I’ve been reflecting the last few days on a couple of weeks full of #BlackGirlMagic and feeling so grateful to have been in the presence of amazing women, like…
Shanute Brewer, who is exposing her young VISIONaries to STEM subjects like coding;
Jamila Trimuel who is helping 9-18 year-old girls discover their purpose, passion and perserverance;
April Ervin, who just published her first book and is trying to help Superwomen save themselves;
Eva Kennedy, who is focused on helping women in transition find clarity;
the women of Mox.E who empower women to live their purpose;
Dr. Yashika N. Tippett, the founding principal of Air Force Academy High School, who just brought the first flight training program to the Chicagoland area;
Tammera Holmes, the founder and CEO of AeroStar, who is creating bonafide pilots for an airline industry with a looming shortage of them;
Young Women Professionals League members, who are focused on developing siSTAR leaders holistically;
Aunt Oprah and FFL (Forever First Lady) Michelle Obama, who are showing the way;
my sister Vanessa Smith, who has successfully led her business for over 20 years
and my daughter, Renise Alexander, who is pursuing her passion for travel by any means necessary!
I am so grateful for your examples of excellence, persistence and resilience. You inspire hope…you inspire greatness.
After planning and executing a few high profile events, I briefly considered event planning as a post Air Force career option. Then I discovered the stress of a demanding career and single parenthood had contributed to a diagnosis of thyroid disease. I recognized I hadn’t handled my busy life as smoothly as I thought I had.
So I reconsidered my phase two career options, resolved to live a more balanced life and reduced activities and acquisitions to what was absolutely necessary to live on purpose.
The kids on Haviland Drive integrated Harlan Elementary long before busing was mandated in my small hometown of Florence AL. The concept that my behavior was a reflection of my family was stressed and understood by me from a young age…and while I don’t remember a direct conversation, I somehow knew that, to my white teachers and classmates, I represented how Negro children behaved.
Pretty heavy stuff for a third-grader…
“Don’t embarrass me in front of these white folks.” ~ Black Mother Saying
Today I am grateful for the birth that gave hope to the hopeless. In this season of birth and renewal in the midst of confusion and fear, I am praying for sufficient strength to be hopeful, effective faith to believe, and enough compassion to be loving…
“For a child has been born—for us! The gift of a son—for us! He’ll take over the running of the world. His names will be: Amazing Counselor, Strong God, Eternal Father, Prince of Wholeness. His ruling authority will grow, and there’ll be no limits to the wholeness he brings.” Isaiah 9: 6-7, MSG
This weekend another young black male died violently, this time on a college campus, allegedly stabbed by a white male member of a hate group. This newly commissioned Army officer, on the precipice of a “limitless life” had sworn to “support and defend the Constitution” of his country…this America where he is hated and hunted because of the color of his skin.
And I grieve for what has been lost, for his family, his classmates and his fellow Americans who understand that America is great because of people like Richard W. Collins III.
“As a United States Army Officer who gladly puts his life on the line everyday…there’s no greater conflict within me. How do I feel about my country? And how does my country…feel about me? Are we only to be Americans when the mood suits you?”
Lawrence Fishborne as Lieutenant Colonel Benjamin O. Davis in the movie, Tuskegee Airman
The reaction to a test is often to retreat. The business we built fails so we determine we’re not cut out for entrepreneurship. The competition won the contest so we stop training. The relationship implodes so we vow to never, EVAH, as long as we’re black to be in another relationship … oh wait…that was me!
The key to not getting stuck in the story is to realize the lesson, appreciate the knowledge gained and be intentional about not choosing that particular path again. And ask for Divine help…’cause there will be another test…
“These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold.” ~ 1 Peter 1: 7 NLT
Have you ever justified staying with someone or in something that is not working for you because of the time, treasure or talent you’ve already invested? Have you ever been wrong about someone you trusted but unable to admit it to those who knew and tried to warn you? Have you ever doubled-down even in the face of overwhelming evidence that what you believe is untrue?
Our level of denial often reflects our level of commitment. The more committed we are, the harder it is to admit when we are wrong.
“It’s easier to fool people than to convince them they have been fooled.” –Mark Twain
Inhale What is, Exhale What is not… Inhale Evidence, Exhale Illusions… Inhale Reality, Exhale Delusion… Just Breathe…
Today I am grateful for the resurrection that gave hope to the hopeless. In this season of renewal in the midst of confusion and fear, I am praying for sufficient strength to be hopeful, effective faith to believe, and enough compassion to be loving…
Feedback is hard to hear. And it’s not just the negative stuff we have a hard time hearing; studies show that even comments that could be considered complimentary are hard for many of us to accept. That’s because, according to author Shelia Heen, most “people actively seek to verify their own perceptions of themselves”, whether those perceptions are positive or negative. We all want to be accepted for who we THINK we are.
But since we don’t get to hear or see ourselves or feel our energy, feedback can be very helpful IF we can receive it well.