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  • Being Thankful and Expressing Gratitude with Maddie Rose

    1st November 2021

    1st November 2021

    By Innermost

    From the moment you meet nurse and disability analyst Maddie Rose, she has a positive energy which you can’t help but reciprocate - a quality which unexpectedly grew out of some of her most difficult experiences as a nurse. An advocate of the importance of gratitude, we sat down with Maddie to discuss her journey into wellness, how she cultivates gratitude and the importance of being kind to ourselves.

    Tell us a little bit more about you! What do you do and what are you passionate about?

    Absolutely! So hey, I’m Maddie. I’m 24 and am currently working as a nurse, whilst training as a PT on the side. As you can probably tell, I love to constantly be learning, and what better way than to tie in two jobs that will allow me to do just that?! From years of studying academic papers, I definitely have a ‘no BS’ approach to new fads, shakes, powders, exercises, and love to get my evidence from the source and know that what I am ingesting, or training, or teaching, is 100% tried and tested. Over the years I made every mistake in the book with fitness so I want to be the source of honesty I wish I had had when I was younger and more impressionable, in an ever-more saturated fitness industry.

    When I’m not geeking out, I absolutely adore any activity that includes water (have been called a ‘surfer’ vibe more times than I can count on two hands), exploring new places, attending numerous bottomless brunches with pals, training heavy just so I can recover at the spa, and eating copious amounts of pick n mix. Wild, I know!

    How did you originally get into health and wellness and what has your journey been like?

    This question made me laugh. It is safe to say ‘journey’ is quite the word for it! My mum dragged me along to a gym one day when I was 16, much to my dismay. When I was younger I’d done a lot of competitive sport but that all fizzled out at as I went to secondary school and became painfully self-conscious. I often make the joke now when I share my experiences online that “I made all the mistakes so that you don’t have to’: needless to say I tried every diet fad, gadget, quirky exercise, and Instagram challenge under the sun. It was only having muddled through all of these mistakes, and stripping back all the layers to nailing the basics, that I have made immense progress physically and mentally.

    What does gratitude mean to you and how do you feel it connects to health and wellness in a broader sense?

    What gratitude looks to me in my life will be different to everybody’s reading this. For we all live in different bodies with different abilities. But at its core, it is in the appreciation of everything our bodies can do, everything our minds can process, everything our hearts can love, and everything our souls ever need. It seems our bodies were made for cosmic capacities of grace, of love and ability - the gratitude is how we recognise and harness this to fulfil its maximum potential. Much more exciting than the goal of fitting into a smaller dress size, no?

    Was there a specific experience that made you view gratitude in this light and how did this change you as a person?

    Where my career has led me so far has forever changed my perspective of what it is to live. Although I cannot be specific, I will say this - I think the magnitude of poorliness that I, and we all, were seeing day-in-day-out throughout the coronavirus pandemic really impacted me mentally. Speaking candidly, it got to the point where it was hard to find positivity at all – online or in real life. I don’t think I’m alone in that. During the stillness forced upon us, I started to seek out small pieces of gratitude each morning that I had never picked up on before, just to discern one day from another. Like the fact that I got to wake up each day to help those who needed it. That my legs that have walked me thousands of miles still get me out of bed each morning for a lockdown walk. That my lungs have the capacity to fill to bursting, and laugh until I cry with my loved ones on Zoom. Most of the time about nonsense.  That steaming cups of tea are a thing. That for the first time in my life, I have slowed down to process emotions I had never taken note of before. And grow to master this process and change my life. It truly is in appreciating the seemingly insignificant things, that add up to the life-altering perspectives.

    How do you practice gratitude in your daily life?

    The quickest and easiest way: grabbing the Notes app on your phone, a notebook and journal, whatever you can find. And write down 1-3 things you are grateful for in that very moment. At first it seems strange, inorganic, and a bit staged. But keep at it every day or so. Some days will be like a drought, other days will be flooding with gratitude. And that is okay. Soon your brain will be subconsciously looking out for things to be grateful for and you’ll notice it outside of holding the notebook in your hands.

    My biggest tip: take note of what you write down. Of everything good around you. What gives you energy. The people you love to spend time with. The traits you love in others. The foods you love to cook. What you do that makes you feel joy. That makes you feel powerful, and motivated, and driven. The sights you love to see. The things you do that set your soul alight with aliveness. This is your gratitude, go and get as much of it as you can.

    Since you began implementing these practices, have you seen changes in yourself and your life as a whole and what were they?

    Since implementing these practices, almost every part of my life has changed. From where I live, what I do for a job, what I want from a career, who I allow in my life, what I do because I want to do it, how I want to challenge myself. And without a doubt, I am so much the wiser, calmer, stronger and more loving. Because in seeking out the glimpses of positivity each day, I have learned to address what brings me true joy, and focus on building a life around those things.

    Have you experienced a time when feeling gratitude was difficult and how did you deal with this?

    I absolutely have had awful times over the years, and still do experience times when expressing gratitude is difficult. Of course no one wakes up in a good mood every day. Of course no one can have a good day every day.

    Like I said earlier, some days it feels like a drought where you feel there’s nothing to be grateful for. Honestly? Ice cream and your favourite Netflix show are a very good shout. Followed by the acceptance that not everything can be peachy every day. Sometimes we just have to give ourselves a break. The sun will rise again.

    Finally, what is something you’re grateful for right now?

    1st November = Christmas, right? I’m excited for the festivities to begin! All the love, cheer and laughing with everyone whom I adore. What could be better?

    To keep up with Maddie, follow her on Instagram

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    Finding Balance and Inner Peace with Brin McKinnon
    This month, we sat down with Innermost Insider Brin McKinnon to discuss inner peace, managing conflict and maintaining balance. Representing us in Australia, Brin is a true Innermost Insider, having loved our products since she was a London native. Funny, thoughtful and eloquent, even with the 11 hour time difference making the interview 1am for her; this one's definitely worth the read. Hey Brin! Tell us about yourself! Hi, my name is Brin, and I am currently studying a Bachelor of International Relations at the Australian National University, whilst also working as a management consultant and freelancing. I've been using Innermost products since 2018 when I used to live in London, and since then they’ve been my favourite products, specifically in terms of vegan products. I then became an ambassador this year, because I wanted to share my love of Innermost products with other people. My favourite platform at the moment is my YouTube channel where I actually recently spoke about Innermost and the products I’ve been loving. View this post on Instagram A post shared by B r i n 🌱 (@brindarcey) Our theme this month is peace. So, the first question I want to ask is, what does peace mean for you, in your own life? A lot of the time in the health and wellness industry, the focus is on the physical and specifically on aesthetics, but I think that it’s really important to understand our health as something that's part of a bigger whole. It’s not just physical - it’s mental too, and that’s why, personally, peace is such a big thing for me, mental-health wise. Mental health is such an important part of our overall wellbeing and I think finding peace is really central to looking after your mental health. I wouldn't say I'm naturally a peaceful person but it’s a process to find that sense of inner-peace and maintain it. What process do you undertake to cultivate your inner peace? What steps have you taken? Over the last few years, I've definitely been taking steps to improve my relationship with myself and I suppose, in a way, to relax a little. As I mentioned, I think that it's definitely a process, and how you cultivate inner peace depends a lot on the individual. For me, a lot of that is spending time in nature, taking walks and exercising outside. I also think that meditating can also be useful, but I think that something that can dissuade people from meditation a bit and definitely dissuaded me was the idea that there’s only one way to meditate. But I think that just finding something that's meditative to you can be really useful in cultivating inner peace and it doesn’t have to be sitting down with your eyes closed. It can be spending time outside with your family or your friends, or even just watching a television show that makes your mind switch off for a bit. The first step to cultivating inner peace is finding what brings you peace. How do you make peace with your mistakes or regrets? I think that I'm quite lucky because I'm naturally quite good at letting things go and I don't necessarily regret things. So unfortunately, that's not going to be helpful for everyone. But I think that, for anyone, letting yourself come to terms with your emotions and letting yourself feel those emotions, is the most important step in making peace with them. However, I also think it’s then important to not hold on to those negative thoughts and feelings for too long. Once you’ve let yourself feel those emotions, you then need to accept them. A lot of the time your ego can get in the way of this step, but you need to be humble and say “okay, I've made a mistake”, perhaps get advice from friends or family and then just take time to reflect on yourself. In the end, the most important step is letting go; it's so important to accept and then move forward, otherwise we let things that we've done in the past continue to hold us back in the future. Is there anything that disrupts your peace and how do you manage it? I’m a person who doesn't necessarily enjoy change. So any small thing that happens in my day could completely derail how I'm feeling and that's something I'm definitely working on. But as I mentioned, it's a process. It's not going to happen overnight. The way I deal with this is not over-committing, organising, scheduling and planning things, but also respecting that things change and that's okay. In addition to this, I've also been going to therapy for a few years and I think that's been really important for me as well. Therapy is typically seen as something just for people who are deeply suffering with their mental health but, I think that therapy can be for everyone. It's just a really useful tool to break down the way that you think and the way that you approach situations that can derail your inner peace. And its been really important for me in my journey to protecting my peace from those day-to-day disruptions. How do you manage conflict with other people? I think that these last few years have been particularly emotionally challenging for everyone. So I think that an increase in interpersonal conflict is something that's inevitable. I'm definitely naturally quite a combative person and I'm anxious-avoidant in my relationships, so I have felt this in my life too. Whilst I do think that it's important to stand up for yourself and for what you believe in, I also think that approaching people with respect, openness and honesty is the best way forward when you're having a conflict with someone. Of course, not all interpersonal conflict is going to be fixable but that's okay. Sometimes we need to let relationships go as well. Beautiful you’ve been open and honest with people then you can move forward knowing you don’t regret how you’ve handled the situation. View this post on Instagram A post shared by B r i n 🌱 (@brindarcey) Do you feel like your nutrition is important in being in that good headspace? Absolutely. I think that nutrition is incredibly important. There’s a massive connection between your physical and mental health so eating a balanced diet is really important. I don't believe in restricting certain food groups, because I think this can actually disrupt your peace. However, I think by listening to your body and viewing nutrition as fuel rather than something to be labelled good or bad, you can make nutrition benefit your peace. For example, for me eating protein is really important because I'm vegetarian. I find it easiest to do this by using a vegan protein, so it’s about finding ways to make nutrition work for you. I actually think that finding balance in our lives is probably the best way to cultivate inner peace, across the board. We can't always strive for perfectionism but I don't think we should be happy with mediocrity either. We need to be somewhere in the middle; striving to do the best for ourselves in the moment that we're in. That’s where you find peace. To keep up with Brin, check out her Instagram! Read more
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