Faith

Do These 5 Things Today To Ensure You Never Stop Dreaming or Becoming (+ Actionable Worksheet)

Never Stop Dreaming!


These were the words I heard right before I was jolted out of my sleep by my annoying alarm early one morning. I rushed to turn my phone alarm off and hurriedly texted these three words to two of my friends who are a part of my dream team.

I knew exactly why those 3 words were on my mind this particular morning, as they had been weighing heavily on my heart after a coaching session I had with a prospective client a few days prior.

This wife and mom of 3 school age children wanted to explore some things that she could do next in her career. She acknowledge the fact that her life for the last 7 years had revolved completely around being a wife and a mom.  As we neared the end of our conversation, with nearly every question I asked, she and I became aware of 3 things:

  1. There was a huge gap between “could do” and “wanted to do” as it related to her career.

  2. There was also a disconnect that existed between the person she was as a child–-full of ideas, hopes and dreams–-the popular college student who was often in the spotlight, and her current situation: an anti social recluse who was in need of some direction.

  3. A shift had taken place and she found herself stuck as she kept saying over and over, “I don’t know what happened to me.”

She had stopped dreaming and as a result she had stopped believing in herself.

She stopped seeing herself as the beautiful woman God created her to be, with a myriad of gifts and talents including the ability to write, sing, act and build things from scratch.

She had not even been able to truly celebrate the fact that she had finished writing and publishing a book, something she felt she was supposed to complete years ago.

Her identity had become so lost in raising her children and being a new wife that she somehow forgot about and disconnected herself from those dreams she had as a child, believing that the two couldn’t coexist.

As I began highlighting the many desires and dreams she still had locked up on the inside of her: to serve others, the passion to create things or pull things apart and rebuild them, she still kept rehearsing words and suggestions that were not her own, but had been imposed on her by others.

They were words that had created the gap that now existed between what she could do and what she wanted to do, and it was keeping her stuck. Phrases like:

“Well this person said I could do this.”

“My mother thought I should do this.”

“People said I shouldn’t do this.”

She had allowed the naysayers, the dream busters and the negative Nancys to redirect her life and now she was stuck, 7 years later.

She needed to reconnect to those dreams and to the woman she was becoming in order to tap into those things that she was called to do. Only then would she begin to really live more freely, unapologetically and purposefully.

I didn’t want her to wake up one day when her children were grown and out of the house still trying to figure out what she was supposed to be doing. 

Perhaps you may find yourself in a similar situation as my client that I described above.  

Here are a few things to begin considering and things you can do to ensure that you never stop dreaming or becoming.

 

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May I encourage you to never stop becoming. Never stop dreaming. Never stop pursuing the things you love, the things that come naturally to you, and the things that make you YOU.

There is a roadmap that has yet to be discovered embedded in your life story.

You owe it to yourself to find out what it is.


Who Will Your Original Be?

A couple of years ago, I had the opportunity to speak to a group of young ladies who were 2nd and 3rd year college students at a natural beauty and self-love symposium.

As we dialogued about the things and people who have influenced their definition of natural beauty over the years and how that definition has changed, one of the young ladies brought to light an important observation.  She stated that society has always had an ‘original’ or standard by which natural beauty is defined. This standard has served as a model to which people make a self-comparison in order to determine whether they measure up.

As I thought about what she said, I challenged her and the other young ladies with this question, “Who will your ‘original’ be?” 

She immediately responded, “Me”.


As I reflect back on this statement, I was forced to think about a number of things and people who I have knowingly or unknowingly used as a standard while on my own journey to understanding natural beauty and self-love—the path of becoming more, doing more and living more. 

For a long time, I, too, didn’t see myself being the original to which I was comparing my ever evolving self. 

Often times, as mentors, parents, teachers and other influencers that have the opportunity to speak into and affect the lives of others, particularly our young people, we have to be careful when we say they can be anything they want to be.

The truth is, each of us was uniquely designed to be a specific person—YOU.


Many well-known people such as Oprah, Janelle Monae, Barbara Walters, Michael Jordan, Elvis, Bishop Jakes and countless others were once just regular names with no significance to anyone. Over time, they became the best version of themselves—who they were created to be—and became great at what they were called to do.

Oprah, herself, made this discovery. When she started her career in television news, she found herself trying to be like Barbara Walters. “It was something as superficial as trying to sit like Barbara and cross my legs like Barbara and lean into the desk like Barbara,” Oprah recalls. “Superficial, but still prohibiting me from being able to exercise the fullness of myself”. She soon realized that the key to becoming who she was really supposed to be began when she stopped “pretending to be an anchorwoman and pretending to be like Barbara Walters”. (Huffington Post). As a result, her career began to take off.

There is nothing wrong with admiring or even aspiring to develop and embrace some of the values, skills, and character qualities of others. However, we need to make sure that we are not shying away from the message to tell others as well as ourselves that being the best version of YOU is the best you can be—100% of the time. 

I have friends who I admire for their persistence in going after what they want as well as their work ethic in pursuing their purpose.  I have loved ones from whose life experiences I have learned what it means to be really bold and outspoken.  Yet, I have to be careful that I am not making them my standard or using them to define who I should be or what I should do.

When we begin comparing ourselves to others, start trying to define ourselves by what others say the standard is or pretending to be someone else, we rob ourselves and others of the unique gift we were specifically intended to share with others.

Discover the freedom of being who you were truly created to be and become unapologetic about it. Then, you will begin creating the original version of you and the standard to which you can now compare yourself.

You are unique, as unique as the DNA and fingerprint you possess. There has never been and there will never be another you on this earth. You are fearfully and wonderfully made—skillfully knitted together with a combination of gifts, skills, talents and abilities that you are to use to serve others. 

Don’t become a carbon copy. Instead, be your own original. Be the one to whom you compare yourself to as you continually move forward in your journey to becoming more—the original version of yourself, doing more—the original things you were created to do and living more—the abundant life you were already destined to live.

Begin asking yourself some questions:

  1. Who am I created to be?

  2. What makes me uniquely me?

  3. Who/what is my standard for becoming the best version of myself?

  4. How did I determine this?

After answering these questions, write a letter to your original self as if you were 10 years older. Describe the person you are now and who you hope to become by then and seal it.  Let’s see how close you come to that person you want to be 10 years from now.

The Most Important Thing You Should Know Before You Step Into Your Purpose

I can hardly believe there are only 51 days left in 2017!

So much has happened this year and while it seemed like a long year, it flew by like all the others.

Well guess what?

It’s also 40 days until my birthday!

As a gift to me, if you haven’t already, would you please take a few minutes to complete this LMAC Valued Opinion Survey for me?

My gift to you for 2018 is to provide you with the best content to help you continue moving forward in purpose!

As my birthday draws closer and 2017 draws to a close, I have begun thinking less about what I want or should be doing and more about who I am and the woman I want to BE.

I recently read this quote and it got me thinking.

To DO is to take some action. 

To BE requires real transformation.

Have you ever thought about that?

The type of woman you want to BE?

Who is she?

What does she look like? What kind of woman is she?

The answer to this question is the most important thing you need to know before you step into or continue walking in your purpose in 2018.

 

I CHALLENGE YOU!

In these next 51 days, I challenge you to really sit and write down the type of woman you want to BE.

What does she look like? (not just physically, but who is she at her core?

What type of person-friend, mother, aunt, wife, sister, employee, servant-is she?

What are her character traits?

What core values govern her life?

Then, I want you to go look in the mirror at that face staring back at you and really look at her. Stay there for a few minutes.

It is so easy to turn our eyes away from the person in the mirror amidst the hustle and bustle of our day to day.

How many times have you stopped to look at her, to really see her, recently?

It’s when we first take the time to focus on the BEing that real change takes place.

It leads to better choices, better action steps, better relationships, a better mindset, a better 2018.

If we shift our focus away from what we, or maybe others say we should be doing, to the type of person we want to BE/become, we will find more meaning and purpose there. It will then drive our decisions.

It was just 10 years ago that I woke up one morning, looked at myself in the mirror and couldn’t recognize the young woman staring back at me.

I gotta be honest. It was one of the scariest moments of my life. I had been living with her for 25 years at that time, but she was a stranger to me.

Now when I look at the 35, soon to be 36 year old woman in the mirror, not only do I recognize her, but I really love her and the woman she is becoming.

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But it was a long, grueling process and thankfully, I am still transforming.

So as you get ready to exit out of 2017 and step into 2018, maybe even thinking about your new year resolutions and the goals you want to set for yourself, can I encourage you to focus on and get clear about the woman who you want to BE first.

It isn’t so much about the things in this world that you do that will matter the most as much as the person you become in the process.

When you are clear about who she is and wants to BE, when you can really begin to see her, then you will have the greatest impact on the people whose lives you have been called to impact while walking in your purpose.

And I’m not talking about a minor impact, but an eternal impact.

Start with the end in mind. Think about and decide who she is and then work backwards.

For example, if you want to be less of a procrastinator or more kind and loving, ask yourself what will that require you to have to do or to have to change.

Don’t wait until 2018 to start. Begin today. 

Woman of Purpose, I am rooting for you, and for woman in the mirror!

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[Just in case you skipped to the end of this post, I am challenging you to use the next 51 days to think about and write down the type of woman you want to BE/Become (see above for the specific questions you want to ask yourself).

Also, because I want to know your specific needs in order to serve you better, would you please take just 3 minutes to complete the LMAC Valued Opinion Survey?

Thank you!

 

 

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