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How often do we think of ourselves as failures? How often do we stress about the fact that we’re not where we wish we would’ve been “by now” and so we assume we don’t have what it takes.

There are so many people giving advice about what it takes successful, and if you’re anything like me you might feel like you’re just not cut out to get “there”.

The rules to being a successful individual are vast.

  • Wake up super early every single morning.
  • Have a morning routine that you never stray from.
  • Say your affirmations.
  • Pray and read daily.
  • Work extremely hard and sacrifice.
  • Know why you’re doing what you’re doing.
  • Set achievable goals and then achieve them.
  • Be super focused and super consistent with taking action.

The list goes on and on.

To be clear, I’m not saying this stuff is bad advice. All I’m saying is that for me, trying to be all these things is overwhelming.

And when I don’t measure up, or when I fail to keep up with the laundry list of things I should be doing daily to succeed, I don’t feel good about myself. I feel like, “dang, I’m never going to make it because I can’t even stick to anything.” I put so much pressure on myself to look like I’m doing all the right things. I think too hard about this stuff and to put it simply…I do the most sometimes!

Over the years, I’ve learned that progress is not as straight forward as I would’ve liked to believe. Progress is a bumpy hill of ups and downs, failures and successes, shortcomings and achievements. It’s a painful pruning process. It’s learning about myself, why I do the things I do, and being a better me. It’s winning the small battles.

Most importantly, I’ve learned that progress means walking fearlessly, confidently in my true self and achieving what God created me to achieve.

I’ve learned over the past 4 years of my writing career that not everyone can do what the next man is doing– and for good reason. We’ve all had different upbringings, we’ve all been conditioned in different ways and we’re all held back by a multitude of things. I wish someone had told me that success wasn’t about the numbers. It wasn’t about whether or not I made enough money from my books, or whether or not I had a certain number of readers, or whether I got a certain amount of followers on Instagram. I wish someone had told me that I didn’t need validation from anyone..and like really helped me to learn this earlier.

Success means something different to me now. It means I’m doing what God told me to do and how he told me to do it. My “why” is no longer, “because I want to have an amazing lifestyle and no longer have to worry about money ever again.”

In fact, I’ve found that when I stopped worrying about how the money was going to come, it came naturally. Once I got committed to tithing, the Lord has kept me and my husband in miraculous ways. See, I called myself a Christian, but I still tried to control each and everything about my life and only depend on myself.

Because the truth is, I still sometimes struggle with trusting God.

But as I go through these days, I’m learning all over again to trust him in every area, including progress and “success”. My “why” is now, “because God has loved me, given me so much grace and mercy, and I owe Him to live the life he’s predestined for me.”

I’m finally accepting that my past is directly linked to my purpose whether I like it or not. I can’t run from my story because it’s there. I haven’t perfected anything, lets be clear, but I can now (thankfully) see that I’m making progress.

It’s no longer about getting straight to success and making as little mistakes as possible so it doesn’t take me forever. It’s now about opening my heart up so that I can fulfill my purpose. There are young ladies in this world who I am supposed to help and if I’m all caught up in myself, I will completely miss the reason I’m here.

What have you learned about “success” on your life journey? What are your battles of progress? Let’s chat about it below.