The whole world is adjusting to Life after the COVID-19 outbreak, and while many of us bewail the days of family visits, parties and aimlessly wandering around the mall because we can, dynamic actress, entrepreneur, mentor, scholar and fitness enthusiast Hlubi Mboya-Arnold chooses to find the beauty and joy in what remains

We spoke to Hlubi in the hopes that her positive energy would not only be inspiring but also contagious and it is…

Related: Hlubi Mboya-Arnold’s guide to surviving entrepreneurship

Happiness is still out there

Right off the bat, Hlubi wants to make note of her appreciation for mothers, especially in the current times. “Mothering is the most important job. Especially right now, we need healing, we need nurturing and we need to be raising children with love and that is what a mother does,” says Hlubi.

In her role as a mentor through various projects she is part of, including her non-profit organisation Future CEOs, Hlubi interacts with young people from various walks of life striving for a brighter and bolder future.

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While lending her experience and wisdom to her mentees, Hlubi says it is important to remember that it is the quality and not the quantity of mentorship that is important.

“I cannot be everything to everyone. I sometimes have to strictly but lovingly say no. I say no when I can’t give the best of myself so that when I say yes I can give that one mentee the best I have to give which is better than giving 5 mentees mentorship that won’t be very helpful,” she explains.

Related: Mental health study reveals toll of Covid-19 lockdown

Say no and accept no

Learning to strenly and decisively say no is only part of Hlubi’s philosophy. With the same loving energy that she sternly declines, she accepts no too.

The saying ‘dynamite comes in small packages,’ would be cliché if it wasn’t so true in describing Hlubi.

“We all need to learn to accept a hard no in the same way that we need to be able to give a hard no. I like space, no boundaries and I have a limitless spirit. This is a mental game for me and it’s hard, just like it is for everyone else. In the environment of working from home during the lockdown, I’ve leaned it is so important to set boundaries between work time and me time , and work time and family time,” says Hlubi.

 

Creativity and innovation

Maintaining the same lifestyle you had before the pandemic is impossible. Instead of seeing regulations as limitations, Hlubi took the opportunity to practice creative innovation and has found ways to keep both her body and her mind healthy at home.

Hlubi leads an active lifestyle however, for her exercise isn’t about physical health and how she looks anymore. It’s all about her mental and spiritual well-being.

“I’m not trying to get into race conditioning. I want to get a good sweat going,stretch and protect my inner peace, ” says Hlubi.

Related:Find your happy place by getting your body moving

Self-care is non-negotiable

The mental and emotional effects of the lockdown on people across the globe are undeniable. Self-care has come into the spotlight and become an important part of everyone’s life in its many forms.

“I love lotions, potions and candles, but exercise is non-negotiable. I need 1 hour in the fresh air and sunshine to rejuvenate my soul,” she says.

While adhering to current lockdown regulations and staying safe,Hlubi manages to run, lift weights a little and practice yoga at home with her husband.

Back to basics

Ever the optimist, Hlubi has found the silver lining to being housebound.

“We’ve gone back to basics and connected with the people we love and spending time together, living by the mantra of finding beauty in the ashes, we celebrate the small wins and appreciate love and gratitude,” she says.

Hlubi spends a lot of time cooking and braaing  with her husband incorporating herbs they grow themselves into their meals.
One of the most profound yet obvious ways Hlubi takes care of herself is simply taking a break. As anxieties are heightened and job security becomes more fragile, taking a break may seem strange, but for Hlubi it is essential. “Rest,recovery realignment and resetting are essential,” she says.

Hlubi takes frequent non-negotiable breaks in her workday to keep herself sharp.

“Taking breaks through my day to go outside and refresh is essential for my mental health. I’ve learned the art of mastering my energy so I can be at my best and give my best.” says Hlubi.