Focus Inward to Continue to Progress

By Cosette Strong

In this edition of our interview feature series conducted monthly, I will give you a window into chats with Clem as he shares his thoughts about a number of things, namely 2020s continued impact on our present and how getting to know ourselves and our gifting is a vital component of working in this industry. Clem requested that I watch this video in preparation for our chat. It will be the subject of our interview, which took place via a virtual video chat while I was home in Ohio and Clem was in Florida.


Cosette: So, talk to me a little bit about the background of the video and what it means to you.


Clem: Watching videos like that and learning some of that mindset as a child and even when I was in college was realizing that we all serve a purpose. We all have this thing, this talent, this gift inside of us and it’s meant to serve a purpose to affect change, the world and society. For me, finding that was a part of my mission. With that, the video reinforced that there’s no way I can fail with the understanding that this is my gift, mission and what I’m supposed to do. If I stay to my mission, if I’m not distracted and if I stay focused and understand who I am and what I’m meant to do, I can keep moving forward through whatever obstacle comes my way.


[Clem pauses for a beat.]


Cosette: How?


Clem: There’s that belief that there’s no stopping. There’s no barrier too great. It’s just a matter of being persistent. You must keep moving forward. I know not everybody has the belief and faith and willpower but if there’s any way that I can encourage someone else that they’ll find it for themselves, then as they continue working through things, they can push beyond their comfort zone and keep pushing to find that place of discovery. It’s really about knowing that you can. [Clem looks away for a second then back at the screen.] You can do. You can be.

Cosette: If you were to share this with someone looking to find their gift, what would you want them to get out of this?


Clem: I’d ask them what they love to do, what they’re good at. What’s something you’ll wake up wanting to do or something you’ll push into the wee hours doing without even realizing you’re doing it? As they describe that, I’d say that’s something to explore and to look into. It’s the thing that makes you different. Now if you can take that thing that makes youyou and learn how to monetize it – find a way to provide that gift, talent, those services for someone – then you can not work and just be. It’s not an easy journey to turn inward and think about that but if you take the time, you can find it. I’d ask, “Are you willing to find that which lies within?”


Cosette: And – getting back to the video – for you, this was an instructional tool or a motivational one?


Clem: For me, it was a motivational tool. For me it was the reflective piece I needed. Then from that motivational video it was the eye-opening experience of listening to others or hearing from others or beginning to search for other ways to progress and move forward in my career and my life. This video, for me, was a spark.


Cosette: If someone is looking to figure out their gifting and how to progress in knowledge of that, what other resources would you point them to?


Clem: I’d point them toward my book or another book. I’d point them toward trying to find a Coach, someone they can connect with to help them find what’s inside if they can’t find it themselves. There are plenty of resources out there to help them find their gift but also to create that structure around themselves to support that as well.


Cosette: What about those who see this as a job, a means to an end, and don’t feel like the gifting part needs to be included?


Clem: [Clem thinks for a moment.] If that’s the case, make doing the job the most impactful thing it can be. A person’s job doesn’t have to be the mission – it could just be what you do to help someone else or inspire someone else, to educate or help or love someone else.


Cosette: And for those who see what they do as a job – that means to an end – what would you tell them about their personal brand?


Clem: Your personal brand is what people see – what they remember and recognize when your name is mentioned or when your skill is mentioned and when you walk into a room. That impression that you make on someone is part of what opens the door for another person. If your gift or talent or way you interact with others is part of your brand, it’s about making each moment or interaction stand out and mean something so you’re able to bring life to each person. For me that can be through operating a camera, being a video projectionist, through processing payroll so people get paid on time or building a relationship to extend to another person. All of that is part of understanding my gift and understanding how I can be of service to others. Once you find your gift you can show the world how special you are, and you can help others discover their gift as well.


Finding your gift, as Clem said, is really about turning inward so you can lean into self-discovery. Discovery of your talent. Discovery of your gift. Discovery of your present. As we continue to recover from 2020 and seek our motivation, we’ll need to transition so we can focus on what’s outside of ourselves: our people. During our next segment, join me as I chat with Clem about how we can use our relationships and partnerships to strengthen one another through these times.