A Beautiful MessSometimes I feel like life is an unending battle between staying motivated and challenged and staying satisfied and content. Both are so important, and I guess there’s probably some kind of middle space that’s the perfect balance of both (?), but I haven’t achieved that yet. 

Lately I have so many ways I want to be better—in my business, in my marriage, my house, my itty-bitty social life and my creative side. It’s safe to say I get easily overwhelmed, and the worst part is when you’re really thriving and killing it in one area, another area tends to get left by the wayside. 

Let’s all have a virtual group hug and raise our coffee/hot chocolate mugs to trying to improve, while staying content, while not getting lazy, while not being overwhelmed… hahaha! 

What even IS this rant? I think I need some coffee myself. OK, here’s the rest of my outfit photos… 

A Beautiful Mess A Beautiful Mess A Beautiful Mess A Beautiful Mess A Beautiful Mess A Beautiful Mess Elsie’s Wearing: Suede Mini Skirt/NastyGal, Scarf/Cents of Style, Turtleneck/F21, Knee Socks/American Apparel, Sunglasses/F21 (similar), Clogs/Swedish Hasbeens

Passing it over to you, Sister! 

Emma Chapman Emma Chapman Lace up shoes Emma of A Beautiful MessI could not agree more! I feel like I’m constantly pushing/planning for more while at the same time thinking maybe I’ve got too much on my plate already. And how are you supposed to know?! It’s not like there’s some way to take your happiness temperature. 

This is probably extremely cliche, but I think it’s really two things. First, it’s trying to practice gratitude. And not just at Thanksgiving or when things are going your way—but all the time. I know I sometimes forget how good I have it while I’m focused on the next thing, or going through a season when something I’ve been working toward just didn’t pan out. It happens. But cultivating a thankful heart is something I’m always working on. It’s like staying fit—you can’t just exercise once and then you’re done for life. (Although there are times that would sound VERY appealing to me—ha!). It has to become a habit and a thing you constantly work on to maintain. I think being whiny comes a lot easier to me than being thankful. 

But then the second thing is just realizing that life is pretty much never perfect. I guess on some level I thought by the time I was 30 I’d have things figured out. Well, really I thought a lot of things would happen by the time I was 30 when I was younger. I guess I had really high hopes for this age. 🙂 But the longer I am an adult the more I realize no one has it all figured out, no one has a perfect life, everything is a constant flux and navigating it doesn’t necessarily get easier in that the answers become obvious. They don’t. Which is at times, very demoralizing, but at other times it feels like freedom. It’s both. It’s confusing. And that well-balanced life always seems to be just beyond my fingertips no matter what I try. 

I guess I’ll just settle for my real life. Oh wait, my real life is AMAZING even though it may not be perfect. Thank you, universe. (See, I’m practicing right now.)

Plaid and denim Red plaid and denimEmma’s Wearing: Dress/thrifted, originally from Old Navy (similar), Necklace/ASOS, Leggings/F21, Shoes/H&M (here and here), Jacket/Levi’s (similar), Purse/Marc Jacobs via Sarah’s IG sale, Sunnies/Moorea Seal (similar). 

What about you? Are you guys feeling as emo as us today? 🙂 xo. Elsie + Emma

Credits // Author: Elsie Larson and Emma Chapman. Photography: Amber Ulmer and Janae Hardy. Photos edited with the NEW A Beautiful Mess actions