Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Power of Pushing Forward

I didn't grow up in the hood or the projects. In fact, I grew up in a middle class family with parents who are still happily married and support my every move. However, for whatever reason, that was not my ticket to a struggle-free life. At 17 I was raped, 19 kicked out on the streets of LA by a relative, bulimic, and by 23, I was pregnant with a man who wanted nothing to do with being a father, thus I was forced to work and finish college as a single mother. Messy, right? Well I grew up around a group of girlfriends who have all their eggs in a row; graduated college, got married and bought homes.
I am glad I am not a good sailor like my girlfriends (whom I love very much). I have learned how to fall hard on my face and get right back up because I have always had faith that God was testing me to become strong so I can be prepared to fulfill my purpose in life. We all have a purpose, and we are all faced with circumstances that are equivalent to a training program for a job. Just as the training program gives us the skills we need to perform our job duties, life circumstances are given to us so we are ready to fulfill our purpose. Maybe your purpose is to teach children or work with cancer patients. Your purpose might be the happy janitor who makes a difference in the lives of students and faculty who see you every day. It's not the title of the job that makes you important it’s the integrity with which you perform that job. Furthermore, it not how hard or easy life had been but rather how you filter out the negative and capitalize on the positive that makes you successful.
I have been able to push forward because I have always looked to God for guidance. I meditate on his purpose for me rather than the purpose I set out to fulfill. God is interesting in that he will slap us around a little until we actually see what he has in store. Would you walk into Talbots and get mad that they don't sell olive oil? Of course not! Most apparel stores don’t sell food products. So why shop for your purpose like that? Are you the type who just thinks life sucks because instead of that "dream job" you thought was best you got a completely different opportunity? Or, do you see that opportunity as something that will get you further than the "dream job" to a place you never imagined possible? Ah have you ever watched Oprah? Yea, she is the queen of showcasing people who have had dreams come true in ways they never even thought of.
I have found that when I try to control my life the opposite happens. I feel chaotic, disorganized and disheveled. When I hand my problems or questions off to God, I feel peaceful, organized and in alignment.


MAC stand for Make A Change. It's something I think about often. I wonder, how can I change something within me to have a more organized home? Or, how can I define my goals better so I go after exactly what I want? Or, how can I manage my time better so I spend more quality time with my son? We all struggle with very similar everyday challenges. Some of us stop to reflect upon who we are and how we can improve. Others just skim through the day as if they don't even have a shadow. And then there are those who know they have to make a change but say, "I'll do it tomorrow."

MAC2Day is all about discussing the ways in which you have made changes in the present to escape the bad habits of your past and improve your future. Change is not something we are meant to do alone. If you read the biography of any great leader, you will find that they accomplished their dreams by building a strong support system of people who believed in their dreams as much as, if not more, than they did.

This conversation is open to anyone who wants to make a change. If you are the CEO of a company and you want to make a change in your home life, talk about it. There are millions of people just like you. If you are a sales clerk at a retail chain and you want to become a manager, talk about it. Someone else was where you are and is now where you want to be. If you were addicted to drugs and you just got out rehab and have no clue where to begin. Well guess what!? There are millions of people in the same boat. You made a huge change already now reach out to a community of people who can help you discover your strengths, interests, skills and dreams. Or, if you are a single parent who has a passion for life and just wants a job that allows you to support your family and be there as a mother and father, talk about it. There are a lot of us out there too. With the divorce rate at a staggering 60% there are more single parent families than nuclear ones today anyway.
The point is we are all walking on the same Earth surface and most of us are just looking for some support to help us discover where we want to be. Don't let anyone fool you into thinking that they have always had it all figured out their entire life. Because if that is the case then they haven't been tested yet or they have not taken a good hard look at themselves in the mirror.
Don't be shy share your story. You never know how your experience could help save and/or change the life of another.