#HBRMethod Success Story.

A text message changed my life.  On an ordinary day in September 2008, while my then husband of eight years and high school sweetheart of sixteen, was in the shower, I picked up his phone and read “I can’t wait till your finally free, and all mine. No more sharing.”

That message instantly ended a marriage.  It left me with three small children (my twins had just turned a year old, and my son was five), without a job or income to support them.  Overnight the world I’d spent a lifetime building crashed and burned, and I found myself in an unthinkably vulnerable and terrifying position.  It seemed beyond impossible.

The day I found out, I had nothing.  No access to bank accounts, not five dollars to my name. The rent and utilities were past due, and I was out of formula and diapers for the babies. He was our only source of income, and when he left so did the ability to feed and take care of my family. That night amid the devastation and my inability to inhabit my body or feel reality, I remember my girlfriend walking through the front door.  I was lying on the living room floor, my face on the cold wood, sobbing.   I don’t remember much, it’s honestly a blur.  But I do remember her arms overflowing with industrial-size boxes of diapers, cans of formula, food, and enough cash to keep the water and lights on. That moment is the defining moment of my life.  It’s the moment that has driven my relentless pursuit.  The moment I hustle and grind for.  It’s the reason I get up when the floor looks like such a damn good alternative.  I decided that night, to stand.  In that moment, I realized that somehow, some way, I would survive this and find a way to reinvent my life.

 Within a week of him leaving I sold everything we owned that would fetch ten dollars, wedding rings included.  Everything I’d spent a  lifetime acquiring… sold to the first Craigslist caller. I raised enough funds to move us from our home to a tiny two bedroom rundown apartment.   I stood in line at the welfare office for the first time in my life, the twins in their stroller, holding my sons hand, tears dripped off my chin and onto the papers in my lap.  I couldn’t look at the case worker when I asked him to put us on Food Stamps. Day and night I searched for a job.  Keeping the fact that I was now a single mom of three very small children, a secret as long as possible. Two months passed and I was completely out of money.

The day I walked into my first real job interview, I knew it was do or die.  If I wanted to keep my family together I had to walk out with a job.  I put on a layer of confidence I never knew I was capable of pulling off.  In the lobby I envisioned my day to day life, imagined myself working at the desk, coming into work in the morning, made a real-life movie in my head.   I convinced myself they had no choice but to hire me, after all I’d already pictured myself working there.  They gave me the job.   My salary was only big enough to cover rent, daycare and the car  payment, nothing more, but I didn’t care.  Somehow I was happy, and proud of myself for surviving on my own, and grateful for what little I did have.  Somehow I believed that this was my second chance at life, and that this time I was in control of my future.  

Slowly I began to dream. 
And dream.  I decided if I was going to start with nothing, that I wanted to reach for the moon.Live the life I had always secretly dreamed of, and let nothing stand in my way.  I’d been “realistic” all my life, this time I dreamed so far outside the box it terrified me on a daily basis. To start, I dusted off an old vision board I had created almost two years before, after I’d first seen Oprah’s show on The Secret, and took it to my new office. On it; pictures of Time Square in NYC, The Las Vegas strip (The Paris Hotel), a tropical island, the Hollywood sign, designer  stilettos, a Mercedes-Benz. All things that seemed so ridiculously out of the question, it was almost embarrassing. After a year of struggling, living paycheck to paycheck, I woke up one day and realized that I was happy. That the kids and I were alive and surviving this. And that’s when magic began to happen. 
One day as I packed my desk frantically, making sure I had everything for my first business trip to New York in the morning, I paused and looked at my vision board.  Goosebumps ran down my entire body when I noticed the  picture of Time Square right in the center, the biggest picture on my board, with the caption under it written in my sloppy handwriting “NYC baby!!”   A picture I’d put there two years before back when I was married.  I remembered so vividly taping that picture up and thinking, “there’s no way I’ll ever really be able to go there.” I had felt so ridiculous for even putting it up.  I looked down at the e-ticket to JFK in my hand, for an all-expense paid week in New York.  
That was the moment I realized that I had the power to create the life I wanted.  That I already had.  No one had handed me this new life.  I didn’t get “lucky”.  It wasn’t because I knew someone, or had been given an unfair advantage. It wasn’t because I put pretty pictures on a board and sat around waiting for them to appear.  It was solely do to the fact that I’d been clear about what I wanted, believed in it with all my heart, envisioned it every day, and then worked my ass off to get it, leaving room for the magic to make up the difference.I realized that the concept I’d learned on Oprah those years before, about changing my thoughts, and those having the power to change my life, was more than a concept.   It was exactly what I was proving to be true.  I’d changed my outlook on life that day when I got off the floor.  I’d decided to be grateful for the little I had, to take full responsibility for my life, to work hard for what I wanted, and to believe without question that at some point in time it would come to me.

That year I manifested my first vision board, one thing after the other, Hawaii, Hollywood, Las Vegas (my company booked me a room at the Paris hotel, and I didn’t ever recognize I’d lived out that manifestation until I got back to work and saw the picture on my board). The magic was in full swing.  For the first time in my life I was happy, fulfilled and living the kind of life I’d imagined, planned out and executed on. 
….*And then in 2011 I lost it all again.  In May of that year I was suddenly laid off from my dream job (through no fault of my own) and a month later our home flooded leaving the kids and I without an income or a place to live. I struggled to find meaning in this new devastating turn of events, but all the while held on to my faith, that there was somehow a reason for it. 
The tools I’d learned the past two years, my focus on gratitude in the most difficult situation, and my motivation to succeed would not let me give up. For almost a month the kids and I were homeless while our home was repaired, and the Red Cross saved us. They put us up in a hotel those weeks and provided us with the basic necessities of life to get us through the most difficult time I have ever faced. All of this just fueled my desire to once and for all break free of the chains that held me all my life, those of poverty and reliance on assistance from others to do what I knew I was capable of doing for myself and my children.
It took a few months, but I found a great job and relocated to Seattle Wa, moving us into a beautiful home, our very first since being on our own.  I set specific goals for 2012, made a new #FutureBoard and worked my butt off to achieve them. Since 2009 I have used  #HBRMethod to totally create a new life for myself and my children, one that has far exceeded my plans or dreams.
I have stayed in five-star hotels, flown first class, had limousine drivers take me wherever I needed to go.  I have played a privet pick-up game of football with my son and NFL players.  I’ve sat court-side for NBA games and even been on ESPN. I’ve flown my son cross-country for the trip of a life-time, where we stood on the sidelines for a Baltimore Raven’s game.  I’ve surfed in Hawaii behind my son who got up his first try!  I’ve fallen asleep under a panoramic view of the Empire State Building, in my penthouse suite.   I’ve taken my family on a trip of a lifetime to Disneyland, New York City and Washington DC. I’ve flown cross country in a private jet.  And even the “material items” that I didn’t really expect to manifest, like; Louis Vuitton bags, Christian Louboutin shoes, and a Benz.  Literally the life I “dreamed up” the day I created my #FutureBoard (vision board) and my new #LifePlan.  I envisioned a life far beyond anything I felt was actually “possible” for me.  Yet in less than four years it all found me.
Now do you believe that anything is possible? For anyone?

You don’t need to be rich to live the life of your dreams; you just need to allow yourself to dream, and be willing to let nothing stand in your way. 
I say all this NOT to brag. I say it to inspire YOU. So that you realize that YOU are the only person/thing (not money, not circumstances, not other people in your life) you are the only one that  stands in the way of what is possible for you. Of watching your dreams come true like magic, the way that mine have.I look at my life today and all I can think of is how blessed I am. How grateful I am for all the trials and obstacles I have faced, without question they have made me the women I am today.  I have learned that the power to turn your life around, at any age, and against any odds, lies within your own mind.  I’ve learned that whatever comes your way is all part of your bigger plan, that sometimes you need to go through the bad, or the “earthquake moments” to make it to the “pinch me” ones.  And that no matter what you’re faced with, there is ALWAYS something to be grateful for and focus on.    I’ve learned that nothing can break you, unless you willingly let it.  I’ve learned that if you want something, and are willing to let nothing stand in your way, and if you believe in it with your whole being… that there will come a day, when you will LIVE it.And for a girl who five years ago was relying on state aid to feed my children… who woulda thought I’d be living this life now?? Oh yeah, I did. I had the audacity to dream, and the tenacity to hustle.

Now it’s YOUR turn. Live the life you’ve imagined.
“Anything is possible child, anything can
be.” –Shel Silverstein

*You can read all my posts about these events and all the others as I went through them in  real-time. Look in my “blog archive” to read what I wrote as I faced these  challenges and celebrated these victories.




  • karen
    September 2, 2015 - 7:14 am | Permalink

    Sounds good but if you don’t have many friends or lists or your not really into facebook Twitter etc

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