Monday, August 31, 2009

My Soul Revealed - Lesson #6 Spritual Awakening

Describe how you have stepped out on faith.
Leaving my job at Coach, at my beginning of the economic crisis was an example of me stepping out on faith. That little bit of money I got weekly, helped make ends meet as I was getting paid monthly. I left a situation where I was comfortable and moved into a situation where I was uncomfortable but knew that I was still kept by God. Even though the money's a little funny these days, I know that God is still in control.
How do you look at your life?
There are many times when I frustrated with how my life is going. But I am getting more comfortable with the notion that my life is the way it's supposed to be. If I was supposed to have the things I get caught up looking at, I believe that the Lord would have given them to me. (It's funny that as I'm writing about my life, Live Your Life - T.I. and Rihanna comes on - MESSAGE!)
Do you pray?
Not nearly as often as I should. 
Do you have a spiritual relationship with God? 
I do. 
Describe how your faith has been easily wavered or increased over time. Give details. 
One time when my faith wavered is probably when I lost my job at ESPN and then lost my job at the City of Oakland. I felt like God shut me out of my dream or at least what I wanted. My faith continues to increase when I think about how far my father has made it, even as he struggles with his health. Many of men have died, while my father lives. You can't make me doubt my God. 
Do you call on God only when there is a crisis or do you have an ongoing relationship with God?
I do seem to call on God more when there is a crisis but I do  have an ongoing relationship with God. I feel God's presence in my life and in my heart. I should talk to God more often.

When you're in the middle of a crisis are you able to surrender to God?
I believe that I am. 
Have you faced a health crisis and if so, how were you able to work through it?
I've had a couple. The only way that I could get through it, is to trust that the Lord will bring me through. 
What gifts do you believe God has given you? 
The gift of caring. I am a very caring person. I have a good way with words, and I think I communicate pretty well. I also have the gift of devotion. Until you do me wrong, and sometimes after, I will be devoted to you through thick and thin.
How do you plan to have your gifts work to help your fellow sisters?
If you call on me, I will be there to support you. Give you words to help encourage you through your storm and sometimes not saying anything and letting you get your words out to help you with that release. 

What would you like to bring closure to? What are you most grateful for?
I would like to bring closure to those relationships that were damaging to me. Intimate relationships and friendships have beaten me up pretty bad. But those same relationships that beat me up taught me valuable lessons about other people as well as myself. I'm grateful for that and the ability to forgive.
Revelations Revealed:
Dream big, embrace your challenges, use the power of prayer...
 "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. We ask ourselves, "Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?" ACTUALLY, WHO ARE YOU NOT TO BE"
 When you get to the moment of realization that you are brilliant, gorgeous, talented and absolutely unequivocally fabulous, YOU ARE AWAKE!

My Soul Revealed - Lesson #5 Standing in the Gap of Grace

More Soul revealing by yours truly...
Have you experienced being attacked at a critical point in your life?
I don't know if I can say that I've been attacked at a critical point. I know that I have been attacked different times in my life. Were they critical? Probably not. 
How did you feel during and after that experience?
I don't remember. I guess that means that it wasn't critical because I don't remember. 
Did you abandon your dream?
For some time after I left ESPN, I felt like I did abandon my dream. I felt like a failure.
What lesson did you learn about yourself?
It took some time to learn that, I wasn't a failure as a person, ESPN was a failure as an organization. The people who said they would help me, they failed. I took that personally for a long time. But eventually I have gotten better with it. Now at this point, I can say that I have the power to change lives and help mold better people. THAT is way more rewarding that "making good TV".
How much time do you spend working? Is it often during evenings, days off, weekends and holidays?
The question "how much time do you spending working?" is a very tricky one. It really depends on what you consider to be work. I'm always working on something. Doing something for church, working on this project for the Alumni, I am always doing stuff for other people. Doing things for family and friends, I don't really have much for myself, which creates a sense of resentment and me wanting to be more selfish. It's still not working. 
Who did you surround yourself with during tough times - cheerleaders or naysayers?
I don't have too many cheerleaders on my team. I'm working on recruiting some more. The naysayers in my life disguise themselves as cheerleaders but that's not who they are.
Were you able to focus on the light at the end of the tunnel? Or were you in a fog?
During most times of trouble and distress, things get very foggy for me. There have been a few times when I have been able to put my head down and get to the goal. But lately, things get really foggy for me. 
How do you think it prepared you for your next life crisis?
I don't know.
Give an example of leading under adversity.
Dealing with my father's illness, caused me to be thrown into a role of leadership. At times, my mother doesn't handle stress well, which puts the burden on me. It seems like more times than not, when my father gets sick, I am running point, regardless of what my mother believes. Having my father have to go to the hospital often means that I have to know what's going on with him and his medications. It's a challenge but it's also a task that I will pass on to one of the brothers who will have to step up in my absense. 
How can you eliminate chaos from your life?
The biggest way is to say no and to feel comfortable saying no. A lot of times I get caught up in other peoples drama (as if I don't have my own to deal with). I have to get used to and comfortable with saying no, ESPECIALLY if my sanity depends on it. 
Provide five ways in which you can seed optimism in your life.
  1. Use positive thoughts and affirmations daily.
  2. Surround yourself with more positive, optimistic people in your life.
  3. Believe that positive energy is within you, no matter what the negative circumstance is. 
  4. Look for the positives in all situations. 
  5. Pray, pray, pray! And know that God wants you to succeed and will give you the tools to do so.
Revelation Revealed:
Road blocks will not deter me and fear will not prevent me from living my life in God's grace in a perfect way.

Trying to Get Better

Now that school has started at Berkeley, maybe I'll have some time to blog more. I've been thinking about doing an up and coming blog, but that is something that I would really need to committ to and I just don't have the time to do that. One thing that I do know is that blogging does relive some stress, blow off some steam. One day, I'll get better at this. Maybe I should just set aside a designated blog time once a week, maybe Wednesdays and just blog about everything and nothing at the same time. 

So it's interesting. I call myself on Technology time out - me taking some time away from my vices, Facebook and talking on the phone. One might think that I am pretenous because I have a custom text message that I am sending to people. It basically just says I'm not taking phone calls or text messages from anyone right now and that I'll holla at you in a few days. This has come along because of a couple of reasons. The most important reason is that in conjuction with having really crazy mood swings when my period comes around, one person pissed me off. I'm pretty sure he didn't do it on purpose and I'm VERY sure he doesn't even know that it's his fault. But he makes my head hurt by giving me mixed signals. So right now, I am trying to determine what I'm going to do with the signals he's sending me. It's all a little complex (or maybe not and I'm just being dramatic) but I've decided that I needed some time away from him for a little while. So why take my time out on my favorite addiction, Facebook? The only good reason that I can think of is because it gives me an opportunity to be clear. I can get on Facebook and get completely distracted (after all, isn't that what Facebook is - a GREAT, BIG distraction!?). I need to focus and be clear about a lot of the things that are going through my head and make clear deciscions. I have some big choices to make in the near future and I gotta make sure that I am comfortable and clear. 

It's amazing what you can accomplish when you don't turn on the TV and don't get on Facebook. So far today - I've started two grad school applications, read to my neice after her first day of school and posted on my blog at least twice. 

I've just needed to be clear with somethings and some people. I realized that a lot of the relationships that I held close to me, should have been let go and purged a long time ago. And maybe they have on the other person's end but not on my end. This is really just some good ole fashion me time with minimal contact with other people. I do have plenty of contact with the people at work but I can't really avoid that either. Even the people I work with, I am evaluating their place in my life. I am really learning not to take too many things personally. That is the big thing, not takng things personally. But that's part of who I am, so that change will not come over night. But like I said, I'm trying to get better.

Making Progress

So once again, I am starting the process of grad school applications. I am pretty excited about the possibility of going back to school. But more importantly, I need a change in the worst way. I am really ready to have my life back for me and not have to worry about other people who seem not to have the good sense that God gave them to take care of themselves. Slowly I am weening my family off of their dependence of me. It has become too much of a burden for me and I feel like my life is in neutral right now. I really need to shift gears, so I am excited and I am making progress.