Being happy in life is all about the journey. Yes, it is repetitious, it is being on your grind, climbing and sometimes falling, getting back up, and at times just downright being in the trenches of life. But more than anything, it is about continuing down the path no matter what in order to become better than you were the day before. And yes, it can and sometimes will be scary.
Being a visionary, I have always been able to see something bigger for myself. So much so that upon initial visualization, it scares me. But I have learned to embrace that uneasy feeling because while embarking upon this journey called life, I have discovered that fear is just an illusion. I have learned that the true joy in the journey of life is going after that thing that seems too big to obtain but in your mind is absolutely obtainable. You see, its not really about the arrival but all about the journey and what you become as a result of taking the journey.
Everyone has something – that thing that you feel deep down in your gut that you are supposed to accomplish in your life but the majority of people ignore it or push it to the back of their mind because they don’t know how to bring that vision or dream to life. It seems too big or too hard to achieve. When you view your dream in that light, it really is too big for the natural mind to comprehend. Worrying about “the how” need not be at the forefront of your thoughts because those answers will come as you start down your path. Instead, you should have the mindset of “knowing” that whatever you want, can and will be yours as long as you start to go after it and be consistent and persistent in pursuing that which you would like to achieve.
I must admit there are times when doubt may try to sneak up on me pertaining to my dreams and reaching my goals but I don’t let that doubt take root in my thoughts. The thing is this: I don’t quit, I won’t quit, and I can’t quit because my mindset is one of which I think “what is mine, shall be mine” so my thoughts are as if it is already so, even if [in the moment] I can’t see it with my natural eye. The same holds true for you: what is yours shall be yours. Period. If only you will go after it. Just take the first step and continue to put one foot in front of the other believing that one day you will achieve that which you set out to accomplish.
My hope and belief, while I’m on this journey, is to influence as many people as I can that you can have whatever you want out of life if you only believe you can have it, while also understanding that absolutely nothing in life comes without paying the price of hard work. Nothing big comes without sacrifice. Nothing. There are no easy routes, unless of course, you are born with a silver spoon in your mouth and even those that are, still have to sacrifice something, even if that something is peace of mind, which in my opinion, is priceless. So is it really worth it in the long run for those that don’t have to put in the hard work? The sacrifice must be worth it. If it interrupts your peace of mind, then it’s not worth it, no matter the dollar amount acquired. The question is: what are you willing to sacrifice to achieve your goal?
At a very young age, I loved to do hair so when my mother asked me what I wanted for Christmas, I told her a Barbie Doll head. Remember, the Barbie Doll heads back in the day? There was no body to Barbie, just the head with a lot of hair. I never wanted a Barbie Doll. I didn’t even like playing with dolls but what I did love was playing in hair and being as creative as I could in styling hair. When I was in high school, I remember looking through the books in the library and looking up the salary of a hairstylist. According to those books, I wouldn’t make very much but I didn’t care, I still knew that it was what I wanted to do.
I was gifted to cut and create any style in my own hair. I also taught myself how to micro-braid my hair. I could literally design any style with my own hair that I imagined. Eventually, I would do the same for other people. For me, doing hair was like breathing; it was easy to do without much effort or thought. Years later, I attended Cosmetology school. I wanted so badly to be a Licensed Professional Cosmetologist that I was willing to make whatever sacrifices I had to in order to become just that. There was only one small issue: classes were held during the day, Tuesday through Saturday, 8 A.M to 5 P.M.
At the time, I was working at AT&T® during the day but I was determined to go to Cosmetology school so I enrolled in school and took another position within the company working nights from 10:30 P.M. to 7 o’clock in the morning, Sunday through Thursday. I would work all night, get off with just enough time to run home and change into my clothes for school. I would then attend school during the day. After school let out at 5 P.M I would rush home, shower, and sleep for about 3 hours before getting up to work the night shift.
Now, keep in mind that I never had a day off; even on the 2 days I didn’t have to work I had to attend school and on the days I didn’t have school, I still had to work; all other days in between I had to balance both work and school. Every Friday evening when school let out at five, I would be completed exhausted. Knowing I didn’t have to work that night, I would sleep for 12 hours straight. I would be so tired from a lack of sleep all week; but for me, it was worth it because come Saturday morning, I would wake up bright and early to be at school at 8 o’clock sharp.
I did this for 8 months straight until I found out I was pregnant with my first son. I could no longer continue with such a grueling schedule so I went part-time at my job, continued full time with my classes, and completed school 6 months later. I was 7 months pregnant when I graduated from Cosmetology school. I was determined and for me, pregnant and all, it was still worth it. I went on to become a Professionally Licensed Cosmetologist and it was one of the most fulfilling careers I have ever had. The skill of styling hair was and still is a God-given talent. The desire to do hair was part of my life’s purpose. It was something that I knew I had to do so I did it. Getting to the end result was hard work, really hard work but I kept my sights set on the end result, not on how tired I felt on a daily basis.
When your sights are set on a goal, the things that are hard to do also become the most important things to do at all cost. A made up mind creates an unstoppable person. The lack of sleep, being tired at school, sleepy all night at work, having burning eyes that felt like dirt was in them…none of that mattered because I had something I had to achieve. Becoming a professional hairstylist was just one part of my journey. Life’s journey is always multifaceted.
Just as you, I have embarked upon different paths along life’s journey and although I didn’t always understand why the road had to be so hard at times, I now know that without hard work and dedication nothing worth having in life will manifest itself in my life. This is the lesson that I learned and the knowledge that I gained is what I want to pass along to others. When life gives you push back (and it always seems this happens just when you are making progress) know that you must be doing something right and sacrifice must be made if you are to accomplish anything great in life. Welcome the struggle because in it you learn what you are really made of. There were times I wanted to quit because I was mentally and physically exhausted but I didn’t and I never will. Quitting is not an option and it shouldn’t be for you either.
Set your goal and not just any goal, but one that scares you or seems too big to accomplish. It has to be a goal that you feel is a part of your purpose and will give meaning to your life. Make your mind up and set out on your journey to accomplish your goals. Remember, a made up mind creates an unstoppable person and always keep in mind that it is not about the arrival, but all about the journey.