My Why

The great motivational speakers will tell you that to accomplish goals in life you have to have a “why,” a reason that motivates you, that keeps you going when things get tough, that reminds you of what is important to you.  Your “why” needs to be specific, detailed, and something you can visualize.

Since the day I became a mom, my “why” has been my children.  They were the motivation to quit my job.  They were the reason I budgeted my time and money, the reason I read parenting books, motivational books, educational books, nutritional books, self-help books, and spiritual books.  They were the reason I volunteered and reached out beyond myself, the reason I took chances and overcame fears.  And when life took turns and led me down dark corridors, they were the “why” that gave me the strength to turn myself around and walk back into the light.

Over the years my “why” has changed but the basis of it remains the same, to be the best ME that I can be as an example to my children of what a life of joy and love looks like.

There are several things that need to happen in order for me to live the example I aim to set.  Foremost, I must have financial freedom.  Most of my life I’ve depended on someone else to provide for me.  I never learned to manage my finances in a manner that would sustain me through tough times.  Money that was given to me quickly dwindled away.  Poor management coupled with a failing economy left me in a very scary place.  Anxiety entered my life and joy was pushed aside.  In an effort to recover, I went to work.  I worked long and I worked hard surrounded by smart people who were doing the same.  After months and months, I felt like my efforts were paying off.  A few commission checks started coming in.  I began to put a little money away.  I felt like I had made it through and would now begin to experience life on the other side of struggle.

But what I learned was that one simple bump in my path could set me back to square one.  I was just one illness, one cancelled transaction, or one major home repair away from where I had begun.  I was at the whim of my clients to buy or sell.  It didn’t really matter how good I was at my job.  If they changed their minds, I didn’t get paid.  My financial situation was feast or famine and my life was one long roller coaster ride.  For a while I thought it was just me, another example of my poor financial skills, but then I realized that most of the smart, skilled, ambitious people working around me were living the same way.  All of us had more days at the end of our months than we had money in our accounts.

I’m changing that for myself.  I’m embracing ‘the opportunity of a lifetime within the lifetime of the opportunity.’  I’m creating a future of certainty and security that will provide a foundation for me to live a life of joy.  I’m taking what I learned in all of those books on education, nutrition, self-help, and spirituality and using that knowledge to help other people create the life they dream of living.  I’m working side by side with my children and watching them as they mature into leadership roles, teaching me as they go.

One year from now, my path will be smooth, no more roller coasters to ride.  The residual income I will earn from the efforts I put forth today will provide me with financial freedom to live the life I imagine.

The Universe provides exactly what we need at the precise time that we are ready to receive it.  I’m constantly amazed by that fact and grateful for it. ❤

You are what you hide

“Man is not what he thinks he is, he is what he hides.” -Andre’ Malraux

This quote on facebook struck a cord with me this morning and I asked myself, “What do I hide from people?”

For a long time I hid my fear and insecurity, then I found a friend who provided a safe place for me to show this part of my Self.  Lately, I find that I’m living without fear and doing things I never would have done before.

For most of my life, I showed the world a face of confidence.  I was outspoken and opinionated, often too much so.  At times I alienated people who disagreed with me, costing friendships and weakening relationships with family.  The insecurity I held inside prevented me from opening my mind and hearing anything different than what I believed was true.  I was on such shaky footing emotionally that I didn’t have the capacity to consider another point of view.  After years of impersonating confidence, I was exhausted.

Thankfully, the Universe provides exactly what we need at all times.  At that time, what I needed was a safe place.  I found that place in the eyes of a friend who knew where I was coming from.  Her open vulnerability and raw emotion were a mirror for me and I began to see my true Self in her.  Removing the mask of confidence was the most liberating thing I have ever experienced.  Learning to trust someone to be there, to support me, to love me, even with my ugliest parts showing, gave me strength and I embraced this new feeling with gusto.  From that first moment of living in truth, I have never looked back.

Today I find myself speaking from the heart without first analyzing the reactions of others.  I see myself doing things that before would not have been possible for me.  Instead of saying, “No way,”  I’m saying, “Why not?”

Most recently, I found myself standing in front of a camera being interviewed for a promotional video that would be used by a $200mil company.  Now for some people, this would not be such a huge ordeal, but for me, I was standing so far out of my comfort zone that I might as well have been on another planet.  While I was being mic’ed up, I waited for my palms to start sweating, for my knees to get shaky, for my chest to blush red.  Amazingly enough, none of these things happened.  I remained calm and as the interview began, I was extremely happy to be standing there.  I spoke from the heart and genuinely enjoyed myself.

Now to say that I no longer hide a part of my Self from the world would not be true.  But more and more I’m finding that the part of me that I hold back is a feeling of joy and confidence.  I temper the expression of these feelings for fear of overwhelming people.  Sometimes I hear myself talking and think, “Whoa sister, back off!  They’re gonna think you’re crazy.  Nobody is this happy.”

But I am.  And for that, I am so grateful. ❤