My Why: 5 MAJOR Reasons Why I Became A Stella & Dot Stylist in 2019 🌸

My Why: 5 MAJOR Reasons Why I Became A Stella & Dot Stylist in 2019 🌸

This year has been full of new experiences: an apartment, buying my first couch, a *rEaL* job, my first “second” cat, and… bills. Sometimes, when I have a spare moment to look around me, it feels like I grew up overnight. Just over a year ago, I was studying for my “FINAL finals” and pleading for graduation to hurry up and come already. Now, graduation feels like a lifetime ago.

When I look back on how I spent this year, I’m really proud of myself. I accomplished ALL THIS on my own. I established independence, got a great job by society’s standards, and transitioned into adulthood earlier than I expected to. But there’s something sour about that picture, more bitter than sweet that had me wondering why I thought all this was going to make me happy in the first place. Let me explain.

I recently started using the metaphor of a mountain to describe my life. Lets just say, my mountain’s a mess. Actually, the mountain’s fine, it’s my approach to climbing it that’s less than exquisite. I’m going full speed up the side, in what looks like the “most direct” route possible, towards a summit I can’t even see, and I have NO resources.

I didn’t bring a tent because “I’ll figure it out when I get there.” I have no water or food on me because I was in a rush when I left the house and I didn’t even bother purchasing star gazing equipment because “we won’t have time to enjoy ourselves anyway.” Let’s go! That’s how I have approached work, school, life over the last who knows how many years. And my “most direct” route? Yeah, it has run me into more obstacles than it has saved me from. I don’t meander; I sprint. More often than not, it leads to injury.

At some point in that painful and uninspiring climb, I realized this: not only am I an inexperienced hiker, I’m climbing the WRONG MOUNTAIN. Enter Stella & Dot.

This year, I made a promise to myself to MAKE. IT. HAPPEN. And I’m not talking about what’s fastest, easiest, or most soul crushing. I’m talking about all the dreams I projected onto that summit that I could never reach because I was treating my life as a means to a miserable end. I’m talking about all the moments that make me feel happy and expansive along the way, the star gazing and the meandering.

I found Stella & Dot at the moment I committed myself to that promise and I’m NEVER. GOING. BACK. Here’s my top five reasons for joining Stella & Dot as an independent stylist. I hope it inspires you to find your mountain and climb it with joy.

1. Freedom (read: I’m taking my life back and not a SINGLE SOUL is stopping me, not even me)

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what I would do if I had the freedom to follow my heart. A million dreams cross my mind, followed by excuses like a thousand shackles. Adulthood can trick you into thinking the fairytale is already over, like you’re bound to the depressing reality of make money, pay bills, eat, sleep, repeat. We are encouraged to groan at our adult lives, make light of it through self-deprecating humor over dinner parties, and go after what’s safe rather than what’s stimulating and I’m already OVER it.

Here’s to “impractical” joy, boundless creativity, adult fairytales, and being the BOSS of my own life. Instead of thinking “what would I do IF I followed my heart,” I’m following it.

2. Flexibility (read: work from home, go back to school, move out of state, make the “write life” possible)

If you’ve been around on this blog for a while, you know that writing is the center of everything for me. It’s what ties together my entire world, from fashion to entertainment to film and everything in-between. Writing well and often is my first priority. Being inspired to write by the life I’ve built around me is second to that and having the flexibility and the financial freedom to make it happen is the glue that holds it all together.

Stella & Dot prides itself on “[giving] every woman the means to style her own life.” For me, that means the flexibility to learn and grow in other areas, all while taking care of myself and my family. As far as I’m concerned, you can’t have one without the other.

3. Fashion (read: creativity keeps me sane, style keeps me happy)

Writing is one of the major outlets I use for my creativity. However, it’s not the only way I like to express myself. I desire to live my life surrounded by beauty, one that speaks to me at a deeper level and reminds me of the world I created. In its absence, creativity has become even more important to me. I’m no longer accepting weeks flying by without being filled with creative moments. If that means fashion and helping other women find their own sense of style, don’t mind if I do.

4. Friends (read: everyday I go out into the world to make a LIVING for the people I love but it’s time to focus on making a LIFE we can share)

I once read that the most important thing you can do for someone is to make them feel special and understood. But sometimes when life is tough and getting by is all you can do, it’s hard to shift your focus outward onto what makes other people unique and worth celebrating.

Making a living is something we do for ourselves. We work hard, we get paid, we focus on our problems, and we repeat every two weeks. Making a life is what we do for others. We share our good fortune, we make the people around us feel beautiful and unique, and we relish in how good it feels to give. It’s time for me to break the cycle of living just to get by and build a life I can truly give to the wonderful women (and men!) I share it with.

“You make a living by what you get. You make a life by what you give.”

Winston S. Churchill

5. Female (read: women empowering women to live their own lives is the best form of encouragement)

And finally, one of the biggest factors that attracted me to Stella & Dot is how supportive they are of women, how firmly they believe in empowering women to “be their own boss, on their own terms.” Being your own boss comes in so many forms and a successful life looks different to every woman. At Stella & Dot, you do you. To learn more about the company’s mission, click here.

I can’t wait to share my style with you on this incredible journey of empowerment and transformation. This is My Why… 💕

xoxo,

shawna.

Come visit me at Stella & Dot by clicking here! I can’t wait to share how I’m styling these pieces with you. Follow me on Instagram for a Style Kit unboxing video coming soon! Interested in living your own best life? Ask me about becoming a stylist!

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A Bit About the Past: Blake Lively’s “Preserve Failure” and What It Means to Me

I’m reaching a bit far into the past with this one (4+ years), so if you’re looking for something trendy, please heed this warning that there will be nothing timely about this post. It’s just something I think about often, built by someone I look up to greatly, that I want to talk about. So here’s my old news for the day. Grab a coffee, a little sunshine soaked disposition, and lets dive in.

Blake Lively is, by far, one of my favorite actresses. Not only a force of fashion, she’s the biggest reason I want to pursue acting again, something I once wrote off as impractical and out of my reach. In high school, I LOVED theatre. Although I wasn’t the most practiced or the most talented, it made me happy, so happy that I honestly can’t remember a moment in that theatre I didn’t completely accept. I WANTED to be there. At one point, my friends and I even stopped eating in the cafeteria to have our lunch at the back entrance of the theatre we loved it that much. It was our open field of freedom and creativity at the edges of a crazy kingdom called “high school.”

Wanting, wholeheartedly, to be somewhere is something that has escaped me lately. These days, every fiber in my being desires to be elsewhere: on my grandma’s deck in mid-July, in a New York City hotel with my boyfriend, in California for the first time, in my old car, in my best friend’s pool when we were kids, in a brand new dress on a yacht in Europe (specific 🤨), backstage whispering on that small stage, and sometimes even on a red carpet (a bit far-fetched, I KNOW OKAY).

Continue reading “A Bit About the Past: Blake Lively’s “Preserve Failure” and What It Means to Me”

Modern Problems: Reflecting on How Technology Has Changed Our Lives

Modern Problems: Reflecting on How Technology Has Changed Our Lives

Wow… I confess. It’s been quite a while since I paid this blog any attention. Although I’m disappointed I wasn’t able to live up to the expectations I have for this blog, I’m happy and grateful for the clarity I gained on how technology is impacting my life during my unintentional break. Over the past two months, I started a challenging new job, learned how to better cope with problems in my personal life, made new friends, laughed longer and louder than I have in LONG time, and established more financial freedom for myself. To say the least, it’s been a great month. Easy in some ways, difficult in others. I’ve learned a lot and feel pretty confident heading into the new year. 

However, I keep coming back to this idea that some of the challenges I am facing now are new to us. I often look at my life and marvel at how drastically the way we live and communicate has changed due to the introduction of technology. When something challenges me, I find myself saying “wow, this wouldn’t have been a problem 30 some years ago.”

Continue reading “Modern Problems: Reflecting on How Technology Has Changed Our Lives”

Love in the Digital World: How to Make it Through a Rough Patch in Your Relationship in 2018

One thing technology has definitely changed is romance and dating. We no longer wait days or weeks to talk to someone. With cell phones, everyone is always available. Portable phone technology has changed how we communicate with each other and has drastically altered our expectations for our relationships. Because everyone is “always” on and available to talk, we expect our relationships to move quickly and satisfy us around the clock. Texting has become one of the most widely used forms of communication and technology is only making people more and more accessible to each other. We crave immediate communication and use it to measure our level of fulfillment because that’s what’s normal.

If you grew up with technology like I did, it’s sometimes difficult to put how we communicate with each other into perspective. Flirting via text message is commonplace for us; communicating often and daily with your significant other is expected. We know of no other way. However, I think it’s important to remain self-aware of how our behavior is changing due to technology and how it can deteriorate our relationships. It’s not enough to mindlessly use our devices and let our new expectations run/ruin our lives.

When we go through difficulties in our relationships, these strange new expectations become glaringly obvious. Every moment staring at the phone feels like a lifetime. We expect change, forgiveness, and love immediately because that’s how we communicate. As we adapt to the new world, we have to see technology for the tool that it is and use it mindfully to support and nourish our relationships. So on that note, here’s a few things to consider as you navigate a rough patch with your significant other in the digital world. Continue reading “Love in the Digital World: How to Make it Through a Rough Patch in Your Relationship in 2018”

Starting a New Job? 5 Tips to Follow to Maximize Personal Success

This week, I started a new job in a line of work I know very little about. To say I wasn’t nervous would be a gross misrepresentation of how I was feeling and a big discredit to the reality of the human experience. I think we all come across nervousness or anxiety when making a big change in our lives. However, not all of us know how to prepare for it. Although we take comfort in knowing that others have many of the same emotions when starting a new career, we are seldom given the tips we need to navigate uncertainty. Here are five tips I put together after reflecting on my first week to help you put your new role into perspective and find personal success. Knowing these tips heading in could save you from abandoning a perfectly good opportunity or fearing change so much you don’t learn or grow from your new job.

1. Seize the Opportunity to Learn

Getting a new job, especially one in a different field, is the perfect opportunity to learn new skills and develop a more diversified network. If you approach the experience as one of learning rather than stress and uncertainty, the world becomes your oyster. In some cases, we are pushed to take and stay in positions out of necessity and fear for the wellbeing of our families. This fear can make it difficult to see how blessed we are to have these learning experiences. So if you can put these fears aside, focus on the work, and seize the opportunity to learn something new, you will be better equipped to find great success regardless of where life takes you next. Continue reading “Starting a New Job? 5 Tips to Follow to Maximize Personal Success”