Happy New Year! I spent my New Year’s Eve in Big Sur with two of my good friends as well as my dogs for a much needed nature break. As the first post of 2018, I wanted to share a few things I’ve learned the past year as well as set new intentions for 2018.
5 major lessons I’ve learned in 2017:
1. The biggest thing I’ve learned is that, no matter what your lowest moment is, there is always a way of getting out and you do get out of it much stronger. In my Paris vlog, I mentioned briefly that there was a point in my life where I thought about committing suicide. If I had killed myself back then what would I have missed? Oh my gosh, everything. I really got out of it much stronger. Early this year, I reached a very low point of my life. I was sad, perhaps very depressed. But eventually, I got out of it much stronger. I’m actually grateful that I went through that period. It brought me so much closer to the ones that matter. Unexpected kindness from acquaintances helped as well and I let go of friends who I thought I could count on. My 2017 resolution was to ‘let it go’ and I did let go of things that didn’t matter to me. I talk more about it in this video.
2. Keep your friends and family close. We’re all so busy with work, life, shit happens and we tend to forget the ones closest to us. They should matter the most. I traveled about 300 days out of the year which meant I was away from my friends and family most of the time. I was doing what I loved, but the reason I felt so alone was perhaps because I didn’t have my support system with me. Now, it’s family and friends first for me. My time is valuable. Instead of going to a cool party or hanging with ‘cool’ people, I’d rather spend that time with my dogs, or do mundane tasks like going to the bank but of course it’s never boring because it’s with my sister. No matter how tired and busy I am, when Jacopo comes to L.A., I pick him up at the airport unless he surprises me of course. During NYFW, one of my closest friend was hospitalized. I missed half of the shows I was supposed to go and might have lost a few jobs opportunities but that’s fine. My friend matters to me more and to see that friend doing so well right now makes me happier than anything.
3. Always be grateful. I went to Ethiopia last year and that was life changing. I saw young girls as little as 3 in their torn apart jelly shoes (some were even barefoot) walking through dirt roads for as long as 3 hours to get water that wasn’t even clean. Despite not having much, these kids looked so happy with so little. That made me realize how I take so many things for granted. I’m going into 2018 with a positive and grateful heart. Try it, it makes every experience amazing and as I’m writing this, I have a huge smile on my face. In 2018, I’d love to be able to give back more.
4. Give Back More. For my birthday campaign, together we raised over $81,000 to bring clean water to those in need. End of the year, I donated proceeds of my Ultimate Holiday Giveaway campaign to Charity Water again. We created t-shirts for Two Songs where half of the proceeds went to different foundations such as The Breast Cancer Research Foundation and Trevor Project. I mean, even my Barbie wore a Love Wins tee and announced to the world that she celebrates all kinds of love! I love helping others and would love to do it in a bigger way this year that makes an impact.
5. Create meaningful work with a great team. I reached a lot of career milestones in 2017. I did my first sunglass collab with Gentle Monster that sold out immediately and got restocked several times. I also did my first Harpers Bazaar Indonesia magazine covers as well as several amazing editorials from Elle to W magazine. Oh, I renovated my first house while being away for 300 days. Well, none of this would’ve been made possible without an incredible team. My team is small. Aside from my managers, I have a small group of very smart and kind girls in my team. We created t-shirts, shot really amazing content for the blog, tried to create meaningful and sometimes silly youtube videos, so I asked my girls including my sister Dani what their resolution is.
1. Being Healthy- Meditate and cooking my own meals on a regular basis is a start. Also since I don’t exercise or workout, I’d like to start walking a certain amount of distance everyday and drink more water. I also have a bike so I’d like to bike in different routes so I can appreciate where I live and find a new cool spot to kick it.
2. Smile, Be Grateful – Smiling and laughing definitely reduce stress. I’d like to smile more and laugh more in 2018 because good energy is contagious! Also I’d like to come up with a gratitude list everyday and write down what I’m thankful for. Another great way to do this is by keeping my head up instead of down. Reminder to thank the Sun and Moon for always being there for me no matter what. Staying present and paying attention to now.
3. Be More understanding, loving, and kind. – I used to take everything personal or overthink on things. Starting 2018 I’d like to be more open minded and be able to really connect with people. I’d like to love more on everything I do and I want to be encouraging. It’s so easy to make someone’s day better by letting them feel important by encouragement. Making others happy definitely makes me happy.
4.Be Confident and Love Yourself- Stop worrying about the past or the future but live in the present moment and trust the unknown because I’ve already been through all kinds of shit and now I just gotta step into the unknown to discover new things. 2017 was a year of struggles and self doubt, but I overcame that. This year, I’m already starting out the year by loving myself which is so important.
5. Learn Something New- I want to try and learn something new every week whether it’s a new language, a phrase, food, fashion, about people, arts, and culture! While I’d like to learn something new, I’d like to also be able to organize what I have. Simply having a more efficient system to keep track of my surroundings such as my closet, workspace, house, schedule so I can stay focused.
Self Doubt- instead of listing all the negative things about myself, I’d like to list more of my positive aspects. It’s so easy to nitpick our flaws. We can be our worst critic and when that happens it brings me down so much and it’s hard to see the positive but I’m learning to appreciate the great qualities I have as a person that make up for any ‘flaws.’
Lazy- Instead of saying “I’ll do it later” or “I’ll do it tomorrow” I’d like to say “Just do it” and make it happen.
Wearing: Orseund Iris Top (similar here, here and $65 version here), H&M x Isabel Marant Metallic Skirt (similar here, here and here), Self Portrait x Robert Clergerie Patent Leather Flats (similar here, here and here)
1. Manage my finances – I hope in 2018 I will finally learn how to not spend all my money on poke bowls and Zara clothes and put my money into investments and my saving account instead. I bought the book Investing for Dummies and hopefully it will help!
2. Learn how to code – If you’re also interested in learning how to code as well, check out Codecademy.
3. Be active in politics – Donald Trump winning the presidential election was a wake-up call for me to pay more attention to politics and current events. In 2017, I have been listening to The Daily Podcast and reading the news consistently (Feedly is a good app to keep track of all the news) and I learned that there are so much we can do as private citizens, like calling your senates, join a protest or donate to non-profits and politicians that you believe in. In 2018 I want to actually participate and stand up against injustices.
4. Learn more about Art – My goal is make an effort to learn about what’s going on in the art world. I have been visiting museum and galleries (like the David Zwirner gallery in New York I visited with Aimee in New York) and listening to Artsy podcast.
Wearing: LIKELY silver one-shoulder top, H&M wide leg pants, Fallon Earrings
1. Style Resolution, Take More Risks: My goal for 2018 is to take more risks with my fashion and hair! My current go-to style is minimal but feminine, so I want to experiment more with silhouettes and mix and match colors and patterns. I’ve been really inspired by Johanna Ortiz, she’s so talented!! I fell in love with everything from her Resort 2017 collection. While everyone was chopping off their hair in 2017, I decided to keep my long locks. I still want to keep my length but I’m thinking about bangs! I love Alyssa Miller’s bangs, they’re so sultry yet chic!
2. Learn A New Language: I’ve always wanted to learn how to speak Armenian or Portuguese. I think it’s about time I get to it! I’ve already looked into enrolling in classes but would love to hear any recommendations of online courses, apps or books!
3. Read More: As a kid I loved reading so I promised myself that I would read everyday! For Christmas I got two books that have been on my wishlist for awhile and I just never got around to buying them: Astrophysics For People in A Hurry (I’m obsessed with Cosmos and Star Talk!) and Love Poems (I’m a huge fan of Pablo Neruda and I’ve been collecting poetry books for years now, so this means so much to me!). I’ve already started reading Astrophysics For People in A Hurry!
4. Creating and Maintaining Balance: This is a work in progress, but my goal this year is to balance my work and personal life. I want to spend more time with my family, boyfriend and also myself! Even if that means calling my mom once a day, catching a movie with my niece or even having dinner once a week with my twin sister. I just want to make more of an effort and let my family know how much I love them!
Wearing: H&M wrap top (sold out but here are some similar versions here, here and here!), Zara pants, (similar here and here), Zara heels (similar here)
1. Eat Healthy and Exercise: I find myself always tired and weak and I think to solve that problem, it’s by definitely eating healthy, exercising, and drinking tons of water!
2. Spend Time with Family/Friends: It’s important to me to not forget the people that helped shape my life. By a simple hello text or quick hangout could really show simply that you’re thinking of them and that’s something I would like to keep continuing to do.
3. Learn/Try New things: Everyday is a new day and I feel that there’s always something new to learn whether it’d be from people that I’m surrounded by, books, or online. I want to encourage myself to be curious and to push myself to learn new things. In order for me to grow, I want to continue to learn more about myself to whatever challenge that comes in my way. I think 2018 is the year to give things a try.
4. Save Money: For me, this is super important! I want to really be good at budgeting my money for certain things. I want to create the habit of saving at least half my paycheck to my savings account. I want to be able to find more staple pieces in clothing that are higher in quality. I tend to find myself shopping for poor quality clothes just because it’s really cheap and how it’s in trend. I realized as I’m getting older that it’s better to find pieces that you’re able to wear for a long time and most importantly comfortable.
Wearing: Billabong Velvet Dress, Steve Madden thin strap heels
P.S. Only missing Erica Maltz who’s in the east coast! We’re also hiring really smart and talented people (boys are welcome too!) who have something to add to what we’re doing! If that’s you, you can email Sophia [sophia at songofstyle dot com] a great resume and cover letter! That’s how I’ve hired all of these girls! We prefer talented people in L.A.
PPS. I’d love to hear your 2018 resolutions and lessons from 2017. We should put it out to the universe so we can manifest them. Love you all!