Life in Mascara: Women Getting Things Done: Jess Lively

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Women Getting Things Done: Jess Lively

Picture provided by Jess Lively
This installment of Women Getting Things Done is very special to me. I credit Jess and her work with the reason why as a newly wed I was able to look beyond the picture perfect image of a couple and an immaculate house and learn to accept our different work schedules, the dirty floors, the endless amounts of laundry (how can two boys have so much dirty clothes?), and the three sassy dogs who all eat special (read expensive) food. But I am getting ahead of myself here. Let me tell you how it all started.

I read about Jess in an article about up and coming podcasts. She was still in her first season (Season 2 recently came on woop woop!) and simply clicked on the link which took me to her website. I'm not going to lie, I saw the page link for her shop and I went there first. I was instantly enamored with her 'Be Present' necklace. It spoke directly to the heart for me because it is something that I constantly struggle with. I am one of those people who have lists upon lists of things to do, that need to be done, that I hope one day will get done. I constantly obsess over them and at one point felt like I was collecting accomplishments rather than enjoying them. When I looked back at certain aspects of my life I couldn't really tell you how I felt at that time because I never fully enjoyed them. I raced to get there, finished the task, and moveed full speed ahead to the next one. That always makes me sad.

I delved further into the sight and started reading her previous blog entries and the resources tab which is full of lovely books and video links to things she has used herself. The theme throughout the entire website was clear 'are you leading a life with intention?'. Was I? Am I now? Honestly, I felt at that point like I was just trying to live. I have dreams and goals but I was floating throughout life and I felt like I wasn't centered. It may seem silly to some that I hadn't noticed that in me before, but sometimes you need someone to actually tell you (or read it right in front of your face) that you need to take a moment and really reassess your life. At that point I think I had been married for about 2 months. I was so happy to have found a wonderful man who I am completely in love with and was trying to settle into a home routine with him, the boys, and the dogs. I was used to cleaning up my apt once or twice a week and it would stay that way. Clean. Not our house. And really how could it? The boys are 4 and 6 and a whirlwind. Petie, the dog that came with husband, has a love/hate relationship with me and will poop on my side of the bed so I can step on it when I wake up. And then there are my dogs. Pedro hunts birds and then eats them (gross!). Bear is losing his sight due to diabetes so he goes potty all over the patio. And then of course husband and I add to the mess. But I wanted a clean house. I wanted to cook dinner and have it ready when the boys and husband came home. I wanted all the laundry done. I wanted it to be perfect. I wanted. I wanted. I wanted. 

I had husband download all of Jess' podcasts for me on my ipod and began to bing listen to them on my way to work and on the way back. I then had the brilliant idea of listening to them in the hour I had alone before I needed to start cooking dinner whilst picking up around the house. This way my chores didn't seem like chores. They seemed like 'me time' because I was still doing something I wanted to do and not had to. Life changer guys! Life changer! It was such a rewarding moment. It took me out of that mindset I get into while cleaning, tunnel vision with deep set eyebrows and a scowl that can mute a chirping bird. But more than anything it was the messages I was receiving that was being blast into my ears and straight to my head. 'How are you leading your life with intention?'. Over and over again and I just could not answer that. 

The amazing women and men that she interviewed all have these amazing stories to share but I chose to really focus on one thing so I didn't dig my grave further: they were not always like that. They were like me at one point just fluttering along. And although it may sound selfish, I appreciated hearing that. We only see the Instagram side of things like Jess has mentioned and it is what I get fixated on. Who doesn't want that Pinterest perfect life? But we never really get to see what is outside of that little square picture, do we?

Another aspect of her podcasts are the business side of things. Many of her interviewees are self employed business people who have started from the ground up. It was awesome to hear the different ways in which they got their start. They are all so different and used various avenues to get to where they are but they were all driven and had a clear goal in mind. I was so inspired by their stories, not all success stories may I add, and it was what led me to reach out to several contacts and get the ball rolling on my end. I am somebody who has something to offer and it is high time that I do something about it. 

I could go on and on about how much Jess' message has changed my life but I think I have written a novel here. I think it is time for you to see for yourselves just how much she has to offer you. I look forward to listening to many more of her podcasts, to one day enrolling in her Life With Intention online class, and to hopefully one day run into Jess in Austin which is only an hour away and thank her personally for the blessing she has been in my life. Much like her picture above, she has helped me see the light at the end of the tunnel. 

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