How I landed an article in the paper



With yesterdays article in the Green Bay Press Gazette I feel it is time to acknowledge something that has been on my mind for some time.

Yesterday I had gotten up in the wee hours of the morning to begin shooting for another local business and while I was waiting for the next class to start I rushed to the gas station at 7:00am to buy out their entire stash. I busted out of the doors like I had stolen something so I could sit in my car and read it on PAPER. I was anxious to see what photos they used (I sent them TONS) and how that 45 minute phone interview would be condensed into a segment. I imagine those nerves were similar to what my clients feel as they wait to see the final product. I read every single word in slow motion as tears poured down my cheeks. Not so much from the words, but the surreality of me sitting in my car reading a newspaper article about ME. And in that very moment, the feeling of solidification swept my body from top to bottom. THIS feeling, this recognition and hug of words is exactly what I provide to my clients everyday through photographs, videos and relationships and it just came back full circle. It felt like the boomerang of love and energy that I have been pouring out of my soul and into everyone I have meet and served for the past five years finally made its way back to me.

Some may think, "WOW, you are so LUCKY!" The fact is that it had nothing to do with luck and everything to me saying YES to myself and honoring my true calling, gift and talents. So how exactly did I land that article? Here it comes the tell all of success... BY SHOWING UP! 

In October of 2017 I attended an Open Mic night put on by Stephen Utech, CEO and founder of Illumyx. The open mic night event was hosted at The Aardvark Wine Lounge, downtown in Green Bay for people, especially businesses to share a story about how they failed and exceeded. I mustered up the courage to speak. My speech was in the format of a letter to myself. You see, I no longer regret my upbringing or the hand that was dealt to me, I am thankful for it. My letter was one of encouragement. I imagined that if I could go back in time, that I wouldn't change anything, but what I would do is leave myself love notes like this,

"Dear Mary, sweet little Mary, I know that you are feeling lost and afraid right now, and what they did to you was tragic and heartbreaking, but just know, God has you, He will pull you through this. Keep going, it's going to get better."

During my speech at The Aardvark Wine Lounge, Photo credits to Houa Utech.

During my speech at The Aardvark Wine Lounge, Photo credits to Houa Utech.

After my speech I received tons of cheers, a round of applause and tons of hugs. I wasn't the only one who shared incredible failures that night. There were several who poured their guts out and we were bonding over craptastic situations and celebrating together over our triumphs. It was amazing. Stephen told us that the newspaper may reach out for an article, so I gladly signed off for him to give me the info. Fast forward to February 2018 and just three weeks ago to my phone interview with Tina Dettman-Bielefeldt, the writer for the business column.

Here is what I want you to know, I did not get to where I am today by luck. I got here because I wanted to be here. Every decision you make will determine where you end up, so if you can think about where you want to end up, it's much easier to say no to the things that won't get you there, and yes to the things that will. I live everyday with intention and purpose and my "end game" in mind. And when that end game changes, so do my decisions. When you realize that you only actually have three answers to the opportunities in life it actually takes off a heap of pressure. It's either YES, NO or NOT YET. The biggest and most important question you must answer is WHAT DO YOU WANT! 

I hope that this blog has brought you some entertainment, empowerment, inspiration and encouragement. I hope that you know that you are so incredibly valuable and deserve to acknowledge your value. I love you guys.