Another Kind of Fairy Tale

Well, today's the day. I finally get to share with you this labor of love I've been working so hard on!  On March 12, 2016 I gathered a small group of family and friends and recorded Another Kind of Fairy Tale live.  

I wanted to create an experience where I could share the stories of these songs and my life since moving to Nashville.  That night was also my birthday...the big 3-5.   I'd been fighting feelings of being behind in my life and struggling to find my place in a new city.  Creating AKOFT was my way of putting a stake in the ground and choosing to embrace my story, and mark it with celebration.  My life may look different from what culture deems "normal" but that's ok.  My tale is my own.  I don't want to follow a formula--I want to live the adventure that's mine and mine alone.  I believe the same is true for each one of you.  Your life is another kind of fairy tale.  So, tell your tale...the world is waiting.


Download AKOFT on iTunes

The Search for Confidence

The word confidence keeps popping up in my books, conversations, magazine articles--you name it.  To be honest, the concept of confidence has always seemed illusive to me.  I've never been able to pin it down or sustain it in long doses...probably because it's been tied to circumstances--how successful I was feeling in the moment or what size pants I was wearing. Most of the time it's felt like my quest in life is to arrive at a point where I will have outsmarted it and trapped it in a bottle to hold onto forever and forever amen. But this week, when I picked up my newest copy of Darling Magazine and began reading an article on Joanna Gaines (of HGTV fame), my thoughts on confidence shifted.  Joanna is known for being incredibly talented at what she does while also being generous, humble and strong. One of the questions in the interview asked her what she thinks confidence is, to which she replied,

"I think confidence can be confusing.  Some think beauty is confidence, others think the perfect possessions bring confidence...when really confidence is mindset of, 'I am created to do what I do, to be the best at what I can.'  It doesn't come from your giftings or your talents, it comes from knowing who you are and that there's a purpose for your life."

A few days earlier I was looking up the etymology of the word confidence (yes, I'm that girl. #wordnerdforever) and learned that it's original definition from the Latin "confidere" meant "to have full trust, firmly trusting, bold".  Queue the lightbulb. It was as if this thing that's evaded me for years suddenly became clear.  Confidence is just having full trust in who you were created to be. It isn't about the addition (or subtraction) of traits or possessions, but a foundational belief that you have value and were created for a purpose.  Yes, we can grow and become better versions of ourselves, but there's no need to strive for confidence, it's simply choosing to hold this belief, and that is so freeing.  

As you know, I'm all about practical application and tools we can use to transform these concepts into realities in our everyday lives. Perhaps it would be useful for us to think upon who we are and what the purpose of our lives is.  So often we make lists of who we want to become and things we want to accomplish (not bad at all--I think goals are so helpful and give us vision), but I've realized that sometimes this makes me overlook the innate qualities I already possess, or the things I'm already doing that I should recognize and celebrate.  It can be an intimidating process, but I would encourage you to look for patterns in your life--are people always commenting on how you good of a listener you are or your problem solving skills or your hospitality? Chances are you'll see some recurring traits about who you are and how you're built.  If you want to share your list, I would love to see it and encourage you in those things moving forward.  You can send me a note here or post in the slack community group.  I have confidence in who you are...go make your unique noise in the world!

Something Growing

Showing up to create something can be scary.  We often let fear creep in our heads and start accusing us with lines like "you aren't good enough", "who do you think are?", "you're a fake", "you're not a real _________", "stop now before you embarrass yourself!"  What I've learned over the years is that to embrace our creativity, we have to embrace ourselves, ALL of ourselves and let our inner child come out to play.  In order to do this we have to let go of the idea that we are something broken that needs to be fixed, and realize we are something growing that needs to be fed.  

If we want to grow as people, as creatives, we have to feed our hearts, minds & souls good things.  As Julia Cameron says, we have to "fill the well."  If all we do is exert our energy and never feed ourselves, we will burn out.  I know it's counter-cultural to say no to busyness and productivity in favor of self-care, but the truth is, filling yourself with beautiful and life-giving things will allow you to function more productively and create more easily...not to mention you'll be a kinder and more vibrant person to be around (being "hangry" doesn't just apply to food!)

This Week's Challenge: Sit down with your journal or piece of paper and brainstorm...What inspires you? What fills your heart? What fuels your body and makes you feel strong? What restores your mind? What fills you with childlike joy? Make a list and then use post-it notes or scraps of paper and transfer your list onto them. Throw them in a bowl and draw one out everyday for the next week or two and challenge yourself to do it.  

I'll be joining along in the challenge and will post some pics of my activities on instagram--some of my list includes nature walks with my dog, water color painting, reading, cooking and sending handwritten notes to people.   I would love to see what you come up with so post your list in the comments below or in the Slack group! And if you want to receive a handwritten note of encouragement just drop me a note here.

Cheers to growth and feeding ourselves well!

PS-Happy Cinco de Mayo!! I will be feeding myself copious amounts of tacos & margaritas today! #tacosaremylovelanguage


An Untold Story...

When I first read this quote by Maya Angelou several years ago it stopped me in my tracks. In a single sentence she articulated what I had felt for most of my life.  We all go through times where we feel hidden, and the weight of that burden is too heavy to bear.  

I believe we are all an untold story slowing unfolding over the course of a lifetime, but how much of the story we reveal is up to us.  We can let fear keep us in hiding or we can choose to be courageous and reveal what's in our very unique hearts.

What part of your story will you let bubble up this week?  What needs to be spoken, written, painted, photographed, collaged, played, sung or dreamed up so you can reveal the next page?

This week I want to challenge each of us to choose a word or phrase that is significant to our journey and turn it into an emblem.  There is no right or wrong way to do this--just have fun and do what makes sense to you.  Once you're finished, display it somewhere you can see it everyday. I hope it will inspire you and remind you what you're fighting for.

If you want to share your creation you can post it in the Slack group or email me here

You've been silent long enough...go make some noise!