I consider it a real gift when I have the opportunity to make meaningful connections with other women. I draw wisdom and inspiration from their journeys, and I often find a piece of myself in their personal stories. Recently, I had the opportunity to emcee the 14th Annual Administrative Professionals Day Conference, hosted by Trident Technical College. The event's theme: Moving Forward. To me, moving forward means that we choose not to be victims of our circumstances; instead we use them as opportunities to learn and grow. We understand what we can control (ourselves) and the things we can't (everything else). We rise above our negativity, fear, and pain to discover the lives we were created to live.
Here I am pictured on the right, along with Yvonne Noisette, Program Leader for Trident Tech's Continuing Education Division, and Nikki Hardin, Founder and Publisher of skirt! magazine. Nikki is a true example of a woman who had a dream, felt the fear, and pursued it anyway. She was 29 years old and a single mom of three when she started college for the first time. She earned a BA in literature, attended graduate school, and got "her first real, full-time job." In 1985, she packed up and moved to Charleston, which she had never seen and barely heard of. A decade later, Nikki was "nursing a mid-life crisis" when a friend asked her, "What do you want to do?" She told him that she wanted to start a magazine for women that was interesting to read. And he asked, "So why don't you do that?" So she did. In 1994, with only $400 to her name, skirt! was born. The magazine grew and in 2003, she sold skirt! to Morris Communications, maintained her leadership role, and secured her retirement. Today, skirt! is in 20 cities. Bravo!I also had the opportunity to meet Marshawn Evans, an attorney, business owner, and former contestant on The Apprentice. Marshawn is making her mark on the world, and she hasn't even reached the age of 30. Marshawn was a young girl when she saw the vision of the successful woman she wanted be, watching the character, Claire Huxtable, on The Cosby Show. Marshawn and Nikki are excellent examples of women who had a vision, and despite challenges and setbacks, made a decision to move forward.
In my coaching practice, I often ask my clients to describe their vision for their lives. Many times, we are afraid to let ourselves "go there" because we see all the obstacles standing in our way. But if we take a moment to recognize our gifts and talents and understand that we were created to use them, it is easier to shift our thinking from the obstacles, to the possibilities. We don't have to figure it all out today. All we have to do is move forward.
Until next time... Angie