Thursday, April 6, 2017

Part III: How Do You Know You Are Walking In Your Purpose?

Monica Utsey & Viviana de Jesus: Fearless Bloggers & Homeschooling Mamuz, 2017 The Blogger Code Brunch

What does doubting fear and trusting possibility look like?

Believe it or not, I do not consider myself a blogger especially when I am not inspired to write.  I've told myself I am not consistent enough, prolific enough, culturally relevant, I don't have a serious following, etc....this is called being normal and experiencing doubt is a healthy emotion.  What is unhealthy is allowing yourself to stay in doubt even when you have a clear vision or nudging feeling to write or create whatever it is that makes you feel good.

I doubt fear thought patterns and keep on writing when I'm inspired to do so.  Sometimes months go by and I don't write one syllable.  I used to beat myself up about it.  Now, I just do whatever else feels good to do.  When I focus on an activity that feels good like reading, exercising, thinking, researching or just living then, I open myself up for new experiences, new insights, new good-feeling opportunities.  Instead, of focusing on my writer's block, or lack of inspiration, I might go out to dinner with my daughter or a friend.  I might accept an invitation to do something fun or, just different - something I've never done before.  That is what trusting possibility looks like.  Your next big inspiration could very well be waiting for you in your next care-free rendezvous.

Last couple of weeks I've been completely focused on some major life transitions.  I started a new business venture, I finally signed the lease on our new place and I am no longer an employee of the District of Columbia.  I have been moving on pure intuition of what feels good.  Some might say, well that sounds frivolous or, selfish or irresponsible.  Focusing on what feels good is absolutely selfish (meaning self-centered) but, not frivolous or irresponsible to yourself or others.  In fact, focusing on what feels good to you is a necessary requirement if you are to create or birth your deepest desires - your dreams and be of value to anyone else.  When you are feeling good (satisfied with your current state of being - your journey) then, are you able to envision yourself arriving to your destination.  Enjoying your journey will not only get you to your desired destination faster; you will be able to enjoy it once you arrive.  If however you are in a constant state of complaining, fear-focused, worry-driven about what you do not have, what you are not yet, where you have not arrived you attract more of the same (prolonging your arrival) because you can not possibly receive what you can not focus on.

On March 21st, I received a quick email from my sister-friend Monica asking if I would be available and interested in going to a Blogger Brunch here in DC.  No explanation, just a link.  In that moment, I could have made a million-and-one excuses why not to click the link.  I repeat "I'm not really a blogger...I do not...I don't have...."  Brunch with a bunch of bloggers sounded like fun.  I was intrigued and opened the link.  Seeing the faces of beautifully brown bloggers felt fantastic!  I immediately felt joy at the thought of being with other fearless writers, media branding consultants and a panel of experts. Then, I saw the location for the event was at a restaurant called Cuba Libre (A Free Cuba).  I immediately recognized the restaurant.

Life has an interesting way of talking to you.  I passed Cuba Libre on my way to my work, everyday. Everyday, that sign "Cuba Libre" had so much meaning for me.  If you know me, you'll know why.  I traveled to Cuba in '98 to do research on Afro-Cuban culture; it was truly an amazing time in my life.  My years in college can be equated to the peeling of onion layers so many tears, so much exploration, so much unpacking and then the feeling of flying - no looking back - just moving in the direction of your dreams.  Every morning, Cuba Libre boldly asked me "Are you free?"  Everyday I went to work; I had to look at the sign and ask myself what it was like inside the restaurant or, maybe I was asking what it looks like to be free.

Sound selfish?  Perhaps you are rethinking your response.

I was allowing myself a good-feeling opportunity; this is the equivalent of spiritual bench-pressing.  Allowing yourself to feel your way through your decisions builds trust in you; in your ability to see opportunities which get you closer to your destination - even if you are not 100 percent sure where exactly that is.

I allowed myself to go really general.  "I can't wait to see what the restaurant looks like inside.  I'm excited to be in a supportive forum with expert bloggers and branding consultants.  I'm excited to make new friends or business contacts.  I'm excited to get exposure and more readers for my blog.  I am excited to learn industry secrets to improve my writing, marketing and monetizing of my blogg."

Cuba Libre is gorgeous inside; I really was transported back to places I'd visited in Cuba back in '98. The Cathedral ceilings, shiny oak surfaces, bright beautifully colorful balconies and cobblestone streets were somehow replicated in this restaurant.  Cuba Libre is a work of art.  Even the bathroom was spacious and beautiful.  Now the food...I am not even gonna lie I allowed myself to indulge (proportionately of course).
Me having sinfully good Cuban coffee with coconut milk and a lil' brown sugar.

 Look at our Future...looks bright don't it? 
The Blogger Code Brunch 2017 Panel.  The panelist who made the biggest impact on me sits second from the right. Chardelle Moore.  Chardelle is a bright, earthy Sistuh with so much Caribbean spunk. Chardelle's personal journey of leaving her corporate job to create and live-out her desires spoke directly to me.  she inspired me to do some specific actions that did not feel out of reach or even out of my comfort zone; it was like she came there with a specific message for me. I was really inspired.  Second from the left is Travel Blogger Victoria of Venture with V, LLC. Victoria's insight and serene fearlessness was also inspiring.  Every panelist dropped nuggets, thank you to all of them.

There were about 50 of us in the room.  So many individual's stories touched me.  I was also able to share my story with everyone.  Folks were so curious about my journey; some even identified with it.  Everyone was supportive.  So, I left TBC Brunch feeling renewed, rejuvenated, rewarded, infused with creativity and stamina to continue...walking in my purpose.  

Thank you to Kiarra Wagstaff and Raro Lae for livin' Your Passions.  Looking forward to more of your events and #TBCDC2018

Shout out to my homegirl Mo thank you for thinking of me.


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