My Tips for Managing Stress, by Lindsay Ellingson
Happy spring, Byrdie beauties! How excited are you that winter is officially over?! As a native Californian, I have never quite adjusted to the brutal winters in NYC. That, paired with an intense workload—including modelling, starting a company (exciting news about that later!), and being a wife and doggie mummy—often leaves me feeling depleted of energy and in need of me time. I know I’m not alone, as we all juggle so much. So I have made it my mission to try a couple new ways to de-stress—you may be surprised at what works for me, and could work for you, too!
Keep reading to find out!
Going into spring, I wanted to try something new and good for my body and mind. I've always been interested in alternative medicine, so I consulted with Cynthia King, a registered Ayurveda practitioner at Yoga 216 and 5 Element Spa, both in New York City. Ayurveda aims to balance the body, mind, and spirit through yoga, herbs and oils, meditation, sleep, and a colourful, cooked diet. Cynthia opened our session with a cup of tea and aromatherapy palm inhalations. We rubbed a couple drops of calming oil into our hands for a few seconds then closed our eyes and took deep breaths to slowly transition into a meditative state. Among the many pieces of information I took away from our session, I love the idea of giving yourself an oil massage everyday. It's incredibly soothing and detoxifying.
Cynthia gave me her recommendations for how to live a healthy, balanced life according to my dosha. Ayurveda groups the five elements—space, air, fire, water, and earth—into three basic type of energies or functional principals referred to as doshas, Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Mine is predominantly Vata (the characteristic that governs movement). One of my favourite products, which I took home after our session, is this calming Vata tea. It contains licorice root, organic ginger, cardamom, and cinnamon. This tea helps especially when you're travelling, feeling restless, and when you're experiencing Vata imbalance.
Cynthia also gave me some great tips on how to fall asleep the right way! Apparently reading on my iPad is a big no-no. She recommends drinking a cup of warm almond milk before bed and then massaging your feet with an essential oil. Get really cosy and read something uplifting or spiritual. Next, use aromatherapy palm inhalations for balancing, like rosewood and frankincense, or rose for grounding. Just add a drop or two of oil to your palms and inhale. Once your head hits the pillow, preferably at 10 p.m. (according to Ayurveda, your body repairs itself most effectively between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m.) follow a recapitulation routine. Slowly start at the beginning of your day, remember how and where you have gone without judgment. If you are still awake when you finish, take three deep breaths and let go of the day. Find one thing to be grateful for and allow your body to take sivasana (corpse pose in yoga) in bed.
When I’m stressed, I enjoy going to Pratima Spa in NYC (which I highly recommend!). It's my go-to spa with an incredible line of skincare products. A mid-day Ayurveda facial in between running to my appointments is the perfect pick-me-up. My favourite part is the face, neck, arm, and shoulder massage. Spa culture has exploded globally over the past decade, so treat yourself to a day at your local spa—and for those of you who are new to a spa experience or possibly intimidated by it, bring a friend to enjoy the day.
Here are just a few of my favourite products from Pratima Spa's skincare line. These are great oils to massage into your skin every day, the scents will immediately transport you to a calm place. I love their Anti-Stress Aroma Oil ($20); I never leave home without it.
For the past year, in addition to travelling for modelling jobs, I've been working around the clock on a very exciting new venture: my cosmetic line Wander Beauty, launching next month! Needless to say, I've learned to multitask even when I'm de-stressing! I love this Eminence Calm Skin Arnica Masque ($54) and my go-to Klorane Smoothing and Relaxing Patches ($18), paired with a cup of tea. (I try not to scare my husband like this too often!)
Who's planning a spring break getaway? This is of course the ultimate way to recharge. I was recently on a job in Puerto Escondido, Mexico. Every evening I enjoyed watching the sunset as the waves rolled in and out on the beach. As a Scorpio—and I'm sure all of you water signs will agree—nothing is more relaxing than the sound of waves. If you can’t afford a seaside getaway, no problem. Thankfully there's an iPhone app for that—the soothing sound of crashing waves, no beach required!
Nothing beats quality time with my little pup Carly! Here we are at my apartment shooting a Wander Beauty story for Vênsette. Carly loves to sit on my lap while I'm getting my hair and makeup done. She's just full of love, as are most pets. If you don’t or can’t have a pet, many animal shelters love to have volunteers who come to interact with the animals. In fact, several shelters in Brooklyn let you come and walk the dogs for a few hours a day.
Stay tuned for my next Byrdie story with more details about my launch product for Wander Beauty! In the meantime, follow us on Instagram @Wander_Beauty.
How do you like to de-stress? Planning any spring getaways? Share in the comments below.