3 Ways to Empower Yourself Today

empower
[əmˈpou(ə)r] VERB
          give (someone) the authority or power to do something.
         make stronger and more confident, especially in controlling their life and claiming their rights.

In this culture, it’s easy to get wrapped up in “all the things”, but it’s so important to have the power to accomplish our dreams and the confidence to pursue the journey that has been specifically designed for each of us. Empowerment gives us the freedom to not only dream with purpose, but to plan accordingly to make those dreams reality.

So how do we make it happen?

First, 10-10-1

I snagged this skill from Kelly Brock when she shared it- definitely follow her on IG! Her feed and stories are filled with wisdom and encouragement.

The 10-10-1 was developed by Rachel Hollis as a way to organize and leverage your ability to become the version of yourself you wish to be, with small, incremental steps toward your goal. So, let’s look at how to do this in your own life. Grab a pen and an empty notebook and plan for 30 min-1 hour.

  1. The first step represents 10 years from now. Think about what you want your life to look like in 10 years. What will you look like? What will you be doing? Will you have children and how old will they be? What will your relationship or marriage look like? How much money will you be making? You get the point. Be detailed and thorough and write it all down.
  2. The second step represents 10 goals that will reflect and support the vision of your life 10 years from now. All of your goals need to be in the present tense. For instance, if you are wanting to get out of debt and not operate paycheck-to-paycheck, “I am debt free and have $(amount of money) in my bank account at all times.” If you are wanting to be successful at your dream career, “I am a successful (Dream career title) and love every minute of it.”
  3. The last step is to write out 1 measurable and achievable goal that supports your dreams. “I spend one night per week with each of my children.” “I read one business book per month and apply the new skills to people on my team each month as we gather sales data.” “I limit my screen time to 3 hours per day.”
  4. Finally, you write your dreams and goal down every single day. This serves as an affirmation to the person you want to be, but it also serves as a way to measure how far you’ve come as you get closer towards reaching a goal.

Second, GRATITUDE JOURNAL

As a glass-half-full person and someone who finds the glitter in the mess, I love to acknowledge all of the things I’m grateful for. But more importantly, practicing gratitude empowers us to walk through life, no matter the season, with an attitude of love and appreciation for each thing we have been blessed with.

I get it…we all have bad days, weeks, seasons, and years…but there is always, always, always something to be grateful for.

The way I do this is by writing 5 things I’m grateful for at the top of my 10-10-1 page.

Third, PLAN ACCORDINGLY

“A dream without a plan is a wish.”- Katherine Paterson

Dreams are great, but without a plan we are setting ourselves to keep dreaming. And no one wants to have unfulfilled dreams. Planning also shows to decrease anxiety, sets up systems to make us successful, and sets the standard to accomplish daily measurable tasks to accomplish goals.

I LOVE planners…like I have an addiction. But, I have a favorite. I’ve used about every planner out there, and the Passion Planner is BY FAR the best. It not only gives you a passion roadmap, but it’s set up to achieve whatever you wish to achieve, by the hour, along with weekly goals, and to-do-list spots.

I know from experience that these three things not only prepare for a more joy-filled life, but a confidence that allows us to chase after our dreams. Sometimes our dreams and goals seem too large to take, as a whole, but if we start with small daily steps, we will be able to see huge leaps and progress toward becoming the empowered person we want to become.

15 Beauty Products You Need in Your Life

I absolutely love beauty products. I often “self care” by browsing in Sephora, Ulta, Target, or your neighborhood Walgreen’s. Something about getting a new product excites and relaxes me all at the same time. A quick 10-minute trip through the make-up aisle, and I’m a new woman. While I love makeup, beauty products extend to accessories, masks, hair sprays and serums, and lotions and let’s be honest…I bask in the beauty department in all of her glory. So, I’ve narrowed it down to 15 products I LOVE that I think everyone could either use or gift.

Vanity Planet ‘Pose’ mirror

  • If you had to choose just one and you were willing to splurge a little (currently $89.99), this is the one I would get. As a girl on the go, this is the perfect thing to pack with me when I travel. I am the weird person who will sit in front of the window at the hotel for good lighting and now, I can get ready anywhere, no matter the lighting.  This has been a game changer in every getting ready routine and I imagine it will make a great gift. For those wondering, you can adjust the brightness and it is a chargeable mirror, which is so much easier than battery-charged.
Get it here

111Skin Rose Gold Brightening Mask

  • Oh my MASK!!!! These are insane. I received these in a subscription box and I am hooked. They are a bit pricey ($32 for a single, $160 for a pack of 5), BUT I say confidently that the results are INCREDIBLE. It’s a hydrogel mask with 24K gold and rose extract and my face thanks me for it every. single. time. If you are looking to get over a break up and splurge or needing a facial pick-me-up…grab these.
Get yours here

Jade Roller

  • I’m probably the millionth person to refer these, but you can get these almost anywhere now. I have received them as gifts and purchased them at almost any store or Amazon from $10-$15. I always give them as gifts with a gift card or candle or face mask. The way my face actually absorbs my moisturizers with it is a total gamechanger. Forever a jade roller babe now. Stick in the fridge or freezer for added benefits- plus it’s amazing at de-puffing those eyes in the morning and it’s the perfect way to say good morning.

Doctor Rogers Restore Healing Balm

  • Let me preface that I am a “Lipbalm Girl”. Have been since the early 90’s. I also received this in a subscription box…and I’m obsessed. Have already ordered another one. Why? Because it works. Chapped lips? Check. Burn? Check. Cut? Check. Cracked skin? Check. Will never spend my days wondering down the lipbalm aisle in mid-winter wondering if I’ll ever be able to feel my lips again. It’s $30, so like $10 a month, if you use it regularly.
Get yours here

Vanity Planet ‘Exfora’

  • I know, I know. I was influenced. BUT it works so well that friends and family have also gotten their own. If you like to deep clean those pores and boost collagen in your face, then get this NOW! If you like clogged pores and saggy skin…well, it’s not for you. It’s $200 or 4 payments of $50.
Get yours here

Rodan + Fields Redefine Night Serum and Roller

  • It’s called ‘Botox in a Bottle’ for a reason. This stuff is pricey and I have used the Redefine regimen for a while, but this stuff is my favorite for two reasons: 1. It feels like velvet on my skin 2. It has Retinol and Peptides, making my skin younger right after I microneedle it. It’s $227 regular prize, or $204 with perks. And homegirl, it comes with 60 capsules, so if you are using on twice a week, it should last you 30 weeks, and I actually use one capsule/week because it contains so much in each one, so mine lasts over a year.
Get yours here

Sol de Janeiro, Brazilian Bum Bum Cream

  • This stuff smells heavenly… and it helps tighten and smooth. Need I say more? And…it’s only $20 for a medium size.
Get yours here

Skin & Co. Truffle Therapy Face Toner

  • Yall, I have sensitive skin. And toners typically burn the ever living daylights out of my skin and I feel like it still doesn’t get clean, BUT this stuff is incredible. It deep cleans and purifies my face, but it also removes dead skin and bacteria…and that’s exactly what I want cleaning my face. You can get a set of 2 online from Ulta for $45.00- split it with a friend; you won’t regret it. (Or you can get a single for $27)
Get yours here

Rodan + Fields Microdermabrasion

  • Calling everyone who wants their own pot of gold. Seriously. I adore this stuff. Anytime I am exfoliating before a spray tan or just needing a scrub for my hands or face, I use this. Won’t ever try anything else. It’s the absolute best and lasts forever. I’m not joking. I swear it’s just a gift that keeps on giving. $83 at cost, or $74 with perks. I like perks.
Get yours here

Tarte Creaseless Concealer OR Shape Tape

  • Tarte owns the concealer industry. I’m not joking. If I’m relying on one makeup product to be my wing woman, it’s this girl. She ensures my bags are covered, blemishes are nonexistent and highlights to literal perfection. Only $26, but always check QVC’s website to see if they have two for $33 (total steal).
Get yours here

LaVanila Pure Vanilla Perfume

  • “My word, you smell good. Whatever you put on, keep wearing it.” You think I’m joking? I’m not. I literally hear it 3 times a week. And it smells heavenly and bonus, it has no phthalates, no propylene glycol, and no aldyhydes and great for sensitive skin- and I stumbled on it searching on Amazon. You’re welcome! Side note: as a health coach, it’s super important to use products that are natural and free of harmful ingredients that can affect your hormones and cause so many other preventable diseases. It’s also only $48 and you need WAY less of this than a normal perfume.
Four amazing scents here

The Perfect Face Shimmer Pigment ‘Grace’

  • This is the best highlighter ever for only $19.50. I use it literally everyday for something. From highlighting your brows, to adding some pop to your lips…this is and will always be my go-to. The owner, Danielle Doyle, is so kind and so innovative. I promise you will continue to find other products of hers that you will make staples. Hint: lip gloss, lip stick, lip liners, and the primer. Yall, you will be hooked.
Get glammed up here

 Fake Bake Flawless Darker & Desert Bronze Tan

  • I am naturally fair and very proactive in preventing skin cancer, so I have self-tanned for years. I have tried literally everything. I think I could review every self tanner that’s been on the market and I only LOVE two.
  • 1. Fake Bake Flawless Darker is my go-to. It absorbs well, has amazing color, and lasts for about a week. I also love this one because I don’t have to exfoliate like a maniac in order for it to look good. It doesn’t smell great, so you’ll definitely need to shower and probably be self conscious for a day, but if you’re looking to be tan for vacation or something lasting a little longer, for sure use this. It’s only $32
  • 2. Desert Bronze is BRONZE!!! It gets you super dark. Unfortunately, you 1000% need to exfoliate every inch and need to watch your sensitive areas like your feet, hands, knees, and elbows- the linger is real and it is super drying…but I bought it to get super tan and I love it for that. If you’re looking to be tan for an event or for the weekend, definitely use this, but bring a good moisturizer. Only $28.99
From bronzed babes
Get bronzed here

Unwined by Hask Rose’ Color Shampoo and Conditioner

  • This was purchased on a whim and it will be purchased on purpose next time. 1. It’s inexpensive for the quality 2. It lasts a while 3. It smells absolutely incredible, if you like subtle wine scents. I also am a tried and true blonde and love that it’s keeping my color so sharp, in between visits to the salon. Only $8.99 for shampoo
Get yours here

Bonus: Amika Detangling primer

  • If you haven’t gathered, I get really attached to things that smell super good, BUT they have to have that somethin’ special to be on this list. This is a bonus, which I have no idea why since I use this every time I have wet hair…and you most definitely should too. It’s hilarious because I was on a girls’ trip and came out of the bathroom and all of my girlfriends were like, “Did you just spray with Amika? It’s the best!” So, you need this in your life, because apparently, it’s in everyone’s staple items. Only $25!
Get detangled here

Hope you find something you love!

I’m Not Where I Want to Be & That’s Okay

I’m not where I want to be.

In my world, there are lots of celebrations & I love a good party as much as the next girl. From the scents of roses and peonies to the monogrammed neon lights and the beloved dance floor. & don’t worry…next weekend, I will indulge in the cutest little pink ruffle onesie sugar cookies as we celebrate another beautiful baby girl coming into the world.

But I’m not where I want to be.

Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely adore and celebrate my friends. They are where they want to be and it’s a joy to celebrate a check on their dream list. I’m honored I get to be a part of their joy. But I would be lying if I said there weren’t days I cried out to God asking, “When will it be my turn?” And then, I check myself.

But I’m not where I want to be.

In the waiting room, I am finding out more about these “bible characters” we often struggle to relate to. Well, of course we don’t relate…it’s not like I’m dating a guy with 10 syllables in his name. It’s not like I’ve had to leave my country to follow my mother-in-law after all of the men in our family have died. It’s not like a prophet showed up to call me Queen. It’s not like I get to walk with Jesus day after day, with a curious mind and standing in amazement. It’s not like someone walked in to my work and asked me to leave it all behind and follow Him. I mean, am I wrong?

Well, sis, you guessed it…I’m not where I want to be.

In studying scripture, I have found, I’m like all of these people (minus the ten syllable part). I have had to leave comfort before. I have had to stick close to a loved one in a season when I was ready to soar into independence. We have an anointing on our lives as children of the Lord. & I get a closeness with the Lord that those before Him didn’t get the privilege of experiencing; the Holy Spirit. And guess what? We have had someone walk into the mess and ask us to abandon it all to pursue Him.

I’m not where…(hold up)

In the struggle, I have found…I’m not where I want to be, because I’m exactly where God called me to be. In scripture, we get the privilege to read the rest of the story. I don’t know about you, but sometimes, this creates an attitude of entitlement in me. Well, so and so, got the answer to my prayer…”So, hey God, I know we are close, so why haven’t you sent out the invitations to my party yet? Why do you keep rain checking on all of my plans?” I get it.

I’m where I’m supposed to be. 

I am speaking to you, sis,  but I am also giving myself this pep talk. Just because you’re waiting doesn’t mean you won’t finally get in. Just because you haven’t received an answer doesn’t mean your answer is, “No.”  Just because you don’t like the chapter you’re in doesn’t mean your book is finished. Just because you don’t like the season you are in, doesn’t mean a new one isn’t waiting around the corner. Just because you can’t see what God is doing, doesn’t mean He isn’t working.

I’m not where I want to be; I’m where God chose for me to be.

Today may not look how you want it to. You may be in a grueling season, BUT the Author is still writing and there is always, always, always a purpose. So, today, I’m not where I want to be & that’s totally okay.

What We Can Learn about the Proverbs 31 Woman through Fall

Here we come, all of the basic girls, chattering about scarves, cardis, and our beloved PSL. Every year around this time, videos and memes glorify our favorite time of year and I got to wondering why we love it so much.

Is it the cool and crisp air? Is it the change of the trees? Is it the need to wear our cute coats and boots? …but there’s something more to all of this. I know, I know…a Pumpkin Spice Latte is reason enough, but there’s something else to the fascination with this time of year.

Every year, I fall captive to all of the fall advertising. And it made me think, what makes this girl different? Why am I so drawn to the changing seasons? One of my favorite women to study is the woman of Proverbs 31: A  Wife of Noble Character. And, sister, I see the spirit of her so prevalent this time of year. It’s hard not to wonder if the love for fall is really a posturing of grace and gratitude for the soul God desires to ignite in each of us.  

  1. Trustworthiness (v. 11): This time of year comes around like clock work. We trust that each year, we will get to experience the joy that comes with pumpkins and school and changing of the seasons and sweaters we found online shopping again. More importantly, we see that not only are we trusting of the seasonal change, but we’ve built it into our soul DNA that we trust the Maker of the Universe to supply our every need, even as the seasons change.
  2. Goodness (v. 12, 28): My favorite part of fall is watching the leaves change. Although short-lived here in Texas, there’s something so beautiful about a sky filled with orange, yellow, and red. While we know the leaves change and fall, we often don’t look at ourselves with the same beauty as the leaves change and fall in our own lives. If we know God is faithful, and we know He is good, and we know He will never leave us or forsake us, then we have to trust that the changing of the season is for good and we can give that goodness to others as we lavishly love and serve them out of the splendor of a faithful and trusting heart.
  3. Hard-working (v. 13, 27): I don’t know what it is about Back-to-school and fall, but it seems that the goal getting is fierce and the challenge to finish off the year strong is at an all-time high. There’s something about the change of summer to fall that allows us to see that hard work is good work. No matter what your job description is, “work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord.” (Colossians 3:23)
  4. Giving and Serving (v. 15, 19): With a heart postured for thankfulness and charities gathering up coats, school supplies, and food, it’s hard not to have a spirit of charity. I find myself more often this time of year wanting to freely give and cheerfully allow myself to bestow gifts and love to others. There’s something to be said for the joy we feel when we get to love and serve others well. Sister, our souls are ignited when we get to love, give, and serve others in the way Jesus has.
  5. Investor (v. 16) : This time of year really guides people to start paying down on debt. I also am a HUGE fan of the sales this time of year. More importantly, as an entrepreneur, I see the investments people are making. As you approach this season of opportunity, also approach it with thoughtfulness and prayer. Whether we are investing our time, money, or mind in something, we need to prayerfully approach the Will of God as He guides our steps, as we make choices in the day-to-day and long-term decisions that will effect the rest of our lives.
  6. Fitness (v. 17): I know, I know. Our least favorite thing. We love to eat all of the fall goodness, and snuggle up under the blankets by a fire. BUT, this is also the time to refocus and regroup our diets, our minds, and our bodies for the winter ahead. A fit body often promotes a fit mind and we all owe ourselves the opportunity to feel crisp mentally. What better way to start than to 15 minutes a day soaking up the fall weather?
  7. Joy & Peace (v. 25, 26): Oh this season brings with it the joy and inner warmth that’s unmatchable, but don’t you feel more at ease this time of year? I know that a crazy season is around the corner and while we label it with the same terms, it often doesn’t feel that way. While I’m soaking up this season in particular,  I find myself taking that nap, or saying “no” to things, and I also find that I am at peace. It’s funny that often we are so concerned about what to wear and what the future looks like, but I think peace is something that hangs up too long in our closet, like that dress we are waiting to wear for that special occasion. But we must first clothe ourselves in His righteousness, and put on strength and dignity, to face the tasks He has laid before us. As the earth is blanketed with new colors, may be face the season of joy and peacefulness and coziness with His heart and blanket it on those around us.
  8. God has the last word (v.30): Do you ever notice a difference in your life when you are walking in alignment with God compared to when you aren’t? I do! Girl, I don’t know how I get from day to day without first rising up to meet Jesus. I love a good sweater and boyfriend jean as much as the next girl, and I do love me some fall themed make up, BUT what does any of it do if my soul is suffering? We can only bloom again when we are firmly planted in the promises of the Lord and even with our withered limbs and the bitter cold, awaiting us, we can trust that the fear of the Lord will greet us as praises in the gates and blooming once again. (v. 31)

As we walk into this beloved season, let us walk with hearts open for the possibilities in this season filled with gratitude, an embrace for change, and an attitude filled with living and giving. For further reading reference, see Proverbs 31: 10-31.