Hey guys! I had such an exciting Tuesday! Guess who I saw? You probably saw in the title of this post – Brené Brown! If you haven’t seen her Ted talk, it’s definitely worth checking out. She actually has a few out now. But her main one is one of the top FIVE most popular, all-time Ted Talks. Incredible, no? Anywho, I wanted to share the experience, plus my eats for the day, in this latest post and video.

*VIDEO: My Eats and Experience at Brené Brown’s New Book Launch*

Click here to view the video if the above video player doesn’t work.

Morning Eats

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

For breakfast, I cooked an egg fried in coconut oil, made Applegate Sunday smoked bacon, enjoyed one of my latest recipe experiments for Healthy Breakfast Cookies, and sliced a kiwi in half to scoop out with a spoon.

The breakfast cookies are a winner. I’ve shared some with friends who have loved them, so they’ve been thoroughly taste-tested! The recipe will be live before the weekend is over.

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

Almond milk flat white by Bluestone Lane Coffee. Yum!

Whole Foods Madness

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

I braved the Whole Foods hot food bar at lunch. In the video, I attempted to capture the madness. It’s definitely an aggressive experience but worth it for the healthy and tasty eats.

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

In the box: cauliflower, steamed broccoli, stuffed grape leaf, chicken tender, grilled chicken with corn, beet salad, mac and cheese, farro salad, and detox salad. I think that’s everything!

I know the chicken tender and mac and cheese aren’t “healthy”, but this is one of my hacks for overall healthy eating. I’ll get a small portion of it at a buffet style place where the quality of ingredients are better and I can enjoy the decadent flavor without overdoing it.

Favorite NYC Thai Restaurant

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

My favorite Thai restaurant in NYC is in the Upper East Side. The place – Pye Boat Noodle House. This was a no brainer for dinner when I realized it was a mere 7 minute walk from the venue for Brené Brown’s book launch event.

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

Although I normally try to have all my caffeine before 3pm, I had to make an exception for a delicious Thai tea. I can’t resist them.

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

For my entrée, I enjoyed a vegetable Pad See Ew. This features wide flat noodles with a soy based sauce and plenty of veggies. I love the way they cut their carrots.

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

I had an epiphany while I was people watching from my table near the window. As I sat there, so many different types of people passed by. A group of kids biking down the middle of the road (2nd avenue – a busy one!). A woman wearing heels that were taller than the dog she was walking. A gentleman in a suit with a baby strapped to his chest. All sizes, shapes, and what not. The diversity in NYC is one of my favorite things. And as I was thinking about how anyone can be anything in NYC and still fit in, it hit me. Maybe I love NYC because I feel like I fit in without having to change who I am.

As someone who has struggled to fit in most of her life, it was a comforting thought. I wondered how many other outcasts feel comfortable in NYC for the same reason. Everyone belongs in NYC. So the concept of “outcast” doesn’t really apply. You can be authentically yourself without fearing that there will be negative repercussions. It’s not a matter of not being in high school any more. It’s about an understood acceptance. And I love it.

It was an interesting thought leading up to Brené Brown’s talk because she would discuss the topic of belonging.

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

Wearing a new dress for the first time since purchasing it with a girlfriend this past Sunday in SoHo.

Brené Brown’s NYC Book Launch

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

The line was wrapped around the building as I approached (30 minutes prior to the show starting).

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

But apparently there was a technical difficulty, and they weren’t letting us in yet. I happened to find an outlet inside where I was charging my phone. And across from me – a table where I eventually noticed the words “arts”. Art class is something I’ve been considering taking recently. So I struck up a conversation with the people there and found out they were doing an open house. They said I could visit the third floor to check out the facilities and since the line wasn’t moving, I took them up on the offer.

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

92Y School of the Arts offers classes in many forms of art – from painting to music. I focused more on the visual arts than the musical arts, so I didn’t see what types of music classes they offered. Though piano lessons are also something I’ve been thinking I should pick back up.

Anywho, something tugged gently at my heart while I was walking around and seeing the easels and paintbrushes. I think it’s time to go back to my artistic roots, you guys.

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

Eventually, the line started moving again, so I walked around the block and jumped onto the end of it.

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

Soon enough, we were inside. Brené came out to a standing ovation from the crowd. It was such a cool example of the whole “your vibe attracts your tribe”. The energy was so positive and uplifting and everyone was so friendly.

Brené covered many interesting topics, which are all available for full consumption in her latest book, Braving the Wilderness.

Here are some of my favorite points

  • “True Belonging” isn’t about fitting in. It’s a combination of being a part of something while also being strong enough to stand alone in your own authenticity. It’s not about changing yourself to fit in, but being you.
  • Hurt people hurt people. Understanding this makes it easier to respond generously and with compassion.
  • “Art has a way to bring us together”.
  • There are scholars who study bullshit. And bullshit is not the same as lying. It’s worse. To fight bullshit, one should respond generously, be curious, and ask questions to try to understand why <the thing> is so important to the other person.
  • Stop looking for a reason you don’t belong. You’ll always find a reason.

And Brené shared this beautiful quote by Maya Angelou and talked about how she first hated this quote and then grew to understand and love it:

“You only are free when you realize you belong no place — you belong every place — no place at all.”

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

We ended the evening with one of Brené’s favorite songs, “If I Needed You” by Townes Van Zandt. I may or may not be the one singing this in the above video. If you want to hear what the song is really supposed to sound like, there’s a video of Townes performing it live.

We sang the song together to end the show, and it was just so beautiful.

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

I’ve already ordered the book! Can’t wait to read it!

Healthy Dessert

Seeing Brené Brown | Going to Art School? | What I Eat in a Day

I’ve noticed a big difference in my energy levels and overall health since incorporating this dessert smoothie bowls, so I’m definitely keeping them up. I don’t have one a day. Only when I feel like I’m a little hungry after dinner or if my fruit intake for the day has been low.

In the smoothie: frozen banana, frozen papaya, vanilla cashew milk, half a scoop of berry Amazing Grass. On top: white chia seeds, Purely Elizabeth granola, Let’s Do Organic unsweetened coconut flakes, and fresh organic blueberries. So good!

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Thanks for reading and watching! Any fellow Brené Brown fans out there? Have you read her other books?