- Identify what happened to cause the change
- Why did it happen
- How can I use this for my personal growth
- What changes can I make to improve in the future
- Where can I find help or who can help
This morning I was struggling about what to post…. when this happens I generally scroll through the hundreds of past blog posts to see if something grabs my attention. I’m grateful for the long list of blogs because it is a reminder of my life – the good, the bad and the ugly.
As the end of the fiscal year with Thirty One ends and a new one begins – doubt starts to creep in. Weird since I had my highest career sales in 2020-2021 and most days I am comfortable where my business and my life are. It usually means, I haven’t taken enough time to seek God’s guidance in the morning.
Every morning in my Facebook memories, I see a quote from “Get Your Girl Back Movement” and no matter how old the message is, it seems to hit home! Today’s was…
You can do it Hope and if you couldn’t, God would not have given you the dream in the first place. If you would have put as much time into your dream as you do questioning yourself and your ability it would have already been accomplished. Now- stop asking and go make your dream come true!
Kind of funny because since the MS, I struggle with dreaming. I have a wish list of things I would like to do but not a BIG dream. My last BIG dream was to pay off my credit card debt and I’m grateful with the help of my side hustle, this is DONE! Financial freedom can be scary for an addict in recovery – money in the savings account, bills paid and the ability to enjoy each day without the stress of how to pay for things. I have to consciously remember how unmanageable life was during my addiction (yes, shopping can be an addiction too).
MS has taught me to live in the moment (most days) because who knows what tomorrow will bring. Planning long term can be stressful and tends to lead me into a fix, manage and control state of mind. Not good for my MS or my recovery. I think I squirreled.. LOL.
As I think about the new fiscal business year, I wonder what God would want me to do. I’m doing a 6-week training program so I am focusing on being intentional about what God wants from me each day. The problem is when a thought or idea hits, Doubtful Debbie pays a visit. What are my dreams? Are they mine or what I think they “should be”? Will they bring me joy? Will they help me reach my purpose in life? I know I am not alone, right?
Then out of no where the message “STOP QUESTIONING YOURSELF” appears. I take a breath and quiet my mind (not always easy). I know my purpose is “to make a difference”, as basic as it is, it is my life’s mission. From simply putting a smile on someone’s face, sharing words of encouragement, or raising funds for a cause – one small act of kindness can make a difference.
I’m not sure who needed to hear this, but I hope at least one person is helped by knowing they are not alone. How do I stop questioning myself? As soon as I realize it is happening, I close my eyes, take a deep breath and release. Bless and release. Sounds easy, right? Believe me, if you struggle with this – you know it takes lots of practice. If I can’t get out of my head I do something else – work on my puzzle, read, take a walk and enjoy God’s beauty or work on a blog post. I do things to bring me joy and help me to kick Doubtful Debbie to the curb.
What are YOU questioning yourself about? Do you have a dream that gets pushed to the side when life gets too busy? Or are you like me and when that happens, you begin to doubt your dream? Just for today, stop asking AND make your dream come true. Who is with me??
Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!
Blind faith is defined as ““belief without true understanding, perception, or discrimination.” It wasn’t until recently it was pointed out to me, this is what I have. A positive thing instead of the negative thing I would have described it as.
“It will all work out” has been one of my favorite lines for years. As a single mom, I always believed things would work out. I didn’t know how, I didn’t know why – I just believed they would. I actually believe my relationship with God was pretty much nonexistent through HS, college and later in life. During my early years, I was active in church and a Rainbow Girl. I believed in God just didn’t have a relationship with him. Weird, right?
God was there even when I didn’t see or believe it. He had his hand on everything which is why I believe through my years of addiction, I was saved. I had a blind faith deep in my soul despite the odds. My first time in the rooms, I always said I was “spiritual” not religious. The Serenity Prayer was the closest I got to having a conversation with God. It was the thing which kept me going even when I was on the road to relapse and during my relapse. I thought it was more of a foxhole prayer at that point since I had made such a mess of my life.
Now, I have a relationship with God. Are there still potholes in my path? YES! Do I wonder if I am on the right road or following his purpose for me? YES! Do I still struggle with fear? YES! Do I still play the comparison game? YES! Fear and doubt didn’t not magically go away because of my faith. Satan loves to play with me especially on days when my MS flares up.
Every morning, I read my “Just for Today” and pause for a moment to thank God for his many blessings. Truth be told (have you heard this amazing song?), I don’t STOP and wait to LISTEN for God’s message.
There are some days, it is more obvious than others I haven’t listened. The days when the doubts come. The days when resentments build. The days when frustration and anger get the best of me. Those days, I wonder what happened to the belief God would take care of things?
Those are the days, when I forget it’s not my job to fix the potholes in my trail. I need to let God lead, and He will smooth the way. Whatever the path looks like, God has a plan for every step (Jeremiah 29:11). The path may be filled with potholes but no matter where I am headed, God is aware of every gap in the road He’s established for me.
Hubby pointed out to me recently “you have a blind faith”. I was shocked because I never thought about it. I used to believe people judged me for the decisions I made. Many times my decisions were not based on solid facts, just a feeling I had things would be okay. Sometimes they were and sometimes they weren’t. It wasn’t until I took my will back and stopped letting God lead the way, the road to relapse became a downhill spiral. Me trying to figure things out or fix things led me to a path filled with potholes. It kept me from letting my light shine and making a difference in the lives of other people.
It is time to embrace my blind faith. Time to stop trying to fix the potholes. Time to stop trying to figure things out on my own. Time to let God lead, have faith and let him show me the path he has prepared for me. It is “his will for my life, not mine”.
Are you trying to fix the potholes in your life or are you “letting go and letting God”?
Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!
This past week I celebrated two anniversaries both filled with emotions and the struggle to remember. Two milestones in my life which changed me forever.
On Friday, hubby and I celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary. We have been together 18+ years BUT only married 10. If you know our story, you get it. 🙂
I generally blog about our story BUT this year, I want to share the gratitude I have for this man. Our road has been a rocky one – from his commuting for 5 years, to living together to marriage. It all seems so basic, right? But add to it – recovery on the road to relapse, a perceived loss of independence, his congestive heart failure, my diagnosis of MS and now his retirement. Life on life’s terms which is something I’m not really good at. It has been a true test for both of us of our wedding vows. He has been my rock on my most difficult days. I have tested his patience and he has learned how to communicate just a little bit better. We have grown together in so many ways…
As we sat at dinner the other night, the subject drifted to the one question to be sure about a relationship. I had never heard this and honestly, I was scared. But he continued saying it is “do you bring out the best of each person?”….. Of course I had to know what he thought about us because honestly my memory is awful and fear was creeping in. My immediate reaction was to feel less than. Not worthy of his unconditional love. Instead of blurting things out, I prayed to be quiet while he finished. He said “our life has been a balance – sometimes we have brought out the best in each other while there are times, we have brought out the worst. He said it is life but the true test is how you get through it. We have made it. WOW! I didn’t get defensive. I didn’t try to over analyze. I just was grateful I kept my mouth SHUT and for how far we have both come. I may have already forgotten much of the night, I pray his words about our life together stay with me forever.
Jump ahead to Saturday and another celebration…. WE HAVE 3 YEARS! I look back on where I was three years ago… a hot mess on the verge of losing my hubby, a mound of credit card debt, a victim mentality while I isolated feeling less than everyone else, broken emotionally, mentally and spiritually. Appearing confident (often cocky) on the outside while a scared child on the inside. I had walked this road before and relapse became part of my story. I had let down my family, my friends but most of all I had let myself down. The strong confident person was gone. What was left was a broken, shell of my former self. Sadly, I didn’t notice it – I thought I hid it well. I blamed everyone else for what was wrong in my life when the only one who was to blame was me.
As I sit here writing, unable to feel anything but sadness (MS seems to play with my emotions as well as taken my memories) I struggle to remember how bad it was. Not just this time but the first time (my first clean date was 10/26/91). Hubby often says, God took the memories because it was too unbearable for me to remember. God gives me glimpses at times but when it becomes overwhelming for me, they fade and only segments remain. So instead of struggling to remember, I try each day to be a better person than I was yesterday. Does it always work? NOPE! I know with God’s help, it will. I continue to go to meetings – I need to hear the struggles, I need to share my blind faith, I need to be surrounded by people who have been where I have been and I need to remember “never” should not be part of my vocabulary.
Today, the credit card debt is paid off. Today, I am trying to connect with local women in recovery. Today, I accept I am an introvert but it does not mean I need to isolate. Today, I know my ride & die gals who have been with me since the first night 3 years ago are just a phone call away. Just for today, I like myself. Today, I don’t beat myself up over the weight or how I think “I should look”. My life is blessed in so many ways. Yes, MS kicks my butt BUT it is not an excuse to go back to those old destructive behaviors. Living life on life’s terms is not always easy but WE do recovery together.
Thank you to everyone who has walked these many roads with us. We are grateful for the part you have played and continued to play in our lives.
Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!
At Thirty-One, giving is part of who we are
The name Thirty-One comes from Proverbs 31, which describes a community-oriented woman who gives back and helps others. From the start, community and giving have been at the heart of every decision we make as a company. As Thirty-One grew, we realized we had the power to make a real impact in the world. So, to help us take our mission even further, in 2012 we created Thirty-One Gives, our charitable program. The mission? Empower girls, women and families to build the confidence and self-esteem needed to live a purposeful, thriving life.
The Thirty-One sales field is a community made up of thousands of women, and we’ve seen firsthand how the opportunity to own an independent business can change lives. We believe confident girls become strong women who lead healthy families and build thriving communities. When women are supported and celebrated, they go on to make a positive impact in the lives of others!
Since its founding, Thirty-One Gives has donated over $100 million in product and cash to charitable organizations that share our mission. From breast cancer research to children’s mental health awareness and support for military families, we’ve forged partnerships with leading national organizations that support important causes near and dear to our heart and to the hearts of our Consultants.
Giving in action: How we give back
One way we’ve made giving a part of our everyday business is through the Round Up! program. At checkout, every Thirty-One customer has the opportunity to Round Up! their order to the nearest dollar or make a donation of any amount to support our mission. Proceeds from Round Up! benefit a different philanthropic partner each season, allowing us to spread resources and hope to different causes and proving that every cent truly makes a difference.
Between Round Up! and donations of cash and product, we’ve been able to accomplish some pretty amazing things, from donating thousands of dollars to support organizations that combat domestic violence to providing care packages for families with children in the hospital. Not to mention the thousands of fundraisers our Consultants have held to raise money and collect donations for causes they believe in.
A community with heart
Not only is Thirty-One Gives about empowering and giving back to women, girls and families –it’s about relationships. We’re only able to do what we do thanks to the passion of our entire community of Customers, Consultants, Insiders and Home Office employees. If you’ve ever bought a Thirty-One tote or hosted a party with us, you’ve been a part of our giving story. The next time you shop with us, consider rounding up to continue supporting our charitable efforts. When we all work together, we can make a huge difference.
My customers have donated over 500 chemo comfort bags, as well as zipper pouches for our troops, dialysis comfort bags, Easter baskets, Mother’s Day gifts, and supported countless families in the community. Fundraising opportunities are available. My next give back program is for Rooted in Love – mini zipper pouches filled with necessities to share some kindness with women who are struggling.
Thank you for helping us to make a difference.
Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!