Several months ago, I approached a local business woman and asked her to be my mentor. After years of praying, I was confident that I’d finally found someone who I could vibe with holistically; loves the Lord, puts her family first, diverse portfolio, invests in local entrepreneurs (#goals). With great anticipation, I prepare for our first meeting, and before I knew it, our first and second meetings turned into a girl boss confessional. With Usher’s Confessions playing softly in the background of my mind, I began to share with her some of the most difficult, and embarrassing things; things I never spoke out loud!
I knew that to make the most of our time and relationship, and to truly create a sustainable brand and business, I was going to have to take a long and hard look at what’s been missing. Oh, the things I saw...
THESE ARE MY GIRL BOSS CONFESSIONS:
I’ve been hustling. What’s been missing? Alignment.
We seem to live in a time where hustling and grinding is glorified. However, I’m here to tell you that the grind is in vain if you are not aligned with purpose. Looking back, I can pinpoint when the misalignment took place. It was a time where I laid my gift (writing) aside, lost sight of the things that had been spoken to me (distracted), and fell into a rat race of chasing dollars. I was working hard to create opportunities, unfulfilled with the ones I had, and eventually, everything began to dry up-- opportunities and money. Through prayer and the advice of a friend, I stopped everything. I started to write again; this blog is proof of that. As many of you know, I published my first book this past December. It’s no wonder that upon publishing my book, I felt more aligned with purpose than I ever had. Over the past year, the Lord has given me revelation about the purpose of my writing, and how it will open doors for opportunities to speak and teach.
A gift opens the way and ushers the giver into the presence of the great.
Proverbs 18:16, NLT
I’ve never set goals. What’s been missing? Strategy.
I know that half of y’all just judged me, while the other half is relieved that someone else finally confessed it! So, here’s a few things to know about me:
I’m a visionary. I much rather delegate tasks. However, one needs extra dollars to delegate, and this ain’t quite been a delegating season. Feel me?
By nature, I can be quite whimsical. I think that many creative people can fall into this category, and when it comes to matters of business, it just doesn’t work. Therefore, I have to work harder at planning and being strategic.
I’m actually a great executor. My professional experience includes day of management for events and conferences, as well as stage management for live events. Got a vision and a timeline? I’m your girl; I will make it happen!
So in a nutshell, the above confession is not a 100% true. I’ve fulfilled on several things I’ve intended. I tend to be very project oriented, managing one at a time. However, at this point in my journey, the way I’ve done things in the past no longer serves me. It’s very limiting and does not enable me to manage the several moving pieces in my life that have began to emerge. So if you’re out there, and this too has been your struggle, just know that you’re not alone. It will take time, work, and discipline to build. In fact, I abhor the “I woke up like this/slay the day/wake and slay” posts BECAUSE I am extremely slow to warm in the morning, and my work day doesn’t generally start until 10 or 11am! That doesn’t mean I’m not up; I’m just doing other things that allow me to be well for the day. I’m committed to finding what works for ME.
For example, I get my best work done in the middle of the day, and I really enjoy working on Saturday mornings. I’m more of a weekly to-do-list person than daily. I also find Trello to be very helpful in taking on multiple projects, and creating deadlines for myself. Perhaps this is a bit of a lengthier confession, but I share all of this to demonstrate that the journey is a process. Give yourself time and grace to discover your learning and working styles. It will make the journey so much more enjoyable. As I’m developing myself in this area of strategic planning, I have actually found that little ugly liar called fear, has been lurking in the background--fear in the form of perfectionism, and fear in the form of thinking that I won’t have enough time for myself if I really take on everything that I’m up to.
I need someone to hold my hand. What’s been missing? Guidance and accountability.
No entrepreneur is an island! At the end of the day, one must have a willingness to seek help. I for one, am never above asking for help. Many of my life circumstances have shaped me to have a boldness and confidence to ask. While I may have ideas and ambition, sometimes the road is a bit foggy, and other times I’m flat out afraid of my vision, and my greatness. In those times, my mentor holds the wheel on this trip steady. She offers me guidance, real world experience, and periodic kicks in the butt. She holds the vision in place while I put my head down to focus on all the gory details. So, if you’re one of those proud/prideful/I got this/care too much what people think type of sisters, please learn to ask for what you need. The ASK is often the difference between success and failure.
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Chicago native, Brandi Nicole Williams is an author, speaker, faith leader, and entrepreneur. Since completing her BA Sociology at DePaul University in 2004, Brandi has been speaking, facilitating workshops, and leading small groups for women and youth. Through this work she has demonstrated a commitment to equipping and empowering individuals to discover their purpose in life. Brandi obtained her Master’s in Theological Studies in 2012 and often lends her voice to matters such as self-worth, body image, and self-esteem. She also loves intertwining biblical principles with fashion, beauty, and pop culture. Over the past year, Brandi has expanded her reach as a personal development coach and consultant to communities, and organizations, seeking to enhance confidence in clients and staff. Brandi currently resides in Nashville, TN. She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and proudly stands 6’3".
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