A Visit to the Zen Institute

If women and men want to look good, and if they can afford it, I don’t think it’s being vain. The thing about today’s society is that we succumb to beauty shaming. What happened to Maureen Wroblewitz, the winner of Asia’s Next Top model, was a perfect example. She was insulted, because she was pretty. I just think that if we want our voices to be heard, let’s not waste it on negativity. Speaking up about issues and things takes effort, and practical ME encourages everyone to say good things about other people.

Now going back to trying to the topic of looking good and beautiful, we all want that! I don’t think anyone would say that they don’t want to look their best. If I had more time, I would probably allot more time to looking good. Looking good boosts confidence, and being confident means that you can face anything and achieve anything that you want to achieve. Last week, I took time out to visit The Zen Institute in BGC. My first encounter with the brand was when they spoke at the Boss Bellas event.

I decided to be adventurous and check out their services. I haven’t tried any treatments lately, and all these terms in their flyer seemed so unfamiliar. But, I was really interested to talk to them and experience their services. Check out my video!

So what I tried that day was Ultralipo. It’s a non-invasive treatment that burns fat. As mentioned in the video, doing this treatment regularly can lose approximately 5 inches in a month. Ultralipo uses radio frequencies to burn fat by driving controlled heat deep within the fat cells and subsequently destroys them. It only targets fat cells so it’s safe. You can have Ultralipo done for your arms, thighs or tummy. You lie on a metallic plate that touches the skin in your back. The lady then uses the machine (looks like an ultrasound machine) by rubbing it on your thigh with a gel. It’s a bit warm as it glides through your skin.

Obviously, since I had it done just once, I don’t think there was a difference in the circumference of my thigh, but I felt my skin was smoother and a bit tighter.

I love that the people in The Zen Institute really explained to me what the treatments were for. Because of the exceptional service, I recommend that you get their Weight Management Program! Also, ask about their Membership card! I actually got one for myself. I got a Silver Card at Php 5000 and got treatments worth around Php 50,000!!!

If you’re interested to visit The Zen Institute, please do visit their site or their BGC branch and look for Veron! http://www.thezeninstitute.com/

Easy Cures Story (Interview with Entrepreneur Tina Vitas)

I meet a lot of interesting people during the workshops that we conduct at Manila Workshops. One of the interesting people that I have met was Tina Vitas. Tina is the owner of Easy Cures.

Having coffee with Entrepreneur Tina Vitas of Easy Cures

Tina’s Story

I studied in Boston University for college, worked in Los Angeles for 3 years and then worked in New York for 9 years before finally making Manila my home again in August 2003. I got the inspiration to open an online store for natural remedies – Easy Cures – from watching my Mom do this as a hobby for 30 years. She was in the costume jewelry business.

On top of that, I held her hand through a health crisis as she approached her 70’s where we discovered a few different alternative healing modalities that worked for her.

She is obviously a fabulous inspiration for me being an ultra-successful businesswoman. She is also my favorite person in the world, my best friend and my mentor (we have very different ideas about how to run a business since I tend to be more modern, in general).

I thought that bringing these products that have helped us on our journey to health, wellness and happiness to a wider audience online would be a great idea, in tune with the times. After being employed in the corporate world most of my life and having dabbled in a few different businesses (restaurant, food, fashion, fragrance, education), I wanted to do something that resonated so deeply with who I am as a person and where I am on my life journey. I am on a continuous personal evolution and spiritual awareness & awakening.

I am a consistent practitioner of Vinyasa Yoga at Urban Ashram Yoga and Kundalini Yoga at Sat Nam Shala in Urdaneta with Madonna English. I meditate daily for about 20-25 minutes. Although I am not 100% vegetarian, my diet has very little animal protein in it. That is deceiving because I love to eat (chocolates, ice cream and pastries are a weakness, thus, I have to budget them strictly on a weekly basis). I’m dining out with family & friends about 5 to 6 times a week. I lived and worked in New York City for nine years. If I can walk it, I will. I support the Missionaries Of The Poor in Sta. Ana which is my charitable institution of choice and I also support the Library Renewal Partnership. I am a member of the US Alumni Club PH, Asia Society and the Business Professional Women’s Group.

Easy Cures Story

Ginger: What is your Startup/brand/business? What is it about? How long have you been in business?

Tina: Its an online store for natural remedies. Officially started in May 2016.

Ginger: Who is your target market? Why did you choose this market? Can you give us the insight behind this market?

Tina: The target market for natural remedies, in my mind, is anyone who has the consciousness that there are alternatives to Western medicine and harsh, chemical-laden products that are commonly found in the market today. But because one of our star products is for aches & pains, the natural market for this would be someone who is a bit older, approaching forties. Or someone, even younger, who is extremely active or has a recurring condition that can be managed with such natural remedies.

 

Ginger: Were there any obstacles that you faced when you decided to pursue becoming an Entrepreneur? What are these?

Tina: Obstacles for a start-up entrepreneur who is self-funded is almost always the available resources – money, marketing, staffing, logistics etc.

Ginger: What are the greatest challenges in putting up and maintaining a business in your country?

Tina: What I encountered is that many people still shy away from purchasing online. It will still take some time for Filipinos to be completely comfortable with e-commerce in the way they are with bricks & mortars stores. Having accepted this year, I decided that I have to compliment my online store with offline partner stores who share the same values & mindset at Easy Cures. Filipinos, particularly if they are buying something that needs to be tried and is also not yet a known brand, will want to see the product in person. The actual product experience is important to them. It builds trust and reputation faster than if they just read about the products online. Online and offline work well together and can drive each other.

Ginger: What are three traits that you think an Entrepreneur/Startup Founder should have when starting their own business?

Tina: Patience, flexibility and grit.

Ginger: Unforgettable moments or lessons that you learned as an Entrepreneur/Startup Founder?

Tina: Ask for help from others. You’d be surprised at how accommodating and generous people can be when asked.

Ginger: What advice can you give to other Entrepreneurs?

Tina: A start-up business is very unpredictable. Finding your market who loves you/your products is key to growth and will take time. After you find them, you have to make sure you keep them coming back. Know from the very beginning that you will question yourself many times during this journey and you will also change your roadmap because reality requires it. But if you truly believe in what you are trying to do, keep going at it. You and your goal will find each other, eventually….. It takes time!

This is a product that I love very very much!

Ginger: Do you believe that everyone should become entrepreneurs?

Tina: Nope, not everyone has the ability to handle the unpredictability, the inconsistency and the build-as-you-go structure of starting and running a business. At the start, you will be doing pretty much everything and involved in every detail.

Ginger: What are ways that you can do to raise capital?

Tina: Through family & friends. I have raised capital before with another business, through a bank loan. I don’t recommend it. The larger the capital you raise, the bigger the pressure you feel to deliver in a short amount of time. For me, at least, this has resulted in my making decisions that I would not have made had I continued to be self-funded or funded with a limited amount of money.

Ginger: How do you market your products? Growth strategy?

Tina:  Social media and SEO. I also sponsor health & wellness related events. Grow online with the help of offline.

Ginger: What are tech tools that you use for your business?

Tina: Online platform for the store, Facebook Instagram, Google Analytics & SEO.

Ginger: Other things that you want to mention which you think are important?

Tina: It’s a long, winding road. Remind yourself always why you started in the first place and have fun! Have a few businesses, if possible, so you have different income streams at any given time.

Ginger: Wise words from a very wise woman! I hope you continue to inspire more people, Tina! 

 

Contact information about your business:
Website: http://www.easycures.com.ph/
Email address ask@easycures.com.ph
Mobile Number +639178117580 on Mobile, Viber & WhatsApp
Facebook Page: @easycuresph
Instagram account: @easycures.ph
Pinterest: easycuresph

How to start Freelancing? Where do I begin?

I’m really grateful that almost 60 people signed up for the Freelancing for Beginners workshop last Saturday. And after observing the questions from the crowd, it seemed that 90% of the crowd was really there to learn more about what freelancing is and how do you actually start “freelancing”. We hope that you really learned a lot! We also got to read the suggestions, and most of you were asking for more time to discuss more topics and to network. Awww, thank you for actually mentioning networking, since support is crucial in this type of career.

A freelancer offers his/her services to different Clients. If you can do something for someone else, like create a video, look and build a list for a client, handle social media accounts for them, create business strategies, do their accounting and legal work, create a design for their office, create marketing campaigns, etc., you are a freelancer. Now I mentioned that there is a blurry line between being a freelancer and an entrepreneur, because for example, if a yoga teacher then decides to hold classes in her home and convert it into a studio (is she now a freelancer or an entrepreneur?). There are numerous examples that will make you think of the difference, but I think the main difference (as best said by my marketing idol, Seth Godin in this interview) will come when the freelancer decides and starts creating a plan to make systems work for him/her to earn money rather then use his or her own time, skills and effort to earn money.

If you have not seen and listened to video above, you need to! Another point that he stated, which I completely agree with, is that if you’re looking to be a freelancer, strive to be an extraordinary freelancer! This is the reason why my main goal is really to help freelancers learn more about their craft and strive to be better than what they were yesterday. I wish that each on would wake up and say that today they know MORE than what they did yesterday.

My Freelance Journey

Not a lot of people know that I after starting my blogging career way back in 2008, I started writing for different clients. I then joined Upwork (at that time Odesk) way back in 2010, as a freelance writer. I was an SEO/technical writer. I was hired to write articles for websites, and the articles that I wrote ranged from reviews of different vacuum cleaners to flooring for the home. I then became a writer for Philippine Online Chronicles (POC) for half a year. When I had to resign from my job from a bank, I created my own business called Manila Workshops, with the main intention to help people turn their entrepreneurial and freelancing dreams into a reality. I had to forego my freelancing gigs, but continued on applying my love for writing through my blogs. In blogging professionally, I continue to apply and hone my skills, and most importantly, I still manage to keep sane because of writing.

Your Freelance Journey

Your freelance journey may be different from mine, but regardless of WHAT you intend to do or WHEN you decide to freelance, it will be something that you will definitely learn from. So, what have I learned from my journey that I hope will help you in starting your freelancing career? Here is a list of a few things that I have personally learned:

The first step is really knowing yourself — know your skills, know what you are capable of and the limits to what you can do, know your strengths and your weaknesses and know your flaws and incompetencies. This “digging deeper” and reflection is not just for you to assess technical skills, but even your emotional capacity. What irks you? What motivates you? What inspires you to do your best and strive harder?

This is something that you alone can do. Clarity, in this aspect of your life, can only be achieved by you and you alone. And I say this even for those with spouses or significant others. Your partner can only give your bits and pieces to a jigsaw puzzle that you alone can build. Ultimately, deciding if you want to have a freelance career will be your choice. It’s good, however, to step out of the house, talk to people, gain insights from what other people are doing, and gain insights from other freelancers so that you see what’s out there. You’ll have a broader perspective of what can be in store for you in that potential life as a freelancer.

Next, after you have gained a little bit of clarity on what you want to do, build your portfolio. Create samples of your work. From the work that you have created, test and gain feedback from other people (especially from people from the market that you want to tap). For example, if your forte is writing about health, medicine, nutrition or anything that involves fitness and health, have people who are interested in these topics, brands who operate in this vertical or clients who have customers who would want to read these kinds of articles,  check your work and give feedback.

Since these are samples of your work, you can improve further and create more samples. I’m sure that for those of you who have corporate jobs, this will be something that you can do when you have spare time. Also, try to create something everyday that moves you a step further into freelancing (it doesn’t matter if it’s just one sentence or just a few strokes in a painting).

The other lesson that I’ve learned is that consistency is key. Just keep at what you’re doing, no matter how hard it is. You’ll reap the rewards later on. I just watched the Katy Perry Part of Me Documentary on Netflix, and I was amazed at how full of grit this lady was. For a lot of successful freelancers and entrepreneurs even, people just see the successful you. They fail to think about the journey that you went through. For most of the successful people that I know, or don’t know (like Katy Perry! haha!), it was a very hard and grueling journey to the where they are now. For example, when we have workshops, people only see the ‘event’ on the day itself. They don’t see the hard work and the effort that we put into making the workshop possible.

So there, my tip is really to just keep at it, no matter how down, worthless and unsuccessful you feel.

Always have someone to talk to, like a mentor, a friend who is already freelancing, or anyone who you know will understand what you’re going through. It always helps to have a friend who will listen to what you’re going through. They have probably gone through the same situation already and may be able to give tips on how they handled difficult situations.

For those in the corporate world who wants to try freelancing, go ahead and try it out. But, don’t let go of the job that you have until you have successfully 1) built enough funds that will last you at least 6 months 2) Even with that parachute fund, you need to have a good base of clients already that are paying you enough for the monthly expenses and for the debts (usually credit card debts) that you have 3) if you still don’t have that base, but really want to allot more time to freelancing, get a bridge job (a part time job that will give you more time for freelancing).

Create a clear visual plan of what you want to be and what goals do you have for yourself. I have a corkboard in my room that shows all the plans that I made for myself. I look at it every so often to be reminded of where I am and how far do I still need to go before I get to the goals that I set for myself.

Learn more about the skill that you want to build. Attend workshops, online courses, download ebooks, read up on the things that are related to the skill that you want to learn more about. The more you know, the more value you can give your clients. And learning doesn’t have to come from structured courses or classes. You can learn from talking to people. Set up meetings with people you want to learn from and just talk about any thing. Strive to be wiser everyday!

At the end of the day, it’s about priorities and making yourself happy. If you really need this and you really want to be a full time freelancing professional, then decide to make that happen, and work smart to make that happen. It will be hard work, but if this is what you want, then go for it.

For those who have been freelancing for year, hope you can give your own tips, too! 🙂 It will be great if you can share your experiences and comments in the comment section below! Read on, aspiring freelancers!

Love,

Mommy Ginger

 

 

 

 

P.S. If you want are looking for support, you can check out these groups:

Freelancing Philippines

Online Filipino Freelancers

Work in freedom community for female freelancers & entrepreneurs

Freelancers in the Philippines

Social Media Managers

Freelance Blenders Group

Professional VAs

Upwork Freelancers in Philippines

Fivrr Success Philippines

Startup Marketing Philippines

Freelancers Hub Philippines

Boss Bellas

 

 

 

Great Baon Tips using Potatoes USA

When growing up, we are always told by our elders about the importance of consuming ample amount of fruits and vegetables daily. Our plates are usually filled with vibrant selections of vegetables with protein and carbohydrates and end each meal with a delightful slice of fruit.

How do we entice them to eat healthy?

During the first few months of an infant, we give them natural and healthy food selections, particularly fruits and vegetables as their first solid food. For my daughter, Zeeka, we even tried baby-led weaning. We would give her sliced potatoes, carrots etc. and she would eat these by herself. After the first year, it was noticeable that Zeeka started to either be picky or fussy with food that was given to her as she learned to become a more independent eater (Have you noticed this to be true also with your kids?). What my daughter didn’t lose though is the love of eating vegetables and fruits, even if she was picky!

It is proven that vegetables are essential and natural part of a child’s diet. It contains essential nutrients for their health, growth and development. The best and simplest way is for parents to be their child’s example by adding vegetables as a daily part of the family’s diet. In that way, children will love the idea of eating balanced and healthy meals. What I love buying Zeeka are potatoes with the stamp from Potatoes USA.

How potatoes can help children’s growth and development

Children get hungry fast that’s why we need to give them whole and quality foods that can help their gut to feel full longer and provide the needed energy daily. This wonder crop is the best solution!

Potatoes are naturally fat free, low-fat and packed with nutrients that’s good for kids. It provides carbohydrate, potassium and energy that is essential particularly to kids who need ample energy to perform well at school. Studies show that a potato contains these nutrients that can help your kid bustle with energy:

  • Carbohydrates: The food we consume daily contains nutrients that have what our body needs to tackle the day. These nutrients in food are the three major groups such as fat, protein and carbohydrates. While the two main forms of carbohydrates are sugars (fructose, glucose and lactose) and starch that is usually found in foods such as grains, rice, bread, starchy vegetables and more.
  • B Vitamins: Provides energy and helps body to put carbohydrates to work.
  • Fiber: Helps to lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels.
  • Vitamin C: Essential vitamin to attain and maintain healthy skin, bones and hair.
  • Folate: Helps body make red blood cells.

I love Lamb Weston because their fries are made from real potatoes!!!

Aside from baked, boiled and fried potatoes, here are some baon ideas that can help inspire you to entice your kid to eat this food boost even at school!

Potato and Leek Soup

  • Melt butter and add the onions and chopped leeks on pan. Stir cook until tender.
  • Stir in the chicken broth and the potatoes into this mixture. Stir until the potatoes are tenderly cooked.
  • Add the half-and-half into this soup and cook on a low flame for about 15 minutes, until the soup thickens a little.
  • Add the cheddar cheese, garlic powder, salt, and pepper while stirring the soup. Cook for another five minutes until the cheddar melts.

Potato Sandwich

  • Slice potato into 1/2 inch slices
  • Heat to medium temperature. Fry both sides of the potato (about 3-5 minutes per side) until the potato is cooked thoroughly.  
  • Once a slice is almost cooked, add a slice of cheese and allow it to partially melt.  Remove from heat and add cucumber slices and lettuce.

Cheesy Potato Pancake

    1. In a large mixing bowl, combine 4 cups mashed potatoes, 1 large egg, ¼ cup flour and 2 Tbsp chopped chives. 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese. Use a potato masher to mash the mixture together until well mixed. If the potatoes are too flimsy and can’t hold its patty shape, you can add flour a Tablespoon at a time.
    2. Place a heaping tablespoonful of potato mixture between your palms and form into a round, ⅓” thick patty. Cover both sides of the patty that you’ve created in bread crumbs and set on a cutting board. Repeat with remaining pancakes.
  • Heat a large non-stick pan over medium heat with enough oil to lightly cover the bottom of the pan. Slowly add patties in a single layer into the pan once the oil is of perfect temperature (hot enough) and sauté 3-4 minutes per side or until golden brown. Repeat with remaining patties, adding more oil as needed. I usually have 2 skillets going at once to finish sooner.

 

I hope that you like these recipes that I’ve shared with you. Don’t forget to buy potatoes that have a Potatoes USA seal like this:

Please visit https://www.facebook.com/PotatoesUSAPhilippines/ for more information!

My New Addiction — 10 Step Korean Skin Care Routine

For those who don’t know, I was a beauty blogger before I became a mommy blogger. There was a time I wanted to be a make up artist, and I was obsessed about skin care. All my life, I never had clear skin. I would always have breakouts. Then sometime 2009, I followed a skin care routine made up mainly of Pond’s products that really helped clear my skin. Then, motherhood happened in 2012, and I forgot to take care of my skin. I found it so tedious to allot time for a daily skincare routine. Now that I’m in my mid 30s, I know that my skin can be better, and I know that it will be better if I just got back to having my own skin care routine.

Two weeks ago, I stayed home for a week, because of a respiratory tract infection. I had nothing to do, so I just watched Youtube videos. Amazed at how clear the skin of Japanese and Koreans are (recently came from a trip to Japan), I researched about Japanese and Korean Skin Care. I know that this may be really late in the game to introduce this to you, but I wanted to share my experience. I’m no beauty blogger, but as a woman, I always want to look good, because it makes me feel good. Related to my last article about loving yourself, we all need to set aside time for ourselves. So, after watching Youtube videos, I opted to try following the 10 step Korean skin care routine.

After 2 weeks of following this skin care routine, I noticed that my skin was better. Some of the dark spots and sun spots lightened (I think I could not see others anymore!). My face also wasn’t as oily. I then decided to do a Facebook Live video to show my friends the products that I used. This is my Facebook Live video: 10 Step Korean Skin Care Routine. I got a lot of views and a lot of requests for me to list down the products that I use, so I decided to write a blog post to indicate the products that I use.

Here it is!

Step 1: Oil Cleanser or Make-up Remover

I don’t usually put on Make-up often so I don’t have an oil cleanser at the moment. What I use is the Nivea Extra Bright Make up Clear Cleansing Wipes. I find that it’s effective for me since I normally just put light make up.

Step 2: Water-Based Facial Cleanser

I use Speedy Perfect Whip and Whip Foam, because I like bubbles! haha! I know that it’s a shallow thing to say, but I just feel that it leaves my skin very clean. But full disclosure, I recently found out that Speedy Perfect Whip has high PH that may not be very good for the skin. I’m now scouting for a facial cleanser with a lower PH. I’ll let you know if I find one. I’m actually looking at buying this: COSRX Low PH Good Morning Gel Cleanser http://www.lazada.com.ph/cosrx-low-ph-good-morning-gel-cleanser-150ml-22082617.html?ff=1

BTW, here is my video review on the Speedy Perfect Whip! Please subscribe!

 

Step 3: Exfoliate

I alternate between two brands, St. Ives Fresh Skin Apricot Cleanser and Cure Natural Aqua Gel. I got the St. Ives Apricot Cleanser from Calyxta (https://www.calyxta.com/shop/skin/st-ives-cleanser-fresh-skin-apricot-6-5oz/#.WU5kVxOGM0o) and the Cure Natural Aqua Gel from Lazada.

Step 4: Toner

For toner, I alternate (on a weekly basis these three toners). I’ve tried Celeteque DermoScience Acne Solutions (since I started this routine with pimples). After a week, I shifted to Nivea Extra White Repair Pore Minimiser Toner, since who doesn’t want minimized pores and no dark spots! haha! Today, I started using Skinfood Aqua Grape Bounce Mist Toner. This is a new product from Skinfood. I’ll be posting a review of it after a week on my vlog (http://youtube.com/c/gingerarboledavlog) so watch out for that.

Step 5: Essence

I have been alternating between the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Essence and the Olay Regenerist Miracle Boost Youth Pre-essence.

Step 6: Serum

For my serum, I use the Kiehl’s Nightly Refining Micro-Peel Concentrate with sustainably sourced Quinoa Husk Extract. I must say that there were a lot of good reviews about this product, and I think it actually works. I will also start using the Skinfood Aqua Grape Bounce Bubble Serum. I heard that it’s a hit. I got this from Skinfood and it was the last bottle (their stock was delivered just last week!).

Step 7: Facial Mask

For my facial masks that I use, my favorites are Innisfree and Lululun! I have tons of other brands here of facial masks (most of them I haven’t tried). I’ll get to reviewing these one by one for you and i’ll post it on my Youtube Channel (http://youtube.com/c/gingerarboledavlog).

Step 8: Eye Cream

For the Eye Cream, I use Helix-D Eye Serum. You can buy this from a store called Tuped in Uptown mall.

Step 9: Moisturiser

For my day and night moisturiser, I use Olay Regenerist Micro-sculpting cream. I got mine from Watsons.

Step 10: Sunscreen

And last but not the least, my sunscreen is The Face Shot Natural Sun Eco Super Perfect Sun Cream that’s SPF50+ PA+++. You can get it at any The Face Shop store.

So these are the products that I use! I’m new to this if you want to share comments also and suggestions, I will be happy to read them, consider and try out new products. Just leave comments on the section below! I will also post a vlog for each one in my Youtube channel, so please subscribe and watch my videos!

 

Master of Myself: A Mom’s Day Out from Sun Life Financial Philippines

Today, I feel in control.

Don’t you have those days where you wake up, and you feel that everything is in the right place — that each thing is where it should be. And even if you know that it’s not, you have that feeling in your gut that you can and WILL get to where you want to be in the near future. That’s how I feel today. It must be, because of the spontaneous Mom’s Day out activity that I attended sponsored by Sun Life Financial Philippines yesterday (I’m all eager, willing and able to go for my dreams), or, it actually may be something else. I really can’t give you a proper reason, so that you, moms may replicate what I did to get to this state.

Today, I feel in control!

But what I’ve learned yesterday from the guest psychologist, Michele Alignay, is that this feeling of being in control, may not last, and it’s okay. As they say, in life, the one thing in life that’s constant is change. And what better way to show these changes in a mom’s life and our changing relationship with our children, but through this video or #SunShorts shared by Sun Life Financial Philippines (She Said, She Said). This video really struck a cord. I may look like I’m super in control of things, and it may look like that I never get mad, but there are times where I really shout and lose my cool at my daughter and at people I love. There are times that I break down, I cry (for no reason) and I get frustrated and depressed. I totally was able to relate with the mom in the video! Super naiyak ako!

We will have it easy if we accept, prepare and plan for changes that may or may not happen. As a mom, I think it’s harder for us since we have a lot of things on our minds. In this economy where the standard is to have double income households, most of the moms I know, balance working/earning a decent living, taking care of the children and taking care of themselves. And truly, it’s a struggle to find that perfect “balance”. This is why I like the definition of balance that was presented yesterday.

 

If we are looking for that balance, where balance comes from the idea that everything should be at equal states or everything should be given equal time, you’re on the wrong track. Balancing is about 1) knowing ourselves, 2) process of continually centering energy with the cooperation and conscious support of all other parts.

Yesterday’s talk was really inspiring, and it reminded me that I should constantly ask these three questions:

  1. What do I want?
  2. What do I think I “Ought to do”?
  3. What I think I can do?

At any given point in our lives, we will have something that we want more than our other wants. We will have something that we “ought to do” and we will know what we can do. After hearing this during the Mom’s Day Out of Sun Life Financial Philippines, being a mindful mom now comes into play when every day, I accept that I can only do so much in 24 hours. I have learned howt o prioritize. I have learned to say “no”, and moving forward, I will focus on things that are truly essential.

Moms Tippy, Patty, Yours Truly, Jackie and Kelly at the Mom’s Day out Event of Sun Life Financial Philippines

It’s nice to think that we can be like Wonder Woman, or even just be like Gal Gadot (haha!) every time — so in control with her “I’ve got this!” attitude.  But we only human and I’m sure even Gal Gadot goes through times where she feels vulnerable. But what we need to be mindful of is that we have a choice on how we can emotionally react to these things. Will we intentionally remain in that state of peace and satisfaction or will we succumb to the judgement of others or worse, fall into the trap of judging ourselves and feeling guilty about not living up to our own expectations of ourselves?

So today, after a rejuvenating massage given by I’m Hotel Spa, after the amazing loot bag that I’ve received, after that delicious buffet from Bloom at I’m Hotel, after the great and inspirational talks from Michele and Mylene Segismundo from Sun Life Financial Philippines Cluster Head Manila, I have decided to feel peace and satisfaction. I wrote down all of the Practical ways for Self-Care that was shared:

Perception

  1. Affirm your goodness
  2. Release Control (of things beyond you)
  3. Saying NO is okay (and needed at times)
  4. Feeling happy and satisfied is normal
  5. Relinquish some task that stresses you

Emotions

  1. During emotional highs: PAUSE
  2. Ditch the guilt
  3. Choose to love more
  4. Be silly with the kids
  5. Flirt with your spouse! Make your marriage matter.

Actions

  1. Choose to rest or sleep
  2. Give yourself an extra 10 minutes in the shower
  3. Put a little color in your face
  4. Find a spot for daily reflection
  5. Find a daily physical activity that you can do

All of these tips of Michele were great and I intend to do it! So guess what, the first thing that I did today, was I met with my Sun Life Financial Advisor. There is something about having your finances in place that satisfies you (well, that’s how I personally feel at least! haha). I learned about their educational fund product. I actually have savings already for Zeeka’s College stored in Mutual Funds, but I thought of a back up.

I’m getting another policy from Sun Life Financial Philippines (which I will write about in another blog post), and I’m excited! haha! I know that’s a weird thing to say about getting a policy, but that’s exactly how I feel. I feel wonder woman-ish today!

So if you are looking to feel the way that I do today, join the next Mom’s Day Out events on July 1 and 15.

Cheers to a peaceful and content life, mindful moms! Let’s all say I’ll be the Master of Myself!

Love,

Mommy Ginger

 

 

How to Squeeze in Exercise While Driving

If you think about it, it’s amazing how man continues to make discoveries that would make everyday things faster, easier, or more efficient. Before the birth of the automobile (now that we say car, this word sounds so “old” haha!), people mostly walked from Point A to Point B or relied on horses. What used to take months of travel by going on foot, can now be done in a few hours. However, modern conveniences like these have also made it difficult for some to find the time to establish a fitness routine. We tend to pack our schedules to fulfil all our obligations, that it becomes tricky to find that balance when everything in life seems to be happening at the same time.

This is especially true for moms, and for some who have already established a bond with their cars from driving the kids to and from school or running errands. Some moms have even partnered up with Uber to augment to the household income. They already drive around most of the day, so why not make money while on the road, right?

So how do you find the time to work out when you’re busy with…, well, life? Luckily, experts have proven that you don’t have to spend a straight hour at the gym just to get your fitness requirement done for the day. You can exercise while driving! Yup! You can break down that hour into more manageable chunks so you can squeeze in a couple of fitness moves while you go about your day. Yes, some of them can even be done while in your car! A word of caution: be sure not to be distracted while doing these moves. It would be best to do this routine while waiting for the stop light or while sitting in traffic (which tends to happen a lot in Metro Manila). Allow me to share some quick exercise hacks that you can do in your daily commute.

Deep breathing. I kid you not, breathing exercises are one of the easiest things you include in your commuting fitness regimen. Sitting in traffic can be stressful, so breathing can alleviate that restlessness. Take a slow, deep breath in and feel your diaphragm expand. Hold your breath for 3 seconds, then start to exhale slowly through your nose until you feel that all the air has been expelled from your chest. You can repeat the steps until you finish 1 song from your playlist. The purpose of this exercise is to make you more relaxed and calm. It is important to note that you should limit this routine for the duration of 1 song, or roughly 2 minutes. Prolonged deep breathing may make you too relaxed and sleepy. Remember that a sleepy driver is a dangerous driver!

Seated cat. You will quickly find that the car is a fun place to try all these modified yoga poses. This is a great way to work out your core, as we don’t get to work out that area while sitting down. Sit in the standard driving position and extend your arms to the steering wheel, putting your hands in the 10 o’ clock and 2 o’ clock positions. Slowly start to tighten your core and abdominal muscles as you inhale, curling inwards until your upper body is curved to a letter ‘C’. Slowly exhale and come back to the standard seating position but keep your abdominal muscles tight as you push your back into the seat. Hold this position for 10 to 15 seconds, and repeat. You can perform this move for the duration of 2 songs, resting for a few seconds in between songs.

Stretching. I love this move as it feels wonderful on my back when I have to drive for long hours. Simply reach your arms as high as you can toward the roof of your car while engaging your abs and back muscles. Hold for 10 seconds and come back to the standard seating position. You can do this move while the car is stopped in traffic. Do not attempt this move while in motion! It is important to keep your eyes on the road and keep your full focus on your surroundings while driving.

So simply put! There shouldn’t be any excuse for not staying in shape — driving around is definitely not an excuse anymore! haha! You can exercise while driving. Do you have other tips that you can share?

Interview with Blogger Sherwin Ramos-Yeo of Techglimpse

For today, I interviewed a fellow blogger. I love interviewing bloggers that focus on technology and business, because, obviously, these are two things that I love, too! Today, I’ll be interviewing Sherwin Ramos-Yeo of Techglimpse.

Sherwin Ramos-Yeo is the founder of Techglimpse. With his passion on technology, he decided to gather all his research into one repository (the current site). He studied in De La Salle University with a degree in BS-Information Communication Technology Management. Sherwin started his career as an IT professional then shifted his focus to digital marketing, focusing now on eCommerce. Through this, he has learned a lot through his different projects, including the ins and outs of using technology for marketing. He also took up several certification courses to strengthen his skills.

Outside the “digital” world, he also joins billiard tournaments and plays the guitar. He is the eldest among the 3 siblings.

Techglimpse’s Story

Ginger: What is your brand or business, Sherwin?  Please tell the readers what is it about and how long have you been in business?

Sherwin: My blog started as a tech blog, but it focuses on innovations like AR/VR, tablets, mobile apps, etc. I have always been fascinated with technology, and how it affects our life. I had a shift in career, now focusing on digital marketing. I’m not a marketer. I graduated as an IT professional. Digital marketing lead me to see “creativity” and on how technology can be used as a marketing tool. Since then I started to do consulting from watch brands, restaurants, etc.

Ginger: Who is your target market? Why did you choose this market? Can you give us the insight behind this market?

Sherwin: My target market would be the the SME’s who don’t understand how they can leverage on digital platforms for their business. And my other market are people who are tech savvy, since I feature tech innovations.  When I started with the blog, it contained most of my research and findings. Later on, I saw the line between innovations in technology and digital marketing has become blurry.

Ginger: How did you come up with this idea? What made you decide to start this kind of business?

Sherwin: Everybody is into tech/digital nowadays, whether you are just an individual who most likely from time to time try to be updated with the latest gadgets and technology. Now the challenge for the entrepreneurs is how they can maximize this changing lifestyle. Small entrepreneurs can’t afford big ad agency to help their business, so this is where I come in. My aim is to focus on the SME’s or those organizations that are in the stage of “exploring” digital as one of their channels. Big agencies tend to amplify a digital campaign, what I can offer is lay down the basic foundation of your digital strategy. From building your social presence, to understanding how the data you collected can be maximized.

Ginger: Do you believe that everyone should become entrepreneurs?

Sherwin: As much as I want everyone to be an entrepreneurs, not all are fit to be one and has the mindset to go into entrepreneurship.

Ginger: Were there any obstacles that you faced when you decided to pursue becoming an Entrepreneur? What are these?

Sherwin: I’ve met with different clients, I tried to solve their problems. Even though all my solutions were good and all of them were theoretically correct but not all didn’t meet the right objective which mostly is creating additional revenue. Clients hire you because mainly they want to increase revenue, and be able to justify their ROI. I started with focusing the whole strategy for the client while the client wanted instant change.

Ginger: What are three traits that you think an Entrepreneur/Startup Founder should have when starting their own business?

Sherwin: Always continue learning. I have always been insecure with my skills. I’m not a marketing graduate and I’m just your average IT student in school.  Competing with others who graduated cum laude, masteral degrees, marketing graduates, I was thinking of how can I stay competitive compared to others? I started reading about digital marketing everyday before anything else, I open my favorite websites to keep me updated on what’s happening. Since I’m not a marketing graduate but doing actually marketing strategies, I took up a diploma course on marketing to at least gain my foundation on basic marketing principles. As of today, I already have more than 10 certifications from marketing, digital marketing, operations, excel, etc.

Ginger: Unforgettable moments or lessons that you learned as an Entrepreneur/Startup Founder

Sherwin: It is definitely getting that first client. When I started my blog I didn’t have the intention to earn from it, all I wanted was to have my own website. I then tried adding a section on my website offering my services, then eventually someone emailed me. After my first pitch/meeting with the client, it was a success, she actually made a follow up meeting inviting the rest of the team to discuss my plans for the company. It was then that I realized that I can actually be good at this, this is something that not all is knowledgeable with.

Ginger: What advice can you give to other Entrepreneurs?

Sherwin: Being an entrepreneur is not about having your own office, flexible schedule, or generating more income. It always goes back to doing what you love. It may sound cliche, but really when tough times come, the only thing that will get you moving is doing what you love. For me, the exciting part of being an entrepreneur is the challenge. The challenge of solving problems of your clients, seeing satisfied clients and thanking you on how you have contributed to their business.

Ginger: What are ways that you can do to raise capital?

Sherwin: For now I’m using up my personal money for my expenses, since it is still minimal. What I usually do is use my earnings from the business to expand the business. In this way I can always improve what I can offer to my clients.

Ginger: How do you market your products? Growth strategy?

Sherwin: Since my website is a blog, I usually write content that is made for my audience and potential customers. This is to establish my skill and knowledge in the field. Currently I have no plans yet of expanding the services since I still handle the business on my own.  For now, the focus is on digital marketing + eCommerce, I feel that this will be the next shift in digital.

Ginger: What are tech tools that you use for your business?

Sherwin: First important thing is to put your files on the cloud. Whether that’s dropbox, google drive (which i recommend), etc, It is always important that you have access and control towards your files. You may never know when you would need them. Website is another must have for any entrepreneur. You can start creating your own website for free, or invest with a freelancer which will cost you around Php 10,000. A website is your online business card, it will showcase what you have to offer and provide information to your potential customers.

Ginger: Thank you for spending your valuable time, Sherwin, in answering our questions for my readers. For those who want to contact Sherwin, I have placed different ways on how you can get in touch with him.

Talk to you soon! 

Contact information:
Website: www.techglimpse.ph
Email address: sherwin.yeo@gmail.com
Mobile Number: 0917-5328482
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/techglimpseph
Twitter account: https://twitter.com/techglimpseph
Linkedin account: https://ph.linkedin.com/in/sherwinyeo