At the start of this year I challenged you to consider making rest your priority. As we enter the second half of one of the most challenging years many of us have faced, and the world begins to reopen, I thought it a great idea to reconsider the importance of sleeping your way to the top.
Before you commit to hustling your way through the year – before you decide you can sleep when you die – tune into this episode about the power of rest to change the trajectory of your life. I am sharing three keys to support you in making sleep and rest a priority this year so you can he, have and do all God has called and created you to with excellence.
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Hey beacon, welcome home to your bounce back blueprint community Podcast, where you are challenged to be do and have God’s best. As you thrive on your journey from setback to success. I’m your bounce back guide, Tiffany Huff-Strothers. And I’ll be guiding you on the journey by sharing tips, tools, and the T on how I was able to bounce back from escaping death, healing from heartbreak and finding hope in homelessness. And then I wrote an award winning book all about it, and shout out to God, ever since I was courageous enough to share my story. My life and the lives of women around the world have been forever changed. And as a member of the bounce back blueprint community, I’m called to teach you to do the same. So grab your journal, and let’s build this blueprint.
Hey, beacon. Hey, happy new year. I am so excited about this new year and what is to come, I am even more excited about what I am sharing with you today. And I am just really, really praying that the end of 2020 was a time of peace and prayer and reflection and recommitment for you and your loved ones. And before we start building the blueprint this week, I want to encourage you, I know that for some of you, when the clock struck 12 in the year change to 2021, it did not change the fact that you felt like 2010 2020 beat you down like you’ve never been beaten before. It didn’t change that for you. When you get up and look in the mirror, you don’t recognize the woman that you see, it doesn’t change the fact that you are still exhausted with the truth that you tried doing all of the things. And it felt like nothing worked, or nothing will work even in this new year. And if that is you, then I want to both challenge and encourage you to grab the link in the show notes and schedule a breakthrough session. Because I would love to be your coach this year, be your guide this year, and really work with you to be and do and have all that God has called you to through coaching. So grab the link in the show notes bit.li slash your bounce back guide. And let’s work together to ensure that 2021 is the year that you not only build but begin to implement your bounce back blueprint. Now today’s topic is sleep your way to the top. Yes, I said it, sleep your way to the top. One more game for those in the balcony, sleep your way to the top. And I know that if you listen to other podcasts, or if you’re on social media, all you’re seeing is stuff about the hustle and how you need to get up and go. And this new year, it’s time to do all of the things. But I just want to really impress upon you the importance of resting. Regardless of what goals you set, regardless of what you’re called to do. Regardless of what season of life you are in. There is nothing that you are going to be able to execute with excellence if you are not getting sufficient rest. And let me tell you how much of a challenge I know this to be for you. And for me, right? I committed at the start of 2020. I told my husband, I am going to take the full final week of 2020 off. And he was like, okay, and I was like No, I’m really going to do this. So I told myself that from December 24th. Christmas Eve through the end of the year, I was not going to do work. Now. I did know that there were a few things that were pre scheduled that there wasn’t really anything I was going to be able to do about about them. But for the most part, I was taking this time to rest to rejuvenate to spend some time with family. And when I say I was resting, I was not only not doing work, I was not doing house work. I was not I was in a 100% chill mode. However, it took some time right because Christmas Eve Christmas. I was still kind of working you know baking cookies and cooking. And not that that’s work but I was doing I was there was a lot of doing right I went to sleep pretty much exhausted on Christmas Eve I went to sleep pretty much exhausted on Christmas. But I did start to rest the day after Christmas. And then when Monday came I went into full rest mode. Talking about I was in the bed all day, I have therapy on Monday afternoons, I took my therapy session from the bed. And my therapist really was proud of me because she knows how challenging it is. And there will there were several times over the course of the last week where I had to really work at resting, I had to really work at not picking up my laptop, I had to work at not trying to schedule things or reaching out to someone so or constantly checking my emails, all of that I had to really work at resting. And I think that it was not even I think it was a telltale sign for me that I’m not being as intentional as I need to be with rest. And I know that I am not alone with this. And so I am sharing this as the first episode of 2020. Because it needs to be a priority. And it’s not something that needs to be seasonal, right? It’s not something that happens only at the end of the year, or only on Saturdays, this is something prioritizing rest. And sleeping your way to the top is something that needs to become the rule and not the exception. And so I want to share three tips that you can use for, you know, creating the atmosphere or setting the tone for you to be able to sleep your way to the top. And I’m going to start out by sharing three scriptures that I think are just really aligned with our need to rest more. And that is not something that is just coming out of the sky. It is something that is written in the word that God is, you know, as I say, challenging and encouraging us to do. And so the first scripture is Psalm three, five, and it says, I lay down and slept, I awoke for the Lord sustains me. And the reason why I wanted to share this scripture is because I know that we feel like if we are sleeping, if we are resting, there are so much that’s not getting done. And perhaps if we aren’t working, then we aren’t making the money. And then we are in this mindset of lack, right? But the Word says that because we lay down and sleep, we awake, you know, we can get that rest because God is going to sustain us. The second scripture is Exodus 3314. And it says, and he said, My presence shall go with you. And I will give you rest. That means there’s nowhere that we are going that God is not there, right? He goes before us, in fact, and so we are allowed to rest, knowing that he has everything under control, and we are covered by him. And then the third scripture I will share is song for an eight it says in peace, I will both lie down and sleep for you alone, oh Lord, make me to dwell in safety. And peace says I want you to write that down. And peace asleep my way to the top and peace. I will lie down and sleep that means not just lay down and scroll on your phone, not just stay in the bed and be watching Instagram Live No. in peace, I will lie down and sleep. For you alone. Oh Lord, make me to dwell in safety. That’s good. Psalm four and eight. All right. So here are my three tips for sleeping your way to the top in 2021 and beyond. The first is to prioritize. So we know that when we are prioritizing something or someone in our lives, it requires us to set boundaries, right. And so I want you to consider the boundaries you are going to need to set in order for you to make sleeping your way to the top and or resting priority in this season. Right? Some of those boundaries might be having a time when you shut down, right. So a time when you stop taking calls a time when you stop responding to text messages a time when you stop scrolling. Right? And you begin to decompress. Right? Maybe that is when you start your prayer. You might do some meditating, maybe some journaling at night. But you are in your space, right you are prepared for rest. And for some of us, for some of us, that is going to be a new habit that we’re setting right so perhaps, you know you need to go to bed earlier, but you don’t just fall asleep. Well that might Look like like that Scripture says, lying down, and then going to sleep. So maybe you need to set a boundary that you will be in bed by 10. Even if that means you aren’t sleep until 11, you are resting and preparing for that. Another boundary that you might need to set is to move where you are charging your cell phone, right. I always tell people not to charge your cell phone next to your bed, I have a powder room in my bedroom. So I can plug my cell phone up in the bathroom, still in my bedroom, but far enough away that I have to get up and go into the bathroom if my alarm is going off, because a lot of people use the excuse that their cell phone is their alarm clock.
The good news is they are still making alarm clocks in 2021. So if you are in need of one, then invest in an alarm clock or move your cell phone, and it’s charging station from your bedside table or your nightstand and put it somewhere that’s going to require you to get up out of the bed in the morning. And am. In addition to that, shut off your notifications, put your cell phone on Do Not Disturb or put it on silent so that even if it is in a different area of the room, you aren’t constantly hearing the buzzing and the alerts and the notifications, right. Another boundary might be that you need to start waking up earlier right? Perhaps you feel like you can’t go to bed earlier, you can’t sleep longer because you have so much to do. Well what if you decided to start commanding your morning, getting up earlier so that you have some time to do what’s necessary. before everyone else in your house awakes before it’s time to get out of the door or on the laptop for work, you can prioritize what’s most important. And then not only are you getting more done earlier in the day, but you’re waking up earlier, which is making it more likely that you will be able to get the sufficient rest you need at the end of the night because you’re tired. The second tip is to prepare for sleeping your way to the top. Yes, I said preparing for sleep. Because let’s be honest, we haven’t necessarily created the optimal environment for us to get the sufficient rest, right, you may have a TV in your room, you may need new pillows on your bed, maybe you need a new bed. And I can tell you that the Sunday after Christmas, we got our new bed delivered. And I know that contributed significantly to the amount of rest and sleep that I got not only Monday, but during the entire course of this past week. And us getting a new bed was way overdue. And that is because I was not necessarily prioritizing my rest. So maybe you need to prepare the environment in which you are sleeping, perhaps you need to freshen it up, you need to fill up your pillows get on a consistent schedule with washing your bedding. And I know these probably sound like very simplistic things. But when we don’t prioritize them, these are some of the things that are the lowest on our list. And because of that we find ourselves waiting until we are completely exhausted to rest and sleep. So I want to really challenge you to consider whether or not where you are resting is prepared for you to get sufficient rest. It could be that your window coverings are not keeping out the light that you need them to keep out. Right. There are a lot of things in the atmosphere that contribute to how well we do or do not sleep. is the temperature right in your bedroom? Do you maybe need a candle or a diffuser or something of that nature. And also, even in preparation for setting the atmosphere in your room? I think it’s also important that you think about what you’re doing just before bed. And I know I already talked about boundaries, but what is it that you’re doing just before bed that is affecting your ability to get that rest you’re affecting your ability to you know, really feel well as you are preparing to end your day. Right? So what is or isn’t in your sleeping space, your bedroom, your living quarters, that needs to be there or that needs to be removed. And then finally, you’ve got to persist. You can’t try this one or two nights and then give up. Right you are going to be building a new habit. And for some of us sleep and rest are not the easiest things and that’s why the boundaries and the preparation are so important. But even more so you have to persist, right? Maybe it’s going to take A few weeks or even a month, a few months for you to get to the point where you feel like you are recognizing the difference in your sleep and how you are waking up. But don’t give up sleeping your way to the top in 2021 is going to be transformational. I promise you this past week has just been amazing for me. And I’m so grateful that God impressed it upon me to give myself the permission to prioritize, prepare and persist, even when I struggled with it on certain days or at certain times because of how important it is. And so I’m just praying that in this season, you are recognizing how God has created you to be and to do and to have so much more than you could ever even wrap your mind around. But it’s going to require more of you. And for you to be able to pour of course, you have to fill your cup and you cannot do it without sufficient rest, and sleep. And so I want you to this self care Saturday morning. And whenever you are listening to this, I really want you to look at your planner, I want you to look at your calendar. And I want you to make sure that you’re scheduling, the time that is necessary for you to rest. And for you to sleep. This is about the prioritizing. And this is about the preparation. And it’s how you persist, right. So if you have things that are scheduled up until midnight, some of those things are going to need to go other places because you are now prioritizing your rest earlier in the evenings. Right? If you have things that are scheduled from the time that you wake up, then some of those things are going to be rescheduled because you need to have some space and therefore rest and for sleep. And so I want you to go and get your planner after you listen to this episode. I want you to look at what schedule in your Google Calendar and what you have committed to already and do some reflecting and some recommitment to yourself and to God to execute with excellence in this year. And to do so by prioritizing, preparing and persisting to sleep your way to the top. I would love love to hear your feedback on this episode. You can of course grab my email in the show notes and shoot me a message. I am on Instagram and Facebook and you can DM me in these internet streets. My handle on social media, if you’re not already following me is at the Tiffany Huff would love to hear from you and connect with you there. And if you were blessed by this week’s episode, please take a moment or two and leave a review. When you leave a review. You create the opportunity for other women like you to find this show and get the support and encouragement that she needs to build her bounce back blueprint. I am so grateful that you have spent your time with me today and I will leave you with this. God is not going to play you but if you refuse to prioritize, prepare and persist at rest and sleeping your way to the top. You are playing your self be blessed!
Have you been struggling to balance being a public success and a private failure?
Do you find it challenging to find your version of success from day to day?
If you answered yes to either of these questions this week’s episode is especially for you! In this episode Tiffany is introducing you to the concept of being famous at home first, and challenging you to shift your perspective about success and fame.
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Failing Forward: How to Redefine Failure + Use It To Change Lives
Sleep Your Way To The Top: Making Rest The Foundation For Success in 2021 and Beyond
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Hey beacon, welcome home to your bounce back blueprint community Podcast, where you are challenged to be do and have God’s best. As you thrive on your journey from setback to success. I’m your bounce back guide, Tiffany Huff-Strothers. And I’ll be guiding you on the journey by sharing tips, tools, and the T on how I was able to bounce back from escaping death, healing from heartbreak and finding hope in homelessness. And then I wrote an award winning book all about it, and shout out to God, ever since I was courageous enough to share my story. My life and the lives of women around the world have been forever changed. And as a member of the bounce back blueprint community, I’m called to teach you to do the same. So grab your journal, and let’s build this blueprint. Hey, begin, hey, I am so excited to build the blueprint with you this week. Before we do though, I want to offer you the opportunity to make 2021 your best year yet, and that is by investing in being your best. Today we’re talking all about redefining success, and the power and the importance of being famous at home first. And that is where I specialize really helping you to build a solid foundation so that you can cease to be a public success and a private failure. And in fact, if you wonder why you haven’t been able to achieve public success, it’s likely because you aren’t famous at home, first, you’re overwhelmed, you’re burnt out, you’re stressed out, you’re doing all of the things and none of the things is working. Let me be the one to help you to course correct. And get the clarity and gain the courage to really be and do and have all the God has called you to, you can grab the link in the show notes and grab a breakthrough session with me so that we can speak about how we can work together to make 2021 your best year ever. Now grab your journal, and let’s build this blueprint all about being famous at home.
First, you have to be famous at home first. And that means regardless of how many people you bless outside of your home, regardless of how much money is in your bank account, if you are a public success and a personal or at home failure, then it’s all for not right. And so I want you to consider even now with how busy we can be as women, right we wear tons of hats, beyond wives, mothers, sister, friend, daughter, significant other if you’re not married, if you don’t have children, you are active in your community, you’re volunteering, you are on professional boards, and the list goes on and on for all of us, right. And so it’s very easy to get caught up in what you have to do once you get out the door. Because for some of us even getting out the door is such an accomplishment, right? It can be easy to focus on your success, once you leave your home and lose sight sometimes or your home actually drops to the bottom of your priority list. And I know that nobody is going to quickly volunteer this as their truth because it’s not popular. However, I do want you to be honest with yourself and be honest with God as we move through this topic today. And so what I have learned, and what I have had to learn the hard way is that it’s so much more important to be famous at home first. And when you are not that it will be easy, but it will be easier to build, bless and bank once you leave out of the house. And this was very challenging for me because I was bred to be an achievement junkie, right? All of my life, I aspire to the next thing and the next thing and the next thing, and there was really nothing that I could not accomplish. As long as I worked hard, until I got into this relationship and I couldn’t make it work, I was able to make everything else work. Nothing else that I wanted or needed, or attempted to achieve was impossible except this. And because of that, I ended up experiencing one of the worst. Well, one of the most life changing setbacks of my life, I will say, and so I want to share with you Like I said, I’m open that I’ve taken enough for the team so that you don’t have to have the same experience. So what does it mean to be famous at home first, if you have your workbook you probably have a little bit of insight into this, but I’m gonna break it down for you anyway. being famous at home first, has some levels and I’m sure you’re used to me saying so many of these concepts. There are levels to it and that’s because it This is a journey right? Even after you’ve completed the challenge, there will be some pieces of this process and your workbook and these videos that you’ll go back to, that you’ll revisit that you’ll have to reflect on and work through and grow through consistently, right, it’s not a one and done. So when it comes to being famous at home, first, there are three levels. And all of these levels are necessary before you even leave out the door before you pick up your phone before you post anything on social media, this is all at home, this is all very important. But I want you to shift your perspective about home, because you probably immediately went to being famous at home as famous as a mom famous as a wife. But even before we get there, there are some levels that you need to consider. So the first famous at home, or excuse me, the first level of being famous at home is being famous with God, good morning. That means that you are prioritizing your relationship with God, and you are prioritizing yourself as the woman that God tells you you are now for a lot of us this is challenging, right. But I want you to think about this from the perspective of when you are getting into a new relationship, right?
Think about if you’re in a relationship, how you got to know your significant other, right, this is time that you have to invest into getting to know that person, right? sharing and learning truth about this person is just getting comfortable. And it takes time. And it’s an investment. And when we are in pursuit or in process of a new relationship with a significant other, this is an exciting time, right? This is a time that you are smiling a lot, right? You’re probably feeling a little giddy, maybe even blessing. And it’s usually a time when we are excited and sharing with others about the experience. And that’s what being famous at home with God is all about. It’s about really being excited and invested in living a life where God is going to get the glory. And that excites you to the extent that you want to share it with other people. And so, like we talked about yesterday, if you don’t have a solid foundation with your source, then it’s going to be very challenging for you to do what you’re called to do, or what you were created to do as it relates to that source. So first and foremost, you want to be a famous home with God, that is on the basic level, right. And that is something again, that is not something that you achieve in one day, it doesn’t happen overnight. It’s not something you check off a list, it’s something you prioritize on a consistent basis. And that will grow. And as that grows, the foundation that you’re building on becomes stronger and stronger. So even though it’s not something that happens overnight, or a one and done, it is definitely something that you need to consistently invested. I know that even today, the houses that are popping up or being built very quickly, right, especially now because we’re inside, you could be in the house for a week and the next week, potentially see a house a structure, right. But even before that house went up, there was some digging that had to be done, there was some semen or dirt that had to be laid on bricks that had to be set before that house was built. So even though it appears to have happened very quickly or overnight, there were things that we could not see happening, that needed to happen for that to take place. So it’s very important to prioritize your relationship and your time with God. And as we move through the rest of this week, we’ll talk about exactly how to do that. The second level of being famous at home first is being famous in your body. Right? So
you know, are most people are familiar with some variation of the Scripture, your body has a space where the Holy Spirit dwells right. Beyond that our body is not our own, it’s on loan to us, right? This is something our body is something just like our money and our gifts and talents that we have been entrusted to steward well, right. And so if you aren’t being famous at home, if you aren’t caring for your body properly, then it’s going to be very challenging for you to do the work that you were called to do, right? being famous at home and your body is what makes you feel good enough to to be able to do the things and so I always challenge my clients to consider what are you putting into your body and where are you going with your body that the Holy Spirit may not want to dwell with or in a space that the Holy Spirit might not want to be in? Right? Because your body is the temple for some people.
You might be the only Bible that they ever open right? Your story what you are called to bless people with might be the soul experience that they have with God and so It’s very important for us to prioritize how we treat our bodies. And again, because we are women. And because we have so many other things going on, unfortunately, we tend to put ourselves on the bottom of the priority list. And so this is why we are focusing here now, because what we don’t want to happen is you start to experience some success with sharing your story, you start to experience some success with blessing others, and then you lose sight of the importance of caring for yourself, we are prioritizing ourselves first, that’s what being famous at home in your body means that means that you are sleeping your way to the top. That means we are not in hustle and grind mode, we are resting because even the Creator of the heavens and the earth rested on the seventh day. So that means part of being famous at home first is allowing yourself to space and the grace to sleep your way to the top, making your rest a priority, right? It means that you are nourishing your body properly. And it’s not only what you eat, it’s not only what you consume with your eyes, right? It’s what you can, or excuse me, it’s not only what you consume with your mouth, it’s what you consume with your eyes, right? What you’re watching what you’re scrolling through on social media who you’re following. It’s also what you are hearing with your ears, right. And like I said, it’s also the places that you go. And the company you keep the people you entertain, as the old folks will say that it’s the company you keep, right. So these are things you want to be mindful of as you build your foundation to be famous at home first. And like I said, this is about being honest with yourself. And your journal, your workbook is your judgment free zone. So what you were writing there, what you’re jotting down as you listen to what I’m sharing is your personal truth, your space to commune and be honest with both yourself and with God. Does that make sense? Everybody with me famous at home with God is level one, famous at home and your body is level two. And you will know when you’ve gotten to the point that you’re famous on those first two levels when you are excited when you wake up in the morning because you know one that you get to have more time with God, but two, you are about to invest the day, the time of your day and doing the things that you are called to do, and you feel good about it. Right? When you wake up heavy and sluggish and tire you don’t feel good about doing the work that God has called you to do, you don’t feel excited. And so it ends up, we end up in a space where we have to wear masks and put on a facade.
So this is something we definitely want to be intentional about, we definitely want to take seriously and we want to prioritize. Now the third level of being famous at home first is the fame that is necessary actually, in your home with your family with your significant other. And even if you live alone, if you’re not married, if you don’t have children, if you don’t have a significant other, this is about being famous at home in the space that you inhabit. And so it’s not only your familial relationships, but it’s also caring and stewarding your space well, right. And again, these are things that often fall to the wayside because of so many of the other priorities that we have outside the home. And I can be completely honest, there was a time when I don’t think I shared this yesterday, from the moment I woke up in the morning to the time I lay down at night, my entire day was accounted for that that was when I was a single mom. And that didn’t mean that I didn’t spend time with my children. But it did impact the way I was able to spend time with my children, because there was so much rushing. And it became very clear to me when I noticed that it was um it was the way of life that my children were adapting to right so I was always hustling always. Let’s go Hurry up, get yourself. Let’s do it. And what I noticed was my older son started doing it to my younger son because he was following what I was doing to him. So he would constantly be like, Come on, get your bag, get your book, but come on, we gotta go Hurry up, get up. And I would be thinking why is he rushing him that way. But it’s because it’s the way that I was modeling the behavior to him. And so it’s really important to take an inventory on the areas of your home life where you aren’t famous. And here’s the way that I encourage you to do it. Draw a picture of a house on a piece of paper and your journal or your workbook, and then divided into rooms, right? And I want you to think about the physical rooms in your house like your basement, your kitchen, your family room, your bedroom, but also I want you to consider The other rooms that make up the home that you embody, right the home that you inhabit. And so that would be like, your physical, your emotional, your spiritual, your mental, your professional, and think about and rate yourself on how famous you are in each of those houses, right? Or each of those rooms, right on a scale of one to 10? how famous Are you in your relationship with your children? how famous Are you with keeping your home clean, and let me be clear and say this, this doesn’t mean you have to do all of the things right? You could have someone that you hire to clean your home, right? That’s part of being a good steward. We don’t have to do all of it ourselves. But we are responsible, we do have dominion over those things that God has given us to steward. And so how you actually do it is not as important as you making sure that it gets done. So it might be that you need to ask for some help. That’s part of being famous at home first, recognizing that you don’t have to do it all on your own, it also may mean that you need to establish some boundaries, right. And that means boundaries with the people you live with. As well as people you work with your friends, family members, right, you have to set some boundaries and create the space so that you can build up the habits, build up the clarity, build up the courage and make the commitment to doing the work of being famous at home first. And I’m a firm believer that we do not grow alone. And I know that part of what what I’m called to do is to help you really build this solid foundation.
This is Cornerstone number one of building your bounce back blueprint. You’ve got to be famous at home first, before you can even consider successfully being and doing and having all that God has called you to do because your foundation is so important to everything else that you are called to build everyone else you are called to bless. And so I would love to have the opportunity to be your guide on this journey. If you are struggling with even how to begin to be famous at home first how to build those habits, how to connect with God, how to prioritize yourself, if you’re struggling with setting boundaries, if you don’t know which goals are God goals and which are good goals. I am here for you. I would love to work with you. All you need to do is grab the link in the show notes and schedule your breakthrough session. That is the first step in us getting together and talking about how we can make magic, how I can help you make 2021 your best year yet and also be the foundation that you need to set for the life that God is calling you to lead and the woman that God is calling you to be. So I look forward to hearing from you. I would also love to hear from you if this was a blessing to you if you found this information helpful if it’s going to help you with your journey to redefining success and really setting the goals that matter for 2021 grab a screenshot, share it on your social tag me at the Tiffany hub and of course if you feel so inclined, you can head over to Apple podcasts and leave a review when you do you create space for another woman to find this podcast. This resource is this community to get the support she needs on her bounce back journey. I am so glad to have had this time with you. And of course I will leave you with this God. God is not going to play you but if you think you found success, and you are anything less than your best and and less than being famous at home first. I promise you, you are plaguing yourself. Be blessed!
This episode is part of the Redefining You Series. Today’s guest is Herdyne Mercier, The Chief Grief Crusador and Hostess of The Redefining Grief Podcast. Herdyne and I discuss the truth about grief, and how closely aligned it is with growth. We also talk about how we do ourselves a disservice on the journey to living purposefully when we refuse to acknowledge and celebrate the lessons we learn through grieving, as well as the five anchors to redefining grief. You can learn more about Herdyne here and follow her on Instagram here.
Book your Breakthrough Session with Tiffany here.
Failing Forward: How to Redefine Failure + Use It To Change Lives
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Herdyne: What it is to truly live. And so the Scripture is it is better to go to a house of mourning than it is to go to, basically a house party for death is the destiny of everyone in the living shall take it to heart. And so what I’ve gotten from that scripture is, we are all going to go through some type of death, whether it is a physical death, a spiritual death, or financial death, whatever death your experience is. But when you go to Homegoing ceremonies, there’s a lesson to be learned. be committed to learning the lesson. You can truly live.
Tiffany: hey, begin welcome home to your bounceback blueprint community Podcast, where you are challenged to be do and have God’s best as you thrive on your journey from a beacon. Hey, welcome back to another episode of struggling. Sharing, tips, tools, tea, and I’m running out of gas from Dallas and my friend are here and then I wrote a book all about welcome and shout out to God they ever since. My story, my life and the LIDAR round began traveling forever changed, and as a member of the community, called to teach you to be the same and less broken hearts to heal, so purposeful living can be restored. She believes that happiness and sadness exists in a delicate balance. She is committed to redefining how we as a society understand grief. And she defines grief as being a normal and natural reaction to any loss or change in normalcy. hurting strongly believes the goal is not to allow our unhappiness to overtake the good times the successes and the laughter enjoys in order to maintain our emotional well being. As the founder of the redefining grief, her Dean has built a community of individuals committed to living their best lives, anchored down and purposeful living, despite what life throws at them. Without further ado, a welcome to the podcast, her Dean, and thank you so, so much for being here.
Herdyne: Thank you so much for having me says I’m so excited
Tiffany: so overdue. Now I have given the people your formal bio, but please let us know who is her Dean beyond the bio.
Herdyne: Beyond the Bible, I am an individual that is committed to purposely living by making sure I unwrap the gifts that God has given me and fulfilling the assignment He has called me here to do. And so I am just committed to living this life. Because I am fully aware, can I just say I am fully aware that I will only walk this planet one time. Come on. And so if I have this thing, and I’m getting chills just thinking about it, where I get to walk you one time, baby, I’m gonna work through the mess so that I can get to glory.
Tiffany: Let’s work through some mess on today so that we can help the people get to the glory. I’m so excited for your excitement. And I know because of our time together and what we shared, that you’ve not always been in this place, right? You’ve not always been in the space where you believed that happiness and sadness existed together. So can you tell us a little bit about your journey to getting to this place where you are?
Herdyne: All right. Okay, so my journey of getting to where I am a lot of my mess, right? That I really need a God to help me clean up. It wasn’t that I had the love. I have the love story, right? I have the children. I have the home. I have the car. It was that purpose. It was the craving it was I know God has called me to do something. But what is it? Like I did not want to be one of those individuals that went Six Feet Under and did not open up the gifts that God had given me. And so that just kept me and my husband was like baby it will come and I’m like but I’m putting 2526 it should be here are ready. You know I’m first generation Haitian American.
I’ve gone to college. I’ve done The things my parents told me to do. Why isn’t it here? Yeah, boy, when I told you that Joe was just a rumble in my spirit, I couldn’t sleep. I had anxiety about this thing.
Tiffany: That was at 2526. How long did that go on?
Herdyne: You know what I think 2526 I was in preparing, I was in preparation. I just finished college. I remember telling my husband, when he when he proposed, I will walk down with all the hours you. But that is not going to happen until I get my master’s degree. Just in case. I get pregnant, I don’t want to do school and baby at the same time. That is my story. Mm hmm. And so I remember going in right into getting a master’s degree. coming out with our master’s degree, six months later, I went into a master’s degree program that if you graduated with, with your bachelor’s with a high GPA, and met the criteria, you get to waive off a year and a half. So I went in naki. But you had to be coming, you couldn’t take another job. It was just the master’s degree program. And so I guess, 27 I’m married 28. I have my first child. And I just really did think that, okay, I did everything you got to think about, I’m coming from a family that ingrained in me. They migrated by boat, my mom and dad migrated by boat, so that I can live the American dream. And they said, this is the this is the plan to go to school, when you come out of school, everything is going to work out. You’re going to have the money, you’re going to have the career, you’re going to have the joy Well, I came out of school. Did my first Social Work job that wasn’t the salary? I was hoping not for the loans that I got. If I can just keep it 100 Yeah, then I’m, then I’m on the job. But I’m not happy at that job. Something right. And so I’m like, I begin to wrestle with God. Is this my purpose?
And so I would fluctuate for years going, Okay, I think I’m happy now.
Tiffany: Oh, no, are you happy?
Herdyne: Oh, I think I’m happy now. Oh, no, I happy. But then I felt guilty because I had the husband who love me and supported me, amazing husband, I have these amazing gifts. But the joy to the career wasn’t planning out. And I needed to find my purpose, so that I can find my voice in this world. Too many times, we take on the title of being a wife, or a mom, right? Or taking on the title of being the CEO. But not connected to purpose. purpose was very important to me, because I know at the end of the day, God is not going to ask me. How were you as a mom and a wife? He’s going to ask me, what did you do with the time that I gave you? According to the my assignment?
Tiffany: That’s good. That’s good. And that’s not to say that being a mom and a wife are not assignments, right? Because no, are solely called to serve in those capacities. But you knew there was something missing? Yeah. And so what did you begin to do? When you can no longer withstand the rumbling and the stirring inside of you?
Herdyne: And just began to talk to God, I strongly believe in his whisper. Um, I just begin, I will never forget it clear as day I was driving. And I’m just like, okay, God, what’s next for my life? What am I going to do? Like, I can’t live this way. I can’t live with things I can’t live with my heart racing. I can’t live waking up another day, entertaining a work environment that does not feed my mind, body and soul. Right. And so he answered, he says to me, what about that lady you listen to every Thursday morning. And I go, Patrice Washington.
But God, I’ve never seen her advertise or talk about coaching. I have never heard her do anything. I just started listening to her podcast in January. It’s now March, April. I don’t think I’ve heard her say anything about coaching. And I remember his still voice saying, dm her. Immediately. I stopped what I was doing. I tapped into her DMS and I said, Hello. It’s her Diem, because I’ve been on and on just saying, speaking to her. And I said to you, before I provide business coaching? And she said, Yes, I do. Because at the time, my husband and I had a private practice, but I just wasn’t as involved in the private practice before or after getting the coaching services from Patrice. And she said, Yes, we scheduled I remember, I was obedient. I remember what God said. She said, her rate, we paid it, and I went into coaching. And I felt better. I felt like I had a plan. Now, I felt like he sent me the individual that was going to help me map this thing out. Right? I didn’t know what it was gonna look like I was scared. But I was committed to his word. And after doing that, I remember saying this, I think it was 90 days. I was like, I don’t know if this is enough, Patrice. Ah, have you ever thought about doing like a mastermind class, just like that. And it was me and her at podcast movement. And because at this time, we had already developed, I flew out to Philadelphia, she was out there that year, we met up, we talked and I remember being on that wall after leaving one of the sessions. And I said, Have you ever thought about doing a mastermind class? And she was like, yeah. And then I was like, Well, I’m gonna beat that accountability person, NGO dm, have you started? Have you started? going, and then eventually it manifested. And I spent a year in her mastery and momentum course or year in that mastery course. And then p2p was offered. And that’s how we met. And boy, oh, boy,
Tiffany: What a journey, which I want to be very clear in reiterating that you said it started with your willingness to be obedient to one word from God. You didn’t know what Patrice was going to say, when you got in her dm, you didn’t know what was going to happen. You didn’t know what the price tag was going to be. But you were willing to be obedient. And I think that I really want to reiterate that for anybody who’s listening, especially when it doesn’t make sense. You know, we pray and we expect God to be like, we’ll do this and do this and do this. We don’t necessarily expect for him to say hop in the DM.
Herdyne: Yeah, yeah. Right. And so I did. And in that process, I cried. I just I read, I removed a lot of deadweight.
Tiffany: Let’s talk about that. Because I’m curious, once you got on this path, and you got connected to Patrice, in this dynamic community, what happened that you decided or that God made you aware that you were going to be the chief grief Crusader?
Herdyne: Well, you know, I didn’t decide I’m just always willing to help. And I think something came up within our mastery and momentum group. And Patrice had asked me if I would do a session on grief. And I was like, Oh, sure, no problem. But what I didn’t know is that that was gonna be the night and I still have the photo. That was gonna be the night that God said, Now you’re ready. I have trained you and I can go far as seven years old. I was obsessed with funerals. I would cry if my parents would not take me to a funeral. I just went and I was one of those observing kid that was just quiet during the service, and taking everything in. And so when I think back to that seven year old girl, I think about although that night that I did the retreat, it just it was like crystal last day, the very next day, Patrice said to me and courage said to me, I know why fidence is what you’re doing. But that grief thing. That is what you need to be doing.
Tiffany: And that and again, I want to reiterate because you said you were seven years old. Yeah, that’s what funerals and observing right, observing the grieving that was happening, and I’m sure some celebrating as well. Right. Missing, but all in the midst of grief.
Herdyne: Yes. And so I have Been in training, before I even can put a name on it.
Tiffany: And then this transformational journey which I’m so happy you embarked on, because it’s how we connected and, and this transformation and redefining yourself as the chief grief Crusader, and then being in position and and purpose, to teach people to redefine grief. Can we talk a little bit about the anchors?
Herdyne: Yes, we can. So and just using myself in these anchors, right, think about what did I have to do to really grieve my, my idea of not being connected to my purpose, the very first anchor is truth. I had to tell the messy truth that I wasn’t happy
Tiffany: and say it again, please.
Herdyne: I had to tell the messy truth that I wasn’t happy. And this is
Tiffany: even though like you said you had the husband. The car, the degrees plural?
Herdyne: Yes. Yes. I met milestones that most people will think that I wasn’t supposed to be at the table, but God had another plan. And even what I want, and what I want to say is I had to get, I had to decide that I was going to be committed to looking in the mirror and telling the truth.
Tiffany: Tht’s anchor number one,
Herdyne: that’s anchor number one, anchor number two was I had to then examine my heart. And then in examining my heart, I realized, I don’t know what this is gonna look like. I don’t know where it’s gonna go. I’m heartbroken and devastated. I feel fear. I feel anxiety. But you know what, that’s what my heart is saying. And what am I going to need to do to heal my heart that’s broken around this subject matter.
Tiffany: So is his anchor number two, then where we also begin to look at forgiving ourselves?
Herdyne: anchor number two can be because the grief journey for everybody else looks different, right? You’re grieving grief journey as like your DNA. It cannot be compared. It cannot be used or substituted in any way. And so what I want people to know is this thing called grief is a normal and natural reaction to a loss that we have. And it’s not only put in this box that you only grieve when someone has died. we grieve when there’s a divorce. we grieve when there’s a move. we grieve when there is this current career wrestle, that we’re doing this internal conflict that we’re having. we grieve, friendships, friendships. we grieve workplace environments. Yes. we grieve our business, we grieve our finances. And so we grieve the pet that we’ve even lost. And let me tell you something about grief. Grief is normal. But what is not normal? Nobody’s teaching you what to do when you’re grieving. And so we, we then, because we don’t have the healthy tools, we pacify the emotions and that pacifying emotion may be sex. willingly being in toxic relationships. All right. And so food, having an unhealthy relationship with food.
Tiffany: What about unhealthy relationships with things that seem to be healthy? Like over exercising? Yeah. Indicating right information hoarding.
Herdyne: You got it? Yeah.
Tiffany: So what do we do with with anger with the truth, anger in the heart anger, when we are when we are examining our hearts and we are able to get honest with ourselves and say, You know what, Tiffany, you are spending so much time at the gym because you need to do the things to work through this.
Herdyne: Well, you just you just saved us right into the third anchor. And that third anchor is connection. When you look back at the story that I said about myself, I was obedient to connect In making investment within myself to get the support that I needed for my next level.
Tiffany: So that’s it, right you get somebody examine your heart, and you get the recognition that there is some help you need those connections. Yes. And I know, I know for you, it was very well, it sounds like it was very easy. You prayed. God said it. You dm her. It sounds like it happened overnight. Right. But that wasn’t necessarily what the journey was. And I want whoever’s listening to understand that you’re not saying it’s gonna be like Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday.
Herdyne: No, as a matter of fact, I always say, healing does not happen in a sprint. It is a marathon. And you have to train for a marathon day by day.
healing does not happen in a sprint. It’s America marathon, you have to be committed to the marathon. And that healing is saying, I’m going to be committed to the day by day training needed to complete the marathon.
Tiffany: What might some of that day by day training look like? Now I know, you said your grieving process is like your DNA. So what’s going on? For everybody?
Herdyne: Yeah, this is so good. And so what I strongly believe is that oftentimes we have individuals that tell us well, this is what you need to do, this is what you need to do. But finding an individual like a therapist or grief coach, someone that is going to create a plan for you, and then hold you accountable, accountable. I like to do with my clients, what I call mental health tasks. And so I have what I say is my daily calendar. On that calendar. When I look for the month, I look at what did I do mentally for me? What did I do actively do for a healing because I strongly I’ve been talking about it on my podcasts are this year, and one episode is called New Year, same grief. Every year, we go into a new year with the resolution or this is what we’re gonna change. But if you do not spend time, unpacking the dead weight of the soveral in the pain and the heartbreak, baby every year is gonna come by you still gonna be in 1999. Jesus New Year, same grief. And so you really need someone that’s gonna help you map this out and hold you accountable.
Tiffany: Yes. And then you’ve got to be again, you’ve got to be committed,
Herdyne: you have to be committed to like showing up? Sure. Yeah. So in February, I’m so glad because I don’t want to just say this is what you need to do. I’m going to actually, in February, I am doing a 28 day, active healing, giving tips and advice on how you can heal as well incorporate self care on your healing journey. Because healing does not happen just by talking about it. That’s right. healing happens when we decide to put in the work.
Tiffany: Yes, because healing is an action word, right? Hey, yo, Herb? Yes, yes, yes, I love it.
Herdyne: So you want to heal and act and really be active in 2021, a part of your healing process,
Tiffany: join me on the challenge that is going to be on all my social media platforms. But where I really like to play is Instagram, I heard and I will be sure that we link everything in the show notes for those who are interested. And I want to say to know that even if you join after February 1, you can continue with the journey. Yes, then you can go back and repeat some of those steps because like you said, it’s a daily, yes, during It doesn’t mean after the 28 day.
Herdyne: It’s a daily, it’s a daily. And then I would say my fourth anchor is that fake anchor. And there’s a reason I didn’t put faith as number one because I feel that sometimes as Christians, we hide behind the faith, and we are scared to go to God with our ugly truth. We’re scared to go to God with our heartache, and we’re scared to go to
Because we believe that somehow he’s judging us. And that connection maker I think I need to say this because this is vital. We need support and community that will see us and hear us without ever judging us. Yes. And too many times we are trying to connect with individuals that are judgmental. And so that faith anchor is saying okay, God, I’ve done the work of telling the truth. I’ve talked to you about the messy stuff. connect to the person you’ve assigned to help me through this process. And now I’m going to anchor down the anchoring. I’m thinking about when you think about an anchor, I just heard a sermon that just really explained all my anchors when I think about, I think it’s pastor Todd Michael, who said this, or he said, you do not heal on the shallow side. You got to be willing to go deep. Yes. And so your healing has to be you have to be willing to go deep. And really, that takes a trained professional to help you go deep.
Tiffany: Yes, in order to work through that, you got to have that faith,
Herdyne: yes, that you need that faith, you need that faith and, and then that last thing is where everybody wants to be, is that restoration anchor, everybody wants to be restored. Everyone, buddy wants to know that God has given them the grace, and the power, and the wisdom and the knowledge to heal. Or what I’m just saying, you can be restored and still triggered. But the difference is, you have done the work of telling the truth. You have done the work in actually spinning time to put things that are healthy mechanisms for you that you no longer need the pacifying behaviors to get you through.
Tiffany: Yes, yes. Can we sit here with this restoration for a minute, because, you know, we’re in this series about redefining ourselves, and, and there is great, there is grief that comes with this process, right? Because you got to do that serious reflection, you’ve got to get to the truth. And whether it is forgiving yourself, forgiving someone else, or if you’re honest, forgiving God, there’s some work in that heart space that has to be done for you to get to restoration. And what I know to be true with some of my clients, and I’m sure you can relate, and if I’m honest, even on my own journey, sometimes we want to skip the struggle, Hey, come on somebody, sometimes we want to skip the struggle. So we don’t look like we’re grieving. I’m wearing the mask.
Herdyne: I think when you skip the struggle, you skip the opportunity to learn the lesson, you skip the opportunity to experience the growth, and you skip the opportunity to anchor down knowing your Creator had you the whole entire time
Tiffany: the whole entire time.
Herdyne: And so I think when you try to rush to restoration, you really are skipping this crucial part with faith, that the next time you are triggered, because this life isn’t normal. But the requirement of Living it is the next time you have this sad experience happen. You can say back. But God got me through this last experience, right? Because you anchored in him.
Tiffany: And I am a firm believer that there is no growth without grieving. when you are restored and you have one growth spurt, if you will, there will be another opportunity to grow and the breathing is going to come again. And that growth might be spurred by the loss of a person. Like you said, it could be the loss of a job. It could be the loss of you know caring for little babies and realizing that your child is going to grow up. And so when we get to a place hurting when we feel like the growth in the grieving is hurting too much. And we want to stunt our own growth. Which one of those anchors is it that we have to really hold on to or really dig into so that we can push through,
Herdyne: I will go back and say this that is different for everybody. But for me it was going back to the truth and why I say the truth because the truth sets you free. Now, the truth is no longer shackled. The truth is no longer putting you at a place where you are shackled emotionally. I think everybody’s trying to get to success. Everybody’s trying to increase the bank account. But when you increase the bank account and get on to that level at says that you thought you needed because you didn’t tell the emotional truth and did the work of healing, you’re not going to enjoy that journey either.
Yet again. Grief has robbed you a second time. And so we have to decide, are we going to do the work now? I think when you decide you are going to sit in every grief box in everything that you need to come to a place of Completion with you then propel yourself forward in life. It’s like a slingshot experience. Yes, it looks like you’re going back. But baby. When you get that thing, it propels you. It propels you in life at a much faster pace than ever before.
Tiffany: And this when you when you are able to embrace these experiences, knowing that is when you are in the place that you speak of where happiness and sadness or grief and joy can coexist, right?
Herdyne: We have to be okay, with experiencing true joy. And I really do believe you cannot experience true joy until you allow yourself to process what sadness is really real sadness really is you Why am I saying this?
Why like, Why are you saying this Hewerdine I know what happiness is. But if happiness to you is defined by the bag that you wear, the clothes that you wear, the car that you drive, you don’t know joy, you know, a masquerade of joy. You know, the mask of a fake and, you know, stuck in as if you are happy. I’m talking about the joy that is inside of you, that makes your skin glow?
Yes, I’m talking about a joy, that when you walk in the rule your haters can take instead. I’m talking about that joy. I’m talking about a joy, that you are not defined by your sadness. You are defined by redefining the grief in your life and making it your anchor that is going to propel you in life with grace. See, oftentimes in our healing process, we are not giving ourselves the opportunity to to grieve with grace. But honoring the journey of that pain,
Tiffany: grieve with grace. And that starts like you said, with that truth anchor and getting honest with yourself. Like what how do you really feel first and foremost?
Herdyne: Um, how do I feel?
Tiffany: No, like asking yourself that question. How is in the midst of this grief?
Herdyne: Uh huh. And you know what? Sometimes you cannot answer those questions by yourself. Right?
Tiffany: You literally need someone to help support you in that journey. And that’s why sometimes I say I’m a grief advocator. But when I’m in sessions, I let them know I am your emotional guide may be blind right now. But if you trust the process, I am your emotional guide. But you got to be committed to brokenness, you got to be committed to allowing yourself to be broken, so that the creator can put you back together.
Tiffany: And that right there is is is is the redefining yourself journey in a nutshell. wanna drop the mic? Hewerdine? Thank you. Now I know that we can get up with you in the grief Crusaders community, I know that we can listen to you weekly on the podcast. Do you have? I know you haven’t written your book yet. But is there a book that you recommend people on the journey to restoration as you call it, read or refer to on the journey as a companion to all that you are offering.
Herdyne: I would recommend the book called grief recovery. It’s called grief recovery. And I would also I will also let I have never sent this out outside of my writing coach. I am in the process now of writing. Our journal guide, a 30 day journal guide that would allow people to walk through these anchors and begin that process for themselves. Well, I
Tiffany: knew it was coming even before You said it, I knew. I knew it was inevitable. Yeah, that God will not let you keep all of this to yourself or require you to be somewhere for people to get what they need to get. So we won’t be on the lookout for that. And like I said, I will make sure that everybody can find the podcast, the 28 day journey that you’re going to be doing, and all of the other greatness that you have available to support them as the emotional guide and grief crews. Chief grief Crusader, I stand corrected. Is there one quote, or any words of encouragement, you want to leave the community with?
Herdyne: One of my one of the eye opening scriptures that I would say will help really watch this is have been this seven year old girl, my quest as a seven year old girl was to be deaf. And by the time I was in my teens, I said, I’m going to be death, by leaving a legacy for the next generation of what it is to truly live. And so the Scripture is, it is better to go to a house of mourning than it is to go to basically a house party for death is the destiny of everyone in the living shall take it to heart. And so what I’ve gotten from that scripture is, we are all going to go through some type of death, whether it is a physical death, a spiritual death, a financial death, whatever death your experience is. But when you go to Homegoing ceremonies, there’s a lesson to be learned, be committed to learning the lesson. You can truly live.
Tiffany: Amen. And again, she drops the mic, thank you so much. ordain, I’m so glad that we were finally able to have this conversation, I know that it’s going to be a blessing to many, I can’t wait to re listen to it. There are some gems for myself that I need to make note of. But I’m eternally grateful for you for not only being here and sharing but for the work that you do. And for what you’ve already taught me.
Herdyne: Thank you. You know, I cannot do this alone. It takes really a sisterhood. It takes a community that would allow me to be on your mind what I call whenever I have these opportunities to grief, Mike, to really help individuals get unlocked, so that they can truly live. Yes. Well, thank you, Sis, you’re welcome.
Tiffany: Thank you. I’m over here stumbling over my words, because I’m just so floored by all the gems that her Dean dropped and share with us today. And I am praying that you were as blessed by this conversation as I was, if you were I would love it. If you would leave a review. When you do you create an opportunity for another beacon like yourself to find the podcast and be blessed by it. You can also grab a screenshot of this, share it on your social Don’t forget to tag me at the Tiffany Huff. And of course, I will leave you with this. God is not going to play you but if you think that you can get on the pathway to purpose without redefining how you look at grief and how it is connected to growth. I promise you are plaguing your self. Be blessed!
Part of the reason you’ve been struggling to bounce back is because of the F word – yes Failure. You’ve made up your mind that your failures and your past are stopping you from being, doing and having what God has called you to. The reality though is God will use what you’ve grown through once you recognize the power of your experiences. In this episode Tiffany is giving you a process and tools to begin to do just that.
Remember, you can not conquer what you refuse to call out and confront.
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Hey beacon, welcome home to your bounce back blueprint community Podcast, where you are challenged to be do and have God’s best. As you thrive on your journey from setback to success. I’m your bounce back guide, Tiffany Huff-Strothers. And I’ll be guiding you on the journey by sharing tips, tools, and the T on how I was able to bounce back from escaping death, healing from heartbreak and finding hope in homelessness. And then I wrote an award winning book all about it, and shout out to God, ever since I was courageous enough to share my story. My life and the lives of women around the world have been forever changed. And as a member of the bounce back blueprint community, I’m called to teach you to do the same. So grab your journal, and let’s build this blueprint. Hey, begin. I hope you have your journal. Because I’m ready to dig in today, and start building this blueprint. We are starting a new series today, all about redefining you. And if you missed the last episode, Episode 71, can you introduce me to your future self that I strongly encourage you to go back and listen to it because this next series is all about giving you the tools that you need, right helping you to redefine how you think about certain things, so that you can begin to embrace and embody your future self now. And so I thought the most appropriate place to start with this process was to redefine failure. Yes, I said it redefine failure, let’s, let’s just be real. This is the bounce back blueprint podcast. The premise of this podcast is all about having the clarity, the courage and the commitment to use and be used right by God, where your worst setback creates an opportunity for you to make an impact. And if God sees fit, to also make an income. And so I really want you to give yourself permission, right now in this moment to release your failures, right. And these are failures that you’ve decided or failures, not failures that anybody else has put a stamp on, I want you to start with those you’ve decided have been or are failures that you have on this little list or written down in your little black book, or those things that rise up and remind you why you can’t be or do or have something because of where you failed in the past. Now, I want you to start with yourself first. Because in doing so you will likely have aha moments about other people, or situations that arose that based on what other people thought, or what society has said, you consider failures as well. But I want you to start with yourself, right because we are focusing on you introducing your future self to you first. And if you are struggling to redefine your failures, then you will struggle to embody your entire identity. Okay, and I’m not talking about you pulling something from the sky about who’s you will be and what you will do. And all of the luxurious things you will have. I am speaking specifically to the woman that God has called and created you to be right to the woman that God has told you, you will become the woman who he has and is working through you to us, right? The woman he has begun to transform the woman who he decided was a beacon, right, you are a beacon. And so I want to take you back to our founding scripture for not only this podcast, but for the work that I do. It’s out of Isaiah 61. I’m not going to read it to you in its entirety. But I’m going to give you verses one through four maybe. And I want you to listen intentionally with this because this chapter is Isaiah, which I strongly encourage you to read the entirety of Isaiah 61. And in fact, I encourage you to begin to meditate on Isaiah 61 because it’s so good. And it speaks directly to God using your quote unquote failures, right, your setbacks, your challenges, to not only bless others to not only impact others, but in fact, to change the world. Okay. Did you catch that your failures and your willingness to use them as God intended you to, will change the world.
This is going to require you to know and embody your future self. So let’s dig into this and start doing the work to redefine failure. So here we go. Isaiah 61. starting with verse one, I’m going to read through verse four, the spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. This is exactly who God is telling you are right, this is God’s speaking to your future self. And if you read this in first person, you’re speaking to an introducing your future self. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives, and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn and provide for those who grieve in Zion to bestow on them a crown of the beauty, instead of ashes, the oil of joy, instead of mourning, and a garment of praise, instead of a spirit of despair. Are you hearing this, they will be called oaks of righteousness, of planting of the Lord, for the display of his splendor. So what I need you to hear is that because of the Broken Heart you’ve had, you are able to help bind up the brokenhearted because of what you were held captive to. He is sending you to proclaim freedom now that you are free, because you were in darkness as a prisoner. He has called and anointed you to release from darkness. The prisoners are you hearing this, he has sent you to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor. And as you do these things, did you hear that they will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord’s splendor you will build the kingdom by embracing yourself by redefining your failure, and being a blessing to others. And then verse four says they will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated, they will renew, renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations. Are you hearing this, when you begin to do what the Lord anointed you to do, you will change people’s lives. And in doing so they will become stronger, they will be a display of his splendor, meaning God is building his reputation in and through you. And then they will rebuild the ancient ruins, they will transform this world. They will transform ancient ruins we talk in generations of Ruin, that you have been called and created to support the real rebuilding of but it is only because he has anointed you based on what you’ve grown through with him, right? And so you’ve got to be willing to do the work to redefine your faith or excuse me to redefine your failures. So that when you are reading and meditating and memorizing Isaiah 61, you can fully embrace it, you can eat it, you can consume it and swallow it, and it becomes real for you. Right? You’ve got to know that you know that, you know, like it says in Isaiah 61 one that the spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon you because the Lord has anointed you. Right? You’ve got to know that. And so I want you to get your journal if you don’t have it already. Yes, I’m telling you, again, to get your journal because we are building this blueprint this week. And of course, there are some questions that I would love. And I am super excited to coach you through right? You got to get your journal. Alright. So in order for you to redefine your failure, and really begin to align with Isaiah 61, I have three questions to ask you. Actually, these three questions you are going to ask yourself, but before we dig into those questions, I want you to spend some time right now. Writing down those failures. I want you to write down those struggles, those setbacks, those things that you have swept under the rug, or worked really hard to rise above that nobody knows about and you’re okay with nobody knowing about Those things that if you’re honest, have made you stronger, more resilient, and probably required you to stand on your faith even more, and pray and cry more than you ever have in your life, write those things down. You know that I am a firm believer that we cannot conquer what we refuse to call out and confront. And so right now is your opportunity to call out the failures that have been weighing you down, that’s speak to you in the back of your mind when you have opportunities, or when someone calls on you to do or be something and you want to, but those thoughts are running through your minds about this thing, write those things down. And it could be anything, it could be something that happened this week, it could be something that happened to you and third grade 10th grade your senior year in college that still kind of haunts you. You know, I shared on an interview I had last week about how, during the time when I was in this abusive relationship, I was in college, and I had been afforded an opportunity to have a corporate internship every summer, because of a scholarship that I had, that was for four years. And I was hired at one of the biggest corporations here in Pittsburgh. And in the second year, things with our relationship got so bad, so bad, that I was constantly late, I was constantly calling off, I was embarrassed about what was happening in my life. And I was trying to maintain this facade. So I was constantly making up these stories to tell my supervisor, so that she wouldn’t suspect that I was in fact in an abusive relationship, hoping that these lies and this facade would help me to maintain my position. And ultimately, what ended up happening was my experience, which was supposed to last for years, and ultimately end with me being hired by the Corporation. And it was after that summer, because the supervisor recommended that I not be brought back. Because my attendance was spotty. When I was there, I did excellent work. But me getting there and getting there on time. And being focused a lot of times has become a challenge. And so when I had this interview this week, there was actually another woman being interviewed, and she was part of that program, as well, right. And we were both speaking about our experiences with domestic violence. And I said to her, you know, you probably don’t remember we were in this program together. But I didn’t get to finish. And I shared that with her. And that was a failure that I carried around for many, many years. In fact, she was or the women on that interview were the first who I ever shared that experience with and why it ended. I had to conquer that failure. It wasn’t something that necessarily haunted me constantly. But it is something that I thought about often, it is something that if I wasn’t careful, could rise up in times when I feel like things aren’t going their best with this entrepreneurial journey. And I think about, you know, should I get a job and then I consider, I could have a multiple six figure job at sed Corp had I not allowed that to happen. But instead, I was willing to not only call it out, but confront it. And I confronted it, both privately and publicly during that interview. And so those are the things that I want you to consider, maybe you don’t have the exact same story. But you have a story about a time when things didn’t go the way you planned. Maybe you contribute it to them, maybe it was something else going on in your life, maybe it was a decision that you made or you did not make.
But those are the failures I want you to consider and begin to write down in your journal. And once you have exhausted that list, and this can be very emotional, I should say, right? So give yourself grace and give yourself the space if you need to, to pause this recording so that you can work through these and get them down on paper. And then once you are able to do that, I don’t care if it’s one failure. I don’t care if it’s a 1002 failure once you have called out what you need to confront. These are the three questions I want you to ask. And I want To ask them for the most significant of the failures on your list, I want you to ask yourself first, what did I learn from this experience? I can tell you for sure. What I know now and have learned from that experience that I just shared with you, in hindsight is that honesty is always the best policy. Right? Had I been honest, in that season, it would have completely changed the trajectory of my life. And this is not about sugarcoating, what is right. This is about the lessons that we are receiving the blessings that come from these experiences that we have to grow through. Now you may have five failures written down, and you may have learned three things from each failure, that’s fine, write them all down. Because this is how you are going to begin to identify the brokenhearted that you are to bind up the prisoners that you are to release from darkness. It comes from, oftentimes the darkness and the prisons, and the broken heart that you yourself have experienced. Right. So that’s question number one. What have I learned from these experiences? What did these failures teach me? And these questions are actually the beginning of your process of failing forward. So when you have a challenge come up, or when something doesn’t go your way, moving forward. Before you berate yourself, you can create some space, take a deep breath, and work through these questions again. Second question is, how has my life been transformed because of these experiences, and what I learned? And so, again, these questions build on each other. Now that you’ve learned that honesty is the best policy that the truth will set you free. How has your life transformed? One of the ways that this transformed my life is when we had children, I decided that I was always going to be honest with my children, and that I was going to have an open door policy with them. Because I wanted them to know that they could get the truth from me. They didn’t have to go seeking it from someone else. No matter what the topic was, the situation or circumstance was right, I was committed to having courageous conversations with my children no matter what. So that’s one of the ways that this experience and what I learned from it transformed my life. Now this may look different from you, perhaps one of the things you feel you failed at is that you felt bankruptcy, right? You had some challenges with stewarding your money. And maybe one of the lessons you learn is that you need to be more intentional about how much debt you incur, right, maybe one of the lessons you learned is that you needed to learn more about financial management and wealth building. And so this may have transformed your life and that maybe you operate with cash only. Maybe you’ve decided not to have credit cards. Maybe you shifted and began a career or got a certification in financial psychology or literacy, right? These are the things I want you to consider. How has what you learned and what you experienced, transformed your life. Again, this is how the people in Isaiah 61 that you’re called to, are going to begin to rebuild the ancient ruins. Because you are embracing your future self you are getting to know your future self as you are answering these questions. And then the last question is, how can I impact others? With what I’ve learned and how I’ve transformed? Right? How can what I’ve grown through shift the lives of someone else? How can in the words of Isaiah 61 I use these lessons and my transformation to bind up the brokenhearted? Right? How can I use the lessons and transformations to bestow upon someone a crown of beauty instead of ashes? What beauty has come out of the ashes of what you have been considering a failure for weeks or months or years or decades? Now is the time for you to redefine failure. So That you can step into the woman that God has called and created you to be, and begin to have the impact that he has called you to have. It is written in the word, you are going to impact people, and they are going to change the world. Not just for today, but for generations. There is a shift happening right now, and you are called to be part of it. And in doing so, is going to require you to redefine your failure, it’s going to require you to consistently fail forward, is going to require you to consistently answer these questions, call out and confront what you need to conquer. Right? The word says that we are more than conquerors. And I’m excited. I’m excited about the shift in this season. I’m excited about you choosing to redefine failure right now. And I’m excited to help you. If you need support through this journey. You know, a lot comes out of this process, right? Once you start to answer these questions and call out these failures and do the work to grow through and fail forward. It can be challenging, and if we’re honest, sometimes it’s so challenging that we want to stop. But in this season, it is time for you to be more of a conqueror than it is for you to be comfortable. In this season, it is time for you to start trampling in those spaces where you have been tiptoeing in this season, it is time for you to stop auditioning for the roles that God has already assigned you. Because you are afraid that your failure and your past have made you an outcast. This is the season of the outcast. This is the year of the Lord’s favor, as the scripture says and it is time for you to show approval, and I am excited to support you, I am excited to be on this journey with you. If you are ready to do the work, and you want to have a guide and coach help you along the way, I am your girl. I am excited and look forward to hearing from you. You can grab the link in the show notes to schedule your breakthrough session so that we can have a mat a meeting of the minds and really work together to develop a plan for how I can help you begin to do the work to day to redefine your failures and begin to make the impact and the income that God has called and created you to stop telling yourself you can’t do it because of what happened in the past. Stop telling yourself that you may not be able to do it well. It is written and it is so and I’m going to leave you with this. God is not going to play you but if you think God can’t use what you’ve grown through, I promise you are playing yourself. Be blessed.
Has your New Year Resolution already become a thing of the past?
Are you frustrated because you know God has called you do something specific, but for some reason no matter how hard you try you can’t “get there”?
If you answered yes, this episode is for you. In this episode I am sharing a divine download God gave me about how we sometimes put ourselves in holding patterns because things don’t look or feel the way we expect them to. Sometimes we put ourselves in holding patterns because we think we have to arrive at a certain destination before we can do the work to fulfill our destinies. That could not be further from the truth.
It’s time for you to begin to use what is in your hands right there where you are.
Schedule your breakthrough session here.
The Truth About Your Word of the Year: How to Understand and Embrace the Good + Bad
Lie: I’ll Never Manifest This Big Vision or Dream: I’ll Never Live In My Purpose
Embracing the Preparation Before Elevation: The Connection of God’s Promises, Your Prayers + Your Priorities
No More New Year Resolutions: The Power of One Word + One Goal to Guide Your Year
Connect with Tiffany on Instagram
Email Tiffany: email@example.com
Hey beacon, welcome home to your bounce back blueprint community Podcast, where you are challenged to be do and have God’s best. As you thrive on your journey from setback to success. I’m your bounce back guide, Tiffany Huff-Strothers. And I’ll be guiding you on the journey by sharing tips, tools, and the T on how I was able to bounce back from escaping death, healing from heartbreak and finding hope in homelessness. And then I wrote an award winning book all about it, and shout out to God, ever since I was courageous enough to share my story. My life and the lives of women around the world have been forever changed. And as a member of the bounce back blueprint community, I’m called to teach you to do the same. So grab your journal, and let’s build this blueprint. Hey, beacon, hey, I am so excited to be building the blueprint with you this week. I’m excited because we’ve wrapped up this series on, you know, the lies we tell ourselves. And I hope that in listening to those episodes, and our guests, that you were able to get honest with yourself, and recognize the lies that you’ve been telling yourself and decide that you are no longer going to sabotage yourself, or do yourself and those who are called to serve a dis service by continuing to live by those lies. And so today, I have a question for you. And I want you to grab your journal, if you haven’t grabbed your journal already, if you have not been bringing your journal to these podcast episodes, which are like mini coaching sessions, then I need you to get that together, hit pause, grab your journal, because I have a question for you today. And I really want you to take the time to answer this question and answer it honestly. And so here’s the question. Can you introduce me to your future self? Can you introduce me to your future self?
Yes. Let me tell you why that is the question. So here we are. second month of 2021. And it is around this time of the year when the resolutions start to fall to the wayside. And those old habits begin to resurface when things we said we were leaving in 2020 somehow find their way out of the closet out of our wallets, back into the contacts list in our phones, if we’re honest. And so I want you to give yourself permission for the next 20 minutes or so that we are together to introduce me to your future self. And before you start to introduce me to your future self, I want to share with you one of the challenges that comes with embracing your future self, right it is this idea that you have to get to a certain destination, or you have to accomplish a certain thing. Or you have to be a certain way. Right, you have to lose a certain amount of weight, all of the lies we were talking about all of these things before you can embrace and allow yourself to be the woman that God is telling you, He created you to be. It’s not about the destination. The reality is that you need the clarity about who your future self is. And then you need the courage to become her now. And I want to demonstrate this by a divine download that I received from God last week. So I was getting ready for bed. I was in the bathroom. And I don’t know I guess this is a sign of getting old because I now spend quality time in the bathroom. Just sitting there pondering so many different things. Sometimes talking to God sometimes talking to myself, but I digress. On this particular night. I don’t think I was talking to myself or God I was just kind of decompressing as I prepared to get into bed. And God interrupted my thoughts. And he said to me, you know, Tiffany, part of the reason why you’ve been feeling the way you’ve been feeling, mind you I didn’t tell him I was feeling any type of way. But he gets in your business like that. He said, part of the reason why you’ve been feeling the way you’ve been feeling is because you are so focused on getting there. And he said, You don’t have to get there to do what I’ve called you to do. And he brought me or he gave me this vision of myself in an airport. And I can see this airport very clearly. And he told me, he said, You’ve been in this airport, and your flight has been delayed and detoured over and over again. And every time the attendant comes to the counter, to announce that another flight is coming in, or that a flight is going to be taking off, you are the first one at the counter, saying Is it my turn, is my name at the top of the list? Am I still going to be on standby, I’ve been here for so long, and I’m ready to go, I have so much to do when I get to where I’m going. And because of what is going on with this airport. And these flights and this pandemic, I’ve been here much longer than I have anticipated, I haven’t slept properly, I can’t get comfortable here, I want to take off my shoes, you know, I am on this rant with this attendant. And the attendant again tells me Well, you know, you’re still on standby, we will see. And so I do the walk of shame, with my bags and my laptop bag back to the seat where I was sitting. And what God showed me as I sat down is you need to do what I’ve told you to do in the airport. Now I’m saying the airport with air quotes, right? Because all of us are not literally in an airport. However, we all spend extreme amounts of time, in a certain space. In a certain space in our minds, or in a certain space, where we feel like we can’t do because of where we are, all of us have spent exorbitant amounts of time thinking that when we get to set place, we will be able to do whatever God has called us to do. And what God showed me during that vision is that there are plenty of seats in the airport. And there are places where I can put my bag down, there are places where I can plug my laptop in and my phone and to charge it. And in fact, there are people in that airport that need what he has given me to serve with. There are people in that airport, who are waiting to hear what I have to say. However, because I’m so focused on the destination, I am missing out on opportunities to walk in my destiny, right where I am. And I’m willing to bet that this is or has been true for you as well. And part of the reason is that you have not begun to do the work necessary to not only introduce others to your future self right, not only introduce others to how you can serve them, how you can help them what God has given you how he intends to move in and through you. Right, you haven’t introduced yourself to yourself. You haven’t fully accepted who you are, according to God, as you said, you are yourself. And so if that is the case, how can you introduce yourself to others? And that is why I started this episode with the question, can you introduce me to your future self? And so I want you to begin answering this question by considering what is the destination that you are focused on? Where are you going? What goals are you setting to get to a certain place, right? And this doesn’t have to be an actual location per se. But where are you working to get to? Right? What is it going to take for you to get there? And when you get there, how will you serve? How will you impact others? And if you want to take it a step further, who are the others you will impact? These are the questions that need to be answered in order for you to introduce me and yourself to your future self. And then when you have those answers, I want you to really spend some time meditating and praying over them. And then I want you to look at what you can do right now, where you are. And specifically, I want you to consider whether or not the people that you put down on your paper are ruining your journal, or who you are going to serve. Or where you are right now, who’s in the airport with you, that does not know what you are preparing to do, what you’ve already been prepared to do, and how you are called to serve them. who haven’t you introduced your future self to other than yourself. And consider the disservice you are doing those people, because they may not necessarily be waiting on a physical flight, they may be waiting on what you have to give them to share with them to teach them, they may be waiting on that in order for them to take off. In order for them to be elevated off the ground in order for them. To get off a stalling runway. They may need you to help them build momentum. Are you with me, you are not waiting on a flight to take off. You are simply waiting to get familiar with yourself, you’re waiting for the clarity that you need to actually be your self so that you have the courage to get off the runway. See, the final thing that God showed me. And that vision of the airport scene was that it has very little to do with the pandemic that is happening across the globe. That these flights are being delayed and detoured. It has more to do with the personal pandemics that you are dealing with or not within yourself. The lies you tell yourself, your lack of clarity, right, your unwillingness to be courageous and to move through the fear, to grow through the fear. And then also, when you know who you are and what God has called you to do. And you’re consistently taking those steps, he will give you the discernment to recognize that is not that you will never get there is that there are some things he is going before you to prepare. So that when you get there, the people you are called to serve and bless and impact on the other side of the baggage claim are prepared for you that the land is ready for you. Right? That the people he speaks of choosing you to serve, are ready for how you will serve them. And so if he has you in a place where you feel like you’re on hold, where you feel like you’re ready to go, only you’re in the wrong place to do the work that I need you to look around. I need you to sit down. I need you to learn to be content where you are without being complacent. And part of being able to be content without being complacent is getting familiar with your future self and embracing her now. embracing your gifts now understand the abundance of what is in your hands now. Knowing that there is a specific reason why some of your bags again air quotes, were checked with baggage claim and some of them you are carrying them around with you everywhere you go. In that airport, in that holding space.
What’s in those bags. What you have in those bags, what you have in your hands are everything you need to begin to introduce me and others to your future self. And that means that you can begin to do the work right where you are. Right now, as you wait for your flight to arrive, as you wait for your flight to take off, there is work to be done in the waiting. There are people for you to serve in the waiting, there are blessings for you to bestow upon others in the waiting. You’ve got to be willing to shift your perspective, right? You’ve got to be willing to accept and understand that delays and detours do not equal defeat. and be prepared to serve every person you meet, regardless of where you are, regardless of the circumstances. Can you introduce me to your future self, I would love to meet her. I would love to see the work that she is going to do to transform the world. And in fact, I would love to see that work begin today. And so again, I am challenging you to answer those questions. Where are you going? Where are you focused on going? Where are you trying to get to? What goals have you set for this month for this week for this year? To get you from where you are to where you’re going? And who is there for you to serve? And how are you going to serve them? Now please hear me out. This is not about you starting a business necessarily. This is not necessarily about your professional life. The answers to these questions are very specific and personal for you. That’s why I said you need your journal because you need the time to do this work. You’ve got to get clear on where you’re going and why. so that you can understand that where you are now is equally as important, if not more important than the destination where the flight you’re waiting on will take you and you’ve got to understand that there are some people in the airport in the space where you are, that are waiting for you to serve for their flight to take off you in essence, or the flight they’re waiting for. And I am confident that until you do the work where you are in this layover space, in this meanwhile space, your flight is not going to arrive, you will not begin to ascend, you are not going to see yourself soaring the way God has intended you too, because you haven’t done the work on the ground level to prepare. And sometimes doing the work in advance right? Is the preparation. Think about it. doctors do years of residency right? Before they be given before they become a doctor. Right? Doctors practice medicine, they do the work before they are necessarily able to do the work. And the same is true for you. And listen, you don’t have to do this alone. You don’t have to go through this process alone. I would love to work with you. I would love to be your coach and guide you. support you and of course challenge you to grow through this season. So that you can, in fact, take off in 2021 so that you don’t spend the entirety of this year, feeling stuck feeling confused, feeling like you’ll never get to where you know God has told you. He is taking you. For you. The first step may be to put your bags down and recognize that what is in your hand is your phone or your laptop with this voice of mind coming through it. And knowing that in your hands is an opportunity for you to be helped. I am here just like those people are waiting for you to serve them. I am waiting to serve you. And if you are ready to start this process, if you are ready to put an end to the delays and the detours and really get in position and be prepared for when your flight is going to take off.
Then let’s get on a breakthrough call. Let’s work together to see how The two of us can make the magic necessary for you to begin to soar. The link to work with me is in the show notes. And your breakthrough session is no obligation, the time specifically for us to chat about where you’re going. It’s time for you to introduce me to your future self. And for me to let you know how I can support you in embodying her today. So grab that link, schedule your time to chat. I look forward to hearing from you. Of course, if you would like you can introduce me to your future self in these internet streets. Grab a screenshot of this episode, tag me at the Tiffany huff on Facebook or Instagram. Or if you have questions about the episode, you can tag me with those as well. And I really do look forward to hearing from you and meeting your future self. And so I will leave you with this. God is not going to play you. But if you are out here in the streets, pretending to be anyone other than who God has already showed you. He called you to be doing anything other than what he’s already shown you. He’s called you to do. I promise this. You are playing yourself. Be blessed
This episode is part of The Lies We Tell Ourselves Series
Our guest today is Rho Thomas, Attorney, Financial Coach and Host of the Wealthyesque podcast. Rho and I talk about the importance of mindset shifts with your money, the possibility of being debt free, value based budgeting, identifying your why, and the one number that is more important than the two we focus on most often. Rho also shares a couple of books that were game changers on her journey:
Your Money or Your Life
The Millionaire Next Door
You can connect with Rho on IG , learn more about her work here and listen to her podcast here
Lie: The Vision is Too Big: I’ll Never Live In My Purpose
Lie: My Happiness Is Based On My Appearance + I’ll Always Be on a Diet – The Power of a New Mindset With Evelyn LeVasseur
Grab your copy of 30 Day Stay, Tiffany’s Award Winning Book
Connect with Tiffany
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Hey beacon welcome home to your bounce back blueprint community Podcast, where you are challenged to do and have God’s best as you thrive on your journey from setback to success. I’m your bounce back guide, Tiffany Huff-Strothers. And I’ll be guiding you on the journey by sharing tips, tools, and the T on how I was able to bounce back from escaping death, healing from heartbreak and finding hope in homelessness. And then I wrote an award winning book all about it, and shout out to God. Ever since I was courageous enough to share my story. My life and the lives of women around the world have been forever changed. And as a member of the bounce back blueprint community, I’m called to teach you to do the same. So grab your journal, and let’s build this blueprint. Hey, beacon Hey, I am so excited about our guest who is here to help us build the blueprint this week. We are continuing our series The lies we tell ourselves, and today’s a lie that we are breaking through is the lie that I will always be in debt.
Tiffany: Today’s guest is Rho Thomas, she has become a very dear friend of mine. And before I bring her on, I’m going to tell you a little bit about Rho Thomas. She’s an attorney and financial coach who believes that true wealth is having control of your time, she helps lawyers make intentional lifestyle and money decisions to regain control of their time, build wealth, and live the lives of freedom and choice they deserve. She has been featured in outlets such as Yahoo, finance, refinery, 29, and Mike and host the Wealthyesque podcast, which explores how lawyers can achieve lifestyle freedom by reframing their mindset and managing their money to achieve financial independence. Thank you so much for being here. And welcome to the podcast, Rho.
Rho: Thank you for having me, Tiffany. It’s a pleasure.
Tiffany: Likewise, before we get into busting down this lie, can you please introduce yourself to our audience behind or beyond your bio?
Rho: Sure, oh, my name is Rho Thomas. I am a wife, a mother, a Christian. And as you mentioned, a lawyer and financial coach, and I am on this journey to just take back control of my time and really build an intentional life. I think this pandemic has shown a lot of us how we just been kind of going through the motions of life, or at least I won’t speak for anyone else. At least that was the case for me. And so I am just really trying to make sure that I’m making intentional decisions for my life. And part of that is making intentional decisions with my money, and I am teaching others to do the same.
Tiffany: Wow. Now that’s a lot. But because I know a little bit about your journey and your story, I know that you haven’t necessarily always been on this path. So can you share with us a little bit about your journey and how you’ve gotten to the place where you not only want to be debt free yourself, and know that it’s possible, but you’re also helping others along the way?
Rho: Yeah, so about four years ago, my husband and I had our first child, and we had been just kind of going through life, you know, doing our careers and all of that I am a lawyer, as you mentioned, I’m in a big law firm. And at the time, the billable hour requirement at my firm was 1900 hours and our bill 2100 easily, right, I was doing all the things, I’m very type A I want to do the best and all of that. But when I had my child, I realized that the life that I had been living, right, the hours that I had been putting in at work would not be conducive to being the kind of mom I want it to be. And so I was talking to my husband about it. And we had talked a little bit about, like paying off debt and things like that before, but we didn’t really take any serious action toward doing it. But you know, we talked about the lives that we want it to live the you know, kind of parents that we want it to be and realize that the way that our work schedules were just wouldn’t allow us to do that. And so we decided to take a look at our money and see what we were working with. And we found that we were over $670,000 in debt with a negative $342,000 net worth.
Tiffany: And so Wait, wait, can you run that number back again? How many $1,000 a day?
Rho: Yes, $670,000. And as you can imagine, I was going right back to work. I wasn’t gonna do the same thing that I was doing. I was able to, to cut back a little bit. I didn’t have to go so far over the minimum and that kind of thing. But I wasn’t able to cut back the way that I had envisioned and so finding our finances in the state that they were, it was really a shock for us because we had been what we thought doing well with our money, right? Like we were paying off our credit cards on time, we were paying all of our minimums on time, we were even saving a little bit, you know, saving for retirement, all of that. But looking at our finances, we had this like, well over half a million dollars in debt. And so seeing the changes that we wanted to make with our lives, and seeing how the debt was a hindrance to that is what set us on this path to pay off debt. And then you also asked about how I got into helping others do it. Like as we were paying off our debt, and I was talking to some of my colleagues at work and at other firms, I’m hearing the same story, different iterations, but the same story of wanting to make some sort of change in their lives, whether it was leaving the firm going to a smaller firm, or another job that paid less, or just doing a reduced or flex schedule, but feeling like they couldn’t afford to do it. And so that drove me to want to help teach people the things that we’ve been learning on our debt journey.
Tiffany: That’s so good. And you know, part of what I hear you saying is that you had to come you had come to a point in your life where you had to choose whether you were going to continue to believe the lie that you know, debt is normal, I’ll always be in debt, or you’re going to make the decisions and do the work so that you could actually live the life you envision.
Rho: Yeah, that’s absolutely right. That’s absolutely right. And, you know, my husband had actually said something just like that, like, everybody has debt, it is just the way that life is. And he was not very interested in the changes that I wanted to make. Before we had our kids. He wasn’t very interested, because I was talking a lot about, like what we needed to do, but I was not explaining the why behind it. And I don’t think I was able to really articulate it until we had a kid and we could talk about the life that we wanted to live and how we envisioned that life looking. And then seeing Okay, this debt over here is what’s keeping us from doing that.
Tiffany: I think that’s so powerful, because it’s almost like, I mean, I know that debt can be a burden, but literally living a life in bondage, like literally envisioning the life you can have with debt, because you just feel like it’s normal, versus really envisioning the life that you desire, without debt and doing all of the work to build it, I think, Well, I know you’re not alone, and that people think it’s normal. And so they do the first, which is to envision the best possible life with the debt. And I think it’s amazing that now that you are on this journey, you’re able to help other people envision that life, what would you say is one of the biggest challenges that people have with breaking through the block that this is actually possible?
Rho: I think the biggest challenge is mindset, right? Like you said, the block, that limiting belief that everyone has debt is normal, I’m always going to have debt. If you don’t change that mindset, then you’re not going to change the actions that you’re taking, or start taking action, if you’re not taking action at all, and then you’re not going to see the results that you want. And so just seeing the possibility was huge for us. Like when we started looking into our finances, we started looking into how to pay it off. And we came across people who were paying their debts off in, you know, these really short periods of time, one guy, I think he was a Harvard MBA or something like that. He paid off like $90,000, in less than a year. You know, we saw a couple, both of whom were teachers pay their house off in five years. And just like all of these accomplishments that people were making with their money that we didn’t even know was possible, right? Like, the way that I learned about money was, you know, you get this debt, you pay your minimums, you know, on time, and then you just keep that loan until the term is up, like paying debt off early. never even occurred to me because it wasn’t something that I had seen.
Tiffany: Right? I think that’s so powerful, because you’re right, if we don’t know something is possible, then it’s likely that we may never attempt it, right? Because there’s that fear of being the first one or of course, the unknown possibility. So I’m curious as to you know, how over the course of the last four years being on this journey has really transformed your life and of course, the life of your children.
Rho: It has completely transformed our lives. We have paid off over $400,000 of debt. We hit a positive, right? Yes $400,000 of debt, we hit a positive net worth for the first time at the end of 2019. We hit a six figure net worth last year. And we’re just continuing to chop away at that debt, we’ve paid off all of my student loans. And a huge chunk of my husband’s I didn’t go through the breakdown for you. But that 670,000 was mostly student loans about 200,000 was our mortgage, we had like a $10,000 car loan. And then I had 100,000. And my husband had 350 or so 1000. That ballooned up to 370,000, with all of the interest while he was in residency. And so just chopping away at that debt has really improved our ability to make changes in our lives. Most recently, for me, I dropped down to about 50% at work during the pandemic, because I’m home with our kids who are now four and almost two. And I was trying to balance full time practice, I have my own business, and then also being a full time caretaker to the kids while my husband is working outside of the home. And I just could not imagine being able to make that kind of change four years ago, like have we not done this work on our finances, I wouldn’t have been able to do it.
Tiffany: That is so awesome. I’m so inspired. And I’m so inspired about the fact that I know someone who’s actually doing it, which I think is completely different than reading it about it on a blog or hearing about it on CNN or msn money or something. When you really know someone who has been in a certain place and is on the journey, and then seeing the progress, the possibility becomes even more real. But I also know that there are people who feel like making this decision and developing a plan means that they have to give up everything they love and kind of be prisoners of their lives until the day is paid off. So can you give a little insight into how you’ve been able to continue to live, but also be intentional about your goal in this debt freedom journey?
Rho: Yeah, I think like what you’re talking about is really pervasive in the media. Like when we hear people talking about finance, and personal finance, and budgeting and all of that, it’s always about this deprivation, you got to cut this and you got to do that. And that’s not my story, right? Like, that doesn’t resonate with me. And so we are very big on value based spending, which means I’m looking at the things that I truly care about. And I’m going to spend on those things. So like, I’ll still buy my nice shoes, or, you know, fashion or whatever. My husband loves cars, we actually got him a new car. But it was an SUV in 2019 when our second child was born, because my husband was driving a coupe at the time. And his car was I think, like 13 years old at that time. And we needed something bigger for our second kid and he wanted an SUV, and he wanted to upgrade a little bit. So we got an infinity SUV. But the compromise was that we didn’t get it brand new. So I think it was three years old when we bought it. And that drastically reduced the cost of it, right? So it’s not about like you have to drive beaters and only eat ramen and you know, walk everywhere. It’s about spending on the things that you care about. So we spent on that car, but my husband doesn’t care about clothes. So his fashion, you know, budget is much lower than mine might be
Tiffany: glad you shared that. It doesn’t have to be like this prison. And it doesn’t have to be this way or no way. And one thing that you said that really piqued my interest was this value based budgeting. And I think that value based budgeting goes back to why you even made that decision because you had a certain way that you wanted to parent, the value of being a present parent was really important to you. And that’s what helped you break through that lie and really take action. So what might be some of the values that you see showing up in the budgets of your clients or some that people who want to initiate this journey might consider
Rho: when we do those exercises about going through what you value and what’s really important to you. I typically have my clients go through and list out the 10 things that bring them the most joy and the 10 things that they value. And usually it’ll be things like their family, having you know, free time. It might be things like enjoying music or good food, that kind of thing. And so then when we are crafting a budget then we make sure that for instance with the Good Food example Make sure that you’ve got a nice budget line item for the good food that you enjoy, you know, maybe it’s restaurants or things like that. But then if it if your budget or your spending is showing that you’re spending a lot of money in this area that you don’t care about, that then is taking away from the financial goals that you have, or even the spending that you want to do in areas that you do care about, then we can cut that out. And I think that the issue is, most of the time, we’re not looking at that we are just spending money, because this is what people spend money on, right, we’re getting the new car just because oh, it’s five years, I need a new car. Now, I need a bigger house because I got a raise. Most of the time, we engage in what we call lifestyle creep, where we just start spending more money because we’re making more money. But we’re not being intentional about it, we’re not paying attention to whether it be things we’re spending on or things that we actually care about, or if we’re spending because we see our neighbors or our friends or our co-workers spending on those items. And that is the key, recognizing what you actually care about spending on that and not worrying about what other people are doing.
Tiffany: That is so, so good. And again, it takes us back to the beginning. And I think that’s what’s so important about what you’re sharing in this journey is that it all works together, right? Once you decide that another life is possible for you, then your decisions that you make about your spending and otherwise have to be a reflection of that decision. So I think you do such a great job of speaking to the process itself. And though it’s not easy, it’s possible, what would you say to the person who says, okay, I’ve created this value based budget, and I’ve been working on it, but it’s hard for me to stick to it, or I’m struggling with the amounts that I’ve placed in certain areas.
Rho: So that is a typical issue that I see, a lot of times when people come across personal finance, or they come across this idea of value based spending, or they see somebody’s story. They’re like, yes, I’m going to get on a budget, I’m going to just slash all of these numbers, I’m going to do this, I’m going to do that they get really gung ho about it. And the issue there is you’re not starting from where you are. And so I always tell my clients to do a three month look back, let’s look at what you’ve actually spent in each of these areas for the last three months, and then we can adjust from there. So as opposed to arbitrarily saying I’m going to spend $100, on groceries, I’m gonna look at what I’ve actually spent, Oh, it looks like my groceries are more like $500 a month. So maybe my budget is 500 or 450, or something like that, if I wanted to rein it in. And that way, when you’re starting from where you actually are, then you are much more likely to stick to it as opposed to trying to do this wholesale overhaul of your budget. And really, really, you know, restrict yourself. Because when it feels like deprivation, you’re not going to stick to it.
Tiffany: And I think that last piece that you said is what the key is we do we create budgets and we feel like we’re depriving ourselves almost like the whole diet thing, right? You don’t eat something and then you end up binging on it. The same is true with our money. And so I guess it’s that constant. Well, it’s the commitment, but it’s also that constant, reflecting like you said, looking at it for three months, and then perhaps after three months with a certain budget, do you encourage your clients to reflect again
Rho: and we look at how they actually are handling the budget that they’ve been doing. And if they’re making progress on their goals, because if the budget is working, then we don’t need to fix it right. But if they’re still having issues either sticking to it, or they’re not making the progress that they want to on their goals, then we can reconfigure it. Something that I do want to add though going back to what we talked about with deprivation is I think it’s really important to have some sort of entertainment, you know, line item, something for fun, because I think a lot of times when people are trying to get their finances together that’s one of the first things to go and that’s a mistake because if you don’t feel like you’re having fun if you feel like you can’t do anything that you want to do, then like you said you you’ll stick to it maybe for a little while and then you’ll go binge on you know, buying all the things are going to all the places, pre COVID but go into all the places or whatever spending a lot of money that you wouldn’t have spent had you allocated something some money towards fun from jump.
Tiffany: That’s good. That’s so good. And you’re right I can remember in the course of preparing to buy my house In creating that budget with the counselor I was working with and thinking, this is really unrealistic for me to say I’m not going to spend money in any of these areas, versus saying, Let me decrease maybe the amount of money I’m spending it with yours.
Rho: I think the second most popular is not being on the same page with your spouse, there’s a lot of times one spouse will come across these topics, these principles and be really excited about it. That was my story, right? Like, I’m like, oh, man, they’re paying off this debt in less than a year, they’re paying off the, you know, houses in five years, we got to do this. And my husband was like, I’m not really feeling that. And so we have to, when we are presenting these things to our spouses, our significant others, our partners, make sure that we’re approaching it in the right way. And that goes back to something that we were talking about earlier with the why behind what you want to do, and not just the what, you know, not just we’re going to pay off all this debt. And we’re going to cut this, you know, from the budget, and we’re going to do this and save this and whatever. But the why kind of dreaming with your spouse about what your lives could look like if you achieved x financial goal, and getting their buy in from that finding out what they want to do, like what their goals are for when you reach the goal. And then you’re able to go from there and make these budget adjustments and not feel like you’re having this tension or like this, this back and forth pulling with your spouse.
Tiffany: Gotcha. Do you suggest celebrating in any particular way, when you reach a certain milestone or when you’ve paid off a certain amount or maybe a certain debt that’s on your list? Do you suggest celebrating?
Rho: Absolutely celebrate, I don’t have any particular suggestion for what to do. I think that that is personal. But I do think that you’ve got to break up your debt, or whatever your financial goal is, it could be debt, it could be savings, whatever it is. But if you’ve if you’re trying to pay off $100,000, or you’re trying to save up for this downpayment, or whatever, you want to break it up into smaller milestones that you’ll hit more regularly, because then as you hit those milestones and you celebrate, it’s kind of a signal to your brain, like, okay, yes, this is working. And it prompts you to keep going right? You, you’re motivated to stay on track, because you’re seeing that you’re hitting your goals on here. Similarly, the method that I recommend for paying off debt is called the debt snowball. And the way that it works is you list your debts from smallest balance to largest balance, and you pay them off in that order. And just like what we talked about with celebrating the smaller milestones, typically, smaller debts are going to be paid much quicker, right? Like, for us, although we had 670,000, our smallest debt was like 15 $100. And so we were able to pay that off really quickly. And you’re seeing these wins really quickly, which then motivates you to keep going like, okay, yes, this is working, I’m seeing these debts being paid off. So anything that you can do like that, to motivate yourself, when you’ve got a long journey ahead is a plus.
Tiffany: That’s good. And of course, we got to make sure we budget for our celebrations, right so that we can enjoy them accordingly without feeling like they’re setting us back.
Okay, exactly. I completely agree with that.
Tiffany: So in one of your recent podcast episodes, you shared that there are two numbers that people ignore on this journey that largely can strongly impact the way that the journey goes and how you evaluate it. Can you share what those two numbers are?
Rho: Well, I know I talked recently about how there are two numbers that we pay a lot of attention to that aren’t as relevant, and then one that that we tend not to pay attention to.
Yeah, I said it backwards. Pardon me?
Rho: Yeah. So the one that we tend not to pay too much attention to is our net worth. And that is when you add up everything that you own, all of your account balances your retirement accounts, your savings, the value of your house, like all of that kind of thing, your assets, and subtract out the total of everything that you owe. So all of your student loans, your car, loan, your mortgage, any other loans that you have, when you subtract those debts from the assets, then you get your net worth. And going back to when we were talking about my story, our net worth was negative. That’s possible, right? Like we had more in debt than we had in our accounts. And so when we’re not paying attention to our net worth, we could either see that it’s not going up at all, or it’s staying the same. Both of those things. Ces are showing that you’re not making the financial progress that you probably want to be making. Now the numbers that we tend to pay attention to are things like our credit score, and our income, or you know, trying to reach a six figure income, that’s always a big milestone. But the thing with your credit score is it just shows your behavior with debt. So it shows that you are paying your bills on time, or that you, you know, have had credit for a while that you are not maxing out your cards, that kind of thing. So having a high credit score is good for some things, right? If you’re trying to get new credit, you need a mortgage, you need a loan for something, the credit score is good for that. But you can have a high credit score, like my husband and I, when we sat down to look at our finances and found that we were over $670,000 in debt, we had low 800 credit scores, because we were paying our bills on time. So the credit score is not a good indicator of how you’re doing financially. The same with the six figure income, my husband and I both have six figure incomes. And at that time, well, my husband at that time did not but our household income was six figures at the time. But we were over $670,000 in debt. And that’s because your income having this six figure income does not it’s not a good indicator of your financial success, your financial progress if you’re not managing it well. And we had been paying our debts off by paying the minimums on our debts, you know, saving a little bit, but we weren’t really paying attention to all of our money situation. And so there’s a lot of money that we were just wasting, quite honestly, because we were saving like, you know, our, our 15 20% however much it was. But the rest of it, I couldn’t tell you what happened to it. And so paying attention to that net worth and making sure that it is increasing, is a really good indicator that you are doing well with your money.
Tiffany: That was such a good lesson. And I hope that people are taking notes, because you’re right, a lot of people get so caught up in that credit score number. And like you said, it reflects a habit, it does not necessarily reflect the state of your financial well being or the lack thereof, I’m so glad that you wrote that down, and you did it so eloquently.
Thank you very much.
Rho: You’re welcome. You have a way with that. So I want to make sure that everybody is following along, we really want to first of all accept or recognize that there is possibility to live a life that is debt free, you got to get in touch with your why you’ve got to know your values and keep them in mind when you’re creating that budget. Be conscious of your net worth, is there any other key tip you would offer to somebody who is either on the journey and need some encouragement, or somebody who is considering this journey and needs some of that foresight,I think the number one thing is to give yourself grace, you know, to not beat yourself up for being in a situation that you want to improve like it’s okay. Also remember that it took awhile for you to get here, right? Like we got into all of our debt over the course of multiple years. And so it’s going to take a little while to get out of it. Don’t expect it to happen overnight. But if you just keep being consistent, keep taking those steps in the right direction, then eventually you will get there. So just give yourself some grace, and keep taking action and you’re going to do it.
Tiffany: I also I’m curious to hear from your perspective, when someone is looking for a financial coach like yourself, someone to support them through this process, developing a budget, and all of those things that you do. What should they expect from that relationship? Because I know that this is a very intimate thing to share and to be completely transparent and honest with to get the coaching. So how might one prepare for a relationship with a financial coach? And what does that look like?
Rho: I think to prepare for the relationship with the financial coach, you’ve got to make sure that you are ready to be open and honest with your coach. As you said, this is a very intimate part of most people’s lives. I think people are more reticent to talk about their money than they are to talk about their weight than to talk about their sex lives. Like for some reason we carry a lot of shame around finances. So you’re going to be open and honest with your coach. Your coach can help you as your coach is going to be there to help guide you, we might educate you if there are some topics that you are just not familiar with. And then we also help you to see how your thinking is impacting the results that you’re getting. Because as we mentioned at the outset, your mindset is everything to do with making progress and your finances. And so having that outside objective third party who’s looking in helping you to make these decisions and showing you how your thinking is impacting things is
Tiffany: he agree, so whenever you first started, or when you decided that you were going to make this shift, or you wanted to learn more, you mentioned that you were reading a lot of things and seeing a lot of success stories. Were there any books or blogs in particular that were instrumental in your journey.
Rho: So two of my favorite books, your money or your life by Vicki Robin, and Joe Dominguez, she actually, Vicki Robin actually put out an updated version last year or the year before, and her co author passed a while back, but she has updated it for you know, more current times. But it talks so much about looking at your money as a reflection of your time, your life energy, because most of us are trading time for money. And so when you’re thinking about purchases, she encourages you to think about how much time that purchase represents. So it really changed the way that I thought about my money. The second one is called The Millionaire Next Door, it’s by Thomas Stanley. And that one just talks about how the people who you think are millionaires tend not to be unless it’s like, you know, the super Uber rich, you know, top 1% people. But a lot of times millionaires are your everyday person, it could be your neighbor or somebody that you work with who you wouldn’t expect to be millionaires because they don’t look like the stereotypical millionaire. But that’s because most millionaires in America made their wealth or built their wealth by practicing more. I don’t know what the word is that I want to say here. Most millionaires in America live simple lives, they live in normal houses, they drive normal cars, and they are just practicing building wealth by making good money decisions.
Tiffany: That makes sense. I’ve heard of the Millionaire Next Millionaire Next Door, but I’ve not heard of your money or your life, I’ll make sure to link to both of those in the show notes. And, um, before I let you go, I wanted to know is there any quote or scripture that you leaned on during this journey or that you constantly refer back to when you are challenged or get frustrated with the process?
Rho: Or, and it says, whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right. And that goes back to what we were talking about with the mindset piece of believing that this thing is possible. And if you believe that it’s possible, then you’re going to take actions that get you there. So that quote is big in my life, I always refer to that quote.
Tiffany: And I think about the lie at the root, right? If you believe you can get out of debt, then you will and a really great place to wrap up the episode. But before we do, I would love for you to share how far you and your husband have come on this journey. I believe you said at the start that you were over $670,000 in debt. With a negative net worth. We know you said you have now a positive net worth but what about the debt? How far have you come in bringing that number down.
Rho: So we are just over $290,000 now and we are continuing to chip away at it. Our goal is to finish off my husband’s student loans which are at I think 100,000. We want to finish that off in the next 12 to 18 months and then we will work on our mortgage.
Tiffany: That is so inspiring. So commendable. Congratulations. I’m so proud of you. And it’s so like I said encouraging for me and consistently reinforces that it’s possible when I see you posting your updates and sharing those tidbits about your journey for anyone who is listening that wants to connect with you further or potentially is interested in financial coaching. Where can she find you?
Rho: Yes, you can head to my website which is rhothomas.com. I’m also on Instagram at I am Rho Thomas and then you can catch me on the Wealthyesque podcast which you can find at rhttps://www.rhothomas.com/podcast/
Tiffany: I thought I’ll make sure to link to all of your context in the show notes. And I want to say thank you so much Rho for your time and being willing to share so transparently and so eloquently, I know that I’ve learned a lot, and I’m sure our community has as well. So thank you again for being here.
Rho: Thank you for having me
Tiffany: It was a lot of fun. It was quite the pleasure. Okay, I don’t know about you. But for me row really came through all things value based budgeting. And during that three months look back. And really knowing the difference and the level of priority and importance for the credit score versus your net worth, honey. I know I’ll be listening to this episode more than once. And if you didn’t have your journal, then I recommend that you do too. The other thing I recommend is if you need support, if you need guidance, if you are challenged with breaking through this or any of the other lies that we have been digging into during this series, if you’re struggling with clarity, or where to begin to even pick up the pieces that have fallen as a result of living by these lies, I would love to help you. And I actually am accepting new coaching clients, you can grab the link in the show notes bit.li slash your bounce back guide and set up a time for us to chat and see if us working together would be a great fit to help you be and do and have all that God has called you to. I am so excited to hear from you about what you’re thinking about this episode and the other episodes in this series. You know you can leave a review, you can take a screenshot and hit me up on Instagram or Facebook at the Tiffany huff and of course, if you would prefer you can shoot me an email. My email is also in the show notes. I will not hold you much longer. However, I will leave you with this. God is not going to play you but if you continue to live your life in bondage to the lie that you will always be in debt. I promise you says you are playing yourself. Be blessed