Write the Vision and Make It Plain

“Then the Lord answered me and said: Write the Vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come, It will not tarry.”

~ Habakkuk 2:2

Write the vision and make it plain post

So I was listening to the Steve Harvey Morning show the other morning and it was the end of the show when he usually imparts some words of wisdom for his listeners. This morning he talked about writing your goals and your vision down. He made a point that (and I’m paraphrasing) writing down the goals helps you to visualize the vision in a way that you can’t visualize it if it just remains in your head.

Hearing that made me think about when my focus had gotten off track before and all of the times that I have been thrown off my writing flow it had been during a time frame where I had stopped writing down my goals and my dreams for one reason or another. For someone like me who is a planner, and who likes to have most things planned out to the tee it is hard for me to operate when I don’t have things planned out. I struggle to tow the line between planning things out excessively and not planning things at all to try and not be so obsessive. I think that I’ve realized that I need the structure of planning things out because it is how I am able to see the bigger picture.

There are plenty of people who like to tell me how unattainable my dreams are and all of the reasons that none of them will ever materialize into reality. I will even admit that sometimes I let their rejection of my aspirations deter me from the end goal. However, having them written out, having a vision board that shows me what my end game is, having a certain amount of belief in my overall vision, is what focuses me in the end. It’s not that having a physical representation of my dreams quiets the naysayers, but rather it helps me tune out their voices of belittlement (most of the time anyway) and persevere in the vision that I have, the purpose in which God gave me.

It is so much easier to fight for a dream in which you can visualize what it would look like to reach that goal. It’s true that you can’t see years into the future and that there’s no real way to predict how it all will turn out but you still have to keep your eyes on the road ahead of you to get yourself to the next part in the journey. If you have nothing to aim for, no goal in your sights, then what are you really working towards. Can you see what the end goal will be? Can you visualize your journey? Visualize and believe in yourself! The season you’re in right now is not the season that you will stay in forever!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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Plant Seeds, Water Dreams, and Persist Until Success Blooms

 

planting the Seeds of Dreams 2I’ve been thinking a lot about the time limits we impose upon ourselves when it comes to getting the things we want done. For a planner like me who had her life plans mapped out from the time I was ten years old it is extremely disheartening when things get thrown so far off course that you don’t even recognize the road you’re on anymore. A childhood friend of mine read my blog post the other day about going back to the beginning of a dream and provided some much needed words of encouragement that I needed to hear. He reminded me that just because I have not yet accomplished the things that I thought I would have by now that it doesn’t mean that I won’t. He reminded me that a lot of times the success comes later on in life and he let me know that he still believed in me as he always had since the 8th grade poem that a group of us wrote together.

True enough, my plans for making an established career as a writer have not worked out quite the way that I envisioned but I’m not completely sure that I would change things. I can say that now because hindsight is twenty-twenty and looking back at some of the things that certain detours in my plan have brought into my life (one main blessing being my daughter) I can honestly say that I wouldn’t trade the experiences that I’ve had or the obstacles that I have had to work through for anything. I think that when I finally do reach the position in my writing career that I am striving for that those same obstacles and experiences will provide a great foundation for the lasting success that I saw for myself from the very beginning.

There are no time limits on when a person can achieve the success that they are looking for in life. We would like to get to the level of success we desire in a hurry and sometimes that can end up being to our detriment because far too often people aren’t really truly ready for the success they are seeking. I think that we’re often tested to gauge whether or not we’re even serious about what it is that we say we want. Will we throw our dreams away at the first sign of a major hurdle? Will we get halfway down the path to our goals and then get so impatient with how long it’s taking that we turn and double back before we’ve even reached the end of the road? Just how important could our dreams be if we run away from them at the first sign of resistance?

I think things happen for a reason, be it good or bad, and we have to be sure that the journey we are on has our full commitment and that our plans of action matches our level of desire. We can’t just quit on the dreams we have because it gets a little harder than we thought it would be to achieve them. They say that the hardest battles come with the sweetest victories so just imagine how sweet the success will be if you don’t give up on the goal just because the storm became too hard to bear. You’ve already planted the seed so just make sure you keep watering the dream!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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Along the Way

Along the way

Let’s talk about appreciating your journey! When you are pursuing your goals and dreams there is no telling just how long the journey will be to reach your destination. If you are low in the patience department like I am then you want more than anything for it all to come together overnight. You want to be able to map out an efficient plan, put in the action, and quickly see the rewards of all of your hard work and effort.

We can sometimes get so caught up in the end game of what our plans are that we take for granted the small victories that happen along the way. We don’t take the time to celebrate the accomplishments that we manage to achieve as we go along. We want the pace towards success to be quick and preferably painless but that’s not the reality of most people’s journey in life. We even waste time comparing the trajectory of other people’s journey to ours. We get so busy looking over on their road, trying to see how fast they’re going that we miss the scenery of our own journey.

Your journey is your own and you should go at whatever pace is comfortable for you but don’t miss out on the journey trying to rush the process. Stop dwelling on the things that you haven’t been able to check off of your list yet. Appreciate where you are right now and the progress that you have made so far. Don’t rush the journey. Instead, take your time to enjoy the scenery along the way!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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The Words We Tell Ourselves

Be Careful what you say to yourself

Let’s talk about self-doubt! I think everyone can admit, if they are being honest with themselves, that they talk to themselves. We tend to debate with our own conscience and question our every move, oftentimes second guessing things that we instinctually believe to be good initial decisions. We are sometimes our biggest champions but we can also tend to be our own worst critics. If something doesn’t go the way we think it should, or the way that we had planned it to go we lose a little bit of hope each time our plans falter. The problem that I don’t think that we realize we are inviting is that we are now speaking negative outcomes to things that we have positive intentions for.

It does no good to speak positively about what we are wishing to accomplish and then turn around and name all of the reasons that we think will cause us to inevitably fail. That negative self-talk that we do to ourselves is precisely what can change the course of things because now we’ve spoken negativity into the goals and dreams that we once had such a positive outlook on. There is no guarantee how anything that we map out will ever go so to talk ourselves down from following through with any idea we have, already assuming that it won’t become a reality, is just us sabotaging ourselves.

We have to be more mindful of how we talk to ourselves. We have to take special care to make sure that we are not talking ourselves out of things simply because we’re afraid that we may not succeed in it. We have to make sure that we are not talking down to our own inner conscience and that the negativity that someone else may be projecting onto you doesn’t get ingrained within our deepest thoughts. We have to make sure that we are our biggest and loudest cheerleaders and that the criticism that we give ourselves isn’t negative but rather constructive. How you talk to yourself matters, probably more than anything anyone could ever say to you. So be kind to yourself and always believe in the power that is within you. You are your greatest champion!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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Even Baby Steps Keep You Moving Forward

Baby Steps move you forward 1

Let’s talk about consistency! Do you remember when you were a kid and you discovered your passion, your dream. The moment when you realized that you actually had the talent to do what you dream of doing. You see others doing what you are only dreaming about at this beginning phase and it seems as if they have everything all together and sorted out and to you it would appear that they gained their success fairly quickly because of course you don’t see all the hard work that went into how they got to where they are.

You immediately think, well I’ve got talent just like they do and so it shouldn’t take me long at all and I think I could become an overnight success. When you’re just starting to work towards your goals you have this strange notion that talent will actually be enough and everything else can follow later. Of course when you get older is when you start to realize that there is some hard work and effort that goes into making your dreams become a reality and you start to come to terms with the fact that being an overnight success isn’t really possible.

Success comes in baby steps and it comes with a large dose of consistency. You are never going to get where you are trying to go by thinking that giant leaps are the only way that you are going to get there. Most of your journey is going to be taken in baby steps and you have to remain vigilant in your pursuit of your goals. There is no such thing as an overnight success. Even those who have managed to make it happen quicker than others, still didn’t achieve what they gained overnight.

So the next obstacle that gets in your way, and slows you down, don’t quit. Don’t just stop in your tracks and allow yourself to get stuck, or worse to turn around and move backwards. If you come up against an obstacle buckle down and dig your heels in deeper. The road is not going to be smooth the whole way through but if you keep pressing forward, and keep taking smaller steps at a time instead of trying to take these long strides you will reach your destination in due time.

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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Patience Through the Struggle

Patience Through the Struggle

Lets talk about patience! I remember sitting in church a few Sundays ago listening to my Pastor talk about having hope as we go through life. He talked about how suffering doesn’t always necessarily mean a negative experience, but simply just an experience. Then he said something that really struck a chord with me. He said too often we get impatient and we tend to walk away before the experience is through and before God has a chance to bring us through to the other side of it.

It made me think about my level of patience (which admittedly I have very little of) and had me questioning myself how many times have I walked away from something because it wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be, or should be. How many times have I just thrown in the towel because I got told no and felt the sting of rejection was just too much to deal with. How many times did I give up on something I dreamt of because I was just too frustrated to tough it out.

Then it made me realize that I am in this place I’m in right now, behind on my goals and my dreams, stuck running in circles, because I didn’t stick it out and I didn’t let God finish doing his part. I guess you could say I ran out of hope, either in myself or in the purpose that God had for me. It’s almost as if I was right there, right at the goal line, just several feet away from my destination and then I would chicken out and later I would have to start over again.

Fear has always been my Achilles heel and it’s the biggest flaw that I have. Now while I know that nothing is really worth going after without a healthy dose of fear, I have been reacting to the fears that I have rather than remaining hopeful and just pushing past those fears. I had lost hope in the reality that God would never allow me to experience something that didn’t serve a greater purpose. I had lost my patience in the fact that he would never leave me and will always bring me through whatever challenges I meet along the way.

So no matter what experiences you are currently going through on your journey, remain hopeful. Don’t lose sight of the fact that God is never going to leave you and you just have to be patient so that he can bring you through to the other side.

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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Published in: on February 16, 2018 at 1:09 PM  Leave a Comment  
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Let Yourself Be Great!

Let Yourself Be Great

Let’s talk about greatness! There’s a quote that I like which says “who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?” I like this quote because it reminds me that God gave me a purpose, and with that purpose he gave me certain gifts that he intended for me to use to fulfill that purpose. With the knowledge of that in mind I know that no matter how big that purpose may seem and how much work I’m going to have to put in to achieve it, this is not something to take lightly and this is what I need to accomplish to achieve the greatness that was predestined for me.

Sometimes I get afraid that I’ve been given too big of a purpose and I start to think, well who am I to say I can do this or that but then I stop and wonder why not me. I start to think about the fact that no one would ever change the world if they ever had the notion that they might not be good enough to actually be the one to make those changes. If they opted out of even trying to fulfill their purpose imagine how that could change the course of someone else’s journey whose life they were supposed to touch.

If we stop to think about how big the objectives that we are taking on actually are we may just talk ourselves out of going after those goals to begin with. We have to give ourselves permission to not only dream the biggest dreams that we can, but also to fulfill the purpose that God gave to us. Not only do we have to give ourselves permission to live the life God meant for us to live but we have to truly believe that we can.

Being great requires that you believe in your purpose and in your abilities. You can’t be great if everyone else around you has to convince you that you are. You have to find it within yourself, for yourself. It may not be easy if you are pulling yourself out of a dark place but if you give yourself permission then you can not only tap into your purpose but you can truly be great. After all, who are you not to be!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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Perfection Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up to Be

Perfection Is not what its cracked up to be

Let’s talk about perfection! I think everyone, at some point in their careers, wishes for things to go perfectly. Even when logically people know that the best things that are worth having almost never come easy and that the things that come easy almost never last, people still want a smooth road to their destination. When we allow that need for perfection to keep us from going after our goals and achieving what we ultimately want it becomes more of a hindrance than a help.

I know all about striving for perfection but when I look at where that has honestly gotten me thus far, I don’t particularly like what I see. I have so many projects, books, concepts that are formulated in my mind. I plan them out, then re-plan them, and then outline the ideas to map everything out about two or three times. Then, because things still don’t seem to be fitting perfectly together just the way that I want them to, those plans, books, and concepts get stored away somewhere in a file cabinet where most ideas go to die (or get dug up years later). I think I’ve had at least two ideas of television shows that I never fleshed out and actually developed because I couldn’t get the ideas to perfectly come together in my mind and then years later I see television shows almost mirroring those ideas already created by someone else who probably didn’t wait for their idea to be completely perfect to get it done.

This is what happens when you wait on perfection. Someone else has a similar idea and they just simply get it done, perfect or not. I’ve been working really hard lately on not having to have every idea that comes to mind be perfect for me to get started working on it. I realize that perfection is not always the best thing because nothing can ever truly be perfect. There’s always going to be a tweak that could be made here, and possibly another minor adjustment there, and as a writer even when you hand over your masterpiece that may be perfect in your eyes to an editor, there is undoubtedly going to be something that that editor will see that won’t be perfect in their eyes and will need to be changed anyway.

So if you are sitting on an idea for a book, for a program, for a brand, for a song, or anything that you’re passionate about, stop sitting on it. Just say to hell with perfection and get started on it. No one will ever see it anyway if you don’t just put it out there, perfect or not. Odds are the less perfect the better!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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The Freedom of Being Vulnerable

Freedom in being Vulnerable 1

Let’s talk about being vulnerable! There is a certain sense of freedom that lies in being yourself and not caring what others think of what you say or do. Now I don’t mean treating anyone bad or not caring about other people’s feelings in general. I mean not letting other people’s opinions of you and what you do in your life affect how you feel about yourself or how you conduct your life.

Too many times we agonize over, not just the important life decisions that we have to make, but also how people are going to perceive the decisions that we have made. No one else’s opinions should weigh that heavily on our minds. I say this having struggled with the disease of caring too much myself but I have done a lot of work to get to a point where I no longer care about what other people feel about what I do anymore. I mean yeah I take critique and advice but in the end the choice will be something that I want not what someone else wants me to choose.

Being yourself and trusting that people will accept you, with all your flaws, is allowing yourself to be vulnerable and being vulnerable is what allows you to open up and do things that you otherwise would normally never do. Being vulnerable allows you to be more fearless and to courageously pursue your goals and dreams. Being yourself affords you the ability to stop feeling the need to apologize for being ambitious and focused on what your needs are to achieve your future goals.

I don’t think you can truly go for what you want without allowing yourself to feel a certain amount of vulnerability. So when you start worrying about what everyone else thinks about what you’re doing in your life, stop. How other people view you is not something that you should concern yourself with because if someone has their mind made up about you already then there’s nothing you can do to change that. Trust in yourself and who you are and let that be enough to propel you towards your destination.

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

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There Is No Dream That Is Too Big

NO Dream too big 2

So I want to talk about dreaming big. I watched this video podcast the other day by the wonderful Nikki Woods (who was the producer for the Tom Joyner Morning Show) and she was discussing how your dreams should scare you. Initially I thought, well why would I ever want my dreams to scare me? That wouldn’t inspire me to accomplish them, but rather, it would make me want to hide in the fear.

As I listened to the podcast I understood more in depth what she was saying, and it wasn’t as if I hadn’t heard this before but she put it in such a way that almost made the fear sound acceptable. Not that we should ever give into the fears and let them win, as I had done for the better part of the last year and a half, almost two years, but that we should let those fears drive us to pursue what we want in an effort to dispel those very fears.

I have always been a big dreamer, with little mini dreams thrown in for good measure but I have also let the words of others deter me from going after those big dreams and keeping me at bay with the mini dreams as a consolation prize. I would constantly let their negative words of can’t, and impossible seep into my subconscious and eventually I had begun to believe them. However, I am truly working on getting rid of the negative voices around me that keep trying to be the obstacle on my path. I still have my list of big, scary dreams that seem impossible, mostly because of financial constraints. These are dreams that, no matter how many doubts I’ve had about them over the years, I have never completely lost hope in achieving them.

I suppose all that’s left to do now is stop living in the fear that they won’t be possible and just go out and make them happen, no matter what it takes or how long it takes. I think that the fight to make these dreams come to fruition will make it all even more meaningful when those big dreams that seem like a hell of a long shot become more of a reality. After all, if it’s too easy then it’s not worth it!

So whatever you’re dreaming up on your journey, you know the big scary dreams that you can never really share with anyone because if you say them out loud then someone will actually tell you just how far fetched they really are. Those are precisely the dreams that you should never put on hold. Don’t wait until the right time to go after them because let’s be honest, when is there ever really a RIGHT time to do something that only you can see the outcome in. Go for it NOW! Whatever the dream is, don’t let it die in your mind as just wishful thinking. Make it happen! It’s never too late…

Check out my interview with Nikki Woods on Write 2 Be Magazine https://write2bemagazine.com/2015/01/29/author-interview-with-nikki-woods/

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

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