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February 2018 Archive

Making Things Happen Intensive Recap

This post originally appeared on Diana Kerr.

One month ago today, I walked, all by myself, into a gorgeous hotel banquet room full of women I had never met. It was Day 1 of the Making Things Happen Intensive.

All photos by Robyn Van Dyke

Earlier that morning, I had woken up and journaled prayer to God that he would help me go into the Making Things Happen experience with few expectations. I wanted to approach the two days with open hands, allowing God and the process to carry me wherever I needed to go.

The experience that followed is very difficult to describe. Take everything you’ve experienced about conferences you’ve attended in the past and think exactly the opposite. The best way I can describe the two days is this: Day 1 was group therapy, Day 2 was group coaching.

I won’t share all the details of those days because the element of the unknown is part of the process, but I will say that Day 1 quickly became uncomfortable and emotional in the best possible way.

I didn’t leave Making Things Happen with a bunch of how-tos. Instead, the successful Jesus-loving business women I admire so much who have joined with Lara Casey to put on the conference–Emily LeyNancy RayGina ZeidlerAmber HousleyRhiannon BosseKatelyn JamesCarrie Grace, and Maghon Taylor, among others–didn’t get up in front of us and tell us everything they know about business. They didn’t give us a foolproof strategy for engaging with your Ideal Client on Instagram or tell us how to structure your work day. Nope. Instead, they got up in front of us and shared hard, raw, personal stories, accompanied by lots of tears.

If I didn’t leave with a bunch of how-tos, what did I leave with? A different perspective. Here are a few of the major takeaways I left with. These perspective shifts have changed the way I approach both my life and business:

  1. There is so much more to steward well right in front of me. Lara asked us to reflect on the question What good will you do with the little bit of earth you’ve been given? and I realized I have so much in my God-given plot of soil that I could be cultivating with more intention. Instead, I find myself reaching outside my space, wanting what others had. (“If I only had a team of people like she does, or an Instagram platform like her . . .”) I have committed to making the most out of what I have right in front of me, right now. First Corinthians 4:2 rings in my ears: Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful. I am also mindful of Luke 12:48: From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.
  2. My vision I have for the business God has given me and the vision I have for our future family are not opposing; they actually go hand in hand. I stood up at the beginning of Day 1 and shared that I was worried my business was an idol–I think about it often, worry about it often, and spend so much time on it. One of my greatest fears for the future is not being able to be a good mom and a good business owner at the same time. At the end of Day 1, though, as all of us laid on the floor in the dark in the banquet room (I told you it’s intense!) and envisioned the future, I realized that the kind of woman I want to be in business and the kind of mom I want to be are the same. I want to lean into the gifts God has given me and pursue them with passion and boldness. I believe I will be a better mom if I can show my kids what it’s like to embrace the gifts God has given you even when it’s hard or messy, rather than shrinking back. As we laid on the floor, I saw my business being a much more integral part of our family life and our family’s legacy than I ever had before. I felt both fired up and peaceful about that picture.
  3. Obedience doesn’t have to be super icky and ugly; it can be joyful! Honestly, I’ve never been the kind of person who feels like she needs to prove anything to God. (Thank you, Lutheran roots, haha. Lutherans are big on unconditional grace!) Still, I have always felt motivated to be obedient as my grateful response to the salvation Jesus won for me. Truthfully, my obedience was feeling like a chore around the time I showed up at Making Things Happen. Nancy Ray and others made me realize how I was viewing obedience as hard and ugly, and it can be, but it doesn’t have to be! I decided to choose to work with joyful obedience. (Take that, Satan.)

I am so thankful to the many women (and men!) who helped make Making Things Happen possible. I definitely want to return next year! I should mention also that I made incredible friends who I still talk to daily who are a huge blessing in my life! (Yay for friends who love Jesus and love goals!)

Sweet friends, please put this experience on your bucket list, especially if you are a Jesus-loving, action-taking type of woman. 🙂

Let’s make things happen! 🙂

P.S. If you want to dig into some of the concepts and steps we worked on at Making Things Happen right away, I highly highly highly recommend Lara Casey’s PowerSheets or her book Make it Happen(Affiliate commissions go 100% to our giving back initiative!)

P.P.S. Making Things Happen takes place each spring and fall–the next one is in October! Click here to learn more about it.


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Make it Happen!

This post originally appeared on So Dressed Up Life + Style

With January comes the excitement of a refresh. The feeling of a clean slate with nothing but room for dreams and goals. I love seeing people so encouraged along with hearing their resolutions. While it can be thrilling, sometimes endless lists of ideas and ambitions can feel overwhelming. For anyone needing help or looking to take goal setting to a deeper level, I wanted to share something that really changed me.

Enter the Make it Happen two day intensive.  Last year something was calling me to go to this conference. Honestly, I didn’t even know exactly what I was signing up for, but I couldn’t ignore that voice in my heart and I went ahead and did it anyway.

Thank goodness.

The intensive was founded by Lara Casey, the author of Make it Happen, creator of Southern Weddings and Cultivate What Matters. She is a love warrior, an inspiration and such a passionate woman so dedicated and committed to helping women live their most intentional and joyful life. She has such a gift. If you don’t follow her, find her now.

This workshop is not like any others I’ve seen. In fact, it’s hard to really put the experience into words.  This workshop has a truly unique ability to reach so many people at different seasons in their lives. At the end of the experience, many of the attendees (including myself) said going into the conference, they thought they were going to address something else than what actually came up for them, or that they walked away with something so much more than they expected. Example: I thought I would get some great perspective on redefining my business, juggling entrepreneur, mom and wife; finding some balance in my tough season. And I did some..but I never anticipated the “ah-ha” moment that stopped me in my tracks. I finally, really, truly, realized how exhausting and paralyzing my perfectionism was and how hard that was on those who love me. And on me. Almost a year later, and I feel so happy with my changed perspective. Done is better than perfect.

It’s not for the faint of heart, but if you are ready to really dig deep, it is a powerful and transformative experience that will really help you uncover your core, identify what matters most, and help you outline how to make that happen. 

It changed my life. It sounds dramatized, but I kid you not, when I left that sweet Carolina Inn, I felt like I didn’t even remember the woman I was when I arrived just two days prior.  I actually *just* welled up with tears watching the promo video from last year when I grabbed the link to post for you guys. It’s truly that powerful of an experience and I am so, so grateful for it. (You can catch ateeny glimpse of me chatting with the incredible Erin Jackson of Madison Lane Photography and Catherine Marks of Classic Catherine.) 

Which brings me to community! The community is incredible. Sweet Erin is someone I value so much. I had no idea I would make such a friend and support system in the luck of sitting next to her. In the first few minutes of chatting, we found out we share a last name and wedding anniversary! And the rest, as they say, is history. We stay in touch and I just know that she is always cheering me on, and I hope she knows I am for her. The workshop is packed of loving, driven, supportive, amazing people. 

 If you’re feeling really stuck, or overwhelmed and are really looking for a change, check it out. This year it’s March 20-21 and the early bird rate is good until the end of the month. You won’t be sorry. I am so looking forward to going down to sweet Chapel Hill for this again someday when the right season calls. 

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