I hope to educate, inspire and empower you to connect with your body and find food and fitness freedom. Here on the blog I share all of my top tips on movement, nutrition, mindset and motherhood.
Holistic Health Coach helping women reclaim their wellbeing.
As you know, I am a huge fan of journaling. I think it is one of the most underrated forms of self-care and wellness.
2021 was the first year that I chose a “word of the year” for myself – and I really enjoyed this exercise. Having a word to focus on was comforting and helped me get through some difficult days. I used my word of the year to help ground me, ease anxiety, and stay focused on what mattered most to me – in both life and business.
I decided to continue with this exercise for the year 2022 – and wanted to share how I chose my words, what it means to choose a word of the year and how to find your own word!
My word of the year for 2022 Is CALM.
What is a Word of the Year (WOTY) Anyway?
A WOTY is one that you intentionally choose to continue coming back to, a word that resonates deeply with how you want to feel in your life and can help you stay focused when things get tough. You can proactively keep your focus on your WOTY by writing it on sticky notes, in your planner, or even by including it on a graphic for your screensaver on your phone or computer!
How to Choose Your Own Word of The Year
These are a few simple steps to find a word of the year. I used this process in my own practice and was able to choose my word of the year for 2022 in a way that felt true to me and flowed easily.
My biggest piece of advice for this exercise is not to force it! There is no such thing as a perfect word. Try to do this at a time in your day where you feel settled, unrushed, and at ease. I did this after a short yoga class + savasana – so I had some mental and physical space and felt peaceful. Another idea is to complete a guided meditation or mindfulness exercise before choosing your WOTY as well. I love using the CALM app for these.
Here are the “steps” I did:
I have been obsessed and in love with stationery, journals, and notebooks for as long as I can remember! Getting a new planner each school year was so exciting for me. I used to beg my mom to take me to Staples when we visited a shopping area when I was younger – which others will probably find silly – but it felt like Christmas to shop there!
A paper planner is an essential part of my everyday routine – and allows me to be successful in staying organized and on top of things as a wife, mother, and business owner.
Paper planners are a fantastic way to time block, set goals, establish routines – all in one simple space.
With the new year coming up – I’d love for you to find a paper planner that resonates and works for you! That being said – you definitely don’t need a fancy planner with lots of extras. To be completely honest, I think the biggest key to staying organized and actually utilizing a planner is finding one that is SIMPLE. No extra stickers, pens, pages etc. that aren’t essential.
So, should you ditch electronic calendars and planners? No! I believe in a hybrid system of both! I would be lost without my Google calendar. I keep all of my appointments, commitments, coaching calls, classes scheduled there and we have also have shared a family calendar with important dates everyone needs to be aware of. It is so helpful to be able to share events with others. I teach the exact strategy I use to my studio members (we have wellness workshops!) and coaching clients – you can find out more about that HERE.
I’d love to know what YOUR favorite paper planner is and if you are going to use one for 2022.
A clean beauty routine doesn’t have to be complex or lengthy.
I started switching to clean beauty in 2017 in preparation for my wedding. Over the years I’ve been able to replace products as they run out with clean alternatives.
Below is my comprehensive list of the tried + true favorites that I will continue to purchase over and over again.
I love that my skincare routine is simple, effective, and safe. As a mom of two under two, it’s imperative to have a skincare routine that isn’t time-consuming.
I genuinely love all of these products and recommend them to all of my friends and family. These brands are outstanding and stewards of clean beauty.
Primally Pure Discount: Enter code DANIELLE10 for 10% off your purchase (Use code DANIELLEH20 for Holiday Sale)
Oil Cleanser – Primally Pure
If you’ve never tried oil cleansing before – you’re in for a treat! This truly feels like a mini spa treatment. I love that oil cleansers remove all of your makeup and build-up without dehydrating your skin. You will not be disappointed!
Natural Deodorant – Primally Pure
This stuff seriously works. And it smells amazing. I was hesitant to switch to natural deo but will never look back! One larger size deo lasts me for months.
Cleansing Milk – Susanne Kaufman
An esthetician at a local store – Mirror Mirror – in Burlington, VT suggested this cleansing milk to me when I was gearing up for my wedding day. It is soft, gentle, nourishing, and completely transformed my skin. Susanne’s products are from Austria and she combines natural ingredients with sustainability. I love it so much that once I left this at an Air-BnB and called to have them mail it back to me!
Illuminated Eye Cream – Tata Harper
This one is a splurge, but I feel like a goddess with it! The skin under our eyes is delicate and prone to more wear and tear than other areas. This eye cream is firming, hydrating and has a small sparkle to it. Tata Harper is a local Vermont skincare company with a large range of wonderful products, but this is one of my favs!
Sculpted Lip Oil – Ogee
No one likes dry lips! Ogee is another Vermont company that has stellar products, my favorite being this clear lip oil. In the winter I always put it on before bed and wake up with luscious lips! I wore the tinted lip oil on my wedding day in Zinnea and it is my go-to for color as well.
Countermatch Adaptive Moisture Lotion – Beautycounter
This is my go-to moisturizer for all seasons. It is lightweight, hydrating but not greasy. 10/10 recommend!
Baby Bar – Primally Pure
This gentle cleansing goat-milk soap is used by every member of our household! We use it on the kiddo’s skin for bathtime, I use it as a double-cleanser on my face, as my body soap and so does my hubby. A little goes a long way. One bar lasts for daily baby bathtime for 6+ months!
Flower Bath – Primally Pure
I mean – what is not to love?! This bath soak has actual dried flower petals in it, contains Epsom salts for muscle relaxation, and smells so yummy. I love using this once in a while to make some intentional time for physical self-care.
Facial Dry Brush – Primally Pure
Dry brushing improves lymphatic drainage, exfoliates the skin + detoxifies tissues. Not to mention – it just feels really nice. This quick and simple addition really steps up your skincare routine! It even comes with a How-To Guide!
This post contains affiliate links.
Getting stuck in what I call the “wheel of information” is a common roadblock that I see often in my coaching clients ending up.
Here is what happens.
You are listening to a podcast and the concept of manifestation sparks your interest. You get excited and follow the podcast guest on Instagram. Watching her stories, she starts talking about a course she has coming up. You end up signing up for her email list and get set a freebie about how to manifest. You don’t sign up for her Manifestation course because you “don’t have time” and know you can do it on your own anyway.
You start reading a book about manifestation. The more you learn about it, the more you love it and can’t seem to get enough. Her profile leads you to many others in the same area of expertise and before you know it you are consuming a ton of information about manifestation!
You feel so proud of yourself. I mean, just look at you! Spending all your free time growing, learning, and self-developing. “Yay, me!”
However, as soon as you get out of the car and the audiobook stops, or you are brought back to your “real life” and off of the Instagram spiral – you quickly forget about what you’ve learned. You continue on with your day and ingrained habits.
You start to feel frustrated. You thought you were investing in yourself, yet nothing has changed. You think “what is wrong with me? Why can she do it but I can’t?“. You begin to think it is all a waste of time and slowly move on. The spark that was ignited slowly fizzles out.
Perhaps you revisit the topic a few months later. And so the cycle starts again.
Listening to podcasts, reading books, listening to audiobooks, subscribing to email newsletters, and consuming social media topics is all wonderful. I’m all about lifelong learning and growth. But there is a difference between getting stuck here in the information-seeking stage of wellness. Here is what to do instead.
Information: The WHAT, the education, the learning, being inspired, yearning and absorbing.
Application: the HOW, the actionable steps, the change. Where growth happens.
Uncertainty and fear can promote information seeking and instead of ever taking action with what we are learning, or putting it into practice – we just continue to absorb information without changing.
The missing piece to keep the spark alive and burning bright within you is applying what you’ve learned to your actual life.
Well-being takes action. Health takes action. Being well isn’t just something that simply happens to us. It instead is choosing to live in a way that aligns with our values by taking intentional steps and making choices to improve our well-being.
It is time to stop sitting on the sidelines, watching and waiting for it to happen to you.
It is time to put it into practice.
What is the difference between Intuitive Eating and Mindful Eating?
You may have heard both of these terms floating around in social media, conversation, or in books or podcasts. These two concepts are both fantastic and play an important role in our overall well-being. Sometimes the terms mindful eating and intuitive eating are used interchangeably. While this isn’t incorrect, there are a few differences to note. Let’s first talk about the definition of each.
Mindful Eating was first introduced by author and mindfulness expert, Jon Kabat-Zinn in 1990. Kabat-Zinn defined the term “mindfulness” as “paying attention in a particular way, on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally”. He wrote the book Full Catastrophe Living to offer guidance on living mindfully based on his personal experiences.
In addition, the Center for Mindful Eating defines mindful eating as:
I really love to think of mindful eating as using the senses and paying attention on purpose to all aspects of a meal, including before and after.
Intuitive Eating is a self-care eating framework that is based on ten principles. Intuitive eating is evidence-based (meaning there have been many studies conducted on the framework) and integrates the mind and body in regard to health. Intuitive eating is a weight-neutral model in which you aim to listen to and respond to your body’s signals in order to meet it’s needs.
Mindful eating is encompassed within the principles of Intuitive Eating. Intuitive eating casts a wider umbrella.
Intuitive Eating goes deeper into additional topics such as coping with emotions with kindness, respecting your body, and rejecting the diet mentality. Intuitive eating also teaches you the importance of moving your body joyfully and gentle nutrition without judgment.
Ultimately, both concepts center around the idea that you are the expert of your body. Both encourage you to be fully aware of the food experience and pay attention to the present moment.
Both concepts prioritize paying attention to your body instead of external cues. Only you know what hunger, fullness, and satisfaction feel like in your body.
1. The Center for Mindful Eating website:http://www.tcme.org/
2. Intuitive Eating website: www.IntuitiveEating.org
3. Jon Kabat-Zinn. Full Catastrophe Living.(1990).
There is no magic solution or one-size-fits-all approach to healthy living. The key to living your healthiest life is knowing your body and being able to connect to it.
I’m a huge advocate of intuitive eating. Intuitive eating has helped me reclaim my food and fitness freedom. Within this framework of ten principles, interoceptive awareness is often talked about. Interoceptive awareness is being able to listen to your inner body sensations and messages.
Self-connection and awareness are essential in cultivating a healthy life. This awareness is the key to developing a healthy relationship with food and our bodies.
Mindfulness allows us to live in the present moment and connect with our bodies.
Why is this important? Food and exercise extremes, cleanses, detoxes, resets and all of these messages are in front of us daily – which clouds our vision and makes it challenging to know, trust or even HEAR what you body is telling you.
It becomes easier to rely on external sources for advice and information – such as what to eat and how and when to move. It can be overwhelming and confusing. We get lost in a sea of the “shoulds”.
Mindfulness is about bringing awareness to your food and your body signals. Mindfulness is about noticing. It is about pausing and paying attention. Mindfulness is powerful because pausing and noticing allows you to start realizing that your body is constantly sending you messages – all day, every day.
You will start to notice things such as how the food smells, how your muscles are feeling, if you’re enjoying the exercise you’re doing or if you’re not, and so on.
Hydration is essential to caring for ourselves and making sure that our physiological needs are being met, but it is often one of the most commonly overlooked areas.
Our bodies are made up of 60% water. Water plays many crucial roles including regulating your body temperature, metabolism, delivering oxygen and nutrients to your cells, lubricating joints, protecting organs, keeping our mucous membranes moist, aids in digestion, and helps our brains produce essential hormones (and much, much more).
Here are a few tips and tricks to help you stay hydrated throughout the day!
1. Start first thing
After sleeping through the night, our bodies are slightly dehydrated. It is important to start our day with water before anything else if possible. Plan for hydration the night before. Leave a special mug in the bathroom or on a nightstand. Seeing the mug first thing will remind you to fill it and drink some water to start your day!
2. Simple Infused Water
Trying adding a little bit of variety to your water! I love adding lemon slices, cucumber, frozen fruit to my water. It is like having spa water with you all day long!
3. Use a Water Bottle You Love
With a variety of bottles to choose from, we can easily find our cupboard overflowing with empty bottles. I encourage you to find just one or two water bottles that you absolutely adore and get rid of the rest (yes, really). Choose whatever water bottle resonates with you and your style. When you have a water bottle that you love and matches your day-to-day, you’re more likely to bring it with you and leave it in sight!
Here are a few of my favorites:
4. Send Yourself Reminders
Send yourself a loving reminder on your phone, email or wearable fitness device throughout the day. It can be as simple as having an alarm that says “Drink some water love!”. Think of it as a love note from your past self.
5. Have A Water Bottle at Home & Work
Bringing a large water bottle to-and-fro each day can be cumbersome. Instead, once you have your favorite bottle – leave one at home and one at work (or whichever second space you spend the most of amount of time). This will allow you to have water handy at all times and never leave it at home!
What are your tips and tricks that help you drink enough water? Comment below or tag me on instagram to show off your water bottles #daniellehavenshealth
When I first heard of the concept of primary vs. secondary foods I was very intrigued. You may be wondering (like I was!) what this means?
After digging into some books and articles, here is what I learned and I can’t wait to share it with you!
What is a Primary Food?
Non-food sources of nourishment in your life – everything from creativity, career, finances, spirituality, and relationships. It is what you do to satisfy your hunger for life. Anything that you are truly passionate about and that brings you joy is probably a primary food for you. Primary foods fill our cups and fuel us every day.
The Institute of Integrative Nutrition teaches that there are twelve categories of primary foods and they are:
I don’t believe these are the only primary food categories. You may find some of your own or re-word them. For example, I think of “home envoriment” may not be as all-encompassing and like to think of this category as simply “environment” -referring to any place that you spend a majority of your time, whether that be your home or workplace.
What is a Secondary Food?
Foods that you nourish your body with and actually consume- your meals, snacks, and drinks.
So, what does this mean for your holistic health?primary
Our bodies crave balance and when it senses an imbalance, it will do its best to restore balance. It can be helpful to think of the primary and secondary foods as a tank or bucket. This means that when any one of the primary foods is low, your secondary food tank with an increase in an attempt to try and restore balance in your body. This could look like emotional eating, possibly consuming more food, or having cravings. In other words, our secondary food tank is trying to make up for the deficiency in our primary food tank.
This makes a lot of sense for me and perfectly describes past experiences. In particular, I can think of several times in my life when several primary foods were unfulfilled and my attention and focus turned solely to secondary food and disordered eating.
This topic is one that I dive deeper into with my coaching clients and one that will always be at the forefront of my mind when I start to feel imbalanced!
Journal and Reflection Questions
Is secondary food taking up more space and energy than you want it to in your life?
If so, is this because your primary tank is low?
Which primary food area could use more attention and love?
Self-care is the act of caring for oneself and doing things that make you feel more like YOU. Self-care is more than pampering. It is a daily act of kindness and compassion that allow us to live well and care for others.
As mothers, we continually give. We give time, energy, love, encouragement, and even give physically through birth and breastfeeding. Eventually, we will burn out. We will become worn out, fatigued, and mentally unavailable. Self-care is extremely important because it is the only way we can continue our roles as mothers and continue to give to others, by taking care of ourselves first and foremost. As the saying goes, you cannot pour from an empty cup.
I believe that self-care is an integral part of your wellbeing.
Simply put; whatever works for YOU. There is no “one size fits all” for self-care, regardless of what society or social media has led us to believe. Simplicity is key for self-care in motherhood. Tiny moments of self-care can make all of the difference!
Here are some examples of small, simple acts of self-care that can be integrated into your daily routine:
The bottom line: self-care is an individual and unique practice. Explore what makes YOU feel good, and once you identify it, make sure it is something you prioritize daily.