ASH AMBIRGE

Author, CEO & Founder

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Look, We’ve All Got Our Faults. *Stomps Cigar*

In: Finding Your Voice

Look, we’ve all got our faults.

I, for one, have a wrinkly ass neck. I don’t know how it happened. I don’t know when it happened. But all the sudden there are lines as deep as the Panama Canal cutting across my trachea.

Fortunately, all the resveratrol I’ve consumed over the years seems to have spared my face…so far. Or, I don’t know, maybe I should be thanking Laura Mercier for that. Ever since I was twenty one, I’ve been wearing tinted moisturizer with SPF, and apparently, SPF ACTUALLY WORKS. Who knew?

But, SPF can’t save me from everything, you know? It can’t save me from my total lack of ability to love email. It can’t save me from getting hot and bothered when customers are jerks. It can’t save me from overextending myself on the regular—despite knowing better.

But that’s okay. It doesn’t have to.

Because you know, these things called faults are nouns for a reason—because they exist.

You got ‘em. I got ‘em. We’ve all got ‘em.

And sometimes, you’ve gotta learn how not to give yourself such a hard time about them—and start getting curious about them, instead.

This is the only way we get past ‘em, people.

For example, when I know I’m writing a crap book chapter, I could spend the rest of the day being an asshole to myself about it. Why couldn’t I think straight today?! Why couldn't I come up with the perfect ending?! Why do I write at the pace of a geriatric?! FML!

Or, I could choose to get curious about it.

I wonder why I couldn’t think straight today—what didn’t I give myself? What nourishment am I missing? Did I get enough sleep? How can I make sure I do better today?

OR

I wonder why I couldn’t nail that ending. I must need a break. I’m usually really good at endings, so maybe if I take a time out, I’ll do better when I get back.

OR

I wonder why I write at the pace of a geriatric. It must be because I love to get every word just right. It’s one of the reasons why I’m great at what I do. It’s what people pay me to do. I should be so grateful that I have the patience to get it right.

I guess the woo woos call this mindset. (Or some other equally annoying word.) And maybe that’s exactly what it is, but you know what?

If I hadn’t gotten curious about my weaknesses, I wouldn’t have known to exercise those muscles in order to grow.

And grow I have.

Just this past Friday, the literary agency of my dreams sent over an official author/agency agreement (yes, I DID run around telling everyone I know), and you know how I made that happen?

By getting curious every time I didn’t want to write.
By getting curious every time I resisted sending the pitch.
By getting curious every time I tried to talk myself out of it.

I could have faulted myself from here until the day I die for not doing it. But you know what I did instead? Figured out what was stopping me…and then figured out a way around the detour.

In other words, I got curious about myself.

And then, I got real.

Because turns out, curiosity didn’t kill the kat—it killed your excuses.

And then all you’re left with?

Is yourself.

Perhaps both the scariest, and the most exciting, place to be of all.

 

Mar 8

2019

The Surprising Reason Why I Decided to Buy My Own (GASP!) Apartment—As an Independent Woman With Her Own Money and Her Own Mind

Mar 8, 2019

“WINNER, WINNER! OFFER ACCEPTED!!!” That’s what the subject line read as I cozied up with a glass of red wine, last night, nervously awaiting the news. And when the email came through? I almost choked. “Omg, I have tears in my eyes!” I wrote in response. (Along with a shit ton of other capital letters […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Oct 22

2016

Your Opinion About Yourself Doesn’t Matter

Oct 22, 2016

Real talk: I think you’re a liar. A very, very convenient liar. I can call you that because we’re all in the same club. Because the thing is, when you’re out there doing creative work, and new work, and work that has no manager, no support team, no pat on the back, there are days when […]

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Sep 30

2010

Defiance or Defeat? You Pick.

Sep 30, 2010

Sometimes, the shit hits the fan. Sometimes, you find yourself living out of your car, storing all of your toiletries in an oversize red purse, lodging sweatshirts in between head rests and sunroof panels to block the windows so you can sleep, explaining to unsympathetic credit card companies that you can’t pay your $41 minimum […]

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Oct 26

2017

Sometimes, Being Difficult Is an Act of Devotion

Oct 26, 2017

Nobody wants to “be difficult.” Those words have stigma tattooed right across their rear. Just hearing them makes you think of that psycho in line at the grocery store, berating the cashier for not accepting her expired coupon. (She’s also wearing Uggs, for the record, and DEFINITELY has a soggy cigarette hanging out of her […]

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Sep 15

2015

Plan On Being Nervous, Brilliantly

Sep 15, 2015

Being nervous sucks. Your pulse races. Your brain blanks. Your hands shake like little assholes. You tell yourself to take deep breaths, but the minute you do, you then worry that the entire room can see the fact that your heart is, in fact, doing the electric slide up and down your rib cage. (God […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Oct 29

2015

“I don’t feel confident in my work.”

Oct 29, 2015

Are you squinting your eyes at the screen trying to decide if this describes you or not? (Of course you are, you’re probably reading this on an iPhone the size of my elbow.) It’s kind of an ugly characterization—nobody wants to admit to feeling less than confident in what you’re doing. And yet, I’ve got […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Mar 20

2014

I Brought 20 Hookers to Central America on Business.

Mar 20, 2014

I sloshed on yet another layer of gloss, steering frantically with one hand while trying not to rear end a truck full of cows. I mean, what would I tell the Life Hooky group? “We didn’t pick you up at the airport in San Jose because, see, there were these cowsssssss.” Even I would think I […]

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Apr 18

2017

Growth Requires Muscle Tears

Apr 18, 2017

Yesterday I talked about change—and it’s no coincidence. I’m making some big changes myself, given that a lot of things are coming to an end, right now. Because iteration is what we’re all doing, every single day, even if it blows by us going 100mph down the freeway. (In a red Ferrari, smoking a cigar, […]

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Oct 24

2019

You Don’t Exist to Please Dipshits

Oct 24, 2019

You know how when you meet someone, and they give you this snotty little look like, “you’re a fucking freak,” and then you start wondering, “AM I A FUCKING FREAK?! IS THAT WHAT’S GOING ON HERE?” And you’re so quick to second guess yourself instead of second guessing the constipated stuck up instead? I hate […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Aug 22

2015

If You Don’t Seem Capable…You Aren’t

Aug 22, 2015

The way you hold your wine glass. How leisurely you pour your words. The conviction found in your fork, as you slowly and quite deliberately raise each bite to your mouth, as if rushes were for commoners and you hold the greatest secrets of the universe right there in between your forefinger and your thumb. […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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I'm a Bad Influence on Women

Hey, I’m Ash! Twenty years ago I was a small town girl growing up in a trailer park in rural Pennsylvania. Fifteen years ago, I lost my family and everything I knew right as I became the first to graduate college. Fourteen years ago, I found myself leaving everything behind for a new life in the city where I could be “normal.” Ten years ago I realized normal was the most disappointing thing that ever happened to me. Nine years ago I quit my job in advertising and pursued my dreams as a creative writer. Eight years ago, I built a 6-figure business doing what I love using nothing more than the Internet and my voice. And now, today, I’m the founder of The Middle Finger Project, an irreverent media co. that helps other women find their voice and teaches them to use it to build whatever the f*ck they want to. With a book coming out with Penguin Random House in February 2020 (YASSS, WE’RE A PRODUCT IN TARGET!) I’m proud to be a bad influence on women and guide them into doing something disobediently brave with their life and their career.

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