Let’s Go On A Living Spree!

“The biggest adventure you can ever take is to live the life of your dreams.” -Oprah Winfrey

Welcome to My Living Spree!

The blog has been a long time coming ya’ll. It was on my heart to write this blog for at least 3 years, but of course I never acted on it. Have you ever heard of imposter syndrome? Well, I had a terrible case of it! Basically, its when a person is unable to internalize their accomplishments and have a persistent fear of being exposed as a “fraud.” Why would anyone listen to what I have to say? I’m no real blogger, I hate writing and grammar and I have no experience in this field. And if you really know me, you know that I am the most technologically unsavvy (I made that word up lol) person you will meet. The thought of having to deal with technology updates and the like literally gives me anxiety!

I’ve played by the rule book all of my life. My constant mantra was, “go to school and get an education so you can get a good job.” Therefore, I excelled at the top of my class at an International Baccalaureate High School (a.k.a. junior college 0_O) and graduated from Top 20 Vanderbilt University, not once but twice, with a Bachelor’s of Arts and a Master’s in Nursing before the age of 25. Then, I landed a certification in not one but two specialities (just in case I couldn’t get a job as a Midwife, I could always work as an Family NP). I played it really safe. Don’t get me wrong, women’s and/or children’s health was always in my heart and still is now. But, choosing a safe career over creativity was the easier and faster route to get me where I wanted to be. And a “for sure” way to become what I thought was “successful.” I was wrong.

The catalyst

You may be wondering where I am going with this. Basically, I became tired of living day to day without that spark, that flame that I knew I had inside of me. Let’s be clear, I love my job and my career (not leaving anytime soon either!), but I knew there was a part of me deep down inside that wanted to explore the more creative Ashley. In 2015 things changed. At the time, I had not traveled for at least 3 years and I said to myself, I have to come out of this hiatus! Traveling is one of my passions. I literally come alive when I travel and I felt like that would be the beginning of rekindling the flame inside of me. This became the catalyst to my living spree!

What is my living spree?

I first heard the term living spree in Kanye’ West’s song “Good Life.” In the verse he says, “let’s go on a living spree, they say the best things in life are free.” When I heard it, I immediately wanted to define the term for myself (I’m always Googling something). The definition of living, “the pursuit of a lifestyle of the specified type or being alive.” Then, the definition of spree, “an unrestrained indulgence in or outburst of an activity.” My living spree is a chance to inspire others to live their best lives— indulging in any and everything that makes them feel alive, or even the lifestyle they’ve always dreamed of. My own personal living spree is not limited to travel, but self-discovery through fashion, self-love, and empowering women to become who they were destined to be and much more. We all serve a purpose on this Earth and so many of us have no idea of what that is. I can say I’ve discovered mine and it’s so much more than the degrees, career, accolades, trips, blog, Instagram pics, and the like (pun intended lol). It’s bigger than me.

What is your living spree?

I challenge you to discover your own living spree. It may be going back to school for your master’s degree, starting that business you’ve always wanted, taking acting classes, taking the MCAT, starting your own school or taking on a leadership role within your professional career. Whatever it is, I challenge you to stop and consider yourself, what you want, and what you know to be true. Do more of what energizes you and give yourself a chance for once. As you embark on this journey with me, I hope it inspires you to begin your own living spree. My prayer is that by the time we leave this Earth, we all would have lived our best life—A life of purpose, fulfillment, and true happiness from within. No stone left unturned. One of my good friends said something to me a couple of days ago that I will never forget. She said, “You can’t find yourself if you’re not looking.” So, let’s go on a living spree!

 

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32 Comments

  1. Raven
    January 1, 2018 / 4:08 pm

    You’re such an inspiration to so many already and I know this blog will only inspire more!

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 8:08 pm

      Aww thank you so much Raven! I am so grateful to have you as a friend and constant support! You are a true gem.

  2. Jalencia
    January 1, 2018 / 4:29 pm

    Awww Ashley! This is great. I love it. I feel you on taking the more stable route of securing those degrees and career instead of opting for the more “creative side”. I’m hoping to explore my creative side and get back connected with dance. We will see if these old bones can still move lol. Congrats on your blog my Vandy sister!

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 7:57 pm

      Jalencia, you are an amazing dancer and I would love to see you back out there on the dance floor and performing! Some of my best memories of of Vandy are dancing with VIBE! I believe in you and please keep me posted. This year I am also challenging myself to get back into dance because I actually really miss it too. Thank you for your support and feedback!

  3. KEY
    January 1, 2018 / 4:33 pm

    I LOVE IT!!! IM STAYING TUNED IN!!! HAPPY NEW YEAR!

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 6:54 pm

      Thank you so much for supporting the blog! I can’t wait to continue this journey with you! Happy New Year and God bless!

  4. Rhy
    January 1, 2018 / 5:03 pm

    You gone get this spree in 2018!!! Thanks in advamce for bringing out of a sistaaaaa. Love u. Proud of u. Look up to youuuuuuuu!!!!

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 6:54 pm

      Thank you Rhyan! That means a lot coming from someone I’ve always and still do look up to (I still have your number saved as “role model” in my phone from 2009 lol). But in all honestly, I am so thankful for your constant love and support! I am too excited for your living spree honey… I don’t think the world is ready! But, they gone learn “tuhday”! 2018 is yours!

  5. Rhy
    January 1, 2018 / 5:04 pm

    Advance** bringing IT out***** 😒

  6. Sis
    January 1, 2018 / 5:07 pm

    To my baby sister…..you are the most amazing, smart, beautiful, energetic young woman I know. Although I feel I helped raised you, meaning I tried my best to be the person you could look up to, now and for a while now, I look up to you. I’m excited to go on this journey with you to hopefully inspire me to be the best me while finding my true passion and purpose! I love you to infinity and beyond. Let’s go sis! 😙

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 6:51 pm

      Thank you sister! Of course I have always looked up to you and tried to immolate you since I was a toddler. You have always been a great role model for me and you definitely are still that! You are everything! Your words and support mean so much to me and I thank you for always supporting me and believing in me. I am excited for you to find your true passion and purpose as we take this journey together! Love you to the moon and back! This year is ours!!!

  7. Debura C. Burrell
    January 1, 2018 / 5:11 pm

    Ashley,
    I am so proud of you!
    Your zest for life and courage to take a leap of faith and follow your passion is awesome.
    Living a life to inspire others is an amazing journey.
    I am inspired by you.. keep up the good work.

    Love you!
    Mom

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 6:48 pm

      Thank you mom! Love you so much. Thanks for believing in me and instilling me that drive and zest for life that I have always had. You are my constant inspiration. I appreciate you and all you have done and continue to do.

  8. Tracie
    January 1, 2018 / 5:30 pm

    Ashley, this is so wonderful! As I was reading your blog, I felt like this message was specifically for me. As you get older, you find yourself just going through life and craving an awakening, etc. Well today, I’m going on A Living Spree! Continue to inspire people all around you Love! Happy New Year! #ONELOVE

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 6:47 pm

      Yay! Go Nikki go! Live your best life girl! You deserve it and plus we only get one chance on this Earth. As I grow older I realize that life is show short, so we have to live it while we can. I am excited for your living spree and please keep me posted! Happy New Year, I love you and thank you so much for your support!

  9. Sharonta Phianzee
    January 1, 2018 / 6:15 pm

    Wow! So true! I love it! I’m so proud of you! I love you fam! 😘😍

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 6:41 pm

      Thanks so much Sharonta! Thanks for reading! Love you too!

  10. Niya Key
    January 1, 2018 / 6:19 pm

    Congratulations and Happy New Year!!! I’m so happy to call you my friend and that you took that leap of faith to create this blog! Your first post was inspiring and I can’t wait to read more! Cheers to you for giving yourself the chance!! Love you and see you soon!!

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 6:40 pm

      Thank you Niya! Your kind words and support mean the world to me. Starting the blog was definitely a leap of faith and probably one of the most vulnerable moments I’ve had in my life. However, I feel so free and happy now and it was all worth it. Thanks for reading and I am excited to see what 2018 holds for the both of us! Cheers to a wonderful year! love you too!

  11. January 1, 2018 / 6:47 pm

    Ok. Soooooooo, I’m choked up right now. Nodding while reading your expression,s o f s elf discovery and a cceptance. …I find myself motivated. Mission accomplished, Ash!!!!! This year, I’ve belly ached about my students’ lack of motivation and academic accomplishment, but while reading your blog I had to question myself. …..Have I done absolutely EVERYTHING I could do to inspire and motivate my students this year??????? Sadly, I can’t say that I absolutely have. Going back to my classroom in 2018, I am gonna do all I can do to take my class on a leaning spree!!!! (Credit will go to you and Kenya for the term). Thank you for inspiring me!!!! Always proud of you ♡

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 6:37 pm

      Thank you Mama Watts! Let me just tell you that you have been an inspiration for me from the very beginning as I sat in your classroom in 4th Grade at EPIC as well as a second mom to me. You are an inspiration to all of the hundreds of students you have taught over the years already and even ones to come. I am excited about your LEARNING SPREE and I challenge you to continue to be the most amazing educator, mom, sister, daughter and woman you are! I love you and I am equally as proud of you as well!

  12. meagan c 😊
    January 1, 2018 / 7:57 pm

    😍😍😍😍😍😍😍

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 6:33 pm

      Thanks for reading Meagan! Hope all is well!

  13. Lori Jane'
    January 2, 2018 / 12:31 am

    I LOVE EVERYTHING about this and of course YOU, Ashley! For those of you who may not know Ashley personally, you are in store for a treat! So, subscribe and join Ashley on her LIVING SPREE. I am more than certain that you will be inspired in some way! Looking forward to what 2018 has in store for you! XoXo-Lori Jane’

    • divinedestiny1
      Author
      January 3, 2018 / 6:33 pm

      Thank you so much Lori! You are a true gem and I really appreciate your support! And thanks for reading!!!

  14. Sabrina
    January 4, 2018 / 4:31 am

    So very proud of you Cuz! 😘 Your friends statement about not being able to find yourself if you’re not looking is powerful !!!!! I lost myself for two years but was able to fake until I made it. I finally made it at the end of 2017 and look forward to 2018!!!!

    • Ashley Cockrell
      Author
      January 5, 2018 / 2:52 pm

      Thank you cousin! And your story is definitely encouraging to me and everyone else! There are so many people out there that felt the same way we did. I am excited about you continuing your journey in 2018 as well!

  15. January 9, 2018 / 11:16 pm

    You are DOIN it girlfrannnnnn 😉

    • Ashley Cockrell
      Author
      January 10, 2018 / 3:06 pm

      Thanks so much Courtney! I’m learning from THE BEST 🙂

  16. January 11, 2018 / 1:17 am

    Thank you for your transparency! I started my blog for the similar reasons. I walked the path I thought I should walk: earn honors in H.S., graduate from Top Tier university (earned B.S. and M.S. by 25), and climb the corporate ladder. By time I earned my 2nd degree and re-entered corporate healthcare environment, I felt that I lost myself, my spark, my creativity. I’m excited to follow your journey!

    • Ashley Cockrell
      Author
      January 11, 2018 / 3:50 am

      Hey christa! I have been following your journey as well! Love your blog and your page! WOW, it sounds like we literally have the exact same story! I am so happy that we both found that spark and have an outlet to express our creativity now 🙂 Thank you for your support as well!

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