Tammy Helfrich

Life begins right where you are.

Author: tammyhelfrich (page 1 of 27)

5 Ways to Enjoy the Process More

Photo credit: Creative Commons (hoyasmeg)


I have been on a journey over the last year that has helped me realize something about myself.

I love to write.

With the help of people like Jeff Goins, I have even learned to say, “I am a writer.” And I actually believe it!

It has been quite an incredible journey. It’s been exciting and scary and unbelievable at times. But, I feel like I am continuing to grow and learn. One of the biggest lessons I have learned is about the process of creating. Since I hadn’t considered myself creative for a long time, I wasn’t really expecting some of the other challenges that can come with being creative.

Some of these challenges can include ongoing periods of self-doubt. Or, learning to manage your time to be creative, because it’s radically different from your day job. Another challenge can be understanding that you may not always enjoying the process of creating. In fact, it can be extremely frustrating and hard!

 “The process of making art is as valuable as the art itself.”  Yoko Ono

But if you are continually frustrated, you aren’t enjoying the processing of making art. And if you don’t make time to create, you will never start. If you continually doubt yourself, you will not be allowing your true creativity to come through.

How can you enjoy the process more?

1. Dedicate time. It can be as little as 30 minutes per day. If it is important, you need to make time for it.

2. Find other creative people. Start sharing stories and encourage each other.

3. Start. This is half the battle sometimes. Just start something!

4. Don’t compare yourself to others. Where you are starting is different from where someone else is. Many times, they’ve been on their journey much longer. Don’t trap yourself in the comparison game.

5. Believe that your creativity matters. The world needs to hear it, or see it, or experience it. There is something that God has uniquely created you to bring to the world. Start figuring out what it is. Then, do it!

What valuable lessons have you learned about your own process of creativity?

Who’s investing in you?

 How are you growing as an individual?

What are you personally doing to grow?

Who’s investing in you currently?


These are all things I’ve been thinking about lately.

Do you have a great boss at work?

Most don’t.

Do you have someone you can go to for advice?

Someone who will tell you the truth?

Photo credit: Creative Commons (DeaPeaJay)

Over the last few years, I have been incredibly blessed to have formed some strong bonds with people who invest in me. They believe in me. And they love me enough to tell me the truth.

What has this done for me?

It’s made me realize that I don’t have to be afraid to approach people for advice.

I don’t have to be afraid to give feedback.

I grow significantly when I have a community.


Because I have learned to form those relationships.

I have learned to network without any request for something.

I have learned that if you approach someone with honesty and the desire to grow as an individual, they will be open to having a good converation with you.

So, who’s investing in you?

How has that changed you?

Parenting is hard

I recently wrote about how nobody told me how parenting would change my life. Luckily, so many of those things I wrote about were when the kids were younger.

Now, the challenges are different. I realize as my kids get older, and I see them in new situations, that they are incredibly unique.

Their personalities have always been there.

I’ve always known they were different.

Night and day different.

But now I’m really seeing their personalities and how God designed them. And I am continually learning how to adapt.

Photo Credit (Creative Commons)

One is strong-willed. The other is extremely active and physical. They have different needs. They react to things in completely different ways. I am continually trying to adjust to help teach and empower them.

And then I wonder.

Am I overanalyzing them?

Are we becoming overly critical of our kids?

Are we constantly looking for something to be wrong with them or for things that separate them from others?

I honestly don’t know. I think some people definitely look for things that are wrong with their kids because their kids aren’t what they expected them to be. And I think sometimes parents don’t know what to do. I know I’ve certainly felt that way. Many times.

I want my kids to learn early in life what makes them unique, what makes them special, and to use the gifts they’ve been given. Beyond that, I’m still figuring it out.

What is the hardest part of parenting for you?

Me first!

First born child.

Incredibly stubborn.

Strong willed.

Wants his way.

Demands to be first.


Pouting (Photo credit: dadblunders)

Do you have a child like this? Do you know a child like this? Were you this child?

I am a pretty calm person. I don’t get irritated easily. I have no problem letting others go first. While I am incredibly determined, I do not have the “me first” nature. I’m sure I did at some point, but I can’t remember it.

When I became a Mom for the first time, it took me a while to realize that these were qualities that my first-born has.  Looking back, I see this from very early on. He was not a good sleeper. He did not like sleeping anywhere but his swing. It took trying different things, and talking to other Moms until I realized that it didn’t matter where he slept, as long as he slept!

I have struggled over the years to find a balance with this. It can be difficult. I want him to be determined. I want him to believe strongly in himself and not let others push him around. I want him to realize that he is uniquely made. I want him to know that he can do anything he sets his mind on. I want him to be a leader. But, with all of these things, I want him to understand that he needs to learn to put others first and not be selfish. I find this to be a constant learning battle as a parent.

We’ve been working with him for a long time on this. He’s gotten much better. But, lately, the me first attitude has been out in full force. We take family bike rides together, and he always wants to be first. He has a very hard time letting his younger brother lead. Don’t most big brothers?

A few weeks ago, he had an incident of needing to be first, and ended up tumbling with his brother on their bikes. He was scraped up. And I was irritated! Of course, I checked to make sure he was okay. But this flew out of my mouth. “This is exactly why we tell you that you don’t have to be first! People can get hurt. What were you thinking??”

It wasn’t one of my finest Mommy moments, as I didn’t show much grace. I was so frustrated that he could not understand what we’ve been trying to teach him. It just wasn’t sinking in.

Then it hit me. Aren’t we all like that sometimes?

Until we actually experience the mistake and the hurt associated with hit, we usually can’t learn the lesson. And as parents, I think it can be one of the hardest things we will have to do. Sometimes, we have to let our children fall and suffer the consequences in order to understand these important life lessons.

How do you handle the hard lessons with your children?

Judgment or Grace?

Mike Foster is one of the founders of People of The Second Chance. He is an incredible human being. He started POTSC to show people how to overthrow judgment and liberate love. I love that line!

He has challenged me every time I have heard him speak. Keep in mind that I’m a pretty easy-going person. Most people would not describe me as judgmental. I feel like the majority of my life I have given people the benefit of the doubt. Most of the time.

Have I been rotten?

Have I been judgmental and mean?

Have I thought I was better than someone else?


And that bothers me.

POTSC challenges us to think differently. When others are crushing someone for a mistake they made, POTSC people are loving them. They are in their corner.

How do you react when someone makes a big mistake? Especially if they did it intentionally?

Do you rush to tell someone else about it?

Do you laugh?

Does it make you feel better about yourself?

Photo by People of the Second Chance

I have really been working on this over the last few years. But I find myself having to continually choose to show more grace every day.

With my coworker, who deliberately lied to make himself look better to our boss.

With my neighbor, who talked about my other neighbor rudely.

With the Mom who ignores their child.

With the person who willingly is hurtful to me.

With the person who expects me to drop everything for them, even though they’ve continually made poor decisions.

With my family members who take advantage of me.

With the person who dresses in a way that I would never dress.

The list could go on and on.

Yet, I choose to show grace. And love. And support.

I have a long way to go. But I am working on being able to say that I am a proud member of People of the Second Chance.

How can you choose to show grace to someone today?

Will you choose to be part of the judgment problem or the grace solution?

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