4 Ways to Reclaim the Simple Life Right Where You Are

A friend of mine is about to begin a long-term program in which, among other things, she’ll learn how to farm, bake bread, make cheese, dip candles and more. It’s hard to imagine that such a life is still possible in our modern world, isn’t it? To me, the notion of living off the land and cultivating routines around the seasons tends to conjure up images of the past and inspire a sense of almost wistful nostalgia for a life most of us have never lived.

In essence, it sounds like an actualization of that elusive “simple life” that we all dream of — free from the stress of nonstop emails, meetings, workouts, social events, etc.

Yet, as fulfilling as such an existence sounds, I also wonder if and how the so-called simple life manifests itself outside the farm and in our own lives. Is the simple life something we just relegate to our imaginations, as a thing of the past? Or is it possible to live a full, successful and simple life without giving up our careers or home responsibilities? Continue reading

Celebrate Your Beauty

Propel Women - Celebrate Your Beauty
There’s something about wearing a swimsuit in public that brings out insecurities we didn’t even realize we had – a phenomenon I witnessed firsthand on vacation in the Caribbean a few weeks ago.

I overheard countless women’s murmurs of negative self-talk all over the beach: “Wait, we can’t take group pics because I’ll look fat next to her.” Or, “Ugh, I have no butt whatsoever. I should’ve done more squats before this trip.”

In this digital age, we’ve all seen countless images of what our culture considers “perfect” bodies. Whether we’re flipping through a magazine, watching a movie, or just scrolling through Instagram, it can feel impossible to escape the stream of filtered, posed images around us – and the pressure to measure up to them.

Our bodies could be in perfect health, but still would never be good enough if looked at through our culture’s lens. We’ll either be too thin, too fat, have too much cellulite, or too little muscle… the list goes on. Continue reading

Releasing Rejection And Living Loved: An Interview With Lysa TerKeurst

Lysa TerKeurst, Author of Uninvited
Whether we were turned down for a date, didn’t get the job, or just feel overlooked, rejection affects most of us more than we’d like to admit. According to author and Proverbs 31 Ministries president Lysa TerKeurst, “We are all either trying to get healing from past rejection, dealing with present rejection, or fearing that an unexpected rejection is just around the corner.”

In her new book, Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, and Lonely, TerKeurst addresses the topic of rejection in depth and offers practical strategies for coping with it. In sharing her own personal experiences with rejection, she gives an honest look into its roots, shows how it can poison our relationship with ourselves and others, and provides faith-based insights into where true belonging is found. Continue reading

Present Over Perfect: An Interview With Shauna Niequist

After finding herself exhausted, isolated, and sick, author Shauna Niequist came to a point where she knew her life had to change. She was tired, burnt out, and felt unconnected to the people she loved.

Her new book, Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living, chronicles her transition from a life of striving for perfection to rediscovering her created purpose and living from a place of meaning and connection. With her warm, vulnerable voice, she tells of how she underwent the most important transformation of her life, while also inviting us to do the same.

She writes, “This book is an account of my winding, messy journey from exhaustion to peace, from isolation to connection, from hustling and multitasking to sacred presence.”

I recently chatted with Shauna about the impact Present Over Perfect has had on her life, where she finds rest, and how we can learn to live more simple, soulful lives, too.

Does Your Life Need a Reset?

Passion (2)
Two weeks ago, M+H’s own Paige and I attended the Together 2016 event in Washington, D.C. Along with hundreds of thousands of our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, we met on the National Mall and took a stand for the hope we have in Jesus. The event had an incredible lineup of speakers, singers, authors and church leaders — including Nick Hall, Tim Tebow, Lecrae, Louie Giglio, and Hillsong UNITED.

It was amazing to hear from such talented and spirit-filled leaders, but it was even more powerful to see such a large crowd united on their knees, lifting their hands and voices for an end to division and for a renewal of faith in our generation. 

It was a visible reminder of how big and how real God is. Continue reading

10 Unexpected Ways to Stay Healthy This Summer

We often think of health in terms of diet and exercise, but there is so much more that goes into our well-being than what we eat and how we treat our bodies. Our social, emotional, and spiritual health are just as important in regards to our overall wellness and should not be overlooked. After all, these components allow us to connect well with others, maintain positive relationships, cope with life’s challenges, and find purpose in our actions — all of which are essential to a full, healthy life.

And unlike sticking to a strict diet or workout regime, which can sometimes feel burdensome, there are countless fun and simple  habits we can incorporate into our routines that strengthen our mindset and improve our overall attitudes and well-being.

Here are just 10 ideas to get started this summer. What items would you add? Continue reading

Becoming Brazen: An Interview With Leeana Tankersley

The word brazen means “without shame,” and it describes how author Leeana Tankersley wants us to live. In her newest book, Brazen: The Courage to Find the You That’s Been Hiding, she invites readers to rediscover their true selves through a series of personal stories and observations. Her words encourage women to honor their intuition, to find their voice, and to be reminded of their God-given worth — even in the midst of a world bent on molding us into its own image.

She writes, “It is time. Time to reach down into the annals of your being and explore all the dimensions of who and what God knit there. It is time to come out of hiding. Let’s go after what’s been silenced, hidden, lost, bruised, abused, abandoned, bullied.”

Inspiring, right? To learn more, Milk & Honey Magazine interviewed Leeana about what it means to live a brazen life and how we, too, can do so. Continue reading

10 Things to Tell Your Mom This Mother’s Day

I think we can all agree that the older we get the more we realize just how much our mothers had to put up with while raising us. From chauffeuring us to tennis lessons and dental appointments to bearing with our adolescent angst and taking care of us when sick, it seems like there’s nothing our moms weren’t willing to do for us.

For many, our moms remain our number one fan, and our relationship with them will forever be one of the strongest bonds we have. Yet, as influential as mothers are in our lives, how often do we stop and actually let them know what they mean to us? Chances are, not enough. Continue reading

On Telling Our Inner Critic To Quit It

As much as we all want to be confident, self-assured women, there’s a nagging little voice inside our head that tries to tell us we can’t be — that we’re inadequate, we’re weak, we’re unworthy. It’s one thing to be aware of our shortcomings, but quite another to be self-critical and demeaning toward ourselves because of them.

When we notice our thoughts becoming less than kind and supportive toward ourselves, though, what can we do? How do we banish self-doubt and manifest the strong women that we are? Continue reading

35 Things to Cross Off Your Winter Bucket List

As someone who grew up in Minnesota and now lives in southern California, I’ve experienced winter in all of its forms — from harsh blizzards to mild rains to full-on heat waves. Yet, there are some aspects of this season that remain consistent no matter what part of the nation we reside in. Whether we live on snow-capped mountains or along sandy beaches, we all experience shorter evenings, lower average temperatures, and a subtle sense of pause around us.

Animals rest in hibernation, nature’s colors fade, and we, too, are invited to take on a slower, more peaceful pace. There is no better time for quiet reflection, for hopeful dreaming, and for all the best comforts of home. Whether we prefer to remain indoors and keep cozy or get outside and explore, there are countless opportunities to savor this season. Continue reading