By: Niki Shadrow Snyder
NS: Tell us about yourselves and what you do? A&ML: Ashley is a bestselling author, speaker, and owns an online media company for women. Mike owns a consulting firm that empowers business owners to scale through social media strategy.
NS: How did you personally move the needle in 2020? A&ML: We kept showing up even when we felt like we were drowning. Learning how to really trust ourselves to make the next right choice when it felt impossible to move forward, has brought a lot of power and insight into our lives.
NS: How did you deal with the stress in the world in 2020? A&ML: This year exploded for everyone, and also gave us an invitation to sit still and not run away from the stress or the pain, because there was nowhere to go. We got very intentional with creating things that brought us joy. That would also help ease the burdens of other people. We started slowing down and incorporated tools like yoga, journaling, and hiking into our lives. 2020 gave the world permission to slow down, so our greatest focus was finding peace and healing in the stillness.
NS: Do you have any advice for your younger self? A&ML: Life won’t look like you thought it would, but it will be even better if you keep showing up through the heartache. You’ll get through what’s coming, I promise.
NS: What did you do in 2020 that you’re most passionate about? A&ML: Ashley wrote two more books with Harper One, and the stories and tools inside of the books are the greatest work she feels like she’s ever done. Mike helped a lot of small businesses pivot during the pandemic, during the peak of their stress, so that they not only didn’t go under, but were able to create new revenue streams in their company during what originally felt like an impossible time.
NS: What was the worst part of 2020 for you? A&ML: Losing our baby boy at 16 weeks pregnant. Ashley suddenly went septic and was rushed to the hospital on the very same day hospitals closed to outside guests because Covid-19 was hitting the United States. She endured days in excruciating pain, all alone, and then unexpectedly, had a miscarriage and delivered our baby all by herself. The pain of being separated from each other during that time, and then losing our son, Jayce, rocked our worlds. Ashley spent months recovering from how sick she got, and we are grateful that she is still with us.
NS: What was the best part of 2020 for you? A&ML: The best part was having the opportunity to meet our son, Jayce. Even though his life was short, and his loss has brought a lot of pain, the joy and healing he has brought has changed our lives. We wouldn’t trade that for anything.
NS: What does success mean to you? A&ML: Success means that we all rise together. If you’re at the top alone, something went wrong along the way.
NS: What causes are important to you? A&ML: We are very passionate about advocating for children and youth in foster care. We are both on the board of directors for National Angels, a nonprofit organization that supports children and their caregivers, who are in the foster care system. So many of these kids face so much trauma, and they need love and support.
NS: Do you think the world right now needs to be influenced by what they can get or what they can give in the middle of this pandemic? A&ML: I think people need to get really still, and listen to what is best for them at this moment. There was a time this year where Ashley was so physically sick, that she needed all of the help she could re-ceive. We didn’t turn any help down. Now that she’s better, she’s able to serve hundreds of thousands of people around the world with her work and writing. Life ebbs and flows, and there are seasons where we are called to show up for others and give, or sit still and receive. We can’t give on an empty well, and making sure that we’re all taking care of our mental and emotional well beings, so that we can be in a position to impact and serve, is really, really important.
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