After 6 years of blogging right here on laurenallen.com I had started to feel like there was a next step that I had to take. My passion had shifted and I wanted something more. Something more than a paragraph surrounded by some outfit pictures. Something that would stop time for the readers and inspire them to follow their passions once the clock started ticking again.
It took me some time to sit back and realize that I was no longer reading blogs. They were too long to stop and read, but not long enough to stop what I’m doing to read thoroughly. What I do love, though, is setting aside time to pick up a new book, especially when I am able to read it cover to cover without stopping. It’s only so often that I get to indulge in this luxury, but when I do it changed my perspective on my career, personal life or even love life.
Some books make me want to put pen to paper (or finger to keyboard) and just write until I am out of words. Some books make me want to go find any sort of networking group I could worm my way into. Some books simply make me want to sit back and take in all of the blessings that surround my life.
My biggest hope is that my book inspires you to realize that life isn’t always going to be easy, but if you look hard enough there is light within any form of darkness that gets thrown your way. Life in the first year after college is going to be utterly nondescript with no one able to tell you which steps to take and when. All we have is the building blocks that our family and schooling have given us and we are left to construct them into a future with room for growth following every step along the way. Sometimes as stable as you think the you’ve built your fort, something will come along to knock it all down. It’s going to take some time to build it all back up, but if you do it right, you will end up with a stronger structure than you started with. It may be tiring and seem like more than you ever asked for, but when I tell you that God only gives you what you can handle, I am telling you this from much experience.
My first suggestions after finishing this book is to pick up two other books that changed my life. Year of Yes By Shonda Rhimes took the fear out of doing new things. She made me want to find opportunities to say yes to just so that I could collect yeses during MY year of yes. That year has lasted my about three years by now but I have since flown on private airplanes, worked for a celebrity in Los Angeles, gotten paid to go to events that I could not have even dreamed attending, been on the Today Show, and if you’re reading this that means that I have successfully self-published my first book! I am thankful for Every opportunity in my life whether it ended up being a great situation or not because each one taught me something new and gave me a great story to tell. There is so much more to learn and I can’t wait to say YES to even more opportunities, leading me to write even more books.
The book Permission to Screw up by Kristen Hadeed opened up a world of opportunities that I thought were exclusive to other people that were not from small towns with little actual experience under their belts. You’ll read in the book about a BNI networking group I went to with my mom. Kristen was one of the business owners that I was able to hear from every week. It was easy to assume that she was older (not that she looked it, just by the confidence that she exuded) with a huge background in her industry. One day I was lucky enough to third wheel a one-on-one with her and my mom over a cup of coffee. Hadeed, creator of Student Maid, was really only a few years older than me and started her business out of a desire to go shopping. I could totally relate to that! I’m not going to share her story because it is so much better to hear from her in her book, but just know that I’ve never related more to a cleaning business in my life! And I am the worst at cleaning, just ask my roommates.
Because of these women I have the courage to put my experiences into writing and share them with the world. Do I think I’m going to start a revolution? Probably not. Do I hope to touch a few millennial that feel lost and behind in the world of adulting? Absolutely! As much as I love reading I feel like there is a gap in the market of people my age sharing their experience to let their peers know that we are all going through the same things. You are not alone.
THANK YOU to all of you who have supported me all of these years on this blog. Every step has only lead me closer to who I am meant to be. Please click HERE to get a copy for yourself and let me know what you think!