Let It Go. Let It Go.

For four or five years now, my pastor has encouraged his congregation to identify a word for the year. By identifying the word for the year, it kind of creates your focus and year long quest. It is more than a new year’s resolution, it is a little different than goals. I would describe it more as a “due north” for the year’s actions.

Last year my word was invest. I desired to invest in others, invest in future, investing in my family, etc. I would say I was okay, just okay in my endeavors. I could have invested more financially in my future and I could have invested more into my friends and family. I think I did a pretty good job investing in my husband, my step-daughter, and my church community. I did take some time to invest in my personal brand and I feel good about that. Unfortunately my short comings and my guilt of failures tends to override my wins.

As I spent my days in reflection over the holiday break I realized that part of my problem with reaching my potential to “invest” was my inability to let go of habits, bad habits mostly! I reflect on the year and realize that too often my deterrence to changing my future is my attraction to my old way of doing things. I have these terribly poor eating habits, because I find comfort in the types of foods that I remember eating as a child around the dinner table. I have poor financial habits because I have always had the ability to make money. I don’t invest in my future because I am addicted to the joys (or splurges) of the day.

Today I want to be different. I want to let go – let go of those bad habits and those bad decisions. My word for 2019 is RELEASE. I plan to release some bad habits. I plan to release the people who get in my way of becoming the person I want to be. I plan to release my worries to Christ. I will release some of those bad eating habits. I will forgive those who hurt me, release the animosity. I will release more of the bad so that I can invest more in the good.

You can hold me accountable in 2019 – check in with me in a few weeks, a couple months and/or at the end of the year. I will be carrying less of a burden of BAD. I will let those habits go and raise the bar! #letitgo #releaseIn19

The Best of 2018

What is something you accomplished this year that you are proud of, and what goals are you setting for yourself for the new year?

With the new year upon us I looked back on the past year of podcasting and thought I’d make some honorable mentions. All of the podcast guest were a joy, but the following especially stuck out to me and my audience. To listen to the podcasts mentioned visit Apple Podcast or click on the links below.

Ep 13: Feminist Filmaker Erin Bagwell talks entrepreneurship and her film Dream, Girl.

Ep 19: Natalie Gonnella-Platts, Deputy Director of the Women’s Initiative at the George W. Bush Institute, Talks About the Power of Women and Her Own Mother’s Influence on Her Success.

Ep 22: Anna Blue, Gender Equality Advocate, talks with Rachael about her Program Girl Up and Sharing Girl Hero Stories

Ep 11: Stephanie Burns, Founder and CEO of Chic CEO Comes On The Show to Discuss Her Path To Success and Her Advice for other Entrepreneurs

Ep 20: Annelise Scudder and Rachael Talk Conflict and How They Addressed It In Their Relationship and How We Deal With It In Our Own Lives

Excuses Are No Excuse

How many New Year’s resolutions of 2018 included big dreams, tough decisions or significant investments in a future career or life change. Then how many times this year did you tell yourself the timing wasn’t right, or the finances weren’t stable enough, or the circumstances just weren’t right? Did you tell yourself these things enough times to prevent you from fulfilling those resolutions?

Well girl, the timing, and the finances, and the circumstances are never going to be right. They weren’t right when I bought my first small business OR when I made the decision to take one year off work to write my book. You will always have an excuse to not take the leap, or NOT open the business, or not lose the weight.  Have you used these excuses yet?

  • Too busy to set aside an hour and write
  • Just a few sweets since it is her birthday, anniversary, party, etc
  • Never owned a business before
  • I am only meant to be second in charge
  • I am too tired to workout

Yes, I have used them all!  And to change my future, I had to adjust my day to day to stop making excuses! If I continue to use the excuses, and you continue to allow the excuses to determine your future, we’ll never move forward in becoming the next version of ourselves – the one that comes closer and closer to our best self!

Together, we wrap up another year, and we have the opportunity to reflect, to forget about all of the past holding us back.  You can stop telling yourself you aren’t experienced enough or confident enough to apply for the job you’ve always dreamed of, and start building the network that you need to thrive in the environment you desire to succeed in.

You can stop making excuses, start making a plan, and set out to achieve your dreams, not tomorrow, or next week, or next year, today.  If you are looking for accountability, use our network here on SuccessWithoutApology.  We want to encourage you.

Begin taking steps towards your success; find a business partner, join a gym, apply for the job, and stop holding yourself back. For there is no better time to start working towards your dreams than right now.  I am cheering for you – and I am cheering for your dreams, goals, and better life.  Here is to 2019!

Ep 23: Rachael and Jazz Singer Pucci Amanda Jhones Talk Focus, Influence, and the Journey of Her Success.

On a recent trip to New York, I had the privilege to meet Pucci Amanda Jhones. She has traveled the world but now calls Harlem, New York home. Her story of success is one you don’t want to miss #moveoutofyourway

Show Notes:



Ep 22: Anna Blue, Gender Equality Advocate, talks with Rachael about her Program Girl Up and Sharing Girl Hero Stories

Are you from Alaska? We need your help. Listen to find out why!

Anna Blue is the Co-Executive Director of Girl Up, a leadership
development organization that mobilizes and trains influential teen girl
leaders through community organizing, advocacy and global
networking, creating an powerful generation of changemakers.
Anna is an innovative leader in program and policy development, with
nearly two decades of experience implementing education and
activism-based programs. Prior to Girl Up, Anna managed fundraising
and communications campaigns for nonprofits, and served as a multi-
state organizer during the 2008 presidential election. A committed
advocate for global gender equality, Anna proudly serves on the board
of directors of Elizabeth Seton High School and Girls Health Ed.

Transformation of Thoughts

Today I offer you a transformation in thoughts, feelings, and beliefs.  My December 2014 self in comparison to my September 2018 self.  The words flowed as easily today as they did back then…but with a much different perspective on the energy I choose to bring into the world.

I have made seemingly small, insignificant choices over the last 1,400 days that has brought me to a new place…one that is sustainable and deeply rooted.  A place that is more comfortable and equally (if not more) productive and fulfilling.  A place that still takes pride in a job well done or a smile across someone’s face…but does not require me to sacrifice my mind, body, and soul to achieve it…In fact, I am more me than I have ever been before.

I share this with you as a source of hope…that maybe you are not as trapped as you think you are…maybe with some journaling sessions, meaningful conversations with loved ones or bosses and a possible therapy session…small adjustments can begin to be made over time.  Sure some chaos may ensue, but the dust will settle and everyone will adjust around your new normal.  You deserve a life that you don’t NEED to take a vacation from!

Bio picAlicja Carter, MHR, LADC, BHWC, has been working in the behavioral health and addiction treatment field for over ten years.  She is a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor and Wellness Coordinator/Coach for Gateway to Prevention and Recovery in Shawnee, Oklahoma.  Alicja is passionate about pursuing a well life and collaborating with others for the purpose of stimulating positive change in her community.


Ep 21: Shirin Taber, Iranian-American and the author of “Muslims Next Door” talks women empowerment

This conversation with Shirin is one you do not want to miss.  We talk about everything from her book and life to  running an organization with her husband and how they balance success together.

Shirin Taber is an Iranian-American and the author of Muslims Next Door (Zondervan/Harper Collins). She was raised by an Iranian Muslim father and an American Christian mother, and has lived in the United States, Iran, Turkey and France. Today she directs two women’s media networks: Middle East Women’s Leadership Network and Empower Women Media. With a background in media, ministry, and cross-cultural training, Shirin assists multiple organizations in media-based initiatives. Los Angeles Times, Detroit Free Press, New York, Fox News and Christianity Today have featured her work among Muslims and Christians alike. Today she serves with United Nations partners, NGOs and faith-based organizations. She helped produce the Magdalena film, which has been viewed by millions in the MENA region. Additionally, she partners with the Religious Freedom & Business Foundation as a media strategist and producer.  Together with the George Bush Institute’s Women’s Leadership Initiative, she mentors women from the MENA region. With the United Nations Office for Genocide Prevention, Shirin  produced films for the Plan of Action (to prevent religious based violence). She has a BA in Literature from the University of Washington and is completing a MA in Intercultural Studies from Columbia International University. She is fluent in English, French and Farsi. She is married to Clyde Taber (Visual Story Network, Director) and has three children. 

Show Notes:

Interested in contacting Shirin?

Contact via Email

Visual Story Network