Against the Grain…

I have nothing against celebrating the holidays that are already in place, but someone like you and I created them. Celebrating holidays have bloomed into traditions, which is totally fine. What I have an issue with is people being singled out, breaking bank to fit in, feeling less than, idolizing materials, and glamorizing the shallow celebration without uplifting or obtaining the meaningful values behind the “holiday”.

Don’t allow the norms in society to put you down because you don’t fit into the mold they deem acceptable. Where’s the love in that? There is none.

Today is Valentine’s day. If you know me, you know I love me some love. It warms my heart to see everyone celebrating their love, and loved ones. But I didn’t appreciate an article I read that basically stated if you are single on this day, you may need to reevaluate yourself. My truth is that I do not have a date today, and even though I am fine with that someone may read the same article and really think they are not whole because they are not spending this day with a romantic partner, and that made me uneasy.

Love is all around.  And should not be limited to one day. Lift love up everyday. Lift up your friends everyday. Lift up your family everyday. Lift up your support system everyday. Lift yourself up everyday. Lift up GOD everyday.

Aim to be consistent in showing appreciation. Aim to be different! Create your own holidays that are filled with meaning, and have a great deal of significance to you and your life. I get excited about creating my own holiday’s and traditions. Uplift your values every day so all days are special.

Don’t measure yourself, relationship, or values with man made concepts. We’re only humans.

But what do I know?

#TREATYOURSELF #CREATEYOUROWN #LIVEYOURTRUTH #CELEBRATEDAILY

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Check Yourself.

It’s February and I needed to remind myself that I wanted a NEW year not just ANOTHER year.

  • Pray pray pray. You can never go wrong when you invite the Lord into your life. No decision, want, need, conversation, trial, tribulation, step, goal, or success is ever too big or too small for God. Thank you, Jesus.
  • Don’t sleep. Do the work.
  • Those unhealthy habits…Stop lying to yourself, you are totally aware of them. Own it and cut it out.
  • Avoid slippery slopes. What glory does God get from you physically insert yourself into a situation when you are mentally premature, with hopes that all will go well?
  • Be honest. With yourself and others. Know the difference between yes men &  doubters VS. motivators & those offering constructive criticism.
  • Take risks. Growth, the unknown, and newness is all outside of your comfort zone.
  • Truly love, and embrace who you are and where you are in life.

Am I missing anything?

It’s so important for me to be my biggest cheerleader and accountability partner. Also, I don’t want to be the same person day after day…I want to be stretched and challenged to be greater every day in every way. If I can accomplish that there is no way I will have JUST ANOTHER year.

But hey, what do I know?

#NOTETOSELF #IMPROVEDMEWHODIS? #LEVITATE #DONTWRECKYOURSELF

JanuaryTwenty17.

  • Last year I had a major revelation in January, which led me to making some pretty big decisions that shaped my whole year.
  • Today I feel the same thing happening, so I am interested in how that will manifest throughout the year.
  • It usually goes sadness, anger, denial, and acceptance. It’s safe to say I experienced all of those emotions today. Prayerfully, I can stay at a place of acceptance.
  • I experienced a multitude of emotions today, because I didn’t run.  Even when the opportunity to run was presented to me a couple of times, I declined. There was no space for defense mechanisms today.
  • I worked my way to a few conclusions and usually getting from point A to point B can be a rollercoaster. For me today went so smooth. God gets all the glory.
  • Its a beautiful thing to practice being honest with yourself and others. Especially, when it’s a tough topic to cover.
  • Being still is so important. I was able to hear so much by just being still and allowing the answers to come to me. There was no need for an outside source, the answers came from within, from my foundation.
  • This year will be hard work, and I expect to be made uncomfortable.
  • 2018, third times a charm or nah?

“Everything that happens once can never happen again. But everything that happens twice will surely happen a third time.” -Paulo Coelho

I’m thinking January may be a special month for me, but what do I know?

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#MONTHOFGROWH #JANUARYTHOUGHTS #JOURNEYTOTWENTYGREAT

Dub Life

Join the club…

WORSHIP 

“To worship is to quicken the conscience by the holiness of God, to feed the mind with the truth of God, to purge the imagination by the beauty of God, to open the heart to the love of God, to devote the will to the purpose of God.” -William Temple

When building a house the most important thing is the foundation. A house with a weak foundation is a bad investment, and unable to withstand harsh conditions. I am consistently trying to grow in my walk with the Lord. Though I fall short, I can feel a change in my thoughts, and values. I am certain it has a positive impact on my behavior. The Lord is worth searching, and worshiping. By searching, loving, trusting, and walking with the Lord I am able to endure the hardships that come my way. The deeper the roots the stronger the tree, right? Absolutely. It’s important to me to be deeply rooted spiritually, so I can truly be resilient without it having a harsh toll on me mentally, spiritually and physically. I’m aware that all walks of life are different but I strongly encourage increasing your praise and worship life. We may not have the same beliefs, but knowing your values and living a life that is a true reflection of what you believe is key. This world will try to convince you that you are losing but you can miss me with that non-sense. As long as I give God the glory, work on my prayer life, love and serve others there is no way I’m taking an L.

WORK

“If you invest nothing, the reward is worth little.” – Richelle Goodrich

You reap what you sow, so if you want anything to flourish you have to put in the work. When it comes to my personal growth, work aspirations, relationships, business endeavors, health goals, I mean anything you name it. I must put in the hours, push through procrastination, and move at my own pace to see some progress. Some days I am able to give 110% and some days not so much, but I have learned to respect the process. I know if there is something I’m not excelling in, it’s because I haven’t put forth the effort to ensure that win. Opposition, and obstacles will always arise but truly being a winner is pushing above that and them. Still working hard for my goals no matter gets in my way is how I measure up if I’m winning or pre-winning (lol). I may not always achieve the success I thought I was working toward, but along the way, I always expand my mindset, make new connections with others, discover additional goals, and add experience to my belt. Where’s the loss in that?

WAIT

“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.” – Beverly Sills

I struggle with being patient in many areas of my life. That’s a fact. Therefore, the road to being somewhat stoic is one that I constantly try to travel down. I’ve learned that making a habit of rushing the process will take you down a slippery slope. It causes unnecessary stress, headaches, over thinking, hurts others and myself. Often times it will even take you down a path you had a no business traveling in the first place. Almost every goal, if not all, that I want to accomplish will take quality time and preparation. Let me repeat that…quality time and preparation. With that being known, it’s important to be able to endure the discomfort associated with waiting without complaining. It is not just about being able to wait, but how exactly does my wait look to others and myself. Now that’s the major key! While I am on this mission, let me not mentally reject what I decided to commit to. Understand it’ll take some time, and be one with it. Enjoy every minute of it, even the minutes that hug my last nerve, because I can’t get them back. I must always move forward with a positive attitude because I am not the only one waiting. My dreams have been waiting for me since before time. They have been eagerly waiting to be greeted with a head held high, inviting spirit, hopeful mindset, and a gorgeous smile. So I plan on giving them exactly what they’re waiting for!

Honestly, what’s an L? Because I’m always winning…But what do I know?

#TREDUB #WHATSYOURWIN #YEAROFDUBS #DUBCITY #GOODVIBESONLY

Steece’s Steez

There will be never be another me. No one will experience life the way I did. My vision is my own. No other viewers allowed. All of the emotions felt, hard work put in, and growth that took place are mine and only mine. Every little cool, quirky, disgusting, brilliant, mediocre, beautiful, astonishing, dope, weak, and weird thing that makes me who I am can never be recreated by anyone else.

That’s music to my ears.

Each morning I wake up I am gifted with another front row seat to this unique film. So how can I ever have the audacity to be disappointed with anything that has, is, or will take place in my life? There is beauty in the fall, and glory in the ascension. No matter what is taking place it is my own, and for that I am extremely thankful. If I truly love myself I have to speak with confidence about my strengths and weaknesses. I must find and be aware of the light in all of my  existence.

You know whats no surprise? My success is different from yours. My failure is different from yours. My love doesn’t look like yours. My pain doesn’t look like yours. My walk, harlem shake, and electric slide is certainly going to be different from yours. My everything will never look like anything you have.And you know what? I think it’s wonderful.

You hate me? That’s your prerogative. You misunderstand me? That’s unfortunate but peace unto you. You can’t stand me? Hey, it’s all good. You love me? Great, enjoy the ride. Either way I still pray for you.

I am growing to appreciate my life so much more…but no worries. Loving me more just permits me to love you and appreciate all of your differences, and what you have to offer the world. Since no one is the same we all compliment each other and in that I find peace. Glory to God.

My style has always been to create home wherever I am and moving forward I welcome whatever comes my way.

But hey what do I know?

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#Magicbehindthemadness #Shineyourlightontheworld

 

Pass Your Skin To Your Energy

“It is no exaggeration to say that every human being is hypnotized to some extent, either by the idea he uncritically accepted from others, or ideas he has repeated to himself or convinced himself are true” – Maxwell Maltz

The aforementioned quote was pulled from one of my favorite books ‘Psycho-Cybernetics’, which has been on my mind for some time. It’s funny how society works. Society will tell you who you are allowed to be, before you can figure out who you are. They’ll label you so much so that you actually wear the mask of the lie, and it becomes apart of your identity. The lies parade around like they are the truth. They become so embedded in who we are its like a layer of Teflon over our skin. Our natural energy isn’t allowed to flow and grow because society said so.

On this journey of self love, and uplifting the black community I’ve found myself creating a space for women to achieve self recovery, but lacked a focus on my brothers. I love the Black man in his entirety. I’ve been able to lean on him for support, he’s stretched me to reach new heights, and has allowed me to unpack the pain he’s been carrying for Lord knows how long.

Kings are called to lead, to be fearless, to be the pillar of strength for everyone. But do we ever think about how the mask they have to wear affects them? A close friend of mine expressed that this patriarchy norm of being emotionally cold has hindered black men in forming healthy ways to express their emotions. There was no example given to him, from friends or family, on how to release his emotions constructively . He was always taught to just “be a man” which created the illusion of having it all together, when in fact he was really unraveling on the inside. One of the most common symptoms of depression is anger. When you are not taught or given a safe space to practice a way to constructively release your feelings, you become irritable and even destructive. He felt that to truly be a man he needed to be able to identify and manage the complicated emotions he was experiencing without feeling like less than a man.

One brother stated “As a black man I find that at times it is looked upon as a weakness to express emotion and love.” He found the media to be the main culprit of promoting shows, movies, and music that portrayed black men as weak when they demonstrated any emotion other than anger. He revealed that this negative portrayal was something he clung too for a long time, which left him thinking the only way he could prove himself as a man, was through physical dominance. Usually women are deemed as “the angry black woman” but men feel what they continue to see are a bunch of angry black men.

Some men have expressed that they have been plagued with these images of being hyper sexual beings. Let me refer to the quote mentioned in the beginning of my post. Anyone can be hypnotized! Black men are constantly encouraged to wear this mask of being hyper sexual. How can we truly blame, or expect them to hold full accountability for becoming what is constantly reinforced as their natural state? Men have expressed that their college peers have played a huge role in egging on behaviors that have been detrimental to them building meaningful relationships. As they mature they are struggling to truly connect with their significant others, because they were taught that key to intimacy is mainly through sexual acts.

What I’ve expressed isn’t meant to be an exhaustive analysis of the trials of the black man, but the narrative of a few may be the same for many and the conversation has to start somewhere. We as a community have to do better. As a woman it is on me to be aware and take responsibility of being a helpmate in the Black man’s journey to self recovery. I must be that safe place, I must be that example. I must be patient, kind, protective, trusting, hopeful, and truthful. I must become love if I am to expect him to rise above all of the barriers that were unlawfully placed on him. The burden is not all on me, but love spreads. We have to be the change we wish to see, so that it will ignite that spirit in others.

It would be lovely to truly know our King’s and see their natural energy flourish. But hey what do I know?

Prospero, you are the master of illusion.
Lying is your trademark.
And you have lied so much to me
(Lied about the world, lied about me)
That you have ended by imposing on me
An image of myself.
Underdeveloped, you brand me, inferior,
That s the way you have forced me to see myself
I detest that image! What’s more, it’s a lie!
But now I know you, you old cancer,
And I know myself as well.
~ Caliban, in Aime Cesaire’s A Tempest

#SEEKTOREDEFINESTRENGTH #TAKEOFFYOURMASK #TOGETHERWECANASCEND