The Perfect Stranger: Encounters that leave a lasting impression

“I had pizza and coffee with a perfect stranger today. It reminded me of my journey and why I must answer the call.”- BCSTARKS

Sometimes we get lucky enough to cross paths with just the right people at just the right time in our lives. The kind of encounters where witnessing the other’s passion and purpose somehow ignites our own. I was so fortunate to have been inspired by the perfect stranger. After back and forth dialogue over pizza about the usual run of the mill (You know, the ‘where are you from-s?’ and the ‘what do you do-s?’), we exchanged stories about spirituality and our purpose-driven quests. And as we did, we saw ourselves in one another’s story.

What I was most captivated by was this stranger’s level of passion and dedication to their love for writing. Needless to say I was reminded of my own dance with writing. I was reminded that I have unfinished business to tend to; that I have a story that has yet to be told. I was reminded that just like this stranger, I must make time for the things that fuel my spirit, even if it means turning off to the world and giving myself permission to say no to the things that distract me from my calling.

Just hours before my encounter, I had listened to a speech given by motivational speaker Les Brown on living one’s purpose. In his speech, he spoke about investing time and discipline into one’s passion and gifts so that they may be of good use to the world. He mentioned how even when one feels like they are not truly where they want to be, one can always make the most of the experience by cultivating habits of success. This shift in awareness and perception would allow one to be ready for when opportunities arise where one can share those very gifts with others. By the time an opportunity arises, one will have mastered or refined the very thing that he or she aims to become.

This is where I can be found in my journey. And in a space that doesn’t fit the bill, I choose to spend my time cultivating the traits and skills that play into my life’s purpose. As a result, I can feel several opportunities on the horizon. And you better believe that I will indeed be ready for them.

Dear stranger, yet kindred spirit… your passion is infectious!

 

Love,

@BCSTARKS

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When life calls you to be more, will you answer?

When I started this blog in 2011, I had no real expectations other than it serving as a source of inspiration for those who needed it. Little did I know, I’d be inspiring myself along the way. Although I don’t post as often as I did when I first started this site, the mere thought of abandoning it would sadden my soul… I know, you’re probably thinking,”Is it really that deep?” The truth of the matter is, it is THAT DEEP, and more.

What I know about life is that we all have gifts and talents. And at different phases of life, we are called to use those gifts and talents in ways that will enrich the lives of others and ultimately make us feel more fulfilled. It goes without saying that my gift and passion lies in counseling and inspiring people. These are the very gifts that I take with me everywhere I go, not matter where I go. In every job I’ve ever had, and every friendship I’ve ever invested in, I have always made it a point to bring more of what my spirit calls me to be to every situation. My goal at this phase of life however, is to become MORE of who I AM.

More recently, I have struggled with being at a job that I have zero desire to stay in. In fact, many mornings I feel anxiety at the mere thought of going to work. It’s not because I don’t like working. I happen to have an amazing work ethic, but I wouldn’t hesitate at the option of being a housewife for a few years. Just kidding (NOT! lol)… 😉 It’s just that nothing about my current job makes me light up inside. That thing that I do so well (inspire and counsel), doesn’t stand a chance to survive nor thrive so long as I remain in my current position. My spirit is calling for my return to those things that feed it. And so here we are.

As I write this post, I am filled with gratitude for this job. Yes, I am grateful for it because it is forcing me to be more of myself. How, you ask? Well, because the more I realize how much this line of work is not for me, the clearer I get about what IS. The more I realize what I’m not great at, the clearer I become about what I do so very well.

Oftentimes it is our greatest failures that push us towards our greatest accomplishments. In this moment, I choose to answer the call of my soul to do more of what feeds it. I choose to honor my soul by not allowing what I do not want to overshadow my deepest desires. I choose to allow the light of my soul to shine brighter by being more of who and what I AM without apology, guilt, nor fear. I am answering life’s call to be more of ME, and it is my hope and prayer that you will be inspired to be more of YOU.

When life whispers, speaks, screams and shouts, will you answer?

@BCSTARKS

Featured Dream Chaser: Poet Barbara Joas drops latest book, ‘My Art, My Love’

 Barbara Joas is a poet, a two time author, and a great friend. She and I first met while attending the University of Miami, and she has been quite an inspiration to me. Ever since I can remember, she has been extremely passionate about spoken word, so much that she chaired  the student committee that brought Spoken Word Wednesday’s and the very first Poetry Slam to UM. The event showcased both amateur and award-winning poets and comedians on campus.

After graduating in 2008, Barbara took a leap of faith and relocated to California to pursue her passion. When she told me that she recently published her third creative work titled,” My Art, My Love,” I didn’t hesitate on the opportunity to share it with my own readers and whomever else I can. Undeniable passion and leaps of faith are what make Barbara the ultimate DREAM CHASER! Check out the details of this amazing creative work below:

My Art, My Love

Synopsis: My Art, My Love uses ideas formulated by dreams and gives them a unique, tangible voice poetic verse form. This stimulating literary compilation promotes harmony among artists of all sorts as they endure the endless journey of self-discovery and learn to translate this way of life to all who can relate. From the imagery depicted in “Still Life” to the gritty love woes in “Nonexistent Love,” Joas’ words radiate messages in the most compelling ways.

My Art, My Love can be purchased via Lulu.com and the file can also be downloaded here.

Bio: Barbara Joas is a Haitian-American writer and performer. While earning a degree from the University of Miami, she published her first two collections of poetry: Darkness Fell into Light in 2006 and Liberate Me in 2008. My Art, My Love is her latest creative work coming alive on each page.

Barbara’s other books are available via publishamerica.com as well as Amazon and Barnes & Nobel Online.