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Oh man, you know that feeling of shooting down a water slide, age eleven? That’s us turning the page from 2019 to 2020. Coming. In. Hot. 

While we are fully aware that a fresh new year doesn’t dissolve the prior year (or decade’s) problems — as the international news has quickly produced evidence for — we’ve got an awful lot of hope for this new decade, for better or for worse.

One thing is clear, this January we’ve got our sites set on happiness. Why? Because new science seems to continually prove what all the woo-woo and spiritual folks have been trying to teach us for eons: it’s not our words that matter, it’s our energy. And feeding ourselves with gratefulness, happiness, joy and peace seems to have deep correlates in our hormonal and nervous systems we’re only just beginning to understand.

This year, we could pursue our dreams — in misery. We could even achieve them in misery. The pursuit of happiness is not always happiness itself. As a platform based in Los Angeles, the narrative of achieving success without happiness is not one that’s unfamiliar to us. In fact, it’s come to define some of the most outrageous success stories in Hollywood in a way that none of us can ignore. And, perhaps, this separation between ‘success’ and ‘happiness’ is a good thing for more of us to understand.

With all the hype around ‘manifestation’ in this season and the blood, sweat and tears more of us pay into wellness this time of year, let’s take a look at what most of us are really after.

At the crux of it, our team is dissecting the difference between ego-pleasing and true happiness this year. There is a difference. And sometimes the differentiators are shocking. We’re going to explore this theme in January and beyond — and would love to hear from you.

In The Shop this month, we’ve added powerful wellness tools and simple pleasures designed to bring you back to the value of being happy.

We’ll repeat ourselves time and again: no amount of green smoothies can make up for the health benefits of dealing with our own emotional health issues. This list of wellness staples addresses things like healthy sleep, balanced sweat sessions and nutritional staples that feel more like indulgences than deprivation (hello, giant gold bag of cacao powder!). Here are a few of my absolute favorites:

Before bed: Radiate Wellness’ Radiate Calm topical cream blew me away. I don’t even have trouble sleeping, but within one application I was sleeping like I only knew as a baby: feeling blissfully calm, passing out right away, and waking up totally restored. I know how many of our readers struggle with sleep and this product is a top, top recommendation.

In bed: Guys, let’s talk about bamboo sheets: they’re temperature-regulating, affordable, and totally sustainable. Our favorites lately come from Ettitude (see below).

Oh, sex too? Yes, yes — of course. We can think of no more revolutionary brand than Foria when it comes to CBD and intimate health. Check out everything this Venice-based brand has to say. Like, right away. 

In the AM: Coffee is one thing, but cacao is another. I can barely tolerate a cup of joe these days without a good teaspoon of energizing, mineral-rich cacao powder and there’s really nothing like an over-sized gold bag with a unicorn on it to tell you that you’re going to have a great day.

Smell Amazing: We can’t really emphasize enough the fans we are of great scents during the work day or at home. While, personally, I’ve become obsessed with a diffuser I found at Ventana Big Sur (more here), my daily go-to is all about essential oils. And one of the best blends we’ve found for the office is this ‘creative juice’ oil from Aura Cacia.

There’s a thoughtful reason for every single item we’ve added to this month’s The Shop and they all have to do with being happy. Explore them, stay tuned as we add more throughout the month, and let us know in the comments what wets your whistle when it comes to ‘Living Well’ while living clean this January!

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