As I begin to write this, I looked at the time and it was what?... 1:11p.m! Have you ever been at a point in life where you felt so in sync with where you need to be that you can’t stop crying even if you are watching, what many would believe to be a cheesy movie that would easily be a skip by, but every single big moment of the movie keeps bringing a tear? Yeah… neither have I! Well today must be an exception to the rule. Yesterday I walked away from my job of over 7 years, and my career of over 15 years. I’ll come back to that.
Ten years ago, around this same time, I was getting a call from one of my Frat Brothers and future best man in my wedding telling me that one of my former clients wanted to meet with us, two of my Brothers and I, about possibly purchasing the rights to the franchise we were apart of and putting us in charge. Wait, what?!!! I walked away from the fitness industry all together just 4 months prior, and I was on my way to becoming the best banker anyone had ever seen or known. Well, along the way I hit a snag in the banking industry, and realized that the position was more about sales than helping people with their finances. So, I guess it was meant to be for me to be in the health and fitness industry. I’ve always known that my purpose was people. What does that mean, my purpose was people?
When I tell you that people are my purpose, I mean that I have a passion for people and a mission to share my light, love and positivity with as many as I can in the space and time that I have in this realm. I was 2.5 years into a major in computer science when I took a class at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, offered by the Career Services Department. In that class I took personality quizzes, and all kinds of analysis that proved to me what I already knew… I am not meant to be in the direction I was in. That class showed me that I was intended to be in a path that focuses on dealing with people in many facets of life. Since I had been somewhat of an athlete all my life, the natural choice to me was to change my major from Computer Science to Fitness Leadership. In 2007, I graduated from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, with a bachelors degree in Physical Education, with a concentration in Fitness Leadership. And, that’s where my story begins.
After 2.5 years, (there goes that 2.5 again), of trying to be a 25 year old (a 2 and a 5… just saying), just married, minority, successful business owner, I realized that because of many factors, I was not ready at the moment. I was supposed to be an entrepreneur, but I just birthed a premature dream that was not quite ready to blossom. I walked away from the business in February of 2012, and guess what?... 2.5 days later (I can not make this stuff up), one of my friends I met through changing my major, Ben Styes called me and asked me if I had any trainers (employees) that were looking for some extra hours. I then told Ben that I had walked away from the business a couple of days ago. In an excited voice, he replied, “Oh great, well not great, but do you still want to train?” I told Ben that I would come talk to his manager. Ben did not know that I had already had a successful interview with a pest control company, and had already accepted a job at a very popular home improvement store warehouse. Interviews went well with both the manager, and the director of the company, my friend reached out to me about. I knew I was in the right place, because my second day on the job, I bumped into another friend I met, only because I changed my major all those years ago, Amanda Krumrie. Yeah, to this day Amanda is my Boo! Well, long story short, because I have to get back to this movie, a little less than seven and a half years later, on 08/08/19, I walked away from that job. It was a bittersweet, “Transition Thursday.” It was bitter because I was leaving many people that I truly came to love over the years. It was sweet because, the next day I would be my own boss and sitting in first class on my way to a 10 year anniversary trip to Hawaii with my beautiful Queen, Felicia James, a cruise at that!
Get to the damn movie Mike! Ok, here we go.
So as I sit on the plane and reflect on the last 17 years since I graduated high school, from The Russell County High School in Seale, Alabama, I was already in an emotional joyous state. As I scroll through the movies, I was really looking for the first thing that caught my attention. Well, the first movie that I get to that had been on my “I want to see eventually” list, I selected play. This movie was probably meant to be a family comedy, or just a PG-13 once over. However, as the movie started, I noticed that it was all about family. That’s when someone started to cut onions. Please allow me to explain for just a short moment, and I promise I will come back to the movie.
So, back to walking away from my job of over 7 years, and my career of over 15 years. Allow me to reintroduce myself. I am Mike James, the youngest of 11 children, brought into this world by the transitioned, late, great Prince Jr. and Izola Edmonds James, just a country boy from Phenix City, Alabama, by way of Fort Mitchell, AL, and I am your weight lifting, real estate investing, life coach, Founder and Owner of P&Z Real Estate Investing, LLC and P&Z Life Coaching, LLC. Damn, it feels good to say and type that and open it up for the entire world to see for the first time! Family has always been important to me, hence the P and Z in my business names, as well as my brand. My Father is Prince, and my Mother is Izola, affectionately known as “Zola” by family. It will be my constant reminder that no matter what stage or great people that my gifts brings me to, I should remain humble and remember where I came from. Ok, enough of that.
Back to the movie I go… This movie had so many deep twists and turns, and I’m now at a place where I was a few years ago. When I’m in sync with my Youniverse, I’m a very emotional being. The smallest things can bring the sensation of onions being chopped into my space. Yeah… I’m back to that point, seeing repeating numbers all the time (look it up), reaching out to those that were once perceived as enemies, crying at every little thing, going places and doing things I thought I’d never do, etc. etc. Would you like to know what the movie was?... I’ll get to that in a second; I promise. Again, this movie was about the journey of a family “sticking to their guns,” and doing what they were meant to do. No matter what insults, no matter what setbacks, no matter what “humble beginnings” they came from, no matter what people told them they couldn’t or wouldn’t do, no matter what obstacles came their way, they stayed on the path until they received their breakthrough. Also, the hero of the family was not the expected star. The hero was the one, that was doing it because they were just born into it, and that reminded me of someone. Ok, last time I promise, I’m going to deviate from the movie once more.
This main character reminded me of me. I tell people all the time, that I am nothing without the talents and gifts of both my parents and all my siblings being poured into me. I kid you not, I can do a little of every single talent that all my siblings had. Three of my brothers have an amazing talent with art, whether it be painting, drawing, or photography. I got a little of those. Some of my siblings, and both my parents could sing. Many didn’t know that about my Father, because he did not know the words to a single song… Oh wait, I definitely inherited that! Ha! Some of my siblings can cut a mean rug, and I’ve been known to have a little rhythm on the dance floor. Many of my siblings, and both my parents were great speakers, and they never meet a stranger. Well, those of you who know me, knows I don’t even have to explain that one. It’s crazy that even down to every sport my older siblings did or could play I did also. I have siblings that were pretty good on the bowling lanes. Check! I have siblings that participated in track and field. Check! I have siblings who should’ve been captain of the football team in high school, if they had been allowed to play. Check! It goes beyond that to having multiple siblings that won superlatives in their senior year of high school. Check! It was an honor to be Mr. Debonair 2002, after my two sisters that came out before me won Miss Charm 1996 and 1999, perspectively. Ok, finally I’m going back to the movie.
The most powerful thing about this movie is that it was based on a true story. The hero of the family actually was the baby of the family… yup you guessed it… I’m crying again. I accept the role of the hero of my family. I accept the responsibility of creating a legacy for all of my nephews, nieces, god-children, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. I accept the cape, and broaden my shoulders to carry the load, and show people how far a little country boy from Oak Street, the Quarter, in Fort Mitchell, Alabama, can go. Yall already know what it is… The Youniverse will align to give you what you Want, Will, and Work for! Also Miss Murphy told me when I was in the 8th grade that, “I am Somebody, Today I am Great, Tomorrow I will be greater, because Miss Murphy said so” -Murphy’s Law. Lastly, I can do it because I’m Capable, Competent, Confident, Conscious, & Courageous to do any and everything I set my mind to. Here we go, drumroll please…
The movie is…
Fighting With My Family!
Yes, I know some of you will think, “Really?” Yup, it’s Fighting with my Family, and I suggest you go watch it keeping in mind this huge set up I wrote for it. Hey you… YES YOU! Remember that God Loves You, and So Do I! Love Life, Live Love! Peace Together, Not Apart! Yall Take Care!