ME! In 2013
Before you read my updated Life Lessons for 2013, I want to take you back to my days as a runner. At the start of every race, runners back into the blocks, coiled and ready to explode when the gun goes off. Getting into and out of the blocks is the beginning of a successful race, right?
Wrong! There’s grunt work, drills, weight training, diet and practice that takes place long before crossing the finish line first. Those winners are a special breed; they’re driven, disciplined, focused, they go to the gym when they don’t feel like it and pass on the pie because they know cheating on their diet won’t move them closer to their goal. They also know what it feels like to want to give up. But they don’t and that is what separates the best from the rest.
2012 had a bit of a rocky start for Good Enough Mother. There some good times too and we ended on a very strong note. But years like that are tantamount to the necessary discipline of weight training and diet. Were there times I didn’t feel like writing? Of course but I did it anyway. Were there times I didn’t feel like promoting? Absolutely but I did it anyway. Were there days I just wanted to take a moment to let my brain cool? Yep but this brand isn’t going to build itself. All of those things have led me to this place where the feeling of a breakthrough has never been more clear or palpable.
I have to say thanks to all of you who’ve believed in me from the beginning; Buff, the kids, Ella, who is an integral part of GEM, our contributors and you guys, the readers. We’d be nowhere without you.
Watch this space for some big things this year. I’m excited! Are you?
So without further adieu, here it is, my own Life Lessons-2013. Have my answers changed much from 2012 and 2010? Oh you bet! And hey, by the way, we’d love to have you do your own Life Lessons. Drop us a line here and we’ll get the questions out ASAP.
Are you happy at the moment?
Yes, very definitely but not without a lot of growing and stretching. This time last year, Good Enough Mother Media was in transition as old co-workers were leaving and new ones were coming on board. Change like that is always tough as we streamlined and welcomed new people into the operation. But now, Ella and I, the contributors and our marketing and PR folks have it down to a science. All hands are on deck and we’re all moving in tandem to accomplish some big goals. I am in a completely different place this year, totally in charge of the site and my destiny. It feels damn fantastic.
If you could go back and say anything to your 16-year-old self now – what would it be?
When I answered this before, I did so from the perspective of a grown woman with a lifetime of experience. But this year, since I have a 16-year-old daughter, it’s easier for me to remember (and see/revisit) what that time was like for me. I’m more attuned to the insecurities that come with that age and I remember them well. So I would say to my 16-year-old self (and to my own daughter now) is this: You are beautiful. You are unique. You are worthy and what you think and say, matters. Don’t try to conform to a standard of beauty or bite your tongue because your opinion differs from others.
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year?
I unlocked a very creative side of myself. A friend was marveling recently about the things I’ve been doing with the website and she reminded me that it was just a couple of years ago I was asking her son for help. Part of the transition I went through last year involved fully taking control of goodenoughmother.com. Learning that, owning that, having the site be truly my own voice was incredibly empowering and awakened an intense curiosity in me. Now when faced with a technical issue, I’m not freaking out and trying to find someone to handle it, I figure it out. Me and my buddy, YouTube.
What do you most want to achieve in the next 12 months?
Well, there are a couple of things. I want to:
*Get healthier. Getting busy and running a business has taken a toll on my body. I need to lose weight, add some muscle, sleep more and take care of my heart and bones. I know those things will make me feel better; if they get me back into my size 6 jeans, that’ll be a bonus.
*Work smarter not harder. Last year, I worked around the clock. This year, I am going to delegate more and use tools more efficiently.
*Sell another book. I had a book deal last year that just wasn’t a good fit with the publisher I was working with. I have since had queries from others so I’m currently feeling out those opportunities.
*Create and own more cross-platform content. I’m no longer thinking in a linear way. All content doesn’t have to all live on TV and there are plenty of effective ways to get your message out to your audience that do not involve that medium. I want to explore more of those avenues.
*Make Sweet Retreats a success. This is my new TV show which will air on The Live Well Network. As much as I love online content, I am still a visual communicator so TV remains a good fit. And I LOVE this show. I think you will too!
*Understand it’s show BUSINESS! Why or WHY is this so hard for me to learn?
*Appreciate more. I was telling a friend the other day that the keep, the lynchpin to my success could be traced back to my picking the right partner all those years ago. I’m not discounting my education but nearly two decades ago, I was smart enough to surround myself with the right people, including a man who would love, protect and challenge me. I want to appreciate Buff Parham and all the things he does to keep me on track.
*Fear less. No need to elaborate.
What’s your secret to happiness?
Mmmm, I guess I would say being creative makes me happy. In order for me to do that, I need time alone with my thoughts to allow them to incubate.
What one ritual or practice keeps you grounded?
Being with my family. As much as I write about them and the crazy train express we’re running around here, they really do keep me rooted in the here and now. Watching my kids grow into remarkable, responsible young adults will be one of the highlights of my life.
What’s your biggest regret?
Having regrets is a bad way to live. I prefer to think of them as, “Man-I’ll-never-do-that-sh*t-again” lessons. So I would say would say a big one is making sure the people are moving in the same direction as you are. That doesn’t mean they don’t have challenge you because that is a part of growing. But I’ve had my fill of agents and managers who saw me as a meal-ticket. yeah, thanks but no thanks.
What’s the most important lesson you’ve taught your kid(s)?
Personal responsibility. Buff and I talk about this all the time, I write about it a lot. I can’t stand to see/hear people blame their situation on circumstances without tracing it back one more step and seeing that they created those circumstances. More action, less belly-achin’.
What bad habit would you most like to change about yourself?
Damn, there are so many. Damn, I’d like to stop cussing so much. Dammit. I also need to care a whole lot less about some people. I need to manage my time better and be less of a procrastinator. I’ll get right on those things tomorrow.
Aside from motherhood/fatherhood and marriage what are you most proud of in your life?
That hasn’t changed since last year. I’m most proud of taking the big pile lemons that was my life a few years back, and making the tastiest pitcher of lemonade. I’m proud of the fact that I’m raising a couple of cool kids who are going to be just fine in this world. And I’m proud of closing in on 19 years of marriage with the smartest guy in the room.
When were you happiest?
There have been a lot of times where I have been happy; graduation from college, the day I got married, giving birth to those babies (after the pain subsided). I’m really not sure I can pinpoint one, single time. I do know that I’m happy just about everyday, and will be the happiest when I sell Good Enough Mother Media for a gazillion dollars.
What ten words best describe you?
I’m sure some folks would have others but the 10 words that best describe me would be:
Loud, tenacious, loyal, stubborn, snarky, irreverent, big-hearted, mercurial, savvy, smart. How would you describe me?