Throughout our journey with Voyage, the one thing we have learned over and over is that hidden within every challenge is a blessing or opportunity. It’s up to us to determine whether a challenge we face will be a step back or the catalyst for a step forward.
We had the honor of connecting with some of the city’s brightest leaders and role models and we asked them our question of the month: What is the best advice you have for someone who feels like they are facing insurmountable odds.
Below, you’ll find their advice and links and other info so you can learn more about them, their work and how to connect with them. We’ll be interviewing many of these amazing individuals in the coming weeks, stay tuned.
Carla Cid de Diego | Haute Couture Designer & CEO of Carla Cid de Diego Madrid | CEO/Co-Founder & Curator at Zenith Art & Fashion
Keep fighting, keep pushing, no matter how difficult it may seem, nothing is impossible when you keep fighting to achieve it. We are all capable of achieving our goals if we put our mind and soul to it. The odds we encounter just make us stronger. Learn the lesson, take the hit and get back up, always taking the positive out of even the most negative situations, and soon enough you’ll reach your goal. Sometimes the goal changes along the way but that’s ok because at the end of the day the most important thing of all is the lessons you learn along the way that make you who you are. In the most difficult situations we all need to be smart, creative and think outside of the box, and if one door closes, then open a window! You’ll make it, it’s all up to you!
Jennifer Art | Photographer | Artist, & Designer
Keep your vision in mind, do not falter, do not accept NO, do not stop. Always keep trying to find ways around the odds that make you feel like you can’t accomplish your dreams. Remain positive and don’t let failure be an option. “Never give up, Never Surrender!”
Tumblr: Jennifer Art
Facebook: Jennifer Art
Liz Amore | President of Amore Communications and Editor of HappiestTravels.com
First, stop whatever it is you’re doing and thinking. Then, reflect on nothingness. That gives your brain a clean slate on how to add and account for all the amazing things you have done and brought into this world. Think of those you love and love you. When I think of my daughter, Abbey, I think of a butterfly or fairy. I think of metamorphosis and the catalyst that she is. She has magic and flight. At the end of this exercise, you will be reminded of the magic and love you bring into this world. That’s way cooler to measure than the number of tasks you “completed.”
MAB Steele | Make-Up Artist & Stylist
Nobody’s entire life is based on a single moment, but rather the collection of one’s experiences. If we choose to celebrate our victories and survive our defeats, then we are choosing to let the defeat become a lesson. Choosing to overcome the negative experiences can be beautiful because it teaches that the struggle you are facing is a test to see if you’ve truly committed to the path you say you want. You are in control of not letting your past determine your future!
Katherine Hartley, M.S. | Nutrition – Functional Movement & Performance Enhancement Specialist
This is a difficult question to answer without knowing the dilemma at hand and the person’s current state of overall health. However, I do know that if this is compromised, their performance, stamina and perseverance will be as well. I would start by assessing & implementing the following:
1. Make 7-8 hrs of sleep each night a priority. Some ways to increase sleep quality: use blue light blocking glasses after dark, avoid food 2 hours before sleep, doze off to a meditation, unplug your WiFi and other unnecessary electronics, read a book, use red light throughout the house, etc.
2. Turn off unnecessary notifications (i.e. social media) on your phone. Take this time to walk, pray and/or breath deeply – refocus your mind and body during the day.
3. Organize your schedule in your calendar for the week with the steps necessary to overcome the odds at hand.
4. Morning pages = each morning write 3 pages of whatever comes to mind – no judgements, just get the thoughts out on paper. This is a safe place to vent and prep the mind for the day.
5. Remember that every challenge is only temporary and when conquered will only make you more resilient.
6. Eat clean, vegetable based meals and drink 2+ glasses of water with lemon throughout the day. Consume 1/2 your weight in ounces of liquid each day – if you weigh 140 lbs, you’ll drink 70 ounces of sugar-free liquids within 24 hrs.
Teryn Simmons | Creator and Owner of Top Twelve Clothing
I would say to them, there’s no such thing! No odd is insurmountable. Sean “P Diddy” Combs once said, “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” As long as you are living, breathing and want it bad enough, there’s always a way. Without this mentality, there would be no Top Twelve Clothing.There would be no “Spread Love” movement. Don’t be afraid to fail, because you will. It’s how you move after, that determines your character. Our list of leaders and influential people are filled with individuals who have overcome, what may seem to have been at the time, insurmountable odds. From the Barack Obamas to the Maya Angelous, the Tyler Perrys, to the Kobe Bryants…All continuously overcame insurmountable odds to obtain greatness. Through hard work, dedication, patience and focus, anything is possible.
Lorenzo Bellon | Photographer
Everything needs time, it’s like hiking a mountain, start by the little hills, then you’ll see that the mountain is not as complicated as you thought, because you took it step by step.
Rachel Farmer | Independent Consultant and Area Manager with Arbonne and Physician Assistant Student
The best advice I could give to someone feeling like they’re facing insurmountable odds is to put your blinders on, believe a little harder, and keep going. By putting your blinders on, I mean stop watching what others are doing and have tunnel vision for your goals. It can be so easy to be influenced by what our friends and family are doing and thinking, but it can be distracting and even discouraging if we aren’t careful. By focusing on what we are doing and ignoring outside opinions, we are more likely to keep on going and keep our belief. Belief is also such a huge part of this because there will be times when you may not ”see” the end of the road, but you must keep the belief that it is there. Lastly, just keep going because waiting attracts waiting, and the only way is through. Consistency compounds, and any step forward is progress. It may seem like the odds are against you, but if you keep focused, believe whole heartedly, and take action, it always works out.
Angie Ocampo | Actress | tv host | model
Believe in yourself in your abilities. and gifts that God has given you as tools to be in harmony with the universe are your weapons to overcome any adversity. I thought you came to make happy and you will be happy.
Oxana Arkadyeva | @oxana_beautyart hair artist
There is no way out only of the coffin! Sometimes it seems to us that the circumstances are excessively difficult. seems like the end. But really, there is no way out of the tomb alone. I have been in different life situations. But one thing which always helped me is a prayer! Because if you have a hope there will be a blessing. One of the turning points of my life was a massive heart attack of my husband. It left him with 10%of heart. Then it stoped 8 times. I didn’t work, attended school, had our 3 kids with me and was completely ruined by the situation. But we went through it. Somehow… and it taught me to appreciate everything I have much more or actually appreciate. It made me rethink all values of the life. So no matter how hard your situation is, don’t give up!! Pray and hope! Lord is merciful
Valerie Frangie | Fashion and Lifestyle Blogger @valeriefrangie | stylist and designer for her self named t-shirt brand @shopvf and Damia Frangie | Accesories designer for her brand Ayounik and radio host
We’ve all been into situations where we think we’re facing insurmountable odds, the truth is that life is so unpredictable that nothing really lasts forever. Everything is in constant moving all the time, change is the only constant thing in life. So our advice would be, stay strong, never give up, persistence is the only way to success and trust in God, God will always have the answer, He will always put the answers and opportunities in your path, trust in Him.
Cast of The Big Idea Box Podcast
Creating our podcast platform seemed insurmountable at times due to the amount of work that it required to get it off the ground. The best advice we could share with anyone is the following: 1. Ask for help. Don’t be afraid to vocalize your needs to release the load of what has to get done. Closed mouths don’t get fed and you’ll be surprised by the support you have. 2. Let go and surrender. It’s so easy to get so attached to what you are doing that you cannot look at it from a different perspective. It’s okay to acknowledge that you don’t have control over everything. 3. Visualize the outcome you want. Write it down and focus. This way you are attracting the solution.
Jelena Meisel | Wine Branding ExpertRecipe Developer
Never ever, ever give up… instead of worrying about setbacks know that they are bound to happen sooner or later – and when they arrive, welcome them as the learning opportunities they are and take it day by day and make lists of how you’re getting to the other side of it.
Andrea Perez | fashion lifestyle
My best advice is to have faith in God, God always knows how he does things and after the storm always comes the calm, time to time, and have a good attitude, although it seems difficult, to face the things of life.
Genesis Goncalves | local hair braider, hair blogger
Life would be boring without obstacles, it’s important that we keep our heads up and battle against our odds to reach our goals.
David “Dave E Drones” Knapp | Aerial Videographer, Musician, & Realtor®
Your perception of the odds is half the battle. The odds of something happening are irrelevant if you see a clear path to your goal. First clean behind your goggles, then find the path and work to increase your favorable odds,then overcome with persistence.
The best advice I can give it is that nothing last forever, what I mean it is that this bad season in your life won’t stay forever, you just have to face it and learn about it so you can encourage other to go thru the same situations. We can’t compare the good from The bad if we never get to know what is to face challenge in life. We will never see the beauty in LIFE if we never get to experience the bad things. And the second one, it is everything happens for a reason.
Everything happens to make you grow, to teach you and to be a better version of yourself. So don’t quit, walk the extra mile cause the best is yet to come.
Mike Mitchell | Co Founder/brand development
The best advice I have someone facing insurmountable odds is to take one day at a time. Don’t try to tackle everything all at once. When we started Mike and Mike’s Desserts in March of 2019 we faced alot of hardships early in the beginning just learning how to run the business properly but we got through it as a team and walked through each obstacle together. I think it’s important to have a great team behind and a good support system that’s cheering in your corner to the end that wants to see you succeed.
Lee Jimenez | Fitness Pro and Founder Body Battle Fitness
There is the roadmap we have planned for our lives and there is the roadmap life has intended for us. My advice is to trust yourself in every difficult situation and understand this obstacle is only as big as you see it. There can be a wall between you and your goals, but the wall is only as high as you perceive it. Take a breath and tackle these challenges one small piece at a time rather than looking at it as a series of pieces that could overwhelm you. Remember you got this and are more than capable to overcome it.
Julia Fernandez | Youtuber and Instagram Blogger
The advice I would give is to believe in yourself and don’t think anything is too hard for you to accomplish. With hard work and confidence in yourself you can do anything you want.
Hoosh | Sudanese writer and musician
Have faith and focus on what you can control.
Denise Booker | Owner/CEO
The best advice I can give someone who feels like they are facing insurmountable odds is NEVER GIVE UP. Understanding that nothing is impossible is probably the first step in accomplishing your goal(s). Remember to keep your eye on your vision at all times. Set short term (reachable) goals. Don’t let your failures stop your momentum. If something doesn’t work, scrap it and try something else; learn from your mistakes. Also, don’t be afraid to talk to someone/people who have gone through similar obstacles; most would be happy to share their experiences with you. Keep pushing forward. Once you accomplish the “impossible” you come out a better version of you. Every failure is an opportunity for growth.
Website: plersons.com (under construction)
Instagram/ Facebook: @plersons
Surf Souleil Mommy and Doggy Matching Beach Kimonos and Matching Bikinis
I learned last year that attitude is everything!!! Look for the lesson in the obstacle and trust the universe put it there for a reason. Although it sucks feel the pain or disappointment for a little bit then move on! Through meditation and journaling regularly build the steps you need to overcome. IT WORKS!!!! Believe in yourself, be patient and stay focused!! Eventually you”ll feel like a badass as a result of this practice. Also be a nice person. Don’t let life experiences make you hard.
Marco Ramirez | Pastry Chef
In life we don’t always manage to solve everything or get what we want but that doesn’t mean you can’t as long as you have the joy of living you can achieve and get what you want
Jose Navarro | Photographer & Content Creator
I believe that life is full of ups and downs, if it wasn’t for that reason we would not be fighting for what we love most. Loving what we do is part of success. I am photographer and social media creator, showing the side that many people want to show in front of a camera, create unforgettable moments and make those people who pose in front of me feel important. Today many people believe that opening a new business, having your own personal brand, making your vision part of your success in the future is difficult things and it is not so. I love what I do and from there I help others get where they want to go, showing what they are possible to be. And that has made me succeed, so for that reason: love what you do.
Serina Ward | Digital Artist & Strategist
Trust. In yourself, in your path, in your process, in the universe, in whatever it is that sets you at ease. I tend to believe that we’re all way more capable than we give ourselves credit for, and trusting yourself and your capabilities is a great place to start when faced with something that feels impossible. Just imagine, to be where we are today, a lot of people had to climb mountains they couldn’t see the other side of. As the saying goes, “Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.”
Victoria Maestri | Content Creator
When we go through situations that impact us, the feeling most affected is attachment. As human beings, we experience different feelings that make us hold on to situations, times, memories, people, objects and places. Usually, when one of these gets affected, we feel hesitation and pain, making the ability to release it tougher. We live so immersed in the past, or so anxious for the future that we forget to live the present. When we understand that life is about lows and enjoy the process of reaching the peak, those unfortunate circumstances that will come around, because they are part of life itself, will make you stronger and allow you to get through the difficult times. We live in a fast paced world, where it is more interesting to get to the finish line than to understand the meanings of the process, and when we skip that part, we feel unprotected, without knowing how to react on unexpected situations. The most important thing is to believe that, in any situation, you and no one but you, have the power to change things up. I am not saying it’s easy, because it is not, but it is in each of us to find that inner strength that we all have to fill ourselves with power and take the will to make that change in our lives either by ourselves or asking for help because asking is not about being weak, it is the other way around. Only the brave ones open their hearts and emotions to allow those people to be the helping hand that support you through any moment. Because at the end, there is no such thing as an insurmountable circumstance, we can overcome any circumstances. We just have to believe in ourselves and trust that everything that happens, and everything, I mean everything has a solution.
Youdeline A. Deravines | Visual Content and Brand Activation Strategist
Life is a mystery. Things won’t always go as planned. Roadblocks, disappointments and setbacks will emerge from time to time. The truth of the matter is, adversity is inevitable; however, we have a choice on how we allow it to affect us. Over the years, I’ve learned that obstacles are loaded with hidden gems – opportunities in disguise. Obstacles give us the opportunity to grow, help us to discover new parts of ourselves, spark new ideas, strategies and techniques, serve as a navigation system to redirect us to new path. No matter how insurmountable the obstacles may seem, we have the power to beat the odds.
Here are some pointers for someone who may be facing overwhelming obstacles:
- Keep a positive outlook – Believe that something exciting awaits on the other side of adversity.
- Know that you are equipped to conquer every obstacle – Don’t resist it. Face each obstacle head on and see it from a greater perspective.
- Recall past victories, acknowledge new wins and find new things to be grateful for each day.
- Decide to win – Be willing to bet on yourself.
- Surround yourself with positivity – Speak life to yourself and your situation with words of affirmation, read inspirational books, connect with positive individuals, script and visualize your desires, listen to inspirational podcasts/sermons, research and read autobiographies of others that conquered hardships.
- Be relentless and flexible – Reflect, create a plan of action, re-strategize if necessary and keep moving forward.
- Practice self-care – Pray, journal, meditate, exercise, rest, give yourself permission to be, detach from the outcome, be easy on yourself, take responsibility for your actions, attend to your spiritual, emotional, mental and physical well-being, ask for help and support.
Albert & Zenia | Fashion Designers/Creators
This is a great question and it sounds a lot like us. The only and the most important advise we can give for that special someone is….”just ride that wave”. Those odds are there for a reason. They are there for you to learn and grow in every perspective. Follow your heart, it would tell you if it’s meant for you. These are speed bumps in life which make the journey worth every penny…
Eunna Hwang, knit & fashion designer , Co-founder and Lizie Hwang, fine art & print textile designer, Co-founder
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
David Perez | Photographer/Visual Artist
My advice to someone who feels like they are facing insurmountable odds is to just never give up on your passion. Whatever it may be. Wether it’s just a hobby or something you’re really working hard towards. The highest level of satisfaction you can reach is always going to come from what you truly love doing.
BakedByMontaha | a local baker specializing in unique, exquisite flavors, European sweets, and cakes
For the question of the month, the best advice we would give for someone who feels like they are facing insurmountable odds would be to always keep your head up and always look ahead. Be patient and enjoy the journey no matter how tough or scary it may seem. It is always important to have faith and believe in yourself. You are always much stronger than you think!
Simona Zion | Owner/ Designer of LOLAHOOP
The advice I would probably give to a person who feels like they are facing insurmountable odds is to try to enjoy the process and to trust it. I know it’s a lot harder to actually do it than say it, but whether we like it or not, every experience makes us grow, especially the hard ones. So try to think of the bad experiences as an investment in your future better version of yourself.
Valeria Miranda| Founder & Head of Digital at Uppley Digital
First of all, never doubt yourself. Be persistent and have perseverance if you are passionate about what you’re doing. We all know that nothing comes easy so work hard, love what you do, never be afraid to get out of your comfort zone and be bold! Don’t take opportunities for granted, appreciate every single opportunity that comes along the way. Believe in yourself but most importantly, believe in what you have to offer. Let’s consider every challenge we face as an opportunity to grow and learn from these experiences.