You Get What You Give

Wake up kids
We’ve got the dreamers disease
Age fourteen we got you down on your knees
So polite, you’re busy still saying please

Earlier this summer, I came across a cover of the New Radicals’ early 2000s classic “You Get What You Give” on television. It aired during The Bachelorette (#noshame) and was a commercial for the “dreamers and doers” for the University of Phoenix.

When the night is falling
You cannot find the light
You feel your dreams are dying
Hold tight
You’ve got the music in you

This song has always been dear to my heart, as songwriter and frontman Gregg Alexander (behind the classics “The Game Of Love” from Michelle Branch and Santana, as well as 2014’s movie Begin Again) has been one of my absolute favorite songwriters. And the thing that this cover did was that it totally brought a new light to Alexander’s lyrics — and brought them out in a beautiful way.

“The song’s lyrics remind dreamers who feel down on their luck that they’re special and capable, even if they’re broke and desperate (‘Don’t let go / You’ve got the music in you’), and encourages them to hang on despite bleak times.” – AV Club

The song is about feeling lost or discouraged by your dreams and the ways of the world — to persevere, stay true to yourself, go for your dreams and find your calling, because there’s something there for everyone.

This past August was a month of shifts, changes, growth and beginnings. With a whirlwind summer from May to June of back-to-back concerts and events, meets and lots of laugh moments with artists and friends, to a slower month of July back home to reset, realign and come forth with my truth, August was the beginning for me to set that newfound focus and direction into action (new season ya?).

These past few months I’ve been leaning more into myself — being calmer with myself, doing more music, taking the initiative to be more creative, write, and never neglect that expressive need in me (the need to “be” everywhere and show up for others has become tiring, and perhaps I’m ready for my next chapter — to show up for myself).

I’ve been locking in on my strengths and flaws, recognizing what people see in me — the personality, influencer, musician or “savvy” content creator — learning where my areas for growth are and how to not see money as a source of “lack” but something that is everywhere that I can allow to flow into my life, not something to be held back by.

P.O.O.R. = Pass On Opportunities Repeatedly

Thank you to the numerous times we’ve shared in the studio and running around town Ru. You’ve become such an unexpected blessing in my life. You’ve challenged me, tested me, told and taught me to be mindful of how I speak about myself, and opened me up to a whole new world and understanding of things I wouldn’t have had otherwise. From the pastor to being a military man, you are such a blessing — and you’ve taught me how to really love and love myself.

“Even if it’s not me, I hope you realize what you deserve and that you accept nothing less. I hope that I can set the bar for you.”

Thank you to the unexpected concerts and shows with friends, from covering a bigger stadium show (TBS), spending an unexpected late night open mic full of laughs with old friends, the early album release parties (DCFC & TNG) that wouldn’t have been as much fun without your company (youdabest BFF Cyril and Ken), the random introduction to a new artist (Pure Bathing Culture) who I have fallen in love with (you’ve always looked out for me Austin), and my first SoFar Sounds event that felt like a “so LA” moment in Venice (I don’t have many girl friends out here in LA Haley, and I’m so glad how we’ve always been aligned).

Thank you to my best friend back home for the heart-to-heart we shared during your breakdown, which only made us both realize how immensely in love we are and grateful for our friendship and journey (that is always somehow in parallel). You da best, G (it’s funny how seeing a relationship situation outside of myself can make me understand my relationship — and respect it — even better, as well).

Thank you to the constant flow of support and encouragement for my musical endeavors. Collaborations with friends (Jess x Rachel & The Black Pack) and little reminders of what I’m meant to be doing (“You’ve too much talent to waste, girl!”) only push me to shift my focus and reset my life even more. I’ve learned you’ve gotta be patient with yourself, for changes and shifts don’t always come easy, and the path to change your routine and also keep yourself accountable is important.

#AsianAugust with the release of Crazy Rich Asians and To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before and all the watch parties and content flowing from friends in the community just make me feel so grateful for the work I have been a part of in the past year — to be a part of this community, to have friends in this community, and feel the power we have to make things happen.

These end of summer daze have been lovely, for everything can’t be work and I’m grateful to have found such lovely people in my life who not only inspire and push me, but help me realize what it is we really are all living for (not to survive, to “get” somewhere to be happy, but that our happiness consists of the little moments we make and have everyday, with people we resonate with).

“If we’ve managed to share some special moments, seen each other eye to eye, stayed up late or slept in talking our ears and dreams off, this one goes out to you. Ty for making me smile. And ty for doing life with me.”

It’s all been uphill in August (with a slight breakdown early September that made me come to terms that maybe my moves need a bit more strategy and planning — more on that for next month’s blog). And of course, to you Dia, after we both had a bit of a breakdown (you saying you don’t know if you’d be a musician if it weren’t for your sister and the music you’ve played on the road for 10+ years), it’s always such a crazy thing that the universe brings me back to you to smack reality in my face — and remind myself of why I do all that I do (and thank you to the girl who mistook me for Dia, because I’ve gotten that resemblance over word for so many years, but never had I witnessed it happen in person. LOL. Just goes to show that it’s my time to start getting up there performing, too).

So much can happen in such little time.

I’ve learned and been tested on how to better process and handle my emotions; to express more creatively; to communicate my wants and desires effectively; to be upfront and honest; and to be more intentional with my friendships, time and relationships. And just be honest with myself.

I’ve also discovered this whole new woman inside of me — an empowered, desired, confident and passionate side of myself. And I finally feel like I am embracing that. It feels so damn good.

Walking into the light — and getting real with myself.

‘Til next time. ❤

With love and honesty,


View my past video blogs below:
Summer Daze 8/2018
Back To You and Hometown Takeaways 7/2018
Young, Reckless and Loving It 6/2018
In A New Light 5/2018
Wandering 5/2018
You Give Me That Wicked Love 4/2018
Rediscovered 3/2018
Twentyfive 3/9/2018
Forever On The Road 2/2018
Beginnings 1/2018
One Sky, Six Months 12/2017
Looking For You, Five Months In 11/2017
Quarter Month Crisis 10/2017
Third Month’s the Charm 9/2017
I Adjusted Month Two 8/2017 
I Survived One Month 7/2017
One Week Out 6/2017


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