GG Renee Hill is the creator of All the Many Layers, a publication dedicated to embracing the all the elements that come with being not a only a woman, but also, being a human. On a daily basis, GG shares her personal experiences, and vulnerable moments with her readers, while encouraging the importance of embracing who you are, wherever you are in life.
JC: Who is GG Renee Hill? Mother. Blogger.
GG: Human. Definitely human first. I have many roles, like we all do, but I find that when I try to define myself too much I become overwhelmed with my contradictions.
I’m a mother who sometimes wishes her kids would raise themselves so she could indulge in loving on them, building up their self-esteem, giving them kisses and hanging out with them. But no, I have to discipline too and that’s exhausting.
I’m an idealistic writer who blogs and tells stories about life and being a woman with a family history of mental illness and how this affects my perspective on well, everything.
I’m an introspective, creative spirit who sees everything in multiple ways and has a hard time making decisions, setting boundaries and as I mentioned above, defining things.
JC: All the Many Layers , what does that represent?
GG: The name, All the Many Layers, came to me when I was writing an essay about being a woman, full of paradox and extremes, and learning to embrace everything about myself. Not just the traits that I’m proud of, but also the traits that are harder to talk about and harder to love. I believe that this is where our true character and our creativity becomes refined, in the acceptance of our dark and our light. The following excerpt captures this well:
All the Many Layers is my offering to women who yearn to create more meaningful experiences in their everyday lives. That means more love, more beauty, more truth and more soulfulness. The tagline — A Daily Indulgence for Soulful Women — speaks to the longing we feel to explore our extremes and allow them to freely coexist. Soulful women are complicated, multifaceted and always seeking intimacy. We embrace the pain and the pleasure, the enlightenment and the foolishness that we must experience in order to discover our deepest truths. We yearn for both spiritual and material fulfillment and we create our authentic lives in the dynamic pursuit of both.
JC: Describe your experience managing your site, being a full- time mother, and pursuing all of your other endeavors.
GG: It’s the biggest and most rewarding challenge I’ve had to date. Like many women, I want to do it all. I want to be an attentive mother, a successful writer, a supportive loving partner, a ride-or-die friend, a patient daughter, sister, cousin. I could go on and on. I want to be physically, spiritually and emotionally fit. I want to be organized and on time for things. And I want to have fun, laugh, wiggle with my friends and act a fool.
Somehow, I never am able to get all of these things right all at the same time, or on the same day, or in the same week, even. But as I stated earlier, I’m learning that I’m human and being unforgiving and hard on myself only makes me anxious and unproductive. Plus, the harder I am on myself, the harder I am on other people. So I’m learning as I go, through trial and error. I try to set a schedule and try to stick to it, be flexible as necessary and always stay in tune with my spirit to ensure I’m finding meaning in everything I do and not forcing things or going through the motions.
JC: You recently quit your 9-5, tell us how you transitioned to that moment? And, how is the after life?
GG: Next to having my babies, quitting my 9 to 5 was the best decision I ever made. I was wasting away there. It was something I planned for about a year, but I still surprised even myself on the day I quit. I’d been planning to wait until the end of the year, but I was sitting in a meeting and I was just overcome with sorrow. (Drama! I know! I’m always in my feelings!) But for some reason, in that moment, a ton of bricks hit me and I knew I couldn’t do it anymore. I went to my manager’s office after that meeting and I quit.
I’d worked in financial services for 12 years, first job out of college, first grown up money, stock purchase plans, 401k, heels, suits, business trips, good times. But around 30ish, slightly before actually, I had a breakdown/identity crisis of sorts and starting writing and blogging soon after as a way to vent. Tapping in to that creative vein really saved me from a dangerous bout of depression and anxiety, and showed me that I was unhappy because I wasn’t being true to myself. I was trying to be who I thought everyone wanted me to be. Now that I’m starting my own business and pursuing what I love, I feel more like myself than I ever have. I’m scared of all the uncertainty, of course, but I’m inspired and everything has meaning now.
JC: What do you currently have going on?
GG: I’m freelancing, writing, life coaching and writing a book. For the past month and a half, I’ve been primarily consumed with my book.
Toni Morrison said, “If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” I took her words to heart and I’m writing a book that approaches various aspects of being a woman like personal development, soulful living, self-love, friendship and spirituality in an artsy, storytelling kind of way. I’m an insatiable reader and I’ve read a lot of books on personal development and spirituality, but I didn’t want to write a book with advice and best practices. I wanted to write a story of becoming, of waking up, and what really goes on in a woman’s mind when she’s trying to make sense of her life.
JC: What are your dreams? Where would you like to see yourself?
GG: I see myself with a catalog of artful, sophisticated books that capture all the many layers of the feminine emotional experience. This includes short stories, memoirs, guided journals & workbooks, and much more. I see myself as an author, coach and thought leader on soulful living and self-discovery through writing and other forms of art.
JC: Your site focuses a lot on self- development, loving yourself, and embracing vulnerability, How do you manage these things within yourself? How do you stay focused?
GG: I’m always searching myself. I know my triggers and I pursue any thoughts or feelings that threaten my peace of mind. My spirituality is my number one priority. If I don’t have faith, if I don’t believe in a purpose larger than my own, then I’m lost. I know that I was created just the way I am for a reason and the more I believe, the more I pay attention and align myself with my spirit, the more I’m able to help people and see my own dreams manifest. My advice to others is to use your mind, your thoughts, your prayers & meditations, your imagination, everything you have to stay in tune with your soul. There are tons of distractions in the world, so I can’t stress this enough. One of my favorite quotes is “Whatever is good for your soul, do that.” This is how I stay focused.
You can visit GG Renee Hill’s site, All the Many Layers, here.
… and follow her on Twitter: GGReneeWrites