As you begin your week, I hope you will take a moment to understand that others’ behavior towards us is more about where they are mentally and emotionally and has nothing to do with you. We are living in unprecedented times, and each of us is experiencing challenges. Understanding this offers us an opportunity to extend grace and compassion to others without internalizing or personalizing their actions and allows us to take no offense. And remember, as you are extending grace and kindness to others, be sure to extend the same grace to yourself. Take no offense to our own actions and behavior.
Knowing who we are-divine; powerful; valuable; worthy-is a prerequisite to a healthy sense of self-worth. A healthy sense of self-worth is the premise of everything we do. it determines how we treat ourselves and how we treat others. it determines how we allow others to treat us. It determines what we think we deserve, what kind of career we choose, what kind of goals we set, and whether we think we can achieve those goals. May you always remember who you are!
As you begin your week, there may or may not be challenges that present themselves. I hope that you will remember that challenges are really opportunities, opportunities for your expansion, growth, and evolution.
I hope that as you move through your week, you will operate in and remember that your I AM’ness is greater than any challenge. May you embrace your I AM’ness and move through your week with ease.
No matter where you are at in your life right now, no matter what you are experiencing, no matter the “challenges,” please know that everything you are experiencing is here for your personal growth and evolution. Nothing has come to hurt you, it has come to help you evolve, develop, and grow. Embrace the space that you are in and always know that you are right where you are supposed to be.
I’m sure you have seen them already. Friends’ social media posts about New Year’s resolutions and how 2021 is going to be their best year ever. You probably are thinking about your own resolutions and what you want the new year to look like for you.
If you’re like many of us you have made resolutions in the past that have not been fulfilled. After all, it is believed that 80% of people fail to achieve their new year’s resolutions. There are many articles about why we fail to fulfill new year’s resolutions and I myself have written about this in the past. So, if you want to be a part of the 20% of people who actually fulfill their new year’s resolutions, here are four questions to ask yourself before you make your resolutions for the new year. Being honest with yourself and really thinking about these questions just might get you on the path to fulfilling your resolutions so that you can truly have the best year of your life.
Why have my resolutions failed in the past?
Being honest with yourself and digging deep to find out why previous resolutions went unfilled is one of the best ways to ensure you fulfill future resolutions. There are many reasons we fail to fulfill resolutions and sometimes it’s because we didn’t change the behavior or our thinking. Fulfilling resolutions requires making changes within ourselves. If we take the same thinking and behavior into the new year, we can be sure that whatever we resolve to do will turn out the same way as in the past.
2. How did I decide on the resolutions I made?
There are many reasons why we make the resolutions that we make. Asking ourselves how we decided to make those resolutions and understanding their source can go a long way in helping us fulfill future resolutions. Ask yourself did you have a healthy sense of self-worth when you made previous resolutions or were you operating from a place of low self-worth? Were your resolutions rooted in fear? For example, if you have experienced financial challenges and you feared not having enough money in the future and you made a resolution to save more money, if you have not dealt with the thinking and behaviors that caused you not to save in the past (maybe you’re an emotional spender or you haven’t set a budget) you are bound to repeat the behaviors that prevented you from saving in the first place and your resolution to save more money will go unfulfilled
3. What did I change about myself to help me fulfill my resolutions?
2020 presented us with many opportunities for personal growth and development and to make changes within ourselves. 2020 challenged us to think about how we treat ourselves and the people around us. It presented us with opportunities to evaluate how we live our lives,
4. What process can I put in place to support myself and keep me on track to fulfill my resolution(s)?
Having a process or “system” in place to support yourself and help you work through challenges is one of the best ways to ensure your resolutions get fulfilled. I write about it here. Having such a process in place not only helps you work through issues and builds you up, but it can also help you stay motivated and on track to fulfill your goals. Whether it’s a Spiritual practice that consists of meditation, crystals, prayer or it’s something else like daily desserts and positive self-talk, having a practice in place that you rely on when you are feeling doubt and/or fear that threatens to derail your resolutions can help get you back on track.
There you have it. Four questions to ask yourself before you make your new year’s resolutions. Asking these questions of yourself and answering them honestly may be just what you need to make resolutions that you will be able to fulfill. Whatever resolution(s) you decide to make, remember to give yourself some grace and some space and understand that life is going to happen as it always does. Know that this doesn’t have to throw you off track to achieving all that you resolve to achieve. So go ahead, make your resolutions, and look forward to having one of the best years of your life.
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!!
Recently I was driving and thinking about the fact that folks in my circle were saying that they were not feeling the Christmas Spirit. I realized that I wasn’t either. With everything going on around us be it socially, politically or otherwise, I can see why we are feeling that way.
One thing that I do when I am feeling a certain way is ask myself the question of why I’m feeling that way and what is the source of the feeling. After asking this question about not being in the Spirit, I realized that it was because I had not CREATED the Christmas Spirit within me. I started to reflect on all the things that were going on in my own life and how I had let them interfere with my joy. I also realized that I decided at that point that I was going home to decorate my home and do what I needed to do to create the feeling of Christmas.
While getting together with girlfriends the next day I asked them if they were in the Christmas Spirit. It wasn’t a surprise when they both replied that there weren’t. I shared my revelation of not creating the Christmas spirit that I had had the previous day with them, and we all agreed that the Christmas Spirit is something that we could create. We had a profound conversation about how people no longer greet each other with a “Merry Christmas” or a “Happy Holidays” much anymore Like we experienced when we were growing up. We reflected on how as children, we remembered our parents greeting neighbors and people on the street with holiday greetings and well wishes. We remembered the holiday baking and cooking and the feeling that these acts brought with them. But we also reflected on some of the traumas that we associated with this time of the year and how they still affect us. It was a beautiful conversation on personal responsibility and connections and the power of creation. We left there agreeing to go about our days greeting people that we came in contact with and doing our part to crate the Holiday Spirit that we felt was missing.
I hope that if you are not feeling much like Christmas right now or are not in the Spirit of the holidays, that you will get yourself to a place where you can create the feeling and the experience that you desire. As Divine beings we have the power to create the reality that we want to have. Whether it be the holiday Spirit or a life that we enjoy, we are powerful beings Divinely gifted with the power to create our realities. There are many resources out there to guide you in this process. I f you need help with this please reach out. I am always here. May you have the happiest of holidays and may you create the life that you truly desire.
How did you come to be who you are? Did you choose the person you are, or did someone else-society, religion, or your parents-tell you who to be?
Recently I served as a panelist as part of a discussion on black women, 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 see 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.