It has taken so much to get back to this place, but I am elated to be back! It has literally been a fight! A fight against distractions, a fight against comparison, a fight against laziness, a fight against overthinking, a fight against insecurities, and a fight to stay motivated. My last post was in July 2018, where I shared the lessons I learned from a 60-day social media blackout. Following that post, I had plans of sharing a blog post once a month; however, that ended up being my last post of the year. The mind and Satan sure know how to cue distractions at just the right time. Right when you are excited and motivated to empower others with the gifts and stories that God has blessed you with, then everything will compete for your attention to keep you from the very thing you set out to accomplish. I became distracted by everything you can possibly imagine- my day job, building the business side of Life Identified, fatigue, and comparing myself and my purpose to others. It seemed as if the launch of Life Identified inspired others to take off with their ideas for businesses and blogs, but I had quickly lost my own motivation to keep producing content. I began to dig my heels into my day job at the time and worked 10-hour days on the road, in the office, and in the schools that I was serving. I had nothing left by the time I arrived home. No drive and no motivation. I attempted to serve the online Life Identified clients that requested image consultations and that is when I quickly realized that I started something that I was not ready for, nor was I doing what God told me to do. I was doing what others thought I was capable of doing, like, styling others and conducting life coaching sessions to improve one’s confidence. God never told me to style anyone and he never told me to conduct image consultations and he never mentioned that it was fine for me to coach others with self-esteem concerns. What He did make clear to me was that I was supposed to use the blog to encourage, motivate, uplift, and INSPIRE others through my life experiences and events, such as my panel discussions entitled “Let Me Save You the Trouble.” That’s what Life Identified was created for, to encourage people in their struggles with identity, purpose, and self-esteem. It was created to help others see their identity in Him, the one who created me and who was helping me to see who I really was in that time of transition in 2017 when Life Identified was birthed. I admit, I was so distracted after the launch in 2018 and I allowed too many people to have a say in what Life Identified was supposed to be, myself included.
I got distracted by other blogs and businesses that were launching and lost sight of what I was supposed to be doing. I was becoming a little jealous as I compared myself and in one instance I was furious because I felt like I was being imitated to some degree. My best friend had to remind me that imitation, or what felt like imitation, was the greatest form of flattery. She reminded me that I am an inspiration to others and my motivational content pushes others out of their comfort zones to pursue that business or blog that was already in their heart. My influence, as well as others’ influence, has the power to ignite a sense of courage in people that moves them forward with their idea and sometimes their idea may be similar to mine or yours, but it will never be the same. I repeat, it will never be the same. Their words, their style, their influence, their followers, and their touch is simply not yours. That, alone, is why you must remain encouraged to continue doing what you have been called to do. I had to repeat this to myself over and over again. I had to constantly remind myself that although we may be offering the same product, we are feeding different people in different locations.
It is with great pleasure that I take up my purpose in my specific mission field, here in South Georgia, to inspire others to confidently carry out the plans God has for them, to be who they are called to be, to be transparent and share their stories of triumph, to serve the community that they have been assigned to, and to confidently wear clothing that fits their personality and style. Yes, my clothing is an inspiration and that is it. I am not a stylist and I am okay with that, that is someone else’s lane. I just simply, inspire. If you like my clothing, great! Be inspired by the colors, shapes, and textures and make it your own. I can say this boldly now because I know who I am, what I have been created to do, and why. I have not arrived, in fact, God is still developing in the things that He desires for me to carry out. However, I will be obedient and inspire with boldness and confidence. It is my hope that this post will encourage you to do the same, but first I want to share a few tips for sailing off into what God has for you.
1. Know your identity. We have to know who we are and why we are doing what we are doing. I always tell people it is important to know who you are and who you are not. We have to know our strengths, weaknesses, gifts, talents, standards, limitations, and most importantly, who God says we are. We have to make sure that our words line up with what God says about us. He has given us power, love, and a sound mind. He will give us wisdom, if we ask. He has made us righteous. In His eyes, we have worth and value, we are wonderfully made, we have the same makeup as Him and are more than able to accomplish what he called us to, all because He has breathed his life in us and equipped us with what we need to do our jobs well.
2. Keep your eyes on your own paper! Yep, that’s right! Stop looking at what everyone else is doing and do what He has given you to do. That was the mistake I made, I was so busy looking at everyone else’s stuff that I stopped working on my own. Looking at someone else’s work will cause you to second guess your progress, will cause you to feel defeated, and cause you to compare your results to a false answer key. God is your answer key. The Holy Spirit is your answer key, not your friend or the similar business that just launched. Also, we have to be careful to keep our eyes on our own paper to refrain from copying. God desires to give each one of us something so unique and perfect for us, but we have to give him the time and space to do so. Being impatient with God and getting ahead of him by copying is disrespectful to both you and God. You are cheating yourself that way. He has something unique that he wants to use you for, but you have to open yourself up to him. Get before God and seek His face about your vision and he will lead you in the way that you should go. Just keep your eyes on Him.
3. Be confident. Being confident means being certain that you are where you’re supposed to be and you’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing. This is why it is important to get connected with the Source and to allow him to give you revelation about your purpose and identity. Being confident means you are able to carry out your responsibilities without being intimidated by other entrepreneurs/bloggers that have similar ideas. Know that what you bring to the table is valuable and desired by a specific following. Remember, you are the solution to problems that are waiting to be solved; someone else is waiting on your obedience. You have what others need. So, stop embracing the lies about yourself and embrace the truth of who you are to this world. But, please, please don’t forget to sit quietly for instructions from God. Do not rush ahead of him. We are able to be more confident when we know we have heard from Him.
I hope this post has encouraged you to spend time with God and understand who you are in Him. It is my prayer that you will take pride in keeping your eyes on your own paper and be confident that what God gave you to do is just for you.
Until next time, Be Fashioned in Confidence,