The Truth about Feeling Too Much but Never Enough

too much but never enough

Have you ever felt like you were too much?…Too excited?  Too emotional?  Too introverted?  Too extraverted?  Asked too many questions?  Needed too much help and encouragement?…

How about, not being enough?…Not a good enough education?  Not good enough to love?  Not smart enough to offer advice?  Not experienced enough to participate?  Not brave enough to try?

If that’s you, I have a story for you…

Continue Reading

A Lesson in Self Discovery {How to be the You God made You to Be}

How I Discovered Myself

Dear Girl, remember, who you are – your passions and personality are meant for more than just you!  You being the you God created is as important as the earth shining is to our ecosystem.  So know the truth about who you are, remove the clouds shadowing your passion and personality, and dare to make your dreams a reality.  In the end, you discover you, by uncovering you and gathering the courage to be you.

Continue Reading

Taking Responsibility without taking it Personally

personally responsbility

All too often us super-responsible people take responsibility for others, because we feel responsible for everything.  But, living responsibly means owning your life and decisions in such a way that you can let your friend own theirs.  Being truly self-less means knowing who you are so well that you can live without identifying yourself as the problem or the solution.

Continue Reading

On Sisters, Goals, and Talking about Guys

how to talk about guys

Every New Years my family takes time to write new goals and discuss them because when goals are talked about, we think about them more and as a result they are more likely to become reality.  It works the same way in talking about our crushes.  We have a couple thoughts about a cute guy and how he makes us laugh, then we tell our best friend and before we know it, we’re obsessing over him and dying for him to ask us out.  As fast as that, we’re star-struck – I know, because I’m a girl!  

And, that’s why my sisters and I decided that we weren’t going to talk about our crushes.

Continue Reading

How to Live a Life that Doesn’t Disappoint

how to live a life that doesn't disappoint

Recently, I’ve been thinking, how do I continue living in such a way that when I’m 26 I’m not disappointed with my life even if it doesn’t look how my 23 year-old-self thought it would?

And that’s when it hit me – the four things that guided my decisions and protected me from living a life of disappointment: choose a destination, consider all options, recieve counsel, and choose your decision.

Continue Reading

Words for the Week: I Love Your Hands

Marisha pessl (1)

I love your hands.

Every Thursday I went for a walk with one of my best friends.

One day I commented on how I disliked my hands. I thought my finger were pudgy and my nails squatty.

My friend quickly responded, “No, I love your hands. They’re strong, but lovely, and so good at so many things.”

With those words she taught me to not only love my hands but my life not for what meets the eye but for what gives meaning to life.

Continue Reading

Why I’m Using Social Media Differently After Looking at my Aunt’s Scrapbooks

How I'm Using Social Media Better

I want my posting-on-facebook-and-instagram hobby to leave priceless treasures.  I’ve decided that I want it to be more than a mindless escape of life’s monotony and a self-serving image of me.  If that’s you, you’re invited to join me in the following: Lessons I Learned from my Aunt’s Scrapbook and How I’m Choosing to Use Social Media Differently…

Continue Reading

Why You Should Like Yourself

Why You Should Like Yourself

Have you ever felt like a little girl at a birthday party watching all her friends carefully swing at the pinata desperately waiting for your turn?

Every time another girl wraps her fingers around the stick she memorizes where the pinata is and rehearses her swing.

What seems like five minutes later she makes her first swing and hits the pinata…no candy.

Finally it’s your turn.  You grasp the stick in your hand and start swinging.  You swing and and swing and swing.  Your breathing is heavy.  Finally you hit something and a loud shout erupts.

Tearing off your bandana you drop to one knee with the stick beside you reaching out for candy, but in the midst of scattered candy you see your best friend crying.

In all your aimless flailing you did hit the pinata, but at a high cost.  

Continue Reading

Purpose without a Destination

Purpose without a Destination

Dear Self,

I think the purpose of your life for this season is faithfulness.

Like going for a walk. When you go for a walk the purpose is to go for a walk, talk with your friend (sometimes yourself), and enjoy the journey. The purpose is not a destination.

Continue Reading

When You Look Beyond Yourself

flowerandflipflops

Dear Self,

I was reading Make It Happen by Lara Casey today and thought this would encourage you.

Friend, you don’t need to be ready or perfect to make what matters happen. A life of purpose – living for something bigger than yourself – is not about achieving your dream job or the ideal circumstance or the perfect timing. Use what you have, where you are, right now, ON PURPOSE.

Continue Reading

Today is All I Have

brothersunrise

Dear Self,

Today is all I have.

I’m learning that life – a beautiful, powerful life – is a choice. It’s a choice that takes work and sacrifice. But more than that it’s a choice to see the beauty and power of simply being alive.

Continue Reading

How To Live A Life You Love

how to live

Dear Self,

I know that sometimes you struggle to love life. Even though your life is the next best thing to perfect you still sometimes find yourself in agony for something I can’t even name.

First of all, know that you’re not alone. We all struggle to love life at times.

Continue Reading

What No One Ever Told You About A Mountain Top Expereience

mountain top experience

Dear Self,

Have you ever heard of the mountain top experience?  Like a camp high; you’re on a mountain top and everything is amazing but you can’t stay there forever because there isn’t enough water, food, or oxygen.  At the end of camp you have to go home down into the valley.   Often it’s discouraging and a drag, but your coaches tell you not to be discouraged.

Continue Reading

The Flower that Taught me to Love Tough Times

The Flower That Taught me to Love Tough Times

Dear Self,

Recently, I have been reading “Hinds Feet on High Places.  It’s a story of lame little Much-Afraid’s journey of faith in the Shepherd.  Shepherd has promised to take her to the High Places and on the way give her the feet of a deer. After traveling several days the path turns, taking Much-Afraid down into a desert dashing her hopes—Shepherd had promised to take her to the High Places! Exploring this book, yet again, I have found many similarities to my own journey with my Lord and Shepherd.

Continue Reading

The Decision that Questioned the Purpose of my Existence

decisions compass heart

Dear Self,

When, if ever, is it right for me to follow my heart rather than follow the current of logic?
Is the desire of my heart reason enough to say ‘yes’?

While accepting a tutoring position seemed like a simple answer I saw all the lives that were impacted by my decision.  It wasn’t a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer for me.  Thankfully, it wasn’t a life or death decision, either.  But it was an expensive or costly decision in the realm of passion and purpose.  It was a decision that questioned the purpose of my existence.

Continue Reading

Grace that only a Forlorn Book Cover Knows

book. people. grace.

Dear Self,

Have you ever picked up a book and decided to re-shelf it only to hear from your best friend six months later that it is one of her favorite books?  Have you ever seen someone from across the room and decided not to be their friend just because of the way they look?  Has someone ever told you something and you shut down your heart towards them because what they said stung?

Continue Reading

What Food and Fun Have in Common

Fun Without Food is Possible

Dear Self,

Tuesday morning you walked into Panera ordered a cookie and coffee and enjoyed both without a terrorizing thought because food was not your enemy.  You knew that food was fuel so when you were satisfied you were able to stop eating and sipping guilt-free.  It was a victorious moment worth savoring.  

But it hasn’t always been that way.  It used to be every time you decided to indulge, you couldn’t stop.  It was as if you were trying to make up for all those years you deprived yourself.  Food wasn’t your enemy anymore but it was still a beast.  So you embarked on journey number two: learning that while food is fuel, food is also fun.

Oddly enough, having fun and enjoying food have a lot in common.

Continue Reading

What Pumping Gas Taught Me About Food

Food as Fuel

Dear Self,

It was just three years ago that your mom spent 15 minutes coaching you on how and what to order at Starbucks.  You were so afraid of ordering you almost cancelled your coffee date!  You weren’t scared of the cashier.  You weren’t scared of coffee.  And you weren’t scared of spending money.  You were scared you wouldn’t have the courage to enjoy your drink.  In short, food had become your enemy.  You couldn’t think of it as fuel.  All you could think of were the calories you were about to ask for, pay for, and be expected to savor.

Continue Reading

How I’m slowing Down my Hamster Wheel Life

slowing down life

Dear Self,

I feel like I’m in a hamster wheel.  It doesn’t matter how many times I rework my schedule, the wheel just goes faster.

As you’re reading this I’ll be putting on my creative/coordinator hat collecting everything I could possibly need for a ball.  Thursday I’ll pick strawberries with my family.  Friday, I’ll work and go to a women’s conference.  Saturday I’ll decorate and host that ball for 175 youth. Finally, Sunday will launch me into four straight weeks of traveling, decorating, doing make-up, brides-maiding, cooking, and maid-of-honoring.

Continue Reading

What Washing Dishes Taught Me About Valuing People

washing dishes and valuing people

Dear Self,

Do you know when washing dishes becomes delightful?

When you’re doing it next to your little brother and having a conversation together. That’s when washing dishes becomes delightful. You could have, of course, rushed through your sink of pots and pans completely ignoring that your brother was next to you. But you didn’t. And the moment you slowed down enough to value people over your projects, washing dishes became delightful.

Continue Reading

How Running through the Seasons Changed my Perspective

running through the seasons

Dear Self,

One of my favorite things about exercising outside is watching the seasons change before my eyes.

Yesterday, I ran through a giant’s tiara as crystal branches defied their lifeless state.  Today, straggly and leafless, the trees remind me of death.  Stepping out in a few days I know I will be greeted by tiny green shoots promising new life.

Continue Reading

What I learned from Packing One Carry-On Suitcase

Carry-on Suitacse

Dear Self,

Packing one carry-on suitcase was a good idea!  It was such a great idea that I think you should take the same approach to your summer.  Now before you get all defensive let me clarify a few things.  I’m not suggesting that you create a capsule wardrobe.  I’m not encouraging you to go without.  And, I’m not trying to add another challenge or burden to your life.  Quite the opposite really, because these are all the benefits I have observed since have been in Florida with only one carry-on suitcase.

Continue Reading

To be Good at Living You Must be a Good Guest

A guest of life

Dear Self,

I was in a hurry to leave for work.  With a purse on my shoulder and fancy shoes shouting my hurried pace i jerked the fridge open.  Flinging a bag of lettuce and a can of tuna on the counter I frantically searched for a can-opener.  Finally I started jamming a lettuce tuna wrap in my mouth careful not to smear my perfectly painted red lips – my signature feature.

As I bent to grab my purse that had fallen during my sophisticated scavenge through the kitchen for a five-minute meal my eye were captured on the neat but empty kitchenette.  As if in a daze I dragged my purse to the bench and we ended the table’s loneliness – my purse and I.

I’m not sure what I thought would happen.  The table and chairs would thank me for being their friend or a bright light from the ceiling would burst around me showering me in pixie dust…but that’s not what happened.

Continue Reading

Discovering Peace in Disorder

disorder

Dear Self,

I saw you hopelessly staring at the piles in your living room yesterday and watched you pick at the duct tape on the floor with your toes.  I also heard you sigh as you stared out the kitchen window only to have your vision obscured by cardboard covering a whole made by a stray arrow from your brothers’ heroic adventures.  You see messes caused by a busy life, but that’s not what others see.  

Continue Reading