Guest Author Reginald “EZ” Ward

We all preach “positive vibes” all day, but are we even bringing the positive vibes or are we only expecting the very thing that we lack to provide ourselves? When laying the foundation for your future, the mentality of the people around you matter the most. Envisioning dreams so big, with the potential to change lives, means that the energy around you needs to be filled with optimism. Though, it can be easy to forget, you have to understand that the reciprocity of this frame of mind to your peers is key. Sharing your incredible ideas with friends should be effortless, and a comfortable conversation. If you are out here shooting dreams down because they seem impossible, you might want to: 

  1. Reconsider your friend group, or
  2. Take a step back to reevaluate your own insecurities and small minded thinking. (If the shoe fits, wear it.)

Your circle is an environment for building each other’s confidence and trust, with genuine support to reach goals. Being a motivating force in someone’s life is not always simple, Game of Faith founder, Reginald “EZ” Ward shares the impact of believing in each other’s vision and the importance of speaking life into them. 

REAL FRIENDS SHOW EACH OTHER LOVE

Love is the foundation of everything, including friendships! Lately, the word “friend” has been used too loosely, I blame social media. You’re claiming that your crew is there for you, rides for you, but do they show you love, when the majority doesn’t? The type of people that I befriend are not chosen based on popularity status, but based on character, which makes them true and genuine supporters. Those people in your life that you consider to be your friends should be the main people shouting you out on their social media, calling or texting you to check on you and vice versa. We might be cool or cordial, but if you aren’t showing me love, we might have to rename this thing from “friendship” to “acquaintanceship”. 

That might sound a little rough to some, but as growing adults, you have to recognize the impact of the people around you sooner than later.

When you’re surrounded by influential people, you could transcend in your life and your career in ways you never imagined.

Within my circle, I have the opportunity to absorb the knowledge and the energy of friends that are smarter than me and doing extremely great things. I lift them up and get excited when they are making big moves in their lives because I truly want them to succeed. If you don’t have true love for your friends and you envy their success, rather than celebrate it, this might be the time to take a break. Rather than emitting that negative energy, even when you don’t necessarily mean to, if you care for them you’ll keep your distance until you’re ready. 

So, before you can  speak life into your peers, consider the following:

  1. Reflect, make sure your heart is genuine. Don’t just say anything to your friends because it sounds good. 

  2. Seek your friends out, ask what their goals and visions are. Listen to them.

  3. Solicit your help, ask them if they need your help with reaching goals. 

  4. Encourage them. Be the support that they need.

EVEN WHEN THEIR VISION ISN’T CLEAR TO YOU, SUPPORT.

With over 2.6 million black owned businesses in America, almost everyone we know is starting their own company. That means more friends coming to you for some positive insight on their idea for a business. The truth is, not everyone is going to support that idea but your friends and the people you love should always encourage you to reach your goals. My main supporter is my best friend, my Dad. Our older generation of black people, grew up at a time of disadvantage. In their era, the black community only reached a certain level of success. However, black millennials dream, and we dream big. We aspire to build empires, 7 figures, traveling, the whole nine. So, when we look to our elders for advice and support, their feedback will only be based on their own experience.

You can’t tell your dreams to those who might put a limit on them.

During my Sophomore year in college, I made it my goal to be the face of the student body. I was excited to share this with my Dad, only to hear “Are you sure you can do that?”. With him questioning my goals, I knew he didn’t see the growth in me, but I still expected that support from the beginning. Negative feedback could either ignite the fire, or stagger the process. Just when I started to question myself and second guess the probability of my vision, his doubt fueled me to push even harder to win. It’s important that you give your peers a chance to attempt their goal before offering feedback that could kill their dreams. But whether you know it or not, that one discouraging statement may keep them from pursuing their vision at all. That idea or concept may not be within your interests, but could be a blessing to the next person.

Simple positive words can change someone’s day, their year, and the course of their trajectory. When pastors preach, their messages resonate more with some people than others. But the significance is the shift inside of your soul that is caused when hearing just the smallest bit of hope that you can go on to the next level. During my time of need and reassurance, a friend told me “Be patient, your platform is going to do great things”. Just those few words gave me the courage to think “I have to keep on going!”. You never know who is in your circle, that could be feeling lonely or depressed, as if no one is on their side. But to hear from someone close to them say, “keep on going, you can do this”, might essentially give them the drive to tackle that project, start that business or build that idea now.

DAILY Encouragement WITHIN your circle IS more important than your know 

You want support from your friends? Be the support for your friends first. When you are going after your passions, you need great energy around you everyday. When I received over 15 job rejections, my spirits had been completely down. To hear my friends tell me “this is a testimony” “you’re the perfect person to get through this” without that I would be sulking and feeling despair. Adversity could take a toll on your health, if you close yourself off from those that love you and want the best for you.

Those days when you question yourself “am I ever going to make it”, keep those people nearby who will speak life into your success and boost your spirits. 

People in our generation, can unknowingly lack empathy. In most cases when other people have issues and hardships, no one cares. For me, it comes natural as a friend to just listen, and believe in my peers’ visions and their stories, empathizing with what they’re going through. What really developed that spirit was my brother who has cerebral palsy. With his inability to walk, I have a different level of sympathy which allows me to help others. It gives me no choice but to be a person for others to lean on. Those people in your life, who speak ill to you or make statements that don’t come from a genuine place, should have limited time spent with you. Hanging out with someone who’s heart isn’t in the right place, impacts your mentality and your attitude toward your vision. 

Protect your headspace, never speak negativity over your friends, show them the love they deserve. Lift your friends dreams, be the support you’d want at your time of need. Bless the lives around you and watch God do the same for you in return.