Hi I’m Mikel Adams, and I haven’t always been living in the right story. I lived, what felt like a lifetime, in the wrong story. I spent a long time struggling. Struggling with my experiences + a victimhood mindset, I had to learn to overcome my circumstances. I struggled with feelings of abandonment and feeling that I wasn't worthy of love, stemming from my adoption. By the age of thirteen I had already endured years of sexual abuse that started when I was very young. I had survived rape by the age of fourteen. I spent years suppressing the pain with drug and alcohol abuse; looking to find the answer to explain what was wrong with me. And no matter what I tried nothing brought relief. I saw no way out of the pain. I found myself repeatedly in abusive relationships and having self-destructive behavior. I tried to bury and forget my past but it doesn’t work that way.
I realized that even though I told myself and others that I had forgiven, I had not faced those demons that would allow me to forgive and let go. And burying the past doesn’t allow you to love yourself wholeheartedly.
We tell ourselves that we have forgiven but still feel the pain. Holding onto the pain of our past hinders our growth and the ability to fully step into the roles we want to play. I wanted to be a better mother to my son. I wanted to have healthy relationships. I wanted to feel whole and confident in the woman that I am. And I wanted to help others.
Who do you want to be? To your children? To your spouse? To your clients?
I was consistently settling for less than I deserve. I didn’t know how to set boundaries, and allowed others to take advantage of me, both professionally and personally. I knew that there needed to be a change for me to find true happiness, but I had yet to find the answer to sustainability in my recovery. I had learned to treat the symptoms, but still wasn’t addressing the source of them. Eventually, the pain of things remaining the same became greater than the fear of change; of the unknown, and that was a pivotal moment. From there, were many more pivotal moments that serve as mile markers in my growth. Like a caterpillar that went into its cocoon, there was a metamorphosis in me.
I had spent years in the bar and club industry building brands and businesses and had established quite a reputation for turning businesses around and was thriving. There is nothing wrong with that, but for me it was an industry that was diminishing my faith in humanity and was making me miserable, binding me to an atmosphere that was feeding the temptation to settle for mediocrity. I was also a single mother, and the hours I was putting in didn't allow me to be the mother I wanted to be. Using marketing + development, and event coordinating, I had later created a business that the industry fed, but I still wasn’t free of the atmosphere. So a decade ago I decided to create something new, a business from scratch.
Another mile marker + pivotal moment that opened my eyes to my true abilities and worth was when I decided to go to college at the age of 35. I went in frustrated + insecure, and with feelings that I was out of my realm. I came out a different woman. I started a new business adventure, taking bigger risks than ever before. Finally recognizing my worth empowered me to take those risks, and I eventually ended the abusive relationship I was in, I quit smoking and no longer felt prey to self-medication of any kind. Because of the transformations in my self-perception, and my continuous works of the heart throughout my entire transformation, I became a better mother through this. My son became a better student and his ethics bloomed by watching me lead by example and overcome circumstance.
You see, you can’t create sustainable success in business or in life without addressing your inner demons + limiting beliefs. You have to build on a solid foundation. And just like I had found out for myself, my clients were also finding out that until you clear up your inner bullshit, you’re going to keep finding blocks that keep you from sustainability.
A few years later, I walked away from a lifetime of friendships and relationships that were dead ends, and that didn’t support or promote my growth. I began to absorb books like a sponge in water. I was hungry. I had this awakening, and like a dam, once it was open, I couldn’t close it. I had a spiritual awakening like no other enlightenment I had ever experienced. I found my way back to God, in a way that I had never known him before.
My decision to no longer fear the unknown + seek something greater was just the door. My life has been consistently evolving ever since. And over the years, I have learned the power of mastering my thoughts, cultivated a life of happiness; I have forgiven the said unforgivable, and set myself free.
I had decided to Drive; to take the wheel. To recognize that Life is happening for me, not to me. When I wake, I am coming from a place of gratitude and I believe none of it is random. Every experience good and bad has been working for me. Every step along the way we have been meant to travel. And every level we reach, requires a different version of who we are. I feel foolish for fearing the unknown when this is the path I was always meant to take. It’s hard along our journeys to remember that everything is happening for us; giving you the tools for that next phase in your life.
All this time, I thought life was a Three Act Play. Well, I have news for you, life is a Five Act Play. Each act builds on the ones before it to advance the story. And like Shakespeare, my play is filled with the poetry and beauty of any great story, and poetry isn't always about sunshine, is it? I am embarking upon my third Act; where the Climax of Action takes place. This Act, is where one can begin to truly soar. This Act, is where things begin to come into fruition. This Act, is the one that makes people buy tickets to the show. No matter what Act you may think you're in, if you're reading this, your story isn't over! My life is A Cultivated Life. Live intentionally and give yourself permission to live fully as the person you were Created to be.
Onward + Upward!!
Created with Love by Mikel
Mikel Adams is a Life + Business Consultant , a writer, and the CEO of A Cultivated Life. She currently resides on the outskirts of Houston, Texas with her son, Spencer and their two miniature schnauzers, Benson & Samson. She has been working to enhance performance for organizations and helping people with personal growth + development, as well as writing for over two decades.