Winners and Losers – What’s the difference?

At May’s Victorious Woman Celebration, the fabulous Girlfriend Gala, I opened the festivities as I usually do, with some thoughts I have about women and victory. I’d just watched the movie, RESPECT, about the life of Aretha Franklin. If you saw it, you know Aretha had her struggles but pushed on to victory, over and over, at each stage of her life. That’s probably why she chose Jennifer Hudson specifically to play Franklin in the movie.

 Maybe you remember Jennifer Hudson on American Idol, as I do, as the young, talented, pudgy singer – the one who didn’t win that year. In fact, Hudson came in 7th.  SEVENTH!

That year, the winner was Fantasia Barrino. I remember her as very talented with a sort of exotic look. Since winning Idol, Fantasia has produced a few albums.

Meanwhile, Idol loser Hudson, similar to some other Idol losers, like Adam Lambert, Kellie Pickler, and Clay Aiken, has become a household name. And, just recently, Jennifer Hudson became the newest EGOT (performers who are winners of an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony).

How did Jennifer Hudson go from Loser to EGOT winner?

What was it about Jennifer Hudson and the other Idol losers that set them apart from other equally (and sometimes more talented) Idol winners?

So I got thinking about victory and its role in Hudson’s life (big surprise, huh?).

What IS Victory?

Just to remind you…Victory is the stretch you make out of your comfort zone to get from where you are to where you want to be. Whether it’s your career, some personal goal (like exercise, weight, smoking), travel, a hobby, or some other something you want or want to do, staying in your comfort zone is easy. Pushing out of your comfort zone is hard.

I think it must have been hard for Jennifer Hudson to push out of her comfort zone when Simon Cowell told her: “You’re out of your depth in this competition.” But, fresh from her idol loss and never having been on a movie set, she auditioned for the part in Dreamgirls (for which she won an Oscar).

Then, just as Hudson was starting to make it big with Sex and the City and The Secret Life of Bees, her mother, brother, and nephew were shot and killed by her sister’s ex. If it were me, I think I would have rolled up in a ball and who knows how long I would have stayed that way. Hudson didn’t do that.

Instead, Jennifer Hudson victoried her way out of her comfort zone to play Winnie Mandela in that biopic. Then performed at the Super Bowl.

Here’s the Key to Being Victorious

I’m not telling you anything new about victory. You know it’s true because, at times in your life, you had to victory your way out of one of your comfort zones. How did you do it?

The key to getting out of your comfort zone is figuring out your “why”. What’s on the other side of your comfort zone that is so compelling for you?

Lately, for me, “out of my comfort zone” means going to PT. The sessions are about an hour of exercise. Then the therapist sends me home with a growing list of simple but tedious-to-do exercises, along with using the treadmill and vibration plate. I do them because I want all my parts to work well – to keep doing all the things I love, like walking and dancing. That’s MY why.

However, every day, I’d so rather be in the recliner watching almost anything than doing those exercises. My comfort zone is what I think about when I’m arguing with myself about why I don’t have time/energy/interest in doing the PT work.

And then there’s Kris

That’s when I think about my webmaster, Kris. She’s a forty-something married mom of two and a competitive mountain biker. However, in the past three years, Kris had a large cancerous tumor removed from her intestines, recovered from covid, and then tore her ACL. She was pushing past her comfort zone a lot, especially when it seemed she might not Bike competitively again. The joy of racing on that bike was HER WHY.

Just a few weeks ago, Kris competed in the Enduro races in Scotland. Last week she competed in the same set of races in Italy, racing up and down the challenging hills of the Italian Alps. She came in 4th in one of those races.

If Kris was in her office today, she’s clean up this newsletter’s font, and post some pix. But she’s with her family, enjoying sunny Italy and her successes. But you can see her fabulous pix on her athlete page on Facebook

At any time, Jennifer and Kris could have retreated to their comfort zones; they didn’t. They pushed on to victory.

I think about that when I feel like quitting PT. Yes, nobody is picking me to play them in their biopic, and I think Kris is crazy to race down huge mountains, but those aren’t my thing.  But hiking in Acadia, dancing the night away, or simply being able to move around without help. THAT’s my why. I’m willing to step out of my comfort zone for that!

What about you? What are you willing to step out of your comfort zone for this summer? WHY?

Share your what and why with me in my private Victory Chicks Community

And guess what? I was featured in Authority Magazine’s Power Woman series. The interview process was going on in the last couple of weeks before the Girlfriend Gala – of course, because it wasn’t stressful enough in May. But I know not to say “no” when the press is calling. I did the video portion less than 48 hours after the Girlfriend Gala, when still trying to catch my breath. So, it’s OK but I like the “revealing” article, maybe you will too. Authority Magazine: Power Women

Happy July 4th. Have a fun and safe holiday weekend!

With love and in victory,
Annmarie

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