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Nine Examples a Personal Paradigm Shift is Happening

Driving into work a few weeks backs, I looked around and realized I had no idea where I was. Still driving on I-635, but not sure how I got to the area I was in. I make this trip five days a week. I supposed the saying, “I could do it my sleep,” is false. I had zoned out while driving. When I “woke” up, I was way past my exit.

Zoning out was starting to happen a lot.  This was the first time it happened while I was driving, which scared me. I had to pull up my GPS to find my way to work. Not only had I lost direction to a place I go to often, but I had lost direction in my life.

My head and stomach had been a constant source of pain. I wasn’t sick. I just wasn’t listening to what my body was telling me. The reason behind the aches, pain and disconnection had more to do with a personal shift.

When you find yourself not paying attention to the signs, they show up in different ways. I found myself blaming a god for my misery because I felt abandoned. I started taking inventory. It was during the time I sat down to journal that I realized how clear those signs were. For instance, I asked for a way to bring in multiple streams of income. I asked for a job working from home so I could be there to watch my kids grow up.

A hundred ideas came up, but I brushed them off as fantasy. Turns out they were answers.  Are you overlooking your own answers. Are you ignoring the visions that keep showing up? Here are nine examples to look out for.

1. You are becoming uncomfortable in your own skin

You can’t really pinpoint it, but sometimes being you just feels off. It’s almost like an outer body experience, i.e. someone had to be driving the car since I was in lala land.  You are wishing you were anywhere but where you are now. What I have learned is that shift is taking you out of routine. You are going to have to make some changes and that is what’s really making you uncomfortable.

2. You are feeling sick all the time

For everyone who watched the movie The Secret, you have probably heard many in the self-help industry use the term dis-ease as Bob Proctor did in that movie. There is truth to getting sick when we are not living our truth. Think about people who are diagnosed with terminally ill symptoms. The ones that decide to live life to the fullest because they have nothing to lose, most of them end up healing. What we call our comfort zone, I think, is the opposite. If you truly think about it, you aren’t comfortable. You are feeling uneasy. That is why you are ready for the shift.

3. You feel like your world is coming to an end

What do we do when our world is coming to an end? Eat? Drink? Sleep? It’s the numbing affect. We not only don’t fit in our bodies, but we no longer fit in our own world. When we suppress our desires, it has to come out some way. It shows up in the form of overeating, or my go to, over spending. We all have our demons. Your’s may be endless hours of laying on the couch starring at CNN or Fox News.

4. Your dreams are more vivid

Our subconscious communicates through our dreams. We have the tendency to think nothing of these nightly movies because we’ve become so far removed from our inner self. Your subconscious is talking, but are you open to receive the message? A dream journal is a good start. Leave it next to your bed and write it down as soon as you wake up. Look for different patterns or a particular subject that keeps reoccurring. Make a list and allow yourself to be guided.

5. Your relationships are changing

Nothing worse than feeling like you don’t belong in your circle any longer. Not only are you uncomfortable in your own skin, but also with the people you hang out with. You aren’t feeling the conversation. You aren’t interested in doing the same things any longer. They tease you about your new interest. One of two things will happen from here. Either you will accept that you are going in a different direction, or you will agree with them and give up on your journey. Where you are at in your mindset will be the deciding factor. Ask yourself one question. Would any of those people give up their dreams for you?

6. Resentment is showing up in the worse way

My younger son walked in to let me know his pants were now too short for him. I found myself mad at him for growing. As if he had any control of that. As if I didn’t know it would happen. The truth of my resentment was not about me having to buy him clothes, but about my feelings as a provider. I know that I don’t make enough money to be a better provider because I chose to work at a dead end job way past the expiration date. But it is not just my son. I find that I am resentful towards everyone. I think their life is better than mine. It’s not true. What is true is the misery I have allowed myself to accept. Yeah, it’s my responsibility. It’s also my responsibility to change it.

7. Envy

OK, yeah, I know, resentment and envy are practically sisters. However, I want you to see it from a different light. We envy others who look happy, or are doing things that we wish we could be doing. We’ve been taught that is a bad thing. I challenge you to flip that old way of thinking. Instead, it is a sign showing you the things you desire. Don’t harbor on the feeling of what someone else has, but see it as a jump off point to motivate you towards getting what you want. It allows you to ask yourself, what would it take to have that? It’s an opportunity to evoke change in your life. It’s telling you it’s time to put in the work.

8. Resistance

I define resistance as the deadly silent killer of what could have been. It is not people that hold us back, but it is the naysayer that lives within. It tells us that our dreams are too big. The day I am writing this, the mega-lottery hit $846 million. I overheard someone say they only needed a small portion of it. That is resistance telling you that you don’t deserve to have that much money in your life. That is a lie. Don’t sell yourself short. Don’t just accept anything and feel like you should be grateful for only what you have now. Yes, be grateful for what you have, but know that it’s okay to have and desire more. If you dream it, then you deserve it. Work for it until you get it. And be willing to receive it once you get it. Know it is yours to have.

9. Fear

That four letter word that stares you down eye to eye. The thought of chasing after what you want scares you. It should. Anytime we try something new is stepping into the unknown. The unknown is naturally scary. I always tell my son, “fear is a yield sign, not a stop sign.” It is built into us to be cautious. Make sure you look before you leap. Once you’ve looked both ways, do what scares you. And the more you do it, the easier it gets. It’s time to go to the next level.

Nine items to meditate on and think about how they are showing up in your life. What changes have been dormant in your subconscious? What’s motivating you to move forward? Let me know in the comments below.

And as always, know that you are so worth it!

– Portia

 

Five Ways to Almost Always Get a Yes

It’s game time! In the world of business that’s when you are going in for the sale. For me, it was my first networking event. I was rocking my white, quilted, motorcycle jacket, my perfect fit, powder blue trousers, and my four-inch, neutral pumps. I checked my teeth to make sure there was no lipstick on them.  My hair was flawless. On the outside, I was ready. My insides? Not so perfect.

Q: Why do we fear asking people for what we need?

A: It’s the possibility of rejections.

I won’t go into all the cliches of, no just means there is another door open elsewhere. At the time you hear it, none of that matters.  No hurts. Like hell, sometimes. The worst part is we remember the no’s better than we remember the yeses. That is how that pit in our stomach develops. All that work preparing, building confidence and knowing we have the answer to everyone’s problem, just to be told no thank you.

All that positive thinking didn’t pay off. That’s because, the truth is, it takes more than thinking positive and wishing/begging for it to work in our favor. Sometimes, no is inevitable.

Five steps closer to yes

Step 1 Be Ready!

Preparation is key. Not just the outfit you are going to wear. Know your prospect. Know what their needs are. I know that seems simple, and like it should be common sense. When you are starting out, some people only think about what they are selling. In our technology world today, there is no reason to not know more about the person AND their company. Be able to show why your product is the answer they are looking for. Show you did your homework so they know you aren’t just trying to land this one time sale, but you are in it because you genuinely care.

Step 2 Practice!

It feels crazy standing in front of the mirror giving your spiel to your imaginary friend that looks just like you. Do it anyways! Practice it a few times. Then practice different versions of it so you sound conversational and not robotic. It’s okay to have it memorized. Just learn how to make it flow. It helps prevent you from stuttering and it instills confidence in what you are saying.

Step 3 Listen and Learn

It’s going to feel like your heart is beating loud enough for the whole room to hear it. Take a deep breath. I promise you are the only one that hears it. And if it is beating, that is a good thing. Right? Take your mind off of yourself and put your attention on the person or persons in front of you. You want to be listening for key points to follow up on later. You will be following up with them, so you want them to know they were heard.

Step 4 Follow-up

Whether you are networking, cold calling or on a sales call, the follow-up is important. Communicating with your perspective clients keeps you fresh in their memory for not just their needs. If they are out speaking to someone who has a need that you can help with, they can say, “hey, I know a person”.

Remember in step three, you are not just listening but you are learning about that person. Your interactions don’t always have to be a sales pitch. Don’t come off phony either. What did they teach you about themselves? Send them a copy of an article that you think they might find interesting. People like to feel important.

Step 5 Bravery Box

Last, but not least, pat yourself on the back. You did it! Add that to your list of victories. You got out of your comfort zone, alive! As you continue to network or make/go on sales calls, you find it gets easier. That pit shrinks. Confidence is not a born trait, but a learned one. You learn by doing.

Keep going. The more you do it, the better it gets.

And one more thing

Be open to making mistakes, as long as you are willing to learn from them. Starting a brand, building a business, landing clientele; all of this takes time. As long as you are prepared and are listening, you should have a lot more yeses coming your way.

Don’t forget, you are so worth it!

-Portia

The Choice Really is Yours

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A break through. Even clouds need one.

I used to look at all the other students in my art class and wonder to myself, “what am I doing here?” They were so much more talented. I was learning. I was improving. Their’s was a natural talent. I felt like I didn’t belong amongst them.

Then, I walked into Art History class. I was the teachers pet. She asked me why I wasn’t pursuing a writing career. I laughed it off. “Writing is just a hobby. Anyone can do it,” I would tell her.

My talents as a painter are decent. I practiced a lot back then. What I didn’t know is, although my painting skills were good, it wasn’t my genius. I wasn’t truly in my lane. I was sitting in that class trying to be better than people that I had no business trying to compete with. Afraid to be the worst artist in the room. Not like I was planning on having a show in anyone’s art gallery any time in the future.

What I thought of as just a hobby turns out to be the talent I should have been chasing. I found out that not everyone can write back to back novels for the fun of it. That all the stories running around in my head had a purpose. I, and my ego, were too busy being competitive in places that had nothing to do with my genius.

Even today, at work, I wanted to be the go-to, know-it-all guru. Then I remembered the scripture, well, I think its a scripture. We’ll say I heard a religious person say, “God doesn’t bless you where you don’t belong.” Its been established that I don’t belong here. Every time I sign up for a Java, C++ or Python course, I get really depressed. I can do it. I practice. I just don’t want to do it.

So let me ask, where in your life are you showing up but don’t belong? Where are you not seeing growth, or blessings? There could be a reason. You could be the square peg, and “it” could be a circle. No matter how you shift and shake, its not going to work out well. Sure, the sides will begin to dull, but the fit is still going to be an uncomfortable fit. Yet, somehow, we pretend it’s not that uncomfortable.

How do you get to the truth? How do you stop ignoring signs that are pointing, screaming and ready to knock you over to get your attention? How do you stop telling yourself that you are stuck?

You make a choice.

Too simple, I know. And because it is so simple, it scares us. It requires us to take responsibility for ourselves. And trust me, I understand the fear in that. I don’t want to stand in the mirror and admit that the last 15 years are my fault. I want it to be someone else’s responsibility. I proudly gave my speech blaming the system. That no one gave me a chance. I boldly said, “I did everything right!”

The system, the unfair world…you know what? That simple fix is also what got me into a life that was not fulfilling. We have been making choices this entire time. I made the choice to settle. So, technically, I have been responsible for where I am today. If I choose safe or if I choose writing, I am responsible.

I am responsible for how I react to obstacles. I am responsible for deciding if I want to stay miserable or go on an adventure. Sure, I have obligations and a teenage son to consider. Those things aren’t stopping me.

Are you looking at your obligations as excuses? That is a choice. You don’t need permission to make a different choice. You get to chose what is best for you. You. Are. Responsible.

And, you are so worth it!

-Portia

Your Vibe Attracts Your Tribe

I saw a meme that read, “I belong in any room I walk into. I get the concept of what it means. However, I don’t fully agree with it. I say that because sometimes we become so adamant about belonging, that we conform to fit in.

I know I am guilty of it. Especially if you have fought long and hard to get there. What I’ve learned is that in trying to prove I belong, I don’t grow. I settle because I feel like I made it.

When I was younger,  I lived in Augusta, GA for a year. Home of the The Masters golf championship. At that time, women were fighting for the right to be part of the old boy’s golf clubs. My attitude back then was why fight for entry into their club? Let’s build our own! I still feel that way.

Everyone wants a seat at the table. That’s normal. The question to ask is, are we at the right table. Is your vibe attracting the right people in your life? Guiding you in the right direction? What thoughts are you giving out? Where are you thinking from? Fear? Worry? Are you asking questions like why?

I did all the things I could think to do to be seen at my day job. Then I looked around and realized I had nothing in common with most of the poeple there. As much as I deserve to be there, in being truthful with myself, I am not operating from my genius. I am in a room that I don’t belong.

It’s when I make the decision to walk in the room filled with entrepreneurs that I will want to tell myself this is where I belong. It will be out of my comfort zone. That is where I want a seat at the table. Belonging to a group of people doing what I want to be doing is when I am in my tribe.

So, ask yourself, am I prepared?

Am I showing up authentic?

These two questions will give you the confidence to show up.

Then ask, what am I bringing to the table?

What is my unique selling point?

Am I present in this moment?

Am I showing up to make a difference?

In these questions, I hope you find your why. Use them to verify if you are in the best tribe. Attracting the right people. If you are authentic and showing up to make a difference, then you can plan to do what it takes. That is when I know I’m where growth happens. If I’m uncomfortable, then I am being challenged. I am not conforming to the masses. I’m not there just to collect a paycheck.

I am there to be mentored and to mentor. And when I get too comfortable there, it’s time to push away. It’s time to find the next room and keep moving to the next level. And one day, maybe I will have built the room that you walked into.

Either way, keep growing. Keep pushing. Keep wanting it.

You are so worth it!

-Portia

 

 

Isolation is Good for the Soul, but Not the Journey

Tonight I got my feelings hurt. I was cussed out, told off and hung up on. I sit here and think of all the things that were said to me. I sit here and think of all the things I didn’t say back. The second person called and I hung up the phone when I heard the first cuss word. The voicemail recorded all the anger and the hurt. I saved the first one. Two minutes long. The second one erased. It was only a minute long. Those three minutes combined will come up during quiet moments in my future for the rest of my life. Words not to be forgotten.

I’m too angry to be hurt. I know, if not tomorrow, a few days from now I will feel the heartache. Right now, my intent is to shut the whole world off. I want to believe that this is the reason I walk this earth alone. Why I don’t trust. Why I feel like there is no one to turn to.

Then…my son walks into the room. He puts his arms around me and sings his off key version of “Everything is going to be all right,”. I laugh. Then, I think of the MeetUp group I joined, which was started to bring women together to pull one another up. Our book for this Month is Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes.

This has been a year filled with women’s rights, and women’s empowerment. More of us are joining together than those of us cat fighting. We are all on a journey to live life on our terms. Collectively, we have changed what women are supposed to do, to what we are willing to do. More so, what we will not tolerate. Girl power has taken on a new life in 2018.

I think of my business coach and all the work she puts in to keep me not just motivated, but pointed in the direction to think like an entrepreneur. I now remember I have work to do. I am mad at myself for having wasted so much energy on this issue for the last five days.

Isolation is good when we need to think. It’s perfect when we are doing the work. When it comes to moving our products, finding customers, sharing our knowledge, for that, we need each other. I couldn’t do what I do without the right people. Why have a blog if no one is going to read it? Why write the great American novel if it’s only going to sit on the author’s shelf? Why build it if nobody is going to come?

I know I need to work on my elevator pitch for an upcoming networking meeting. I might not be crazy about going to them, but that is where you meet your customers, your mentors, your future friends and partners. Businesses need people. People need each other. Back to the mirror I go to practice.

My relationship with two people ended tonight. I won’t say I am okay with that. I do know in time it will get easier. I wish I could have been the person doing the cussing and the hanging up, but that’s not my personality. That, I am okay with. Sometimes a particular part of the journey comes to an end. I won’t lose the lesson. I will eventually let go of the pain.

Isn’t that what life is about? It keeps moving, so we need to also.

Here’s to our journey.

You are so worth it!

-Portia

 

 

Recovery Strategy

 

I feel like at this point I am dusting myself off. I fell down. I scrapped my knee. Then I just sat there in the dirt feeling my pain. Now it’s time to get up. It’s time t heal. Time to forgive myself.

The first question I have to ask of myself is, how are you going to recover?

Fortunately, I planned ahead. I asked myself a year ago what obstacles could I expect. Although it was a little different this time, I learned from my past what I could expect. This time I had a full fledged meltdown in public. I had to go to therapy. I had to deal with my my shadow parts.

I learned I am stronger now. Good thing. My son didn’t stop being himself and decided to pull another transgression. Because of it, I had to again deal with my family letting me know how they felt about my parenting. This time, I stood up for myself. I let them know that all decisions would be made by his father and I. Co-parenting is new for us. He had his rules when our son was with him. I had mine. It took 13 years to learn that didn’t work.

Something else new is I realized is that I am not going to defend myself. The same as I tell my kids, you ask me a question, I answered, that is the end of the conversation. I have to be the same with the adults in my life.

I am who I am, as Popeye would say. I can’t stop being me. I explained that to my 15 year old. “You keep taking me out of my personality and that is not helping either of us.”

This brings me back to the light. My business coach taught me to forgive myself. For a moment I had to see myself through the eyes of others to be reminded of my authentic self.

So I ask myself, how am I going to handle the obstacles I now face. Some are self inflicted. However, the advise I would give is this: Let go of the pain. Keep the lesson.

As I let go, I make a plan. I commit to check in daily. I pray. I feel worry come over me. I pray some more.

I have also removed the statement, “I have to fix this,” from my self talk. Just like I can’t raise a 15 year old male by myself, I can’t “fix” anything by myself.

I revisit my plan in the morning. I revisit my plan in the evening. I see what’s working. I see what’s not working.

I see what needs to change and I take action.

So, we re-calibrate. What’s working? What’s not working? Who can we reach out to for help? And most importantly, we move towards action.

That is how we recover. We move forward. I heard someone say, “You can’t drive forward looking in the rear view mirror.”

How true that is!

Breathe.

Forgive.

Move on.

You are so worth it!

-Portia

Believe in You

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“Do you want to try the medication ?” Dr. Clayton asked me.

”Of course I don’t. I should be able to fix myself,” I replied.

I was resisting wearing the label depressed. I write a blog and teach others tips on how to push themselves to the next level, and here I am, not finding joy in a walk through the park. I know all the right things  to do. All the right things to tell myself. I have studied for this moment for years.

Trusting myself

When I trust the process, I am open to it showing me my messy parts. I am open to revisiting what I have yet to face. My biggest struggle is with my role as a mother. I don’t have much of a support group, and I don’t feel like I am good at it.

Its not because I have problem children, but because I keep comparing myself to everyone else. I am looking for perfection, which on the surface I know does not exist. Unfortunately, I am driving my boys crazy trying to make it exist.

I am probably also driving them crazy preaching one thing and then fussing when they do it. How can I truly get upset with my youngest for not conforming? I am the one that told him never to conform. It’s like I’m telling him, be yourself, as long as yourself is what I say. “Ouch,” I’m that mom.

I realize I am not taking my own advice. I am concerned with what others think. I am concentrating on the negative stuff. I am counting lack instead of blessings. So even if I have to take antidepressants, I am willing to walk through the process and trust I am doing the tight thing for me.

Starting over at step one

This time out I am on is a chance to go back to the drawing board. It’s time to go within. Listen to intuition. I hear the answer, and it’s actually been yelling at me for some time now. Up until now, I just kept saying it was impossible.

The famous quote by Henry Ford holds true here.  “Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you’re right.” The answer I was shown is not impossible. I just don’t feel confident taking on the task. If I were the coach in this situation, I would say, so what. Not because I did not care, but because I know confidence comes with doing. What I am feeling is normal.

Isn’t that what holds most of us back from becoming entrepreneurs or changing careers? We don’t feel confident. We feel like frauds. We aren’t sure if we can actually pull it off.

All things are truly possible. The problem is we lack belief in ourselves. Instead, I encourage you to rely on your knowledge and your experience. A friend was just telling me her husband is worried about accepting his new job. She reminded him that he had to learn proprietary software at his last two places of employment. He is very capable of doing the same at the new one.  She understood the underlying fear was change. He has both knowledge and experience to do the job.

Keep moving forward

Be okay with making mistakes. Just be open to learning from them.  Our journey in life is to keep moving forward. As a mom, I am learning and teaching at the same time. At the end of the day, I ask myself if I made any progress. If not, what do I need to do differently?

I am constantly asking myself and my kids, what would it take? I am asking you the same.

If confidence comes from doing, then what would it take for you to do?

If you don’t have an immediate answer, then just do it anyway. You’ll find that the answer will come as you go. It will come in the form of an email, a friend, or even a blog.  Just start taking steps.

And, believe in yourself.

You are so worth it!

Portia