Why We Can’t Live Without Our Non-Negotiables

Around the office recently we’ve been talking about Seane Corn’s ‘non-negotiables’ that she shared with us on stage at the Together Tour last year –the six things she commits to each and every day to bring her best self into the world.

In tough times, it’s incredibly easy to feel inadequate, overwhelmed and burnt out. Our bodies are accustomed to shutting down and withdrawing, and we often seek substances as a way to change how we feel. But what has worked for Seane is sustainability and commitment.

Our Together team is also committed; to ourselves, and to each other. We’ve given a lot of thought to our own non-negotiables. Take a look below at what keeps us happy, healthy and hopeful. And we’d love to hear yours! Send them our way at togetherliveteam@gmail.com.

Maggie – Director of Brand Strategy

  • Sleep. If I don’t get a good night’s sleep, I’m truly not a person the next day. I won’t sacrifice my sleep for anything! This is my hard and fast rule of self-care.
  • Therapy. Sometimes you’ve just gotta talk it out. I think a lot of us are taught to sweep the tough stuff under the rug and run away from heartbreak. But running towards it instead is the only way I know how to get through it. It also always feels like I’m doing my future self a solid.
  • Writing. The more I write the more I know what I’m trying to say. Putting pen to paper keeps me centered and helps me figure out where I stand on certain things.
  • Drink water. Easy to do, but easy to forget.
  • Good peeps. Being around my friends and family is the most reliable and best medicine. It’s an instant cure all. But I’ve learned the hard way that it’s about quality over quantity – you have to let go of the things and the people that don’t serve you.
  • IDGAF. Sitting on the sidelines doesn’t feel good anymore. March, write, call, scream and shout. It’s time to go the mattresses. (I’ve never seen The Godfather. This is, obviously, a You’ve Got Mail reference).

Jamie – Community Manager

  •  Early-morning routine. Mornings are when I have my precious ‘me’ time. Before I head to the office, I exercise, have coffee & breakfast and read the news. An early start helps me clear my head and stay more focused & energized throughout the day.
  • Well-balanced diet. I’m a big foodie – I love to cook almost as much as I love trying new restaurants and dishes. There are very few foods I won’t eat or try at least once – but portions are key. I love the way my body feels when it’s fueled with healthy foods – but I’ll never say no to a bite of an extra-fudgy brownie or juicy cheeseburger.
  • Exercise. From a casual jog to the two marathons I’ve completed, I’ve always found running to be one of the most calming activities. I also love the fun & competitive aspects of group classes – anything from cycling to yoga to Tabata to Pilates.  No matter the exercise, I try to keep active five times per week.
  • Affection. I’ve always believed that everything happens for a reason. But when you see the ones you love continuously get knocked down, it’s hard to keep convincing yourself of that. The universe is funny that way. I’m never guaranteed another day with the people I love the most. So I’ve made a point to tell them how I feel, even with the simplest of texts or shortest of phone calls, each and every day.

Caitlin –Director of Operations

  •  Clean eating. In the last few months I’ve shifted to eating a plant based diet. In a typical Western diet, food = pleasure, so we treat mealtime as our tri-daily dopamine hang. But for a moment, let’s put a pin in that and consider another view – that food is medicine. I KNOW, WHAT FUN? But before you hurl yourself into traffic, consider the idea that you ultimately won’t need to “work” (exercise excessively, take a million pills, many visits to specialist doctors etc.) as hard to be healthful, if every few hours you feed your body with medicine instead of those feel good chemicals that ultimately leave you feeling depleted.
  • Sleep. I don’t mess around with sleep.  You know how sometimes your friends are all “Hey wanna hang at some house this weekend where you may be sleeping on a kitchen floor, and I don’t think there’s extra pillows? But it’s ok because life is about adventures right! You coming?? Cait..?” No sir. No I will not be attending. Sleep is my #1 pal. And at this point in my life I know what it takes for me to get it and I don’t compromise that, even for your kitchen floor adventure weekend. Every day your bod gets filled up with toxins, and when you sleep it finally has a ‘lil downtime to clear them out. To get good sleep, I turn my phone off and stop scrolling the internets around 9, and then I watch or read something funny and light-hearted (see “Lolz”). Also, I’ve been reading about how the most important hours of sleep are 11-1am, so I’m trying to get to bed by 10:45ish.
  • Exercise. I’m all about helping my body expel toxins. Working out has always been a part of my life, but something that’s shifted my view for the better was learning that exercise and sweating is one of the most important ways your body rids itself of toxins. This has made it feel like less of a chore. Previously, if I had to choose between more sleep and exercise, sleep would win because I thought sleep=health, and exercise=vanity with a side of health. But now I hold the two with the same regard.
  • Lolz. Just about all of the media I consume is comedy. Books, TV, podcasts etc., my MO is I’m either learning or laughing because life is dramatic enough on its own, I don’t need to drown myself in someone’s made-up garbage problems. I loved how Seane Corn included joy as one of her non-negotiables, because it’s something I’m trying to be more intentional about. But one thing I’ve always been good about is making sure every day I consume some content that makes me laugh.

Let the Madness Begin

For some avid sports fans, March Madness is the most wonderful time of the year. The single-elimination tournament between 68 college teams yields unlikely heroes, unimaginable upsets and unparalleled joy to the players, teams and fans alike.

But it’s not the game-winning buzzer shots or the success of our brackets that we look forward to this year. It’s the passion and soul that’s poured into these games that really warms our hearts. It’s the unique bond we form with coworkers competing in the office pool. It’s the sense of camaraderie we experience rooting for our alma mater. And it’s the admiration we have for the college athletes who dedicate everything they’ve got for the love of the game.

Our Together team can’t wait to watch UConn’s women’s basketball team in this year’s tournament. The Huskies have won 107 consecutive games and will be seeking their fifth consecutive, and 12th overall, NCAA title this year. These girls are on fire.

Here’s What We’re Talking About This Week

Peaceful and Powerful. Here are a few things on our mind this week.

Yesterday we joined together in honor of International Women’s Day to act towards a more inclusive, gender-equal world. Why did we strike? Because we believe in gender justice, in racial justice, and in economic justice. Caregiving and unpaid work is largely devalued by our economic structure and we’re taking action to change that. Did you participate in #ADayWithoutAWoman? Share your reasons why by emailing us at togetherliveteam@gmail.com.

Here are a few other things we’ve been chatting about this week:

  • Music offers a way to publicly share what is often so personal. We’re so inspired by all of the talented musicians who entered the 2017 Tiny Desk Contest. Check out the entries here—your ears will thank us.
  • Vogue is celebrating the extraordinary diversity of style, enterprise and values that define American women today with these breathtaking photographs of leading ladies from coast to coast.
  • We’ve been taking action every 10 days. Get notified how and when to join us by signing up here.

#ADayWithoutAWoman

This year, celebrations of today’s holiday, International Women’s Day, feel different than in year’s past. While this day means something different to everyone, today we’re aligning as one.

 

Women all around the world are celebrating in a number of different ways. From free entry at museums and cultural sites across Europe to strikes and protests in the United States,  we’re coming together to #BeBoldForChange.

 

Are you wearing red in support of revolutionary love and sacrifice? Or demonstrating your commitment to resistance by not engaging in paid or unpaid labor? Perhaps you’re simply reflecting on the women in your life you rely on and how you can offer them support. We’d love to hear how your observing – and what it means to you. Email us at togetherliveteam@gmail.com to share your story.

 

To whatever inspiration is igniting you to take part in today’s celebration, we applaud you, we thank you and we have your back. From the words of one of our favorite poets, Rupi Kaur, “We all move forward when we recognize how resilient and striking the women around us are.”

Jennifer Rudolph Walsh on Telling Yourself a New Story

The head of WME’s Worldwide Literary, Lectures, and Conference Divisions on the importance of finding self compassion.

When you have the opportunity to ask some of the most interesting people in the world about their lives, sometimes the most fascinating answers come from the simplest questions. The Thrive Questionnaire is an ongoing series that gives an intimate look inside the lives of some of the world’s most successful people.

Thrive Global: What’s the first thing you do when you get out of bed?
Jennifer Rudolph Walsh: Even before I get out of bed, I sit up and meditate for at least 10 minutes. From there, downstairs to make coffee.

TG: What gives you energy?
JRW: Brainstorming and co-creating, deep conversation, laughing.

TG: What’s your secret life hack?
JRW: No incoming in the early morning — I read, I dream up ideas, I write letters, I exercise, all proactive. I don’t become reactive until 10 am.

TG: Name a book that changed your life.
JRW: Broken Open by Elizabeth Lesser.

TG: Tell us about your relationship with your phone. Does it sleep with you? JRW: Are you kidding me?! No way!! Arianna would have me excommunicated! My phone sleeps in its bed and I sleep in mine.

TG: How do you deal with email?
JRW: Immediately if possible. I communicate even if to say I don’t have an answer yet. I find silence to create more misunderstandings than an update with little or no change.

TG: You unexpectedly find 15 minutes in your day, what do you do with it?JRW: Call my mom or sister.

TG: When was the last time you felt burned out and why?
JRW: Three years ago because I was working full on but not making the impact I envisioned. I had to get still and listen to the sound of my breathing, I had to recognize a story I was telling myself that no longer was true or served me, I had to tell a new story. And that required patience that I had to learn.

TG: When was the last time you felt you failed and how did you overcome it?
JRW: See the above! Through the process of meditating, rewriting my narrative, and finding self compassion, I was able to find a new way forward for my dream of bringing people together through storytelling and finding purpose.

TG: Share a quote that you love and that gives you strength or peace.
JRW: In the words of St Julian of Norwich, the great 14th century mystic, “All shall be well, and all shall be well. All manner of things shall be well.” Those words have found me at my most scared like a search and rescue team on the top of a mountain. They remind me what my deep knowing already knows — that it’s all unfolding perfectly in divine time.

Jennifer Rudolph Walsh serves as the head of WME’s Worldwide Literary, Lectures, and Conference Divisions. She spearheaded the launch of WME Live, most recently launching Together (www.togetherlive.com), a nationwide tour focused on purpose, community and action.