What’s Stopping You?

January 5, 2011

“Go! What’s stopping you?” is the slogan used by a major airline here in the U.S.  While this question is written to inspire people to fly with their particular company, it provides good food for thought for us all.

What’s stopping you from living the life you know you could be living?  What keeps you from chasing (and catching) your dreams?

Fear of failure?

Lack of belief in yourself?

The poor economy?

Most of us could legitimately claim at least one reason for not whole-heartedly pursuing our dreams, but if we allow those things to hold us back, we will eventually be left with nothing but a long list of “what could have been.”

As the airline motto implies, it’s time to leave all excuses behind and start moving forward in the direction of your dreams. Start now!   Instead of focusing on the reasons why you can’t, make a list of all the reasons you should and can, and redirect your thoughts toward those instead.

At first, this may take some conscious effort on your part, but aren’t your dreams worth it?

STOP complaining and rationalizing away your success.

GO in the direction of your dreams!

And don’t give up until you see those dreams come true!

God Bless!

Coach Becky J. Taylor

Bold New Day! LLC

Personal Development Coaching for Women

http://www.boldnewday.com

Follow Your Passion!  Pursue Your Purpose!

Become the Person You Know You Were Born to Be!

 

Coach Becky J. Taylor (Bold New Day! LLC) specializes in Personal Development Coaching for Women, based on Christian principles. She is available  for personal coaching, group coaching, face to face or phone coaching sessions, speaking engagements, women’s events, and workshops anywhere in the continental United States. http://www.boldnewday.com

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Sailing Into Sunshine

July 28, 2010

While enjoying a Caribbean cruise a few years back, our family was particularly looking forward to spending a day on one of the islands owned by the cruise line, when the Captain made an announcement.

“This is your Captain speaking” the voice over the loud speaker boomed, “As you know, we are scheduled to anchor on the island tomorrow, but heavy storms are being forecasted for that area.  Do not be concerned.  If we can’t spend the day on the island, we will sail around until we find the sunshine.”

I appreciated the Captain’s optimism and have thought of that comment many times since that day.

“We will sail around until we find the sunshine.”

Sometimes it seems our lives are just one big storm after another.  We barely catch our breath after one squall  before the next wave hits.

It can be exhausting.

It’s also easy to forget that somewhere the sun is shining when in our little corner of the world there is nothing but dark clouds, high winds, and lightning strikes all around!

But … our Captain always knows exactly where we are on the radar screen.  He also knows where the sunshine can be found and you can bet, he is sailing us into the sunshine. Just hold on and trust him!

As much as I’d like to believe it’s God’s will that we never encounter storms in life, I know better.  Even storms serve a purpose in the scheme of things.  Our human minds can’t comprehend the vast expanse of the universe.  We’re usually so wrapped up in our efforts to preserve our own interests, we fail to notice what’s happening on a grander scale.

We certainly don’t like to think the “grander scale” is more important than our bout of bad weather. The painful reality is, our little bout of bad weather is part of that grander scale… and so it is important!

I’m hearing the collective “groan” of several of you right now.

“We want the sunshine, we don’t want the storm!”

Don’t abandon ship!

You must keep moving through the storm. You will find the sun waiting on the other side.

God bless!

Becky J. Taylor

July 28, 2010

Bold New Day! LLC

Personal Development Coaching for Women

http://www.beckyjtaylor.com

http://www.beckyjtaylor.webs.com

http://www.boldnewday.com

The Race Is On

July 25, 2010

A couple months ago I mentioned that I was writing a book.  My goal was to have it ready to publish by my birthday, which is now less than three weeks away.  Barring a miracle, that isn’t going to happen.  That’s what “deadlines” are for though, right?  Like rules, they were made to be tested.

My book was off to a good start.  Words continued to pour from my thoughts, through my fingers and onto the computer screen with ease for several weeks.   Then, BOOM!   Suddenly nothing I wrote made sense.   The flow turned into a trickle and then to a complete halt much like gridlock on the interstate leading to Atlanta.  I can see my destination, but I am helpless to get there at this point.

The world, which is my life, has been in a tailspin that’s lasted nearly two years now.  I thought things were beginning to settle out, but they’re not.  If anything, it’s getting worse.  This is possibly because I am so tired of it all.  I feel like running away … quitting … giving up.

Like that is an option.

Which brings me back to the topic at hand … my book.

I’ve chosen “Finishing Strong, A Woman’s Guide to a Race Well Run” as the title.  My inspiration (for lack of a better word) has been the events of my life, and those of so many other women I know. I wanted to do something positive with all the negative circumstances that I and others have been experiencing.  There is a lesson to be gleaned from all this, I just know it!  The trick is to figure out exactly what that lesson is so we can all stop spinning our wheels and move forward again.

It’s occurred to me that virtually everything I’ve been writing in the book is being tested.  Every word of encouragement, every theory I’ve suggested concerning what the “race of life” is all about, all hope I’ve dared to offer has been and continues to be challenged.  I look back over the chapters now and ask myself if I even really believe my own statements.

Here I am, telling women that life is a race of faith.  A race we cannot lose as long as we do not give up.  And here I sit myself, wanting to rip the book to shreds because I am sick and tired of running.  Forget finishing strong!  I just  … want … to … be … FINISHED!

Maybe I just had to come to this point in order to believe what I am trying so hard to convey to everyone else.  Even in my current state of weariness, I still have that underlying, nagging sense of optimism that things surely have to get better from here on in.  But I also have to admit, my thoughts have been leaning more toward the notion that it no law says it has to get better at all.  What if this is truly as good as it gets?

I’m asking myself if I can live with that possibility and frankly, I don’t know right now.

I suppose it’s also possible that I am finally figuring out what faith is all about.  “Faith” isn’t really faith at all if one can see, touch, feel whatever it is they’re hoping for.

Hebrews 11:1 “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” (NIV)

Perhaps I should be encouraged.  One thing is for certain, I cannot see anything I’ve been hoping for at this point in time.  Yet, I am still here.

Down for the moment?  Maybe … but I’m still here.

Licking my wounds on the sidelines? Probably … but I’m still here.

Too tired to run anymore? Oh yes! …  but I’m still here.

So, the book may be a little later in coming than I first believed, but I will finish it soon just as surely as I will eventually catch my breath, lace up my track shoes and continue my own pursuit of the prize that awaits at the end of my race.

I’ll see you at the finish line, my friend!  

July 25, 2010

Becky J. Taylor

http://www.beckyjtaylor.com

http://www.boldnewday.com

http://www.beckyjtaylor.webs.com

I grew up in small town Appalachia.  By “small”, I mean there were only about a thousand of us or so and every one of those thousand or so people knew everything about everybody at any given time.

“Gossip” er, I mean “News” was shared with neighbors over the back fence or via party lines. (In case you were born after the 60’s I should explain that “party lines” were common phone lines shared by several different families in the same neighborhood.)

Back in the day, most people never moved far from where they were born.  They lived, worked, died, and were buried within a 10 mile radius of their home town.

While living in such a small town had it’s disadvantages, there were also many advantages to be enjoyed.  We could trust our neighbors and count on them to look out for us.  We never had to lock our doors.  We always knew when someone in our extended family got married, had a baby, fell ill, or lost a job.

We could call on them (or if they shared our party line, just pick up the phone and interrupt their conversations if necessary) any time, night or day and they’d come running.

Personally, I believe people miss the days when they could satisfy their need for human interaction simply by going outside and chatting with the neighbors over the back fence for a while.  When back fences and party lines disappeared, they created a void that people have been trying to fill ever since.

And I believe this explains why social media is so popular today.

Even those who never knew anything about back fences and party lines, or lived anywhere within driving (much less yelling) distance of Grandma and Grandpa; even if we never sat at Aunt Millie’s dinner table and ate oatmeal cookies or enjoyed the sense of family a small town provides, we still enjoy human interaction.  We still need to feel like someone cares about even our most mundane concerns.

Yes, we need each other whether we like to admit it or not.

Social media sites give us access to our distant relatives, elementary school friends and even new friends with the click of a mouse.

What’s more, these sites never close.  Twenty four-seven, there is always someone online with whom to exchange a laugh or share a story. There’s never a lack of videos to laugh at, quotes to make us think, and great gossip, (I’m sorry, I meant “news”) to be found, thanks to the availability of cyber-space.

Social media has made our world very small again, just like it use to be when I was a kid.   No matter how big the city we come from, I’m convinced there is a need for folklore in each of us.  Social media makes it possible for each of us to experience the joys of small town living, even if we’re all alone in the middle of nowhere.

Becky Taylor

July 14,2010

http://www.boldnewday.com

http://www.beckyjtaylor.com

(“Small Town” by John Mellencamp.  Enjoy!)

It’s amazing how little effort it really takes to make a difference in someone’s life.  The most seemingly benign act of kindness can make someone else’s load a little lighter and life a little easier.

Here are some easy ways to make a difference in the lives of others.  Choose one (or all three) each day and put it to use!

Smile

When I worked at the hospital I made it a point to make my patients smile.  It could be a challenge at times, given that they were in the hospital and of course that was not the ideal setting for having a happy face but most of the time it was easy … simply smiling at them when I walked into their room usually sufficed.

Returning a smile is almost an involuntary act in most situations.  Even when people were too sick, or in too much pain to smile back at me, my “plan” still worked about 98 per cent of the time.

Smile at everyone you meet, even strangers.  Make eye contact and show them your pearly whites!  Don’t be surprised when you also begin to feel better with each smile that is returned.

Watch Your Words

Words are powerful.  Your tongue can be a weapon of mass destruction, or it can speak life to everyone around you.  Use it wisely.

The old adage, “If you can’t say something good. don’t say anything at all” is still a wise a piece of advice.  If you don’t believe me, think back to a time when your whole day was ruined by one discouraging word from a friend or family member.

Now think of a time when your day was absolutely made by someone’s words of encouragement.

See what I mean?

Say something nice to someone today.  Tell the cashier at the supermarket you like her haircut.  Tell the kid at the pool what a great swimmer he is, or if someone consistently brightens your day with their words … tell them how much you appreciate it.

Actions Speak Loudly

Remember the “random acts of kindness” craze from a few years back?  People everywhere were doing little things for others without any expectations of recognition or reward.

“Random acts of kindness” was a great idea and probably one we would have done well to keep in practice.

What action can you take today that will make a difference for someone else?

Help the neighbor carry her groceries in from the car.  Hold the door open for a stranger at the store.  Send a “just thinking of you” card to a friend.

You don’t have to do anything complicated.  None of these things necessarily take a lot of time or cost a lot of money, yet they can make the difference between a “bad” day and a “great” day for the recipient!

God bless!

Becky J. Taylor

Bold New Day! LLC

Personal Development Coaching for Women

http://www.boldnewday.com

http://www.beckyjtaylor.com

Follow Your Passion! Pursue Your Purpose!

Become the Person You Know You Were Born to Be!

Brown ChairAnd old brown leather chair and it’s matching ottoman occupy one corner of our keeping room.  The chair has never been among my favorite pieces of furniture.  It’s just too big and bulky to suit my decorating preferences.  In truth, no one usually even sits in the chair at all unless we happen to have company.  Surprisingly enough, most of our visitors actually like the chair and have commented on it’s comfort.

More often than not, I use the chair for another purpose altogether.  Over the years it has become a laundry center where I sort, fold and store our clothing fresh from the dryer.  I’m almost ashamed to admit that approximately four days out of each week, the chair is buried in stacks of clothing awaiting transfer to their proper destinations.  Because I use the chair to hold the laundry, it is rendered unavailable for it’s intended purpose, which is of course to be a place for people to sit!

The chair functions just fine as a laundry center and I suppose I could continue using it in that manner forever.  It really is a waste of a good piece of furniture though.  A plain old $5.00  plastic laundry basket would be a much more practical and useful container for our clothing.

Some people live their entire lives in much the same way.  They were created for something specific, yet they clutter their souls and surroundings with so many other things that their original purpose stays hidden, or even worse, lost altogether.

Unlike a piece of furniture, which has no knowledge of why it is on the earth, people tend to be unsatisfied unless they are doing what they were meant to do.  They may function just fine in whatever ulterior role they choose , but most of the time they will have a nagging feeling, a sense of restlessness that tells them something is amiss.  They will not be fully content until they are walking in the calling for which they were born.

God  has a purpose for your life.  The Bible says He knew you before you were formed in your mother’s womb.  He created you and placed your spirit in a human body for a specific purpose.  A purpose so unique that no one else can fulfill it!

Now that should make you feel pretty special!  The Creator of the universe not only knows who you are, He has a specific plan for you! (Oh! And according to Jeremiah 29:11-13, that plan is for your good!)

Of course, it’s up to you to decide whether or not you will carry out your true purpose, and God loves you no matter what you choose.   But imagine how He must feel when He see His children being less than He designed them to be!

Are you sincerely happy with the way you are living, or are you merely functioning day to day?  Are you doing what you believe you should do, or are you simply doing what’s easiest or most convenient?  Does the idea of pursuing your true calling seem like too much “work”?   Following the path you were meant to follow may not necessarily be easy, but the rewards are so much worth the effort!

It’s not too late!  Take that first step in the right direction today!

Follow your Passion!  Pursue your Purpose!

Become the Person You Know You Were Born To Be!

Philip, enjoying the big brown chair as it was meant to be used!

Philip, enjoying the big brown chair as it was meant to be used!

Becky J. Taylor

http://www.boldnewday.com

Love Story

January 7, 2010

Yesterday, I attended the memorial service of our precious friend, Bishop Charles Johnson.

Bishop Charles was a unique and remarkable man.  He had a true passion for souls, and made it his mission to carry the message of God’s love around the world.  From the backwoods and hollows of West Virgina to India and Africa, he was unstoppable!

Back in October, when the doctors diagnosed him with leukemia and sent him home with a prognosis of two days to live,  he traveled instead to North Carolina and preached to one of his many beloved congregations.  He had unfinished work to do and no man was going to tell him he couldn’t do it!

Bishop lived and ministered for three more months, not two days as had been predicted.  His desire to live and preach God’s Word was stronger than the disease that was trying to take him.

Bishop Charles was a great story-teller!  In his 50 plus years of ministry, he’d had many adventures and could describe each of them in a way that made a person feel as if they’d been right there beside him in the experience.  Many of his stories were hilariously funny and I often found myself wiping away tears of laughter as he spoke.

Even though I’d only met Bishop Charles six years ago, I felt I knew him fairly well, but it was not until his memorial service yesterday that I realized the legacy of love he was leaving behind.

Hundreds of people flowed into the auditorium to pay their last respects, and being very much a “people watcher” I couldn’t help but notice what a diverse group they were.

There were men and women in fur coats and fancy hats, as well as tattooed biker types with pony tails and tattered jeans.  There were old people and youngsters, people with perfect hairstyles and buttoned down collars … and a half-dozen or so with their hair dyed in all the colors of the rainbow.

Those who stood on the platform and spoke at the service were equally varied in their culture and color.

As I watched and listened, one thing became undeniably clear … not only had Bishop Charles Johnson preached the love of God to the nations, he’d practiced it!  The variety of people in attendance at his home-going celebration was a testimony to that fact.  As different from one another as we might have been, we had one thing in common.  Bishop Johnson loved us all unconditionally.

In his lifetime, Bishop Johnson was a great story-teller.  Ironically, it was his life itself that was the best story of all.  It was a story  written in accordance to God’s greatest commandment …

“Love One Another!”

Rest in peace, Bishop Charles.  May the lives of those you’ve touched continue to carry your story of love and acceptance to the ends of the earth!

Becky J. Taylor

http://www.boldnewday.com

January 7, 2010