Step into the world of Calais Peterkin, a visionary entrepreneur and founder of The Breath Room, as she takes us on a profound journey of embracing a wellness-first lifestyle. In this captivating blog post, we will explore the transformative power of mindfulness, self-care, and personal growth, all woven together in the tapestry of Calais' life and business philosophy.
As a woman who has always done things her way, Calais shares her inspiring insights on integrating wellness seamlessly into daily life, defying the norm of burning out in the pursuit of success. Join us as we delve into Calais' personal journey of redefining herself during her postpartum period and creating a sacred space called The Breath Room, where she discovered the essence of her true calling. From finding solace in journaling to fostering an intuitive approach to business, Calais' story will leave you inspired to take inventory of your own life and prioritise self-care in your journey of entrepreneurship. This blog post offers profound takeaways, practical tips, and a renewed perspective on what it truly means to live a wellness-first lifestyle.
Latticia: What does a Wellness-First Lifestyle mean to you?
Calais: I just think instead of sticking wellness on to the end of what I do or as recovery from what I do, it's integrating it into it, working in a way that integrates breaks. I've done some incredible work with Interlude and they talk about integrating breaks into your working practice and just working in ways that support your health, instead of normalising burnout. So I think that for me it is about taking a marathon approach to work. Even with beauty and health, I'm all about my vitamins and supplements.
Latticia: Tell me about Calais and The Breath Room, how did you start this journey?
Calais: I was raised in a very Christian household, which is very relevant to my path. My parents' career always meant that there were eyes on us as a family, you know, whether or not we were doing things correctly, whether or not you were showing up improper, whether or not you were being naughty. So I grew up with this sense of really like, knowing what the rules were, but I was also really, really rebellious coming up. I've done everything the long way around, always. But my way, I've always done it my way.
I was grew up kind of half between London and Guyana in South America, so I feel like I have a Caribbean lens as well, and they're a lot more blunt than we are. Coming up through my education, I wanted to go into writing so I did literature. I started doing writing workshops with mindfulness moments to preface the workshops. I was realising that actually it went the other way around, that the sessions became a lot more about mindfulness.
As for the Breathroom, everything coincided with my postpartum journey because I'd had my daughter. I was in a period of redefining myself in this role and my career. I had a deep desire to carve out a space for myself to breathe and to fill my cup first. I was realising that I was so drained. I had this tiny box room that was supposed to be a nursery but I ended up clearing it out, putting in a bookshelf of loads of Toni Morrison books and my favourite poem, a few bundles of sage and that was really my space where I did a lot of my healing. That's kind of how The Breath Room was born. It's very much my personal journey.
Latticia: How are you balancing motherhood and entrepreneurship?
Calais: I was very much team round the clock childcare and I think that's really helpful in baby season. Now that my daughter is four and she's understanding the world, asking more questions. I want her to see me outside of a domestic role, I have a career that she witnesses and of course there is one-on-one time. I feel like you're always redefining what childcare looks like.
Latticia: Tell me about Yoga in the Park. I am so excited about this new project of yours and I think it's incredible.
Calais: I think my business always mirrors my journey. I also think if you have the freedom to do that, then you should. So for me, I'm entering a stage where I want to integrate like the different parts of me. I don't want to switch in between different parts. I was getting a bit exhausted of having these environments or these play dates or these parties where it was like the children are all there and we all kind of stood around the sidelines talking about the children. It is always the same conversations like what school are you applying for? I wanted us to show up our full selves and for ourselves so I really want to create a space where we can be focused on mindfulness and on wellness and just being centred and grounded as a family. Where parents are getting just as much from it as the children are.
I'm really excited about it and I want to bring in different practitioners every time we do it, so it might not always be yoga.
Latticia: what is your vision for Yoga in the Park with the kids and The Breach Ron and how do you hope to contribute to the future of wellness?
Calais: Good question. I want to have a few hubs in London for Yoga in the Park. I also want to keep them as free or low cost as possible and make it really accessible for families to show up each week with their children.
For The Breath Room I want to continue serving women and helping them to really prioritise themselves and connect with themselves in the midst of being super high powered, high achieving, successful individuals. I want us to be better parents. I want us to be super high achieving and super high earning individuals that are normalising higher and higher levels of success and I want that for women.
Latticia: How do you stay motivated and inspired in the wellness space?
That's a good question. I don't think I do. I think it fluctuates. I think it's similar to what we were saying about children and how in different stages we are finding a new way to make it work. I think I have to find new projects within my business that serve where I am. Yeah, it might not be the trend or what's popping or what's most lucrative. I think as long as my schedule serves where I'm at and what I'm inspired by it, I'll be okay!
Latticia: Have you got any books, resources or podcasts that have helped you on your wellness journey?
Calais: Oh yes, actually. There's a business called The Hearty Life, and they offer incredible readings. It's more on the spiritual side, but it has been immensely helpful for me and my business. It has allowed me to develop a more intuitive approach, even though what I do is secular, I don't impose any kind of religious belief. Being more in tune with my intuition and spirituality has been the driving force behind my business. I would 100% recommend checking it out, the founder's name is Jessica.
Also, it may sound cliché, but I met Sharmadean Reid, the founder of Stack World and she's the only person I know who has a 50-50 childcare split with her co-parent. I realised that this kind of arrangement would work for me when I split my daughter's time with her father. When I made that decision, people were skeptical, asking if my child would be confused or if it was working. However, it was incredibly liberating to hear Sharmadean share her co-parenting experience and it affirmed my choices, especially as a career-driven woman and a mother.
Latticia: Any tips for anyone who's starting their wellness journey?
Calais: Before you look outwards, it's essential to take inventory of yourself. For me, journalling helps a lot. You have to know what you want to break down and dismantle before you can build something new. Ask yourself questions like, "What isn't working?" and "What do I want to change?" Also, never be afraid to revise your approach. Don't feel pressured to stick rigidly to a wellness decision just because it might become part of your identity. I think sometimes we tend to associate our wellness choices too closely with our identity, but it's okay to adapt and evolve as you learn more about yourself.
Latticia: Finally, where can we find you?
Calais: You can find me on Instagram at @TheBreathRoom, where we'll be posting updates about the events that are coming up. If you want to know more about me and my personal life, you can find me at @calais_lois. Feel free to reach out or follow along with our wellness journey!