Photos by Nora Varcho
Ok I don’t know where I’ve been or what I’ve been doing, but it feels like FOREVER since I’ve sat down to write a chatty post here on the blog. I must admit, since getting properly into Youtube this year, a lot of my time (a lot!!!) has been going into filming & editing. It’s been a pretty big challenge and whenever I’m new to something, I always want to put 110% focus on it. But now that I’m kind of getting the hang of video – a.k.a I’m not petrified anymore, haha, it’s time to get back to doing a little more writing here on Retro Flame. Back to where it all started nearly 6 years ago!! Can you seriously believe I’ve been doing Retro Flame that long!? It’s crazy to even think about it!! I feel like whenever I meet people lately something which is always said is, ‘Can you believe how fast time is going?’…and honestly, I can’t. Since going full-time with Retro Flame about a year ago, I can truly say that there hasn’t been one single day/week/month which has felt long or dragged out. Time is going faster than ever (which I know is a good sign) but as a result, it’s kind of freaking me out.
I’m currently 25 – so being honest, there are a few main things constantly on my mind (and I’m sure a lot of you can relate):
1. I want to be successful and financially comfortable so I need to keep getting sh*t done. Basically, I need to put in the work now so I’ll be set up for the future.
2. I should be living a healthy lifestyle – going to the gym 4-5 times a week, cooking healthy meals, running around Central Park like all those insanely fit people I see every day.
3. I want to see more of the world & do more travelling, while my responsibilities are flexible & I can.
And while taking all this into account…..
4. I’m in my 20’s, I live in New York, I need to see more of my friends, relax and enjoy myself and HAVE FUN!
So the million dollar question: How on earth do I do all this at once!? While still remaining sane…. ;)
The answer? I’m pretty sure I’ll never find this perfect ‘balance’ people seem to be obsessed with talking about. I won’t lie, some weeks I work 16 hour days most days and go to bed with my laptop in hand, some weeks you couldn’t pay me to go to the gym/for a run and some days all I want to do is watch friends & eat dairy milk. No day/week is ever the same for me and as a result, I’m never able to plan out a balance. I just do the best I can, when I can.
I never take for granted how lucky I am to be alive & healthy and able to wake up every morning and tackle my to do-list but I’m also aware (from emails & snaps you send me) that so many of you, me included, feel a constant pressure to be ‘doing it all’. We’re all guilty of stalking that guy/girl on social media who seems to have it all under control & then without even realising it, we compare. But honestly, this is the WORST thing you could do. The only thing you need to be focused on is figuring out what works for you & taking control of your own life. It takes a lot of trial & error and you won’t figure it out all at once, but you WILL get there eventually. Life is never going to be perfect but you owe it to yourself to make the most of it.
Over the past few weeks, there are definitely a few things I’ve been doing that are helping me and I wanted to share them in today’s post as they might just help one or two of you too….
1. Pilates Classes
Guys, pilates is changing my life. Haha and no I’m not turning into one of those zen yoga people (I don’t think I’m capable of being zen) but it’s honestly doing wonders for my mind & wellbeing. I’m currently doing about 3 classes a week at Equinox and I feel better & better after every single class. I love going in the mornings – it really sets me up for the day and puts me in such a good mood. Oh and the fact that it’s making my abs even slightly visible at the same time is the biggest bonus I could ask for. Just find a hobby or class that takes your mind off things a few times a week and you’ll see a difference in no time.
2. Getting out of New York
Before I went on my recent travels (Coachella, Dubai & Ireland), I’m not going to lie, I was at peak stress-levels. I had let things get on top of me, I was worried about things that I shouldn’t have been worried about and overall, I just needed a break. Wherever you are in the world, I can’t tell you how much even a 24-hour break away from things can do absolute wonders for you. Sometimes we get so caught up in our daily lives & to-do lists that we’re not even seeing straight any more. But as soon as we take a step back, somehow everything doesn’t seem as crazy as you thought it was and you come back refreshed and ready to start over again.
3. Drawing the line between ‘Online me’ & ‘Offline me’
This one is extra important. Seeing as Retro Flame is basically a documentation of my life, it’s kind of a 24/7 gig. And that’s OK, that’s what I signed up for. It was my choice. But I guess, it wasn’t the choice of the people around me. Now don’t get me wrong, I have THE most supportive family and group of friends who want nothing but the best for me….but a lot of them know me as Erika, not Retro Flame. And that’s something I have to remember. So I’m really starting to make a big effort to bring back Erika (haha sounds weird but you know what I mean) when I’m around the people who’ve made an effort to spend time with me in person. For example, I try to put my phone away at dinner or just totally switch off for a few hours. We are a generation that is OBSESSED with social media and sharing everything online…but every now and again, it’s nice to just do things for YOU. Not for the benefit of the people who follow you. Keeping this in mind has helped me big time!
And then there are loads of other smaller, random things I’ve started to do too – I’ve been taking REVIVE Active supplements every day for the past 2 weeks and I feel amazing, I’ve been making loads of evening plans so I know I have to be off my laptop by a certain time and I’ve also just done a HUGE wardrobe clearout which has seriously made my life a million times easier (video coming tomorrow). Small but very effective changes.
So overall, I guess what I’m trying to say is that as long as you’re doing your best, you’re doing just fine. Be focused on work when you need to be, be present with family/friends while you’re lucky enough to have them, make healthy choices whenever you have the option, save for a rainy day (& travels) and just HAVE FUN in the process. Honestly, that’s all you need to do.
It feels so good to be back chatting here on the blog! Be sure to let me know if there are any specific topics you’d like me to focus on & I’ll get working on some posts. Leave a comment on my latest Instagram post and I’ll take a note of everything.
Oh and before I end this post, can we just take a minute for my new Saint Laurent sandals? I feel like I’ve been talking to you all week about them (video here) but I just can’t stop!! They’re honestly the nicest shoes I’ve ever owned and I’m so excited to wear them all Summer. I got them online from my go-to designer website, Farfetch – which I’m actually featured on today!! I did a quick interview with them a few weeks ago and I’m so excited that it went live today. You can see it HERE, if you fancy a read :)
Hope you’re all having an amazing week!