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Jennifer Lopez on Drinking Alcohol in Moderation

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Jennifer Lopez on Drinking Alcohol in Moderation

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Chances are, you don’t immediately associate words like “carefree” and “easygoing” with Jennifer Lopez—the same JLo whose daily butt-kicking workouts and regimented sleep schedule have long been the stuff of internet lore. But as the multihyphenate raised a glass filled with one of her new Delola spritzes to toast with me via Zoom this week, I could see that she has a distinctly chill vibe.

Lopez has been in the process of changing and evolving, she tells me, sharing that her new line of ready-made cocktails is part of a larger shift in her lifestyle and personal goals. She says she’s shaking off some of her rigidity in favor of a more joyous, playful side—a version of herself that close family and friends nicknamed “Lola” in the past, but that she’s long kept hidden from the rest of the world.

“Lola existed when I was in my twenties,” Lopez says. “I was the girl dancing on the table… and then I became this super-focused, type-A, overachieving workaholic.” Over the course of the past 10 to 15 years, though, she’s realized that softening a little might do her soul some good. Today, at 53, JLo feels proud to be incorporating more balance in her life in an effort to (proverbially) “Dance Again.”

“I realized my life was passing me by, I’m in my fifties now, my kids are getting big,” says Lopez. “I needed to find more balance and learn how to enjoy myself a little bit more and relax, and also I needed to stop proving myself and putting all that pressure on myself that we do as women around the middle of our lives—when we’re at the height of our career, and we’re raising kids, and we’re superwomen.” What Lopez needed most, she realized, was to chill out and have fun.

“I got to this different point in my life where I was like, ‘I need to laugh more,’ ‘I need to dance more,’ and these are the keys to life and happiness.” —Jennifer Lopez

And yes, drinking the occasional cocktail has become a part of that. Though Lopez has been adamant about avoiding alcohol in the past (largely for health reasons), she tells me that she’s begun to enjoy a glass of rosé (or the occasional white Russian or fruity spritz) every so often in recent years. The decision wasn’t so much an, “I started drinking” thing as it was a “My life ideas started changing” thing, she says. “I got to this different point in my life where I was like, ‘I need to laugh more,’ ‘I need to dance more,’ and these are the keys to life and happiness.”

Her Delola cocktails are a reflection of this carefree spirit, reminiscent of her long-hidden “Lola” alter ego (hence the name, a portmanteau of “de” and “Lola” to mean “from Lola” in Spanish).

Though Lopez takes pride in the fact that the first releases from Delola—three fruity spritzes flavored with natural botanicals like elderflower, passionfruit, and hibiscus—are lower in alcohol and sugar than some of their counterparts, there’s no denying that their alcohol content nevertheless negates any would-be health benefits. (To be sure, recent science has squashed previous notions that a small amount of alcohol is good for you.) But to focus on that is to miss Lopez’s point with the launch—which is more about the potential for finding a moment of joy when pouring the occasional drink or popping open a bottle with a group of loved ones.

Whereas Lopez once believed in an all-or-nothing approach to well-being, she’s now wholeheartedly embracing balance—not just when it comes to alcohol consumption, but also in terms of working out and sleeping and everything else she does to care for her body. “Before, I was like, ‘I have to work out every single day, and I have to do this other thing, and I have to get all this sleep,’ and that worked for me for a long time,” she says, “but I got to a point where I just started questioning, ‘Why do I put all these rules on myself?’”

For the next act of her life, Lopez says, if she “has anything else to offer to the world,” it’s the importance of being balanced and being consistent when it comes to well-being. “You don’t want to not work out at all, and you don’t want to work out every single day; you want to say, ‘Let’s see if I can accomplish three or four days a week of working out.’” And the same goes for her approach to sleep: “Sometimes, you’re going to go to bed late, and sometimes, you’re going to get up real early, and you might not get the hours you need—but that’s okay.”

As the impetus for this new laid-back approach to well-being, Lopez cites the natural changes that come with getting older. “It’s about being in tune with yourself and learning to change along with those changes, which I think is the hardest thing for people to accept,” she says. You have to feel comfortable getting to know yourself, she adds, in order to embrace every part of you. And as for Lopez going forward? That’s going to look like a little less “JLo” and a little more “Lola.”

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Harmony Evans is an award-winning author of Harlequin Kimani Romance, African-American romance, and so on. Harmony Evans is an award-winning author for Harlequin Kimani Romance, the leading publisher of African-American romance. Her 2nd novel, STEALING KISSES, will be released in November 2013. Harmony is a single mom to a beautiful, too-smart-for-her-own-good daughter, who makes her grateful for life daily. Her hobbies include cooking, baking, knitting, reading, and of course, napping and also review some of the best-selling and popular brands and services in the market and also write comprehensive blogs.

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