It is not challenging to look at the world in the state of calamity and losing hope. Injustice and tragedy are all around us. Despite this, we have the power to be empowered.
Imagine you were on a basketball team. There are ten seconds left on the clock, and you are responsible for the game-winning shot. At that moment, will you fold under pressure or give it all you’ve got? The basket represents your goals in life, and the opposing players represent life’s obstacles. Winning players are usually relentless. They see the target and make it their number one priority to get it. They understand that they have all the tools they need to achieve the goal, and that empowers them.
We have the same ability to help ourselves and others. Merriam-Webster describes the word empowered as:
“having the knowledge, confidence, means, or ability to make decisions for oneself.”
Therefore I challenge you to use those specific tools to create change and empower others.
When I look back at my life, just as I have had some beautiful experiences, I have faced challenges. Some of the protective factors that society considers to be the framework for the health of an individual were not at all present for me, which could have put me at risk of being a statistic. I am utterly grateful for a Mom who planted a seed at an early age of what it meant to be resilient in the face of adversity. It was not just the words that she spoke but her quiet demeanor in which she operated and modeled for me at all times. Even when I felt all the cards were stacked against me, there was one card that mattered to me. I was equipped with the tools needed to bounce back from adversity.
When we face disappointment, hurt, and or rejection, unforgiveness silently creeps in. I recall the loss of my grandmother, my sister to Leukemia, and my Dad to lung cancer. I was then challenged when my husband almost lost his vision to diabetes and the unjust experiences he faced in the workplace due to a disability, then challenges with my family. If that wasn't enough, after years of faithfully serving in a leadership position, I was faced with the ultimate challenge to move beyond my comfort zone despite having heard that small still voice say, ‘take the shot and use my acquired tools to create change and empower others.’ I am grateful that I took the shot! When you love and laugh abundantly, you live a beautiful life.
Angela Bassett Gives and Empowering Speech As She Accept the Icon Award at Black Girls Rock 2019
"Don't settle for average. Bring your best to the moment. Then, whether it fails or succeeds, at least you know you gave all you had. We need to live the best that's in us." – Angela Bassett
Empowered to Inspire YOU!