5 Things I Learned at 28

Well, today I turn 29 years old and y’know what? I kind of really love being almost 30, and I never ever thought I would say that.

Dancing for Donuts | 5 Things I Learned at 28

This year has been a freakin’ WHIRLWIND. I moved into a new apartment with my boyfriend, switched jobs (twice…😅), got into a minor but very expensive car accident, broke my elbow, and started getting serious with my blog/Instagram. It’s been a year of ups and downs, exciting and new things, realizing what I do and don’t want to do with my life for the rest of time, and learning about myself. I have some maaaajor goals to hit by the time I’m 30, so knowing I have one year to get there is giving me the biggest, most exciting push EVER. I’m so ready to work, to accomplish, to grow, to change, and to make moves.

That being said, this year has been an incredible stepping stone on my way there, and I wanted to share some of the most important things I learned this year. I know most of them are particular to me and my life, but maybe there a few tidbits in there that you can relate to, also😊

Dancing for Donuts | 5 Things I Learned at 28

1. If you’re unhappy, make a change. As I mentioned earlier, I did switch jobs twice this year. Am I proud of that? No, not really, but what I AM proud of is the fact that I was able to recognize that a certain situation wasn’t allowing me to thrive, and then take action to remedy that situation. I learned so much from where I’ve come from (and met some seriously incredible people!!! I always fall in love with my coworkers, honestly…), and I don’t think I would have found the role I’m now in without those changes happening at those moments.

2. Save for a very, very rainy day. So in a matter of 2 months, I had to spend about $2,000 between my car (this dude straight up ran a stop sign and blamed it on me…thanks bro!) and my injury. I admittedly cried when I saw all the bills, but it wasn’t so much because I didn’t have the money, just because there were soooo many other things I wanted to be doing with my $2,000, y’know? That being said, I DID have the money because I’m pretty good at saving (hence why I’m always on a budget over here), and I’m so freakin’ glad I did because if I didn’t have savings I’m not quite sure what I would’ve done.

3. But don’t stress out or freak out when things don’t go as planned. Okay you know that $2,000 I spent in less than 60 days? I actually got some of it back after the car insurance company was able to sue the other driver (s/o to State Farm!) and the hospital made a mistake. I knowwww I am the MOST lucky person ever, but I swear I never counted on getting anything back at all. If I had, I wouldn’t have spent all that time crying and stressing out over money. I think regardless, the lesson here is that sh*t happens and then it works itself out. Even if I hadn’t gotten any of that money back, what was done was done and once I spent the money it was gone and over with. We experience things, we learn, we move on.

4. Meet people. All the people. This one does seem a little unusual for me to be writing – I’m an introvert like 90% of the time, I didn’t go to a single networking event in business school, and I still have the same best friends I did in middle school. But, I can’t even begin to tell you how much joy I’ve gotten from meeting people this year. And don’t laugh, but most of them I found on Instagram…yep, the freakin’ internet. I’ve also been saying yes to as many events as possible, and facing my awkwardness head on, to introduce myself to people at all of them. You know why? Because as I get older I realize 1) how important it is to surround yourself with solid people that understand you, 2) that networking really IS insanely important for your career, and 3) meeting other women in the community you’re in (or men! whatever, honestly) is insanely fulfilling and inspiring. I love helping others and the help I personally have received is immense. I am so grateful.

5. If you don’t have the time or money to go far away for a vacation, take time to explore someplace nearby or even in your own city. I don’t know about you, but I find myself getting upset when I realize I don’t have the vacation days (or funds) to take an actual vacation and all I want is to escape LA. This year was also the first one in a couple where my boyfriend and I couldn’t just go all over the place on a whim (like we did in business school or when I worked remotely every Friday), so it felt slightly different. That being said, I think we’ve had some pretty fun days doing new things around LA, or even venturing out for quick day or overnight trips to Santa Barbara, San Diego (I’m there now!) or Topanga Canyon. Not everything has to be a big event to make it feel special, break up the week, or help re-set the soul.

Dancing for Donuts | 5 Things I Learned at 28

If this ^ doesn’t make you chuckle inside, then what will honestly?😂😂😂

Okay, that’s it for today😊 Thanks for stickin’ by me through another year and hope you have a fantastic weekend!

xo Jordan

My Focus Word(s) for 2018

Peace out 2017, hellooooooo 2018😍

Dancing for Donuts | My Focus Word(s) for 2018

Happy New Year, my sweet friends!! I’m a couple of days late, but getting back into the swing of things after break hasn’t been easy, as I’m sure you all know! I so badly wish I could be transported back to a week ago when I was still on vacation with my family on the east coast, but you know what? It’s okay because I’m actually looking forward to getting my sh*t together this month. I’ve just signed up for ClassPass and am super excited to start a new fitness plan, have started to work on some really exciting business opportunities, and will be finishing up decorating our apartment. Lots of good stuff in the works!!

As you probably all could’ve guessed, I’m not really one of those people that waits until January 1st to make resolutions. I tend to make them all year round, writing out my goals and plans monthly, weekly and even daily most of the time, so when I thought about how I wanted to approach 2018, I felt like writing down a list of new year’s resolutions wasn’t going to work for me. Instead, I thought I’d choose a focus word or two, something easy to remember, and truly aligned with my goals for this year. So, without further ado, here they are!😊

Dancing for Donuts | My Focus Word(s) for 2018

Love

It took me a long time to decide if this one was too cheesy or not, but the more I thought about it, the more I knew that it was the perfect fit for this year. First of all, I want to make sure that I’m showing my love for those around me on a regular basis. I live across the country from my family and many of my friends, and don’t even get to see the ones in my city nearly enough either. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned, a little distance can’t come between a strong friendship and nothing is more important than that.

I know a little goes a long way – a letter, phone call, or even text will do if that’s all I can manage. I want to take this year to strengthen the relationships I have, and also take time to cultivate new ones. At the end of the day, it’s who you surround yourself with, and I think it’s so important to express love and gratitude for those people I’m lucky enough to have in my life. I want to lift them up, motivate them, encourage them, and make sure I’m there when they need me.

I also want to take this year to love myself. I’m not necessarily a self-conscious person, but I’m certainly not the most confident, either. Hearing “no” a gazillion times in your professional life can really take a toll on ya😅 (helloooo entertainment industry, I’m lookin’ at you). But seriously, in this era of social media, it’s pretty much the easiest thing in the world to find someone else who looks like they live a way better, more perfect life than you. So how can we not feel inadequate sometimes?

I know that these comparison traps exist, but I want to let them go in 2018. Like BAI, see ya never because if looking at it and thinking about it doesn’t bring me joy or inspire me, I want it GONE. I want to let go of self-doubt, lack of self-esteem, and the things that don’t serve me. I want to take the time to treat myself, even if it’s to something as silly as that iced latté I’ve been craving for a week, or a haircut that’ll make me feel like a million bucks. It’s not about money, but really just taking the time to do what makes me happy because that is the start of self-love. Of living a life I’m proud of, and being the best I can be so I can help others do the same.

Dancing for Donuts | My Focus Word(s) for 2018

Dream

Yep, another cheesy one (because what can I say, I love all things Pinterest and inspirational quotes). I literally could not decide between this word and the one above because this one is so freakin’ important to me, too. I’ve said this before, but about 8 years ago, I decided to move across the country to a place where I knew no one and had no job, no nothing, because what I did have was the dream of becoming a professional dancer. I had this crazy drive in me to just say f*ck it, and drop everything (in a well-thought out, very calculated manner of course😂) because I wanted to make it happen. And guess what? I did.

In the last couple of years, I’ve found myself doing so many wonderful things like meeting new people and traveling and starting a new career, which is great, don’t get me wrong, but I feel like I haven’t been doing much daydreaming lately. Does that make sense? Like I’ve been super focused on getting through the day to day and just being a girl with a life and resumé I’m proud of and honestly just watching a crap ton of YouTube videos when I have down time because I LOVE them. But I miss the dreaming part of life. The part where you have these insane ideas and imagine yourself just GOING FOR IT.

I’ve been asking myself lately, if I could do anything right now, like absolutely anything, what would it be? Would I go to Bali? Would I write a book? Would I go for a walk in my neighborhood and find a new restaurant? Who knows! But the possibilities are kind of endless. And I don’t have to stop my life or do something drastic to think this way, I just need to be present and find what fills my cup.

If I had to describe myself in one word, I’d probably say that I’m a hustler. I kid you not, I could be working a job that pays me a six figure salary and I’m 99% sure that I will still say yes to babysitting on a Saturday night because why not? I figure I get to hang out with some super cute kiddos and then get a boat load of work done once they’re asleep. I have a looooot I want to accomplish this year, and sitting on my tucas isn’t going to get me there. I want to take this year to focus on what I really want out of this life, and then go grab it by the ball$. I want to have crazy daydreams and then make them reality.

Dancing for Donuts | Focus Word(s) for 2018

So yeah. Those are my focus words and I’m SO excited to wake up every morning and choose to love, to dream. I hope I keep doing those things well after 2018, but hey, it’s a start😊

But enough about me – what about you?! Did you make any resolutions this year or choose a focus word? I’d love to hear because chances are, I’ll be adding more to my list as time goes on!

xo Jordan

all photos taken by Carrie Rogers

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Top 10 Posts of 2017

Hi friends and Happy (almost) New Year!!!!

Dancing for Donuts | Top 10 Posts of 2017

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday! I obviously wanted to take some time this week to just soak up as much time with my family as possible, so I did take a mini blog-break. As I sit on the train down to D.C., I’m feeling so unbelievably grateful for having the opportunity to travel home for the holidays and to work remotely. I hope you all were able to, as well!

This year has been pretty nuts in so many ways, particularly for the world (and this country) in general, but personally I experienced a ton of personal growth, adventuring, and figuring out where I want to be in life. I expanded my skillset professionally, started growing my blog, strengthened new and old friendships, moved into a new apartment with my boyfriend, and traveled to so many new places. It’s been quite the year!

I just want to thank you all so much for reading my blog, you have no idea how fulfilling it has been to create content and have this creative outlet. Reading your comments and hearing your feedback makes me so happy, and I’m honored to be able to share this bit of my life with you. With that, I wanted to take a quick moment to wrap up the year with my top 10 posts of 2017! I’m looking forward to spending even more time in the kitchen and on DFD in the upcoming year, so please let me know in the comments if there’s anything you’d like to see more or less of, or even something different entirely!

1. 3-Ingredient Fizzy Popsicles

Dancing for Donuts | 3-Ingredient Fizzy Popsicles with Sparkling Ice.

 

2. WIAW – What I Ate Wednesday #1

Dancing for Donuts | What I Ate Wednesday.

3. WIAW – What I Ate Wednesday #3

Dancing for Donuts | WIAW #3

4. Babes on a Budget: 3-Ingredient Cinnamon Raisin Energy Bites

Babes on a Budget: 3-Ingredient Cinnamon Raisin Energy Bites.

5. How to Pick the Perfect Healthy Afternoon Snack

Choosing the Perfect Healthy Afternoon Snack with Shine Organics Superfood Pouches | Dancing for Donuts

6. Balancing a Healthy Life With a Fun One

Dancing for Donuts | Balancing a Healthy Life with a Fun One.

7. Portugal Travel Guide

Dancing for Donuts | Portugal Travel Guide.

8. Saying Yes to the Big Things

Dancing for Donuts | Saying Yes to the Big Things.

9. Easiest Pumpkin Pie Crescent Rolls

Dancing for Donuts | Easiest Pumpkin Pie Crescent Rolls for an Immaculate Thanksgiving

10. Staying Healthy on the Go [+ My New Favorite Smoothie!] 

Dancing for Donuts | Staying Healthy On-The-Go with Kiwami Greens.

Thank you again for all of your always and I hope you have the happiest new year!!! See you in 2018 🙂

xo Jordan

Friday Finds

Well, we made it to the Friday before Christmas😍

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Finds

I’m actually writing to you from my parent’s house in New York (is it weird for me to still call it MY house? Because it’s totally going to be home for me always). I feel so freakin’ lucky to have been able to come home for both Thanksgiving and Christmas this year, since that hasn’t actually happened in 7 years! It feels so unbelievably good to be here, even if I have to work a bit remotely. Thank goodness for the digital age, #amiright?

Before I leave you for the holiday weekend, I just wanted to wish everyone a wonderful Christmas (if you celebrate) and even if you don’t, I hope you have time to relax, eat some delicious food, and be with friends and/or family. Is it just me or is this time of year the BEST because it reminds you of all the things you’re grateful for?

I’ll be spending most of this weekend baking cookies, sitting by a fire, and catching up with loved ones! I hope you get to do a version of the same😊 And now, back to our usual weekly roundup. They are some awesome last minute gift ideas in here!

5 Things to Get Rid of Before 2018 – Literally all of these, but especially #5. That was actually one of my New Year’s resolutions for this year! I did okay, but not great.

10 Genius Ideas for a Healthier Holiday – These tips are sooooo realistic, unlike so many others I see floating around during this time. Just eat the dang dessert and stop talking about your diet. Please. The kale will be there tomorrow!

Gluten-Free Dark Chocolate Eggnog Cookies – I’ve only actually had eggnog a couple of times, but I remember loving it. These sounds super delicious, and I love that they’re allergen-friendly!

DIY Sugar Scrub Cubes – Perfect for gifts or yourself!! I’m obsessed with scrubs lately. They make me feel like I’m at a spa…

9 Non-Toxic Beauty Products at Sephora – YES. I’m trying to make more of an effort to use green beauty products, so this list is super helpful!

How to Put Together a Gift Bouquet or Box at Any Budget – Literally my favorite thing to gift people is a box or bag of a bunch of different little things. These tutorials are gorgeous!

Why 30 Minutes of Cardio is the Best Workout for a Good Night’s Sleep – Considering 30 minutes is all I’m motivated to do these days, this is GREAT news.

Love y’all so much and I’ll catch you next week!

xo Jordan

28 Lessons in 28 Years.

Hi friends!

Dancing for Donuts | 28 Lessons in 28 Years.

So tomorrow is my birthday and I wanted to share some of the wisdom I’ve learned in the past 28 years of my life. I jotted these lessons down partly for me (because practicing gratitude instantly makes me feel a bit better when I’m not feeling myself) and partly for you in hopes that maybe you’ll learn something, too!

1. You’re never going to be this young or free ever again so you might as well do some crazy sh*t. Heck, why not move across the country to a city where you know maybe just one person and follow your freakin’ dreams 😉

2. Moving far away may make relationships harder, but the ones who are worth it will reciprocate the effort. It’s a two way street, y’all.

3. It really does get better. Not everyday is going to be rainbows and unicorns, but know when to wallow and when to rise up. The lows make the highs even better 🙂

4. The best investment you can make is in yourself. Attend the school/conference/event that will teach you more about what you’re passionate about and if you need to take a loan out, you’ll make it work and pay it back. Knowledge isn’t free!

5. The money will come. Sometimes (most of the time) you have to pay your dues. Take these moments as learning experiences and don’t worry about the paycheck yet. That being said, no when to say enough is enough. You have value and deserve to be paid for your contributions and hard work.

6. You’ll never regret a trip you took. Travel while you can, and while you have minimal responsibilities (aka no kids!).

7.. Family is #1. Hands down, always. And if you’re not close with yours, find friends that become your family instead.

8. There’s nothing better than having good friends and a support system in life so treat relationships like they’re solid gold.

9. That being said, say goodbye to relationships that don’t serve you, lift you up, or make you smile. Not every moment can be perfect, but the highs should by far outweigh the lows.

10. Kindness. Is. Everything. I promise that nothing will get you farther in life than being a kind person.

11. Do favors. People notice and karma exists.

12. Others may be lucky, but working hard for what you want is far more important in the long run when it comes to gratitude and character.

13. Everything happens for a reason (and I so, so strongly believe that!). The job you didn’t get, the breakup you had to endure, the hardships. They teach you things so keep an eye out for the lesson and remember it in the future.

14. Treat your body like the friggin’ temple it is. Stretch, move, fuel it with goodness and love it for all it’s capable of.

15. Save when you can. You’ll be glad when you have money for a “rainy day.”

16. Women are so capable of becoming anything they want to be. Be independent, be strong and be a role model. Girls need more of those in this world (and I’m thankful I had mine!)

17. Your home should be your oasis, the place you come home to after a long and crazy day and instantly makes you feel comfortable.

18. The small things are often the big things. Don’t take small moments for granted.

19. Celebrate every single victory, no matter how small. You are accomplishing things and growing every single day and nothing is more motivating than stopping to recognize that.

20. You and your needs come first every single time. Give yourself time to rest and learn when to say no (and when to say yes!).

21. Treat yourself! What’s the point of living if you can’t indulge in the things you love?

22. If it doesn’t make you happy then let it go – the job, the boyfriend, the whatever-it-is that’s holding you back. You deserve happiness and life’s too short to hold on to things that make you miserable or bring you down.

23. Don’t wait for things to come to you. Work hard, manifest what you want in life, and ask for it when you can.

24. Stop talking sh*t about people. I’m so guilty of this I’ll be honest, but when I think about it, what’s the point?! It doesn’t help me in anyway, or them. If people want to be crappy, that’s their prerogative. Avoid them at all costs, but don’t waste your breath or brain capacity thinking about them.

25. Confidence will get you far. It probably won’t come instantly, and it’s definitely easier said than done, but find the things you love about yourself and focus on those. People will instantly be drawn to you and you’ll find yourself rocking interviews, dates, friendships, and being happier overall.

26. Don’t let people pressure you into doing, saying or thinking anything you don’t want to. If they’re going to judge you for not drinking, smoking, going somewhere, or doing something, it’s their problem not yours.

27. You have to have to HAVE to follow your dreams and take whatever path you think it is that you’re meant to take. If life doesn’t turn out how you planned so be it, you’ll pivot and find another path, but if you don’t try you’ll never know.

28. Don’t forget to laugh. Having a sense of humor (& humility) makes the tough stuff so much easier to handle and life a bit easier to get through 🙂

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xo Jordan

Saying Yes to the Big Things.

I don’t think many of you know this, but for about 5 straight years of my life, I worked almost every single weekend night.

Dancing for Donuts | Saying Yes to the Big Things.

It actually kind of started during my senior year of college when I’d decided to move to Los Angeles. I knew I needed to save money for my move, so I got a job hostessing on Friday nights at a restaurant in Manhattan. When I moved here to LA, my main sources of income were nannying and hostessing, as well, so that I would have time to audition during weekdays (and the funds to actually keep a roof over my head/food in my fridge). Between those two jobs, I worked every single Friday and Saturday night, and most Sunday nights as well, which meant saying no to having a life like most people in their early 20’s. Part of that, I’ll be honest, was due to me being a little too anal about saving money, but in my defense I wanted to save for rainy days or when gigs were few and far between…

Dancing for Donuts | Saying Yes to the Big Things.

That’s not the point of this post, though. The point is to tell you that the other day I was listening to one of my new favorite podcasts The Goal Digger and she was talking about how to graciously say no to things, people, events, etc. that don’t serve you. She also said that while you can’t say yes to everything (for your own mind and heart’s sake) you should absolutely say yes to the big things. What I took away from that is actually something I’ve been thinking about, and trying to do, for quite some time now.

Dancing for Donuts | Saying Yes to the Big Things.

I’ve spent more money on travel, food and drinks, adventures, and gas money to visit my friends in the past year than I ever have before. I’m probably making slightly more money as well, but the real reason is that I’m tired of not living my life. Our time on this planet is waaaaay to short to not try the restaurant we’ve been dying to eat at, visit the countries on our travel bucket lists, to let important relationships fade (or not create new ones), to miss out on events or trips we know will be a blast. For the first time in my life, I’m finally loosening up the purse strings, (as my mother would say) and enjoying life.

Dancing for Donuts | Saying Yes to the Big Things.

You will never regret a trip you took, or a weekend you spent creating memories with new friends in a new city, of that I can promise you. I went to my first multi-day music festival last weekend and it’s safe to say that my tired feet and slightly unsettled stomach from the fried food were absolutely worth it. And I don’t just mean the money, I mean the time and energy, too. I’m still exhausted 2 days later, but I’m going to have the memories of bobbing up and down to the Killers with my boyfriend, grabbing the best tacos I’ve ever eaten at midnight, and watching a new band (that I now love!) from backstage, for as long as my memory holds up.

Dancing for Donuts | Saying Yes to the Big Things.

So for all of you babes on a budget out there, and those of you who may not be fully living because you’re afraid of the calories in a cocktail, and even for those of you who feel like you don’t look as good in your outfit as you wanted to, find something better to spend your time thinking about. Because none of those things are worth missing out on your life.

Dancing for Donuts | Saying Yes to the Big Things.

xo Jordan

How I Stay Sane [Because “Health” is More Than Food + Fitness!]

Do y’all ever feel like, even though you’re eating well and getting your exercise, your mind doesn’t totally feel at ease?

Dancing for Donuts | How I Stay Sane [Because Health Isn't Just Food + Fitness]

The other day I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts by The Healthy Maven, and her guest said something that resonated with me so much that I actually had to stop mid-walk and write it down in the notes app on my phone. Niki, from Healthnut Nutrition said, “Health isn’t just the food you eat, it’s the thoughts you think and the relationships you have.” I mean, I literally could not have said this better myself. How valid is that?!

Dancing for Donuts | How I Stay Sane [Because Health Isn't Just Food + Fitness]

As I get older, I’m starting to realize that, while eating well and sweating it out does make me feel great, that’s not the only thing my body (and soul) may need. Don’t get me wrong, when I’ve had a stressful day or I’m totally freaking out about something, I crave a cardio session or POUND class to let it all out, but I also think that this isn’t the only way to calm down, get some perspective and gain peace of mind. For me, sometimes the last thing I want (or need) is an intense workout, and what really will make me feel better is writing it all down, talking it out with a friend, or even just unplugging from my phone and social media for a bit.

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I don’t exactly meditate, not because I don’t think it has benefits, but because I think I just meditate in other ways than silently and sitting, you know? I think my meditation comes in the form of walking and maybe listening to an uplifting podcast (swear my a roundup of my faves is coming soon!), or writing in my planner. I’m still with my thoughts, and thinking about how I feel, but without having to sit in silence. Does that make sense?

I’m no health expert, as you all know, but I will say this – being happy, in addition to healthy, requires a certain mindset. And running around like a crazy person trying to squeeze in a workout 7 days a week for an hour and a half plus thinking about how you can eat every single superfood in the 15 hours you’re awake, can often do more help than good. I’m working on this myself, and have gotten a lot better at it in the last year or so, but this whole “self-care” thing is more important than I have a feeling most of us think it is.

Dancing for Donuts | How I Stay Sane [Because Health Isn't Just Food + Fitness]

Here are some of the things I do to help de-stress before or after a long day, on a lazy Sunday when I’m not quite ready to get back to Monday, when I’m on vacation hoping to reboot, or even on my lunch break…

Make a to-do list before bed at night or first thing in the morning – I don’t know about you, but sometimes it literally takes me 5 hours to fall asleep (just ask my boyfriend who gets woken up by me asking him if he’s still awake at 3am…). A lot of times this is because I’m thinking about all of the things I have to do the next day, week, month, whenever. I find that writing things down in my planner right before I go to bed not only helps me organize my plans, but also keeps me aware of things that are happening days from now. I do the same thing in the morning at work so that I know how to organize and time-manage my day. It definitely keeps the stress at bay when I have everything written down in front of me that I can check off throughout the day!

Keep a journal – This one sort of goes with my point above in the sense that getting our thoughts down on paper helps get them out of our heads. I used to be a huge journal-er when I was in grade school, but it became less of a priority and more of a time commitment over the years. Instead of writing massive entries like I used to, chronicling every single thing I said and did in a day, I use the 5-minute journal method or the 52 Lists Project (my favorite) to jot down some thoughts and move on. Even though it takes only a few minutes, it puts my head in a better space and re-focuses my thoughts. (I’ve linked my favorite journals/notebooks at the bottom of this post!)

Dancing for Donuts | How I Stay Sane [Because Health Isn't Just Food + Fitness]

Go for a walk – If you know me at all, you know this one’s my go-to. I try to take at least a 30 minute walk every single day in the middle of the day, and sometimes one at night as well, just so that I can get myself away from my desk. I find that if I’m having trouble focusing, a walk helps me re-center myself so that I can come back to my work feeling refreshed. It gets the creative juices flowing and also allows me to step away from my tech, where I often have 8,000 tabs open and get distracted super easily! I also think walking kind of forces you to think/feel since there’s nothing you’re responsible for in that moment except for putting one foot in front of the other.

Call a family member or friend – While I think it’s super important to think through things on your own, I also know how incredible and important it can be to get someone else’s perspective, or even just talk it out without expecting a response. Depending on what’s going on, I’ll call either or both of my parents, my brother, my boyfriend, or my best friends to get their opinions if I’m dealing with a tough situation. Other times, I just like to hear someone else’s voice, listen to how their day is going, and separate myself from my own problems. Not only does this help take your mind off of things that may be bothering you, but it also allows you to be there for someone else if they need it and gives you an opportunity to fortify a relationship or keep in touch with someone far away. After all, Niki did say that health is about relationships, too!

Find a good hardcover or paperback book (not an audiobook!) – As you probably know already, I am a die hard fan of audiobooks and podcasts right now. However, I think unplugging completely, holding a book in your hand and focusing on just that can do wonders for our minds. When an audiobook is on, it’s easier for us to multi-task, and I think part of unwinding should be the opposite of just that! I recently started going back the local library and it’s been amazing. Books are always worth it, but the library makes them so accessible and free for this #BabeOnABudget!

Dancing for Donuts | How I Stay Sane [Because Health Isn't Just Food + Fitness]

Alright y’all, that’s it for now. I hope everyone is having a stress-free week! Don’t forget to make time for the things that make you happy!

xo Jordan

 

The Best Advice My Dad Has Given Me (So Far)…

First of all, Happy Father’s Day to all the wonderful dad’s out there!!! 🙂

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And of course I want to give an extra special Father’s Day shout out to MY dad, the wisest and most incredible man I know. I was lucky enough to be on the east coast for Mother’s Day this year, but I so wish I could be there to celebrate with my family again today!!

Growing up, I was so fortunate to have two ridiculously supportive and encouraging parents (sometimes I can’t even believe how lucky I am). And over the years, my dad has given me so, so much advice that has absolutely helped me get to the place and state of mind I am in today. I want to share and write them down, even just for myself so I can remember them always, in hopes that we can all benefit from his wise words!

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1. Don’t forget to have fun. – Want to know who actually encouraged me to go on Spring Break in college and party with my friends? My DAD. And who moved me into a frat house 6 years ago when I first got to LA and had no idea what I was doing or where I wanted to be? Yep, that was my dad. And what about when it’s Friday night and I’ve been invited to a party, but kind of just want to stay home and save money? My dad will tell me to go out, see my friends, and enjoy. Just enjoy life as much as I possibly can. And though it seems counterintuitive for my dad to have to tell me to have fun, I totally need the reminder sometimes 🙂

2. Quality first, then price. – Always a bargain hunter, my dad is constantly doing his research before making a purchase, and he’s taught me to do the same. In all honesty, both of my parents are that way and I attribute my frugality to their example! Just the other day, I was searching for flights to go home for a visit and went with United (my main rewards points program) for one leg, but American for the other since it was so much cheaper. No matter how thrifty I am though, I absolutely refuse to fly Spirit or Frontier not matter how cheap! I know this might be kind of a silly example, but it’s the truth. You can only sacrifice quality so much to save a buck before it’s just not worth the struggle or consequence!

3. If you’re doing all the right things and trying your hardest, that’s all you can do. – Now this one might sound more pessimistic written down than it does when he’s actually saying it out loud in his wise-dad voice, but essentially, if you’re doing the best you can, you kind of have to just leave the rest in the universe’s hands. There’s no point worrying about something you can’t control the outcome of (like after a audition, job interview, or test) and if you tried your hardest, that’s the best thing you could’ve done! Whenever I call my dad freaking out, he usually says this to me and my perspective changes almost instantly. After years of having to repeat it, I’m thankful that he did because it took about 27 years for it to sink in as the truth 🙂

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4. Don’t run yourself down. – This one is quite possibly the most valuable piece of advice I’ve ever been given. As someone who (oddly enough) enjoys packing my schedule to the absolute brim, I for sure need to be reminded of this on the reg. Self care might be all trendy now, but my dad was on top of that trend yearsssss ago! Though he always encourages me to work hard and play hard (y’know, within reason!), he also knows how important it is to rest when you need it.

5. You have to spend money to make money. – Ok this one might actually be my favorite through (saved the best for last)! During my past 6 years in LA, particularly while I was dancing professionally and working about 8 part-time jobs to make ends meet on top of going to business school, I felt like I couldn’t ease up on the purse strings at all whatsoever. But if you’ve ever heard anyone say, “the best investment you can make is in yourself,” believe them. My dad has been reminding me for as long as I can remember that you’re not going to make anything back if you’re not willing to spend money on the things you need to get there. His voice saying “Buy the extra headshots,” “Take the dance class,” “Drive the 2 hours to the audition,” and “Get your Master’s” will forever play on in my head. Sometimes you just have to take the plunge and make the investment if you want to make the return. Thanks for keeping me business-minded, dad 🙂

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Well, if you read through all of that I give you credit, but I also hope you really did since I know anyone could use this advice! Hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend!

xo jordan

 

Meeting Commitment with Self Care.

Oh, hello! I’m so sorry I’ve been pretty MIA lately. Life and work have been a little nuts and the madness threw me off my game.

Dancing for Donuts | Meeting Commitment with Self Care.

That’s actually why I wanted to write this post, to be honest. I feel like my schedule has gotten a little out of hand (as everyone’s can from time to time) and instead of listening to my mind and body, I’ve focused on fulfilling a billion commitments. If you don’t already know, I’ve always been someone who likes to be busy. I genuinely enjoy filling my time with things that make me feel like I’m progressing as a human, whether that’s physically at the gym, financially by working side hustles, or emotionally by spending time with people I love. And, while I absolutely still enjoy those things, I’m starting to realize the importance of quiet and alone time, doing things that are just for me, and making sure I’m taking care of myself.

Dancing for Donuts | Meeting Commitment with Self Care.

This notion of self care has been really trendy lately, and I know it kind of sounds like some b.s., but it’s not. I’m glad it’s becoming more main-stream, and even more acceptable for us to slow things down, if that makes sense. There’s so much in our society that demands us to just go, go, go and I think social media has a lot to do with that today. We’re inundated with images of people traveling the world, going out to eat, and doing all kinds of activities. I think this is so amazing because it inspires us to go out and see the world, but I also think it makes us feel pressure to do as many of those things as we can right now. But we don’t have to do what everyone else is doing, we can do one thing today and one tomorrow, or no things today at all if that’s how we feel. And the concept of self care let’s us step back from this pressure and just chill for hot second.

Dancing for Donuts | Meeting Commitment with Self Care.Dancing for Donuts | Meeting Commitment with Self Care.

I was listening to my absolute favorite podcast, Soul on Fire by The Balanced Blonde, and in her most recent episode she interviewed Mary Beth LaRue, a health and wellness expert, yogi, and entrepreneur. Jordan and Mary Beth were talking about how they’re both so busy and so productive, but that it’s important to “meet commitment with self care.” This really resonated with me, particularly this morning, because I just got back from a bachelorette party that I planned (which I had a blast at!) and have also been coming off of some really crazy weeks at work. For the past 7 days I’ve actually had some gnarly stomach issues randomly, as well, and for the life of me couldn’t figure out why. Fortunately, my stomach woes have seemingly come to an end, but it’s kind of strange because pretty much the moment I got home from our trip and the 5 and a half hour car ride back, I started to feel better. How weird is that!?

The only thing I can think of, unless my pains come back of course, is that it was anxiety. I’ve never experienced a reaction like that from stress ever before, but I think it was a sign that I need to slow things down. My dad always tells me “don’t burn yourself out, child” and even though I usually laugh it off and tell him I definitely won’t, I may have just done it.

Dancing for Donuts | Meeting Commitment with Self Care.

So, that being said, I’m not entirely sure what the point of this post is, but I do know that taking care of yourself (/myself) needs to be a priority. My advice to you and my future self is to say “yes” to just one less thing, maybe leave half of a day in your planner blank, and don’t be afraid to check out of life for an hour or so every once in awhile.

Have a wonderful week 🙂

xo Jordan

A Word on the Weekend.

Aaaaand just like that, we’re back to Monday.

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Finds.

Every other Thursday, we have a meeting at work where we discuss our recent wins and some things that we’re working on. At the end, we share our plans for the upcoming weekend. Last Thursday, and for the first Thursday in a long time, I realized I had no real, concrete plans. I’ve been on the go quite a bit, and I’m 100% a planner/list-maker, so not having any set schedule seemed almost boring and honestly slightly stressful. After our meeting, I thought about setting up back-to-back friend-dates for both days and tried reaching out to a few people, but when nothing came to fruition I realized I had total freedom for once. And it was so unbelievably nice.

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Finds.

My Saturday consisted of an easy morning in complete with pancakes and homemade lattes, then a solo trip to the gym. Without any time constraints, I was able to do a full on workout while I listened to some of my new favorite podcasts. Afterwards, I took a walk along Main Street in Santa Monica and then met some friends at the beach. For lunch, we went to a new-to-me spot I’ve been dying to try for years, Huckleberry, and it was incredible (see the photo up at the top of this post ^!)

Dinner was a special one, thanks to a gift my parents gave me and my boyfriend back on Christmas. I didn’t take any photos, partially because I wanted to live in the moment and keep my phone away during our time together, but also because (let’s face it) taking photos in a fancy restaurant isn’t exactly the classiest thing ever. I will say, our crab cake appetizer, scallop dinner and pumpkin pot de creme at Cafe del Rey were absolutely to die for. I don’t exactly get to splurge on dinner often, so being able to go to such a beautiful restaurant was a real treat. Thanks mom and dad!!

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Finds.

Sunday we slept in and then decided to make a frittata. Have you ever made one of these?! It was so easy, and so delicious!! I then met a friend from home at the Beverly Hills Hotel for a cup of coffee. This is another place I’ve driven by a thousand times but have never actually gone to! This place just screams Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s to me, I loved it – perfect baby pink with Beverly Hills Hotel written in script on everything, just quintessential old Hollywood vibes. And it’s safe to say I’ll be searching for an exact replica of their palm leaf wallpaper for my next apartment…

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Finds.

Post-fancy coffee, I met one of my best friends for (yet another…) cup of coffee. Since really no one should have 3 cups of coffee before 2pm, I opted for a Golden Milk Latte instead at Cafe If in West Hollywood. I had never been to this cafe before either and it was super cute! Very minimalist and quiet, I think this would be a great hidden gem to work out of someday! That latte was pretty epic too, slightly spicey and lemon-y and very delicious. Dinner was homemade turkey chili + cornbread (I swear by the mix from Trader Joe’s!) while watching the Oscars.

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Finds.

To be honest, I didn’t actually mean for this post to be so much a recap of my whole weekend as an attempt to prove the point that not everything has to be planned every minute of everyday. And, more importantly actually, there are so many things to do and see wherever you may live that you may not even realize. I think we often get caught up in our routines or only go to our favorite places, which I totally think we should still do, but every once in awhile it’s nice to find something new. In 2 days, I visited 4 new places (which is rare for me.) A new place or meal or mini-adventure can make any ordinary weekend feel special. I’m grateful to live in a place with so much to offer, and I’m making a promise to take more advantage of it in the future!

Did you try anything new this weekend?! Let me know in the comments 🙂

xo Jordan