Category Archives: Motivation

Open Letter to Tomi Lahren

Dear Tomi,

Sweet, innocent, closed-minded Tomi, you are so sorely mistaken and misinformed about this Women’s Rights Movement. Your anger and hatred are so loud that I can barely hear the judgmental, ignorant words coming out of your mouth.

I imagine you and I are alike in many ways. We were both raised by a mom and dad in an average, predominantly white town. We both attended a high school about the same size, and we both attended college for journalism. We both got into the television industry almost immediately out of school, except that you were handed your own TV show at the inexperienced age of 21, where I worked as a production assistant for a year, part-time at minimum wage, until I was forced to find a different, better-paying job. Here is where our stories begin to differ.

You have never known adversity. You have been riding a cushy six-figure salary since you were of legal drinking age. You didn’t “earn” your job at One American News Network, you didn’t start from the bottom and work your way up a career ladder that some spend their entire lives aiming for. A man looked at you and realized the opportunity for a fantastic ROI. You’re beautiful, sassy, and entertaining, and in news, that means money and ratings. It doesn’t make you right, or smart, or even good at your job. It simply means you are entertainment.

With that being said, OF COURSE you don’t understand this Women’s Rights Movement. Why would you? Every time I see you, your brow is furrowed and your mouth is open. LISTEN. Even if for just a moment, remove yourself from your shiny, blonde, polished Fox News-esque pedestal, take a step back and really look at the world around you. I’m not talking about your friends, and family, and coworkers, I mean the people you don’t even see on your way to work every day. The homeless woman, the cab driver, the single mom with three kids using food stamps, the woman who’s been silenced by a broken and abusive relationship. Don’t you see these humans? Or are you too blinded by your privileged past and present to completely miss what is your imminent future?

The difference between me and you is that I don’t stand for myself and my own selfish desires. I stand for others who weren’t dealt the same cards as you and I. I am not the victim, but I stand with women who have been the victim. Of discrimination, of assault, of abuse, of oppression. I believe wholeheartedly in equality, from gender, to race, to religion, to sexuality. I believe that we are all humans, and that we are all brothers and sisters as children of God. At the end of the day, we are all equal in God’s eyes. We are commanded to love one another, and by attacking other women, your fellow sisters, you are defying the very premise of Christianity.

You have a voice where other women don’t. You are literally handed a microphone and camera and the opportunity to make a difference on a daily basis. Use your voice for the betterment of society. Use your voice to empower other women and inspire them with your own strength and work ethic. Don’t shoot them down because they aren’t like you, lift them up higher than they ever thought possible because they aren’t like you.

No one is asking for “free stuff,” this is so much more than that. And if you did any actual research besides scribbling down a rant and reading it from a teleprompter, something in those facts (not alternative facts, just regular facts) may change your perspective a little. The moment you open your arms and start loving others the way Jesus loves you, your entire world will shift. I urge you to try it sometime. 

I believe in you, Tomi.

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Stretch Marks

Lately I find myself subconsciously searching for something more, I’m not entirely sure what, but can’t seem to find it anywhere. I look for it as I scroll through social media, at the bottom of my beer, at the end of a long Netflix binge (I’m such millennial), but I always feel the same. I’ve been trying to find an explanation for that feeling, a word to associate with it, something to blame it on.

Complacency. I’ve been hearing this word a lot lately and actually paying attention to it when it touches my eardrums. Unlike other words, it flutters in and stays there, resonating for reasons I can’t put my finger on. Like an itch you can’t scratch.

To be complacent means to feel unaware or uninformed self-satisfaction. My own personal definition of complacency is “ignorant contentment.” I love when people say that you aren’t growing as a person unless you’re outside of your comfort zone. I love even more when these growing pains are referred to as metaphoric stretch marks. You grow, you stretch, you learn, you adapt, you are forever changed because of it.

So I started really thinking about that word and realizing all the different aspects of my life I’ve slowly grown complacent about. My job, my weight, my city, everything has become so routine that I feel content for the most part. The problem is I can’t label that same contentment as happiness, or pride, or even satiation.

The problem with complacency is you can think about it and talk about it until you’re blue in the face, but unless you actually do something it isn’t going anywhere. It pulls up a chair and sits next to you and you both idly watch the world go by day in and day out. You stare out the same window and watch the same cars go by and think the same thoughts and have the same observations, until after a while you don’t see the window, or the cars, or observe new things, or conjure new thoughts. Life happens and you don’t even know it.

I wish I knew the secret to avoiding complacency altogether, but I guess that’s half the reason we’re here. We all live to know what our life’s purpose is and once we find it, we channel our hearts and souls into that purpose. It’s the waiting period that’s the hardest part, and it could last forever if you don’t force yourself into growing some more stretch marks.

 

 

 

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Me, Myself, and I

I want to be different.

I want to be myself. 

 

A rendition of a particular quote runs through my mind every so often: We are all just an automat of characters. All reading from the same dog-eared script.

Have you ever been walking down the street, or standing in a line with a bunch of other people, all waiting for the same thing or walking in the same direction, and feel as though you’re amidst cattle? Sometimes I have to choke back a laugh, because I feel utterly (see what I did there) ridiculous. My dad will actually “moo” when he is put in this situation, which makes it much less frustrating.

Before I digress, the actual quote (because I loathe misquoting) is by Gillian Flynn, author of Gone Girl. And it’s important:

“I don’t know that we are actually human at this point, those of us who are like most of us, who grew up with TV and movies and now the Internet. If we are betrayed, we know the words to say; when a loved one dies, we know the words to say. If we want to play the stud or the smart-ass or the fool, we know the words to say. We are all working from the same dog-eared script. 

It is a very difficult era in which to be a person, just a real, actual person, instead of a collection of personality traits selected from an endless Automat of characters.”

Spending time alone is surely an eye-opening experience. And possibly my eyes have just opened after many years of being some strange mixture of hating solitude and being terrified of commitment. Being single forces you to spend time with yourself, lots and lots of alone time. Picking apart your thoughts, asking yourself questions, deciding how you honestly want to spend your time. When there’s someone else contributing, you don’t have to always or fully make each decision on your own. Does that make life easier? Probably. Does it make it better? Doubtful.

I feel that majority of my days I spend trapped inside a shell of what society expects of me. I work a 9-5, I wear my make up and hair and clothes in a professional manner, I say certain phrases like, “How can I help you?,” “Have a great afternoon!,” and “Thank you for calling!” Even when I’m feeling negative the worst I’ll say is,”that’s ridiculous.” Even with my friends I base my identity on how my friends view me. We all act differently depending on the people surrounding us and the situation we are in. But what if we were ourselves 100% of the time?

On dates I find myself answering questions solely based on what I think a “cool girl” would say or what I think that particular guy would be into. I dress to look skinnier and try to sit on their right because I think my left side is my good side. I try not to laugh too hard because I hate how my mouth looks. How exhausting! How tiring and worthless it is to continuously pretend to be someone you’re not.

How dull of a life you lead if all you do is follow the crowd. Why would we ever want to be like anyone else when we can so comfortably be?

Finding yourself is a long process. You don’t wake up one day and say, “there I am! Now I can live my life.” Finding who you truly are comes from a long series of situations and decisions that gradually mold you from the inside out. I constantly search for a man to validate me. But being alone forces you re-learn how to be yourself, by yourself, without depending on anyone or anything else to define you. You have to sit with your thoughts and question them. Reflect on them and make sure they are YOUR thoughts and YOUR words before they are spoken.

Speak your mind.
Do you want you want.
Have faith in yourself.

I’m not even close, but I can imagine that feeling of pure confidence and independence must be the most amazing feeling in the world.

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” –Psalm 139:14

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Cliche New Years Post

Oh look! Another article in your news feed about how to better yourself in 2015. “Fifteen ways to be happier in 2015.” “Fifty Resolutions You Should be Making This Year.” “The Top 10 Resolutions to Make for Next Year.” You can be a journalist, or even a blogger, and have your own writing style without using a list for every single article you write.

#overit #endrant

I’m not making any resolutions this year. That’s right, I’m so awesome already, I don’t need to change myself. Not really, I just think about last year at this time when I made my resolutions, and the year before that, and the year before that. And how they never happened. And how they’re always the same.

1. Lose weight.
2. Stop biting my nails.
3. Exercise more.
4. Eat healthier.
5. Pray more.

[It’s really sad that “pray more” is at the bottom of that list below losing weight and biting my nails. Probably if that were at the top of the list I wouldn’t need anything else on the list.]

None of these things about me have changed over the last several years. My weight and routines have fluctuated but I am still the same person. New Years Resolutions don’t drastically change who you are just because the date on the calendar changes. You change because of things that happen to you over the course of that year, things that you have NO control over.

I sat down last December, much like in years’ past, and told myself I would lose weight, blind to what God and the universe actually had in store for me for 2014. A stress fracture in my foot, a new job, and most recently, a car accident.

Sometimes it feels like the more determined you are to do something, the more obstacles you find standing in your way. Just when I hit a great momentum of motivation I am stopped in my tracks. The accident left me with a concussion, back pain, a gastrointestinal bleed, and a ulcer (in a nutshell). Last night was my first night exercising in 20 days. The longest I’ve gone since my stress fracture. And there’s not much more discouraging than trying to work out in the gym when you feel tired, fat, and unmotivated.

Spoiler alert: people think that a new year means a new start, but the reality is your life continues the way it’s been going! You can’t change yourself, but you CAN change your attitude. Maybe 2014 wasn’t so shiny for you, I feel ya, man. But 2015 might be better for us if we change our attitudes and outlooks. It really sucks to get back in the gym after 20 days of not working out, but exercise is always the better choice than sitting on your fat ass at home! And sure, life may not always go as you plan, maybe you got laid off or got broken up with, but you know damn well those things always turn into something better down the road. I got into a car accident and got a brand new car, see? Case in point! So keep on truckin’ friend, headstrong into 2015.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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