Having just kicked off the fourth season of her hit CW show, Nina Dobrev pitched in on promotions by scoring herself the cover of the November 2012 issue of Self magazine.

The 23-year-old Canadian brightened up the Ben Watts shot front page in a skintight Gryphon New York dress with the feature column’s subject matter ranging from fitness and beauty to fashion and traveling.

Highlights from Miss Dobrev’s interview are as follows. For more, be sure to pay a visit to Self!

On her tummy toning preference:
“Six-pack abs? Not me. I have a flat tummy, but I’m not rock hard. If I’m going to be in a bikini, I’ll train more and skip desserts for a couple of weeks. But usually, I work out to feel good.”

On her diet:
“Starving to be skinny isn’t my thing. When I don’t eat, it affects my mood! On-set, I fuel up with small meals and I’m always grabbing high-protein snacks, like almonds. Chai lattes with espresso also keep me going.”

On her personal growth motivational tool:
“I want to keep growing, so I make vision boards that say things like, ‘Learn. Excel. Succeed.’ Using my imagination, spelling out what I want to achieve and creating a reminder of those things helps me move forward.”

On her traveling techniques:
“I’m like George Clooney in ‘Up in the Air’. When I fly, I never check my bags. I bring a carry-on, an eye pillow, noise-canceling headphones, a big pillow and a blanket. I usually travel with a castmate and fall asleep in the most contorted positions, with my leg splayed out on the lap of whoever is next to me.”

On preferring quality over quantity when it comes to clothes:
“I buy a few pieces that are meaningful, versus a lot of things. My mom says only buy something you think is special enough to be worth three times its cost.”On: