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You Have to Fix It First
We often drive our lives like we drive our cars. Some folks love to go fast. Others take their time and check out the scenery. All of that is fine. But what I don’t understand is letting other folks drive your car. Sure, as children, our parents are in the driver’s seat. They guide us along the way until we are mature enough to take the wheel. The same goes for teachers and mentors, to a certain extent. But some of y’all let folks drive your car who shouldn’t have even been allowed to ride in it. But there you are, handing over the keys to your mind, heart, and soul. Some people you let drive your car too long. They aren’t doing any maintenance on it. Haven’t contributed a gallon of gas, but they are still driving your life instead of you. Honey, time’s up. It’s time to take your keys to your car and your life back. You are the only driver.
Your Personal Prescription
God gave you that vision, that dream. Stop getting upset because other folks can’t see it. God didn’t give it to them. Just like those glasses, your dream is prescribed just for you and your vision. No one else’s, alright?
Instead of spending so much time trying to force people to see your vision, invest your energy in manifesting that thing. Bring it forth. There is absolutely no need to get bent out of shape and argue about things other folks were never prescribed to see.
There’s a saying that goes, “Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”
No Shame in Putting Yourself First
The first rule of getting to happy, of reclaiming your joy, is to put yourself first.
There’s always something that will intercept your decision. If you have a family, there will inevitably be some guilt lurking around your heart when you start taking back some of your time and energy. Don’t buy into it! Of course, we have responsibilities in our home that we must attend to. If you have a partner or children, I’m certainly not suggesting you neglect them. But you also cannot neglect your own self.
Everybody will just have to deal with it. That’s their business. Especially if they are people outside your immediate family. What those people think about you, their comments and “concerns” about the decisions you’ve made for yourself, ain’t none of your business. Of course, be considerate. Be loving. Be respectful. But then handle your business and move on. Don’t let guilt stop you. Don’t let fear, that ugly “what if,” stop you. Put yourself first. Do something great for yourself today. Then do it again tomorrow.
Running Only Leads You Back to You
Some of you might be running from your dreams. You were born with this dream inside you, but life done got in the way. Honey, know this: You can’t run from it. Your dream will lace up its sneakers tight and chase you down until you face it. It won’t feel good. In fact, it will probably be uncomfortable. But sometimes you have to be made to feel uncomfortable before you’ll turn around and say, “Okay, I’ll do it. Stop chasing me.” God will make your life uncomfortable until you face the thing that has been tapping at you, the thing you’ve been running from. Once you do, you’ll begin a whole new journey of releasing the fear. Minute by minute, day by day, week by week, month by month, and, yes, sometimes year by year.
But if you’re committed to it, you’ll soon realize it wasn’t even the problem that you were running from. You were running from yourself. You were running from your own insecurities, the whatByifs and fears; your own doubt. And the moment you face it, your entire world begins to change.
Strong and Wrong
Some folks love to blame everyone or anyone they can. And then one day, they run out of folk to blame. It’s easier to blame someone, though, right? It’s easier to be mad. It’s easier to point the finger at everyone except ourselves. But think about this: If the person you are blaming truly did something to you that caused you hurt and pain, how is blaming them going to heal you? What makes you think that holding on to it is going to make you feel any better? That’s right. It won’t.
So let’s stop playing the blame game. Let’s focus on doing the work to heal ourselves. No, it doesn’t let the person “off the hook.” It actually just takes our attention away from them and places it onto ourselves. Don’t let a person or circumstance hold you hostage in the blame prison.
We All Have Value
Sometimes when good things are happening to you, something or someone else will come and try to steal your joy. They will try to make you see your blessing in a negative light. As if you aren’t supposed to be where you are or have what you have. Don’t let that devil win, honey. You are not the problem. Those negative things coming your way are sent to distract you from what God is doing in your life.
There is an enemy, and he has a job to seek out and destroy your dreams and your life, if possible. Don’t you dare buy into it. Don’t let anything stop you from growing.
And don’t be like those neighbors when someone around you is growing and being blessed. Don’t be upset that someone is promoted at your job, or gets married. If someone is blessed to move into your neighborhood, don’t look at them like they are going to devalue you or your property. See them as humans who are going to bring you value. Know that we all bring value wherever we go. Yes, you bring value, honey!
We’re Better Together
God can use anybody to bring about a message. He can use the homeless person in the street. He can use that neighbor you don’t even like. He can use your coworkers or your children. God can and will use anybody to reach you.
Let us not be so quick to judge someone because they don’t look the way you think a so-called good person should look like. Stop thinking people are useless to you when they just very well may be the blessing you’ve been waiting for all your life. But there you are, blocking the blessing. Perhaps talking bad about them. Shutting them out. Don’t you know that you could be missing out? You better allow God to use the people He sends as a vessel, so you can get that word you’ve been praying and asking Him for.
Everybody isn’t going to have the same beliefs as you. They aren’t going to look like you, nor will they have had the same journey you’ve had. Be okay with that, okay?
Freedom Is Knowing You’re Enough
No one can live for you. Choose freedom. Choose to be yourself no matter who likes it or who doesn’t. You can still be loving to people. You can love people and still demand respect for yourself. Poet Nikki Giovanni said it best: “Deal with yourself as an individual worthy of respect, and make everyone else deal with you the same way.”
Live free and watch your whole world change around you. The way people look at you will change. They will even start treating you differently. Why? Because they actually see you. There’s an old saying that goes, “In a world where we could be anything, the best thing to be is yourself.” It really does make a difference. Can I say it one more time? You are enough.
Take Your Hands Off—Let It Go!
Let go of all that noise in your mind and heart. Embrace the fact that you have a purpose on this earth, and it’s time for you to figure it out and fulfill it. You’ve got somebody’s life to change, starting with your own. I know life can be bittersweet. We all go through stuff. We all are fighting battles, seen and unseen. But let’s not let the struggle win. Let the struggle go. At least you will be able to say, “Man, I went down swinging. I went down fighting. Honey, I was trying.”
Let’s throw away all that’s worn out and old. All our old ways. All the things we used to do that didn’t serve us or our purpose. All the things that were our norm but have never evolved. It’s time to live our best lives. Having lived through a pandemic, we know better than most that tomorrow is not promised. But forget tomorrow—the next minute isn’t promised. Let’s choose joy and love. Let’s choose peace. And then once we’ve got it for ourselves, let’s spread it around.
So, let go of trying to fit in. Let go of trying to please other people over yourself. You are an original creation.
More Than One Route to a Destination
If everyone is going the same way, then everyone is going to pick a lane and ride in it. Yes, depending on the lane chosen, some folks are going to get there a little bit quicker and some are going to take their time. But we’re all on the same road. You don’t have to do everything just like somebody else to be successful. Figure out your own way and be alright with getting off on a different exit, your exit. Don’t watch other people and think that if you don’t do it exactly like them, you’re somehow failing. You’re not. The failure is in trying to do something like someone else. Being your true, authentic self is the best way to win.