It blows my mind when I look back on my life and realize the number of times I’ve talked myself out of something. Can you relate?

Somewhere around the time I moved from Virginia where my family and my world was, then thrust smack dab into Middle School, fear started to creep in. I had a personal experience that I would put into the traumatic category. In fact, I had a few. And it wasn’t until I was an adult that I realized that was the time of my life where the root of my anxiety took hold.

Fast forward to when I got married. About a year into pretending to be an adult, and I make that statement in all seriousness, I got sick…really sick…the sort of sick where you wake up one day only to discover a month has passed. And when I woke up? My first ever panic attack. Turns out I was recovering from pneumonia, which possibly started out as mono, and was probably having an asthma attack and the for the first time in my life I thought I was going to die. Since then I have battled what a therapist would later label as “panic disorder.” Since that time I’ve spent a lot of time learning to understand myself as an artist, as a person…but in that time I’ve also realized something else. I’ve been hiding. For years. Hiding behind jobs, my husband, my kids. And on the top of the list?


I look back at lots of excuses as to why I should NOT have done something. You have them too. And it amazes me how easily we can create them. We don’t have to look very far to find them. So lets address some shall we? Because I have PLENTY of reasons I shouldn’t find success, including the level of success I currently have.

As an example lets just say you are sick and you can’t set or attain your goals because your illness has defined you. I have personally been chronically ill most of my adult life. I have had cancer. Twice. I have had chronic allergies, sinusitis…you get the picture. And I still have sick days and I rest, but what else do I do? Paint. I paint sick. I paint tired. I paint in pain. So then you tell me, “Well Chelle I don’t have the space I need.” OK. I live in a 3 bedroom townhouse, a small 3 bedroom townhouse with my 2 boys and my husband. I homeschool. My husband works from home…with all his equipment and supplies it takes to do photography, printing, etc. We have no outside office or storage facility. So where do I possibly paint? Where do I work? I paint in my bedroom. Because of said townhouse we get little natural light, and our bedroom has the most light. So I literally paint in a corner.

You see, success is not found in ideal space and circumstances…when the stars are aligned just so or our ship comes in…when you are at your ideal age (whatever that is!) or when you are married to a supportive spouse or when you get married. The difference between a successful person and an unsuccessful one really comes down to attitude and perspective. When you have the right attitude and right perspective, your excuses somehow become smaller. If you don’t have money you come up with creative ways to work around that. You make a list of your natural skills and strengths and find a way to capitalize on them. Lacking time? Well if you have time to watch TV you have time to make some goals and action steps to make them happen. Do you lack support? Find it in your faith and friends. Don’t have supportive friends? Acquire some new ones!

If you want something bad enough, you will make a way. And I’m allowed to say that because I have. And I will continue to fight the doubts in my head, the resistance around me, the obstacles and circumstances that try to distract me and derail me.

So for 2016, no more excuses. No more allowing doubt, fear, and resistance to sabotage me of all this life has to offer. No more hiding. I want to have life and life abundantly.

Are you with me? I sure hope so.