Business Dreams

Many years ago, I had a small business in the direct selling industry and I loved it! I sold beauty products, but what really excited me was the opportunity to help other women grow their businesses too.

A couple of older women, who were top sellers, took me under their wings, taught me everything they knew, supported me and were equally excited to see me succeed and I did. 


What also was a tremendous part of my success was my relationship with God and understanding how he played a major role in that little business I was slowly growing.

God gives us all different types of dreams and for some, that includes working for themselves. His word has a lot to say about business, integrity, ethics, service and being in relationship with customers. 


Since starting wordsbytara.com four years ago, I have come to understand, even more, the importance of being in alignment with Him. 


My new ebook, Business God’s Way: Encouragement for the Woman Growing A Small Business, is being released soon.

It's a collection of short essays intertwined with stories from the Bible that provide encouragement for navigating the challenges of growing a small business.

It's also an invitation for deeper reflection about your business and how to determine if it's aligned with God. 


The ebook is now available and you can order your copy today by clicking here.

What's your God-inspired business dream? Share in the comments.

Short Musings On Resistance, Service and Life

“New things are happening very quietly inside of me.”- Corita Kent

Short Musings is a random collection of writing ideas of 300 words or less.

Resistance. When we resist the pain it blocks the new thing that is trying to emerge. The more we resist, the more the pain intensifies. Lean into the pain and accept what is so you can begin to heal and ultimately transforming yourself and your life.

Service. Everyone has something they were created to do in this world, even if you don’t think so, you really do. Our purpose and God-inspired dreams are always bigger than us because they are about honoring God and being in service to others. Our gifts, talents, passions, and experiences are not meant for us to hold onto and never share them with others. Instead, God-inspired dreams is how our purpose is expressed. It is very important to understand this, honor it and then do something about it.

Life. This is how life works. We do our part and God does His. But in the process, we must not become attached to a specific outcome, simply because things do not always happen the way we imagine. Instead, we do all that is required of us and then we surrender believing that everything will turn out exactly how it is supposed to.

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When Your Dreams Are Not Fulfilled

"The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams." -Eleanor Roosevelt


My latest work on www.speakthewords.com.


Maybe we are not supposed to fulfill our dreams, but instead, lay the foundations for future generations to carry out the work and complete the dreams.
This was the thought that came to me as I sat down to write this piece. I also thought about what it could possibly mean for each of us who are the bearers of dreams we hope to see manifested.
I came across an audio version of a lesser-known speech entitled Unfulfilled Dreams given by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. one month before he was assassinated. In it, he talked about King David’s dream to build a temple and how he died before he was able to carry out the vision. Dr. King said, “At so many points we start, we try, we set out to build our various temples. And I guess one of the great agonies of life is that we are constantly trying to finish that which is unfinishable. We are commanded to do that. And so we, like David, find ourselves in so many instances having to face the fact that our dreams are not fulfilled.”

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Short Musings on Dreams, Stagnation, Gratitude and Life's Challenges


Short Musings is a random collection of writing ideas of 300 words or less.

Dreams. Every day, we are given the chance to live fully and intentionally. Part of that involves doing what we were created to do and living our dreams. The dreams I am referring to are the ones that no matter how hard you try to ignore, avoid, or run away from, you just can't because they are in you. The dream He has placed in your heart, the one that just can't let go of no matter how crazy or illogical it may seem, that is yours to do.

Stagnation. There is a purpose in being stuck. And when we enter those times where nothing seems to be changing, we need to have open hearts and minds so we can be present for the lessons this season of life wants to teach. The times of stagnation are the times in which we are standing on fertile ground; ground that is primed for amazing transformation and blessings to grow from and for the movement of life to begin again. 

Gratitude. At its core, giving thanks is about perspective and how you choose to see the world. To be honest, it is easier to find all the things that are wrong. But it takes more effort to find the things that are right. And the payoff in doing so is beyond measure. Taking on the posture of thanksgiving lifts your spirit, reduces the heavy load you carry in your heart about the things that are not right in your life and feeds the idea of possibility; that if I can recognize a few things to be grateful for imagine what more is waiting for me.

Life's Challenges. Everything in life whether good or bad happens for a reason. While we all love it when life is great, we also know those times won't always last. When the sunny days turn into gray ones, we want them to be over quickly. We want the sunshine to come back and the difficult experiences of grief, pain, loss, or loneliness to go away. But in those dark times, purpose can be discovered. There are lessons in our experiences. What we learn when we emerge from the darkness, can be used to serve someone else who is also going through their own challenges. Nothing is wasted if we recognize the gifts that the messy hard parts of life are offering us and be open to receiving them.
                                                                       
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Four Questions To Unravel Your Life

"Writing is thinking on paper." -William Zinser

A new guest post at createwritenow.com

I recently forgot the importance of trusting my inner voice. My life was changing, which meant there were decisions I needed to make, but instead of deciding I found myself reverting back to an old habit of overthinking everything. I was spending too much time in my head wrestling with the choices, weighing the pros and cons and searching for guarantees that didn’t exist.

Whenever I feel overwhelmed by the need to make big life decisions I cling tightly to what is familiar and comfortable despite knowing that change is necessary and inevitable.


Realizing what was happening to me I reached out to a friend and was reminded I needed to go back to the blank page. I am an avid journal writer but instead of writing, I was trying to figure out everything in my head. This gentle reminder led me back to my journal and to one of my favorite techniques called the Four Questions. These questions without fail always help me to gain clarity about what matters most and to reconnect with what I already know to be true about my life. Often times we become confused and unsure about what we want because fear and doubt have tried to rob us of what we already know.


Click here to continue reading.


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Create Your Own Opportunites

"Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” 
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

The idea of creating your own opportunities is not a new one. For ages, people have been “making lemonade out of lemons,” creating their own paths when there seemed to be none. 

I once read a book where the author recalled the ups and downs he experienced on his road to success. During one particular point in his life, he found himself out of work and employment prospects were nonexistent. In the book, he wrote that since he could not find a job he went out and created one. He created for himself the thing he needed the most at that particular time in his life. 


Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, "Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”


Sometimes the path that is before us may not be the right one to take. Sometimes there is no path and we have to figure out how to create our own.



How to Manage Fear and Doubt

"Faith is taking the first step even when you can't see the whole staircase."- Martin Luther King Jr.

Part Four of the Dream Makers Series

You have a dream. A dream you have held for a long time.

You have thought about it.

You have fantasized about it.

You have talked about it.

You have created a plan for it.

Perhaps you have even made attempts to live it.

But then something happened. Maybe fear and doubt got in the way.

Maybe life pulled you in a different direction. Your obligations and responsibilities demanded more of your time and efforts.

Or maybe you started to go in the direction of your dreams and then you quit. What you once thought was possible you now think is not possible at all.

But… the dream has not died. It is still alive, beating strong within the deepest parts of who you are. No matter how many times you tried to ignore it, pretended it did not exist, refused to take ownership of it, it remained. It has never gone away.

Your God-inspired dream will not leave you. It is what you were created for and is directly tied to your purpose and needs to be expressed. Your dream is a perfect representation of who you are, of all the things that make you unique and special. Your dream is waiting for you.

Five Small Actions You Can Take Towards Your Dreams

Now is the time to do the thing you were created to do." -Tara C Pray


Part Three of the Dream Makers Series

Today is the day to start living your God-inspired dreams because there's no time like the present. 

But you may have many reasons why today is not the right time. If so, I know how you feel because I was in your position for many years while I delayed my writing dreams. It wasn't until I made a decision and then started taking concrete actions, did I realize my reasons for putting my dreams on hold were not really reasons, but excuses I made because I was afraid and doubtful of my abilities. 

What I have learned during my journey is that while pursuing your God-inspired dreams can feel overwhelming and terrifying, taking small steps towards the vision you have for your life, makes it possible and less intimidating. Start small, right where you are with what you have is how I approached my writing dreams and this mindset continues to work for me years later.

In part three of the Dream Makers Series, discover five small actions you can take to help you get started with pursuing your God-inspired dreams. 

THE FIVE ACTIONS

Decide. Make a decision and say "yes" to do the thing God has spoken to you. What is that one dream that has been on your heart that you know you need to say yes to? That is the one that requires your commitment. Don't worry about the details of how you are going to do it, instead just step out in faith and let God know you are ready and willing to put this dream into action. 

Write. Commit to your decision and write down what you have decided to do and the reasons for it. The act of writing helps to make the dream and the commitment real. Think of it as a contract you are signing with God, partnering with Him to make your dreams happen. 

Tell. Share your decision to pursue your God-inspired dreams with someone. Choose wisely and select a person who is not a dream killer, but instead is a dream supporter. The person you choose should be trustworthy, a good listener,  willing to support you and hold you accountable. Dreams are not something we should do alone and having the right people in our corner is necessary for our success. If you do not have anyone in your life who you can confide in, consider joining an online group of like-minded people who can be your support system.

Plan. Create a simple mini-plan for your God-inspired dreams. Often times what stops us from following through on what we commit to are the details. We think about the how. "How am I suppose to do this?" "How am I going to get the money? "How will I find the time?" While these are legitimate questions, you don't have to answer them right now. As you move in faith, God will open doors and bring the people and resources that you need. Right now, your focus is on planning to do five small things that you can accomplish in five days. Implementing your mini-plan will provide you with momentum and a sense of accomplishment. Write down five actions you can take that will support the decision you have committed to. 

So let's say for example your dream is to return to school. You have decided that by this time next year, you will be enrolled in college. Now ask yourself what are five things I can do in the next five days that will move me closer to my dream? Some ideas include research schools, talk to someone in the field that you are interested in studying, set up a campus tour, start filling out applications and identify people who you will ask to write letters of recommendations. Remember to keep it simple.

Do. Once you have written your mini-plan you must then put it into action. Nothing can be accomplished if you don't start. It is important to remain mindful that your dream is one that God has given to you. It is yours and He has promised to be with you. Trust the process and move in faith.

So as you can see, today really is the day to start living your God inspired dreams. 

What decision will you make and what will you take today? Send me an email @tara@wordsbytara.com, I would love to hear from you.

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Click here to read Part I and Part II of the Dream Makers Series.

Are You A Dream Maker

"The dream comes through much effort." -Ecclesiastes 

Part Two of the Dream Makers Series

Dreams are realized when the Dream Maker does what is required. 

We live in a time where if you look on TV, Facebook or Instagram you see images that highlight the good parts of a person’s life, but rarely do we see the struggle. A couple of years ago, I stumbled upon a web series entitled Black, Married & Hustling that offered a glimpse into the ups and downs of being a dream maker. The creator of the series, LC Johnson, each week took us behind the scenes as she followed her dreams of self-employment. She bravely showed us some of the not so pretty sides of being a Dream Maker whether it was managing her emotions, financial concerns or balancing her entrepreneurial dreams with being married. LC was willing to pull the curtain back on her life and offer us the realities of what it meant to listen to and follow your heart. Watching the series and looking at my own struggles with pursuing my writing dreams, highlighted some of the important qualities of a Dream Maker.

Are you a Dream Maker? Are you a person who is about making her dreams a reality? 


DREAM MAKERS ARE...

Committed. They do not waver in their dream no matter the challenges or obstacles. Dream makers are always focused on the bigger picture. They don't quit or abandon their dreams.

Purpose Seekers. They understand their dream is a direct reflection of their life’s purpose. Dream maker know there is a purpose for their lives and seek to live it out.

Faith Walkers. They have faith in themselves and in God. Dream makers don’t have all the answers but know the answers they need will be provided for them.

Fear Conquers. They recognize fear, embrace it and move forward in spite of it. Fear does not rule in the life of a dream maker.

Risk Takers. They step outside their comfort zone as a daily practice. Dream makers understand in order to get to where they want to go, they have to do things they may never have done before.

Servers. They understand their dream is bigger than themselves. Dream makers recognize the dreams they hold are about serving others and making a difference in the lives of people.

Authentic. They show up in the world as themselves. Dream makers don’t try to be anyone other than who they are. The beautiful and flawed parts of who they are is honored and reflected in their dreams.

Time Managers. Time is seen as a precious commodity. They understand that every day is a gift and is not wasted on things that take them away from their dreams. 

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What are some other qualities that a Dream Maker possesses?  Send me an email and let me know what you think. My address is tara@wordsbytara.com

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The Black, Married & Hustling series became the inspiration for my own podcast, where I shared my journey towards becoming a successful, self-employed writer, who uses her words to make a difference in the lives of women. You can catch up on the first three seasons right here.



What Is A God-Inspired Dream?


Part One of the Dream Maker Series.

I often write about pursuing God-inspired dreams simply because I believe it is one of the most important things we can do in our lifetime. God inspired dreams are part of who we are as individuals. The importance of these types of dreams is significant because of their potential to impact our lives but also the lives of others in ways that can be life-changing.  

Over the next four weeks in this Dream Maker Series, I will focus God-inspired dreams, what it means to be a Dream Maker and what you can do to live your dreams.

In part one of this series, I want to define what a God-inspired dream is in order for you to be able to determine if your dream fits into this category. It's important to recognize that God-inspired dreams are not about the material things that society often equates with dreams. Instead, God-inspired dreams are about something deeper because they are directly tied to your purpose, the reason you were created. 

So, what exactly is a God-inspired dream? Below are seven common characteristics to help you answer this question.
  • A God-inspired dream is uniquely yours given to you by God. It will be tied to your gifts, talents, passions or experiences. No one else will be able to fulfill this dream except you. A dream from God is aligned with who you are at your deepest level.
  • A God-inspired dream requires sacrifice. Dreams from God will require you to make some difficult choices. It will ask you to let go of some things whether it be your job, relationships, your home, time, money, habits, or old ways of thinking. The greater the dream, the greater the sacrifice.
  • A God-inspired dream is deeply embedded in your heart and mind. You are not able to let it go. You may have tried to ignore it, minimize it or run away from it, but no matter what you do the dream is still there.
  • A God-inspired dream will affect the people in your life. Some people who are close to you will not understand or support your dreams. You/or your dreams may be criticized. Family and friends may discourage you from following your dreams.
  • A God-inspired dream makes no sense to you, but you are compelled to do it anyway. The dream scares you and excites you all at the same time. You don’t know how it will come together and you will have questions and doubts about how to make your dream a reality.
  • A God-inspired dream requires you to move out of your comfort zone. You will try new things, go to new places, and meet new people. The dream will challenge and stretch you in ways you could never imagine. 
  • A God-inspired dream serves people. Dreams that seek to serve others are not pursued based on the goal of achieving fortunes, fame or material possessions. The dream instead grows from a sincere desire to help others and to make a positive difference in the world. Your dream is one where you would happily dedicate the rest of your life to fulfilling.
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What are some other characteristics of a God-inspired dream? Is your dream a God-inspired one? Share your thoughts by sending me an email.

For more about pursuing your dreams, check out these posts:
Out of Your Comfort Zone
Five Myths About Purpose
God-Inspired Dreams

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