What Inspires Me?
Artistic Expression! I love the arts in pretty much any form. There’s just something about the many ways you can express yourself through the arts that just moves me. The art forms I’m most passionate about are acting, and then cooking. Cooking nutrient dense soul food didn’t really become a thing for me until I realized it was the foods that I was eating that was contributing to my health (or lack of) issues. I grew up with severe asthma, and by the time puberty hit, my cramps were so painful I’d have to check myself into the hospital for morphine before I went into shock and passed out. I remain vegan to this day (6 years and counting) because I know that in order for me to express myself creatively, I need to be in good health.
What are you most proud of?
I’m most proud of my ability to keep going. If you know me, than you know that no matter what, I’m ALWAYS smiling! Smiling is very therapeutic for me. Having experienced living more than comfortable and quite spoiled in my childhood, to experiencing homelessness from at 17, I am so proud of myself for not only getting through it, but coming out of the experience years later as a mature young adult who’s optimistic and excited for her future. A smile changes my whole mood and reminds me that, everything is going to be OK!!
Name a book that changed your life?
The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield! This book taught me so much about how we as people interact with others, and the energy that’s exchanged when we do. I’m very sensitive to energy, and this book helped me to understand what was happening when I felt weird, uncomfortable, comfortable or excited when around different people. Another book was The Science of Getting Rich by Wallace D. Wattles. This book combined what I had learned about energy and vibrations from The Celestine Prophecy with the law of attraction to teach that getting “Rich” (whatever that looks like to you) takes the right mindset.
What advice/insight do I have for someone who is trying to figure out their Passion?
“If at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself off and try again!” No matter what it is you try to do, always remember that a FAIL is nothing else but a First Attempt In Learning! If your passionate about something, you HAVE to pursue it in some way or another. You’ll have more regret not trying than to try and not succeed. And don’t be afraid to try multiple different things until you find what really makes your heart jump with joy.
What keeps you going on days you want to quit?
My family, especially my Mother. She’s always worked so hard, and i think about what I’d be able to do for her. I want to one day be able to provide her with everything she’s never had, everything that she’s lost, and everything that she desires. I want nothing more than to be able to provide my family with the things they need in order for them to grow.
What’s been your most important lesson in life/business?
SELF LOVE IS EVERYTHING!!! Self love taught me to be more compassionate, to be responsible and hold myself accountable, and most importantly, it taught me about acceptance. Acceptance of what is, what’s passed and of myself. The good and the ugly. Knowing yourself, who you are, what your values are, what morals you live by, will help you navigate through life so much easier with very little stress. Only accept into your reality what it is that you’ve called into it. But to do so, you must know exactly what it is that you want.
What advice do you have for someone like you?
YOUR GUT SPEAKS TRUTH!! Even if logic or other people tells you something may not be a good idea, if your gut says YES, then do it! If there’s even a slither of a silver lining that gives a pinhole of room for success, STRETCH THAT SHIT! Don’t ever allow Fear to stand in your way. Acknowledge it, embrace it, and go full speed ahead in spite of it.
How do you balance life and your creative work?
To me, they are one in the same. I’m an entrepreneur who is extremely passionate about what she does. I’ve turned my lifestyle and my daily habits into my work, so it never really feels like “work” when I am in a creative space. It just feels like me being me! I am however still working on balancing out time with my family & friends with time spent “working”. It’s easy to mix work and fun with some of my friends, because most of them are artists in some form and entrepreneurs, so we’ll sometimes have work dates. We’ll pick a central and casual lounge like a sheesha spot, and work on our own projects while together. It helps to have someone there who not only supports you, but will help keep you accountable and give honest advice and feedback.
Anything Else you like to share?
Dreena is a holistic nutritionist, and soulful vegan chef at Cocktail Lifestyle. She is passionate about helping artistic millennials find holistic ways to feed their minds, bodies and souls, without compromising their love for food. She believes that. “In order for artists of any art form to express themselves and share their message with the world, they must first master the art of self love. Maintaining a healthy body, mind and spirit will allow them to pour more of themselves into their art, and feed the world the magic that flows from within.”
As a nutritional chef, she uses flavors from her Caribbean background to create plant-based, nutrient dense soul food that will invigorate you. Although contradicting to her being vegan, and only creating vegan friendly-dishes, she does not believe in extremes. Through her Instagram videos, she continues to send the message that balance is key! Through Cocktail Lifestyle, Dreena offers private chef services for weekend retreats and private dinner functions. She also offers workshops and nutritional consulting programs to help artistic millennials find all the right holistic ingredients, that make them who they are!