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Happiness & Social Media/Life Balance

That’s a wrap on #TIFF19 for me! This week I’m working on a Vitamix commercial w/ 1188 doing props & set styling. I love it!

Over the past couple of years, I’ve been all about JOMO vs FOMO (see this post). The joy of missing out is something I’ve come to love, I think it comes with age and experience. This is the first TIFF, I didn’t go partying, stay out late, or drink alcohol. I put my happiness and health first, yay adulting! 

Finding Balance: The Telus Happiness Workshop

This summer I spent a week in Vancouver for the Telus Creator Summit with the #Telus_Partner team from across Canada. It was 4 action-packed days of volunteering, adventure, food, drinks, and learning about the many sides of Telus business. I had heaps of fun and made new friends but by the last day, I was totally exhausted.

Telus anticipated this and used it as an opportunity to bring us together for a Happiness Workshop. We put down our phones, learned about disconnecting, and finished with yoga, meditation, and lunch. Not something you would expect from a telecom giant but that just goes to show how Telus is different.

During the workshop, something amazing happened…

The whole group of bloggers, YouTubers, and content creators started talking about how much social media stresses them out. The pressure to create, stay positive, be healthy, have a clean house, great photos, have good engagement, make money, collect the money, have good relationships, be a good parent, be a good partner, AND remain sane while living this crazy internet life.

IT WAS SO REFRESHING. It felt like a weight was lifted knowing we all have similar feelings about social media anxiety, it connected us.

The Telus Happiness Workshop was developed with input from expert psychologists to tackle online issues facing youth including excessive digital use and comparing themselves to others. As a group, we talked about spending too much time on your phone, social media anxiety, and the importance of taking breaks

Telus Creators in Vancouver w/ Telus WISE Ambassadors

Have you ever taken a social media break?

Over the holidays this past year, I took a 5-day Instagram break and let me tell ya, it was great. It’s not until you take a break that you realize how often you pick up your phone, scroll, and have feelings of self-doubt looking at other peoples highlight reel. I try not to do it, but we all do.

Telus gave a bunch of teens a 24-hour challenge to not look at their phone and it’s amazing to see their reactions.

Watch this: Telus 24-Hour Challenge

Take the Telus Happiness Workshop

The Happiness Workshop is available online or face to face, in both official languages, and hosted by a TELUS Wise Ambassador. The online workshop can be done alone or in a group, ex. in a classroom. I highly recommend taking the Happiness Workshop with your kids, it’s geared towards teens but I reckon everyone on the internet could benefit from it.

TELUS Wise

Aside from going over digital safety, the workshop talks about digital breaks, limiting the social comparisons, and practicing the Joy of Missing Out (JOMO) as opposed to the Fear of Missing Out (FOMO). For more information visit telus.com/en/wise.

If you want to see something crazy about internet usage, check out internetlivestats.com. We learned this in the workshop and it will BLOW your mind!

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I have a partnership with Telus and love working with them. Check out some of the great stuff we've done together here

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Just Make The Thing

A couple of months ago, the guys at Occupied VR and I got really into AR filters on Instagram. The first one approved in the app was for The Holy City VR at Cannes Film Fest. The Spark AR program is now out of Beta and now anyone can submit filters to Instagram to be approved.

Monday I submitted my first filter to the app! IT IS NOW LIVE!!!

TRY MY ‘HELLO’ FILTER HERE!

I had been wanting to make one for ages but hit a couple of roadblocks as developing a filter involves learning Spark AR, a program from Facebook. About a week ago I decided to send Sean some text I’d made on iPad to see if it would work for a filter. It totally does! He made the background pink and they added the same hearts you see on this very blog. I was so excited to try it for the first time! Big thanks to Sean & Daeve for helping me. Check out Daeve’s other filters here!


Earlier this month, I started a blog post called ‘make the thing’. For the past few months, I’ve been very tired, uninspired. I needed to take a break to get my mojo back. I spent heaps of time at the cottage this summer and also declining events to stay home. It feels good.

September feels like a new start. There’s 4 months till Christmas and 2020. What’s your 2020 plan?

Make it happen. Start now.

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Review: Sonos x IKEA Speaker Collab

Review: Sonos x IKEA Speaker Collab

This week I went to the 2020 Ikea Catalogue media preview where they announced their partnership with Sonos. I love IKEA and smart home accessories so was keen to learn more. Through this partnership, IKEA is focussed on enhancing your home with sound and lighting. This post is not sponsored by Ikea but I would love if it was!


I was given the new SYMFONISK speaker and set it up as soon as I got home. Wanted to share my thoughts right away because I’m super impressed. It’s my first Sonos and by far the nicest speaker I’ve ever personally owned.

Symfonisk Setup

In a few minutes, I set it up on my home wifi, connected it to Apple Music, and my Amazon Echo to work with Alexa. The SYMFONISK I received is a bookshelf speaker which is quite the coincidence because I have been looking for the best bookshelf speakers recently so this was perfect timing! It can go vertical or horizontal and be mounted as a shelf that can hold up to 7lbs. Multiple speakers can be paired for surround sound, paired over wifi, or to your TV. You control the speaker with the Sonos app and can set up voice controls. Mine is connected to Alexa and works perfectly!

Symfonisk Design x Quality

Both speakers in the series come in black or white and are designed to blend in with your home decor. The bookshelf speaker is $149 and table lamp speaker is $249. Pretty good price for the sound quality and Sonos brand. For the one with the light, you can add in smart bulbs like Phillips Hue or Ikea’s own smart bulbs to make the light change colour.

My Symfonisk speaker in the IKEA KALLAX shelf

At the media preview, they had a bunch of the speakers paired together for ‘party mode’ which was pretty rad.

One of the really cool things, when you set up the speaker, is it takes you through pairing it to your specific room from the app. You slowly move your phone up and down around the room in a wave-like technique to pick up on the room shape and tone, this allows the speaker to perform the best sound for the space. Safe to say I am loving how loud it goes and clarity of sound.

The speakers are available online and instore August 7th. If you are buying online, make sure you sign up for Ebates first because they have 2.5% cashback at IKEA right now.

[that’s Swedish for thank you!]

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Interview: Vocab Comm Influencer Tuesdays

I recently did an interview w/ Chrissy, longtime friend, OG PR, and founder of Vocab Comm. I talk about the social media landscape, influencers, and my career. I included part of the interview below, read the whole thing here. Chrissy used to host MMVA and celebrity gifting lounges at the beginning of social media, we worked together on a few. This was a fun one.

Tell us a little about yourself.

I grew up in Cambridge, Ontario. My parents immigrated here from New Zealand and my dad had a custom Hot Rod shop growing up. I created my first business in grade 2 and at 14 I wrote a book and started a publishing company. I went to Conestoga College and last year was given an Alumni Award for my work from the President of the college. I went to university in Australia and have a B. Com in International Business. I have lived in Toronto since 2005 when I started my blog. Through my blog, I’ve built some amazing brand partnerships (Pepsi, Telus, Aeroplan, Sassoon) and traveled to incredible amazing places in the world (Thailand, New Zealand, Costa Rica, Disneyland).

How do you define an influencer?

I think the word ‘influencer’ has really taken on a whole new (kinda negative) meaning with the rise of Instagram influencers. To me, influence is a product of something someone does. It’s not something you get by having a lot of followers. My influence has grown from being a pioneer in a new industry and constantly innovating. I share my life with the world and love discovering new things, my influence comes from building trust with my audience.

What advice do you have for other people looking to become an online influencer?

Don’t do it. Find something you love and do that! Don’t set your goal at being an influencer. I swear it’s not all it’s cracked up to be!

Don’t strive to be an influencer, aim to do something that has influence on the world.

– Casie Stewart

The other week I was at the Cannes Film Festival and someone said “I’m jealous of your life”. Shortly after, I tweeted, “You wouldn’t be jealous if you knew how much work it took to get here”. For almost 10 years I blogged every single day. I very rarely take a day off and hardly any of my travels are vacation. I love what I do and have turned it into a career. It takes WORK and consistency.

What’s your fav personal social media moment in your career so far?

I’ve some really cool moments in the last 10 years of my life. A lot of them tie back to my work in social media. Traveling around the world, working with Virgin America & Richard Branson, walking in Toronto Fashion Week, being in a film about TIFF, reporting on The Royals for eTalk, speaking at SXSW, doing a TEDx talk.

Celebrity Stylist Derek Warburton, Nicole Miller at NZFW, 2010

How do you inspire others through your work or personal life?

I try to keep it real. Being on the internet can be hard. I have a series of posts called ‘Sometimes I Don’t Feel Like It’ (See here: http://bit.ly/2KA5Bgd) where I write about how social media gives me anxiety or I don’t feel like being an ‘internet person’. I’ve had great feedback on those posts because they share the realness that you don’t see in curated Instagram feeds.

Casie Stewart, signature, iPad Pro.

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P.S. Did you get a ticket to my upcoming event? I'm speaking at LinkedIn Local this month about branding. More details here, use CASIESTEWART as code for discount tickets. Love ya!