Let Go and Breathe

With Ari Eastman

Introduce yourself! Who are you?
Hi! My name’s Ari Eastman and I’m a writer and poet living in Los Angeles.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
My father used to tell me to find just one thing I liked or enjoyed about the day. He meant it about going to school, but it’s a great thing to apply elsewhere too. It’s a hard one to remember, especially given the state of the world right now. And I’m definitely not someone who buys into forcing positivity (there’s importance in processing painful moments), but it can be a great survival technique to look for just ONE thing that brought you joy that day, even if it’s something super small.
What would you say to 16 year old you?
Facing your grief is not as terrifying as you think it will be.
What message do you think every woman should hear?
The patriarchy can feel so daunting and so much misogyny and sexism is so deeply woven into our society, but surrounding yourself in sisterhoods and women who understand you and what you go through can make all the difference. I cherish being around women and find a lot of strength within my community.
What do you love most about yourself?
I’d say my heart. I’m an empath, which is a blessing and a curse. But I’m glad I have an easy time connecting to others.
What motivates you most?
To be completely honest, I actually really struggle with motivation. I suffer from depression and anxiety and sometimes I get so overwhelmed with those things that fatigue takes over and it becomes easier to just watch Netflix all day. In those moments, I try to take walks or talk to my mom or read an incredible book. I’d say a lot of my motivation comes out of wanting to NOT be in that low place anymore, in wanting to find healthy and productive ways to be better in all aspects.
What is your favorite meal?
Sushi all day. Every day.
What do you do on a daily basis to grow and move forward?
I keep a journal and write down any major feelings, fears, things I feel I messed up on. And when I’m feeling really lethargic or like I haven’t done anything to move forward that day, I go to a yoga class and try my best to let go and breathe.
If you weren’t doing the job you have now, what would you be doing?
I’ve often thought about being a teacher, or working with kids in an after-school arts program. Spoken word was incredibly important to me in college and I’d love to give back to that world in some way.
What is something on your bucket list?
I want to travel to Denmark! My Dad was obsessed with Denmark and lived there for two years. He passed away before we had a chance to go together, so now it feels even more important to me that I experience a place he loved so much.
Where do you find inspiration?
Watching other people do what they love. Inspiration is contagious, I think.
What are your biggest passions?
Literature, poetry, television, and animals. 

More About Ari

Ari Eastman is a poet, writer, and mental health activist. Her work has been featured in Thought Catalog, The Rising Phoenix Review, and Words Dance Publishing. She is also the author of three collections of poetry. She currently resides in California and enjoys crying to old Buffy The Vampire Slayer episodes.

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