Mom and Daughter: Mary and Lisa Coffey
Key Words: influence, purpose, passion, persistence, patience, patriarchy, prosperity & power
By: Dr. Lisa M. Coffey
October 17, 2021
Continuing with the theme of influence and legacy building, I asked myself who has influenced me the most?
Influence means to have the capacity to affect someone or something's character, development, or behavior. At some point, we are molded by those around us, parents, family members, clergy, mentors, or educators, to name a few. These individuals' roles in our lives can impact our maturation process and who we become as adults. Our role models provide a blueprint for us to follow. But do we mirror what we see?
When I ask myself the questions posed in the title, the person who has influenced me the most is my mother, boss, and best friend. I have learned valuable lessons from my mother that transcends our relationship of mother/daughter. Those lessons helped me in every area of my life. What have I learned?
Through my mothers' guidance and her life lessons, I have learned the true meaning of purpose. The greatest gift bestowed to me is the gift of motherhood. Raising my sons using my mothers' example is rewarding and challenging because my mom has set the bar so high. Our mother/daughter relationship is built upon trust, respect, discipline, determination, and love. My mothers' guidance has allowed me to flourish and define the purpose of my life as a servant leader. What is your purpose?
My mother grew up in a large family in the South during the Jim Crow era and faced racism, sexism, segregation, and oppression. After migrating North and facing other setbacks, she was determined to have a better way of life than her predecessors. The need to do better fueled her passion for building a business to create opportunities for her family. The enthusiasm, adoration, and desire to create business success while developing her legacy drives her love of entrepreneurship. From this experience, I learned the value of understanding my passions and moving toward embracing my passions. What are your passions? How are you developing/working those passions into your everyday living?
Watching my mother grow the business required persistence because she faced roadblocks and setbacks. Because of tenacity, the obstacles she faced as a minority/women-owned business gave her a renewed focus on pushing forward and not giving in to the naysayers or self-doubt. My mom refused to let her descriptors limit her potential for success. My mother has taught me to believe in myself and my dreams and to remain focused despite obstacles. My mom has taught me that persistence means never giving up. Do you showcase perseverance in your life?
A partner to persistence is patience. Nothing happens overnight except sleep. We are constantly under construction, learning, goal setting, engaging in continual improvement, conflict resolution, and other processes. Our patience and dedication to the process allow us to swing the pendulum toward success. Sometimes we have to slow down, reevaluate and then re-engage. Patience allows us to have a healthier sense of gratitude. Witnessing my mother's journey has taught me the importance of patient and adds value to taking my time. Do you practice patience?
Although patriarchy describes the male leader of the family and his role within the group, my mother has been our family's patriarch and in todays society women are often the head of the family. Through her leadership, our immediate family continues to flourish. By investing in us emotionally, financially, and supporting our goals, she contributes to our overall wellness and promotes a system of unconditional love. My mom has set the example of leadership, unity, and cohesion for our family. Who has a leadership role in your life/family? How are their opinions and level of influence valued?
Most times, prosperity is thought of as wealth and tangible assets. While my mother does promote saving your money, building your portfolio, and living in a manner that supports a positive net wealth, the prosperity I speak of encompasses so much more. My mom promotes a culture of prosperity through education and knowledge. The promotion of wealth attainment without compromising morals and values, being victorious, taking charge through leadership, and building harmonious relationships are other ways I have prospered by learning from my mom. Through encouragement and guidance, I can thrive in many areas of my life. How do you define prosperity?
When you think of power, you often think of control, which is not the kind of power I am referencing. My mother has shown me that power means having the ability to influence, take control/lead, transform and change the trajectory of your life/situations, be accountable for your actions, and navigate challenging times. When you embrace your power, you will have control over your life to reach your goals. However, you cannot surrender your power to relationships, addictions, and circumstances. Are you using your power as a source of energy to fuel your dreams/desires?
Not only is my mother my parent, but she and I also work together in a family-owned business, and she truly is my best friend. Our relationship is tight. I am thankful for all of the support, knowledge sharing, and conversations that have helped me blossom into the woman, parent, educator, coach, and friend I am today. Everyone needs someone to help navigate life, shape their ideas, and present a blueprint to follow. I write about this topic in my book iDid and uCan 2; parenting, mentoring, influencing, and role modeling are vital components in shaping our lives and the lives of others.
The role models in your life should display behaviors and patterns you want to emulate. Keep in mind there is no perfect person on this Earth, so it is up to you to decide which patterns of behaviors you plan to mirror. Answer the question s above and then ask yourself who has the most significant influence in your life? What are the 7 points you value from that relationship?
© 2021 Lisa M. Coffey