Prayer

on prayer

“Bold prayers honor God, and God honors bold prayers. God isn’t offended by your biggest dreams or boldest prayers. He is offended by anything less. If your prayers aren’t impossible to you, they are insulting to God.

The greatest tragedy in life is the prayers that go unanswered because they go unasked.

God does not answer vague prayers. The more specific your prayers are, the more glory God receives.

Most of us don’t get what we want because we quit praying. We give up too easily. We give up too soon. We quit praying right before the miracle happens.

It’s not just where you end up that’s important; it’s how you get there. Goal setting begins and ends with prayer.

You can’t pray for open doors if you aren’t willing to accept closed doors, because one leads to the other.”

- Mark Batterson

{thanks for the reminder and originally posting, Brooke!}

comparison

avoiding the comparison game

We’ve all felt it: the slight gnawing twinge of discontent (or maybe it’s even evolved into a slight depression) that pops up after spending time scrolling through our social media feeds. Call it what you want — envy, jealousy, FOMO — but there’s no doubt it’s often a result when we allow ourselves to play the comparison game. It can be brought on by someone else getting a s***load of instagram likes, or landing a huge opportunity, or “lucking out” with a new job that you’d really like to have (please tell me I’m not the only one who’s felt this way?) And now those triggers are constantly at our fingertips, letting us dive right into the comparison game with one swipe of our iPhone, ready to tap into the disconnect they we all feel sometimes between the life that we want to have and the life that we actually have. And since Instagram especially is so ripe for creating a façade of a “perfect” life, we can easily find ourselves in a constant state of catch up with someone who, from the outside looking in, seems to have it all.

So the question becomes, if we’re going to use and interact with social media on a daily basis, how do we combat the feeling of dissatisfaction that can accompany a scroll through the “fabulous” lives of everyone in our feed? Here are a few practices that have worked for me:
  1. Be others focused. Instagram is often a shiny happy world where people post only the moments (and outfits, meals, parties, and destinations) they want people to see (edited and filtered to perfection.) There’s nothing wrong with conveying a curated feed of the things that inspire us as long as we’re not forgetting that the other 99.9% of our lives is actually real life. If I find myself focusing on the number of “likes” I’m getting, it probably means that it’s time for me to get outside myself and start engaging with other people, loving my family and friends, and setting my sights on the people and things in my life that matter. Because real-life love beats 1 million “likes” any day of the week.
  2. Be supportive, never jealous. In this crazy and fast-changing world of blogging and social media, can we please find a way to be on the same team and help each other? Instead of allowing the wins of our friends’ (or “competitors’ “) to feel like threats, how can we turn our perspective so that they are an encouragement and inspiration to us? It’s not as though the amount of success in the world is some kind of bank account that can be depleted; there’s lots to go around, and our friend’s success in no way takes away from our own present or future victories. Trust me: when you’re able to truly be happy and supportive of others’ accomplishments, you’re left feeling one thousand times better than if you let jealousy rear its ugly head.
  3. Just be inspired. One of my good friends Ashley Woodson Bailey recently shifted her career as a floral designer to that of fine art photographer, inspired by the desire to capture the constant metamorphosis of a flower as a moment in time. She does it on her own terms with her favorite medium (flowers) and her iPhone. Ashley told me that since she gave herself the freedom to dive headfirst into her passion, she’s finally been able to ditch the cycle of competition she’d previously felt and learn to appreciate the beauty all around her. Instead of constantly feeling the need to “get ahead,” she’s learning to let real things of substance, like sharing art and beauty that moves people, become her yardstick for success. Just remember: a quick snapshot on social media (and how others respond to it) is unrelated to our real value in the world.
  4. Learn to set boundaries. Do you have certain “triggers” that set off the start of the comparison game for you? Be aware of when these happen, and be proactive in deterring them. Maybe it means turning off your phone at a certain time in the evening, or refraining from scrolling through your instagram feed first thing in the morning. On vacation or even just over the weekend at home, it might mean unplugging for an entire day so that, instead of thinking about how you’re going to capture it with your iPhone, you’re actually just soaking it all in. And if that sounds like a dramatic step, it probably means that it’s just what the doctor ordered.
  5. Remember: life’s too short to worry too much about what other people think! You’ve got one chance to live it, and I promise that most people are way too caught up in their own little worlds to worry too much about yours, anyway. Our culture applies the time-is-money principle to every single moment of the day and night, which doesn’t leave room for rest, play, or so many other things that our bodies and souls long for. I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to master the art of staying present in the real (not virtual) moment.

via Camille Stiles, photo via Pinterest here

copenhagen

i’m heading to scandinavia!

quick life update! i’m taking off for a spontaneous trip to europe FRIDAY! i’m heading to scandinavia and will be visiting oslo and bergen in norway, copenhagen, denmark and stockholm, sweden. i’m super excited about the adventure! scandinavia was never one of those places that i was dying to visit but decided to go somewhere interesting and totally new/different from where i’ve been before. i’ve only been to europe twice {paris and barcelona} so really looking forward to heading back. also: norwegian air flies direct to a few places in scandinavia so no layovers! very thrilled about that.

have you been? would LOVE any recommendations on things to do/places to explore/spots to visit for dinner, coffee, etc. i’ve been curating cool things to do and places to visit on pinterest the past week or so. i won’t be posting on polish my crown, so follow my adventures on instagram @luckyandi!

{copenhagen image here}

orange harp

have you downloaded orange harp? + giveaway!

Do you remember when I shared about the awesome app, Orange Harp, a few months ago? Orange Harp is the first mobile app that makes it easy to shop from your phone for socially conscious products – and to learn the stories and meaning behind the products and brands.

I’m excited to share about one brand in particular today that’s featured on Orange Harp. The brand is a line of jewelry called showtheLOVE and celebrates the beauty, magic and power we each possess. All of their inspirational emphasizes positive affirmations and invokes that ‘girl power’ mentality {so perfect for queens!} and is also created with recycled metals and ethically sourced stones. And super cool — all showtheLOVE products in the Orange Harp app are 35% off until this Sunday, July 13!

Orange Harp is also giving one lucky Polish My Crown reader a beautiful showtheLOVE elephant bracelet/hair band {valued at $28}! The bracelet is inscribed with the words “What would you do if you knew you could not fail?” reminding people to dream big and live the life they desire. TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY: comment below sharing your favorite brand on Orange Harp/what brand sounds the most interesting to you. You can also share via Twitter tagging @luckyandi and @orange_harp. To find out the list of brands featured on Orange Harp, visit here: https://orangeharp.com/our-brands/ or pull from the list below. The giveaway lasts until Monday, July 21. Good luck!

Along with showtheLOVE, here’s a few of my favorite brands in the Orange Harp app:

LOVEHEWN: ethical fashion jewelry line
BOGOBRUSH: bamboo, compostable toothbrush that donates one for one toothbrushes to those in need
Pura Botanica: sustainable, cruelty-free luxury bath products that donates a percentage of proceeds to several nonprofits
Juniper Ridge: world’s only wilderness fragrance distillery
Beryllina: handcrafted jewelry made from recycled metals and U.S. only gems
Jessica Faulkner: amazing L.A. fashion designer – I’m obsessed with her tank tops!
Tradlands: well-made women’s clothing, inspired by menswear and sewn in San Francisco
Dandelion Chocolates: two ingredient {cane sugar and cocoa beans} chocolate
Love & Piece Jewelry: nature-inspired jewelry made with timeless semi-precious stones – shared on Instagram here!
Ecco Bella: gluten and parabon, water and alcohol free makeup
Etkie: jewelry line that provides jobs to previously unemployed Native American women; works with Kiva