If you identify with the majority of this list, you may be an HSP (Highly Sensitive Person): 1. You go to a coffee shop to get ‘work’ done, and instead you spend most of your time trying desperately to ignore the … Continue reading →
I used to think courage reveals itself in words and bold actions. That courage is speaking up in a crowded room, or jumping out of a plane with nothing but a parachute strapped to your back. But now I know … Continue reading →
Last week, the Universe gave me a profound gift. One of my mantras lately for dealing with uncertainty is a phrase that came to me months ago while I was sitting on my patio, with only the sound of the … Continue reading →
Imagine what it’s like to spend the majority of your adult life thinking that you’re mediocre at everything you do…in your job (building presentation slides, leading sales pitches, throwing together proposals), in your personal life (decorating your apartment, staying active, making … Continue reading →
Over the past month, I’ve been battling a lot of what Steven Pressfield calls ‘Resistance.’ Writing this very post feels like trying to type my way through heavy sand. A month ago, I began the long list of tasks that … Continue reading →
Loving oneself can feel astonishingly similar to the twitterpated, warm rush of feels you get from falling for someone else. Nothing is more empowering than courting your inner badass with fancy dates, shiny presents, and some good ol’ tlc. Chances … Continue reading →
There are a few key things that I know now, that I wasn’t consciously aware of over a year ago when I worked a desk job in San Francisco: I want my life to feel like living, breathing, beautiful art … Continue reading →
Recently, I’ve started reading a book about sychronicity, a concept I became fascinated with that essentially means recognizing coincidences as a part of our story rather than simply dumb luck or strange randomness. Or, quite simply, seeing the world in … Continue reading →
It’s not the ex who cheated, the party you didn’t get invited to, the person who cut you off from the lane over. It’s not the shitty day at work, the bad hair day, the pimple that appeared overnight. It’s … Continue reading →
I love you. When it comes to those three words, often the first people we openly say them to is our parents – or, simply, the family that raises us. At first, we repeat it back, like any words and … Continue reading →
I’ve been at battle with my skin lately. The mean voice of stress started in on me a few weeks ago: ‘Why are you still struggling to keep your skin clear?! You should have this under control by now.’ One thought that … Continue reading →
Last week, I took deliberate steps into a brand new career by starting school. After eight months of deep self-examination, countless goal setting exercises and personal growth workshops, and living the unbelievably stress-free existence of unemployment by choice (i.e. funemployment), … Continue reading →
There’s been a flood of ‘things I’ve learned’ articles across my Twitter and FB feeds lately. Most are voiced by people who want to target the young adult, twenty-something crowd. Being so near to age thirty, much of the advice … Continue reading →
The day I left my job was the same day I took an even scarier step: I publicly launched my blog. I had no idea what the response would be. Would my thoughts resonate with people? Ruffle some feathers? Or … Continue reading →
Dear in-a-hurry (or in-between, or in-between-and-in-a-hurry-to-figure-shit-out), Right now your life may feel like it’s getting away from you. It may feel as though you are being too picky. Like you’re stuck in the grey-zone that is indecision. Like you are … Continue reading →
When I moved out of my last San Francisco apartment in January of this year, I had two years worth of SF living under my belt. In two years, I moved between three different neighborhoods — SOMA, Lower Haight, and … Continue reading →
In my search for a place to call home here in this new city, I’ve spent a fair amount of time scanning Craigslist for future roommates. Though I’d prefer to live on my own, halving the monthly rent with another … Continue reading →
I feel strong, but not all the time. I feel courageous, but not all the time. I feel smart, but not all the time. I feel beautiful, but not all the time. It’s okay to think highly of yourself. It’s … Continue reading →
Imagine being in a beautiful hotel suite, in Hawaii, surrounded by your closest friends, toasting to two people you love who are dedicating their lives to one another. The fifth of such toasts. That very same weekend, the party continues … Continue reading →
I can only summarize the last seven days as life responding to my callings. There’s the lull of uneasy, sometimes sickening silence that happens after you’ve yelled out to the world, “Here I am, world! This is me. This is … Continue reading →
We Need to Fail More Yesterday I toured a beautiful institute in ‘The Pearl’ district of Portland. The moment I walked in, I felt it. This place gets me. Everyone was buzzing with energy. The artists and their teachers smiled … Continue reading →
Why Are We So Focused on Finding ‘The One’? Saturday was my last day in San Francisco before my big move to Portland, so after a picture-perfect day full of great food, beer and amazing people-watching with a collection of … Continue reading →
How to Get Unstuck I’ll be completely honest with you guys, because hey, that’s the point of my keeping this blog and recording my journey into the uncertain land of unemployment. I’ve been in total freak-out mode this week. Perhaps … Continue reading →
Looking back on my years spent in college and in a desk job, I’ve observed a pattern about myself that no longer serves my life. For the past ten years, I’ve been a rule-loving people pleaser. The person whose goal … Continue reading →
Thoughts on Successful Relationships I did not intend to study the mating habits of guys this week, but somehow I found myself shoulders-deep in books, articles and podcasts that tap into men and their raw struggles with love and intimacy. … Continue reading →
It’s All How You Look At It Do you ever catch yourself stressing over a conversation you had with someone, days after the fact? Not even a fight. A small interaction that perhaps took you outside your comfort zone. You … Continue reading →
The S Word You know those single phases in your twenties, where you feel extremely vulnerable and paradoxically totally free at the same time? Life takes on another meaning whenever I emerge from a break up, and things feel so … Continue reading →
What I’ve Learned About Fear Because how are you really going to know, and how much time are you going to waste, before you just effing DO it? Today I met with one of my blogging idols — the lovely … Continue reading →
I Quit My Job Today Or, to put it less dramatically, I requested a three-month leave of absence from my job today. When you’ve been at your first job longer than you were at college, a leave of three months … Continue reading →
We’ve all endured enough tragic hair cuts, awful exes, and embarrassing interviews to know that sometimes life is sucky. Straight up, life gives us all its share of bad lemons. And yet, experience tells us that even super sour lemons can produce kick ass cocktails. Even the … Continue reading →
As I embark on the final month of my twenties and gear up for the big 3-0, I have to take this moment to give thanks to age 29 (and year 2014) for teaching me the following: How to write … Continue reading →
A close friend recently asked me for advice, as she’s between jobs and feeling stuck in a rut. She’s made small moves, and isn’t seeing any lasting results. My advice to her was simple: If you want big results, make … Continue reading →
This week marked the 15th birthday of an album that defined my teenage years, from a band I will always love. As a walking, rocking example of ’emo’ in high school, “Through Being Cool” by Saves the Day was my … Continue reading →
The B-sides of my Mind I write on a near-daily basis, and so you can probably imagine how few of my tangential thoughts actually make it onto this little blog. Sometimes when I’m experiencing writer’s block I’ll flip the pages of … Continue reading →
The B-sides of my Mind
I write on a near-daily basis, and so you can probably imagine how few of my tangential thoughts actually make it onto this little blog. Sometimes when I’m experiencing writer’s block I’ll flip the pages of my multiple journals, drawing squiggles and stars next to passages that I may have previously tossed aside for not having the “star potential” to appear on Courage Love Intensity. It’s also not uncommon that I write something down, set it aside and forget it’s content completely until a day like today, when I unexpectedly happen upon it. This post is meant to honor some of my most recent disregarded thoughts, what I lovingly will refer to as the b-sides of my mind.
Thoughts on dealing with those things called emotions
Yesterday, I had a good cry.
It wasn’t for very long, and it wasn’t dramatic. It is what it is. It had been a long time since I felt so off and emotional, I’d almost forgotten what it feels like. There was no particular event that sparked it. The world just felt heavy on my shoulders and I just couldn’t shake off that weight.
I know it’s not a new concept that going into business for yourself and starting brave adventurous in new places can feel lonely. Yesterday, I felt that loneliness through and through. I felt so lonely.
Whereas that used to not be acceptable for me, I now am okay with emotions like these. I know how temporary they are, and how important it is to feel them. I allow pain and loneliness to happen without feeling attacked by them.
That doesn’t mean I don’t get moody or impatient with them. And, occasionally, I’ll cry. But, that kind of ‘processing’ is greeted with deep breaths and self-care. If I feel compelled, I’ll bring someone I love in to see my pain and offer me guidance. That’s embarrassing sometimes, but always helpful. I arm myself with intuitive, amazingly warm people.
Many of the things I stress over are small potatoes in the grand scheme of things. I know this. But every single one of us has the right to a good cry, once in a while, when things feel too much to handle.
Like writing, crying feels cathartic. It can feel cleansing. Hey, it can even feel powerful. There is strength in vulnerability.
Thoughts on ‘started from the bottom, now we here’ OR Thoughts on evolving from an anxious teen into a competent adult
All I really wanted (subconsciously) was for someone to tell me that all the crazy ups and downs I was feeling as a teen were totally okay. A lot of my anxiety back then stemmed from feeling powerless against my emotions – being upset with how I really feel, and not in a safe enough place to express it.
Something happens when you start to achieve ‘normalcy’ or even greatness as an adult who has previously suffered from anxiety. When you start to make money, get promoted at your job, get recognition for your work, etc… while coming from a place of not feeling all that smart or capable of greatness.
This started for me when I got into a great college. Instead of thinking I deserved it, all I felt was lucky that I somehow got in. As such, I put a ton of pressure on myself to prove my place. I surprised myself with exceptional grades – the kinds of grades I didn’t often see in high school. But they came at a cost – sometimes crippling anxiety. Then, OMG, I landed a job at Google. How the hell did I trick such a selective work place to hire me?! With thoughts like those, of course I once again put a ton of pressure on myself to prove my place there. I eventually developed guilt for wanting to leave a job that I ‘should’ be thankful for working.
The combination of impaired self-perception (i.e. lack of self-confidence) with the self-imposed pressure to be perfect is pretty difficult to maintain. It isn’t sustainable and can end pretty disastrously.
As I started reading empowering blogs by business-savvy entrepreneurs, my sense of self grew along with my confidence. My urge to do something that truly felt meaningful and reflective of who I am literally took over. I went from identifying with my inner anxious teenager to seeing myself as a competent adult and avoided any big disasters by putting hard work into what really matters: myself.
I am where I am today because it’s where I’m supposed to be, and I’m excited to see where I go next.
Thoughts on who I see as the future me
I’m a famous makeup artist, living in Portland but constantly taking off to LA to do makeup for TV shows and films. I also have a beautiful spa job that keeps me full booked, if I want it to. I live in an adorkable house, filled with life and color and quirkiness, with my husband and our dogs. A baby is on the way, and my pregnancy glow is in full effect. I am financially stable, free to be me, and feeling blessed.
Thoughts on modern education
I think the best educational environments are those that honor creativity, allow for experimentation, and apply real-world scenarios. The first way of learning I was introduced to as a toddler was at a Montessori school. That was before pre-school and yet I still have many memories of it. I remember lots of singing, building things, forming friendships with the only two other girls in my class (one of whom I am STILL close with to this very day), and also learning to act independently. It wasn’t until attending college at a Jesuit university – one that encouraged community service, offered study abroad programs, and taught mind-opening classes – that I felt that love for the education system again.
Thoughts on how to become an entrepreneur
1. You know all of those late-night epiphanies you get? Write them down. Entertain them.
2. Connect as often as you can with people who share your interests, as well as people who want to do more and be more (i.e. people who are ready and willing to take big risks, and have already taken a few)