When did you start your blog/business?
I started www.mybookofrandoms.com about a year ago. I would post my random ramblings on facebook and my friends encouraged me to do more of it. Before long the blog was born. www.heysis.org had a longer conception time. It started off as a group I started called MRS! Made in His image, Reaping His promises, Standing in Sisterhood) which was meant to encourage women in their marriages. Through a lot of twists and turns I realized all women need to be encouraged, as we are all in different stages of life.
What triggered you to pursue your dreams and begin creating the life you want?
I actually started blogging anonymously. I was in a very difficult time in my life, couldn’t find help and decided to “write out my rehab” so to speak. So many women reached out to me, who quietly struggled like I was, and said that my writing blessed them, encouraged them, ministered to them. My dream is to write. My purpose is to encourage women in Christ. It’s awesome to see how God is marrying the two into something great!
What do you enjoy most about living life on your own terms?
I’m still learning this.
How are you living out your purpose?
As I said before, God is marrying my passion with my purpose. And I am living it out by coming out from the anonymous umbrella, and instead becoming transparent in my writing. I was able to speak at a women’s day, which was also a fresh experience for me. It’s exciting to discover your purpose and see it blossom.
Describe an a-ha moment.
My a-ha moment came when I got my first random email from a stranger, expressing her gratitude for my blog. It was a time when I ready to quit. Not just writing, or the blog, but just fighting for a better me. I felt attacked at every turn, I was beat up, I was down trodden and just done. Her email, which expressed not only gratitude for what I had written because it was identifiable and it helped her, but also a craving for more. In that moment I understood that I could not quit. In that moment I realized that it wasn’t about me. God was using my pain to help others. I often have moments when I want to quit. And in those times God always offers a similar reminder.
What does being free mean to you?
To me, being free means to not have to live by anyone else’s rules or standards. I stand by my own convictions now. I am learning to own my own truth, no matter what it looks like to anyone else.
What has been your biggest challenge pursuing your purpose?
Transparency. Being that my initial blog was anonymous, I was able to tell my truth while hiding behind a fake name, all while smiling in public as if everything was great. I don’t believe that we should walk around with our hurt on our sleeves, but I do believe we should have more honesty. But it’s hard to be honest sometimes. It’s hard to say, I’m hurting because my husband is cheating, I’m hurting because my kid is acting up and I don’t know what to do, I’m hurting because even though my life looks great, I am totally unfulfilled. We need a safe environment to be honest. My hope is that Heysis.org in part, offers that.
What does your ideal day look like?
This is an easy question! Time spent with my boys, time spent in my word, time to write, lots of laughter, dinner with friends….throw in a beach, a nap and a couple extra hours in the day!
What’s one thing that you want people to know about you or your blog?
Hey Sis is about having meaningful girl talk for women. It’s not to bash men, but to encourage women. It’s about finding peace and purpose in Jesus Christ.
What is your biggest fear?And how do you overcome your fears?
My biggest fear is what will people think. Whether I fail or succeed, how did I look doing it? What will people say. I gave others opinions way too much power, which caused me to shrink. So I guess that’s my biggest fear: shrinking based on others’ opinions. I have overcome this by repeating to myself God’s word. My favorite scriptures to combat this is “If God be for me who can be against me” and “Greater is He that is in me, then He that is in the world”. When I have God with me, I’m unstoppable. And anyone’s negative opinion doesn’t concern me any longer.
How do you stay encouraged?
I stay around encouraging people, like minded people. Friends that love me and want to see me succeed, often encourage me to stay the course. My children encourage me. They may be biased, lol, but they are never short on telling me how awesome I am. I try to have devotion/quiet time with God every morning, which truly sets the tone for my day. And I always try to find something to laugh at. Laughing is one of my favorite past times! It’s free therapy and if you do it right, it can be an ab workout!
What are you most proud of ?
Being a mother is probably what I am most proud of. It’s a job I never knew I wanted. When I was pregnant with my first son, I was intimidated…didn’t know that I could hack it. Turns out, I’m pretty doggone good at it! I’m secondly proud of hey sis. My book of Randoms is great and funny and silly and provides me, if no one else with laughter. But hey sis has purpose. She’s my third baby.
How do you support other women?
In any and every way that I can. You are selling a product, I will buy it and tell my other girlfriends about it. You are in trouble, I’m grabbing my cape and coming to help. You have the body, I’ll grab my shovel….JOKE. I like to encourage my sisters, push them towards greater goals. My greatest honor is when a sister asks me to pray. No greater support than going to God on behalf of my sis, petitioning together, and waiting expectantly for a great move from Him.
What is your favorite affirmation or quote?
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11
What’s your favorite book?
I have fallen in love with the Bible. The more I read it the more encouraged I am to continue this race. It’s nothing like knowing God Almighty is for me and on my side!! Aside from the Bible, I love a good romance, with comedy. Is that cheesy? Lol. Give me a Terry McMillan, Eric Jerome Dickey….a cup of coffee and lit candles and I am quiet for hours.
What exciting things do you have planned for 2015?
I’m excited to start Hey Sis!! It’s been on my heart to do for a while and I have a had a couple of setbacks. I opened the website on February 24th, which is also my birthday! I am so excited to see where God is going to take it. I’m so thrilled to encourage women and gain encouragement as well. Aside from that, I’m still posting my randoms, working on a devotional for women, and pretty open to whatever God opens up for me.
You can learn more about Valencia...
The Chasing Free feature is designed to spotlight women who are living in purpose, pursuing her dreams, and creating the life she wants by doing what she’s passionate about.
Monthly, I'll introduce you to women that are unapologetically living life on her own terms. She's a solopreneur, blogger, small business owner, she may even have a side hustle until she’s able to do what she loves full time. She’s doing the darn thing! And she openly shares her journey with the BeFree Community to help inspire others to be free.
If you or someone you know is living out their dreams and want to be featured on the blog, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!