Knowing you and Embracing you

Becoming a person of authenticity and purpose isn’t easy to do, and it doesn’t happen overnight. It takes hard work, deliberate effort and patience…lots of patience. To become a person of purpose, it’s almost like you’re training for the run of your life or for the fight of a lifetime.

Purpose follows persistence and persistence follows passion.

PASSION –> PERSISTENCE –> PURPOSE

Sometime, you will walk along life’s path and not really have a clue as to what your purpose is, and if you’re seeking that answer, this season of unknowing can be incredibly frustrating!! But, just as I’ve heard Pastor T.D. Jakes preach,

You’ve got to figure out what your passions are. When you figure that out, you’re half way there to finding your purpose! Just continue in that passion. Fine tune your strengths. Figure out your weaknesses and work to improve those areas needed. Get a coach who can challenge you and “get in your grill,” someone who will cheer you and not take “No” or “I quit” as answers. Keep pushing forward until you realize you’re working in your purpose.

Just as a boxer finally knocks out his opponent when he stays persistent in the fight, always looking for the weakness of his foe, and just as a runner finally crosses the finish line when she stays persistent even when her legs scream “just quit,” you will become an authentic person of purpose when you keep on keepin’ on!! 😉

Find You. Know YOU. Embrace you. Become who you were meant to be! You can do this! I believe in you!! 💕

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Knowing You and Letting Go

When you’ve gotten to know you, only then, can you let go of who you are not. Because this is such a simple statement, this may sound silly or even a little cliche; yet, it is so very true. When you don’t truly know who you are, you can’t rightly let go of who you might have been pretending to be.

Often, when we start pretending to be something, or someone, we’re not, we lose our true identity. We get lost in the fantasy, the struggle and the desire to be that other person, and that facade will become a false reality for as long as we will live it. It becomes a place of comfort and security while, in reality, the fallacy eats away at our very being.

Everyone around us can see it. Anyone who gets close and is tuned into reality will recognize the fake for what it truly is, and more often than not, those people will eventually remove themselves from our orbit without us ever realizing why they left. To me, this is one of the saddest places to be in life, because that person is so wrapped up in their own lies that he/she can’t even recognize reality until the painful truth slaps them in the face either by tragedy, self-harm or broken relationships that bring about a sense of desperation for truth.

So, tune into the real you. Stare hard into that mirror in the morning and be that the little boy on Hook, who wiped Peter’s face until he could find Peter Pan. Find YOU. Embrace YOU, and learn to love YOU. Then, you will become authentic, and others will be drawn to that new you. 💕

Knowing YOU

I’ve been sharing for the last few days on the subject of authenticity. This is such a great word, and everybody is better off when we all embrace it to it’s fullest. Yet, as I posted those blogs, I started thinking how maybe some people resist authenticity, not necessarily, because they like to be fake, but rather, because they don’t really know themselves.

It made me think of the movie, Runaway Bride, when Julia Roberts’ character has to go “find herself” before she can commit to what she’s purposed to do. (Trying not to give any spoilers here! 😜) Now, I’m not a big advocate of dropping all your commitments to go “find yourself,” because I think, too often, this is used as a cop-out to simply be lazy or rebellious toward the commitments you’ve made. However, my point is this…

You can never be authentic until you truly know and embrace who you are!*

So, get to know that person staring back at you in the mirror every morning. Stare hard. Stare long. Ask questions and answer them, even when they’re hard ones that scream for honesty.

What are my likes? What are my dislikes? Why do I laugh? Why do I cry? What do I believe? For what, in what, or in whom, do I hope? In whom, or what, do I put my trust? When am I the most scared? When am I the most lonely? When am I the most confident and why?

There are a gazillion questions to ask and answer. This may take awhile. Even if it takes the rest of your life, don’t stop asking and never stop answering.

That’s the only way you can truly realize who you are. Draw out that heart within. Reach down deep and find the depths of your soul. Is it shallow, or are the measures endless and complex? True self-evaluation and self-analyzation helps to recognize, acknowledge, challenge and change those things that need alteration and improve those things which are just needing tweaking or strengthening.

Having a mentor, a life coach or just a truth speaking friend will also help you to find yourself and be the “true you,” but these thoughts will be held for another day.

Now, get out there and get to know YOU; so, you can let that authenticity blossom!! 😉

*Note to the wise: the real truth in who you are can, actually, only be found when you come to know the Creator of who you are, and that, my friend, will be a full post for another day very soon; however, you can start on that path of discovery today: Proverbs 9:10; John 1:1; John 3:16

Tuesday’s Treats #142

O’Shucks

Location: Loganville, Ga

If you’re looking for a great little seafood dive, and you’re miles and miles from the coast, check out O’Shucks. I promise you, you’ll be surprised! From the moment you walk in the door, you’ll feel like you walked into a little dockside restaurant on a He beach. The atmosphere is so fun!

I’m sorry this pic looks skimpy but we had already dove into these yummy bites before I captured the shot! Yet, I did want you to see how tasty these are!!

The food is great! There are all kinds of seafood selections, and some that might just surprise you like redfish and conch fritters. We ordered bacon wrapped shrimp for the appetizer, the TNT burger, blackened redfish and chicken fingers. Yeah, we have some land lovers among us. 😂 Everything was delicious, and although, (obviously) I wouldn’t say it’s, “fresh right out of the sea” kind of seafood, it is still very delicious! Being from Florida, my craving for good seafood can be very disappointed while living inland Georgia; however, this place impressed me.

Now, for desserts, many of them are homemade. I ordered the apple pie this time, and it was decent, but when we go again, I am ordering their brownie ala mode. It is to die for!

So, if you’re stuck inland for awhile and have to get some good seafood at not the outrageous-fancy-place-prices, drive over to O’Shucks and give them a try! They have two locations: Winder and Loganville.

Give Yourself Permission: Authenticity

Too many of us grow up believing we must conform to society, or be molded after our family’s traditions, or conform to our friends’ desires, or even be completely yielded to our parents’ or spouses wishes. When we’ve been constantly conditioned to surrender and submit all willpower, all defiance, all choice to the determination of another, authenticity can escape us, and we might not even realize it.

It really takes hard work to be authentic, because not everyone is going to agree with you on everything. It takes a dogged mindset to remain real when the world around us is full of so much fake that is sold to the highest bidder. It even takes a mental stubbornness to remain grounded in your own beliefs, standards and choices for life, especially if you have someone close to you whom you seek to have their approval, affection or admiration.

The coveting of another’s love can wreak havoc on one’s conviction to be authentic. At times, it will even take some self-denial to preserve true genuineness of soul, because our natural tendency toward selfishness can, often, override authenticity to the point of creating a self-righteous, self-approved, self-promoted state of being, which is never truly authentic in the matters of the heart.

A true authentic being is one who knows herself, the good, the bad and the ugly, and is fully aware of what needs improvement, and is willing to make the, sometimes, hard adjustments to bring the kind of change that will not simply “turn over a new leaf,” but change that will also be magnetic to cause others to desire this same type of transformation to become authentic.

Authenticity comes with a price. Those willing to pay it will reap it’s amazing benefits. Those who refuse will grow stagnant in the mundane, duplicity and hypocrisy of life, until they eventual die a slow, cruel death of fake relationships, dual personalities and a foul, unreliable character.

So, it is up to you, and it up to me.

What will you choose?

I will strive to choose authenticity.

Be Brave. Be Authentic.

Authenticity takes courage and boldness to obtain. This is not because it’s hard to achieve, but rather, because it takes effort and a deliberate decision to be real, not only with others, but with ourselves. It also takes a true appreciation of ourselves, a sort of self-love.

I say, “sort of,” because I’d like to clarify this word I chose. The kind of “self love” I’m talking about isn’t this cultural self love where everyone has to agree with you, appreciate you and understand to for you to be able to “carry on” in your daily routines of living. That kind of attitude has been misrepresented as self love, when all that is is pure SELFISHNESS. No, true self love is when you can appreciate who you are AND who you are not. It is an understanding of your strengths AND your weakness and having the ability to love yourself through all of them. It is even the ability to be able to ask for help when needed, realizing that you’re not made perfect, and there are other people in this world who are better than you, more capable than you and even, sometimes, who aren’t even going to like you.

But you can be ok with that, because you’ve come to grips with who you are and who you are not. You love yourself for it; you’re wearily working on the improvements you need, and you’re okay with those who don’t like who you are, because you’re not living for them anyway! THAT’S authenticity, and that’s “the bravest and most adventurous way to live!”😉💗

Authenticity is Magnetic

Not to steal someone else’s quote, but to requote Daniellelaporte.com, “Authenticity IS magnetic! When you are your true self, people will be drawn to you. Uniqueness is intriguing. Genuiness is both compelling and appealing. Try it. You might just find you like it, and others do, too! 😉

*Note: if your “true self” is just simply a jerk, you may be a bit more repelling than compelling; so, please, do self evaluate. If you’re more of a total jerk than a friendly person, this might not work so well. You might actually have to “Fake it till ya make it, baby!” 😉😂

Authenticity is Attractive

Have you met someone who acted one way in front of a crowd and was totally different behind the scenes? I’ve heard and read this a lot about certain actors in Hollywood and various TV celebrities. They might be amazing actors on the screen, full of love, class and debonair, but get them out of the spotlights, and they are complete jerks!

It’s a lot like this iceberg above. It looks small, unimposing and practically a tiny island unto itself. Yet, the underside is dangerous, imposing and all together vicious to any ships that may sail within its grasp. There are plenty of stories to be found of heartbreak and tragedy when even the largest of vessels have encountered these mammoths of the frozen world.

When you are not authentic, you can leave a path of destruction and death behind. Authenticity can be quirky, against the mainstream or status quo, and definitely not trendy or cliquish. Yet, authenticity is the most attractive thing you can wear, because even if you are different, your honesty of self is refreshing and a thing to comfort to all who meet you.

Authenticity draws people to want more. Uniqueness causes people to take a second look. Genuineness pulls people close like the warmth of a fire.

Be your authentic self. Embrace your uniqueness. Be genuine. Don’t paint a mask for anyone, because when you do, one day, you’ll be caught in a thunderstorm, and everything you’ve painted will be washed away. Then, no one will even recognize you for the reality of who you’ve become.

Tuesday’s Treats #141

El Ray Mexican Grill

Location: Bethlehem, Georgia

The atmosphere was great, and the food was delicious. Honestly, it might not be my absolute favorite Mexican grill, but it was defining tasty. The staff is very friendly, and if you need to do some shopping after dinner, you’re in the right spot! Check out the menu and location here.

Tuesday’s Treats #140

Universal Joint

Location: Clayton, Ga

This little gem is situated right downtown in the North Georgia mountain town of Clayton. There’s always a crowd; so, show up early, or plan to fight for a seat. Lol! There’s some seating inside, as well as, plenty of patio seating.

The staff is friendly, and the food is yummy. We always like to start with the Pimiento Cheese Plate and follow it with burgers, tator tots and a cold, sweet ice tea. I used to get the brisket sandwich all the time, but somewhere along the way, they started getting one a little too salty; so, now I just stick to the burgers, and they’re always delicious. They have other sandwiches, salads and apps from which to choose. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed with much of anything you get. So, head on over and check it out! And since it’s October already, be sure to drive on up the road just a bit to Black Rock Mountain State Park Ana check out the beautiful fall colors! 😉