IMG_0539_copy_2 2Over the past few days, I began reflecting upon 2016 and what it has taught me. It’s not always easy to sit back and reflect because you discover some pretty fascinating things, but you also discover some not so great things as well. My “Reflection Week:  is a ritual that I do every year. I enclose myself in for a few days, stop talking so much and simply breathe and listen. My goal is to move into the new year without any baggage or overwhelm and with a whole lot of ease and grace.

This year has brought me many wonderful experiences, and some very painful experiences. So painful that all I could do at times was scream. Yes, scream! I’ve cried and I’ve laughed. There were many amazing victories and wins. I’ve met wonderful and amazing new friends, two new adorable grand babies were born this year, I’ve loved on my family and connected in deeper ways with them, my husband continued to love me in ways I’ve never imagined, I wonder as I look at my “not so perfect’ children….whom I see as “perfect.” That’s my right as a mother. I’m grateful for loving and supportive parents whom I love and adore and do my best to make their seasoned years joyful. I am eternally grateful for my Ida and Kandi who lead a powerful prayer team who prays day and night for me, my business and family. There were times when I could feel those prayers going up for me and holding me up when I simply couldn’t hold myself. The power of prayer is amazing. I’ve had some incredible team members who have helped me this year in my business. I’m truly blessed. So yes, 2016 has brought a rainbow of experiences for me and as I reflect upon the past 12 months of life. I can sum 2016 up in one word: “Opportunity”. Opportunity for Growth. Opportunity for Expansion.Opportunity for Acceptance.

I am sure we all have experienced many opportunities this year. How do I know? Because life has a way of forcing us to embrace many of the opportunities that come our way. My opportunity for Growth was both a result of me willing to embrace growth by setting aside times to read, pray, meditate, work with amazing mentors/coaches, attend trainings/conferences and experiencing many soulful conversations.  But then there were times this year when I was forced to grow when crisis and challenges would show up in my life. There were times when I didn’t want to grow.  I wanted to get in my bed the put the covers over my head and hope that when I awaken it all would go away. I would scream, I would write in my journal, I would talk about it to my closest friends and I would cry in my husband’s arms. Yet, when I was finished resisting these challenges and crisis, I would remember who I was and see them as opportunities to grow. The moment I stopped resisting, was the moment I could see clearly the lessons, the opportunities and the growth that was taking place in my life. I never said it was easy…but it was simple.

The next opportunity was that of Expansion. Now you may think that expansion is great. Right? Well for the most part it is, if you are ready for it. I discovered this year that I was not quite as ready as I’d hoped. As opportunities arrived for me to expand my business, there were times when I would resist. Opportunity met with resistance meant there was something deeper going on and I had to identify it. I learned that I was not comfortable with having the spotlight on me. As as former entertainment executive and talent agent, I’ve always played in the background and pushed the talent that I represented to the front. As as a success strategist, mentor, coach, author…it was easy to remain in the background. Even as a radio host and co-host of a tv show, I was interviewing others and spotlighting them.

When the opportunity arrived for me to do more speaking this year than I’ve ever done before, to host of my own national tv talk show, to become a regular on networks such as CNN and to write for a huge national publication, I paused. Yes, I paused. The person who is always pushing others to get out of their comfort zones and here I was not willing to step out of mine. I had created a really comfortable system in my business and I was okay. Doing pretty good in my business. Yet, my wonderful coach Robbie knew that I was playing it safe. LOL. You gotta love him. He left me a voice message and it reached deep in my soul. He saw in me something that I’d never saw before. It was huge, yet it was real and it resonated so deep within me that I could not deny it. Then another mentor of mine, Mr. Washington also left a message on my voicemail and it was as if he and Robbie had spoken. But they didn’t because they don’t know each other. And his message brought me to my knees. I could no longer deny or hide the gift that God had placed in me. In fact, I had become one of the gifts that God wanted to send into the world. This was a defining moment for me. It was the moment that I decided that I would never resist opportunities of expansions again. To expand my gifts, to expand my territories, to expand my business or to expand myself. I gave God an “Unconditional Yes.” I am so out of my comfort zone now that it’s really scary at times. The executive producer of my TV show,  the amazing R & B legend Angie Stone, looked me in my eyes one day while we were shooting and she said, “You’re built for this.” I love this woman for seeing me what I dare not have seen in myself.  You need a strong supporting cast of mentors, coaches and leaders. So here I am…living outside of my comfort zone because this is where I belong. I never said it was easy…but it was simple.

The final opportunity was that of Acceptance. There were so many things that I needed to accept and was not aware. You see, I believe that people can change. I really do. I believe in the goodness of people. I love people. But this year I had to accept the fact they many people simply will not change. Not change for me or live according to my expectations, but change in order to live the life they were meant to live. I had to accept the fact that I didn’t need to rescue or fix everyone’s problems. Even if it was in my power to do so. Because interfering would  rob them of the very lessons they needed for their journey and grow in ways they needed. The final acceptance was letting go of people who no longer served my best interest. This was difficult because I love deeply. I am always looking for the best in others and I will over look flaws.  But there comes a time when these flaws are not just harmful to the person, but harmful to me. I’ve also learn to accept life and not resist the flow of life or try to force the flow of life. Because this causes most of our struggles. As I learned to accept things, I’ve discovered a newfound level of peace and contentment.  A level of serenity that I’ve not experienced before. And it feels great. I didn’t say it was easy…but it was simple.

I’ve tried my best to be honest and transparent with you. Sometimes when you are in the spotlight…lol…I gotta get use to that word. But when you are visible and you are empowering and inspiring others, people tend to think that you have it all together. That your life is perfect and you don’t have problems or challenges. That’s further from the truth. People also expect you to be perfect and I’m definitely not allowing that to happen to me. I make mistakes daily, I miss the mark often…yet, I’ve learn to get back up and start again. One thing for sure, I don’t quit. I will NEVER quit. I don’t put myself down, I don’t get upset because I error. I atone, I ask for forgiveness, I self correct, I shift, I change my perspective and I move forward.  I want to encourage you to take a look at this past year and grab the biggest lessons you’ve learned and move forward into the new year with them.

I tell you all the time how much I want for you to win. And I do. If you knew how much I love you and want the best for all of you, you’d be surprised. I am so very grateful for you connecting with me and being apart of my online community, my tribe and my following. I’m deeply humbled that you would find some good and value in what offer. Because it’s from my deepest heart and soul. Thank you for your support.  It’s my wish that you prosper, be in good health, find true love and be happy in the coming year. And the great thing about this, it’s not only possible for you, it’s inevitable. Happy New Year my dear Awakened Friends. I love you and I’m here for you.

If this was a good read for you, please share on our Facebook Page. Thank you.