Monday, April 20, 2015

Average Is Easy

Average is easy. It's not overly hard to achieve the status quo, and the danger lies in staying there, simply because it's comfortable. The problem with staying in the "average zone" is that we never achieve our potential there. You never know what kind of person you could be or what you could accomplish if you only achieve average results. Allowing your mind to dream and your heart to soar means finding the courage to step out in faith. If we listen to the voices around us, there's often a combination of those who want to hold you back, and those who want to see you succeed. The challenge for you and I is to choose who we listen to. Average may be easy, but extraordinary results await the one who has the courage to allow their heart and mind to dream. Refuse to be average. Don't hold yourself back from greatness any longer; pursue the incredible passions and dreams God placed in your heart. When you operate in your areas of strength and passion, you'll find that the results are absolutely incredible. 

If you want to take the next step toward living a life of greatness, I would suggest checking out the book that my good friend Jenni and I wrote together! We share our experience with finding our purpose, following your dreams, real beauty secrets, and other valuable life lessons. 
To watch the official book trailer or pick up a copy: click here

Monday, April 13, 2015

5 Ways to Become A More Courageous Person

So last week we talked about courage, and I wanted to continue the conversation with this list I came across in my reading. It's taken from a book by John Maxwell (one of my personal favorites) entitled, Beyond Talent. This list is part of a chapter how courage amplifies talent, and it is so fitting with what I've been discovering in my own life lately. Hopefully you'll be able to identify with it also.

To become a more courageous person:
1. Look for courage inside, not outside, yourself.

2. Grow in courage by doing the right thing instead of the expedient thing.

3. Take small steps of courage to prepare you for greater ones.

4. Recognize that leadership position won't give you courage, but courage can make you a better leader.

5. Watch your horizons expand with each courageous act.

"The opposite of courage is not cowardice, it's conformity. It's not just enough to believe in something. We need to live for something." --John Maxwell

I hope that whatever you are facing in life, you'll find the courage to do the right thing, and know that courage ultimately leads you to the life you desire.
Have a fantastic week!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Have Courage

Print by Kat Gaskin for PuraVida

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter celebration! It was such fun to invest some time with family, and to celebrate Christ's incredible act of love for us. What a great weekend.
I recently saw the new Cinderella movie, and was inspired by the thought of having courage. An underlying theme of the film is to "have courage, and be kind".  It's a great thought. What would the world look like if we all decided to embrace that kind of perspective? Courage and kindness are a powerful combination.

Have you ever wanted to do something, but felt like you lacked the courage to do it? Perhaps it was trying something new, moving to a new place, applying for a job, starting a business..etc. We are often faced with opportunities to take risks, and our success is often determined by our measure of courage. I remember the first time I thought about the idea of writing a book. It was something that felt so big, so overwhelming, and the unknown of how to do it felt somewhat scary, but the momentum that happens when you take the first step will create a tidal wave of enthusiasm. Once I decided that it was going to happen, no matter what, and I summed up the courage to get things moving, it was amazing to see the kinds of things that began to move into place!

We must have courage to take the first step, and get beyond whatever limitations or barriers we've set up for ourselves. Most of the time, the obstacles in our lives are there because of our own doing! You've been designed for an incredible life; will you have the courage to live it? I sure hope so! Don't allow the fears, past failures, and limitations keep you back from greatness. Take a deep breath, summon all the courage you can, and be brave enough to take the first step (no matter how big or small) toward your goals and dreams. You will be amazed at how things begin to happen for those who have the courage to begin! Remember you do not go through life alone; God walks with us each step of the way. Deuteronomy 31:6 says, "Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you."

Here's to an amazing, courageous week ahead! You can do it!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Konfetti Colors

It's officially Spring, everyone! I love this time of the year, as all the trees, flowers, and bushes are blooming with color, days are beginning to get longer, and the skies are often a brilliant shade of blue, illuminated by lots of sunshine. When spring arrives, the first thing I am reminded of is...color! Time to put away all the shades of black and grey, and move toward happy hues. Since the weather has been so nice, it's been great to be outside, and I've done a lot of biking lately. This darling skirt from Shop Konfetti's Spring collection is so perfect for spring days, whether you're running errands, lounging at a fabulous resort, soaking up the sun on spring break, or exploring on a bike. Pink and turquoise are my two favorite colors, so this was an obvious must-have, and it's a light cotton fabric which is breezy and cool when the temperatures start rising. Pick one up here, and shop the whole adorable collection here! Happy Spring!

p.s. It was so fun to create a video lookbook for this post, and the first time I've done something like this for the blog. What are your thoughts? Want to see more of that around here? Let me know!

Monday, March 9, 2015

What Do You See?

How do you see yourself? What is your vision for your life? Have you ever thought about where you want to go, what kind of person you want to become, and what dreams you want to accomplish? Brian Houston says, "Vision alone can exist for our own purposes and interests, whereas a cause extends well beyond us. It is bigger than any individual or organization. Is your vision bigger than you?"
Sometimes it's easy to get stuck on just our own lives, but a vision is often something that is more about leaving a legacy or being a part of a cause that far surpasses our own circumstance. I challenge you to dream big, and strive to have a vision bigger than you! When you surrender your vision and future into God's hands and align them with his will, your life is a miracle waiting to happen. 

Ask yourself: Where am I gifted? What are my talents? What comes naturally to me? These things are your abilities. Be willing to tap into them, and use them to achieve your potential!

James 1:17 says, "Every good and perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights." 

God has gifted you with incredible amounts of talents and abilities for a purpose...His purpose. Embrace them, and you're well on your way to an incredible life!

Monday, March 2, 2015

Seasons Change

I have thought a lot about seasons lately. I heard a fantastic podcast by Chris Hodges recently on the subject, and it really got me thinking about how much of life is based around the concept of seasons. Sometimes we may feel like we're in a "winter" where opportunities and other situations in life seem barren, difficult, and cold. Still others feel like spring with prospects, offers, and life all in bloom everywhere you look. If we're in one season, there's two guarantees. First, all seasons will come to an end. Second, there is always something to be learned from the season. 

It can be easy to want to try and force things/people/situations to fit into certain seasons, but just like trying to plant crops in the middle of winter, it's just not going to produce the kind of results we are looking for. It may be the right thing, the right person, the right job, the right feeling, but the wrong season or timing. Seasons may be challenging, and other times they may be simple. The best thing that I've found is to simply look for the beauty and the lesson in the season, and be willing to wait it out. Spring always comes after the hardest of winters, and the beauty of fall comes at the end of a long summer. Wherever you may be in life's seasons, know this: there is a time and a place for everything. Be patient, persevering, and learn what you can. Soon the season will pass, and you will be able to look back and say, "remember when..?"

I am reminded of this passage in Ecclesiastes 3 which says, 

"There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
What do workers gain from their toil? I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end."

In His timing, all things will be made new, life will be restored, hope will rise again. It says in scripture that "He has made everything beautiful in its time"; things of value and beauty often require an investment of time. We are accustomed to a "quick-fix" society, where things are available to us at the drop of a hat. Remember to be patient, and the right opportunities will open up in the proper timing. Trust that whatever situation you are in, you are there for a reason, and your obedience to His timing will bring forth blessing. Each season has beauty; we must be willing to find it. 

Monday, February 16, 2015

5 Questions To Ask Yourself Right Now

It's good to do a self-check every once in awhile so you can congratulate, re-calibrate, or set a date..for a new goal (sorry, just had to rhyme the last one!). We come to many intersections in life, and it is good to know how to make decisions that will positively impact our direction. We can add things to our lives, subtract from them, or swap something we do have for something we don't. It is critical to know when to do which of the above options. I'm currently doing some self-checking, goal setting, and habit creating, so I thought I'd share a few questions that have helped me in this process....

1. Are you giving attention to your soul?

2. Are you doing challenging or uncomfortable things? 

3. What are you doing to develop the habit of character growth?

4. Do you consistently serve others and put them first?

5. Where have you placed the majority of your focus up to this point in your life? Does it need to stay there, be adjusted, or change altogether? 

I challenge you to spend a few moments answering these questions for your own life...go ahead and even journal some of the answers on a piece of paper, and see where you are in terms of the goals you've set. Are you on the way to where you want to be? If yes, fantastic! Keep it up! If not, don't beat yourself up over it, just re-adjust your goals and priorities, and set some exciting benchmarks along the way to achieving the life you want! It's been said that the pathway to success is not an always have to take the stairs. Remember that in the process, while it may be tough or uncomfortable, you become a person of character.

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