Tara Nicolas knows the importance of taking care of your mental health. She is a Nike trainer, Reiki, and Meditation practitioner as well as an actor and dancer. While balancing so much on her plate day to day she discovered her passion for bringing sustainable wellness from the inside out.
Nicolas is one of the instructors for the Move for Mental Health event series that helps to celebrate the power of the mind and movement. During this 6-week series, the goal is to raise money and moods for this very important cause.
Continue reading to learn more about Tara and how she aims at prioritizing your mental health.
Recess: Has fitness always been an important part of your life? If not, why is it important now more than ever?
Tara Nicolas (TN): I basically came out of the womb dancing. so I’d say movement was always very important. Fitness came into my life as an adult and provided me with physical strength of course but also mental strength. A sense of mental fortitude and resilience.
Recess: What does your week-to-week workout routine look like?
TN: I’m in a season of my life where my schedule is very volatile. I do my best to have a plan but the truth is that now more than ever I have to treat myself with compassion. I had a lot of strange body stuff happening due to stress. So, some days I want to do a power workout and it has to turn into a nourishing yoga session. And my body thanks me for it short and long term.
Recess: What are some of the daily routines and movements that support your mental health?
TN: Taking a moment to really tune into how I’m doing and really assess the best way to approach everything on my schedule. Do some meditation, reiki, gentle massage/stretching, nourishing meal or juice or smoothie, etc. I’ve learned the hard way to prioritize my self-care or my body/mind/soul will make me do it.
Recess: If someone was just starting on their fitness journey (and needed a pick-me-up!), what would you say?
TN: Honestly I don’t have anything magical to say other than, I know it’s hard but you are not alone. Some days will feel better than others but we have to keep showing up best we can because the goal is to live the entirety of our life still being able to move our bodies in all the ways we want and like go to the bathroom alone.
Recess: What do you do when you’re feeling burnout coming on?
TN: Quarantine has been a huge reality check. burn outcomes more easily because of all the new stressors. I have to slow down, spend more time at home relaxing or doing relaxing activities in nature. choosing things/people/experiences that lift me up. Taking some Epsom salt baths with candles/music/essential oils.
Recess: Why is destigmatizing mental health personally important to you?
TN: Since I’m so empathic I’ve always veered towards sadness. it’s important to face these different emotions, know when to ask for professional and personal support, build your community, and also have your personal tool belt to support yourself through difficult times.