35 & Fabulous!

The Husband I spent last weekend in Charlotte celebrating the 35th birthday of one of my girlfriends and the 40th birthday of her fiancée. This year most of my best girlfriends and I turn 35, so we have been on different missions to celebrate and what we plan to do differently going forward because, let’s face it: we’re not kids anymore. At 35 we should have it right, right? Wrong. I know I don’t. I’m nowhere near where I thought I would be by 35. Honestly, I don’t know where I thought I would be, but it ain’t here. I will say, however, that I’m closer to my most recent goals and I have to attribute a lot of that to being jealous of my girlfriends.

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I know you’re like, WHAAATTTT?! (minion pic), but it’s true. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not harboring any feelings of ill will – I love these dynamic ladies, and I actually love the fact that I’m jealous of them! Some people get jealous of their friends and it ends friendships. I get jealous of my friends and it motivates me. If Vette and her husband are going on last minute trips and I want that for The Husband and myself, I need to grind a little harder to make a little more money so we can do it too. If Rita is starting a new business and doing well, I need to grind a little harder and take tips from her to make my businesses do better too. If Michelle and Nisey are taking classes to help them excel in their work, maybe I should take a class or two too.

The actual “jealousy” aspect of it all lasts all of about 30 seconds before I realize I can do it too if I work for it. I think people get jealous of other people because they think there’s a limit on success, and if their friend is doing it then there’s no room for them. LIES! Not only is there room for my girlfriends AND me, if we work together and take advice from each other’s successes and failures, we can get where we want to go TOGETHER. I have TV and movie visions of my friends and I all living in our dream homes with paid-for cars and kids in the best schools taking bi-annual vacations together and living debt-free because we are living our profitable, professional dreams, and we do it TOGETHER.

Proverbs 27: 17 says, “As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.” If your friends aren’t sharpening you and making you better it’s probably time for some new friends. No, not all friends are going to be business-minded, but you should be able to gain SOMETHING from them that helps make you better. Maybe you have a friend that loves the gym and eating healthy and tries to get you to do the same. Maybe you have a friend that invites you to Bible study week after week (even if you don’t go). Maybe you have a friend that knows your relationship with your parents are strained and calls you just to ask about them in hopes of helping you to rebuild that bridge. Whatever it is, if you are giving energy to the relationship, you should be getting something in return that sharpens you, and you should be doing the same for your friends.

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People say that it takes a village to raise a child, well, the same rings true for dreams that come true. Sure, some people will tell you that they did this or that all on their own, but the reality is that someone, somewhere saw something in them that they were willing to nurture or at the very least give a chance to – even if they receive a return on investment in the end. When you have friends that are willing to help you because they love you and their return on investment is partying with you when you succeed, that success is that much sweeter in the end because the same people that encouraged you through the struggle are there to celebrate you and celebrate with you when you get to the finish line. I am very thankful for the ladies in my circle that motivate and celebrate me even – and especially – when I don’t think I’ve done something that great. To have them rooting for me helps to keep me pushing forward, and I just hope that I do the same for them.

 

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