Are you enjoying life?

I have been in a very reflective mood today. It seems that I am divided between two different places, the me I am today (that is based upon past decisions resulting in my present circumstances) and the me I know I shall be in the future (that is based on the decisions I’m making now, even in this very moment).

At times it feels hard to reconcile those two Donnas, the one of yesterday and the one of tomorrow. The Donna of old is familiar but her life was stunted and without purpose. However, the Donna of new is propelled by a clear vision of things to come but she is still unknown. She holds great promise but the future is not yet here. So it leaves me with the unknown… The unknown, don’t we all fear the things we are uncertain about?

It is within these moments of contemplating an ambiguous future that I start to question: “am I enough to make it?” and “do I have what it takes?”

It’s so common to be hesitant about the unknown, but fear can cause us to drift back into old habits, settle for less than we deserve, and give up on desired dreams. And if the reaction to run or turn back is so typical, what will make me any different?

I don’t know.

But I am certain that I made myself a promise to never stop trying, even in moments where things are unclear and my future on shaky ground.

I share this hoping you get the message that you must keep moving forward, for each step (no matter how small) is a sign of progress, which brings you one inch closer to the finish line. Don’t waste today, for it’s your actions today (in this moment) that will provide the open doors of tomorrow (your future).

In the book the Untethered Soul, Author Michael Singer states: “… you have limited time left in your life, and what’s really not reasonable is to not enjoy life.” So what are you willing to do today to start living a life that you enjoy?

For the life you’re living today is setting up the life you shall live in the future…

I am still in contemplative mode – trying to exercise my patience muscle so that I can allow the Donna of the present to catch up with the Donna of my future. Until then I am going to work on enjoying the life I’m living right now.

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

Your Gifts and Talents… Get to Work!

I sit here reflecting on a recent sermon I heard in church. The pastor spoke about the importance of “working your gift”. I thought this title was quite fitting and a bit ironic because earlier that same morning I was singing along to the contemporary gospel song “The Gift” by Donald Lawrence and Company. Both that song and the sermon expressed three important points:

  • We are each “gifted”
  • No one else on the earth can exhibit our gift the way that we can, for we each are divinely unique
  • We have to work our gift

Although all of the above points resonated with me, it was the last that I seemed to fixate on… the importance of working the gift that we’ve been given…

That third point held a lot of weight because it reminded me that although we are given talents and gifts – it’s not until we do something with the endowment that we get to see and feel the power of the blessing.

How many of you have talents that you are just “sitting” on? Gifts that are going wasted because you feel you’re too busy, tired, or afraid to step out on faith?

I can relate to your reluctance, for at times I too want to shy away from using my gifts, for with gifts comes responsibility.

For even the bible talks about this greater responsibility in Luke 12:48: But what about the servant who does not know what his master wants? He also does things that deserve punishment. But he will get less punishment than the servant who knew what he should do. Whoever has been given much will be responsible for much. Much more will be expected from the one who has been given more.

And with increased responsibility, comes increased pressure. Sigh. Yes, pressure!

However, despite the heavy load of responsibility and pressure, I know that I can’t not walk in and make use of the talents I’ve been given because there’s always this little push or voice from within that keeps propelling me forward. And more importantly, I know that my gifts were meant to be shared, to be a blessing to someone else. Or in the words of the pastor delivering the sermon: “the gift is given TO us but NOT for us… so be not prideful and be not a hoarder…. Bless the world around you.”

I hope you find the inspiration and the courage to share your gifts and talents with others, knowing that we each have something valuable to contribute to this planet we call Earth.

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

Want Success? Then you must Ask and Receive…

How specific are YOUR requests?

In life we are each on a journey, and along the way there are various things we desire, dream, and want. However, when I look around I see that there are those who attain what they want, and those who seem to fall shy of crossing the finish line. I wonder, what is the difference between the people that make it and the others that don’t? Is it based on luck or chance? Or is it based on the idea that some people are just more fortunate than others?

Hmmm…. Well it can’t be luck or the idea that “some people are just more fortunate” because there are many who have been elevated to success but they started out from humble, meager beginnings. So what is it?

I wonder if the missing piece is that the successful are very specific in their requests. Let me explain…

The bible suggests that we should “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7). I have often heard this verse, as it is commonly cited. So much so that even secular references have been made to this idea in books on the Law of Attraction. But I found something even more interesting when I went to re-read this verse. I discovered another translation of the Matthew 7:7 verse, it states:

Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you – Matthew 7:7, New Living Translation

Wow… now this is really powerful because the key word in that verse is KEEP! Keep on asking, keep on seeking, and keep on knocking…

So it would seem that the successful have attained that status because they kept on asking, seeking, and knocking on various doors until they found the very specific requests of their heart.

I am seeking from God: a book deal for my memoir, a job that is not toxic/constantly stressful, a supportive husband, a biological baby, and financial freedom.

What things are you seeking for your life?

In the Untethered Soul Michael Singer states:

“Does anything in God’s creation, other than the human mind, actually pass judgment? Nature just gives and gives to whoever will receive. Should you choose not to receive, it doesn’t punish you. You punish yourself because you choose not to receive”

My hope for you is that you find the courage to keep asking for, seeking, and knocking on the doors of your dreams. And may you be ready to receive the overflow when it comes!

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

Just keep going… even through fire!

Last week had to be one of the worst weeks I’ve had in a really long time. It was busy, disorganized, frustrating, and just chaotic! Maybe I was feeling this way because I took on a new position at work. Or maybe my feelings could be attributed to the other tasks that I juggle in my free time: dance, mommy duties, family/friend prayer circles, and writing. This was also the same week that saw me kneeling on the floor praying to God for HELP: https://donnadoctora.com/2015/01/30/on-the-job-stress-brought-to-my-knees/

Not sure why, but I do know that by the close of the week I was emotionally, physically, and spiritually spent. As the weekend rolled in it took everything within me just to be able to roll out of the bed.

Eyelids too heavy to open

Lower back sore with tension

My spirit feeling depleted

Feeling beat up and beat down…

But then I remembered something that my dance ministry leader shared with the class. She said: “some of us are anointed to fight the fires of hell”. As I read that short, simple line I could feel chills throughout my body. That one phrase conveyed not only the life journey I had been on, but it also described to a “T” what I was feeling as a result of last week!

I was feeling beat up, spent – because I had been through hell. And as with any good fight, you will have the scars and injuries to prove your battle woes.

However, there is GOOD NEWS…

Even though that was the week I had – I made it through! I felt like quitting, I felt overwhelmed, and I felt like throwing in the towel. But I didn’t… and I MADE IT!

It’s a new week… I feel a renewed sense of hope, courage, and strength…

I guess sometimes we just have to be fearless enough to keep going, NO MATTER WHAT! Keep going, even if that means fighting through strife, difficulty, and struggle.

Here are a few quotes to encourage you to just keep going:

  • “If you’re going through hell, keep going!” – Winston Churchill
  • “I’m not the richest, smartest, or most talented person in the world, but I succeed because I keep going, going, going” – Sylvester Stallone
  • “You simply have to put one foot in front of the other and keep going. Put blinders on and plow ahead” – George Lucas

May you be encouraged this new week! You WILL MAKE IT!

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

I’m tired… Demonstrating mental stamina.

Most days I wear a sunny disposition, however, there are those days where I feel too tired to smile. This morning was one of those mornings. I rolled over and still felt exhausted even though my day had yet to begin! Maybe it was the fitful night of sleep, as I woke up before my alarm had a chance to go off. Or maybe it was the thought of my work to-do list that seems to extend to infinity. Whatever the impetus, I felt tired and depleted. Yet even within my exhaustion I know that I must continue to push ahead with accomplishing the many goals I have set for myself.

In the past people have often inquired how I was able to achieve various goals, such as my doctorate. I believe my success lies in this very moment, in this present time where I am spent and lacking energy. For if I can continue to persevere despite feeling tired, I believe that in the end I shall make it to the other side!

I like to think of this pushing past the tiredness as emotional and mental stamina.

In the world of sports, athletes know that in order to achieve their next great physical feat, they have to push past the sore muscles and joints. This same perspective can be applied to our minds.

We have to condition our mind to push past feelings of I feel like giving up, It would be so much easier to quit, I don’t have the energy, or the ever so common: I don’t feel like it!

The mindset of a winner is to believe that success will require us to go through and get through a struggle!

So for 2015, let’s get our minds right! One month of this brand new year is complete… As the newness of the year begins to wear off, now is the time that you begin to feel tired, spent, and worn out… But just remember that the WIN happens when you keep pressing and moving in the direction of the finish line!

There is a quote by golf legend, Arnold Palmer that says: I never quit trying. I never felt that I didn’t have a chance to win

So if you just believe, in your goals and your dreams, with everything you’ve got, then you shall discover fuel, motivation, and stamina to keep you going even on days where you just are tired.

In a previous blog I shared about the importance of beliefs. If you haven’t read it, check it out:

https://donnadoctora.com/2015/01/28/whats-going-to-happen-believe/

Just remember you CAN do it! You just have to choose to do so, and then stick with that choice no matter what.

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

Do and Persist in 2015

Ugh, was the feeling I had as I rolled over, in bed. Limbs still somewhat sore from the previous evening’s dance class, and the brain still not fully awake – I was struggling to get up and moving. What was sort of funny about this morning’s fight was that as soon as I got out of the bed, I could hear my 12 year old across the hall going through a similar battle! I called his name several times, but it was to no avail, he was not ready to be awakened. However we had 45 minutes to get to his morning basketball practice, he had to wake up now! I called his name for the sixth time. He groaned in response and said “I’m not going to practice today”. Initially I paused, but then I responded with “get up, you’re going!” He dragged his lazy bones out of bed and proceeded with his morning routine.

On the drive to practice I explained to him the method behind what he perceived to be my madness. “Get up, you’re going was said in order to teach you the importance of persistence”, I explained. We then had a discussion about the value of doing things, even when you’re tired, discouraged, or frustrated. We spoke about the difference between the successful and those who aren’t. The successful continue to do despite how they feel!

And as if to confirm the legitimacy of my stance, later that day my sister sent me her morning devotional, from mydailybible.org, which read “for whatever was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope”.

So my question to YOU is what are you willing to endure on your path to success? Will you continue to pursue your dreams even when you DON’T FEEL like it? If you do, keep going no matter what, I bet on the other side of that journey will be your happy story ending.

Take a look at this quote from American Essayist Og Mandino:

“The victory of success is half won when one gains the habit of setting goals and achieving them. Even the most tedious chore will become endurable as you parade through each day convinced that every task, no matter how menial or boring, brings you closer to fulfilling your dreams”.

It’s the New Year (2015)… I hope you decide to begin doing and persisting… and WHEN you do – come back and share your triumphs, with me!

Forecast for 2015 – Slow & Steady Wins The Race

Confirmation is all around you!

That is the sentiment that came to mind when I opened my Christmas gift from my cousin/sister-friend. Her purchase was a silver charm bracelet that included 4 charms: a green gemstone, a 1st place ribbon, a star, and a tortoise.

I immediately loved the present because it was simple and classy, but upon further reflection I realized the weight attached to this dainty surprise. It wasn’t a simple bracelet with trinkets. No this wrist ornament was confirmation of the journey I have been on. It was proof that I was on the right track and just needed to keep trudging along. As if to place an exclamation to this point, the card that the bracelet was attached to reads:

Determined ~ Slow and steady wins the race

How timely of a message, as I get ready to close out 2014, in anticipation of 2015 and all of its expected blessings. I forecast that 2015 is going to be a great year, one of abundance. However, I don’t intend for the bounty to just fall into my lap. On the contrary, I am determined to be steadfast and persistently consistent in manifesting all of my dreams!

Although I was already on the course, it’s nice to receive a surprise reminder that the race is not won by strength or speed, but by endurance and an unwavering faith – that the impossibilities are all possible, in due time.

So I shall continue to run my race knowing that I have found my stride and I am in my season, so I shall reap my due harvest!

As we approach the New Year, it is commonplace for people to choose New Year’s Resolutions. I, however, tend not to set resolutions. I figure, why wait for the New Year.

  • Why not choose to live a life where you become determined to go after all that you desire and aspire to do and be?
  • Why not wake up every day being firm in your convictions to make your fantasies, a reality?

Have you ever wondered, to yourself, what is stopping you from living out your dreams?

I hope you decide to name the obstacle and then jump over it, get around it, or go through it – but whatever you do – keep going! Remember, slow and steady wins the race!

And when we look back at this post, at some later date in the future, we can be glad that we decided to get started AND that we kept moving!

To you and yours… I wish you a happy holiday season and a DREAM Changing NEW YEAR!

Happy 2015!

“Persist with a heart full of gratefulness for what you’ve overcome (past) and what you have yet to accomplish (future)!” From Dr. Donna 🙂