This interview is a part of our Live Your Dreams Stars series where we feature awesome young women who are changing the world one amazing dream at a time. LYD!
Life begins at the end of your comfort zone… this is how UChic LYD Star Jessica Lawlor reaches her dreams. As the founder of the Get Gutsy Blog, Jessica creates online content helping thousands of young dreamers like you step out of their comfort zone so they can live a life that makes them truly happy.
Here is an interview UChic did with Jessica this year! Also stay tuned – You can chat with Jessica on a Dream Mentor sess on Twitter February 25 at 6:30 p.m. EST.
Getting Gutsy with our fearless friend and LYD Star Jessica Lawlor.
How long have you been working on the Get Gutsy idea?
I started working on the Get Gutsy blog two and a half years ago. Prior to that, I had been blogging for years with both a book review blog and several other personal blogs. I became burnt out working on the book review blog and decided to take some time off from writing. After a six-month hiatus, I felt re-energized and ready to jump back into blogging. As I brainstormed ideas for a new blog I decided that I really wanted a place where I could write about whatever I wanted under the umbrella of helping people step outside of their comfort zone. From there, the Get Gutsy concept was born!
How did you come up with your routine and manage it without becoming rigid?
Creating a routine absolutely takes time. It’s all about creating habits. Many experts say it takes 21 days to form a habit and while I’m not sure the exact amount of time it takes, it’s not easy, takes time and requires discipline. Tweaking your schedule little by little and seeing what works for you is the best way to get started. For example, I work full-time in public relations, run the Get Gutsy blog and also work with freelance clients. I started to notice that by the time I got home from work I was drained physically and mentally and wasn’t in a great place to write. I knew I had to change my schedule if I wanted to accomplish all of my goals. Slowly, I began to set my clock back earlier and earlier and now I wake up at 5 a.m. to write for a few hours before work. I was not always an early bird. Trust me. I was the girl in college that slept until noon!
How do I do this without being rigid? There are definitely days I don’t want to get out of bed, so I allow myself to sleep in on those days. Or, I wake up, finish my most pressing task and go back to sleep for an hour before work. It’s all about being kind to yourself and your body. It’s about finding the balance between being disciplined, but also being gentle with yourself. As Type A go-getters (and especially as women!) it can be challenging to be kind to ourselves, but it is so important.
What was your biggest challenge with putting together Get Gutsy?
The biggest challenge has been simply making decisions and getting started. It’s easy to get caught in the perfection trap. When I first began working my website’s redesign, there were so many decisions to make about colors, fonts, header images, layouts…it felt endless. I found myself spending way too much time trying to figure these things out, when in reality, they aren’t permanent decisions. These are things I can always go back, tweak and change, as needed. I try to remind myself that at some point you just need to get started and hit publish. You can continue to improve as you go!
What advice would you give young women chasing their dreams?
First of all, just get started, whatever that means for you- creating a website or blog, joining a new organization, starting a new fitness routine. Don’t wait! The sooner you put yourself out there, the sooner you can start reaping the benefits. My second tip is easier said than done- know that over time, you will change. You will not be the same person when you graduate high school or college. Embracing who you are now and who you are as you move forward is important. Allow yourself to grow and change- don’t resist it.
Want more great inspiration? Stay in-the-know with great tips from our Chicsters and LYD Stars on our Facebook and Twitter. Who are your favorite inspiring young women? Share with us in the comments below.