4 Things You Should Leave Behind in 2016: What My Most Embarrassing Moment Last Year Taught Me

Me Looking for the Exit

Me Looking for the Exit

Wednesday, April 22nd 2015. I traveled to Bennett College in Greensboro, North Carolina. I was tasked to deliver a speech on student leadership. 30 minutes before I was to be announced to speak I could barely move in my seat. I was not prepared to talk about leadership. I was working at Measurement Incorporated making $11 an hour grading papers and sleeping in a car. I felt like a fraud and you could see it on my face.

As she began to read my introduction I noticed something was terribly wrong. She was reading the wrong attachment. She read my press kit bio which laid out my entire life story. My depression, homelessness, time throwing parties, breakthrough’s and setback’s. When I was a young speaker that was basically my entire message I didn’t have the confidence yet in my other material. So what she shared with the audience was the exact same thing I was about to say. As they begin to clap my textbook energy and confidence completely dissolved. 5 minutes in and my mind vanished. I sat there looking at their blank faces and I wanted to run off the stage. There was no engagement, energy, nothing in that room.

I decided I was going to quit, As I begin to apologize and leave the stage I caught a second wind and finished the last 10 minutes. I wish I could tell you that this second wind I turned it around. But honestly, it just got worse. The same guy that can go for 2 hours straight barely lasted 15 minutes. I was so distraught after the event I didn’t even want to take the $250 check. But two things stood out to me during this failure.

  1. Your perspective is not everybody’s perspective.

Immediately after the show, 2 young ladies came up to me and said I loved your speech. It was what I needed to here. I have dreams of doing what you do, how did you do it?

Note: This didn’t change the fact my performance was AWFUL. But, it did help me realize that everybody doesn’t see failure or the world the way we do.

  1. “The world is far less interested in us than we perceive it to be.” – Jonathan Fields

A few months ago I heard something similar to the quote above, from a comedian on how to get past a rough show. He said the next day when you’re in the pits and thinking you’re world is over, the reality is the  people in that crowd have forgotten about you completely. The world is only interested in itself, so don’t take a bad performance personal, just go out there until you get it right. Richard Pryor said it best “You’re Only as good as you dare to be bad.”

Cool story Greg, but why: Some of you are playing it real safe right now in life. Because you’re scared to look bad or fail. I challenge you to get over yourself and go all in. Because the world, your family, your friends, they can care less if you fail or succeed because they are focused on their life ultimately.

Explore your life and OWN it. Just wanted to share that real quick, because I have been discouraged a bit for those that have hit me up asking for advice to start their own blog, speak publicly, or pursue their passion. They already know what to do, but I realized at the core of it all, they are afraid to look bad to their peers.

Please don’t look for affirmation of your dream’s from other people, God gave YOU that vision and other’s may not see it.  Steps off Soap Box and into the real blog.


What is one thing you know you need to let go in 2016?

to-the-left

Who is one friend you need to let go?

What is one habit of yours, that is stopping you from advancing at work?

What is one thing you know that is stopping you from reaching your fitness goal?

(Please write down your answers before you read any further)

The month of January was phenomenal for me. I woke up every morning at 4:30 am or earlier, had the privilege to speak at over 7 schools, churches, and colleges, had a phenomenal time with church family, and I am building a solid foundation of a new relationship. I could NOT ask for a better month. It was like going into your second semester of your senior year with a full-time job and easy classes.

But, I knew January was unsustainable and I had a tiny voice in my head nagging me about a couple key things I need to let go of in order to move forward. Have you ever been in a time in your life where things are going well, but you know there are certain habits, thoughts, friends you have in your life that will derail your progress if you let it stay? Well after sitting down with myself, I came up with a list of 4 thing’s I had to leave in January so I can continue the momentum.

If you feel like you’re stretched too thin, not following your heart, or simply in need of motivation, then this is the post for you.


4 Things I Left Behind in January

  1. I Left Behind “Watching” Greatness

Beyoncé is arguably the 2nd best performer in the history of entertainment. Her Super Bowl performance and her domination of tours, trends, marketing itself is just a masterclass of leverage, hard work, and genius. So  when I got online I saw the backlash and hate from her super bowl performance I  had to step in.

Beyonce

My Story: Last week somebody asked me after I spoke, what was one thing I thought was different about me then everybody else. I told him I always believed I was just as good as the people I looked up to. Meaning, all the people I looked up to in speaking, acting, business, authors, I sincerely believed I was just as good. Doesn’t mean I have the same talent or ability but I always saw commonality. I first believed I could speak professionally when I watched Will Smith Words of Wisdom and I was like I say the exact same things with my friends with the exact same passion. I believed I could write a book because I read a book by my brother EJ Carrion and I said he’s the same age as me, I can do this. But I noticed for the last few months I have been watching a role model of mind Eric Thomas change the motivational game by dropping motivational mixtapes, youtube video’s, online memberships and I have been reading all his content. But then I had to check myself. Why am I not putting out my videos? Why am I not working on getting corporate gigs? Why is my own speaking page so unorganized with a demo reel from 2 years ago? So now my priority is working on my brand as a professional speaker. As I have gotten better and better my online brand in reference to speaking has been the same since 2013 and that will change this week.

Translation To life: You deserve to accomplish your dreams to. The people you want to be wanted to be like somebody else before they were famous. They just believed they were as good and (Don’t miss this) worked as if they were as good. I realized why the hate was so crazy. It is easy to critique greatness. It is hard to do what the great do.

Please Ask Yourself Now: Look in the mirror or camera phone. And ask yourself “Why Don’t I deserve to be Great?”.

  1. I Left behind the habit of Confusing Movement with Progress

My Story: There were a few times last month I did get caught looking at the stats. I spent hours upon hours replying to every Facebook message, writing copy for all my social media accounts, checking plays on my podcast, finding pictures for my blog or Instagram post. And although those things are important, they are not #1 priorities. At the end of each day I was drained and felt like I really killed it. Then I looked at my Thrive List (what I call my to-do list) and NOTHING was crossed off. It was like I spent all my time working on an album cover and the title, but didn’t complete one track of the album.

Translation to life: Look at your schedule. Honestly. Are you involved in too many things? Many of us are young, so we feel at times we must be on every board, in every discussion, at every event, speaking at every school. But, is it really moving us forward or are we just doing allot so we can just say we are busy?

My Challenge to You: For the remainder of the month, take one activity off your plate.

  1. I Left Behind giving Basic effort and expecting Deluxe Treatment

My Story: Last Sunday I decided to treat myself to a manicure and pedicure. As I sat down in the chair the lady handed me a book with all the options of services

Manicure

Translation to life: As I was leaving the building I thought about it. If I would have asked for the Sea Salt Exfoliation, Massage, Colling Gel, etc. She would have charged me for the ultimate manicure. We understand that when we buy things but in our own life we often get amnesia. We ask life for Deluxe Treatment to reach are goals, dreams, and ambition but we give life basic effort in return.

  1. I left behind focusing on what I want to get out of Life

My Story: Last year in 2015 my focus was getting into a relationship, getting my life together (first half of year), getting more speaking engagements, getting more wisdom and knowledge from God. These things aren’t bad, but I realized there was a gap.

Translation to life: When you genuinely change your mindset from, what can I get, to what I can give, everything changes in your life. To make it plain, look at each category below:

Relationships: Are you focusing on what you can give to your significant other (more time, more honesty, and more communication) or focusing on what you can get (money, sex, inspiration).

Work: At work are you focusing on what you can get (Money, Promotion, and more responsibility) or focusing on what we give (time on task, ideas to work, and consistent effort).

School: Are you focusing on getting good grades, getting a job after college, getting respect from your peers or are you focused giving your time to studying, giving your attention and respect to the teacher regardless of how you feel about them. Or Giving your soul permission to pursue what you want to pursue, instead of what the world tells you.

Church: At church are you focusing on getting a good word, getting wisdom, recieving financial blessing or what you can give (working in Ministry, Creating New Programs, more time, money, and talent to God).


 

Big Takeaway: It may be too much to change every area of your life. But, remember sometimes the biggest breakthroughs don’t happen by changing yourself. It comes from letting go.

“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be. When I let go of what I have, I receive what I need.” – Lao Tzu (click to tweet)

Question: What are you going to let go of in February?

 {Answer Below in the comments by clicking here.}

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Elviria Valdaz

    Beautiful post Greg! You’re always transparent & it’s inspiring. To answer your question, one thing that I’m leaving behind in February is my need to please others ALL THE TIME! I have such a big and loving heart, in which can make me naive to others intentions. God has reminded me repeatedly that I have to put myself first. One affirmation that I practice and speak daily is “I love myself more than the need of approval from others.” 2016 is about me actively practicing that statement. Thanks for sharing your life with us!! You’re awesome!!

    • LETS get it! This is your year and I have seen your growth first hand. Keep loving yourself and what God has destined for your heart @elviriavaldaz:disqus 🙂

  • Khadejah Bennett

    Great blog!!

    • Thanks @khadejah_bennett:disqus. Thanks for leaving a comment. Is there anything that you may think about leaving behind in February?

  • @big_mur

    Love this! Love your honesty and the clarity about the lessons you’ve learned. There’s so much gold in here. “…everybody doesn’t see failure or the world the way we do.” –>this! I watch this fear of failure play out in the lives of my middle schoolers but I fail to reflect and see where it shows up in my own life. In February I’m letting go of excuses– I’ve muted my dreams for long enough and I’m excited to get real about my own potential.

    • Oh my. Thanks for sharing @big_mur. ITS TIME!!! Cant hold anything back when educating are youth. I am excited to join you on this journey

  • Cierra

    Ahhhhh good ol’ Bennett!! Lol I’m glad you learned from that experience Greg and I know that it only made you even better!!

  • Kam E

    If this blog was a mixtape it would be Pure fire lol but seriously..Man, I felt the conviction and definitely needed to be reminded of the principles you discussed here.. To answer your question.. Hm, in February, I am going to let go of the feeling of [helplessness] #notcool #norcute. If I believed I gave my all, or frankly if I really believe that God has my back REGARDLESS – and that it’s not by my might – then I have no reason to dwell on things of the past. BOOM.

    Secondly, both of the two quotes referencing the necessity to get over self and to let go also resonated with me… down to my heart! It’s so important to Give power to effort instead of emotions…. To not trust how things seem, but to soberly assess the situation from a faith-led mindframe, then to execute the plan while affirming God’s promises to yourself. I too am striving to be cognizant of and tackle my Priorities 1st… they truly set the foundation for everything else to be aligned.

  • Linnita

    I think what I enjoy most about your writing is your TRASPARENCY! Even in our weakest and darkest moments we are still strong! God is moving through you Bro! Glad to witness the journey! Awesome post!

    • Thanks @disqus_3v5lYCeb6c:disqus .We all in this together. What do you plan to let go of in February?

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