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How Olivia Noceda Uses Top 5 Lists To Become Her Best Self

Tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do.

Hi! My name is Olivia Noceda and I am a health + wellness influencer/blogger @olive.eaaats, and I work part time as a Pediatric Speech Language Pathologist. I am 26 years old and I live in Los Angeles, CA!

 

Working long days as a speech pathologist seems a bit draining, but you are extremely consistent it seems with all that you do – from content creation to workouts to your morning routine to making dinner. What does balancing all that with a full time job look like for you? 

HA! I’m glad I make it look balanced. Truth be told, it’s a lot. Lately it seems like I’m unable to keep up with my routine + get sleep… so I’m working on that. I took a big jump about four months ago and went part time as an SLP so that I could focus more on content creation, as well as connecting with my community. It’s been a huge blessing in my life but also a major learning curve in terms of having completely different routines every single day.

What’s most important to me is that I am crossing things off of my “top five” list everyday – my “top five list” is a list of my biggest five priorities in life, giving me a chance to better achieve balance.

I think it’s easy to want to do everything: workout, call family/friends, be a good clinician, make recipes/take pictures, engage with my community, sleep, eat and make healthy food, respond to emails, have a morning and nightly routine, sauna, THE LIST GOES ON.

If i were to live my life thinking that I could do all of the things I WANTED to do, I’d probably get down on myself really quick… because the reality is: I work 25/8, with both my speech job and my blog, so i need to make sure I’m achieving things I know will make me feel happy and balanced.

Here’s my current top five list:

  1. Sleep (at least 6-7 hours)
  2. Sweat (this ranges from a walk, to yoga, to HIIT, to a sauna)
  3. Engage (with my instagram community and/or my clients)
  4. Meditate + Routine (take my time in the morning to meditate and have a proper routine where i don’t feel rushed)
  5. Tell someone I love them

If I can accomplish those 3 out of the 5 of those things everyday, I feel balanced and like I can take on the world!

I’ve experienced this contrast with personal growth that because I’m so into personal growth and love learning new ways to take care of myself, that it can sort of put me in a negative mindset when I don’t follow through or take time to do all those things. I’ve seen in a recent post you talking about going through this sort of thing. What kind of self-talk comes up for you often? And how do you shift your mindset?

Totally get this. I believe that we will always be our own worst critic and if we choose to be, our own worst enemy. It can be tough especially when we are exposed to millions of people and accounts on the daily living and doing things that we ourselves wish we could be doing.

As aforementioned, making a list of your top five in any situation or relationships is SUCH a great way to create achievable and tangible goals.

I even do it for my relationship – like, what are the top five things I need from this person/relationship, and what are the top five things I want to give to this person/relationship? I think this helps us get into a mindset where we are accomplishing and crossing things off, leading to positivity.

When it comes to comparison (body image, skin, personality etc.) my advice is to look into the mirror naked every morning. Say 1-3 things that you love about yourself that doesn’t have to do with your physical appearance. See that person and love that person, cuz she’s all you’ve got!

 

You were building an audience on Instagram when you decided to take a year long break. Why’d you take a break and what did you learn from the experience? Was Instagram something you were trying to make a career out of at the time and if so, did you feel fear around leaving it behind?

Taking a break from Instagram was easily the best decision I’ve made in my entire life. At the time, “influencing” wasn’t a thing and it really just became a hobby. The thing is –– I was in graduate school and was recovering from seasonal depression around the time I decided to leave. I didn’t have this “AHA!” moment or anything, I just stopped posting and it felt really good and right.

A few weeks after not posting I decided to sign off and sign back in when the time felt right for me… which was almost 14 months later. Because it wasn’t a career, I didn’t have fear of leaving it behind. I also think I came to a place where I was really trying to figure out who I was, so what I was posting didn’t feel authentic.

Leaving it now, like for good, seems almost impossible. It’s my life blood. The community that I’ve built is so supportive and amazing, I think we are making real change on social media and now I can confidently say I don’t know where I’d be without it!

I heard about equanimity from you and I love this so much – the feeling of mental calmness – and I’d love to hear, what do you do to feel equanimity? What are your go-to practices?

Ahhh, one of my favorite topics. True equanimity is very difficult to find – go to a monastery and become a monk if you really want it, haha. In this modern world, finding equanimity takes time and effort, amongst lots of education. I’ve learned about equanimity through my readings, but here’s how i go about it, in short.

Treat everything the same, yea? Take a job promotion and a job firing. It could be really easy to get worked up about both. “YES, I GOT PROMOTED!!!!” and “SHIT, I GOT FIRED!!!” come from the same line of energy.

So, taking either of those experiences into account and treating them the same way will allow you to have more equanimous energy within your daily life. “A promotion is here; I accept it and have gratitude for it,” or “I was let go today; I accept it and have gratitude for it.”

Learning to treat most everything in your life with that type of equilibrium will balance out your energy and allow you to accept the good just as you accept the bad, making the words “good and bad” meaningless, therefore leading to… ~*ENGLIGHTENMENT~* Haha, not really nirvana or anything, but you’ll start to recognize how much easier life becomes! 

 

What are some ways that you’ve changed over the years, and what have been some lessons that have stuck with you? You’ve mentioned going from being the loudest one in the room, to feeling at peace with being quiet. I’d love to hear more about that and any other ways you’ve changed.

Oh gosh, I have changed so much. I’d say my biggest change is my attitude towards mindfulness – doing everything with purpose and intentionality rather than impulsively. I think that it has come with age and error, for me. Most of the changes I’ve made in my life have come from accepting “error” or “failure” and being compassionate with myself about it, then finding ways that I can be “better” as it pertains to my life! I am proud of every stage of my life that I’ve been in. Had I never been the loudest one in the room, I would’ve never found the motivation to turn inwards and find peace in silence.

What are you still working on and what’s challenging you?

Currently, it’s finding a work/life balance. Assessing everyday how I can work less and live more, while also continuing to work hard and accomplish my goals. I’ll let you know when I’ve got it figured out, but I think this is something that most of us struggle with #thestruggleisreal. So just know, YOU ARE NOT ALONE!

 

I find it really refreshing that you talk about money and saving. It’s something that a lot of us think about constantly. What are the things that you save on? And what’s worth splurging for to you?

Oooof! Money is such an important topic to me. Mainly because I pay loans, a car payment, rent, and everything else in my life on my own.

Can you guess what i’m going to say about this one? TOP FIVE LIST!

I have a list of the top five things I NEED to save for (mentioned above) and a top 5 list of the things I’m willing to pay for monthly, and a top five list of my “splurges.” I usually pick one thing/month to spend on.

I save on food. I buy organic when I can/if it’s on the dirty dozen list, but not always. I prep my meals or have planned meals every single week, so that I can eat on about $10/12 a day. My boyfriend and I go out for one big meal/week at our favorite Italian restaurant which is my weekly splurge!

I like to spend money on self-care when it suits me – I pay a good amount of money for my workouts because it’s something that’s really important to me, but I save in areas like acupuncture and massages, because it’s not a priority in my life currently!

I suggest making a NEED VS WANT list, it will help to sift out those things that aren’t necessary and maybe are financially irresponsible!

You are quite open online, but what’s something your followers would be surprised to learn about you? What’s something you think might be a misconception?

Ha, oh gosh. I guess one thing my followers might not know about me is that I partake in the 4/20 lifestyle! A big misconception being in the health and wellness world is that we don’t partake in things like drinking, partying, etc. I think that you can responsibly do all of these things and still lead a really healthy life! I drink infrequently and my idea of a party is staying inside and watching the Great British Baking show, but when Friday night rolls around I love to responsibly partake in smoking legal Marijuana! I love brands like Lowell Farms, which has an organic strain, and Dosist, which sells really thoughtful THC vape pens to target all types of things like anxiety and sleep! So yeah, i’m not a stoner, but I definitely love to ~chill~ every now and then.

 

And lastly, what lights you up right now? What are you excited about?

LIFE!! I am excited about having the opportunity to wake up every day with an able body + mind – life is truly a blessing and I’m just so grateful to be alive! Otherwise, I’m excited about my new website which will be launching towards the beginning of November! Be on the lookout for the link in my bio