My gyft is being uncomfortable. My whole life, I’ve been blessed with an unideal athletic experience. Yes I meant to say blessed; however, there was a time I didn’t see it that way. I’ve always had this preconceived notion of how my athletic career should go and when things didn’t go as such I wasn’t sure how to handle it. I saw myself as a victim and began to adopt the mindset of one as well. I found myself asking the question “Why me?” when I should’ve been asking “Why not me?”. I read an article in Forbes that said “the beauty of discomfort holds a wealth of wisdom” and I couldn’t agree more. The adversity I’ve faced is bigger than athletics. It has taught me a plethora of lifelong lessons, but the one that resonates with me the most is mental strength. I’ve learned to look at adversity as a challenge to be tackled head on rather than a hindrance. My gyft is being uncomfortable!


Growing up as an only child, I thoroughly enjoyed being around anyone and everyone. However, as I got older, I was not sure where I fit in. Too this for one group and too that for the other. This is when my "Gyft" began to surface...the ability to make peace. I am an optimistic person but not to the point where I live in a false reality. I have my moments, like anyone else, but it never lasts for long. I give myself time to process and deal with whatever life throws at me, but I always find my way back to my peace. I have the ability to see things from many sides. I have learned that I may never fit in. I will always and forever be too much for some, and not enough for others, and that is ok. I feel that has only broadened my horizons. This has also become vital to my success in my field. Healthcare can be physically and mentally demanding. It requires me to give more than I have at times. It requires me to show up when I don't feel well. It requires me to deal with people and as we all know, people are not always pleasant or grateful. I am constantly demeaned and skill set questioned based on my appearance (perceived age, gender, race)but through all of that, I am able to stay consistent in spirit and positive in outlook.


Trying to answer the question what is your GYFT isn't as simple as one may think! I thought well I am smart? Mother? Wife? Hardworker? Friend? Sister? Teacher? All these things but I thought that can't be my gyft..... I sat in a hotel bed last night and it was like a lighting bolt struck me .... Strong... wait thats my GYFT my strength and as I thought on this it clicked. Yes, Strength is your Gyft now let me explain. I have always know I was strong and to be honest I think you credit my father a lot for this. You see my father has always expected greatness from all his kids period. Now I am the oldest girl with 2 older brothers who are very strong themselves so growing up there were no passes for me, no oh she is a girl so don't be so rough or let her have a pass etc. This continued in sports, school, and in life. Now, I have dealt with blatant racism in a sport that I loved but was an anomaly however my father told me early on this is life not right but life you will be stronger from this. High School my senior year my father suffered a diagnosis of cancer which as scared and torn up as I was I had to be strong. College.... oh boy the list could go on and on college sports, injuries, finding out you have a heart condition, etc these life experiences continue to be follow by the same statement, " oh Genee your strong you got this, if anybody can get through this it is you, I wish I had your strength." But hey I am strong so onward and upward I went! Now here comes adult life and when I say it through me twist and turns, floods, tsunamis, and earthquakes basically you name it I swear I have been through it. From fighting for a marriage, to discovering life altering health information in regards to my husband, to miscarriages, delivering a baby that I would never get to enjoy here on earth, life changing health diagnosis for myself, surgeries, depression, etc... You see it got to the point where the thought of being strong I HATED, I wanted to be weak in a sense, I wanted to be coddled just a little bit. I wasn't always ok and when I would voice that, I felt those cries went unheard or had very little value. Reality was wait let me be honest I'm just knowing have this Aha Oprah moment (lol) but this strength and me being strong is my GYFT. I have taken some of my losses and turn them into to stronger voices. I have become a voice to help and advocate for those they may not be strong enough to. My strength has allowed me to survive things that I know most people would quit, leave, throw the towel in, etc. My strength it now something I embrace knowing this is MY GYFT and I will never back down from it! Know that your GYFT may be the same thing that you want to get rid of but hey try to embrace it!!!

Reyana Spears

I am gyfted with individuality. With individuality brings confidence and self love, and with that I am able to set my own goals, stand out from the crowd & not feel subjected to follow any trends. I am my own person, and nothing feels better than knowing that your achievements and accomplishments are solely for your own satisfaction and no one else’s. I am free from the elements of external influence; I am gyfted with individuality!

Maurice Harris

My brand was driven from a failed business. Initially started off as a sneaker and apparel boutique, but grew into an apparel brand. 2016, I quit my job to pursue my passion. Unfortunately, opening the store front ran into a few road blocks and I had to part ways with the business. With determination and passion I was able to turn that loss into a lesson. Instead of dwelling on the loss of that venture I decided to focus on a new endeavor which was my own clothing line. My "Gyft" is hustle and determination.

Cul-ture Apparel

IG: @cultureboutique




Gifted with optimism, I am possessed with the ability to overcome any obstacle due to the fact that I believe in myself. When faced with trials the true character of a man will be tested and the way he handles the issue will reveal his desire to overcome. The never fall off attitude guides me on my journey through life as I strive to reach my god state. Discipline, desire, and integrity are the principles I live by

Margaret Spears



Every day I count my blessings! I have been through my life with ups and downs, they have molded me into the person I am. Still travelling trying to be that person that cares for others, gives from the heart and merely wants to find the best in others. However, my greatest accomplishment is my family. I would change nothing in my travel as it would effect my family, the greatest gift anyone could ask for! This journey started 46 years ago, I have played baseball, football, basketball, softball, cheer & dance, on good days & bad days. I have cried because I saw my babies faces when they couldn't play. Cheered when they played. Sat up all night while homework and research papers were completed. Tried to give them proper nutrition, probably failed on that as I am easy. Thank God for their POPS, always the voice of reason. Many years later, I still worry if they are ok in their life. Bottom line is happiness for them. They will always be my babies! Big baby, hip baby, diva baby, knee baby, etc. One thing I know for sure is your journey never ends as YOU continue to affect others through your actions. Always be humble and open the heart to receive your blessings, they are there and will always be with you.