So many of us were determined to ‘get it in in 2010’. In January, you could literally feel the excitement and enthusiasm for a new year and a new decade in the air. I started off this year by choosing a theme for the year and the principles I would work on. You can review that post here. Then, after 3 months, I reviewed my progress in this post. Continuing the analogy that I’m the CEO of Me, its now time for another quarterly review.
This review is even more important, because half of the year has passed. I had several intentions at the beginning of the year – namely to lose weight and incorporate healthy eating habits into my life, take my business and blog to the next level (two specific goals are to become my own boss and write an ebook for Motivated Sista), start a committed relationship, and improve my cooking skills.
How Far I’ve ComeTaking stock of exactly where you are, how far you’ve come and how far you still need to go is integral to your progress. How can you progress if you don’t know which direction you need to go in or what adjustments you need to make? I think this is one of the biggest reasons for failure, besides lack of self-confidence. We either don’t take action or continue to take the wrong action, and then wonder why we’re not where we really want to be.
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The gist of the movie was that these two old guys threw caution to the wind and had all these experiences that they’d been desiring their whole lives. They called their list their bucket list – their list of things to do before they kicked the bucket. What’s interesting is that their families didn’t like it… I mean Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson ain’t no spring chickens here, but that just shows you that no matter what you do folks are gonna have something to say. So you know what I say,
do you and be happy!!
I’ve been carrying around my list in my head for years, but was inspired to share it with you guys after reading Cody’s Post over at Thrilling Heroics. And I can’t share everything… I’m an introvert at heart, so sharing my bucket list is like pulling back the dressing room curtain while I’m getting dressed! LOL
It is my hope that you’ll drop a few ideas in my bucket (hence the title of this post), and if you don’t have one, to gather your thoughts and write your dreams down. Because if you don’t at least recognize that you need a map, how can you ensure that you’ll reach all the points along your destination? I’d love it if you shared yours with me, but if not that’s ok too. I just want to inspire you to continue to dream. As Les Brown says, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.”
So here’s my list,
50+ Adventures to Embark On Before I Kick the Bucket:(not in a particular order)
Click Here For My List
Don’t you just hate it when someone throws cold water on your dreams? When you’re really excited about the direction that you’re going in, but a well-meaning Negative Nancy tries to throw a roadblock into your path? I hate that too and I’ve fallen victim to unintentionally letting others dampen my excitement, which ultimately led to me second-guessing myself and what I really wanted. There are ways in which you can protect against that, and I’d like to share a few of them with you today.
Get On The OffensiveThe most important thing to do in order to guard your dreams from outside negative attack is to get your story down pat. When you sound doubtful or confused when people ask you questions, they will be doubtful and confused about your vision. For example, if you’re in the midst of switching careers and your current job is perceived as a ‘good job’, people will wonder why you are switching and how you can leave that money behind. To prepare for the inevitable questions, work out in your mind what your response will be. If you just say “I’m following my passion”, you’ll likely sound flaky and unrealistic. But if you have a succinct, logical story about your vision you’ll fare better when questioned about what you’re doing. You could simply say “I’ve always been passionate about creating gift baskets, and I’m finally doing me and starting my own business”.
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- William Gaitor was born on March 7, 1924 in Miami. He was affectionately called Bill or Gaitor by his friends and family. He married my grandmother, Muriel Vera Rolle in 1955. Grandaddy liked giving nicknames (a habit I just realized I picked up) – my grandmother’s nickname was ‘My Muriel’ and my nickname was Pumpkin Poo.
- Grandaddy was a proud Veteran of World War II. My childhood is filled with his stories of his European travel while a soldier, and he loved teaching me the few words he remembered from different languages. Examples are greetings in French, German numbers, and words that I’ve figured out later a child probably shouldn’t be taught… He also told stories of imminent danger, such as the time where his bad habit of being late caused him to be the only survivor when his entire unit was killed. This sparked my early desires to learn different languages and see the places that he’d been, like Berlin or the Eiffel Tower.
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It seems like the more productive I am, the less sleep I get. I have a tendency that the more things I do, the more my brain is working, solving puzzles and answering questions. It used to be that as the gears turned in my mind, I felt like my mind wouldn’t let me rest and I could almost feel my brain working. But now I’ve become adept at turning off the noise and being able to sleep when I need to.
But during those busy times of brain activity, honestly I don’t want to turn it off. I want it to keep going, I love the feeling of activity and productivity. I thrive off of constructive action, progress and growth. So to feel my mind being busy as its taking place gives me energy, strengthens my resolve and renews my excitement for my goals.
More Than Just Smelling RosesBut its in the quiet moments where all movement has stopped, and I can take a breath and be still and be silent, that I get even more benefit. There is an indescribable feeling of bliss in feeling how small I am and how immense the Universe is, and how I’m just one being in it. Now if my old self had had that same thought, that would’ve freaked me out. But now I understand much better how I fit into the flow of life and how to better utilize my resources to create change. Its in those quiet moments as I’m laying in bed, or writing in my journal, or meditating, that I can feel change moving toward me. I can feel that forward movement, that great things are coming my way, even as I’m being still. And I love feeling the deliciousness of that moment, and that hopeful anticipation of the change to come, while at the same time taking time to appreciate the present and what’s happening right now.
We are sometimes not fully satisfied with our current situations. But I look at it like this: the ‘now’ that I’m currently in, is a manifestation of my previous thoughts and hopes. This ‘now’ is the hopeful anticipation that I was waiting for before. It may not be perfect, but just knowing that my thoughts – whether good or bad – created the things that now surround me. And in each moment, my current thoughts are creating the things I can feel that are moving toward me. I feel immensely grateful in those moments where I stop and relish that realization. Those thoughts make an imperfect now even better. Pretty soon ‘now’ will be just a memory anyway.
So tell me my Motivated CEOs and Boss Ladies, how often do you stop to smell your roses? How often do you appreciate exactly where you are in the current moment? Its helpful to remember that even roses have thorns, yet we can enjoy their fragrance and their beauty regardless of the threat. Motivated Sista Circle discuss what motivated us to start on our current paths. We’d also like to know what motivated you to start on yours, and welcome any comments and questions about the journey you’ve had. Also, let’s welcome Patrenia from Personal Finance Notebook to the Circle. She is our resident financial expert and I’m glad she could join us.
I receive immense inspiration and motivation from reading the stories of other women, that’s one of the reasons I have my She-Ro series. I hope you receive the same enjoyment from reading how we all started, and that our stories inspire you to take a few more steps along your path to success.
Anilia, Motivated Sista
Anilia is an entrepreneur and blogger, who writes about motivation, personal development and self-esteem.
My journey on this path grew from my t-shirt business, Black Girl Tees. I kept reading that online businesses should implement blogs as a way to draw attention to the business and let customers get a feel for who the owners are. So I started the blog Black Femininity. While writing on issues affecting black women and girls, I constantly had to reign myself in from writing about more personal topics, such as goal-setting and personal development. I found it increasingly difficult to talk about the issues we face without going on these tangents.
One of my strongest traits is being a good listener and I honestly enjoy when friends and family ask me for advice (but I hate when people don’t listen, and then come back and tell you that you were right… but I digress…). I started to notice that I was answering the same questions over and over again, such as “how do I start this new goal, when my mother doesn’t approve?”, “where do you get your motivation from to do all the things you do?”, and “how can I get closer to completing my goals, when I feel so stuck?”.
So I felt that writing about personal development, self-esteem, goal setting and the law of attraction – topics I am more knowledgable about – would be a better tool for other women to use, instead of just limiting myself to news topics that affect black women and girls. I’ve been blogging at Motivated Sista for 10 months now, and feel that I definitely made the right decision. Now I’m ready to take my blog to the next level!
Patrenia, Personal Finance Notebook
Patrenia is an Accredited Financial Counselor and entrepreneur who writes about ideas, education and motivation for financial success at Personal Finance Notebook.
My current path is teaching and discussing the object that’s needed almost as much as oxygen – money. The motivation came from my own personal and work related experiences with money. See, I had no problem making money; keeping more of it was the issue. For my husband and I, maintaining a home and the needs of two growing kids became a roller coaster ride of a growing – declining – depleted savings fund. After many moments of frustration and realizing that we had it all wrong, we became students to learn how money should really be managed and successfully paid off about $93,000 in debt along the way. Being in the mortgage industry, I also noticed that many of my clients had the same money issues. So after recognizing that my clients, most of my friends and family and I had it all wrong…I became compelled to share this information. My hope is that many people will be intrigued with the information I share, seek knowledge and take action to transform their financial lives. I now know that it CAN be done!
CW, Black Women Deserve Better
CW’s blog “Black Women Deserve Better” was an exercise in truth, self-discovery and healing. It is her mission to help Black women get the love, respect and commitment they deserve.
Circa 2001 (Particularly after September 11th), I began deeply contemplating the direction in which my life was moving. Events such as these remind us that life is too short to waste on non-productive endeavors. It was as if myself, and nearly every Black woman who I encountered was on the same hamsterwheel. Stats such as age, height, weight, education level were not a mitigating factor in this phenomenon: On the job, the neighborhood, family, friends and friends of friends. Our stories were eerily similar. Being trapped (self-imposed or otherwise) in our routine…Or shall I say stagnation? Visiting the same hang-out spots, dating the same types of men and having the same conversations ABOUT those alleged men. This scenario played out time and time again over the years. At some point along the way, it was unfathomable that I was the only one sick and tired of being sick and tired. Without veering too far off topic, a number of Black women are familiar with being told:
Topics which have been discussed ad-nauseum on the BWE (black women empowerment) blogs. I found it quite amusing that for all the things we ought to do, our situation overall wasn’t much improving. I observed an increase in OOW (out of wedlock) children, decrease in marriage, abdication of male responsibility, bashing of Black women and the haphazard “dating”. We are well aware of the negative behaviors which manifest as a result, but nonetheless, our children have suffered most. I want to give our daughters a fighting chance at living quality adult lives, with healthy relationships. This is one of the reasons I began “Black Women Deserve Better” three years ago. My book (by the same name) reveals the mind control and deceptions used (often by “our own”), to keep Sisters in their place. But my work doesn’t stop there. I periodically facilitate workshops and design courses to assist Black women in navigating the treacherous waters. In addition, one of the new hats I’m wearing is “Dating & Life Coach”. The goal is to uncover the real reasons why we often run into walls -and I have already ran into most of them a while back! My desire is for Black women not only to want change, but also to BE THAT CHANGE. Know that our daughters are counting on us!
Anilia’s note: please check out CW’s book, Black Women Deserve Better and her online workshop, Building Upon The Change.
Kim, Fit Sisters Boot Camp
Kim is a teacher by day and has her own fitness business where she helps women to get into the best shape of their lives.
I combined my love of teaching with my love of staying healthy to start my boot camp business. I believe that you must put your health first, because if you’re not healthy then your quality of life is at jeopardy. Staying healthy is a lifestyle — not a one-time act. Once you get into the groove of that lifestyle and start reaping the benefits, you will never go back. I love helping and showing people “the way” to a better quality and more fulfilling way of life by putting one’s self first.
Danielle, The Style and Beauty Doctor
Danielle is a stylist and makeup artist with a financial industry background. She is also president of Urban Glamour LLC, an image consulting company that offers personal styling, wedding, and makeup services. She also edits a fashion and beauty blog, The Style and Beauty Doctor.
My motivation came just when I was on line waiting for my college graduation to start. I was getting my BBA in Marketing and was kind of just standing there thinking about my future… when I overheard two girls saying they would take classes at The Fashion Institute of Technology. Who knew eavesdropping could take you on your path! I knew I always wanted to do something in fashion — in high school people would often ask me what to wear with what — I just never thought I could make a career out of it. Several months after graduation, I enrolled in the Image Consulting program and then completed the two year program. I’m so glad I made my decision. Never before have I felt so “myself” than when I can tell someone what looks great on their body type and/or skin tone. I love what I do!
Tamyka, The CEOMamma
Tamyka is a wife, mother and entrepreneur. She’s the Founder/Owner of TheCEOMamma and teach women entrepreneurs how to build a business on a budget.
There were a couple of things that motivated me to journey down my current career path. The first being that I was gifted with an entrepreneurial Spirit. I knew from a very young age I wasn’t cut out to work for someone else. I always had the drive and passion to “create my own”…whatever it may be!
The second motivational force is that I truly enjoy helping people. Not just in business, but however I can. I’ve always seemed to attract people who felt comfortable enough to share with me their deepest worries and concerns and I’d freely offer up support, encouragement and guidance.
Growing up, I was often misunderstood and my ideas often went unsupported, especially when I started my first business in Direct Sales (even by my own family). As an adult, things didn’t change much. I began to realize many entrepreneurs experience the same things and I wanted to be of help to those who needed it.
In my business, I share many resources and tips on building and marketing a business on a budget and have inspired many women in the process. I know this is the right path for me because I’m truly fulfilled in what I do! Give and it will come back to you, go measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over…is what I believe and live.
So tell us, Motivated CEOs and Boss Ladies, what motivated you to start on your current path? How is your journey unfolding?