When’s the last time you took a weekend for you. Not for work. Not a vacation. Just a weekend to work on your heart. I’ve NEVER done that. So, I decided to go to the RISE conference with Rachel Hollis in Dallas this July with 10 girlfriends, including my sister and mother and — IT. WAS. MAGIC. I’ve been to several conferences with my skincare business, but this one was different. This weekend was all about facing our past, smacking down any shame associated with it, accepting where we are and dropping some major VISION for our future. I have to say, I had already done a lot of work laying out a vision this year. We have been through a huge transition and with that, it made me take a look at where I wanted things to go. So, I already knew a lot about where I wanted to go. What I didn’t know I needed, was the walk down memory lane to look at my past to see what baggage I was still dragging behind me. Rachel dropped some truth bombs on me when she simply said “you can either carry those bags behind you, knowing the load will get heavier and heavier, or you can lay them down, stand on top of them and make it your platform to say, Hey! I’m still here!! You didn’t take me down!!” What a #micdrop moment that was for me. I didn’t even realize that I was still dragging things behind me from 20 years ago. That even though I fight for women every single day, it was time for me to fight for me too. So, today I stand here saying… I’m still here!! You didn’t stop me!! I’m standing a little taller and I’m grateful for the permission to leave those bags there as I move forward. Let’s GO!!!!

The most powerful moment of the weekend came as a surprise to me. Rachel had us fill out a form that had a list of things on it. Things we may identify with as a result of personal experience. We had to check all the boxes that applied. This list ranged from sexual assault to depression to suicide to losing a spouse or even a child to hating your body to having a substance addiction to shame… it was a HEAVY list. I looked around this room packed with 7,500 women. The tears were abundant and the burden in the air was thick. We all stood holding on to this piece of paper that marked us in ways we weren’t comfortable accepting out loud. So, she smartly had us swap papers with a stranger, then another stranger, then another until we no longer knew where our list was. “If you won’t stand up for you… will you stand up for Her?” Before she even called out the first one — I was sobbing. What a powerful step forward for sisterhood. The magnitude of this moment was so heavy on my heart. It is everything I fight for today. Standing up for our sisters. Helping them out of the dark. Holding them up until they can stand on their own. Seeing a room of so many women, standing up for each other, as tears ran down their cheeks… made my heart feel hopeful. It was heartbreaking to see how many women stood up for sexual assault, hating their bodies, having sex with someone they hated to feel loved, and struggling with depression. You are not alone, ladies. None of us are. Ever. Whatever you feel shame for, whatever has a hold on you, you aren’t the only one. Find someone that will listen to you, confide in them, let that shame go because it doesn’t define you. It happened, and it hurts and I’m sorry. But you are STILL HERE. Stand on that and make it your platform. You are strong and beautiful and you haven’t come this far to ONLY COME THIS FAR… you are NOT done. Let’s GO!!!!

And because I believe nothing happens by CHANCE… as I was standing in line for a water, out of the little girls room walks Kendra… a wonderful friend I have been thinking about for my side business and as we squealed over seeing each other she told me she had been thinking of me and wanted to chat! Kendra was at this conference solo so we had her join us for dinner and we signed her up for her own business when she got home. If you are open to wonderful things happening… they will. So excited to see what’s ahead for Kendra and love that this business has connected us on a deeper level!

Once we got to Goals and VISION for our FUTURE… I was LIT UP!!! This has been such a big part of my year and I was so ready for this part. What I took away was a monster secret in how to make my goals happen. I learned how to “make soup” when laying down a clear path towards my goals. That was a brilliant analogy for me!! It just clicked in my brain. I have felt like a squirrel this year with all of my visions and ideas and this website was actually a huge part of me defining what fit and what didn’t. I am so excited about the future and where things are going and I refuse to let anyone’s ideas influence what I am capable of. If my dreams make you uncomfortable, I’m totally okay with that. I’m not here to make you comfortable. I’m here to shake things up, send out a tidal wave of change and leave a legacy… and that is going to take a LOT of soup making. Let’s GO!!!

PS… this hilarious pic is a result of all the gangsta rap that was played at RISE… it stirred us up. PPS… how cute is my mom?! PPPS… if you are my friend, and a crip… don’t be mad, my hands just can’t spell crip… I have no affiliation with the bloods and neither does my mom or sister. Just in case you thought we got legit gangster in Dallas. We did not.

If you can’t already tell… “Let’s GO!!!” was a huge part of the weekend. And I loved it. I loved looking on either side of me seeing my mother and sister calling out the highest visions for their life. Seeing my girlfriends moving out of the pain that has held them back and stepping into a new light of hope and strength. Being part of a community of women that see the power in lifting the circle and RISING UP. If you ever get a chance to attend one of these weekends… GO. It will change you forever. xx

PS… thanks Shawna Dawna for our adorable hats for the weekend!! I love how crafty you are!