Kriston Gordon-Cathey, M. Ed is a Entrepreneur, Author, Speaker and Ghostwriter. Kriston works with entrepreneurs to assist in creating dynamic B2B/IT blog digital content to propel their business personas.
She offers one on one as well as corporate consultation for writing and content creation inclusive of technical writing.
Where to Find Kriston:
Links We Talked About:
Fun Quotes from Podcast:
Honestly, I really do love the self-publishing component. I do. It does give you that freedom over your work, things of that nature. I do recommend that. I mean, to get your feet wet, I most definitely do love self-publishing. However, if you do get the opportunity with a big publishing house, by all means, I would make sure to take advantage of it.
I just think we need to get back to that old place where we cared about each other and loved each other and were genuinely concerned about the other person.
You get caught up, so you do have to have barriers when it comes to social media and get that human interaction. Just to talk to somebody live every day. It is important. Go outside, meet your neighbor. A lot of us don’t even know who our neighbors are. Know your neighbors, talk to your neighbors. It’s not good for us to be so stagnant.
Transcript of Podcast:
Sandi: Well, hey everybody, it is so great to have you all on here with us today. I’m super excited. I’ve got Kris Cathey on the show today and she has her hands in a lot of different things. I’m going to let her go through and tell you all everything about it. She is a super inspiration to so many people that get to hear her voice or be around her and be involved in the things that she’s doing. I wanted you guys to be a part of that too. Kris, will you tell us about yourself? Where are you located and what is it that you do?
Kriston: Sure, thank you so much, Sandra, and I want to thank you so much for having me today. I really was excited about this so thank you.
Sandi: My pleasure.
Kriston: I’m originally from California, a native of California. However, I actually moved to Maryland about nine years ago. I’ve been here with my family, been married now almost twenty-four years.
Sandi: That’s awesome.
Kriston: Yes. College sweethearts. I have a college graduate, my oldest son. He is twenty-two and then I also have a thirteen-year-old son, so we have two sons. We live here. What I do basically, Sandra, is I’m a writing consultant. I’ve been a writer since I was kid, went to college, majored in journalism, and I’ve always written. It’s been for friends and close relatives and things of that nature. Now, what I’ve done in the past six years is I’ve extended myself to the outside community to help them become authors of their own. A lot of woman I’ve targeted that have had issues, things that have happened in their lives like all of us, and basically pain, things that they couldn’t get over and they’ve used the power of words to get through that pain. To find purpose, to find joy again, things of that nature. That has been my mission. My life has changed quite a lot because at first, I was quite driven and an entrepreneur. I’ve always had the entrepreneurial spirit but there was a calling that I felt was necessary to help other women to use their voice and to feel that they can be restored again from whatever has occurred in their lives.
Sandi: Was this something that you really dreamt of as a kid, that you wanted to be a writer? Where did it come from?
Kriston: Yeah, as a kid, I’ve been writing since I was probably about seven years old. My mom- I can remember vividly being really small, maybe about five or six years old, and her introducing me to these huge words and from that point, I just adopted this great love of writing. I’ve been doing it since I was a small girl but then going into college and things of that nature, I went into journalism. I’ve always written on my own but never to the point of making it a full-time career. I was doing other things. Running businesses, being an educator, things of that nature. I always kind of pushed it back. In a way, I was pushing my purpose back. Something that was with me since being so small, it was that small thing behind in the back of mind like, “Well, what if you never do what you really love to do?” It always was something that called behind like, “What if you never write? What you never do the things you’re doing, that people never know what you’re doing?” Maybe six or seven years ago, I got this epiphany like it’s time for me to start using that gift that was given to me and to share with others as well. That has been my calling. Yes, it’s come since I was a small girl.
Sandi: That’s beautiful. How did you get started? How did you make the transition into going, “This is going to be my full-time deal?” How did you get started doing that?
Kriston: Gradually, to be honest with you. I’m going to just be honest. At first, it was a lot of procrastination. “Oh no, I don’t want to do that.” I was like, “Oh no, maybe I shouldn’t do that. Writers don’t make a lot of money. This or that. It might not work.” All of these different doubts constantly would come into my mind, but I don’t know. I started writing about it myself, journaling it. I started to change my mindset. I adopted a more positive mindset saying, “Okay, it is going to work. This is something you’re going to do. You’re going to plan it just as if it’s a business so that you can see it growing.” I took steps initially. It wasn’t something I just threw myself into. I said, “Okay, this is what I’m going to do. This is who I’m going to target.” I planned for it, so I think that’s what really helped, is the fact that I planned for it gradually. It’s something that I love to do. I really love to see people become authors. I really love to see that they have fulfilled something that has been on their heart for so long. I meet women all the time that say, “Well, you know, I had this book for twenty years. It’s been in my mind and I haven’t let it out. I’ve been going through this and I haven’t let it out.” When that complete work is done, it’s really fulfilling. Not just so much for the author, but for myself as well because being there to be the light-maker, the light-holder, to help them get to the path of where they need to be in order to acquire themselves as becoming a writer is really, really, special.
Sandi: Gosh. I just love what you’re doing. I love it.
Kriston: Me too.
Sandi: You’re so empowering and motivating to people. I love it, I love it, I love it. So, as people are starting out on their journey with writing, what do you wish that you had known starting out on this journey?
Kriston: I wish that I would have known to be true to my own self and to want to listen to my own voice. A lot of times you might get caught up in, “Maybe I should sound like that person or I should sound like that person?” That’s the thing: just being true to one’s self is what I wish that I would’ve had in the beginning. That’s what I would offer as far as advice. Don’t sway from it. Don’t get caught up in what ‘Bobbie Jo’ is doing, don’t do that. You want to make sure that you stay true to yourself. That’s the most important thing because you want your voice to be expressed.
Sandi: Absolutely. Absolutely. Have you found in your own writing- I know writing can be so cathartic. You can find so much healing writing things down. In your own life, if you feel comfortable sharing, where was a time that the writing really helped you overcome?
Kriston: There’s been many times. I think it was one situation that I had when I had a failing business and it was something that I really worked on for years. It was my baby. I gave everything to it, and it failed. I blamed myself. I felt like I was a failure. I probably had grown up- I realize now- with this perfect complex that everything is supposed to go this way. These certain things are not supposed to happen if you do things correctly. However, you can’t control life. You can’t control the things that come to you and often times, those things come to you as gifts so that you can be birthed into the next point of your life. In going through that very, very dark space in my life, because I became not Kris. I was so depressed. I felt like a failure. It was terrible. Family, friends, no one could reach out to me so in writing, that was what healed me. I was able to convey those words on paper, the things that I was feeling that I couldn’t convey to my closest loved ones. They couldn’t understand. They wanted me just to be back to who I was, to be Kris again. But to be able to express those things on paper and to give my heart and everything there, it healed me. It was a healing process gradually. A lot of people don’t believe in journaling. They don’t believe in writing, but it is a healing mechanism that a lot of people should use when they’re really, really hurt. It definitely helped me, and it has gotten me to the place where I am today. I still continue to journal as well because it gives you a perspective too. I’m the type of person I have so many things in my mind but writing those things down, it kind of helps you to decipher- a blueprint of where you need to go next. Writing has definitely been a healer for me.
Sandi: I know it has been for me too. I mean, when I look back at some of the things that I can’t make sense of, I put it down on paper. Because I’m a paper person. I want to actually write on a paper-
Kriston: Me too.
Sandi: -if I’m journaling out. It’s so healing. You know, it’s so healing to you. When you are talking to somebody and they’re wanting to start as an author or even the beginning steps, what you do? How are you guiding them through that process? What does that look like?
Kriston: Normally, I meet with the prospective client. We discuss what their genre is, what they actually want to do, where they perceive their book to be, what they want it to look like, the cover. Sometimes I ask them, “What does your cover look like?” That kind of thing because the thing is, sometimes that cover- once you see that cover- this is the real deal. My name is there. Just kind of trying to get them to visualize that. From that point on, once they’ve had an idea of where they want to go, then we start the process. I also offer ghost writing as well with the actual client. If they do want the ghost writing, then we would go chapter by chapter along with consulting so that we can edit it, make sure that everything is correct, everything is flowing correctly. We also do a storyboard just to make sure that everything is outlined correctly so that the full completion of the book comes to pass. We look for a duration of time. When do you foresee seeing your book published? When do you foresee yourself giving- because a lot of people like to give themselves book watches and things of that nature- when do you see that? Prospecting is kind of like the initial part of it and then from there, we get to work. The hard work to make sure that everything is okay and outlined and a good read for the reader.
Sandi: Do you recommend someone self-publishing or going the traditional route?
Kriston: I’ve been asked that. Honestly, I really do love the self-publishing component. I do. It does give you that freedom over your work, things of that nature. I do recommend that. I mean, to get your feet wet, I most definitely do love self-publishing. However, if you do get the opportunity with a big publishing house, by all means, I would make sure to take advantage of it. Again, you want to make sure you have all your ducks in a row, that you do have a great litigation, your contracts, things of that nature, are reviewed the way that they should be. To be honest with you, self-publishing, there’s freedom in that because you yourself control your book.
Sandi: Yeah, I can see how that can be beneficial. I’ve heard both sides of it. It’s sounds like it’s up to that person, like how much creative control do you want over it? Because going the traditional publishing route- correct me if I’m wrong- but I believe that’s a much longer process?
Kriston: It’s a longer process and it’s a lot more limited for you as the writer.
Sandi: Are there any good books or podcasts that you’re listening to right now that you would recommend to people?
Kriston: Right now, I’m reading this really good book a friend of mine gave me. It’s Contagious by Jonah Berger. It’s about why people share certain things. It’s about social media and word of mouth. It’s really good for entrepreneurs. It’s to give you an idea about marketing and the way of thought. I think that’s a really good book. That’s what I’m reading now. As far as podcasts, I love GaryVee. He has a very-
Sandi: He tells it like it is.
Kriston: Yes, he does. He does have a way of expressing it, but I love GaryVee. I love Amy Porterfield as well. Rise by Rachel Hollis is another one that I listen to. I’m kind of a podcast junkie so sometimes I just jump through iTunes back and forth when I’m working just to listen. I love podcasts.
Sandi: Me too. If I’m driving or working. It’s in the background. I listen to podcasts all the time.
Kriston: Right? And you learn so much. Are you the same way? Something new that I learn every time I’m listening. It’s like, “Wow.”
Sandi: I love to learn. I have a real kind of insatiable thirst for learning. There’s so much amazingness out there on podcasts right now. There are so many great people that are out there working on it. I listen and listen and listen and listen.
Kriston: Same here. If it’s just me working, they keep me company. So, it’s like, “Oh, okay.”
Sandi: I think it’s self-care to me. I think it’s a part of my self-care routine. If I can take a long, hot bath and listen to a podcast, I’m good.
Kriston: That’s awesome.
Sandi: Do you have any self-care stuff that you do for you? Because I know as an entrepreneur, as someone who does have their hands in a whole lot- I really recommend you all go over to Kris’ website and see everything she’s got going on. I’ll have all the links to all the podcasts and to all of her info that you get within the notes. Kris, do you have any self-care things that you do? Is there a routine you do every day or are there just things that you’ll do every week that you go, “I really need this for myself”?
Kriston: Once a month, I try to at least go to the spa for a massage. That’s my happy thing that I give myself, my happy gift. Daily, I try to- like you said- do the baths and candles and things like that. I try to have my own little retreat on my own, listen to my podcasts, listen to music, that kind of thing. Just make time for myself and then I just started in my community- I’m just so bad because I’m always working- that I didn’t realize that we have a beautiful trail that has really pretty nature. I’ve been running, walking so that has helped me as well, given me a lot of energy. That’s part of my self-care routine. And then trying to just, you know, drink water and try to do small things. Sometimes you forget. You get so busy. You know as an entrepreneur you get busy and you’re kind of like, “Okay, I forgot to do-“ so you have to make sure that you make time for self-care.
Sandi: I’m so bad about water. I am so bad. I have an alarm set on my phone for every hour of twelve hours. The alarm goes off and I know to drink eight ounces of water.
Kriston: Sometimes you need that. I had to buy- I don’t know if you’ve ever seen it on Amazon but they have a water bottle that gives you certain times. Okay, you should drink this certain amount at this time. That helps me as well. I’m the same way with water and it’s bad.
Sandi: My doctor is like, “You are so dehydrated” and I was like, “I forget to drink water. Sorry.”
Kriston: Right, exactly. “Why is my skin so dry? Oh, you need to drink some water maybe.”
Sandi: I’m totally going to find that water bottle on Amazon and I’m going to put a link so everybody can do that. The whole world needs to take care of themselves a little bit better. In looking at it- because you deal with a whole lot of different people and- what do you think that right now that people need? What do you think people need in the world right now?
Kriston: I think love and understanding and just patience. To me, that’s definitely needed right now. We don’t love each other like we should. We’re not kind to each other. I even see sometimes young people, they’re not respectful to elders. I was taught to be respectful to my elders. Open up the door for my elders, things of that nature, but you don’t see that. I just think we need to get back to that old place where we cared about each other and loved each other and were genuinely concerned about the other person. We want to see them grow and we have patience to do whatever we can in order to help them to get there if we can.
Sandi: It’s so true. I just think if we were more understanding and kind and patient with each other, and kind to each other. I think we have such a short fuse and I don’t know if it’s from such instant gratification things that we have around us now that our behavior has- all of that has just shortened. I have a shorter temper. I have a shorter patience span. I think we really need to slow down a little bit and be present with each other and be kind to each other.
Kriston: I definitely agree. It does have to do with this technology boom that we have. Everything’s so fast. Nobody slows down. We don’t even communicate with each other, have conversation anymore. We are just constantly on our phones. You’re definitely right. I believe wholeheartedly that those things are needed back in the world to make the world a better place. That’s not a cliché. It sounds like one, but it’s needed.
Sandi: I really believe it’s true. Setting good boundaries with your social media and everything is helpful.
Kriston: Yeah, you have to do that. You can’t become consumed with this. It’s easy to happen but you can’t become consumed by it because you’ll start playing the comparison game. Or you’ll forget about the things that you’re supposed to do that are important. You get caught up, so you do have to have barriers when it comes to social media and get that human interaction. Just to talk to somebody live every day. It is important. Go outside, meet your neighbor. A lot of us don’t even know who our neighbors are. Know your neighbors, talk to your neighbors. It’s not good for us to be so stagnant.
Sandi: I always feel like I sound like my grandmother. You know, it’s like, “Turn off that internet and go outside and play.”
Kriston: That’s what my grandmother said.
Sandi: But it’s true.
Kriston: When we were kids, we were like, “Ah, whatever.” But now, when you become an adult it’s like, “Oh, that makes a whole lot of sense.”
Sandi: They were right. Kris, what is a question you wish someone would ask you? In the back of my mind, there’s always like, “Oh man, I wish somebody would ask me that.”
Kriston: A question I wish someone would ask me? Maybe why do you believe that people can achieve their goals? That’s a question I’d like them to ask me.
Sandi: That’s good.
Kriston: I would say to that: I believe they can achieve their goals because we are all given that ability. We just all have to put our minds to it. It’s all about mindset. We all have it within us. It all lives within us. I think that would be the question I would want someone to ask me. A lot of people don’t believe that they can achieve certain things. They don’t foresee themselves acquiring the goals that they have or the dreams that they have. Yeah, that would be the question that I want them to ask me.
Sandi: I love that. I think it really ties into- even back to what the world needs, like kindness. If people could believe in themselves, that they do have the ability, that it is in them, and that if other people- If we came around each other and supported each other and the things that we’re really meant to do, like we interacted with each other. We built each other up instead of constant tearing down and comparison and all that kind of craziness.
Kriston: Exactly. I think that’s how we’re designed. I know that’s how we’re designed. I think we’re meant to interact with each other. I think we feed off of each other, our energy can be good or bad. If we’re around each other, we build each other up that way. That’s why I think it’s necessary, that’s why a lot of people who don’t get that human interaction, they can go into depression because they’re not getting that human effect. I think that’s important.
Sandi: Absolutely. Last question and I ask this to everybody. What is bringing you joy right now?
Kriston: What’s bringing me joy right now? You mean at this very moment or this period in my life?
Sandi: This period in your life. Like, right now, this second. Like in your life right now, in this season of life that you’re in.
Kriston: In this season of life that I’m in, being able to help others is what’s bringing me joy. Like I said earlier, being able to help others go to the next plateau or reach a certain dream that they want, that is what is bringing me joy right now.
Sandi: That is so good.
Kriston: Yeah, it’s true.
Sandi: Kris, where can everybody find you? Are you on Instagram more or Facebook?
Kriston: I am on Instagram. You can reach me @KreativelyKris and it’s both with a ‘k’. It’s all one word. And then if you want to reach me on my website, it’s the same. It’s www.kreativelykris.com
Sandi: Perfect. We will have all that linked in there so everybody can find you super easy. Thank you so much for talking to me today.
Kriston: Thank you. Thank you so much. It was such a pleasure. Thank you so much for inviting me.
Sandi: I just love your spirit. You all go out there and seek her out and find her. She is just a wellspring of joy.
Kriston: Thank you.
Sandi: Thanks for talking today. I absolutely loved it.
Kriston: Thank you. Have a really great day okay?
Sandi: You too.