4 Jul
Lisa Peyton-Caire

Lisa Peyton-Caire


I was struck with a message this 4th of July that I want to share with you. It’s about independence–real independence—independence to seek, fulfill, live, do, be, and exist in our life’s purpose in every waking moment of our lives. Independence to carve out the life we envision in our minds, to be stable, thriving, and even prosperous in doing the things we love to do, and in providing for ourselves and our families in the way we want.

My ultimate goal in business–that one thing that pushes my crazy work ethic and personal drive, is the desire for financial, creative, and intellectual independence and total control over how I spend my time. I want to wake up in the morning and decide how I spend my day. I want to have breakfast with my children every morning, be present and available to them in the important moments of their lives, and spend quality time with my husband doing the things we enjoy. On top of all of this, I want full credit for my work and to be compensated based on the true value of my talents and contributions. In the process (yes, there’s more!), I want to make a real difference and be an inspiration to others along the way.

To achieve this, I must be fully independent and in full command of my destiny. But what does this mean?

I recognize that so many of us loosely use words like ‘independence’, ‘success’, ‘happiness’, ‘joy’– but what do they really mean? What does it mean to be fully independent and in charge of our work, our time, our money, our lives, our destiny; and how do we get to this ideal space?

I looked to the dictionary for a little insight.

Merriam-Webster’s dictionary definition of independence left much to be desired:

in·de·pen·dence (SAY IT WITH ME)! (Noun): the quality or state of being independent

So to dig further, I had to look up independent, which is when the real light came on for me:

in·de·pen·dent (adjective)
  • not dependent
  • not subject to control by others : self-governing
  • not affiliated with a larger controlling unit <an independent bookstore>
  • not requiring or relying on something else
  • not looking to others for one’s opinions or for guidance in conduct
  • not requiring or relying on others (as for care or livelihood) <independent of her parents>
  • being enough to free one from the necessity of working for a living <a person of independent means>
  • showing a desire for freedom

As I read each of these statements, I could feel a tingling sensation emanating from the top of my head as I whispered “YES, YES, that’s what I’m aiming for, what I deserve, what pushed me down this road of entrepreneurship, the space I’m determined to exist in, and where I want all my enterprising sisters and brothers to exist with me”…in the space called INDEPENDENT!

But how do we get there? What are the steps, and how to we weather the transitions and storms that we are bound to encounter along the way to true independence? How do we jump from employee to owner; from consumer to producer, from spectator to the main attraction? How do we achieve independence in our work life, business pursuits, or simply as individuals–as WOMEN–who recognize that we’re relying on others to make our way for us when in fact we alone are responsible for making our own way?

There’s one simple answer, friends, and that is to JUST DO IT, as my dear friend Crystal Washington aka The Black Synergist reminded us this morning…or like the incredible Donna Maria Coles Johnson, president of Indie Business Media, LLC, who encourages us to “do at least one thing today to declare (our) independence from relying solely on traditional means of employment to secure (our) well-being…”.

Two of the points in Donna’s Indie Business Pledge offer us a starting point:

6. I will positively impact my family legacy by empowering my children and other family members to use their talents and gifts to generate income so they need not be solely dependent on a traditional job to secure their future.

7. I will actively support and encouarge other families to start and manage profitable businesses so they can enjoy the freedom and flexibility that comes with owning your own business.

This may involve one big step or several small steps, but for sure, it will take ACTION on your part. For certain, you must start with:

  • a plan that includes mapping out the vision of the life you want
  • identifying your passions & your marketable skills
  • identifying the nuts and bolts of how to get started, and…
  • establishing a timeline and strategy for how and when you’ll get to your desired destination, understanding that it’s a journey, not a quick trip!

Did I mention PRAYER, FAITH, PERSEVERANCE, and the willingness to take a bold risk or two? You’ll need those too, and a network of like-minded, supportive, forward-thinking peers to collaborate with and draw inspiration from.

There’s a wealth of resources on the web, in the library, and in the hands of folks you know and are soon to discover once you make the DECISION to pursue and achieve INDEPENDENCE!

The biggest point to remember is that You can do it! Now get busy planning, doing your research, making your connections, working your networks, and plotting your course to independence!





  1. theblacksynergist July 5, 2008 at 2:14 am #

    Sage advise Lisa!!! We should all continually strive for personal independence.

  2. Darhlene E Banks July 6, 2008 at 6:56 am #

    An excellent stimulus mid year! This was a timely thought for what Independence day stands for and what it means for the people in this country, especially people of color. As we continue to be perceived as unintelligent,shiftless laborers with the least compensation for our efforts, we must strive together to create an empire for our children to continue to build on. Watch Black in America CNN July 23 & 24 9pm ET

  3. blaquesmith20 July 7, 2008 at 4:28 am #

    This is great information. I preach this lesson all the time, yet I took in this “sermon” like it was the first time I heard it. You are a positive person and I know you will soon gain the Independence that you seek.

    Blessings and Prayers
    Ramel LaMont

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