Jen Hatmaker: She’s Crushing Stereotypes With Moxie

February 23 - On The Dot
FIRST THOUGHT: Keeping an Open Mind

Do you have a memory of a time when you were super close-minded? Let’s be real: If you’re like most of us, you probably have a dozen of them. There’s nothing funnier than seeing a 10-year-old think so black and white about a subject, all the while knowing she will better understand the shades of gray later on. As we get older, we learn being insular just isn’t cool. You close yourself off to getting to know some really astounding people and gaining some marvelous knowledge. Today, embrace open-mindedness. Give someone new a chance, like that over-the-top server at your favorite lunch spot or your relative known for her questionable social-media opinions.


Of course, being open-minded is often easier said than done. But author Danielle DiPirro has seven wonderful tips for opening yourself up to open-mindedness. First, let go of control. Yeah, that one’s a toughie. But once you’re able to let go of your need to control situations, you allow yourself to experience changes. Change can be good, seriously! Next, allow yourself to be vulnerable and OK with making mistakes. You’re only human, after all. Be honest with yourself and others, and find strength in your failures. All of this will amount to a reward of increased confidence and, as Danielle says, will produce untold benefits in your career and your personal life.

WOMAN TO WATCH: Jen Hatmaker, Author, Speaker, Blogger and HGTV Star

We’re talking about open-mindedness plenty today because we’re featuring a woman who lives her life with that idea at heart. Her name is Jen Hatmaker, and if she sounds familiar, it may be because you know her from the hit HGTV show My Big Family Renovation, on which she and her hubby work to renovate a 1910 farmhouse into a home for themselves and their five kids.

But Jen is far more than just a renovating TV star. She’s also a New York Times best-selling author of several books, a public speaker, a blogger, a podcaster, a dedicated mother and wife, and a devoted Christian. It’s Jen’s ability to embrace life’s messiness and open herself to others that make her truly giving. As she says, “I crave a world of justice where people are safe, loved, empowered. I plan to use whatever influence I’ve been given on behalf of edged-out people for all my days.”

One of my favorite things about Jen is that she’s just plain funny. And she has the capability to be brutally honest in a relatable way. In her newest book, Of Mess and Moxie, Jen emphasizes that women have strong backbones and have the power to take on life’s most challenging experiences with courage and grace. Part of Jen’s appeal to readers is her penchant for forgiveness, something she has a keen understanding of. For instance, she says if she’s snapping at someone for something, chances are she needs to look inside herself for the cause.

But make no bones about it. Jen didn’t become successful in her career because she’s bland and agreeable. She has a political side that occasionally seems controversial, given she doesn’t let herself be bound by the paradigms often associated with white, Christian culture. She voices her open-minded opinion that LGBTQ families should be included in the Christian faith and warns of the dangers of elected officials’ rhetoric.

For Jen, what it all comes down to is living and loving well. And that’s something we can all aspire to.


Jen Hatmaker definitely embodies one of her favorite quotes from Mother Teresa, who said:

“Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough. Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.”

This is Melinda Garvey signing off until next time. Remember, ladies, empowered women empower other women. Share On the Dot so more women can have a voice. Thanks for getting ready with us.

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