Tag Archives: commitment

It’s Your Season, It’s Your Purpose

iGnite - living with purpose

Point to Ponder:
Do you struggle with defining or finding your purpose, feel confused about your life, or feel fearful that there isn’t enough time left to do what you want to do?

by Neissa Brown Springmann

by Neissa Brown Springmann

Since moving to San Diego, my life has drastically changed and taken a 180 degree turn. I do not yet have any friends here, and except for taking Durant and Malaine to school on Tuesdays and Thursdays and tending to my iGnite responsibilities and duties from afar, I don’t have any commitments either. I won’t lie, when talking to the iGnite leaders, family, and friends and occasionally peeking at Facebook and Instagram, I experience bittersweet emotions. It stinks to be on the outside looking in, missing out and not able to take part in what I’ve created in iGnite in Austin. I have also experienced extreme withdrawals from my addictions: the “being busy addiction,” “having places to go addiction,” and the “feeling needed and wanted” addiction. There are times when my ego screams so loud that I find myself taken over with feelings of inadequacy and the desire to busy myself just so I can feel important and accomplished again. Then, finally, it dawned on me that not only was my evil ego in my way, but what I was really struggling with the most was my purpose.

With the help of Martha Lynn Mangum, iGnite member and business coach, reminding me that our society inundates women with the destructive message that if we aren’t working 60 hours a week, involved in a million organizations, committed to regularly volunteering, acting as the home-room mom, and only taking two-weeks of maternity leave, or just tending to our own or our family’s and community’s needs, that we aren’t enough. Pu-lease! Don’t get me wrong, I believe in having a passion and purpose outside of our family, but not at the expense of jeopardizing our marriages, not being a present mom to our children and neglecting our relationships. Looking back, while living in Austin I definitely tip-toed into those zones and was drinking the toxic Kool-Aid. This is my destructive tendency, and I have to consistently check myself to make sure I am being counter-culture.

It has been a very long time since I have wondered about my purpose. While living in Austin, my family, friends and iGnite were absolutely my purpose and they kept my heart pumping fast and hard. Originally, I thought starting iGnite in San Diego would be my first purpose-filled project, but now I’m not so sure about that. For now, I’m declaring that I am on a prayerful, peaceful, intentional purpose-finding mission project. I’ve narrowed my purpose down to:

  1. Learning how to become a fully-attentive, loving and supportive wife to Russell (which is hard to admit because of my strong will, pride and independence)
  2. Appreciating this colorful and unique time I have with our preschool-age children and being a fully attentive and fun mother.
  3. Remotely supporting and leading the iGnite team, the iGnite members and our efforts to iGnite Austin and impact, inspire and empower every woman to live a healthy and purpose-filled life.
  4. Taking the time to get on my knees everyday and pray for myself, my family, my friends, iGnite and anyone I know who is in need of prayers or who I told I would pray for them. While I am a faithful person, embarrassingly my prayer life has been pathetic, and I’m tired of being lip-service only. Please let me know if and how I can pray for you. Seriously!
  5. Becoming involved with our church, The Rock, and serving the San Diego community.

I must confess that while I’m feeling content with my new purpose in San Diego, there is sooooo much I want to do in my life! For example, I want to write a book, I want to be on the speaking circuit and I want to grow iGnite so that women all over the world can iGnite in a positive and inspiring community. I wanna, wanna, wanna! And with that said, I get nervous and afraid that I am going to miss my opportunity, run out of time and miss out. But, thankfully, for the first time in my life, I found a Bible translation that I can actually understand called The Voice, and it’s teaching me about patience. Even though Adam, Pharrell, Gwen and Blake aren’t quoted in it, I have learned so much! One of the things that has been glaring is how late in life God uses people. Of course he uses children, like when He used David to defeat Goliath when David was only a teenager, but for example, Noah, Abraham, Sarai (Abraham’s wife) were waaaay past their “prime,” or what we today consider our “prime.” Granted, people back then lived longer, but by human standards, they were still considered old, and they fulfilled God’s purpose for them much later in life.

I recently watched a special on television called Try, Try Again where John Stossell chronicled the lives of great inventors and authors who not only failed before having success, but were also “past their prime” before having any success and fulfilling their purpose. Just to name a couple: Julia Child was 50 before writing her first cookbook, and Harland Sanders (a.k.a Colonel Sanders) franchised his first Kentucky Fried Chicken at age 62.

All in all, I write this journal not to go off about my personal purpose journey, but rather to encourage anyone who is struggling with defining or finding their purpose, feeling confused about their life, or fearful that there isn’t enough time. For sure we all sometimes feel a sense of urgency because we aren’t guaranteed tomorrow, but fear cannot be the reason why we do or don’t take action. Instead, remember that there is a season in life for everything and that our purpose can evolve, morph and even change. Sometimes we’re in a season of action, and other times we’re in a season of self-reflection, contemplation and quiet. Regardless of the season you find yourself in now, when you weave in prayer and intention, you will without a doubt be led down the right path and your fruit will be ripe.

Action Item:
Remember there is a season in life for everything and that your purpose can evolve, morph and change over time. Approach your season of life with prayer and intention.

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Wisdom from the Rock

fear-of-commitment

“A bird sitting on a tree is never afraid of the branch breaking because her trust is not on the branch but on it’s own wings.  Always believe in yourself!”    (Anonymous)

Point to Ponder:
What “thing” in your life have you pretended to or attempted to be committed to?

Action Item:
No more excuses. Commit to that “thing” that needs and deserves your full commitment.

by Neissa Springmann

by Neissa Springmann

A few weeks ago while on the Monarch Escape in North Carolina I rock climbed for the very first time. I anticipated the experience would be challenging, scary and exhilarating (which it was, plus much more!), however I didn’t expect that I would walk away with life wisdom.

While rock climbing, a special bond is formed between the climber and belayer. The belayer is the climber’s anchor and is responsible for keeping slack out of the rope while the climber ascends. The belayer also must provide the climber with just enough slack so the climber can repel safely.  Therefore, while the climber climbs, if the belayer does not keep the rope taut, if and when the climber slips, it could get ugly.

As you can imagine, the climber relies heavily on the affirming words of the belayer, and in our group of eight, it most often sounded like this:

Climber yells down to the belayer “You got me?!”
Belayer yells up to climber: “YEP, I got you!”

It was always then that we, the climbers, felt confident enough to proceed to our next move, which many times felt hopeless.

In addition to having to trust our belayer (with our life, literally!), we also learned to listen to our ‘super chill’ and awesome guide, Wes. While climbing, many times we were certain there were no other spots to place our big toe or grab with our finger tips, but Wes always assured us there was. And, when I didn’t feel I could push myself any further and wanted to quit, he would simply say, “Neissa, commit to taking the next step.” Even though I doubted myself, I knew he was right (ugh!) and my body would do whatever my mind commanded and commited to doing — and it did!

So, our wisdom from the rock is this: Anything is possible as long as you trust and commit, but by the same token, defeat is inevitable if there is no trust or commitment.

Therefore, if you are wanting to make a positive change or pursue a goal, relationship, career, etc. commit to it! Without 100% commitment it’s merely a nice sounding idea or dream, which, at the end of the day will only use up precious time and energy and leave you feeling disappointed.

In addition to commiting, you must also trust yourself and trust the process. Know that even though the act of trusting may be extremely difficult, scary and filled with uncertainty, in the end you will have no regrets and plenty of confidence and wisdom to take you to your next big opportunity.

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