Be a Babe: Subscribe & get a free Beginner's Toolkit + more. Smooches!

Self-love: Jenni chats with Mary from Uncustomary about a powerful practice

Posted by on Nov 7, 2017 in acceptance, guest author, inspiration, self care | 0 comments

A few months ago, I stumbled across an Instagram account that was just irresistible. Mary is a strong, creative, energetic, authentic woman talking about the benefits (and challenges) of practicing self-love, and I adore her style. She offers resources at her website, Uncustomary, including blog posts, a podcast, a fun (and affordable!) membership service, a book, much more. We had a couple conversations and now, OMGOSH are we friends. I’ve written before about how we can rock our look as ChronicBabes; this babe rocks it Every. Dang. Day. Today, she’s hosting me over at her Uncustomary podcast, and I’m hosting another conversation here, too—because we both believe women with chronic illness deserve to love themselves deeply, no matter how sick they are. And have fun while they’re at it! Jenni: You’re all about the self-love and its impact on leading a happy life. What brought you to this work? Mary: The short answer is knowing what it’s like to be on the complete opposite end of the spectrum! I started developing multiple mental illnesses at just eight years old, and it seriously impacted my adolescence in terms of self-esteem and overall happiness. Feeling like I wasn’t in control of my body made me hate my body and myself which spiraled deeper and deeper. I finally got to a point where my symptoms were controlling my life and I knew if I didn’t at least try to do something about it, I was going to end up in a place I didn’t want to be. So I started cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), which is one of the huge stepping stones I pivoted on and feel changed my life. I basically learned how to deal with some of the most obtrusive symptoms in my life, and by doing that I felt this mental space open up in my mind. I finally wasn’t totally consumed by just getting through the day; going from one symptom to the next… I had room to wiggle around! I could even get creative! I dove back into crafty stuff I had missed from my childhood and started documenting it. From there emerged a blog, and that blog chronicled the progress of the journey of my self-love exploration and discovery that is ever-growing. Essentially, I realized that if someone who had five mental illnesses, a palm-full of pills to take just to function, and a panic attack metaphorically scheduled on her Google Calendar could start loving the body that had gained a hundred pounds in the process (from medication side effects) and herself, that it was possible for other people in better and even worse situations. I wanted to provide my perspective in hopes it would be useful...

Read More

Join me for a celebration – November 12 in Chicago

Posted by on Nov 2, 2017 in announcements, chronicbabe 101 | 0 comments

Now that ChronicBabe 101 is published, I have a little more breathing room—and I want to celebrate with you! I’m hosting a book party on Sunday, November 12 from 1-5pm in Chicago at TLR: The Living Room. The space is wheelchair accessible, and the party will be kid-friendly. We’ll have snacks and treats and drinks and music and free swag and book signings and… it will be a lot of fun! If you’re interested, please RSVP to the Facebook event. And please help me spread the word by sharing the event on your Facebook feed, inviting your friends, shouting from the rooftops—there will be room for all ChronicBabes and their loved ones at this...

Read More

The ChronicBabe book is now on sale

Posted by on Sep 25, 2017 in announcements, chronicbabe 101, featured | 0 comments

The ChronicBabe book—ChronicBabe 101: How to Craft an Incredible Life Beyond Illness—is on sale today! After a few years of work, I’m thrilled to offer the first-ever ChronicBabe book! Head to ChronicBabe101.com right now to buy a print copy or ebook, and grab all kinds of bonus materials, including: A discussion guide for book clubs A fun habit checklist A special bonus PDF about making friends with illness Full audio of all the “pep squad” expert interviews in the book 10 fun life lesson videos Swag like buttons, stickers, and wristbands …and more The ChronicBabe book is packed with resources for you I organized the book into 10 “lessons” that focus on some key areas for women with chronic illness: It all starts with learning to practice acceptance (Lesson 1) Learn to kick those bad habits to the curb (Lesson 2) It’s time to turn around negative thinking (Lesson 3) Establish healthy boundaries to create confidence (Lesson 4) Learn to love your body again (Lesson 5) Build your “team” to maximize support (Lesson 6) Strengthen personal relationships to weave a safety net (Lesson 7) Adapt your education and career to boost success (Lesson 8) Become a talented communicator (Lesson 9) Get organized: Tips, tricks, tools, and systems (Lesson 10) Within each lesson are interviews with guest experts, who bring their personal voices to our conversations about life with chronic illness. They include two psychologists, one doctor, a pharmacist, a career coach for people with chronic illness, three ChronicBabes with successful businesses, an executive coach, and a sexuality expert. In addition, I included interviews with a dozen caregivers, who provide perspective on how it feels to love someone who has chronic pain or chronic illness. These perspectives may be tough to read at times, but they help us understand what they go through. This helps us to become better partners, spouses, daughters, mothers, and friends to the people who care for us the most. Other goodies included in the ChronicBabe book: In addition, I included homework assignments in each lesson (don’t freak out—I’m not grading you!). They offer guidance and additional resources. I’ve also included some fun “pop quizzes” throughout, designed to encourage you to think differently, explore alternative approaches, and make you laugh. And in the back of the book, an “extra credit” section offers more than 350 website that I think are amazing resources. Most of all, I want you to know that the book is written from me to you—in my voice as a ChronicBabe. This is because I think we’ve already more than enough dry books about our individual chronic conditions. Don’t get me wrong, those have their place. But in comparison to what you’re used to reading, this book offers a fresh voice...

Read More

Join me and for a book release party September 25

Posted by on Sep 21, 2017 in announcements, chronicbabe 101, featured | 0 comments

I’m so lucky to announce that my friend Tami Stackelhouse, the Fibromyalgia Coach, is hosting a book release party for me on September 25, at 5pm ET, 4pm CT, 2pm PT. So fun! Join us as we talk about what it’s like to be ChronicBabes and creatives, and how together we’ve created three books—despite having chronic illness. It’s going to be a SUPER-FUN LIVE webinar and you’ll get to see inside the book, and hear all about all the fun things Tami and I do—including all the strategies we use to stay productive even on our worst days. We’ll talk about sexuality and chronic illness; enlisting the help of your “team”; managing your time and energy; and much more. Join us! Sign up TODAY so you can secure a spot for this exciting online launch party. I can’t wait to see you...

Read More

It’s a party: ChronicBabe 101 is out September 25

Posted by on Sep 21, 2017 in announcements, chronicbabe 101, featured | 4 comments

Friends, I am THRILLED to announce that my new book, ChronicBabe 101: How to Craft an Incredible Life Beyond Illness, comes out September 25. Woo hoo! To be the FIRST to know when it’s available for sale, sign up at ChronicBabe101.com – a website that will also be packed with resources to go along with the book. There’s so much goodness to share with you! There are 11 expert interviews with a collection of awesome folks I call my “Pep Squad.” There are tons of caregiver perspectives so we can be sure to understand what it’s like for them to love us. And the book is PACKED with practical advice, heartfelt encouragement, personal stories from my journey to becoming a ChronicBabe, and much, much more. There’s also fun swag! Starting September 25, when you go to ChronicBabe101.com, you’ll be able to order buttons, stickers, wristbands, and more so you can show off your ChronicBabe pride. I’ll also be hosting contests, giveaways, webinars, and much more in the coming weeks. The BEST WAY to keep up with everything is to check out my Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter accounts – I’ve been showing off lots of sneak peaks over there for the past week and it’s really fun to see what y’all are loving! I also want to reassure you that this book will be available to you in all your favorite formats: print (my personal favorite), ebooks for Kindle, Nook, and iBooks, and I’m starting to work on an audiobook version (that one will take a couple months to work out). Babe, I hope you’re as excited as I am! This is gonna be FUN. xo,...

Read More

WE’RE NOT DOCS!

Info posted here should not be considered medical advice; it's not intended to replace consultation with physicians or other health care providers. 

Every Babe needs to find her own path for achieving optimal wellness. While we do tons to help guide you, it’s up to each of you to make well-informed choices and live with the consequences. ChronicBabe.com assumes no liability or responsibility for stuff that goes wrong.

Links to other web sites are provided as a service, but do not constitute endorsement of those sites by ChronicBabe.com; we are not responsible for their content. We do our best to find the most rockin’ resources but hey, we’re human.

Take what you like from this space, and leave the rest. Use what you learn to make your life better. Be responsible for your own choices. And please don’t sue us. XO!

As Seen In