Every once in a while a beauty influencer or brand comes along that’s so extraordinary in their efforts to give back, attention must be paid. Each Feel Good Friday, we’ll highlight these do-gooders along with simple ways to support their efforts.
Have you ever wanted to quit your job and try something completely different? That’s exactly what Fern Olivia did when she found herself working 14-hour days on Wall Street, losing her sense of calm and losing her sense of self. “My body rebelled. I suffered from chronic congestion, puffiness, brain fog, constipation, food allergies, and severe stomach irritability for nearly a decade,” she says.
A fainting spell in NYC’s subway was the final push she needed to complete a yoga teaching training and launch her own wellness practice that blended yoga, energy work, and more. Her services, she found, were in high demand. So high that she quit her corporate career and left the concrete jungle for Los Angeles, the beachside oasis that would allow her healing and growth to begin.
As Fern’s confidence grew, so did her business. She founded Thyroid Yoga® after a Hashimoto’s Hypothyroid diagnosis, as well as Ajai Alchemy, a therapeutic skin care line to be used in conjunction with a self-care practice. Her yearn to help others also drove a partnership with Keep-A-Breast and Drop4Drop.
Here, the meditation guru reveals the inspiration behind her give-back collaborations, the advice she gives clients for recharging, and her personal ‘do unto others’ mantra.
Alexis Farah: Tell us about your partnerships with Keep-A-Breast and Drop4Drop. Why did you choose those nonprofits in particular?
Fern Olivia: I love collaborating with nonprofit organizations that I feel a connection with, and that are genuine in their efforts and passion for giving. That’s why Keep-A-Breast and Drop4Drop are organizations I’ve chosen to give back to through purchases of the Ajai Alchemy Grace and Radiance gift sets. I love that products I make are loved and cherished by the recipients all over the world, and that beyond that, the impact is even deeper through my partnership with Keep-A-Breast and Drop4Drop.
My friend Laura Rubin, a breast cancer survivor and founder of Allswell, and Lisa Merkle, a spokesperson for prevention, introduced me to Keep-A-Breast founder Shaney Jo when I moved to LA. All three of these beautiful, radiant women are cancer survivors and advocates, and I was inspired by their stories. I felt an intuitive hit and that I need to be involved in empowering young women to check their breasts.
Drop4Drop has entered my world recently through my friend Normandie Keith. I feel very blessed to have clean water available, especially during my recent travels in Costa Rica, while natural disasters have affected our brothers and sisters in Mexico and Puerto Rico. In addition to supporting Drop4Drop, I give to LifeStraw, which is also ensuring our global community has access to clean water. Water is life!
AF: Ajai encourages self-empowerment and lifting yourself out of negativity. How do you tell clients to find that recharging “me” time?
FO: One word – botanicals!
Ajai is a Gurmukhi word meaning invincible, and I believe that we all have the power to shift our mind at any moment. We can feel uplifted, empowered, confident, radiant, graceful, and easeful at any given time. That is why I’ve created alchemy with nature’s medicine. Pure, organic essential oils from sustainably harvested botanicals bring us back to our true nature. If enjoying a peaceful hike or jumping in the ocean whenever we feel anxiety isn’t available, we need tricks. We need alchemy. Ajai is the alchemy I have chosen to support my highest self, because the results are profound and immediate.
There are absolutely times where I have felt overwhelmed and the shadow side of myself has appeared. I have gotten stuck there when giving and giving and not taking care of me. As a very sensitive empath, it’s been easy to forget to honor my own need for quiet and solitude, my own need for a personal recharge. Nature charges my batteries. My recent journey in Nosara reminded me of this.
Sometimes finding the time to recharge isn’t in clear sight. We have to create it. We have to know we are worthy of taking that one-month soul sabbatical and letting the emails pile up, sitting with the anxiety of missing deadlines, feeling the stress creep up, and reminding ourselves again and again, we have to take care of ourselves rather than depleting ourselves at the expense of our passion projects.
In order to be the leaders our world is so loudly asking us to be, we absolutely have to ruthlessly stand in our personal strength, and to do this, we have to feel strong, safe, and invincible. We need time to recharge so we have the full capacity to stand in the eye of the storm and remain unshakable.
AF: And on the flip side, why do you think it’s important to also serve the community?
FO: I love this question! I love the simple truth that by finding recharging “me” time, we inspire our community to do the same. We have so much more to give when we feel nourished and taken care of from within. During my month soul sabbatical in Nosara, I felt so at home within myself. I was honestly depleted and exhausted before my journey here, and I didn’t feel inspired and couldn’t give fully from my heart because I was malnourished.
As I discovered beautiful, new self-love rituals during my time in the solitude in the jungle, I allowed myself to become fully present with my soul’s desires for play, nature, and space. Here, I began to write more poetry and passages, realizations I felt called to share on my social media. I began receiving an abundance of thank you notes and gracious comments that my writing was touching my community deeply, and that my words were invoking powerful activations.
As an influencer, I am gifted with the power to inspire and empower in a special way. My goal is to always ignite a call to action in my community to become the most confident, radiant, generous reflection of our truth. To make empowered choices that serves our world. A call for liberated self-expression so in freeing ourselves, we inspire freedom in all those we touch through our voices, our hands, and our hearts.
AF: Do you have a personal ‘do unto others’ mantra?
FO: I see you. I see your beauty, your vulnerability, your humanness.
When I love and accept you exactly as you are, I love and accept me, exactly as I am.
My friend Richard Michaelsen is the founder of the I SEA U Movement, and he created it inspired by our soul connection and a sweet moment we shared.
Tell someone special “I see you,” today. This person can be a friend, a lover, a mentor, or someone you meet with a glisten in their eyes who could truly use these simple three words.
AF: Aside from shopping the line (we’re browsing the site as we speak!), how can our readers support your efforts?
FO: Come say hi on @fernolivia and Facebook. I love connecting with conscious advocates, leaders, visionaries, and brands that share my mission to elevate and inspire our planet. Join me for soul revival and ReWild Retreats in Costa Rica and a Thyroid Yoga® teacher training in Australia!