Tag Archives: confidence

project 30- chelsea

25 Sep


Chelsea, 31 of Fresh Steps

What would your 30 something self tell your 20 something self if you could?

Don’t look sideways. Comparing yourself to others is a total waste of time and energy. Life is long and everyone will have highs and lows. Carve your own path and don’t be afraid to make a few mistakes along the way – those mistakes are a good thing and will shape who you become. Spend time with your girlfriends now – relationships and families will happen and suddenly you won’t have as much time for each other. Open a savings account.

What do you wish you took more seriously in your 20’s?

I wish I took MYSELF more seriously. I was so focused on what I thought others wanted me to do, I forgot to ask what I wanted.

Health and fitness. I had a horrible insomnia problem for most of my 20s which I assumed was genetic. I learned later it was easily fixable with a change in eating and fitness habits.

What do you wish you took less seriously in your 20’s?

What other people thought of me. It truly did not (and does not) matter.

Romantic relationships. Every memory I have of being heartbroken is now a big, giant #whatwasithinking.

Favorite memory from your 20’s?

Spending a year travelling solo in Australia produced enough memories for a lifetime, but if I have to pick one – it is a memory where I suffered more than I ever have – the one that sticks in my mind was finishing my first ultramarathon at 28. Finding ultrarunning in my late 20s completely transformed my life. Physically I shed pounds, but the most important changes were mental. I let go of uncertainty, doubt, worry (and insomnia)! I gained confidence, strength, and the ability to work my way through anything. You don’t know perseverance until you’ve forced yourself to run 100 miles. Ultrarunning boosted all aspects of my life: my career, my personal relationships, my mental well-being. It became my catalyst to understanding the importance of goals.

In your early 20’s where did you think you would be (work, live etc) by 30?

I thought I would be living in New York hosting a music show on MTV. I was going to marry a John F. Kennedy Jr look-alike so I could get a green card to work in America. And a loft on the upper east side so I could run in Central Park every morning. I cringe when I think of the time I spent daydreaming (time I should have spent planning, running, working…anything).

And where were you by 30? What did your life look like?

Turning 30 was a huge sigh of relief for me. I was completely lost in my mid-20s. By my late 20s I wrote down what I wanted, and what I valued. I realized Vancouver was the place for me – a big enough city with easy access to both the ocean and (the most essential piece) mountains to run in. Once I knew my goal I aggressively chased it. I arrived in Vancouver a week before my 30th birthday and felt like I was finally living my best life (thanks for that phrase, Oprah).

Life is taking shape in Vancouver and I feel comfortable in my skin. I live with my boyfriend Dom and his son and we have access to the best mountain trails in the world. I’ve found a peer group of smart, intelligent women that I’m proud to call friends. After struggling in a job I didn’t like for a year, I have an awesome Senior position working on digital and social strategy with Canada’s national broadcaster (shout out to CBC fans). Most surprising of all, I have completed 7 ultramarathons, 2 of them being 100 miles long. I could barely finish a road marathon a few years ago. It’s remarkable what you can jam into your late 20s when the number 30 is looming.

Were you ever worried that it wouldn’t all fall into place?

Yes, all I did was worry! That was the problem – worrying didn’t get my anywhere. Once I wrote down achievable goals & gave myself deadlines, the worry went away. I know I’m intelligent and I I work hard. There will be bumps along the way but I feel prepared to take them on – and enjoy the ride along the way.

What is the greatest gift about being a woman in your 30’s?

Confidence. Independence. The ability to detect (and not take) bullshit.

When you look out onto the horizon. What do you hope your life looks like at 40?

I hope I maintain physical and mental health. Running is not something everyone can do forever, but I hope I can take care of my legs and body enough so I can continue well into (and past) my 40s. I want to chase career and financial goals. I plan to check some more countries off my travel list and experience running trails around the world with my boyfriend. I hope we see his son continue to grow up happy and healthy. I hope to share what I’ve learned with those younger than me – I had some very helpful people give me a hand up after college and I look forward to paying it forward. I hope I get the opportunity to run the Hardrock Hundred in Colorado. And I hope no one will be able to tell when I cave and get botox.

What’s a quote/ saying you try to live your life by?

Only make moves when you’re heart’s in it. And live by the phrase “sky’s the limit.” — Notorious B.I.G.

One thing we know for sure is that change is certain. Progress is not. Progress depends on the choices we make today for tomorrow. — Hilary Clinton

Few places in this world are more dangerous than home. Fear not, therefore, to try the mountain passes. They will kill care, save you from deadly apathy, set you free, and call forth every faculty into vigorous, enthusiastic action. — John Muir

connect with Chelsea : twitter / instagram @chelssees / blog



project 30 – brian

7 May

It feels weird to introduce Brian on my blog considering I talk about him allllll the time. You would have to be living under a rock to not know who he was, but, just in case….he’s my future husband and my favorite human. I can’t believe I actually got him to  participate in my “Project 30’s” Q & A. Let’s just say that opening up on the world-wide web is soooooo not his style. He leaves that to his crazy fiance. Somehow I got him to agree to be the first male to be interviewed for the project- I think that means he loves me.

Honestly, his answers are so thoughtful and inspiring and I’m not just saying that because I am madly in love with him. Enjoy.

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This a totally odd, against the grain, peeling away the onionskin, type exercises. As Kate does, in a totally good way, she continues to challenge me with this fun little outing. Seeing her bravely wade through the literary world, baring her soul one keystroke at a time – how could I not follow that example for at least one day, one post. Welcome behind the curtain, for a glimpse of what Kate is signing up for… by choice.


What would your 30 something self tell your 20 something self if you could?

Cherish everything – time is finite so don’t let those fleeting moments pass by without noticing. Cherish your family and friends and every moment you have with them – those moments will not, and do not last forever. Embrace the quirks, savor the smiles, store the sounds of their laughter. Cherish those ever-rarer moments of quiet – that unadulterated quiet that only comes with freedom – an naivety that fades as we get older. Revel in the laughter and fun that comes with having friends that truly love you for who you are and just get it – don’t waste time on those that don’t or doing things you aren’t passionate about.

What do you wish you took more seriously in your 20’s?

Quite frankly – I wish I were more selfish – I don’t mean selfish as in “look at me, I’m the center of the universe” selfish, but more of wanting to conquer the insatiable desire to be beyond the normal world, beyond the status quo, experience more, see more, taste more, feel more, learn more, be more. There is no substitute for that unscripted, diving in head first experience and while I think I did a pretty good job accumulating a fairly good haul of those – there is always more – be more selfish.

What do you wish you took less seriously in your 20’s?

The future. I have always believed in myself – my parents instilled an amazing gift in me – in that they believed in me no matter the circumstance or the obstacle ahead. I wish I had trusted this more whole-heartedly and just embraced the moment. I am a “brooder” as one friend once called me. Things are measured, calculated, multiple scenarios are run, an evaluation is made – get out of the thought process and jump into the reality, or for that matter the unknown, that is staring you in the face, just say yes.

Favorite memory from your 20’s?

Wow Kate. I mean really? All of it – and that’s not a cop-out. I’ve been, admittedly, very blessed with amazing family and friends, free from most struggles and burdens that face many people throughout their lives. My 20’s were awesome. I lived in 3 different countries, completed multiple degrees in a profession that goes beyond passionate, created life-long friendships, explored the world testing my own perceptions and misconceptions about life and the infinite diversions it has to offer. My 20’s prepared me to be the man I am in my 30’s – and I wouldn’t trade one moment, the good or the bad.

In your early 20’s where did you think you would be (work, live etc) by 30?

Honestly I had no idea. I am not sure that even now I have a concrete idea of what life should be, where I should be going, what it looks like going forward – I don’t know. I always felt that you needed goals to guide you and the ability and freedom to deviate from those as you see fit – free of guilt, with all abandon. That being said – I am driven, sometimes to a point of obsession. But I knew this – I would have a career doing what I passionate about. I would have a family that supported me and stood by me every step of the way. I would have friends who would be there no matter what the situation or the consequences – and that was at a minimum, no matter where life took me. That is an unbelievably precious thing to have – I was free to pursue more, knowing what I already had …

And where were you by 30? What did your life look like?

I am right where I should be – I know this with no doubt in my mind. Very simply – I just know I am happy. I knew I would have my family, my friends, my career in my 30’s. The part I didn’t know I would have, and definitely was definitely surprised to have, was this amazing partner and best friend, Kate. I mean who end ups dating, engaged to, and soon to be married to a person they have known since grunge, braces, and really bad junior high hair? I have a partner who when she looks at me makes me feel like anything, anything is possible. I had no way to comprehend the effects of when someone has an unrelenting belief you in like Kate does in me. It is inspiring. It is motivating. It is everything. Life is fantastic. Sure, would I also like to be financially golden, gallivanting around the world, pursuing my other passions – absolutely – there’s still time. I am only 31 and Kate and I are just getting started.

Were you ever worried that it wouldn’t all fall into place?

No. And I don’t say that lightly. I have always been confident in myself and my own ability to find a way forward. I thank my parents for that – I also thank the fact I am an only child. Being your own best friend, your own entertainment, your own internal combustion engine providing drive, quite simply reduced my need to have someone else provide that for me. I used to tell my friends that truly – if I had just a handful of wonderful friends in this life, my cabin in the woods, and a faithful pup by my side I would be good. I probably ended up with the better end of that situation – thank you Kate – but I am still pushing for my cabin.

What is the greatest gift about being a woman man  in your 30’s?

Having the confidence in myself, the education and experience that people have to take notice of, the vision to see beyond the hurdle just in front of me and the knowledge that while life is awesome, it also just absolutely blows sometimes, but it always comes back around – have faith.

When you look out onto the horizon. What do you hope your life looks like at 40?

More love. More laughter. More adventure. More additions to our family unit – French bulldog or otherwise. Just more – bring it on.

 What’s a quote/ saying you try to live your life by?

I have actually always had a strong disdain for role-models, quotes to live by and anything of the like. Why do I want to be like someone else, do what someone else is doing. I want to be my own man – I want to be me. That being said I’ll play along. I read this recently and it speaks to me, where I am at, and where I would like to be going – at least for the next bit of time…

“Find what you love and let it kill you. Let it drain from you your all. Let it cling onto your back and weigh you down into eventual nothingness. Let it kill you, and let it devour your remains.

For all things will kill you, both slowly and fastly, but it’s much better to be killed by a lover.

– Tenuously attributed to Charles Bukowski


Connect with Brian

website / facebook / twitter 

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