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My name is: Elsa Marie Collins.

I’m known as: A social impact strategist.

My expertise is in: Social justice issues around equality, voter registration and immigration.

I stay physically healthy with: Variety! I run outside, take rebounding class with @thenessnyc, lifting with @keithanthonytrainer, Pilates with @marymillermethod and boxing with @coach_karlb. Variety is key to me being able to maintain!

I keep my emotions balanced with: Waking up in the morning in gratitude. My family is healthy, we are together and we are doing the best we can. I remind myself of that all the time...if one of my kids interrupts a meeting on Zoom, that is ok! If I can't answer a homework question right away, that is ok! We are all trying to navigate our new normal. I start by giving grace to myself. 

I’m intellectually stimulated by: The work I am doing during the pandemic.  Talking to women, communities of color, leaders in these movements and in their respective fields has nurtured my intellectual side, but also feeds my soul at the same time. Understanding what is at stake for all of us is key.

I was recently transformed by: The death of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and so many others. My kids are now at the age where this affects them too. I am cognizant of the fact that this is their reality, one in which comfort is not necessarily available. We try to prepare them for what it means to grow up in this country, but also continue to infuse understanding and empathy in our parenting. 

In the last six months, the ritual that has become so important for me is: Starting off my day right! I am usually on calls nonstop the entire day, working on different projects, campaigns and initiatives. Once the day starts, it becomes more difficult to take any personal time. So, I wake up, give thanks, get my workout in and then grab my coffee and bran muffin for breakfast and I am ready for anything the day throws at me. Quarantine has also granted me the opportunity to be back into a nighttime routine with the kids. I remember when they were babies how important that routine was and, as they get older, you tend to start to shorten it or it changes. But being home every night has given me the gift of singing them their goodnight song and tucking them in.

Here’s how you can do it too: For the morning routine, think of it as what you need to set you up for success. It doesn't need to be a lot (mine is a workout, coffee and a muffin!) and make sure it is accessible. 

It helps me live my process because: The way you do one thing is the way you do all things and how you live your life.

Take a moment to learn more about Elsa Marie Collins’ journey here.

Image Via Antti Lovag 

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