We spoke with writer, journalist and beauty editor Akili King (@akili_) about her recent trip to Mexico City, how she stays grounded while traveling and her evolving definition of what it means to get away.
Window, Middle or Aisle? I love being able to look out the window but I’d have to go with the aisle, because I like to be able to get up without having to disturb the people sitting next to me. And I feel too claustrophobic in the middle. lol!
Where’s the last place you traveled? Mexico City. One of the most beautiful and vibrant cities I’ve ever been to. I also got to visit Frida Kahlo’s home, and she’s one of my biggest inspirations, so that was awesome! The food was also incredible.
What does travel mean to you? Travel means everything to me. I definitely don’t take the ability to do so for granted. Especially after the last couple of years in lock down. It’s such a blessing to be able to expand your horizons and explore new cultures. Taking a break from your day-to-day and changing up your routine every now and then is really important.
What’s your idea of a perfect vacation? A nice beach, sunshine, a good uplifting book, good food and good conversation with loved ones… maybe a massage too! I’m also learning to expand my idea of vacation; it doesn’t necessarily have to mean you’re hopping on a plane or purchasing anything. A relatively recent interview I did really inspired that mentality for me! You can take a vacation in your own home by creating a relaxing vibe and unplugging and taking care of yourself. I think vacation truly just means to refuel the soul!
What do you most value in your friendships? I value communication/deep conversations and laughter. I love to laugh and make others laugh. I think that’s one of the most healing exchanges we can have as humans. At the end of the day, the memories we hold closest to our hearts are usually the ones filled with joy.
What (or Who) currently inspires you? In general I’m inspired by creative people and those who keep pushing forward and don’t let anything stop them in life. Being in Mexico City recently definitely re-ignited my admiration for Frida Kahlo. After a bad accident I was in a few years ago, and doing more research on her at the time really helped me to get through my challenges with PTSD, and she really reminded me that you can create beauty out of darkness; creativity is a powerful tool that allows you to transcend adversity.
What is your self-care routine when traveling? I try my best to keep up my same self-care routines as much as I can while traveling. I try to work out in the mornings when I can. While I was in Mexico City, I was using a site called The Pilates Class and they have so many different great workouts to choose from: pilates, HIIT classes, yoga, stretching, meditation and more. It’s nice to feel like a workout is available to you anywhere you are in the world, even if you just have your phone! Sometimes when I’m traveling to other cities, I’ll try to find a pole dancing studio to train at as well. That’s a really important self-care practice to me too. Additionally, I try to bring a good book with me. In CDMX I brought the book ‘Golden Guidance’ and it really gave me a lot of positive energy and inspiration while I was there. I also always travel with my journal. Journaling is such a centering activity for me and something I’ve done since I was little. I also try to keep up with my skincare routines; night and day. And lastly, sometimes I’ll book some sort of spa appointment as a treat! Either a pedicure or massage or something like that to give my body some love. In general, I maintain my vegan lifestyle as well no matter where I go.
What are you manifesting in your life right now? Right now I’m just focusing on manifesting sustainable, lifelong peace and joy! Nothing is more important than that to me. I think everything else in life falls in place when you focus on those things; from relationships to work. I’m constantly reminding myself that I’m not a machine. It’s okay to take breaks and go within when we need to. Everything else can wait if we are depleted.