What did Simba’s dad say to him in Disney’s Lion King after Simba grew up? Remember? Hold that thought. It’s been said too many times that 2020 is unbelievably challenging. Too often, we let outside factors cause doubt in ourselves. We focus on those negative thoughts and ideas, and we start to see more of them because we are looking for that confirmation. Seek, and ye shall find, it says. But did you forget who you really are?
I did! I did two years ago when I had to tell my team I messed up and had to tell my team we might not be able to cover payroll. When I confided in my friend, Ed Tate, he reminded me of who I was. He said, “Dude, I’m reading this book Grit, and as I’m reading, I’m thinking, ‘That’s Darren!’” He picked me up and guided me back to my success pattern. What is your success pattern? That thing you do? You know, that way you act when you make things happen? Who are those people you reach out to and actually listen to?
With so much craziness happening, it can be challenging to look away from the news. It’s like staying glued to the T.V. when a devastating storm is hitting close to home. The big difference is this is months rather than just a couple of days. I grew up in a home that had the news on morning, noon, and night.
So, now it’s very different and overwhelming. I have to admit that there are moments I feel like giving up. Thoughts like, “God, do you hear me? I’ve had enough.” We’ve all had challenges, and even though we see others having it worse, we take our challenges to heart. As an encourager and motivator, we sometimes don’t want to be a downer, and we forget it is the authenticity that truly connects us to our audience.
Right now, I’m facing painful business and frustrating personal challenges, as you may be as well. Even if our own may be smaller than what we see others face, they are felt and ours to overcome. I have often felt like quitting and have moments where I step up and do what I need to do. Then, I slide back again.
One moment I was in a great place when invited to be a guest on a podcast Behind the Funny hosted by a comedian that I used to open for back in the 1990s, Ace Aceto. It was fun! I was connected and reliving the days when he was a hero of mine. An hour after we finished recording, reality slipped back in. Or should I say my victim mindset?
A couple of days later, I received an unexpected private Facebook message from one of my college roommates, Darren. Yes, I had a roommate named Darren. Here is what he said in his message:
Wow! I was shocked, not only that he listened, but also reached out to me. Even more so, what Darren said. He reminded me of who I am. When he said, “We were also both impressed that it seems like giving up is not in your genetic code. You’re not wired that way. But I always knew that about you.”
He reminded me of what I do have in me when I’m on a mission and not playing a victim. Maybe God was listening and used Darren to remind me and get me out of the funk and back on track. It’s been said that God uses people. It sure feels like it to me this time. But this is not about me. It’s about you! What is your success pattern when you are on a role? Is it diving into some book or reaching out for support? Praying? Look back, and if you are not sure, ask your friends and family who were around you when you accomplished something amazing. If you are alive, you made it through some significant life challenges. What got you through?
Remember what Simba remembered? If you didn’t see the movie Lion King, Simba remembered his father’s words even after he was gone, “Remember who you are.” We all need that reminder from time to time.
Don’t let the negative images rule you and take you down a rabbit hole. If you aren’t paying attention, it may happen naturally in all this. Pay attention! If I wasn’t paying attention, I could have easily just said, “Thank you” to my college roommate and just asked him what he has been up to. There was a message there for me. It’s there if you are aware. Seek, and ye shall find. Ask and then listen. You may not get your answer right away, it may be a few days or a couple of weeks, but I believe it will come. Maybe this article is your message?
What’s in your DNA when you are on your game? Who are you really?
What do you take from this?