This message is for all of the small business owners in this beautiful country.
Champions are rarely made in the easiest of times. Like the world's rarest of gem-quality diamonds, real champions are made only from the most intense pressure from the earth.
Only a diamond that can sustain immeasurable stress from the earth has extremely high value sought from people worldwide.
An incredibly beautiful lotus grows from the muddiest of water. The lotus surfaces from the bottom of murky water and blossoms perfectly the way only Mother Nature can design.
Mother Nature is always fair. Yin always becomes Yang. Yang will inevitably become Yin.
My late Shifu taught his students that life has seasons. The moment we really embrace that concept, we can delete any feelings of defeat.
No, not I nor any other small business owner I know received their SBA check. I'm still waiting. I applied early like a responsible business owner. One thing that I did know when I received my confirmation was that with or without the government's help, I'm going to prevail like I've done in the past OVER AND OVER AND OVER.
21 years of practice have taught me that only the strongest with the most resolute ambition come out on top.
Few people know what I mean that I did not make a profit the first 7 years of practice 1999-2006. Something very powerful happens when Yang turns to Yin in one's life - humility. You learn how to go back to the basics, which should be the foundation of everyone's life. When I had zero money in the bank and barely any net worth, I kept my dream alive despite what the facts were and what everyone said about me and my far-fetched dream to my face or behind my back.
I stayed strong like a baobab when others would easily have crumbled. I did not come out unscathed during that time and my faith was tested multiple times, but I persevered and I made something great of myself like I knew I would when very few people stood by my side.
I learned from that darkness in my life that dreams are not meant for others to believe in. They're only meant for the dreamer to hold onto, cultivate and turn into beautiful realities.
Ask my students - I said at the beginning of this pandemic - recorded in my videos that THIS IS WHEN CHAMPIONS WILL BE MADE.
Times of hardship are when we show our true colors and our resilience. How RELENTLESS we can be RIGHT NOW will define our fate. We can sit, pray, envision, all that good stuff- but none of that matters if we don't take massive and immediate action. What that means for each business owner depends on their industry's needs.
For me - it's reaching out to all of my patients and letting them know that despite this pandemic - I KNOW THAT PAIN STILL EXISTS. I KNOW THAT DEPRESSION, ANXIETY AND STRESS ONLY GET WORSE. I KNOW THAT AUTO IMMUNE ISSUES WORSEN WITHOUT SELF CARE.
So we adapt, us business owners. For those of us who can't work or choose to not work, then go back to the drawing board and survive. Keep your head up and keep your faith alive. Do what you need to do to keep your family's mouths fed - with kindness and love.
For those of us who can work - let us not take this for granted. We must never listen to people who have a steady paycheck whose ability to make a living has not been affected.
Instead, we must look to each other for support and keep our hearts strong and minds focused.
DO NOT LISTEN TO ANYONE WHO CANNOT SAY ANYTHING GREAT TO YOU.
Too much good times can make us soft. I love the good times. They make me feel powerful and lucky and rich and happy.
But our true character is revealed when the going gets very tough and we get to see how we treat our neighbors. We get to listen to the words we say to ourselves. It's real easy for me to be "spiritual" when things are going good. How "spiritual" am I when things are taken away from me? That's the standard I hold dear to my heart. Are my actions those of Christ?
I made it through the depression in the last decade. Not only did I make it through, I profited immensely. I'm going to make it through this pandemic. A great man in my life teaches that if you're walking through hell, you might as well act like you own the damn place. And so I will - and I do. I slay everything in my path; all the challenges - every little "fact" that tells me that I'm not designed to thrive through this virus, much less survive.
This moment in time is when Champions are made. Give me your best f*kg shot because I am not the one to fk with and this world will see how I not only survive, but that I come out on motherfkng top.
Do not accept defeat. The moment you allow yourself to become a victim is the moment you give away your power.
Walk with me through the fire. Be okay with the burn, the agony, the bitterness, and all the "negative" stuff worthy of saying - this is some real bulsht. Just know that this too will pass. We're NOT meant to be the same after this. We're meant to be stronger.
You just read my book.
A PHOENIX ONLY RISES IF THERE IS FIRE
-Anna Katherine Navida Dolopo
April 29, 2020
I'll let you know where you can read the rest if you're interested.