By Kim Fusaro
This story is part of a series profiling the inspiring women behind the 2018/2019 Hello Sunshine x Together Live tour, a band of all-female storytellers who traveled to 10 cities across North America in November. On tour, the women shared their stories and songs, and made 10,000 women across though country laugh and cry.
Abby Wambach (two-time Olympic gold medalist, also part of the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team named 2015 Glamour Women of the Year) took the stage in Cincinnati in 2018 as part of the girl-power-fueled Hello Sunshine x Together storytelling tour and the group kicked off their conversation by sharing the mantras they keep going back to. Regardless of what you’re going through, it seems there’s a mantra among them that could work for anyone, whether you’re the highest-scoring women’s professional soccer player ever in the world (Abby), or a mom with two kids under three and half (Priya Parker, who also happens to be a best-selling author). So we went ahead and rounded up mantras from all of the “warrior women” for you below. Pick the one that best applies, take a deep breath, and repeat as needed.
“Go off the path.” We all know the Little Red Riding Hood story. Little Red Riding Hood has to stay on the path or she’ll run into the Big Bad Wolf. But I think a mantra I recently realized I’ve lived by, without knowing it, was “Go off the path.” Everything good and beautiful in my life has happened when I ventured off the path, and I realized that, in fact, there was no Big Bad Wolf. —Abby Wambach, soccer superstar
“It’s not what happens; it’s what happens next.” When something’s gone upside down, or not the way I wanted it to, I remind myself, “Well, that’s the one thing I don’t have control over, what already happened. But my response to that, and what I do next, is the thing I do have control over.” —Jennifer Rudolph Walsh, one of the cofounders of the tour, entertainment and media exec, who emcees the events
“Keep zen and try again.” In my music career, I made some good calls and I made some bad calls. And I sometimes made choices in favor of my truth and sometimes I made choices in hopes of pleasing others. Every time, when I look at my mistakes, I say, “Keep zen and try again.” That actually came because my computer crashed. And I was going to tear my hair out. But now I implement it in all different places in my life. —MILCK, singer-songwriter
“There is enough time for all things.” I’m the mother of two under three and a half, and I find myself in this deep debate where I’m like, “Life is short. And life is long.” And so those moments where I’m like, “Ahhhhhh, I can’t do ALL this stuff!” I think, “There is enough time for all things.” —Priya Parker, author of The Art of Gathering
“We can do hard things.” I don’t know if anyone else has gotten sober before, but it’s unbelievably difficult. When I was 25 and getting sober and teaching third grade, I felt like life was so difficult. And I thought, Maybe I can’t do it. It was so hard for me. And so each day I would take my class past the classroom of my friend, where a little sign on the wall said, “We can do hard things.” So when the kids would say, “I can’t do this, it’s hard,” she would say to them, “Oh no, it’s supposed to be hard. Hard is OK. We can do hard things.” And I don’t know why it just changed everything for me, but I thought, It’s not supposed to be easy. Right? It’s not supposed to be easy. I’m not doing it wrong because it’s not easy. It’s hard and it’s supposed to be hard. And the “we” thing always sticks with me. When it’s getting too hard, it’s because I’m trying to do it alone. It’s not “I can do hard things.” I cannot do hard things. It’s we, together. —Glennon Doyle, author-activist (also one of cofounders the tour; also Abby’s wife)
I have three: “Yes you can can.” You have to try to do things. Most of the things you try to do won’t kill you. If they will, don’t try that. But along with that, you have to dream big. And if your dream turns into a nightmare, you find a new dream. “Don’t hang out with mean people.” There are billions and billions of people. If you can’t find anyone who’s decent, get a cat. And finally, “It’s OK to be uncomfortable.” I think we’re all really worried about making people uncomfortable. But if my need to exist, safe and equal, makes you uncomfortable, I’m OK with that. —Maysoon Zayid, comedian