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say it out loud

A couple weeks ago Jenni wrote about the newest bandana, ‘hell yeah’. This is something she says a lot and it makes me smile every time. There are many ‘hell yeah’ moments in the office of Jenni Earle bandanas. The essence of this new style is to highlight those moments when, as Jenni wrote, “your eyes are wide open, you are seeing all the magic around you and you feel like you are in the right place at the right time”. 

Being exactly where we want to be in a certain moment is definitely enough to elicit a cry amazement or triumph. For me though, I like to use ‘hell yeahs’ as my guide post towards authenticity. The magical moments when I can’t say anything but ‘yes!’ or ‘this is IT’ or ‘hell yeah’, I often don’t know that’s how I feel until the words erupt from my mouth. 


When you can’t help but yell something from pure happiness, you’re experiencing true self-expression.


When I feel this way, I know I’m where I need to be, but if I didn’t get there on purpose I like to use the ‘hell yeah’ feeling as a flag that’s waving in the wind, saying, “this is where you belong”. On the flip side you could think about the opposite kind of moment, which I call ‘ugh’ moments. 

I felt ‘ugh’ when I was working in a job after college that I felt I was supposed to have, not one I actually wanted or felt fulfilled doing. I felt ‘ugh’ six months ago when I realized that I wasn’t allowing myself the free time I needed to accomplish personal goals; I had many ‘ugh’ moments when that lack of time and personal control caused me to be snippy with co-workers and generally unhappy. 


It’s taken me years, but I’m getting better at recognizing the moments that will guide me to the kind of life I truly want; where I can thrive.


Those ‘ugh’ moments are the opposite of ‘hell yeah’ but they can give you a clue what direction to head. And then, when your direction is set, keep your eyes open and your heart ready to feel that ‘hell yeah’. The moments when you feel so full you could burst, I use them as trail markers: keep heading in this direction. 


Whatever you were doing, or whoever you were with when you feel most confident and strong, keep doing it, do it again, call up that friend, or lover, chase that moment.


A couple days ago I turned 30 years old. Many women in my life, who are older than me, told me that “Your 30s are great, and it only gets better from there”. Looking back at my 20s –full of ups-and-downs, new experiences, and plenty of mistakes– I have a strong tendency to believe those words. At this point in life I’ve learned to recognize the guideposts. I know what to keep my eyes and heart open for: those moments on top of a mountain, or writing at my desk, or connecting through conversation, when I want to say, hell yeah. 


be brave.
be authentic.