Welcome to the Refine Blog

The Ideal Refiner

I want to talk about the Refine ideal client. Because yes, I have one…


I want to talk about who I’m seeking to cultivate community with…


Who I’m seeking to help grow….


Who I’m seeking to speak into my life as well, challenging me and holding me accountable to be a better leader at all times. Because I learn just as much here as I hope you are.


Before sharing the requirements of membership and the attributes and beliefs of the ideal Refiner, I want to tell you more about me so you have context on my lens and how I choose to operate this group:


I’m an open-minded, teachable, left-leaning moderate that has experienced life both in poverty and affluence. I live in a Blue island in a Red state. I’ve experienced abuse and trauma as well as healing. If there are extremes in life, I’ve experienced both ends. Those few things being said, I’m generally pretty capable of seeing both sides to most issues when discussed civilly. Yet, I do have firm convictions and backbone on my stances. It’s usually no secret where I stand. I believe having a firm stance and being empathetic to an opposing opinion are not mutually exclusive. I’m human, I’m messy and I make mistakes. But I pride myself in learning from those mistakes. I’m very frank, I do not sugar coat things, but I do have a very kind and altruistic heart – which is why I’m constantly campaigning for empathy (my knack for wordsmithing, that you all love and adore, is rooted in this). And guys, I’m freaking fun, too! Like this is the most boring and dull blog post ever to me. But it’s necessary. On a regular day, I don’t take myself too seriously. I’m sarcastic and dry. I am so weird and silly. And most importantly, I love Jesus, but I cuss a lot.


With a tiny glimpse into who I am, I lead Refine with the viewpoint of leaning into any and all conversations our industry needs to have. But in moderating posts and comments from members, I do keep two things in mind:

  1. RELATIONSHIPS- A group of nearly 4k people is not a your “safe space.” It’s too big to truly know each other, context is missing, things can be screenshot and used against you, etc. This is why I highly encourage building relationships with other planners either in your community or as an offshoot of Refine in masterminds, or in the near future, through the Refine Membership (separate and in addition to the current free group).
  2. CENSORING- All posts have to be approved before they go live on the board. Very rarely, but at times, I will ask someone to re-word a question or comment. I understand that is censoring and I understand that is frustrating. However, my job is to foresee the positive or negative impact on the group as a whole. In watching each post over the years, there are certain triggers I know will yield negativity without productivity. I also know when things are going to be hard and dark, but yield growth. So no, I’m not afraid of the hard, I just want it to be productive. And I ask for your trust on that. My hope in the future Refine Membership is that censoring will not occur at all. That members will adhere so well to the qualities found at the end of this post, that it will be a non-issue.

Now that you have my context and lens for leading the group, below is a list of attributes to outline the “Ideal Refiner.” It’s my dream that even in our free group, we align with this list; however that is self – regulated and on an honor system. Within the Refine Membership, these things will be non-negotiable and grounds for removal.


As you read these things, reflect on if this is you. I know this group isn’t for everyone. I know many of you disagree with me. Some of you have stronger loyalties elsewhere and some are here to scout me out to report back to others. Some of you are here to lurk and learn from others, despite not actually supporting me or Refine. Some of you feel you are entitled to this group, without an ounce of appreciation (or giving thought to) what it takes to offer this group to you. And you know what? Fair enough. Way to be resourceful.

But as you read this list, be honest with yourself…do you align with these things? And if not… or if you have any beef with me… or find yourself disagreeing with me more than agreeing, I would like to ask that you please remove yourself from the group and find one that best meets your needs. By the end of the summer, I would like this group to be whittled down to those committed to the following requirements, attributes and beliefs:


Membership Requirements:

  1. Is a wedding planner. Either aspiring or current. You may also provide services in other vendor categories as well, but do at least offer planning.
  2. Retired planners (and the generosity of their continued insight) are welcome.
  3. If you have moved to another venture within the industry, and no longer provide planning, this is a conflict for membership in Refine due to how the group can then be used for scouting or spying.
  4. There are a select few educators that I have personally invited into this group based on being mentors and peers of mine. Their knowledge of Refine assists in my continued growth.


Membership Attributes and Beliefs:

  1. Teachable and eager for it.
  2. Humble and kind.
  3. Does not speak with entitlement.
  4. Understands that Refine is a business, and it’s run like one. Not only understands Refine is allowed to make money the same as anyone is allowed to make money, but supports this purpose and empowers me in my success.
  5. Embodies a spirit of community over competition, but also has a back-bone and protects their business.
  6. Expresses empathy, asks questions and chooses to give the benefit of the doubt prior to making assumptions or accusations.
  7. Gives before expecting to receive.
  8. Searches the group for answers prior to asking, taking part in the community effort to reduce the noise.
  9. Is willing to challenge me and does so respectfully (as in, gives me the benefit of the doubt at all times).
  10. Is able to engage in civil discourse without attitude, judgement or belittling others with sarcasm and/or heat.
  11. While we are not organized for politics, understands that political conversations are healthy, productive and vital to the continued growth of our industry and is committed to engaging in such conversations with the goal of learning, growing and making positive change.
  12. Refine is an incredibly diverse group that embodies a spirit of tolerance and love. When disagreeing, Refiners share their counterpoints or opinions, but do not engage in name calling or telling others they are wrong. Discrimination of race, orientation, religion or other is not tolerated in any fashion.




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