Last weekend was great, I was able to attend football games for both of my Godsons, Jeremiah and Jourdan. I also spent time with my Goddaughter Jazmin. It was a weekend full of J’s. Jazmin and I made breakfast together but what she didn’t know was that these days Maine (that’s what she calls me), likes to listen to music, sing, and dance while she cooks. Showing her how much fun cooking can be was awesome. She out danced me by breakdancing while we waited to flip the pancakes. Yeah, my dancing is not that hardcore. The point is that although she’s changing and growing fast, I want her to remember to enjoy life. Adult Jazmin, please continue to play. Don’t be afraid to grow, love well, and try to find humor in most things. That goes for you too Jeremiah and Jourdan.

Throughout my life I’ve heard many people say that change is constant. I agree but what about growth? I feel like I’ve been on this journey of personal growth and development my entire life. It’s called me to look myself in the mirror and take responsibility for my life. Author, Jen Sincero’s quote about growth is so true, “Growth ain’t for weenies.”

Taking responsibility for the outcome of my life isn’t easy. I can no longer shift the blame to the way I was raised, what people did to me or what “the devil” made me do. I’ve had to do away with excuses and learn how to move past hurts, failures, and disappointments. Getting rid of distractions is still hard at times. Accepting the outcome of “failed” relationships is another tough one just like letting go of the stories I’ve been telling myself. Growth is not for weenies y’all but I’m becoming a better me. You get a better me! I have the capacity to love and care for myself and others from a sweet place.There’s nothing superficial about it. Of course, I’m am nowhere near finished learning and growing. Oh, I forgot to mention that I’m constantly learning to let go of my ego? Yeah, that’s real fun.

Caroline McHugh’s TedTalk called the Art of Being Yourself  has been helpful on my journey. In the video she talks about having an inferiority complex and a superiority complex that are both driven by fragile egos. She then explains the concept of an interiority complex (a word she made up). The interiority complex is where you don’t feel the need to compare yourself. Her example of interiority is from an answer Jill Scott gave to a journalist who asked her if she was nervous about going on stage after Erykah Badu. Jill replied by saying, “We all have our own thing, that’s the magic. But everybody comes with their own sense of strength and their own Queendom. Mine could never compare to hers and hers could never compare to mine.” Thank you Queen Jill Scott. Living from a place of not comparing yourself to others is freeing. However, it takes practice because we live in such a shallow society.

Also, during Caroline’s talk she stated that when you figure out how to live your life from interiority, it’s incredibility liberating and an untragic way to live. Liberation gives me the green light to ‘go for it’.

I like to think I am a ‘go for it’ type of girl but it depends on what I’m going for. It doesn’t always come easy for me. My friend Ed, then Business Coach, told me to just start my company. He said I didn’t need to have it all worked out. My office didn’t need to be perfect, just start. So, I did. There were times I thought, why in the hell did I listen to Ed? But he’s continued to encourage me to keep going. To be honest, there was a knowing that I was going to find my way but had more growing to do. When going for it seemed like too much, I’ve pressed pause or allowed distractions to get in the way, talk about pain. When I’m not going for it, it’s painful. I don’t know about you but I don’t like pain so, today I plan to go for it and then a little more tomorrow and the day after that. I hope you will too.

Grow. Play. Let’s go for it. Just do it. Be free. Dance and sing while you cook. Woo Forever.