This past spring, one of my heroes made a well-meaning but dismissive, offhand comment about my business, and it affected me in an unexpected way.
It's the 28th and final day of the #empoweredWritten project, and I think there's no more appropriate way to end things than by honoring the patron saint of Galentine's Day, Leslie Knope.
Leslie Knope is, sadly, a fictional character, so in reality this post is honoring her creator, the inimitable Amy Poehler.
In 2014, I was going through a rough patch. I've always struggled a little with anxiety, and been more prone than most to casual crying, but things were getting out of hand. I started seeing a therapist that helped me change the way I saw myself, and be more kind in my self-talk.
And then she recommended I check out Brené Brown's The Gifts of Imperfection, aka the book that was probably written with the express purpose of changing my life.
A couple years ago I was working miserable long hours at a job that just wasn't right for me. All I wanted was to leave, but I didn't see how I ever could; after all, work would be hard no matter where I went.
But reading Cheryl Strayed's Tiny Beautiful Things made me realize that I needed to find the hard work that felt worthwhile.
When I first launched Written Paper Goods, I was still a little shy about embracing my real voice and writing true sentiments. It was a lot easier to defer to the wisdom of known and loved authors and poets, and use their beautiful words.
...until I got an email telling me I was in violation of copyright law. Then it got a little harder.
Thankfully, I had Nicole Antoinette—host of the Real Talk Radio podcast—to look to as an example of the value of being real.
Yesterday I wrote about how Megan Leigh Barnard has inspired me in the short time we've known each other. But she also played the important role of introducing me to today's #empoweredWritten honoree: Sarah Harste.
Sarah is as kind and genuine a person as you could ever hope to meet, especially when you're attempting to get through your first ever networking event.
When I first Emma, it was on the heels of a thrilling promotion. As Editor of an online magazine, I was managing a small team of writers, and I was psyched to find that Emma was a kindred spirit and hailed from my home state of Vermont.
But as time went on, my excitement about the role faded, and I was left facing the reality that I was suffering serious work-life imbalance — cast into relief by the stories Emma regaled me with of her digital nomad lifestyle.
In 2013, I was thrilled to land a full-time job as a business copywriter — but really nervous to start working in an office for the first time. When I met my coworker Laura, who seemed perfectly poised and polished, I immediately felt intimidated and threatened.
But as time passed, I realized all was not as it seemed.
When I first moved to Columbus, I had to take a terrible job just to make ends meet. Thankfully, I was able to leave within months, and started working for a woman that became one of my personal (s)heroes.
Christina Getachew didn't just teach me the value of sustainable fashion, but also that it was possible to build a sustainable business on a foundation of transparency, creativity, and philanthropy.
Galentine's Day is less than a week away, so what better time to publicly confess to a long-held girl crush?
Lindsay MacDougall isn't much more than an acquaintance, but she's such a positive, loving person that today I am overcoming my awkwardness and writing about how she has unwittingly inspired me and #empoweredWritten from afar.
When I was in the 7th grade, I made a shocking discovery that changed my life: I could choose to not do my homework.
Slacking off never worked out for me that well, but it was still a tempting option a lot of the time. Being bad just felt so good....
It wasn't until meeting Izabella that I saw there was another way.
Every summer growing up, my mom, sister and I would spend a couple weeks in Boulder, CO visiting family. I looked forward to this trip all year, and from the moment we arrived, I spent most waking hours inseparable from my cousin Alysia.
Every summer we’d buy new best friend necklaces, to replace the ones we had inevitably lost the year before. We were voracious readers, spending blissful hours reading in lounge chairs while the younger cousins splashed around. We could play for hours with our moms’ old Barbies, inventing fantastical stories of adventure for the dolls. We both loved ballet, and once I even got to see the last 10 minutes of her class -- and that’s when I realized that we weren’t as similar as I thought. I loved ballet, but I was mediocre at best. Alysia had a gift.