How-To, Inspirational Quotes, lifestyle blogger, Monday, Motivation

Make 2018 Your Year of Splendor

It has officially been one whole week of 2018. I hope that you all are feeling rejuvenated and ready to tackle another 365. All over social media and even in day to day conversation there’s a widely shared opinion that 2017 was straight up B-A-N-A-N-A-S.  *cue Gwen Stefani please*

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Nevertheless, for those of us who struggled, stressed, and suffered immensely whether it be mentally or physically, there is still hope. I know it sounds cliche or hell it actually is very cliche but for me a new year often provides this feeling of being washed over with the purest of waters. Perhaps that is why my favorite holiday is the New Year. I know the numbers changing on a calendar doesn’t necessarily reset your life’s conditions but you can do so by making that change yourself.

Now, while I am no longer one for resolutions I do stand firm in the idea of creating reasonable goals for yourself with real action plans set behind them. I won’t knock those who start the new year hitting the gym hard or stocking up on low carb foods from their local grocery store because that was once me. However, there were years when I actually stuck to those resolutions. The major key for the years that I did stick to my goals was that not only did I envision myself in that new space, I first embodied the person I wanted to be mentally. That mindset along with a gameplan led me to my success.

A few years back in 2011 I decided I would go full throttle on a weight loss journey which resulted in my shedding of nearly 30 pounds. Now throughout college and life post grad that weight (and then some) did return , BUT that initial success came from a few things that I would like for you to apply to your own daily routine.

First things first, discover your desire.

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What is that thing you’ve been putting off FOREVER? Yeah that thing. Yup, I know you’re thinking about it. The book you’ve been wanting to write. The credit card you’ve been wishing would be paid off. Sidenote: wishful thinking cannot and will never make bills disappear, you’ve gotta do the work. Nonetheless, I want you all to take into consideration just one thing you’d like to accomplish for 2018 and work at it like it’s your day job. Hell so many of us have jobs we don’t even like but we work at it so hard we eventually lack the desire to do what we actually want to do. Let’s begin to redirect our energy to our true desires and perhaps we can began to build wealth off of that desire.

Second thing, *ahem* GET HELP. 

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I know it sounds scary for my fellow prideful folks out there who also happen to be very fearful of appearing dependent upon others. However, let’s be real here, there comes a point in life where doing it alone isn’t worth it. One of the major keys to how I lost that weight back in 2011 is that I had accountability at home and at school. My mother helped me buy foods that were healthier and even prepared the random recipes I had found online. At school I had my best friend who was also on a weight loss journey to keep me encouraged. Right after school we’d both workout in our rooms but in order to keep ourselves in check we would call each at the start of the workout. This happened consistently on a daily basis.

“Let’s begin to redirect our energy to our true desires and perhaps we can began to build wealth off of that desire.”

You see, it’s quite simple actually to find help. It’s everywhere. As a matter of fact, even if you don’t have family or friends to keep you accountable you can find an online community. There are so many groups on Facebook that I am sure you can find one that relates to whatever it is that you are working towards. Of course not everyone is on Facebook which is why there are other platforms we can utilize to find our own tribe (i.e. Pinterest, Twitter, Tumblr etc.). So please, I urge you to find yourself a reliable accountability partner.

Third thing, create a realistic action plan.

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A lot of us go on the deep end when it comes to goal setting. We create this abundant list of what we want to do but then in the end nothing gets accomplished. Then we kick ourselves while mentally imploding in a C sharp note of “Why me?” or “I can’t do anything right.”

STOP! Just stop that dry ass pity party and self loathing celebration by jumping right into real goal setting. This can be as simple as opening a word document and writing down your goal with one step that can lead you closer to actual results. (i.e. I want to eat less sugar- Have one meal a day without any sugar in it). I picked sugar as an example because most of us are in fact addicted to it. I also chose it because that’s actually a new goal of mine.

“Just stop that dry ass pity party and self loathing celebration by jumping right into real goal setting.”

Nevertheless, start with simple tasks that can eventually add up to even more complex ones that will then lead to your goal (s) being accomplished. You can find some examples of how to create your action plan sheet by clicking here.

Whatever you do, please start slow.  Also, make sure your goals are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Set deadlines). Don’t rush into it or feel as if you aren’t doing well simply because you’ve just begun. I want you to keep this in mind: Success never invites the elevator to its events, but the stairs on the other hand is always its honorary guest. It takes time to flourish, and it takes to time truly elevate to the next level.

Fourth thing, be kind to yourself.

Yes there will be times when you don’t feel like sticking to your goals but you’ve got to always go back to why you started in the first place. What made you want to have that desire in the first place and why would you stop now when you are so much closer to the end than you were yesterday? Regardless, be kind to yourself and know when a break is necessary. Understand that it is okay to pace yourself. It is about finishing the race NOT rushing through it.

“Success never invites the elevator to its events, but the stairs on the other hand is always its honorary guest.”

One more thing before I go, according to numerology as well as the bible the number 8 holds great significance. Now, I’m not going to get too deep because this isn’t some sort of spiritual lesson but I do find the meaning of names/numbers to be quite intriguing. In the bible the number 8 is considered a sign of new beginnings. Others believe that the number 8 is a representation of infinity including everything good. The number 8 is also seen as a balance which represents what you’ve sown and what you will receive as a result.

Overall, 2018 can be  whatever your heart desires. This can be your year of new beginnings, infinite blessings & accomplishments. 2018 can also be your year of sowing seeds of greatness that will soon turn into goals accomplished, doors unlocked and fears defeated. At the end of the day like the rap duo Black Sheep said “The Choice Is Yours.”

 

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Serenity, Smiles & Positive Vibes,

 

 

 

Ms. Royale

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Creative Writing, Featured, feminism, feminist, History, Monday, Motivation, Quotes

More to Life Mondays #1

Today, I am kicking off More to Life Mondays which is a part of my Weekly Wisdom Series. If you didn’t get a chance to see what More to Life Mondays are all about, click here for more info.

I am proud to start this part of the series off by sharing with you all this quote by one of my favorite writers, Alice Walker.

I truly love the stance that this quote abides by because we as humans have so much power. However, if we allow ourselves to continuously wallow in self doubt or pity it is easy to give that power away to others. But, I want you to take these 3 tips and apply them to your life.

1)Stand in your STRENGTH.

Now this might sound strange but strength and power are not the same thing. In fact, strength is defined as the amount of force a muscle or group of muscles, can exert against an external load. Strength is also known as a quality of a person or thing.

So essentially our strength lies in how much we can take based off the physical or mental muscles that we each have as individuals. Having different strengths from others does not make one weak or weaker than the next. This is why we must learn, understand and accept the strengths that we all have. It is unhealthy to try and apply what someone else has to your life without first realizing your own strengths. Your homework is to create a list of your top 3 strengths.

For example, I would make my list go something like this: 1) I can make people laugh, 2) I am a pretty decent cook (nervous lol still learning) and 3) I am really good at keeping calm

2)Stand in your POWER.

Power is our ability to influence the behavior of others or the course of events that a place at a given time. Now this one gets a little tricky. As a Black woman I can easily say I am strong, no not because of the stereotypical of “Strong black woman.” Rather, I can say that because I as a woman who is also Black and other Black women, we have endured some of the harshest treatment in this country since its inception. Now can I say I am powerful? I mean based off of what American society would have you believe, I cannot be powerful because not only is my race oppressed but so is my gender.

Regardless of what society might assume, I do believe that I am and we as Black women are in fact very powerful. I also believe that power can sometimes be misconstrued as an entity reserved solely for those who are commonly in positions of “power.” This is what causes many of us to feel as if our voices cannot be heard in front of the masses, and therefore we begin to feel powerless. Then we end up giving this power away like Walker stated in her quote because we believe we don’t have any.

For Black women, and anyone out there who has ever thought this way, I want you to take some time to do some reflecting on why this is actually detrimental to our very lives. If you constantly feel as if you have no power simply because others have deemed you powerless or an entire system has you are doing yourself a disservice. It is not an easy mindset to remove by yourself and trust me I am not saying you are to blame for having this mentality. There are many reasons why people feel they are powerless and those reasons are very valid/real. But, what I want you all to understand is that there is power within all of us. If you search you will find it.

More homework: What is your power? Write that down under your list of strengths. (i.e. my power is my singing, writing, or my education)

3) Lastly, but most importantly, stand in your GREATNESS because trust me it exists within you. It is simply waiting for you to free it into the physical realm of the universe.

Just like the power that exists within us, there is also greatness. It may take the people who are in your close circle to see it first or maybe even for you to see it in someone else first. Now when I say for you to see it in someone else, that does not mean you go around comparing your current situation or life in general to others. (BIG RED FLAG) What I mean is that you may notice you also have a desire to sing, act, dance, hell go to the moon and you see someone else doing it, and now you are inspired. Regardless of how you find it, trust and believe me it lives inside of you. Your soul is always trying to give you the steps towards unleashing that greatness into the world but only you have the key to open that gate of great.

With that said, Alice Walker is definitely the perfect piece to fit into this puzzle of More to Life Mondays posts. She embodies the power and passion that it takes to push past life’s misfortunes. Often times whenever we hear the stories of successful public figures, there are certain pieces to their success puzzle that is left out. Thankfully in the case of Alice Walker this is not the case.  After doing some research I was shocked to find out what led to her love for literature. While my connection to literature also started as a child, what drove her towards it was totally different than my own experience.

Anyhow, in several interviews Walker has expressed that at the age of about 8 or 9 years old she was accidentally injured with a BB gun while playing with her brothers. The injury resulted in blindness in one eye which led to emotional issues due to the physical impact following the accident. As a coping mechanism, Alice found herself enamored with a new found love for reading and writing. She later insisted that this moment of “isolation,” was a contributing factor that led her on the path to her passion for literature. She spent a lot of time away from the world which helped her to develop a more introspective view on life and in turn helped to build her muscle in terms of writing.

While that incident took place much earlier on in her life, I would like to use that as an example to help encourage those of you reading. Since that incident, Walker’s books went on to be awarded several best sellers, the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award and other literary accolades. Now, imagine if little Alice had determined from that one incident that she would no longer try in life.

While that situation in itself could have caused death, it didn’t. Rather it caused immediate physical damage and later emotional damage as well. That same damage became converted into positive energy which helped her land a partial scholarship for college. Just as she stated in the video, “You can’t even be mad at your misfortunes because it led you somewhere.” Y’all I’m telling you, sometimes you biggest blessings comes out of your biggest setback. Also, a quick side note Walker also graduated as Valedictorian of her class AND was voted prom queen. I’m sure she never imagined those two factors would come to fruition when she was going through her season of insecurity as a child.

Nevertheless, it would be wrong for me not to acknowledge the fact that as humans we all deal with emotional baggage differently. So in this moment, I want you all to understand that all coping comes in different forms. Sometimes coping comes in the framework of negative behavior such as acting out, taking your anger out on others or self-harm. However, there are times when people cope in a more positive manner for a number of reasons. I won’t get too deep into that because I can dive deeper into that in a later post.

The point that I am aiming at here is that our mindset has to be set on success and the techniques that it takes to get there. If we are solely focused on the negativity going on in our personal life, or what else can go bad in the world, 9 times out of 10 something will go bad. While this may not apply to every situation due to external variables such as racism, sexism, classism and all the other isms; we do have more power than we think we do.

Energy is a very powerful tool, and we must learn to use it wisely. So tell me, are you going to remain in a negatively energetic mentality or a one full of positive energy? Regardless of what negative thought dares to pop up, you have to get a hold of those thoughts and remind them that you have the POWER. Then use that reminder to remind the world as well. Exert your strength to exhibit the power that exists within you in order to release the greatness that you also have inside of you!

Serenity, Smiles and Positive Vibes to all,

Ms. Royale

Shout out to all the sources used for this post:

  1. http://alicewalkersgarden.com/about/
  2. http://www.biography.com/people/alice-walker-9521939
  3. http://www.fembio.org/english/biography.php/woman/biography/alice-walker/
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