The Power Of A “Why Not Me” Mindset

The other day I stumbled upon an article on the idea of ‘why not me’ and living in possibility—saying ‘yes’ to things, jumping forward into opportunities, being unafraid. I think, in many ways, I’ve tried to make this my mantra for the last few years. I’ve celebrated (and simultaneously bit off more than I could chew 😂) saying ‘yes’ to people, to challenges, to work projects, to ideas, and to the beat of my own heart.

I remember when I was younger I was really affected by the movie Yes Man. It was such a silly plot and fun characters, but the message really resonated with me. What if I really did say ‘yes’ to everything that came my way? Would that make me a better person? Would I do things that I normally shied away from? Would it cause my entire life to shift? I remember walking away from that movie with an uplifted heart. I promised myself that I would say ‘yes’ to more things, jump forward instead of holding back.

Slowly and over time that came true. I think I saw this growth the most in my romantic life. I started saying ‘yes’ to dates, ‘yes’ to the pounding in my heart, ‘yes’ to the people who made me feel something. I said ‘yes’ to new tasks at work. ‘Yes’ to my own ideas and creativity.

And most of all, a resounding ‘yes’ to myself and what I believed in, which truly changed everything. Continue reading

Maybe It’s Not Perfection We’re Searching For After All

I read in a survey that the average American only has 15 “perfect days” per year. When I first came across these words, my eyebrows furrowed. A “perfect day”—What does that even mean? Is it the same for everyone? Different? Is it measurable? And why are there so little of these days that we’re truly experiencing? Continue reading

Recognize Your Potential, And Then Wildly Pursue It

Life is all about chances, and empowering yourself—despite the obstacles that may stand in your way—to take them. Every single one. Continue reading

Just Because Things Aren’t Going ‘Right’ Doesn’t Mean They’re Going Wrong

We all have a perception of ‘perfect.’ Try as we might to pretend that we aren’t living this way—aren’t searching and striving for excellence, aren’t beating ourselves up for every failure or wrong turn, aren’t living with our eyes focused on the unobtainable—we are. And yes, it can be a disheartening perspective, but it can also be a motivating one, depending on how we choose to let it shape us.

We spend most of our lives searching for the best. We want to be the best. We want to have the best. We want to live the best life. Thinking and behaving this way isn’t bad. It’s only when we start to let this endless chase control us, and find ourselves falling into a pit of despair when we inevitably aren’t and can’t possess the ‘best,’ that we have to take a step back and realize the ‘best’ isn’t everything.

Life is not about relentlessly pursing something we can’t quite identify. It’s not about running wildly towards a goal we can’t quite name. It’s not about forever feeling inadequate because what we desire for ourselves is always out of reach, even though—and especially because—we might not even recognize it when we have it.

Truthfully, looking and pushing for the best, for a perfect life can be disheartening because we are human, and no amount of work, effort, or even miracles can make our lives completely on ‘the right track.’

Trying to get there is a good thing, but we have to remember that the pursuit is our purpose.

Even if we don’t get there, don’t make it, don’t always go the ‘right’ way—that doesn’t mean our efforts were fruitless. That doesn’t mean we no longer have meaning. That doesn’t mean we are hopeless, or wrong.

Things aren’t always going to go right. They’re not always going to make sense. They’re not always going to go the way we want them to, but that doesn’t dictate our lives. Our resilience does. Continue reading

Maybe To Truly Live You Must Remember Your Impermanence

I still remember the bright glimmer of the Lake Tahoe water reflected back with a shine in the whites of our eyes. We were sharing the same extra-large towel, two bodies only having met a few hours earlier, connected under that warm summer sun. This moment I remember so vividly—his long hair tossed over broad, tanned shoulders; the light warming our faces; the sound of his laugh. It was love, yes, but in the strangest way. It wasn’t that I wanted to lean in and kiss him, to draw his body closer to mine. It’s that I wanted to hold his heart in my hands, lay there and just listen to the sound of his voice.

I loved who he was as a person, I loved his soul.

He had turned to me, pouring stories of his past. I could tell by the way his eyes looked away over the water that he was heartbroken—he didn’t have to say her name for me to know.

He was dying—epilepsy—every seizure taking his strength, but not his heart.

I watched the way his mouth moved, comforted by the sound. And in that moment, I did not have words. I just listened. Realizing that he, even with his numbered days, knew far more about living than I did. Continue reading

Take Chances—That’s Where Your Life Begins

I wouldn’t classify myself as a risk-taker. Sure, when it comes to love, I’ve always been one to jump in. But love feels different, is different, in my opinion. When you take a chance on a person, when you welcome the possibility, it feels smart (even if you get hurt).

Love has always felt like a good decision. Not necessarily a risk. And maybe that’s because I’ve seen real risk as jumping off cliffs, walking into burning houses to save children, fighting in the army, etc.—something that takes real heart, and guts, and strength.

But then, doesn’t love require all of those things, too? Doesn’t love ask you to stand up in the face of your fear, to be brave, to trust, to be stronger than you’ve ever been?

I wouldn’t call myself a risk taker, but I guess I’ve always been fearless when it comes to love. I’ve always believed that it’s far better to fall than to wonder what if, far more incredible to let a person in than to look back with regret. And maybe that simple act is truly stronger than we think.

Maybe there’s a little bit of risk-taker in all of us.

I’ve been thinking a lot about risk lately, actually, I’ve been thinking a lot about everything. When we’re faced with a big decision (which aren’t we pretty much all the time?!) we start to question, to dig deep, to consider all our options and lean into the people around us for guidance and support.

I’ve been considering some life changes. Many of those have already began. And as my life shifts and spins around me, I keep coming back to the thought of taking risks, taking chances, saying ‘yes.’

And for the first time in my life, I’m really walking boldly into that.

The other day I took a step back and really asked myself what I was after. I asked, “If I could have everything I wanted, what would that look like? If I imagined the life I desire, what would I be doing, who would I be surrounded by?” And then the follow up question, “What am I doing right now to head into that direction?”

This made me think. It made me think a lot about my day-to-day decisions and how, sometimes, I think I spread myself too thin trying to do and be everything. It made me think about how I let other people influence my heart because I don’t want them to be disappointed, or to see me in a different way (and how honestly foolish is that!?).

It made me think about how every second we’re alive and on this earth matters—and maybe not in the sense that we have to constantly stress about losing or missing out on time and opportunities, but that we have to go and grab what we can—life is too short not to. Continue reading

Stop Searching For Happiness—It’s Right Here

We are all so desperate to find happiness, to hold it within our palms, to tuck it away in some corner of our minds our hearts, to claim it as ours. This is human, natural. It’s not wrong to want to experience joy, to grab onto it for as long as we can.

But have you ever noticed how much time we spend searching? Have you ever stopped to see that perhaps you don’t always have to be looking, running, living in frantic pursuit of what you don’t yet have because what you do have is enough? Continue reading

I Am Allowed To Take Up Space (And 10 Other Affirmations To Tell Yourself)

I am allowed to take up space.

I am allowed to exist here, on this earth, in all my mess and glory. I am allowed to be bold, to be hesitant, to move, to stay put, to ask questions, to challenge the perspectives set before me.

I am allowed to exist as I am.

I am allowed to be and become, to create and recreate myself as I see fit. I am allowed to be whomever I choose or change into. I am allowed to lean on others, to rely solely on myself. I am allowed to be proud of the skin I’m in. And I owe no one an apology for how my heart beats.

I am more than my past.

I am not defined by where I’ve been, unless I choose to use the moments behind me to propel me forward positively. I am more than the times I’ve fallen down, or the times I’ve lost touch of who I am or where I want to be. I am not held back by sin, by failures, by moments of weakness because I am and forever will be more than that. I am ever-growing, and stand boldly in this. Continue reading

Repeat After Me: I Am Blessed, I Am Happy, I Am Thankful

There is a baby I am nannying laying in my arms, eyes half-closed, fighting sleep. There are dishes in my sink back home. There are piles of paperwork I have to go through on the kitchen table, pamphlets I have to read, websites I have to study to learn how to start my business from the ground up. There are notifications buzzing on my phone, friends I need to call back, family members I need to email back today. There are six different to-do lists, each three pages or more long.

There are not enough hours in the day.

And yet, as I rock this little baby, hear the hum of a lawn mower across the street and the birds floating and singing lazily in the cloudy sky, I know one thing—no matter the items on my lists, the stress I’m feeling, the weight the world sometimes puts on my shoulders—I am blessed. I am happy. And I am thankful.

I am thankful for moments like this—when nothing goes my way, when I can’t catch a break, when all I need is a few more hours to breathe, to sleep, to think, to be still. I am thankful for the baby that cries, teaching me to slow down, to be patient even when that’s the last thing I want to be. I am thankful for the moments of peace where I can grab a quick drink and write from the heart. I am thankful to be here, even when ‘here’ is a little helter-skelter.

Right now, even though my heart is beating far too fast, even though everything feels like a landslide ready to fall with the tiniest, pebble-sized movement, I know I still have so much to be grateful for.
Continue reading

6 Ways To (Guiltlessly) Prioritize Yourself

1. Create a self-care schedule.

Life gets busy—from calendars and planners to schedules and online appointments—sometimes we need to keep ourselves and our commitments organized. In the same way that you plan and book meetings or events, create a self-care schedule. Write on your calendar spa dates, gym time, nail appointments, nights out with friends, solo movie dates, etc. Whatever your daily life is lacking, whatever you long for, whatever you need to add in order to prioritize yourself, do so by writing these physically into your calendar.

When you do the physical act of writing, you will intentionally block out time for those activities and can make plans around them instead of skipping them. You won’t feel guilty, either, because what’s on the calendar is a committed plan, rather than a lofty idea.

2. Make healthy boundaries.

Prioritizing yourself sometimes means learning to say ‘no.’ Whether that’s missing out on Tuesday Trivia and drinks with friends in order to get some well-needed rest, or cancelling (in advance, of course!) on a coffee date so that you can catch up on your work alone, feel empowered in creating boundaries for your self-care.

You only have one life, and though you should always be excited about, and take advantage of opportunities—sometimes it is just as beneficial to your body and soul to say ‘no,’ to stay home, to work late, or to do ‘you’ in order to rejuvenate and get back to your inner fullness. Continue reading