I’ve always been pretty opinionated. So much so that when I was a kid, my mom would ask my older brother to keep an eye on me–and my mouth–if we went anywhere without her. She was sure I would say something offensive or rude. Not because I was a disrespectful kid, but because I didn’t know how to be anything but honest.
As I got older, my opinionated nature remained. But a lot of noise entered my life, making it more and more difficult to gain clarity about what my thoughts were. It started to feel like there was too much noise to figure out what I wanted and how I planned on achieving it.
I felt lost at times.
And feeling lost never feels good. It’s confusing and frustrating and lonely. On the days I felt like I just didn’t know what to do, I turned my thoughts to God. I knew that only He could help me figure things out. And after talking to Him, I would often turn to my friends–the people who make up my tribe and keep me going when I feel like I can’t find the energy to deal.
Those conversations with God and with my loved ones taught me the importance of silencing the noise so I can listen. I started to understand the need to limit my time on social media. I began to appreciate how important it was to not let some people linger in my space. I realized that the more I could do to eliminate some of the noise in my life, the more I could hear my own voice and gain clarity about what I want to do with my life.
I wish I could tell you that once I learned to silence the noise it never got noisy again, but I can’t. The truth is that the noise can be relentless. It’s a part of the world we live in. So learning how to silence it is really about developing a way of life–an ongoing habit that allows you to connect with who you are and what you want while you’re here.
So what do I do when it all gets way too noisy and I am on the brink of losing it?
I find ways to be still.
I limit the access that people have to me.
I do less.
I connect with the people that matter most.
I say “no” even when saying “yes” seems like the polite thing to do.
And above all else, I listen to that small voice and what it tells me to do. Call it a gut feeling if you want, but I know that voice is God and it never lets me down. Not ever.
Recently, I read Can We Talk? 10 Life Lessons on Finding Your Voice and Finding Yourself, written by my friend Amber Wright. In the book, Amber shares personal stories about the path she’s traveled to becoming the woman she is today. Through sharing lessons learned over the years, Amber is able to help the reader find her voice and ultimately find herself.
Fun, authentic, and straight up refreshing, Can We Talk? reminds me of all the young women out there who are simply trying to figure out this thing called life. I know that Amber wrote this book for them. To be honest, she wrote it for me, too. Even though I have learned my own lessons along the way, I am still figuring a few things out, and reading Amber’s book offered some fresh perspective that I needed more than I even realized.
My favorite lesson in Can We Talk? is lesson 6, Let Go of the Things That No Longer Serve You. This is a lesson I have learned over the years, but I am in a place in my life where I truly need the reminder. Call it a refresher if you may. I am so glad Amber shared her experiences with letting things go and reminded me that whether you’re releasing people, places, or things, we all have to embrace when it is time to let go.
I don’t know where you are in your journey to find your voice and yourself, but I know that Amber’s candid stories and undeniable lessons are worth reading. If you feel like you have things figured out on most days, Can We Talk? can serve as an opportunity to remember what you’ve learned. If you are still in search of your voice, Amber shares insight that can help you find what you are looking for. And even if you don’t think you need to learn these lessons, I promise that you know a young woman who does. As someone who has spent years working with young college women, I can’t even begin to tell you how many of them need to learn the lessons in this book, while also understanding that they are not alone.
Grab a copy for yourself or share a copy with a young lady who needs it, but whatever you do, get a copy today. I don’t do book reviews often, so when I do, I hope you know it comes from a genuine place.
Life is wonderous and exciting, but let’s be real–life is also scary and hard and sometimes we can feel alone. What a blessing it is to read a book that reminds each of us that we are not alone. This journey may be tough, but when we learn the right lessons, we uncover what makes life so incredible.
If you live in the Los Angeles area, please attend Amber’s book launch party on July 8th. If I wasn’t all the way on the east coast adjusting to life with a new baby, I would be there for sure. And not just because I want to support Amber, but because I think this book is a must-read for any woman who is ready to find her voice.
To get tickets to the book signing or to grab a signed copy of the book, click here.
Feature image photo credit: http://www.createherstock.com