How do you see yourself?
She said, “I think when we want to belong anywhere, it’s all about being seen … Being seen for who you truly are … As an adoptee … people don’t get to see all of us because we can’t show all of us … There is part of us that is either hidden to us or unknown to us … When we’re looking at how to be seen, its an enigma to us too … When we know we feel like we can belong, it’s because we are confident in being ourselves in the company that we’re in …”
Who are the people that surround you? Do they accept you for the type of person you are today?
On Belonging: See yourself within other people
On Community: Surround yourself with people who accept you for who you are
On Self-Worth: What makes you unique?
On Purpose: What is the reason for your existence?
What is a promise that you made to yourself as a child?
She said, “ … When I was growing up, I had a youth group leader … she took me to a little restaurant called, Olga’s Kitchen. I don't even remember what she said to me, but I know she said something … that made me feel like she saw me … she didn’t understand what my story was, but she saw me and she reassured me that she loved me and I was beautiful inside and out … That there was a purpose for my life … I left that meeting with making a promise that if I made it through my teen years, I would spend the rest of my life helping other kids find their way …”
What once seemed, as a simple promise, is now part of Erica’s life work, to change the world through reforming practices and policies in domestic and international adoption.
What is a promise that you made that you still need to fulfill?
On Wholeness & Healing: Know your story and history
On Promises: What is a promise that you made that you still need to fulfill?
On Environment: Focus on creating and maintaining lifelong relationships
On Development: Focus on gaining valuable and meaningful experiences
Are you aware of the triggers that cause your stress or anxiety?
She said, “… It was in my Master’s program that I became aware of my triggers … You have to be aware of what causes your stress, your pressure, and your anxiety …”
Self-awareness or self-reflection, a process that is easier said than done.
A process that allows us to take a step back and reflect on our life, behavior and beliefs.
What do you to do to practice daily self-refection?
On Identity: Fall in love with yourself
On Stress: Become aware of what triggers your stress
On Anxiety: Take the time to reflect
On Environment: Be able to say, “No” to people who aren’t helping you grow
It all started when she was a little girl.
She said, “Since I was a little girl, I always knew that I wanted to be a social worker. So, I knew that I had to do certain things in order to be able to work with people …”
I was once told, “a dream written down with a definite date becomes a goal; a goal broken down into actionable steps becomes a plan; a plan supported by action becomes a reality.”
For Ebony, the process was not any different [dream -> goal -> plan -> reality]
She continued by saying, “ … I always knew that I wanted to work with people … I didn't know the form or the setting, but I knew that I wanted to work with teens … So, I knew regardless of the things that I was facing in foster care or the abuse that I was enduring that I had to keep pushing forward in order to see the ending light. In order to get to be where I am today to help other people …”
What are you doing to put yourself closer toward achieving your dreams? What type of people are your surrounding yourself with or need to surround yourself with to help you achieve those dreams?
On Story: Use your story to give back to others
On Trauma: Seek support groups
On Routine: Develop a routine that brings the best of you
On Self-Care: Take the time to care of your mind, body and spirit
It took him years to get to this point.
He said, “… The story that I was once ashamed of was the story that was helping liberate people from their own circumstances or issues they may have been ashamed of …”
What are you still ashamed of when it comes to sharing your story? How are you working through it?
It is by answering such questions Branden Brown was able to find his purpose in life, to help increase the quality of life of people and their families through teachings and powerful coaching experiences.
Tune in to our conversation with Branden Brown, as we discuss the importance of choosing your own family, treating others the same way you want them to treat you, helping yourself before you can help others, and many others.
On Family: You get to choose your family
On Relationships: Treat people the way you want them to treat you
On Helping Others: Help yourself before you can help others
On Narrative: Live the story you want to tell, not the story others want you to tell
How does one develop trust? What are the elements that make up trust?
He said, “What I’ve seen in the past from my experience is trust really came from those who were consistent in my life …”
It is through consistency that we are able to tell whether or not people are fully invested in the relationship at hand.
Do they trust you enough to reveal deeper parts of themselves?
Do their actions speak louder than their words?
A set of questions that most of us seek answers to, as we try to form healthy and trustworthy relationships.
What questions do you seek answers to as you’re developing trust in a relationship?
On Mentorship: Find people who will help you see the bigger picture in life
On Developing Trust: Learn to observe your environment
On Leadership: “Actions always speak louder than words”
On Self-Narrative: “Why” do you want to share your story?
She couldn’t tell anyone.
For five months, she sat alone, in her college dorm room, getting sick, not wanting others to know.
She said, “When I was a junior in college, I found out that I was pregnant. I was at a strict religious school and at the time … it was definitely frowned upon… I always dreamed of being a mom one day, I just knew it wasn’t the time. I had no way of providing the kind of life I thought my baby deserved. I really wrestled with this decision of what to do, how to handle the situation and while I was thinking through that, I had to hide my pregnancy…”
A decision had to be made.
She said, “In the end, when I realized that I couldn’t give her everything she deserved, I went ahead and made an adoption plan for her … Leaving the hospital without my newborn was probably the single hardest thing, I have ever done in my life … The loneliness that envelopes you, the doubts, the fears, the worries of not doing the right thing or not ruining someone’s life … But, I knew at the time that I loved her so much, that I wanted more for her than I could give …”
For Adrian, doing the best she could with what she knew at the time was the only option.
What is the hardest decision that you have had to make in your life?
On Decisions: Know that you’ve done your best based on the information available
On Storytelling: Use your story to encourage and bring hope to others
On Judgment: Put yourself in the other person’s shoes
On Acceptance: Find a way to work through your fears and keep moving forward