You Matter in This Space

0DBE4034-73F5-436C-A0C9-DF638C5EBA3D
Each day brought new challenges. Sometimes the obstacles seemed too hard to overcome. The stresses of meeting the rising demands of teaching at the time, added to the weight that she carried on her shoulders of being the authority in that classroom. Not a day went by that she did not wonder if she was equipped, skilled, and talented enough to be great at what she had chosen as a career. Teaching children and molding the minds of a new generation; a challenge in which she believed she was ill prepared for.

She was a teacher who put her best foot forward each day in spite of the daily challenges in her own world, outside of the school building. After all, she was human too.

She left the classroom every afternoon and worked to be present in other areas of her life. She balanced it all, learning every step of the way the difficulties of navigating life with many responsibilities and being prepared for the work of  educating children. But she managed to balanced it all and work endlessly to be a positive presence in every area of her life.

51078EA7-399E-4629-A5C4-416D40809F3A

Want to get organized? Try this Appointment Book

Her hope was that her positive spirit would manifest itself in the classroom full of societal missteps and the plight of disadvantaged communities. Each day, she was met with a gap in the road with little to no bridge. While she was not from their world, she had been blessed to empathize with their circumstances. She had not had their experiences, but found her overwhelming compassion to do more. She did not understand the dynamics of their lives, but accepted the challenge to grow into the channel the spirit of humanity to be the positive force that they needed in their lives.

As a  teacher, she learned that through their toughness, they communicated their fears, anxious thoughts, and doubts. In their interactions with adults,  they showed their lack of trust for people. In their relationships with their peers they displayed their willingness to fight at any time; a coping mechanism developed  to survive. They did not believe what she believed and failed to see the optimism in every situation which was her mantra.

They were not privy to experiences that she had and were not always accepting of her attempts at changing their perception of the world. While they may have wanted to improve their character and respond differently to adverse situation, they did not. It took her a long while to realize that they simply did not know how. In spite of her efforts, it was a daily battle to remain in control of the day when they responded to every situation with a confrontation, carrying the negative emotional baggage on their backs. Many of them had taken on responsibilities of their world; even at their young age.

FD408769-9AB0-4888-8121-E70942EFE6CE

There were some mornings when he entered the classroom talkative and cooperative; generally happy to be at school. He was liked by many and had many friends. But there were also days when he entered the room and was clearly angry, bothered by something that took place before he even entered the classroom. At those times, he was quiet and withdrawn for the better part of the day. It was clear that he was processing something that had impacted his world.  It was days like these when he fought her to be right about everything. He was defiant and disrespectful. Uncooperative and destructive. The whole day was turned upside down. On these days, she felt helpless, like she was failing as a teacher and as a partner in his connection to a bright future.

Over time, she  realized that there is nothing like seeing into the world of her students. This is how she connected. She listed. She did not judge. She cared and it was evident. One day in particular, she learned of a fight between him and another male student. When asked, he told her that the other student said something about his mother. All of my efforts at dispelling the myths that lived inside of him and the internal struggle that he was having with himself failed. He was adamant about acting in the in defense of his mother by any means necessary… He refused to allow her name or character to be defamed by anyone. While empathizing with his feeling to respond to the other students comments, she wanted him to consider responding in a different way instead of with violence. To him, words were just as harmful as sticks and stones.

She sensed a certain responsibility that a child should not have. He shared that it was indeed his responsibility to take care of her. Period. She learned that his mother struggled with setbacks and consequences associated with their environment. This was the weight he carried. To him, showing his love for her was fighting. It made him angry to hear such negative words about his mother. After running out of words to say to calm him and get him to see her point, she told him this.  Pray for his mother. She told him specifically to go home and get on his knees that night and pray for her to be better.

Her heart hurt for his tears and his unwavering love and admiration for the woman who birthed him. There was no judgement there; only the love that a son could have for his mother. The next day she returned with hope in her heart for better days for them all.

BDB066C9-CC90-4C44-888B-C29F1BE8690C

While she was, at that time, working to support him through that moment of struggle, there were other students in her class whose behaviors fluctuated as well. Some days they were all up and there were good times to be had and other days its was one, two, three or four of them that brought their emotional weight to school and struggled to keep it under control. This caused conflict both within and outside of the classroom.

The inconsistent behavior interactions made it difficult to manage peer to peer relationships let alone teaching the skills necessary to pass a state test. But on one particular day, a glimmer of light shone for the compassion that she had for her work. This lit a spark in her life that would change the course of her work.

If there was ever a time when she felt that she was doing the most good, it was on the day that he told that he had indeed done what she had told him to do. That morning, he did not say ‘hello’ or ‘good morning’. His words were simple, “I did what you told me to do.” He had went home and prayed for his mother. At that moment working to hold back her own emotions, she knew that the work she was doing was having an impact on the lives of her students.

That day was a good day for him. It seemed as if a weight had been lifted off. If only for a moment. From then on, she know exactly how to reach him.

That teacher was me. I never imagined that I  could silence the cry of the hurt in the lives of my students. Their circumstances seemed far beyond what I had experienced and what I was capable of understanding and managing. But I realized that when you are in the right place doing what you are created to do, you will be able to access the skills needed to do the work. All I needed to do was just be willing. That was over 19 years ago. Since then, I have carried with me these experiences throughout my years of teaching. Every student needs to know that you care. As their teacher, you are a valuable part of their lifeline and the success that they dream of. You are the gateway for their future. It not just about knowledge and skill, it is about the heart and the spirit. That is how you will connect; nothing else will penetrate their world as much. Once they know that your compassion is genuine,  they will work for you, they will learn from you, they will be your biggest example and your greatest accomplishment. Know your place in this field. You matter in this space.

©️ May 2020 Inspired Serenity by Kim Seymore

https//www.inspireyouserenity.com

When you learn to use the power to decide

Photo by Ono Kosuki on Pexels.com


Your life is a reflection of your experiences, choices and decisions. While some things seem to just ‘happen’ to you, the majority of circumstances speak the language of which road you decided to take when you had the opportunity to decide.

Let’s take this very valuable moment and recognize that while some of our decisions were spot on, looking back, others were quite the opposite. But what about when you lack the consistency with making decisions in your life that will add value to who you are becoming?

I am not speaking of those routine decisions that you make every day and have become more of a ritual than a decision…I’m talking about those times when your decisions do more to pacify someone else than a representation of your true self.

When we make decisions about our own life for the benefit of others, we neglect our own worth. In earlier experiences the impact on our own self esteem may not be noticeable but over time, resentment sets in, often towards the individual or individuals whom we are seeking to satisfy.

Looking for motivational words to display in your classroom or community center? Click here!


So, How Do We Reverse This Cycle!


The power to decide is a weapon in our arsenal in the fight against low self esteem.

The power of ‘No’ sets us free to the degree that we allow it. Being able to say no when everyone expects us to say yes sheds a light on the value we place on our own lives.

The Power to Decide

The power to decide speaks volumes in the process of pursuing our life goals. Deciding instead of having people decide for us all but guarantees power over our own circumstances.

When life gets in the way of your leadership

So it happened again. You were ready. You had finally developed the courage and confidence to walk in your purpose. It was not an easy undertaking by far but you did it. You found a way. Everything around you sends the signal that the beauty that existed in your dreams is just around the corner. You will no longer have to live a life that someone else carved out for you. This is your life and you finally get to live it the way you imagined then….

Life throws you not one, not two, but a whole set of curveballs. Your marriage is falling apart. Your kids are out of control. You family finances are shaky your emotions are all over the place and you just can’t seem to get a hold of your life. Your stress level has gone through the roof and all of a sudden, the life that you thought you were about to live diminished right before your eyes.

When you lead, the weight of everything is on your shoulders. As you quiet the raging waters for the people you lead, you nurse your own wounds and toy with the idea that a word of comfort may come your way from those who don’t even know that you are suffering. How are you supposed to keep the ship afloat when you are drowning in your own sorrows?

You truly have to take care of yourself. Leadership is all about inspiring, motivating, encouraging, empowering and influencing people to follow your lead to achieve a common goal. But how successful can we be if our spirits are low and we struggle to pull it all together to stand in the strength that is needed to move in sync? Understanding yourself and who you are as a leader is important but valuing who you are and caring for that part of you that is in its own mini crises must be at the forefront of how you approach your life’s work.

It has been said that you must care for yourself before you can be present and available for your family. This holds true in all areas of your life. Self care is the single most thing that you can do for yourself to provide a foundation for overcoming the challenges in life. Being attentive to your needs and considerate of your spiritual, mental, emotional and physical state is most important along the journey of your life’s work.

So where do you begin? Maximize your alone time to benefit the whole you.

  1. Create a space in your home where you can spend quiet moments to reflect, meditate and bring yourself to a place of calm.
  2. In your workplace, if possible ,have a location where you can go when you need to gather your thoughts or just to breathe.
  3. Monitor your self talk in this space. The goal is positive and not negative
  4. Consider journaling to get out what you are feeling.
  5. Be careful not to beat yourself up. The goal is to identify what you are feeling and the emotions that are associated with those feelings.
  6. Spend some time breathing, to clear the space in your mind and body
  7. If you are facing an immediate problem decide how you will solve it or what actions you will take to resolve the issue
  8. Before leaving the space, affirm yourself with positive, kind words.

As we know, in our life there will always be troubles, wherever we go and whatever we do, we will still have to deal with our own set of challenges. As we lead, we tend to put our own issues on the back burner because it is our role to stand out front, make decisions and support the work that is being done. Regardless of whether we are falling apart inside or not, the work has to be done. People depend on us to be at the forefront. Sometimes, the very challenge may not be the issue but moving past it or even continuing our daily professional lives in the midst of our personal trauma often outweighs to actual problem.

If you fail to take care of yourself, you will find it difficult to keep going and overcome your struggles. Make a habit of spending some quiet time alone to gather your through and bring yourself to a place of clam. You absolutely must be a priority in your own life before you can prioritize others in yours

@2022 Kimberly Boswell Seymore

https://www.inspireyoureserenity.com

Three Qualities of a Trustworthy Leader

Photo by Christina Morillo on Pexels.com

“Your reputation is in the hands of others. That’s what the reputation is. You can’t control that. The only thing you can control is your character.”  ―    Wayne Dyer

In order to be a trustworthy leader you must have a strong and positive reputation. When you have a strong reputation it’s easier to encourage others to take action, be a seen as a reliable leader, and trusted to do what you say you’ll do. This is why your reputation as a leader is very important. So let’s talk about how to develop your reputation as a leader. 

In order to be seen as trustworthy there are some qualities you should strive to have. 

  1. Transparency. When you are transparent with the people you lead, the people you lead will feel like they can trust you to tell them the whole story. No one likes being left in the dark. Sometimes it might feel like holding out on some truths will protect others… but really, people find peace when they know the whole truth, no matter how bad that truth may be. 
  1. Resilience. Being resilient in times of adversity will really make those you lead want to trust you. Not only that but the people you lead will feel a sense of comfort around you. When you’re the leader, people expect you to fight for what you’re leading, that’s why you play such an important role.
  1. Humility. Being self centered and having a large ego are not qualities that make leaders great. What makes a leader great, is when they are able to put their pride aside for the talks or project at hand. With this quality those you lead will find it easy to trust you. 

Sometimes we need help from others to build these type of leadership skills. Courtney 4 Rhodes encourages you to Make Your Mark. Courtney R. Rhodes is a brand building and marketing strategist and has worked with numerous socially conscious brands that dedicate themselves to serving those in need.

 

In this book, Rhodes breaks down those key factors that allow the discovery and promotion of your best self. In finding your authentic, passion-driven self, you will find the means and energy to chase new

opportunities, complete those tasks you’ve long put off, find new career options or clients, and ultimately realize your fullest potential. 

Through years of working with these companies, Rhodes noticed a commonality in each brand’s approach that allowed them to accomplish their goals while supporting their communities. In this book, Rhodes breaks down those key factors that allow the discovery and promotion of your best self. In finding your authentic, passion-driven self, you will find the means and energy to chase new opportunities, complete those tasks you’ve long put off, find new career options or clients, and ultimately realize your fullest potential.

@2022 Kimberly Boswell Seymore

https://www.inspireyourserenity.com

Because Each Day Seems Like the One Before.

Photo by Rachel Claire on Pexels.com

It is a new day and you awake feeling refreshed, inspired and empowered to embrace the presence of hope and take on the challenges of the day. You complete your morning routine; prayer, meditation, exercise, set your intention and get started with your day. From the first few moments, everything goes well. No real issues arise and you seem to possess the strength, will and necessary tools to face your day. Then….

Out of nowhere you realize that something is off. A close reflection of the first few moments of your day gave no indication that something was wrong. You cannot put your finger on it but something has changed. You continue to move forward with your day, because life does not stop just because you have a sense that you are no longer in the sane ‘slay the day’ space that you were at the start of your day.

As if on cue your mind begins to go back over the early part of your morning to see what could have happened to cause the sudden shift in emotion that you have begun to feel. This, all while you try to continue on with your day with a business as usual attitude. From your recollection, everything was fine before you walked into the grind of your day. Nothing out of the ordinary has happened. You just do not feel as secure, confident, strong inspired and empowered as you had earlier during your day. What happened?

It is very important to understand your emotions and how they work. As women, we are called out consistently for being overly emotional in some or all of the roles that we play in our daily lives. In order to ensure our success, we must learn not only to control our emotions but to understand them in the context of our personal and professional relationships. We must shine a light on our own emotional interactions with ourselves. What we say, think and do in relation to how we feel about ourselves has a huge impact on how we show up emotionally in the world .

Somewhere between the start to your day and the present moment, you experienced an emotional shift from a positive and empowering perspective to a more solemn state where uncertainly has settled. The reasons for this can be many. It may be obvious as to what caused the shift or it may be a total mystery. Whether or not there was a preceding event that you can recollect, if you want get back in the space that you were when you began your day, you will need to decide to make another emotional shift and regain your grasp on the day. If not, the success that you crave may fall short or be significantly delayed altogether.

Take a few moments to tend to yourself. What are you feeling at the present moment? Are there any events that took place that could have had an influence on your emotions? If so, what is the connection between the event and your current emotional state? Is the event real or imagined? What are you telling yourself about what you are feeling? Is what you are telling yourself true or untrue? Getting a hold of your feelings about an event or perceived event is important as you work your way out of your current undesired emotional state. Reflection is important so that you do not allow everything to keep pilling on top of each other making it more difficult to uncover what the issue really is. It will be easier to address your emotions as they come, then to wait until you have to sift through a myriad of emotions and events to find the core of what you are really experiencing.

Self care is a major part of personal growth. The road to achieving the life you desire is rocky with many twist and turns. Your mind and emotions will not always align and you will definitely experience days when you wonder if you are still on the right road or not. Until you work to understand and manage your emotions, you will find yourself experiencing emotional highs and lows at critical times when you need your focus the most. In addition, if you choose not to tend to your emotional you can run the risk of falling back into a more unhealthy state of emotional turmoil that is more difficult to resolve.

Throughout the day, in the moments when you feel the shift, take a step back. First, understand that it is ok that in this moment, you are not necessary where you want to be emotionally. Then, take steps to resolve any emotions that are having a negative impact on your day. After that, decide what kind of day you choose to have, then move forward with purpose. This process can be shortened or lengthened as needed and to the extent that your emotions are managing your day instead of you managing your emotions.

It is important to learn the art of stepping away for a few moments in your day to tend to your self care in a way that will not significantly impact your work performance. An important fact to remember is that if you choose not to address your emotions, they will impact your day regardless so taking a few moments when needed can be very impactful. At the end of the day, take another moment to reflect according to your need to ensure that you have resolved any issues from the day to set a clean slate for the following day. With intention, practice and consistency, you will be able to better manage your emotions which will impact how you show up in the world around you.

@ Inspired Serenity by Kim Seymore December 22, 2021

Progress

Photo by Chris Kane on Pexels.com

The journey to healing is slow and its success is contingent on your ability to navigate the waves of emotions that continue to resurface in times of uncertainty. With or without your permission, your strength dwindles in moments when you need it the most. Often times, your faith in something better seems to be out of your reach as the belief that things will stay the same dominate the present.

How then, does the process of healing bring you to the place in your journey where you can see and know that true progress is taking place? The promise is in the small steps and this is where we need to land our focus. Whether it be one day, one hour or one second that you feel hope for a better life experience, you must see it as progress. Failing to notice the small moments of relief from life’s hurts, disappointments, shame and defeat, will serve to delay your progress.

Your hope should be grounded in what is true about the promises of GOD. It is not HIS WILL for us to succumb to the pressures of life’s challenges. We must find our strength to endure in HIS WORD. We must also understand who we are and what our purpose is here on this earth. We must be grounded in our true selves, the gifts that we have been given and the power that we posses to carry out our life’s purpose. Our ability to fulfill our roll in this big world will come in the process of progress.

We must commit to the process of growth, even in our low moments. The end goal must always be the focus, This will guide our steps and guard against feelings of defeat, failure and despair. Along the journey, we must see our own value and worth. Once we internalize who we are, then we can begin to make decisions that align with who we are becoming. Until then, we will remain ‘stuck’ in an endless loop of self defeat, which will in turn give the perception that we are failing.

Slow progress is often mistaken for a setback but in actuality, each step that we take in the right direction is progress even if we have a few missteps along the way. Perhaps the most important thing that we must do is to stay committed to the process. When we start the journey of growth, self discovery, self love, self care and self respect are the key components to knowing yourself. Listen to the inner voice that speaks so clearly about who you truly are. Write it down so that you will not forget. In moments of doubt reflect on those things and know that progress is in motion.

©️ December 2021 Inspired Serenity by Kim Seymore

https//www.inspireyouserenity.com

Power in Your Struggle

The storms of your life are raging and there never seems to be an end to the turmoil that you are going through. One thing after another interrupts your world like a roaring hurricane slamming into the shores of your life . You once thought you were equipped to handle the pain, disappointment, fear, and loss,; only to find out that your capacity to survive in the moment was limited and somewhat conditional.

You must build up your stamina to fight in the moment. There is often no time to waist between the unfortunate circumstance and the actions, if any, that you must take. A constant routine of prayer, scripture reading and meditating on the Word will get you to the door of peace, even in the midst of the struggle.

Strengthening your faith and understanding the power it brings to the resolution of your situation will aid you in your fight if you are struggling to believe in the power of God, you are putting yourself at a disadvantage..

Be open to healing as it will present an opportunity for growth. Never underestimate the purpose of your chosen path. While your present understanding may be limited, your steps are crucial in the process. Know that there is power in who you are becoming, where you are going, and how you will get there.

©️ March 2019 Inspired Serenity by Kim Seymore

https//www.inspireyouserenity.com

Waiting for Your Flowers

Have you heard the saying ‘I want my flowers while I am here on earth’? With this phrase one would be asking for those around them to celebrate us while we are here. While it may be a worth saying it may often fall in deaf ears.

The truth of the matter is, life is defiantly a journey and everyone has their highs, lows, and moments of joy and pain. While we may seek to celebrate others for their great efforts, contribution of time and unwavering compassion for others, we still have our own stuff to deal with. But at any given point either we are the ones who ate so inundated with our own drama or we are the ones wondering while no one has noticed all that we have accomplished We know what it is like to be on both side of this issue. But still……

…….we find ourselves wondering if anyone sees all that we do say in and day out. We may not opening state it but there is that part in us that may want the drums to beat when we enter a room, the horns to play a tune in unison with a full band celebrating our work. At times, we want heads to turn when we walk in a room with everyone upright acknowledging our presence. Maybe just the subtle gesture of a nod signifying a ‘thank you for helping me’ moment that cannot be replaced. Regardless of the magnitude there is something innate in us that would appreciate some type of acknowledgement for who we are and what we do. While you wait on someone to do this for you, I have a suggestion….

Buy your flowers yourself. Place them on a table in your home or in a desk in your office or cubicle. Every time you walk by, acknowledge who you are, your good works and where you are headed. The more you do this for yourself, the less you will need someone to do it for you. Flowers are a symbols of showing love or some sort of appreciation. But you may not always be in the position to get flowers when you need a little encouragement. You must make this a daily habit. Over time. You will find that although it is always good to hear an ‘I love you’ or a ‘thank you’ or even an ‘ I appreciate you’, you won’t have to depend on it for your happiness because you bought your own flowers!

Momentum

The new year is here. It is already, January 2, 2019 and the momentum is changing. The celebrations, confetti, wine, and good feelings have all worn away. For many, work has begun again and the spirit of hope, aspiration, and positive vibes have subsided. Any new year’s resolution you have made, while still in force, lacks the same urgency that it had on December 31st. As the hand moves around the clock, you wonder if you will feel the same warmth that you did when you decided that you would do something different. You cannot help but to think, ‘will this year be like all the others?’

The dictionary defines momentum as the quality of motion. It speaks in terms of the movement of the physical body or a type of force. It ties together the idea that it takes some amount of  strength and force to move an object. We can use this same meaning for the movement of our life outcomes. While not entirely physical at all times, the ability to keep our lives moving in the direction that we desire requires a certain type of momentum.

In order to live out the beauty of your dreams, you must first activate the power of your will and inner strength. You must tap into your resolve and realize the time, effort, and energy it will take to carry out your goals and aspirations. You must build up your emotional strength to deal with setbacks and disappointments.

The only way you can truly start and keep your momentum going is to set some personal goals, calendar them, and put an action plan in place to achieve them. Without a plan, it is unlikely that you will notice any real success. You must visit your plan often and make adjustments without fail. This process should be repeated so that you can keep consistency within the process and ensure that you do not veer away from your goals.

Knowing and preparing for the obstacles that you will face in advance will keep you from becoming discouraged when things do not work according to what you have planned. Perhaps one of the seemingly most significant setbacks will be the criticism of those who know you best and are likely not convinced that you can achieve what you have set out to do. Once met with this type of setback, chances are, you will step back and evaluate your success (or lack there of), start to criticize your own plan or halt the process altogether. In these instances, you manage to give the power of your momentum to someone else.

The important thing to remember is that there is no momentum without the work that goes into keeping it going. Remember, it is defined as the quality of motion and the strength needed to keep it going. This force explicitly encompasses your will to fight through every obstacles that you will come up against. When it is January 5th and you are too tired to take the next step, you have already lost your will to get it done.  When June arrives and you realize that you have not worked towards your goal in over 3 months, you have lost your resolve. When December makes its debut and you figure that if you set the same goals you will do better next year, you gave your power away long ago and that same lack of will power will yield the same results the following year.

If words of wisdom will provide you with what you need to move in the direction you are trying to go, you must take hold of a few things. Greatness is already within you but it is you that will have to take the journey to see it actualized in your life. The journey is yours and you can start and stop whenever and how ever many times you like. But your journey is just that; your journey. This means, whatever you aspire to do and/or be, it is your assignment to do it regardless, It will continue to show up in your life without fail. Each year that you decide you will do something better and/or greater in your life, it is a charge and connected to your assignment. So, without fail, go after what you seek with force. Let your momentum not fade away, but instead propel you into the life that you desire and so deserve.

© January 2019 Inspired Serenity by Kim Seymore

Browse empowering content for women

https://www.inspireyourserenity.com