Shine your light

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For the longest time, I gave not even an iota of care about what anyone thought of me. But as of late, I’ve mulled and mulled over making certain decisions because I was unsure of what other people would think.

Will I be judged for posting this picture? Is someone going to think I’m conceited? Will they think I’m overly ambitious for pursuing this project? Will what I put out be accepted?

New flash: they probably already think all of the above.

The beauty of life and growth is not allowing what other people think to cripple you. What other people think of you should not stop you from being your genuine self!

One of the most liberating things you can do is accept yourself for who you are at the present moment. Your no college degree having, gap-toothed, over-analytical, wide-hipped, over zealous self. Because when you have love of SELF, the outside forces cannot destroy you.

Sharing your light is what matters. If you’re too concerned with the thoughts of others, how can you share your light? How others perceive you is not your business or your reality.

Random but, I just felt like sharing.

miss lucy

Giveaway: the four agreements

I’ve read a lot of books that have shook me up inside and most recently, that has been The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. It’s a quick but poignant and necessary read. I felt it in my heart to give this to one of you, my faithful readers, as a gift. I know it blessed me tons so I want to share the knowledge.

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Self-awareness is a lost art

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“Your visions will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.” 
―  C. G. Jung

I’ve been in a very introspective mood lately. Really, I always am. Always over-thinking, always over-analyzing and always observing. It’s exhausting! Despite all of that, I had a pretty good weekend. Spent time with friends: eating, drinking and laughing until we couldn’t stand it. And I loved it. But there’s always that moment after it’s all over when you retreat back to your thoughts. Back to reality.

Yesterday after work, I went home, took a nap and woke up restless. The sun was out being annoyingly bright. I got up with the intent to do yoga but I always forget the moves so there’s that. Then I decided to take a walk but I didn’t feel like being chased by a dog. So, I went to the small airport by my house just to watch the sunset and ruminate over different aspects of life.

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You are not entitled

We are not entitled to anyone’s love.
We are not entitled to anyone’s friendship.
We are not entitled to anyone’s professionalism, courtesy, consideration or admiration.
We are not even entitled to life.
Receive it all in gratitude.
Tomorrow is not promised.

J

Every time I visit Jada Pinkett-Smith’s page on Facebook, I receive a message crafted just for me. Jada has a way of using her introspective thoughts to connect with all of her readers.  I love and admire the caution she takes in analyzing every experience, gaining peace along the way.

I read the post above and thought, wow, you’re so right, Jada. Although I knew the information already, it just hit a little closer to home for me.

How often do we feel like people owe us everything? We feel like our family owe us love; our friends owe us time; our colleagues owe us respect; our partners owe us love and admiration. In an ideal world, we would get everything we wanted. But in this life, you can’t control any of it, only your response to it.

So, you can choose to be upset when people don’t acknowledge you, when situations don’t go your way, or when someone doesn’t love you the way you want to be loved. Or…you can accept that you’re not entitled to any of those things. That way, when you do unexpectedly receive whatever it is that you desire, you will be grateful for it.

Let go of the need to control the outcome and start appreciating what is in front of you right now.

Happy Monday.

miss lucy

The power of words

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The Four Agreements, pg. 34 & 35

There was a woman, for example, who was intelligent and had a very good heart. She had a daughter whom she adored and loved very much. One night she came home from a very bad day at work, tired, full of emotional tension, and with a terrible headache. She wanted peace and quiet, but her daughter was singing and jumping happily. The daughter was unaware of how her mother was feeling; she was in her own world, in her own dream. She felt so wonderful, and she was jumping and singing louder and louder, expressing her joy and her love. She was singing so loud that it made her mother’s headache even worse, and at a certain moment, the mother lost control. Angrily she looked at her beautiful little girl and said, “Shut up! You have an ugly voice. Can you just shut up!”

The truth is that the mother’s tolerance for any noise was nonexistent; it was not that the little girl’s voice was ugly. But the daughter believed what her mother said, and in that moment she made an agreement with herself. After that she no longer sang, because she believed her voice was ugly and would bother anyone who heard it. She became shy at school, and if she was to sing, she refused. Even speaking to others became difficult for her. Everything changed in the little girl because of this new agreement: She believed she must repress her emotions in order to be accepted and loved.

Whenever we hear an opinion and believe it, we make an agreement, and it becomes part of our belief system. This little girl grew up, and even though she had a beautiful voice, she never sang again. She developed a whole complex from one spell. This spell was cast upon her by the one who loved her the most: her own mother.

Wow, what a revelation. After reading this passage, it dawned on me that at one point in time, I held on to similarly disparaging words.

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The truth is…

51724d6c18e770ca0d6224b4ac3c4682Last week, a friend of mine put this post in her Gmail status. Shortly after reading it, I came across this post amongst the blogs that I read. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that both posts speak true to how I’m feeling and have been feeling for a long time now. I am not happy. Waking up in the morning feels like a chore. Finding interest in people and things have become a burden. Foods that I use to love have lost their flavor. And tears? HA! I’ve cried more times this year alone than I have in my entire life, twice over.

But WHO wants to talk about that stuff? Who can you say those things to without feeling like you’re complaining or seeking sympathy? No one, really. But I’m choosing to tell you all today for vulnerability’s sake. I don’t wake up every morning with birds singing sweet songs in my ears. I’m not excited about much of anything anymore. I feel like a complete stranger to myself. That’s not the kinds of things people want to hear. But it’s my truth for the moment.

After reading those posts, I felt like I should be honest with you all. I know that my writing has changed because I don’t feel 100% like myself. That isn’t fair to you as a faithful reader. I appreciate you so much. So here goes.

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Respect the queen

PicMonkey Collage (2) (1)It was right before bed when I first heard Janelle Monae’s song, Q.U.E.E.N. I thought to myself, “what is this noise that I am I listening to right now?” By the second and third listen the next day, I finally realized how perfect it actually was. Oh yes, Miss Monae brought it with the funky beats and hip-hop slash gospel tones. But more than that, her lyrics spoke to the very thoughts I’ve been mulling over for quite some time. It was at that moment that I decided to reclaim my Queendom. I decided to reclaim the respect that I feel I’ve lost along my way.

“Even if it makes others uncomfortable, I will love who I am.”

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10 necessary grown up realizations

My friend Keila is like the therapist I never thought I needed but glad I have. Today she randomly sent me a text message asking why she had to find out about my latest venture through the internet. No real answer there except that I was sorry. But knowing that I have her support regardless really lit up my somber day.

We moved on to gchat to fully catch up. I tell you, not even fifteen minutes into the conversation, I was literally reaching for my Kleenex. Keila has an introspective way of communicating that always stirs me up. She’s just that friend that encourages you to wholly embrace whatever it is that you’re feeling. Which, at times, can be very awkward.

We talked about life choices, love, purpose and other not so fun adult stuff. It reminded me of an article I read earlier about adulthood. It’s never easy realizing that you’re an adult. That there are certain choices you’re solely responsible for. That some journeys can only be traveled alone. That sometimes you have to struggle to get the things that you want. The article lists 24 painful things you must do as an adult. Here are my two cents.

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I’m in a glass case of emotion!

this chat is brought to you by myself and a spirited Cancer friend…and the letter E, for emo. warning: mature language below.
me:  do you find it hard to reel in emotions, as a Cancer?
friend:  …as i’ve gotten older and a little better at understanding myself, i think that i go thru a wide range of emotions very fast, and if i’m not careful, they may all come out at once
me:  yikes
friend:  i find that i have to make a conscious effort to look at things logically rather than emotionally, but on the flip side my intuition (which may not be purely emotion based but plays a part).. my intuition hardly EVER is wrong. I may be really mad at something, but laugh and make a joke about something else then a little later cry about some completely different situation.  BUT i’ve learned that i dont have to make excuses for my emotions. If something hurts my feelings or upsets me, that’s just what it is and I shouldn’t feel bad about that.  some ppl who are overly emotional or sensitive prob shouldnt take that stance but i think it works for me
me:  i think….growing up as someone who has always bottled emotions, dealing with them at this point in my life is a huge challenge. i’m like what the fuck is this??? TEARS??? what am i supposed to do with this?! i’m totally undone. and for no real reason other than i’ve bottled things in for so long. like i legit have tears in my eyes right now. why? because i wrote the word ‘tears’.
friend:  i’m a bottler too actually.  I mean I cry, but actually going in depth about my issues as they develop, i suck at that, i dont think its good to be a bottler, but i also think you should be selective on who you open up to. some people will judge you if you’re too transparent and i hate that, i also hate when you open up to ppl and they stare at you and act like they’ve never been thru what you’re going thru.  even though you know for a fact that their situation was the same if not worse but they look at you like you’re a poor unfortunate soul, i cant.
me:  that’s kinda heartless.  i’ve acknowledged a few years ago that it isn’t good to bottle things in. i’ve allowed myself to “feel” and it’s an interesting experience to say the least. i just need more control over them. or maybe i can just read my damn tattoo and let it be.
friend:  please feel. i strongly encourage it actually. i think more people should feel. be vulnerable and feel comfortable in that vulnerability.  you should never have to apologize for your feelings, they’re yours and you’re grown
me:  it’s just foreign territory. but i’m learning to accept it
friend:  please do. i mean we all have to learn the other side of the fence. I bet you try to look at things logically. thats foreign territory to me! but i think its beneficial to everyone involved when i take that extra step and say “hey, emo girl WANTS to burn this bitch to the ground, but LOGICAL girl should prob just tell him ‘hey i saw all those hoes in your phone, i’m leaving’ ” see, it works. i say that to say, if you explore the other side of the fence, it’ll open up more options for you… i think
me:  lol!!! emo girl is funny
friend:  welll, what are you gonna do about your bottled up emos??
me:  i’m just trying to figure out how to put them to good use without letting them consume me. cuz right now, i’m drowning.
friend:  i would suggest writing but you already do that… i think you need something physical then, like exercise or kick boxing or something.  something extremely physical, but not like sex.. trust me, i’m a doctor.
me:  LMAO. it’s what i want tho….but i agree
friend:  have you been feeling like this for a while, or does it feel like it all just got dumped on you at once or was it gradual?
or is it something that you’ve just always had and now you wanna free yourself!  “Free your mind and the rest will follow” thats the realest shit she dun EVA SAID
me:  lol…just the last two years.
friend:  I get that. Well to get different results you gotta do things you’ve never done before.  Something substantial. it may be hard but it may just be what you gotta do
me:  yup. all that i’ve realized. it’s just weird. but i’m evolving!
friend:  good! thats the great part about life. growth and change!
me:  hey. do i have your permission to use some of this conversation in a blog post. i won’t reveal your identity. i can call you a “spirited Cancer”
friend:  lol absolutely!
So here’s the deal. For the past two years I’ve felt like I’ve completely lost control over my emotions. Not everyday. Maybe once every other month. It all depends on my diet, my relationships, movies I watch, and music I listen to. On those days, I wake up feeling like Ron Burgundy. Actually, I’ve never cried like that but it’s only a matter of time because I’m literally a time bomb waiting to explode.
I guess I can say it all started when I decided to love fully and completely a few years back. Everything went straight to hell from there. Kidding…but not really. Fast forward past heaven and hell and into this present moment. I just can’t. How does everyone deal with emotions on a regular basis??? I see babies and old people, I tear up. Happy movie, sad movie, I sniffle. Books I read, waterfalls. Love, I’m a mess. But you’d only know these things about me through this blog. I would never show it in public.
“Spirited Cancer” says I should continue to feel but this is dreadful. Or maybe it would be some kind of wonderful if I had more control. Fuck. Maybe this is just the way life is supposed to be. If so, I hereby concede to my emotions for today. So here’s how I’m feeling. I woke up this morning and my president was still Black. Today I also celebrate my thirteenth anniversary of living in Atlanta. I just ate hot wings for lunch and licked two out of five fingers. I may not exactly have a hold on my emotions just yet but hell, I’m gonna ride this bitch out.
“So, this is my life. And I want you to know that I am both happy and sad and I’m still trying to figure out how that could be.” -The Perks of Being a Wallflower