ASH AMBIRGE

Author, CEO & Founder

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WE ARE WASTING OUR BRAINS ON BULLSHIT (And Other Darling Sentiments)

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life

You know those creeps who never drink any water and you're all, “BUT YOUR CELLS! YOUR CELLS ARE SHRIVELING LIKE LITTLE CALIFORNIA RAISINS!”  (Unless this is the kind of thing that only goes through my brain, in which case, welcome to my inner landscape, ya'll.)

I feel the same way about time. There are so many people who aren't drinking enough time; they're spending it, they're bleeding it dry, they're “making the most of every moment,” but they aren't retaining any of it for themselves. Time, like water, is a nutrient. It is sustenance. It is motherfucking health food for your brain. And we're so damn depleted.

A couple of years ago I was having a conversation with a girl in a hotel who wanted to give up her current life, switch careers, and start fresh. She didn't know what she wanted to do, so I asked her a simple question:

Well, what do you like? 

She stared blankly. Sadly, she didn't know. She could not answer this one simple, fundamental question of the human experience. She hadn't had time to really think about it, she said. She'd been so busy trying to get ahead, all these years, that she'd left herself behind.

This is the greatest tragedy of our time.

WE ARE WASTING OUR BRAINS. We're using them as storage units, there to process practical day-to-day tasks, but never something that nourishes us from the inside. Instead, we run our brains as if they were a factory, with thoughts rolling by on conveyor belts in order to be as productive as possible. Forget idle hands—our generation is terrified of idle brains.

But the idle brain is sorely underrated—and in fact, it's fucking fundamental when it comes to creating a creative, pleasurable, meaningful life.

How else will you engage in the deep thought necessary to understand yourself on more than a superficial level? (Likes: the color red, pizza pie, and board shorts, durrrrrr…) How else will you reflect on what you really want from your life? (Because you're allowed to want things from life, you know.) And furthermore, how else will you ever be able to give your brain the space to roam? To wander? To contemplate the array of beautiful, endless options this world affords us?

To my future artists, and writers, and creatives, and travelers, and dreamers, and big thinkers:

Guilt is a hologram.

Make space for yourself.

The only thing that matters is not what you did with your days, but that you deeply enjoyed living them.

May 3

2018

Listen: Do What You Crave Without the Guilt. Travel to Italy. Enroll in That Workshop. Make Your Art Every Afternoon. And Hurl Yourself Into the Unknown—For This Is The Best ROI That Money Can Buy.

May 3, 2018

My almost-mother-in-law gets really fucking nervous when I travel—especially when I bomb off to South America for a month by myself to drink ALL THE WINE and celebrate ALL THE BOOK DEALS. But she doesn’t get worried in the typical way a mother might; not the way my own mother would have been worried, which would […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life

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Nov 4

2010

You Don’t Need a Job – You Need Guts

Nov 4, 2010

Truth: Most people will walk this earth for decades, feeling guilty for not pursuing the great adventures inside of them, but will never do anything about it. Truth: Most people are overwhelmed by fear, and will make some of the worst choices of their lives because of it. Truth: Most people will put their head […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Sep 5

2012

Are You Going To Be Someone Who Does? Or Doesn’t? (Warning: Contains Least Amount of Swear Words Ever Written On TMF)

Sep 5, 2012

It’s 5am. I’m checking out of my hotel in Buenos Aires, and I’m hoping the $80 eye cream I bought is ACTUALLY HELPING ME NOT LOOK LIKE I JUST CRAWLED OUT FROM UNDER A MOSSY, EARTH-STENCHING, FUNGI-COVERED ROCK. Mostly because I knew Andrés would be checking me out–hopefully in more ways than one. Andrés isn’t actually his name, as […]

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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