Rewriting Your Reality
This is a new journey and you need to have faith in yourself that you can accomplish your goals. You have come this far and you’ve made it to this point. I can’t promise that the days ahead will be easier, but if you stick with this work, you will undoubtedly get stronger.
Have faith that you know all the right people. Be open to collaborating with individuals of like mind who are advocating for the same issues and solutions. These individuals may not be your family or closest friends. Yes, friends and family love you and they are concerned for you, but that does not make them an advocate for your cause. Family and friendship doesn’t always mean that they are fit to be good business partners.
You are looking to add brand advocates to your business circle. These individuals are usually already doing the work and are successful at it. Partner on projects with these people, but pay attention to how they do the work. Though you may run in circles with people who are fighting for the same things, you may have a different way of reaching your goals. That’s okay. It doesn’t make them wrong or you right. It just simply means that they are from a different tribe. Connect with your own tribe. In fact, you should be attracting people to your tribe. Those will be your most loyal brand advocates.
The most obvious of faith that you will need to do memorial foundation work is spiritual or faith that brings you back to a healthy state of mind. If you follow a certain set of principles, may be Christian or Muslim, Buddhist or Ma’at, you will need to cling to this in times when you feel you can’t go on. Enthusiasm is common, but endurance is rare. I implore you to practice these principles when times are good, so that when times are bad, you will already be rooted in your faith. When you have faith, you will be able to move forward through challenges with positive thoughts like, “I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me” or “The universe has my back.” Though it may sound cliche´, we find our resilience when we “keep the faith” in ourselves, others and our principles.
Always begin with the end in mind. Ask yourself if you believe in a future with no violence in our community. If so, envision ways that that could actually come about. It’s hard to do. I know, but it’s good to have some idea or a plan of where you see your memorial foundation fitting in to the future, and not just the present.
Are you looking to end systemic racism? Do you want to help other families? If so, for how long? Do you plan to be in business forever helping families or do you see there being a transition to a more respectful and safe environment? Have a plan for when freedom comes. Think about it this way. If I were to tell you don’t think about a herd of elephants. It would be nearly impossible to get elephants out of your head. So when you advocate for something, clearly express the future you wish to see. Talk about that more often so that people can believe in your vision more than the worst case scenarios it’s easy to lean towards because darkness is highlighted more frequently.
Position of Authority
Have enough authority or influence to actually move folks to act. Learn how to take up space in the conversation and be present. If you aren’t sure how to do this, read more about this in The Charisma Myth. Own your own platform and determine how and what your message will be on it. Your platform could be your own podcast show or a book that you write or even a video series you host on your own website. Share the facts and accurate information along with your personal views. If you are telling your story in writing be sure to include proper citation for other people’s work. That alone can make you credible and more authoritative. All of these are ways to share your story, unfiltered and unapologetically. Create authentic and original content and you will position yourself to be the authority.
Your reality may seem bleak and the loss of your loved one is devastating, but believe for a moment that you are living a very different life, one where you are free from pain, hurt and negative thoughts. Hold that feeling for as long as you can and while in that feeling dream up all of the things you would want for your loved one. Envision a world of peace and love that they could live in. What would that look like? Measure their happiness and take note of your own as well. It is in that moment that you will discover what you are truly fighting for.