Where We’ve Been, Where We’re Going…

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Yesterday was a big day, a major milestone.  Yesterday Waiting On Martha turned 1!   I mean 1?!  I can hardley believe it’s been a year, and what a crazy year it’s been.  To celebrate I thought it appropriate to step outside my usual and get personal today by sharing some of my biggest lessons from the past 365 days.  And trust me there were plenty of lessons.  But before we look at where we’ve been, let’s have a quick chitty chat about where we’re going.

If you’ve been following along then you’ve been getting some sneak peeks of what the future holds for WOM.  And today, I can finally share with all of you our newest venture, MKR, editorial and lifestyle styling.  Styling has become such a passion of mine, and I am just over the moon to be bringing my vision into this arena.  We’re officially launching later this summer so stay tuned for more details, but yay for new adventures!

Lastly, none of this; not the shop, the blog, and the soon to be MKR could happen without the love and support of the Mr., my parents, friends, and all of you.  So from the bottom of my heart thank you, thank you, thank you!  This year has been a year to remember.  A year of firsts, ups, downs, and mostly a year of lessons…

 Enjoy the journey.  We’re always so focused on what’s next we sometimes forget to stop and enjoy where we are, and more importantly how far we’ve come.  A journey is made up of moments, relish the moments.

Comparison is the thief of ALL joy.  If you want to feel depressed start comparing yourself to anyone and everyone in a similar industry.  You are not them, they are not you, so why are you comparing yourself to them?!  Personally in the beginning I found myself in constant comparison mode so I did what I had to do.  I stopped.  I stopped following, reading, pinning, etc.  Comparison is an unhealthy relationship, break up with it.

“Best” is the enemy of “Great.”  I was at a Beth Moore conference a month ago and she posed a question I couldn’t get out of my head; “When did everyone decide they needed to be the best at everything?  What happened to just being great?”  I thought and thought on this for days, in fact I still think about it often.  We are all clamoring trying to be the best, but by definition there can only be 1 best.  And if you ever did become the best where would you go from there?  I don’t want to be the best.  I want to grow.  I want to be better than I was before.  I want to be great.

You are who you hang out with.  Through starting WOM I have connected with some of the most amazing, supportive and loving individuals.  These connections have truly been a beautiful and life changing gift.  However, I have also experienced people that spew negativity and hate like it’s their job.  Some that passively tear down others on social media, light up the comments section with “their truths,” and mock anybody and everybody outside of their inner circle.  And all I want to say is why?  Did you not get hugged enough as a child?  I don’t get it.  There is NO reason to EVER be mean.  Ever.  Stay classy, and dump the haters.  Life is better lived with love.

Always be hustling.  I know in a world of overnight reality stars and YouTube fame it’s easy to think it will all just happen.  Well it doesn’t just happen.  For every 1 person who’s “made it” there are 100,000+ that haven’t.  And they haven’t because it’s hard work.  Blood, sweat and tears hard work.  Push you to the brink and ask you to keep going hard work.  But it’s worth it.

Fake it till you make it.  Most days I have no idea what I’m doing, and truthfully I’m okay with that.  This is my journey, and trying to control the chaos, learning new things, making mistakes, there’s beauty in all of that.

Do what you love, forget the rest.  If you are blogging, starting a business, embarking on any new fill-in-the-blank for the fame, the comments, the re-Pins, the money just stop now because you’re in it for the wrong reasons. Know who you are, know what you love and confidently go in that direction.  All the other stuff will follow, eventually.  And likely when it does you’ll be so engrossed in doing what you do you won’t even care.  (Thanks Emily Ley for the inspiration)

Trust your gut.  This one is big for me.  Big.  (Fair warning this is going to go deep for a moment so hold on).  I’ve always lived a life guided by my gut, or rather my inner compass as I call it.  Now I didn’t say I always followed my inner compass, I pretty much ignored it from age 18-25, but I’ve always known it was there.  Truthfully I believe it’s my way of staying in the flow with God.  Whenever I have a large decision, or just anything I’m feeling unsure about I take some quiet time, talk it out, and simply stay still and listen.  I wait.  And this past year I’ve never been more unsure in my life.  Talk about unchartered territory.  I’ve been in it.  And through this entire year, I’ve listened and simply followed my gut.  I believe we all have an inner compass that we need to listen to a lot more, and the outside world a lot less.  Let it be your guide.

“Live to start, start to live.”  I read this quote, or rather mantra in Richie Norton’s book “The Power of Starting Something Stupid,” a MUST read for all entrepreneurs.  The thought is don’t wait for the perfect moment to start chasing your dreams, because there won’t ever be one.  Just start.

Last month was a crazy month for me, the craziest I’d say to date.  Between deadlines, photo shoots, travel, and the everyday juggling of life I honestly didn’t know how I was going to get through it.  Well long story short I got through it all, every amazing piece of it, and then I celebrated with a day off at the lake.  At one point I was sitting on the back of the boat, the Mr. was floating on a noodle and the sun was shining and I said to him, “I have never been so happy.”  And it was the truth.  I had completed everything I set out to do, accomplished some amazing goals, and now I was soaking it all in and spending the day with the people I loved.  And I had never felt so alive, so happy.  I was living my dream.

Listen, there will never be a perfect time, enough money, the right support.  Never.  So just start.  Because it’s in the starting, the doing, that you will truly live.  And I promise when you find your dream, and you start living your dream…well there is no feeling quiet like it.

KEEP GOING.  If you take nothing away from this post, take this.  The secret to it all, to life, is simply to keep going.  Every time you get knocked down, breathless from defeat, every time you’re about to throw in the towel just get up.  Put one foot in front of the other and keep going.  truly, MKR

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  • Happy Anniversary! I adore the “start to live, live to start” section. There really isn’t a good time to start anything. Thanks for reminding me 🙂

  • This post is so well timed and so well written! I’m constantly having to remind myself to go for things even if it’s scary, and your incredible leaps and bounds over the past year are such an inspiration!

  • This post is perfect timing for me. It was beautifully written and I couldn’t be more excited for you. I have enjoyed following your journey and you have become quite an inspiration to me. I look forward to seeing all of the wonderful things that are in store for you!

  • I love that quote as well. It’s now my mantra! xo MKR

  • Thank you SO much Liz. It’s been the most crazy and exciting year ever and I’m so glad I’ve been an inspiration to you! xo MKR

  • Tiffany, I’m so glad I can be a little bit of inspiration for you! Your support this year has been amazing to me as well! xo MKR

  • What a wonderful and motivational post for Monday. I seriously took a lot of your words to heart, and I will keep going even on this Monday morning when all I really want to do is hide under the covers with a good book.

    Happy One Year Anniversary! Keep up the GREAT work!

  • Congratulations on the shop turning 1! I have become obsessed with it and actually purchased a few prints & macaron trinkets last night (and blogged about it today). Your shop is one of my favs and I can’t wait to pay it another visit when my house is almost finished!

    XO, Stefanie
    Life on the Squares

  • Happy Anniversary. Thank you for inviting us to your party…it’s been wonderful sharing the journey with you. I’m always waiting for what Martha shares next. These quotes are very important reminders…for everyone, but especially entrepreneurs. Thank you for your story, your journey, your wisdom. I will bookmark this post as a place to reflect when I find myself in that chaotic, unsure place. I’m looking forward to MKR and what’s next for WOM. XOXO

  • This couldn’t have come at a better time. I was feeling a little defeated about my own expectations of my blog. I started blogging a little over 6 months ago and I don’t know why I had this illusion that I would have overnight success. So not happening! Your trajectory is so inspiring and reassuring to just do what you love. I love to write and that is why I started my blog. Period. All the rest is a distraction – the comparisons to other blogs, the self-doubt etc. You are right. Keep moving forward and think positive and that will bring me to where I want to be. I am a perfectionist and I do this to myself.

    Congrats on this important milestone! Your blog is amazing and I love reading it. Thank you for all the tips. I appreciate each and every one of them.

  • Keep going girl!! It will all be worth it! xo MKR

  • I saw your post & appreciate your constant support! Enjoy the WOM goodies! xo MKR

  • Thanks Lori, your constant support is beyond! xo MKR

  • Overnight success is just not reality, just keep doing what you do and success will follow! Positive thoughts always…just keep going! Big hugs! MKR

  • Thanks, Mandy for such a kind response! You’re such a sweetheart!

    Many hugs,

    Carmen

  • happy happy anniversary! so excited for you, but I just know the best is yet to come! Looking forward to following along!

    xx
    Here&Now

  • Aw! Happy Anniversary! I am so happy for you! You have a wonderful blog, and I am so happy to see your success. 🙂 Also, I love the inspirational quotes that you have gathered here. I especially love what you said after enjoy the journey. It is something we all should strive to remember.
    Chi O love and mine,
    Jaclyn
    Written in Fashion

  • I missed this post, and it made me so happy to see the launch of your styling business. I know there are big things in story for you. What an inspiration to see how far you have come in a year! So happy for you! xo

  • I love this post. I love everything about WOM and what you’re doing, it’s so inspiring. I can’t believe you’ve only been doing this a year! So impressed. I think I need to remember the stop comparing part. I make myself sick over it sometimes and it needs to stop.

    Congrats on one amazing year!

    xo Jessica

  • I ran across your shop on twitter yesterday, and have instantly become smitten. I too have recently embarked on building my own shop with handmade totes, clutches & home decor while managing my blog. It’s been an up and down hill battle trying to keep up the momentum to manage everything, but after reading your post I’ve been reinspired. Congratulations on your 1st anniversary, I wish you many more to come :).

    xo,
    AB

  • I am in LOVE with this post. I have been wanting to start my own business for years, but there is never enough time, money, etc. I have been in a serious rut the past few days and this post has totally changed my mind. Why can’t I start now? Why wait?!? I even went through your post and took screenshots of my favorite parts for motivation! Thank you so much for a much needed read!! And congrats on a fabulous first year!!

    Preppykates

  • This was an AMAZINGLY inspiring post!! I love what you said about negativity. There really IS no reason for hate and it’s just a downer! It sounds like you’ve had an amazing year 🙂

  • This is fantastic–so inspired by everything you’ve done!

  • Happy Birthday to WOM and Congrats Mandy!
    Such a wonderful accomplishment and such a great post to celebrate it.
    Here’s to another year full of greatness, positivity and love!
    xo

  • this should be required reading for bloggers! what a fabulous post full of inspiration and wisdom. loved every single word of it & how brave to bare your sole and speak such truth. thank you for sharing 🙂
    xo ~kim & chloe

  • Great post and great words of wisdom! 🙂 Happy (belated) Anniversary!

    Emily

  • Such a great post. I loved your collage of quotes, and reading your sage advice! Happy blogiversary to you!!

    perfectly priya

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