Two Women, One Lesson

A few months ago, I ran into a distant cousin at my great aunt’s funeral and learned that she had been fighting Lupus for a long time. My heart broke for her as she explained that she had been in and out of the hospital a lot. I was struck as she shared her story by how strong her faith was. Instead of complaining, she was praising God in the midst of her trials. She let her faith shine as she trusted in her God.

Ever since that day I have been following her journey and praying for her. This week I received news that she has passed. She was 27. Now what I remember the most about her was her smile. Her spirit. As I browsed through her Facebook page this week, every comment is filled with evidence that she knew God and that she ran a good race. Her race may have been short, but she touched the hearts of many and bore good fruit during her fleeting stay here on Earth. Rest in heaven Jasmine Haynes. Job well done.

A couple of months ago, I met a new friend name Cassandra through one of my cousins. We clicked immediately. We are both introverted and have reserved personalities, which is the total opposite of the cousin who introduced us. We shared mutual experiences of trying to meet genuine people we felt safe opening up to, and were delighted to discover that we had so much in common. We exchanged numbers and we started texting each other and talked on several occasions. I was so grateful that God brought us together. We tried to make plans to meet up for lunch, but our busy schedules kept us from nailing down a date. Four months ago, I received a text from my cousin that Cassandra had just suffered a massive stroke. She was 41. I honestly could not believe my eyes and what I had just read. My heart and my eyes swelled with tears and I asked God why? Why her? Why now? She has a baby boy and two adolescent girls. My heart is heavy with regret over not dropping my plans to make time to have lunch with her.  I was so looking forward to getting to know her, but in the midst of my questioning and sadness, I humbled my heart to trust God’s will and prayed like crazy for him to save her. I'm grateful to say that Cassandra is still alive, but she has a long road ahead of her, including overcoming brain damage from her stroke. I believe God is a miracle worker and I'm still believing God for her complete mental and physical restoration.

Two women.

Two unique stories.

One common lesson.

Life can change dramatically before we take our next breath.

Both of these women had plans for tomorrow and responsibilities on their shoulders. Both were looking forward to their futures. Did they appreciate the moments they had? When they heard the common platitude “Life is short,” did they know just how short it could be? Had they made up their minds to live as if they were dying?  

We all have a lot of things on our plates. We're wives, mothers, friends, daughters, entrepreneurs, employees, and the list can go on. Most likely you're overwhelmed with all of the pressure and responsibilities that fall on you every day. Sometimes you may feel as if you don't know what to do first. When we are sleepwalking through each day or just going through the motions of our lives, it’s hard to pay attention and live with a constant gratitude for the moments God gives us on this earth. How do we live as if we are dying?

Here are a couple of solutions to end the cycle of overwhelm and busyness that have been helpful to me as I have processed the events of the the last couple of months and weeks of my life.

1) Every morning ask God to show you what's important today.

Ask Him to guide your steps and allow you to focus on how you can bear fruit that day and live on purpose. Remember he knows exactly how much time you have left. So He definitely knows how you should arrange your time. Trust me, when God calls you to do something important, like going to lunch with a friend who may really need your attention, the laundry can wait. The enemy loves to distract us with what's urgent instead of what's important.

Ask yourself, "Am I more focused on what seems urgent (dishes, email, making more money) or on what's important (playing with your child, sending that encouraging text to a friend going through). Ask God for help to know the difference today and every day.

2) When you talk (or think) about your day, try to change your wording from "I have to..." to "I get to..."

I can hardly believe how this small word swap has changed my perspective since I've started doing this. For example, here’s how it looked today: As I walked around my house, I saw stuff everywhere. My husband literally thinks our guest bathroom is his closet (lol). But instead of getting upset that he left his huge size 10 shoes in the bathroom AGAIN for me to trip over, I said thank you God that I get to clean up after my husband. Thank You that I have a husband, and a good one at that. Thank you God that I get to cook dinner for my family. I would much rather enjoy this Sunday on the couch, but I get to serve my family by cooking and cleaning. Practicing gratitude is a game changer.

Jasmine and Cassandra would love to be able to do the very things we complain about. I bet they would give anything to be able to cook, clean, and go to work.

I know that their lives and what happened to them was not in vain. Jasmine’s legacy will live on forever, and I believe that Cassandra will be completely restored to life as it was before the stroke in Jesus’ name. But until then, her life and the fight in her, has inspired me on so many levels.

Lovely friend, live your life with gratitude and passion. Choose to live like today could be your last. Make up your mind to enjoy every minute of your days and let others be inspired by how you live your life.

I love you dearly.

Tiffany

 

P.S  Will you join me as I continue to pray for Cassandra and her family? And please pray for the Haynes family as they say goodbye to their precious loved one.

 


 

A life full of burdens, is a life full of purpose.

Hi Friend,

Let's talk a little about purpose. As you may or may not know, one of the services I offer at Oh So You coaching, is to help women discover their purpose. I've discovered that purpose is the missing piece that is causing frustration in the lives of so many men and women. The key to finding your purpose is discovering your burden. You can discover your burden by paying close attention to what grabs your attention and hold your thoughts captive.

Is there something you are dying to change or communicate?

That is your burden. That is your calling, AND you must do something about it.

Is there something that fires you up? Something that others can walk right past, that stops you dead in your tracks?

A while back I was leaving an NBA basketball game at the Phillips arena. Along with everyone else walking to their cars, I was walking and laughing arm-in-arm with my husband when I noticed a homeless woman sitting outside (in the winter time) with two small children asking for money. Just the sight of those children sitting out there in the cold instantly brought tears to my eyes. I thought about this woman and those kids all night long. People were walking right by them. A few stopped, but the majority of folks kept walking to their luxury cars to go to their warm cozy homes, while not realizing they had a responsibility to do something.  You see some of these same people may have been searching for their purpose, not realizing that God may have answered their prayer by putting people directly in their path.

Of course I understand that not everyone has the same calling and purpose, but the principal doesn't change. There is something or someone right under your nose that is your assignment. Your calling.  If you have been praying for God to reveal your assignment here on this earth, you must know that HE will answer you. It's your job to keep your eyes and ears open to receive the answer HE reveals to you.

Have you ever found yourself thinking that "someone needs to do something about this or that," or do you often ask that infamous question,  "If God is so good, why does he allow these (bad) things to happen?"

Scripture says, "for we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." Ephesians 2: 10.

He created us in advance for good works. These works are to combat the evil going on around us and to help those in need. There are people in need everywhere you go. Up until now you may have just walked right past your purpose, but not anymore. I'm challenging you to pray this prayer... Lord open my eyes to the needs and problems of those around me." And give me the courage to not keep walking and hoping somebody will come and do something. Let me be that somebody."

If you're like me with so many areas near and dear to your heart, you may have to spend more time searching for clarity. But while you are waiting, you can do something. It's in the doing where you'll find your life's mission. Since launching this coaching ministry and business, God has confirmed my calling and even birthed new visions in my heart. I might not have ever discovered these burdens if I had not started with the first tug on my heart to help frustrated Christian women create more harmony in their lives. From that first calling, my work has moved on to reaching more women on a deeper level based on the conversations I've had the opportunity to have with prospective clients and actual clients. And to think I almost passed up on pursuing this passion, because I had my heart set on becoming an actress. I'm so glad I decided to trust God with my life. Although some may think Life coaching isn't as "impressive" as acting, I'm having the time of my life operating in my gifts.

Friend, if you are having a hard time discovering your purpose, it could be because you're waiting on a BIG platform. We usually miss God when he answers if we are looking for a big, impressive calling. But God doesn't measure callings or assignments by how “impressive” we think they are. He presses assignments on our hearts that are directly tied to His heart. When God uses someone or something to tug on your heart, those tugs become your burden, and you can't seem to stop thinking about it. Friend, that is your purpose. And you owe it to the world to do something about it.

********************************************************************************************

I never forgot the words of this song that came on the radio in 2011 when I was riding in my car. These words struck a cord in my heart, and I knew I had to do more. I pray you will listen to the words and they will also challenge you to do more. And if you're already doing your part...Rock on sister!!

 

Answering Your Questions: How Do We Surrender?

Hello friends,

Today I am answering a great question I received in an Instagram comment:

How do we know when we have fully surrendered things to God?

In my experience, surrendering has been a process of letting go of what I wanted for my life and embracing the Lord's will for me. Before I truly surrendered I kept trying to knock down doors that just would not open. I would pray for God to direct my steps, and then get frustrated when things did not work out. I didn't realize that by closing doors, God was actually answering my prayers asking Him to direct my steps.

I stopped becoming frustrated with dead ends when I finally was

able to say (and mean) these words: "Lord, I don't care what I want anymore. Your will is what's best for me."

I continue to pray for guidance, clarity, and direction, but I am no longer committed to my version of “success.” Instead I look to God to show me the next step on the path.

So to answer your question, I think you know that you have surrendered when you are no longer frustrated if things don't work out according to your plan. You have confidence in all circumstances because you know that God is directing your steps. Also, instead of going along with your normal schedule, you ask Him to show you the way, and you simply flow with Him.

I'm not sure what season you are currently in. You may be experiencing a season of opened doors and opportunities falling in your lap, or you may still be in the waiting season, standing on God’s promises for what seems like eternity. If you are experiencing the latter, just know that you must surrender your vision and your life to Him. It's okay to have dreams, but those dreams can't have you. They can't have your peace. Your Joy. Your life. If you find that you can't be happy until you have "it," then "it" may never happen. Surrender it today and start enjoying your life while you're waiting on His perfect plan for you. The right door will open to you in the Lord’s time and not a minute before.

I am not saying it is easy, but I know from experience that it is the way to peace. Surrender.

Until next time my lovely friends,

Tiffany

P.S.

I've been thinking a lot about you and how I can serve you better in this virtual space.  It is my intention to not only inspire you with these emails, but to impact your life in a tangible way. Inspiration is wonderful, but it does not last very long. I'm sure you get tons of emails filled with inspirational feel good messages. There is nothing wrong with that, but if inspiration was enough, we'd all be living out our dreams.

So I promise that I will not write to you just for the sake of writing, but I will always wait until I feel I have something valuable to say. The funny thing is I always have something to say, but a lot of times I have to sit with the information until I can put it into the right words for you. The reason I'm letting you in on my process is that I want to know more of where you are in life right now so I can give you more of what you are needing and wanting. I want to know your frustrations and your concerns. What are you most excited about right now? What would you really like to change, and why? Also, feel free to ask me any questions you may have. I promise to answer every one of them.

So hit reply and tell me all about you. I really want to hear from you. So c'mon don't be shy :)

 

Take a note from Beyonce and give it all you've got!

Hey friends,

Do you remember back in the day when we used to buy music on CD's? Do you recall actually having to go to the music store to purchase your favorite band or singer’s latest album?

Tell me that wasn't that long ago! Please! Because I refuse to believe that I'm one of "those people" who uses the words "back in the day." Have mercy.

I can remember getting Beyoncé's first solo album like it was yesterday. Ya'll remember her first solo album, Dangerously in Love? It was BANANAS.

One day I was in the car with a close friend of mine and we were listening to that Beyoncé CD.  "Dangerously in Love" started playing, and I forgot my friend was even in the car. Part of my personality as a creative artist was that I could get lost in music as a way of expressing myself. So I used every ounce of lung power I could muster up to belt out the lyrics of that song.  When the song was over, I quickly got myself together and looked over at my friend, only to find her laughing hysterically to herself. I never had to ask her what was so funny. Even now, many years later, I can remember how  uncomfortable I felt at being laughed at that day.

That was one of my first experiences of learning that everyone may not "get me" and my passion for life and entertainment. Music has always played a big part in my life, and I’ve never been that person who could just listen to music or simply sing along. If I'm going to do something, I'm going to put my all into it. It didn't matter if I couldn't carry a tune to save my life. If I was going to sing, I was going to SING.  

As I write these words, I remember that adolescent girl who marched to the beat of her own drum, that fearless girl who didn't care what anyone thought about her.  If I'm very honest, a little part of my spirit died that day along when I realized that someone thought less of me for being me. And over time, those kinds of interactions continued to diminish my fearless attitude, like another time where I put my all into a praise dance at a pageant and received only a few hand claps.

What I want you to know is that those hard moments, and the many other times I felt misunderstood, have given me more compassion than I ever would have had if I had never been laughed at. My experiences of having my spirit crushed by the critics have enabled me to be someone with whom you can share your heart and passions. I will understand. I will rally with you, and push you to express yourself however you need to. I will be the one giving a standing ovation when I see someone giving their all.

Can you think of moments in your life that "killed your spirit?” Did you used to be fearless, but now you're full of fear? Are there things you want to do or try, but you're afraid someone will laugh at you, afraid that you may not be good at it, or afraid to fail in front of people?

Sweet friend, you must get back to that creative, spirit-filled enthusiastic girl you used to be.

Don't stop being you because others don't get you. If there is a dream or passion in your heart you want to pursue, then by all means do it with all your heart, with all the power you can muster up. If it makes you happy (as singing does for me) then do it. You don't have to do it on a grand scale, but do what sets your soul on fire in whatever small way you can today. You never know where it will lead you or how you might discover more things in the process that you have an aptitude for.

You see I just want to express myself. Whether it its on the movie screen, dancing for the Lord on the praise team, or writing blogs to dear friends, I just have to be me.

And you have to be you. All of you. Not the watered down version that people can handle, but the too-much-to handle person you are dying to be.

Yeah they laughed. Yeah you failed before. Yeah they may talk about you. Yeah you feel inadequate and unqualified to pursue your passions, but you must.

You must.

Decide today, that you will live your life doing those things you really love to do. No more playing it safe and holding back. Just like that little girl belting out the lyrics to Beyoncé, live like nobody is watching. Do what sets your soul on fire and give it all you've got!

"Live your life full of passion, or you'll end up being full of regrets."

-Dr. Tiffany Pierce

 

The Blessing is After the But.

Have you ever wanted to do something hard, but you convinced yourself that "you just don't have it in you?” Maybe you even made an attempt, but decided quickly that “you just don’t have what it takes.”

Do you console yourself with thinking that you tried, relying on your "but" to dull the pain in your heart, from being in the same predicament and realizing that you may never reach your God-given destiny? Can you think back to a time where you set out to really "do it" this time, but yet two weeks later, you had already aborted the process, prepared your concession speech, and once again convinced yourself that you tried, but...

Maybe your "it" is fasting to hear God's voice, but you just can't give up food for whatever reason. Or, maybe your "it" is needing God to fix your marriage, but not being able to consistently do what he's been telling you to do for a while now, in order to humble yourself and change the areas you need to work on first. Your "it" could be staying quiet when others betray and lie about you, instead of seeking to take matters into your own hands. “It” could be losing weight, starting your own business, letting go of toxic relationships...Sis, I don't know what your "it" is, but what I do know is that the blessing and life that you desire is found on the other side of your "but." On the other side of your sacrifice.

I can relate to your resistance to suffering and sacrifice, and so can Jesus. In Luke 22:42 Jesus is facing the reality that in order to fulfill his divine purpose, he would have to make a painful sacrifice. Coming to this heavy realization Jesus cries out "Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me, yet not my will BUT yours be done." As I type this, tears begin to swell in my eyes, as I realize the burden and the loneliness Jesus faced as he contemplated wanting to turn back and abort the process. But it's the process, the death and burial that allowed him to resurrect, and conquer death for all of us.  Without the sacrifice, you and I would not possess the power to trample over our own dead situations. The Sacrifice was necessary! And your sacrifice is necessary. When you face your own "wanting to turn back" moments, in light of Jesus, I'm sure it pales in comparison. In the next scripture, it says “An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him.” (Luke 22:43) Sis, what we can learn from this scripture is that no matter how hard your "it" is, you can pray to God about the hard task you're facing. Instead of giving excuses about why it's just too hard, you can vent and yet still change your "but" from an excuse to convince yourself of your shortcomings, to a "But your will be done." Or "But I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength." And just as God gave Jesus the strength to go through, he will strengthen you too.

Friends we can't expect to get something from nothing. To get to the life you dream of, you will have to give up and sacrifice something. Unlike Jesus, you may not have to sacrifice your life, but your sacrifice could be: pride, laziness, relationships, jobs, sleep, comfort, old patterns and habits, excuses, selfishness, your flesh, food, television, or any number of things.

What it is that you know you need to sacrifice in your life, but until today, you've really ingrained in your mind that you just don't have it in you to do?

The blessing is on the other side of that. It's on the other side of your "but."



 

Spring Cleaning for the Soul

Hello friend,

Do you ever find yourself spiritually hungry?

Do you wake up craving for more of something in your life, but you’re not sure what it is?

I don’t think we are supposed to ignore those cravings.

Just like our bodies remind us of physical hunger, our hearts let us know when our spirits are in need.

Thinking about hunger makes me long for food, and thankfully, I prepared a tasty meal in the crock pot overnight that I will enjoy later today, but I need more than meat and veggies to satisfy my spiritual appetite. So what do we do when we aren’t sure what our souls need?

Of course we know that Jesus Christ is the ultimate solution to the cravings of our souls, but sometimes it's hard to hear his voice or we feel overwhelmed about how to seek him to satisfy our gnawing hunger for more.

I think that hunger is a sign from our spirit,  alerting us that it is time to pull away and listen to that still, small voice inside of us. Our busy lives make it easy to ignore that voice, and we go on starving our souls until we reach a crisis of faith. But whether the hunger is just a fleeting thought at the beginning of the day or the ache for more is filling our waking hours, we can be sure that If we continue to feed on the world instead of the word, we will never be satisfied.

So where do we begin to fill our souls with the presence and power of Jesus that we truly long for?

I think we begin by making room for him in our lives. We must start with a detox of our spirit, a decluttering of our lives so we can hear that still, small voice that is starving for our attention.

In honor of Spring, here are four key areas of our lives that we can begin to declutter in order to make room for more of what we want. Empty out what does not satisfy so we can fill our souls up with substance.

1) Declutter your thoughts.

Studies show that we have between 50,000-70,000 thoughts per day. That makes 35-48 thoughts per minute. Before we can even complete one thought, we are bombarded by another one, and most of the thoughts we think are not even our own. Our thoughts come from past circumstances or the opinions and fears of others. If God is speaking, can we hear it when we have so much else going on in our minds? I recommend  writing down key thoughts in a journal as a help to begin to decipher the Lord's voice from that of the world. Journaling is a very effective way to "brain dump" all that clutter in our heads. Once we put pen to paper, we can release a lot of what is holding our thoughts captive. It’s amazing how journaling can create self-awareness and free up space for more beneficial thoughts.

2) Declutter your inbox.

Most of us check our email at least a dozen times a day. Have you ever taken inventory of your personal inbox? Most inboxes are full of advertisers trying to push their agenda on you, other people expressing their opinions, and other businesses or companies looking to influence you in some way.  Go through and decide which emails you want more of, and which ones serve no real purpose. Then use the power of the unsubscribe button. I personally do this on a regular basis, and now my inbox is full of inspiration and news about the things I care about. A helpful internet tool you can use to do this for you is called unroll.me.

3) Declutter your social media accounts.

Social media serves as a networking tool that has several advantages, but there are also disadvantages Everybody and their dog (and a lot of other pets) has a platform on social media. Not everyone should be on social media (I know you feel me on this).  If you need to be on it, be very intentional about who you follow. Follow people and companies who will feed your spirit with more of the things that will help you grow. One question to ask when deciding if you want to follow someone or befriend them is "What is their intention behind these posts?" You'll be surprised how this can help you make a decision on who to follow.

When it comes to social media, guard your heart and set yourself some limits.

When I really need to hear God's voice I make a point of staying off of social media.

This is so important. Other people's opinions and words have an influence on us, so if we clutter our minds with everyone else’s thoughts, it can be hard to have room for the Holy Spirit.

4) Declutter your friends.

This might sound kind of harsh, but not everyone is meant to stay in your life indefinitely.

God places people in our lives for different seasons, and when circumstances change or we grow, sometimes our relationships change too. Don't be afraid to let go of certain friendships, or to choose to love someone from a distance for a while. We want to allow people in our personal space who encourage and push us further on the path to become who we want to be.

Once again, guard your heart. Living for God and listening for His voice is harder when those closest to us are living contrary to our beliefs.

Overall, the most important thing you can do when you notice that your spirit is hungering for more is to silence the noise around you, so that you can hear that still, small voice inside. We must be very intentional about nurturing our spirit, and feasting on things that feed our soul.

So many of us are starving and hungry for things of substance, but we aren’t filling up the crockpot with nutrient-rich food that satisfies. We indulge in diets that fill our bellies, but starve our souls. I am praying that these tips will help you do some spring cleaning in your heart so that you can have room for the good stuff.

It's amazing what happens when we eliminate unnecessary clutter in our life!

Do you have any other spring cleaning tips to add to the list? Please share!

Until next time,

Tiffany




 

36 Lessons From 36 Years of Life.

Hello Friends,

Do you know what today is?

 It's my birthday {insert spirit fingers and a loud cheer}!!

 I am so grateful to see another year. I've been blessed to celebrate 36 birthdays on this side of heaven, and although they've all been pretty special, this one is different from all the rest.  The best birthday gift I've ever given myself is stepping out and becoming an entrepreneur.  Since taking this entrepreneurial leap, I have seen doors fly open and opportunities literally fall in my lap (I will have to write a blog on this at some point).

 But I must admit, it hasn't always been this way. Not too many years ago I lived in constant frustration and anxiety, because no doors were opening for me, no matter how hard I tried to beat them down. Ironically enough, I'm thankful for those hard years, because they drew me closer to Jesus, and now I can see how everything was working  for my good.

 So in honor of my birthday today, I wanted to do something different. I want to share with you 36 lessons I've learned throughout my life, in hopes that it will inspire you to look over your own, and perhaps even create your own list of the lessons you've learned along the way.  So here is my list of, as Oprah would say , things I know for sure...

36 Lessons from my 36 years of life

  1. God placed unique gifts and talents within every single person he created, and you begin to discover those gifts as a child.

  2. There are no coincidences. Every detail of your life is carefully planned in advance by your creator.

  3. God is intentional.

  4. God is faithful, even when you are not. Even when you  don't deserve his faithfulness.

  5. You never really fail in life. Learn the lesson and move on.

  6. No one has it all together, no matter how it looks on the outside. Everyone is fighting some type of battle.

  7. People aren't really"haters." Instead they are confused admirers who do not realize their own greatness. Instead of focusing on their actions, pray for them and help them understand that God has a great plan for their life too.

  8. Love is the universal language. Imagine what the world would be like, if we all spoke this samelanguage! I have a dream...

  9. We live life forward, but we understand it backwards. It's exciting to go back and connect the dots of our lives.

  10. God is good. It's not just a cliché saying. It's truth.

  11. Even though you and I may experience every emotion on the spectrum all in one day, God never changes. Amen to that!

  12. You will very rarely feel "ready" and qualified for the things God calls you to do. Do them anyway. God doesn't call the qualified, he qualifies the called.

  13. If you don't have peace about something, don't do it. Its. Not. Worth. It.

  14. It's better to obey God quickly and wholeheartedly. Partial obedience is not obedience. And there are always consequences for disobedience.

  15. Social media is the cause of a lot of depression and unhappiness in peoples' lives. You have to use it as a tool instead of it using you.

  16. Boundaries are non-negotiable. If you ever intend to fully enjoy your life, you must draw a line in the sand and not cross it, or allow anyone else to.

  17. It is imperative to laugh often and use humor. Try to laugh as often and as much as possible.

  18. You must learn to love yourself, just the way you are. Flaws and all. You are perfect as perfect can get.

  19. Children are a gift from God. I heard this for a very long time, but it took on a literal meaning when I became a mom.

  20. In addition to changing your life, children can also save your life.

  21.  If anyone else in the world can do "it," so can you. Nothing is impossible.

  22. You will never be able to make everyone happy. So don't even try. Just think about Jesus, he was perfect, and people still found reasons not to like him. Just do you and focus on the majority who are with you.

  23. Always stay true to yourself. Don't let another person change the essence of who you are.

  24. Life is tough. But you are tougher.

  25. Cupcakes are a girl's best friend- or at least that is the case for me.

  26. Contrary to popular belief, getting older is the best thing that can happen to you. Consider the alternative, and I'm sure you will agree.

  27. We should never focus more on our external features. Get the inside right, and the outside will take care it itself.

  28. People are always watching . Make sure you live out your convictions and walk your talk.

  29. It's takes a lifetime to build a good reputation, and only minutes to lose it. Be careful how you live.

  30. If you intend to get something you've never had before, you MUST do things differently than before.

  31. Nothing great comes out of convenience and comfort. Greatness is birthed from opposition, challenges, and obstacles. If you're experiencing any of this, just know that you are being prepared for your purpose. Keep on keeping on.

  32. You must have a vision for your life. If not you will end up somewhere, but not somewhere on purpose.

  33. Perspective is everything. There is always something to be grateful for. And things could always be worse.

  34. There is nothing that you and God can't handle together.

  35. You won't really see God move, until you surrender your entire life to him.

  36. At times we may wonder if God has forgotten about us. He hasn't.

     

     

So there you have it my friends! Thirty-six lessons I've learned along the way. I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it. And of course I want to know if you have any lessons you would like to share. I always like to hear from you.

Now excuse me while I go devour my birthday cake. No matter how many gifts I get, the cake is always the hi-light of my day.

Cheers to another year of life.

Until next time,

Tiffany

 

 

 

Why your goals won't matter until you get these two important areas under control.

two areas to manage photo.jpg

Hello my lovely friends,

We're swiftly approaching the month of March!

So tell me, how is your February going?  Prayerfully it is all you planned it to be. 

Did you catch that? I didn't say I hope it is all you wanted it to be, or wished it to be. The key word here is "planned."  

I must admit that I haven't always been a planner, but after spending year after year wondering why I wasn't making much progress, I realized that I wasn't planning for my success.  I was waking up every day going to a job that wasn't so bad, although it wasn't exactly my dream job, then coming home; following the same routine day after day, month after month, and year after year. Determined to do things differently , I broke this cycle by taking control of two important areas of my life. And I'm willing to bet these same two areas of your life may need a bit of tweaking as well. If you are going to be intentional about achieving your goals this year and beyond, you must learn to manage two very important areas of your life:  your emotions and your time.

Managing Your Emotions

Friends, you will NEVER achieve any amount of success in anything if you don't learn to manage your emotions. If your emotions are unstable, and you base your day on what you feel like doing, your life will resemble that same instability. Our emotions can change at any given moment.  The key is to manage them before they manage you. One way to do this is to eliminate options. Decide what you will do beforehand by creating a plan; then choose to stick to that plan, regardless of how you feel. Too often we give ourselves options, and as a result we easily abandon our plan at any sign of resistance that creates negative emotions. Practice placing constraints on allowing your feelings to influence major aspects of your life, and notice the incredible changes you experience as a result.

For example, you are committed to eating healthier and staying on top of your fitness goals. You have your dinner already prepared at home, and your gym clothes in the car for when you get off of work. However, you have a horrible day at work. Your boss is so harsh and unfair and you have just about had it with him and that job. If you have options,  you may choose to allow your emotions to take over, skip the gym, and instead of sticking to your dinner selection,  go to the buffet and eat all of the buttered rolls you can handle; all in the name of "having a bad day." However, if you have decided beforehand to eliminate any other options, other than the one you've already committed to, then you will go to the gym, take your frustrations out on the treadmill, and enjoy the healthy meal waiting for you at home. Believe me, in that moment of passion the buffet may make you feel better, but the next day you will regret letting your emotions manage and control you; not to mention your waistline and your wallet. Can you see how our emotions can hinder us from making any progress?

 

Managing Your Time

I want you to use the phrase "I don't have time" as much as possible this year.  

"I don't have time" really means "it's not my priority," and contrary to popular belief, it's completely okay to not have time to waste. In fact, if you are not prioritizing what is important from what is not, you will get to the end of yet another year thinking "Where did the time go?" However, if you have a schedule and calendar that you keep throughout the year, it will be easy to look back and see what you did with your time.  Starting now, make a schedule and fulfill the duties on your schedule.  Go ahead and say "No" or "I don't have time" to something that is not a part of your plan. This is being a good steward of your time – your most precious commodity.

 

Learning to manage your emotions and time will dramatically change how you approach your day. Get these two areas under control, and there is nothing you can't do. Commit to taking charge of your days. It may not happen overnight, but as you begin to apply these principles, you will gradually see positive change and growth.  It won't be easy, but you weren't designed for easy. You were designed to withstand pressure and overcome. You can do this, my friends.

You can. :)

Until next time,

Tiffany