This past year, more than ever, we’ve felt overwhelmingly inspired by women’s strength, bravery, creativity, perseverance and overall brilliance. So, just in time for the launch of a new year, we’ve compiled a list of all of the best pieces of advice our 2017 FACES treasure. We hope you can take these words of wisdom and carry them through another beautiful year. Here’s to an incredible 2018!
What’s Your Best Piece of Advice?
Danielle Busby: “There is always tomorrow. A lot of people ask, ‘How do you do it?’ and the No. 1 thing is I start my day off with trying to keep God as the focus, so with a devotional and keeping my head clean and telling myself I was given this life to take care of and to be the mother of these extraordinary babies and Blayke, and that’s what I’m going to do every day. And it’s gonna be challenging, but there’s always the start of tomorrow, and you will get through it.” Image: Audrey Brown of Bennett Brown Photography
Kandace Springs: “Be yourself. But, keep an open mind. You may learn something about yourself you didn’t know. But, deep down you know who you really are.” Image: Ashley Hylbert
Lyn Lage: “My favorite is from my mother. ‘Anything worth having is worth waiting for.’ She used this advice for everything, from shoes to husbands, and everything in between. It’s guided me through lots of decisions.” Image: Adele Reding Photography
Michele Dudley: “Don’t clutch anything in your life too tightly. Live life with your hands open to give and receive, with a willingness to change course as needed to follow the path that God has laid out before you with gratitude.” Image: Piper Warlick of Piper Warlick Photography
Molly Mathis: “‘Nothing changes if nothing changes.’ It’s easy to get comfortable in our day-to-day routines. While that’s got benefits, I’ve learned life becomes much richer and fuller when you embrace new things, step outside your comfort zone and keep looking for ways to challenge yourself.” Image: Catrina Maxwell of CatMax Photography
Glennon Doyle Melton: “My friend Nadia Bolz-Weber always says, ‘Write from your scars, not your open wounds.’ And I think that is important. The way I write, people think that I am writing everything in real time. Oftentimes when people do that, it comes off as a cry for help and not art. We have to let what happened to us sink in to get truth out of it, then serve it back to people. My other favorite piece of advice that I got recently was from my friend Liz Gilbert. I called to ask for parenting advice, which is so funny because she doesn’t have any kids. But she said, ‘Your family is in an airplane and there is a lot of turbulence right now. What do we do when there is a lot of turbulence? We look to the flight attendant. And if they are freaking out, we start to freak out, but if they look calm, you feel calm. So your kids are looking at you on the plane right now. You need to keep smiling and serve some freaking peanuts.’ Since I have been steady throughout this time, my kids believe that despite the turbulence, we will all be okay.” Image: Amy Paulson
Bailey Spaulding: “A friend of mine who was a postdoc at Harvard and a professional falconer once told me, ‘Find what you love doing in life, and con somebody into giving you money to do it.’ Maybe the way he said it was a bit funny, but what resonated with me was that I could find my own way and make a living at it.” Image: Ashley Hylbert
Sara McMann: “I had a college coach — Rocky Bonomo at Lock Haven University — who said when it comes to competition (but can also be applied to life), ‘Don’t go by what you feel, go by what you know.’ Feelings change. They go up and down, and you can react to a situation completely depending on your mood that day or based on the circumstances. That’s helped me with sports a lot.” Image: Piper Warlick of Piper Warlick Photography
Stephanie Zundel: “2 Corinthians 12:10 — ‘That is why I take such pleasure in weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions and difficulties for the Messiah’s sake, for when I am weak, then I am strong.’ When I’m having a bad day, and the blindness is bothering me, I go back to that and remember that I know that I am strong.”
Carol Cox: “My parents always instilled in my brother and me that hard work pays off, and if you want something, fight hard for it because anything is achievable in this life.” Image: Catrina Maxwell of CatMax Photography
Margaret Bosbyshell: “My father, Bill Clary, advised me that a lot of people are creative, but it is important to run a good business or you will not be successful and be able complete your jobs.” | Clary Bosbyshell: “My mom has always taught me to not sweat the small stuff and to put good vibrations out in the world.” Image: Catrina Maxwell of CatMax Photography
Margaret Anne Florence: “They always tell you in acting, ‘Just go in there and just be yourself. You’re bringing yourself to whatever the part is.’ But it’s true. I think that is how I got this job. I put a lot of myself in there, and it takes a lot of guts to have the confidence to just be yourself, that yourself is good enough and great and all you have to be.” Image: Caitlin Mitchell of Caitlin Mitchell Studio
Kristin Schell: “I think the conversation is the most important thing. You just have to start, and once we get over the fear of inviting someone into our lives, it just makes everyone feel so good. I mean, think about how you feel when you’re invited to something.” Image: Kasandra Keyes
Lucy and Kim Wilson: “Do something you’re passionate about and that you like, but most importantly, start small. It’s when people go and open up a large store with a million dollars’ worth of inventory and they don’t know their customer [that they run into trouble]. I was able to start small and grow one day at a time by learning what my customers wanted and providing things that I would want myself.” Image: Catrina Maxwell of CatMax Photography
Cassidee Dabney (left): “Don’t compare yourself to other people. Keep doing what you’re doing, and if it’s not working, then look at yourself and say, ‘Hey, why is this not working for me?’ Look internally first.” | Sarah Steffan: “Surround yourself with the type of people that you want to be like. Choose your friends wisely. Work really hard, and don’t think other people’s success is your failure. Learn from everything, and see the positive in everything.” Images: Submitted
Megan Melgaard: “You really never know until you try, and if you can use your internal compass to help guide you, I think a lot of us have the answers inside, but we have the tendency to bury them. So I would encourage people to uncover their internal compass and listen to their intuition, and rely on divine intervention, because it will point you the right way. I have the tendency to get in my own way at times, so I’d also say, take a step back and use the support system, or build a support system, that you can use as a sounding board. Say, ‘This is really where I think I should go, what do you think? What are the pros and cons?’ And at the end of the day, exercise caution. If you’re looking at a trail that has three different paths that you could take, it’s okay to go down one of them. But listen to yourself and know the way back, in case you decide, ‘OK, I don’t really feel good about this path that I have taken; I can go back and take another route.’ More or less, just be aware and leave a trail of breadcrumbs.” Image: Catrina Maxwell of CatMax Photography
Rebekah Gregory: “Never lose sight of where you’re going, but don’t forget who you are and where you came from.” Image: Submitted
Janet Ivey: “I was a sophomore at Belmont. I was feeling a little down — I wasn’t sure where life was taking me. Sarah Cannon came every year [to speak at Belmont], and it was the most packed chapel that we ever had. I remember she said three things: Love God, never take yourself too seriously and always be kind.” Image: Grannis Photography
Kobie Jarmon: “I would definitely say that it comes down to organization, but also, just don’t be afraid to go out on a limb and try something new. You never want to go through your life saying, ‘What if?’ So if you have the time, or if you can make the time, always try to do what you love and what you want to do. There was a month where I wasn’t able to do something simply because I didn’t think I had the time, and I did. And the whole next month, I was like, ‘I wish I could have done this.’ So afterward, I just decided to make the time, and I prioritized and rearranged my schedule to make it happen.” Image: Grannis Photography
Cheri Leavy (left): “Hire people smarter than you are. We succeeded there with the hire of Dominique Paye, our digital media director. Whitney and I wouldn’t want to be on this journey without her. Same with Leapfrog PR Co. They have been with us from the start of the Summits and bring so much strategy to the Coterie. Nicely Built, our new website developers, are an integral part of our future.” | Whitney Wise Long (right): “’There but for the grace of God, go I … ‘ My mom always said this growing up, and it has stuck with me since then. It floats through my consciousness many times a day, and it truly helps in being reminded to have an ‘attitude of gratitude’ and also realize how fortunate I am in both my personal and professional life.” Image: Submitted
Valarie Hall: “Always ask questions if you’re unsure. I don’t mind if you don’t know; we can learn it together. Telling me you know how to do something [when you don’t] is one of the worst things. Before I hire someone, I’ll give them a few simple tasks, and about 50 percent of the time, they don’t ask questions, and they’ll do it wrong.” Image: Micki Martin
Melissa Ann Barton (right): “My momma always told me to be kind, be yourself, like yourself enough to like others because being those things makes it easy to follow your dreams!” | Emmylou Harris (left): “Follow your bliss.” Image: Submitted
Randi Lesnick: “The first thing they have to do is take care of their family and themselves. When I got sick, I knew I was not going to give up, and I was not going to leave my husband and my kids. So first and foremost, it was about me and my family. The second thing to remember is that your business is just your business. It’s such a miniscule part of life, so you just have to learn to trust the people around you. And if it falls apart, it falls apart, because the most important thing is you. A business is never built on one person. There might be one name on the door, but it’s never built on one person.” Image: Grannis Photography
Lynn Nesmith: “It’s a cliché, but I’d say, ‘The regrets you have in life are the things you didn’t do, not the things you did.’ I’m frantically living my life to make sure I’m not missing out. Anytime I think Should I walk down to look at the sunset? I never regret that I took 30 minutes to walk down to the beach, take a picture of the sunset and put my feet in the water. Stick your head under the water, you’re never sorry that you did.” | Image: Sheila Goode
Jean Allsopp: “Take your time with the business part of photography. Creative people are notorious for not being organized or business-oriented, but that’s probably why I was on staff at different magazines for so long. That was easy for me. I was able to move on to the next project because I didn’t have to bill it or edit it or market it. I took time to try to understand what works and what doesn’t.” Image: Submitted
Mara Papatheodorou: “My parents each said, ‘Follow your passion through and through. If you love what you do, learn all that you can as it makes the commitment, the effort and the resilience to do it worth it.’ And Anne Willan from La Vareene first put the idea in my head that the whole food story isn’t always just in the kitchen. And she was right.” Image: Ashley Hylbert
Fawn Weaver: “If you look for good, you will find it. Focus on the now, and all you need will be found in that present moment.” Image: Keith Miles
Rebecca Williamson: “Don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions from others in your industry, because their good and bad experiences will be so valuable. And I ask a LOT of questions.” Image: Eric and Jamie Gay of Eric & Jamie Photography
Magda Sayeg: “Think fast, talk slow.” Image: Ben Sayeg. Prop Styling: CJ Dockery
May this advice inspire and guide you as you embark on 2018!
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