ASH AMBIRGE

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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.

 

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 […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Aug 15

2014

How to Be the Most Confident Person At The Table

Aug 15, 2014

When somebody doesn’t buy from you, which are you thinking? “Man, I’m a loser”  or “Man, they’re a loser.”  Getting cocksure is the very first order of business. And if you don’t feel sure of yourself, you know what you need? Not more clients. You need to sit your ass down, read 100 books, grovel for the […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Jun 15

2017

Having FUN Doesn’t Make You an Unprofessional Schmuck

Jun 15, 2017

Fun is underrated. We spend so much of our lives trying to get taken seriously, that fun becomes something we think of as shameful, dirty; something to be minimized in a professional setting. Giggles are juvenile; jokes are adolescent; anything more than a poker face threatens your status as “a respectable professional.” But that’s only […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Dec 31

2010

Resolutions Are For Chumps. I Choose Revolution.

Dec 31, 2010

All the things you think you need this year, you don’t. You do not need more determination.  You do not need more discipline.  And you certainly do not need more diligence. Are you kidding me? You are a Westerner–you’ve got plenty of that.  Why else have you gotten up every single day and begrudgingly gone […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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May 27

2014

Do You Have Chickenshititis?

May 27, 2014

I have a friend named Melissa. (Yes, I have friends.) Melissa doesn’t have a job. She spent her twenties and thirties working for other people as a professional headhunter–(am I obligated to make a Headless Horseman joke here?)–before finally going back to school to pursue an advanced certification in Human Resources. And then she waited. And she […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Jun 11

2016

When You Feel Worthy of Being Seen…It Shows

Jun 11, 2016

  Let me tell you what: American women may have Victoria’s Secret, but Italian women have another secret altogether. You know it by the way she holds her head a little higher than yours, eyes on fire, gliding down the god damn sidewalk as if her and Mother Nature were tag teaming. It is not just […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Dec 12

2017

To The People Who Keep Asking Me When I’m Having a Baby

Dec 12, 2017

“When are you having a baby?” “You’d be a great mom.” “You’ll regret it later if you don’t.” “You HAVE to have kids!” …and I used to think people were pushy about making me try seafood. Though the decision not to have children actually reminds me of that: people are really convinced you’re making a […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Nov 7

2015

Your Hatred is Wisdom

Nov 7, 2015

What is it? The thing you sighed with relief about this morning? The thing you didn’t have to do on a Saturday? The thing you exhaled about? (And maybe even shimmied around the room naked over. With this You Tube video playing. And at least two neighbors cursing you to hell.) That’s the thing.  Pay very close […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Jun 2

2015

When You’re Scrappy, You Don’t Give a Sh*t

Jun 2, 2015

I like the term scrappy. I’ve always pictured some femme fatale bobbing and weaving and diving and contorting herself into any number of ways to get the one and only job done that she’s there to do: Win. It reminds me of my favorite Will Smith quote (oh, you don’t have a favorite Will Smith quote?) “The […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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Aug 12

2017

A Note of Support for All My Dreamers Getting Their Ideas Pooh-Poohed By Their Family, Their Friends, Their Spouses, and Their Neighbors (Fucking Neighbors, Am I Right?)

Aug 12, 2017

In the year 2010, friends would call and say: “So, how’s your blooooooooggggggg?” The tone was obvious: How’s your cute little imaginary friend that you think is going to save you from the real world that the rest of us have to suffer through? The year 2011, I made $103,000 with that blog—a far cry […]

In: Finding Your Voice

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