It’s All In How You Respond

“You can’t control everything that happens to you but you can control how you respond to everything because in how you respond is your power.” ~Anonymous

It is instinct to react to things that upset us in an emotional, sometimes irrational manner. It is human nature but it doesn’t always make for the best outcome and it most certainly doesn’t act as a solution to your problem or whatever has disappointed you. Oftentimes we get disappointed about the doors that won’t open for us or the rejections that we get, particularly if you are a writer or pursue a creative career in general. It takes the wind out of your sails and when you get knocked down there’s that one moment where you just want to stay down. You find yourself telling someone trying to help you up that you just need a moment to lay there and get yourself together.

The thing is that you can only take a minute because while you’re laying there collecting your thoughts on what went wrong, someone else is trying out their own attempts at that same door.  When you respond to rejection by giving it up and quitting because it gets too hard, well there is power in your response. It’s just power that you are giving to the next person who won’t give up quite so easily. I don’t say any of this as a person who hasn’t wanted to just lay in my rejection and wallow for a while before making another attempt at something.

I don’t react well to rejection. It’s one of the main reasons that I had decided about two years ago to completely give up seeking traditional publication and to self publish instead. Now I am rethinking that decision. I mean there is a few books that I would choose to self-publish more so because they are poetry books which don’t typically get traditional publication unless you’re in the spotlight for something else. However, I have a few books that I really would like to see get the traditional publication treatment. I am not a marketer, I am not a graphic designer, and while I can be a persuasive person I can’t say that my negotiation skills are that of a publicist, or an agent even.

Now I just have to wonder was my response to all the rejection (albeit great rejection because they were not form letters) I received the right response. Did I throw in the towel too soon, and more importantly, is it too late. Did I give away some of my power by staying down for too long? I guess that is to be determined but I wanted to write this today to say to a that person out there who thinks that they have all the time in the world to stay down for just a few moments and to respond with only a little bit of wallow, you don’t.  It’s time to get up and respond to that moment of rejection with even more action.

Until next time…#BeBold #BeProductive #BeMotivated

Jimmetta Carpenter 

Writer/Editor

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Can’t Move Forward While Standing Still

“We cannot become what we want by remaining what we are” ~Max Depree

I saw this quote and it made me think of how much I’ve grown in certain ways over the last couple of years. It also makes me think of the ways that I still have yet to grow.  There are still risks that I haven’t been willing to take because, simply put, I can’t predict where taking those risks will lead. However, I can’t help but think that perhaps not taking some of those risks costs me way more time than the sheer anxiety of wondering where it would lead. 

Some of us are really good at jumping into the next phase of the dream and taking things head on and I admire that. Then there are those of us who often are hesitant to reach out and grab the next opportunity that comes our way because we don’t know if we’re going to actually be able to reach the level we’re striving for.

It’s true that you can’t move forward while standing still so if you are anything like me and your anxiety or self-doubt is holding you back from something, don’t allow it to continue keeping you stuck.  Let’s make a pact that we’ll reach for that next opportunity together. We will keep moving forward, even if the steps that we are taking are small little baby steps.

Until next time… #BeBrave #BeFearless #BeReady

 

Jimmetta Carpenter 

Writer/Editor 

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Having Courage Is Never Easy

So I know this blog is not necessarily a political type of blog but I have been known to occasionally voice my feelings on something political that has happened. By now everyone who isn’t living under a rock knows that a certain former President was, once again, not held accountable for his criminal behavior while representing this country. In large part, this is due to a the vast majority of the party formerly known as the Republican party who refused to put their country first along with the people they represent over one person who desired to become a dictator.  They lacked the courage that they needed to actually do the right thing and to think of other people besides themselves and their grab for power.

Now I’m not going to waste time in this post today talking about people who clearly don’t exhibit any bravery and this is not a condemnation on the REAL Republicans who still exist and are not beholden to one man but rather to their conservative principles. My point in today’s post is about when people show and exemplify courage to do the right thing even in the midst of pressure to do the wrong things. Those people who persevere in spite of the push back and the struggle will be greatly rewarded in the end with the knowledge that they reached their destination in life, not by taking the easy way out, but by fighting for what’s right.

Life is like that when you are also walking a path towards your dreams. It is so very easy to do things that feel good at the time and that are short cuts to your end goal but easy doesn’t always mean it is right. I’ve often wondered how much further I could be in my career and in the positive change that I want to have on this country, on this world, if I hadn’t always been looking for so many short cuts and easy roads to getting what I wanted. Nothing bad every really happened as a result of those short cuts per say but it ended up taking longer to get to the destination that I was really trying to get to. I had so many things to untangle from doing the wrong things, what looked like the easy thing, in order to get to the point where I was supposed to be. The short cut or easy way turned out to not be so easy after all.

All of those Republicans who think they’re going to keep their seat, hold onto their power, by doing the wrong thing, I believe are reading the room very wrong. I think that they forgot that there were real people who they are supposed to be representing and they’re taking short cuts to hold on to power supposedly in the name of the constituents that they seemed to not even be really listening to.  It seems easy to take short cut after short cut or to try to find any path without a challenge in it, one that doesn’t require any fight or any bravery. But doing the right thing, the challenging thing, the courageous thing, will never be easy. If it were easy then everyone would do it.

Until the next time… #BeFearless #BeCourageous #BeDetermined

 

Jimmetta Carpenter 

Writer/Editor 

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What Is Left to Be Discovered?

I love that even at the age of forty I am still discovering things about myself and my creative abilities that I had not realized before. For instance, I have been doing my YouTube channel for almost a year now (May 9th will be a year) and I was so hesitant to dive into that realm of the creative world. I don’t know if you know this about me, but I am an extreme introvert and being on camera terrifies me. Nevertheless I took the risk and dove into the world of becoming a YouTuber and while it is a bit of a slow crawl to get a good sized audience I have discovered that I like doing it more than I thought I would.

Not the being on camera part mind you, but knowing that something I said or some advice that I have given has somehow inspired some other writer or given them courage to start their own YouTube channel. I always want to make a difference, in whatever I do, so getting comments on my videos telling me how much they enjoyed the video and how much they got out of it really makes me feel like I’m leaving my mark, however small of a mark it might be. We all leave our marks in this world, admittedly some leave bigger marks than others, but it all adds to the betterment of this world and the people in it.

I also happened to discover that I like editing videos and I’m not too bad at it either (imagine how good I can be at it if I can learn some more about the proper techniques) but I would have never discovered this hidden capability had I not attempted something that I was fearful of doing. Now I’m not saying we should dive into every single whim that we have.  However, taking a few risks every now and then can help us really learn things about ourselves that were just waiting to be discovered. Have you ever wondered what talents you might unearth if you just took a leap into that endeavor you’ve been holding back on? You should take the risk and see just what you discover about yourself.

Until next time… #BeFearless #BeBold #BeCourageous

 

Jimmetta Carpenter 

Writer/Editor 

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Have You Picked Up Your Broom Yet?

One of my best friends made a Facebook Live video yesterday with a message from God that was on her spirit to share and it was an amazing word that we all need to hear and be reminded of. She spoke about (I’m paraphrasing) blessings and God bestowing many blessings upon us but that they may not always look like what we thought they would.

We tend to have these expectations of what we think God should bless us with (me included) and if they don’t look almost exactly like what we want we get the notion that God somehow has let us down and didn’t keep his word to us. But His word didn’t say that he would give us exactly what we asked for in the form in which we asked for it. He said he would bless us exceedingly and abundantly but he never gave us the exact method in which those blessings would be bestowed.

Sometimes He says yes to our prayers and He opens a door that we were waiting on to be opened. Sometimes He says no and He closes a door that we had been hesitant to close on our own (which is still a blessing, trust me). Then there are other times where He simply says WAIT, and He gives us a broom and tells us that we need to sweep our front porch and get our house in order first before he can open that door and heap the blessings he has stored up for us. It’s that waiting period of time that challenges us the most because it’s not a yes and it’s not a no either so you tend to think that you’re in limbo, this holding pattern so to speak, without any answers. But in actuality it is an answer and very much still a blessing.

See, God doesn’t have to give us that broom to sweep our front porch with. He doesn’t have to give us a chance to even get our lives together because let’s be honest, hasn’t He given us countless chances already. If God is giving you a broom and you’re in the waiting room recognize just how blessed you really are because he is giving you time.

He is telling you that He has something special for you and He wants you to have it but you need to be ready because He has a purpose for you. It’s a purpose that He’s not entrusting to anyone else but you. Don’t just let your broom sit in the corner and just let time go by while you keep wondering where your blessings are. Pick up that broom and get to sweeping because He’s waiting on YOU! Be thankful for the broom!

Until next time… #BePatient #BeWilling #BeReady

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

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Timing is Everything

As I watched Joseph R. Biden being sworn in last Wednesday as our 46th President I felt a sense of relief and calm come over me. I also felt a sense of hope as well. Not just hope for this country, and hope for the unification of the people of this world, but also hope in the timing that God has. I’ve learned over the last several years, the hard way might I add, that God has an incredible sense of humor when it comes to the development of our plans in life in relation to His ultimate purpose over our lives.
We don’t always understand when God closes a door that we were so sure we were prepared for but he always reveals his reasoning, eventually. Just think about our newly elected President, Joe Biden. This is his third time running for the office of President. In both of the first two times he never made it past the primaries and I don’t at all believe it was because he wasn’t prepared enough for the job, or that he wouldn’t have made an excellent President both of those times, but yet the office eluded him. He had been Vice President at least and had come to terms with the fact that being President wasn’t meant to be. But God clearly had other plans.
I don’t think that was by coincidence, but rather by sheer design. I think God knew there was going to be a more dire time in this country in which He was preparing Joe Biden for. I think given who he is, to his very core, his empathy, his knowledge, his preparedness he is the perfect President in the current circumstances this country is in.
Our timing is not always in line with God’s timing and I think if we always got everything we wanted, exactly when we wanted it, we might not be well positioned for the purpose God has for us at the time in which He needs us to be ready. He allows us to go through the obstacles and struggles we do, not because he wants us to suffer, but because he needs to build us up and provide us with the strength and fortitude we will need to endure the journey He has mapped out for us.
The next time you have a question about what God is bringing you through or why you’re not where you think you need to be yet just keep in mind what God may be preparing you for. Just make sure that you are ready when it is your time. God has a role for each and every one of us but we must be in position when called upon.

Is There Still Hope for The Dream?

I wasn’t sure what I wanted to say today but I knew that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was going to be the subject of this post. So I went to pull up the full “I have a Dream” speech on YouTube because it’s been a long time since I’ve heard the speech in its entirety. As I sat there listening, it was mind blowing just how relevant and powerful his words still are to this very day.

Now I don’t know if that is telling to the staying power of his words or to the sadness that they still ring true. In essence, we may have come far but within these last few years we seemed to have taken several steps backwards.  I guess you would have to listen for yourself to determine which one it is for you. For me it’s a bit of both. Yes of course those words he spoke that day still matter, even more so now, because before the last four years we were starting to see some of those dreams manifested and brought to fruition. Or were we?

We thought that we had started to see some change with President Obama because he was someone who truly took those words of Dr. King’s to heart and he embodied them and strived, with much opposition, to make those dreams a reality. We thought we had come farther, but within the last four years we have seen certain strides that were taken being walked back immensely. It makes you wonder, had we really even made any change? Was it all surface accomplishments but underneath, the roots, were still very present and had not yet been weeded out enough to allow sustainable growth?

That day on August 28th of 1963, Dr. King said that America needed to pull itself out of the quicksand of racial injustice in where people of color lived on an island of poverty amongst a vast ocean of material prosperity. He point out that America had not kept its promise to us and that it was in for a rude awakening if it expected things to go back to business as usual.  I think that he would be disheartened to see all of his words continually quoted by people who clearly have no deep understanding of what they actually mean because if they did then they would see that we only seek “the riches of freedom and the security of justice.”

I think if he were still alive that he would find himself having to repeat those same words he spoke to those gathered around the Lincoln Memorial that day. I think he would feel obligated to remind the entitled groups of people who think the rules don’t apply to them that equality is not wrong, it is not unreasonable, and it is not unattainable.

I think he would also turn to those who have grown weary and tired, and yes complacent amongst those who would like to revert back to a time that our ancestors struggled so hard to lead us out of and tell them to keep moving forward. I think he would tell them that we cannot be satisfied with the status quo and we most certainly cannot leave this country in the fragmented state that we find ourselves in today. I think that he would remind people who are angry because we’re still explaining that we just want equality that they have to continue to strive for freedom but not by “drinking from a cup of bitterness and hatred.”

The song that plays at the very beginning of the recording of his speech is “We Shall Overcome” and as I listened to the words in that song, and replayed the words of his speech, I have to say that even in the current state of this country, I still have hope that we will be okay. I still think that Dr. King’s Dream is going to come true, someday, but we can’t give up, and we have to keep moving forward, until we are all Free At Last.  

Until next time… #BeFearless #BeBrave #BeRelentless

Jimmetta Carpenter 

Writer/Editor 

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The Image We Portray

As I watched the events at the Capitol building unfold last week I not only felt a profound sadness but I also felt concerned about what other countries thought of America when they watched this chaos ensue. How have we been representing ourselves to other nations? I was reading my devotional today and one of the messages talked about being a good representative of God.

We are made in His image and everything we do reflects on Him. Countless times I’ve heard people say they don’t have faith in God and in what God can do in our lives and through our lives. I myself, had a period of time (well over a decade ago) where my faith was shaky and I had those same feelings but it wasn’t because I didn’t necessarily believe in God, it was more so because there were so many un-Christian like representations of Him that it made me questions things.

I of course no longer feel that way anymore because my main focus is on how I can be a good representation of God and how I can fulfill the purpose he has placed on me to achieve. I do still, however, worry about the images that we as a people, as a country, as Christians, are projecting into this world. I want everyone to see and to know how good God is and the miracles that can take place in your life when you represent Him well and dive into living out the purpose He has for us.

By us fulfilling our dreams and purpose in life we can become and remain a very good representative of who God is and of what He can do in our lives. I want people to not follow behind those who are not a good likeness of Him. Be mindful of the image that you are putting forth for the world to see because rest assured, people are watching and they are most certainly taking notice. Until next time… #BeMindful #BeDriven #BetheChange

 

Jimmetta Carpenter 

Writer/Editor 

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Continuing to Build on the Vision

“Then the LORD answered me and said: “Write the vision And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it.”

~Habakkuk 2:3

Listening to the first message of the New Year preached by my Pastor in my virtual church setting I felt as if it was an answer to some things that I had not yet worked up the courage to ask God about. Direction that I suppose I was reluctant to ask for because I had thought I had known so clearly in which way to go next and yet during these last few weeks of rest and restoration of my creativeness I seemed to be slightly stuck. Or maybe the more apt way to put it was that I was unsure if I was correct in the way I had perceived that I was to go. I was ready to write down my plans for the year but I kept hesitating when it came to putting pen to paper and plans on physical calendars. It’s like God knew that I needed to be nudged or reassured and decided to speak to me yesterday morning.

I’m sure there will be some slight corrections as I walk my path this year but after the message and reading the scriptures in the service, plus my devotionals later on, I think that I am starting this year on the right track. My journey to where I’m going surely seems to be modeled after the story of the tortoise and the hare, with me clearly being the tortoise but I am reminded in that story that slow and steady wins the race.

I suppose it doesn’t matter how long one takes to reach and fulfill the purpose that has been to them so long as you get there following the directions you were given, no short cuts, no avoiding of the adversities that may come along the way. After all those adversities may very well be the lessons that the next person needs that comes behind you.

One thing is for sure when it comes to fulfilling a purpose and achieving your goals. You should write them down. Don’t just keep them in your head out of uncertainty or out of fear that maybe you aren’t on the right track. It’s much easier to discern how to get back on course if you can visibly see where it is that you went off course at.

Writing down your goals is imperative to getting them done so take some time today, if you haven’t already, and write down what you plan on getting accomplished this year. If you feel like sharing let me know what a few of them are. If you’d like, go check out what my goals are for this year on my YouTube channel. Happy New Year everyone and until tomorrow… #BeAmbitious #BePersistent #BeFearless

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

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Breaking for Creative Rejuvenation

This will be my last post of the year 2020 (and what a year it’s been) and I just wanted to tell my readers and followers how much I appreciate you all. I come here to pour my heart out to you in hopes of not just being able to sort things out for myself but also in hopes that I can have an effect on someone else out there. I would like to think that I inspire some of you and even if it’s not with actual successes, then with the lessons that I have learned from failing often because failing just simply proved that I have tried and as long as you are trying can you truly say that you have failed. There is truth in that saying that nothing beats a failure but a try because when you don’t try you don’t actually know what can happen.

I applaud all of you this year, in a year full of uncertainty and heartbreak and truly rough times, for the sheer fact that you have made it through and that you didn’t let this year dictate anything to you. You tried in spite of the odds maybe being against you. You gave to others regardless of the fact that you more than likely didn’t have much to give yourself. You gave words of hope and encouragement to others who needed it even while trying to find that hope and encouragement deep down within yourself. You have put yourself out there and became an inspiration for others shooting for their dreams, all while struggling to see your own dreams through. You are strong and important and I love all of you.

I have some things that I’m working on for the coming year. I’ve got some books that are finally going to be released next year and other ideas, for the magazine, for my YouTube channel and other Write 2 Be related things and I have to go off and refill my creative well so that I can come back with fresh and new ideas and inspiration for you all. I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Until next time… #BeInspired #BeMotivated #BeRenewed

Jimmetta Carpenter 

Writer/Editor 

https://write-2-be.com/

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