When was the last time you scheduled a break in between Working From Home? Not a lunch break, but an actual break providing you with much needed time to unwind – perhaps through stretching, meditating, or even napping.

While many (unconsciously) feel undeserving of a break until everything on the agenda has been completed, research has shown that your performance actually decreases the longer you concentrate on just one specific task. In short, another myth has been busted by Wild Ginger: working non-stop is not productive. Instead, to improve productivity, you should focus on resting and sleeping better.

 

Set Goals Prioritising Rest & Sleep

How exactly can you set goals that prioritise rest and sleep? Well, it’s important to know what type of rest you need, so take a moment to read this; then, set a SMART goal – a goal that is specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. This way, you know what you’re committing to and can hold yourself accountable. Remember, accountability is necessary when goal setting, but staying flexible will allow self-love through the form of kindness to permeate your being.

 

How To Rest Better

Now that you know what type of rest you need, here are ideas on how you can implement resting into your daily, weekly, and monthly schedule:

  1. Emotional Rest, Mental Rest, and Spiritual Rest (Non-Physical Rest)

Daily: While WFH, write down your to-do list to avoid feeling emotionally and / or mentally overwhelmed.

Weekly: Journal about everything and anything (try to remember if your colleague or client upset you, write about it).

Monthly: Find what helps you feel spiritually rested then do it (like listening to a sound bath, breathwork etc).

  1. Physical Rest, Sensory Rest, and Social Rest (Physical Rest)

Daily: While WFH, set an hourly or bi-hourly timer on your phone to remind yourself to readjust your posture and to close your eyes for at least a minute to avoid sensory overstimulation.

Weekly: Slow down your heart rate with a relaxing yin yoga class.

Monthly: Schedule at least one day (or maybe every Sunday) of the month for you-time.

  1. Creative Rest (Non-Physical and/ or Physical Rest)

Daily: Create a Vision Board and gaze at it, or add to it every time you feel uninspired.

Weekly: Set aside anywhere from five minutes to an hour to get creative (dancing, drawing, cooking etc).

Monthly: Explore Mother Nature to feel re-inspired by life!

 

How To Sleep Better

Besides your mental health being affected by poor sleep, your physical health is affected, too. Totally shocking: a study has shown how one night of poor sleep has similar affects as a poor diet over the course of six months. Before that fact keeps you awake at night, here’s how you can sleep better:

  1. Avoid Stimulants

Which of these three can be stimulating to the digestive system: chocolate, spices, and / or sugar? If you guessed all of the aforementioned, then you’re absolutely correct and should remember to avoid poor pre-sleep snacks. You can still indulge, of course, but until a certain time only – for example, cut back or omit the aforementioned after lunch. According to experts, preferred pre-sleep snacks would be complex carbohydrates: fruit, nuts, popcorn, wheat bread, and more.

  1. Limit Your Use of Electronics

There’s a reason why iPhones stop emitting blue light past a certain time, daily: blue light is not good for your circadian rhythm. If you have a tendency to scroll through social media or to just use your phone in general before sleeping, then know that that habit could be impacting the quality of your sleep. To improve your sleep, simply limit your use of (or don’t even use) electronics before sleep and set your phone / tablet to airplane mode.

  1. Set The Vibe

How you set the vibe is entirely dependent on what type of person you are and where you live, but here are some suggestions: a diffuser and lavender essential oil for those feeling stressed, high quality bedding for those with sensitive skin, ear plugs for those living near roads, blackout shades for those living near bright lights, and the list goes on…

  1. Familiarise Yourself with Several Strategies

What do you do normally do when you can’t sleep? If you do nothing but lie in bed, then it’s time to research sleeping strategies! Although getting out of bed when you’re attempting to stay in bed may seem counterintuitive, it may help you feel more sleepy – especially if you’re trying a guided meditation, deep breathing, muscle relaxation through body scanning, and other tactics that will help you feel calm.

  1. Regular Timing

The best is always saved for last (according to some, at least) so here’s the cherry on top of your new and improved sleep cycle: regular timing. By sleeping around the same time daily, your body will basically condition itself to feel sleepy during those times. In the long run, this means struggling to doze off will be but a distant memory – yay!

On the heels of World Environment Day, comes World Oceans Day – an annual celebration of the heart of our planet and its importance to all life on Earth. The ocean provides us with oxygen, nourishment and even employment, but now, it is in need of our support. This June 8th, the theme of United Nations’ World Oceans Day, The Ocean: Live and Livelihoods, reminds us that the ocean is our lifesource, so we must protect it from global warming, pollution and overfishing.

 

We may not be able to go out and clean up the beaches this year, but we can still help save the oceans from inside our homes. Through small actions and sustainable decisions, we can make a big difference! Don’t give up on sustainability during this time, if anything, the pandemic has shown us how dependent we are on the ocean, which is why we must work together to protect it. 

 

When it comes to conscious shopping, a brand that is making it easier for consumers is terrae – while other fabrics release microplastics into the ocean, theirs is made from repurposed ocean waste. Founded by two friends, Azalea and Suan, the sustainable fashion brand focuses on inclusivity, innovation and information. “Our goal is to create activewear and athleisure pieces for real bodies in real situations, while doing our best to minimise our impact on the planet”. 

 

With a name inspired by the word “Terra”, the Latin / Italian name for Earth, terrae aims to integrate sustainable practices into their production and supply chain processes, and at the same time, raise awareness and educate their followers on issues such as climate change and how to live a more sustainable lifestyle. “Doing well and doing good don’t have to be mutually exclusive, and our goal is to achieve both in the long term”.

 

Read on for their take on sustainable fashion and how you can help save the ocean from home!

 


Why did you start terrae?

About a year and a half ago, we were on our way to lunch after attending a workout class together and what was supposed to be our usual car ride from the gym to our favourite chicken rice shop, turned into a conversation about wanting to make a difference in areas we felt strongly about — sustainability, fitness and (cute) clothes. That’s how it all started!

 

 

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How did you come up with the creative idea to use ECONYL®?

We spent quite a long time researching sustainable fabrics that were suitable for activewear. ECONYL® is one of the most innovative and sustainable alternatives to virgin nylon, having been made from ocean waste such as discarded fishing nets and other materials bound for landfill.

 

 

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What is the sustainable fashion industry like in Malaysia?

We believe the concept of sustainability is still in its infancy in Malaysia. In recent years, we’ve noticed a number of sustainable fashion brands sprouting up in Malaysia and around SEA, but none that really focused on activewear or athleisure in particular, which is where we aim to fill the gap. We still have ways to go as a nation when it comes to shopping more mindfully, but we’re seeing signs that we’re on the right track, which is encouraging.

 

 

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What challenges have you faced as a sustainable fashion brand?

There’s no question that fast fashion continues to dominate the fashion industry with new design launches every week, and prices being cheaper than the cost of a meal. It can be difficult to connect fashion to the destruction of our environment as the effects and consequences are so far removed from the end consumer by the time the final garment reaches us. Compared to seeing plastic bottles floating in our oceans or litter in the streets, the environmental damage caused by the fashion industry is a lot less obvious because it doesn’t happen in our own backyard. The negative impacts occur in developing countries where the majority of our clothes are produced today.

 

As a sustainable brand, one of our biggest challenges is pricing our products in a way that is fair for our manufacturing partners, our customers, as well as ourselves to be able to continue to operate and grow as a business. Additionally, the challenge with activewear compared to everyday garments (that can be made out of natural fibres), is that there needs to be the right balance between stretchability, compression, breathability and comfort for it to be suitable for work outs. This unfortunately means that they need to be made from synthetic fibres like polyester and spandex, which release microplastics into our waterways when washed. While ECONYL® is a good starting point, our goal is to be able to improve on our product offerings with the introduction of better and more advanced technology.

 

 

 

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Other than your fabrics and packaging, how else do you promote sustainability?

We work with a number of non-profit organizations, as well as the local community throughout the year! Here are some of our initiatives in the time since we’ve launched:

 

We’re also organising an online activation this World Oceans Day! Due to movement restrictions and rising Covid-19 cases, we won’t be able to do organise a physical cleanup, but we’d like to encourage our community to show us how they lead a more sustainable lifestyle, be it through cultivating good habits, or even doing a cleanup of their own in their neighbourhoods.

 

 

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How can we protect our oceans from home?
  1. Eat less seafood (watch Seaspiracy on Netflix if you haven’t already!)
  2. Take shorter showers
  3. Refuse single use plastic as much as possible
  4. Support organizations working to protect our oceans
  5. Learn about why oceans are a critical part of our ecosystem, then share your wisdom with your friends and family!

 

 

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“With so much negative news in the world today, trying to effect meaningful change or create lasting impact as an individual can feel overwhelming, isolating, and even impossible at times. It’s important to remember a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step — we just have to start somewhere.”

 

Support terrae by shopping their pieces here and follow them on Instagram for more sustainability tips!

What is an alternative latte and why would any latte be labelled as a superfood? In a nutshell: an alternative latte is caffeine free, dairy free, and filled with much needed nutrients. The fact that superfood lattes are served in various shades of the colour wheel is a definite bonus for consumers demanding functional ingredients that can boost energy and the immune system – and according to Grand View Research, it’s a growing demand.

If you’re obsessed with caffeine and frowning at the idea of anything other than an actual latte then here’s:

Why You Should Consider Reducing Your Caffeine Intake and / or Ditching Caffeine Altogether
  1.    If You Want More Sustained Energy Throughout the Day

For those unaware: caffeine is a stimulant and like any other stimulant, the effect is temporary. The reason you feel that distinctive caffeine buzz is due to adrenaline and cortisol being released – hormones that kickstart your fight-or-flight response.

  1. If You Want to Feel Less Anxious

Unfortunately, that fight or flight response can cause anxiety, heart palpitations, nervousness, and even panic attacks. For adolescents, a high intake of caffeine has shockingly been linked to increased chances of depression.

  1. If You Want to Efficiently Absorb Nutrients

Without getting too complicated, caffeine contains tannins and tannins can potentially inhibit the absorption of calcium, iron, and vitamin B. By lowering your caffeine intake or refraining from caffeine, this side effect is then reversed.

  1. If You Want to Balance Your Hormones

Research has found that caffeine can change the way estrogen is metabolised – especially in younger women. Ironically, for women experiencing menopause, caffeine may increase estrogen which can result in increased symptoms (such as hot flashes).

  1. If You Want Better & Deeper Sleep

Unsurprisingly, caffeine has been proven to alter sleep cycles which results in restless sleep. If you switch to superfood lattes over traditional lattes, you may find that falling asleep becomes easier, too.

The Various Benefits of Superfood Lattes
  1. Hojicha Latte

 

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As Hojicha comprises of L-Theanine, it’s the perfect superfood latte to start with if you want better sleep. L-Theanine has a calming effect and can actually help to lower your heart rate. Considering how the Covid-19 is still rampant, boosting your immune system remains more important than ever. Guess what? L-Theanine does exactly that as it helps your immune system function better (but of course, stay safe)!

Purchase a Hojicha Latte from Oh Cha Matcha

  1. Turmeric Latte

 

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You probably drool over curry, but have you tried consuming only it’s main ingredient (turmeric)? Most likely, your answer is ‘no’ although if you were to ask any health freak, they’d reverently nod ‘yes’. Reason being that turmeric contains a compound known as curcumin which is anti-viral, contains anti-inflammatory properties, and has anti-parasitic qualities.

Traditionally, it was yogis who combined turmeric with black pepper, cinnamon, ginger, and dairy-free milk. Nowadays, this concoction, known as Golden Milk, can be tried by anybody in the world who has access to superfood lattes!

Purchase Golden Milk from Damai Café

  1. Beetroot Latte

 

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Totally surprising: recent studies have shown that beetroot can improve athletic performance. As beetroot is rich in nitrate, it can improve blood flow, too, which leads to notable health benefits. A major reason why city-dwellers especially should try a Beetroot Latte is because beetroots are a source of betalains which supports liver detoxification.

Purchase a Beetroot Latte from Urbean Café

  1. Charcoal Latte

 

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Almost every Asian is aware of how important it is to have charcoal pills on standby, so it makes sense to include activated charcoal into a superfood latte. If you’re unaware of why charcoal pills should be an essential item in your household, then know that activated charcoal helps gastrointestinal issues – such as bloating, indigestion, and irritable bowel syndrome. It helps by reducing tension and discomfort by binding to toxins which in turn, eliminates said toxins.

Purchase a Charcoal Latte from Fittie Sense 

  1. Rooibos Latte

 

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Yes, Rooibos is a tea but it can also double as a superfood latte when non-dairy milk is added! Due to its antioxidant properties, it’s known for boosting overall heart health and lowering cholesterol levels. Like most antioxidants, Rooibos has the potential to reduce the risk of cancer – a definite win/ win situation (yummy and healthy).

Purchase a Rooibos Latte from RGB Café

Start Your Superfood Latte Journey

Note that every café and / or restaurant chosen was specifically picked due to being able to provide alternative milk options. If you’re ready to taste the rainbow, then place your superfood latte order ASAP and tag @wildgingermy to let us know your thoughts!

Global Running Day is an annual celebration of the beloved pastime that encourages physical wellness and community spirit. Held on the first Wednesday of June, it is an important reminder of the positives that running can provide and the power of unification, especially during these times. 

 

Running has seen a boom during the pandemic – it was the #1 fitness trend of 2020 and continues to be in 2021 as gyms are forced to shut down and lockdowns limit other physical activities. People have become more health-conscious since the COVID-19 outbreak began and many took up running as a way to stay active and healthy, release anxiety, and cope with cabin fever.

 

In Malaysia, Brand New Waves Running Club has been promoting running and fostering community spirit since 2019. Founded by a group of individuals who believe in change for the better, they have successfully built a sense of belonging for like-minded members with a safe and empowering space that celebrates active lifestyles, music, fashion and art.

 

This Global Running Day, we connected with three captains from Brand New Waves Running Club for their advice on starting a running routine and staying motivated!

 

Tengku Adlina

When did you start running?

I started running 2 years ago, April 2019 specifically. I attended one of BNWRC’s Sunday morning sessions at KLCC park.

 

What was a misconception you had about running?

I somehow always thought that running is just something you can do. And if you can’t, it means you’re just not physically good at it. But I learnt that just like everything else, you can always get better. Everyone has a starting point. And I definitely started on my first day.

 

How has the pandemic affected your running – have you been running more or less?

Last year when the pandemic first hit, I definitely did not run as much as I did because I had to figure out how to run alone without the group. It’s not as motivating. But currently, I am running more now as I’m starting to find my rhythm and confidence in running alone.

 

Physically and mentally, how has running helped you cope with the pandemic?

It definitely is a huge part of how I cope with the pandemic. Since everything has shifted to working from home entirely for me since last year, I spend almost all day in my room. It’s a good way for me to get some fresh air and movement. Mentally, it has become my way of checking in with myself. Every run allows me to reflect back on my current wellbeing. If there was anything troubling me, it surfaces itself during my run and I allow myself to process it then. If I’m having a good day, it is also reflected in my run. If I’m not having such a good day, the happy hormones would naturally kick in by the end of the run hence elevating my day a bit better. It probably is my number 1 method for coping with the pandemic actually.

 

Although it has distanced us, the pandemic has also amplified our community spirit. How has your running club continued to support and empower each other during this time?

We still continue to encourage people to run with our postings and resharing other people’s post of them going for runs. We run events and campaigns – we had one early this year where we passed virtual batons to people (#BNWRCrelay). That was quite cool and got many people motivated to go out and run again even if they hadn’t in a while because a ‘baton’ was passed to them. The most important thing is staying relevant; to people’s emotions, what’s going on around us, and coming up with something for the community that speaks to what they might be going through.

 

What advice do you have for new runners?

Keep showing up and don’t overwhelm yourself with information about how to run. Just run first, and have fun with it. You’ll figure out the rest along the way.

 

Diyana Radzi

When did you start running? 

I represented my school’s track & field team as a sprinter and began road running at 15 years old. When I took an interest in exploring other sports and forms of exercise, I wasn’t running as frequently, but picked it back up right before our first lockdown last year.

 

Without the right focus, running can be hard at the start. What motivated you to continue running? 

Initially, running was my coping mechanism. It was my quiet time with myself, for me to give that mental talk I needed, for me to enjoy being outside and soak in its beauty and drown out the rest of the world. Then, I kept on running cause I loved how good it made me look and feel. Not that I’m the fittest person out there, and it doesn’t matter to me if I have the best abs or not, but running generally makes me feel good about myself, physically and mentally. I don’t necessarily love the feeling during running, but the feeling after is so good, it’s enough to make me want to do it again and again, (almost) every day. Yes please to that daily boost of endorphins!

 

What was a misconception you had about running? 

That I had to beat yesterday, every day. Be faster with every run. Boy oh boy, was I wrong. You’re only wrecking your body if you overdo your runs. Getting injured would be counter-productive to your progress. Enjoy the journey! You’ll eventually get to where you want to be.

 

Physically and mentally, how has running helped you cope with the pandemic? 

The world feels a little bit nuts right now to be honest. To me, running is my natural antidepressant. That boost of endorphins and serotonin really helps me stay sane, and keeps me in a better mood, which in turn makes me a better person. It’s a form of self-care, both physically and mentally, as long as you don’t overdo it. At a time where everything seems so scary and uncertain, running is the one thing that makes sense.

 

What are the benefits of running in a group? 

I love running in groups! If it weren’t for BNWRC, I don’t think I would’ve made running a habit. Group runs are a great way to keep you motivated. “Mana nak breakfast / minum lepas ni?” will definitely motivate you to finish your run! But on a more serious note, I started running in a group for safety reasons because at that time, I only had time to run at night and running with a group of people is definitely the safest strategy.

 

What advice do you have for new runners? 

Listen to your body. A good run is one where you feel good after, not dying for air with soreness everywhere. Set a targeted time to run then slowly increase it, and when you’re more comfortable, build your mileage gradually. Don’t worry about the pace, you’ll slowly get there (and yes, to run fast is a slow process. At least it is if you want to achieve it with a low risk of injuries). Run your own race (a really good tagline from BNWRC!). Don’t compare your progress with other runners cause it’s really not a competition.

 

Fatemah Shatar

When did you start running?

Around 3 or 4 years ago…I think.

 

Without the right focus, running can be hard at the start. What motivated you to continue running?

Rather than relying on motivation, which comes and goes, I prefer tapping into discipline. I know it sounds pretty stern, but it’s going with what you feel on that day. You can just do a short run with an easy pace, and even walk a little on low motivation days, but push yourself on days where you feel you can go total athlete mode!

 

What was a misconception you had about running?

Some people are just born runners and I am not one of them. Looking back now, it sounds as If I am putting myself down, but that was a serious belief I had back then. To be honest, there is no such thing – there is only practice, dedication and discipline that separates a good runner from a bad one (if there is such a thing!).

 

Physically and mentally, how has running helped you cope with the pandemic?

It helps immensely! Physically, it goes without saying that it helps improve my overall fitness and health. But what’s even greater is how it helped me mentally, because when I’m running I get to enter into this meditative space which is free of stress and noise from the outside world.

 

What are the benefits of running in a group?

Running in a group is pretty special. There’s an immediate sense of togetherness and that feeling that you are never alone, plus it helps you be more committed! When there is a planned run, you’re not gonna bail too many times as you would do if it’s only you.

 

What advice do you have for new runners?

Mentally…don’t be afraid, don’t be intimidated and don’t let anyone, including yourself, tell you that you can’t do it. And on the practical side, do read about injury prevention and some basic information about running so that you can enjoy running for a very long time!

 

Get in on the action by following Brand New Waves Running Club on Instagram and Facebook for more inspiration, motivation and advice!

The persisting stigma surrounding menstruation can be seen by the many euphemisms that exist for the term: “shark week”, “code red”, “female trouble”, “time of month”, “Aunt Flow”…and these are just in English! While some may be entertaining to use, they are actually harmful as they reinforce the idea that having your period is something to be ashamed of and should be hidden from others. Because of this stigma and taboo, menstruation isn’t discussed as openly as it should be, and this leads to false information being shared from generation to generation. It’s now become crucial to have open conversations about periods, and dismantle cultures of misinformation and shame that have been around for centuries.

Let’s debunk these menstrual myths to prove how healthy and normal menstruation is:

 

MYTH #1
“EW, PERIOD BLOOD IS DIRTY!”

This is one of the oldest myths that have been around, and passed down from generation to generation. Period blood isn’t dirty blood. Period blood is simply a different form of bodily fluids (which is naturally secreted by the body) that contains a little bit of blood, uterine tissue, mucus lining and bacteria.

 

MYTH #2
PERIODS = WOMANHOOD

We’ve all heard the notion, “Once you get your period, you become a woman”. Now, throw that notion out the window! Not all women menstruate and not everyone who menstruates is a woman. Periods aren’t experienced by cisgender women only – they are also experienced by trans men, and non-binary, genderqueer and intersex individuals.

 

MYTH #3
“YOUR PMS IS NOT REAL / YOU’RE JUST BEING DRAMATIC”

For those who menstruate, PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome) is a naturally occurring monthly change in their body – not a mindset! Right before a menstruation cycle, the sex hormone (oestrogen and progesterone) levels drop drastically, causing emotional and physical symptoms such as mood swings, tiredness, painful cramps and headaches. When the human body experiences these changes, it is bound to affect their emotions and reactions to daily stressors. It is not made up or an excuse – it is very much real!

The next time your period causes you to not feel like your usual self, please remember that it is completely normal and perfectly okay to feel that way.

 

MYTH #4
“YOU WILL LOSE YOUR VIRGINITY IF YOU USE A TAMPON / PERIOD CUP”

The sanitary products developed for dealing with our periods are predominantly safe and won’t affect your virginity at all. These products, which are designed to go inside of you, may cause the hymen to stretch. However, they will not cause someone to lose their virginity. Check out our list of safe, eco-friendly and organic period products here!

 

MYTH #5
LATE PERIODS = PREGNANCY 

False! There are plenty of reasons why a period might be late. Sudden weight loss, stress, contraceptive pills and irregular periods can affect your menstrual cycle – hence, making your period late. If you’re worried, take a pregnancy test to ease your mind or visit your gynaecologist. Don’t forget to practice safe sex!

You can understand your period cycle better by downloading period tracker apps like Flo and Clue.

 

It can be extremely empowering to exchange experiences, information and ideas about menstruation. By encouraging candid conversation about periods, we are supporting the individuals in our lives, and breaking the taboos and myths around them. Having your period is a normal thing – as ordinary as having to go to the bathroom! No person should ever be held back just because they are on their period.

You may have skipped school because of period pain, or have gone home early because of a stain, but in many countries, including Malaysia, children have been missing school because they can’t afford menstrual hygiene products or are afraid of being bullied for having their periods. 

 

Period poverty is a global problem that affects up to 500 million individuals (more than 800 million people menstruate daily). They have limited access to sanitary products and hygiene facilities, such as toilets, handwashing facilities and/or waste management. This human rights issue is exacerbated by the lack of education on menstrual health and hygiene, and the prevailing taboos and stigma. As a result, millions of individuals are held back from reaching their full potential at school and work because it threatens their opportunities, health and overall social status.

 

In Malaysia, the pandemic has made matters worse. Individuals in poor urban areas were already struggling to find an absorbent substitute for unaffordable sanitary pads, resorting to paper, newspaper and ‘kain batik’. In rural areas, they’ve even had to make use of coconut husks and banana leavesNot only are these ‘alternatives’ extremely uncomfortable, the unsanitary conditions they provide put wearers at risk of developing infections, which can lead to serious health issues.

 

Period poverty doesn’t just affect girls and women, it is a global sanitation problem. According to UNICEF, 2.3 billion people live without basic sanitation services worldwide, and in developing countries, only 27% of the population have a hand washing facility (soap and water) at home. The lack of education on menstrual health and hygiene among boys and men also harms for those who menstruate, as it affects their confidence and social solidarity. 

 

Menstrual Hygiene Day is a global advocacy platform that promotes good menstrual health and hygiene for all. Their goal is to end period poverty and stigma by 2030 by raising awareness and breaking the stigma around menstrual health and hygiene, and engaging decision makers to increase action and investment in menstrual health and hygiene at global, national and local levels. 

 

Achieving menstrual equity worldwide will empower people to manage their menstruation safely and hygienically, with confidence and without shame. It will allow everyone access to menstrual products, proper toilets, hand washing facilities, waste management, and education.

Do you constantly feel overwhelmed, run-down or anxious? If you answered YES to at least one of them, it’s time for you to have some ‘ME-time’ and focus on your self-care.

Self-care is any behaviour, action, or tool that helps reduce a person’s stress level and possibly avoid health problems, mentally and physically. Our proposed ratio is 20:30:50. 20% for Future Relief, 30% for Instant Relief, and 50% for Basic Needs. All of it comes together to ensure you lead a well-balanced life!

 

20% : Future Relief

We should always strive to live in the moment as “now” is the only time that matters; but when we practice these healthy habits, we are helping our future selves to be more mindful, centered, and calm.

For future relief, you should utilize these ‘tools’:

  • Journaling

Keeping a journal helps to analyze your moods, problems, concerns, and fears. Tracking this daily helps you recognise your triggers and stressors, and you can find ways to better deal with them.

  • Resolutions & Goal-Setting

Align your focus and goals to sustain good momentum in life. This is an easy method of guiding you to your end target.

Feel free to check out our guide to making mindful resolutions for your life!

  • Therapy

Explore your feelings, thoughts, patterns of behaviours, and trauma causes through therapy. Learn new coping techniques and skills to manage daily stressors, as well as symptoms that may be associated with your diagnosis.

There are many types of therapy, explore which you would like to try out here.

 

30% : Instant Relief

There are plentiful ways to instantly raise our ‘happy’ hormone levels! Try these out when you want a little pick-me-up:

  • Turn Up The Music

Listening to happy music alleviates your mood and stimulates creative thinking. Shake your booty while you’re at it too! It doesn’t just burn calories, it boosts moods and body image. Here’s our fun self-care playlist that you must check out!

  • Laugh Out Loud

Laughter truly is the best medicine. Our mental and physical health improves when we let loose with a little laughter. Here’s a plan of action: Watch a funny movie or comedy series – those reruns of “Friends” and “Brooklyn 99” may actually be beneficial for your heart!

  • Meditation

Practicing meditation proves that it doesn’t take a lot of time to do the body and mind good. Quieting the mind for just a few minutes helps reduce stress and anxiety. If you dislike the ‘typical’ meditation method of sitting cross-legged, fret not – There’s More Than One Way To Meditate – Find Out What’s Best For You!

 

50%: Basic Needs

Often ignored but extremely necessary, these Basic Needs are what make up the majority of leading and living a good life. Maintaining this helps us sharpen our physical and mental health through better stress management, better self-esteem, and overall well-being.

  • Sleep

Prioritizing snooze time is important for a healthier, happier you! Skipping out on shut-eye may hurt your productivity and reduce your abilities to make rational decisions – not to mention the imbalance of hormones it could cause. It is vital for you to allow your mind and body to rest and recuperate so you can function at 100%!

  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!

Drinking enough water every day is crucial – the body needs it to perform its tasks well. From regulating the body temperature, ensuring your organs function properly, and preventing infections. When you’re well-hydrated, you also improve cognitive function, mood, and sleep quality.

  • Exercise

The benefits of exercising are bountiful – it decreases risk of diseases, releases stress, reduces feelings of anxiety, increases “happy” chemical levels in the brain, and many more! Sneak in a quick 10-minute workout or a 15-minute walk and get your body moving.

  • Fuel Up On Healthy Food

Indulging in ‘junk’ food is necessary self-care from time to time, however, you should fuel your body daily with foods that nourish you best. Consuming fewer sugars, salts, saturated and industrially-produced trans-fats ensures a healthier diet. Plan your meals and choose nutritious foods, so you can perform your best, every day. Healthy you = Happy you!

 

Assess which parts of your life require more self-care and attention; and reassess your life often! As your daily situation changes, so should your self-care needs. When you are caring for all areas of yourself, you’ll likely see an upgrade in many parts of your life – especially your health and relationships.

Have you ever experienced shavasana during a yoga practice? If yes, then you’d know how relaxing shavasana can be while simultaneously providing you with more energy, and clarity, after. If no, then here’s another method to feel the same: napping!

 

Why You Should Nap More

When thinking of ways to boost your productivity while working from home (WFH), napping is most certainly not the first idea to come to mind. In fact, most people view napping as an activity strictly reserved for children and / or seniors. To some, napping is even considered a waste of time – an interference to minutes spent productively. 

 

Yet, science has proven again and again how napping, regardless of age, is beneficial:

 

What Type Of Nap You Should Take

Considering the aforementioned benefits, it makes total sense to incorporate napping into your WFH schedule. However, napping will also be of benefit to you in these scenarios:

 

What To Keep In Mind 

As to really reap the benefits of a nap, timing is everything. For those unaware, while you’re asleep you move through various stages of sleep, depending on the brain waves you’re accessing and its effects on your eye movement. Without getting too science-y, here’s what you need to know:

 

With that in mind, the ideal length for an in-between work nap would be anywhere from 10-20 minutes. Napping within this timeframe is commonly referred to as a ‘power nap’ as it provides recovery benefits without any of the grogginess post nap. As for what time to nap, aim for the halfway point between when you awoke and when you plan to sleep. Reason being that if you nap too late in the afternoon or in the early evening then you may struggle to sleep – which you definitely don’t want!

 

Wild Ginger wishes you happy napping ahead 🙂

So another MCO is upon us, meaning the option to ‘balik kampung’ is unfortunately unavailable to us. Similarly, visiting family and friends to ‘makan’ together in celebration of Hari Raya may not be possible for everyone due to inter-district travel being banned!

But guess what?

Even if you can’t ‘balik kampung’ or attend any open houses, you can still enjoy traditional Malay dishes through food delivery services such as GrabFood, Foodpanda and Beepit. Although many perceive Malay food to be unfriendly for vegetarians and / or vegans, mouth-watering options do exist so here’s a comprehensive list of traditional and typical Malay food you can enjoy:

 

 

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A post shared by BMS Organics Official (@bmsorganics)

BMS Organics Cafe was founded in 2007 and, since the start, has focused on providing customers with food free from artificial colouring, chemical preservatives, GMOs and MSG. If you avoid microwaves, then know that BMS Organics Cafe does not cook its food in microwaves at all!

If you’re craving: Curry Laksa

Location: Find a BMS Organics Cafe outlet near you (and double check that it’s the cafe)

Opening Hours: Varies depending on outlet

Order via GrabFood during MCO

 

 

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A post shared by HALAVEG 清真纯素 (@halaveg)

HalaVeg was founded by a local woman who decided to leave her high-paying job to start a vegan restaurant. Why? After 10 years of being vegan, she realised that more options for vegans were needed, which is why the slogan for HalaVeg is: everything you love made vegan.

If you’re craving: Nasi Tomato with Ayam Masak Merah (Ramadhan Special)

Location: LG07, Empire Damansara, 47820 Petaling Jaya

Opening Hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Order via GrabFood during MCO

 

 

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A post shared by The Hungry Tapir (@thehungrytapir)

The Hungry Tapir (THT) opened during the first MCO in Malaysia and, despite the challenges, has only gained in popularity due to its diverse menu that offers a fusion of flavours. If you want to know more about THT, then read our interview with the foundHer here!

If you’re craving: Satay

Location: Lot 135, Jalan Petaling, 50000 Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. (closed on Mondays)

Order via GrabFood during MCO

 

 

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A post shared by Lauk Pauk : Urban Warung (@laukpaukrexkl)

Lauk Pauk is basically a warung that’s been urbanised. Literally nestled in the heart of the city, Lauk Pauk caters to meat eaters and non-eaters, so note that choices for vegetarians and / or vegans is limited compared to other options in this list. 

If you’re craving: Pajeri Nenas

Location: RexKL, Jalan Sultan, 50000 Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: Varies depending on the day 

Order via Grabfood during the MCO

 

MediFood is run by a team of dietitians, nutritionists, and pharmacists with more than a decade of experience combined. While you can’t physically visit a branch right now, know that you can get professional advice on your dietary needs for free once the restaurant / store reopens.

If you’re craving: Mee Rebus

Location: Bangsar South, Damansara Kim, or Subang Jaya 

Opening Hours: Varies depending on outlet

Order via GrabFood during MCO

 

 

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A post shared by SALA Kuala Lumpur (@sala.kl)

Sala is known for its Tex-Mex cuisine but as the owner is local, he included Malaysian favourites in the menu. On Fridays, Bakso is available but normally sells out fast so if that’s something you’ve been craving, know that Sala is currently the only vegan restaurant providing Bakso. 

If you’re craving: Nasi Lemak with Rendang 

Location: Find a Sala outlet near you 

Opening Hours: Varies depending on outlet

Order via GrabFood during MCO

 

 

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A post shared by Simple Life (@simplelifemy)

Simple Life was founded in Malacca, 1992. Originally, it was a shop selling organic products and organic food. Following its success, Simple Life slowly started expanding and there are now 12 outlets across the Klang Valley, so check which outlet is closest to you by clicking the link below!

If you’re craving: Assam Pedas (labelled as Assam Seaweed Beancurd)

Location: Find a Simple Life outlet near you

Opening Hours: Varies depending on outlet

Order via GrabFood during MCO

 

 

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A post shared by 🍁Jean ジーン🍁| 日本びいき🎌📍Ipoh↔️PJ 🇲🇾 (@lijhuin)

Tze Erne was founded in 2015 based on the chap fan concept – essentially, a Chinese version of a warung. The menu is incredibly affordable and consists of mainly Chinese food but classic Malay items make an appearance, too. If you love salted egg yolk chicken, then the vegetarian version by Tze Ern is another recommendation! 

If you’re craving: Butter Chicken

Location: D3-G4-09, Publika, 50480 Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: Varies depending on the day 

Order via GrabFood during the MCO

 

Bonus: Even though Hijau is currently not available for dine-ins, keep it in mind for when the MCO is lifted as the pop-up buffet serves delectable vegan food. For now, a few dishes from the weekly buffet can be ordered via Thursdvys

 

 

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A post shared by Hijau 緑 (@hijaukualalumpur)

What is your definition of rest?

 

For most, rest is synonymous with sleep but here’s a fun fact: there are actually seven types of rest needed for the body, mind, and soul to feel truly rejuvenated. If you’ve been wondering why you still feel fatigued after sufficient sleep, then now you know!

 

But which type of rest have you been neglecting? Read on to find out what type of rest you need:

 

What Is It: A creative rest is when you stop chronically brainstorming idea after idea. Instead of pressuring yourself to think of solutions, you’re allowing solutions to naturally arise. A creative rest provides you with time and space to widen your perspective. 

Indicators: Feeling uninspired, creative blocks, and / or struggling to switch perspectives.

Solution: Surround yourself with inspiring images (yes, even at your work-desk), visit art galleries, and / or venture into nature.

 

What Is It: An emotional rest is when you stop avoiding your emotions. By understanding why you felt certain emotions, you can learn more about yourself and your triggers. After discovering your triggers, you can handle your emotions without feeling overwhelmed. 

Indicators: Easily triggered, prone to crying, and / or struggling to contain emotions.

Solution: Notice your triggers (caffeine, specific situations, specific comments etc.), embark on shadow work, and / or schedule time to emotionally express yourself to a friend or therapist.

 

What Is It: A mental rest is when you stop forcing your brain to work overtime. Instead of continuously overloading yourself with information, a mental rest creates time and space for your brain to actually process and store all the information you have been exposed to. 

Indicators: Forgetful, trouble concentrating, and / or struggling to sleep.

Solution: Incorporate a meditation practice into your day-to-day (even just for five minutes), schedule short breaks in between work, and / or jot down what you’ve learned / need to do / nagging thoughts etc. 

 

What Is It: Physical rest can be categorised into active and passive. An active physical rest focuses on improving blood circulation by stretching or massaging the body. A passive physical rest means literally resting by napping or sleeping. 

Indicators: Lack of energy, constant yawning, and / or struggling to stay awake.

Solution: If you feel physically sore or stiff then practice yin yoga or even Qi Gong, book a lymphatic drainage massage, an d/ or take cat-naps with an eye-mask (ideally up to 15 minutes).

 

What Is It: A sensory rest is when you intentionally deprive your senses of stimulation. Just like you can become mentally overloaded, you can become sensorially overloaded, too. Some examples of what can cause sensory overload: electronic devices, background noise, bright lights, flashing lights, multiple conversations at once,  etc. 

Indicators: Eye strain, headaches, and / or struggling to focus. 

Solution: Set a timer to remind yourself to close your eyes in between work, lower the brightness of your electronic devices, and / or limit your time with electronic devices (on Instagram especially!).

 

What Is It: A social rest is when you dedicate time to connect with yourself. Maybe for you, connecting with yourself is equivalent to spending time alone; or maybe it’s through meeting a friend who understands you and can guide you towards clarity. Just ensure that the person you’re meeting makes you feel revived instead of exhausted. 

Indicators: Feeling like you need a break from certain friends but not knowing why, feeling drained after socialising, and / or struggling with social anxiety.

Solution: Do something for just yourself, catch up with an old friend, and / or surround yourself with positive people.

 

What Is It: A spiritual rest is when you allow yourself time and space to feel connected to those around you and the world around you. By experiencing the power of unity, you will be able to uncover what life means to you and what you should do more of in order to feel fulfilled. If a spiritual rest includes religious elements is entirely up to you. 

Indicators: Feeling unhappy about your life, feeling disconnected from the world around you, and / or struggling to empathise with others.

Solution: Find a mantra (like: I am connected to my Higher Self) and repeat it daily, volunteer at a local NGO, and / or find your purpose through trial and error.

 

So which type of rest do you need more of? Whichever you need, remember that Rome wasn’t built in a day, so keep coming back to this article if you need guidance 🙂

A certified pilates instructor at The Flow Studio, and a proud single mother of four, Siu Lim has always been into fitness – she frequented the gym as a college student and squeezed in time for pilates as a new mom. Eight years ago, she turned these exercise habits into a dedicated lifestyle, and now she’s a familiar face in the fitness space, connecting with the community as a passionate pilates instructor and a fun-loving content creator.

With Ramadan entering the second half of the holy month, we spoke to Siu Lim about her current diet and workout routine. If you’ve also been fasting, you may have noticed your energy levels pick back up as your body starts getting used to it. Read on for Siu Lim’s advice on how to start working out and boosting your energy during Ramadan.

 

 

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A post shared by Siu Lim (@siulim)

 

What is your exercise routine like during fasting month?

Quite simple and sweet. Every morning, after Fajr, I do some pilates and yoga. If I have some time, I do indoor cycling. I always stick to this workout routine because it gives me a lot more energy.

 

Ideally, when should one work out during fasting month?

There is no right or wrong time for a workout, it always depends on what’s best for the person. Personally, I prefer to workout during the day because I find that it gives me a lot if energy, whereas many would think that it tires you out. It’s like a replacement for coffee in the morning for me!

 

What do you eat to keep you energised during the day?

I do eat my carbs. I am anaemic, so I make sure I eat my sugars, but I eat natural sugars, like dates, and stay away from artificial sugars, like cake. This is probably one of the hardest times to avoid cakes and cookies because they are always coming around as Raya is nearing, but I built up my tastebuds during the year to not have such a sweet tooth – so the cravings are not really there for me. If I do get cravings or hungry, I try to eat more proteins. During fasting month, my diet is more nutritious and I drink more water. It is only then I realise how little water I drink (until I start fasting)!

 

 

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A post shared by Siu Lim (@siulim)

 

How do you stay motivated?

I am a very competitive person, so that means I always follow a person or a group. This year, Lululemon had a running event by Goodspeed Run Club. I joined that to make sure that I kept up with my running, otherwise I would slack off and just be like, “no one is watching me, it doesn’t matter, it’s only a month”. So it is important to be part of a group or have some friends  to stay active with – it doesn’t matter what you do, just continue to be active!

 

What advice do you have for those struggling to stay healthy during fasting month?

Avoid eating fried foods, salty foods and high-sugar foods. Instead, Include foods from all major food groups, such as fruits and vegetables, rice and alternatives, and meat and alternatives.

 

You can book a pilates class with Siu Lim at The Flow Studio here or DM her on Instagram to join one of her own workouts – she’s always down to workout with people and provide motivation!

Sexual violence refers to all unwanted, forced or unconsented: 

by any person. These include, but are not limited to:

 

Throughout the world, women, children and men are affected by sexual violence. It has a profound impact on the psychological, emotional and physical health of the survivor. Although victims and survivors have unique experiences and different reactions, sexual violence can have a lasting effect on their everyday lives. This also involves their social wellbeing as individuals have been devastatingly stigmatised and ostracised by their own families and communities for being a victim. 

 

Some of the impacts of sexual violence include, but are not limited to:

Psychological

 

Emotional

 

Physical

 

Although there are some commonalities, it is important to remember that victims and survivors respond to sexual violence in their own way – there is no “right” or “wrong” reaction. Some victims may keep their feelings to themselves for days, weeks, months or even years after the incident (if they ever choose to share their story), some may express their emotions right after and tell others what happened. These are both normal and common reponses. We must respect each survivor’s choice and way of coping with their trauma, and support them by:

 

Many victims of sexual violence withhold or withdraw allegations because they are afraid of not being believed or having their experience brushed aside. We must take all complaints of sexual violence seriously. If they entrust you with their story, provide them with assurance and support. Let them know that you believe them and are behind them.

 

Listen to the survivor without judgement. Put your opinions aside to allow them to share what happened and how it made them feel. Acknowledge their feelings with empathy and compassion. They need a space to be heard and feel understood.

 

Victims of sexual violence have had their boundaries violated, so it is crucial to let them have control over their decisions. Even if they ask for your input, respect their boundaries and be a willing listener. They’ve experienced a loss of control and need to re-establish it.

 

There are a lot of myths and misinformation regarding sexual violence that puts the blame on the victims and survivors. These are extremely harmful. You must educate yourself to provide informed and compassionate support. This will also allow you to recognize acts of sexual violence, such as rape jokes and locker room banter, and call them out.

 

Sexual violence is a community problem – we all need to work together to address it. You can start by allowing victims and survivors to feel safe, respected and empowered. Showing support can make a difference, and have a positive impact on their healing process. Take them seriously, make them feel seen and heard.

 

If you or anyone you know is a victim of sexual violence, you can contact the Women’s Aid Organisation Hotline at 03 3000 8858 or SMS/WhatsApp TINA at 018 988 8058 .