Total sunshine is the best way to describe Abbylee Bonny. She quite literally oozes happiness from every pore. As a woman who has stepped back from the hustle to strive for a slower, simpler yet still extraordinary life with her son Cas and fiancé Vinny, Abbylee is undoubtedly one of the most remarkable women we have met! As we celebrate the arrival of our Exhale collection, the inspiration of which stemmed from a journey to create moments of being present; Abbylee effortlessly embodies the values of the collection. So we chat with her about nature, head-space and daily mantras she swears by.
Get ready to swindle some awesome tips from her daily life in finding presence and clarity for yourself…
Words of comfort for those trying to “balance”:
I find balance a hard one, it’s not for me. It feels so static and difficult to maintain. It’s exhausting to constantly be “trying” to do something isn’t it? I mean (in the nicest possible way) do you remember a time you felt completely “balanced” for an extended period of time? Rather than a balancing act I like to think of life in ebbs and flows. If you’re visual (like me), I see the balance as a seasaw, notice how hard is it to find and maintain that perfect balanced state? Instead I imagine the rise and fall of a wave, some days/weeks are going to be more full on than others; I feel like it’s important, and way less stressful, to just ride it and flow. But you gotta make sure you have those moments of down time when you do chill and enjoy that because like the hard or the busy, it won’t last forever.
Also, while I once believed I could, I currently don’t think you can give 100% to everything at the same time, like the idea of being ‘balanced’ portrays. Some hours/days I’m more a Mum and other hours/days I’m more a businesswoman, I personally can’t be a great mum and great businesswoman in the same moment.
Reducing stress and creating space (the mental kind) is an everyday work in progress, and like anything it takes practice for it to become second nature. Can you share with us how best to get started?
We know you are a massive essential oils fans…. Elaborate:
Essential oils for me are a wonderful cue to change state or come into a state I wish to feel, I diffuse citrus and mints when I want to feel energised and uplifted or lavender and vetiver when I need calm and grounding. When I first got into oils I loudly proclaimed “I don’t want to be one of those people that smell like essential oils” and now I smell like them, as does my home and my lovely child, it’s delightful. I find that reaching for essential oils has amazing physical and emotional therapeutic support but is also is a beautiful form of self care that brings be back to myself.
And advice to babes that are feeling ‘stuck’ in the hustle:
Allow yourself to step out of it, even if for an hour. Leave your phone in the car, go for a barefoot walk along the beach, notice the sand between your toes and the temperature of the air against your skin. Breathe, breathe deep into your lungs and let your belly expand. Exhale, with every exhale let go of things that are not serving you and feel yourself become lighter. When I feel stuck, caught up and consumed with being busy getting out into nature is the quickest way I find of releasing that but also putting things back into perspective. I also like to remind myself that I’m putting myself in that place of hustle and I can absolutely give myself permission to step out of it and breathe.
Any guidance when it comes to easing the guilt of self-care:
Let it go, the sooner the better. You’ve heard it all before, ‘you can’t pour from an empty cup’, but truly we must take care of ourselves. The practice of self-care is all about doing something just for you, with no one else in mind. Sounds like something we should be guilty of I know, that’s what we’ve been taught, but we really have to do a little reprogramming. I’m a huge advocate for enjoying life, for taking time and noticing the small things, this has become a really lovely way for me to practice self-care simply, drinking tea in the sunshine is a form of self-care, or taking time to moisturise my whole body after a shower, that’s self-care and takes 5mins. Make showing yourself some love easy to achieve, it doesn’t (always) have to be a trip to the day spa.
Mantras you live by:
My Mama Mantra, the one I gave myself when I first became a mother, because this was the hardest thing I’d ever done in my life and I needed to find some joy became…
“Breathe”, because there is never a moment when a full deep breath (or 10) won’t help a situation.
“I am enough”, I am strong enough, patient enough, kind enough, loved enough, smart enough, capable enough…. Because things can are hard sometimes (whether you’re a Mama or not) but I have everything inside of myself that I could ever need.
“Choose Kissing”, because kissing is way more fun than fighting, waaaaay more fun!!
In a world that is always about ‘next’, and demanding more, we are more digitally connected than ever which has in turn seen a shift toward social disconnect. What do you do to combat this:
Get out in nature, nature is everything to me. I literally could not imagine a peaceful life without getting out and being in her presence. I feel most connected to myself, others and mother nature herself when I am outside.
AND finally, your fast five. Share your fave five ways you re-centre yourself:
Move my body – yoga, dancing, walking. Remember, emotion is created in motion.
Go into nature.
Play music – and sing, it changes everything.
Love – every moment is better served with more love and empathy!
Spend time with girlfriends. There was a study, that one of my besties shared with me, it found that when women were stressed/overwhelmed with life they should spend time with their women. It also found that when men are stressed, they too should spend time with their woman. Yes!!
I know that was six but I’m cheeky like that!! xx
Abbylee wears Bex handbag in super soft tan leather from the latest Exhale collection. To read more about Abbylee and her journey of business and motherhood head to the Saben Mother Muse blog post here. For a daily dose of Abbylee (trust us, it’s good.) follow her on Instagram @abbyleebonny
Enjoy! Much love xx
We catch up with ever-lovely Zoe Clark, INCO Studio owner and mother of three, to chat on our three favorite things: beauty, business and babies. Zoe candidly shares her thoughts on COVID, community, and the challenges that have come with 2020 (most chaotic year to date, am I right?). As a lover of NZ design, we couldn’t help but be inspired by her edgy yet effortless style, along the way. Read more on the blog…
Colour makes us happy, and in the case of the Saben Summer collection, brighter really is better. Read more about the moodboard behind the season and why we are so excited to welcome magenta styles.