What holds you back?

“What do you think it is that holds us back from moving forward towards what we know in our hearts is the right way to go? – The Barista

A follower of The Barista (a.k.a. My Mornin’ Coffee) I saw this question and it really got me thinking: What is it that holds us back?

FEAR. Big, old, crippling fear.

Click here for original source
Click here for original source

Fear causes us to conform to things we don’t believe just so that we can fit in and not be alone.

Fear causes us to run when we should stay.

Fear causes us to give up when if had held on a second longer it would have made all the difference in the world.

Fear makes us hide the truth.

Fear can keep us from going through the dark. If we go through the dark we will always find light again.

Fear can cause us to choose poorly.

Fear can keep us from being happy.

Click here for original source.
Click here for original source.

Wouldn’t it be fabulous if we all just took a step forward in the right direction – if we all chose to move in the right direction at the same time?

What a crazy, beautiful world that would be.

If I wasn’t afraid of the stigma attached to being a medium/clairvoyant/whatever-you-want-to-call-it that is probably what I would do with my life. I am  certain I was destined to help people who have lost loved ones deal with that grief. I am pretty sure God made me extra feely for that very reason. I believe that is my calling.

What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

36 and counting…

This Sunday I inch closer to 40 than 30…I will be 36 years young. This weekend I am going to do 36 Random Acts of Kindness for every year that I have been alive on this Earth. (36 Birthday RAK blog to follow next week).

So with tonight’s post I thought I would share 36 of my favorite quotes that I have collected for that last few years. Reading back through these has helped me on my being my best self journey – or living out loud journey. I thought some might help inspire you, too.

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35 for a few more days,

M

** All these are pinned on my Pinterest account. Come follow me to find out their sources. **

I think what I would miss most is the ordinary, day-to-day bustle

“It occurred to me that if I were a ghost, this ambiance was what I’d miss most: the ordinary, day-to-day bustle of the living. Ghosts long, I’m sure, for the stupidest, most unremarkable things.”
Banana Yoshimoto, The Lake

I think we all want to be remembered. It must be written in our subconscious or part of our DNA, but we have a common need to be noticed and remembered.

These days that need has catapulted into something more extravagant; almost everyone wants to be famous. Between social media, reality TV and the news it seems like just about everyone has some claim to fame these days. And if they don’t already have a claim to fame they can quickly get one; or so it seems.

I noticed this in myself on Friday, while I was scrolling down through my Facebook newsfeed and came across a picture on Jen Hatmaker’s Facebook page (if you aren’t familiar with Jen Hatmaker you can check her blog out here). She was standing with other writers; one of which happened to be Glennon Melton Doyle – and if you don’t know who she is check out her blog here. And if you do know who they are; I know you felt like I did. I was knee-deep in envy. I so wanted to be in that picture!

The infamous FB picutre Click it to be taken to its original source
The infamous FB picture
Click it to be taken to its original source
I thought about this a lot since Friday. I started out thinking about how I want so desperately to be a well-known author. But the more I thought it about it, the more silly it seemed to HAVE to be extraordinary. To have to be famous or how much that even counts really. So many things have become so OVER the TOP extraordinary these days that maybe there is something to just being ORDINARY.

For instance, you can’t even get into a four-year college any more without being a 4.2 valedictorian, concert pianist, who also happens to volunteer twice a week at the local convalescent home and lettered in field hockey.

Our young kids are so over scheduled with soccer, guitar, language lessons, extracurricular math programs and robotics camps on top of school in the hopes that they will be extraordinary, they don’t even know what it is like to just play.

I think we have forgotten how extraordinary it is to be ORDINARY; to sit content in the daily hustle and bustle of our average lives and find peace in that. We are so busy trying to be someone famous and special that we have forgotten that we are already special to begin with.

I think I would much rather be the voice of the ordinary, the voice of being content with what we have, the reminder for all of us that we are already extraordinary because we are unique and have our own personalized God Given Gifts than one of the extraordinary that HAS to be famous.

There is so much beauty in our lives already that we don’t have to add fame and flash and paparazzi to make a difference or be remembered. We just have to be ourselves and open our eyes to what we are already doing every day.

To find comfort in the simple beautiful moments of laughter, goodnight kisses, a job well done, a phone call from a friend, fresh-cut flowers, a warm bed and clean sheets to sleep in.

Or for example, letting our little ones pick their own clothes, so they can express their independence…

3 year old fashion
3-year-old fashion
Mike Wazowski
Mike Wazowski
Our remembering that one little love story created something magical…

The ring
The ring
Pumpkin patch maze
Pumpkin patch maze
Daddy and Z with the perfect tree
Daddy and Z with the perfect tree
Or watching the world through a child’s eyes…

photo 2(17)
kite flying in Newport Beach
Thanksgiving bead necklace making
Thanksgiving bead necklace making
A 3 year old created castle
A 3-year-old created castle
Being with your best friend
Being with your best friend
Or just remembering to look at the beauty of the world around us…

Sunset at the beach
Sunset at the beach
The view from the top of my street
The view from the top of my street
A handwritten note from one of my favorite bloggers
A handwritten note from one of my favorite bloggers
My desk
My desk
It is definitely what is in the small stuff that is going to be remembered and cherished. So after much thought; I don’t want to be in that Jen Hatmaker picture any more. I would much rather be the girl I am; whose life is ordinary and filled with small, magical extraordinary moments.

Your ordinary friend,

M

What’s it all about anyway?

click photo for original source
click photo for original source

Exactly two years ago I decided to become the best version of myself because I wanted to be the kind of grown-up I want my children to become. Most of my life has been spent wishing I was more like this or had more of that. Or wishing I hadn’t done or said something stupid. Mostly I wanted to choose happiness and find joy even though I was mostly AFRAID. That is how this little bloggity-blog got started.

I needed to have a way to hold myself accountable and to track both the successes and failures on this journey to what I call “LIVING OUT LOUD”. I always wanted to be a writer and so naturally blogging it out seemed to be a pretty good idea even though I was mostly AFRAID. Afraid because I am not grammatically correct (it’s like politically correct, just with grammar), run-on sentences are a specialty of mine, and I love inventing random new words. I figured since this journey was about being authentic and wide open writing something imperfectly fit even more wonderfully.

Plus, I figured if I wrote it down and shared my stumbles and triumphs that I could help others like me. LIVING OUT LOUD is scary, hard work and I can’t be the only one who wants to do this better…there must be more of us out there…at least I think there are. And so this blog was born.

I want it to be a place you can visit and know that motherhood, marriage, love, courage, fear, food, hair, clothes, and everything else will be discussed with complete authenticity – out in the open. And maybe, just maybe that would not only help me be the best version of myself, but help you all, too.

Authentically yours,

M