I had a “notion" of wanting a very nice car one day, but it wasn't until I went to the Jaguar dealership to meet one of my clients who worked there, that the dream took hold in my heart. George (my client and top salesman there) asked me to come by to get the signature I needed from him instead of him stopping by my office. This was near Christmas time. When I got there he was in the midst of a transaction where a gentleman was buying a shiny red convertible Jaguar for his wife to be delivered to their home with a bow on Christmas Eve. She didn't know she was getting it. Needless to say, that stretched my heart and my mind. . . a man buying his wife a luxury car and she didn't even know she was getting it. I imagined how thrilled she would be as she looked out the window and saw the car coming down the driveway with a bow on it.
"People really live like that" is what I thought. Of course George tried to get me to test drive one and I said no way. He told me I didn't have to wait for a husband to give me one; I could have one on my own. He must have thought I was much more prosperous than I was at the time and looking back, inwardly I guess I did feel that way. Before I left he tried a couple more times to get me to do the test drive. I don't know if he was trying to encourage me or impress me (smiles). Our birthday is on the same day and he's a great guy. He gave me the shiny brochure to take home with me. When I got to my apartment, I tore out the picture of the one I loved and put I put it on my refrigerator. I put one of my address labels on the picture to say it would be mine and I wrote down my 40th birthday as the date. It was still just a notion, but I did not know how powerful that simple act of faith would be. Each day I saw it, but didn't really see it if you know what I mean. I went about my daily tasks of putting my life back together again. Little did I know that this act of placing the picture of the Jaguar on the refrigerator would change my life in so many ways!.
At the time, I was working to get back into the “black" again. I had just started my real estate career and my accounts had gotten behind because it took me almost 7 months before I made any real income. I figured out that 11 sales would bring me to the black and I rolled up my sleeves and went to work. Something miraculous happened because the clients kept coming and coming. I remember the day I “crossed over. " Everyone had been paid in full and there was money left over. It was a day of rejoicing! I kept working hard until I sold a church, a home to a doctor, and a home for the pastor and they all closed at the same time. I had almost made the same amount of money I previously earned one year in just a month's time. The possibilities began to open for me. I saw how I could make six digits and maybe even a quarter of a million dollars. During this time I was stacking money and hardly bought a thing. It had been a very long time since I had experienced prosperity and having more than enough . I savored having a surplus for the first time in a long time. I can even remember a time that I cashed one of my commission checks in $100 dollar bills, threw them all on the bed and just rolled around to get that feeling anchored in my heart. It felt wonderful! The memory of it is even wonderful.
That's when I knew I could go buy a home, but I was fearful even though I was helping other people to become homeowners. I wanted to buy a home for the same amount of money as I paid for rent because fear continued to remind me that I had lost everything once and I didn't want to ever lose everything again. My mentor told me I should buy the home I really liked and to just sell more real estate. Whenever I slipped into that thinking pattern or talked about my past he would not listen to it and continued to quote the phrase “sell more real estate. " I purchased the home I wanted and after getting settled in I decided that I wanted a new car. I was driving a new Camry at the time. I went to the local Jaguar dealership to “do my homework" about the pricing, payment, taxes and insurance, etc. When I told them how much I wanted to pay for a car payment, no one took me seriously. George was no longer working there and one salesman even told me that I should consider buying a fully loaded Camry if $500 a month was all I was willing to spend. I was not deterred; I continued to do my homework to position myself for it.
Then I saw the one I wanted. It was on the used car lot and it was $30,000. It was beautiful. I had gone online and checked the credit union payment calculator and thought I could afford this one with the payments stretched out to 60 months. The next day, it was gone! I was heartbroken. Since the dealership was not taking me seriously, I decided to see if I could get a preapproval for the loan with my credit union and then I would be empowered to shop. They approved the loan! I couldn't believe it! Up until this point, I always had to write a letter of explanation or ask for a second review by the credit committee to get approved. Then it dawned on me that when you have your affairs in order, you just get approved. I decided to take a trip to North Carolina to Leith Jaguar with a friend of mine. I was just going window shopping. That was the largest dealership close by. I was hoping to find a white one, but the new mistral blue color was my true favorite.
When I got to the Jaguar dealership, I met myself! David the salesman was one of the best and I could hear what I must sound like to my real estate clients. He was not going to let me weasel away and he masterfully stripped away every excuse and objection. I felt like I was “in the box" like on the Homicide TV Show. He told me that the mistral blue color had just come out with the 2000 model. He further asked me why I wanted a used car when I could drive a new one. The sticker on the new car was $59,000 and I thought he was out of his mind! Once he found out that was the color I wanted, he put me on the path to leasing which would make the payments more affordable. Still, the credit union had approved me for $30,000 which was a stretch for me and I could not comprehend paying almost $60,000 for a car, nor paying the payment it would require to drive it. He told me words that I will never forget and I started using them in real estate.
He said “you must be willing to pay for what you REALLY want in life. . . it moved you; it called your name because it's what you really want. . . the car payment of $500 does not do that for you. So if you want it, you can have it, but the only way is to pay the price for it". It made sense, but I had not come with the intention to buy that day (or had I?); I wanted to see all my options and fear was still whispering in my ear. He finally convinced me to let Jaguar Credit review an application for a lease. I think I only agreed just to get out of “the box. " He kept asking me to test drive it, but I kept refusing saying that I was obviously already SOLD on Jaguar. I just needed to make the payments affordable (more like $500 smiles). Of course the words “sell more real estate" kept echoing in my ear.
I signed the application and my friend and I went for lunch and some shopping and then I was ready to go home. He asked if I was just going to go back home without giving him the courtesy of a call. Afterall he said that David had spent so much time with me and I owed him at least that. I told him there was no way on earth I would be approved for a new car and I would stick to my plan. When I was really ready I'd come back in a few weeks and get one. They didn't have a white one or any other color that I liked other than the new one and I had firmly decided I would only buy a car that I loved and not one that the dealership could make me a deal on. At the end of the evening while enroute home, I did give David a call to thank him for his time. Imagine my surprise when he said “Ms. Hobbs, we've been trying to reach you! We have your new car ready for you to drive back to Virginia!" I couldn't believe what he was saying. I became very nervous that for one of the first times in my life something I really wanted had come to pass and it was the exact model XJ8-L that had hung on my refrigerator with a prettier shade of blue! I told him I would be back to get it and I drove home. My friend couldn't believe that I wouldn't go back to the dealership, but I felt I wasn't ready and fear came over me big time!
I could not figure out whether God had blessed me or the devil was tricking me to make me lose everything I had all over again! Prior to buying my home and then this transaction with the car - prior to then life had always been an uphill battle. Now life was opening up its arms to me and saying “you can have whatever you want". It took some time to embrace that. I called a Pastor to discuss it and he told me this was God blessing me and to go in faith and receive the car. I didn't go. I had not told my family and only two other people knew because I did not want to be talked out of it or into it. I prayed and prayed to get the inward assurance that this was indeed God and this was the right timing. Inwardly I knew that my life had truly changed and it was permanent, but I had to regather my courage to step into this new place, this new level. The finance manager called me to work out the transaction. He told me I could put $10,000 down and get the payment close to what I wanted. But it didn't make sense to me to give up $10,000 to save $400 per month on a three year lease. So I refused that proposal. Then he called me back and said I didn't have to put down ANY money if I was willing to take the higher payment. He was literally giving it to me, but I was still not wiling to say OK. The payment would be $833.33 per month with no money down. On Wednesday I agreed and told him I would come the next day to pick up the car. I did not go. On Thursday I told him I would come on Friday. I did not go. On Saturday morning, David called to tell me that he would be delivering my car to me at 5:00 pm. I agreed.
When he drove into my driveway, the car literally appeared that it was ascending down from heaven to me; it was glowing! My friend was on hand to take pictures of this milestone in my life, to capture my joy and my signing the papers at my kitchen table. I thanked David with a big hug because he we both knew if he hadn't driven that car to me from North Carolina, I may not have ever gone to pick it up. I probably would have settled, thinking that I couldn't have what I really wanted. My mentor and I couldn't wait to go for a drive. It felt like the car was too big for me. There was so much room, and it was luxurious! I loved the new car smell and I was trying to remember what all the gadgets were for, seat settings, steering settings, and lots and lots of buttons. It resembled a cockpit. He looked at me and said, you're a gutsy lady. If only he knew inside I was mush and still unsure of myself even though I had what I really wanted at last.
I wanted this car as a personal reward for myself. I felt I had earned it, I had beat life's odds and I was finally due. I was finally at a place where I could do something just for me after all of those years. I felt uncomfortable driving the car and asked him if he wanted to drive. I felt so unworthy at first. A part of me felt like it was a fluke and that I'd get a call saying that they had made a mistake and would be coming back to get it.
That night I thanked God for literally performing a miracle for me. Not the miracle of the Jaguar so much, but that with his help, my life had turned totally around and had been transformed. I had accomplished my goal of gaining stability in my life, my credit was straight, my bills were paid and there was money in the bank. I had a pipeline full of clients and there was a Jaguar in my yard. The next morning I woke up and went to the window to make sure that I had not been dreaming! It felt like Christmas to me. And then I recalled what had happened in the dealership over two and one half years ago. God had arranged for my car to be delivered to me just like the woman who got the surprise gift from her husband. George's words had come true. I didn't need a husband to give me one. God had also surprised me by making a way for me to get it on my own.
The car was in the driveway, shining and beckoning me to go for a ride. The Camry was there too. Now all of a sudden I chastised myself for not following my plan to the letter. Now I had a $320 Camry payment in addition to the $833.33 Jaguar payment. How was I going to pay $1200 for car payments? I felt I had not used wisdom and I felt foolish, but it was done. I hoped that I would sell it quickly and I felt fear and unworthiness begin to creep in again.
I kept wondering why I felt that way. I had been approved for the lease and I qualified; why didn't I feel great? I drove it church on Sunday but on Monday I was back in my Camry (comfort zone). This went on for a while. Gradually I pushed myself to drive it. I felt wonderful driving it and it was so comfortable. Soon word got around that I had the car. And a magical thing happened!
My income doubled after I got that car. I was the same person, practicing real estate the same way, saying the same things, nothing had really changed but all of a sudden because I drove a Jaguar people perceived me differently. Business was coming out of the woodwork. All of a sudden my family believed in me again. I opened my own real estate company and ten people wanted to come with me right away. It was a very heady time. Things just started falling into place. My life felt congruent and things were easy and effortless. It felt like my life had turned inside out. Like if you were wearing a shirt on the wrong side all of your life and finally you noticed it and put it on correctly.
This was a life changing experience for me and when I took a step into my destiny it was as if a thousand other steps were made on my behalf. I had to pay more than I wanted to, but it was well worth it and some. I owed for mileage at the end of the lease, but even that was worth it. That car brought me more business than I could have ever imagined. My vision had stretched me and I was living up to my new capacity and then some. All of this started innocently with George giving me the brochure and me putting it on the refrigerator and then rolling up my sleeves to put my life back into order and in the process, my dream came true two months after my 40th birthday.
My advice is to get a picture of what you really want and put it someplace where you can see it every day. Then begin making preparations to set your house in order. Do the homework on the cost to acquire whatever it is you want and don't be deterred. Understand that you will pay the price for what you really want and it will be more than worth it. When you begin to take steps towards your dream, something magical happens! You receive it!
If it happened for me, it can happen for you!
Copyright 2008 Sharmaine L. Hobbs
Sharmaine Hobbs is a writer and speaker and Founder of The Metamorphosis Movement which is a transformational movement reaching 100,000 women in 2008 to inspire, uplift and empower them to become the woman they were born to be. She reaches women through her speaking engagements, inspirational writings, womens workshops, teleclasses, mentoring program and her website. “When Women Awaken, Mountains Move!" To have her speak at your event or to awaken and transform your life, visit online at http://www.whenwomenawaken.com and email her at email@example.com