Author: Lauryn Evarts Bosstick
1. How did you prepare to write your book, “Get the F*ck Out of the Sun”? What do you wish you would have known before you started the writing process?
This book was complex because it wasn’t just reliant on me. I went to about 200+ influencers, celebrities and doctors to collect their opinions and answers. To lay the foundation I knew I had to create a compelling book proposal. It needed to be very clear to the publishers what I was trying to do: share all my tips and tricks while spilling the tips and tricks from top tier influencers too. It was cheeky, pink and showcased that it would be like the reader and I were at happy hour.
...What I underestimated was how crazy it was to gather information and photos from 200+ people. There was so much back and forth over email and DM, there were lawyers involved, and my team and I had to organize everything so it was as streamlined as possible. So it involved writing my own book, but simultaneously I was essentially compiling another book featuring other people.
Ultimately the goal was to create a book that is a resource for all things skin, but not a boring old, crusty encyclopedia. (Side note: my advice to anyone wanting to write a book: set time in your calendar every single day to work on it. Commit yourself every single day. It’s effective to actually NOT look at the whole picture or going from A to Z. It’s helpful to focus on A to B and what you can accomplish that day. This will keep the process from being too overwhelming).
The book also had to be photo heavy, visual and beautiful. The colors and tones had to be just right and very aesthetically pleasing. This was a whole different facet of the book coming to life because we were organizing photoshoots, nails/hair/makeup appointments, the schedule and the layout of the photos.
What I love about this book is that you can open it to any page and find value. No need to read it from front to back, although of course you could. It’s a cute, pink book that you want on your coffee table, but also super informative.
2. Tell me about the day you came up with the idea to start a blog. What finally made you decide to start it and how did it change your life?
It all started when I had joined a sorority (for one minute) and I was so broke. They asked me to pay $800 for one semester to be in the sorority. Ya right! I couldn’t even afford rent, let alone a sorority fee. It seems ridiculous to have to pay to be part of a community. On campus there were 400,000 people but no way to connect all these women. There were a ton of tips and tricks I wanted to share so I decided to create something online to share them, but also get their tips and tricks. And it would be free!
The name for the blog, The Skinny Confidential, came about because I wanted to create the space for women to get the juice, the deets, the skinny. The blog had to be pretty, cheeky, girly and visual so that when the reader left, they had a takeaway or something they could apply to their own life. The branding was incredibly important to me. From the get-go I knew that I was launching a brand, not just a blog. Everything was very thorough and thought-out with regards to colors, fonts and how the reader viewed it.
Bartending and teaching Pure Barre were my side hustles at the time and this allowed me to focus on The Skinny Confidential and provide blog posts with value. Never ever was I in it to monetize. Which is good since I didn’t make a dime from it for 3 years! Now the brand has blossomed into a podcast, 2 books, YouTube channel and a product line.
3. How different is it to write for a book in comparison to a blog? Were there certain things you had to be consciously aware of when it came to writing this book?
It was similar. The same way I write blog posts is the same way I approached the book- talking to my friends over a cocktail. So many skin books I’ve read are so boring and dry, just not visually appealing. This book is all about having a casual convo in terms we can all understand. That’s exactly how my blog posts are too.
The main difference though is that it’s a longer form content. In the book I had to make sure everything was strategically placed. Meaning I can’t talk about an ice roller then go right into why SPF is important. It had to flow so after the ice roller, we went into lymphatic drainage. On a blog you can post on a topic, then post something completely different the next day.
4. Why did you decide to expand your blog into a podcast? What kind of impact do you want your podcast to have that your blog doesn’t?
Since I was born, I’ve been an oversharer. The typically Instagram landscape of sharing an outfit and a hairstyle were getting so boring. A more intimate connection with the audience was something I strived for. Plus, readers were becoming really interested in my husband’s take on things. So to bring him onto the podcast medium gave a great “HIM & HER” perspective. Ultimately, it’s a great way to connect with the audience and a good extension of the brand.
Also, it saves my audience time. We’re very conscious of that. They can listen to an episode and learn something while doing dishes, getting their nails done, taking care of the kids, or exercising. Podcasting is a medium that is respectful of your audience and I feel really good about that.
Being on the mic feels natural to me. I adore the platform and the community.
5. How did ‘The Skinny Confidential’ grow into what it is today? Do you remember the day you noticed things start to pick up faster than normal? (in terms of viewership and content analytics)
There has never been a day where things just ‘changed.’ The Skinny Confidential’s growth has always been slow, methodical and strategic, while I laid down the foundation brick by brick. Nothing has ever gone viral, I’ve never had some kind of epiphany. It’s been about putting in the work every single day with simplicity, discipline, and patience, while always engaging with the audience.
The growth has also come from doing things when I’m not inspired. As a creative person I only want to do things when I’m totally inspired, but that’s not how I feel all the time. Even writing this now, after a weekend long bachelor party, I’ve trained myself to just get the work done. What makes a successful person is doing the work 80% of the time when you aren’t inspired as well as the 20% when you are inspired.
My systems help The Skinny Confidential grow too. My color-coded Google calendar holds me accountable, batching tasks and time-blocking are all really important systems to help you reach your goals.
6. Why is being ‘real’ important and how does it affect the relationships in your life?
Everyone else is taken so there’s no choice other than to be yourself. As I said, I’m an oversharer by nature, I tell it how it is, and I like to surround myself with people who also tell it how it is. There’s no other option for me than just being myself. It’s not a strategy or a show I put on to be a certain way. There’s no sugar-coating and BS.
When The Skinny Confidential first started, no one was talking about boob jobs, camel toes or the BTS of beauty and procedures. On The Skinny Confidential I wanted to talk about suicide, grief, addiction, you name it. Recently on The Skinny Confidential HIM & HER Podcast we had a woman who was sex trafficked by her mother. Difficult conversations are important and we’re going to continue to do that while questioning the status quo.
7. How has becoming a mom influenced your brand, and how does your advice on being a parent stand out from what else is already out there?
Being a mom has influenced my life but not really my brand. It’s a part of me now, and if I can provide little tricks and hacks for other parents, then that makes me so happy. But I’m no expert. What works for me is what I share and I just like to sprinkle it in once in a while. My daughter is very special to me and I’m incredibly protective of her. I don’t want to share her all over every platform. My husband and I have had a lot of conversations about making sure we’re doing what’s best for her, now and in the future.
Motherhood is just a different layer of the brand. Keeping a lot of that layer private appeals to a side of me that is actually quite introverted. Every now and then I like to go inward, recharge by staying off all media, and read a book. Not everything always needs to be plastered over social media all the time, and that includes my daughter.
8. How do you maintain consistency? What are some pieces of advice you would give to someone that struggles with this?
Here are some things that help me stay consistent that I really recommend:
Color-coded Google calendar: Literally my whole day is scheduled. This includes reading time, thinking time (yes, I put aside time to just think), workouts, driving time, meetings, phone calls, time with my daughter. EVERYTHING is scheduled. Even showering! Color-coding is a huge plus because you can know what each block means with just a glance. This keeps you accountable and helps you focus on the tasks at hand. Which leads me into time-batching & time-blocking.
Here is why you need to get on board with time-blocking and time-batching: Refocusing on a task takes an average of 10 minutes every time you’re interrupted. So, if you’re working on a project, but you stop and respond to every single text message or email that comes through your phone, AT THE TIME it comes through, you’re losing a ton of time, energy and focus.
For example, block off an hour to work on your project. Now you know that for that hour you are solely focussing on that one thing. When that hour is up, you can spend another hour ONLY checking emails. Make sense? Scheduling phone calls is a big one for me too. The Skinny Confidential team knows that I prefer to have phone calls and meetings all on the same day. We also like to schedule a lot of podcast interviews in one day too.
Honestly, I even batch social things. Hair and makeup take up time. So let’s say I’m getting my hair and makeup done for a photoshoot. I’ll try to schedule a date night, or drinks with a friend, then dinner with another.
If you have a goal and are struggling with consistency to reach it, I highly recommend the strategies listed above. Goals are great, but you need the micro-systems to help you get there and keep you accountable. Be proactive instead of reactive and run the day. Don’t let the day run you.
9. What is the biggest lesson you have learned being a multi-occupational professional? Do you think it's possible to be a professional in a variety of sectors, or do you think it's better to be good at one thing rather than a lot of things?
Everyone is different. You gotta do what works for you. Some people need total focus on one thing, others need to work on lots of things at once. At any given time, I have about 6,000 tabs open in my brain, but I’m only really working towards a few. You can do anything, but not everything.
My brain thinks in seasons. There was a season when I was only focused on writing my book, then a season focused on the product line, a season of enjoying pregnancy and then falling in love with our newborn daughter. Right now this season of my life is about embracing being a mom, being a good wife to my husband, working on the podcast and developing the product line.
The brand has been growing and after 12 years, it’s now time to give the audience product. I have a 10 year plan in my head which I learned from Warren Buffett. So there are goals I want to hit, but I’m more focused on the systems to get there and what needs to happen each day to move the needle.
10. You mentioned that you were not paid a dime during the first 3 years of your blog. Can you please tell me more about that time and what kept you going despite this fact?
Blogging was always a brand that I was building. It wasn’t a money grab. Suzanne Somers and Bethenny Frankel are 2 women I look up to so I was thinking, how can I build something solid, a great foundation? Instead of working for someone else from 9-5, I worked in the service industry which gave me time to put my energy into my work and my own thing.
If you’re in the hustle and bustle of working for someone else and you can’t live out your own dreams, I highly recommend the service industry. It’ll help you connect with all types of people that you can learn from and give you time to work on your side hustle.
Not making money from the blog was fine. I supported myself with bartending and teaching Pure Barre so I got to be creative during my time off. Truthfully, I really went into blogging to provide value. Sure, the first time I made money was so exciting, but I was still focussed on creating valuable content. To this day, I love content and being creative. It’s so cliché to say, but when you do what you love, the money will come. Shift your focus away from money. Who cares about money if you aren’t doing what you like?
11. How do you go about planning fitness routines? Do you find inspiration through other gurus and base your workouts through them, or do you come up with them yourself? If so, how?
The best workouts for me are low cortisol workouts. Not into being in some class where an instructor is yelling at me to go faster. I’m very in tune with my body and now know what works best for me. I walk a lot. While walking I’ll listen to podcasts, take work calls or just enjoy being outside. Pilates is a favorite of mine, so I like to walk there. As I said, my workouts are scheduled so it's a non-negotiable. It clears my head and is a must for my day.
12. What’s your best advice for getting over writer’s block?
Write even when you aren’t inspired. Commit yourself to writing every single day, even if it’s just for an hour, or even less. But just write something every day. Even if you are at a block, write something that has nothing to do with the piece you’re working on. Write something totally unrelated. Eventually something will spark and you’ll get back on track.
Make your space inspiring too. For me that means that all 5 senses are going: candles lit, oil diffuser on, a clean desk, Bossa nova music playing and a big window to look outside. Set your vibe, make a commitment, get it on your calendar, time block and focus.
13. What’s the best book you have read this year so far?
Atomic Habits by James Clear. It’s all about how to form good habits by associating them with a habit you already have. For instance, whenever I brush my teeth, I do a face mask. Whenever I do breathwork, I use the Joovv red light therapy. When I workout I’ll listen to an inspirational or educational podcast, and when I get into bed at night, I read. So you associate your everyday habits with stronger habits.
Another one I loved was When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi. It’s a totally different genre but it’s a memoir of a neurosurgeon, Paul, who is diagnosed with lung cancer. The perspective is so unique because the doctor becomes the patient. He describes how aware he is of what’s happening to him and he makes death feel not so taboo.
14. What’s the best advice you have ever received on happiness?
For me, happiness is autonomy.
It’s not about materialistic things or even passions. It’s about me waking up and creating my own future with freedom and independence.
Another big thing I learned about my happiness this year is that I love nature and being outside. It lowers my cortisol and helps me to connect with simpler things. Walking outside with my family, or taking my daughter around the neighborhood in the morning makes me feel the happiest.
Of course my friends and family, my profession and my community all make me happy but really connecting to nature and being still, combined with autonomy make me happy.
15. Do you plan on writing more books in the future?
Yes. Definitely! I have a lot of different niches I want to explore, ones that will all remain very on brand. In fact, we’re already starting my next book proposal...FML.
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Linkedin: Lauryn Evarts
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