10 Tips for a Productive Day

posted on: Monday, August 31, 2015

There's no time like the present (or a Monday morning!) to get productive. Whether you work in an office or at home, how do you stay motivated and tackle your week?  I decided to share what works best for me to make the most of days, here in no particular order:

1. Tackle something right away. Resist the snooze button and get the morning started! Even the most simple accomplishments help me feel ready to take on the day. Making the bed, unloading the dishwasher, tidying up the kitchen, organizing my purse, etc. These little tasks only take a few minutes, but always help get me in the productive mindset for the rest of the day.

2. Prioritize. Determine what needs to be done now, tomorrow, and later this week. Setting priorities puts things into perspective and helps break down what's most important. I like keeping an "at a glance" monthly calendar, as well as a daily to-do list, to keep on track with monthly commitments and goals.

3. Make a to-do list. One of the most satisfying things is crossing off a completed task list! Sometimes it's helpful to make a daily to-do list the night before, so you can go to sleep stressing less about the next day. I love these to jot down to-do's, notes and ideas that pop up during the day.

4. Get some fresh air. If possible, try to get outdoors during the day. Take a break to walk around the block, grab a coffee down the street, or enjoy your lunch outside. Being able to take a few breaths of fresh air always helps to clear my mind and feel refreshed.

5. Wear something you love. When I wear something I love, I feel an extra boost of confidence — don't you? That might mean wearing a certain color, a meaningful piece of jewelry, a bold lipstick, a spritz of fragrance, or a pair of heels that make you feel like a million bucks.

6. De-clutter. Less is more! You know what they say: cluttered space, cluttered mind. Organize your workspace, as well as your closet, so you begin each day in control and without a messy mindset.

7. Disconnect. Easier said than done, especially when your work is tied to email or the phone. Try to disconnect (as much as you can!) to avoid unnecessary distractions and get down to business.

8. Stay focused and positive. One of my favorite ways to find inspiration is to browse Pinterest, especially motivating quotes and words of wisdom. I also love the idea of framing and placing these prints near your workspace.

9. Get moving. Even a little exercise, like stretches or a quick walk, can make a big impact. Exercise (and keeping a healthy diet) always helps me stay energized and prepared to conquer the day.

10. Reward yourself. Having something to look forward to is a motivating factor to power through my to-do list. Meeting a friend for happy hour, trying a new restaurant, planning a weekend getaway, or treating myself to a manicure (or fro-yo) seems to work ;) It's all about balance, right?!

Summer to Autumn Style

posted on: Thursday, August 27, 2015

While I'm surely not ready for summer to end — we hopefully have a few good weeks yet to enjoy! — I do like catching a sneak peek of styles for autumn. On my wishlist for the new season is this classic field jacket, a pair of leopard flats, this off-the-shoulder dress, a structured tote (this one is on sale!), a lightweight scarf, these cute booties (also love this heeled suede pair), this embroidered dress and an oversized hat (we'll see if I can pull it off!). Any pieces you're looking forward to wearing this fall? As we transition to September, I'm continuing to update my Shop page, as well as my Autumn Pinterest board for seasonal style and more — check them out now, or bookmark it for later!

Items as seen above: Lightweight Parka || Pendant Necklace || Skirt || Leopard Clutch (one of my favorite pieces I own!) || Statement Earrings || Scarf (comes in multiple colors) || Link Bracelet || Eyeshadow Palette || Crossbody Bag (splurgeworthy) || White Dress || Felt Hat (under $30!) || Belt || Leopard Flats

5 Recipes I Tried and Loved

posted on: Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Let's switch things up today and talk about: cooking. Do you like to cook at home? While I do enjoy it, I admit it's easy to fall in a pattern of cooking the same 4 or 5 things over and over. (Who else is with me?) There's a weird dichotomy in the city sometimes, where you can walk to multiple grocery stores and fresh markets within a few blocks, but you can also eat at an endless host of restaurants, or order just about anything you wish at any hour directly to your doorstep. While I feel good about cooking dinner at home most days, I do want to want to be better about adding more variety in the kitchen. I often turn to Pinterest, as well as friends and family, for recipes. Here are 5 tried-and-true recipes I'm loving lately:

Now your turn! What are your favorite recipes to make at home? Do you meal plan? How do you not let your groceries sit in your fridge until they go bad?  Where do you find new recipes? I'd love to hear!

Image via Glitter Guide

Sundress + Denim

posted on: Monday, August 24, 2015

There’s something so special about late summer here in the city. Everyone is out and about —walking their dogs, having a picnic in the park, enjoying rosé on a rooftop — trying to soak up every last bit of summer. I spent the weekend taking walks along the lake, enjoying a night with friends at the harbor, and on Friday, my boyfriend and I celebrated our anniversary! So long as the sunshine is here, I'm wearing lots of dresses and sandals — autumn will be here soon enough!

Special thanks to my Mom who took these photos!

Everlasting Summer

posted on: Friday, August 21, 2015

With summer (sadly!) winding down over the next few weeks, I'm trying to make the most of the warmth and sunshine while it's here. Here's to a happy and fun weekend ahead — hope you're able to enjoy some time outdoors!

And in case you missed it: 10 Fun Things to Do This Summer

Summer Weekender

posted on: Tuesday, August 18, 2015

mott 50 navy and white stripe toni dress
laura bright and beautiful blog chicago
sole society cassidy weekender bag
navy and white stripe dress with converse sneakers
long sleeve navy and white stripe dress
navy and white stripe dress weekend outfit
mott 50 toni dress
navy and white stripe dress with leather weekender bag
laura bright and beautiful blog
Keeping things short and sweet today, as I'm enjoying an extended weekend at home in Wisconsin! I packed my favorite weekender bag with a few casual summer pieces, like this navy and white stripe dress and these cute white sneakers. I have to mention how soft, lightweight and flattering this dress is, plus how it provides 50 SPF coverage from the sun - so cool, right?! Be sure to check out Mott 50 at Nordstrom and Tuckernuck

My outfit details: Mott50 Dress (c/o) also available here || Sole Society "Cassidy" Weekender Bag (under $70) || Converse "Shoreline" Shoes (c/o) || Bracelet (c/o) || Sunglasses (a style steal under $10!) || Lip Color (#6)

Links I Love

posted on: Friday, August 14, 2015

• Ways to make the most of summer while it lasts.
• 10 beauty habits you should be doing now.
• 9 ideas for how to add character to your home.
• A collection of career advice and tips from leading women.
• These are the food capitals of the world, according to Instagram.
• How to make your manicure last days longer.
• My 5 favorite fitness tips, no matter the season.
• This berry acai bowl recipe looks amazing (and healthy!)
• Quick and simple ideas for impromptu summer entertaining.
• If you're local, a fun event to benefit Chicago Public Library Foundation.
• Love the off-the-shoulder trend this season? This, this and this are on sale!

Images 1 / 2 / 3 / 4

Staying Connected

posted on: Thursday, August 13, 2015

Every so often, I feel it's good to "check in" with you, whether you're a new reader or have been visiting for months (perhaps, years?). First: Thank you! And secondly: I want this to be a place you look forward to visiting. I love when you chime in with your thoughts and comments on posts, or when when I receive an email with a question or idea. You can find me on Facebook and on Instagram, where I share snapshots and glimpses of daily life. And recently, I joined Snapchat (laura-platt) — though I'm not too keen on snapping a whole lot. Sometimes it's better to enjoy the moment as it happens, you know? No matter the way, let's connect! Again, thank you for visiting and sharing your comments — I love hearing from you!

Image via Wandeleur

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