Last week I presented my workshop The Silence is Too Loud Series I. I enjoyed this opportunity because I could see there are people who had their ah-ha moments and some who chose to only attend briefly and not return. I did not take it personally because either they are not strong enough to receive the information or they are not ready to make changes. As I continue this journey of motivational speaking I am learning more about people as well as myself. You know when people want to grow and move past the obstacles that are keeping them tied down. We can be our worst enemy and the very person keeping us in captive is ourselves. That my friend, is a tough evaluation to make and accept to the degree that you are prepared to do something about it.
So, as I presented my workshop sessions for three days, I had people who were there because they needed to acknowledge their truth and wanted to find ways to heal and move forward in their lives. I found that one of the most intense sections of this workshop is addressing the people who are toxic in your life and walking away from those relationships. When we have a misguided loyalty to others, it can be to our own detriment. I would call this a loyalty that is a tragedy because if we are not careful we find ourselves in an abyss that we can’t seem to figure out how to escape. If we want to become healthy in our thinking and our spirit, we should be willing to evict some people from our personal space and not look back. Often, we believe that if we let go of certain individuals that we are taking a loss and there will be a void created because of the disengagement; however, I believe we would be pleasantly surprised of the weights that are removed in doing so. Perhaps we believe this because we have not fully tapped into our own self-worth and ignore the signs of toxic people who bring no value to our lives. Once we discover and acknowledge our own self-worth, I believe that is a pivotal moment when we are ready to let go and move from a place we were never destined to be.
The lesson that I really want to get across to audience as I present this workshop is the need to identify our wounds and in turn learn how to heal. There are many facets involved with the process and healthy relationships are critical to our healing as they provide us the support we need. Everyone does not fit in our space and we must give ourselves permission to step away from those people so that we can grow.
Last week, I participated in a Holiday Bazaar at work where I could showcase and sell my book, “The Silence is Too Loud.” Though my initial outlook was positive, as the hours passed I begin to feel a bit discouraged and thought about leaving earlier than the closing time. As I was considering my departure a woman stopped by and begin to thumb through my book. Honestly, I wasn’t sure it would result in a sell but I was appreciative for her taking the time. After a few minutes, she put the book down and walked away. Not too long thereafter, the same lady returned picked up the book had her money in hand and was waiting for someone to come stand with her. At the time, I didn’t realize it was her daughter she was waiting on, but she wanted her daughter to look at a couple of the poems. They began to talk and the woman said to her daughter “do you think this would be good for him?” Her daughter answered “yes.” She handed me the money and took the book. I told her “let’s trade, I’ll give you an autographed book and I’ll take that one from you.” She said, “it’s not for me, it’s for my grandson, he has stage 4 cancer and I think this book (as she begins to tear up) would…..” I finished the sentence and said lift him up and she shook her head yes. At that point, she took the book and thanked me as she walked away with her daughter.
This was a defining moment as well as a powerful testament to what was happening right before my eyes. I realized that I had been positioned for my purpose. Had I followed through and left when I initially thought about it, this would have never played out. I would have missed a pivotal moment where I received a blessing. The blessing wasn’t the purchase of the book, but it was the circumstances surrounding the purchase. The fact I could connect with someone based on the words which I had written in my poems was a beautiful experience. Now I understood it was all relevant that I was supposed to be at the Holiday Bazaar to meet this specific woman. We both had something the other needed. She needed to find something to comfort her grandson, while I needed to recognize my purpose I had been positioned for. It wasn’t about how many books I could sell or how much money I could make, but it was about touching someone’s life. I got the lesson and embraced the confirmation of my purpose. Words are powerful and they create emotions that impact us on every possible level. So, writing “The Silence is Too Loud” is not just my own journey, but it is the catalyst to reach those around me. I hope my book can have a major impact on people’s lives and they are empowered, uplifted and stand boldly in the truth.
People who cross your path never show up by accident. They are purposeful and a part of a greater picture. They can help you identify your purpose and allow you to see your destiny more clearly. Your purpose may be closer than you think, look for the signs and walk through the door when it opens. Once you are positioned for your purpose, you will discover it’s bigger than you.
If I were to take a poll of a group of people and pose the question how many of you have had a conversation with your friends and family and told them what your expectations are of them? And, along with that they understood and stated they could meet your expectations. I would imagine on average no one would be able to confirm such an occasion has every taken place. So, if we operate with that thought it helps to create the journey we are about take in this particular post.
Typically we have framed our disappointments based on people and not on our expectations. The truth is “it is not people who disappoint us but our expectations.” This is what it looks like, we create a story in our mind of what we want people to do or be, but we have never addressed these expectations. When the expectations are not met we say “I’m so disappointed in him/her” when in fact the story was based on our own expectations. I believe it is difficult to own that we are disappointed based on our own expectations that we have set verses expectations that we were told one could meet. Regardless of our rationale as to why we thought the expectations should have been met, we have created unnecessary hurt and frustration because there was never a conversation in play. Here’s an illustration that I believe validates my point: A couple has been dating for a year and as the one year anniversary approaches the boyfriend says to the girlfriend, “we’ve been together a year and I want to do something special, so let’s plan to go out to dinner to celebrate.” Afterwards, the girlfriend calls up her friends and says “I believe this is the big one, he’s going to ask me to marry him, and after all, it has been a year.” To better clarify this let’s take into consideration that in the course of the year never has there been a conversation about becoming engaged. What we have here is wishful thinking and a story the girlfriend has created in our own mind based on her own expectations of what she wants to happen. The big night comes and there is no proposal and the girlfriend leaves at the end of the evening hurt and disappointed. The feelings that are being experienced are not the result of the boyfriend, but the girlfriend’s perception says “he has hurt and disappointed me because he did not propose.” The question becomes where did this idea come from if this was never a conversation or confirmation from the boyfriend? I hear you, you are absolutely right the idea falls back on the girlfriend. These are major mistakes one can make and be unwilling to understand the disappointment must be owned on their end not on the end of the other party. While this may not be your story, we all have at least one where we created a story in our own mind only to be disappointed when it played out differently.
It is totally acceptable to have expectations but make sure the expectations have been confirmed and they are not a story you have created in your own mind. The truth of the matter is sometimes our expectations are beyond what a person can give and they have not arrive to that point yet. Perhaps they may never arrive at that point. It is extremely beneficial to address people about your expectations for the purpose of avoiding certain disappointments. This will at times take courage to speak to people about what you expect because they may be very forward and tell you they cannot meet your expectations, but you have to be prepared to accept their truth regardless of what you feel or believe.