By Mahal Hudson

When I was asked to be a contributor to Kubo magazine, I was ecstatic! Wow! Me?! I remember the time that I was so inspired by the Chicken Soup for the Soul book, I wrote a story for them and sent it. Well, of course it didn’t get published. Why would they do that from a 12 year old? When I received the rejection letter, I pouted and I said to myself, one day I will write a book. One day I will be writing an article so I can inspire the world with my message. (Common, don’t ask me what that message was, I was 12!). That was the one day when I was 12 years old living in hot weather in a third world country. I didn’t even know how to grammatically finish a sentence then. Because of my low self-esteem and poor self-image (well, you know that we all go through that stage), I realized that what I really want it is to speak and write in “perfect” English. Why? So people will not judge me. So, I will not feel stupid or unimportant.

One crazy thing I did when I was in college, I applied for post-graduate studies …in Australia! Why? So, I can learn how to speak English well. This is a true story. Looking back now, I realized that I was so diligent, thorough and persistent. Remember, I was applying for an advanced education in another country to which I have never been before. The application requires pages and pages of questions and proposal for a thesis. If I recall, I sent it to 5 Universities without knowing where they are geographically located. All I knew then, I just wanted to go and learn English well. I was beyond happy when I received an acceptance letter from two Universities. I was doing my happy dance that time! Along with the package were information about board and lodging. Immediately, I gasped “I have to pay for boarding and lodging?!” See how silly I was? I didn’t fully factor in the financial obligations. That come along with my goal to learn English well. Duh! My hardworking parents did not know about my plans that I was applying to go to Australia and that I need their financial support. When I told them that I was accepted, they didn’t say “no” to me. I was actually surprised when they started asking about how we could afford it and who do we know in Australia. Suddenly, I realized that with their mere interest to my endeavour, I felt that my goal was not as important as it used to be. Also, I realized that nothing is really impossible. I myself was not convinced that I would be accepted in any University but I tried anyways and followed every steps they asked me to do. I also know that if I show the University how eager and conscientious I am with my application, I know I will have a chance. I made it! I achieved my goal to get accepted. For me, that was already an achievement. With determination and action, I can created my possibilities.

Fast forward 12 years after, I immigrated to Canada. Fast forward another 12 years, I wrote an article in the widely known Canadian Immigrant magazine in Toronto that was published in March 2014 entitled “Landed…now what?”

When I wrote a blog about my fierce courage in starting a leadership development and coaching business, a US-based publishing company in California took notice of my authentic message. They invited me to be a co-author in their Transform Your Life! Book2. My chapter was “The Fierce Me: An Immigrant’s Journey of Self-empowerment.” Currently, I am finishing my second book: “Superheroes Unmasked: 10 Powerful Ways to Lead without Fear.”

Also, I hosted a radio talk show with pinoyradio.com: “Get Real with Mahal” every Sundays. I was invited to speak at SIPO (Spreading Ideas and Providing Opportunities), a non-profit organization helping Millennia’s to close the gap in unemployment by providing them education for successful employment (sipofoundation.org). I also have an upcoming project with MCBN TV Network to host a TV talk show in the fall of 2016.

And now, you are reading my article at Kubo Magazine.

So, did I achieve my goal to speak and write English well? Of course not! For me, at that time, was just a means to an end. My true goal was to be recognized, feel important and be loved by everyone. I was always waiting for people to that for me. I realized it now that feeling valued and loved does not come from anyone else but me.

Now, my opportunities came because I allowed it to open. Allowed is the magic word here. Those things I mentioned above did not just fall on my lap. I continued to have more opportunities because I was out there networking and talking to people. I proved to people that I am a person with quality and integrity. I spoke of my fierce courage. I set myself apart from others. I never stop speaking about my message of hope, compassion, courage and leadership. I did a lot of work on myself learning about my life purpose, core values and self-limiting beliefs.

Now, you are probably reading this and may be wondering what the ONE sure-fire way to be successful is. Actually, I should be the one asking you “have not read the article in entirety?!”

Here’s the truth:

• TAKE ACTION according to your life purpose and core values. Literally, get off that couch or stop playing with your IPhone. Go out and network!

• Reach out to other groups. Really, why would you stay in a group that laments the same thing over and over again?” I can’t find a job, it’s hard to find a job, and my boss is a monster…and blah…blah…blah.” Tell me, what good learning you will find in these situation s- nothing! As I believe, always surrounding yourself with positive and successful people you can be that type of person also. And believe me, this is a fact!

• Ask for help. Don’t ask for money or ask someone to give you a job without knowing what you really want to be. Ask for help with how to get the “job.” Ask for help with practicing your interviewing skills. Ask for help to connect you with people who can help you build your leadership skills.

• Get a coach or a mentor. Really! If you are a Filipino reading this, this may be so foreign to you. Sorry to say that. But that is the fact of the matter right now. Our western counterparts have full understanding in using this tool that’s why they seem more advanced in this area compared to most Filipinos. But I truly, truly BELIEVE that Filipinos can stand out in the crowd and can be massively successful. Every successful person has a coach or mentor. I don’t have to reiterate that. I am evidence of that. Remember the stuff that you read above?!

Look, my message to you is simple.

Start living the life you always wanted to be.

Reclaim the power identity that you always have.

Anything is possible when we speak and act according to our life purpose and core values. If you don’t know, for god sake, then go out there and find yourself a coach or a mentor! TAKE ACTION NOW!
Disclaimer: I write with many questions and exclamation marks. And so be it!

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