How I Stay Motivated – My 5 Secrets

How I Stay Motivated – My 5 Secrets

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Hello again, Monday! I won’t lie, I had a very lazy day yesterday here in New York (needed every now and again) so I’m more than ready to get back to work today….& I’m so excited to share this new look. I mentioned on my Snapchat (@retroflame1) on Friday that I’m going to be teaming up with River Island over the next few months to style some outfits here on the blog and on my Instagram (@retroflame). It’s one of those extra special collaborations for me because, River Island, is a brand I’ve worn since I first started shopping. I’ve always and ever had some of their pieces in my wardrobe and have shown you LOTS of their styles over the years. So now being able to collaborate with them is such a huge deal for me. You all know by now that I’m fussy about the brands I work with, so when I’m able to work with brands I’ve worn forever, I’m so so grateful for how things work out. Each month I’ll be choosing some pieces from their site (which I’ll always show here in the blog – I’ve made a collage further down in this post today) and will also be styling full River Island looks here on the blog & on Instagram. So first up is look number one…

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Photos By Claire

River Island Coat // River Island Molly Jeans // River Island Jumper // River Island Boots

As soon as I saw this coat, I just knew it was a winner. The colour, the jewel detail, the length…I just LOVE it! So classy and understated but still that coat that makes you feel like a million dollars when you’re walking down the street. I have so many ideas about how to style it but for this time of year and for the current weather here in New York, I paired it with some Autumn essentials. My go-to Molly Black Jeans (I’ve mentioned in previous videos that these are my favourite), a chunky cream knit & killer black boots.  This cream knit is insanely cozy – I live in Jumpers/Sweaters for half the year – and the boots are also really comfy considering the heel. I love the gold detail. You literally cannot go wrong with a look like this. Below are the other pieces I’ve gone for this month:


And now that we’ve talked shopping, it’s time to get into our usual Monday chat. A question I get over & over & over  is, ‘Erika, how do you stay so motivated? What inspires you to always keep going? So I figured I’d dedicate today’s post to my answer. Now firstly, I just want to stress that I’m human. Of course there are days I wake up 110% uninspired and there are things that trigger a ‘I can’t do this kind of attitude’ in me but that’s NORMAL. Always will be. But it’s all about how to deal with those feelings. I’m still learning, but I figured I’d share the key things that help me fight any kind of feeling of self-doubt or negativity and in turn ensure I stay motivated & inspired. So here is how I stay motivated – my 5 secrets:

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Whenever I feel like I can’t do something, I look back, pick out one thing I achieved that I had always wished for (my example: quitting my job to work on Retro Flame full time) and remind myself that if I can achieve a dream once, I can do it again. The only thing ever getting in your way is yourself.


In the world of social media we live in, I truly believe we’ve forgotten how to look up to people. Comparison has gotten in the way. Instead of looking at someone who’s exactly where you want to be, or doing exactly what you want to be doing and feeling inspired,  we now feel disheartened. But newsflash!! If they can do it, so can you. I really think it’s so important to find a few people to feel inspired by. Study their journey, realise that more often that not it’s hard work & strategy that got them to where they are and then make your OWN plan. Be inspired & motivated by them to do more.

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It might seem obvious, but the 5 people you spend most time with are the 5 people that determine how you look at things. If the majority of those 5 people are happy to waste away their lives, settle for things they don’t want, b*tch about people doing better than them…then I hate to say it, but before long, that’ll be you too. Do you ever hang out with someone and literally feel like you can conquer the world after you leave them? Well that’s how it should always feel. You HAVE to be fussy about who you spend your time with – I promise you, it determines your motivation levels. One of the only things I don’t love about living in New York is being so far away from my parents. I learned early on that they’re genuinely the people who have a way of motivating & inspiring me like no other. I don’t know how they do it, but I can’t even explain how much I appreciate it. For you, it might not be your parents, it might not be your best friend, it might not be your boyfriend, but you have to find the people that do. If it means joining new clubs, signing up to a new evening course…whatever it takes. Good energy is contagious.


Being honest, this one is probably my biggest motivation. I’m petrified of looking back and knowing I could have done better. It genuinely scares me to death. Whenever I’m lacking motivation, I always think back to my ‘why’. Why did I start? That’s the million dollar question right there….because the answer will remind you of your end goal. And it’s the end goal you want to be sure that you reach. If you have a chance, then why not? Why not just go for it. Yes it’ll be a lot of work, but just imagine that feeling when you get there. That’s what gets me motivated – every. single. time.

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…& finally, quotes. My Monday mornings always start the same. I have a quick brainstorm meeting with Kaelin to talk about upcoming content & schedule for the week ahead & then I spend about 30 mins scrolling through Pinterest.  It’s usually a mix of home decor, outfits & quote images that I repin and it genuinely feels so theraputic to me. I’ve ALWAYS been a fan of quotes. I think they’re something you either love or something you hate, but I really appreciate them. They hit home when I read them and I guess they’re often the reminder that I need. It’s funny, in life, all of us seem to know exactly what we should & need to do, but we also need to be reminded A LOT. These simple quotes are the best reminder, in my opinion. Below are this morning’s finds which will hopefully inspire you too:

“10 years from now, make sure you can say you chose your life, you didn’t settle for it.”

“And when you become a diamond, you’ll see why life had to pressure you.”

“If people are talking about you behind your back, be happy that you’re the one in front.”

“If you are not obsessed with the life you’re living. Well, it’s time to change it.”

“I think one of my favourite feelings is laughing with someone and realising half way through how much you enjoy them & their existence.”

“Look in the mirror. That’s your only competition.”

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As always, thank you so much for reading – I truly do appreciate you taking the time. I hope I’ve provided even the tiniest bit of motivation & inspiration and that as a result, this will be your week!!

See you in tomorrow’s new video,

Erika x

*Huge thank you to River Island for sponsoring this post. So proud to be working together :)


  1. Akanksha

    30 October

    OMG! This is awesome! And to think of it, I found you through your video on DIY your IKEA dresser and followed you ever since. Obviously love your styles and fashion recommendations, but this is different level, girl! Hats off! Needed this so much, especially when I have also come here to NY from a different country. I love how courageous you are, there are a million bloggers today, what I love about you is your story and how you made it in a different country than your own! Shin on, forever! Thank you for this! xo

  2. Hannah

    30 October

    Thank you for this post. I am just starting a new journey of blogging and find you so inspiring and positive. Just like Akanksha I first found you on YouTube through your DIY Ikea hack video and could tell right away you were the kind of positive, down-to-earth type of influencer I actually wanted to follow and learn from. I just moved to NYC a few months ago and know NO ONE yet (except my husband), which makes it really hard to get motivated and stay positive sometimes. So thank you for wearing your heart on your sleeve and having such a passion for sharing with others. Your videos and posts probably touch and inspire way more people that you can know. Keep it up!

  3. Helen Quealy .

    30 October

    Aha…Thank You!!!! Xxxx

  4. […] week’s post shared a big chat about the things that keep me motivated (5 tricks) but this week’s post is going to be a shorter one. I just have one quick thing to share. […]

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