On Turning 30

 On Turning 30

I guess it’s only natural that on the night before you welcome a new decade you become pensive and a tad bit emotional.

I’m preparing to say goodbye to my 20′s and say hello to a beautiful, new decade tomorrow. I’m overcome with joy and gratitude and am on the brink of tears.

It’s remarkable when you sit down and really think about all the things you’ve done in ten years – the good, the bad and the oh so stupid.

In my 20′s I graduated from USC, where I made lifelong friends. I went through break ups. Many of them. I moved to a new city not knowing a single soul with my only companion at the time, my dog Joey. I worked as a TV anchor – a dream come true. I got fired for the first time in my life from said job. I recovered from being fired and landed a better job at another TV station. I had babies! Two of them! My friends had babies. My friends lost babies. I fell in love. My friends fell in love. I went to Burning Man three times. I got tattooed. Twice. I made new friends AS AN ADULT.

In my 29th year, I kept a running list of notable moments throughout my year. A habit I think I’ll maintain.

During the past 12 months I stepped outside of my comfort zone in many, many ways. It’s my life mantra and only resolution I make each year. I tried fitness training, took up aerial silks, tried my first (and only) spin class, completed my first ride (54 miles!), CrossFit and even pole fitness. I embraced and explored my passions including teaching workshops and a sewing class.

As I sit now and think about my 20′s, I realize just how truly wonderful they have been. Awkward? Yes. So many times. Uncomfortable? Duh. But mostly, spectacular.

What makes me tear up most is realizing that as I enter my 30′s I’ve started to learn some of life’s greatest lessons, one of which includes knowing this is just the beginning.

——————————————————

I’ve learned that I’m worth it.

I’m deserving of so much love. It took me 30 years to not only believe this, but say it aloud. The quote that changed my life  more than a year ago is “we accept the love we think we deserve”. My decision to end a relationship of nearly seven years, and with a man who I loved so very dearly, has been the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I have chosen to spend many evenings completely alone in my home with so much time to think and doubt. I only see my darling daughters half the time. But as time passes I’ve come to truly, wholeheartedly believe I deserve an amazing love and I want my daughters to believe that for themselves as they grow into confident, compassionate women. Knowing I’m worth it has impacted the friendships I keep, relationships with family members, as well as the professional opportunities I pursue and accept.

On love. (Briefly).

I do believe the cliché is true – you have to know how to love yourself before you can love anyone else. But what I learned in my 20s is that I also need to know how to accept another person’s love.

I’ve learned to speak my truth.

Granted this was accomplished through a lot of therapy, but it has been incredibly healing and liberating. And let me be clear, this is an area of ongoing growth in my life. I’ve learned that if I speak my truth with kindness, I can’t go wrong. No one else is going to do it for me. I’m braver. I’m less afraid to say what I think – what I really think – and say no without feeling obligated to give an excuse. For the first time ever, I feel authentic. I don’t have to justify my feelings or convince myself they aren’t worthwhile. I matter and how I feel matters.

I’ve learned to love my body.

This one is hard. It’s easy to want to compare myself to other girls who are fitter or prettier, but gratitude can drastically change that. I may never have rock hard abs (that would require me to give up so much of what I love to eat), but I’ve grown to love my curves and lumps and wrinkles and even my damn pregnancy mustache. I’m so amazed that my body produced two healthy people. I’m eternally grateful my legs help me explore beautiful places on my mountain bike and bring me peace during quiet runs.

I’ve learned to live a life of intention.

Every day I have a choice. Many choices in fact. The attitude I choose to start my day. The tone and language I use when I talk to my daughters. And the subsequent decisions throughout the day that may or may not feed into my bigger goals. I need to constantly ask myself “is what I’m choosing to do now helping my goal of financial stability…. physical health… emotional well-being…” As Danielle LaPorte teaches in her book Desire Map, your desires or intentions can be redefined every year – or more often if necessary – and should address the overall goal of being happy. For me, this includes living a simple life, free of attachment to material possessions, because life should be made up of memories and not things.

——————————————————–

I’m okay with hanging out at 30+ bars. The kind that are still fun but quiet enough to actually have a conversation. Even if that means falling victim to the two-day hangover.

I’m okay being 10+ years older than that other girl at the gym.

I’m excited for you, 30.

And hey, you know who else is turning 30 this year? The Trebek era of Jeopardy!

The Truth about Loving Yourself

the truth about loving yourself The Truth about Loving Yourself

Source

My daughters and I listen to Disney music during dinner time. Dance parties and loud singing ensue.

The other night, Poor Unfortunate Souls from The Little Mermaid came on.

My four-year-old quickly said, “I don’t like Ursula. She’s a meanie. No one loves her. Only Ursula loves her.”

I started to spiral in my head.

Actually, Billie, even Ursula doesn’t love herself. That’s why she’s such a meanie. 

Was this an opportunity to teach my daughter about self-love and bullies?

By the time I formulated my thoughts, Billie had moved on to the third or fourth topic at the dinner table.

But that moment has made me pause. There are and will be countless teaching opportunities with my girls, and boy how quickly they sneak up on you.

I’ve learned a lot about myself this year – including how to truly, wholeheartedly love myself. And strangely enough, it was this quote that hit home for me. Continue reading

Pin It

Book Review – Delivering Happiness & Finding Your Higher Purpose

I recently finished reading Delivering Happiness written by Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh.

Now, I can’t stop talking about it, especially because I feel like the Universe is continuously reminding me of the book.

Exhibit A| I have a newborn baby so I’m more than behind on reading through my favorite blogs on my Google Reader. However, earlier this month I was compelled to click on Amy’s blog and low and behold she had written about the science of happiness. Thanks to Tony (apparently a friend of hers) she’s intrigued by the study of positive psychology. If you’re still reading this and remotely interested, be sure to check out this video she posted.

Exhibit B | A few weeks after reading this post, Baochi Nguyen (one of my favorite bloggers) posts on Facebook that she’s hosting a webinar via RingCentral featuring none other than Tony Hsieh. HELLO! I somehow managed to listen to the entire podcast while simultaneously wrangling my two children and making myself presentable for the day. If you missed the webinar, you can listen to it here.

Learning from Zappos1 300x212 Book Review   Delivering Happiness & Finding Your Higher Purpose

Exhibit C | My sister-in-law is launching her own business, and I’ve been busy these last few weeks helping her build her company’s website. Last night over dinner we started talking about social media (Twitter specifically) and I mentioned that I’d  just won my latest favorite book via Twitter. “Which one?” she asked. And just as I started on my tangent on why Delivering Happiness is such a great read she says, “My business coach just recommended that book!”

Sister, now that I’m getting a copy, I’ll make sure you read it. 

As Marianne Williamson said in A Woman’s Worth, 

A career grows out of who we are; who we are doesn’t grow out of a career.”

Whether you’re an entrepreneur or trying to find your calling in life, I recommend you read this book. It will inspire you and force you to not only identify your values, but more importantly determine if your personal values align with those of the company you’re building or working for. The questions aren’t easy, but if you have an answer, you’re more than on your way to carving out your own happy path in life.

  1. Are you working toward maximizing your happiness each day?
  2. What are your values?
  3. What are you passionate about?
  4. What inspires you?
  5. What is your goal in life?
  6. What is your higher purpose?

Every person took a different path to get here, but our paths managed to intersect.” – Tony Hsieh

 Book Review   Delivering Happiness & Finding Your Higher Purpose

How Do You Define Success?

Girls Playing in Water Sunset How Do You Define Success?

source

I’ve been wanting to write about this since I read Fat Mum Slim‘s take on the subject in late March. Since then, the definition of success has come up quite frequently in random conversations and even in a portion of the book I’m currently reading. I took these as signs to take a heartfelt look at my life and how I would define the word.

I loved Fat Mum Slim’s definition:

“It’s laughing with my husband and getting butterflies when he comes home from work. It’s having a healthy daughter who is happy and loves me back.”

Much like all other mommy guilt (self-inflicted), I find that defending or defining why some of us do what we do is always challenging – because of the judgment we feel from other parents and the guilt we impose on ourselves. And because of that, our definitions of success will vary greatly. There is no right or wrong answer. 

As I prepare for baby #2 and continuously strive to strike a balance between my professional life and personal life, the definition of success has been weighing heavily on my mind. I’m just wrapping up the first chapter of Eat, Pray, Love. The author is struggling with her decision to leave a marriage, not have children and still feel like she fits into society.

“First you are a child, then you are a teenager, then you are a young married person, then you are a parent, they you are retired, then you are a grandparent – at every stage you know who you are, you know what your duty is and you know where to sit at the reunion.”

But what if you don’t “fit in”? What if you never have kids? Have a high-paying job? Get married?  How do you measure your “success”?

I genuinely love what I do professionally, and I know that in order for me to be a good parent, I need to work. I need that balance. This doesn’t mean I don’t miss my daughter or have days where I feel overwhelming guilt. But for now, it’s the right balance for me. 

I envy my parent friends who only work a few days a week – “They have the best of both worlds!” I often think. Similarly, I admire my friends whose full-time job is being a parent. That has to be the toughest job in the world.

S

uccess for me means having a healthy family; love and peace in my home; learning to love myself completely and raising happy kids.

How do you define success?

 How Do You Define Success?

Product Review: Simple Skincare

Simple Skincare Klout 1024x1024 Product Review: Simple Skincare

A week ago I had never heard of Simple Skincare until I received a happy surprise from Klout in the mail with a sample of Simple facial wipes and moisturizer.

I took horrible care of skin throughout college. I rarely removed makeup after all-nighters or parties. It wasn’t until 5-6 years ago that I started to take better care of my skin (and myself overall ).

I remember reading a quote from a 40-something-year-old whose sole advice to her younger self was “Take care of your skin. Your 40-year-old self will thank you.”

I’ve never been married to one particular skincare product. I’m lucky in that I don’t have sensitive skin, so I’ve always bounced between brands.

Now that I’ve been using Simple Skincare wipes and moisturizer for more than a week I’m in love. 

Unlike other makeup removers I’ve used in the past, these wipes feel gentle and are not at all oily. The moisturizer is light and smooth.

Target Simple Skincare 768x1024 Product Review: Simple Skincare

I’ve had such a positive experience I stocked up on my recent trip to Target. I was happily surprised to find how affordable the brand is!

Thanks for the Klout perk – you have a new fan!

Have you used Simple Skincare before? What’s your favorite skincare brand?

*This post is not sponsored by Klout or Simple Skincare. As a recipient of a Klout perk, I’m in no way paid or expected to write a review of the product. 

 Product Review: Simple Skincare