My name is: Laura Rubin.
My expertise is in: Creating transformative analog experiences, the power of journaling, having good taste in human beings, telling stories.
I stay physically healthy with: I physically crave time outdoors, ideally doing something active. So, I try to hike or surf at least once a week. It’s why I moved to the West Coast from NYC. Being in nature hits my reset button.
A few years ago, it was pointed out to me (thanks, Mom) that the things I did to unwind from my over-scheduled life were all pretty intense. Even the type of yoga I was into was kind of hardcore. That was then; this is now. These days, I have a better balance. I incorporate breathing techniques to chill out my nervous system, book myself massages with Kumi Sawyers and embrace my love of infrared sauna sessions. And yoga? Bring on the Yin.
I keep my emotions balanced with: Not surprisingly, my go-to tool is journaling. Regularly putting pen to paper helps me be my best self. If I start feeling edgy or out-of-body, it’s usually because I haven’t been keeping up with my twice-daily journaling rituals.
For bonus points in the morning, I whip up a matcha latte, load it with Sun Potion’s Mucuna Pruriens and sip it while I write. Hellooo, dopamine!
In the evening, I’ll top my journaling-in-bed off with some CBD from Lord Jones. Getting enough rest is key to my emotional well-being. Sweet dreams = sweet Laura.
I’m intellectually stimulated by: I am always reading at least two books. No Kindles for me; I’m old school: print on paper. I’ve been on a nonfiction kick for the past few years, but I try to mix it up with poetry, novels and memoirs. Some of my recent favorites: Coming to my Senses by Alice Waters (fun memoir from the foodie visionary), The Nature Fix by Florence Williams (nonfiction book about how spending time in nature boosts our health, happiness and creativity) and The Overstory by Richard Powers (a hauntingly beautiful and unusually structured work of fiction about the value of forests).
I was recently transformed by: A visit to poet W. S. Merwin’s palm tree conservancy in Haiku, Maui. It underscored the power of the long-play and the difference one person can make in this world.
In the last six months, the ritual that has become so important for me is: I’m a marketing geek at heart, so I typically ask AllSwell workshop attendees to fill out a brief survey after we wrap. The next day, I sit and read them with a cup of tea. I’m so completely in the moment when I’m in facilitator mode, and the surveys have become a wonderful opportunity to for me to revisit the experience from a different perspective. I always learn something. Maybe a tweak I can make to optimize the experience, or I get a lovely takeaway about what a particular exercise or passage meant to someone. I jot down notes for myself about highlights, observations, opportunities for improvement. Rather than rushing past the event and being onto the next thing, it helps me slow myself down and appreciate what the experience meant to others.
Here’s how you can do it too: Analog rituals slow down time, something most of us are in acute need of these digital days. I don’t expect others to create surveys. That could be super-awkward (“How are my dinner party hostess skills on a scale of 1-10?”). But, after a special experience, step away from your phone, sit down and take a few minutes to write about it. Not just the big achievements like having a baby or buying a house. Maybe it was a near-perfect beach day, a night out with your best friend, a big meeting you particularly crushed, a spontaneous kitchen dance party? I find that I savor, reflect on and remember moments better by writing them down.
It helps me live my process because: I’m giving myself the gift of being more palpably aware of moments of grace.
Take a “Moment” to learn more about Laura Rubin's journey here.
Photo by Sofia Törnqvist