Sunday, September 16, 2018 1 comments

I believe, help my unbelief...

This entrepreneurial life is no joke, and there are a lot of days it's not as cool as it sounds to be an entrepreneur.  Turns out, the ability to succeed in the "independent" lifestyle is rooted in mindset and belief.

To fill you in on the backstory, my year started out interesting to say the least. I spent New Year's Day driving back from Florida while sicker than I had been in years (pneumonia level) only to arrive home to get let go from a three-year employee contract two years early.  Which was perfectly fine with me since they stopped listening to me at day 35. The money was good and got me back to stable "on my own." The plan just didn't go COMPLETELY like I thought - year 2 pay off debt, year 3 bank money and have my speaking/training business at half-calendar capacity.  Simple enough, yet no go.

Since I had a fundraising event on my plate to concentrate on, I devoted my first 2 months to fundraising, and regrouping on my health and business. Just tighten the budget, get creative with resources, and get to work!

Fast forward to August.  Business is finally starting to get some root and blooms at the same time; however, not enough blooms to turn into fruit fast enough to replenish the money coffers.  I think this is part of every business owner's story.  I am not the first, certainly won't be the last to go through this situation. And remember, technically I just rebooted my business 6 months prior.  Not near enough time to get into a rhythm.

Where I am now in this journey is what's known as a defining moment.  I have a choice. #1 - Believe and trust that God is my supply and will provide in His mysterious way - that I should keep at peace and poised ready to go when He says "go" while I stand still and watch Him work.  OR.  #2 - I take matters into my own hands, ditch the business, get a job and just pay the bills.  I've been talking with God since August about this.  And here are messages I have been receiving on almost a daily basis:

  • A cloud formation that looks like two hands making the heart symbol.
  • Random sermon podcasts that talk about God providing in crazy ways.
  • A book recommendation that is filled with biblical affirmations such as:  "God is my supply and every day is a good day." "The walls of lack and delay now crumble away and I walk into my Promised land under grace."  "What God has done for others, He now does for me and more." and hundreds of other amazing thoughts that I tap into on a daily basis.
  • Random conversations that lead into this subject on a deep spiritual level.
  • Moments of surreal clarity.
  • Vivid dreams that have meaning of life change and prosperity and alignment with my spiritual self.
  • Reading passages in the Bible like the man who asks Jesus for healing for his child and Jesus tells him, "If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes."  He responds with, "Lord, I believe, help my unbelief!"  
  • and even, movies like "The Empire Strikes Back"

I can say "I believe" all day long.  But until I get to the point of believing in my heart (trusting), and not just in my head - belief is not solidified.

Napoleon Hill's, the author of "Think And Grow Rich," most known quote is, "Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve." Just because I can picture it in my mind (believe that it can exist) doesn't always mean I believe it to be for me.  That has been my biggest challenge lately.  The heart belief.

That means my defining moment is a trust issue.  Do I trust God more than I trust my own way?

It may not make sense as the money in my account continues to pour out before more can be put in, but I am putting my full trust in God to show up in His usual mysterious way.

Anyone else as excited as I am to see what's going to happen next?

By the way, please don't press your "I'm worried for her" button.  I implore you, if you have made it this far in my message to think only of amazingly positive thoughts surrounding my life.  "Where two or more are gathered..." Your good vibes add to the positive side and feeds into the light.  Worry only gives into the darkness.  That's not allowed here.  I believe in the force of good always winning, even under the most adverse circumstances. And I believe that God works all things for the good, including my life. find some really cool background music....

Wednesday, May 30, 2018 1 comments

According to the Quiz, I'm Depressed

So my friend gives me her extra copy of Good Housekeeping.  I'm thumbing through all the ads to get to an article that caught my eye, "No One Would Ever Call Me Depressed."  

The article had a feature picture of a laughing, happy, full-of-life Meg D'Incecco of New York City that makes you just want to hang out with her and get her to laugh more.  She shares her story that sounded very familiar to my own.  Lots of great things going on, nothing that should CAUSE depression, but on the inside the dark moods are always lingering.  Meg tells the interviewer, "A mean voice played loudly in my head telling me that I wasn't worthy, that I didn't know what I was doing professionally, that I was as fat as a Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade balloon...I'd chat with someone and then be immediately filled with self-doubt, picturing the other person walking away thinking I was an overbearing freak."

I've said almost exactly the same things to myself, and worse.

Then I get to the quiz.  

And I'll be damned, I checked off most of these.  Should I be worried?  No.  For me, this is nothing new.  I know how to manage and I have already been working on incorporating more self-care in my life to break some bad habits and negative cycles to live a life that energizes ME.

If you're reading this, and you have checked most of the symptoms - consult a therapist.  And then interview a good one for YOU to work through any issues that can help lighten your load.  If medication is necessary, do it.  Medication does not define you, neither does depression.  YOU determine what defines you.  And know, it's a process that takes time.

My own dark moods do not define me, it's just an experience I go through. Too often for my liking. And it takes me allowing myself the time necessary to shut down for a spell, stay away from situations I know will affect me negatively, to put myself in environments that energize me, and I'm still learning to do it all regardless of what other people think.  Even if I need to take a nap in the middle of the day to give my body what it needs.

So as I move forward with growing my business, my darkness may be there with me.  But I know over time through work, change, and patience, my light will be so bright there will no more room for darkness.  
Tuesday, January 9, 2018 0 comments

Egypt Is My Poverty

My biggest client and I decided to part ways this month.  A year early.  Which means, slight financial panic mode about to be engaged.  I'm nervous,  but not terrified.  The strange thing is, I get this feeling that I should just keep moving forward as normal.  Focused on my business and growing it this year.  And just stay calm.

I stayed calm on New Year's Eve when my car had a flat tire in Cedar Key, Florida.  One gas station.  New Year's Eve.  And the plan was to drive to Jacksonville on the other side of Florida to watch the sunrise on New Year's Day.  Flat tire on the opposite coast...but I stayed calm and a solution presented itself in the form of a couple riding their golf cart past the gas station.  Sonny quickly found the hole, the station had A plug kit, he patched the hole, filled the tire with air, and I was good-to-go all while I chatted with his wife, Amanda, about which beach I should visit in their home town of Jacksonville...

One adversity-filled moment. Calm peace. Quick solution appeared.

I remember a time when I could feel this calm in the midst of adversity-filled moments.  2009 I lost a decent corporate job (it was the fashionable thing to do from 2008-2010).  I cashed out.  I recreated myself. I started a business and began a whole new string of adversity-filled moments related to business.  But in those days, my habit was to go to the kitchen table, watch the sunrise, and read the Bible till I got something out of it.  Meaning. A Message.  Something. And it was always a positive feeling.  The calm.

So tonight after figuring the money isn't going to be there if I don't do something big and soon, I decided to read the Bible until I got something out of it.  I didn't know where to begin.  "At the beginning," I hear in my mind (some would say spirit here).  So, I open up to Genesis and notice I already have a pencil toward the beginning of the book.  I flip to the pencil at Exodus 13:21 where I highlighted: 

"And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so as to go by day and night..."

I keep reading how God positioned the people of Israel by the sea away from Egypt.  God also hardened Pharaoh's heart to be instigated to chase after them.  The pillar of cloud was between them.  The Israelites of course were in panic. It seemed to be the end. Nowhere to go. No options. Everything lost. They cry to Moses. Moses replies (Exodus 14:13),

"Do not be afraid.  Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord which He will accomplish for you today.  For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall see again no more forever."

Then it hit me.  Egypt is my poverty.  Or at least fear of poverty.  I've been in this financial crazy situation before of not having enough coming in to take care of basics, thus living in other people's spaces and relying on faith and kindness of others to help me through.  Which is its own learning and character development.  But this time is different for me.  The FEAR isn't there about my current situation.  And honestly, looking at it from outside it may look like I'm backed up to the sea with no options.  But wait...

Moses finishes his words to Israel, "The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace."

That was it!  I just needed to stay at peace, God's got this.  And I remembered this picture I took of a bird sleeping on a branch beside a waterfall.  Seemed to fit the moment.

Of course the story with Moses plays out with God parting the sea, the Israelites crossing, Eqypt pursuing, God closing the waters, the Egyptians drown, and Israel goes on to new adventures. 

I hope I can stay away from "wilderness moments" while God is working His plan for me.  Stay aligned, at peace, and move forward when the time is right.  And ultimately, it will all work out better than I could have imagined.  No more Egypt for me (until I visit the Sphinx someday).