Entries Tagged as 'Life'

THIS

Posted on: Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Shauna Niequist truly is my patron saint or long lost big sister or something to that effect. I’ve read all of her books several times and find myself flipping through them, over and over, to soak up more wisdom and encouragement frequently. It’s like everything she writes, I am screaming YES YES YES out loud because her words hit so close to home and really resonate with me. I also like to think we would be besties IRL, but that’s for another blog post.

I recently started reading her latest book, Present Over Perfect, and one part of the What the Lake Teaches chapter made me stop and pause. I read it again and re-read and re-read and re-read. I showed it to Eric, telling him, “this is me! This is exactly what I need to remember every day!” and he agreed (and told me to print out these words). I read it to my mom, who said something similar; that I need to keep reminding myself of these truths over and over.

This was a powerful reminder to me – an extrovert, a die-hard people pleaser, an affirmation seeker – that I need to stop craving approval and acceptance from external sources and lean into what I know to be true about myself, what God thinks about me, and who I am without all of those compliments and affirmations and heavy expectations.

Here’s the excerpt. Hope you get as much out of it as I do and I highly recommend her new book! <3

But this is what I’ve learned the hard way: what people think about you means nothing in comparison to what you believe about yourself. Essentially, my identity depended on outwards approval, which changes on a dime. So you dance and you please and you placate and you prove. You become a three-ring circus and in each ring, you’re an entirely different performing animal, anything anyone wants you to be.

The crucial journey, then, for me, has been from dependence on external expectations, down into my own self, deeper still into God’s view of me, his love for me that doesn’t change, that will not change, that defines and grounds everything.

I bet it all on busyness, achievement, being known as responsible, and escaping when those things didn’t work. What I see now is that what I really wanted was love, grace, peace, connection.

When you decide, finally, to stop running on the fuel of anxiety, desire to prove, fear, shame, deep inadequacy – when you decide to walk away from that fuel for a while, there’s nothing but confusion and silence. You’re on the side of the road, empty tank, no idea what will propel you forward. It’s disorienting, freeing, terrifying. For a while, you just sit, contentedly, and contentment is the most foreign concept you know. But you learn it, shocking as it is, day by day, hour by hour. You sit in your own skin, being just your own plain self. And it’s okay. And it’s changing everything.

After a while, though, you learn you weren’t made only for contentment; that’s only half the puzzle. The other part is meaning, calling, love. And this is a new conversation, almost like speaking a second language – faltering, tongue-twisting, exhilarating.

#LoveOfTheJourney: On entrepreneurship & Wente Vineyards

Posted on: Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Wente #LoveoftheJourney 3

Wente #LoveoftheJourney 5

I recently discovered Wente Vineyards, a winery based a few hours from San Francisco in Livermore. I learned that Wente has been around for more than 130 years and is the country’s oldest continuously family owned and operated winery. While I looooove a good trip to a winery to sit in the sun, casually drinking wine, I haven’t had a chance to visit the Wente winery in person yet. I did pick up a bottle of the Wente Southern Hills Cabernet Sauvignon here in SF and enjoyed it recently during a picnic in the park!

Wente Vineyards recently launched their #LoveOfTheJourney initiative, celebrating the brand’s heritage and story. Their family – and brand – focuses on the reason behind why they make wine, which is simply because they love doing it and love the journey the Wente family (five generations!) has been on to get to where they are today.

They asked me to share on of my own journeys, so as I was sipping on the Cab Sav in the park, I started thinking about the past few months and my journey as a (newbie!) entrepreneur. I made the leap to launch my own company Lucky Collective a few months ago and it’s been a challenging, but mostly really positive, journey so far. The whole #LoveOfTheJourney idea had me thinking – why did I start my own company? Am I focusing on an “end goal” or am I simply enjoying the journey of entrepreneurship right now?

Rather than always focusing on achieving milestones or growing my business, I want to make sure I’m learning as much as I can, soaking up the experiences in front of me, and enjoying the freedom and flexibility that comes with being my own boss. I’ve learned A LOT about myself by working solo and the importance of confidence and believing you are good enough to do a job or get a client, “selling yourself” and networking, strategic time management skills, and when it’s okay to just slow down and RELAX (or celebrate – both which require wine, naturally). My go-to way to relax, especially on weekends, is to pack up an epic picnic (including a bottle of wine!) and hang out in Duboce Park near my apartment. This past weekend, we picnicked while sipping on the Wente Cab Sav, lounged and played cards – it was definitely a really great way to stop the hustle and bustle of work and emails and to-do lists and just soak up the sunny afternoon.

Thank you to Wente Vineyards for partnering on this post and for the challenge to focus on my own #LoveOfTheJourney! Learn more about Wente on their Facebook page + Twitter. Cheers!

Wente #LoveoftheJourney 1

Wente #LoveoftheJourney 2

Wente #LoveoftheJourney 4

Wente #LoveoftheJourney 6

#nofilter // speaking words of love over our bodies

Posted on: Wednesday, June 15, 2016

“don’t say that about yourself.”

this simple statement, said to me during a facial by a lovely esthetician, really stuck out to me. while she was doing extractions (ugh, these are so bad and good at the same time) i apologized to her for my “gross skin.” and she called me out – telling me that i should never call myself or my body gross and instead speak love to myself. and that i shouldn’t apologize for my body, period. it was nothing deep nor profound, but her words were a wake-up reminder that the words we say to ourselves, about ourselves, are so important.

for the past nine (!!) or so months, i’ve been dealing with some not-so-ideal hormonal adult acne. i didn’t really have bad acne growing up, aside for some small breakouts during that time of the month, and it’s been really challenging to experience bad acne as a 27-year-old. i changed my birth control method last fall and since, i’ve been struggling with acne on my chest, neck and parts of my face. i’ve tried lots of solutions and continuing to treat it – topical lotions and creams, antibiotics, these murad skin clarifying vitamins (highly recommend as they seem to be what’s actually helping), the whole nine yards. and the acne sometimes comes and goes. a few weeks ago, my chest was really clearing up – no redness and barely any bumps – and i was so excited. it’s working! i’m getting better! and then, this past weekend, my skin flared up and is redder and bumpier than ever. sigh.

i spent the morning of my wedding day anxious and upset about my skin (pre-makeup pic below, where you can see some breakout on my chest. thank you Sarah for your magical makeup skills! ). I’ve spent many regular mornings in a bad mood, not sure what to wear or how to cover up the bumpiness, the red, the imperfect. now, with warmer weather comes swimsuits and skin-baring tank tops, and that brings a whole new wave of worry over my skin.

i know that there are much bigger and more important issues that people are going through, but this whole skin thing for me has been unsettling and upsetting the past almost-year. my self-doubt and self-hate gets all worked up when i look at my skin and i say things to myself, about myself that aren’t edifying, helpful or remotely loving. it sounds weird to say this, but looking at my skin automatically puts me in a sour mood and makes me feel grumpy and frustrated.

so what i’m really trying to do, slowly, even when it’s hard, is to speak love to myself and to my body. even when i don’t look the way i want or when my skin isn’t “going back to normal”, i’m trying to not freak out, but to instead take a deep breath and move on. i’m trying to not let the way my skin looks on any given day affect my attitude and mindset. i’m trying my best to find solutions that work for my skin type, continue talking with my dermatologist and try my best to alleviate the redness and bumpiness, but ultimately – not let my acne define me as a person or ruin my day. when words like gross or disgusting or ugly pop into my head after looking at my skin, i’m remembering to “not say that about myself” and instead give myself, my body, my skin, grace and love.

i don’t really know what compelled me to share this, as it’s not something i’m necessarily proud of sharing. i also prefer to share the pretty and inspiring and happy things on my blog, but i also want to share the real and honest. i’ve had my blog for 6+ years now, and it’s changed a lot, but i always want it to be authentically me, and right now, this is where i’m at.  it was helpful for me to write down how i’m feeling and what i’m experiencing and to read my feelings, put into words.  i’m just hoping that even one other person out there reads this and is reminded to speak love over their body and to not be quick to judge and condemn yourself based on the way you look. <3

xo

wifi & work spots in san francisco

Posted on: Monday, May 23, 2016

i recently shared that i went out on my own to launch my own company, lucky collective. it’s been about six weeks or so working by myself, and it’s already learned a lot about myself, both personally and professionally. one of the most challenging things has been being alone all day, as i’m extroverted and feed off the energy of other people. instead of working from my apartment all day, i try to switch it up and work from a coffee shop or cafe in either the morning or afternoon. i’m always on the lookout for good spots with wifi so thought i would share my go-to places to work.

SOMA:
elite audio cafe (folsom x 5th) // smallish, but great spot known for their crazy latte art!
soma streat food (11th x bryant) // most people don’t think of this as a working spot, but i love working here! it’s a great lunch work spot on a nice day, since there’s tons of food trucks there and lots of outdoor seating.
red door cafe/111 minna (minna x 2nd) // one of those coffee-during-the-day, wine-for-happy-hour working spots, plus they have toast and other good small bites.

LOWER HAIGHT/NOPA:
duboce park cafe
(duboce x sanchez) // coffee drinks, smoothies/juice, salads and sandwiches, plus beer/wine if you’re working late. this is my go-to neighborhood spot, right next to the park.
beanbag cafe (hayes x divis) // cheap and dive-y spot with hazelnut coffee (my fave) and breakfast, lunch and dinner options. $2 craft beers on draft is always a good thing to power through the late afternoon!

MISSION:
stable cafe (folsom x 17th) // i think this may be my all time favorite spot. yummy breakfast and lunch options, plus the dreamiest backyard (pictured below)
melage market (17th x capp) // right around the corner from stable, this is a cute spot with lunch and coffee options and big, bright windows.
coffee bar (bryant x mariposa) // this place is usually pretty packed, but if you get there early enough, it’s a great work spot with fresh juices, salads and pastries.
haus coffee (24th x mission) // this is a new-to-me spot with no food for sale, but strong coffee, super quiet vibes (good if you have a lot of work to do!) and a backyard patio.

Stable Cafe

HAYES VALLEY:
arlequin
(hayes x gough) // one side cafe, other side wine bar, with a beautiful, jungle-y back patio. great spot for all day working with yummy food options.
artis (octavia x hayes) // small, but great option for a work sess. not a ton of tables, but if you can snag one, it’s good vibes in here!
mercury cafe (octavia x page) // i don’t love working inside here, as i find it kind of dark, but i love grabbing an iced coffee and sitting at one of their outdoor tables and working.

DOWNTOWN/UNION SQUARE:
mazarine (market x 3rd) // a busy and bustling spot downtown, but good spot for in-person meetings. i still need to try their epic toast!
equador (market x 6th) // the mid-market area can be a little rough, but equador is a mini oasis among the chaos with strong coffee and breakfast and lunch options. they also have fresh-pressed cashew milk available (!!)
nordstrom bistro (market x 5th) // typically you wouldn’t think of nordstrom as a working spot, but shopping AND wifi AND food AND views of union square? yes please! i’ve worked at the nordstrom bistro (top floor of the nordstrom in the mall) while snacking on tasty burrata.

NOB HILL/RUSSIAN HILL:
saint frank (polk x union) // this cafe is sooo dreamy and pretty! get there early to snag a table and work here!
contraband (larkin x california) // i haven’t been here in awhile, but it’s a good, centrally located spot to get serious work done.

PACIFIC HEIGHTS/PRESIDIO HEIGHTS:
jane (fillmore x california) // work in the upstairs loft area and snag an iced coffee, green smoothie or any of their tasty and healthy breakfast or lunch options. right now, i’m loving their passionfruit bowl!
as quoted (sacramento x spruce) // this is a new farm-to-table, seasonal cafe that is gorgeous on the inside with delicious food and wifi. i LOVE the kale caesar salad here, so it’s a regular lunch work spot for me.

Jane on Fillmore

i know this isn’t an extensive list, and i didn’t cover a lot of neighborhoods, like the marina, north beach, castro, inner/outer richmond, dogpatch, potrero hill, inner/outer sunset…but these are my tried and true spots for a good work session! for more recommendations, check out this 7×7 article by friend shikha sharing her favorite spots with wifi – including other neighborhoods than the ones i shared. i’d LOVE to hear your go-to work spots in san francisco if you have any to add to my list!

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