10 Tips for a Better Yoga Practice

10 Tips for a Better Yoga Practice

If you guys are new to the Kayli Wanders rodeo, you may not know that I fell in-love with yoga last year. I’m not one of those ya-ya raindancey types, so I mean this in the most sane way possible: yoga has done more than physically alleviate my pains (I’m 20 going on 80 with my back pains, you guys). It helps relieve my stress, center my inner voice + remember all of the good that my life holds.

I’m not going to lie though, sometimes it can be hard to get in the groove– your neck is sore from sleeping wonky the night before, your mind is all over the place with your over-extended todo list and the last thing you want to hear is your instructor correct your downward facing dog one more time.

Alas, on the days I force myself to go, I leave feeling like I can take on the world, ready for a good nights rest and thankful for all that I have– and all that my body is able to do.

Here are 10 Tips to help better your yoga practice and get into your groove a little bit quicker.


1. Disconnect a hour before class

Ditching the phone/iPad/computer will help your body recognize it’s time to calm down + help you forget some of the troubles that the day may have caused and unnecessary stress that may come from being connected online. You won’t be able to dwell on that awful Facebook picture your friend tagged you in if you never saw it!

2. Stretch

Stretching will help your body limber-up and physically prepare you for the class ahead. Even 10 minutes does the body good and you may be hurting a whole lot more during Warrior 3 if you don’t.

3. Set an intention

Setting an intention for the class will help you stay focused and let go of the negative thoughts you may have stuck on the brain. Take 5 minutes before you practice to write down your intention– what it is, why you chose it + the good it will bring into your life. If setting an intention isn’t your thing, make a gratitude list! Then, focus on the elements you wrote down during class.

4. Stay hydrated– but don’t gulp the water down

Drink a tall glass of water one-hour before your practice. You want to stay hydrated for any form of exercise and yoga is no different! Don’t drink too much, however, or you may find yourself cramping-up.

5.  Listen to calming music

I like to play some calming music on the drive to my yoga studio. It helps me calm down and start to get relaxed for my upcoming practice. Rap and KissFM can wait until after!

6. Remember that you’re a student of the Universe

Remember that you are always learning and no one– not even your instructor who can get into Scorpion pose in, like, one-second — is done being taught. The sooner you accept this, the sooner you’ll find yourself open to the instructor’s corrections and the sooner you’ll find yourself having better practices. You might even get into a headstand one day! (A girl can dream, right?)

7. Use mat cleaner

Yep. It will literally stink when you finally get to sink into Savasana and realize that the nasty smell that’s been bothering you throughout class is your mat. You can buy a cleanser here for cheap or make your own! Side note: This especially applies to those of you that practice Bikram! Don’t be that guy.

8. Eat a protein bar

There’s seriously nothing worse than getting side-glances in class because your stomach is being Mr. Grumbly. Don’t fill-up on a whole meal before class, but having a protein bar will help sustain any hunger and also give you an extra blast of energy.

9. Bring a friend

Bringing a friend with you can help motivate you to do your best + having an accountability partner to-go every week (or day or weekend or…) is even better. The best part? You have a built-in partner to grab wine a juice with you after!

10. Do deep breathing

Pausing to take some deep breaths throughout the day will help you find your center and prepare you for the class to come.

Do you have any tips for bettering your yoga practice? 

Photo Credit: Sara Bishop Photography

Tips for Phone Interviews

Tips for a phone interview

I consider myself an outgoing person and -weirdly enough- I enjoy interviews. I think it’s fun to answer questions and dress professionally and all that jazz. (Not so weirdly enough) most people do not. However, back in 2013 when I had my first phone interview, I had no idea what to expect. My non-verbal cues couldn’t be expressed (or so I had thought) and for all the employer knew I could have been in my pajamas- how would they know if they liked me? I was a nervous wreck.

Since then, I’ve had many phone interviews (and have gotten the job/client 94% of the time) and have many tips to pass down to those of you that might have your first phone interview coming up or hell, maybe your third and really need to nail it. Whatever number you’re on, I gotchu.

Here are tips for landing the job during your next phone interview:

1. Still Use Non-Verbal Cues

When you use the non-verbal cues (smiling, nodding, etc.) that you would use during an in-person setting it helps your tone come off in the way you hope it would. You sound more interested, polite and eager.

Note: Smiling is particularly huge for me- the employer will be able to hear the excitement in your voice and they’ll be pleased that you sound so enthusiastic about the position. I like to overdo it a little bit in my interviews as enthusiasm can be harder to convey over the phone.

2. Change-Up the Way You Answer the Phone

Always answer the phone with, “Hello, this is ____.” If you don’t, it creates an awkward feel for the rest of the call– using this tactic, you set the tone for the rest of the interview, let it be a good one.

3. Take the Call at Home

You want to be in a setting free of noise and distractions + you also want to make sure you have a stellar phone connection. Be prepared and make sure your phone is fully charged (since really, who still uses landlines these days?) and you’re sitting in a room that’s tidy and that you feel your best in.

4. Dress the Dress

Yes, I know I said that the employer would never know if I was in my pajamas or not, but really, dressing professionally when taking an important phone call sets you up for success. It allows you to get into the proper mindset and when you feel confident, you’ll come off as such. When you’re in your boyfriend’s old frat t-shirt and a pair of norts? Not so much.

 5. Print Your CV and Resume

During phone interviews employers frequently reference your cover letter or resume, make sure that they’re printed out in front of you for a quick read– I suggest having a computer open nearby as well (especially if you’re speaking with a potential client that works primarily online and it’s not necessarily a traditional job) but it gets annoying when employers can hear clicks in the background or your tech fails you.

6. Still Prepare

This one is huge. I know so many people who didn’t prepare for their phone interview because they were under the impression that it was going to be easier or different from a traditional one– think again! Prepare, prepare, prepare like you normally would and use the non face-to-face thing to your advantage by creating a cheat-sheet that you can have in front of you for quick reference.

7. Speak Slowly + Clearly

I’m a super fast speaker (when I get excited there’s no slowing me down) so this one I’ve really had to practice. The employer can’t read your lips over the phone so you have to make sure to slow down and speak extra clearly to assure they can understand you.

My suggestion? Practice this before the interview!

Have you had a phone interview? What tips would you add to the list? 

Yes, fill me in!



Eating Healthy On A Budget

eating healthy on a budget

1. Shop the Sales

I like to check-out the ad section in the Sunday paper + frequently pop-in to health food stores to see what sorts of sales are going on in my area. Things like fruits and meat can get expensive, but you’d be surprised how often specials come through– I actually just got home from buying two containers of strawberries for only $5! Certified organic too. :)

2. Eat Seasonally

Eating seasonally is one of the best things you can do to eat healthy on a budget and it’s much easier than you think. Not sure what’s in season when? No problem! Print out this chart and keep it handy when you’re…

seasonal eating chart

3. Meal Planning

I know, I know, the drag that is meal planning (!!!) However, I swear it’s not that bad. I started meal planning this year and not only am I eating way healthier, I’m spending so much less on groceries too!

A personal tip of mine? Try to use a few of the same ingredients in your meals and buy what you can in bulk for the week to save a little extra.

4. Don’t Eat Out

I know it’s not reasonable to say stop eating out completely (I love my Taco Tuesday lunch dates with the girls just as much as the next person!) but try to choose a healthy option when on-the-go. I like to always have something pre made in the fridge so I usually make a big salad at the beginning of the week.

Another thing I love to do? Shop the pre made section at Sprouts! I’m always finding super healthy lunches there– my last find? A quinoa pasta salad for $2.68!

5. Make Your Freezer Your BFF

I like to buy fruits I like when they’re in season and then freeze them so I have them on hand later (when they’re more costly in the grocery aisles!) I also am obsessed with the packaged bags of fruit at Fresh & Easy– super inexpensive and especially great in my smoothies!

6. Shop the Perimeter

The perimeter of the grocery store is where most healthy food is sold and when you shop the outside you’re more likely to buy more nutritious options. Another plus is you’re staying away from most of the processed foods that mark their prices up + are so hard to pass up in the moment. My weakness is Chips Ahoy. I’ve learned this from experience.

7. Visit a Local Farmers Market

A better suggestion? Shop the farmers market! Not only are the fruits and vegetables being sold usually 10 x’s healthier than the food sold in stores, you’re helping a local family put food on the table. Farmers markets are a great place to get deals– especially if you go near the end when they start marking down the prices so they don’t have to haul it all back home.

8. Choose Cheaper Cuts of Meat

I know the filet mignon looks amazing, but it’s probably not the most cost effective option! Ground chuck, flank steak and chicken thighs are all better options.

How do you eat healthy on a budget?

Biz Babe Spotlight: Paige Poppe

Paige Poppe Career Spotlight

Paige Poppe is a 22 year-old powerhouse playing + working in San Luis Obispo, California where she’s currently finishing up the last semester of her undergrad in architecture.
Photo Credit: Weekends Are For Lovers

If you were to look at Paige Poppe’s artwork you might question, “How did she not do this her whole life?”  The designs are intricate and the artwork bold, unique and incredibly her own—a sight to behold.

Surprisingly, she didn’t always see this as much more than a hobby. It came to her when she was fashion blogging and realized she wasn’t passionate about fashion and wanted to share the art work she was creating with the world—and so she did.

She had sold skateboard art on Etsy in the past but knew she wanted to get more serious in May of 2014 when she was studying abroad in Copenhagen. Shortly after the realization she launched a Kickstarter campaign to buy the necessary supplies and found herself pleasantly surprised when she had a fully funded venture under her belt when she returned home in June.

Today, she’s sitting down with me so we can talk biz, balancing work + play and what she does to wind-down after a long day.

Tell us about what you do:

I am primarily a skateboard artist, which is what most people know me as! I paint skateboards and do custom commissions on skateboard deck and longboard decks. I also make my mini cruiser decks by hand, which I truly love because the entire process is handmade. Besides skateboards, I just love to paint in general. I honed my watercolor skills in Copenhagen, and I practice with the medium every day. I also create Youtube videos weekly about my artwork and business, to share my advice + experiences with others.

So I guess that makes me a painter, a maker, a creator? It’s so hard to define ourselves these days because we have all learned to be so multi-talented, which I LOVE!

What messages do you hope to convey through your art?

I’m all about positive + creative vibes. PMA, positive mental attitude, is something that comes naturally to me, but I practice it every day and want to spread that to others. I also really hope to encourage people to be bold by pursuing their dreams. I believe that if you want to do something, you should!

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Walk me through a typical day in the Paige Poppe office?

On a day that I don’t have a lot of architecture classes, I am most productive in my studio!

7:45 Wake up

8 -10 AM: Meet my girlboss photographer friend, Asia Croson, at Starbucks. We bring our laptops + notebooks, catch up, and have a crazy creative brainstorm sesh!

10-2 PM: Alternate between painting, answering emails, filming + editing videos, or shipping orders.

2-4 PM: Class!

4-5 PM: Zumba at my university gym

5-7:30 PM: Shower + make dinner, and do a little more creative work or website work

7:30-9 PM: Watercolor class with my architecture professor on campus

9 PM – 2AM: Paint more, watch tutorials, edit, read. On days that I have less class, I like to try and really focus on my business. Painting is also my form of relaxation, so I just end up doing it all the time :)

Can’t live without item in your business?

Definitely my Canon DSLR camera! High-quality content is important to me, so I always have my camera next to my current painting, to take photos + film. Also, a little secret is that basically my entire Instagram feed is taken with my DSLR, so it’s definitely a necessity!

in the studio

What’s your favorite part about running your own business?

This is going to sound like a typical answer, but I can’t tell you how many amazing creative friends I have made since last year, including you Kayli! I have somehow met a ton of them through Instagram, and also just love getting coffee with new friends and chatting about creativity + being a small business owner. I am very lucky to have made a lot of creative friends in Arizona, so I am very excited to move back and hang out with them a lot more often!

Tell me a little bit about your art. What inspired you to start selling custom painted boards?

I made my first deck for myself in high school, after learning how to longboard.I really enjoyed the unique canvas because of it’s shape and because it was useable. Form and function! I also love the look and texture of raw, natural wood. So when I can, I try to reveal as much of the original wood surface as possible.

View More: http://asiacrosonphotography.pass.us/paige-poppePhoto Credit: Asia Croson

Where do you find your artistic inspiration?

I’m very inspired by crumbling old architecture—think worn red brick walls, and big tattered wooden beams. Lately I am challenging myself to incorporate my architectural eye + background into my artwork, and I am really loving the results.

I also love maps, the Arizona desert, cacti, the sun, old school tattoos, and pop punk music.

Anything you’re obsessing over lately?

As far as art goes, I’m really just obsessed with watercolors lately. Trying out new brands of paint, creating my own palettes, and practicing all the time. And as for something not art related, I’m dying over Lisa Messenger’s book Daring + Disruptive.

What advice do you have for an entrepreneur starting out?

Be bold, work hard, and be 100% yourself. Don’t try to be anyone else, because your unique self is the best thing you can offer the world.

I also recommend getting hooked on some good business resources! I listen to the raddest podcast, Being Boss, while I paint because it is chock-full of great advice. Also a huge reason I was inspired to start an online business was from watching from Alex Beadon’s videos on Youtube!

rpg-GiaITlNg7mT3D0weWMc5x06kK-0rwqUDJ4KgKswPhoto Credit: Weekends Are For Lovers

Owning your own business is hard! What do you do to let loose + wind down after a long work day?

I love to go to Zumba because dancing is something I’m trying to tap back into! I also love catching up on my favorite Youtubers content, and love walking to our local farmers market on Thursdays with my roommates!

What all do you sell? What are you hoping (if anything) to add to the store in 2015?

I currently offer custom skateboards, longboards, and cruisers, as well as decks with my own designs. I sell a lot of paintings on wood, and originals + prints of my watercolors. In 2015 I really want to focus on creating more original pieces on top of my custom work!

Anything you like to snack-on while you work?

Besides a big jar of iced coffee…goat cheese! Spread some on piece of toast + put strawberry jam on top…you’ll die.

You can find Paige over on:

Website • Instagram • YouTubeFacebook