“For with God nothing is ever impossible and no Word from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment” (Luke 1:37)
Should I or should I not? Can I really do this? Is this the best time? How am I going to do this? Do I really have what it takes?
Do any of these questions sound familiar? I’m sure they do! Most of us have a vision but don’t trust our God enough to know that he has given us everything we need in order to complete the special assignment that we were given. We spend more time trying to convince ourselves why we are not worthy of an opportunity than using that energy to manifest our most desired dreams. There are words that replay in our head daily that stop our progress. We say things such as, “I have bills to pay. I have kids to take care of. I’m not pretty enough. I’m not smart enough. I don’t have enough money. I don’t compare to her. I’m nothing like him. I’m not this. I’m not that.” The list can go on and on until we cease to think that any spectacular thing is even possible for us. One word of advice. STOP!!
Stop disqualifying yourself for an opportunity that God has already qualified you for! Stop the self-limiting beliefs. Stop telling yourself who you are not and start reminding yourself who you ARE! You were given the vision for a reason. When God gives a vision, he will always provide the provision.
Even during your most challenging and demanding times……….
During this time last year, I felt like I was PUSHED and PULLED. I was going outside of my comforts in order to create an even more fulfilling life for myself, my family, and my community. I was excited to start a new role in February 2014 that would allow me to grow and be a part of the efforts to impact the double bottom line for a company. We all know that starting a new role means being the new kid on the block and adapting to a new language. This meant I was working weekends and putting in at least 10 -12 hours a day in the office because I wanted to learn as much as I could. I knew that I wanted to get my MBA in the future so I applied to the 1 year Forte MBALaunch program and was accepted! This was the beginning of my journey to training my mind for the MBA Prep process and I was excited that I was finally taking a step in this direction. Acceptance into the Forte MBALaunch program meant that I would have to participate in workshops twice a week and attend group meetings. Now the icing on the cake was when I received an email stating that I was accepted into the Management Leaders For Tomorrow (MLT) MBA Prep program. Eeeek!! I wanted to apply to this program for 3 years but the lengthy requirements prevented me from moving forward in the past. I can’t even begin to explain how excited I was to know that I would be a part of the MLT Family. Now I must say that the homework and group work was INTENSE. I spent at least 15 -20 hours a week doing homework, group assignments, and gmat prep as a requirement to maintain enrollment in this highly selective program. But it was worth it. I had the opportunity to travel all over the U.S. on a MBA Tour and visit top tier institutions such as Harvard, Stanford, Duke, Cornell, Northwestern, and many more! For any of you considering an MBA, I will be writing more about this journey in another blog. I’m not even about to go into speaking engagements, extracurricular involvement, and my squat challenges. My schedule worked because I was doing things that I loved and had a compelling why to guide me in everything I did. I couldn’t have done any of it without my family, accountability partners, dream team, MLT cohort, coaches, and all of the amazing people that entered my life. God placed the right people in my life to make it all possible. Everything was tough but it made sense. I was completely focused on my MBA game plan and nothing was going to take me away from that idea.
I started seeing flyers about the Ms. Corporate America pageant. Every time I saw the flyer, I couldn’t help but to smile. This was going to be the year that I would go to Orlando, Florida in order to see talented women from all over the world compete for the title of Ms. Corporate America. How exciting is that? I couldn’t wait to be in the audience and attend my first out of state pageant!
As months passed, I started thinking about the pageant more and more. I told my family that I was excited to go to Orlando to see the pageant. Then they would randomly see me modeling around the house in aerobic wear as I pretended I was on stage competing in a pageant. My sister said to me, “Who are you fooling? You are going to compete in another pageant!”. I gave her 101 reasons why I was NOT going to compete in another pageant. There was no way I was going to add something else to my plate and all of my money was going towards GMAT prep courses and my MBA traveling adventures. So I concluded my list of excuses by saying, “No I don’t even have the money that I would need in order to compete in a pageant in Orlando.”
A day later, I saw a flyer on the MCA page about an essay contest that would allow you to gain FREE admission to the pageant. No way!! It was like the universe was saying, “What’s your excuse now?”
Ok. Time to think of another excuse. This would be the master of all of my excuses. I DON’T HAVE TIME. That’s a legitimate excuse, right? I kept telling myself that story but my heart was singing a different song. The more research I did, the more the opportunity to be Ms. Corporate America began to reflect the reason why I wanted to pursue an MBA and my purpose for my life. MCA represented everything I was working hard for. Was I going to let another year go by without signing the dotted line to compete?
I begin to sit still and listen. The signs were appearing everywhere and leading me in the direction to compete in the MCA pageant. So I started doing photo shoots so that I could have pictures available just in case I decided to take the leap and compete in the pageant. I started dreaming about the pageant and I would wake up expecting great things. So I started refining my resume, doing more fitness challenges, and perusing different sites for pageant attire. These activities became rewards for completing my MBA prep commitments. After I completed my MBA applications, I was FREE! So I decided to fully commit to being a contestant in the MCA Pageant. Finally!
Little did I know, everything I was doing was preparing me to be Ms. Corporate America 2015! My year long traveling adventures, speaking and emceeing at conferences, partnership arrangements, and MBA prep work was helping me to develop a skill that would help me in pageantry and beyond. I had been working on a new type of MBA: Master of Being Authentic. When you commit to being the best and most authentic version of you, nothing or nobody can stop what is designed for you!
No one ever forgets the moment when preparation meets opportunity. On March 7th, I won the title of Ms. Corporate America and my life as I knew it would never be the same. I stood there in shock thinking about how I almost missed my opportunity. I almost allowed money to stop my journey. I almost allowed excuses to distract me from my purpose. I almost lost the game before I even gave myself a chance to play the game. I can’t believe that I almost missed my opportunity to use pageantry as my ministry. I want to grow more and more in my faith and this is the perfect opportunity to do so and share it with others.
Don’t allow the thoughts in your head to keep you from the amazing journey ahead!
Keep Creating Endless Opportunities,
Ms. Corporate America