I recently hosted a Vision Book Party for some of my Dream Mates. Soup, Salad and Sight to your Vision was our theme. It felt like an Oprah moment. Oprah moments to me are moments in which you get to share your favorite things with your favorite people. I am not at the stage where I can yell, “You get a new car!!! You get a new car!!! Everybody gets a new car!!!” But I can gently whisper, “You can give sight to your vision. You can dream big. You can give yourself permission to grow beyond where you are.” Seeing, doing, dreaming, growing and forgiving are more valuable to me than new cars. Cars depreciate the moment you drive them to your destination. Dreams enrich your life and increase in worth as you drive towards your destiny.
In 2015, I gave myself permission to dream. Many of the goals on my Vision Board were internal. I remember sitting in my bathroom floor thinking and saying, (YES, it’s OK to talk to yourself) “Don’t you dare fill this board with things that will make you look like a visionary from the outside in. Dreams start from the inside out.” Practically every measurable goal on my board I achieved, (with the exception of a few books I hope to write). But the greatest sense of accomplishment came from those immeasurable milestones that no one could see but God and me.
2015 was an awesome year! I traveled to Honduras. My Español increased about 20%. I wrote my first book and reached my fitness goals. Those things were great but they paled in comparison to the hidden things like, “maintaining grace, finding peace, having courage, fueling my faith and conquering fear.” If I had not taken the time to place those things on my board, I would not be able to credit God for causing me to triumph over the things that troubled me for most of my life. Procrastination and people pleasing had imprisoned me for too long. 2015 was the year in which vision empowered me to be free!
Personal Power Plays/Self Care Tips
1. To effectively “love my neighbor” I choose to love myself. Be kind to your mind!
2. Fitness increases happiness hormones like serotonin and dopamine. Get moving!
3. Rest effects thinking, emotions, digestion and immune health. Go to bed!
4. Decompress from stress by doing all of the above consistently. Be kind. Work out. Rest.
At my recent Vision Party before the Oprah moment started I shared with my Dream Mates that our time together was not intended to turn into a Mompetition. I did not wish for everyone to start one up-ing each other. Wouldn’t it be a tragedy to attend a party that was designed to enhance your vision either blinded by jealousy or blurred by comparison? I shared that throughout Womanhood I have found myself in 3 stages.
Recover-after illness or the birth of a baby, a major life change like adoption, loss of a job/career change, overcoming offense, loss of a loved one.
Retreat-during seasons of intense focus, when changing church homes, when life gets overwhelming, to strengthen your marriage or bond with your children.
Advance-when God gives you clear vision, when starting a new business, while re-branding an old business, when enough is enough and you’ve grown sick and tired of being broke, brokedown or broken.
It is important to know what stage we are in and not to allow anyone to pull us in to their stage. If we do, we will forfeit what God has in store for us in our season. None of these stages are better than another, they are needed for growth and invaluable towards being healthy and maintaining balance in relationships. No one knows what you are in need of like you and until you acknowledge that you are in need of recovery, retreat or advancement people will assume that you are in the exact season as them.
As I learn to embrace “My Best Self” I am most thankful for times in which I have been mishandled in friendships or by leadership. I don’t have “haters.” I feel like those that most would consider to be “haters” loved me well because they taught me how to love well. Letting go of unhealthy relationships is healthy but only if we forgive and release those who have wounded us. It is hard to focus on seeing your future clearly when you are trying to point out the speck in someone else’s eye.
Have you ever had Conjunctivitis AKA Pink Eye? Did you wonder how you caught it? I feel like if I look in the direction of someone who has Pink Eye, I will wake up the next morning with crud oozing from my eye or my eyes will be plastered shut with crusty mucous. It is said that the natural remedy for Pink Eye is already on the inside of you? (Urine or Breast milk). I’m not a medical professional so don’t quote me on that but I have friends who are missionaries that have told me, if you are on the mission field and you get pink eye that you are to use what is already on the inside. Someone else’s urine is not sterile to your body so it won’t work. It has to be your own. GROSS, RIGHT?!!
Hardship, heartaches and headaches feel gross when you are going through them but in the end bring clarity to your vision. As you cast your vision for 2017 don’t just focus on those external goals, remember the true key to success, health and emotional wellness is within. Have fun dreaming up big dreams for 2017!!! Your tomorrow starts today!
Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others. -Jonathan Swift