Social media bombarded my mind and fed me false illusions. Every time I opened up Instagram or logged into Facebook I was getting a glimpse of the fairytale-like lives that people seemed to be living. It put pressure on me and made me feel like where I was at wasn’t enough. These people must have it figured out I thought! But what I have come to learn and realize is that everyone is going through their own individual journeys, and no matter how glamorous a person’s life may appear- I don’t think anyone has this whole life thing figured out. Life comes with no rulebook! Take it day by day and be grateful for the journey. 


I used to envision life being this straight line from where I currently am to where I envisioned myself arriving. However, that line is no longer straight in my mind. It is now a bit bumpy; it includes some zigzagging and even some swirls. Obstacles, challenges, and failures are all a part of this experience. I’ve learned that they are necessary to align us to what is ultimately for us and to test our endurance.  Sometimes we don’t understand why things happen the way that they do. We get discouraged, lose faith, and question God. However, through these times there is always light at the end of the tunnel. Overcoming obstacles and failures demonstrates strength and in these moments you are being prepared to launch forward.  So do not stay down. Use that inner strength and bring your mindset and energy levels to a place that is intended to help you excel. You got this!


There’s a Stephen King quote that I love, “Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work.” A key for success is hard work and having a mindset that will transform you from being in the gutter to accomplishing the unthinkable. There are numerous people who have degrees, certifications, or who may be naturally talented athletes or intellectuals. However, at the end of the day- having the most talent or paper certifications won’t determine the outcome of your life. What determines your happiness, sense of inner peace, and success all stems from a strong mindset. Believing in yourself, cutting out the limiting beliefs, having that drive to excel, take action, and achieve will work wonders. In the words of Nipsey Hussle, “Dedication, hard work, plus patience.”


Setting goals, dreaming, and reaching them make life exciting and show us that we are capable of achieving the unthinkable. But what I’ve learned is that the end result of achieving whatever it may be isn’t the highlight. That end result moment shouldn’t take away from enjoying the present moment.  A lot of discouragement and low-vibe energy comes along if you put to much focus on the end result. Along with that- that moment of achievement is so temporary. Who you become on your journey is the ultimate gift. The present moment can always be filled with discovery, wisdom, gratitude, and appreciation for life and those around you. Making the present moments your best moments contributes to a life worth living. 


I no longer define myself by titles. I’ve realized that by adding titles to who I am puts me in a box and subconsciously limits my capabilities. If I define myself as a writer, I feel limited to only do that. If I say I studied communications, I’m expected to find a career in that field. Since we were children we’ve been asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Just because you may have wanted to become a doctor, an artist, or a philanthropist doesn’t mean that’s all you can become. Opportunities are limitless. There’s an abundance that each and every person has the ability to unleash and align with. I think that we are way more than the titles applied to our names. We are individuals who have character, extreme minds, and spirits. A title can’t cover or define the greatness of a person.


There are numerous benefits that gratitude can do for your state of well-being. Having a grateful heart steers you away from greed, jealousy, and ego-driven desires.  When you can recognize how blessed you are and can appreciate what you have been given you will feel abundance.  Newton’s third law of motion is always at work, what you put out will be reflected back at you. There’s an unseen force of good vibes that will bless you when genuine intentions and gratitude are present within. Acknowledge where you are at and all you have to be grateful for. There are millions of people who are not in as good of a state as you are, and it’s important to keep that in mind as you live your life. Have gratitude and let it lead you to become a positive change agent in the lives of those around you. 


For so long I associated wealth with monetary value. If your bank account was hitting 7 figures, I’d imagine you were living a happy, successful, and wealthy life. I assumed that the material things in life must equal a fulfilling life. I have come to realize I was very mistaken. Material wealth is only an illusion. What I now believe is that a wealthy life is a life lived with presence, passion, happiness, peace, gratitude, giving back, purpose, and light. Having loving family and friends who you can experience life with is a life worth living! Traveling the world and being introduced to new people and cultures is exciting! Being able to give back and recognize your position and blessings is priceless. Living with love and forgiveness in your heart, loving yourself, loving others, and allowing yourself to be loved in return is the ultimate gift. The greatest wealth life has to offer comes from what is felt, shared, experienced, and contributes to your well-being.

Originally published at https://www.marlenerjennings.wordpress.com