Living Fabulously Fierce Factor #45-Letting Haters Hate

Ok, given the boldness of this week’s factor, we’re just going to jump right in…

Over the past few weeks, I’ve heard from a number of folks about their recent experiences with some “hateration”. These are successful individuals who are really beginning  to make some major progress in their respective focus areas and as a result of sharing their excitement, and/or others’ observation of their ‘wins’, they experience gossiping tongues, diminishing support from some who had previously  been there for them, and/or folks questioning  what they’re doing with a negative or doubting tone.   It always gets to me when I hear these things because I have definitely been there and experienced some of this-it’s not fun.  

Now here’s the deal with all of this, if you’re committed to being the best you can be, progressing and succeeding toward accomplishing specific goals you must also commit to only inviting supporters, positive challengers, and promoters into your arena. We’ve talked about the arena during our deep dive into daring greatly per Brene Brown’s advice-spectators need not apply to provide feedback or even be around.  Supports, champions, advocates, friends….welcome!  What this all boils down to is letting haters stay in their lane…hating…and you continue to forge ahead in yours…everything will pan out in the end and you’ll see the gain from taking this approach.  TRUST ME….remember, I’ve been there…it totally pans out 😉

This message isn’t really elaborate because when it comes to dealing with all of this, my advice is simple-don’t.  See, when you start to dwell on the negative energy you’re getting from others, you get distracted.  You begin to veer off your path, let go of your charted course a bit, spend waaaaaay too much time trying to figure out the ‘why’ of others’ behavior, and we give them and whatever situation we may have experienced waaaaaaaaay too much airtime. Tough LFF Love: Take it, raise your awareness of the source, move on, and be wiser as you continue to progress in determining who will and will not be in your circle.

And if I need to really reinforce this message, even The Bible tells us not to “give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces” in Matthew 7:6. Your dreams, your hopes, your aspirations are sacred….they’re your pearls…Need  say more ?

Ultimately, let those who are not for you just be. Don’t waste time trying to convince them how fabulous you or your efforts are.  Just be fierce, let them stay in their lane, and continue to forge ahead in yours.

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Living Fabulously Fierce Factor #44: Operating as a Masterpiece of Potential.

 

I recently picked up a book, not because of the author or even just because of the title, but because of an individual I really look up to-Ray. Since the day I met him, he has consistently amazed me when he shares all that he does and sets out to do on a daily basis. Essentially, he literally makes every day count. Hence, when I saw John C. Maxwell’s Make Today Count, I had to pick it up!

This work includes so much insight and wisdom but one thing has already stood out to me in it:

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“Good Decisions + Daily Discipline=A Masterpiece of Potential”

What I love about this is that everything here on the input side of the equation is all about action while the left side conveys an inevitable yield. What I mean is, good decisions don’t just happen….we make good decisions. Daily discipline can’t just be a theory….it’s a consistent activity and operating mindset. What’s also interesting here is that I truly believe that we are created as masterpieces of potential with great purpose and ‘boundaryless’ influence. It’s just when we fall short of making good decisions with the intention of executing in a disciplined manner that we dilute our potential and dim the light of our masterpiece. What does all of this mean for those of us living fabulously fierce? Well, we’ve got to get to the action side of this equation!!!

Making Good Decisions: Now before you even do it, I’m going to cut you off. FORGET THE DECISIONS YOU’VE MADE IN THE PAST THAT WEREN’T “GOOD”. This is not the time to look back and start regretting and playing the “oh if I could just do it over again, I would have…and I wouldn’t have…” game. Making is about progressing, moving forward, letting go of the weight of what we may perceive should’ve have been or could’ve been “better”. So today, as we look at the goals and aspirations we have, we have to determine that we’re going to make good decisions. This actually only entails one simple thing-committing to making decisions that move you progressively toward accomplishing your goals and living your purpose. For instance, this basically means that if I’m planning to do a fitness competition this summer (I’M SO NOT) because I want brand presence in that space and I have my own personal goals around this, I have to commit to not eating certain types of food and decide on a fitness regimen that will work for me.

We’ve spent time in the past here deciding on goals and targeted accomplishments, so I’m sure you’ve got some things in mind that you’re committed to. That being said, what decisions do you need to make today around accomplishing these goals to set you up for success? How will you position yourself to continue making good decisions as you’re presented with different choices along your way?

 

Committing to Daily Discipline: This morning, not sure why, but it just hit me again how easily get are overwhelmed by our goals because we focus on the big picture of everything that needs to get done or happen for s to accomplish the incredible feats that we absolutely capable of. Instead of this approach, what we really should be focusing in on, on a daily basis, is just taking the very next step. That’s all that discipline is all about. For example, if your goal is to learn another language, don’t jump to the focus of being able to hold a lengthy conversation in the new language and set yourself up for frustration when you still can’t do that one month from now. Instead, focus on picking up a new word or phrase every day until you can hold that conversation you’re envisioning. If it’s a goal of losing a good deal of weight, focus on the things you can do every day to meet your goal-it could be working out for 30 minutes, turning down sweets, committing to turning down that wine at the work functions you have to attend. Whatever your goal may be, give yourself the benefit of a break from the mental gymnastics of trying to wrap your head around all that has to be done and enjoy the process, the journey, toward accomplishing your goal that allows you to just focus on your daily actions that will help you get there. You also get to celebrate more wins this way too!

So, today, how are you going to make this commitment to yourself of just operating in daily discipline? How will you reward yourself for each step you take?

 

ROI-Basking in the Masterpiece of Potential that You Are: This you can do right here, right now. Here’s the thing-again, we all know we have potential, that we’re fabulous, that we’re fierce. Even the person with the least bit of confidence and self-esteem can say, “I’m here for a reason….I may not know what that is, or that it’s for a great reason, but I’m here, so there’s got to be a reason for that.” That being said, take a moment just to celebrate this truth. Yesterday, Be You Photos hosted a photoshoot for Living Fabulously Fierce (more to come on that) and three of the women are some of the most phenomenal moms I’ve ever seen, so of course their little ones were there. At one point, my sister got the little people to put on the LFF Tees and I was OVERCOME WITH JOY. They were DROWNING in these adult-sized tees but the reason I loved it besides seeing them in front of their moms was because the oversized shirts representing their abundant potential!!! These three are to be experienced, to say the least-I think I could LITERALLY just sit and watch them ALL DAY LONG! And here’s the thing…today they’re drowning in those shirts, in their potential, but they have to grow…and those shirts are going to fit at some point. Overtime, their potential is going to be matched by the good decisions and daily discipline they’re going to apply. Now, that to me, is what living fabulously fierce is all about!!!

This week, I have to give a shout out to the fabulously fierce Alesha Barnes.

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As a masterpiece of potential, Alesha has been modeling this formula of making good decisions and applying daily discipline for months now and will competing in her first fitness competition next month. She set goals and man has she accomplished them and now she’s just taking it to the next level!!! Cheering her on as she gets to her final weeks of competition prep.

And, with their mommies’ permission, I had to share the masterpiece of the fabulously fierce littles-Ella, Tiana and Victoria! #watchoutworld!

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Soundtrack of the week: Because all of this requires patience with ourselves and helping each other, Patience from Dreamgirls.

Living Fabulously Fierce Factor #43: Processing-Accepting “Ugly” to Revel in “Beauty”

This week I came across an Instagram post of one of the fitness accounts I follow that really struck me “

“You have to sweat like a pig and work like a horse to look like a fox.”

I wish I could remember what account it was so I could give cred, but I totally forget. There were a few reasons why this stuck with me including my own challenging efforts with personal fitness goals, goals I have around my career, entrepreneurial endeavors, and just life in general. I really like what this quote is getting at because it actually gives you a slap in the face while simultaneously encouraging you.  This is  what I really take away from it:

Listen, if you want to be fabulous and fierce, you have to accept that the being is actually becoming, becoming is a journey, and not every stage of any journey positions you to look or feel your best all the time…but if you stick with it, the process that is, you’re going to be amazed by the outcome!!!!”

So, this is what I’ve got for you today-a recommitment opportunity. We all have different things that we’ve previously committed to that we started off really well with and then, because it got “ugly” and we weren’t seeing results as quickly as we wanted or we didn’t achieve a goal by the time we determined we would, we just abandoned the process.  For me this has included the process of becoming a runner, going natural (with my hair for those of you that just got lost a bit), losing weight, learning how to golf.  Yup, I’ve got things that I need to go back to.  After three attempts, I did finally go completely natural four years ago.  I’ve had some success with weight loss but have newer goals in that area.  I have tried multiple times to get better at running and this past month, for the first time, even though I really have been ready to quit because it truly is not always cute, I haven’t.  I’m totally committing to the process.  In fact, today, I hit run #31!!!  I’ve NEVER been that consistent with that process….and I’m actually getting better.

So, here’s what I’ve got for you today-a recommitment opportunity….an opportunity for each of us to revisit a process we’ve walked away from in the past or select a new one. Basically pick a goal: Going back to school, losing 10 pounds, doing a workout program…the whole way through, something. Now:

1-Determine the process of reaching your goal: For me, I’m going to stick with my commitment to running.  I’ve determined that for me, I need to be consistent in getting at least four 5ks in per week-basically 3.1 miles.  I’ve actually been doing more than that but that’s the process I’ve identified. What is your determination-your process?

2-Make a commitment however you need to. My commitment making has taken the form of me having the Nike Running app Coach as my “partner” in this process.  And let me tell you, it’s no joke…it really pushes and encourages in a very effective way.  Commitments take different forms.  Sometimes, all it takes is stating what you’re going to do or become.  When I finally decided I would never go back to relaxing my hair…it really was just a simple decision…and let me tell you, as I was figuring things out, not every day was a good hair day.  Other times, all I needed to do was write down my goal in my journal or on a sticky note that I posted somewhere that I would see every day.  As it relates to weight loss/management, I had to commit to only picking up seven different items from the grocery store and doing meal preps on Sundays.  This week, one of my friends actually posted her commitment to her selected process on Facebook.    Whatever it is, you just need to decide how you’re going to actually make the commitment. How will you make your commitment?

3-Accept that there are going to be some “ugly” days. Here, all I mean is that you are not always going to be cute in whatever the process you’re selecting is because the process itself, if it truly is one that is going to lead to transformation, development and growth, is just not going to be cute.  Accept that and know it’s totally ok.  During one of my runs this week, I was totally struggling.  It was just a tough day and I was hoping and praying no one say how I was pretty much dragging my steps during the last mile of the run.  NOT cute.  But, I know there would be days like that before I even started the process and I just accepted it….so I didn’t let that stop me.  I let it propel me toward what I’m headed toward…success in this area. What do you already know may be “ugly” about this process for you? Just put it out there so you know that you already knew it ahead of time and can’t use it as an excuse to quit.

4-Keep the “fox” in mind-the success, the “beauty” of the process. This is all about keeping the vision up front and close…really making it…well, real.  What do I mean by that?  Well, I am n where near being a “runner”, or the runner I want to be, I should say.  But, I’m much closer to it now than I was on day one of the process, and you better believe that every time I head out the door, with every step that hits the pavement, every breath I take to push just a little bit more, I’m envisioning myself at the finish line of some race-sometimes, another 5k, other times, yup, the Boston Marathon.  I know what my “fox” looks like.  What I look like as the “fox”.  In order to be able to get here, I had to think about what all of this was, again, before the activity part of process even began.   What’s your “fox”-The end game?   What do you look like at the end of the process?

5-Get ready, set, go!!!! All that’s left is to mentally prepare, set yourself up for the process, and go forth and conquer.  I had to get new sneakers and a few more workout pieces.  I had to also get the running app.  Then, I just had to get out there and go.  And guess what, that first day, it rained like crazy!!!!!  But I had determined the process, I made a commitment, I had envisioned success…so there was only one thing left to do…so, I did it…I went…and I’m still going!

So, how about you? Do tell.  What process are you going to commit to and begin accepting the “ugly” that may be involved, determining to move forward and keep going until you reach your goal….at least until you reach your goal?

Soundtrack of the week: Because you can’t rely on your momma for this one…and it’s just a really good song, Paramore’s Aint It Fun!

Living Fabulously Fierce Factor #42: Recognizing, Yet Defying Defeat!

The loss of Dr. Maya Angelou really did render me speechless.  I’d never met her, but there’s such a natural attraction to her light, even now, that I truly feel like I lost a great aunt or someone of that sort very, close to me.  See, Dr. Angelou was introduced to be at a very young age by a few educators who played a significant role in my life-Mrs. Beverly Mines, Mr. Wilbur Smart, and Mrs. Charlynne Mines-Smart.  I believe it was at the same time that they introduced me to Janet Jackson’s Rhythm Nation (well that was really Mr. Smart who just loved to dance) that they also introduced me to “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.”  I clearly remember what the cover of that book looked like in the library of Lena Park Community Center.  Then the other children in my after school program and I got to watch the movie and learn her story.  Since then, her light has developed an attraction to her work that I just never shook.  So, as I think of what she has left behind in just this one person from Boston, Massachusetts, I truly can’t boil it down to a few points…I just can’t.  What I can do though, is share what’s resonated with me most over this past week as everyone was posting one thing or another of from her pictures or her quotes. One quote in particular stood out to me the most:

“Though we face defeat, we must not be defeated.”

There’s so much to unpack here.

1-Not all days are good…such is the reality of life.  Yes, in living fabulously fierce, we always try to remain positive, look at the brighter side of things, seek the silver linings in the storms, maintain optimism and all of that jazz. The reality of life though is that we will face defeat…it’s not a consequence of living but evidence of it and we have to accept that not everything will be as we expect it, outcomes will not always yield to our desires….and this is all absolutely ok…such is the reality of life, the evidence of living.

2-Circumstances do not define you, you do.  At one point, Dr. Angelou shared that “I would like to be known as an intelligent woman, a courageous woman, a loving woman, a woman who teaches by being.” Now if you know anything at all about her story, you are aware that her life’s circumstances, especially the beginnings of her days, were not pleasant, peaceful, or anything you would like any child to experience, to say the least. And yet, in the face of her circumstances, she refused to accept definition under what she faced but instead, determined who and what she would be and how others would perceive her. Fierce! What more can I say?

3-You must already have your ‘pick up’ strategy in play.  Now because we know there will be bad days and tough experiences, we have to know how we’re going to get back in the game when we’ve been fouled. You can’t wait to be hit on the court of life to determine how you’re going to come back and how hard you will too. Now, here’s the deal, you can even include a pity party if you want to or you can commit to not even given any space to one, but the reality is, you have to decide before it all happens.  I’ll admit, I’m one who probably doesn’t give myself enough time to “mourn” over bad experiences or what I may perceive as losses every now and then.  I remember my first adult break up…you’d think I’d sit home, get some ice cream and watch a sad movie and cry or something….nope, I went to the movies…a really good and funny one too.  What I’ve learned though, is that there is value in taking the time to reflect on the “defeats” we face because it is in that process that we can really take away the intended learned, yielding the needed growth. With all of this in mind, no matter what though, we have to have predetermined strategies around how we’re going to move from facing the “defeat” to progressing from it and staying out of the defeated mindset.

So, again, there’s so much I could share in taking some time to pay tribute to the legacy of Dr. Angelou but on the scale of resonance this week, this message stood out stood out at the higher end of the spectrum.  And for you my friends?  Do share, your favorite Maya quote, moment, or message…one that has resonated most with you as we reflect on her light this week.

Soundtrack of the week: Yolanda Adams’ Fo’ Sho’ as a reminder that always, at the end of the day, things always work out, for sure!