When I was in elementary school I was a die hard Duke fan. I attended school back and forth from California to North Carolina and in N.C. you either cheered for the Tar Heels or the Blue Devils. I was so obsessed with all things Duke, I set out to make it my college of choice. If I hadn’t won a scholarship to an HBCU, you would’ve definitely caught me in blue and white painted face at every basketball game.
When it was time to head to Washington D.C. to attend THE Howard University, my mom decided abruptly that she wouldn’t be traveling with me. I’d flown alone before since a little girl so I wasn’t afraid of traveling alone but I was quite fearful of going to a new city, let alone a new school all by myself.
A close friend of mine (shout out Neiky!) happened to have a friend who lived in Maryland and she arranged for him to pick me up from the airport and take me to campus. So, I set off with all of my things to a new place to meet a new person and embark upon a completely new experience, all alone. I can remember all of the students with both parents helping them load into the dorms and me feeling so out of place and lost while navigating Howard’s campus.
I spent hours upon hours waiting in unnecessary financial aid lines, but I did it. I did it alone and scared but I pushed myself and embraced the challenge. I was only 18 and 3,000 miles away from home but I was determined. My mom came to visit a couple of weeks later and by then, I was pretty acclimated to Chocolate City (that was until it started snowing in April…freakin’ April!)
Looking back now, the only way that I could’ve ever been successful on my solo college journey was to completely shut the fear up. I had to suspend all of my what ifs and worries and just go for it. What was my alternative? Not to go just because my mom wasn’t going? Lose my scholarship? Not go to college period? Or push myself and face whatever obstacles were on the other side? That’s the funny thing about life. We always have choices and usually the choice that causes us to stretch and push ourselves, are the ones with the greatest rewards.
It can be scary not knowing what you don’t know but it’s even scarier to not know and not strive to know. Howard was where I learned a lot of valuable life lessons and made some of the closest friendships that are still impacting my life today. It’s also where I signed up for a credit card in exchange for a free t-shirt and Subway sandwich (with no job) which led to me f’n up my credit and learning some of my most important financial lessons. It’s where I waitressed and bartended making sometimes $2,000 in one night. It’s essentially where I learned how to mismanage my money and the importance of saving for a rainy day.
Shutting the fear up can change your life! What have you been neglecting or denying in your life? What would shutting the fear up do for you in those areas? Would it take your relationship to a new level? Stack your money up? Help you lose weight? Change your career path? There’s no time like the present to take the leap and make it happen! You don’t even have to wait until the new year! Do it now!
If your money fears need to be shut down, guess who can help? 🙋🏽♀️ I’ve got you! Who’s next?