By Dawn Onley
For years, I would get really hung up on how people treated me.
Loyal to a fault, I would get peeved and even hold grudges toward relationships that weren’t reciprocal. If I supported a person’s dreams yet they didn’t support my dreams, if I helped someone through a trying time yet when I went through, they weren’t around, if I celebrated their victories and they were silent on mine, I would get pissed and eventually I would distance myself from these lopsided relationships.
But the distance didn’t stop the brooding. I spent far too much time nursing hurt wounds. Although we are all different and have different ways of expressing ourselves, I used myself as the example. My barometer was how I valued and treated my relationships and I expected the same treatment in return. I naively assumed that if I offered goodwill that everyone I dealt with on a personal level would too.
When it didn’t happen the way I thought it should, admittedly, I would get distracted. I would allow these distractions into my spirit, even allowing the experiences to lodge in my heart. I would tell so-and-so what so-and-so did. I would temporarily feel better for releasing my hurt, but it never really moved me forward in any substantial way.
I didn’t realize it at the time, but the distractions of life were time-consuming and energy-zapping. Even worse, I was allowing them to distract me from my destiny.
One thing I’ve learned over the last few years is that to achieve our destinies in life requires a singular, unrelenting focus. Our focus needs to remain on moving the needle closer to our end results and not remaining stuck.
Most of the feelings I was allowing on a monthly, weekly, sometimes daily basis was keeping my mind and attention from more important things.
Any moment spent on items that are not productive to our purpose in life is a moment we can never get back. I thought about this yesterday as I scrolled through social media channels and read posts that were filled with innuendo, drama, and declarations that sprung up from hurt feelings. I thought back to last week and the week before that and even last month. Some of these same people had logged similar posts.
I can relate to some of these people because I’ve been there before. Many times. But a part of growth and maturity requires us to put away things that aren’t helping us flourish.
It is so easy to get distracted. There is so much noise in the world. On social media pages there is a constant barrage of life occurrences that take us away from where our minds should be focused.
Bishop TD Jakes discusses this idea of destiny detractors in his book, “Destiny.” He uses Tyler Perry as an example of a person who has fought battles his entire life – against a father who ridiculed him, against the people who sexually abused him, against homelessness, and for his place among filmmakers. Jakes said Perry could have lost his focus and could have succumb to feelings of despair on any number of occasions.
But he didn’t.
Jakes said Perry “chose to let go of the fights that were counterproductive to destiny. Instead, he invested his Warrior Spirit in fights that were worth the effort to get his plays and films to audiences. Tyler kept on fighting to live his dream, even when he was homeless and sleeping in his automobile.”
“Because he never gave up, the winds of fate changed in his favor and he has since sold millions of theater and movie tickets to fans of his beloved Madea persona and the characters in his many other film and theatrical productions,” Jakes added.
That’s the kind of fight that’s worth our energy. The fight for our destiny. The fight for our soul purpose. The kind of fight that helps the winds of fate to change in our favor. Not the stuff that really doesn’t matter.
Ask yourself, before you put it out there and speak it into existence, is this fight worth my energy? Will it get me closer to my destiny?
If the answer is no, let it go.