It’s not what you should be doing, honey… it’s what you could be doing! If you’re so busy taking care of business, and everyone else, that you rarely make time for yourself, HeartStories is looking at you, Sister.
Founded by Crystal Gornto, HeartStories hosts monthly HeartStories GNO event series to connect women with purpose in the busiest seasons of life. HeartStories was officially incorporated in January of 2013, and they held their first event in 2014 and began the monthly GNO’s in April of 2016 with 22 monthly events to date!
How did HeartStories Begin?
It all started in 2011 when the Super Bowl came to Dallas. Crystal says,
At the time, I was selling cardiac medical devices, enjoying financial success in a male-dominated career, but not feeling personally fulfilled. There was a moment when I learned about the reality of local human trafficking, that completely rocked the heart of this native Oklahoma girl, to the core. It sent me on a journey to re-evaluate my purpose and my legacy. That journey led me to leap.
I quit my lucrative career, that I’d worked so hard to earn, and liquidated my retirement to start something that would encourage other women on that same journey to more joy and purpose. I wanted to start a community to connect women and encourage them to not be held back by all the negative noise in their minds, and to live the stories of their hearts.
The HeartStories logo is a pair of red heart-shaped headphones to remind women to replace the negative noise in their minds telling them that they’re not good enough or that this season of life is only about taking care of everyone else. Because that story is a lie.
The headphones are a visual reminder to replace that negative soundtrack with a story of LOVE for themselves and for each other. When they see, or pop on our red headphones for a picture, they’re a symbol that they’re replacing the negative noise with the kind of truth and love that can only be found in the context of authentic friendships.
What Happens at a GNO?
Most women today are so busy trying to keep all the plates spinning, that they don’t make space for the rest and rejuvenation they need. At HeartStories, we’ve created a fun monthly GNO event series that helps women reconnect with their girlfriends, and themselves, to inspire the joy they crave and the courage to pursue their purpose. It’s like a mini-retreat in the middle of the week!
We focus our monthly event themes on topics that are relevant, fun, and helpful to busy women. Some of the themes have been:
- cooking class
- vision board party
- 80’s themed birthday party
- tips on getting “holiday ready” like flattering photo posing, gift wrapping, and gift giving
- Ya-Ya Sisterhood
- laughter yoga
- floral workshop
- interior design
- home organization
- thoughtful Thanksgiving gatherings
- cookie decorating
Upon arrival, the ladies are given raffle tickets to enter in the jars of their choice for numerous raffle prizes from our incredible sponsors, ranging in value from $25 – $250 each! They are then pampered by our rejuvenation sponsors offering champagne, hair styling, makeup touch-ups, and chair massage. Crystal says,
Enjoying laughter, wine, hors d’oeuvres, and fun crafts or activities, we often feature a successful woman as our special guest for the evening, who shares the backstory of her real life and how she built her business with us. Then, she teaches us something new. We always wrap up the evening by 9:30pm so the ladies get home early enough to get the rest they need for the next day.
What Makes HeartStories Unique?
Yes, there are many organizations focused on supporting women founders, networking for women in business, professional development, and self-development. You can find women’s weekend retreats, online classes, and workshops for just about anything you want to learn. Plus, loads of places around town for fun GNOs.
HeartStories is none of those, and yet all of those at the same time.
It’s not a networking group, although that happens naturally and beautifully within our community. It’s not a personal or professional development course, class, or workshop, although our events can touch on all of those things. And, it’s certainly not just a fun Girls Night with no purpose or intention.
To our knowledge, HeartStories is the only company focused on rejuvenating the lives of women by reconnecting them, face-to-face with their girlfriends, with the purpose of inspiring them to live the stories only they can live… their HeartStories.
What’s Coming Up This Season?
We’re growing! We’ve reached capacity in our current meeting space. We’re contacted weekly by businesses inquiring about sponsorship. Our partnerships with other businesses is one of the best surprises, and biggest highlights of what we do. We’re seeing such a beautiful community emerge. Being able to connect our members and attendees with businesses that believe in supporting women to live with purpose is such a huge win and pure joy for us all. We’re laying out a strategy for how we will expand and grow beyond Texas, to serve women the world over, while continuing to improve the thoughtfully curated experience that is currently serving our local community.
So, join HeartStories on the first Thursday of each month… You’re working your tail off to be the most amazing mother, wife, friend, daughter, and contributor to this world. We know you can get discouraged when you can’t keep all those plates spinning as fast as you’d like.
Take a mini-retreat with your girlfriends, right in the middle of the week… More joy. More connection. More purpose. More fun.
You CAN draw a line in the sand to say, “It’s time for me.” OR you can keep telling yourself, “It’s just a season,” until you look back and realize, it was your life.