Force Quit on your Losing Streak

Almost a month in, and I’ve stuck to the most important of my new year resolutions: to grow in faith. At the end of last year, I was at odds with relationships in my life and wanted to turn everything over to God. Not only would dedicating the New Year to God bring me closer to Jesus, I felt doing so would also give me the answers I needed to mend the troubles I was having.

2017

In order to hold myself accountable, I made a list of 12 people in my life I wanted to either improve my relationship with or needed to forgive; I make a similar list of 12 topics I wanted to focus on, in order to be a better Christian. I decided I would consciously pray each day for the person I dedicated that month to, and would read specific scripture each day addressing the topic of the month.
The list included subjects such as my parents, my sister, specific friends, my desire for a boyfriend, and working to overcome the negative perception of news. Topics included forgiveness, jealousy, worry, judgment, and being enough for myself.

What I’ve learned in my first month is that both mending and growing relationships, with people and God, takes time. I approached the resolution with optimism and was quickly rewarded with lines of open communication between me and the person I chose for January. But praying and reading the Bible does not automatically grant me positive mending every day. I’ve learned this is a process – there will be days I feel I’ve taken a step back. Yet, overall, I feel more complete. In just one month, a peace has overcome me. While I know there will be days and months full of ups and downs in 2017, I also know I have a God that I can always turn to. And as I grow in this journey, I hope to learn how to better listen and hear His voice, in all the times I turn to Him.

 

Disclaimer: I have not stuck to my resolutions to practice French twice a week or practice piano three days a week.

Indulge endlessly in all that inspires your soul. You’ll never get bored.

“When we submit to God’s plans, we can trust our desires. Our assignment is found at the intersection of God’s plan and our pleasures… Each of us has been made to serve God in a unique way… The longings of your heart, then, are not incidental; they are critical messages. The desires of your heart are not to be ignored; they are to be consulted. As the wind turns the weather vane, so God uses your passions to turn your life. God is too gracious to ask you to do something you hate.”

As Christians, we are taught to follow God’s Plan for our lives, and ask for His guidance when we feel lost. Mere months after getting the promotion I asked and worked hard for, I found myself, instead, being pulled down a different, but old and familiar path. So I prayed, asking God for a sign. Days later, I read the devotional above, and knew the path I felt compelled to walk again is exactly where God was leading me.

A year ago, I left my news job in Lubbock to live out my life in Austin. “You’ll miss it,” one coworker told me my final day. Though the possibility of that becoming truth couldn’t formulate in my mind at the time, his words never left me. Now, just 12 months later, I was feeling pulled back into the newsroom. I did miss it.

“The meaning of life is to find your gift; the purpose is to give it away.” I’m not sure whether to attribute the quotation to Pablo Picasso, William Shakespeare, or some other person, but it seemed fitting, reading it the same week I was offered a job back in news – this time where I feel most at home, in Austin. The process of applying, interviewing, and accepting the offer went so quickly, I knew I was not only following the desires of my heart, but also the path God created for my life.

“Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.”

God wants us to thrive, so everyone sees the beauty of Him, through us. I left the news industry because I felt discouraged and distraught, but that doesn’t mean being a part of the industry wasn’t part of God’s Plan; it just wasn’t His timing. I believe God puts passions on our hearts as signs, leading us down the path He has mapped out for our lives. If you wake up each morning and ask yourself what God’s Purpose is for your life, take a moment to think about the scenarios you daydream about, what inspires you, and what persuades you to be a better version of yourself. I truly believe living in Austin and working for the news are two passions God placed on my heart for very deliberate purposes, and at very deliberate times.
And I couldn’t be more grateful that He did.

The Power of Written Word

As a writer, journalist, and communications professional, I know the power of words. I certainly endorse written work, if for no other reason than to keep a job – but really we can learn so much, just from reading others’ writing.

I was reminded of this when I reviewed a particular blog post I wrote a couple years ago, after finishing my internship with Indianapolis Monthly. I learned about different writing styles, online, print and digital editing, but also how to scour through information of all sorts, to simply educate myself. You never know when seemingly random information, read during downtime, may become useful. Seize the moment.

You can read more about my time as an Indianapolis Monthly intern, here

A Lasting Effect

“Everything is historic, because it happens and then it’s history.”

That (or something like that) was a direct quotation from a co-worker today, joking about how many times the word “historic” was used when predicting the snowstorm along the Northeast coast earlier this week. Turns out it wasn’t so historic for most residents, but if you break it down, sure – everything is history after it happens. It doesn’t have to be distant or ancient history to matter.

In the news business, someone once told me, what we are doing is recording history. Years from now, we can look at old newscasts and relive this day. When you want information about something, you can look it up in a newspaper, search the topic online and see how news stations or social media users covered it.
Looking at my job from the perspective that it’s more than just a daily newscast was significant. It puts more pressure on me to produce shows that mean something later, but it’s also more rewarding. The work that I am doing now could be used to inform generations not yet born.

We all know it’s important to record history so we can learn from it. I’m happy to be a part of something that lasting.

Countdown to Summer

Summer is beginning for many college students, and it won’t be long before I taste my bit of freedom, as well. What to do during my three months off? Lots!

My new year resolution was to find a journalistic internship. I am so excited for my editorial internship at Indianapolis Monthly this summer!  I interviewed with three different magazines and applied to countless others, but was so happy to accept Indianapolis Monthly’s offer!

While interning, I am going to try writing a separate blog just to record my experiences and all I know I’ll learn while at the magazine. Tune in, here!

I am also using this summer as the start of my mid-year resolutions. I am excited to make the most out of my internship, but I am also excited to use my summer to improve myself in preparation for the start of my senior year in college. This time next year, I’ll be graduating college…scary!

Mid-year Resolutions

  • Make connections – with Indianapolis Monthly, Emmis Communications, other magazines, television stations, newspapers, alumni from my college, random people on the street. Anyone and everyone could be a vital source for help, advice or a job in the next year!
  • Read a book a month. This is a result of my nonfiction English class this semester. It just so happens that we finished our four book right as the month of April ended, so I now feel obligated to keep up the book-a-month roll that I am on. It is amazing the interest your mind produces when reading unexpected books.
  • Write everyday. This is also a result of my English class. It doesn’t matter what you write, I just think it is important to write something, everyday. A blog post, an article for the magazine, a journal entry, a postcard to a friend – anything!
  • Create and stick-to a realistic budget that can be easily transitioned into my life after graduation when I get my first “real world” or “big girl” job a year from now.

My Passion

In one of my journalism classes this past fall, we had to write a blog post about our passion. I knew I immediately wanted to speak about my passion for architecture, writing and traveling, but I was almost overwhelmed at how to go about this simple assignment.
I am so passionate about traveling and experiencing other cultures that it becomes difficult to put into words at times.
In the fifth grade I somehow decided to become an architect. I had never taken architectural related classes before, nor were either of my parents in the field. I just came up with the idea and ran with it. In high school I took engineering classes which introduced architectural programs to the students, as well as participated in an intensive, 2-week immersive architectural workshop at a university in Indiana, but  other than that I had no experience in architecture. Despite the fact that I lack a talent for drawing and do not come from the most diverse of families, I wanted to be diverse and become a renowned and respected architect, so I started my freshman year in college as an architecture student. After 1-1/2 years, I switched my major to journalism, where I am now, with a minor in architecture.
While I still love architecture and still consider it a passion of mine, more than just designing buildings, I wanted to share my love for architecture with others. I thought writing about it, and expanding my passion into culture as a whole, would really please me.

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This passion began when I took a random elective class my junior year in high school, Advanced Cooking. While I love my family I have to confess, they are not the most adventurous of types. I have to respect their lifestyle if I want them to respect the fact that I do not want their way of life, but a more traveled and diverse life.
The cooking class opened up a whole new world to me. I tried foods I didn’t know how to pronounce and learned about new cultures along the way. The class taught me it was very important to give everything and everyone a chance.
The class was made up of multiple graduation classes, social classes, and personalities, but for 70 minutes a day, everyone dropped prior prejudices and just enjoyed the experience. You never know what you can discover by giving something a chance. Try everything once.