The Countdown Begins (DAYS 36&35 Staying The Course)

Yesterday, I almost cracked and gave up on my weight loss journey…

It is so hard to stay disciplined, but I have made a resolve in my heart to keep going. Why? I received a phone call from one of my homeless friends (Rahkeem) yesterday. He is a 19 year old that stays under the bridge in tent city…

He reached out to say thank you for being a friend (and keeping our word)… talk about tears forming…

It was inspiring and moving to me that he considers me a friend, and trusts our team. He went on to say that everybody under the bridge appreciates #lovebeyondwalls having people help them while they are in transition. That alone is reason enough for me to keeping going, stay the course, and share more of what I have learned from going homeless around Christmas.

It is my prayer that God keeps me while on this journey! So far, I have lost 10lbs… I need you to pray for #lovebeyondwalls, and the second awareness campaign that I will release next week. 35 more days to go!

35daysTerence

The Countdown Begins (DAY 38 FIVE THINGS ON FOCUS)

Below are the top five things I’m learning about focus and distractions! Why am I sharing this? Because it takes laser focus to complete this task of losing weight and #lovebeyondwalls’ next awareness campaign!

Here goes:

1) You can’t focus if you don’t have a plan — If you are building something great, losing weight, or seeking to reach a goal… you MUST have a plan. Without a plan, you’ll allow life to take you in any direction. When this happens, it is easy to give up completely.

2) Focus can be easily broken if you have options — A mentor of mine once shared, “you can’t give half of yourself to something you want full results from…” In other words, it is important for a person to go ALL in, and cut off ALL options to escape the plan.

3) Focus needs accountability — You can’t achieve anything great alone! Therefore, accountability and support as your strive toward reaching your goal is important. Your accountability system will keep you on track, and challenge you to stay committed to your own commitments.

4) Focusing on the big picture helps one to ignore the small distractions — The big picture will always remind you of why you started in the first place… It is easy to become distracted by the smaller “picture type” experiences that are negative and draining. Focus requires seeing that every experience contributes to the bigger picture!

5) Focus takes sacrifice of immediate gratification and may be uncomfortable — Focus means that you forfeit some things that you enjoy to reach your ultimate goal. Focus is a sacrifice! However, this type of sacrifice will push you outside your comfort zone, and strengthen you as you let go of things temporarily.

All of these points above mean so much to me as I prepare myself for this life daring challenge!

Terence

The Countdown Begins (DAY 39 BIG PICTURE)

Today is day 11 of my training and healthy eating! Today kicked my butt, but I am determined to lose these 30+ pounds to raise awareness about homelessness. When days get rough like this, I have to force myself to think about the big picture! #lovebeyondwalls cannot wait to release the second campaign! As a matter of fact, this quote came to me while working out,

“Whenever you feel yourself becoming distracted, remind yourself of why your started out in the first place. Never allow second and third things replace the main things!”

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Terence

The Countdown Begins (DAYS 42&41 MUST STAY CLEAN)

Have you ever gone 3 full days or even a week without a shower or bath?

What about this… Have you ever stood in a line of 100+ to take a shower, and got discouraged by the time it got down to only 20 in front of you (because it took hours for you to go)?

Well, many of our homeless brothers and sisters experience this week in and week out. In fact, when I lived on the streets for three days, I found out that personal hygiene was hard to maintain if you are a homeless person (especially if you live on the streets). Why? Because there isn’t easy access to everyday products like toothpaste, soap, rags, lotion, q-tips, etc…  (products that are some times at arms length for us)

I remember day 2 when I went homeless… I decided that I wanted to take a shower… I wasn’t able to because a gentlemen fell out in the shower, hurt himself (causing blood to be on the floors), and they shut the shower down for a few hours (by that time, I was discouraged). It took hours for the shelter to clean it up and by that time, I was on day two without a shower… It was hard because I wanted to shower or at least keep clean, but wasn’t able to.

Point blank, it is hard. It is hard to maintain cleanliness when there are only “few” showers around the city for thousands of homeless people. Therefore, if you wanted to know why #lovebeyondwalls is collecting hygiene products, this is why… With walking in the shoes, and hearing the heart of many of my homeless friends… We have decided to provide hygiene “LOVEKITS”

In the month of February, #lovebeyondwalls is collecting “LOVEKITS” filled with hygiene items that will aid our homeless friends with items to survive on the streets. To participate, contact us [HERE], or simply drop-off items at one of our three locations on the flyer below.

LBW-LoveKit-Location copyTerence

Love Beyond Walls Story (Pt 1)

Below is a piece of the LBW’s story and how it started.

-LBW Team

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The Countdown Begins (DAY 42 PERSEVERE)

Today my inspiration to continue my weight loss journey for the next #lovebeyondwalls‘ campaign comes from a Duracell commercial. It briefly highlights the story of Derrick Coleman. If you have not seen it, allow it to push you to persevere!

Terence

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The Countdown Begins (DAYS 44&43 WE NEED A SPACE)!

Hey everyone,

Today is the day after Martin Luther King’s Birthday, and I am reflecting on many things… Firstly, I am reflecting on Martin Luther King’s legacy, and my top three favorite quotes spoken by King… Here are those three:

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

“A man who won’t die for something is not fit to live.”

These quotes are not only inspirational. They speak to the core of who I am… I believe life should be about God’s love, faith, justice, community, and relationships.

Second and last, I am reflecting on how tough this journey has been trying to lose weight and prepare myself for the next life-daring campaign to raise awareness. Also, #lovebeyondwalls is growing fast. Although we have many supporters, it has been a challenge trying to manage it all with a few. In fact, we need admins, social media managers, people to pick up donations, speakers for campaigns at schools, love team leaders to lead people out in the streets, and other roles to expand the vision [if this is you, let’s meet to see if you’d fit on our team… contact me [HERE].

Most importantly, #lovebeyondwalls needs a space. We are looking to secure an old office in the back of a church, a storage space we could fix up, or somewhere we can plant in for a year and build more (800-1200 square feet). Currently, we are a mobile organization with many working pieces. Why are we looking to plant and build? Simple. We have outgrown our home! Our garage in my home is no longer a place to store stuff. We have gotten so many donations in the last 30 days that our garage is filled to capacity (we can’t park our cars in it anymore).

If you are reading this, I need you to pray… Pray that we find a generous person, church, or business to donate an office space (in ATL), and pray that God keeps me strong while losing weight for our next big social campaign. Can’t wait to share next week!!!!!!

Why do I care so much? Because when I go out and saw that many of my friends lost everything when the city cleaned up under the bridge, it hurts… Below is a picture of the area without tents after G.D.O.T cleaned the area. I care because I would like to collaborate with people, organizations, and other agencies to sit around the table and collectively come up with solutions. Real solutions!

Many of my friends have to start over from scratch. Also, the video will give you a story to connect with and explain what happened… Could you imagine having a few things one day, and losing everything the next? Well, if you have questions… That’s why I am going forward with #lovebeyondwalls and our next campaign.

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Terence

The Countdown Begins (Day 49 NO EXCUSES)

This morning, I have to be honest… I asked myself & God, “Can I really do this?” “Can I really get prepared in 50 days?” 

I tried making excuses… “Maybe I can do something else…Or, maybe I can find somebody else to do this with me… Or, better yet… Maybe I can say it is too hard…”

Then I shook myself out of it, and gave myself what “kid president” calls, “A Pep Talk…people” 

NO EXCUSES…

Why did I ask these questions and make these excuses though? Because I looked at my weight on the scale yesterday, and surprisingly the scale revealed a shocking number that not only pained me, but revealed how unhealthy I have lived (in my eating habits) over the last few years. Are you ready? I weigh 260lbs (I need to lose 25-30lbs)… This is the most I have ever weighed in my life. Of course, I am big guy, but I am not comfortable with that.

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As a matter of fact, my “weight” number shocked me so much I dropped down on the floor and asked God to help me get my life healthier so I can be transformed personally, and physically prepare to raise awareness for my homeless friends. Isn’t it amazing that before we can fully help others we must be willing to transform ourselves?

I know we all make health commitments throughout the year, and soon break them with inconsistency. But, when I saw this something happened in me… I was reminded of how important my health is, and how important it is to remain healthy if you are homeless (living on the streets)…

When I was homeless for 72 hours, I encountered many people who had medical conditions that were life-threatening. In fact, many people revealed how those conditions increased when they started living on the streets with no resources.

I clenched my fist, looked at the scale and said… “I’ve got to change… I’ve got to beat this so I can raise more awareness for my friends…Lord, I can do all things through you… NO EXCUSES…”

Ever feel like you need supernatural strength to make it? Well, over the next 49 days that’s what I am going to rely on (God’s strength).

Yesterday was rough, but I found support…I reached out to an old friend that does personal training… His name is Lucien. We attended the same High School (Westlake), and it “just so happened” that he lives in the neighborhood across the street and runs “bootcamps” at parks. Without thinking, he told me he’d help me train to get the weight off for this big challenge that I am about to embark on in 49 days. I agreed and began exercising yesterday along with changing my eating habits (water only, and clean foods).

THIS IS HARD PEOPLE… I had two meetings in Chick-Fil-A yesterday. LOL.

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Can you do something to help? Yes! I need you to pray, hold me accountable via social media, and push me until I am ready to reveal #lovebeyondwalls‘ next challenge to raise awareness about one of many social ills we care so much about.

Terence