On August 27, 2016, I launched BloomingAugust.com. Although, I had peace about the journey I wanted to embark upon for a long time, I was scared out of mind. The thought of being on social media and sharing my story made me terrified.
After I had my son, I knew that my life would never be the same. Occasionally, I still get emotional when I speak about my experience, but I try to channel that energy into ways that will drive me to move forward. I knew that there were others like me who have a dream and don’t know where to start… Those who did start, but life happened and they don’t know where to pick up again… Those who lack confidence… Those who need to see what the road to success looks like… I didn’t do it just for me. I’m doing it for everyone else like me who has a dream and needs a little extra push.
My purpose with this blog is to show people that you can overcome challenges and still pursue your dreams. This year has been the most rewarding and challenging experience… But I’m so glad I did it.
Here are a few lessons I’ve learned since I hit that “publish” button… In no particular order.
Invest in yourself
“In terms of days and moments lived, you’ll never again be as young as you are right now, so spend this day, the youth of your future, in a way that deflects regret. Invest in yourself. Have some fun. Do something important. Love somebody extra. In one sense, you’re just a kid, but a kid with enough years on her to know that every day is priceless.”
– Victoria Moran
The morning of launch day, I attended a workshop with Mattie James about blogging. It was also my birthday, in Downtown Los Angeles, on a Saturday morning. So what…I had to be there! There was no better way that I’d like to celebrate my birthday and the launch of Blooming August. I wanted to meet someone who is successful, gain inside knowledge, and learn the tools I needed to succeed. Man, I walked away with so much knowledge that day. This workshop was just what I needed to help me confidently publish my blog and share my story.
Before you get to where you want to be, it’s important to put yourself in position. That means attending seminars and/or workshops in your field of interest, take classes to learn new techniques, practice your trade when no one is asking for the product… Don’t be discouraged if an opportunity isn’t in front of you at the moment. It will come and when it does, you will be ready.
Below are photos from the workshop.
Share your gift with others
I prepared my story, and a couple of other posts, to have ready for the day I would share my little secret on Facebook. Many people knew that I loved to bake, many did not. Even fewer people knew that I also love to paint. Realizing this, a couple of questions crossed my mind…
How do I expect people to believe in me, if they don’t even know what I do?
How will someone have me in mind to make a dessert for their next event, if they don’t know that I bake?
It was time to take myself more serious and share it with my loved ones. I shared the link on Facebook and logged off for the rest of the day. Haha! I don’t know why I was so scared of people’s opinions. I received nothing but support and encouragement from my network of people… I’ve even gone on to make desserts for them and teach them how to paint.
Confidence is something that I’ve struggled with my whole life. I’ve never felt completely comfortable with myself, in many areas, and it certainly rolled over to my baking. I don’t know where it came from, but I know that I won’t be able achieve my idea of success if I’m not confident.
“How will someone else take me seriously, if I don’t believe in myself? … Do I even believe in myself? … People will have opinions about me whether I do something right or wrong. So why do I care so much about what people think of me?”
This way of thinking will hold anyone back from moving in the right direction. If I want to be in the room with “winners,” I have to behave and think like one. So I got to work on myself. I also practice baking and painting every chance I get. Over the past year, I gained new skills, perfected others, and connected with individuals I may not have otherwise. I know that I am on the right track and will only get better.
One of the affirmations I tell myself everyday is: “I am equipped with everything I need to succeed.” I am. We all are. Believe in yourself and you can do anything.
When I decided to take my passions more seriously, I had done tons of research on people I admire and how to be successful. But none of it prepared me for the amount of time I actually spend working towards my dreams… or should I say, actually finding time to work on it between motherhood, marriage, family, household duties, etc.
At times, I felt overwhelmed. Other times, I was on a roll. I sometimes feel if I’m succeeding at one thing, I’m failing at another. The most important thing is that I didn’t give up and paced myself according to what I wanted to accomplish, not on social timelines. While it’s good to be consistent, sometimes it’s necessary to work at a slower pace in the beginning to achieve your goals.
I was definitely the junky teenager who never liked cleaning up and clothes often piled up on the floor, as I talked on the phone about who knows what, for hours. My friends were the same. After a few days, I’d clean it all up and then my room would be messy again. It was a never ending cycle.
As I grew up and eventually moved away to finish college, my tidiness improved and now plays a major role in the harmony of my environment. If my space is chaotic and messy, it reflects in my mood and I can’t focus like I need to. Every so often, I stop to take a look around, assess my surroundings along with what I need to accomplish, and tidy up if I need to.
I wouldn’t say that I’ve mastered organization, as I feel this is a life long habit that needs to be practiced, however, I believe that organization is one of the key components to achieving success in anything… whether it be personal or professional.
Commit to the Process
I’m not going to be the best at anything right away. It takes time and repetition. Jereshia Hawk (an online business coach I follow on Facebook) said it best….
“You getting there won’t just happen over night. You have to keep doing it. Keep putting yourself out there. Keep putting in the work. It will be hard. It will be uncomfortable. You will over analyze and judge yourself too harshly. You will be nervous. But you WILL get better. You will grow. And you will get there! #JereshiaSaid”
Appreciate the process
This subject is probably the most important lesson I’ve learned, and still learning. I had a wonderful conversation about life with a friend the other day and this subject came up. Often times we see a successful person and we want the same thing, not knowing all they went through to get to this point. We don’t see the years of struggle behind the success that is visible today. So we try to skip over the process, to get quick results, and when things get difficult, we give up and say it didn’t work. (Check out this interview with T. D. Jakes where he talks about this as well.)
Through the process is where you develop character and hone your skills. It may not be enjoyable. As a matter of fact, you may probably even question yourself along the way. But this is all a part of the process of achieving anything. Do not give up!
One day, you will look back in awe of how much you’ve accomplished.
Are you on a path to pursue your dreams? What have you learned over the past year? Comment below.
Peace and Love!