How to Get What You Want in Life.

“How to Get What You Want in Life: if you think you can, you can” is a 6 part ecourse that I have created that you can take from the comfort of your home, designed to provide you with the direction, purpose and drive that you desire.

Each of the 6 modules includes a number of exercises and assignments that will walk you through the process of first working out what you want from your life and then, map out a plan for how you are going to get it.

The course will enable you to stop existing and start living–you will discover what your life is all about and how you can go about making improvements.

You only live once so you’d better make the most of the time while you are here!

“How to Get What You Want in Life” will be your very own life map outlining where you are now to where you want to arrive.

You will soon rediscover those lost ambitions and dreams that have taken a back seat to fear.

NOW is the time to start a fresh!

 

Part 1:

Discover what your life is really about
Part 2:

Life Mapping –charting out what you want in your life
Part 3:

How to take action
Part 4:

Overcoming obstacles
Part 5:

How to stay on track with your goals
Part 6:

Creating the life that you truly deserve

 

To learn more and to purchase this course, visit shop.infinitefortitude.com!

 

 

 

How to Get What You Want Logo

 

***Shanika Washington is the owner of Infinite Fortitude LLC, a life coaching practice whose mission, through the Infinite Vision Institute, is to empower, motivate and inspire individuals to acquire the life of their dreams by assisting in the development of an action plan, while providing the necessary support to help them evolve into the person they were created to become. Ms. Washington, a Certified Professional Coach, is also the creator of the Infinite Inspiration e-course series which provides hands-on training on a variety of topics aimed to assist its students in achieving at a higher level, personally and professionally. Additional information can be found at http://www.infinitefortitude.com.

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10 Things I’ve Learned as a New Mother

The last year, 13 months to be exact, have been such a whirlwind! Finding time to balance being a new mommy, losing the weight, not losing my mind, starting 2 businesses, growing 2 businesses, finding time for self, all while safeguarding the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being of a baby is mind-numbing when I take the time to reflect over it all. Needless to say, I’ve had my ups and downs this last year and I’m grateful to have found the time to rank, in no particular order, the top 10 things I’ve learned as a new mother:

1. No one knows your baby better than you. Therefore, when you don’t know what to do; trust your instincts. While those days seems like a distant memory, I remember the constant crying and becoming so frustrated that I really didn’t know what to do. Since I am a perfectionist who is uberly protective of her baby, I didn’t look to anyone else to assist me, so I opted to implement the techniques regarding how to calm a screaming baby that I read and watched DVDs about. Sometimes they worked, other times they didn’t. When they didn’t, my maternal instinct would kick in and I would know exactly what to do, and it would always work. It always gave me great satisfaction to know I met each and every need my baby had, every moment of every day.

2. It’s okay to let your baby cry if you need to leave the room for a moment to regain your sanity. I must admit that while all of the literature said this, I was skeptical–until I tried it for myself. I will never forget the day I was completely at my wits end, my baby girl was crying incessantly, and nothing I did worked quick enough to my satisfaction on this particular day. I thought the only solution was to jump out of a 2nd story window because that pain would have been lesser than the glaring screams of a 2 month old who couldn’t be consoled. Then it hit me: make sure she’s safely lying down, with nothing near her that could be a potential choke hazard, and leave the room. With just me and a crying baby in the house; I went to the bathroom, closed the door, and cried. Inhaled. Exhaled. Cried some more. Eventually, I felt a million times better. This monumental moment didn’t last more than 5 minutes (because instinctively I worried and didn’t want to leave my baby alone for too long), but it was 5 of the most refreshing minutes of my life. I felt re-energized and walked into the “room of perpetual crying” ready to console my baby, patience restored. That “break” gave me the confidence I needed to be assured that my baby wouldn’t break if she cried alone for a little while.

3. One day your baby won’t cry as much. While my funds were more limited than they had been in years, there is no money that could replace the experience of staying at home with my baby. As a result, I was able to see her develop from one stage to the next. During what’s know as “the period of purple crying,” I longed for the days for that to cease, however I now appreciate going through each and every moment with her, on my own because I believe it taught me some things I otherwise wouldn’t have learned if someone else was caring for her throughout the day. I now know for myself that the crying was just a phase and pretty soon she would be interacting with me on a daily basis sans crying (barring feeding or changing time). I also learned that a baby doesn’t need a pacifier. The counselor in me was against pacifiers from the start, as I believe the root issue(s) should be resolved instead of pacified, but there was one day I gave in and stuck this rubbery trinket in her mouth, only for her to spit it out. I tried again, she responded the same. This was an “ah ha” moment for me as I realized an infant’s needs are finite—they need to eat, have on a clean diaper, and  to be loved. If the former two are taken care of, overdosing on the third is all that’s left. After that day, I refused to force her to take pacification and I take pride in knowing that eventually her mommy was able to love her through her tears.  I now breathe a sign of relief and pat myself on the back for making it through, and can emphatically say, “one day your baby won’t cry as much!”

4. Take pictures of everything and save them in more than one place. As the days and months fly by, make time to reminisce over the memories. My child is now 13 months old and has over 5,000 pictures and there’s nothing more satisfying than scrolling through, seeing her growth, noticing how she has changed, and remembering those moments that now seem like forever ago. It’s a breath-taking experience so snap away! Also, video tape and journal milestones. Trust me, you will forget some things. Having photographic, video-graphic, and written evidence helps when they are older and there are additional items added to your to-do list :).

5. No matter what, be the best mother you can be. This advice was given to me in one of the congratulatory cards I received. The timing of receipt was perfect, in that I read the card on a “rough day” when I was questioning myself and how I would be able to handle everything-was I doing everything within my power not to damage my child and to make sure she grew up to be a functional citizen equipped to compete within the global market (yes, this is how I really think-I’m rearing a business owner, after all :)). This line spoke to me because so many mothers compare themselves and compete with each other, further separating a group of people who should really come together and work, as there is much to be learned from one each other. This lesson taught me that I can only operate within my limitations and I can only be who I am and that’s okay because that’s exactly why I was created :). The way I parent may not be the way you parent and that’s okay. It doesn’t make me better, nor does it make you better. It makes us different. It makes us human. No matter what, be the best mother YOU can be.

6. It’s okay to ask for help. It takes a village. This task was a difficult one for me because I am a control freak who wants everything to go her way. For countless reasons, I obviously needed help at various points in time and am eternally grateful to my village. Sharing experiences and words of advice and encouragement was exactly what I needed. As a result, my child has an extensive network of aunts, uncles, and cousins who can all grow, learn, and love together. Our communities need to become communities again and stop alienating ourselves from one another, as we weren’t created to be alone and accepting help from a person may be the healing they need to make it through a storm in their life (read that again if you didn’t catch it). It’s not about you, but how you operate and communicate with others. We need each other in all we do.

7. Remember the goals you had before you became a mother and continue to work towards them. It’s very easy to get caught up in taking care of everything and everyone and forget self. I don’t believe anyone was created to accomplish only one thing in life, therefore motherhood is one accomplishment on a list of great things you can achieve. While keeping your goals or creating new goals will benefit you personally, it will also benefit your child to see you in a variety of roles so they can gain the confidence they need to tackle the world. One day they will grow up and leave (and from what I’m told, this day comes faster than we’d like), and it will help you better transition if you do more than be “so and so’s mom” or “so and so’s wife.” Even if it’s a hobby you enjoy like knitting, knit to your heart’s content. When your child is 18 and you send him or her off to college, you will then have a ton of knitted goodies you can them market and sell (yes, I want to turn the world into entrepreneurs ;)). On a more personal note, because my pregnancy wasn’t planned, as MY plan was to start my business in 2012, I was more determined as ever not to “get lost” in my role as mother. I knew my life’s purpose long before I became pregnant and because it is a divine purpose; I knew it must be fulfilled. There were times when I didn’t know how I would get everything done, but it took concerted effort, eliminating excuses, balance, and follow through on a consistent basis.

8. Your friends who aren’t mothers don’t really understand. However well-intentioned there is no way this experience can be substituted or merely viewed through the lens of adorable Facebook and Instagram pictures and videos. You have to fight in this war and earn the battle wounds to truly know what being a mother is all about. I admit, I thought babysitting family members or talking to my friends who were already mothers gave me the intel I needed, but it only scratched the surface. For the aforementioned reasons alone, it is imperative to form a network of mothers on whom you can rely when times become stressful because when you do not have all of the words to describe it, they “know” because they’ve been there and will know exactly what to say to best comfort you.

9. Trust God. When I’m having a difficult day, this is all I have to remember and I can trust God because of my history with Him. I know for myself He won’t leave or forsake me, giving me who or what I need at the right timing (how many times have I mentioned timing in this post?). When I don’t understand God’s will, I totally trust His plan.

10. God chose you for a reason~you can do this. As cliched as it sounds, we really aren’t given more than we can handle. When it feels like you are stretched to the brink, consider it a growth spurt. That experience is strengthening you for what’s to come and as long as you don’t give up; you will reap your reward!

Hopefully my lessons will provide enough insight to encourage another new mother on her journey. I’m looking forward to learning and sharing more as my motherhood adventure travels into a place known as Toddlerville :).

*Disclaimer: these are MY lessons and in no way am I saying that if you did something differently or not at all, then you are a bad mother, as this isn’t a comparative piece. These are MY lessons learned while on MY journey. When in doubt, reread #5 and have a great day! 

Shanika

 

lessonlearned

Life Happens

In 2005, I was given the vision of the business I wanted to start. I came up with a name and outlined the services that would be offered. My target market was outlined, and I began making partnerships with other professionals with whom I would work to fulfill the vision.

In 2006, I completed my graduate program and relocated to a Charlotte. My goal was to become a business owner, however as a new graduate; I also needed the consistent flow of financial resources that came in the form of a traditional job. It was my intention to save money that would be used to launch my company. Life happened and I got bogged down in the hustle and bustle of working, and because I was in my field, it wasn’t as if I felt totally unfilled in my life. While I wanted more, I became comfortable with feeling content. Eventually, I became unhappy at work, because I wanted more and did not want to be confined by a job description. I also hadn’t saved as much money as I had wanted, nor had I conducted the proper research to learn the steps I needed to take to build the type of agency I wanted.

In 2007, my dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and my aunt, who had been sick for quite awhile passed away that year. Feeling overwhelmed with life, I opted to resign from my position and relocated back to my home town of Florence to assist in the care of my grandparents, as my dad wasn’t able to do as much as he could normally, given his prognosis. This was a major turning point in my career, as the change in the atmosphere of our economy rendered me unable to secure employment. As the savings I had acquired dwindled, I became more and more sad and feelings of worthlessness crept into my consciousness On one hand, I was happy to be able to help out my family, but on the other hand, I knew I wanted more. I knew there was more to my life than working for $10 an hour with a Master’s degree, because I decided a little money coming in was better than no money. Nevertheless, per usual, I decided to keep on my happy face, masking what I was really feeling inside.

In 2008, my dad passed away. Obviously, it was a very sad time, but what many don’t know is I felt more useless than ever. Still not working in my field, I felt like the major reason in my moving back was no longer there and yet I was still stuck there. I made the decision to open up my job search to Columbia, and within a short while I received a job offer and moved. I was still making considerably less than my education and experience would typically dictate, however I leaped at the opportunity to start at the bottom and work my way up. That’s what we are taught, right?

In 2009, my paternal grandmother passed away. Despite the fact she was more like a mother than a grandmother to me, if you been keeping a tally; her death marked the 3rd death in 3 years in the same family. All people with whom I loved dearly. My world was shattered and many familial relationships ruined, something quite typical when death occurs. While I was employed, eventually that unsettled feeling crept up into the pit of my stomach again, and when it became obvious I wouldn’t be promoted; I reignited my job search, deciding to return back to Charlotte as a representation of the last time I was most happy with my personal and professional lives.

In 2010, I accepted a job offer in Charlotte and was ecstatic about my “new life.” Well, the transition wasn’t as smooth as I’d like for it to be and I found myself once again working for someone who wanted to stifle my greatness. I was more determined than ever to start my business, but the consistent setbacks convinced me I needed a business degree so that I would be equipped with the proper information to run a successful business. I began working on my MBA and while in that program, I finally penned my business plan. I knew what I wanted to do and became obsessed with opening a nonprofit program designed to assist young ladies with enrolling in and successfully completing college. Through my years of work, I knew this was the best population for me. Additionally, I knew college was a major turning point in my life, so helping others accomplish the same was my way of giving back.

In 2011, I was looking forward to finishing my degree and launching my business. While I wasn’t working in an ideal setting; I knew it was only a matter of time before I would be doing what I always dreamed I would. In November of 2011, I received some information that would forever change who I was and how I viewed myself. A positive pregnancy test will do that to any woman, but for me, it sent me into a state of denial because in my mind I went from being a positive role model for young ladies, to the person I worked hard not to become: a single mother. While it wasn’t death sentence, it took me some time to accept that I had let down God. I revisited opening a nonprofit and was led in a different direction. Through my pregnancy, I was reminded that my story can help many, as I was able to reconnect with some true friends who showed me how great of an impact we had on each other. I also had the opportunity to meet some really awesome people who were motivated and refreshed by my story.

I began to look at my purpose more broadly, realizing I limited my God-given gifts while He wanted so much more for me.

In 2012, I gave birth and my vocabulary is too limited to describe how she changed every fiber of my being. I’ve learned so much about myself through motherhood. My desire to be a beacon of light led to me changing my business plan, as the type of business I wanted to opened changed. Researching life coaching was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, because it showed me how I can change the world, without limitations.

In 2013, my newly-inspired vision came to life with the launching of Infinite Fortitude LLC. It took me many years, many tears, many trials, and many obstacles to bring faithfulness to fruition. Probably because it took me many years to learn to lessons I needed to in order to become the person I’ve been created to be in this world. I am grateful for it all, as it has prepared me for where I stand today.

Life happens. Let me help you become who you were meant to be through the services offered by Infinite Fortitude LLC. Your consultation is free. Don’t let life continue to make you ignore that feeling in the pit of your stomach. It took me 8 years to get my dream off of the ground, but it happened because I didn’t give up on myself. I can’t promise you the journey will be easy, but I can promise you that I will be there with you through it all.

Sincerely,
Shanika

Visit www.infinitefortitude.com to learn more!

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Waiting for Love

I love…….

your fear of God, because it’s the foundation,

your intellect, because ensures longevity of conversation,

your drive, because it makes me want more,

your smile, because it illuminates my life,

your sense of family, because we are now one,

your aggressiveness, because it exudes your confidence,

your hug, because it shows your vulnerability,

your swagger, because it’s so sexy,

your ambition, because it elevates us to higher heights,

your voice, because it’s soothing,

your smell, because it affirms your love of self,

your involvement in the community, because it accentuates your selflessness,

your strong back, because it keeps me satisfied,

your laugh, because it’s the music composed specifically for my ears,

your reassurance, because it compliments your love for me,

your tears, because they express your security of self,

your manhood, because it fits perfectly,

your honesty, even when the truth is hard for me to swallow,

your flexibility in adapting to life’s changes,

your kiss on my neck after a long day at work.

I love…….

the way you look at me when I’m acting silly,

the way you finish my sentences,

the way your eyebrow wrinkles when thinking,

the way you touch the small of my back,

the way we can communicate without talking,

the way you can read my mind and discern my needs,

the way you know when to shut up,

the way you give me my space,

the way you let me be me.

I can’t wait…….

for the day we meet.

sunglasses

my eyes are the windows to my soul

so I keep them covered.

hiding my deepest thoughts and most intimate desires.

damn, if you only knew…

you’d not only gazed into the brown, you’d get lost

so deep, you’d find the pink and

you could speak my words and write my thoughts

into our bible, making them our word.

our bond,

unbreakable,

unable to be hidden behind tinted plastic framed in designer labels.

looking good on the outside,

disguising the ugly truth.

my true self, unknown to you.

withheld from you….

until you muster up the courage to pull back my blinds,

open up my gates,

and stimulate my mind, body,

uncover my soul.

but you chose to pull away, feelings surpassed.

and I chose to

keep on my sunglasses.