Today, I want to talk about embracing life. A couple weeks ago, I was meeting with someone who wants to start a business. They believed that life was over for them, because of their race, gender, knowledge and education. They spent a lot of time comparing themselves to others. I began to share with them the importance of identifying their gifts, loving who they were, using all their resources and embracing life.
I realize that as people, we often fall into the trap of comparing ourselves to others. We suppress our gifts, and allow others to make us feel inferior, because of our gender, race, education, size, etc. When we allow all the negatives to lead our lives, we limit our potential. In celebrating black history month, I was reminded of a quote by one of my favorite motivational speakers, the late Dr. Myles Munroe. He stated that the greatest tragedy in life, was living without a purpose. Dr. Munroe also stated that the wealthiest place on earth was the cemetery, because within the cemetery lies companies never created, inventions never made, books never written, masterpieces never painted, and music never recorded. The cemetery represented untapped potential and gifts unused.
When we embrace life, we must come face to face with our dreams, fears, successes, failures, setbacks, and our challenges. How we handle this confrontation, can open the door to our potential or derail us for life. Therefore, I have several recommendations I want you to incorporate in 2020 so you can embrace life and unlock your potential.
#1. The first thing you must do is Embrace your dreams. As a future business owner, writer, professor, mayor, minster etc, you must embrace your dreams. In order to do this, you must believe that dreams come true. I will always remember my dream of writing a book, becoming a college professor, earning a doctorate degree, becoming a motivational speaker, and starting a family business. I remember some people telling me that was a lot to accomplish. I knew they did not believe it was possible. However, I kept my dreams in front of me, because they were my dreams. Today, I can say that I have accomplished them all, and now I am rewriting my story, because I discovered that I have more yet to achieve.
#2. You must let go of fear. When you let go of fear, you allow yourself to receive the blessings that life has to offer. For me to move forward I had to overcome the fear of failing. I knew that failure was not final, because I could start over. This is important,
when changing careers, leaving a terrible job, or starting a business. It is important for you to let go of doubt and self -judgement.
#3. Step outside your comfort zone. Sometimes you must take small steps towards your dreams. This may require traveling into areas uncharted or new. I began my journey into publishing by writing my first chapter in an anthology. I had never done anything like this before. Today, I have contributed to 6 anthologies, released my own solo project, and I am on track to release two additional books this year. However, my finest achievement was becoming a professor, and now interim dean. For me to achieve both, I had to step outside my comfort zone. I had to push myself into areas unknown and take a chance on myself.
#4. Become resilient. Sometimes in life, you will get knocked down. In these times, you must pick yourself up, dust yourself off and keep going. I remember my layoff from Chrysler, I thought the world was coming to an end. One day while taking care of my father-in-law, I discovered by coaching and teaching ability. It was in that layoff that I discovered my purpose. Sometimes, your setback is nothing more than a setup, that leads you to your destiny.
#5. Find a cause that brings you joy. While discovering my purpose, I found Toastmasters, and learned how to improve my public speaking skills. I found the joy of passing out beads during Thanksgiving, by marching in the Michigan Thanksgiving Day Parade. I never knew a strand of beads could bring so many people joy. Finally, I learned through taking care of my father-in-law the importance of finding services for seniors and those with disabilities.
#6. Evaluate your inner circle. One of the most important strategies I have used in life is protecting my inner circle. I shared this in a speech I gave a couple years ago, the impact of starters and bench players. Starters are those individuals who honor the best in you. They support your gifts, and give you feedback to move you forward. They know that for you to make a friend you must be a friend, so they introduce you to others who will help you. No matter where you are in life, they always have your back.
Bench players, on the other hand, want to be there for the ride. They like you, but not for who you are, but for what you have. They constantly bring negativity to every idea you have. Yet, when it works, they are the first to want to get on board. Its so interesting watching them try to convince you that they were always in your corner. Therefore, as you build your inner circle, be thankful for the people that serve you with their knowledge, support, love and kindness. Also, never miss the opportunity to pour back into their lives, the love and support that you have received.
#7. Finally, you must live your life, and not the life others are creating for you. As a person of faith, I connect to my source daily, so I can live a joyful and passionate life. I feed my mind positive quotes and words of motivation from people like Dr. Myles Monroe, Joel Osteen, Beth Moore, John Maxwell, and my husband. I have realized that my passions and my goals have inspired me to embrace all that life has to offer. Therefore, my 2020 vision is off the charts, and I know those dreams will come true.
Now its up to you. Will you follow your dreams? Will you release the fear, and step outside of your comfort zone? Will you pick yourself up after a fall? Will you embrace life and untap your potential? I believe that you can, and I believe that you will. Most of all, I believe that your 2020 vision will come true. Never settle for anything less.
Dr. Regina Banks-Hall
Fall Forward Your Purpose Is Waiting for You – Book Promotion
In this book, I share my personal story of overcoming grief, and self-sabatoge. I did not realize I was falling into my purpose.