Trials I Have Overcome (12 Lists)

Make a list of trials you have overcome

My sister Gillian from Chez Gillian and I created the 12 Lists series which is a monthly list-making series for those who love writing lists. Each month we announce the topic, write our lists accordingly, and invite you to do the same on your blog. You are welcome to add your post to the link-up below so we can get to know you a little better, one list at a time. This month’s topic: trials you have overcome.

Trials I Have Overcomevia dttsp

  • fear and self-doubt over starting a new business
  • Celiac Disease (mostly)
  • clinical depression and anxiety
  • terrible ex-boyfriends
  • getting up in the morning after a late night

Writing this month’s list was a great encouragement to me. It’s nice to remember how far we’ve come and to be proud of the hard work we’ve done in our lives. What trials have you overcome?

Check out Gillian’s list of trials she has overcome, make your own list, share it on your blog, and be sure to submit your post to the link-up below (and use #12lists2015 on social media). Feel free to use the post header provided, just be sure to link to the original posts. Happy list-making!

Haven | Sarah from Dasher Life

The One Word Inspiration series is a guest post series on Clear the Way which asks different visiting bloggers to share whatever they are inspired to share when they hear only one word. The word changes each month and today Sarah from Dasher Life is here to share her inspiration from the word haven.

[hey-vuh n] any place of shelter and safety; refuge; asylum.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve realised that everyone has a haven and you come to depend on that haven more than you’d expect. Mine is a small coastal town called Lorne, located along the Great Ocean Road in Australia.

I live only an hour away from Lorne, and as a child my parents would take me and my brother there for a walk along the beach and fish & chips for dinner nearly every Sunday night. It never mattered what the weather was like. It just mattered that we were together, relaxing before the crazy week ahead.

one word inspiration - everyone has a haven

The amazing thing about Lorne is that it is the ocean meets the rainforest. You can go on bushwalks and see amazing birds you can’t see in the city, then come out of there and go for a surf and have a coffee and the biggest chicken parmigiana the size of your head.

I had a breakdown at work a couple of years ago. It was in a small business and the work was outnumbering the people. I couldn’t take it any more but there was nobody to give the extra work to. I left to take the rest of the day off and calm down. I got in my car and drove home, covered my splotchy cry-face in makeup and got back in the car again to drive down to Lorne to just walk around and sit on the beach. I sat for 2 hours in the car just to get to my haven. That’s when you know it’s your haven – you’re willing to go out of your way just to be there. That sweet salt air from the ocean is akin to yoga for me. My breathing slows down and a sense of calm washes over me. Just seeing the small town along the coast as you approach is enough to settle any crazy thoughts in my head.

Sarah Donovan is an Aussie currently living in Germany. She blogs over at Dasher Life about running marathons, travelling the world and dealing with crazy Germans in Lederhosen who love recycling.

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August Goals

August Goals

In 2015, I am sharing my goals and aspirations with you for every month of the year. Each month I will show how I did on the previous month’s goals and let you know what my new goals are for the upcoming month. Let’s take a look at my goals for July:

  • I want to limit my time reading informational articles online and, instead, focus on finding more creative ways to relax I feel like I did a great job with this one. I read only about ten articles online this month and, instead, spent time focusing on relaxing and using my time productively
  • Run at least once a week Fail… I only ran three times.
  • Package my efforts for Clear Creative Consulting to help more bloggers I mapped out a timeline for creating one set of packages (my Werk Library) and created a scheduling system for consultations.

While I know I could have done better on my goals in July, I don’t feel like a failure. I’m going through many rough transitions right now and I’m just choosing to have grace with myself. (More details below.) Here are my goals for August:

  • Get settled into my new place.
  • Finish the newsletter courses for the Werk Library.
  • Take a real break from Clear the Way.

A while ago I took a miniature break from devoting time to Clear the Way in order to prepare for my transition moving up to San Francisco. Since then, I have successfully found and furnished a beautiful, quiet little studio for myself and am anxiously awaiting the opportunity to settle in. Before that can happen, I’m whisking myself off to the East Coast to visit my friend, Emilie. In the meantime, I am incredibly overloaded with client work for Clear Creative Consulting and desperately in need of avoiding burnout. To help with all the things on my plate, my transition in moving/settling in, and my desire to truly relax on my vacation, I will be taking an actual break from Clear the Way for the entire month of August. The 12 Lists, One Word Inspiration, and How Do You Deal series will continue as usual, but I will be forcing myself to refrain from putting any additional effort into this blog for the remainder of the month.

Wish me luck and let me know if you have any goals for August in the comments.

How Do You Deal With Upsetting Current Events?

How Do You Deal with Upsetting Current Events(via dttsp)

This week’s Feminist Fridays post is another installment of the How Do You Deal series and this month marks its one year anniversary! When I started this series, I had no idea how amazing it would turn out. I have connected with bloggers online in a whole new way and have seen such a great response from Clear the Way‘s readers. Thank you so much, everyone, for being a part of this great series with me.

Because there are certain issues in life and in feminism that are tough to talk about on our own, the HDYD series allows many voices the opportunity to share in these discussions, making it easier for us to talk about our beliefs, opinions, and feelings. Each month I ask contributors how they deal with an issue and we each share our thoughts on the matter. This month we are talking about upsetting current events. Here are my feelings on this topic:

I sometimes feel like every time I read the news, I hear about a new shooting, a new rape, a new unwarranted arrest or some other terribly upsetting event. While I want to remain informed about the goings-on around me, I feel the need to step back occasionally in order to handle some of the more gruesome stories. I have found the best way to deal with upsetting current events is to digest them slowly and decide the best course for action. This can mean reading articles only a little at a time, processing the information slowly, and talking through my feelings with others. When I take action (either by raising awareness, donating to funds or some other response) regarding these events, I feel able to repurpose my distress into something that may help.

Now let’s hear what my contributors had to say about upsetting current events, and feel free to share your thoughts on the matter in the comments.

lix bio

A checklist for dealing with upsetting current events:

1. Assess your mental health, and assess your knowledge and ability to help. Will you make things worse? Can you add something important? Change a close friend’s mind? Measure this against the toll it takes on your health, if this is a concern. Detach if needed.
2. Remember you don’t owe anyone engagement. If someone wants to “debate” a topic that dehumanizes you, you’re allowed to say ‘fuck off.’ Unfollow, block and mute indiscriminately, during event fallout and every other time. Cultivate a safe list.
3. If the event involves someone less privileged than you, support their voice. Link them (make sure they welcome it), retweet them, distract their trolls, listen when called to action. Listen.

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There’s always so much going on in the world, but lately it does feel more overwhelming. My positive spin on that is that these injustices have been going on for a long time, and now they’re just being brought to light more frequently and with more outrage. And maybe that will translate to change. The news still gets me down quite a bit, but responding to that with anger and activism just means I’m not too jaded to care about things, so there’s even an upside there. Healthy outlets for that (like volunteer work and talking with my partner and friends) are key.



It seems like there’s been a lot of crazy huge events lately in the news. With that comes a lot of online (and real life) controversy – I usually try to stick to my own business, even though I’m a pretty hardcore feminist. My main problem with current events and the upheaval they bring is that whether you’re on the ‘good’ or ‘bad’ side, everyone hates on each other. We should all be able to have (and express) our own opinions without a hate storm coming our way from the opposing side.

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Oh man, current events! It seems there’s always something on the news that’s upsetting in regards to women or just upsetting overall. To be honest, to deal with horrible current events I like to rant to my friends or my mom, someone whom I know will “get it” and can rant with me. That definitely makes me feel better!

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It might sound heartless, but I’m rather good at switching off from those horrible feelings that come with upsetting current events and news. I know that there is no point in fretting and being sad or angry for a longer period of time, so after my initial feelings of sadness, anger or frustration, I tend to push them away, rather focusing on positive things, and putting energy into other things. That said, I think hearing about horrible stuff happening definitely deepens my frustration with some part of our world, and makes me want change to happen more quickly.

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In general, I flatly refuse to read any of the comments for news stories that I see online–it is so disheartening to see how hateful people can be to one another, and I want no part in it. As of late, blatant gender inequality is one of the topics I get most frustrated about. The pay gap infuriates me, and I can’t understand how, in this day and age, it’s still okay to pay a certain group more just for having a Y chromosome. I don’t actually have a solid way to deal with this yet (other than carrying on with my life) since I’m still a student, but I’m going to have to learn how to negotiate fair pay in the future.

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I have learned that the greatest way to deal with upsetting current events, especially ones that involve violence or hatred, is acceptance. Not in a sense that is cavalier or dejected, but in a way that honors any victims and keeps a rational view of the circumstances. These events do not take away from the aspects of living that are beautiful and good; chaos is, in its nature, an aggregation of destruction and creation, of violence and peace. Only you have the ability to make something good or bad, no one else has the power to fashion your life into something amazing. Once you truly accept that you have this power, then contentment and compassion can bloom even when it seems the darkest.

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Corinne - The Feminist Feline

Good news barely makes the papers. I get CNN alerts on my phone and although I like staying informed, it’s heartbreaking to get an alert of another mass shooting, another death of an influential person, another natural disaster. I’ve found the best way to deal with upsetting current events is to seek out the good news; it’s harder to find but it happens every day. June 26 was a beautiful day this year because the news focused on joy and love with the Supreme Court’s ruling that made same-sex marriage legal. That day reminded us all that love really does win and that the world is at its best when we support each other and put love first.

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So now you tell us:  How do you deal with upsetting current events? Do you relate to anyone above?

Browse the rest of the How Do You Deal series.
See more Feminist Fridays on the blog.

Big News


I have some really exciting news to share with you. I’ve actually known for a while now, but I haven’t shared with you yet because I think it has taken time for me to really process that this is actually happening. Do you ever get like that with big deal stuff? Sometimes it just takes a while to sink in before you can share…. So what is my big news?

I’m moving to San Francisco and attending
San Francisco State University this August.

AHH!!! For those of you who know my story, you understand what a big deal this is for me. I finally have the opportunity to return to school and get a degree in something I actually care about, like really really care about with my whole heart and mind. I’ll be majoring in Gender and Women’s Studies, attending one of the most beautiful colleges in California, and living in my favorite city in my own beautiful little studio.

I’m busy cleaning and packing my life in preparation for the move, but as soon as I get a chance to set up my new place, I will share photos and update you on my transition.

I’m so excited to share this journey with you on Clear the Way. Many of you have been here with me for my trials with unemployment, the stresses of starting a new business, and all the many joys along the way. Now you can join with me in this exciting new endeavor.

Thanks so much for being here for me, friends.
You mean the world to me.

Apps I Use Most Often (12 Lists)

12 Lists Prompt #7: Make a list of the apps you use most often.

My sister Gillian from Chez Gillian and I created the 12 Lists series which is a monthly list-making series for those who love writing lists. Each month we announce the topic, write our lists accordingly, and invite you to do the same on your blog. You are welcome to add your post to the link-up below so we can get to know you a little better, one list at a time. This month’s topic: the apps you use most often.

A list of Clear the Way Kate's most used apps.

  • Messages (for texting)
  • Google Hangouts (because my boyfriend doesn’t text)
  • Mailbox
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Afterlight (for editing photos for Instagram)
  • Chrome
  • iPhone Clock for alarms/timers
  • Spotify
  • Timehop

Check out Gillian’s list of which apps she uses most often, make your own list, share it on your blog, and be sure to submit your post to the link-up below (and use #12lists2015 on social media). Feel free to use the post header provided, just be sure to link to the original posts. Happy list-making!