Author: SharRon Jamison

Sometimes You See Better With Your Eyes Closed

Imagination!

Imagination is so important!

When I young, my elders would say, “sometimes you see better with your eyes closed.”

If I was tired, sad, or frustrated, they would remind me to close my eyes so I could SEE visions and dreams. They knew I would feel better, happier, safer, and more powerful if I could SEE beyond my reality.

Imagination!

So, what’s imagination. According to the dictionary, “the faculty or action of forming new ideas, or images, or concepts of external objects not present to the senses.”

 

Family, right now, our world needs to use its imagination. We need to see something different because what we are seeing is hurting our souls.

Mass killings, violence, vitriol.

Domination, aggression, anger.

Death, rising COVID numbers, and reluctance to follow safety measures.

Toxic masculinity, white supremacy, plots of revenge.

Unemployment, underemployment, divisive work cultures.

Voter disenfranchisement, degrading social media posts, selfishness.

Whitewashed narratives, spiritual bypassing, racial gaslighting.

Fear-mongering, police brutality, civil unrest.

Loneliness, despair, physical abuse.

Our world is living in fear, and our collective anxiety is swallowing us up into an abyss of madness, misery, and mayhem.

We are being strangled by our collective grief, and we are becoming numb to pain. We are living fragmented lives, and many of us struggling. The increase in mental illness and abuse proves we are living in perilous times – times which we are not psychologically equipped to endure.

Though emotionally exhausted and spiritually depleted, we are doing our best to survive in a harmful environment that toxic individualism, systemic oppression, and unbridled greed created.

Yes, our harmful culture was man-made and perpetuated by laws, policies, and practices designed by the powerful, reinforced by the greedy, and co-signed by the silent and apathetic.

My friend, we need to imagine something different if we are to heal our past, thrive in the future, and live together in peace. 

My elders were wise; imagination is the beginning of new possibilities and healing. And I believe that there are 4 types of imagination that can help us SEE bigger and better. All 4 types challenge us to reflect on critical questions that affect humanity.

Prophetic Imagination – What you can predict, hope or SEE for yourself and others to help the community weather the storm and build a better future?

Spiritual Imagination – What can you imagine your Creator doing for you and to you? And most of all, what can you imagine your Creator doing THROUGH you and AS you so you can contribute to the world?

Liberatory Imagination – What can you imagine doing and being if you were fully liberated from oppressive systems, white supremacy, social conditioning, need to please, old trauma, toxic traditions, the fear of rejection, the status quo, or any other factor that limits how you and others live?

Collaborative Imagination – What could you do if you could work, live and share with people who lived, loved, prayed, spoke, believed, voted, and talked differently than you do? How could you join hearts and hands to uplift those in need, speak for those who didn’t have a voice, or share with the poor? How could you work with others to dismantle systems that devalue others?

What I know for you sure: When you can imagine something better than your current reality, you can hope, dream, and work for a better life. You can reclaim your hope, reignite your courage, and mobilize for change.

Click here to listen to the IG Live.  Click here to listen on YouTube.

As we continue to face many complex problems and challenging times, please close your eyes and imagine something safer, better, bolder, and fairer.

And then determine how you can support yourself and others to transform the ethos and the policies of the world.

I am praying and thinking of you.

Please share this message with those who need hope.

What Do Already KNOW But Refuse To Accept?

After 30 years of working with people, one thing I know for sure is that most people really know the truth.

They may deny it, dilute it, denounce it, devalue it, distance themselves for it, but they KNOW.

And it is the KNOWING that creates the crisis.

It is the KNOWING that something no longer serves their highest good that causes the dis-ease, the disruption, and the disconnection in their families, careers, and their relationships.

It is the KNOWING that their current circumstance or their current choice contradicts their calling or their character.

It is the KNOWING that causes anxiety and misalignment.

The truth: Living in that “I know but I don’t want to know place” is acutally dangerous to the soul and psyche.

In fact, if you decide to live in this toxic place for too long, you suffer; your health, happiness, and wholeness are comprised. Most of all, you sacrifice living a life that supports, sustains, and satisfies you.

So, what do you really know that you are trying NOT to know? Take a few minutes and answer these questions.

  • Do you know what relationships contradict your values?
  • Do you know how your chosen career is preventing you from pursuing your divine calling?
  • Do you know why you are investing your time and money in everything except your own development?
  • Do you know why you keep walking into dead-end jobs and joining toxic organizations?
  • Do you know why you are blaming others for your unhappiness instead of cultivating a life that inspires you?
  • Do you know why you are conflating your income with your identity?

What do you know that you are trying NOT to know?

Once you answer those questions, you will be free to create a life that honors you and the God in you!

As I stated in Deciding to Soar 1….”Living a lie will make you die,” and the death will be slow, subtle, and painful.

You don’t want that!

You deserve better!

You deserve to live a life of peace and joy!

We all do.

Let’s Dare To Soar Higher Together!

 

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10 Questions To Get You Moving Towards More Joy

Are you ready to create, grow, or do what you were born to do?

A few days ago, I asked a powerful group of courageous, brilliant, truth-seeking women 10 important questions to help them prepare for the second quarter of 2021.

Though very self-aware, their answers to my questions revealed they were not living their highest, most truthful expressions of themselves. (That was their assessments, not mine.)

Why were the self-assessments so critical?

Because they were all embarking on new paths – new jobs, new relationships, new faith beliefs, and new businesses. And because they were entering new phases of their lives, they desired clarity. These women wanted to understand what kept them small and dissatisfied.

Their willingness to accept feedback blew me away. They were not invested in keeping secrets, hiding their weaknesses, or accepting their blind spots. They yearned for insight and illumination, and they opened their heart to hear critiques from other women without fearing judgment. It was amazing to witness such transparency and vulnerability.

Their mental break-throughs, aha moments, and deep revelations made me reflect on the questions, too. I also wanted to ensure that I was not overlooking or ignoring some truths about myself. And after deep reflections, I wept. As I peeled back layers from old wounds that I thought were healed, I cried because the questions challenged my “wokeness,” and invited me to look deeper at how I had been conditioned, colonized, and confused about my talent, skills, and God-given mission. The experience was painful, yet purposeful.

The experience was so powerful that I wanted to share the questions with you, and I hope the questions pierce through your emotional armor too. The more you delve deeper into your own soul, the easier it is to create a life that aligns with your needs.

The truth: so much is happening in the world, but if we are clear about who we are, we can make better choices that support our desires. We can be more anchored in who we are, more intentional about who we are becoming, and more committed to being a light in the world. We can be more alive, aware, and awake to our intuition and to the Spirit. We can grow, heal, and serve at the highest level of our ability and calling.

Here are the questions:

  •  When did you stop being curious about who you are and what you were created to be?
  • When did you decide to settle for less than you desire?
  • When did you start feeling disqualified for more?
  • Why do you keep believing that you don’t need others?
  •  What is constantly conforming costing you, and how long can your soul pay the price?
  •  Why do you fear losing people who don’t really celebrate, love, and support you anyway?
  • What will you do to regain and reclaim who you are?
  • What do you need to mourn so you can move on?
  • Who are you if your degrees, accomplishments, and social personas are stripped away?
  • How do you represent your values when you are surrounded by people who believe differently?

 

Hard questions. Yes!

Important and life-changing questions. Yes!

But these are the questions that will galvanize and guide you to be who you were created to be.

Remember, you don’t have to forfeit YOU to fit with THEM – whatever and whoever “them” may be

Take a few minutes and answer the questions.

Then, dare to be different and by daring to be YOU!

It’s time to SOAR HIGHER!

P.S. I will be sending out all these questions and more in my newsletter. Click here to sign up.

Rejection May Sting, But It Does Not Have To Stop You!

Do you know many people miss out on major opportunities, love, and happiness because they fear rejection?

I don’t want to admit it, but over the years, I gave up a lot because I wanted to be liked and accepted.

For example, when I was a little girl, I scored high on standardized tests and was assigned to advanced placement classes.

I had access to better books, speakers, teachers, and other educational events, but I almost gave it up because I wanted to be accepted by my peers and my so-called “friends.”

You see, I wanted to be with the in-crowd and wanted to be popular. I knew that academic success would make me more of an outcast, and I didn’t want that. I already existed on the fringes of social acceptability because I was a black girl in a predominately white school.

Needless to say, I almost let my fear of rejection rob me of a good education. Have you ever done that?

The same thing happened early in my corporate career when I was promoted to a sales manager. Instead of my “friends” cheering for me and being happy about my promotion, they rejected me and bitterly gossiped about me. I became a pariah and was no longer invited to the dances or parties. I was crushed.

And guess what? Because I was so needy for acceptance, I almost gave up my promotion. Can you believe that? After 4 years of college and years of sacrifice, I almost derailed my career because I could not deal with rejection. 

The same thing happened in 1992 when I started my first personal training business. I wanted to teach aerobics to market myself and my budding business. Unfortunately, I was rejected by fitness studios and health clubs. According to the owners, I was too fat, white students would not attend aerobic classes taught by black women, and my music was not appropriate for “their” students. Of course, they said it nicer, but the message was clear. You are NOT teaching here.

Again, I almost let rejection stop me again from doing something that I enjoyed doing – teaching aerobics. Thankfully, I kept pushing forward and my resilience paid off. I built a clientele, won aerobic awards, and built a business called Fitness F’ness that provided fitness services for under-served markets.

The moral of the story: rejection may sting you, but it does not have to stop you. 

So, ground yourself in your truth. Surround yourself with people who support you and support your divine assignment. And most of all, trust God –  the God who made you, sustains you, and protects you as you navigate through this amazing journey called life.

You got this!

Soar!

 

 

 

 

Don’t Get Trapped In The Web Of The Status Quo

Something or someone will always try to catch you, confine you, and control you. The more you live your truth and pull away from society’s claws, the more you will be pulled, pressured, and punished to conform.

Despite your resolve to forge ahead and resist the gravitational pull of conformity, sometimes you will get stuck or trapped. Though not physically trapped, the emotional bullying, spiritual bypassing, and the mental gaslighting will create formidable barriers that are sometimes hard to overcome. And even when you try to overcome the forces that try to squash you, it’s hard to fight back.

The truth is…it takes true grit to amplify your voice, listen to your inner wisdom, walk with hope, think your own thoughts, and honor your heart. It takes incredible perseverance to forge ahead when everything around you tries to keep you sidelined, silenced, and shamed into staying in places that don’t celebrate or affirm who YOU KNOW YOU are.

But here’s the truth: Despite the opposition, you must work hard to free yourself from the status quo, and getting free won’t be easy.

Why?

There are many people invested in your subjugation, subordination, and stagnation. Remember, the status quo thrives when you are predictable, not purposeful. The status quo succeeds when you blindly comply, not boldly and bravely critique its right to exist. The status quo prevails until it’s disrupted and destroyed AND exposed and eradicated.

My friend, despite the cost, resist the status quo and get free! And know that getting free – self-liberation – will cost you something and maybe someone. Freedom isn’t and has NEVER been free; you will pay a price for freeing yourself from systems, structures, beliefs, ideologies, old wounds, and addictions.

So, how do you get free?

  • You must recognize and celebrate how amazing you are; you are human and divine.
  • You must understand, accept, and honor how incredibly talented you are; you are a one-of-kind creation with a combination of one-of-a-kind skills.
  • You must acknowledge that you have a divine calling, a sacred contract, or a spiritual assignment; you have a purpose that only you can fulfill.
  • You must believe that your birth was not happenstance; you were created to do something, be something, help something, say something, correct something, create something, untangle something, and contribute something to the world. You were born on purpose AND for a purpose; God had something special in mind when God created you.

When you can SEE yourself fully, appreciate your gifts humbly, and honor yourself deeply, you will take action that supports and aligns with your very essence. You will change, grow up, and grow into who you were created to be. Most of all, you will become invincible; nothing and no one will be able to stop you from answering your divine call.

The world needs your magic, medicine, mind, and message and you MUST do what you were created to do! You must not get trapped in the web the society wove for you.

Please hear me today: the status quo is NOT your place; it’s not worthy of you.

Leave so you can fully live!

And SOAR Higher than you have ever soared before.

Blessings!

 

*** I share more about the tyranny of the status quo in Deciding To Soar 2. You can get it here.

You Know Enough To Help

So often we downgrade our skills and we belittle our potential because we perceive others as having greater authority or seniority than we have.

Just for the record: Title and Time have nothing to do with TALENT!

Don’t minimize what you bring to the table because you are not the boss, owner, or because you are new.

Every great leader knows the value of “rookie” wisdom. Sometimes the people who have not been developed or inculcated in a system are usually the first to see pitfalls, potential, and possibilities.

Share what you know. You have a different perspective that is valuable and refreshing. You will see some advantages that others may overlook and/or minimize because you are looking through fresh eyes.

Bottom line: When it comes to success, new thoughts and ideas are always needed. Without new insight, antiquated routines will ruin you, bad habits will hurt you, and ” we have always done it this way” familiarity will prove fatal to your development and refinement.

You KNOW enough to contribute. Don’t sell yourself short!

Let’s Dare to Soar Higher!

P.S.  Be sure to sign up for the newsletter. Click here.

Happy Black History Month!

My parents didn’t have much. They were just teenagers when they had my sister and me.

Yet, they gave me something valuable. They taught me to love myself and reinforced my self-worth in a culture that insisted that I was nothing, dirty, and worthless.

They exposed me to the power, the brilliance, and the beauty of Black people. They made sure that I knew that Black people were not just slaves. And most of all, my Dad made sure that I knew that history books strategically omitted the truth of Black contributions to perpetuate the myth of white supremacy.

I am so grateful to my parents. Because even when White teachers told me that I was dumb and even when white kids bullied and degraded me, there was a sweet knowing in my soul that I was royalty.

That sweet knowing gave me the power to endure adversity. I was kicked in the back, spat on in the face, hit in the head, pushed down steps, punched in the stomach, and consistently called nigger by my classmates…..all before I entered the 3rd grade.

I was wounded, but praise God, my wounds didn’t win. Praise God that my parents gave me the ammunition to neutralize and challenge the lies that tried to confine me to a life of mediocrity, misery, and marginalization. Praise God for the Black Churches who taught scripture and Black History side by side so that Black children would know that we had a place in God’s Kindom ( not kingdom…patriarchy has no place in my life).

Happy Black History Month!

And during this precious, but short month, I pray that all people will take the time to learn and know the truth about the wealth, brilliance, diversity, and love found in the lives of Black people.

Blessings!

I Know You Can Do It, But What’s Your Plan?

I am pretty blessed. I have a few friends that have weathered depression, divorce, disease, and displacement with me. I have friends who have celebrated graduations, successes, achievements, and breakthroughs with me. I am blessed with friends who loved me enough to provide constructive critique, invest in businesses, connect me with resources, and tell me that I look a hot mess in clothes that didn’t compliment me or my body.

I am blessed. But when I reflected on what makes us stick together, I realized that we consistently say one thing to each other– “I know you can do it, but what’s your plan”.

It’s just ONE sentence, but the statement conveys the deep respect that we have for each other and for each other’s talents. We believe in each other. We trust each other’s opinions, expertise, experience, and ability to follow-through. Most of all, we hold each other accountable, and as a result; we help each other.

We share our experiences, we share our money, we share our knowledge, and we share our connections. We share because we are vulnerable; we admit what we don’t know, and we are always open to receive from each other. We all have vastly different personalities, and we are in different industries, but we freely capitalize off of each other’s distinct perspective of the world. And our unique perspectives have helped all of us grow personally and professionally because our collective intelligence is hard to match. Our shared knowledge provides great exposure and insight that we would never have alone.

This is what I know for sure. My true friends are not only my cheerleaders; they are in the game with me. They are blocking, passing, shooting, and coaching me so that I can win the game. They love me enough to make sure that I do everything possible to do and to be everything that I proclaim that I want to do to and to be.

They see my tears, but then also offer me templates. They see me cry, but they will also hand me a calculator. They will affirm me, but also want to understand my assets. They will let me share, but they will request a spreadsheet. They will listen to my vision, but also ask me about demographics, timelines, funding, and ROI. They are in it to win it with me because they believe in me, they see me, they respect me, and they love me.

They don’t exist on the sidelines of my dreams; they are participants, teammates, prayer warriors, funding sources, collaborators, investors, motivators, teachers, counselors, experts, and reputation builders. Yes, they are hard on me, but I am equally hard on them because I love them.

Who do you have in your life that provides encouragement AND expertise, reason AND resources, constructive criticism AND connections, relief AND results, goods AND goals, friendship AND feedback? Who is in your life that loves you enough to want to see/hear/help with your life plan?

You have to know to grow ,

Excerpt from my book ” I Have Learned A Few Things.”

** You can purchase the book on my website or whatever books are sold.

 

From Crisis To Collective Care

I hope you are well.  I wanted to check on you because some of the events of last week were horrifying and frightening.

Along with the rest of the world, we were stunned to watch an angry insurrectionist mob violently storm the United States Capitol building in Washington, DC. We were shocked as we watched people push through barriers, break windows, assault Capitol police officers, invade the building, create terror, and, unfortunately, cause at least five deaths.

Since last week, I have not slept well because my nervous system is still on overdrive from having been assaulted by the haunting images of violence, vitriol, and deadly entitlement.

For me, as a Black woman, the scene triggered deep emotions of fear and disgust because it represented the same kind of frenzied, racist mob energy that terrorized many of our ancestors. It dredged up images of a shameful past that included the lynchings of thousands of Black people and the burning down of scores of Black churches, homes, and businesses during the Jim Crow years of White Rage in the South. The mob that invaded the capitol building channeled the same terrifying energy that has brutalized, raped, and murdered countless Black women, children, and men. It was a revival of a destructive ugliness from our history that continues to destroy lives and livelihoods today.

So much was lost: Lives; Faith; A Sense of Safety; International Respect. 

None of us can predict the future, but what I do know is that our country will never be the same.

I also know that we are not powerless: we can affect change. The work will be hard; it will be challenging for all of us. But without doing the soul-searching work, we can’t shift or evolve into a more equitable nation or embody the principles of the American Constitution.

To effectively do the work to rebuild our county, we must:

  • Get curious and engage in honest conversations about power, privilege, and race and critically assess how all three create barriers for some and advantages for others.
  • Question our cultural assumptions and inspect our points-of-view to see how our history continues to affect and infect our future. We must check our own blind spots and biases that cloud our views of others.
  • Learn to discern truths from falsehoods and properly verify accurate information so that we do not buckle under peer pressure and blindly follow groupthink or get swept along by inflammatory views.
  • Openly listen to people who have different perspectives, different histories, different memories, and different access to the American dream so we can see what’s missing or what’s distorted.
  • Consistently find ways to build bridges with people we don’t agree with AND learn how to disagree without disconnecting and dehumanizing.
  • Invite and incorporate compassion, empathy, and psychological security into our conversations and reform our national culture that too often demonizes victims of oppression and shames them into silence.

Rebuilding our collective trust will require deep discovery and honest dialogue. It will demand that we explore the issues of racism, colorism, and colonialism so we can see patterns and pitfalls in systems that dehumanize and devalue people. Reforming our conversations and re-humanizing our culture will demand that we dismantle and re-construct how we perceive others and how we see ourselves.

If we fail to undertake this change journey, we risk replicating oppressive systems, supporting unjust laws, telling untruths, parroting lies, and perpetuating toxic thinking that will keep us marginalized and divided. And constant division will prevent us from having what we all need to thrive and to feel safe…. peace.

If you believe that undertaking this change journey can help you understand and heal our nation’s soul AND help you become a better parent, partner, leader, and business owner, I want to invite you to two unique opportunities.

  • “I Dare To Be Me” is a 6-month high-touch mastermind community where you can unpack your social conditioning and critically evaluate some of the messages you learned as a child.   Sometimes we replicate oppressive systems and internalize hurtful messages that rob us of our ability to make decisions that honor our hearts and honor the hearts of others. But when we learn our history and understand its impact on our lives, we can make personal changes that result in meaningful cultural shifts. Click here for more details.
  • Deciding To Soar 2 Book Club – is a year-long book club that gives you an opportunity to discuss and examine your life experiences. In a safe place, you will have an opportunity to talk about systemic issues and personal views that affect your life. Most importantly, you will have a chance to practice skills and create strategies to help you live a life that totally aligns with who you are and who you desire to be. Click here to learn more.

I hope you will consider joining one of the programs. We would love to add your voice and unique perspectives to the discussions.

My friend, last week, was scary. It was a frightening reminder of what happens when people hold on to outdated beliefs and paradigms that fail to honor all diversity, mutual dignity, integrity, and the collective good.

Although emotionally shaken, I am committed, like you are, to doing my part to heal the racial divide so that my grandchildren and great-grandchildren can live peacefully with your grandchildren and great-grandchildren in the years to come.

Please continue to take care of yourself because the next few weeks will be emotionally and politically challenging. Also, please stay connected to a community or join me in one of my programs or sister circles. During these times of unrest and uncertainty, nobody needs to be alone. Let’s connect.

My deepest belief is that breakdowns precede breakthroughs. We will get through this…TOGETHER!

I am thinking of you.

You can click here to learn how I can support you.

Blessings!

SharRon

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