Intimate Musings | Purposeful Exploration
soul care

This week on The Soul Collect we're inviting you to join us for an entire week devoted to self care... soul care, if you will. We've invited 5 guest writers to lead us in unique challenges throughout the week, specifically designed to help you pave the way for a garden of self love and encouragement. Join us in promoting this time spent dedicated to soul-spiring, nourishing, and uplifting content along with discussion. 


Monday, February 12th: Meditation & Reflection
10 minutes of mediation, followed by a moment of reflection and a chance to set personal goals for the week ahead.

Tuesday, February 13th: Let’s Get Physical
Perform an exercise you’ve never done before OR pick an exercise you love to do the most. This could include yoga, hiking, weight training, pilates, etc.. Today is dedicated to loving the body that propels you forward.

Wednesday, February 14th: Write Yourself A Love Letter
Write a love letter... to yourself, seriously. Highlight what you love and are proud of yourself for. Use affirming language. What you say and write has the power to manifest in your life. 

Thursday, February 15th: Social Media Cleanse
That's right, you heard us. No social media for one whole day. We challenge you to live presently. Unplug from Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter, etc... redistribute that energy into what inspires growth and personal development. 

Friday, February 16th: Solo Date
Go on a date... with yourself. Where is a place you've always wanted to go? Take yourself there. But only yourself… Some possibilities could include: dinner, a movie, a long walk, a trip to the bookstore, time spent in a coffee shop… etc. The goal is to enjoy spending quality time in the company of yourself. 

So, will you join us for #5daysofsoulcare?
We sure hope so.
Tag your adventures on Instagram with @thesoulcollect
for a chance to be featured on our page.

Day 1: Meditation and Reflection 

Welcome to Day 1 of the Self Care series; I am SO happy to have you. My name is Anna, I’m the founder of The Soul Collect, and I’ll be your host for today. I’ve often been asked about the reasoning behind the title of this blog. Why The Soul Collect you ask? Well, the name came to me in a dream. I literally woke up with the words in my mouth. I knew from a very early start I wanted this blog to be a collective: I wanted to capture the hearts, minds, and souls, of the different places I was traveling to, but more importantly the people that made up these places, respectively. It wasn’t until a few months ago that I felt lead to shift the direction of this blog into a community dedicated to women. And now I can say I feel The Soul Collect is truly serving it’s assured purpose. My mission is to cultivate an intimate community of women who celebrate the art of transparency, relish in meaningful discussion, and aspire to a wholesome standard of living. Welcome to The Soul Collect, all you fascinating, bold, electric, women. Welcome to the next 5 days of Soul Care.


meditation photo

This week

We are devoting this week to the rejuvenation of your body, mind, and spirit. I’ve never seen myself as very, “zen…,” I basically have zero chill. Though I’m the first one to admit when my body and mind feel weary, and are in need of a little R&R. I hope you will find time in your week to replenish the parts of yourself that feel worn and burnt-out. May you seek revitalization, comfort, and solace in this intimate community of women. I hope that we can walk through this week in love and companionship, building and restoring the parts of ourselves that need repair. 



today's challenge

10 minutes of meditation. Sure, it may sound easy... but have you ever tried to meditate? It can be a real challenge, especially for those of us who go go go at a million miles per hour! Give it your best try... empty your mind, clear your thoughts, and sit within silence for 10 minutes. It can be anywhere: during your lunch break at the office, right before bedtime, a stolen moment after drinks with friends... all you need is 10 minutes, and a small ounce of discipline. Meditation is essential in feeling well and living a life that sustains our spirit. It has been proven to rid negative thoughts, worries, and anxiety, if taken seriously and practiced repeatedly. Maybe you’ll find that meditation has been exactly what you’ve been looking for. You’ll never know unless you try! 



When you’re finished, take some time to reflect. What would you like this week to bring you? Picture yourself in a perfect state; you’re far from all that leaves you feeling incomplete or unworthy. You are happy and free and weightless in a world brimming with possibility. You are open to all that is waiting to find you.


Day 2: Let's Get Physical

Welcome to Day 2 of the Soul Care series. My name is Erin Jasper, and I’ll be taking you through today’s challenge, let's get physical! Fitness has always been a huge part of my life. It has taught me discipline, humility, and most importantly self love. Today I ask that you make a commitment to perform an exercise you love, or maybe an exercise you’ve never done before. This could include yoga, hiking, weight training, swimming, etc., anything that gets your body moving! If you are reading this and are lucky enough to have your health, mobility, and time: join me in celebrating our ability to get physical.

Moving your body will wake you up and propel your mind forward in the right direction; far more purposefully than sipping coffee, checking your social media, or reading your daily horoscope will. Is mercury even in retrograde? So ladies, get up, get sweatin', and watch how your mood will begin to change for the better. Your mental and physical health go hand and hand more than you may think.


my invitation to you...

1. Set A Goal: Are you working out to wake up? To gain muscle? To feel more confident? Or just because you love The Soul Collect? Thought so. 

2. Set Expectations: Are you going to work out for 20 minuets? An hour? Setting expectations ahead of time will keep you on track and solidify your purpose for movement. Setting the right expectations will keep you from quitting just because you’re tired or "over it."

3. Work It Out:  No more wasting time or making excuses - it's time to get to it!

4. Reflect: Tell me, what did you learn? How did you feel after you finished? This is the part I want you to hold close. Forget the number on your scale, or what that post workout pump looked like in a mirror.  If I had to bet.. no matter how much or how little you enjoyed that work out, you actually feel pretty damn good, don't you?

I take myself through these four steps every. single. day. Personally, I wake up early and head to the gym before I commute to my 9-5. If I’ve already set and achieved a goal before 9am, any previous anxieties I had about the day are completely demolished. If I can push myself out of my comfort zone and into challenging physical movement all before having my morning coffee, tell me,what else do I have to be afraid of?


Discipline Creates Long Term Success

By making the decision to get physical – today and any day, you are developing habits for a healthier, happier, and more confident version of yourself. Remember that it has little to do with how you look, and everything to do with how you feel. Falling in love with lifting weights has taught me to fall in love with myself. It gives me the energy, confidence, and stamina to walk purposefully through my life. The more active I become, the less I obsess over what my physical appearance looks like. I figure if my body can impress me every day by lifting weights and upholding strength, who cares how it appears to others?!


My hope for you...

At its very core, this challenge has less to do with getting physical and more to do with the soul strength physical movement creates inside of us. Hold on tightly to the feeling you had when your twenty minutes were up, when you walked out of the gym, or sat down at your desk: feelings of accomplishment, pride, and self-confidence. You, my dear friend, have just taken the time to better yourself. And guess what? You DESERVE the time to better yourself again tomorrow. 


Author: Erin Jasper  - Follow her fitness journey, tips, and inspiration on Instagram: @erinkjasper

Day 3: Write Yourself a Love Letter 

love letter

Happy Valentine's Day

Hi friends! Welcome to day three of #5DaysOfSoulCare. My name is Kierstyn, and I will be your fearless leader for today. I want to start off by saying Happy Valentine’s Day! Now I know there are some of you who will go all out on this holiday; I’m talking chocolate, roses, a big romantic dinner. I also know this holiday can be hard for some people. It can make you feel sad and lonely and desperate for something more. There have been Valentine's days where I’ve been especially hard on myself, wether I’ve been in or out of a relationship. This day has a way of making us feel > less than. Well, not today! We are ending that cycle. This week is all about self care, and today happens to be all about love. So we’re going to love up on the most important person in your life.... YOU! Get your pen and paper ready y’all. 


Today's Challenge:

Write yourself a love letter. I’m talking a gushy, heart filled, sexy letter about all the things you love about yourself. You could include personality traits, personal strengths, even physical attributes. You are truly special in so many ways, and I want you all to affirm yourselves in each of the ways that make you feel unique and loved. Sometimes talking about yourself can be tough, but try your hand at being open, honest, and vulnerable. If you do, this exercise will be an experience unlike any other. It has the ability to create confidence along with a newfound self love you may have been lacking or hoping to strengthen. 


Feeling stuck? Here’s a little breakdown of what my letter looks like:

First, I wrote down all the things I love about myself I know people can physically point out by looking at me. For example: my green eyes, my nice skin, (thanks mama for both of these!) and…my behind. Hey, what can I say? I’m proud of this dukey booty!

Second, I wrote about certain personality traits I love about myself which people can point out if they know me or have spent some time with me. These are traits that my friends, family, and also love about me. For example: my honesty, (which is also a flaw! You have to learn to love those too!) my loyalty, and my humor. I mean my 14 year sister thinks I’m a nerd so I’m *age appropriately* funny. Oh dammnit I got jokes!

Third, I wrote about what I love in myself that most people don’t know about me, or things I don’t necessarily say out loud. I’m going to love up on things that I once was ashamed of or fought hard against. For instance, my growth from depression as a young adult, (choosing happiness over darkness is HARD y’all) my faith and my relationship with God, and my newfound appreciation for my body as a whole. I may not be a size two, but learning to love my curves has made everyday in this body so much more enjoyable.

*Now these aren’t restrictions or “how-to’s.” This is just what I found best for myself when writing this letter. The most important thing to remember is this is all about YOU and all of the wonderful traits that make you so unique and special. Today is about you my friends! You are special, you are worthy, you are loved. Now go write down all the reasons why! 

XO, Kiers 

Author: Kierstyn Rios | @kierstynrios


Day 4: Social Media Cleanse 

social media cleanse

Good morning...

Day 4 of the Soul Care Series, here we go! Today our goal is to cut out one of the biggest parts of our present culture: social media. Social media consumes us. As a society we use social media for many things: entertainment, communication, news, business, and discussion. It can be a great thing, yet most of our society spends more time staring at a screen, then conversing with others face to face. Our goal for today is to step away from the screen that engulfs us, and use this time to better ourselves and replenish our souls.

Today’s challenge:

Cut out all forms of social media for a full day. From waking up in the morning until falling asleep at night, no sneaking a peak at Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, or any other apps we all have on our phones. It sounds daunting, I know, (I’m already wondering how I will spend my 30 minute break at work,) yet our hope is that by the end of the day you will feel refreshed and even somewhat less attached to the overload of content we see by scrolling through our phones. This challenge is meant for you to focus on yourself: take the time you spend on social media and read a book, go to the gym, call your family, or cook yourself an amazing dinner! The possibilities are endless. Let’s rid ourselves of the toxins that social media can create. Instead of comparing ourselves to others, let’s focus on building ourselves up and redistributing the energy we spend on our phones to our present self.


The next morning reflect on how you feel. Are you anxious to get back on your phone and see what you missed? Or do you feel revitalized with a sense of calmness within? Please let us know, we would love to hear about your experience.


Author: Rachel Gray | @rachelgray2



Day 5: Solo Date 

Hello there, welcome to the last day of #5DaysOfSoulCare. Pamela here; I love to blog, write, photograph, laugh, cry, hug, and feel everything at all times of the day. I have this blog that is currently untitled (any ideas?) where my concepts manifest themselves through esoteric photos and nonsensical words. I love being able to dip my toes into anything that I’m currently inspired by, and recently I’ve been inspired by the connections I’ve been making.

Today’s challenge: 

Go on a date with yourself. I love being around people, but I also love being alone. Dating yourself (or being alone) not only serves as an opportunity to get in touch with yourself, but to think about the things you haven’t been able to think about and feel instead of finding mindless distractions (although those are good too… sometimes).   


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I regularly find myself sitting across the table from someone sharing a meal and exchanging conversation. I observe their expressions and mannerisms without them knowing. I pick up on little things that repeat in my head the next morning. I love giving a big hug at the end and saying, “Take care. I’ll see you soon.”

I love to date. I also consider everything and anything a date. I date men (sporadically and for good reason), I date my friends, and I serial date all the women in my life (any chance I can get, I’m there). I think dating should be more than just being romantically or sexually interested, but a way to form connections with one another.  

Recently I’ve connected more with women than ever in my life. It surfaced from a haphazard goal I made that I never thought would manifest itself the way it did. I love learning about other’s goals, strengths, sense of humor, fears, and passions. I learned to become confident in being vulnerable, but also felt moments of inadequacy and fear.

“I was suddenly learning the inner mechanics of myself through other people all while being irrevocably single.”

Although dating and connecting with people has taught me so much, it can get a bit overwhelming. I started to feel like I was stretched thin. I was constantly talking to someone, asking about their day, or following up about something they had said. Even though it was overwhelming I was trying my best to be the most dedicated friend I could possibly be. I simply wasn’t making time for myself. I didn’t have the time to be aware of my own feelings and emotions. I was starting to lose elasticity, and even the sympathy I felt for people.    

“Dating has taught me that… the most important relationship you can have is with yourself, and it is helping you become the person you were always meant to be.”


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So, I started saying no to people. I HATE saying no when a huge part of me wants to say YES.

I thought if I can make the time for all the people I’ve spent time with, I could definitely make time for myself. So I took myself out on a date in the interest of my self preservation— mostly sanity— but really because spending time with yourself is the best thing you can do.   

I woke up with no plan. I cancelled everything and made sure I let everyone know I was OUT OF SERVICE. I packed a bag with my cameras, a jacket, blanket, book, water, snacks, and a towel. I was going to the beach, rain or shine, no matter what.

The most challenging part was disconnecting myself from all the… well... connection. When you’re on a date you’re in a constant state of connection and reciprocity (sometimes lack thereof), but what happens when it’s just you?


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I wanted to give myself and my mind freedom to think and reflect on everything that has been happening lately, or time not think at all, and just observe my surroundings in the present moment. I had all this free time and I didn’t know what to do with it, that I found myself subconsciously implementing all the challenges from this week.

I meditated and focused on my breathing; I swam in the freezing cold water; I wrote in my journal about present feelings and emotions; I stayed off my phone and didn’t check the time. It was just me.

I had just gone on a date with myself…

Then bought myself some gelato.

Whether you take yourself out to the beach or dinner, the goal is to do something you would usually do, with a partner or friend, alone. I’m well aware of the fear of being publicly judged for being alone in a movie theatre or a nice restaurant, but truth of the matter is no one cares and it’s even better when you get past that. There is absolutely nothing wrong with taking yourself out on a date. Try it once, and don’t forget dessert!

Author: Pamela del Valle | Photos: Pamela del Valle

To read more, read Pamela’s essay, “So I Dated Women” on