Last week, I posted a blog about a movement towards authenticity, towards being real and showing your true self – the self God created you to be.  There has been an amazing response; women have reached out and told me about what they’ve been going through, about how they cover up and why they cover up.  I’ve been told to continue spreading the word and encouraging.  But today, I want to talk about why it matters.  Authenticity is a very broad term.  It can mean being genuine.  It can mean being brave enough to show your makeup-less face when you really struggle with the raw picture.  It can mean admitting to a friend what you have been going through.  It can mean telling another about the battles you’ve faced to help get them through their battle as well.  And that’s the part I want to focus on.

Women empowering other women stems not only from encouragement and being a cheerleader, but also from getting down to the nitty-gritty and saying “hey, that eating disorder you’re facing, I’ve been through that.  I understand.  And I’m here.”  It’s staying up late with a boutique owner because they’re this close to quitting not only on their job, but their dream.  It’s letting people see your flaws in all aspects because that makes you human.  It’s admitting mistakes and honestly asking for forgiveness.  Women have the power to be so influential, so caring, so understanding, and so incredible together, but first we have to be authentic.

I was a completely different person a little over two years ago.  Plagued with trials of circumstance, my soul felt heavy.  It became panic attacks on the train or randomly at the bar.  It became needing a drink (or five) right when I got home.  It became angry and uncontrollable outbursts towards family members that didn’t do anything wrong and were simply trying to give me grace.  It became starving myself.  It became depression.  It became hating everything and everyone I came across.  And I had no idea how to fight it.  It was a nasty, multi-faceted beast that would come back to haunt me in the fall and winter.  I couldn’t even identify where it came from.  I didn’t know why it was happening or why I was like this; I only knew the pain.  Oh no, I didn’t share any of this at the time with anyone out of my inner circle.  There were too many demons and I had an image to uphold.  I was the farthest thing from authentic.

But what if I had shared sooner?  What if I had reached out and been real about my pain.  Maybe I wouldn’t have suffered for a year and a half.  Maybe I could’ve found help sooner.  Eventually, I realized I wasn’t being myself and I sought therapy and seriously sought God.  The therapy helped my pinpoint where my pain was coming from and helped me to control my thoughts.  My God restored my soul and set me free from my pain…and the idea that I was alone and had to hide.

When women send me messages about what they have been going through, it is a truly courageous step in reaching out.  Those women are why authenticity matters.  Women struggling with addiction, insecurities, perfectionism, mental illness, poor marriages, eating disorders, the not-enoughs, terminal diseases, and everything in between.  Anything that isn’t in alignment with what God says about you, it is why authenticity matters.  Because if you realize that you are the way you are for a reason, but you aren’t celebrating the way God made you, then something isn’t lining up.  You can have the confidence to ask for help.  You can take those steps, as big or as little as you need, toward resolution and healing.

Authenticity is called brave because it’s rare, but it should be normal.  It should be celebrated and encouraged.  It’s not only about leaving behind the compulsion to dress up, Photoshop images, and presenting an image online; it’s being authentic in person and relationships too.  Authenticity is a destroyer of shame.  And anyone who has experienced shame knows that it’s about time to kick it in the teeth.  As we continue to encourage genuineness, realness, and rawness – to ourselves and others – remember the why behind it.  Remember that motivation has to be authentic.  Reach out – and be available to be reached out to.


Welcome to the party, 2018.  To some, you were ushered in with open arms.  To some, you came much too fast.  And to others, you were a scary thought that was completely inevitable.  Regardless of how you came into our lives, you are here.  You are ready.  You aren’t slowing down, and now it’s up to us to decide how to handle your stay with us for the next 365 days.

I had enormous goals lined up for 2018: goals of winning my first breakaway buckle, goals of starting a new ministry within my church, goals of expanding my pie repertoire, goals of becoming increasingly more disciplined with Bible studies, goals of training my cow pup to work cattle, goals and goals and goals (I’m a very driven person)!  All of these were whirling around in my head until about two weeks ago.

I have always had a love/hate relationship with Instagram; I need it to run Salt Lick Sisters, but the attention focus has always seemed so backwards to me.  I would get frustrated when I saw girls who were doing the same thing as me, but better because they were putting on a face.  I would get angered when I knew someone was trying to be something that they aren’t, and getting hundreds more likes than I was, while I was trying to be genuinely true to myself.  I didn’t find it fair at all that my well thought out attempts at being inspirational would be upstaged by people showing off their cleavage.  I would almost get sucked into the fakeness, and then I would take a step back.  My perspective shifted when I asked myself why these girls were editing themselves significantly thinner, changing even their face shapes, and portraying themselves in a lifestyle that truly wasn’t theirs.  Why would someone be so dedicated to an image of who they aren’t?  Why would someone not want to be and accept the woman that God created her to be?  There are so many possible answers to those questions.  It must be exhausting keeping up with everything.  It must be painful to look in the mirror and not believe that the world will accept that.  It must be so difficult to walk into a job that you believe you have to cover up.

I cannot think of a single person that hasn’t experienced the I’m-not-enoughs.  But what is enough?  What would it take to make you feel pretty enough, exciting enough, interesting enough, or smart enough?  Especially in today’s time, where comparison can take on a terribly false idea of what is real, and what are the false things people want you to see.  We will never be enough if we are chasing worldly standards instead of God’s standards.  And guess what, you have already more than met His list of requirements to be enough of everything.

So in this New Year, I challenge myself and everyone that I come across to be authentic, to be completely and unashamedly you.  God created you the exact way that He wanted to, so nourish that person.  Grow and show off that creation, not the image of what you think the world wants you to be.  God isn’t going to bless what your idea of how you should be is.  He’s going to bless who He knows is best.  If you honor your image and build up your image, but never take care of God’s true creation, you can’t expect Him to bless that.  But if you love that wonderful life and body and mind that He gave to you, wrinkles, quirks, scars, funny laughs, dimples, weird talents, points, curves, freckles, and all, then He will bless you.

Show yourself the grace that God has, and toss aside the pressure to be someone He never intended you to be.  It takes time, trust me, but it is more than worth it.  The #authenticitymvmt is my goal for 2018.  I not only want to keep myself in check to be transparent, but also inspire other women to do the same.  God wants you to discover who you truly are, and He will be there holding your hand each step of the way.  In the end, we all need to support each other as well.  We should encourage authenticity from other women and celebrate their genuineness.  I can’t think of anything better than going around and throwing parties for all of the wonderful things that God, the ultimate Creator, has created.  And that is you.  It may seem scary, and it may take a few tries to get there, but I will be your cheerleader and encouragement.  Let’s take away the image and peel back all those layers of who we think we should be, and simply be ourselves.

Thank y’all so much for sharing a bit of your time with me today.  I hope this encourages you and I would love to see you being yourself and telling your stories!! Tag “#authenticitymvmt” in your incredible journeys so I can keep up with you, and God bless!

Xoxo, Meghan