Categories
style

A Walk Down Memory Lane- Remembering “K on the Bay”

Just in time for Throwback Thursday, a memory appeared on my Facebook feed taking me back to the last time I lived in Traverse City.

Back in 2013, my fashion blog “K on the Bay” was in full swing.

At the time I was working with a variety of designers and online boutiques, so I thought, “why not represent local businesses?”  Traverse City was rapidly growing, but most people didn’t consider it a fashion destination.  With endless shops and brands from all over the country, I wanted to show that you didn’t need to leave the town to find great style.

I contacted every publication in town.  Shot down by most, I kept going- and received interest from Grand Traverse Woman Magazine.  Thrilled, I walked from boutique to boutique, telling them about my blog and offering to style the pieces that wanted to promote for the fall fashion season.

The article came out in the November / December issue, with the title “Warm Style on the Bay.”

This was several months before I decided to move to New York City to pursue a career in fashion.  That said, this little article made me more proud than most things I ever did on the east coast.

What I didn’t realize when I moved is that my impact and connections with other people was so much greater here in Northern Michigan.  From NYC to Boston, I was still a number.  My interest in the blog dwindled, and I later ended up deleting it.

Nevertheless, my love for style never ended- so I created Mindful in Style to bridge mindfulness and fashion.  This time, it wasn’t necessarily about the clothes or the brands; it was created to celebrate individuality and being mindful about whatever style you choose, whether it’s a lifestyle choice or what you put on in the morning.

It’s your style, no one else’s- and that’s being mindful in style.

Today, I am once again working with local boutiques, and I couldn’t be more excited.  Sometimes you have to experience different things to realize you were right where you belong all along.

I’m grateful to come full circle- and that my love for merchandising has been rekindled.

Categories
empowerment self discovery

Where I See Myself

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“I want to write. I want to write stories that make people feel less alone than I did. I want to make people laugh about the things in life that are painful. That’s what I want to do.” –Hannah, Girls

I am finally finishing Girls, one of my favorite TV shows.  Over the past couple of years I’ve been absorbed in my own life, without HBO (until now) or television in general.  However, it’s a good thing I am finishing the series when I am, because the synchronicities between Hannah Horvath and myself are out of control.

Not only is she an only child from Michigan like me, she moved to New York City with the dream of becoming a writer.  She got herself into ridiculous situations, met a plethora of crazy characters, and even was published in the Modern Love section of the New York Times- yet another goal of mine.

When asked where she wanted to be in three to five years by author Chuck Palmer (who stated how much he loves Traverse City, my hometown), she told him she wanted to write.

The vulnerability of writing is powerful, healing, and helpful to others- and like Hannah, I want to write to make people not feel so alone, too.

I’ve never been good at “jobs;” as a creative person, I’ve struggled in office environments.  I’ve had creative differences with people I have worked for.  I have had a vision, a dream, and a wild streak- something that employers generally don’t value or understand.

Freelance writing is something I am looking to do full-time, yet working on my book is my top priority right now.  In addition to writing two Modern Love stories, I have an outline for a fictional, yet semi-autobiographical book based on my life in New York City and beyond.

We will see where my path leads, but I know who I am, and I know what I am good at.  I know my dreams and goals, and in this chapter, I won’t let sitting at someone else’s desk get in my way.

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Categories
mental health mindfulness self care

Being An Introvert Isn’t Isolating

Today I decided to debunk one of the biggest introvert misconceptions of all:

That introversion and isolation are the same thing.

I shared a status on Facebook from four years ago, when I lived in a doorman building on the Upper West Side.  Every time I walked in, and every time I went on the elevator to my 6th floor apartment, I had to make small talk.

Every.  Time.

Sure, it’s nice to be greeted or to have someone acknowledge you, but sometimes, believe it or not, you just want to walk in, go upstairs, and be left alone.  So, I would keep my sunglasses on, pretend I was talking on the phone, or keep walking straight to avoid the small talk.

After sharing my status from 2015, my best friend from my hometown commented:

“Thank you for this.  I cannot stand small talk, I would rather not say anything at all!”

She gets me.

Even though we live over 1,000 miles apart, those are the connections that mean so much to me- I would rather have quality friends who understand me than a large number of people who don’t.

Some people gain energy from other people, and others gain energy from being alone.  That’s the difference between an extrovert and an introvert.  In a city like New York or Boston you’re constantly surrounded by so many people, being stimulated left and right, that it’s easy for an introvert to get drained.

This is why I spend so much time in the park, outside, and journaling by myself.  Whether I’m reading by the river or hanging out at home with the cat, my recharge time is extremely sacred, and necessary, to maintain my sanity.

It’s completely different than isolating.

I’m positive that the world around me would rather have a recharged, calm Kristin than a snappy, reactive one- and that latter is what you’ll get if I don’t have ample alone time.

Dedicated to my fellow introverts and Rachel, who *always* gets me, no matter where in the world we are.

Categories
empowerment mental health sobriety

Love Yourself: The Importance of Speaking Your Truth

“Being yourself ” today can be a scary thing in a world of so many mixed messages, expectations, fear mongering, and marketing.  Just when it feels safe to speak up or “be yourself,” someone seems to shoot you down or makes you second guess that “you” you’ve been striving to embody.

Well, I’ve finally shed the final few things that have been holding me back from being my authentic self.  For me, the most important element of being “Kristin” is simple: it is speaking my truth.

I need to be in an environment where it is safe to surround myself with people who allow me to speak my truth and can benefit from my stories.

As I feel safer and safer to share my story and speak my truth on a daily basis, the easier life has become- and the more I have been able to be of service to others.

As some of you know, I have been sober on-and-off since April 8th, 2011.

I’ve never publicly written about this before in fear of being both isolated or grouped together with other “sober people.”  I don’t identify with any group, religion, or title- nor will I.  I’ve tried it, and it didn’t work.  You will never label Kristin or put her in a box.

Today, I am simply “Kristin, and I’ll take a coffee.”

My reasons today for not drinking are different than they were a few years, or even months, ago.  I used to say, “bad things happen when I drink,” or “my body can’t handle it.”  I used to make excuses, such as “I’m on medication” or “I’m on a diet,” but today, my answer is simple:

“I’m fine as I am.”

Over my seven years of sobriety, relapses, periods of thinking I was “normal,” and drinking for pure self-sabotage, I found one common theme:

I drank when I thought I couldn’t be myself.

Being “myself” used to be a scary thing.  I used to water myself down, drink away my thoughts, and numb out my emotions.  I used to fear my imagination.  My creativity used to scare me.  I was told “creatives are flaky” or “artists starve.”  Again, that’s society’s stereotype, their lack of understanding, and their inability to think, create, or live on their own.

I get by just fine doing things my way.  I tried to fit in their box, and it didn’t work- time and time again.  So, with a clear mind and a lot of lessons under my belt, I’ll try the alternatives and create on my own.

Don’t listen to the others if their way doesn’t work for you. 

Keep doing you.  Keep speaking your truth.  Your niche will find you.

Today, I wouldn’t want to water down any message; I want to be my authentic self to share my experience and strength with others.

I am happy to share that I finally love being myself- and I’ll do my best to help you love yourself, too.

If you think you have a problem a problem with drinking or need someone to talk to, please feel free to send me a message. You are never alone: kristinfehrman@gmail.com

Categories
mindfulness

Heavenly Bodies