Updated: May 22, 2020
A few years ago, I had the opportunity to provide my insights on some topics for a book a friend of mine was writing. While I was being interviewed during that time to provide insights, I really started to reflect back on my life and the many different journeys it has taken me. As I thought about life, I thought about what has truly helped me to achieve success. If someone would have told me 15 years ago I would be doing what I'm doing today, I probably would have laughed. It's amazing as you continue to go through the journey of life the things you uncover about yourself. What I have found to be consistent through all my growth, is that I have sown. So you may ask, what does that mean? For me, I’ve found that to achieve my success (grow) I have had to invest in the success where each investment is a seed sown. However, where you sow is key. My grandmother used to tell me that you can sow in either good, or bad, ground. It's your choice to decide which one, and the choice takes wisdom.
To bring forth This concept let me share a couple personal stories.
When I started speaking, seriously, in 2009 I was so green (new). I thought it was just simply creating a presentation, getting up in front of a group of people sharing what you know about a specific topic. It is definitely FAR from that. When I completed my first couple of speaking engagements, I realized, after the feedback, I was not engaging and/or capturing the audience as much as I thought I was. I knew this was something I wanted to do and be successful at. I had a lot of knowledge to share and I wanted to get it out for others to learn and use. I determined if I was going to grow in this space, I needed to sow in this space in a different way, because doing it on my own was not working. I decided to watch individuals I respected, who would always receive great feedback, and would engage audiences, to determine what I should be doing differently. I also took advantage of opportunities to facilitate, and speak at work to learn how to effectively connect and engage the audience. These steps allowed me to sow into my dream. I was sowing of my time, energy and finances (purchasing the right equipment) to achieve my goal. What is even more interesting is I really preferred not to speak in public. When I was younger I used to stutter. I felt I had a hard time articulating my thoughts to where they made sense. I also internalized rejection. I took constructive feedback as rejection, and negative feedback to where I felt I was a failure (another post on blog). In my mind I thought, why would I put myself in a position to go through that? However, this was a fear and I wanted to conquer the fear. To overcome the things that scare you, you have to approach them head on. What I should have been doing is changing my mindset that feedback truly is a gift. You can always learn from others, and you can learn through experiences that may make you uncomfortable. Though I may not have liked public speaking at the time, I did love sharing my knowledge, and gaining knowledge as I shared and talked with others. Through sowing into my dream I have really grown in the area speaking. All of those years of sowing has allowed me to reap a bountiful harvest, as my grandmother would say. I definitely could not have done it without the support of my family, friends and mentors. The journey hasn't been easy. I've had to humble myself, get rid of the ego, accept the fact that I need help from others, commit to my dream and stay disciplined to achieve it.
Many years ago I decided each year I will bless (sow) 1-2 people in achieving a personal or professional goal (grow). The type of blessing can take many different forms. I have a heart of giving, and though I have been hurt by my generosity in the past, it's just a part of my DNA (again influenced by my grandmother). I don't do it to receive anything in return as it comes from the heart. However, what I have found quite interesting is every single time I do this I have received 3x, or more of the blessing, back I have sown. I have found this to be a boomerang effect. What you put out in the atmosphere comes back to you in the atmosphere. 😊
I truly believe in order to grow you must sow. There must be an investment of some type. You tend to appreciate growth more when you have sown into that growth as well. I challenge you to think about how you can sow into good ground to help someone else. Do it expecting nothing in return and see what happens. Not only do you grow in an area, but you’re helping someone else to grow as well.
Trust me, it's worth it!!!!! 😊
Until next time, signing off,
The BA Martial Artist 🥋