Am I Living and Enjoying My Life’s Full Potential?

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This morning I started a new devotional reading plan on my Bible app. It is called Giving It All Away and Getting It All Back Again. Apparently, this devotional is from the book, with the same title, written by the founder and CEO of Hobby Lobby, David Green.

Right out of the gate this plan has me thinking already about how I am living my life. I am not just talking about how much I might cuss, or laughing at an inappropriate joke, or asking forgiveness for the road rage I experience from time to time. The part of my life I am thinking about is the legacy of my existence. Do I have the right frame of mind to live my life the way God intended? Happy, loving and giving.

Mr. Green broke out how we think during each stage of our lives. He states we worry about who we will marry or what type of career will we have in our twenties. In our thirties, we ask ourselves how I can grow in my career and will my kids turn out ok? I am in my late thirties, and I would have to agree with Mr. Green because those two items are very top of mind.

When we reach our forties, we start to question if the career we worked so hard for in our twenties and thirties is even the right fit. And wonder why life is so hard? The fifties we start to look backward and forward: “How has my life turned out so far, and what will I do that’s significant in the next twenty-five years?” (David Green)

By our sixties, we began to worry if our bodies will stay healthy and hold up and how often we will see our grandchildren. In the golden years of seventy, we start to look back and ask if everything we’ve done in life so far has been worth it. And more importantly, will anyone remember?

The material things we once held high are no longer relevant in our eighties. We will find our joy in the things you can’t buy.

A phone call from a friend
The touch of your spouse’s hand
A quiet walk observing God’s creation
The presence of your children
The laughter of your grandchildren
(David Green)

What struck me this morning is that the questions we should be asking at the beginning of our lives are the ones we ask at the end. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be eighty and regret not enjoying life the way God intended. What makes it hard for me to stop and smell the roses is I am always on the go. It is hard for me just to stop and soak in all the blessings around me.

What’s Your Mojo?
How do you live your life to the fullest? Are you like me and struggle to remember to enjoy life instead of always on the go?

When Leaving Great Makes You Excellent. Discovering My Full Potential.

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We’ve all heard the saying, “When one door closes, another opens.” It’s such a cliche and probably way overused.

However, it is very fitting for this post. In fact, I would even change that to, “When a great door closes, an excellent door opens.”

When 2016 started I felt I was totally on top of my game career wise. I had been working back at the company that started my marketing career. It was pretty much all I truly ever known and I was making things happen. I was ready for a killer year and looking forward to all the possibilities and projects destined for me in the upcoming months.

I was swamped with projects and enjoyed every single minute. I was proud to go to work every day, knowing I was working with amazing talent. It was fun. No, it was great.

I was knee deep in spreadsheets, trying to organize data for a client. This project was pretty big and I was in my zone. In the midst of creative and organization, my desk phone rang. When I saw the name on the caller ID, my heart sank to my toes. I knew what was waiting for me on the other end of the line.

Before we left for Christmas break, there had been talks of layoffs. I wasn’t too worried about it because I was busy, had work to do, and it wasn’t my client that was giving the agency issues. And hey, I had missed layoffs in the past, so I am golden. I never really thought twice about it. I belong here. This was my home.

Looking at the caller ID, I knew what was awaiting me. My career here was over. I didn’t want to answer. I didn’t want to leave. I braced myself and picked up the receiver. For a split second, I was hoping I was being punked. Nope.

I entered the conference room where two of my colleagues were soberly sitting. For a split second, I flashed back to the day I interviewed in this room. The demeanor was much different today. My heart was now lodged in my throat.  I’m pretty sure I was frozen in disbelief.

I had invested many years with this agency and they in me. I started working there when I was 23, still in college. This organization molded me, taught me, instructed me and lead me to become one hell of a marketer. I had worked there almost six years before I left to tackle another endeavor, but you always end up coming home. I had been back for almost a year, even though the people had changed, it was still like home.

Standing in the doorway of the conference room, my mind gets a little fuzzy, because I don’t remember sitting down. As my colleagues began to speak, I closed my eyes with my head down. For a second, it was like I couldn’t understand them. You know, like how the adults talk in the Charlie Brown cartoon. Again, am I being punked?

They told me they had to let me go. My actual response was, “Are you sure? I am mega busy right now.” They were very kind to me. They could have been a-holes. One of my colleagues was explaining reasons why and telling me about the layoff process. In a daze, I asked him to stop talking. It was silent. Before I realized it, I was crying. I was super emotional. I began defending myself, not all psycho like, but reminding them how busy I was and how things needed to get done. And how I fit the agency motto and was so pure of heart and passionate about my job.

They told me it was a hard decision to make and it had nothing to do with my work performance. Of course in my head, I was thinking, “Damn right it don’t. I am a hard worker.” With a shaky hand, I signed the paper knowledging I am being let go. And just like that, my career was over.

It was January 11th when I became unemployed for the first time since I started working at the age of 15. What in the hell am I going to do now? I am 36 years old, have a family and bills. The door to my career just got slammed in my face. I felt like a loser. I was deflated.

At first, I tried to play it cool. I posted a blog post about being laid off. I posted it on social media. By January 12th, I had a job interview. Didn’t get the job. I applied at many places. Then on January 14th, I received notice I made it to the phone interview round for a company I had never heard of before but had applied for on a whim. That lifted my spirits.

The phone interview went well and I made it to the next stage, face-to-face interview. The only downfall was I had to wait until February 4th before the interview would take place. To me, that seemed like a lifetime.

As the days after my layoff passed, even though I had this scheduled interview in a few weeks, I sank into this funk. There were days I didn’t get out of bed until mid afternoon. I felt worthless. Looking back, it amazes me how I let my career define my self-worth. I just wanted to work.

Finally, February 4th arrived. I had my interview. I was nervous. This was the first time I had actually had a real interview, with people I didn’t know, in 10 years. Prior to my interview, I had to research how to interview. I can’t explain it, but going into this, it just felt right.

The interview went well. I found myself totally jazzed and hopeful. Now, I just have to wait for my phone to ring with an offer. Twenty-four hours later, it did. I got the job.

I started working for the O’Connor Company February 8th. And I had no idea what I was in for. For the first two months, I was overwhelmed. My brain was on overload. I loved it. Since my employment with O’Connor, I have done more in my field of marketing than I ever had at my former employer. I have developed marketing plans, written television, and radio commercials. Shared my marketing knowledge with clients. Helped organize the sales team. Met amazing people, who believe and trust my field of study.

When I was first laid off, I thought I would never find a place as awesome as my former employer. But I have come to realize, my potential was being underutilized. I was comfortable at my old job. I wasn’t being challenged. And now, I am tapping into my forgotten passions. I am blossoming and growing more and more each day.

In the beginning of my unemployment, I was sure I would never be as successful as I once was. Boy, was I so wrong. I can honestly say I am grateful for my lay off. I am thankful because I now know what it is like to work for a company who values my skill set and wheel house. O’Connor has relit my creative fire and let me tell you, it’s hot.

So back to the cliche, the agency I worked for was great. I loved every second there. The staff is some of the most creative and passionate people on the planet. I have made lifelong friends. And I know they will continue to do great work. I look forward to seeing it. But I’ve moved on to excellent. My eyes have been opened to a whole other side of marketing and advertising.

I will never forget my month of unemployment. I know it wasn’t long and some people are unemployed for months. But for me, it was long enough. When it is all said and done, I am so thankful I was let go from something great, so I could become excellent.

 

 

Failure Is Not An Option. What Would You Do If You Knew You Could Never Fail?

Never Fail

Has there ever been something in your life you wanted to do, but you were afraid to fail?

For me, there have been times my fear of failure has held me back from doing things that could have turned out pretty great.

Sometimes my lack of self-esteem keeps me from trying new adventures or opportunities. I mean, who wants to do something only to be laughed at or told their idea was stupid?

I’m sick of living that way.

I stumbled upon this thought today and it made me think what would I attempt to do if I knew I couldn’t fail? I would do all the desires of my heart.

I would develop a cure for cancer, psoriasis, and alopecia.
Create a money tree in my back yard.
Start a cat rescue and save all the abandoned felines.
Become a singer.
Make a chocolate cake recipe that was completely fat-free, yet still taste amazing.
Develop a way to make cell phone cost drop dramatically.
I would make everything free on Fridays.
I would pass a bill stating bullies would be put in jail.
The Pledge of Allegiance would be part of morning announcements in school.

I know some if these are silly, but just think if everyone started living as if failure was not an option.

If you could do anything and not fail, what would you do? Comment and let me know.

Hope you have a blessed Saturday.

Dee Dee