The Best of 2017: Becoming my own boss, traveling to far places, and celebrating 4 years of blogging
I've sat down to write this blog post SO many times in the past 72 hours, and I can't seem to find the words. I guess that's the best way for me to describe 2017... it has been quite an indescribable and pivotalyear.
Next week marks my one year anniversary since quitting the 9-5 grind to be my own boss. Of course, I was nervous not knowing how this would pan out, but I weirdly felt a sense of calm and comfort in my 'risky' decision. Looking back, that was my gut telling me everything would be alright if I just let go. Since then, life has kind of felt like I've been hitting all of the boost pads in Mario Kart.
But first, a thank you: I wantneed to thank you all for being here every step of the way. I couldn't do any of this without you - so, thank you for reading this blog of mine that I care so deeply about. Thank you for sharing your stories with me. Thank you for being so vulnerable and open with me. Thank you for supporting the brands I love. I am so grateful to be able to make this my living, and it's all because of YOU.
The Best of 2017
January to March // Saying farewell to terrible bosses and hello to freedom
On January 8th, I quit my job and never looked back. One month later, my decision to work for myself was put to the ultimate test. Completely out of the blue, I was offered a dream job on the West Coast with a leading activewear brand that I had become rather close to. After flying out to meet the team and shedding many conflicted tears, I turned it down to continue working for myself. Toughest decision I made all year, but it was definitely the right one! And yes, I still get to work with this lovely brand.
^My trip to San Francisco in February & shooting for American Eagle with Victoria Morris!
April to June //Moving apartments, traveling to Bali, and becoming a puppy mama
In April, we moved to a brand spankin' new apartment overlooking Brooklyn with my baberoni Andrew. We moved so I could work out of a nicer space, AND so we could adopt a pup (since my old building didn't allow dogs). I figured I should probably squeeze one big trip in before I'm tied down to puppy training, so a few weeks later, I packed my bags and flew to Bali with my friend Allison. We rode motorbikes, explored waterfalls, and ate ALL the food. See my Bali Travel Guide. When we returned, Andrew and I adopted Luna Loo Acree, the love of our life.
^New apartment, new pup!
July to September // Leading events, facing the fear of public speaking, and traveling for work
I've struggled with public speaking pretty much my entire life. I can't say I'm magically over it, but I did force myself to say 'YES' to every opportunity that scared the sh*t out of me. That's probably the best advice I can give: Just say yes even if it's scary, and then you're just stuck since you already committed to it. Therefore, you have no choice but to freakin' do it. Here's a few things I said yes to:
^In Portland with the sweetest girls from my trip in partnership with Barre3
^In Arizona with mindbodygreen and some of my favorite yogis!
October to December // Probably the most stressful, yet rewarding few months of my twenties
After attending countless NYC events, I felt the urge to connect deeper with this community. So, with the help of my friend Josefine, we launched AWAKE | The Space, a wellness popup concept. Our first event (with special guests Well+Good and Kait Hurley) sold out in less than 48 hours.
The day after AWAKE's launch event, I hopped on a plane to Los Angeles for a four day photo and video shoot with Old Navy, which was a REALLY COOL experience getting to 'model' in a real shoot. It felt good to finally see you don’t have to be a certain height or body type to feel equally celebrated in the world.
Despite only being in town for 5 days in December, I must say traveling is my favorite perk of this job. I've flown more times this year than any year in the past, and for someone who always thinks we're falling out of the sky, that's a pretty big accomplishment.
^Spotted my face in a magazine for the first time ever (Thoughtfully Magazine)
^Driving around a mini cooper in Austin, TX (one of my favorite cities)
^Our sold out AWAKE launch event hosted with Well+Good and Kait Hurley!
Reflecting on it all...
I don't know what the future holds. No one does. I've worked harder this year than ever before and have definitely experienced ample moments of doubt, anxiety, and overwhelming stress... But, it feels great knowing I'm not alone in navigating this crazy, exciting, and creative space. I am doing something I absolutely love, and it makes my heart happy to hear I've inspired some of you along the way.
Four years ago, I began this little blog of mine with the pure desire to share my wellness journey and to connect with like-minded humans. Today, I'd say mission accomplished. I would do anything for this community, and I hope you all feel it.
Alright, your turn. What are some of your favorite moments of 2017?!
Wishing you all the most amazing year ahead and beyond!