Sometimes, You Have to Encourage Yourself

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Inhale. Exhale. Inhale. Exhale. Inhale. Exhale. Take a moment to listen to your deep breaths as you breathe in and slowly release the air in your lungs. Do you hear that? Can you feel that? Possessing the ability to breathe on your own is such a blessing that you should not take for granted. Every day is a miracle that is bestowed upon you. You are afforded an opportunity to become better than you were yesterday. Each day is chance to conduct a self-assessment in an effort to "get it right."

You must not lose focus of your goals. When challenges occur, they are not setbacks but, rather, can be considered stepping stones to navigate you closer to your purpose. When you feel overwhelmed during your journey, take a moment for "me-time" to relax, rejuvenate and become renewed. At some point, everyone must take a sabbatical so that she may have the necessary time to regroup, refresh and re-evaluate her circumstances. When you take an honest inventory of your life situation, you can determine what areas need improvement.

Don’t give up on yourself when things are not going the way that you initially planned. You must continue to try, try and try again. Your attempts will not be in vain. Success is a process. Hard work, determination and perseverance are key components for being successful. Your dreams are not dead—they are just lying dormant. Stir up your passion, revive those dreams, and go get your blessing. Release any superficial timelines that you placed on your goals, press reset, and start now. Always remember that you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.

Do not seek others' permission or validation to live your best life. During those times that you may feel defeated, take a deep breath, and encourage yourself. Speak words of affirmation, pray and encourage yourself, and continue to strive forward toward your destiny.

The following guiding questions may provide assistance for your personal evaluation:

What are my weaknesses? What are my strengths? Am I fully committed to achieving my goals? Am I engaging in productive activities that will produce favorable outcomes toward my purpose? Am I truly utilizing my full potential, faith, skills and relationships (networking, mentors, etc.) to maximize God's plans for my life?

Ask yourself these questions, and provide reflective responses in a journal. Periodically, during various intervals in your life, review these questions and your responses to gauge your growth. You are your best advocate. Sometimes, to get the nudge you need to begin or continue your quest, you have to encourage yourself. You can do it.