How to balance work and life: 7 steps

IMG_3447What type of lifestyle and thinking do you lead? Horizontal or Vertical?

Horizontal refers to mutli-tasking people, those who can do several tasks at once. Vertical people tend to focus on one thing at a time. I don’t think there’s one right way to do things, its you and how you prefer things. I’ve heard that women tend to be better at multi-tasking. In all cases, if you don’t balance work and life, you will enjoy neither and you’ll definitely perform poorly in at least either one.

Here are 7 simple steps to balance work and life:

1 – Sleep Well:

Old habits die hard and mine took a very long time to come to an end. I’m talking about checking my phone, social media and the hundreds of new daily posts I receive on my social media accounts. This habit not only delayed my intended sleep time by at least an hour, but also got me excited from the news I ended up reading or looking at while I was supposed to relax my eyes and brain. So I trained myself to dedicate only 10 minutes for social media before I sleep. My aim is to eliminate this habit all together and make sure that the last time I check my phone is at least 20 minutes before I sleep. Sleeping well won’t only protect your skin, but more importantly, it will allow you to perform freshly the next morning

In other words, get your beauty sleep. Beauty sleep consists of 7 – 9 hours a night and it will prevent wrinkles and stimulates muscle growth. This should be your uninterrupted time slot.

2 – Pamper yourself:

Caring for your life means caring for yourself first. Ideally, you should be taking care of your largest organ, your skin, before anything else. Then your hair, or what I call your crown. Last but not least, finding an ideal way to relax then your makeup.

  • Skin
    • Clean your face: Every night before you sleep clean it. Just like you wash your hands before I suggest one of those 2 products: Shiseido Future Solution LX Cleansing Foam or Bioderma, a much faster application.
    • Under no circumstances should you leave your skin to dehydrate, especially if you live most of your life in air conditioning or in cold weather. Choose a good quality moisturizer with SPF for the day and another one for night.

I’ll talk more in depth about this topic in the future.

  • Hair
    • Nothing turns me off more than dirty hair. Keep your hair clean with and find solutions for your dandruff if you have any (i.e try pharmaceutical products). I personally love Pantene Clinicare and Alterna Caviar Anti-aging.
    • I’ve recently tried an amazing range from CAVIAR Anti-Aging VOLUME range from Alterna. It is considered a luxurious line used by some of the top salon stylists and beauty artisans. The range consists of caviar, sea-silk, hemp, bamboo and Kendi oil allowing the hair to shine with volume and boosts its health.


  • Here’s a trick I would love to share with you: After every shower, towel dry your hair and apply a leave-in product from your ear level down. I personally have tried both Kerastase Elixir and Caviar CC Cream from Alterna. Both are good but the Elixir may easily leave your hair oily if it already is an oily type. On the other hand Caviar CC Cream is a 10 in 1 primer leaving your hair shiny, smooth, moisturized, UV protected, manageable, light holding, strong, soft, heat protected and anti-braking. I personally love how my hair feels after it drys with this cream left on. So beautiful, healthy and truly flawless.

alterna caviar cc cream balance work and life

  • Relax
    • My favorite source for relaxation after meditating is my bath time. I try to make it once a week. I love surrounding myself with candles and soulful music once a week. It’s one ritual I enjoy so much.

Note: When preparing a bath, mix some baby oil with your favorite perfume and drop it in the water. It will stick to your skin. Even better, try out one of your favorite scented body and bath products from Rituals. They’re amazing!

  • rituals cosmetics bath treats hammam collectionMakeup

I’ve been blessed to work with several amazing makeup artists. This is where my passion for makeup began. It also taught me how to put on my best face, which would give me the top confidence and ultimately that confidence brings me happiness. Here are some unbelievably cool tricks I learned from makeup artist (and equally great hair stylist) Kaya Guerreiro:

  • 1- Foundation: “The most common mistake ladies do is not testing the foundation in natural light on their wrist, hand or arm before making the purchase. Always test the foundation on your hands and on various areas of your face, such as the side of your face and on the cheek, since the face is rarely the same color as your body. Test 3 samples that range from lighter to darker and the correct one will disappear into your skin.” says Kaya. Although I have a fairly medium tanned skin, the best foundation that worked with me from Shiseido is Synchro Skin Liquid Foundation Collection shade number 3, one of the darkest in this range. Its texture is velvety and its color merges beautifully with my skin tone.

Shiseido Foundation

  • 2 – Brushes: Try using a synthetic foundation brush and finish it off by setting it with a damp BeautyBlender sponge. This combination ensures even coverage and an airbrushed finish. Your fingers can retain bacteria, dirt and oils, which you don’t want to spread all over your face, especially if you have acne! using a foundation brush will help properly distribute your the foundation evenly and will leave your complexion flawless. To prevent acne or oils from spreading, make sure you you clean your brushes every two weeks.
  • 3- Add Color: No look is complete without a splash of color on your face. This is where a blush and bronzer come in if you’re going for a very natural look with no colored eyeshadow or lipstick. For me, it feels like I’m finishing off a painting with its final strokes. They instantly brightens your face and gives it a lively and healthy appearance.

During the day I like to keep my makeup simple; however, for any event after 7pm, I like to upgrade my look with the magical false lashes. Kaya has been working recently with At First Sight mink lashes and I’ve fallen in love with them. Each set can last you up to 20 times. She also recommends the Bourjois glue to go with it.


On a separate note, since last year, I’ve gotten addicted to shaping my eyebrows. You all know I don’t like tattoo, as its not natural looking at all. However, shaping your eyebrows changes your entire face. One of the most popular brands for eyebrows is Anastasia Beverly Hills. I got the chance to try HI Impact Brows and have been addicted to it ever since.


3 – Stay Organized:

  • Time is everything. If you overlap appointments, your day is a jungle. I used to stick to my iPhone giving me the timing but then had to keep it away when in meetings. Guess what happened? The meeting would go on and on beyond its allocated time frame. So I chose to wear a watch; SHEEN. Not just because I love the brand, but because its different styles work with a variety of my outfits. I’m particularly looking forward to the SHB-100 from SHEEN as it is the first ever ladies watch that links to a smartphone device.  With an efficiency to display accurate time over 300 cities globally it combines the smart need of the modern women with a touch of elegance and panache in design. This is the ideal watch for balancing business and pleasure.


  • Dedicate time for each activity: Phone calls/ Emails/ Getting tasks done/ Meetings/ Relaxation/ Eating anything and everything. In short, plan your day properly ahead of time. I use calendars all the time and I always keep a gap before and after each event just in case there was traffic on the road, or some emergency had taken place.
  • There’s nothing worse than multi-tasking and ending up short on any area, such as your style. That’s why I like to stay ready. So I keep a colored leather watch from SHEEN (in my one of my favorite colors, powder pink) as well as another in stainless steal to go with almost anything I’ll be wearing. With short time gaps between each activity and the other, you need to be prepared for anything!


4 – Be selective:

When you have too many activities proposed, be very selective. One of my biggest mistakes was officially working, then going to events and categorizing them under fun. Though its great to socialize with people from my industry, it was still work. We talked more about work than life. Avoid talking about work after official work hours. Relax your brain.

IMG_3385 5 – Meditate:

I can’t stress on the importance of meditation. It keeps you balanced and releases the stress from your life. Meditation comes in different forms that it becomes absolutely up to you which medium you’ll choose. It could be through prayer, yoga, sitting alone and thinking about nothing etc..


6 – Delegate:

As your business grows, your responsibilities increase. I found out that for many years I worked like a battery but didn’t get much happening at the end of the tunnel because I’ve exhausted myself. When I focused on marketing my product, I didn’t have time to perfect it. When I focused on perfecting it, I slowed down on promoting it and so on. I’ve heard it once from my friend “in order to grow, delegate”. Hire an assistance. It doesn’t have to be full time. There are many students or fresh graduates who need an extra income and can spare an hour a day for your work. It will magically transform your life.

7 – Exercise:

I kept exercising at the bottom of my list because I didn’t want to be a hypocrite stressing on the importance of exercising when I don’t do it myself. Truth be told, I wish I had the love for exercising, but I don’t. When I get into it, I do really well. Otherwise, I have to be in the mood and not have much going on. However, I tell myself – and you – to give that portion of your life at least half an hour. Half an hour is enough to keep you healthy and energetic. One tip I’ve learned is avoid exercising late in the evening as it will prevent you from sleeping on time. Another tip to share, if you’re like me and don’t like to exercise, you probably like dancing. Dancing is an amazing way to shed off the extra weight, keeps you moving and most of all uplifts your morale.

You are the only one who can balance work and life in your own life. Take a look at your life and make the right decisions for you.

Photography by Sam John

Hair & Makeup by Kaya Guerreiro

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