When you fall into a groove it’s very easy to stay there, but if you have goals and aspirations you can dig your way out, because at the end of the day the last thing you want in your life is regret. Take baby steps and do little experiments to see what your potential is… throw it out there…. oh and I DON’T mean on social media… You only live once and there aren’t any “re-dos”.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Erin Cosgrove. Erin is a country music singer, songwriter and actress based in Los Angeles with a bachelor in opera. Although originally from Florida, Erin admits that whether she’s performing at the House of Blues or the Daytona 500, singing the national anthem at the minor league games as she did when she was as child, appearing in reality shows like Summer Camp or co-starring in hit TV sitcoms such as Parenthood as comical country singer, she feels most at home in front of a crowd or a camera. Her debut single, Tennessee Lie was released on April 28th, 2016 and has already received a great deal of attention in the country music scene.The inspiration for the song comes from her experiences dating as a home grown Southern girl. Tennessee Lie is now available on iTunes, Pandora, iHeartRadio, Spotify and several other online platforms. Since the release Erin has been constantly working on an Album and performs regularly at clubs and events around the US. Be sure to also follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram as ErinCosgrove or ErinCosgroveOfficial for show dates and new music releases.
Thank you so much for joining us! Let’s Get Intimate! I’d love to begin by asking you to give us the backstory as to what brought you to this specific career path.
It all started when I was around 5 or 6- my parents said I used to walk around the house just singing and making up songs; a few I still remember a bit of lol. From there my creativity really just took off.. I was always very interested in arts and crafts and then joined choir when I was in middle school and started singing the national anthem at baseball games and high school football games. I realized that was pretty much what I wanted to do with the rest of my life at that point… Kinda crazy really! From middle school I went onto a national level show choir in high school and majored in music shortly after. It’s all kind of a blur at this point, I just remember growing up always wanting to be a singer and performer; so after college I moved to LA to pursue acting. If you’re wondering why I said acting and not music it’s because after I studied music in college I actually hated it and wanted nothing to do with it. I had a terrible college experience majoring in music to the point of loathing the craft- so what else could I do that was similar in the performance world? Acting! After about a year of living in LA I decided that music was still amazing IF I could create my own, without being forced to follow a subjective curriculum. So that’s what I did and here we are! :)
Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you hope that they might help people along their path to self-understanding or a better sense of wellbeing in their relationships? Yes, we have a bunch of new things coming out over the next year! My single “Tennessee Lie” was just recently released and the music video for it will come out this March! We also have another new single called “Ride that Bull” which will release with the music video this summer! It’s a great party song and will really get people up and dancing. We’ll have a choreographed line dance to it as well! Both “Tennessee Lie” and “Ride that bull” are great “relationship” songs that really focus on the ups and downs of dating and the challenges we face in our every day lives. You’ll have to listen to them to see what I mean :)
Do you have a personal story that you can share with our readers about your struggles or successes along your journey of self-understanding and self-love? Was there ever a tipping point that triggered a change regarding your feelings of self acceptance? I think as someone who was always the “weird one” growing up I went through a few phases in my younger years to achieve self love. I was home schooled until I was around 9 and then went into a private school until 7th grade so my appearance was “special” to say the least lol! I was a true tom boy and had no sense of fashion or people skills, I blame that on the small private school. I decided that I had had enough of being forced to be friends with kids that I straight up didn’t like so I convinced my parents to send me to public school, and thank God they did! lol The first year I realized that there was a certain “pecking” order to say the least and that as a 12 year old going through puberty I needed to find my place in that order otherwise I would be eaten alive. After a brutal year of being known as the “nerd”, I went to Summer camp where my world was turned upside down and groomed by, well, bitchy girls. In the 2 weeks I was camp I decided to make a change- did I care what people thought of me, absolutely! Did I need to make a change in my appearance, absolutely- trust me it was bad! lol I learned that summer that not everyone is going to like you and that’s ok, but if you get in good with the popular girls, life is a lot easier- this is my thought process as a 12 year old by the way!
I’ll never forget the moment I walked into my middle school in my 8th grade year- I was like I had dyed my hair bright pink or something! By the end of the day almost everyone who knew me as the “nerd” now looked at me with a totally different perspective. Not only had I gained respect from hundreds of students, I had a level of self confidence walking back into that school that could be felt a mile away. I did an experiment that day and boy was it fun!
This similar situation also happened after getting out of a terrible college relationship. I went from having a confidence level of a super star to feeling as though nothing I did was ever good enough by boyfriend and his ENTIRE family- talk about a mind blow! I finally realized after a few years that I didn’t need him or his psychopathic family, so left and it seriously felt like a huge weight lifted off my shoulders! I then did what I had always planned on doing after school- I moved to LA where I was faced with many other challenged of feeling “wanted” but soon learned the game of the industry and now I don’t care what anyone else thinks of me! :)
According to a recent study cited in Cosmopolitan, in the US, only about 28 percent of men and 26 percent of women are “very satisfied with their appearance.” Could you talk about what some of the causes might be, as well as the consequences?
I think a lot of people don’t realize their self worth… Especially in places like LA where plastic surgery and injections are the norm. I also think people don’t take care of themselves in the sense that they don’t eat healthy, go the gym and take responsibility for their appearance. I find that many people just complain about it instead of actually doing something.
As cheesy as it might sound to truly understand and “love yourself,” can you share with our readers a few reasons why it’s so important?
It’s important because that’s what shows in every day life, in your career, in your relationships etc. No one wants to be around someone who is insecure, self concision or uneasy and a lot of times whether you know it or not, these energies radiate from your entire body. Not only will loving yourself allow you to achieve more in your life, it allows you to be happy and see the good in so many situations!
Why do you think people stay in mediocre relationships? What advice would you give to our readers regarding this?
People stay in mediocre relationships because they are comfortable and no one likes to feel uncomfortable! I did it for over 4 years in college. I stayed with a guy because he made me feel as though I needed him and manipulated me into thinking I was nothing without him. When I finally realized I was EVERYTHING WITHOUT him is when I broke it off and never looked back. I even started dating someone 3 weeks after I had broken it off because I had been over the relationship for almost 2 years and was just ready to get out. What I thought was love was a trap and nothing about the relationship was healthy. When you fall into a groove it’s very easy to stay there, but if you have goals and aspirations you can dig your way out, because at the end of the day the last thing you want in your life is regret. Take baby steps and do little experiments to see what your potential is… throw it out there…. oh and I DON’T mean on social media… You only live once and there aren’t any “re-dos”.
When I talk about self-love and understanding I don’t necessarily mean blindly loving and accepting ourselves the way we are. Many times self-understanding requires us to reflect and ask ourselves the tough questions, to realize perhaps where we need to make changes in ourselves to be better not only for ourselves but our relationships. What are some of those tough questions that will cut through the safe space of comfort we like to maintain, that our readers might want to ask themselves? Can you share an example of a time that you had to reflect and realize how you needed to make changes?
I always like to take time every few months and re-evaluate myself and my career- I ask myself questions like- Are you happy? If not, what can I do to make myself happy? If I don’t know at the point in time I ask myself- What am I doing now that not making me happy or vice versus? Are there things in my relationship I would like to change or fix? Sometimes it’s as simple as a phone call or a couple good emails with good news that will completely change my outlook. I didn’t exactly choose the easiest of career paths so it is definitely tough to stay positive and hopeful when everything just doesn’t go as planned- which happens a lot. I also find having some kind of religious base or faith really helps in low points and a simple prayer or just venting to the higher up seems to work pretty well. I also try to reflect on all the things I HAVE accomplished and how far I’ve come, and that always puts things into perspective for me as well.
So many don’t really know how to be alone, or are afraid of it. How important is it for us to have, and practice, that capacity to truly be with ourselves and be alone (literally or metaphorically)?
Being alone is very healthy. When I finally decided I didn’t want to be in a relationship or “need” someone to make me happy I was SO happy! I was so happy to the point of attracting another person into my life who will be my husband in 30 days! Being alone isn’t permanent it, just allows us to be okay with ourselves. To this day I enjoy my alone time. It gives me time to get done what I need to get done and decompress from a long days work.
How does achieving a certain level of self-understanding and self-love then affect your ability to connect with and deepen your relationships with others?
It deepens because it allow you to be fully open and real- people are afraid to show their true selves in fear of being judged or less than. When we love ourselves we can honest and true about everything in life and connect on a deeper level with everyone.
In your experience, what should a) individuals and b) society, do to help people better understand themselves and accept themselves?
Get off social media- I honestly believe social media and THE media have made this society so self absorbed or insecure there’s no happy medium. I’m honestly only on social media because I have to with my career. If it were up to me I would delete it all together. I think doing what you enjoy and putting away the phones and tablets will allow us to see what’s really important- not how many likes we got on Instagram… Try it, uninstall ALL your social media apps for a day and turn off your data…. A full 24 hours… It’s truly amazing how much better you feel when the world isn’t watching your every move.
What are 5 strategies that you implement to maintain your connection with and love for yourself, that our readers might learn from? Could you please give a story or example for each?
I just make sure I’m happy. If I’m not then something needs to change as I mentioned in question 7. A Simple questions of “Am I happy?” will be enough to start a series of questions you can answer (honestly) and make changes as needed. If you really don’t know then go talk to a professional. I love how Carrie Underwood puts it in one of her songs “Sometimes that mountain you’ve been climbing is just a grain of sand”.
What are your favorite books, podcasts, or resources for self-psychology, intimacy, or relationships? What do you love about each one and how does it resonate with you?
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? Maybe we’ll inspire our readers to start it…
A movement I would like to see happen is taking responsibly for your own actions- stop blaming others for your problems or mistakes. I think just that simple bit of responsibly will solve a lot of issues that are going on in the world today.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote” that you use to guide yourself by? I live by the quote “Anything is possible” because it is and I’ve seen first hand what people with disabilities, serious road blocks and just life in general has thrown at them and it’s amazing what the human mind and body can accomplish if you just try.
Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life and how our readers might learn to live by it in theirs?
The quote come from the Ironman Triathlon- My dad has raced Ironman Kona 21 times and I’ve been present for around 13 of those years- growing up I saw people that couldn’t even walk accomplish one of the toughest races and challenges of their lives- so when I feel like I can’t, I remember that I can, and I will.