ASH AMBIRGE

Author, CEO & Founder

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Sometimes You Fall Into Things. You Fall Into People, Fall Into Places, Fall Into Patterns, Fall Into Deep Dark Obsessions With Red Velvet Cake. (AHEM.) 

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life

The other day I tweeted about how I watched The Notebook and so CLEARLY I was living my best life. And then I started thinking about how much I love that phrase, because it's a good reminder, isn't it? Am I really living my best life? What does that even mean?

Sometimes you fall into things. You fall into people, fall into places, fall into patterns, fall into deep dark obsessions with red velvet cake. Ahem. (As someone who is patently Team Cheese, this is mutiny.)

I hate falling into things. I hate when you accidentally wake up one day and don't know yourself, anymore. It's weird how often that happens, even when you're deliberate about your choices. Even when you spend twenty four hours a day INSIDE YOUR OWN BRAIN thinking that you know yourself pretty well, and then one day you look in the mirror and discover you're actually a thirty-four-year-old zookeeper in Memphis. Like, what? How did that happen?

So much of life is a sneaky little slow burn. If you're not watching, inertia takes over and sends you spiraling down this path that just sort of happens. One day you're getting a college degree in business management; the next day you're the manager of a Blockbuster in Alaska. Which is actually still a thing. Next to the Tractor Supply Store. Where you've got store credit. And they know you by your new name, Rising Earth.

So it's a useful question to ask yourself, over and over again—even if the answer is a little painful. Are you living your best life? Or is this just a substitute to get you by? A filler. A holding period. A way to push pause on the pressure and the pursuit that comes with constantly trying? Sometimes it is nice to push pause on ambition; to just be a regular human with regular aspirations and a regular life. To not have to figure it out today, or face the hard conversation, or do the hard thing. But unfortunately respite can quickly turn into reality. A lonnnnnng reality full of shitstorms and resentment and lukewarm showers.

We need to place checks and balances on ourselves; to be wise enough to question our own judgment, our own choices, and everything we've done since. Unfortunately there is not a little man named Bob running around with a tiny clipboard, monitoring the quality of your life. Oooh, happiness spiking! Yes, make sure she keeps doing that. Uh oh, happiness falling. Get her out of there now, go, go, go! You gotta be willing to call yourself on your own bullshit. And to not only realize when you aren't living your best life—but be willing to fix it. (I've heard that watching The Notebook is always a great place to start.)

We're human. We're fallible. We fall on hard times and we fall behind and we fall on our face and we fall into traps. We fall short, we fall hard, we fall down, and we fall out. We fall from grace, we fall prey, we fall flat, and we fall out of touch.

But we mustn't fall in line.

Not when there is so much more out there waiting for you.

Jun 25

2012

A Tearful Birthday

Jun 25, 2012

Yesterday was my birthday. I flew from Ecuador to Chile on Friday so I could spend my birthday with my best girl friends in the whole wide world. Sure enough, they surprised me in the airport with glittery welcome back posters, prompting me to scream like a hyena. I had no idea they were coming. […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Jan 24

2016

On Getting Old, Having No Idea How to Make a Soufflé & Consciously Choosing to Do What You WANT.

Jan 24, 2016

It’s 2:42 in the morning and the reason I’m awake is called CHARDONNAY. People talk about getting old—buying crock pots, nonchalantly cutting your spouse’s armpit hairs, relating more to The Golden Girls than The Gilmore Girls—but they do not prepare you for the one thing that will change your life even more than tiny packets of GrillMates: […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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May 25

2010

The Lost Art of Quitting

May 25, 2010

“Quitters never win & winners never quit.” Excuse me, divine gods of all Protestant work-ethic-inspired proverbs, *takes drag of imaginary cigarette* but I beg to differ. *Apathetically exhales and flings cigarette to ground before grinding it with the ball of not-so-imaginary fire engine red high heel.* We’ve heard these types of statements all our lives:  […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Apr 25

2010

White Men Can’t Jump, But They’ve Got Other Tricks Up Their Sleeves: The (Unearned) Privilege of Being White

Apr 25, 2010

Here’s a little something to ponder: Band Aids. What comes to mind? Perhaps a small, rectangular piece of flexible plastic with adhesive that sticks to your skin and pulls at your little hairs when you finally tear it off, bringing back unpleasant memories of your last Brazilian wax. No? I should leave the Brazilian wax […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Oct 15

2010

A Conversation With An Immigrant on U.S. Life

Oct 15, 2010

I had an insightful conversation with a Mexican immigrant the other day. We also might have had a round of margaritas, which could have enhanced the perceived value of the conversation, but nevertheless, I wanted to share it with you. It went something like this: ME: So, I imagine you came here with some expectations […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Jul 30

2010

On NOT “Following Your Dreams”

Jul 30, 2010

You know, this whole “follow your dreams” thing is getting a little old, right? Coming from me, that’s probably surprising. But the problem is that so much of it is fluff. So much out there encourages you to start “living the life of your dreams,” while frolicking on a big white puffy cloud and nibbling […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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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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