Overcoming Hurdles: Fear


Good afternoon, let me ask, have you ever felt the irony of writing a post about something you are dealing with in the here and now? I believe we have come to have a mind-set that whatever we write, has to be on areas or struggles we have already “overcame”. I don’t know your approach, I get into that mentality at times. Thinking to myself, I have to put myself together to be able to post. As awesome, and perfect as that may sound, that’s not life, most importantly is not me.

Lately, I have been missing in action from getting into a routinely posting schedule. There are two reasons for that, that I wanted to share with you on here. Hopefully, you may be able to identify with me in this post. In my last post, I shared how complacency can be a killer of creativity and purpose. In this post, I will share how fear got the best of me.

One fact about me, I watch about 2-3 TED talks per week. I’m passionate about what the organization stands for. I have learned a lot, for free, I may add. I have come across, amazing ideas, and individuals that I can identify with. Individuals that inspire, motivate, who have an innovative mind-set in approaching life’s hurdles. I even have volunteered at a TEDx event last year. last week of September I was scrolling through Facebook, and I saw the advertisement for the same event. It was schedule for October 2nd. That same day, I received an e-mail about open-mic positions still available. You would think that my first reaction was to submit a manuscript and contact the person in charge and let them know. NO! I gave myself millions of reasons why not to do it. I was going back and forth, and it just clicked, I had to do, this was a dream, a goal, that could become a reality. So I submitted, my manuscript, and received the response. I was accepted and on my way to Virginia, I was.

The title of my presentation was “Gentrification of the mind; how to overcome transitions in life.” it was surrounding all I have learned about fear; the reaction of the mind. How I went through changes professionally and academically. Share about how I decided to move back to New York. I even had a personal story of how educating myself about breast cancer, helped me overcome fear and be the caregiver my sister needed while battling cancer. I had it all ready and squared away.

You would think it was a perfect presentation, I got up on stage and completely changed the presentation, yeah, I shared some of the points, but nothing that I had outlined. Fear took over, fear got the best of me. I didn’t believe in myself, I didn’t let my confidence take over and share what I had from the heart prepared. We live and learned, the feeling I experience while being up on that red circle was accelerating, thrilling, it ignited something in me. It was as if I was made for this, type of feeling. I will be once again be submitting to speak at a TEDx. I am not done yet. It’s become my motivation, to continue to write and find opportunities to speak.

Let me ask you, whats your motivation? what are you passionate about? educate yourself, be confident in what you know and have learned. I can assure you, you will overcome the hurdles of fear in your life as well.


In Him



Overcoming Hurdles: Complacency


As you may be reading this, you are potentially on your way to work, currently drinking your coffee, thats if you are anything like me, or starting on the To Do list for today. In my last post, I expressed a few of the hurdles, as well as a few of the decisions I started to make as I saw myself in a difficult position professionally, spiritually, emotionally, as well as physically. As I was writing my last post and giving some of the steps I took, I began to ask myself a question; Why is it difficult for me to overcome hurdles?

I started to come with a hundred reasons as to why. One of the first reasons I came up with was this word complacency. By definition; self-satisfaction especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies. I just want to simply put it as being lazy. At times is even more dangerous, because we are very much aware of the changes, decisions that are either harming us and need changing. When it comes to laziness, there is a biblical principle in which its address and gives advice to the individual that is lazy, which can so easily result in neglecting; responsibility, and work, Yes! everything takes work.

“Poor is he who works with a negligent hand, But the hand of the diligent makes rich.”

-Proverbs 10.4-

I am one of those, that can be very passive in making decisions, or know the changes that I have to make, but do not jump the hurdle of preparing, and working towards change. You see the thing is that the decisions that we have to make, may very well be different and have different results. This is why if you search for decision-making steps or self-development, leadership, how to be a better student? learning a new skill, how to be a better parent. There are so many resources, and its a never ending process that we need to daily work on. I am not saying that this is wrong, after all, this is why I am writing this post before I head to bed. Because If I want it bad it enough, and feel accomplished, sticking to my goals and schedule, sacrifices are needed.

And there it is, we are usually complacent of the sacrifices that are needed to be made. We really do not appreciate transitions, and it doesn’t matter what we do, if we are honest, we really dislike change. However, to be honest, if we are not willing to sit down and write down some of the hurdles and find ways to overcome them, we’ll be in the same place over and over again. Today it stops here, tell yourself today and every day, “I will move forward, and in spite of fear, laziness I will do my best to accomplish what I know I need to.”

“It’s often said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.”

The hurdles to overcome

overcoming hurdles.jpg

Where do I begin, I have not posted for a while now, and since then I have been needing to overcome many hurdles, and this is why I have named my post as such. just to give you all an update, I have since my last post, moved from the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia to the city that never sleeps. It has been quite a transition, and I will share with you in the post to come, how that transition has shaped my life and given me, even more, desire and passion to have my voice heard for us all through my writing. As I took a season away from writing, I had to really sit-down and take a lot of time of analyzing, reflection and really ask the tough questions to myself. But above that, be honest with me and answer them.

During this season, my job was not giving the satisfaction I was seeking, not many opportunities were presented, and I got to a point where I was clocking in and out. Which lead me to read more books on professional development and ask myself, am I doing everything I can? I came across a few books; “People over profit” by Dale Partridge, “Start with Why” by Simon Sinek, and I am currently reading Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday. These books have made such an impact in my professional development and have been able to overcome many of the mental obstacles that started to slip into my work and daily life. Furthermore, I developed a habit of listening to Tedtalks and read articles in various areas; professionally and also spiritually.

This, in turn, resulted, in my decision to spend quality time and truly invest in my co-workers who became close friends, and the friends I have become family. Which brought me back to the fact that the reason I work, the reason I write is that I enjoy investing in people, I get excited about listening to people’s stories and help them with their struggles, but also encourage them, and bring about the positive in them. In addition, I got involved with my local church, Blueridge Community Church in Forest, VA.

Spiritually speaking, I was part of a Men’s small group which was pouring into me, and many of the issues I was needing to work with internally were being dealt with and address. I know that if you are anything like me, I really dislike accountability, but as the saying goes, No man was created to live on an island. I started doing a daily devotional by Oswald Chambers “My Utmost for His Highest”. In addition to this, I was reading articles by John Piper on his website Desire God.

As I was making professional decision and taking steps to making changes, I came to a realization, as a professional, you have to know your value, your talents and what you desire, and at a point where those are not being met or acknowledge it may be a time to jump the hurdle and move on. In the aspect of the spiritual enlightenment I was having, and just the challenge to step out of my comfort zone and not just be a spectator at church, but get involve in the community of believers, it has really been life changing. To challenge myself and work on the  obstacles and areas of my life daily.

In closing, as you can potentially sense the emotions in this post, I can definitely continue to write, but I will leave it for the posts to come. At this point, I’ve had questions of inadequate to write, of being prepare enough to advice, whether professionally or spiritually. I have not followed through with the goals and resolutions I’ve made in the beginning of the year. However, through these questions and moments of (fear), I have found tools (grammarly.com, WordPress, TEDtalks and other people that have a common interest.) which have helped and mentor me to express myself through writing. I look forward to connecting with others as God has brought me to New York City, the city that I now call home. I leave you with these words,

“Don’t quit, don’t ever quit. “

-Jimmy V.

In Him


9.||.01 A memory of emotions

A day where we all woke up to go about our lives, school, work, and going about errands. The morning was still and quiet, with the sun beaming. The morning rush hour But, understanding that was part of the norm of life. Going about our day, Not knowing whata shock, we would all receive. BOOM! A blow that would stir up many emotions and feelings, with no vision of what to do, or think. With many emergency calls, alarms going off, and the blue skies being consumed by gray. A day where our honor was hinder, where our valor lost its worth. where our patriotism was tested beyond the struggles of our nation, yet we all came together through an emotional bond that has helped us see through the barriers of human interest and come together as we all have connected through our sadness, vulnerable, and unprotected, lost, confused, bitterness, and many other feelings. As we all look back and remember that day. Yet, we have sustain the blow, and today we stand, though many have fallen, ( my heart goes out in sharing the emotions, of those who have lost someone) they have become heroes, so that we can live in a free America today.

“Let love be the Motivational agent to rise above hate.”


Here we are 16 years later still remembering, the WWI, the WWII, the Vietnam war, the pearl harbor of our day. As time has fly by us, we can all make a connection to that Tuesday morning, that forces us to connect with each other and become one nation under God. For as many acknowledge Him, some in reverence, or fear, or just to paint a picture of the ignorance of man. In which, we decide to run to God when our world is out of control or collapsing.


In Him


The Eulogy of time

This morning as many of us did, I woke up thinking about 2017, what I would like to accomplish or happen. I brewed my coffee, and read my bible, then read a chapter from Michael Hyatt Book “Living Forward”  (I highly recommend it for your 2017 Reading List)  and it made me reflect and ask myself, what’s really important in life?-A while back I wrote a personal note about Time in reflection to my sister’s passing, which was the note that spurred me to start blogging, Here it is:

Don’t miss out on something great, just because it might also be hard. The time we spend discovering the things we treasure says a lot about the type of person we really are. Never give up discovering who is worth spending time with. For they will be the people, to help you realize that your time was not spent in vain.

In life, many times we have many questions about why, or how things happen, to us or people around us? Sometimes we think that we have everything under control, yet we forget to look around and acknowledge that there is someone in control greater than who we are. He is greater than any situation we can go through, in this journey we call life. Life brings us many uncertainties, many desires, many dreams and goals to achieve, but who really can search inside and say that they have everything planned out for their lives. Can we really be certain that it will happen that way?

At times, in our lives, does not matter our age; could be early on, if we are lucky, or later on, when we have been on many “life trips.” When we reach a point, where we reach the one thing that satisfies us, the one thing that “complete” us so we come to believe that’s the case. We come to pursue careers, fame, and power and any other ambitions, besides those that really matter and last.

However, interesting enough, are they really satisfy? Because ironically, once they have found the career of their dream or the fame of social media or the power, I believe at that point it’s just become a rat race to satisfied something intangible, with the tangible…they neither would be satisfied. We can seek, discover, study the universe, and never be completely happy because we will be always lacking the control over the one thing that we’ll need to spend the most consumed by…which is time. TIME- time is precious, it was given to us, by the one who holds this world in His hands…it’s His gift to us…what we do with it, is our gift back”

“Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.”

-James 4:14-

There are many times when we don’t spend time with those people that we need to love, treasure or show appreciation for. Because after all, the most precious gift you can give someone, is of your time. Time is something that can not be bought, given back, taken or advance, it takes its natural course in life. Whether we use it wisely or not, is up to us.

There are people that use their time for self-interest, self-satisfaction, or sometimes just simply self-benefit. But I believe that is precious, when we spent our time to the interest of others, or to bring satisfaction to others, or to benefit others. Because looking at life from that perspective shows that you do not value the time it of itself, but you value the people around you. They may be a friend, a co-worker, a father, a mother, a brother, an aunt, an uncle, a husband or wife, an uncle, a cousin, or a sister. I believe true value is express when it comes to the time when we do not spend it on ourselves, but on others. The honest truth is, We do not know when that time will come to an end.

“Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”


Time is precious, think wisely, for it is here today…and gone tomorrow, for time is not an adjective to be described, or a noun to be given a secondary name, but a subject in which is represented by the people that we truly love, and care about. Time spend together, is the only trace of memories we are able to keep in our hearts…once that time is gone being together, would we be able to look back and say that time was well worth it.-Remember, Time is here today and gone tomorrow, how will you spend it?

In Him



A Special Christmas


As we find ourselves taking a moment and thinking about how fast the year has gone. I know I have, we come in a time and season, where there are jingles being played everywhere we go. All that is on our minds is the Christmas; decorations, list, get together dinners. We may be overwhelmed with the amount of traveling we are needing to make to visit those that we love and want to spent the most exciting season of the year, Christmas with. However, I find myself thinking about what goals have I accomplished, what do I want to add to my “New Years” resolution for next year. The Christmas list of those that I have to get a gift for, or make it to New York City. I will just pause here for a minute. There is no place like NYC for the holidays; the lights, the busyness, or the thousands of people, the Rockefeller tree, ice skating in Central Park or Bryant Park. Ah, so many memories, now, that I think about it, that’s what it’s all about, making memories. If your childhood was anything like mine, we had a tradition to watch Christmas movies every year around this time of year, one of them was a “Charlie Brown Christmas” there is a quote from this movie that I want to share:

    ” It’s not about what’s under the tree that’s important, but who is around it.”

Forget what you did or did not accomplished this past year, forget about the goals you will need to set for next year. Forget, about buying the biggest and most expensive presents, be creative, be thoughtful and just give from the heart. But, most importantly share with love in the moments that we would get to share with those around the Christmas tree. Whether they are family, friends, co-workers, neighbors, or those that we interact at church with. Reflect on our relationships, because at the end of the day people is what matters. Who are those people that uplifted you, encouraged you, challenged you, loved you, those that called, texted, or meet up to check up on you and ask how were you doing? –I know I am thankful for those people in my life. One of the goals I have set for this next year is to become that person to many others.

Now, I want to leave you with two things; first, enjoy every moment this upcoming two weeks; laugh, get out of your comfort zone, make things right, and share in the joy of getting together, sharing the gifts and continue to make memories for years to come. In closing, this year, Start thinking how you can make possible in setting the environment for next year that will make it possible to reach your goals, develop, strengthen, challenge you in ways we have not been challenged. Remember, is not so much to focus on the presents under the tree, but the people around it that make life special.

The Empty Chair

unnamed          As the season’s change, the leaves are falling, and the temperate decreasing. All we can think about is the holiday season is quickly approaching. The flannels, sweaters, mittens and boots are taken out of the closets. Many of us change the way we order our morning coffee to Pumpkin spice latte. We have more gatherings around campfires, while we hold a marshmallow over the fire to make that perfect s’more. For many of us, it’s the most wonderful time of the year. As we get into the Thanksgiving spirit of having those that we hold dear to our lives to gather around a dinner table and reflect on the many blessings we have experienced the past year. Moreover, to tell about the many struggles or the hardships the year has brought. For a few of us, there will be an empty chair this year, and nothing I can say or think can fill that void for you this holiday season. I tell you this because I have experienced that feeling of emptiness, sadness, for the past five years.

“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.”

(Ecclesiastes 3:1)

            But what has helped alleviate the pain of losing a loved one is to reflect; on the times you laughed, the stories you have told, the times you cried, the moments you shared love, the places you visited together, and the memories you have made. I want to also tell you, it’s ok to cry, to mourn. I just hope that you understand, time is a healer, how long would that be? I don’t know. But that is the beauty of life, the time it takes for us to (heal) will bring new wonders, new seasons in our own lives. I want you to know, I will be praying for you. Be comforted, be hopeful, be blessed, because there is still love to be shared around the table this thanksgiving.

“Blessed those that mourn, For they will be comforted” -Jesus-

Champions of life

What defines a champion? Is it’s the outer appearance or the physique to conquer obstacles or challenges? Or is it that individual that wins medals or awards? Because his intellect has met certain standards set by institutions years and years ago? What defines a champion? Is it that person that can look back at his or her life and say that they have not made a mistake? well, here I am trying to figure that out myself? Who am I, am I a champion?-Because if I define being a champion by my physique and or athlete ability to conquer obstacles and challenges, then I would fall short. Moreover, if you gauge my intellect and being smart base on my academic accomplishments only, I fall short. I know, but is it base on not making mistakes in life, and living that fairy tale life?–It’s a battle within, is a crisis of identity. ( Here is a quote from my favorite movie series Rocky.)

“Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It is a very mean and nasty place and it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t how hard you hit; it’s about how hard you can get hit, and keep moving forward. How much you can take, and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done. Now, if you know what you’re worth, then go out and get what you’re worth. But you gotta be willing to take the hit, and not pointing fingers saying you ain’t where you are because of him, or her, or anybody. Cowards do that and that ain’t you. You’re better than that!”

-Sylvester Stallone-

Rocky Balboa

Aha! No! A champion is someone that knows who he or she is, in the one that created them; God. A champion is someone that despite the obstacles or challenges whether physical or mentally has confronted them and has fought through it, maybe they have won, or maybe they know their limitations?–a champion is someone that pursuit education in all aspects as you have defined it, because who can tell you that education is only confined to the walls of a classroom, being address by a professor who has the same struggles as you and me? I ask the question, what defines a champion?

“Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school.”

-Albert Einstein-

Listen, we have all perceive a champion by the metals achievements and accomplishments because we only see the end results. But if we were there from the begin…fighting the mental thoughts of not mounting to anything, the fear of failure, having the perspective of the short end of the stick; because of social, physical, economic, mentally, emotional, or spiritual status. The decision to devote the countless years, months, days, hours, minutes and seconds. The amount of physical, emotional or spiritual heart aches that you and I have had to endure?–I ask again, what defines a champion?-You are that champion, say it; “I am that champion” because no one can define your life, your struggles, no one. Remember continue to fight and don’t quit, don’t give up, because there is a champion in all of us. 

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course,I have kept the faith.”

  2 Timothy 4:7 (NIV)

I Quit…

img_2547-3Quitting can be defined as giving up, no longer trying, walking away, abandoning, leaving, or resigning. Choose your definition, but who wants to be known as a quitter? Well, I do…

Today I say “I quit”. You want to know what l’m quitting?

I quit looking at my life as if it is some mistake or without meaning or purpose; it’s simply not true! I quit making excuses for why my life is not the perfect social media life, fit for public display, for sharing my thoughts, and my experiences, because my friends everything, and I mean everything happens for a reason.

I quit giving myself titles or categorizing myself by society’s standards that tend to define my life more by my mistakes than my triumphs. I quit looking at others and wanting what they have, or comparing myself to others; all that does is bring down my self-worth and demean the values I hold with my identity in Christ.

You see we all try to fill a spiritual void with the tangible, temporary, and worthless things this world. I quit buying the lie that I have to have a certain degree, or have a certain lifestyle or maintain a particular social status in order to say that I have reached some goal. Who is the establisher of that mentality? Who said you need to be doing this, or in that job, or have this amount of wealth to be called successful or have value?

I quit living from my past because all that does is flood my present with guilt in an attempt to drown me in the past I don’t want to or need to dwell upon. I know I am forgiven by the Grace God has shown me. So I quit at looking at my past, except to realize that I cannot and will not make those same mistakes. I quit leaving the door open to the depressing burdens of the past, and will only allow it to be reminding me of the moments I saw God working to bring me to this moment, this day that I choose to quit.

I quit living in the future, in living in the dreams of what could be, realizing that they are primarily based on my selfish desires, dreams, and goals, and are rarely God-centered aspirations. I quit merely dreaming dreams, and I determine to continually ask myself first, what would please God, how can I bring glory to God? Looking at life this way makes it not matter if we live in a shack in a third-world country, a small apartment in the inner-city, or a house in the suburbs. Staying focused on God’s will makes us beyond satisfied.

Today, I quit walking away, from the decisions I have to make. I will face them head-on and make firm decisions. Today, I quit on looking for meaning and purpose elsewhere and only seek t find it within the calling and purpose given to me by God. I quit on telling myself I will try it later, or do it some other time. NO! I will try it now! I will do it now! Today, I resign, trying to re-design my life, making me feel like I am in control of my life. I quit trying to answer the questions about my career path, marriage, where I will live, or how my life will be.

If these questions consume our time to the point that we are not enjoying what we have and get to do right now, then life has become a worthless cycle my friends. Quit that mentality. Quit that habit. Words are powerful, this journey called life is not easy. But if you and I start quitting on the right things, we will begin to live life to the fullest–the kind of life that we were truly meant to live. Now, it’s time to quit just talking about it…

The Power of ONE


img_2312This morning, what would happen if we made one decision different than what we custom ourselves to? what would happen if we change ONE perspective on how we are seeing in our lives. I bet all of other things would change, but what if that’s the ONE change we are looking for. Let me take us back in time, and show you what ONE decision, one change can make just a huge impact. It was ONE creator or cell that created all that we see and call it the universe and the place we call home, earth. It was ONE man that changed the paradigm of how we date history B.C or A.D. It was ONE man that paved the way for us to relate to physics, science, and math (I don’t know what he was thinking, must have been bored). It was ONE man that paved the way for us to see the world around us with electricity and light. It was ONE man that saw the journey too long to walk or ride on a horse, and explore the horsepower an automotive can take. It was ONE man that saw, it wasn’t sufficient for him to drive around, but saw beyond the horizon and wish he could fly above the skies.–It was ONE man, that believed in a free world for freedom and government and sailed across the Atlantic. It was ONE man that fought for the rights of human beings. It was ONE man that believe in a dream to give us an opportunity many wouldn’t have. It was ONE MAN/WOMEN that discover the biological coding that defines you and me scientifically. It was ONE cell that changed me for the rest of my life.

You see I have pointed out ONE man for the past few minutes, but if you realize it was just not that ONE man that made it happen. It was the countless hours down to the one minute, the countless people, the ONE person that supported, educated, tested each individual idea. (ONE) in that being individuals in our own identity, with ONE core idea (minds, talents, dreams, and goals) ONE core group (colleagues, family, friends, church members, collaborators) a lot has happened, and still can happen. We can all agree on ONE thing, and that is, that we all long for a better world. Going back to my own story; “One cell change my life”- I am here blogging today as I have mentioned before because ONE person who was dear to me, inspired me to speak; spoke a word to my life that still echoes till this day….and that was my sister; Her name was Marcela, she lost her battle to breast cancer, and since her death, my life has change.
I currently work in Higher Education, never saw myself in Higher education, far from it actually. But I believe in educating ourselves; academically, spiritually, physically and emotionally. I believe in collaborative work in using all of our resources to bring about the best in us and in turn the best in others. We ALL were wired differently, but if you really think about; deep down, each and every one of us, have ONE common core idea to make things better.
I’m not here to present a project or a non-profit, or an invention. But if I can bring ONE thing to this blog, it would be an encouragement. We all need it, each and every ONE of us. Don’t give up, don’t give in…continue to pursue your talents, gifts, dreams for maybe ONE day, you will be the ONE that our kids, our grandchildren will be talking about in which brought a change in our communities, in our states, in our country or maybe, just maybe….Even our ONE world.