister

As a woman, here are my two cents on this International Women’s Day! It is unfair to put all the burden on men to empower women. In my opinion, even when some women talk about equality, they are still subconsciously carrying thoughts of comparison and damaging competitiveness with other women. As a mindful exercise, we need to scan our minds and actions to see if we inadvertently have such feelings when interacting with other women.

You can start with simple mindfulness of your emotions and energy around other women or while thinking about them. To visualize, imagine a successful woman who gossips about other women with her male partner. If another woman is doing better than her in any avenue of life, then she will find faults in her out of jealousy while having a drink with her male partner. Here’s another negative picture, if a woman is going through some health issues, then another female coworker will “help” her by surprisingly taking over her coworker’s tasks without discussing them with her to show their leader that she is not productive. Or, when you complimented a woman on her purse, did you have a feeling of jealousy or did you compare yourself to her?

Where is the change needed the most?

It has to start at the grassroots level – in women’s minds and hearts. It is not easy to shed centuries-old belief systems. However, you can try it even with minor things, like if a woman is standing on the wrong side of the line at a cafe, politely guide her to the right side. Maybe you can take a genuine interest in learning about a woman’s interests while also sharing with her about your own so that it can help you both to build a good rapport with each other. Or, if you like a woman’s outfit, you can give her an appropriate compliment without any comparison or judgment of her body size.

Change starts with us. We need to support the right things, even if that means supporting another woman and not supporting a man you know. Some men help other men even when they are wrong. Generally, men easily buddy up with other men, and they are not concerned about what women think, even when a man is unjust. Therefore, women need not worry about what men will think of them.

Here’s is a beautiful quote worth sharing, “Be the woman who fixes another woman’s crown without telling the world that (it) is crooked. … Be kind! We never know the battle others are fighting. I hope that we can all find a way to lead with an open heart and assume positive intent.” – Leslie Littlejohn

Celebrate your sisterhood with other women every day. Will you be there for other sisters and show the world how beautiful and robust sisterhood can be?

Featured
Posted in Holidays & Environment

Healing Holidays

As you are in the holidays-spirit and meet people, I just thought to share a warm reminder that not all genuine hardships can be seen. The person sitting next to you might be fighting a difficult battle that is unseen. Do not overwhelm people by reminding them of their issues if they act differently. Please do not compare your situation to theirs especially if you are in a better state than them, for example sharing about your good health when they are sick can cause them anxiety or stress. If you have no support to offer then at least genuinely pray for their healing. Materialistic things can be bought, but in my opinion, what matters the most is the time, emotions, and the quality of thoughts that you choose to give.

If someone is trying to heal from health issues that cannot be seen, then it could already be difficult for them to share their issues with even their own family. If they make the effort to share them with you, then please let them know that you won’t judge them and that you won’t push your opinions on them. You may offer support by just being with them, and by listening to them, even if that means listening again to the same thing that they might have already shared. You can ask them what you can do for them. Most of the time, they won’t have an answer to that, so just listen to whatever they can say. As always, show empathy and pray for their healing!

May the holidays bring me, you and the world with immense healing and good health.

Have healing holidays!

Posted in Food & Health

Soup Shop!

After exploring #vegan and #vegetarian food worldwide, I thought it would be helpful to start sharing some honest food reviews from time to time. A few notes on some cool abbreviations in my food reviews:

1. Rating – I don’t want to give a zero rating to anyone’s hard work in cooking something, so if I wouldn’t try something again, then my rating will be “CBB,” which stands for “could be better.” Yes, I just came up with that! 🙂

2. Vegetarian is abbreviated as “veg.”

3. Vegan is abbreviated as “vn.”

My first #food #review is for a #soup place in #Chicago

Place: Soup & Scoops, 6701 N Olmsted Ave, Chicago, IL 60631

Food Items:

1. Cream of mushroom soup – veg. – 5/5 Stars

I love the #creamy taste, the chewy texture of #mushrooms, and the bits of #herbs in this soup. I would go back for this soup. Based on my conversation with the cashier, typically, they would change their soup #menu so that a given soup could be back on their menu after two weeks. Plus, if they have any leftover soup, it is sold for half the price the next day.

2. Detox soup – vn. – CBB

This one is a water broth that looks like tea. I wasn’t sure what to do with it when it came in a soup cup. Drink it directly from the cup? I wouldn’t order this again. I didn’t take a picture of it!

Vibe Check: This is a #beautiful hidden gem with #vintage #furniture, fresh #flowers, and a #colorful #decor that is simple yet pretty. They have cute ice cream cups, but I haven’t tried any of their scoops yet. There was no music, and the place was super quiet. Adding some music should make this place even better.🎵

Parking: There is a cheap parking lot across from this place.

Verdict: Would I go back? Yes! ✅

Enjoy these pictures and share in the comments if you have tried their soup or once you try it!

Posted in Food & Health

Got cake?

How do you treat your #thanksgivingleftovers?

I treat myself with #treats like this one! The best way to eat your #fruits is to have them with #cake

🧀 Just chopped some kiwi in a cheesecake from @wholefoods
🥝 Mixed it well 🍰
🫐 Topped with some blueberries

I hope that you enjoy 😊 this #yummy #instant #snack

Posted in Food & Health

Tea Size ☕️

As a tea lover, I was not happy to hear when my friend said that she has tried so many different teas but she doesn’t get a good taste when she drinks tea. If you are struggling with getting the taste of tea in general, then let me share some simple tea tips with you that I shared with her.

Tea Tips 💚💖

1) This is the most important thing – please make sure that you are using a small teacup – the type that is meant for tea and not for lattes or smoothies or anything else

Reason – If you use a big cup, your tea will dilute in all the extra water and you won’t get the true taste!

2) Use a proper English teacup or if you are extra blessed then you might find a small Chinese teacup, but be extra careful with the latter as it doesn’t have a handle and it can get too hot to handle 😉

3) Make sure that you boil the water that you are going to use for your tea so that it is hot enough to dissolve all the goodness from your cute tea bag (iced tea is not the traditional way to have tea. It is okay to have it, but here we are only talking about a hot cup of tea 🍵)

4) Place the tea bag (with the tag hanging outside the cup) inside your teacup and then pour hot water into it

5) Lift the tea bag and using the string, dunk it back in the teacup for the tea to steep

6) Let it sit for a minute or two and repeat step 5 until you see the water is saturated with the color of the tea

7) Let the tea steep for ten minutes and then take out the teabag

8) Smell your tea before sipping it in to enjoy your sensory experience

9) Take a sip and feel it on your taste buds with your eyes closed to appreciate your tea and thank yourself for making it

10) You may repeat step 9 until you slowly finish your tea

Hope that you enjoy your tea with these tea tips 🫖

For loose leaf tea, you can use these same tips, but instead of using the teabag, you would need to use a tea strainer ball in which you will add one teaspoon of your loose tea. You will also need to take the ball out before you start sipping your tea ☕️

Posted in Food & Health

Vegan Ramen

What’s for dinner I ask? How about some vegan “buttery” #ramen and “chicken” tenders? All under 20 mins 😁

Ingredients:
1) Any vegan broth (I used low sodium, so it barely had any taste, which gave me freedom to add my own spices!) – a full pack of Imagine Foods broth from @wholefoods
2) Any noodles you want (half the quantity of a full pack of soup)
3) Any spices you want
4) Any veggies you want (recommend not more than two – otherwise that would be a crowded ramen party)
4) Throw them all in a pot and they’ll be done in about 15 mins

While the above were kissing each other in the pot, I shallow fried some @gardein “chicken” tenders (no oil, they already came done with oil)

You may add vegan butter @miyokoscreamery and any herbs for garnishing. I used chopped #cilantro because it’s the go-to garnishing in the #brownculture 😁

Vegan Ramen and “Chicken” Tenders
Posted in Happiness & Inspiration

“Mind-Blowing” Exercise

Do you sometimes find yourself in a sad mood, feel sullen or just do not know why you are unable to keep yourself happy? It is normal to sometimes feel low and feel the need to have someone make things right for you or just make you smile. However, unless you live in a fantasy world, it is not possible for someone to always be there for you. It is fabulous if you have someone who is close to you by heart but they might not always be able to lighten up your mood. One of my favorite life mantras is that, only you can make yourself happy and if you realize this, then there would never be any situation from which you would not be able to lift yourself up. In one of my previous blogposts, I wrote about how you can have a happy state of mind to keep yourself happy. Today, I am going to share another way of how you can make yourself happy. I am going to term this as the “Mind-Blowing” exercise. Following are the steps for this exercise:

  1. Just sit in your most comfortable position and take a few deep breaths.
  2. This might sound a little unusual and will take some effort but start blowing your mind (reflect back) by trying to think about all your achievements, starting with the oldest one that you can remember.
  3. Note: you might not always remember all your achievements but sometimes visuals can help. For example, a photo of you when you participated in a school program or in a work event; a paper that you wrote; your kid’s photos; a thank you e-mail from a volunteer organization; or if you are at home, then just look around and acknowledge that you have a place to live.
  4. Thinking about the past can bring up some bad memories as well. However, it is up to you to utilize those memories in a strategic way. Just briefly pause as you recollect your past memories.
  5. Do not dive deep into the bad memories but just pause enough to acknowledge the struggles you faced, the situations you lived through, the obstacles or the hindrances that you overcame, and any negative vibes that you had around you.
  6. Now just in your mind, put together all your achievements and your struggles. Think about how you worked through all your struggles and negativity that happened around you in the past and you still had those “made it” or “successful” moments.
  7. Finally, take a few moments to be proud of yourself (not cocky), realize all that you have achieved, feel where you are today and understand how far you have come.

After step 7, you might actually want to spend some moments to celebrate your life. Blowing your mind strategically to reflect back on your wonderful journey will steer your mind away from any negative thoughts, any unhappy vibes or any anxiousness. It will make you realize not just all your achievements but also your capabilities, courage, potential and all of that will fire up your confidence and make you happy. Take it as a blessing if you ever had an opportunity to experience any kind of hardship. If you have surpassed hardships and achieved things in the past, then you probably have learned from your past experiences and have fueled your potential to achieve even bigger things.

©️2018 Yuvika @Big Life. All rights reserved.

Posted in Happiness & Inspiration

Get Enraptured

Life is ever evolving and so are the things that make us happy. What we liked last year, might not mesmerize us now and vice-versa. Taking out some “me” time can help us realize how far we have come, what gives us delight and what we do not like. Life happens every moment. It is never too late to adopt new rituals. I believe that an important daily ritual should be to check on ourselves and acknowledge our feelings. We need to do some positive self-realization everyday to call out the things that bring joy in our life. I believe that self-realization is an essential fragment that brings together our doings and feelings. A moment of self-realization can help us to filter out our “stress” stuff and just get enraptured with what is left behind…the “happy” stuff. Express what makes your heart happy and enjoy the moment of enrapture.

Posted in Happiness & Inspiration

Extra Baggage

Do you carry the stuff that you don’t like? When you go on a trip, do you pack all the stuff that you love or do you also carry the weight of the items that not only need extra room but are useless or you don’t even love them? Similarly, don’t carry the extra weight of all the negative things in your life. Fears and negativity come to you only if you let them come to your mind. Do not let any actions or words hurt you if you want to take care of your mind and body. Not everyone is going to love you or treat you back the way you love them or treat them. Your mind is the only place that will help you think through your whole life and your body is the only place that you and your mind will live in. Love yourself and take care of yourself. Don’t carry that extra baggage with you throughout your life.

Posted in Holidays & Environment

Stay Excited ⚽️

Find your excitement and stay excited. World sports bring people together and Soccer ⚽️ is the most popular sport with an estimated 3.5 billion fans across the globe according to topendsports.com. One of the big matches is coming up this weekend. Will you be watching it? STAY EXCITED AND SHARE YOUR SPORTS VIBES WITH AN ESTIMATED 3.5 BILLION PEOPLE ACROSS THE GLOBE ⚽️

#soccer #goals #goaldigger #football #france #argentina #messi #rojo #sports #worldcup #fifa #excited #love #live #play #goodvibes #goodvibesonly #united #world #global #international #feelgood #weekendvibes #biglife #inspiration #motivation #workhardplayhard #lifestyle #healthylifestyle

Posted in Happiness & Inspiration

♥️Feed Love♥️

Food, water and air are the essential things that our body needs for nourishment. We ensure that we are feeding ourselves with quality food, clean water and are living in a hygienic atmosphere. However, a wholesome nourishment is not complete without feeding quality thoughts i.e. feeding love to our mind. This becomes even more quintessential in the technosocial times that we are living in because even though we are more connected to our family and friends through technology and social media, than we were maybe two decades ago, we sometimes feel lonely and at some point, some of us feel that we are not genuinely loved by others. Therefore, it is just fitting that we love ourselves! Let’s just feed our mind with thoughts that help us take care of ourselves and love ourselves.

We come across numerous things that provoke thoughts across our mind and there can be thoughts that make us feel stressed out or not-so-good. Doesn’t matter good or bad, but whatever we let to sink in our mind, it does feed our body cells. There is a biochemical reaction to every thought that we feed to our mind. Then why not feed love and make ourselves healthy?

I believe that feeding good thoughts to our mind is equally important as feeding nutritious food to our body. Do we ever knowingly eat stale food or drink contaminated water? If we can say no to bad food then why do we hesitate to say no to bad thoughts? Perhaps, at times we don’t realize that we are feeding bad thoughts to our mind and that’s where mindfulness plays a part. If we can try to be mindful of the world around us then we can better evaluate what we are feeding to the world inside us. We need to be mindful of what we are letting into our mind, what we are surrounding ourselves with, who we are spending time with, what we are doing with our time, the kind of conversations we are having, the numerous things that we are pushing into our mind, and much more. If we can be mindful of such things that impact the quality of our thoughts, then we can take a step towards a healthier mind and thereby, love ourselves. Personal life tip: Absorb good vibes only. Seeing the good in everything is one simple way to pick just the good thoughts about anything that we come across. Pick good vibes only and just feed love to your mind.

Posted in Happiness & Inspiration

Scars to Your Beautiful

🌸Makeup or no makeup, you always look beautiful🌸

🌸Got scars, uneven tone, breakouts or blemishes? These are part of your skin and you should not feel uncomfortable about anything that is a part of you🌸

🌸You do not need to hide your natural self🌸

🌸Genuine people look at your inside beauty and your skin type is just not even something that matters to them🌸

🌸Your skin type does not define you🌸

🌸It is the type of person that you are that defines you and your personality🌸

🌸You are what you do🌸

🌸Keep it natural🌸

🌸There is an elegance in being natural🌸

🌸Outshine in your natural confidence and not beauty complex🌸

Leaving you with one of my most favorite and uplifting song’s lyrics:

“…You should know you’re beautiful just the way you are

And you don’t have to change a thing

The world could change it’s heart

No scars to your beautiful

we’re stars and we’re beautiful…”

Lyrics quoted from the song, “Scars to Your Beautiful” by Alicia Cara