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Ashley LeMieux

July 12, 2012

When I was young, every time people asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, they would laugh at my naïve answer, “A writer and business owner.” The reaction was usually the same, “But what do you really want to do? You can’t make any money being a writer.” After a while, I decided that they were right. When I got to college I changed my major several times, each time being more frustrated than the last. A year before my graduation I finally switched my major to English like I had always wanted it to be, and am now a writer and a business owner.

I’ve come up with a model the past year to help me every time I want to start a new project or venture into the unknown. This can be used in any of your life’s situations; Motherhood, work, church callings, new ideas, learning how to cook (okay, I’m still working on that one), etc. I’ve interacted with a lot of people who say they have a dream of doing (fill in the blank), but it has never happened because of (fill in the blank with lame excuses). I’ve learned that we literally can accomplish anything that we want to, we just have to make it happen. So, amazing and talented women, here are your four steps to making it happen.

1. Begin-One of the most difficult parts of accomplishing a goal is taking the first step. That’s probably why everyone hates Mondays. Poor Monday gets the pressure of being most people’s starting date for anything new. But how many times has it been a Friday, and you’ve said, “On Monday I’m going to start my diet…” Start today. There’s never going to be that perfect time. Success happens when you stop waiting for Monday and start today.

2.  Explore-It’s time to explore your options. What is the best way to accomplish your goal? One of my favorite phrases is “work smarter, not harder.” Figure out the smartest way to get from point A to point B, and get ready to tackle opposition when it comes. Reach deep within you and explore your potential. Explore your relationship with God and ask Him to help you learn who you are. This is important to fall back on when things happen that might make you want to give up

3. Create- To me, “create” is a beautiful word that requires action. Create time, focus, excitement, whatever you need in order to keep going. Create projects that get you closer to your goal, create relationships that you can learn from and that will aid you, and create happiness within to push yourself outside of your comfort zone.

4. Shine- Be confident in yourself. You’re amazing. No one in this whole world can do you, better than you! Give yourself credit for the things that you are being able to accomplish, and motivate other people to go after what they want to do too. Success isn’t just reaching our goals, it’s also helping others reach theirs.

Go ahead, let the world see you shine.

Ashley is a 25 year old change activist living in Phoenix, Arizona. She created The Shine Project to motivate the world to go out of their comfort zone, reach their goals, and lift others around them. This year, she is traveling around the country putting on SHINE events to get people involved in their communities. She created a non-profit, The Shine Scholarship Project, to raise money and awareness for inner city high school students so they can receive higher education. They take these at-risk youth and organize service projects with them so they learn leadership skills and become aware of their ability to give back to society. Ashley served an LDS mission to Cincinnati, OH, which fueled her love for people and her desire to make everyone aware of their potential to shine. Ashley blogs at: