About Dr Beverly Browning
Dr. Beverly A. Browning (Dr. Bev) – The Grant Doctor is a nonprofit capacity-building consultant and revenue-generating visionary. She is a grant-writing consultant who uses thought leadership to work with eligible organizations struggling with the woes of revenue stream imbalances. Dr. Bev and her team members have helped her clients win over $750 million in grant awards. She has been researching grant funding, grantmaking trends, and board-related barriers to nonprofit capacity building for over 47 years.
Dr. Bev is the founder and director of the Grant Writing Training Foundation and Bev Browning LLC. Dr. Bev is the author of 47 grant writing publications, including seven editions of Grant Writing for Dummies (2001-2022), the 6th edition of Nonprofit Kit for Dummies (2021), and the 4th edition of Fundraising for Dummies (2022).
She has also created six courses for Ed2go.com dba Cengage Learning. Her instructor-led online asynchronous courses include A to Z Grant Writing (1 & 2), Advanced Proposal Writing, Becoming a Grant Writing Consultant, Nonprofit Manager, Winning RFP Responses. and Professional Grant Writing.
Dr. Bev is an approved strategic planning facilitator and training provider for CFRE International (AFP), the Grant Professionals Association (GPA), and the Grant Professionals Certification Institute (GPCI). In addition, she has also created two Zoom-based live training courses, Coaching & Mentoring for New and Struggling Grant Writers (16 weeks) and Freelance Grant Writing Consultant’s Boot Camp (4 weeks). Her classes fill up months before they are offered. Dr. Bev lives her life with faith and discernment.
- DO appreciate yourself: I am worthy of success. 03:29
- DO create a spiritual foundation: I am a withering flower without faith. 06:38
- DO not be hard on yourself when you make mistakes: Mistakes fuel patience and do-overs.12:26
- DO live your life fully: Yesterday can’t be replayed, and tomorrow is not a promise. Live for today. 15:35
- DO celebrate yourself: Pat yourself on the back, create BIG PICTURE plans or incentives to celebrate your life. 20:27
- DON’T beat yourself up over mistakes. Move on with lessons learned. 30:35
- DON’T isolate yourself when you are going through hard or trying times. 34:53
- DON’T give up, ever! 36:49
- DON’T let your mind get stagnant. 43:06
- DON’T let your health decline! 44:27
Dr Beverly Browning – DON’T isolate yourself when you are going through hard or trying times
[00:00:08] Diana White: hello and welcome to 10 Lessons Learned, where we talk to leaders and luminaries from all over the world to dispense wisdom for career, business, and life in order to make the world wiser lesson by lesson. My name is Diana White and I’m your host for this episode.
[00:00:25] Our guest today is Dr Beverly Browning.
[00:00:28] Dr Beverly A. Browning, a k, a, Dr Bev, the grant doctor is a non-profit capacity building consultant and revenue generating visionary. Dr Bev and her team have helped her clients win over 750 million dollars in grant awards. She has been researching grant funding, grant making trends, and board related barriers to non-profit capacity building for over 47 years.
[00:00:54] Dr Bev is the founder and director of the Grant Writing Training Foundation and Bev Browning, LLC.
[00:01:01] Dr Bev is the author of 47 grant writing publications, including seven editions of Grant Writing for Dummies, the sixth edition of Non-profit Kit for Dummies, and the fourth edition of Fundraising for Dummies.
[00:01:16] She has also created six courses for Cengage Learning. Dr Bev lives her life with faith and discernment. Welcome, Dr Bev.
[00:01:26] Dr Beverly Browning: Thank you so much for the invitation to be on the show. I really appreciate it.
[00:01:31] Diana White: Oh, I, you know, you’re, you’re one of the most humble human beings I know, but this is an honor for me. I can tell you that.
[00:01:39] Dr Beverly Browning: Thank you.
[00:01:40] Diana White: Well, I, I am, uh, I’m not going to pull any punches. I’m going to get started right away with the first question, Dr Bev, what would you tell your 30-year-old self?
[00:01:50] Dr Beverly Browning: That they’re going to be rough years ahead? You’re going to lose a son at birth. You’re going to experience a move to another state, unknown at 30, but you know, you’re leaving Michigan and you have to finish your education.
[00:02:08] You cannot climb the career ladder or even plot out your own dream. If that dream happens to be a business with an associate degree. You have to have more. You have to polish your critical thinking skills. You have to understand the ways of the corporate world. The ways of the non-profit world and the powers that be, that hold onto the money that you have to produce a business plan or some kind of a magic appeal to, to try to get that start-up money for anything you want to do.
[00:02:43] I would just say have patience. It’s going to be a long road. And babe, you ain’t done yet.
[00:02:50] Diana White: I love it. I love it. you know, I, I have been asked that question myself, what would I tell my 30-year-old self? I think I would tell my 30-year-old self, wait for Dr Bev to come and tell you what’s your lesson?
[00:03:02] I love it. I love it. So, I will tell you, listeners and viewers, Dr Bev’s lessons are listed as kind of dos and don’ts for life. And I love the way they’re worded. and the first two are kind of, I want to say they’re mantras.
[00:03:21] I would use these as mantras. But I want to give you, uh, an idea because it’s not our traditional. Format, but I love it.
[00:03:29] Lesson 1: DO appreciate yourself
[00:03:29] Diana White: So, lesson number one, do appreciate yourself, and the mantra is, I am worthy of success. Dr Beth, tell us how you came to know that to be true
[00:03:40] Dr Beverly Browning: by working with clients. back in the day before, I had guidelines and boundaries by spending six years in the corporate sector where all of my confidence was flattened, to zero and.
[00:03:58] giving notice, giving a two week notice with no idea where my next dollar was going to come from because I had a non-compete contract, which meant that during the six years I was with this corporation building a division of their company, I had to put my business on the side. I couldn’t take any clients, I couldn’t do any grant writing, um, needed permission for any publications that I was going to write.
[00:04:24] And honestly, I lost so much of me in that corporate hustle that when I gave that two-week notice, I had no plan. No clue. And I just sort of threw my hands up and I said, I’m going to let all of my colleagues in the grant writing world know I need subcontract work. I need help bringing dollars in the door until I can figure out how to relaunch what I was doing before this six-year disruption.
[00:04:56] So that really is, is where that comes from. we’ve all been flattened by someone or something in our lives, multiple times, many of us. But it’s about how we pick ourselves up, how we move on, and how we move on without anger, without the stress, without the guilt, but in the innocence to just believe in ourself and, and have a spiritual belief that when you close the door, or a door is closed for you.
[00:05:31] There is something magnificent waiting for you ahead. You just have to inhale, exhale, and wait.
[00:05:42] truer words have never been spoken. And I know this to be true because in my life, I consider myself to be a professional, loyal puppy. I get ensconced in an organization and, I’m there for life.
[00:05:57] It really has to take something pretty off-putting to get me out, right, or to make me think maybe I, I need to move on. And I’ve come to learn to be grateful to those circumstances when they happen because, it’s been my only guide to let me know that I need, there’s something better for me.
[00:06:17] Diana White: And so, anytime I’ve had, um, situations where, the work environment is, hasn’t been the happiest it could be. And I know it’s time for me to make a move. I will look back upon and think of the leadership fondly very fondly because, without that agitation, I wouldn’t be at this next level.
[00:06:37] Dr Beverly Browning: That’s right.
[00:06:38] Lesson 2: DO create a spiritual foundation: I am a withering flower without faith.
[00:06:38] Diana White: Lesson number two, do create a spiritual foundation. Here’s another mantra for you, listeners and viewers. I am a withering flower without faith. I am a withering flower without faith. Dr Beth, talk to us about that.
[00:06:56] Dr Beverly Browning: I would have to say that my faith journey started as a child, but because I was a child, I just thought it was my job to step up and be baptized.
[00:07:06] I didn’t understand what weight that carried with it. So, after we were married and I married at 18, my husband was 21, we, we had hardly anything. We decided to, to have our first child, because I was in community college, we were struggling. We’d just gotten our first house, it, had a lot of things wrong with it, and we went into debt, and I just said, you know, not now.
[00:07:32] I need to get my associate degree. Well, um, after we went through that little period of, you know, hustling and working and trying to pay things off. We were ready to have our first child, and nothing happened. We found out that we couldn’t, we went to all these specialists and doctors, and they said, you know, you’re just going to have to settle.
[00:07:53] You’re, you’re not going to have children. And these were the days before they grew lab babies, by the way, way back in the day. And so, we, you know, did what any young couple would do. We’re both working. Uh, we got a motorcycle, we got a boat and took it out, you know, on the lake. And about that time, my mom, who did not raise me, but we had a, a good relationship, she said, I want to go to church, and there’s a church across the street from my house.
[00:08:27] But it’s a Catholic church, and in order to join it, you have to take catechism classes. And I said, well, mom, you should do that. And she said, I, I’m afraid to do it alone. And I said, so what does that mean? And she says, I want you to go with me. And I said, you want me to change from being Baptist to convert to Catholicism?
[00:08:52] Dr Beverly Browning: And she said, yeah, I really want to go, but I don’t want to go alone. And she said, I want you to come here on Sunday. And then we walk across the street together and we go. And so, I said yes. And we took these classes. I, they were forever, they were a long time. Um, and then after we took the classes, we were confirmed on Christmas Eve, of that year, and I believe it was 1976 it was.
[00:09:21] And we still had given up on having children and being confirmed on Christmas Eve. And then in January, my husband and I took a trip to Toronto, Canada, because we lived in Michigan, then Flint, Michigan. That’s where I was born. And. and I came back, and I had some kind of a bug. I was feeling sick, throwing up, coughing, blowing, you name it.
[00:09:46] And I went to the doctor, and he gave me an antibiotic. And when I got home and I had the pill in my hand to take it, something said, stop. You cannot take this medication. And so, I just flushed it down the toilet and it’s like, what has come over me? I’m going to be sick forever. So about six weeks later. I went back to the doctor, and I said, I still feel horrible.
[00:10:17] I didn’t take the medication. Something told me to stop. And he said, you need to have another script and I’m going to put you on Valium for this hysteria. And I said, wait a minute, wait a minute. And I said, we were told we could never have a baby, but something keeps saying maybe you should do a blood test.
[00:10:37] And so he said, to please your psychosis. I will. And of course, this was a male doctor, and he took the test and I, I came home and then I got this call and he said, I’m so grateful you flushed those pills down the toilet and that you refused to take, antipsychotic medication. The last time you were in the office.
[00:11:01] He said, you are pregnant. Congratulations. And I just associated that with. giving my life to Christ in the Catholic Church, along with my mom. And I’ll never forget that.
[00:11:15] Diana White: I have chills. I have chills. and viewers and listeners, you know, we love sending these lessons to younger generations that are still trying to find their ways.
[00:11:27] So you don’t have to go through the hardships that we went through. And a lot of things over the years have gotten better. Right. But one thing that is still true is that you have to be your own health advocate. Yes. Even if you don’t know, even if you’re you, you would say, well, they’re the ones that went to med school.
[00:11:48] I’m going to put it in their hands. Ask questions if something doesn’t feel right. Whatever you believe in if you believe in your own self, Your gut instinct is telling you something. If you’re a spiritual person, God is telling you something. Listen, listen to it and ask the question and be brave like Dr Bev.
[00:12:08] Say, I’m not taking these meds, until I get further testing. That is absolutely an amazing story. I mean, if you’re a spiritual person, you just, you see, you see how it all aligns and how it makes sense and how you were being protected.
[00:12:26] Lesson 3: DO not be hard on yourself when you make mistakes: Mistakes fuel patience and do-overs.
[00:12:26] Okay. Lesson number three, Dr Bev. Here we go. Do not be hard on yourself when you make mistakes.
[00:12:33] Diana White: Mistakes, fuel, patience, and do-overs. So where has this manifested itself in your life? Dr Bev.
[00:12:40] Dr Beverly Browning: Making mistakes all of my life.
[00:12:43] Listening to other people tell me I couldn’t do things or, you know, how would this look in the community? Or people expect better of you? Or why would you leave a good job that you could have worked on for 30 years and had a retirement, um, to go out and launch your own business?
[00:13:05] Foolish, foolish woman. Don’t you think if it were possible to make a living being a grant writer, 40, you know, 40 hours a week, that we all would’ve done it. We are all veteran experienced grant writers. You’re going to go broke; you’re not going to be successful. And I was in a meeting of a group. Genesee County group of grant writers in Flint, Michigan, they were all older than me and they had been out there writing grants as an employee forever.
[00:13:35] And they said, don’t you think if we could do this and actually switch over, that any of us would be working for somebody else. We’d have our own consulting business. What makes you think people will even want to work with you? I mean, you’re just a no name. Why would they do that? And I quit that group that day, and I came home and it’s like, I’m doing this.
[00:13:59] Diana White: I love it.
[00:14:00] Dr Beverly Browning: It takes patience. I didn’t curse. I wasn’t angry. I just said, this is my last meeting. I can’t come back. I can’t believe that you’re discouraging me from trying something that none of you have been brave enough to try.
[00:14:15] Diana White: That’s right. I mean, and it’s one of the things that I’ve learned for sure in, in my mentorship of young women, especially young women of color.
[00:14:23] It’s like cheerlead for them. Give them the power. Let them know they can do it. And then get out of their way.
[00:14:30] Dr Beverly Browning: Exactly. Exactly. There were no dreams in that group.
[00:14:35] Diana White: Yeah.
[00:14:35] Dr Beverly Browning: Well, they had a dream 30 years of working nine to five and then retire and live a cushy life.
[00:14:42] Diana White: Yeah. You know, You and I both know that, that is a prevalent thing and it’s something that I’ve talked about on the show, uh, quite frequently, which is the dynamic of the African American family nucleus, where it’s like, get that government job, work 30 years, get your watch, get your pension, and, you know, shut up, head down.
[00:15:00] And I did not follow that route. And there was a lot of worry, not, not so much ridicule, they didn’t ridicule, but there was a lot of worry. What’s going to happen to this girl? How’s she going to make it, you know? I’m not saying that my path was easier, and I’m not saying that it was the right thing to do.
[00:15:22] What I’m saying is where I am now, I’m happy. And I don’t think I would’ve gotten there if I hadn’t taken my own path.
[00:15:31] Dr Beverly Browning: Ditto.
[00:15:35] Lesson 4: DO live your life fully: Yesterday can’t be replayed, and tomorrow is not a promise. Live for today.
[00:15:35] Diana White: All right, lesson number four. do live your life fully yesterday. Can’t be replayed and tomorrow is not a promise. Live for today.
[00:15:49] And again, you grew up Baptist, you grew up, uh, you know, Pentecostal, whatever it is, we, we all hear those words.
[00:15:56] Tomorrow is not promise. God doesn’t promise tomorrow, but I love the way you put it here yesterday. Can’t be replayed and tomorrow is not a promise. So, live for today. I love that. Talk to me about that, Dr Beth.
[00:16:10] Dr Beverly Browning: Well, I made a lot of mistakes, and I carried a lot of guilt for decades. Um, and it wasn’t just my guilt, it was guilt that I heard from other people.
[00:16:21] Um, maybe my mom, my parents, not so much my grandparents. They were very encouraging. but. The demeanour. You’re never going to have anything, you know, getting married at 18, when’s the baby due? Um, you know, hey, and oh, and I have to tell you, when’s the baby due? So, I kept saying, I’m not pregnant. I’m not pregnant, I’m getting married to get out of your house,
[00:16:52] Diana White: This is not, this is not shotgun. It’s an escape. It’s an escape. It’s a prison break.
[00:16:58] Dr Beverly Browning: Yeah. So, 12 years later, when I gave birth to our daughter and my parents came to the hospital and I said, how does this 12-year baby look
[00:17:10] Diana White: I love it. I
[00:17:12] Dr Beverly Browning: love it.
[00:17:14] Diana White: Oh, and, and I don’t, I don’t know about you, but you know, in my experience, I had my daughter, young, I was 22. And I wasn’t married, and my entire pregnancy was, you know, disaster upon the family, shame upon the family, oh, what are you going to do? How are you going to get ahead?
[00:17:34] And then as soon as this little brown bundle of joy came, it was like, get out of the way, girl. Give me my grandbaby. You know, get, gimme my baby. Where’s that baby? You know? And I, and I said to my mom at one point, just a little tongue in cheek, I said, you know, all this love that you’re pouring on this baby, which I, which I am so grateful for I if you, if you would’ve, if you would’ve sent a sliver of that my way when I was pregnant, maybe.
[00:18:03] I don’t know, maybe I would’ve been a little bit mentally stable, a little bit happier in my, in my pregnancy and what I was going through. Um, and it’s always fascinating to see how, when, when, uh, something happens that the family doesn’t agree with, and especially if it’s around birth or, or a child that, you know, the, the, the mom to be is carrying a lot of weight on their shoulders.
[00:18:28] And then as soon as the baby comes, everybody forgets the things that they said or the things that they thought, because this new life is bringing joy into everybody’s world, you know?
[00:18:40] Dr Beverly Browning: So, we have some things in common, um, but we also have differences. My parents never acted excited when my daughter was born.
[00:18:49] In fact, the day they came to the hospital to see her, they informed me that after 31 years of marriage they had filed for divorce. Oh, my goodness. The first five minutes in the door in my room on postpartum, they announced that they were getting a divorce before they even, before the nurse even rolled in the isolate with the baby.
[00:19:12] So like the mood went from excitement and balloons in the air and flowers all over to everything kind of being popped. Oh, my goodness, the sun going down. And it’s like, oh my God. She was born into a dysfunctional family.
[00:19:30] Diana White: No, she was born into love. Grandparents are figuring it out. Grandparents are figuring out.
[00:19:37] But your love. For sure. For sure.
[00:19:39] Dr Beverly Browning: Yeah. No. Yeah. The parents never fought over who was going to get to see her, who was going to keep her. It was like begging, can you just watch her so I can take a class? I’m still in college. Please help me out. So, I remember that, and it’s changed my whole demeanour. I don’t want to be that generation that passes down bitterness and craziness to the next generation.
[00:20:05] Diana White: Oh, listeners and viewers. I think we just got a free lesson. We got a free lesson That is not part of the 10 lessons. Let’s, let’s take that lesson into heart. Don’t pass down that trauma to the next generation. No, there’s no need for it. No. Oh, goodness gracious.
[00:20:27] Lesson 5: Do celebrate yourself: Pat yourself on the back, create BIG PICTURE plans or incentives to celebrate your life
[00:20:27] Diana White: Lesson number five, do celebrate yourself.
[00:20:31] Pat yourself on the back. Create big picture plans or incentives to celebrate your life.
[00:20:37] Now, I want your take on this because I’m a believer in this as well, but, uh, you know, I’m, I’m, I’m a tadpole practicing this, and you are experienced, and you are, have practiced this for a while. Tell me, does it work?
[00:20:53] Does it get better? Tell me.
[00:20:55] Dr Beverly Browning: It gets better if you can take the guilt and put it in a box and tape it up with, uh, packing tape and then lock it in a drawer and then forget where you put the key. when I first started doing that, making me feel good and stopped taking care of others first, I felt guilty in the beginning.
[00:21:18] Like, how can I deserve, you know, ordering a couple of new pieces online that were marked down by 75% when I could have done this for this person, or I could have done that for that person. Um, but then I, I felt so special because I was treating me. So, I just want to say this, no one else buys me fresh flowers every week.
[00:21:43] I buy them for myself. And I have, I’ll be married 56 years, um, in December. My husband has multiple health issues and memory issues, so he’s not going to remember that. You know, last year was our 55th anniversary and that was special for me, but I remembered, and I bought myself, uh, an anniversary ring. This year I took on a hard project, a project that I needed a whole team to help finish because it was so difficult and it just happened, uh, last month.
[00:22:16] But I made up my mind if I took it because it was blood, sweat, and tears kind of a project drove me crazy. But it got submitted, um, that I was going to treat myself to something for all the stress and anxiety, late nights, early mornings, middle of the night calls, you name it, from the project team. And I went out and I bought another ring to fit under my anniversary ring.
[00:22:39] And the first ring I bought; I went in with the Kmart blue light special mindset. I said to the jeweler, I want the cheapest plane band you have.
[00:22:49] And he gave me that and it was cheap. And I, and I mean really cheap, I probably could have gotten it out of a bubble gum machine or something. And I came home, and I put it on, on under my anniversary ring and I kept looking at it and I was so disappointed in me, in me for settling.
[00:23:08] So I promised to wear it for two days to see if I loved it. After two days and after the second day, it was troubling. I didn’t even want it on my finger. And I thought, what can I do? So, I got the receipt, and I went back, and I walked in the store, and I said, I was here two days ago, and I bought based on price, but I’m better than that.
[00:23:32] and I want to see something that makes me feel like a princess. And I’m not worried about the price because God will send me another project soon and I’ll take care of it. And so, they went right to the cabinet, and they said, and he said, this is the one you tried on before that you loved, but when I told you the price, you asked if there was a chair nearby cuz you felt faint.
[00:23:55] He said and now you’re taking it? And I said, I’m taking it. I’m taking it. And I promise I won’t be back to trade it in.
[00:24:07] Diana White: Oh, another lesson. Another lesson within a lesson, which is you get to a certain point in your life if you plan your life right, and you put yourself first. Put your mask on yourself before you save others.
[00:24:23] And if you manage your finances the way you’re supposed to, then you, are allowed every once in a while, to say, I don’t have to buy based on price. I want to be treated like a princess or a prince, or a king or a queen.
[00:24:39] Dr Beverly Browning: I treat myself every week. Not with that kind of money. It could be very little, um, you know, like a $12 wallet on sale or something.
[00:24:48] But I get a treat because it’s like, I’ll be 74 this year. Who else is going to give me treats? Nobody.
[00:24:57] Diana White: Okay. So, if I didn’t already know you, I would’ve said, you know, you’re giving us some good lessons. You ain’t got to lie about your age, but I do know you and I know you’re not lying. But it, I think, I think part of that, youth that you keep, right?
[00:25:13] Dr Beverly Browning: I think we have to take pride in our age, especially as you start to, well, I think all the time, but as you start to get older, because I’ve said this to like new female friends and, and they’ll say, well, why are you still working
[00:25:26] Seven days a week, and I said one, um, because I have to support myself and my husband. Two, I never worked anywhere and earned a pension. I’ve always been an entrepreneur for decades. And if you, if you just make enough to pay the bills, this is what you do. You work until your last breath, but you do what you love, and you do it well.
[00:25:47] And the universe will make sure that you’re taken care of at the right time.
[00:25:52] Diana White: Oh, I, so we have to stop for a moment and unpack this because you hear that old adage all the time, do what you love. You never work a day in your life. That’s a lie. That’s a lie. It’s work. It is always work. Right. But the way you said it, you work seven days a week.
[00:26:10] You probably work till the day you die.
[00:26:12] Dr Beverly Browning: Yeah.
[00:26:12] Diana White: But you love what you do.
[00:26:14] Dr Beverly Browning: I do.
[00:26:15] Diana White: Right?
[00:26:15] Dr Beverly Browning: I do.
[00:26:16] Diana White: Right. And that’s what it’s all about.
[00:26:18] Dr Beverly Browning: I get excited. Creativity, innovation. Um, I’m definitely from the school of Walt Disney. I attended the, uh, Disney Institute in Anaheim and I’ve been three times. And each time they remind you of the child inside of you and, and it, it just makes you laugh.
[00:26:37] It makes you smile; it makes you appreciate silliness. And it’s okay to cry. It’s okay to laugh. It’s okay to do all of those things. We have too many rules that try to put us in these little boxes. And you know, honestly, as a culture and an ethnicity, we left those boxes behind us, but other people kept trying to put us in those boxes.
[00:27:02] Well, our job is to push out the walls, knock off the top, kick off the bottom, and just do what we want to do.
[00:27:12]. That is truly our job. And, and again, talking about passing down that trauma, that’s what we should be teaching our next generations. Harriet Tubman kicked down one side of the box.
[00:27:24] Diana White: Martin Luther King kicked down the other side of the box. you know, Oprah kicked down another side of the box. Okay. What side are you going to kick down? What side is the next generation going to kick down? Right.
[00:27:37] Dr Beverly Browning: Absolutely.
[00:27:38] Diana White: We live in a, our ancestors paved the way kind of history, but nobody’s talking about what our next generation should be doing to pave the way.
[00:27:47] Dr Beverly Browning: Well, they should be doing more than TikTok
[00:27:53] Diana White: I absolutely agree. Yes. I absolutely agree Dr Bev, I feel like social media is unfortunately for some communities, some marginalized communities. The next, basketball star, rockstar singer kind of, idolation, right? Where back in my day, it was like, I’m not going to be rich.
[00:28:14] I’m not going to be able to do anything with my life. I won’t have fulfillment because I, I’m not going to be the next, Whitney Houston, you know? Mm-hmm. or something like that, right? It was always nobody, nobody ever said. Now they’re saying it, which I’m so glad, but nobody ever said, um, uh, I’m not going to be the next deGrasse Tyson.
[00:28:30] Right? I, I’m not going to be the next scientist. It was always, I’m not going to be the next James Baldwin. It was always, I’m not going to be the next Michael Jordan. I’m not going to be the next Whitney Houston. So why try? Right? Yeah. Flip that mindset. Flip that mindset cuz we’re more than just sports entertainers and singers and rappers.
[00:28:49] Dr Beverly Browning: And it has to come from within too. Yeah. I can’t be going to, you know, these self-help talks and all of this other stuff, it has to come from within you. And I think the only way that happens is through your spiritual whispering that comes into your mind to give you ideas, to create, to innovate, to break away from the pack, to do something different.
[00:29:12] To dare to stand on the age of the cliff without a parachute and take a jump into entrepreneurship or whatever you want to be.
[00:29:19] Diana White: Whatever you want to be. Yeah. We do interview a lot of entrepreneurs and business leaders and authors on this show, but viewers and listeners, it’s about you figuring out what brings you joy and what you can become better at.
[00:29:38] Not necessarily what you’re good at. Because a lot of people, when they start out, they’re not good at the thing that they end up loving to do in life. They have to practice. Right? So, you, you can get there and be good, but it doesn’t matter if you work a nine to five or if you start your own business, or if you become a novelist or if you become a dancer.
[00:29:57] Affiliate Break
[00:29:57] Diana White: I’d like to take a short break to thank our affiliate partner Audible. Audible is an amazing way to consume 10 lessons learned books and other podcasts, allowing you to build a library of knowledge all in one place. You can start your 30-day free trial by going to audibletrial.com/10lessonslearned.
[00:30:18] With Audible, you can find your favorite lesson while at home or on the go. Once again, that’s audibletrial.com/10lessonslearned all lower case for a free 30-day trial. The link will be in the show notes.
[00:30:35] Lesson 6: DON’T beat yourself up over mistakes. Move on with lessons learned.
[00:30:35] Diana White: Let’s welcome back Dr Bev and continue with lesson number six. Lesson number six. Don’t beat yourself up over mistakes. Move on with lessons learned.
[00:30:46] Now that’s kind of apropos for the show, but uh, tell us about that, Dr Bev.
[00:30:54] Dr Beverly Browning: I made a lot of mistakes, with client work in the past, and I’ve recognized that, and I’ve talked about it. I actually called up and said things like, you know, did you know you paid me twice? We made a mistake on this application, but hey, you got funded.
[00:31:10] That’s the bright side of it. Um, but they were still unhappy, so they got a refund because the mistake. But it was, it was a great, it was a play on a word. Um, it was writing for a bunch of teachers who were tired and, and drained and needed paid time in the summer to be creative and come up with new ideas for their teaching plans or lesson plans in the fall.
[00:31:32] So this was way back. I, I was working on a T r S 80 computer, um, probably if you were born after 1970, you never heard of it? Maybe 1980. Um, but it was one of the first computers out with a plain blue screen, and it didn’t really have the kind of spell check and editing we have today. However, I typed the word sabbatical.
[00:31:57] at least 22 times in there, because it was the project name, we were asking for funding to, you know, put them on a sabbatical. However, it was typed sabbitical, nobody caught it. Even the client who went over the draft review did not catch it. It was a State Department of Education grant application, and it was submitted, and so we didn’t, none of us knew we made a mistake until we got a letter from the state superintendent saying, congratulations to the x, Y, Z school district on submitting a highly successful project.
[00:32:35] The blank blank blank School dress District SABBITICAL. Project and they never, they just thought we called it that because the teachers were so bitter from being overworked.
[00:32:47] Diana White: Oh, that’s a good marketing spin. Dr Bev. Oh, my goodness. Okay. But the district was,
[00:32:53] Dr Beverly Browning: oh, livid, because then they went back and looked at the doc and they said, you did this 22 times.
[00:32:59] How is that possible? You know, we’re paying you. How could you make this mistake? We want a refund. And it’s like, Hey, you’re getting $250,000. We want a refund. And it’s like, No problem, no problem. I’ll give you a refund. so those were the days when in order to maintain a business and to keep goodwill and to not have one superintendent tell 300 other superintendents, yeah, I don’t work with her.
[00:33:26] She really messed us up with the state Ed grant and now the superintendent of the entire state thinks that we have bitter teachers here. Which he did have bitter teachers because I talked to them. So, I guess I learned that you just take it with, with light and you don’t downplay yourself or hate yourself or, you know, stand in the mirror and beat on your brow.
[00:33:53] We’re all human. We’re going to make mistakes. We’re not perfect. And if anybody can’t accept that, then maybe that’s not the right client for me to begin with.
[00:34:04] Diana White: Oh, truer words have never been said once again. and in my own consulting practice, I have come across times where I’ve had to eat crow. I’ve had to say, you know what?
[00:34:16] I messed this up. And what would you like to see for it to be made right? And I think it starts with just authenticity of owning the mistake and being fully transparent. So many times, we’re so afraid of the ramifications that we run, or we lie, or we cover.
[00:34:35] Dr Beverly Browning: Yes. Yes.
[00:34:37] Diana White: And that causes more harm than good.
[00:34:39] Not just for the relationship, but in your own psyche. Because I feel like if you’ve run away from something, if you’ve run away from a mistake and you haven’t fessed up to it in the mirror or to the person, you’re always subconsciously running.
[00:34:53] Lesson 7: DON’T isolate yourself when you are going through hard or trying times
[00:34:53] Lesson number seven. Don’t isolate yourself when you are going through hard or trying times. Oh, my goodness.
[00:35:02] Diana White: Let’s get into this one because it is, um, I think it’s almost a natural tendency for people who quote unquote think they have strong personalities. I’m too strong for this. I don’t need anybody.
[00:35:15] Nobody can see my weakness. Dr Beth, tell me how you came to know this to be true.
[00:35:20] by keeping things to myself for too long and becoming angry and going to anger management counseling for two years.
[00:35:28] Diana White: Well, stop one moment. You’re not telling me that my sweet Dr Bev had to actually go to anger management class are you saying this right now?
[00:35:40] Dr Beverly Browning: Lady I’m a Scorpio, smiling on the outside and planning the demise on the inside.
[00:35:53] Diana White: Oh, my goodness. Oh, my goodness. That is, that’s amazing. Okay, continue. Dr Bev, I apologize.
[00:36:04] Dr Beverly Browning: There are two sides to me, And I have to get control over the angry side.
[00:36:11] Diana White: I see, I see. Well, good job. Good job. Well done.
[00:36:14] Dr Beverly Browning: Yeah, I went to Christian counseling for two years to understand how not to be angry and to, um, here’s what I left with peace and joy.
[00:36:25] The only way to put out the fires of anger is to focus on what brings you peace and joy and do those things. And if you have to do something out of, love or whatever, that’s not bringing you peace and joy. Remember, it’s only a moment in time.
[00:36:46] Diana White: Oh, agreed. Agreed.
[00:36:49] Lesson 8: DON’T give up, ever!
[00:36:49] Diana White: All right, lesson number eight.
[00:36:51] And this is short and sweet, but powerful. Lesson number eight. Don’t give up. Ever. Take it away, Dr Bev.
[00:37:03] Dr Beverly Browning: There’s always going to be naysayers that tell you all the things you can’t do, all the places you can’t go, all the things. You can’t have all the neighborhoods and communities and houses you can’t live in.
[00:37:17] Because you’re just this little bitty person and you can’t move the powers that be. Well, you know what? We don’t have to move anything. All we have to do is put it to prayer, speak it. and it happens. It happens even if we don’t speak it. There are times when I want something, and I have no idea how I’m going to get it.
[00:37:39] I write it down on an index card and I just open the Bible any place and put that index card in there and close it. I never even remember how many cards I have in there at any given time, but I do know that at the end of the year, typically, um, we don’t go out or anything on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day.
[00:37:58] So I open that Bible up after a whole year of putting index cards in there and I start looking at them and I see everything has come to being, it’s come to fruition. The thoughts have turned into real actions without me even realizing this was what I asked for. This was what I needed help in. This is where I wanted to be.
[00:38:20] I used to complain because when I was working differently, I don’t travel now, I, I do everything virtually, but when I was working differently, I used to be on a plane 35, 40 times a year, and I used to hate running through airports, going all over the world and, and the country, United States, um, training people, teaching people, all of that just to bring a check back home.
[00:38:44] What I didn’t know was that at a certain time in our marriage, my husband wouldn’t be able to travel anymore because of his health, and I would need to become his caretaker to make sure that he’s okay to do things for him. So, I don’t leave him overnight. Uh, and I have a hard time if I have to go out for a day.
[00:39:05] But just think all the times that I regretted getting on those planes, trains, and buses. I saw states, I saw rural areas, I saw urban areas. I met hundreds of people at every location. I made friends, I made extended family members. I got to go across the ocean and, and work in Africa and see that, you know, I, I’ve been to Canada, I’ve been to Mexico, I’ve been to The Bahamas, all in the name of work.
[00:39:36] Well, now we can’t travel. So, what would’ve happened if I would’ve lived my life, like the average worker thinking, well, let’s just hunker down. Let’s save every penny. Let’s save every dollar. Let’s stay in the old neighborhood. Let’s just live in this house. Even though we’ve got to have burglar bars on every window and door, let’s just make sure we have something paid for.
[00:39:57] So when we retire, oh, I can go to Hawaii, or we can go to here or there. Okay. You don’t know what’s ahead and everything that’s happening in your life is the part of God’s plan. And while you are grumbling and complaining about airline seats and people coughing and sneezing without covering their mouth, you are seeing things that you might not have a chance to see later because you don’t know what the circumstances will be.
[00:40:27] So instead of grumbling, take every task as a privilege. Accept it with grace, learn from it. Expand your territory. Do everything you can to be outside of your comfort zone because that’s when you grow.
[00:40:45] Diana White: And, and I just had the biggest epiphany, because I was, when you were talking about this, I was going back to the former lesson, which is, you know, tomorrow is not a promise.
[00:40:58] And it just occurred to me that I think in our lives, when we hear tomorrow is not promised. We think of it in terms of life and death mortality. I do what you can today because you might not be here in tomorrow. You might not be here in in 40 years, but I think it’s more than that. I think it’s enjoy the life that you have right now because you may not be able to have that same kind of life tomorrow.
[00:41:27] Doesn’t mean that you’re gone. It just means that what you thought tomorrow would look like, may not look like that. So, enjoy it today.
[00:41:36] I have no regrets. I have no regrets over not being able to travel now. I have no regrets over not working in, in person and training. This is a blessing to be able to stay home, to stay out of harm’s way, not just because of the, you know, looming pandemic one right after another.
[00:41:55] Dr Beverly Browning: But because I took vows, I took marriage vows, and it’s for sickness and in health for better or worse. And now this is the worst part, this is the health part. So, I’m supposed to be here and that’s where I’m planted. And, and I’m happy about it.
[00:42:15] Diana White: Ugh. All right. I’m listeners and viewers. I’m sorry. It, I’m blown away.
[00:42:23] This is why I am, I’m stumbling over my words. Uh, I, I am, I really am. And I don’t know if, uh, Robert is going to cut this part out or not, but I am. It’s very rare that I get tongue tied. You know, it’s 30 years of sales in retail. I can talk to just about the best of them, but Dr Bev, your, your life is an inspiration, an absolute inspiration.
[00:42:48] Your belief in your philosophy and the way I see you still approach life as a kid in a candy store. I see that. it just,
[00:42:58] Dr Beverly Browning: Hey, thanks to Walt Disney Institute.
[00:43:02] Diana White: Oh, I’m going to have to go to the institute. I’m telling you that.
[00:43:06] Lesson 9: DON’T let your mind get stagnant
[00:43:06] Diana White: All right, lesson number nine and this is 100% Dr Bev. Don’t let your mind get stagnant.
[00:43:16] That’s 100%. You, your mind is not going to get stagnant. I would say anytime soon at all. You are constantly learning, constantly teaching. Talk to us about that.
[00:43:28] Dr Beverly Browning: I found out that I’m a creator, and I find I have the most joy in creating the ideas that come down into me. Not that I think up on my own or look on the internet or copy off of somebody else, but they just come into me, these titles, and I know right away I’m going to have to do an outline and I’m going to have to create curriculum.
[00:43:52] I’m going to have to get this to my marketing team, and we’re going to have to push it out. And this is going to be another live class because I’m supposed to teach this. And what do I teach? It’ll come into me right before I have to create the PowerPoint and the re and the resource files. So, I live my life like that.
[00:44:10] I just, and I wake up during the night, sometimes ideas are flooding into my mind and it’s like, I’ve got to get up. I’ve got to come to my home office. I have to write this down. What does this mean? What kind of a class could this be? I’ve been given the title, now I have to do the rest. What does the rest look like?
[00:44:27] Lesson 10: DON’T let your health decline!
[00:44:27] Diana White: I love it. And we’re up to our final lesson, and I kind of don’t want this to end, but I’m not going to hold you video hostage.
[00:44:37] Lesson number 10, don’t let your health decline. And we’ve talked about the ramifications of growing older and health, uh, throughout the episode, but, uh, give us some, some words of, of wisdom and advice on that Dr Bev.
[00:44:54] Dr Beverly Browning: Over the years rushing around the country and the world, uh, jumping in and out of other people’s vehicles and super shuttle vans and everything else, I’ve taken my share of falls, tripping, being tired, trying to drag luggage early in the morning. 4:00 AM got to get to the airport for a 6:00 AM flight.
[00:45:14] I’ve fallen, and I’ve ignored. Even following up to see if anything was fractured, if anything is out of place. All of the above. Well, Now I have a lot of specialists and I get shots in my knees. So I think back of all the times, if I could have just stopped when the plane landed and come home and put my suitcase aside and called a doctor or gone to urgent care, or gone to the emergency room to get some x-rays, I would’ve known then that those falls were the beginning of osteoarthritis and likely would’ve been able to do something preventative.
[00:45:55] Dr Beverly Browning: But once you have it, you live with the pain, you live with the pain of the cortisone injections, the gel injections, when you no longer have fluid, between the bones. And I think about that. I could have stopped, I could have taken care of my body when it was sending me signals, moving too fast, moving while sleeping, all of that stuff.
[00:46:17] But I didn’t, I was just in a hurry to get on to the next, you know, next destination, the next paycheck. My older self is not like that. Uh, if I wake up, I got put on a new, uh, blood pressure medication a few weeks ago, and the first night I woke up with these strange pains behind my right eye, right then and there I am sending a message to my primary.
[00:46:39] I am having strange pains behind my eye. I think this is a side effect. I’m not taking this medication. You need to come up with something in a hurry. I never would’ve done that 10 years ago. I would’ve just pushed it off and said, oh, it’s headache. I’ll take a Tylenol and keep going.
[00:46:55] and I think also too, listeners and viewers, that that is another unfortunate, side effect, if you will, of being an, an entrepreneur or a solopreneur. I mean, it’s all on you. Go, go, go, go, go. And you know, I can’t stop for this little tummy ache. I can’t stop for this tickle in my throat.
[00:47:14] Diana White: I can’t stop for this migraine that comes every once in a while. Stop. Stop. Because if something is wrong and you can be proactive about it, again, you can’t go back in time.
[00:47:29] Dr Beverly Browning: No, you can’t change what you didn’t take care of.
[00:47:32] Diana White: Mm-hmm. can’t change with another free lesson. Dr Beth. Stop giving them away.
[00:47:40] Dr Beverly Browning: I love it. I love it.
[00:47:42] Diana White: All right. Well, we are done with your lessons, and I tell you what, this, this has been a, an amazing episode, but I’ve got one more question for you.
[00:47:51] Dr Beverly Browning: Okay.
[00:47:52] Diana White: What have you had to unlearn?
[00:47:56] Dr Beverly Browning: Self-criticism, hearing other people’s voices. Negative, um, words in my mind, like stupid, dumb. You don’t know anything. You can’t do anything. You’re never going to be anything. Um, I’ve had to unlearn that those voices are just tricks that are still in my brain because I believed what people said when they said that I would never be anybody, never do anything.
[00:48:31] All of those things. You’ll never be a writer. You know, you belong in remedial English and community college and that’s what you’re going to take. And I was insulted, I cried to be in a remedial class. Uh, it was horrible. But it’s okay cuz if those people were still alive today, and I don’t know if they are cuz they were much older at the time they taught me in college, I wish they could see how their words affect the people that they talk to.
[00:48:59] Dr Beverly Browning: And it takes a very strong person to throw those words over their shoulder and just move forward. they have an expression, sometimes it only takes one person to believe in you.
[00:49:09] Diana White: That expression is, is very powerful. But it’s sometimes hurtful when you know for a fact that there really is only one person that believes in you. Like, it’s not just you have one person. Right. Right. It but, but it’s sad because a lot of us, when I say us, I mean marginalized groups. We’re we, we are lucky if we are given that one person.
[00:49:36] Mm-hmm. lucky. So, Dr Bev, this has been life changing for me, but I knew it would be, I knew it would be.
[00:49:46] Dr Beverly Browning: Thank you.
[00:49:46] Diana White: And let us know what projects are you working on. Where can we find you? What are you doing?
[00:49:52] Dr Beverly Browning: You can find me on LinkedIn under my profile. That’s the best way to reach out to me. I’m trying to build my connections, so I get more perks from LinkedIn.
[00:50:01] I’m almost at 20,000 and I love it. Um, my marketing team works on it five days a week, building the connections in the non-profit world, the foundation world, the government world. So, the best way to reach me is on LinkedIn. Um, you can also look at my website, bevbrowning.com. Definitely encourage you to figure out what you want to be because just because somebody else planned your career for you, it doesn’t mean it’s the one you love.
[00:50:30] You can always change over. You can always do what you want to do. That’s the spirit and the essence of living someplace where our, our destiny is not dictated to us. We might be nudged one way or the other, but we still have free choice.
[00:50:48] Diana White: So powerful. I want to thank my guest, Dr Beverly Browning, for sharing her lessons with us today.
[00:50:56] Dr Beverly Browning: Thank you so much. It’s an honor to be on the show. Thank you for the invitation and reaching out.
[00:51:02] Diana White: Oh, I, you’re stuck with me, Dr Bev, I’m going to be reaching out more often. Let me, let me exit out here. You’ve been listening to 10 Lessons Learned. This episode is produced by Robert Hossary, supported as always by the Professional Development Forum.
[00:51:20] Please tell us what you think of today’s lessons.
[00:51:23] You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. That’s podcast at the number 10 10 lessons learned.com.
[00:51:32] Go ahead and hit that like button subscribe and turn on the notification bell so you don’t miss an episode of the only podcast that makes the world wiser.
[00:51:41] Diana White: Lesson by lesson. Thank you everyone. Be safe out there.