Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays

Wishing you all a wonderful Christmas and joy for the holidays. May peace be yours today and always.

In Luv and Dessert,

~Leisa Monique

Monday Mantra

If you have followed this blog for any length of time you know that here at #EMDF we embrace Monday and use the day to create a magnificent day and week. if you are new to the EMDF family I hope you, too will embrace Monday and use it to set the tone for the rest of your week.

I am super excited to kick off #MondayMantra, a weekly affirmation that you can use to get your Monday started. I will post a new Mantra every Monday in an effort to get more people to embrace the beauty of Monday rather than dread it.

In Luv and Dessert,

Leisa Monique

When the Teacher is Ready…

We have all heard it said that when the student is ready the teacher shows up. I was in a conversation recently with my BFF Sandra Dee and I was sharing with her all of the opportunities that I have been getting to be a panelist and speaker for various events. There have even been amazing career opportunities that have presented themselves. Its been pretty exciting for me. As we talked about it I recalled a time when I was frustrated because I wasn’t getting these opportunities. I’ve had this brand for over 10 years and have been in this space of inspiration, activism, self-worth, and self-luv for all of them. And though I have served as a keynote speaker and been a panelist countless times, it is only now that the opportunities are pouring in.

“What do you think the difference is,” she asked me, and as I thought about it, I thought about how I felt when presented with these opportunities in the past vs. how I feel now. Suddenly the light bulb turned on and I realized what was different. My confidence! In the past when I was asked to speak I would get extremely nervous. Oh, I would do it and do a great job but the process was almost excruciating. To the point where I would be tempted to pull out of the engagement. And I have done that too. I have canceled events that I had planned, had family emergencies so that I didn’t have to go through with a speaking commitment, or serve as a panelist or be in front of people. I was operating from a place of fear.

I have now reached a point in my life where I have learned to trust myself and the Spirit within me. I trust that I am capable of. I trust that I can execute. I trust that what I have to say is what is needed at the moment. I trust in my purpose. I am confident in the wisdom of my words. I am confident in ME. Getting to this point in my life has been a long and arduous process. It has been a beautiful process though, filled with all kinds of experiences. Some that still incite tears when I think about them and some that brought the badass me that I didn’t realize was there. There were some that brought sadness and despair and there were some that required me to develop my talents, skills, ideas, and strategic thinking. All of them played a role in me becoming the confident woman that I am now.

“Ah”, Sandra Dee said, “when the student is ready the teacher shows up.” But what I heard was “When the TEACHER is ready the students show up!” And that is was resonated with me. Students were showing up to hear what I have to say because their teacher is now ready. And ready she is!!

In Luv and Dessert,

~Leisa Monique

National Women’s Health Week

“Communities and countries and ultimately the world are only as strong as the health of their women.”
~Michelle Obama


May 10-16, 2020

It’s National Women’s Health Week and as we navigate the current times, we are mindful of the importance of our physical and mental health and the health of all of the women in our lives. 

This is a great time to check-in with yourself to see how you are doing physically, mentally, emotionally, financially, and Spiritually and think about making any changes that you feel are necessary to be in optimal health in all areas of your life.

We are living in challenging times but we can minimize the stress of daily life as we know it by engaging in activities that bring us joy and happiness and offer us an opportunity for peace. The Office on Women’s Health offers a wealth of resources on women’s and girl’s health including a fact sheet and this handy “Find Your Health” tool to help you assess where you are with your health. Our blog Eat My Dessert First offers plenty of inspiring posts to guide you on your path to healthy self-worth and self-esteem including the Ebook “Daily Desserts to Inspire Self-Love“. There are also resources on financial education and budgeting to help you get your money right. 

No matter where you are on your journey to optimal health know that you are supported. Be gentle with yourself and give yourself space to explore and grow. Nurture your body, mind, and Spirit and above all else give yourself all the luv and support you need to get through these times. Enjoy your journey! 

In luv and dessert, 

~Leisa Monique

Have a Wonder-Filled Day Luving Your SELF First!

Valentines Day 2019
In honor of Valentines Day, I am reposting one of my favorite blog posts that I wrote some years ago. I find that it is as relevant today as it was when I first wrote it. Enjoy. 
“Your task is not to seek for Love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
– Rumi, thirteenth-century Sufi poet

“Love yourself. Forgive yourself. Be true to yourself. How you treat yourself sets the standard for how others will treat you.” 
― Steve Maraboli

As we celebrate the day of luv remember to honor, luv and accept your SELF right where you are. SELF is the core of who you are, your essence your Divinity. Accept it, luv it and honor it for doing so you are honoring the Divine in you!

Do something nice for your SELF today: rest, take a hot bath, dance, read a book, listen to soothing music…give your SELF a break from the stress and strain of life and give your SELF something wonder-filled.

I do hope that while you are expressing luv to those in your circle that you will take the time to give luv to your SELF. To guide you into doing do Please download my gift of Luv to you. It is an e-book entitled Daily Desserts to Inspire Self-Luv. I hope that it will indeed inspire you to find luv within you.

In Luv and Dessert,

Leisa Monique

Fabulous Thanksgiving To You!

“Gratitude means to recognize the good in your life, be thankful for whatever you have, some people may not even have one of those things you consider precious to you (love, family, friends etc). Each day give thanks for the gift of life.You are blessed” 
 Unknown

“If a fellow isn’t thankful for what he’s got, he isn’t likely to be thankful for what he’s going to get.”
Frank A. Clark 

Good morning desserters. To all of my American friends, I wish you a wonder-filled Thanksgiving today. For all of my friends in other parts of the world that don’t celebrate Thanksgiving, I wish you a day of joy, peace, awareness, gratitude and consciousness. Know that I am thankful for each of you.  May you continue to see the blessing in YOU and may you always recognize your worth and value.

In gratitude,

Leisa Monique

Have a Wonder-Filled Day Luving Your SELF First!

Valentines Day 2019
In honor of Valentines Day, I am reposting one of my favorite blog posts that I wrote some years ago. I find that it is as relevant today as it was when I first wrote it. Enjoy. 
“Your task is not to seek for Love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
– Rumi, thirteenth-century Sufi poet

“Love yourself. Forgive yourself. Be true to yourself. How you treat yourself sets the standard for how others will treat you.” 
― Steve Maraboli

As we celebrate the day of luv remember to honor, luv and accept your SELF right where you are. SELF is the core of who you are, your essence your Divinity. Accept it, luv it and honor it for doing so you are honoring the Divine in you!

Do something nice for your SELF today: rest, take a hot bath, dance, read a book, listen to soothing music…give your SELF a break from the stress and strain of life and give your SELF something wonder-filled.

I do hope that while you are expressing luv to those in your circle that you will take the time to give luv to your SELF. To guide you into doing do Please download my gift of Luv to you. It is an e-book entitled Daily Desserts to Inspire Self-Luv. I hope that it will indeed inspire you to find luv within you.

In Luv and Dessert,

Leisa Monique

LEAVE IT ALL ON THE FIELD-BY JONATHAN MEAD

I loved this piece from Jonathan Mead, author of Illuminated Mind, so much that I wanted to share it with you!  Enjoy!

Right now, you have a choice. You can live life partially closed or wide open.
You can spend each day feeling completely spent, knowing that you gave everything. Or you can hesitate, hold back, and obstruct what you have to give.
The first path is where you let your heart guide you, immersed in a deep curiosity and with a sense of exploration. You smile at what you have yet to do because you know that each step will be joyful and deliberate.
The second path is filled with second-guessing, what-ifs, and seeking approval from maps and nods of others. You cringe with each step; you feel tense and unsure.
One way leads you to feeling thoroughly used up, knowing that you gave everything and held nothing back. Like at the end of a good run, you’re tired, yet energized.
The other way leaves you with a feeling of fragmentation; a sense that part of you has been closed off and bottled up. You feel twisted and jammed, as if some part of you is being pinched off.
They have a saying in sports to “leave it all on the field.” It means: Hold nothing back, put it all on the line. Don’t end the game feeling like you could have given more. Don’t leave feeling like you played it safe when you had the opportunity for something greater.
If you give everything, there will be no questions about what you could or might have done.
I definitely relate to this when I’m running the San Gabriel trails in my backyard. Most of the time I don’t run all the way up the steep climb to the top (an elevation gain and drop of about 4,000 feet over 7 miles), but when I stop to walk I hear a call somewhere in me asking if I have anything left to give. I ask: Jonathan, is there anything left in there? And even though my lungs are on fire and calves are burning I always find that the answer is Yes, there’s something more to give.
It’s easier when I’m on the trail. I’m only thinking about the next few steps in front of me; the next bush, the next turn… just a few more feet. In life I find it to be a bit more tricky. The path isn’t always as clear. Goals change as you move toward them; life can be messy and unpredictable.
But I find the goal to be the same. Give everything, hold nothing back. Unrelentingly feed love into everything that you do, in every interaction, every step. Even the smallest things can be done with great love.
Of course there will be days where you stumble. Sometimes you will make things out to be bigger than you are and forget what matters. Something on the path will distract you and deter you from the direction you want to go. But then you will remember to retrace your steps and take notice.
And when you reflect you’ll remember: give everything, hold nothing back. End each day thoroughly spent.
That’s the way I want to end each day. How about you?

LIVING FROM THE INSIDE OUT

It’s Monday y’all and I’m feeling really excited! I have been this way all weekend. I feel such an energy in the atmosphere! It feels like restlessness or the feeling that something big is getting ready to happen! Do you feel it? I know you do!! With this energy surrounding us and with today being Monday, I felt like this was the perfect time to encourage you to look within and see what areas of your life need your attention and begin the journey of transformation. There is no better time than now, so don’t let another day go by before you decide to begin your journey!

One of the hardest things for us to do in life is to take a look at the woman or man in the mirror and take responsibility for the circumstances of our life. It is so much easier to place blame on those around us who have caused us pain in some way rather than accept the choices we have made that play a part in creating our circumstances. Oh, this is not going to be a pleasant one today but it is NECESSARY if you are ever going to start living the life that you so desire. So sit back, open your mind and heart and prepare to begin the first day of the rest of your life.

First, let me make one thing clear: What’s happening around us on the outside is a direct reflection of what is going on with us on the inside! This may be a foreign concept to you, but it is one that you must grasp if you are going to move forward. Your life-your situation, your circumstances, your state of being- is a direct reflection of the state of your mind! If you are experiencing disorder within, your life will reflect disorder without! Sit with that one for a while and let it sink in. What you are experiencing on the outside if reflective of what and how you think and feel on the inside!

It is tempting when we have experienced emotional pain in some form, to hold on to that pain and make it our story. It’s the story that we tell over and over to ourselves and to everyone else. It’s the story that we use to gain pity from others and to wallow in self-pity ourselves. We begin to believe in the story, which starts to define us and becomes who we think we are. The boyfriend or girlfriend who did you wrong!  The parents who didn’t listen to you when you were growing up! The person who violated you as a child! Oh, I’m going deep today!! I’m getting all in your business! Why? Because it’s time you get off the ride of self-pity which does not serve you in any way and start being the person you were created to be!! Yeah, I know it was painful but is over! It has no effect on you anymore!  And the sooner you let go of the story, the sooner you can begin to LIVE!

The first step is to understand who you! You are an extension of the Divine! You are not your story! You are powerful, creative, magnificent, beautiful, loved, worthy, and good enough! Some of us have believed in the story of who we have told ourselves we are for so long that we actually begin to live the story. YOU ARE NOT YOUR STORY!

The second step is to open your mind. I recently wrote that the hardest thing to open is a closed mind, and I find it to be so true! Once we begin to believe in something, it is almost impossible to open our minds to the possibility of something else! But IT IS possible, so open your mind and be willing to learn and try something new.

Next, be willing to take responsibility for your life! See! Right there, some of you are ready to stop reading and go back to telling yourself your story. But if you are going to grow, then you must take responsibility for your life and the choices you have made that have contributed to your circumstances. It’s tempting to go back to the familiar because it’s often what is comfortable. Growth is never comfortable, and the pain of facing ourselves and the choices we have made can hurt like nothing we have ever experienced before. But again, it’s necessary!

Taking responsibility does not mean blaming yourself!! It does not mean judging yourself! It simply means that you acknowledge the choices that you have made in your life. If we sit and honestly look at our life, we will see that our circumstances are related to the choices we have made, but again, that doesn’t mean we go into judgment or blame mode.

Once you have opened yourself up and are willing to go within and acknowledge your hurts and how they contribute to the story you tell, and how it is holding you back, transformation will begin to occur. This is not an overnight process, so be patient with yourself. And don’t think for a minute that this is going to be an easy process, either! It’s not! It will be ugly and painful! The hardest thing to do in life is to look at ourselves in the mirror and acknowledge that we, not everyone else, are the problem! To acknowledge that subconsciously we create the circumstances or the drama in our life that we say we don’t want!

Well, those circumstances are just that! Circumstances!! They are not your life so stop believing in them and begin to believe in the power of your creation! Believe in who you are! Believe that you are worthy of the life that you dream about! Believe that the story you have been telling yourself and others no longer serves you, and be willing to let it go!

This is a good time to begin a meditation practice if you haven’t already done so. I encourage you to make time for yourself on this journey by getting up half an hour earlier than you normally do. Create a practice of prayer and meditation for yourself that works for you. Please don’t get spooked out by the fact that I said prayer and meditation. This is not a religious thing. Whatever your beliefs are, whatever your spiritual practices are, I encourage you to build a prayer and meditation practice around those beliefs. There are many books and other resources on meditation, and I encourage you to find one that works for you.

Whatever method you choose to aid you on your journey of transformation is fine. Just get started! Make a decision today to let go of the story you have held onto for so long! Make a decision to work through any issues or past hurts you are holding on to. Make a decision to transform yourself from the inside out and start living the life you dream of! It begins with YOU, and it begins today! Have a magnificent Monday!!

In luv and Dessert,

Leisa Monique

RIGHT WHERE YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO BE!

As I sit here and watch the sun rising I realize that at this moment, there is no place that I’d rather be! There is nothing that I’d rather be doing but sitting here in the stillness of the early morning marveling at the purplish, blue sky that is reminding me of the intelligence of the universe and that everything is as it should be because the Divine is as it should be. There is no place I’d rather be!

I haven’t always felt this way! There have been some days when I got off center and looked around me and saw my life and started to think that I should be much “farther along”‘ than where I am. A few days ago I was talking with the luv of my life and listening to him as he shared some of the disappointments that he has with himself. He expressed disappointment with some of the choices that he has made in his life and how he feels that these choices are responsible for his not being farther along in his life.

As I quietly listened to him express his thoughts my heart began to ache for him and for the countless numbers of people in the world who for whatever reason feel like they should be somewhere else in their lives; who feel like they should be doing something different than what they are doing.

I remembered feeling that way. I remembered the guilt and the sadness and even the embarrassment that came along with it. But what I remember the most about that place is coming to the realization that the choices and the decisions that I had made in my life up to that point were precisely the reason that I was who I was at that moment! I remember talking with God and expressing my own disappointment with some of the choices I had made and Him gently showing me that through all of those experiences that came along with those choices, I had become a better person! I had experienced growth from the pain of those decisions! I had evolved because of those decisions! I had learned from those experiences! Those “bad” decisions and choices had played a major part in shaping my character!!

Through the pain and suffering that came with some of the choices that I have made in my life, I have become more compassionate, more loving, more understanding and more tolerant of people and where they are in their lives. I have become a person of great character and I attribute it to the experiences of my life that those choices and decisions brought with them.

Perhaps you are looking at your life and thinking that you should be in a different job, have more money in your bank account, own your own home by now or are regretting a relationship that you had and if only you had not made THAT decision you would be much farther along in your life right now. But I’m here to tell you that YOU ARE RIGHT WHERE YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO BE!!

God doesn’t make mistakes! And if we begin to look at our life and at the “mistakes” that we have made along the way we will see that we have actually learned from them. How many times have you done something that has not turned out to be that great and you realized that it is something that you will never do again?! You learned from that “mistake” and therefore can’t call it a “mistake” at all! Its a life lesson! Even if you have found yourself doing the “same thing” over again there is still growth to be made from it.

Let me use the anology of lifting weights to drive my point home. Whether you are beginning a weight lifting routine or are experienced in the area, stay with me now, and are moving up to “heavier weight” there will be pain that comes with that heavy weight. Lifting weight actually tears your muscle fiber and anyone who has ever had any experience with working out for the first time or moving up to heavier weight than they are used to can tell you that major soreness sets in a couple of days later. The pain sometimes causes you to rethink and even regret the decision to exercise at all or to “go heavier.”

But it is in THIS pain that your muscles actually “grow”. It is the tearing of the muscle fibers that the weight causes that also causes the growth! How you ask? When your muscle fibers are torn your body begins the process of healing itself. Your body draws on the protein stores that is has to rebuild the muscle that has been torn from lifting the heavy weight. The result of the “healing” is that your muscles grow bigger because protein is being added to repair the torn muscle. That is why body builders are willing to go through the temporary pain they will experience from the heavier weight for they know that the growth they are going to have far outweighs the pain they feel in the ensuing moments.They know that the potential to be bigger and in their eyes, better, is there and they are willing to go through it to be bigger and better.

What does that have to do with you and where you are in your life? The “bad” decisions that you have made in your life, and will continue to make if you are human, are your weight! It will be these decisions that often bring pain and suffering with them that will also cause you to grow and to evolve. Does that mean you should just go around making bad decisions in order to grow? Of course not, but what it does mean is that on those occasions that you do make a decision or a choice that turns out to not be so good, understand that it will be from those decisions that you will also experience growth.

So instead of looking back on your life with regret, look back and marvel at how far you have come! look at the amazing person that you have grown to be! look at the character that has developed from those decisions! Look at the compassion that you now feel for others! Look at the wisdom that you now have! Look at the lessons that you have learned and the better choices that you will now make because of those lessons!

Hold your head up high, forgive yourself and flex the spiritual muscles that you have developed from the pain of the weight that you have lifted in your life. Know that at this moment everything in your life is as it should be and had it not been for those decisions you would not have grown into the person that stares back at you in the mirror of life. You are magnificent! You are marvelous! YOU ARE RIGHT WHERE YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO BE!