B. Inspired: Your Independence

Happy Friday, folks! Summer is in its full groove and we have yet another holiday weekend. Monday, July 4th we celebrate America’s independence as a country. When you think about independence, what comes to mind? How has independence or the journey towards it affected you? Independence can mean a lot of different things for different people. It can represent freedom, liberation, having no fear, or daring to live the life you’ve always wanted. Going against the grain or holding steadfast to a goal (especially one that others challenge) takes a certain amount of independence and tenacity.

I can think of many ways being independent has changed my path over and over again and helped me at every major turn in my life. Cutting my hair in 2005 and going au natural (sans chemical processing) was extremely liberating and freeing for me as a woman. I independently did the research and made the decision to do the big chop! Talk about intimidating. It was some time before it was a major trend for Black hair, so I was limited on styling products or information on how to maintain my hair – but I prevailed in the end.

Moving back to Atlanta in early 2006 without a job in place was another time my independence and self-determination served me well. I booked a flight, hotel, and rental car and flew down to Atlanta in January. I worked with Pro-Move to find an apartment, I purchased furniture and setup delivery dates, and scheduled utilities to be activated.

Back in Lincoln, I resigned from my job at State Farm (which got me many side-eyes from folks who didn’t understand why I would leave such a ‘good job’), packed my things in a small U-Haul trailer hitched to my Neon (what a great little car) and headed for the south.

Over ten years later, as I look back over the career and many awesome opportunities I’ve had, I celebrate that fact that I have always been independent, strong willed, and tenacious. Many of the ideas and beliefs I have today are rooted in my ability to always think for myself. This is important in life. You have to stand for something.

What’s your story? How has independence or your search for it shaped your life?

Enjoy the holiday weekend. Here’s to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

With Love & Light,
-Tina B.


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