Growing Into Grace is all about garnering pearls of wisdom from women at all different points in their life. I am such an advocate of women learning from one another! Experience is the best teacher but it can also be an expensive one, so why not listen to those who have been there and done that so we don’t make the same mistakes. As we continue with the series, Toya Haynes is up next!
Toya Haynes is an extremely talented writer from New Jersey! I met her at my very first writing workshop, The Writer’s Muse. She attended in order to get out of a writer’s block funk and I’m glad that the workshop was able to help! Toya covers all types of music events in and around the tri-state area. She gives the lowdown on all the cool places to eat, hear great music and just have a good time. She also published a really cool devotional blog, Hilltop City, for traveling musicians that are Christian! We’re hoping it turns itself into her first book!
Below, check out the 5 things that Toya knows for sure!
Toya Haynes, What’s Good Toya?
1. Comparison is futile. I’m 40 but I am a weird 40. Like, Benjamin Button 40. I used to look at other people my age and wonder how they are “adulting” so well while I feel like it took me 10 years just to figure out how to be 30. When I stopped comparing myself to others, I came to actually like who I am at 40. Constantly comparing yourself to others keeps you from really knowing and loving who you are.
2. People can change and we need to let them. I have a loved one who has done a complete 180 in life. It’s been a beautiful journey to see them change. Unfortunately, our society doesn’t give a lot of people a chance for redemption. I really wish that we would be more gracious to help people change, heal and then blossom into who they are supposed to be. We need more success stories. After all, we would want that for ourselves.
3. Don’t ever mistake community for friendship. I’ve been fortunate to be a part of a large and wonderful community of beautiful and musically creative people. With that being said, the overlap of my closest friends and my community is pretty small. While it’s wonderful to work alongside people, everyone is not supposed to be a part of your inner circle. Realize who is and never take them for granted.
4. Parenting doesn’t end at 18. Like I stated earlier, I’m 40 and I am pretty sure my parents are not much less concerned about me now than they were when I was 18. I don’t think you ever really stop being a parent. On the flip side, even at this age, I am still concerned about what my parents think of me and my life decisions. We won’t always agree but it is still important that they trust me.
5. Choose someone for where you are going and not for what you want right now. When you are packing for a trip, you pack for where you are going. It should be the same with whomever you choose to partner with in life. Sure that sundress is cute, light and flirty but if I’m headed to Chicago in the dead of winter, I’m going to need to pack something with a bit more warmth, coverage, and stability. Anything outside of that will only be excess baggage.