Well Intended: How Mindy Kaling Leans Into Introspection, One Vision Board at a Time



From mantras to meditation, from mindfulness to manifestation, Well intentioned offers an intimate look at how to make room for meaningful personal care large and small.

In 2008, before Mindy Kaling was a writer-actor-producer-showrunner-mother-mentor, she was a writer-actor on Office who used his free time to blog about shopping, as we did in 2008. “The things I bought that I love” was an outlet for his thoughts on things like polo shirts, jumpsuits and, say, blankets specially suited for watching TV on your couch. “I’m kind of a shameless consumer,” Kaling admits during a Zoom call we organized to discuss her consumerism, which she notes has become a bit more confused in recent years. “As I get older I try to be a little more intentional in the way I shop, so I try as much as possible to help small businesses.” Today, the 42-year-old entertainment powerhouse is putting those efforts into a holiday collection curated in collaboration with Amazon Handmade.

Partnering with the online marketplace manufacturer-led platform, which aims to provide unique products made by verified artisans around the world, has been an easy sell for Kaling. “I love handcrafted items so it made sense to do this, especially before the holidays, because I can recommend products to people with a really good, non-alienating price tag. Kaling is “not good at the visual arts,” she admits, but her 24-piece line – which includes a handful of co-designed items – is heavy with unique pieces of home decor, a new area of ​​interest. that it has developed in the past. a year and a half while stuck in her Los Angeles home. “Honeycomb Studio makes porcelain products in small batches that I really love. And it’s run by this woman Courtney Hamill, who works in her garden in Atlanta, and I just loved her story, ”Kaling continues of the emotional bond she developed with select vendors while participating. to virtual market calls and returned samples. -forward. A particular point of pride are the herringbone white linen napkins that she co-designed with Lithuania-based Thing Stories. “I am obsessed with linen; I think that’s really a thing in Southern California – and it’s just a beautiful product that everyone would love as a gift. You can give them to Kanye West, or you can give them to your mother, ”says Kaling. “These are just very simple and warm neutrals, great value for money and they are closely tied to local traditions, so they are trendy, but they come from a personal place.”

Kaling, who has two young children, just enjoyed the success of season 2 of his hit Netflix comedy I have never, and she’s currently gearing up for the November 18 premiere of her new HBO Max series, The sex life of the students– that is, she does not have much time for new projects. But designing her own products is something she might get used to. “I would get a box from Amazon with some nice candles, or some nice linens or some great cutting boards and I could edit them and send back notes, and I was like, ‘It’s an amazing life. I wonder if this is how Jessica Alba is all the time? Her busy schedule also means there isn’t a lot of time for self-care or introspection. But Kaling finds those times when she can, whether she’s cooking in the kitchen or making a vision board. “When you ask a comedian what his intentions are, we feel really vulnerable! She laughs, before forcing, downstairs.

1. Manifesto

I’m actually in a great place to talk about my intentions because I just did a vision board two days ago. Being 42 and making a vision chart can be very triggering, and can only be compared to making a report as a child. So you’re already transferred at the age of 11 or 12: I have Staples posters, and I cut out words in magazines. I’m a funny person so it’s hard to write like to breathe, and forgiveness on a billboard. Being in comedy and being around people all day long who laugh at anyone who has soul-searching, it’s hard to have that soul-searching yourself. But I was really determined to do it because I had done a vision board two years ago and ended up removing it! I put it on the back of my door around January 1 of the New Year, because I heard you should always be able to watch it. There were all these vulnerable photos of things I wanted, and for eight months nothing happened. In fact, some of the things absoutely didn’t happen, so it was just, like, taunting me. So I took it apart. But in the last month of the year, three of the things I had put in there came true – and it was three big ones – and I remember thinking, “Oh my God, that was that fuckin ‘. of visualization board. I just had to be patient. And I thought that was a really good lesson, because when you put up a vision board, it’s not like asking Santa for things. So one of the things I have on the new one is patience, because the last time I took it apart. This year, I will try not to do that.

2. Give gratitude

Every morning, because I’m a stressed and competitive person, I take the time to think about what I’m grateful for: that my kids are healthy, that I’m healthy, that I have a job. who provides them with resources and that I have a nanny and my dad to help me take care of them. Honestly I think if I didn’t do this I would start every day with a chip on my shoulder which is my natural state. Gratitude is really hard for me, so taking the time to do this first thing in the morning puts me in a healthier state of mind. I don’t write anything. I’m just sitting cross-legged on my floor, and I’m like out loud, “I’m thankful for my health, I’m thankful for the health of my children, I’m thankful that my father is alive, and I’m grateful for our nanny, there is something about having to say it that makes it really real.

3. Cook, eat, love

If you follow me on Instagram, you know I really want to share healthy meals – not ‘healthy’ because I was raised and raised in diet culture, and that word has a lot of connotations to me – but just a good one. meals with the people I love. I usually have some time in the middle of the day, between 11:15 am and 12 noon, when I am free, so I will try to make a recipe that is mostly vegetables and cook it for my kids and my assistant and the one. who is at home. And we sit down and take out the placemats. I’m telling you, the linen placements are so pretty and they make you feel effortlessly chic! As a comedy writer, I ate a lot of Styrofoam with plastic utensils. It was my life for eight years Office, and another six years The Mindy project. So we don’t use anything disposable during these meals, which are usually very simple, like vegetable-based coconut curries. And even though two hours later I eat a Snickers bar, or an Almond Joy, or drink a Light Coke, at least I know I’ve had this really nourishing meal with people I love, and we have talked about our days. It was really important to me and really fun.

Thing Stories Linen Linen Placemats

4. Live in color

Like everyone else, I have been living in athletics for two years. But I love to dress up, and adding a pop of color to my wardrobe always puts me in a better mood. I really like Elder Statesman. They have wonderful knits. And La Ligne makes these incredibly comfortable sweaters that are actually LA-tailored. I am also obsessed with The Real Real. The problem is, the minute I try to sell an old dress that I used to wear to an event and don’t wear anymore, I see something on it and I’m like, “Oh, I need it. of these Chanel Birkenstocks ”. It’s good for the environment, of course, but we forget that as we have fun shopping!
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La Ligne ribbed V-neck sweater with balloon sleeves

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Elder Statesman ribbed cashmere cardigan

5. Turn chores into personal care

I find it very comforting to have rituals. If something feels like a chore, I often have to do something that turns it into self-care so that I don’t hate it. I used to find it so boring coming home from a meeting and having to wash my face and remove my makeup, and I would rush – or not at all. But I saw this influencer wearing a puffy stretchy headband with a big bow and I thought it was so cute, and really “Elle Woods”. And it cost, like, $ 8 on Amazon, so I just went and got it. Now I am looking forward to the ritual and have the chance to use the rejuvenating serum from Joanna Vargas, who is my facialist. I’m really trying to prioritize my skin right now so if I can see it four times a year I’m happy. I use it on my face and Mo’Butter Cream 16J Organics moisturizer on my body. Especially in beauty, I feel like there has been huge progress, even over the past 10 years, in products that are better for you and the planet. 16J Organics are just awesome and their whole thing is real nourishment for our skin. They use food grade ingredients, which I didn’t even know about until I met the founder, Lourdes, based in New York. I’m not perfect, but trying to buy things that are sustainable and not bad for the environment from a company that reflects my values, especially supporting women or women of color, is really important to me. .
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Joanna Vargas Rejuvenating Serum

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16J Organics Body Butter Moisturizer

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