My 2019 Message

One thing I’ve reflected on heavily in the beginning days of 2019 has been the aspect of regret, and missed opportunities.

We oftentimes take things for granted; people, opportunities, even material things. We think that people will always be there, that opportunities for growth and positivity will always come our way. We take our journeys through life, and sometimes we anticipate that everything will always go smoothly; however, the fact of the matter is we have to expect that life has a trajectory that we all are unknowing.

I have to say that while I haven’t experienced very many tragedies or traumatic experiences in my life, and I’m grateful for that, there are some that I do have regret. If the tables were turned and things were different, there are situations that I would have ensured I had done differently.

These experiences have taught me to never take opportunities for granted. If you love someone and feel the need to say it, then say it. If you want to do something that’s in your power to do, then do it. If you need to say something, then say it.

Never live with regrets. Try hard to live life without having too many “I should have” and “I wish I did” moments. Take advantage of the good things life gives and take the bad moments as learning situations.

That’s the message I’m taking through 2019.

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A Narrative Change in 2018

Hello 2018…
Here we are again at the inception of another year.  Another opportunity to set intentions and goals for ourselves; to start routines that we may or may not commit to our memories by the end of the year.  The beginning of the year is a time that everyone is all too familiar with and we have all had times and can share memories of how we have said goodbye to 2017 in our own way.  Some of us partied, some of us didn’t.  Some of us brought in the new year in church, while some us were home.  No matter what you did, I hope that we were all safe and sound when the clock struck midnight and 1.1.18 was upon us all.
Now that toasts have been made and celebrations have been completed, it’s time to manifest some of our successes and goals for a prosperous year ahead!  I wrote in a post a few weeks ago (that you can read here) about one thing we can all choose to leave in 2017, and I hope that we all didn’t bring that thing into the new year.  I know that insecurity is something I chose and it was something I reflected and meditated in heavily and vowed to try not to bring into my energy in 2018; and I hope to keep that negative vibe at bay in the new year for myself.  I thoroughly believe that the last few weeks has been a trying of my patience and resilience; however, I have managed to make it to this point and I am bound to leave that and a lot more negative things behind in the year 2018.  I have also vowed to agree that if that means a change in lifestyle, career, etc, then so be it; but I have to go into 2018 spiritually, mentally, physically and emotionally sound and I intend to leave it just the same way I came into it, and even better as well.
A part of creating a new and better year for yourself, may creating a new and refreshing personal narrative.  A lot of times, we get tired of hearing the same ol’ story about ourselves.  We tend to get bored with who we are need a change.  This is when you may realize that it is time to begin a personal narrative change.
Here’s how you can take a much needed shift on your personal narrative for 2018:
  1. Take a self assessment and see what needs fixing, then ask yourself these questions:
    • Are you happy with where life is taking you right now?
    • If not, what do you see you want to change about it?
    • Do you know the steps are in order to change it?
    • Have you gotten comfortable in life?
    • If money was no object, what would you want out of life? What would your ultimate goals be?
  2. Take charge of your life and how you’re planning on reclaiming it.  Don’t let anyone else tell you how your life should look or feel.  Customize your goals and intentions to fit YOU.
  3. Isolate the things you can control; do NOT let things you cannot control effect your plan.  Your plan needs to only be centered around the things you can control in life.  When your setting goals to changing your narrative, you have to make practical, sensible and measurable steps towards achieving them.  Don’t shoot for the rafters if that’s not attainable for you. “Taking two small steps forward will be better in the long run than taking giant steps forward only to be knocked 5 steps back later.” (Quote this in the post)
By implying a few of these steps, you will be able to take the necessary steps towards changing your 2018 narrative.  If for no one else, do it for yourself, and see if you feel any better about the outcome of your life and how you plan on taking charge of things in the new year!

Self-Care Sunday: Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail

For 2018’s first segment of Self-Care Sunday, we will be highlighting the topic of planning.  Last year (a couple of weeks ago to be exact), I wrote about planning out my 2018 year for writing (you can read about it here).   In this post, i outlined the importance of planning your writing out in advance and how it will lead to a more stress-free way of blogging and writing for the year.  I also touched on a little bit of organization last year in a self-care post here.   Last year, I was pretty consistent with writing and scheduling posts a couple days in advance; however, this year, I want to be proactive about having all of my posts (or at least most of them) scheduled out at least a month in advance.
Now, I’m sure you’re wondering by now, what does this have to do with self-care?  Well, I’d be happy to share some insight on my personal experience with how organization and planning help to enhance my wellness and self-care.
I’ve noticed as I’ve gotten older, that the more hectic and out of sync my life is, the more heightened my anxiety is, the more stressed out I become and overall, my mood is just not that great.  All of these things have a direct effect on my self-care.  Even in your self-care, there is a level of planning that has to be done in order for it to be successful; you have to schedule out time for yourself, decide what you will consider your routine, research the pros, cons and benefits to your designated method of self-care, etc.  There are many aspects of this idea and I believe that a well thought out and planned life is a life destined for a reduced amount of stress.
Here are a few tips in order to plan for a successful 2018 personally and even professionally:
  • Get a calendar: One of the first things I did was buy calendars for the 2018 year.  I bought two; one for my personal/family life, and one for my blogging/writing.  I like to keep both separate, and plus i need more space in the writing one in case i need space to write more things down (lol).  Also, I buy colorful pens and highlighters and highlight all the important deadlines and due dates for projects, events, etc. that I have coming up initially at least six months out. Then, at the beginning of the summer, I will sit down and plan out the second half of 2018
  • Schedule in “me-time”:  While you have your calendar out, be sure to schedule your “me-time” getaways as well.  Although they are important, and we often do not forget about the time we have allotted for ourselves, it makes it more tangible and realistic when you look at your calendar and see that you’ve already got time booked with yourself in your calendar.
  • Make sure all your work is done between Monday and Friday: Professionally, I find that I work too many hours on the weekend, for FREE! I am an exempt employee, which means I do not accrue overtime, and anytime I am working after 5, it is for free and with little to no ability to flex my time.  My personal policy is I’d rather work a possible hour or two later, or come in an hour or so earlier, if it means I can leave my work laptop at home on Friday and not look at it again until Monday.  It is something I hope to adapt and keep in place in the 2018 year.  It will also give me more time to focus on my blog and my publishing company.
  • Learn to say no if your calendar is getting too full too quickly: it’s perfectly ok to tell someone that you cannot do something.  It is important not to spread yourself too thin.  It is also important to note that if you’re committing yourself to so many things for others, when will you have time to focus on your personal goals?

What Are You Leaving in 2017?

This question continues to surround me, and has been for the past couple of days; “what are you leaving in 2017?”

I believe that we ask ourselves this question every year around this time. As we prepare and plan for a new year, we set our new goals and intentions and manifest new and great things for our lives. During that, we tend to bring up the conversation of those people, places and things that we need to keep behind us as we are moving forward and progressing in our lives.

I too, have asked myself this question and given it deep reflective thought for the last couple of days. I’ve tried to summarize in words what, or who I want to leave in 2017 so that I can have a prosperous and successful 2018.

I’ve decided that can be summarized into one concept: Insecurity.

I’ve been insecure about so many things in my life, and it’s time that those thoughts and feelings get left in the past and not be brought into my present. Whether it be about my appearance, my own creative abilities, or my ability to succeed in various business or professional avenues, I have made a promise to myself that I will leave the concept of being insecure about myself and my life in 2017, and go into 2018 confident in myself, secure in my convictions and my intentions and not allowing anyone or anything stop me from pursuing my goals or dreams.

I ask that you do the same thing for yourselves: think of one thing that you want to leave in 2017, but think of how that thing has affected you in a way that you did not feel it was beneficial; and how you plan on reinventing yourself for the new year and leaving that one thing behind in hopes to manifest great and positive thiings for the new year!

Let’s Get it Started! 

Welcome 2017!!

Since my 2016 list of goals were pretty reasonably met (see post for details), I decided to expand on that and prepare a list of goals for 2017.  Now that we are 2 days into the new year, I have spent more time reflecting on what goals I would like to accomplish for the year ahead.  Here’s the 2017 list of goals:

  • Become a better writer/blogger
  • Learn to live the best life I can live, in the best ways I can live it
  • Grow spiritually
  • Save more money
  • Find new and exciting ways to be comfortable in my own skin

They are in no particular order of importance, because to me each one of them are equally important in my life.  2016  had its ups and it definitely had its downs.  I achieved some things that I never thought were possible, gained a new love for exploring the many avenues of self-care and also took an active role in trying to improve my overall health and wellness.  I have to say that despite all of the tragedies of the year, I had some personal triumphs as well.  Although the tragedies did not effect me in a direct way, I did have the opportunity to use my blog as an open space for me to express my feelings about those things, and most of them were well received.  I hope to continue to become a better blogger in the years to come, and continue to network and make connections through writing.

This year will also be the year I turn 30, which means I will be going through a new transition into a new chapter in life (I hear 30 is when you truly start living, lol) and finding out so many new and amazing things about myself.

Hopefully, I will be able to accomplish the things I have on this list and so much more in the next year!!

What are your goals for 2017?