Ep #169: Rebooting Your Dreams in 2021 with Teneshia Jackson Warner

The Design You Podcast with Tobi Fairley | Rebooting Your Dreams in 2021 with Teneshia Jackson Warner

Hey all you dreamers out there, are you ready to get your dreams on? After this past year, we all need to reestablish our dreams – I know I do! And today’s guest joins me to share why dreaming is important, what to do when your dreams get off track, and what you can do to reintroduce your dreams and unleash them. Get ready to be inspired to put dreaming back into your life.

Teneshia Jackson Warner is an award-winning multicultural marketing expert, purpose-driven entrepreneur, and author of The Big Stretch. She is the founder, CEO, and Chief Creative Officer of EGAMI Group, a leading multicultural marketing and communications firm in Manhattan as well as founder of The Dream Project. She’s here to talk about her work and share why we all need to dream more.

Listen in this week to discover how our dreams provide us with a way to experience different versions of ourselves, and how to let go of what’s holding you back from dreaming fully. Teneshia shares what it means to fight for your dream and how to overcome obstacles to take action and make your dreams a reality. If you’re ready to be committed to your dream for the long term, no matter what, you’re going to love today’s episode!

If you want help creating a business with thriving revenue streams so that you can design the life you really want this year, now is your chance! We’re going to be opening the doors to the Design You Coaching Program really soon, get on our waitlist now!

What You'll Learn From This Episode

  • What a dreamer is.
  • Teneshia’s biggest lesson of 2020 and how it helped her focus on her dreams.
  • How to stop self-editing your dreams and go after them fully.
  • Why it’s so important that we dream.
  • How your family dynamic affects your beliefs and your ability to dream.
  • Why you must be willing to work through discomfort to achieve your dreams.

Featured On The Show

Full Episode Transcript

You are listening to the Design You podcast with Tobi Fairley, episode number 169.

Welcome to the Design You podcast. A show where interior designers and creatives learn to say no to busy and say yes to more health, wealth and joy, here’s your host, Tobi Fairley.

Hey all you dreamers out there. Are you ready to get your dreams on, get them reset after this, a little bit wonky period that we came out of in the last year? Yeah, we need some, we do we need to sort of reestablish our dreams. I know I do. I bet a lot of you do. And for that reason you’re going to love today’s episode. My guest today is Teneshia Jackson Warner. And she’s an award winning multicultural marketing expert. She’s a purpose driven entrepreneur. And she’s the author of The Big Stretch.

She’s also the Founder CEO and Chief Creative Officer of Egami Group which is a leading multicultural marketing and communications firm in Manhattan. And if that weren’t enough, she’s also the Founder of The Dream Project. And she talks about all of these things in our episode today. But what we really talk about is why dreaming is important, why you should do more of it, why it should be on your calendar.

And how to really unleash not only your dreams but your dream warrior, that fighter that gets up on those days that sticking up for and finishing our dreams is hard. She talks about what to do there. So if you’re ready to dream bigger, dream more, dream better then today’s episode is for you. So enjoy my fun and incredible conversation with Teneshia Jackson Warner.

Tobi: Hey Teneshia, welcome to the Design You podcast. I’m so glad you’re here today.

Teneshia: Thank you for having me, Tobi. I am thrilled to be here.

Tobi: So fun. And I’m glad to know you because before your publishers who I work with a lot, the publishing house that you’re with, before they reached out I didn’t know about you. So it’s always such a delight when I get introduced to another amazing woman who’s doing fabulous things in the world. So that’s so exciting. So why don’t we start there?

Why don’t we start with some of the fabulous things you’re doing in the world? And tell everybody who you are, what you do before we get into this really cool conversation we’re going to have about dreams, dreaming, creating cool stuff in our life. But first tell us who you are and how you’ve done that.

Teneshia: So my name is Teneshia Jackson Warner. And I am the CEO of Egami Group. Egami Group is a multicultural marketing agency that’s headquartered in New York City. For your audience, Egami Group was definitely a dream of mine that I have witnessed go from an idea concept into now one of the nation’s leading advertising agencies which is why I’m so passionate about dreaming.

Other things you need to know about me is I am also the founder of The Dream Project, an initiative that was started to support other individuals, and professionals, and aspiring entrepreneurs, take their dreams from concept into reality. I’ve had an opportunity to interview over 200 iconic dreamers. And so whenever I get the chance, I’m really thrilled about sharing those tips to make sure we’re all on track to live out our dreams.

And then lastly, from a personal standpoint I’m a wife. I’ve been married for 12 years. I am a doggy mom, so if you happen to hear my dog bark, please don’t blame it on Tobi and I. It’s because my dog doesn’t have the Zoom etiquette. And that’s a little bit about me. I think last but not least, I am a dreamer. So that means I believe in the impossible. I’m willing to be radical and just really living life on purpose.

Tobi: I love all of that. I love words like that, impossible, radical. I’m one of those people that when someone tells me my goals or dreams should be realistic, I’m like, “I’ve never had a realistic goal or dream in my life.” That’s the whole point of them and then making them come true is even more fun. So let’s get into that. Let’s get into what you really mean when you’re talking about dreaming, why it’s important.

Let’s start to set that tone and really help people realize if they’re doing it or not. Because I think sometimes we sort of feel like yeah, I’ve got some dreams or goals and then we try to pen them down and we’re like, “Wait, no, maybe not so much, they’re a little loose, they’re a little not quite clear.” So tell us about dreaming.

Teneshia: So first and foremost let’s start with the definition of a dreamer. So a dreamer is someone that is willing to create a way out of no way, someone who is constantly tapped into their imagination and they’re comfortable with seeing what does not exist, and then moving forward to make that happen.

Tobi: That’s so good. I don’t mean to interrupt you but that just makes me so excited just to think about that. That’s so good. Okay, keep going.

Teneshia: And then I always love to say that a dreamer has to also be comfortable at being called crazy. Because in order to move forward and to do what doesn’t exist or to move forward on a new idea that it doesn’t exist yet, you’re kind of out there sometimes. And you have to be willing and okay with being called crazy and radical. And I’ll tell you more about that with my story. But that’s my definition of a dreamer.

Tobi: Okay perfect. So why is it important that we dream then?

Teneshia: So it’s important that we dream because I believe that our dreams provide us with a way to experience a different version of ourselves. So for example, think about Oprah Winfrey, Oprah was somewhat at the top of her game as being this talk show host with the Oprah Winfrey Show. Then she had a dream about what if I could potentially be a network owner. So yeah, we have the channel but what if I could actually have my own network?

That dream helped Oprah meet another version of herself beyond just a talk show host. I’m a talk show host but now I also am the creator of a network. So I think our dreams allow us with expansion, it allows us to stretch. And it allows us to meet a different version of ourselves. So maybe you always had a dream to be an author. Maybe you’ve always had a dream to be a mother. Or maybe you have that dream to start that small business. Well, that dream is giving you an opportunity to meet another version of yourself.

Tobi: That’s so good. I love that definition because I think sometimes, and we’ll talk about this more in a little bit. We have maybe a dream for the first version of ourselves sometimes when we’re in our 20s or our 30s. But I think sometimes we forget this is an ongoing thing. I could have another dream at 30 or multiple, and at 40, and at 50, and at 60, and at 70 and while I’m on this planet. We absolutely can keep recreating the next version of ourself on purpose, not just letting it kind of be.

And when without dreaming I’m guessing, my assumption would be if you aren’t willing to do this then sort of you leave who you become, you’re going to become the next version of you, we’re going to age. But if you’re not intentional about it then you’ll kind of just get what the world creates for you or what happens to evolve. But not something that’s super thought out and directed, which is my favorite thing to do, believe we’re in control of our own destiny. So that’s so awesome.

Okay, so I want to get into the how we should start to do this. But I think – I’m trying to decide if I want to talk about this other thing first. I think I do. When you were talking one of the things that I see all the time with the people I coach in business, interior designers and creatives is – and you mentioned it several times. So you said people have to be willing to think about things that don’t exist yet or a new idea or something that they’ve never done before.

And I see all the time with these people that I coach, that’s what stops them more than anything, and even when they’re talking to themselves, they’re self-talk is, “I’ve never done that before. I don’t know how to do that.” And that’s where all their fears come up. And so I think this is really fascinating.

As we’re thinking about why we should be dreaming and how we should be dreaming, I’d love for us to have it in that context of yeah, that’s the whole point is to do things you haven’t done before because that’s so often the excuse I hear for people not doing the next thing is they’re like, “I don’t have the steps A-Z, I don’t know how it’s going to work.” And I would suspect that that, that fear and that sort of confusion and that little bit or a lot of uncertainty keeps people not only from taking the steps but from dreaming at all.

So can we talk about that a little bit, as you’re starting to teach us how to do this, and it may be embedded in your process anyway? But I just kind of want that filter over this conversation because I just see it so often where there’s a lot of buts, but I’ve never done. But I don’t know. And what you’re saying is you have to sort of – when you described dreaming to me of impossible and radical. In my mind that’s like you have to suspend all of those buts on the front end of the dream to even get it on paper. So can you teach us about that and how do we start this process with that in mind?

Teneshia: Tobi, you are so spot on. So, alright, so in my book which is entitled The Big Stretch and for all of the listeners, The Big Stretch is literally a four phased approach to dreaming, a book that I poured my heart and soul into and it’s a 12 week action guide where we work with you to think about what that dream is and then moving it from concept to reality. But in that four phased approach, and Tobi this is why you’re so spot on, the four phases are dream, design, dare, do.

Okay, one is dream and what I encourage all of the listeners here to do is phase one is just getting comfortable with being okay with dreaming. So if you look at our schedules we are so busy day-to-day. When was the last time that you looked on your schedule and there was a block to imagine? There was a block to get creative inspiration. It’s not something that we typically do but one thing that I found personally on my dream journey as well as my interviews with other iconic dreamers, they’re intentional to carve out time for new inspiration to come.

So when I interviewed Magic Johnson he talked about, “I get my best ideas when I’m walking on a treadmill and I just let those ideas flow.” When I did research on Steve Jobs, people often talk about his best ideas came to him walking on very scenic routes. And so he was known for taking these business meetings walking. For me, you probably see the background right here. I’m right now at a cabin. This is me being intentional to unplug from the New York City crazy. I come out in the middle of nowhere and I have a notebook and I let the ideas flow.

And so to the listeners I want you to become familiar with what is your ideal dream environment? Is it being near nature? Is it on the beach? Is it walking? Is it meditating? How do you get your ideas? That’s step one in dreaming.

Another thing that is important, where you started to hit right away, Tobi, was people will actually stop the dream from coming if you start to think about how too prematurely. You may have a big idea that comes to you but just because you can’t figure out how would that work, you can stop your imagination from flowing if you start to think about how too prematurely.

Tobi: That’s so good. Yeah, I see that, you’re right, because people are almost afraid to put the dream on paper if they don’t believe they’ll be able to figure out how to do it. And what you’re saying is don’t even worry about that right now. We’re starting with the what; we don’t even care about the how quite yet, yeah, so good.

Teneshia: Absolutely. And not letting the how stop you. So I always give this as an example, each year I do a vision board. And Tobi, do you know what the vision board process is?

Tobi: Yes, I’ve done it before. I don’t do it all the time but I do like it. I do similar things even when I do a mood board for a room because I’m an interior designer so it’s, yeah, grabbing different pieces of inspiration of what could be possible, is that kind of what you mean?

Teneshia: Yes. So each year I do a vision board. And one year I did the vision board with my mom. And so for all of the listeners, one of my mom’s dreams was to tour Europe and go to Paris, so I thought I would make this vision board exercise kind of fun by actually buying her tickets for Paris. And the moment she put it on her vision board then I would exchange it with the real tickets. And so we’re in this imagination zone. And I noticed that my mom would not even put a picture of the Eiffel Tower on the vision board. And I kept kind of trying to nudge it her way.

Tobi: You’re like lady, I have these tickets, please, please post that on there, yeah.

Teneshia: And she didn’t know I had the tickets. And I said, “Mom, I know a dream of yours is to go to Paris, you’re looking at pictures of Paris, why won’t you put it on the vision board?” And she said, “Because I can’t do that this year.” I said, “Why not?” She said, “Because I haven’t budgeted for it.” And that was an example of how you can have the how stop your dream before you even allow yourself to experience it in your mind. And so I said, “Mom, you’re thinking about the how too prematurely.”

And then I had to surprise her and was like, “Bam, I have the tickets right here.” But when a god is looking at us that way in the dream process, you’ve got to be able to see it, and imagine it, and experience it first in your mind, body and spirit. And believe that it’s possible even before you know how the how can work out.

Tobi: I love that so much. I feel like what you’re describing, when people won’t even put it on the kind of the plan, the board, the dream, won’t write it down. Is kind of how we self-edit our conversations or when we ask for what we need from someone, we’re already kind of pre-deciding. And I see people do this all the time.

In fact I have a kind of new executive assistant. And she was kind of pre-deciding something for me. And I was like, “Just give me the information and let me decide.” And she’s like, “Oh, you’re right, you’re right, you’re right, I just didn’t want to bother you or make it a big deal.” So how many times with our dreams are we already sort of self-editing for that very reason like you’re talking about?

And I think we might be surprised to find that there’s all kinds of dreams we could unleash that might actually be able to come true if we would stop kind of pre-editing or pre-deciding like you’re talking about. That’s so interesting. Okay, so let’s talk about how do we, say we admit the dreams and we’re like they’re there, but we still are having a hard time making them happen. Is this about fighting for our dreams? What do we do to start making that thing that’s been on our vision board for maybe two years and it hasn’t happened? Where do we go from there?

Teneshia: Okay. So I’m going to actually move you through the phases. So let’s assume you get comfortable in the dream phase. Two other tips that I do want to tell you in the dream phase is number one, I want you to even study your dream ancestry. And that is this process of understanding what were you taught about dreams. And I actually have a template that is out online that the listeners can go download. It’s at thebigstretchbook.com. But you can actually download this dream ancestry exercise that I have.

You start to think about what were you taught about dreaming? What’s your whole family dynamic? Because sometimes that also interacts with what your beliefs are around what’s possible for you. And another thing in that particular phase is also there’s a dream risk assessment. And there’s a template that will help you sort of understand how risk averse are you versus not? Because all dreams are not meant to be the same, maybe you want to do a dream as a hobby where you don’t necessarily want to do a career shift right now because you have so many responsibilities.

What you’re going to love about this exercise is it’s going to get you comfortable in the path that’s right for you. So those are things that I want your listeners to do before we move into this next phase that you’re asking about and that’s the how do we now move from the dream phase to the how? And that phase is design. And inside of the design phase, the first thing that I get you to do is once you have clarity on what that dream is, we are going to back into what needs to be achieved by when in order for that to happen.

And I like to take it and break it in first a one year increment because if you think so big, sometimes that can be overwhelming. But knowing that this is the dream, what do you want to do in this one year? So let’s go back to the author example. Say we have a listener that one day wants to become an author, a published author. What I would have them do, say, “Well, what needs to be true in a year in order to be on track for that dream?” And maybe in a year the one thing we want to do is have a proposal and get it picked up by a publishing company.

So I break it down into what is that one year goal? Once you have that one year goal then I’m going to have you back into 90 day increments. And so in order for me to achieve this in one year, what would I need to be doing? And what do I need to achieve in the next 90 days to work towards that goal? The reason why I do that is it starts to bring it out of idea land into action and realities. Because all of the greatest dreamers they understand that you can dream all day, but dream without action will not equate to a realized tangible it has happened.

Tobi: Yeah, outcome.

Teneshia: So, Egami Group, the agency that I run that started in my idea brain at some point it had to be dropped down into just small incremental actionable goals. So that’s important on how you start moving from the dream to the bringing it into the reality, and that occurs in the design phase.

Tobi: Great. So any other things you want to tell us about the steps, because I’m loving it and picking up what you’re putting down, it’s making all sense to me. Before we talk about, because I do want to make sure we talk about today too, what happens when dreams get off track or deferred? But do we need to know the rest of like anything else about the steps before we talk about, when we’re on track and then all of a sudden we have say a pandemic for 15 months and then what happens?

Because it happens all the time and it’s all kinds of things, it could be a health issue, it could be a money issue, it could be you want to put things on hold because your children are a senior in high school. Or something’s happening but either way if you deferred it or it got deferred for you, I for sure want to talk about that. But let us know if we first need to know anything else before we go there.

Teneshia: So I’ll finish the steps. And this is the step in a normal situation. So you have the design, in the book during the design phase I get you to understand who your dream champions are. Your dream champions are people that will see the potential in you and they agree with you that this is possible. But I also push you to understand who your dream bullies are because everyone in your circle is not going to be able to see the vision that you’re working towards. You’ve got to kind of know who is who. And treat them accordingly on your dream journey.

So that’s a concept that we talk about in the design phase. The dare phase is the third phase and that’s just – you’re going to have to also get uncomfortable being uncomfortable. So that’s – it leans to the title of the book called The Big Stretch. The definition of the stretch is it’s the expansion that will be required of you to become that next version of yourself. And it’s the distance between where you are in your dream. So you will have to become comfortable, daring, stretching, moving outside of the comfort zone.

And the last phase is really mastering the do, which is being committed to your dream for the long term no matter what. And I think that’s a perfect segway Tobi, to your next question about…

Tobi: Yeah, what happens, yeah.

Teneshia: When dreams are deferred.

Tobi: Yeah, or derailed because I love – what was coming to me when you were saying that, mastering the do and being committed no matter what. I think that maybe even what could happen because in your system, which I love and it makes so much sense to say a year from now. But just because we decide something’s going to take a year doesn’t mean that there’s not some extenuating circumstance that suddenly what we were hoping to happen in a year is going to take two years or three years. And a lot of people would give up when they hit those obstacles.

So what do we do when we have a pandemic or something else major and our dreams literally feel like they were just blown up?

Teneshia: Oh man, Tobi, I bet you could give me, and I’m curious to hear for you, how many things that you thought were going to happen in 2020 didn’t happen. Can you just give me the one thing that I thought I was going to be doing this but this was deferred?

Tobi: The things that come to mind instantly, I mean I have to admit, (a) I’m an optimist and (b) I kind of secretly loved having an excuse to be at home and nestle in. And it gave me a lot of time to work on my business which I love to do anyway. But some of the things that just come to mind are the fun social dreams that my family and I have. We were going to the Bahamas for a trip and we cancelled it. Then we were going to the beach for a trip and we cancelled that.

And it seemed like excursion after excursion that was really needed for our mental health and wellbeing, and socializing, and all that, self-care, all that, just kept getting cancelled. And there was nothing we can do about it. And we maneuvered pretty well but it still, I think you kind of forget. The optimist in me forgets when I’m feeling frustrated or overwhelmed. But yeah, a bunch of stuff that was part of how I was going to show up just got completely wiped away for me.

Teneshia: Yes. And I use that just as an example so that if I start talking about this I can pull back from some of the things that you deferred. But to all of the listeners, I was surprised by the year of 2020 with the pandemic. And here’s lessons that I learned in the pandemic that I believe we can apply over and over again when change hits or when you have to defer a dream. So first and foremost, the biggest lesson of 2020 that I learned is it’s paramount that we plan and that we write our plans. But it’s very important that you write your plans in pencil.

Tobi: Yes. Flexibility, right?

Teneshia: And I learned that because we have, for my business we have a robust business plan. And all of that was blown out of the water when the pandemic hit. And if those plans were so fixed that we weren’t willing to pivot in real time our business would have went under. That’s just how much we were impacted with clients calling saying, “We’ve got to pause. We’ve got to not do this contract.” And so I’m just so happy that the plans that we wrote, they were written in pencil and we weren’t so attached to those plans that we weren’t willing to erase and find new ways forward.

So whatever that dream may be for you and you’re listening, and you have this plan of how you’re going to do it, kudos that you have the plan because that’s a part of the design phase. But what I want to make sure is if life hits and the unexpected happens you promise yourself that you will not be paralyzed and that means the end. It is simply the comma; it means you might have to write the sentence in a new way. It may mean that you have to find a new path on how to get there. That’s a huge part of a lesson that I need all the listeners to know about deferred dreams.

The second thing is, and I started to hit on this a bit but in order to have a mindset that’s being willing to pivot, that means you have to be very resourceful and innovative in finding new ways forward and problem solving in real time. Because there’s not a single dream path that won’t have a problem or obstacle being placed in your way, so being resourceful on yes, I can get to the end result this way. Or I can get to the end result this way, or this way, or that way, or this way. Being resourceful is going to be key in how you get those deferred dreams back on track.

Tobi: That is so good. A couple of things coming up for me while you were saying that starting with the writing in pencil or getting the how on paper, it’s important to get the how on paper. But like we talked about earlier, I think people are so desperate for that how and what I see happening, and I’m sure you see this all the time is that people start to believe there’s a right way and a wrong way to do this. And they’re real attached, kind of like you were saying, they’ve written in pen.

And so I see that a lot and I love this idea of even maybe from the beginning, just so you don’t box yourself in when you’re writing the how. Go ahead and reminding yourself at that beginning point of okay, one way that we’re going to do this and it’s the one we’re going to commit to for right now is this path. But we’re also mindful there’s all these other ways. There’s not one right way to get to that destination. That’s so good.

And then another thing that comes up is a lot of times I hear people almost believing or hoping that not only is there one right way but if it’s the right way it won’t be hard. And it shouldn’t be this hard. Why is this so hard? And I love what you were saying about you’re going to have obstacles. You’re going to have problems. Go ahead and know, okay, we’re going to pick this path, it’s one of many. And whichever of the paths we pick there’s going to be problems, obstacles, roadblocks, it’s like whack-a-mole sometimes.

Things keep popping up and that’s just what this process looks like, and expect them. But then I think you can tell us what to do about them. But expect those things because that’s what I see people not doing. They’re going to be one way. They expect it to go exactly like they wrote it down on paper from their brain. And they think it shouldn’t be hard. And I find that to not at all be the case when I have achieved dreams. It’s been the whole time a lot of times hard, but I kept going. So what do you think about all of that?

Teneshia: You hit the nail on the head especially that last one around…

Tobi: Not being hard, yeah.

Teneshia: Yeah, especially that it’s not going to be hard. So here’s one of the other big lessons of 2020 and it was in the book before 2020 but it’s like life pulled a joke on me and then I had to really live it. But I had a whole section on unleashing your dream warrior. And by that, it’s just acknowledging that dreamers are fighters. And dreamers will fight the obstacles that stand between them and their dreams. And yeah, I knew it in theory. Yes, I interviewed all these dreamers telling me about the obstacles that they had to fight.

But in 2020 I’ve never had to fight for my dream so hard that I did in 2020. And one day I would wake-up and it was fighting the cancellation of contracts. And having to be resourceful, what do we do? Next it was fighting just the realities of the world shut your complete office down, no one can go into your new fancy office that you just built near Madison Square Garden. So be resourceful there.

And then it was partially it was the mix of whoa, my grandmother got sick in the pandemic. And she ultimately ended up passing but me having to fight through emotionally what that did to me in the middle of the pandemic. But still keeping my eye on the dream that I know we had to push forward. I’m like I refuse to let it crumble in this pandemic. And so it was a fight every single day. So that’s a big part too of, you know, if you think that shiny north star, that vision is just going to be handed to you.

I love to say I believe in the notion of things coming to you with ease. But I am a realist as well and I’ve lived this dream journey enough that if you’re listening, I want to be truthful to you to say you’ve got to master fighting.

Tobi: Yeah, I love that. I think you’re right. There are definitely ways we can engineer ease into our lives. And we don’t have to always be on that hustle, productivity, forcing treadmill that a lot of us get on that don’t even lead us to our dreams a lot of times. It’s like kind of holding both of those things at the same time. How can I not make this harder than it has to be? But also when it is hard getting and realizing that this is part of it. And kind of that’s just part of life.

There’s always going to be things happening that are unexpected that we wish weren’t happening. But we have the choice to either push through it with that warrior attitude or succumb to it. So, any tips that you can give us before we wrap up about getting up and being that warrior day after day? Because when you are hit with the first wave like you talked about, and you have cancellations and the money’s not showing up, then you close your office, then your grandmother’s sick, then your own emotional wellbeing.

What are you doing day after day or week after week when the next roadblock shows up to not just quit because you’re exhausted or it’s scary, or you don’t have it in you anymore? How do you get back up every day?

Teneshia: Well, first I think it’s the acknowledging that, and not fighting against the fight, put it that way. So I think first is not fighting against the fight. And knowing this is a part of the journey, the obstacle is here, and realizing that it is a part of the journey, so that’s one thing. The second thing I would say is the willingness to not give up and to keep at it on a day-to-day basis no matter what that obstacle may be. So whatever that obstacle is on that particular day give it the best that you can to overcome the obstacle on that day.

Tobi: Yeah, a day at a time, right?

Teneshia: Take it a day at a time. Do the best that you can do in fighting the obstacle on that day. For me, my spiritual practice, Tobi, is very, very, very important. So I always, when I’m in a fight season I always have to get in tune with something greater than myself. So for me that’s God, that’s prayer. And I’m making sure that as I’m battling I’m not battling just based on what I think I can do on my own power alone. I actually believe in God and God’s power to fight with me.

And so making sure that if you’re in a fighting season you know how do you strengthen your spiritual mind, body and spirit, muscle. That’s important. Another element, and when you’re in a fighting season is the importance of self-care in that season so that you’re in the right mind mentally, physically. That’s very important. So even on a day-to-day basis now I know, you know, do I want to wake-up and workout in the mornings? No, but me being even in physical shape, it helps me with the mental capacity to fight battles that are inside of my business on a day-to-day.

And this last one is very important. There comes a time where you do what you can do in your own strength. You do what you can do fighting the obstacle but then you surrender. And surrendering is a posture of I’ve done my part, I’ve done what I can do, so, God, world, universe, and trusting the process.

Tobi: I’m passing the baton to you. Here you go.

Teneshia: Here you go. And there has been battles that I faced that were just bigger than me. And I surrendered. And in that surrender moment something greater came back. But sometimes you fight, and fight, and fight and you don’t practice the surrendering till the very end. But understanding the power of surrendering and knowing when to let go is [crosstalk].

Tobi: Yeah, I agree. Yeah, I think when we’re rigidly attached to something, that’s what even kind of gets us stuck into there is one right way or whatever. And I find the same thing. Holding things loosely, sometimes I think of it almost like holding a bird in my hand. If you’re going to crush it you’re going to kill it. And so you’re there, and you’re committed, and you’re efforting, but there’s also a little bit of that looseness too, and flexibility, and that even comes with surrender to me.

Because I was thinking as you were talking, yeah, there’s a point where, there’s some days and some moments, and some points where it is about giving more effort. And there’s some days it’s maybe about resting, or releasing, or something because more effort is just going to maybe lead to burnout. But it’s not necessarily going to muscle you through the next part of the journey. So good. So good.

Well, if anybody wants to find you, find your book, all those things, where do they go to get more of? You’ve told them about these great, also resources. Remind us where to find you, where to get all that good stuff so they can learn to dream on.

Teneshia: So again if you go to thebigstretchbook.com, many of the resources that I’ve referred to, they’re downloadable. And I’m making them available for no cost. So you can go there. I would recommend if you do one exercise and you find value, you want to make sure you get the book. And the book is The Big Stretch; again, it’s a 12 week action guide. It’s a great bootcamp, kick starter for those dreams that you have for this year. So you can get the book anywhere books are sold.

And then if you just want to follow me, my Instagram is @teneshiajwarner and that’s my handle on instagram as well as Facebook and Twitter. And I’m always out there talking about something with my personal, professional journey or giving nuggets on dreaming. And I would love to invite all of you into my Dream Network family to stay in touch with you.

Tobi: So good. Well, thank you so much. You’ve inspired me. I already consider myself a dreamer but there was some really, really good stuff in there to just remind me. And I do love to make time. I’m a big time blocker and I love to put what I call thinking time on my calendar. But now I’m going to change some of that to dreaming time because I like it even a little better.

There’s a lot of stuff we’ve got to think about but sometimes you just want to go to that place of dreaming, and like you said, imagining what’s possible, so thank you, so helpful, such great wisdom. And I enjoyed you, it was so much fun.

Teneshia: I enjoyed you too, so thank you, thank you, thank you. And best of luck with everything that you’re doing, your interior design business, your podcast and I can look in your background and tell you’re a true creative. So I don’t think you have problems dreaming. Hopefully I’m taking your 10 dream and now to 15.

Tobi: Awesome, you did, you did it. Okay, well, it was so fun, thank you so much.

Well, I think my dreams need a little tune-up. Do yours? I am a dreamer for sure. And I love to get in touch with that creative part of me and make big, big things happen that have never happened before, or I haven’t seen other people do. But still, I learned a lot of stuff today on how I can do that better. So you better believe, there’s going to be blocks probably in the next hour in my schedule, in my Google Calendar that say dreaming time. And I hope you’re inspired to put dreaming into or back into your life again too.

I will see you back here one week from now on this dream, my podcast was a dream that is realized and it’s still so fun to come back here with you every single week. So I’ll see you then. Bye for now.

Thank you so much for listening to the Design You podcast, and if you are ready to dig deep and do the important work we talk about here on the podcast of transforming your mindset and creating a scalable online business model, there has never been a more important time than right now. So join me and the incredible creative entrepreneurs in my Design You coaching program today. You can get all the details at TobiFairley.com.

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Hi! I'm Tobi

I help creative women (and a few really progressive dudes) design profit-generating, soul-fulfilling businesses that let them own their schedule, upgrade their life and feel more alive than ever!

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