If I were to narrow down a list of my favourite wellness bloggers and health coaches, Angela Simson from Gratitude Project would be in my top 5.

Her mission is to help people live a healthier and happier version of themselves through her approach to practicing gratitude. And she does it with so much love and authenticity.

I get so excited talking about wellness and spirituality, and Angela reminds me of myself in parts. I am generally a positive person and like to encourage people to see the bright side of life and be happy! I’ve also had a good life so far, of course a few ups and downs but nothing too crazy. As Angela jokingly said in her bio, “I don’t have tear jerking Oprah couch worthy rock bottom story to tell. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for improvement”.

Three years ago, my husband, our six month old boy at the time and I moved to Auckland from Dubai. It was a challenging transition. My whole life changed very quickly. I left my family, best friends and my life on the other side of the world to start a new one with the love of my life and our child knowing that we will be setting routes here. Even though I’ve lived in many countries, I knew in my heart that this move was different. I was excited but sad, scared and a little lost especially as a new mother.

While scrolling through the many wellness instagram accounts, I found “The Gratitude Project” and was immediately hooked by Angela’s philosophy – which has always been mine too – Always be thankful for what you have, and more will come your way. I just needed to be reminded of it during this transition in my life.

I was so excited to interview this amazing women and share her wisdom with you.

– How did the Gratitude Project start?

I was in the car one day when Bo was only a few months old, driving to see the chiropractor because she had some problems with her neck. She was in the back of the car screaming, she hated the car! I could feel my stress levels rising and I pulled over the car for the 4th time to get her out and soothe her, frustrated as anything and wanting to cry. I was running late, Bo hated the car and it was all getting on top of me. But I had this moment when getting her out of the car and I realised that some people would give anything to be in my situation. I had a beautiful baby girl, I was in the car taking her to see a health care practitioner that I could easily afford and that was my biggest stress that day. Who on earth was I not to feel so incredibly blessed in that moment? But I allowed all the things out of my control, her discomfort in the car and my poor time keeping to overshadow how incredibly luck I really was! So I made a decision there and then to stop choosing to focus on the discomfort and start focusing solely on gratitude. It changed everything for me. I became more present and happier within a week and over the long run I started to see big changes in my health, relationships and life.

– What has motherhood taught you?

Mostly about me as a person, what my strengths are and where I need extra nurturing and love.

– What advice would you give your younger self?

None, because if anything had changed for me as a teen or a child I might not be where I am today and the person I am today. I really love life right now.

– What is a typical day like for you?

Waking up with all 4 of us in the bed, cuddles for a while as we slowly get up, Hugh stretches and occasionally I go to F45 then we all head to the kitchen to prepare Bo’s lunch for kindy and Hugh makes Bo and I breakfast. I usually work through the day while Harper sleeps and when Bo gets home it’s cuddle time with her as she’s usually tired from the day and needs some extra attention. If all is calm at home I head out for a sunset beach walk and then dinner happens. Some nights I head to yoga, others it’s just clean up time and we all get ready for our bedtime ritual.

– How do you deal with tough moments?

I remember how lucky I am in other ways, I spend extra time on self care, I surround myself with the things and people that make me happy.

– How do you balance motherhood and your marriage?

I’m in a very lucky situation that Hugh and I both work from home, so it’s definitely easier to keep our marriage strong as we’re together all day. When Hugh was working in corporate life it was different, I would only see him at night and I’d be busy making dinner then trying to clean up from the day and mornings were a flurry of chaos! Having him with us at home has changed that. Bo is in care 2-3 days per week and we make the most of it just being us and Harper on those days, we go for lunch and spend quality time checking in with each other.

– What are your top tips for time management?

I only have one, stop procrastinating! It will change your productivity for life!

– Your views on social media?

Social media can be a beautiful source of inspiration, an amazing way to connect and also an inconvenient trigger to some. It’s all in how you use it and being aware of what feeds you and what creates havoc in the mind.

– How spirituality and meditation helps you as a woman and a mother.

Life isn’t sunshine and rainbows at all time, when things are tough and the stress is creeping in, my spiritual practices bring me back to earth, ground me in what’s really happening (not my false evidence appearing real FEAR) and helps me to keep a level head.

– Your favourite recipe at the moment.

The best ever Dahl from my own online nutrition program, it’s so easy and so warming during these cooler months!