Here at Damn, Girl, I talk a lot about taking risks and asking others for the things that you need.
And I follow my own advice… mostly.
I get anxiety about pursuing the things that truly matter to me, just like every other creative.
While I am sure this is true for every person, I feel there is a larger stigma for women when it comes to pursuing their goals with the direct, relentless passion it takes to actually get shit done.
This is in part due to to the fact that in order to achieve our goals, we need to ask for support. We are made to feel that by asking for support, we are admitting our lives are not perfect. And there is nothing if not a great pressure to make our lives seem perfect.
Not just perfect, but completely self-achieved. Like we are some glorious island that has its own oil, the best mangos in the world, and a thriving, self-sustaining economy. We have entire platforms for this illusion: they’re called WordPress, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Don’t get me wrong; I love stalking celebrities’ sandwiches on Instagram as much as the next person, but the popularity of the “perfect life illusion” kept me from even considering blogging or talking about my experiences at all. They just weren’t that shiny.
That’s when I read The Skinny Confidential.
Lauryn Evarts was seemingly the same: perfectly blonde, fit, put together, drinking rosé in France and glowing for some damn reason (seriously, how the hell do you all just glow? Is there some switch I don’t know about? Is that what nipples are actually for? Have I been using them wrong?).
But then I came across a post of hers called “I Hate You Anxiety” and for the first time, I saw one of these perfect people talking about something real. I continued reading her blog. She dished on jaw swelling, constipation, all the nasty stuff that I thought never touched these people.
The more I read, the more I grew to love her voice. Lauryn was sweet, she loved and supported women, she talked about real things. It was The Skinny Confidential that inspired me to start this blog.
I knew that I wanted Lauryn in my corner, so I decided to take my own advice and reach out to her. To ask for the support that I needed.
Sure, I had some wine first. Psyched myself up. Waited for the inevitable “Please do not contact me, loser” message I was sure to get at any moment.
Turns out asking for the things that I needed turned out to be ok. Lauryn was sweet and supportive and was kind enough to pass on her blogging tips to the readers here at Damn, Girl. So tuck in, and enjoy some tips from the master:
Q1: You’ve built a successful business out of blogging, did you always want to be a blogger? How did you come up with the idea for The Skinny Confidential?
The idea for The Skinny Confidential came about when I was attending San Diego State University. I was incredibly frustrated by the lack of healthy food options on campus… and I was BORED. At the time I was going to school full-time, working days & nights, and teaching reformer Pilates and Pure Barre. Also, I was on a major budget.
So I started modifying all of my meals & the rest is history.
I would take off one side of the bread in a sandwich or swap lettuce for spinach, sweeten coffee with cinnamon, make taco salads, you get it. Then one day I sort of had a lightbulb moment and thought, “why not share my tips and tricks with other women? There’s 20,000 women on campus, they need these tricks too! And shit, I want their tips.”
Since then, The Skinny Confidential has evolved from a fitness and health blog to a community for women all over the world to come & SPILL their tips & tricks. It’s a source of inspiration for women. The Skinny Confidential is also a book, a podcast, and soon to be product line.
Q2: What kind of info are women getting when they visit TSC?
Anything & everything! The more taboo the better, HA! One day I’ll share a healthy 1 minute recipe, the next we’ll talk home decor, and then another day BAM! A post on yeast infections! The content sort of varies but it’s always TSC branded.
Ultimately I like to get REAL real. A little sassy too.
Q3: What are your top easy fitness tips?
Workouts should be effective, not time consuming. I created TSC Bombshell Body Guide which integrates barre, yoga, Pilates, and your favorite personal trainer all into one. It’s 27 minutes, I’m dead sore after, and I can do it anywhere. Really ANYWHERE. In a hotel room, at the beach, in my office, etc. I shoot for three times a week.
You need cardio. Not a lot, but you need it regularly. Intervals are huge for fat burning. I shoot for 3 to 4 times a week.
I love a good Pilates class — huge Pilates fan. Also, yoga once in awhile is always good for the psyche.
Q4: Favorite quick/easy recipe?
Q5: Tell us about your journey from blog to book. What inspired you to go from online to also in print?
Since I get a lot of questions from readers, I thought it would be fun to put all of my tips in one place, in print, so women could have a coffee table book and refer to the chapters at any time. A lot of the info in the book is not found on the blog.
Q6: What can we expect to read in “The Skinny Confidential: A Babes Sexy Sassy Fitness and Lifestyle Guide?”
Even though the content is fresh, it’s a lot like my blog. Kind of everything & anything. You’ll find recipes, personal stories, makeup tips, relationship advice ( like how to avoid the “Love Chub” ), easy/quick workouts, hair secrets, TONS of pictures, and more.
Q7: Which chapter did you have the most fun writing?
Definitely the chapter on my relationship. It was fun and something a lot of girls can relate to: LOVE CHUB. The guy can eat whatever he wants usually and as women we want to keep up! That’s love chub. I write about how to avoid it!
Q8: You just had a super intimate wedding in Cabo. Tell us about it.
Michael & I were engaged for 4 years before we tied the knot. We invited our closest friends & family to Cabo for a 4 day wedding celebration.
Q9: Between the blog, staying fit, your husband, dogs, managing a social life, the list goes on and on, how do you manage it all? Do you have any tips for women that wish there were more hours in the day?
I make things quick and easy in any way I can. For instance, I use the 27 minute workouts in TSC Bombshell Body Guide — a lot of my recipes take 5 to 10 minutes to make. Quick, easy, painless.
As far as balancing it all? I recommend LISTS. Stick to them. I also set goals for myself & make sure to meet them. Balance is discipline & discipline is difficult. If it were easy though, everyone would do it. Discipline can really take you places if it’s utilized correctly.
My ultimate advice: start small, think big.
Q10: What’s the single most important thing you’ve learned from building a successful blog empire?
Anything that’s truly worth it takes time & patience. Success takes time. Business takes time. Relationships take time. Building anything takes time.
Time is your friend.
I launched my brand over 5 years ago. I have blogged and worked on it every single day, 7 days a week. Again, discipline is key.
Q11: What are you working on now? Any books or special projects we should be looking out for?
I’m constantly adding new content to TSC Bombshell Body Guide and Membership. We’re currently working on an ANTI-INFLAMMATORY meal plan, which I can’t wait to share with everyone.
Michael & I are having a blast recording our weekly podcast: The Skinny Confidential: HIM AND HER. We answer business and relationship questions from readers and just shoot the shit. It’s been so much fun to work on a new medium. Podcasting is something we are very focused on right now. Big plans to come.
Also, possibly another book & a product line are in the works. Stay tuned!
In the meantime, you can find some major realness on The Skinny Confidential.