Whether it was in my romantic relationships, friendships, school or business, I used to have a very interesting relationship with failure. I thought that because I had failed so many times and experienced the consequences, cost and horrible feelings associated with it, I was deserving of success. I figured that this was the secret; that my failures were just a form of “paying my dues.” The universe was merely priming me for proving everyone wrong in a massive way.

Success, happiness, confidence, wealth and power were always just around the corner.

And to me, it all made sense. I had gone through so much and collected so many failure tokens, a Purple Heart in the name of being powerful and achieving success was, to me, an assumption that was beyond reasonable at this point. The only thing that ever got me through it all was this belief that something massively better had to happen. Why? Because I had endured.

“Endurance” soon became a fancy term for falling victim to the horrible feelings associated with my relational, professional and scholastic failures. 

Who doesn’t like hearing a story about the underdog winning, the ultimate victim turned victor, etc.?

The problem is, I think that today we’ve become addicted to sharing our failures as more of an emotional mastrabatory contrast to acquired successes, than as a tool to establish credentials on how to overcome it and reclaim power.

One of my favorite writers and innovators, James Altucher writes, “Lately, we’ve been living in the Golden Age of Failure Porn.  Everyone wants to share their story. Everyone wants to ‘fail forward’.”

I don’t need to share my entire story to uncover the secret of overcoming failure and reclaiming power, but I will share some of my credentials.

Here’s the secret (that I’ve learned the hard way), about failure:

Failure of any kind is not a right of passage, a badge of honor, nor is it a precursor to success or anything good. It sucks. It’s the worst thing ever. It makes you feel sick, powerless, worthless, hopeless and suicidal – emotionally, spiritually and in some cases, physically. There’s nothing glamorous about it and it will never be a sign of anything better around the bend.

The Secret: Failure is not a “symptom” of success. It’s a failure. Period.

Failure and powerlessness go hand in hand. As the volume of my failures and suffering increased, the level of power I felt that I had, exponentially decreased.

Because of this, I dated powerful men and racked up celebrity friends in hope that I would be viewed as powerful by association. It never worked. I was only viewed at best, as a doormat; a people pleasing sheep in a game of follow the follower.

Today, I have a lot of celebrity clients and yes, I’m still attracted to powerful men and powerful people in general but there’s a difference…

I’m attracted to people who are available, vulnerable, honest, empathetic and unapologetic in their ambition. To me, that’s powerful. This has nothing to do with money in the bank, I could care less. Money comes and goes. I’m just no longer attracted to people who abuse their power – whether it be relationally, emotionally, financially, psychologically or in business.

How?

I no longer abuse my innate power/instinct by allowing it to get suppressed by those who feel just as powerless. You will always attract what you exude.

So, in light of sharing the secret to overcoming failure and reclaiming your power, I’ll establish a few of my credentials…

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Relationship advice… Where do you even begin? 

I want to start off by saying that for me, this is one of the most meaningful and exposing posts I’ve ever written. It’s long, but I share a lot of myself, my mistakes, and the ways in which I was able to transform my relational life and reach indifference to so many anchors that weighed me down. If even one sentence resonates with you, I’m happy.

I usually write blog posts on my phone in under 2 hours. For the past 6 days on my laptop, I’ve been working on this post and another one that I’m posting after this (which for a long while, I’ve been really scared to write, let alone publish). I’m also in book writing mode. It’s been nonstop writing for me (sorry for being a little MIA).

I wanted to give you guys something different. Something that made too much sense for your fears to complicate or your ego to write-off and ignore.

So, I took some time to look in my rearview and examine mistakes I’ve made. I revisited stuff that brought up really intense feelings of shame, embarrassment, guilt, insecurity and pain, which surprised me. I took breaks in between and just felt my way through it. There was no way I could write this all in one sitting.

For the past 6 days, I’ve been an emotional chemist.

I made it my mission to pinpoint (and then simplify + make assessable), the common denominator of the close/long-standing relationships in my life currently, and in the lives of couples who were kind enough to allow me to interview them.

I’ve also spoken to a lot of men over the last few weeks as research for this post and my book. I spoke to men of all ages and stages about what it takes/would take for them to want to commit and remain committed.

 DISCLOSURE: this relationship advice will only illuminate a diamond that ALREADY is (aka an emotionally available partner). It won’t turn a pebble into a diamond that’s magically illuminated just because it accepts you tirelessly shining it, in hope of some immaculate transformation.

A few questions that clients and readers have asked:

“What would it take for the person I’m with to feel like the grass is always greenest underneath my feet?”

“What does it take for emotional commitment to occur?”

This isn’t about putting a ring on it, proving everyone wrong and “settling down.” A baboon could literally get down on one knee, put on a tux and repeat vows. Marriage is neutral. In chemistry, a neutral solution is neither acidic nor basic – it’s the product of whatever is put into it.

It can either be something really uplifting and amazing or really suffocating and sh*tty, depending on what it’s made of. Marriage, in and of itself, will not fix a damn thing. If you go into it for the wrong reasons, it will only end up highlighting and taking on the identity of the bullsh*t that it’s made up of.

Same goes with relationships, friendships, business & dating – they are all a direct byproduct of their ingredients.

The problem is, we tend to ignore the fact that we ONLY have control over:

  • Our own ingredients that we put in.
  • Making the decision to act upon the fact that the other person’s lack of/missing ingredients have nothing to do with us or our value. It has to do with THEM. Their kitchen was empty long before you came into the picture. It’s not your job or within your abilities, to keep your kitchen stocked while restocking anyone else’s. You’re not Costco.
  • Getting turned on by the fact that the other person needs our ingredients to feed off of for narcissistic survival (and enthusiastically consumes until you have nothing left but a codependent nightmare – they are dependent on wiping their emotional shoes on the doormat you’ve become and you are dependent on them using you + the crumbs of mud they leave on your mat, just to feel significant).

For me, this post was about identifying an X Factor that would make the thought of deviating induce a “No thanks, I’m good” yawn, instead of a “Yes-!!!-I’m-finally-free-from-the-ball-and-chain,” excitement.

What, if anything, would silence and shut down the “Could I do ever do better?” wonderings ?? Even in the most connected and empathetic partners.

Relationship advice is interesting. There’s such an abundance of it, but the living, breathing results of its application are few and far between.

I examined the few and far between – both in the long-standing relationships in my personal life and with the couples I interviewed that have been together for decades.

And the conclusion I came to, the “secret,” to long lasting relationships… Just like every solution to life’s complexities, is so simple.

This relationship advice will give you a sense of peace. The kind of peace that can only come from realizing the keys to your jail cell have been in your back pocket all along.

Take it from someone who finally escaped and got out… Your cell is self-imposed.

You are right now, voluntarily serving a sentence that was never meant for you.

It’s time to reclaim your keys and get the f*ck out.

As far as relationship advice goes, I want to share with you the #1 thing that makes relationships last.

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I’ve been getting asked a lot about what the best breakup songs are and what’s on my heartbreak/sucks for you/over it/f*ck you/I need to wallow in this for a while/I miss you/You’re moving on and I’m left in the dust/I’m moving on better, badder and stronger than ever, playlist (if that makes sense? Ha).

The best part about music is that there’s nothing you have to be rational, mature or even logical about. There’s nothing linear about it. Your imagination can go anywhere and it’s amazing.

Music directly effects your endorphin and energy levels. When you can’t move emotionally, as long as you start to move energetically and physically, your emotional state will follow suit. I breakout into dance parties for 1 all the time, especially in my car and the shower. If you don’t feel like dancing, listen to one of these songs at the gym and the intensity of your workout + your physical and emotional endurance will exponentially increase – win/win.

Music instantly puts your current emotional state in a rocket.

And the best part?

It can take you wherever you want to go in the universe. 

Music is so therapeutic and one of the healthiest forms of escapism. It’s this safe space that allows you to non-judgmentally feel while you’re temporarily away.

Last Saturday night in Vegas, I was literally on my last leg. Because of getting ready and then going to the fight, I hadn’t had any food in hours. After dancing for 4 hours straight in 6 inch heels with 2 broken feet at an after party (by this time, it must have been 3 or 4am), I had ZERO energy…

And ALL it took was for this song to come on as I was leaving.

Before anyone could even blink, I was back on the dance floor as if my feet weren’t throbbing, I wasn’t hungry, had just gotten 10 hours of sleep and was auditioning to be in Drake’s next video.

And just like nothing about music or dance is linear, there’s nothing linear about the soundtrack and dance of the relationship that you’re trying to get over.

There’s nothing linear about heartbreak.

With that being said, there are countless lists online delineating the best breakup songs of all time. Most are obvious.

I wanted to give you guys a list of what personally resonates with me and a lot of the time, isn’t so obvious. Some songs may not make much sense. And because it’s really all about how the songs make me feel, there’s nothing that I can really explain. You’ll just have to listen for yourself.

These are some of the songs that have gotten me through the most hopeless heartbreak. There are also some that have immersed me in such darkness and despair, I cocooned until I eventually lost fear of the light and broke open.

Each one of these songs carry significance and meaning for me.

When it comes to music, I truly love eve.ry.thing as you’ll see below.

Here are my personal favorites for every situation. The BEST breakup songs.

+ disclosure: a lot of the songs that I am linking to in this post contain the strongest, most offensive and graphic language possible. 

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If you know me and are familiar with the blog at all, you know how much I love Natural Calm. I usually drink it with hot water before I go to bed, but also I love making booze-free margaritas with it (recipe here).

I’m a huge herbal tea/grass-fed bone broth/drink/smoothie person; I always have a million drinks around me. Supergreen smoothies (with turmeric, ginger, collagen, and a few drops of liquid chlorophyll), are my favorite.

Green smoothies promote healthy digestion by giving your gut a much needed break. And since everything is blended, it’s already digested for you. These smoothies alkalinize the body, promote healing of the gut lining and aid in restoring bacterial/flora balance – ALL of which, effect your overall heath, hormones, fertility, how you age, levels of anxiety/hopelessness/obsessive behaviors and your SKIN.

If you have any of these skin conditions (I’ve had them all) – persistent ingrown hairs, acne, eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, etc., check out what my favorite health guru, Chris Kresser, has to say about the skin/gut connection here.

You may not think that your gut needs any TLC, but it does. Our immune systems are located in our gut and whenever we’re triggered and hit with a pain contraction – grief, stress, loss, heartbreak and anxiety, our gut is the first to take a major hit. When you go through a breakup, your gut will actually take the energetic, emotional and physical hit before your heart.

We LITERALLY feel it in our gut in the name of sluggish digestion, heartburn and anxiety… some of us also SEE it on our skin, experience hair loss, lack of strength in our nails, loss of skin elasticity, hyperpigmentation, blackheads and more.

This domino effects into us feeling like such hopeless sh*t, we end up looking for relief in ways that are unknowingly, counter-productive. These avenues usually just maintain the symptom and don’t address the root cause.

With that being said, I’m flying to Vegas tonight for the fight this weekend. It’s the first time I’ve been to Vegas for something other than work in over a year. I’m excited to eat, shop, swim, dance my ass off, unplug, gamble a little and enjoy the weekend with friends who will be around.

And as much as I’d like to bring 15 packs of Natural Calm and make my own margaritas, I just want something easy, fast and that I can order at any bar, anytime. Something that isn’t sugary, will aid in digestion and combat bloat. You can’t afford to be bloated when you’re eating 7 courses in one sitting and wearing dental floss (because why not? It’s Vegas).

Here’s my going out drink of choice + a few things to keep in mind when a pain contraction hits…

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