Your Greatest Competitor Is You

One thing we all can agree on is that the only person anyone is trying to better than is their own self. What they believe, how they behave, and how they represent themselves to others all play apart of who we are as individual's. Never waste your time trying to be something or someone you are not. The world doesn't need android robots, the world benefits from our unique individuality.

Over the years I bet you can find thousands of case studies on the topic's of maternal child health, child welfare, mental health-dual diagnosis, geriatric, and a number of other human rights issues, including gender equality, health concerns, medical care, community support centers and the affects it may have on the high risk population. These studies look closely at the race and or nationality of those elected or volunteered participants for the study as well as their social economic status, social class, the environment and or geographical origin in which the participants live , education levels, and more as each may apply to the theories in which they are attempting to prove in real life time and present conditions of the world and the people in it along with the affects it may or may not have on them.  How do these case studies help or harm those whom they wish to help? One may never know especially since ones achievements are based on ones own mindset, life experience and how they view their life, the world and the part they play in it.

Many of these case studies contain valid facts and some myths to why people thrive and others don't.  You have to take into account how many participants actually participated and how many did not. I believe the best most accurate case studies are the ones done over a period of time that contains a beginning, middle and end. The case study that tracks participants from the start until the finish however most case studies have to have a cut off point to be able to asses the information obtained that will either support or invalidate their hypothesis and or theory.

I love Earl Nightingale's book the Strangest Secret in it he defines success as, " the progressive realization of a worthy ideal.  He then goes a little further to write that, "It is the person who say's, " I am going to become this," and then begins to  work towards that goal. In this book he list successful people, like teachers, the woman who is a wife and mother, the man that runs the corner store and or gas station, the entrepreneur that starts their own company and the sales person who wants to become top notch and grow and build. He further goes on to explain that only 20 will deliberately decide to go for it and the rest are failures.

I often wonder what causes failures? Is it systematic, social, economic or is it just the lack of desire and or ability to become more than what we are? I struggle with this often and especially since I have personal experience with life failures and I have found that although one may fail. One still has the opportunity to turn things around at any given time, it just is going to require more of you and more for your to do to manifest the desired goal we wish to achieve. Now don't get me wrong some are perfectly happy with their life just as it is, like my grandmother used to say, "Let welfare feed you and the good Lord keep you."  Then there's the other grandmother that use to say, " I will help you get what you want however, you have to work for it."

Neither was right or wrong it was just their perspective of life and how you cope and make it through the times that will come.  I am grateful to have had them both in my life as well as the additional grandmother that not only told you to go get yours but took me to the place and open the door for me to walk through and that changed my life forever. From that point I knew failure was never ever an option because in life there will always be opportunity now weather I took advantage of the opportunity and did all that was required with the opportunity is what made the difference.   

Life and life situations will always arise but I believe it's how we handle those life situation I think that makes the difference. If you think you are defeated then I guess you will act as if defeat has taken over. If you think you are a winner and or warrior then I guess you will act as if your winning and conquering all attacks against you. This does not mean that you will never feel defeated and or exhausted from fighting the good life changing fight. But it does mean that the actions you take or do not take will affect the outcome of what it is you attempt to manifest in your life.

My struggle with life has always been numbers and the formulas to work them out as numbers just keep going and going. I had to learn how to manage the numbers better and when I forget the formula to work out the equation I know to ask for help from someone who knows more then myself. Sometimes that works out and some times it doesn't as some are so good with numbers they can work it out in their head and other like myself have to work it out on paper. I don't always get them all right but I like to think that I do more right then I do wrong.

Having to be the care giver in my family many times making the decision to do something for myself can be a challenge as I contemplate how what I want to do and what I want for me will impact my family. Well, over the years I have found that yes, my decisions have impacted my family in a more positive way then negative as my children see me never give up or fall to the side and give up. They have always seen me going for what I want that was going to make my life and theirs better even when at times it didn't feel like it. Just like today, I know that I am doing whats best and I know it's a good thing yet, I know joy is there but joy is also hidden under the stuff of life, situations and circumstances however, I can not just stop there and die because of it. I must keep going as my mess is my message and to any mother out there if you are doing your best by giving your time and dedication to your family and working toward better for the whole. Sometimes you may feel as if the world is attacking you and or holding you back but if you just take a moment to breathe and reflect and pray soon all that ill gotten feelings will subside and soon you will be well on your path to greatness at the level in which you can achieve it as success means different things to different people.

If your happy where you are wonderful live life until the wheels fall off. But if you feel that there is more to this thing call life and something keeps pulling you to go into motion. I suggest that you find that prayer closet and go inside and have a talk with God as he listens and can move things we never can move on this plane.  I want you to know that your the only one that can stop you from being what you desire to be in life as it will require all of you to get there. You can not come with half expect a full out come you must bring all of you and be confident enough to know that yes others may be better, faster, and progress ahead of you. But before you let the sin of jealousy and envy grab hold of you think about this? 

What challenges did they face on the journey?

How long did they have to put in the work to get where they are?

Did they get help along the way?

What personal challenges did they have to over come to get to where they are now?

And the most important question is what are they doing to maintain an keep what they have at the level in which they have achieved it and what will it take for them to continue on to the next level?

Many times we see other's as successful when they just see themselves as doing what they do to maintain. Like I said, success means something different to everyone. Purchasing a home, car, completing school, getting a better job and or career, having a wonderful family that loves you can equal success to most. Then there are those who have all of the above and go for more because they feel that it's possible and obtainable for them to have it so they go for it. I would say these folks would be entrepreneur's, business owners, government officials and the list can go on. It does not mean that they achieved their success without struggle, problems or life on life term situations it just means that they did not let it stop them from achieving what they wanted to achieve. 

Now to be healthy one must eat healthy, exercise or have some sort of physical activity that moves and motivates them to go forward and do what they need to do. You may have a daily routine that will not only promote good health but show off the good health through the behaviors, actions and interactions they have as they go about their daily living.

Then there is the other perspective of not being healthy one may choose foods that are filled with preservatives, saturated fats and oils, high in sodium and sugars and we know the health risk for eating these types of foods. Not good as the body and mind may not function as well as it could if one took the time to make healthier choices. You may have a daily routine the will not only promote poor healthy eating but poor healthy habits as well. Now I'm not against having a drink or two or three every now and again but remember everything must be done in moderation because excessive partaking in any type of substance can have long harmful affects on any person and can even result in death of a person.

How you plan your days will determine how your out come will be. If your up everyday and seeking new information, new opportunities, new ways to make life a little easier nine times out of ten you will find it.

However, how you plan or choose not to plan your day has it's affects also. Like if your seeking information, opportunities, new ways. I'm sorry to tell you if you wake up late chances are you could possibly miss great chances of opportunity.  Say you party everyday until the wee hours of the night that will set you up to miss chances of opportunity as well as impact your health and behavior because it doesn't feel very good when you consume too much of anything even a good time.

I know all to well that through every phase of life we may indulge in all of the above at some point and time. I also know that for some staying in one particular space and place to long can take it's tool and leave negative affects.  So how does one begin to change and go for what they believe to be better for them. Well, from my experience I say, it all starts with a thought. The moment you begin to want more for yourself is the moment you begin to start identifying what it is that you may need to get you where your trying to go. For some it may be getting their high school diploma, other it maybe taking up a trade and for some it may mean going back to take a few courses.  It could also be a new job or switching jobs or moving from one area to another area or just simply leaving certain people, places and things alone so you can find what it is that you really want and decide how your going to get it.

Whatever your case scenario maybe and you know that you deserve more then where you are presently in your life.  It looks to me that you got some soul searching to do as well as some actions steps to take. It will feel very different in the beginning even maybe scared but believe me when I tell you that you can do this!. You really can and you will be successful at whatever it is that you set out to do.

I like to share with you that if and when challenges come because they will. All you have to do is be in  the moment and start to see what is really the challenge and is this challenge something you can work through. Most times challenges can be worked through, you may have to pay a price and or may come out with a scar or two, heck you may even lose some people along the way but you will be fine believe me when I say the only way you can lose is by not showing up for yourself everyday, every hour, every second of everyday.

know that your worth all the energy you put into making you and your life better. I have come through a lot of things in my life time and I know I will face many more however, what I know now and what I struggled to believe prior to this is that nothing placed in the masters hands will ever go to soil and not manifest something. There will be days where you will have to push, pull, drag yourself to do and get things done. Don't worry about your pace just focus on getting each thing done within the 24 hours that we all are given to do some pretty magical things.

Did I have it all together when I started, No, did I and do I struggle, Yes, will I ever give up?  I don't see that happening anytime soon as long as God wakes me up and gives me breathe and the ability to do I will. Do I think of other's as I go about the doing of of doing, Yes, do I let what they think and or may say about me affect me? Being honest, Yes, and No, for me it's the initial impact once someone shows me who they are that kind of trips me up. But once I put it all in perspective and realize that what they think, say or even how they may act towards me holds no weight in my progression after while it doesn't even matter. Although because I have this disease that  makes me think everyone is good and means well but the reality is most people only really care about themselves and it shows.

I can remember times in my life when I would still show kindness, and grace to those who have wronged me. And many times my love one's close family and friends would tell me to look out for number one first. Some how my brain just had trouble getting the concept of it. Being a mother your never first, and when we do something for ourselves we will do something special for other's around us to ease the guilt of doing for yourself. Crazy right? But many face this challenge daily. I hate to admit that I just learned that it's perfectly okay to take care of me. You know why? Because I found myself by myself and my greatest responsibility grew up to be responsible for themselves. Now aint that some stuff to write about (laughing) well, now I see that it is I that is the gem to be cared for no one else.

New territory, new waters, not sure exactly how to do it but I am learning. This lesson is one of the reason's my why changed during the process of me building a new life and business. Suddenly, I began to take some actions steps because I knew I needed some help with all of this here so I reached out in my new communities and guess what I found lots of people will to help me and teach me or help me understand what I wasn't understanding which open my eyes and my mind to the newness of all that I have and the possibilities that comes with it. Blew my mind away. I now have a new perspective on things and I am willing to do some things that I never done before to get things that I never had before, if that makes any sense to you.

It is in this process that I had to take inventory and realize that I have been caring for others for most of my life and I still enjoy doing so. Except for now caring for other's has taken on a new appearance as now instead of my old desire to fix whatever is broken or wrong in someone else and the pressure of wanting them to have all that life has to offer them. I now realize that each individual is responsible for their own outcome as they get what they put into it. Some people want help, some people need the help, some don't want the help, and other are perfectly fine waiting for you to do what they should and can do for themselves. Wow, what an eye opener! 

When you're a giver you will go over and beyond to help someone even if it means you will go without and or suffer a hardship only because you know that God is always working things out and he does and has over my life time. I am learning to set boundaries, and set my not open for discussion areas in my life, still having to be very much aware of how I am feeling and processing what is going on with me so that I don't bring harm to others. I am constantly checking myself because I been through some things and I did not come out totally unmarked by them yet I learn to live with them and move on. However, because of it I now have to make sure that it's not me causing the problems and if a problem should arise I must be very careful in how I deal with it. Well, needless to say two out of three aint bad, but I find that if I'm overwhelmed it's best to find my space of peace until I can approach the problem diplomatically and sometimes the problems just work themselves out and it has nothing to do with me or other's it's just a problem that will go away quickly.

My primary care doctor was right, I was running from something, I was running from all the feelings that I had carried over the years that I thought I had forgotten and moved on but no I hadn't. I found myself building for a better life when all the time I was building a better me.  The moment when I discovered that I no longer had to hold on to the lose of my parents, who did and who didn't do, who conspired against me and who was my allies. The feeling of knowing that you did your best within your power and the long process road that lead you here all had a purpose to my life. Sometimes it's hard to admit when we are running away from something especially when your putting more and more on your plate so that you will not have to see and or deal with it. But one day that day comes and you have no choice but to feel the happiness, the sadness, the joy or lack of joyous feelings, frustrations of the choices you made along the way that placed you in hardship but to be honest if given the option I would do it all again as it helped me to grow and become a better person.

I will never have my parents back and my aunt was right when you lose your parent you do feel kind of like an orphan. But what brings me peace is knowing that we had the chance to say all we wanted to say and do all that we could do in those times. I rest knowing that between the two of them they truly loved their children and did their very best with what they had and it served my siblings and I well.  The most important thing is love because without you will find it even harder to make it through the hard times when they come.

I know I am part of possible many case studies including my own that I started a couple of years ago, but to be able to have the opportunity to join a platform filled with communities of people that are happy to see you arrive was an experience. As I faced all my challenges and got through them day and night I worked and I worked and I still work to become better. I may have taken on more than I can truly handle however, I refuse to let that stop me. As I worked through my loses and challenges I gained much insight to myself as far as what I want and what it's going to take to get there so yes, I came with guns loaded so to speak.

As my challenges were being worked out and I continue to meet my responsibilities time after time many days I find tears in my eyes I now know and understand that when you refuse to cry and release what your feeling your body will do it for you any time any where and any place, yup that's right so you can imagine the many days people asked me, "Are you okay?"  I reply, " Yes, I am fine thanks."  I don't have many friends but I was blessed with co-workers that do believe the hype (laughing) they know exactly what to say and or do to help a girl along and they have been nothing but gems to me even the ones I know don't like me but we cool though it's just a job and we do it and do it well.

Strong support in any life changing event is vital to the outcome and benefits everyone involved because we all grow because we begin to see life in a different way. I can speak on those who hate on other's but I don't have the energy to wast there. Because for every hater there are three to four people who are rooting for your to make it.  So if you happen to be like me, someone who may be a part of the social services case studies, you're a caregiver and parent, you love your family and friends and all you want to do is have a better life. Well, I am living proof that no matter what shizzle life can come up to throw your way. I want you to know that no matter what it is that you set out to do you are going to win and no amount of pain, hardship and or grief can hold you back, only you can hold you back.

Today,  you no longer have to feel alone and or ostracized from your past or what you have gone through because each step gets you to where you want to be if your seeking it. Yes, it's gonna take some time, no it's not always going to be easy, no I don't know how long it will take but what I do know now is that all things are possible to those who believe and do what needs to be done to achieve it.

What is your story?

How do you handle challenges?

What are you willing to do to make the changes you want to see?

Do you have an ideal or plan on where to start?

What are your interest?

Is what I am doing something you think you can do?

Always remember your always gonna be more than any number positive or negative of any case study and no matter what the case maybe you are the answer that your looking for. Having worked in the filed of human services, I have seen a lot over the years but the greatest gift a client and or consumer ever gave me was the day they took control over their own life and start working the actions steps to bring the change that they wanted to see. The bonus is and always will be when they see me passing by and yell hey, "Ms. Tia, I did it and start running down all the good things that are going on in their life presently even getting over their challenges and still moving toward better." 

Now that makes all the shizzle well worth it, as it's not easy helping someone when you could use some help yourself but God and his ultimate wisdom knows best and it shines so bright you can't help but stop and say, "God that was all you!"

So on this day of independence as it's marked on the calendar. How will you begin you road to independence?

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog as I know the topics are all over the place and some are right on point. However, if any of the things I write resonates with you let me know I love to hear what great things you all have going on or like to have going on.

Have a blessed safe holiday weekend.

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