December 28, 2017


big_bear_Selfcare_melissa_ChataigneIn 2017 the term “self-care” became a priority for me. I have to admit that in the past, I was not so great about it. I had been so focused on planning a wedding last year and building a business that I put my health on the back burner. Most days I pushed through after meditation and goal setting, not taking time to eat or rest but eventually, like all things are left to the back burner, I became burnt out. Once I took a step back to regroup, I realized I am more productive when I take time to take care of myself. By taking some of my time back, interestingly enough, I have more to give to others.

So when my boss babe girlfriend, Tarashaun, of the wildly popular healthy-living website, Blenderbabes, suggested we head out of town with yoga expert, Elise Joan Fitness, for a couples weekend at her fiance’s family home in Big Bear before the holidays; I had to say, “YES.” Robin and I were thrilled to disconnect mentally to gain more headspace. Being surrounded by women with the same entrepreneurial goals and with their partners was comforting and we grew closer. There is something to be said for taking the time to be “present.” Here are 3 things I learned from our weekend in Big Bear that you can incorporate into your daily lives.

1. Disconnecting is Necessary

Although we took some fun videos and Instastories, we disconnected from the outside world and focused on our group. Being able to put the phone down and spend quality time with my husband was much needed. When was the last time you didn’t look your phone in the bedroom? Being present with your partner can feel so surreal. Waking up in the woods and looking at woodpeckers outside your window is magical.  I challenge you in the new year to disconnect a bit – you will feel more energized. I promise.



2. Conquer Your Fears

I’ve never been a fan of hiking as I have a massive fear of snakes, but it’s palatable in the winter as they are underground. We took this trip up a notch by climbing Castle Rock, a 35-foot mountain formation after a 2-mile hike. It was pretty challenging figuring out my footing and facing my fear of heights, but so rewarding. One thing I learned from experience is that I can center myself, figure it out and push forward. With the support of the ones you trust, you can come out on top! I felt so much closer to everyone that day and even celebrated with a dancer pose. Now I want to hike more and continue to conquer my fears. Goals are nothing without courage and action; and through the pursuit of your accomplishments, you are growing – you are practicing self-care.


3. Dinner Parties and Gratitude

After a beautiful day, the guys cooked us dinner, we all sat around the table and gave thanks. I feel the art of dinner parties have been lost to quick meals, ”Postmates,” or dining out. Not that there is anything wrong with the convenience these services provide, but there is something so special about a traditional dinner party. Whether it’s the care you take into preparing a meal for your loved ones, connecting on another level with your friends and family or the laughs you share as you patiently wait for the timer on the oven to ring; the time spent with each other is priceless. My friends and I played Christmas music and engaged in intellectual conversations. No one was concerned about dressing up to head to a bar or impressing anyone. We were just enjoying each others company and our meal – together. Being present and our presence was the greatest gift. We enjoyed it so much that we even decided to start a new tradition of hosting dinner parties once a month!


This time of year can be overwhelming, so if you’re feeling burnt out, try taking a little time to focus on YOU. I hope these tips help you as much as they helped Robin and me.