My husband and I took a trip to Arizona recently for a photography conference, called Showit United. It was easily one of my favorite trips we’ve ever been on! We started in Tempe and Phoenix for the first five days for the conference, then we traveled to Sedona and The Grand Canyon for the last part of our trip! Before I get to share some highlights of the trip, I first want to talk more about the United conference.
This was an educational conference with speakers, breakouts, styled shoots, and so much more! I realized I cry more than the average human, no big deal. The speakers were beyond incredible. I felt renewed, inspired, and loved. I met some amazing photographer idols who I’ve followed for yearssss (including Jasmine Star who I got to meet and hug and obsess over)! I got to dress up for a beautiful gala with my hubby, made new friends, reunited with old friends, and grew closer to my dear friend from home. This was SO much more than just a photography conference, friends.
We all have a purpose. I have a purpose. YOU have a purpose.
You are heard, you are seen, you are loved, you are intelligent, you are beautiful, you matter, you are MORE than enough. We all have our valleys and challenges. You are not alone. Be generous, be kind, love hard. Put your mental health first. Give and give some more. Stay focused, be intentional, change your perception, be confident, and make sacrifices.
This is everything I took away from the conference. I mean, this was a photography conference, you guys!… Can you believe that? I feel like it was more of a spiritual journey. Don’t get me wrong, I learned A LOT about how to improve my business… but those are the topics that stuck in my head the most. These are the things that matter most to me. These are the things that will empower me to run a successful business. If I keep working hard towards being a good human, living intentionally, putting others first, and doing the things that make me feel whole, THAT is the only way I can foster this business.
A community that teaches these life lessons is a community I will forever be proud to be a part of. I am so grateful for the opportunity to attend this conference and to have witnessed the support, love, and kindness that it was built on.
Now moving past the mushy gushy stuff, here comes the fun! This is where the awesome desert photos come in! I had so much fun photographing this stunning couple alongside two alpacas and the beautiful details. I knew I signed up for the “fiesta desert” styled shoot, but the alpacas were the best surprise EVER!
Thank you, Raelene for this amazing experience! Vendors listed below–
Host- Raelene Schulmeister Photography
Cake- Sugar By Tracy
Gown- Bella Lily Bridal
And just for fun, I’ll share some shots I got of Alysha of Blessed Beginnings Photography, Jaimi of Jaimi Bailey Photography, some of my new headshots, and some fun traveling photos!
Oh, I remember it so clearly. This time last year, I was crying, complaining, and felt defeated. My husband witnessed the worst of it (sorry, Eli!). I had maybe 3 people on the books for the Spring and I was so confused as to why I wasn’t booking more clients. Here I am exactly one year later, and I have an incredible amount of clients on my schedule and I am getting new inquiries almost every day. Normally I would say, “Woah, I don’t know what happened!” But I actually do know… That’s what I’m going to share with you today!
“If we don’t have dreams, what do we have?” I heard this on some random Netflix show I was watching the other day… It spoke to me. If we aren’t dreaming and fighting to get where we want to be, then what are we doing!? It’s time to reach your goals and begin living your dream! YOU are the only one who can make that happen. It all starts with YOU. So, let’s get you going!
Here are some ways to grow your business and start booking more clients from my personal experience! These tips worked for me, but keep in mind it took an entire year to get there. I have practiced, worked hard, tried new things, followed through, and taken chances. I went for it and I made it happen. It’s not going to happen for you overnight, but it will happen over some time and on YOUR time. So stop comparing your business growth to someone else’s because it doesn’t work that way. This is YOUR experience and YOUR story. Soon you are going to stop feeling defeated and start feeling refreshed with a newfound perspective and confidence!
If you’re interested in an educational opportunity with me, check out more information about my “Shades of Pink” Workshop on June 18th!! Find the registration and investment at the bottom of the page! Mentoring is fully booked until the Summer- if you are interested in some one-on-one time, shoot me an email! I can’t wait to hear from you!!
To sign up for my Education Email list, click HERE!
Do you know your worth…? Have you ever really thought about that before? Have you ever been put to the test about knowing your worth? I always knew what that question meant, but I didn’t know the true meaning of it until I had to step away from all the things I was doing and really take a look at myself. I had to dig deep, I had to be honest with myself, and I had to make some changes.
It feels good to be valued, doesn’t it? But it feels terrible when you’re not. When you are just starting to understand your worth, it can still be hard to make confident decisions about what you’re doing, who you’re working for, or how you’re being treated. After starting my photography business, I had to make some tough decisions. There were times when I just didn’t think I was worth as much as something or someone else, but then I grew to know my value. I have been challenged and tested time and time again. Certain situations and people have come in and out of my life by way of soul-searching and contemplating whether I was adding value or having it taken away from me. There are jobs, moments and people that are put into your life for a reason… they force you to soul-search, test your will, and grow.
I’m sure a lot of you have been in positions where we have felt undervalued and been given unfair circumstances. Let me tell you… I have been there a few times. After a while, it gets tiring. I am all for working hard, going above and beyond, and making a sacrifice for the greater good, but when I don’t get the appreciation or respect I feel I deserve, I begin to feel a lack of value as a whole. After a full year of going full-time as a photographer, I am now confident enough to say that I KNOW my worth. I know what I deserve and I know how I should be valued as a person and photographer. I decided I will no longer give away my hard work, time, and my personal space to a situation that doesn’t create value for both sides. I know that each and every one of you wants to feel that you earn value when you make an investment, and I believe everybody should dig deep to find that source of positive gain.
Now, think about it… Are you also confident enough to say the same? Do you know your worth? It took me a solid year in business to figure it out and I continue to work on it daily; maybe you need some time to figure it out, too. Take a step back, give yourself the time to really think about how far you’ve come in your career. Look at your business and your life. Are you getting what you know you deserve? Think about why you think you should be valued, and the changes you might need to make. Are you making sacrifices that seem unfair? I can tell you now, it’s okay and it’s going to all be worth it in the end. These things happen for a reason… to make you stronger, to teach you how to speak up and stand up. When you’re sacrificing and doing the best you can, you should be so proud of yourself. Just know that the right thing at the right time will be placed in front of you and it will pay off. You are always rewarded in the end.
Sometimes it seems impossible to get out of a situation or lifestyle after being committed to it for so long. I know, I’ve been there too. Weirdly enough, every time I put it in my head that I belong somewhere else or I don’t feel right in a position, I start making natural changes that push me in the right direction and I end up exactly where I need to be. Doing the right thing is never the easiest decision. It takes strength and courage to speak up for yourself and it takes hard work to make your worth a reality. Just know your value and don’t let that slip away from you. When it comes time for a change and you’re ready to step out, that will be your moment. It makes the world of a difference to know your worth and be confident in your strengths. If you don’t recognize your worth yet, maybe you need to make some changes, or maybe you just need space to grow. It takes time to really know and feel it, but I just wanted to get this thought into your head.
With faith, comes joy.
So have a little faith, do the right thing for yourself, and remember you deserve to be valued and you deserve to be happy!
Most people don’t talk about depression, anxiety, broken hearts, or anger all that often on social media. I know I don’t because it’s not something I want to share through my business brand. My brand is happy, cheerful, colorful, bright, and exciting! I want people to see my brand, my website, and my social media and feel joy. That’s why I don’t normally bring up the other feelings when I’m actually feeling them. On a bad day, I usually don’t post on social media at all! I’m a real human though, I’m not a brand… I just built this brand for my business. I have ALL the feels ALL the time. I’m actually an extra emotional human. I take everything to heart, I take everything personally even when it might have nothing to do with me. I feel sadness, I get mad, I get anxiety, I cry, and I feel every emotion just like you. Just because I’m not sharing these thoughts and feelings with social media, doesn’t mean those feelings aren’t there. That’s important for you to know.
I’ll be honest, I’m not always happy and I’m not always doing what I love. I have to do whatever I need to do to survive and build this business. I’m hustling every day and I love what I do, but it’s not always easy. I’ve been given situations time and time again that challenge me in ways that push me to try harder and to be a better person. I learn something new through every emotion and every obstacle. I have nights where I can’t sleep because of the anxiety. I have days where I want to delete my social media. I have things happen in my life that you might never hear about because I choose to keep that private. I don’t think all my specific problems in life should be announced for the world to see, but I do think it’s okay to let you know I feel all the same things as you. I’ve been hurt, taken advantage of, put down, stressed, annoyed, confused, mad, sad, all of it.
I want you to know that I’m not always a confetti throwing lunatic and I have way more going on in my life than what meets the eye. I do however try to turn all my negative feelings into a positive outlook and that’s what I want to share with my followers. I want to spread joy and light to the world. I choose to share happy thoughts, encouraging words, and a colorful life because maybe that’s what someone else needs at the time.
Just know that you are not alone. Next time you see me holding a glass of champagne toasting to a big announcement and you’re over there crying because life is weird when you’re in your 20’s- just remember that’s not real life and I feel it too. Here’s to living a purposeful life day by day. Here’s to discovering our true selves with an open mind and heart, to the imperfections, adversities, and emotions that shape us. To those suffering in silence. Here’s to the people who don’t show it or share it but feel it and live it every day.
Yep, it’s true… little Remy is overwhelmed because her dreams are so big they take over her tiny head. Have you seen my head? It’s small… My to-do list keeps growing and growing, which means I need to calm down! Can anyone relate? Let’s all take a deep breath together… yeah, that didn’t help me either. The winter can provide lots of downtimes, but the planning time for the Spring can be so overwhelming.
I’m overwhelmed with new ideas, creative planning, my crazy work schedule, my emotions, and the balance of work life and the real world. When I get like this, I know I need to slow down. I shouldn’t be in a rush to get it all done at once. I need to remember that my timing is God’s timing. He has this path laid out for me, and I need to walk through it, not run! If I start rushing, I know I’m not doing things to their fullest potential. When I start planning something big, exciting, and totally out of my comfort zone, I‘ve learnedthat I need to take my time with it so that I’m enjoying the process, rather than stressing about last minute things.
I always want to put my best foot forward, I want to be all there, and I want my whole heart to be present in everything that I do. I get it, sometimes it’s hard to live in the moment when you’ve been dreaming about something for so long and it’s finally coming to life! But I know that I need to focus on the present while slowly planning for the future, rather than pushing forward too quickly and carelessly. I want to give it all I have, don’t you?!
So instead of running or maybe even hiding, let’s learn to slow down and do it all on our own time. I’m cheering you on every step of the way! If you are taking leaps instead of steps, start trying to reach those small steps and see if that helps you get out of that overwhelmed mindset. Remember, do things on your own time and give it your all! Sending you snowy kisses!
Let’s be real here. We all have a natural tendency to compare our successes or our lifestyle to someone else’s. “The comparing monster” has been trending, now more than ever, with social media being shoved in our faces all-day-every-day. What we don’t need in our lives is to feel discouraged, competitive, and sad for no actual reason. We also don’t need other people telling us to “just stop comparing” and move on… I think we need more people to educate us on how to stop comparing, how to let go and let God, and how to move forward rather than letting it slow you down.
In the past year that I have been really building and concentrating on my business, I have also experienced a few similar conversations. I’ve talked with small business owners and found that a lot of their emotions get caught up in comparing to other similar businesses. I’ve heard from some of the most successful and inspiring women and even they get caught up in the ‘comparing world’ from time to time. I’ve also had conversations with friends who are in totally different places in their lives who admitted to comparing their life or career to my own. When I hear something like that, it doesn’t make me feel good, and it just doesn’t make sense. The last thing I want to hear from a friend is that they feel the need to compare their own lives to mine. Why?
Because her success is not meant to be your own. We are all doing life on our own time and in our own way! Whatever God has in store for me, was not meant for you. Whatever God has in store for you, for her, for them, was not meant for me. No one situation is the right way or the wrong way to live life. How can you compare yourself, your success, and your life to someone or something that was not meant to be yours to begin with, and was not on your own time?
Whoever and whatever it is that you feel the need to compare to, it’s time to let that go. It’s time you know how to get past those feelings. It’s time to understand why you should be looking at this as an opportunity to grow and challenge yourself to get exactly where you want to be on your own time.
I want to let you in on a few tips that help me through the struggle of comparing and what allows me to move on in a positive direction.
Get to the point. Let’s say you come across someone’s instagram and you keep scrolling and scrolling until you just feel bad about yourself. Now get to the root of that feeling and figure out why you’re reacting that way. This forces you point what it is that’s making you compare. Now, what needs to change? Do you need to make a change in yourself and the way you think? Do you need to make a change in your business? Get straight the point, don’t dwell on whatever it is you’re comparing to.
Take it as a challenge. After you’ve figured out exactly what’s making you feel the need to compare, take it as a challenge to keep moving forward, to make your next big move, and to work harder to get what you want. Make this an opportunity to get yourself into gear, change your mindset, and work towards those goals!
Let go and let God. Remember, have a little faith. Maybe you just have faith in yourself, or maybe you have faith in yourself and God. Whichever works for you, don’t forget to trust the power of having faith. You have to remember that you have your own path to follow, not anyone else’s. Try to understand that whatever someone else is accomplishing, was not meant for you. Maybe your time will come, or maybe your path will take an unexpected turn. Whatever happens, is exactly what’s meant to happen for your benefit. So cheer that person on, don’t compare or compete, just let go and move on!
Put it down and get creative. This tip is my favorite way to distract myself and then totally forget I was even feeling the comparison crazies. Stop the scrolling, put down your phone, and get creative! So maybe to you, this means you’re going to put your phone away and go hiking to clear your mind in a peaceful environment! Or maybe this means you need to get creative in your business and start a new project to work towards! I love coming up with new projects to keep me motivated and get my creative juices flowing! This will take your mind off of the comparisons and make you realize there’s no need to feel that way when you are doing things your own way!
Time to reflect. Whether you enjoy meditating, praying, quiet time, taking a walk, or whatever you enjoy, do this to put your mind at ease and reflect on how far you’ve come. Think about everything you have accomplished by now compared to last year or maybe a few year ago. Reflect, be thankful, and be at peace with your own success and your own lifestyle. We are all blessed. If you make the time to do this, you will remember that comparing does nothing but make us feel discouraged, and there is no need to make ourselves feel that way. This is your life, and it’s time you own it!
Be proud of who you are, have faith in where you’re going, and remember you are loved. I’m rooting for you every step of the way, friends!
“A thief comes only to steal and to kill and to destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.” John 10:10
Sometimes my Dad decides to send a family group text and include his morning devotion. August 25th, my birthday, he sent this message to us. I saved it on my phone because it was strangely relatable to a lot of conversations I’ve been having with friends lately. I used to try doing the morning devotional routine, but then I figured out that I’m 100% not a morning person and I would just fall back asleep after 30 seconds of reading… maybe someday I’ll get there. Lately, I’ve been finding that a lot of my spirituality comes out in my writing, so here’s an unexpected message I thought I would share with you all.
“If you are not experiencing love, joy, and peace, you have settled for less than what God intends for you. If you have been making excuses for why you are not experiencing an abundant and joyful life, determine today to settle for nothing less than God’s best for your life. Stop following the world’s way of finding satisfaction. Instead, listen to the Savior’s voice, and you will find true fulfillment.”
Your 20’s can be weird, right? Once you’re out of college, it’s like………… huh? What is life? Or maybe you’re still finishing college, or maybe you decided not to go to college… either way, it can feel weird. Overwhelming interviews, figuring out where to live, the pressure to do this and that, finding what you’re meant to do, comparing yourself to friends, deciding whether to get married or not to get married, discovering everything you dislike about your job or where you live, feeling alone, feeling confused, and feeling unfulfilled. This doesn’t just go for those of you in your 20’s of course, but I’m 25, so I’m speaking from my point of view and based on some of my experiences.
I get all of these feelings and obstacles, and I think we ALL do to a certain extent. Most of us have been there, done that… if not, it’s going to happen sooner or later. These struggles last longer for some more than others, because we are all different no matter how close in age we might be. I’ve been hearing the same thing from friends over and over. To sum it up, they’re feeling unfulfilled and they know there is more for them somewhere out there- but they don’t know what, when, where, or how to get there!
It’s easy to feel discouraged when you’re confused about what you’re doing, where you’re living, or maybe even who you’re with. Maybe this means it’s time to find your courage and make a change. Or maybe this means it’s time to simply look at your life differently. Whatever it is that needs to happen and whatever you are confused about, does not have to lead you to feelings of unfulfillment, sadness, or anger. It doesn’t mean you can’t be joyful and thankful throughout the process. It does not mean you should settle for less than what God has intended for you. Let’s try to not make excuses and, instead, open our hearts to an abundant life. Instead of listening to the world and what society says, take a moment to listen to the silence. Be with yourself in peace and listen. You will find your answers and you will open the path to living an abundant life.
Eli and I love Trevor Hall- there is a peaceful and calming feeling that comes over us when we listen to his songs. His “Chapter of the Forest” album is especially our favorite. One of my favorite songs on the album is “Green Mountain State” and it says “there’s a way, there’s a way. there’s a way…and there is always.”
There is always a way. Always a way in and a way out. Choose joy. Choose fulfillment. It can take time and effort, but just remember that you are intended to live an abundant life.
If you enjoyed this post, you might be interested in some of my other blogs!
I mean like really hard. I’ve always had a strong work ethic and I’ll always be that way. I forced myself to be this way a long time ago and now it just comes naturally… it’s a part of who I am. I give my all in everything that I do.
There are those people we all know: the ones who easily succeed in school without having to lift a finger or open a book… and then there are the people who have to try extra hard to make it through… that was me.
Elementary school- I literally couldn’t learn the times tables no matter how many times my teacher jammed it in my head. Middle school- I actually couldn’t comprehend a single thing I was learning. High school- tutors on tutors on tutors. Math, science, history… it was all a nightmare. That left me to English/Writing, Music, and Arts… those were the only subjects I felt confident in. Obviously, I succeeded more in the creative field- where I (happily) am today.
Back then I thought I was a failure, and that I would never get a good job because I felt so stupid. Really? Stupid? That wasn’t true by any means, but that’s how the school systems can make you feel when you aren’t learning at the same pace as the majority of students. I, of course, was blessed with the typical loving parents who always told me how smart I was and how amazing I was doing in school, but I knew, truly, that it wasn’t my strongpoint and I struggled with that.
I wasn’t stupid, and I’m not stupid, I just learn differently. There is nothing wrong with that. Knowing this, I had to work extra hard at everything I did. I was so hard on myself, especially when it came to tests. I would bawl when I came home with a bad grade– not because my parents were upset… they were proud of me because they knew I worked hard — it was because I gave it my all, and I still didn’t see my hard work pay off. Yet, the person beside me could miss class for a week and text through every lecture, and still receive a better grade than me.
Taking the SAT was a nightmare. I took them twice and my scores were terrible, both times. Sadly, I didn’t get to experience the excitement of being accepted into the college of my dreams, like all my friends did. I experienced something way different. I was embarrassed, distraught, and felt totally alone. I had to accept the fact that I had to stay at my childhood home during what was supposed to be my freshman year of college and attend a community college instead. It just wasn’t what I pictured. Most people think of community college as a lesser thing, so I did too. I was in a really dark place and on top of that, I was diagnosed with Still’s Disease after being in the hospital for a week. I was on medication that gave me bad reactions and I was going through a healing process with my body.
My friends were all leaving for college, while I was dealing with illness, depression, anger, and, truly, I didn’t even want to leave the house. As it turned out, staying home and going to community college was honestly the best possible experience for me and it was exactly where I needed to be. I learned so much about myself, about my work ethic, and ways to succeed through college. I was determined to succeed and would not stop until I got accepted into a four year university. After two years of working my butt off at the community college, I was denied by the school I had my heart set on, but I was accepted into two colleges- VCU and ECU. I took a chance and chose East Carolina to study Hospitality and Special Events… thank the Lord I did or else I would have never found my great friends and my amazing husband. It all happens for a reason, friends.
I have never worked harder in my life for the Bachelors Degree that I received from ECU in 2014. Even after transferring from a community college, I only graduated one semester behind. I have never been more proud of myself for getting through college. It is SO rewarding to finally receive a degree knowing all of the stress, tears, and struggles that I went through along the way. I somehow found a path through the biggest challenges, but I believe it had a lot to do with the thousands of prayers I sent to God. I proved to myself that I could succeed, and not just succeed, but do it better than I ever thought I could. ECU gave me the biggest blessings at just the right time in my life.
Three years down the road, here I am owning my own business and succeeding more than I ever dreamed I could. I’ve been given the greatest opportunities thus far by working for some of the best people I know. I was given a gracious chance to prove myself and what I had to offer. I have been blessed with incredible experiences in many different areas. I have been inspired, encouraged and taught by amazing women in the creative industry.
This is where I belong. I can feel it and those who know me can see it. I get to use my best skills every day: organizing, planning, creating, coordinating, collaborating, sharing my heart, inspiring others, and working really really hard every day to improve and better myself. I wasn’t meant to remember and talk about history, or understand science, or work with numbers. The schools may not have planned for that, but looking at my life now, I couldn’t have it any other way. All I needed to do was put my best skills and my accelerated work ethic to use and now I truly feel that I can create anything I desire. A lot of people don’t have those skills, and that’s okay because they’re using their strengths to do big things.
I was meant for this field and I will succeed in it.
Here is some advice for anyone who feels they might be a little like me… This is your life, be who you are meant to be. It is your duty to prove your worth- work hard to get where you want to go. Nobody else will do it for you, only you can make it happen. There are so many opportunities out there for you. Some jobs might require a Masters Degree or some employers might look down on community college, but just know this… It only takes one person. It takes ONE person to see the real you, to believe in you, take a chance on you, and trust you. You might get denied a lot and leave you feeling worthless and harsh on yourself, but do NOT give up.
I’m telling you now, there is a place for you and it’s waiting for the right moment. It’s all in your hands. YOU can define your own success, YOU can decide what’s best for you, YOU are in control of your own life… nobody else is. So remember, hard work and dedication will take you anywhere you want to go in life. It’s not about being book smart, it’s about believing you can do anything and making it happen. If you’re trying, you’re improving. If you’re failing, you’re learning. If you’re changing, you’re growing. If you’re seeing all of this and continuing to work hard, you are succeeding. The money isn’t the reward in the end. The rewarding part is whatever is truly important to you.
Keep dreaming and follow your heart.
First step? Write down your weekly and monthly goals. Stop dreaming it, and start living it. I want you to feel empowered and inspired, because I believe in YOU! If I didn’t have my little support community through school, I would have given up and I wouldn’t have the happiness that I have now. If you need that support, that kick in the butt or a cheerleader, you let me know. I’m here to help and I would LOVE to hear from you. It’s time to hear the encouragement you need to get you on the path you deserve for yourself. This is much more than a career, it’s your happiness and the fulfillment of your life. Discover yourself and be exactly who you are meant to be.
“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” – Mother Teresa
One of my favorite things about being a photographer is getting to know my clients before their session, and then finally meeting them in person! The best part comes when I greet them with a hug and we instantly feel like we’ve been friends for a long time. This is exactly what happened during the 30 minutes I had with Danise. We had an awesome time chatting throughout the entire session about our businesses, our personal lives, our hubbies, and how we absolutely have to get together when I visit again! When you instantly click with your clients, it makes everything feel easy, comfortable, and fun!
Danise was SO sweet and I am SO in love with the business she has created. The Busy Bee Productivity Coaching is meant to encourage and inspire those who are ready to reach their goals and live their dreams. Danise offers coaching services to help manage your time, set goals, get organized, and live more intently. I mean, seriously!? She is amazing. She works so hard at everything she does, and her passion for helping others just shines through her! I love a badass chick who can follow her heart and just go for it! Danise is so empowering to woman in the many jobs she strives at, and I was so excited that she asked me to take her headshots. If you want to take your business seriously, and you want people to know who you truly are, it is so important to have quality images to share. Danise is one heck of a boss lady and a stunning busy bee!!
I read a blog post the other day and it got my thinking. Let’s stop thinking small, and start thinking big. Think outside of your Instagram, outside of your phone, outside of your house, outside of your city, and into the bigger picture. I’m a firm believer in serving others, sacrificing for others and putting your loved ones first. I think that’s an everyday motto, and it’s so important to remember. I also believe that in order to be selfless and giving, you should find your own happiness first. If doing good for others makes you feel unhappy and unappreciated, re-think the situation and think about the bigger picture. Are you unhappy with your lifestyle? Stop thinking you are chained down to your job, your location, your friendships or your relationship. MAKE A CHANGE… like now.
My mom always said, “the only person who can make yourself happy is YOU.” You have to be the one to make the change. Your friends aren’t going to change, your job isn’t going to change, and your life isn’t going to change unless you make it happen. Life is so much more than the tiny space your head lives in, and I too must remind myself of that.
This is what I read in the other blog, and I thought it was beautifully written.
“Leaving opens a new door for change, growth, opportunities and redemption. You always have the choice to leave until you find where you belong and what makes you happy. You’re even allowed to leave the old you behind and reinvent yourself.” -Rania Naim
You are ALLOWED to make a change for yourself, you are allowed to leave where you live or the job you’re in, and you are allowed to REINVENT YOURSELF. I love that. I can relate to all of that. You have every right to make the changes in your lifestyle to be happy, healthy, and feel refreshed. Nobody is holding you back, even if that’s what you’re thinking.
There are a lot of things you don’t know about me… and I think my juicy stories are meant for another day, so let’s talk about something that hugely relates to these issues– FEAR. What are you afraid of? Why aren’t you making the changes you need to make? Like I said before, think of the bigger picture. Get to the root of your fears. Think long and hard about what keeps you from making changes and how you can overcome those fears.
Looking at the smaller picture:
Being trapped in the shower with a mosquito. (that happened yesterday. I worked hard to kill it and it just never happened. I came out alive.)
Sea creatures. Seriously, I am deathly afraid of anything that swims beneath me. That goes for tiny little fish too. I can’t do it.
Public speaking. Oh my gosh, you guys. I pray that my little sister doesn’t have a big wedding so that I don’t have to make a speech in front of all those people (so selfish, I know). College presentations were NOT easy for me.
Now, let’s look at my bigger picture fears:
Failure. I’ve been hard on myself since elementary school memorizing the 50 states and getting tested on it. (I passed, thanks to a song my mom came up with.) Now, it’s bigger than that: I think about failing as a business owner. I think about failing as a mother one day. I could fail at a lot of things in life, and that freaks me out, because it can affect the people around me.
Disappointment. I don’t like the feeling of disappointing others or myself. Even the smallest of disappointments give me the worst feeling deep down. That includes anything from making a less-than-savory dinner for my husband to letting a family member down, to making a friend upset, and so on. I also carry a weird amount of anger/frustration inside me when I am personally disappointed (like when I order food that I am super excited for, but it comes out totally wrong or burnt, hehe).
Embarrassment. Literally, I get so embarrassed about the smallest things. That goes for misspelling words in my social media posts, to tripping in a parking lot, to talking about something personal that might seem dumb.
WHY!? Ask yourself, why? Why am I so afraid of failure, disappointment, and embarrassment? I’d like to think it all goes along with my background, and my story. I learned to overcome a lot of these fears, just by going for it. I might still be afraid of these things, but I have pushed myself to get past it by making bold moves. By leaving, choosing happiness, choosing change, and re-inventing myself. I’ve made a lot of decisions in my life that put my happiness in front of my fears. I made the decision to grow and leave the rest behind. Do you know how hard that can be? Because I totally do!!!
If you’re going through this right now, and actively choosing your happiness before your fears, you should be SO proud of yourself!! If you want to make a change, but don’t know how, that’s okay too!! I have a little advice. Learn to just BE. Be alone with yourself, be alone with God if that’s your thing, be open, be accepting, meditate or pray on it, let go and be. If you fight against your ability to overcome your fears, then you aren’t making room for change. I have always lived by the mantra “whatever happens, is meant to happen… just go with flow.” When you find yourself at peace about an idea and feel that it’s exactly what is meant to happen, then let it happen!
I have always been queen of planning my own path. I’m a planner, I like to think ahead and plan for the future. God seems to disagree with me on that, though. He tends to guide me in the exact opposite direction of my plans most of the time. When I have a plan set in my mind, it seems to fall apart when the time comes, and that’s when disappointment sets in. After a few frustrating disappointments, I learned quickly that whatever God has planned for me is what is best for me and it’s all happening for a real reason. That can be scary, right? That’s when my fear of failure sets in. Because, basically, all I think is, “what am I doing, this wasn’t my plan!” Then I realize, this is God’s plan for me, so how could I be set up for failure? So I learn to roll with it, go for it, and put my all into it! That’s when embarrassment creeps its way in. I feel embarrassed when I’m confused or when others are confused about my decisions. That’s when I think, “why do I care so much about what others think…?”
THIS IS MY LIFE. I trust where God leads me, and I’ve learned that leaving, growing, changing, and being open to new opportunities are all part of the bigger picture in life. This path that God has laid out for me has been challenging and pretty much the exact opposite of what I may have originally planned… but gosh it is SO rewarding. To use something as an example, after a lot of obstacles, reasons for swollen eyes, and lesson after lesson, I was guided on a path that led me to my incredible husband. I could have put up fight after fight to make things go how I had first planned, but I let go and I ended up exactly where I belong by letting go and following the bright pink carpet that God rolled out for me. I will be sharing these life challenges and stories in a blog post to come… look out for it!
Think about your fears, what are they? Think about why you are so afraid, and think about how you can overcome them. What gives you inspiration to follow your dreams?This is YOUR time!! You may not think it’s the right time, but I’ve found that the time is never just right. I have faith in you. We all have faith in you. Do you?