A Phoenix represents transformation, death and rebirth in it's fire; it's the ultimate symbol of strength and renewal.
As humans we are scared to make mistakes. In this day and age, one mistake invites an audience of self appointed judge and jurors, who are quick to point out our flaws and falls all while conveniently leaving out their own ugliness. These are people who have failed and cannot stand that you are working on yourself, and possibly may surpass them in life. Or maybe you truly wronged them and pissed them off; so do your best and move on. Some will still love you and many still won't forgive you. Your growth shouldn't depend on their approval. They don't deserve your attention in any capacity. So don't give in. Keep going, or you cannot get to where you need to be.
The only person you need to be better than tomorrow, is yourself. Look for people who are where you want to be and get around them. Watch them and learn from them. These people say very little, but their lives reflect their example. These are your kind of people.
I was having a conversation with my daughter this week and I was complaining about how hard it has been to grow our business. She had no sympathy for me. In fact, she didn't skip a beat. She kept going about her morning routine and said matter of factly, 'well, no one asked you to grow an Empire or even a business. So shut up about it and get up and run it like you are walking into your downtown office as the CEO of a corporation. You wanted this.'
I just stared at her. Then I rolled my eyes and walked away. She was right but I wasn't about to tell her that!
Talk to anyone who has grown a large company or business. They will tell you they were the toughest yet rewarding years of their lives. To achieve my dreams and pay my debts I have no choice but to run my business right and grow it so it is successful in those accomplishments. So I don't have time to wallow in self pity....anymore.
When you fail, there needs to be a natural balance. Those cheering you on, and those hoping you'll fall into quicksand and suffer for a millennia. You can't escape it. So get a tough skin or lay down and die. You choose. This failure will press you until it reveals what you are really made of. So here's your chance.
1. It's never too late for a change.
You are not stuck in your current situation. You are not a tree. So move. Start with small changes daily and keep going. Don't make the mistake of biting off more than you can chew. Manage what you can manage. Baby steps. When you plant new seeds they don't immediately grow. It is however the conditions in which it is planted in which will determine it's growth and development.
2. Failures are only a visible measuring stick for what didn't work well.
Your critics are your launchpad. So use them to your benefit. Listen and if you can change some things, change them and make it better. If there's nothing to change, then recognize you are headed in the right direction, and they don't want you to notice. Kind of like the child hood game of 'hot and cold hide and seek'. When your opponent doesn't want you to get to the destination, they get loud and heckle to throw you off. Pay attention.
3. A toddler doesn't quit learning how to walk because they fall down a few times.
Fall down 6 get up 7. Learn what leverage is and use it to help you walk better.
Find a support system to take your hand while you get your bearings and balance.
(The key word here is balance. You can't master anything new without balance.
This applies to every area of your life)
4. If you have haters, you are doing something effective.
No one is born hateful or destructive. By nature as children if we are competitive, we get jealous. Jealousy comes from an insecurity or a fear of being criticized. It's root comes from a lack of self confidence and self value. Sometimes if you truly do something wrong, haters are there to get you back on track. But I'm not talking about that. I'm talking about the ones who never let things go and cannot stand seeing you succeed. This means you just might make an impact so they need to keep you down. Stay your course.
5. Not everyone outside the ring has your back. Some are there to watch the drama.
The ones who get in the ring with you are there to fight you for the title, or stand beside you no matter what. There's haters, then there are spectators. They haven't yet decided who's side they are on. But they are watching every move. These aren't your people either. But they are useful. Use them to measure your growth. Make no mistake, they are paying attention. But don't give them energy, stay your course. Be kind.
6. Be who you want to attract.
I was busy making a list awhile back on who I wanted as a partner in life. My list was pretty long. Somewhat unrealistic. Then I realized one important factor. I wasn't even the person on my list. So how was that going to work? I realized I needed to become that person I was seeking. Then I would attract it. Grow my company with values I love in other companies and I will attract those clients. Like attracts like.
7. Not everyone shares your values.
Recently I decided I want to go back to school and get my Bachelor of Arts - Criminal Justice Degree then use that as my degree to apply for law school. It has shocked me how many people feel at 46 I've fallen off the turnip truck. I quickly learnt that this would eliminate or change some of the people in my world. I had to be ok with that. I can't go back to school and hang with people who feel my time has come and gone. So learn to be okay with change. Because many things will change as you work your plan in life. It's ok.
8. You're never too old to achieve your dreams.
One of the most common questions I get on going back to school is...why? I say why not? And I leave it there. No one is going to dictate for me that at 46 my role would be that of only a wife, mother, grandmother, etc. I have 2 sons and 1 daughter watching; and 2 adopted sons and 2 adopted daughters watching me. I'm never going to send a message they are too old to be who they want to be.
9. No one wants a hot mess. Neither should you. Raise the bar.
I also get asked a lot, why aren't you dating? Hmmm...great question. Because I am still working on some areas I wouldn't want to have to walk in and deal with with a partner. So I am not going to be that for anyone else. I want to be proud of who I am and where I've come from. And I demand the same from anyone I would consider. If I workout you better too. If I eat clean you better too. If I don't drink like a fish you shouldn't either, if I pay my debts you better too. Makes sense. Live it.
10. You have 2 arms and 2 legs so work bitch.
I also get asked a lot by people who know what I've come through in life, why don't you just be realistic and walk away from your responsibilities and just call it what it is. Let me tell you why. I believe if you have 2 arms and 2 legs, you work. Get realistic about what you can manage yes. But when did we become this world who found it ok to fail and then walk away? You'd be surprised to learn I actually get judged worse and more harsh by people by not giving up. It's a fun little game they play called 'hold it over their head'. I believe systems are there when all hope is lost. When you have tried everything and there's nothing left to do. When it serves people better for you to completely lay down and die then do what you can in the moment, even if it means you can't do anything for a moment. Take that time to work and get ready to honour your commitments. Life happens. It's more satisfying for people to parade around and say 'they officially failed! I win! I called it!' Instead of working hard to find a path back thru the storm. These require baby steps and we just aren't as patient a society anymore. You want to restore your path, your integrity and your place? Get up and work. Collaborate. Deal. And get on with life. Be your own success. No one is going to do it for you. And if you are lucky enough in life to find a tribe who helps you in those moments. Don't give up on them. Get yourself positioned to be their hope in the storm. Honour these people in time and get it done. Then pay it forward.
11. A diamond was once a useless ugly lump of coal with very little value.
It requires a team of people to sculpt a lump of coal into a diamond. A group of people who see it's value and find it beautiful. It's a process. And the longer it takes and harder it's pressed, the more value it has. A diamond cannot become a diamond until it's placed under intense pressure in intense fire. Geologists believe diamonds were formed in the earths mantle and delivered to the surface by deep source volcanic eruptions.
So don't give up just because your life blew up. Use it to sculpt you into what you were meant to become.
12. No matter how far you've come, don't act like you've arrived.
A leader is one who earns respect. A leader isn't someone who 'likes everything you do and has to speak up on every post. This is a kiss ass and attention seeker.' Great they like you. what does this mean? Do they talk about me behind my back to other leaders? Do they try to alter and manipulate how people see me? Draw attention to my limitations to excel their own? Watch first who they are and what they do. I have learnt most times when people do this they are intimidated by you and are silently telling you that you are a threat to their role, place and possible achievements. Take this as a compliment. Don't trust it. Actions don't lie. To me, a leader is someone who is quiet. Likes something only when I've really earned it. Then their words are gold to me. They are those who had my back when I was being beat down. They allow me to heal, grow and bloom in a safe environment. They are those who quietly live and speak up only to encourage others and bring love, kindness and peace. They lead by example. You can't force respect. And you don't auto earn it just by association. Get in the ring with me and understand I'm ugly and a mess. I'm not pretty. I don't think highly of myself. So I need you to be patient. I will meltdown and I will want to quit. I'm not strong like you yet. And I'm broken. So be patient with me. I'm growing.