Beyond Blessed

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Beyond Blessed

This time last year I had just sold a business that quite simply sucked the joy from my life. Not wanting to rush into the next thing, I decided to take a deep breath and give myself the time and space to figure out what I really wanted to do. I love R&D and dove head first into the job of determining what my next best step would be.  

It’s been an amazing year. In addition to being able to nurture myself and my family, I’ve been able to explore a lot of different paths and fall down quite a few rabbit holes along the way. It’s been a year of discovery and rediscovery and even though at times the process was frustrating and I felt impatient, I’ve loved every minute of it. 

My plan was that at the end of this process, this year, I would have a J-O-B. That didn’t happen. Instead, I got a L-I-F-E, and for that I’m eternally grateful. While I’m still not entirely sure how I’m going to generate income, I do have direction and believe that as long as I stay committed to this path opportunities will follow.

From time to time, I had to step into my own darkness, something we each must do if we want growth and change. From time to time, I felt lonely and scared and confused. The truth of the matter: I was never really alone. Like everyone else, I too am blessed with the wisdom and advice and life lessons of those who walk before me. I truly stand on the shoulders of giants. 

So, in the spirit of this week of thanksgiving, I would like to take a moment to give thanks to a few of the people who have had a huge impact on the trajectory of my journey this past year. Some of them I know personally and others I’ve not yet had the pleasure of meeting. These individuals inspired me to make changes and take risks that I would have otherwise never have even considered taking. To each of them I offer love and thanks.

Pam Asberry: Sometimes It’s Cloudy, Sometimes It’s Clear: It was reading her blog and watching her amazing life unfold that gave me the push I needed to start dreaming about what my life could be and starting my own blog. She is a true friend, a loving supporter, and someone I don’t want to live without. 

Gabrielle Bernstein: Spirit Junkie: This dynamo is an example of how to move through this crazy world. Her work has had a huge impact on how I think, move, and feel. Beyond blessed. 

Brene Brown:  Vulnerability/Courage/Worthiness/Shame Researcher:  As I read the intro to I Thought It was Just Me, I knew I wasn’t crazy and I would be ok. I had the privilege of hearing her speak at the World Domination Summit in Portland, OR and the opportunity to talk to her briefly. She actually put down her stuff to give me a hug. Yep, she’s just as awesome in person as she is on the page. Her Ted Talks are must sees.

Tim Ferris: The Four Hour Work Week and The Four Hour Body: Paradigm shifts. Every single time. Enough said. Read his books. Hurry.

Marie Forleo: Creating a Business and Life You Love: The business guru with the heart of gold. The information she shares is spot on and the community she’s created is a priceless. Through her programs, I’ve been blessed on every level. 

Sue Ann Gleason: Chocolate for Breakfast and Conscous Bites: Sue Ann has inspired me with the teaching she does on her two websites and regularly brings me to tears with her writing, but it was an invite to join her blogging master mind this past summer that was the game changer. I’m constantly humbled by the caliber of writing and quality of person I’ve enountered in this amazing group of women who are quickly becoming beloved friends.

Chris Guillebeau: World Domination Summit, The Art of Non-Conformity, and The $100 Start-Up: The boy can write. He is quite simply my high water mark. But what I believe the most amazing thing he’s done is pulled together a group of inspiring people for the sole purpose of making the world a better place. WDS was a three day love fest and I’ll never be the same. 

Louise Hay: You Can Heal Your Life: I avoided reading this book, but when I finally picked it up I knew it was just what I needed. She taught me that I will only change my life if I change my mind one stinky thought at a time. Easier said then done and non-negotiable. 

Mastin Kipp: The Daily Love is my morning must read. Always thought provoking, always eye opeing, and eerily congruent with what I’m feeling and pondering in the moment. Blessed to have found his inspiring work.

Chris McDougall: Born to Run: Gave me the inspiration and courage I needed to toss my big, bulky running shoes with the custom arch supports in the trash can and hit the trails in zero drops. After years of knee and hip pain, I’m on my way to being able to call myself a runner again thanks to his book and the resources he shares. 

Joshua Fields Millburn: The Minimalists: Joshua ditched the American Dream and created a life he loves. Reading his eloquent essays has given me the hope that I can do the same. I had the pleasure of meeting him and his exuberant enthusiasm for his life is something to which I aspire. 

Steven Pressfield: The War of Art: I’ve read this book all the way through three times and dip into it regularly. Pressfield changed the conversation in my head. Resistance is in trouble. 

Joseph Stewart: BEST. HUSBAND. EVER. He’s my anchor in a stormy world and my soft place to land.

Denise Wade: BEST. FRIEND. EVER. Blessed to have found her and blessed that she has remained a constant in my life. She’s a 2AM friend to the core.

Last but not least, I owe a debt of gratitude to every single person who has read my essays, commented on a post, and shared my writing with others. I started this blog last year because I felt alone. Through writing here weekly, I’ve been blessed time and time again as you’ve reached out to offer love, advice, and reassurance. I’ve been humbled by those of you willing to share your own journeys with me whether in the comments, via email and text messages, and in person. Pressing “publish” that first time was one of the most terrifying things I have done to date and has yielded more blessings than I can count. 

Love to you and to the ones you love best this Thanksgiving,








  1. Well said, as usual, Denise!

    • Thanks for being part of this year, Kari.

  2. I always LOVE reading your posts Denise…They are so genuine and open. Thank you from a fellow B-schooler.

    • Thanks for reading Suzanne. B-School has been one of the best investments I’ve made and you guys are the icing on the cake.

  3. My FAVORITE line: “My plan was that at the end of this process, this year, I would have a J-O-B. That didn’t happen. Instead, I got a L-I-F-E..” This is like a checklist of who to check out and who to follow for a life transforming experience.. I had looked at “The Four Hour Work Week” on Amazon about a year ago, but passed it over.. Now you have me wanting to read it!! One more good read to get me going. I’m thankful for YOU!

    • Sorry to add to your already tall stack, but Ferris does rock.

  4. Nice reading list! There are a couple on my “To Read list”, and I especially love “Sometimes It’s Cloudy, Sometimes It’s Clear! 🙂

  5. What a nice way to show your gratitude! I love it and I’m going to check out a few names on your list that I’m less familiar with.

    • This was a hard list to make, Karen. I decided to stick with the people that gave me biggest shifts and who I keep going back to time and time again. The sad thing is that there are so many more wonderful people who’ve impacted my journey this past year that I didn’t mention. There’s a lot of good out in the world the important thing is to find what resonates with you.

  6. I am blessed by your friendship and honored by being mentioned in this blog post. I am grateful we are walking down the road of life together!

    • You opened my eyes and got me started and have encouraged me every step. Indebted.

  7. Thank you for my new reading list! You’ve already turned me on to several on your list, but there are some new ones I will have to check out now. Thank YOU for being MY inspiration on this journey. Xox

    • We are all in this together. Love following your journey and so glad you’re sharing it.

  8. You are amazing, and I’m glad to be on this journey with you.

  9. Lovely post, thanks for sharing so many interesting websites, books and people! Happy Thanksgiving!

  10. Beautiful post and congrats on getting a L-I-F-E :).

  11. Denise, recovering your L-I-F-E is truly reason to be thankful. Wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving! xo

  12. So honored to be on your list of inspiration, Denise. YOU inspire me. I am called to think deeply about my life and my path each time I read one of your posts. Our stories are different. Our stories are the same. Every time I spend time on your blog I am called to write more of the untold stories that are begging to be written. I am “beyond blessed” to know you.

  13. Thank YOU, Denise, for sharing so much of yourself! I’ve learned so much!


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