Amy Edwards leads the rock star life of performing and pursuing her dreams. We recently caught up with this busy wife, mother and musician while she was recording her latest album in the studio. We also take a look inside her new book, #RockYourLife: 5 Days to New Habits, that will surely inspire you and how you tune into life this year.
Photography by Ben Porter Styling by Bijou Finney
Make-up and Hair by Rianna Alberty, RIMIX Cosmetics
Sittings Producer: Lance Avery Morgan
Location: 512 Studios
ROCK YOUR LIFE
What if you could accomplish anything? What a question, right? And that’s exactly the spirit that makes life rock. Picking up something new. Fearlessly embracing the unknown.
In 2010, at 38 years old and with two small children, that’s just what I did. I unwittingly set myself on a course of life-rocking by saying yes to picking up a guitar and attempting to make sounds with it that were tolerable to the human ear.
I didn’t know that I was embarking on something that would alter the course of my life. I just wanted to try something new. And as a result, I learned that with a little effort and the right mindset, life could be less challenging, be more satisfying overall, and it didn’t matter if I was busy. I could do it.
That’s what rocking life really means: we are busy individuals, but we want to accomplish things and do things and go for it and feel good about ourselves.
That’s definitely not too much to ask out of life, is it?
But the how of it is where it can break down. Like I said: We. Are. Busy. It’s a thing now, right? Busy lives. I personally never have the wherewithal—or much less the time—to spend on a super involved series of lessons. I won’t stick with a program that demands too much from me. Which then sets me up for—you guessed it—feeling bad about myself that I didn’t complete my goal.
With that in mind, my book #RockYourLife: 5 Days to New Habits is laid out so you can flip it open anywhere, you can work it straight through, or you can use it as a reference when you are feeling down and need a pick-me-up. You can go back to it anytime to remind yourself of what you need to do every day to keep working toward your life goals.
I need it just as much as anyone. I refer back to this system all the time: I fall off of it, and I get back on it. True story: I even used this 30-day process to get the first draft of this very book written. I truly wrote this 30-day Rock Your Life manual for myself and anyone who wants to achieve a goal and live the best life possible, without feeling overwhelmed in the process. This book is the opposite of feeling bad about yourself. This book is about spending roughly ten minutes a day working toward a goal and a better you. This book is about building goal-oriented little daily habits, which are a lot like developing callouses on guitar-playing fingertips: once they’re there, they’re there for life… even if you don’t use them every day.
When I picked up music those years ago, I started to get called rock star randomly by people I knew. It used to embarrass me. I constantly felt like—what am I doing? Am I seriously 40 years old and pretending to be a rock star? But as time went by, I thought about the people who I would call rock star. What that means to me is someone who lives life on their terms. It’s someone who might be afraid but doesn’t allow that to hold them back. It’s someone who takes risks, lives in the present moment, and doesn’t conform to expectations. It’s someone who doesn’t worry too much about what others say about them. It also means getting out of your comfort zone. Those are all methods spelled out and made easy, and are right here in your hands.
So, flip it open or follow it through, and know that you can make your life rock to the next level just by saying yes like I did that day in 2010 when I picked up a guitar. We will get past fear, build toward feeling amazing, accomplish our goals, and most importantly: live our dreams.
And the best part? Today can always be more rocking than yesterday.
DAY 1: GET CLEAR ON YOUR GOAL
What’s your goal?
We all have one. Or many. Maybe yours isn’t fully formed yet. Maybe it’s a vague sense that we know we have more within us. Maybe it’s as simple as getting though this book!
When I started out with guitar, my dream wasn’t to write music or release an album. My goal wasn’t fully formed at all. I think if I were to spell it out, looking back, it would be something to the tune of, “I’d like to not embarrass myself.”
If I had forced music-beginner-Amy to come up with a goal, however, I know she could have seized upon one or two dreams that seemed crazy at the time. Maybe it would’ve been to be able to play the guitar solo in the first song she learned (that would be I Love Rock ’N Roll by the great Joan Jett, by the way). Or, possibly it would have been to just actually call herself a guitar player.
Music-beginner-Amy had always fantasized about being in a band. Ever since college, she fantasized about how amazing that must feel and the exhilaration of being on stage and connecting with others through music. It’s a little trigger that can point you toward what you really dream about doing in life.
Take cues from the moments you might feel jealous of what someone else is doing in their life. When I feel that twinge, it’s always a huge indicator that I should be pursuing whatever it is. It’s a signal to see what feeling or desire lies underneath.
We don’t have to have our goal completely figured out now, and we don’t have to get fancy with it, either. We just need to keep it simple and say, Yeah! I want to write a book. Or, I want to help people with their lives. Or, I want to start a charity. Or (insert your answer here!) Something drew you to this book. What was it? Was it just the idea of making more happen within your own life? Or was it the simple thought of being perceived as a rock star?
Take just a few minutes today and get one thing written down, either on your own paper, a post-it note, or a notebook. Is it a business you want to start? Or is it a creative endeavor, like starting a blog, podcast or a YouTube channel? It could even be something personal, like being a better partner, parent, or leader. Maybe you want to learn a new skill, play guitar, or advance in yoga. Whatever it is, get as clear on it as you can, and write it down.
Next, take your goal and put it on a post-it note, or tape it up on your bathroom mirror. The idea is to see your goal every day. It is yours. State your goal in a way that affirms it, using will rather than want. For instance: I will write this book this month!
Again, your goal doesn’t have to be fancy—I mean, consider me. I am not trying to write the great American novel. But I am trying to bring this idea to life. It scared the daylights out of me (and quite nearly overwhelmed me). But just because we might feel scared, that doesn’t mean our goal isn’t worth fighting for. You know what you dream of. So, bust that out and let’s put it in front of you.
As the day progresses, keep your goal in mind. Toss it around in there. Let your brain mull over all the things you might need to do to get it going.
Aaaaand…you’re done! BOOM! Day 1? CHECK. When you’re ready, follow the rest of these steps toward your goal:
30 Days to #RockYourLife
- Get clear on your goal
- Write it!
- Clear that head
- Get specific
- Action (not distraction)
- Baby steps add up
- Say it!
- Stay Vigilant
- YOU time
- Rock all night
- Thanks = Cool
- Do that thing
- Right now is all
- Routines build freedom
- Want without attachment
- Get with that FLOW
- It’s a DIY world
- Find your tribe
- Roll through FEAR
- Random daily kindness
- You control SUCCESS
- Assess and reassess
- The Majority Rule
- Be true to your beat
- Change the song
- No one rocks like YOU do
- Look like the star you are
- Good enough vs GREAT
- WILL not WANT
- You create your own light
Order your copy of the book, out January 31, on Amazon.com and for more information, visit RealAmyEdwards.com