Strive

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Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/pp.print

During the month of February, we honor notable African Americans.  Today, I want to talk about Booker T. Washington and the concept of striving.  Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) was born into slavery and rose to become a leading African American intellectual of the 19th century.  He was one of the founders of Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute, renamed Tuskegee University in 1881. He also founded, the National Negro Business League.

After the civil war, his family relocated to Malden, West Virginia.  His mother later remarried and then took on the last name of his stepfather.  Booker had to work and was only allowed to go to school after his morning shift.

He learned about the Hampton Institute, a school for former slaves, and would walk 500 miles to Hampton, where he excelled.  He went on to study at Wayland Seminary in Washington, D.C., but after impressing Brigadier General Samuel Chapman, he was invited to return to Hampton as a teacher in 1879.

Booker would go on to be an advisor to multiple U.S. Presidents, and was a dominant leader in the African American community and of the contemporary black elite.  Booker became the leading voice of the former slaves and their descendants who were oppressed in the South by disenfranchisement and the Jim Crow discriminatory laws.
Booker’s life was not without challenges. He found himself at odds with other negro leaders, over the issue of racial equality for African Americans.  He called for black progress through education and entrepreneurship, while others sought to fight the laws of Jim Crow directly. He remained a leader and figurehead at Tuskegee University until his death.

Booker’s story is important, because he shows us that we must all strive to survive.  And we must also strive to thrive.  Life is not easy, it is filled with challenges, failures and setbacks. In most cases, only those who are determined to press through the challenges and setbacks overcome their adversity.

Many people created dreams and visions for 2020 and may have already given up because of a challenge or a setback.  However, in order to achieve your dreams, you must push through the adversity and get to the other side. Nothing that is worth something comes easy.  It is when you are challenged the most, that you must push the hardest.
Remember this quote by Booker T. Washington. “Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life, as by the obstacles which he has overcome.”

Strive to survive and strive to thrive in 2020.
Dr. Regina Banks-Hall

Maximize Your Gifts, to Maximize Your Dreams

Martin Luther March on Washington
Leffler, W. K., photographer. (1963) Martin Luther King with leaders at the March on Washington. Washington D.C, 1963. [Photograph] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/2013649720/.

Today, we are celebrating the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  Dr. King was born in Atlanta, Georgia on January 15, 1929.  In December of 1955 when he was a young minister, he got involved in the Montgomery, Alabama citywide bus boycott. At the beginning of the 1960s he used his voice and his talent to galvanize individuals to speak out against segregation. In his famous  ‘I Have a Dream’ Speech, he laid out a vision for a better world.  He was assassinated on April 4, 1968 in Memphis Tennessee, where he was there supporting striking sanitation workers.

As I thought about Dr. King, I thought about how he maximized his gifts.  He used his voice, and his ability to champion his cause.  He suffered criticism, was beaten, and jailed for believing in his dream.  However, he pushed through despite the challenges. His willingness to utilize his gifts, has become a blessing to us all.

As you celebrate him today, I want you to think about your gifts.  Are you maximizing your potential? Are you using your speaking skills, writing skills, and music ability? Are you being the Change Agent you always knew you could be, or are you letting others define your destiny?  Recognizing your gifts is tough and maximizing them is even harder.  But just like Dr. King, you must maximize your gifts, so you can maximize your dreams.  Remember, when you maximize your dream, it can be the blessing that the world is waiting for.

As I close, I leave you with this challenge.  Let go of negativity and say no to fear.  Start by putting one foot in front of the other, maximize your gifts, and follow your dreams.  I believe that 2020 can be the year, where dreams come true.
Dr. Regina Banks-Hall

Be A Bridge

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Bridges are structures designed to cross an open space or gap.  When most people think of bridges, they think of crossing a body of water, valley, or road without hindering what’s underneath the bridge.  The bridge is designed for providing a passage over the obstacle, which is often difficult to cross.  Some bridges are unique because a pathway has been provided for you to walk alongside the bridge in order to get to the other side. Finally, bridges serve a particular purpose and are designed by bridge builders for different situations.

The concept of the bridge is very important when you think of people.  As I begin to narrow my 2020 vision, I want to focus on how we can become bridges of society.  As a bridge builder, we can use our knowledge, skills, and abilities to help bring people together.  When we become the bridge builder, we can often become the catalyst that introduces opportunities and learning experiences to others, allowing them to find and use their gifts.  We have all heard the saying, “Be the bridge.” Well, today is a great time to start.

If there were no bridge builders, many people would never know what is on the other side of the river, lake, stream, valley or ocean.  In other words, without bridge builders, so many people would never know what they could have become.  Remember, when we share our experiences, education, testimonies, wisdom, resources, stories, advice, connections, and gifts, we become a bridge of opportunity, possibility, and vision for those who have never seen what is on the other side.

So, I am challenging you for the year 2020.  Don’t be a wall, a border, or a blockade. Instead, be a bridge builder and usher someone over to a bright new future.

Dr.  Regina Banks-Hall

Look Beyond the Wall

man in blue suit
Photo by The Lazy Artist Gallery on Pexels.com

Hello Everyone

Today is January 6th, and many of us, my self-included, have created goals that we want to accomplish for the year. As you begin to create goals for yourself, and think about how you will impact 2020, one area that I want you to focus on is looking beyond where you are. Often when I conduct vision board or leadership workshops, or do motivational speaking, I share with my audience the importance of looking beyond what is in front of them.

You may be saying to yourself, why is this important? Often as individuals we become accustomed to the status quo. We expect nothing better. We buy into other people’s comments about our abilities. We sometimes overlook the notion that they are afraid of what we might become, so they plant negative seeds. Finally, we hold back our dream, because we are waiting for someone to validate our ideas instead of moving forward with our vision.

In order to grow and truly live out your purpose in 2020, it will be important for you to look beyond what is in front of you. It is important for you to visualize success. There is no limitation to your success, there is only the limitation to your vision.
Today, find the courage to venture out. This venture can lead to a new promotion, a new book, or a business opportunity. For years, I had a dream of becoming an author, professor, life coach, and motivational speaker. Yes, I wanted it all. I knew the odds were stacked against me, because I knew there were people who did not want me to succeed. However, I was willing to look beyond what was in front of me, because what I saw was people standing in my way.

I began to change my attitude and my inner circle. I began to put action behind those goals by writing the book, becoming a motivational speaker, coaching others to success, and my favorite of all, becoming a college professor. I held onto the faith I had, that I could do it. I realized that the purpose of my goals was bigger than me. These goals were associated with helping others see that, if I could do it, so could they. But most importantly, I held onto my faith in God, knowing that he had a plan for my life.

As we begin to move throughout this year, and you begin to formalize your goals, think about how your desire to change your story can affect your community, your family, your church, or your organization. Do not sit back and accept the status quo. Instead, step up and accept the challenge of looking beyond the wall. Realize that today can be the day that changes everything.

Dr. Regina Banks-Hall

Don’t Bury Your Talents in 2020

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Well, today is the final day of this year.  As part of my own goal planning process, I conducted my 2019 year in review.  I checked off my accomplishments and reprioritized my goals for 2020.

Like many people, I worked through some challenges in 2019.  But through it all, I will enter 2020 renewed and ready to use my gifts and talents in this year.  As you evaluate your 2019, reflect, evaluate, and celebrate your story.  Remember that your failures or setbacks do not define you, because you still have a chance to rewrite your own story.

I want to remind everyone of an important biblical story.  In a biblical passage, a Master gives his servants several talents, according to their ability.  He then plans to take a journey but vows to return.  The Master gave one servant five talents, which the servant doubled.  The next servant was given two talents.  He did the same.  The last servant was given one talent and he buried it in the dirt.  This servant, in his mind, played it safe.  He was afraid of the unknown, or possibly lazy, so he buried his talent.  The servant expected his Master to be thankful for protecting the talent.  When the Master returned, he congratulated the first two servants for their diligence.  But with the third servant, he was infuriated and dealt with him harshly.  The key point in this story, is that we have all been given a portion of talent or ability.  However, it is what we do with it that counts.  Do we multiply it, or do we bury it?

As you enter 2020, know that it is okay to step outside your comfort zone.  In order to change the world and leave a lasting impact, it requires that you take a risk on yourself. Do not be like the servant in the passage and bury your talents.  When we bury our talents, we hold back solutions, knowledge, skills, innovation, and creativity.  We literally rob the world from utilizing and benefiting from our giftedness.

As a professor, author, speaker, coach, and leadership expert, my goal for 2020 is to convince you not to bury your gifts.  Tomorrow is the beginning of a new year, start the year off in grand fashion by utilizing your God given gifts and talents.

Join “Dr. Regina’s World” by following me on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tumblr, and YouTube and let’s start using our gifts together.

From my family to yours, I wish you a healthy, successful, and prosperous New Year.

Dr. Regina Banks-Hall

Embrace Life

person standing on hand rails with arms wide open facing the mountains and clouds
Photo by Nina Uhlíková on Pexels.com

Hello everyone,

I know it has been a while since I shared a post.  I took some time, spending the last few months, conducting small business workshops, finishing up two books for a fall release,  and getting ready for my fall teaching season.  As I began to reflect on the first half of this year, I was reminded that no matter how strategic your plans,  life will provide you some unexpected twists that can impact your future.

As an Leadership Expert, Assistant Professor of Business, and Small Business Coach, I am always reminding everyone within my reach that life is a risk.   Today, I was looking at the board game called, The Game of Life.  It is a game I use often, while teaching my economics class.   In this game, a person travels through his or her life, from early age to retirement.  During this journey around the game board, it covers jobs, marriage, career opportunities, pitfalls, and the possibility of children that can be added along the way.  It is a reminder that in real life, these things can happen, and we can also experience a twist or turn, along the way.

As I was looking at this game, and reflecting on the year, I was reminded that we cannot control the events that come our way.  Some of the events I am referring to are, the loss of a job, a bad relationship, or a death in the family.  We certainly can’t control these events, however, we can control how we respond.  We must always keep in mind that pitfalls can also be stepping stones.  For instance, the loss of a job may open the door to a future opportunity that you never noticed.  Getting out of a bad relationship may open the door to you meeting the right person. A death in the family, though painful, can give someone a renewed sense of how important life really is, or how important it is to spend time with those you love.

When you view life as a journey, you open yourself up to embrace the unexpected.    The journey into the unexpected is where you discover who you really are.   It is where your character is tested, yet you make the choice to maintain your integrity.   It is during the journey of the unexpected that you send a message to your critics that you are still standing, in spite of their attempts to bring you down.   It is during the journey of the unexpected that you find yourself on top of the world one day, and down in the valley the next.   The key to success here is to remind yourself that these small setbacks do not define who you are.  When you know who you are, you know you can recover, and you are always looking for the light at the end of the tunnel.

History reminds us that some of our most successful people did not succeed because they knew they would.  They succeeded because they would not allow doubt, and the fear of the unknown, to derail their progress.  They understood that the unexpected opened the door to opportunities.

I believe that the thing that hurts people the most is banking on the status quo.  Successful people understand that they can lose it all.  However, they know by pushing through the challenges and setbacks, they will achieve a winning outcome.   The game of life is a reminder of what could happen.   Yet, real life is not a game at all, and should be embraced in a meaningful way.   Success is often determined by the choices you make, and your ability to embrace the unexpected.  These two variables will help you navigate towards a winning outcome.   As we move through the rest of the year,  choose to implement these measures, embrace the unexpected, and prepare to win.

Dr. Banks-Hall

 

Handle Your Business

woman sitting on black chair near brown table
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

 

As a business coach, professor, and leadership expert, I have the opportunity to witness up close, new entrepreneurs launch their business ideas.   These entrepreneurs have fresh and exciting ideas, big dreams and a boatload of optimism.   This excitement is contagious and their energy is overwhelming.

However, I have also seen individuals stumble, fall, and ultimately fail in their business pursuits.  Sometimes, this happens, because success is a tricky thing, and not easily achieved.   Therefore, if you are ready to launch into a new business, let me share five tips that will increase your odds for success.

#1 Keep your vision in sight.   When things go wrong, you can use your vision to maintain your focus.

#2.   Understand your competition.   As a professor of economics, I share with my students all the time, that every business must understand the market in which it operates.  Therefore, you must identify the competition, and determine how your business will compete.

#3.   Provide a good service.  It is important to know your capacity to deliver what you’ve promised.  Therefore, do not overpromise and under deliver.

#4.  Keep track of your expenses.   As a new business owner, it is important to create a system for managing your expenses.   Managing your expenses, allows you to track your progress and keep a handle on your debt.

#5  Hire a business coach.   If you are starting a new business and are unsure of what you should do, hire a professional to assist you.   There is no substitute for experience, and a business coach will provide the expertise you need.

If you are launching a new business, I recommend that you attend my workshop this weekend, (Saturday April 27th at the VisTa Tech Center in Livonia), entitled: “Handle Your Business.”   See the video below for details.

Dr. Regina Banks-Hall

 

 

 

Impacting our youth, Dr. Tamara Jefferson and the Joyful Tots Childcare and Learning Center

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-mqijd-abe46b

In celebration of Women’s History Month, Dr. Regina Banks-Hall sits down with Dr. Tamara Jefferson, Director of the Joyful Tots Childcare and Learning Center.  To learn more about Dr. Jefferson and her childcare center, please visit her website at http://www.joyfultots.com

Also, please visit http://www.rbankshall.com to learn about Dr. Regina Banks-Hall’s upcoming Small Business Workshop, “Handle Your Business.” 

Celebrating Women on International Women’s Day

Today, we celebrate International Women’s Day.   International Women’s Day is a day dedicated to celebrating the cultural, economic, political, and social achievements of women.   As a female business owner, professor, author, business coach, public speaker, daughter, and wife, today I reflected on my own journey.

As I reflected on my life,  I thought about all my experiences good and bad.    I acknowledge the journey has not been easy.   I have overcome adversity, negative people, and others trying to hold me back.   I realized that my focus, commitment, and determination to my dreams has allowed me to press forward.   Therefore, my message to my sisters, is to never give up on yourself.   Recognize your value and continue to push forward towards your purpose.

Today, as we celebrate International Women’s Day, give thanks to those who have created a pathway for us to follow.  However, take a moment to celebrate and honor yourself.   Use this moment in time and determine what trail you will create for others to  follow.  Please enjoy this video in your honor.

Dr. Regina Banks-Hall

Empowering Young Women- Girls Group

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-kcinh-a89465

In this episode, Dr. Regina Banks-Hall interviews Ms. Kia Sweeney, the Program Director for Girls Group.  Ms.  Sweeney shares the organization’s mission, and their efforts to transform the lives of young women.  To learn more about this organization, please visit their website at www.girlsgroup.org