She’s a beautiful and brilliant force for good; a community connoisseur of sorts and Nonprofit Executive. And she’s one of our favorite people on the planet. We’re ever so blessed because Sonya Shields is sharing her self-care rituals. Read. Enjoy. Be inspired.
Tell us a bit about yourself – where you live, where you’re from and what you are creating
I grew up on Long Island, went to college in Washington, DC and remained for many years before moving to Brooklyn 21 years ago. My life is super busy as a nonprofit executive and active Board Member for several organizations. I love that my work enables me to be creative in service to mission driven nonprofits focusing on social justice and human rights causes. Outside of my work, I am always creating. Whether it’s creating special occasions for my friends, writing, expressing myself through fashion, decorating, gardening or making music playlists. I am a creator.
Share with us some of the self-care rituals you practice
I juggle multiple projects all throughout the day, so to create balance, mental focus, and to maintain a healthy immune system — I practice Transcendental Meditation (TM) twice a day for 20 minutes. I have practiced TM for 3 ½ years. After my morning meditation, I pray, sometimes turn to affirmations, and I always review goals for the day. My next stop is the gym or my Peloton bike. I work out at least five days a week. Exercise is just as important in my life as eating and sleeping. It helps boost my energy, produces endorphins, and keeps my libido alive. The way I look at life is that we are going to get older, but we don’t have to age.
I believe in taking care of myself from the inside out. I eat clean, drink tons of water, and usually have a fresh juice or healthy smoothie every day with powders like Ashwagandha, Chaga Mushroom and Moringa whole leaves. I haven’t eaten red meat or pork in over thirty years, and I prioritize whole foods. I also see the benefits of taking supplements that clean out the toxins and feed my body with antioxidants. It’s also important for me to boost my energy, maintain hormone balance, and ensure that my mind is sharp. Some of the supplements I use include Biotin, Spirulina, Chlorophyll, Advanced Antioxidant Formula, B Complex, Maca Root, Estroven, and DMAE to name a few.
Then there is my skin care. I am blessed with good genes. But I do believe in feeding my skin with vitamin c serums, oils, and I regularly use masks and steam my face. Some of the products that I use for my face include Rose Water by Simplified Skin, Instant Brightening Moisturizer by Caudalie, Radiance Serum by Caudalie, Vitamin C Facial Serum by Serumdipity, Vitamin C Serum by Isdin, Purity Made Simple Mask, and I like activated charcoal masks. These are just some of the skincare products that I use and I put time in on a daily basis.
I decided to let the perm grow out of my hair and go natural in 2018, which began a journey of reconnecting with me. When I had a perm, I went to the hair salon every week. I never missed a hair appointment. Even after my hair was natural, I was still going to a hair stylist because I was convinced that I couldn’t do my hair on my own. Then COVID hit and I had to quickly figure it out. When I washed my hair for the first time during the height of COVID, it had been 22 years since I washed it. Learning my texture was like going back to my childhood. It has been a beautiful journey and I love the process of putting my hands through my hair, and caring for it. I use all Oway hair products. Some of my favorites are Moisturizing Hair Bath, Moisturizing Hair Mask, Curly Potion, and Glamshine Cloud Oil Spray. The products help with detangling, and help to maintain moisture and shine.
I do a deep cleaning and organize my apartment. I find it challenging to live in clutter and chaos. I also like to throw things out. I don’t believe in keeping things that don’t serve a purpose.
I don’t drink alcohol or consume sugar during the month of January, which for the past several years has continued into February. By the time my birthday arrives in March, I am centered and ready for a glass of champagne.