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Lately I’ve seen a change in many of my clients, friends and family members. Where once they were excited about losing weight and getting healthy, for whatever reasons they have lost their Will or the Way. Sometimes in life we have the will, but we can’t find the way. At other times, presumably, we know the way, but we can’t seem to muster the will. In either case, getting from wherever we are to some place better can be our biggest challenge in life. How do we get from here to there? How do we find both the will and the way?

At 17 years old I was the first in my family to go off to college. My mother and grandparents drove me to Tuskegee University (TU) beaming with pride. As we reached TU’s campus we met many other freshmen and their families, moving into the dorms with excitement. While setting up my dorm room with my 13-inch color TV with the bunny ears and manual knobs to change the channels, my VHS recorder, my fan for the window…no AC, bedding and my footlocker filled with toiletries and keepsakes to remind me of home, just in case I got homesick, I noticed my dorm mate’s belongings. Many of my dorm mates were second, third and some even fourth generation college attendees. Many of them were coming to school with dorm refrigerators with freezers, microwaves, 20-inch or more color TV’s with remote controls and DVD players. A few even had cars and received monthly allowances. I thought WOW, must be nice. Quietly for a moment I became ungrateful for what I had. I dare not show such ingratitude because I knew all the sweat, tears and sacrifices my family had made for me to be the first to go to college.

Being that Tuskegee, Alabama was such a small city we stopped at a gas station for directions only to find out it was also a convenience store, Western Union and the bus station. As we were standing outside, a Greyhound Bus pulled up, only one young lady got off the bus and she had one suitcase. She took a deep breath as she finally reached the gravel. She sat her bag down on the dusty ground, looked at the sky and the biggest smile came across her face. She straightened her clothes, took out some papers and proceeded to ask the closest person to her, who happened to be my grandfather, how to get to Tuskegee’s campus. My mother, being nosy, started asking a lot of questions, where are you from, did you travel alone, where is you family, etc.? She explained that since she was a little girl her dream was always to attend Tuskegee University. She shared that she was 18 years old, had traveled all the way by bus from New York and that she was the only one in her family to even graduate high school. She said she didn’t have much family support and she was thanking God for the scholarships she received and the many jobs she had to work to save up some money. She had a I am ready spirit, a don’t pity me spirit and a truly No Mess spirit.

We gave the young lady a ride to campus and offered to help her carry her one suitcase into her dorm. She replied with a smile thank you for the ride I can manage from here. As she walked away with a smile full of hope, I couldn’t help feeling blessed to have my outdated 13-inch color TV and my family with me. I will never forget that young lady because she had a WILL in her, whether she had support or material things nothing was going to stop her from finding her WAY!

You’ve heard the old English proverb that asserts itself with complete assurance: “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” This saying proclaims that the mind always rules over matter. At times we don’t have the will; or we lose our way, but the first thing you must do to get them back is to remember your why. Why did you start on this journey, why is this important for you to accomplish, what is your motivation? Digging deep and redefining your why, will help you to recapture your will and open a way. You will begin to prioritize things in your life, maybe letting some things or people go. To have that understanding and power will allow you to eventually see the path. We learn by going where we must go, not where we want to go! Will there be obstacles along the way? Of course, just remember to stay on track.

Ask yourself where in your life you need to stop waffling and make a commitment. Ask yourself where you need to start going, to make progress. Things will only get done in your life when you make a commitment to do them and stick with them. So, grab your “one suitcase” and get going like that young lady. She knew her way was not in material things or people. She had the will. If you have the WILL, God will always provide a WAY!

No Mess

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