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One of the best pieces of advice I received prior to attending the ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) conference in Nashville a couple of weeks ago was to find something unique about myself and embrace it. The premise behind this advice was that embracing your individuality helps you stand out from the crowd and be remembered.

When I told Mountain Man about the advice, he quickly helped me pinpoint the quirky part of my personality that needed to be embraced. And that is how I became the proud owner of a pair of silver metallic Converse! (I added a glitter ribbon for extra pizzaz.)

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Why Converse? Well, several years ago, I had surgery on my right foot (twice). As a result, most shoes that I wore caused my feet to hurt and my legs to cramp during the night. Since I was on my feet all day (I teach middle school), I had to find a solution fast! Then I realized my feet didn’t hurt on casual Fridays when I wore my Converse. So, I started wearing Converse to school every day…I now own, nine pairs (navy blue, light blue, denim, black, white, red, pink, purple, and my new silver ones).

Of course, seventh and eighth graders think it’s cool that their teacher wears Converse shoes with dresses, but what would my writing peers think?

After two weeks of searching for a pair of dressy shoes that I could walk in without twisting my ankle (or worse breaking my neck), I embraced Mountain Man’s suggestion and ordered the silver, metallic sneakers.

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I was happily surprised to find two “sole-sisters” at the conference, authors Jamie Jo Wright and Sara Ella .

left to right: With the lovely Sara Ella at the ACFW Gala, with the talented Jamie Jo Wright after her “How To Build A Platform When You’re A Nobody” class, Sara Ella and I showing off our shoes, and my “not so tired” feet at the end of a very busy day  🙂

It turns out, embracing my individuality at conference was the best thing I could have done. My shoes sparked more than one conversation with fellow attendees, and I was a lot more comfortable being “me” than I would have been trying to be someone I’m not.

So, go out into the world and be yourself! Embrace your individuality, and be uniquely you!

 

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