Did you choose you or did someone else tell you who to be?

How did you come to be who you are? Did you choose the person you are or did someone else-society, religion, your parents-tell you who to be?

Recently I served as a panelist as part of a discussion on black woman, stereotypes and the #MeToo movement. The discussion centered on the stereotypes associated with black women and how those stereotypes helped perpetuate sexual violence against black women and how those stories are or are not being told in this time of #MeToo.

During the discussion the topic of black womanhood came up, specifically, what it means to be a black woman. My response was that as women, we came into our womanhood in a patriarchal society and that our womanhood has been defined by others. Men. A society that is male centered and male dominated has decided what the standards for being a woman are and women themselves have perpetuated this standard. Men have decided the standards for what a woman should be, how she should dress, how she should speak, how she should behave, wear her hair, who she should date and most importantly, her sexuality.  And all of it is based on the needs, wants and desires of males.

Question for you: Did you as a woman have a say in setting the standard for who you are as a woman or did you fall in line with what was dictated to you? Do you sit quietly when you really have the desire to roar because you have been told that a lady is not loud? Do you stand by when you seen an injustice being committed against others when the warrior spirit in you really wants to fight against that injustice? Do you forgo the short miniskirt that set your heart ablaze when you first saw it or do you choose the more “appropriate” longer skirt because society says that only whores wear dresses that short?

My point is to inspire you to think about how you became who you are. If you are not  being the woman you really want to be then I encourage you to courageously explore who you really are, what it is that you really like and what womanhood means for you  and start on the path to becoming that woman. Know that you are supported every step of the way by the Divine. After all, it is the Divine who created you.

You have been activated

A few years ago I was asked to speak at a women’s empowerment luncheon. Naturally, my message was about the innate power that women possess to make and create change, why women don’t use that power and how to recognize and activate it. During my address I made the declaration that if the trajectory of the world was going to change, it would be by the hands of the world’s women. When women got tired of the violence, the miseducation of our children, childhood hunger, sexual assault, political policy that benefits only a few  and other things happening in the world and took a United stand, we would begin to see things change in the world.  I still believe this today.
 There has never been a time in history where women’s voices, their gifts, talents, skills, strategies and our powers are not more needed than they are right now. Our world is in peril but the tide is definitely shifting. Women have been activated. All around us we are seeing women and girls get on the front lines of change. We are demanding that the powers that be hear us. As a matter of fact, we are becoming the powers that be. More women are running for elected office and assisting women in getting into elected office than ever before. We are seeing a sharp rise in the number of African American women who are choosing to run for office as well.  We are seeing unprecedented numbers of women and girls engaging in activism and challenging the status quo.
 ‎
On this International Women’s Day, I encourage you to find your place in this time of change. You are here for such a time as this! You are well equipped to do what you have been placed in this world to do. You are smart, brilliant, powerful, strategic, skilled, talented and gifted so that you can do what you what you have been called to do. Take your place sister! You have been activated!

Happy Valentines Day-Daily Desserts to Inspire Self-Love

Happy Valentines Day to you all! I hope that while you’re giving luv to those closest to you, that you are giving luv to the most important person in your life: YOU! 
As my Valentines Day gift to you I want to share with you something that I have been working on for quite some time. It’s called “Daily Desserts to Inspire Self-Love” and it is my labor of luv to all of you. I hope you enjoy it. Click HERE to download.  Leave a comment in the comment section below and let me know what you think. 
In Luv and Dessert, 
Leisa Monique

(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i[‘GoogleAnalyticsObject’]=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,’script’,’//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js’,’ga’); ga(‘create’, ‘UA-57888448-1’, ‘auto’); ga(‘send’, ‘pageview’);