Updated: Feb 15
Today is Valentine's Day and the perfect day to remind you that you are LOVED and that YOU MATTER to the world. I wanted to share a memory when I was struggling and didn't know where to turn to get back on track. I felt like a complete failure and wanted to give up on everything that I had worked so hard for.
September of 2019, I was so distraught, feeling like I was making all the wrong decisions. I made a commitment to growing my own medical device company that I established, however I had the WRONG partners. I was working with people that I could not trust. I made the decisions for the right reasons to help customers and patients, so why did I feel like I was going through torture. Have you ever made a decision for the right reasons in your heart, yet caused you so much pain? When I was in the middle of my decision, I was determined to make it work at all cost. I was the expert in the technology space, as I had helped developed this market for the United States. I was passionate about helping my customers and was committed to serving my 46 team members who were working to serve our customers. I believed in what I was accomplishing, however I just felt there was something out of sync. This "gut" feeling was the deceit of trusted business partners.
This was at this time that I was searching for answers. I was determined to see this commitment through because I believed in the possibilities.The decision that I made to start a medical device company, at a critical time for patients and international influencers ended up impacting my family financially and ended up destroying my ability to believe in others. I have never been one to create a program with an agenda. I have always created a program knowing that the sole benefit would be to add value to people. My heart kept telling me to stop and reflect on what I was doing, yet I was so focused on "what I thought was momentum" that I was blind to the realities right in front of me. Have you ever had this feeling? You meet someone and you immediately feel that you can connect with them because you have common objectives? Maybe an idea or project in the community, or maybe even falling in love for the first time. As we are experiencing these things, sometimes our heart is so vulnerable because we show up to believe that others have our back, or our best interest. What I learned was that sometimes our hearts can get broken, even with the best intentions. It was at this time, as I had opened this medical device company, that I was absorbing everything I could from my mentors to help me create solutions and understand how to make the right changes. I had never felt so excited about making something work, yet I was so anxious, sad and depressed about the reality of what was real. I began to understand that my partners were only using me for their own selfish gain in an industry that I had influence in. Wow, that was a lesson that I will take with me for the rest of my life.
We have heard the story of Little Red Riding Hood when the WOLF is hiding, waiting to attack ..... it is just like this when we have trusted with our hearts first yet we are always so surprised when we learn that the WOLF (in our own story) has always been right there the whole time, preying on us. When we learn this for the first time it feels so disgusting, we feel so used. Hopefully, what it teaches us is to become aware of situations like this in our future so that we can reflect on this and protect our hearts from those with agendas to come into our lives and manipulate our time, energy and resources for their own benefit. This realization can damage our ability to believe in our own judgment and the ability to trust ourselves. When we are in the middle of a situation, we forget to pay attention to those that are influencing us and the intentions of the people around us. We trust first, because we believe the people in our lives we associate with and work closely with share our beliefs and values. We forget to protect our hearts because our minds are convinced that we are doing the right thing.
I want to take you back now to my mind set one morning, in September of 2019. I was getting ready for the day and was working on a call with my team. I decided to take a break and intentionally connect to my mentor. I had just gotten off the phone with my business partner, who I was beginning to distrust because I was stepping away from my emotional commitment to add value to others through my company. I was realizing that my international partner had different intentions than mine and I needed to reflect and gain clarity. My mentor, Dr. John Maxwell, has a daily video series, called Minute with Maxwell, and sometimes when they come through my email, I save these to play later, and most often times I intentionally play these immediately. This day that I am speaking about was a day that I played the link immediately and this is what it said.
If you are in a place that you are struggling with something, if you need to gain clarity in your life, if you need to look at life from a different perspective, I challenge you to study the book of Proverbs for 31 days. This challenge may change your life. Well that was all that I needed to hear. Now, I hear myself saying "When the student is ready, the teacher appears", I was at a point that I felt like every decision that I made was turning out to take my life into a downward spiral, I was getting deeper and deeper into debt and feeling like every decision I made was letting myself, my team and my family down. I knew I needed a change.
So I decided to reach out to a few others and I asked them to join me on this challenge. I said, October 1, I am going to start studying the book of Proverbs for 31 days, because I need to create consistency, accountability and clarity in my life. I said, "I would love for us to use the John Maxwell Leadership Bible as a great leadership reference. If you'd like to join me the invitation is open to all. Would you join me? "
I posted this challenge on social media and among my faith based friends and invited others to join us on this journey, every morning beginning Oct 1, 2019.
Today, February 14, 2021 is day 502 of the journey. We have met every morning at 7:30am EST for 502 days. Kelly Ekwurzel and I have been on every morning since day 1 , have experienced the value in adding value to our lives first to gain the clarity we needed and bonding with so many others! I have learned so much about myself and why it is so critical to listen to our mentors in our times of distress. It's not that they have all the answers, what our mentors do is help you to think about things more clearly and challenge you to find a better way to overcome your obstacles.
This morning we were studying Isiah 45 and we discussed the importance of never giving up on ourselves and our dreams. Our answers come from our heart, so don't look for the billboard to show you the direction, look inside your own heart. The answers to everything you need to know are right there, everyday. Everyday Leaders are you and me, finding peace, finding joy, finding a way to add value to our selves and the world everyday.
A Poem for You: Just don't quit!
When things go wrong as they sometimes will,
When the road you're trudging seems all up hill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest if you must, but don't you quit.
Life is strange with its twists and turns
As every one of us sometimes learns
And many a failure comes about
When he might have won had he stuck it out;
Don't give up though the pace seems slow—
You may succeed with another blow.
Success is failure turned inside out—
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell just how close you are,
It may be near when it seems so far;
So stick to the fight when you're hardest hit—
It's when things seem worst that you must not quit.
This Poem also reminds me of the lesson of the ANT from Proverbs 6
This is a lesson the John Maxwell Leadership Bible from Proverbs 6: 6-8
When life has you perplexed about your next steps, take a deep breath and realize that all you need is a little inspiration. Don't ever give up on yourself. God designed you with a potential to make a difference in the world. If you need help on your journey, reach out email@example.com www.everydayleaders.com, I'm a professional life coach to help you Find the JOY in Your Journey and Learn How to Develop Strategies to OVERCOME Your Own Limiting Beliefs. Sometimes all you need is ONE IDEA, ONE CHALLENGE to Change Your Momentum.
Thank you Dan Dominguez for reminding us about this poem this morning and thanks Kelly Ekwurzel for copying it for all of us to enjoy!
If you'd like to join us for our Everyday Leaders morning inspiration and leadership devotionals, go to www.everydayleaders.com and click on the ZOOM link for the morning devotionals. We meet Everyday at 7:30am est. Yes, Everyday ..............
We would love to meet you and have you on our journey!