R.E.S.P.E.C.T … Respecting the person in the mirror so that others can too…. You are becoming conscious of the ‘true you‘ but who are you and do you have any respect for the person that you have become? Are you worthy of that respect? Why? You are a strong person and you have made several strides to get to this point. You have looked at yourself unclouded. That alone deserves a measure of respect. The fear of looking to self and coming up lacking is daunting to some and terrifying to others. As a woman or man each day that you interact with others you demand a certain level of respect from the people around you. That level of respect varies from person to person. Some respect is earned and most is implied. We assume that people will and should respect us for various reasons. In religion we are taught to respect our elders and to honor and respect our bodies, our temples, wives and husbands. What it does not teach us is that not everyone has to respect you to a certain point and honestly not very many will especially if you have given them nothing to respect in the first place.
Respect yourself first before demanding it from others.Ladies, this message is especially for you. When it comes to men, dating and relationships one of the first things compromised is self respect for a lot of us. In the name of love we will limit the importance of self. We sometimes allow ourselves to be treated as a yes woman, a pushover, or even a floor mat. We do all of this in the effort to keep the man that we have and we assume that he will love and respect us for it. The truth is he won’t. How can he respect you when you don’t respect yourself enough to stand up for you. If you are not your own champion why would you assume that a man would want to . Some of us assume because he doesn’t love us that we are worthless. We feel that because he doesn’t want us anymore that he is right… that his judgement and opinion of us is correct.After all his word is law right? Stop attaching yourself to someone in an attempt to be loved. To be part of something. Don’t let your desire for acceptance blind you to you.He is important but then again so are you. Between the two of them if value is to be assigned then let it the one person that will never leave You.
Understand that every choice you make in how you live your life determines how you see yourself. Learn to recognize when you are being disrespected and when you are disrespecting yourself. It seems that almost every quote or meme in the media refers to women as ‘B***h. The ridiculous part is that women will look at that term as a positive if the word Bad is put in front of it. Do you see men referring to themselves as the dipstick or something foul? No then why do women do it? Why do we wear clothing that is uncomfortable and prance around like lambs to the slaughter in the face of men? Why do we treat each other bad and not lift each other up? Why do we choose to not fight? Stop making excuses for not being accountable for you. It doesn’t matter what the media or that man may say or call you unless you decide to answer to it. Those words hold no power. Stop making excuses for being afraid to demand respect.
Fight for you and how you want to be treated. Stop being negatively labeled and accepting it because its easier than making a stink. Remind yourself that you are NOT a female dog. and certainly not a bad one. You are NOT loose change. You’re name is NOT ‘Shawty’ or ‘Ma’. You are not a piece of candy to be gawked at. You are NOT a without standards. Stop looking to an outside person to determine the level of respect you deserve. Project the person that You can honestly respect. Be her. The real her and not the glamorize copy of a diva. Be the woman who inspires respect and the man that is meant for you will find you. He will respect you because you respect yourself as well as him. He will see you for the strong woman you are and not the bad b***h from the radio or TV.
“You’re different than you used to be… There is something about you that I can’t put my finger on…. I’m confused …. just who are you?… Time and life’s journey change everyone. No one remains the same. Believe it or not, we are not genetically designed for it either. Every few years the human body creates a new you. This new you is a total replacement of the cells in your body. You feel different because you are different. This new you is like a rebirth for your entire being. What does that mean for the mentaland spiritualyou?
In life everyone is meant to change to evolve. How you choose to focus that change is up to you. Mentally you are not supposed to have the same mindset as the younger you. As you get older and mature the things that you found funny will seem silly, the things that used to aggravate you won’t matter and the people in your life will be different as well. The naivete of youth should make way for the wisdom of age. Sometimes that wisdom has come at a price. When someone makes the statement “You’ve changed.” to a lot of us it comes as no surprise. What does shock us is the fact that it took others so long to notice the change in us. For the rest of us the changes in ourselves will be like a splash of cold water in the face of society. I am preferable to the bucket of water to the face. Especially for those of us that have been suppressed. Sometimes bursting out of your prison cell is just what you need to shine. For years you were a lump of coal in the earth and now you are a diamond.Changing yourself polishes that diamond and makes it more priceless than it already was.
Discovering who you really are and accepting you, may open a few mental cans that previously were hidden and closed. Don’t be afraid to leave them open. Sure they may not win you any congeniality awards but if you notice that you have no tolerance for the BS of your past life and past friends then it may not necessarily be a bad thing. When the changes are good, to hear “you’ve changed” should be confirmation of the hard work that you are putting in. Change is not just mental it is spiritual. Just as your body and mind changes so did your heart. All of the mental changes you are undergoing are making you stronger. You are beginning to trust the person in the mirror more and more. You start noticing that you really are in control. Your mind and heart is finally working together and leading you down better decision paths. Mentally you are maturing.
Spiritually cleansing yourself of all of the negativity that you were once surrounded with is a part of your becoming. After you have become mentally and emotionally stronger all of that bad energy and negative vibes that you had before must go. You can’t hold onto the same spirit as the old you. You’ve now become a beautiful butterfly and its time to spread your wings. Free yourself of anything not worthy of you.Don’t just think positive be positive.
Be worthy of the new you. Give yourself a chance to grow and develop by being truly open. Positivebehavior and actions should become second nature. Positive thoughts should be your mantra. You are as amazing as you think and more than that to be honest. The new you is a total package.Accept it as a whole. People around you will see the changes. They will notice that you have indeed become new. They may not choose to accept you but that is their choice and no reflection on you. They don’t have to like the fabulous new you. They may not understand the evolution of you. They may not care. All of that is not a concern. The only person that matters… the one that has to love and accept the current person you are is YOU. Everyone else is secondary.
Why am I still smiling? … Why am I laughing? Why am I happy? It is because of you!You make me smile!… You make me laugh!… You make me happy to know and call friend…. Everyone that I meet and talk to I consider my friend. This blog is growing by leaps and bounds and its because of you, the readers, that I smile. It is because of you that I am able to do what I love. It is because of you that I have a purpose. I am human so daily it is a struggle for me to continue to be upbeat and happy just like you. I choose to smile instead of frown. To laugh instead of crying. Not different or better I am still fallible. Case in point I had a mini nuclear explosion yesterday due to circumstances beyond my control. A lost card and what I assumed was the ruin of the coming holiday.
Oh I ranted, raved and cried until finally I sat back and looked at my home which I had tore apart looking through drawers, purses and every single pair of pants I have ever owned, including the ones that have not fit or been worn since the Ice Age. I looked at the chaos and it hit me “Holy crap! I have to clean all this back up!” only after looking through all of the clothes that would have to be refolded and the closet that needed to be reorganized did I realize that I had become a raving lunatic. Even the neighborhood cat looked at me weird when I checked the car for the tenth or twelfth time. I was letting my anxiety over the coming holidaymake me go bonkers.
It was through friends and people like YOU that I was able to look at myself and burst out laughing instead of crying.Here I was about to contemplate Hari Kari over turkey! The thought of not having dressing had me reserving a room in the local loony bin…. I was ready to choke the stuffing out of the poor bank teller that could not for the life of me seem to understand that I wanted to do a money transfer. I could see the headlines now ” Woman kills bank teller over lost pies”. The holidays makes us all lose it sometimes and I am no different than you.
A beautiful friend told me to “Become the holiday, joyful, thankful, full of love etc..” So that is what I plan to do. I am Thanksgiving because I am grateful each and everyday to continue to breath and live. I am thankful to be able to sit here and write and I am thankful for the chance to encourage as many people as I can. I am grateful for my friends and family. I am Thankful to you. Without you I would be writing for myself. You are my smile. You are my holiday… You make my soul and heart sing just because you are you. Happy You DAY.
“It’s not that bad”This phrase is one of the most overused and dangerous ones in the English language. People say it all the time to placate themselves into thinking that things really aren’t as bad as they seem. What if the one time you tell yourself and believe it, you find out, too late, that it really was ‘ That Bad“? Too many times we have all become complacentwith our own little worlds that we have lost a measure of our empathyand in some cases our morality. We have lost our sense of outrage. We still might feel anger at seeing something wrong but most of us really don’t care enough to do anything… Some of us have even lost the sense of outrage for ourselves. It’s not that we are oblivious we simply have convinced ourselves that if things have not met a certain measure of extremeness then it is not as bad as we imagine it to be. That caustic phrase ‘Its not that bad’ can make an abuse victim stay; a woman or man to ignore themselves; or a person to believe that certain injustices like homophobia and racism do not exist. It can fool us into assuming there is an abundance of hope when hope is in limited supply. It can even make us partially blind to the plight of others. Its bad when we can turn on the TV or browse the web and the story of an abused or exploited child gets less press than the one about the dog being rescued from a shelter.
When was the last time you actually felt angered by something you saw or read? Not just a passing anger but infuriated? What about something that was done to you? Someone hurt you and feels they can get away with it, does that not make your blood boil? What about someone doing harm or something happening to another, does it make you angry enough to act or speak out? When was the last time you got angry period?… Did you speak out and tell off the other person or did you bottle your rage inside and fume? Did you try to do anything at all to change what made you angry or did you poster in front of others and pretended, what you could have done or would have said? Where is your real anger? If you are the person suppressing your anger to go with the flow then I beg you now to simply stop! You’re right, in a lot of cases it really is not as bad as you imagined it is much worse and if you don’t act it will continue to spiral.
‘It’s not that bad’ is a lie that we tell ourselves to make living the way we do easier to swallow. Life is not meant to be easy it was meant to be lived and learned. That means sometimes you will have to step outside of your comfort zone. In the case of abuse, it is never OK so telling yourself ‘its not that bad’ is the same as saying ‘I don’t matter’.No one deserves to be abused. No one deserves to be harmed. No one asked for it. Besides do you really want to get to the point where even you can no longer claim its not as bad as all that? You only have one life and you are in control of you. That means getting angry over the way that YOU are treated by another and by yourself. GET ANGRY! Find it! Feel it! Once you have felt the anger and righteous indignation, act on it. This is your life take charge.
Take charge of you and get angry with you.Stop making excuses. If you know your behavior is destructive and you can change it, why would you continue to keep putting your head in a blender? You deserve better than to live halfheartedly. Don’t assume getting angry with yourself means punishing you. It doesn’t. It simply means being accountableto you. No one can live your life for you. No one can change you. You have to change yourself.
Don’t hate the world or walk around on edge and full of anger but don’t be afraid to feel a healthy dose of anger.Don’t wait until society or our lives really are so horrible that we can not effectively claim indifference. Don’t negate something or assume that things are not as inadequate as we assume because it hasn’t affected our corner yet. Teach the next generation that it is OK to care about the plight of others. Teach empathy and strength. Teach hope. Teach them that the only time ‘its not that bad‘ should be used is to describe a casserole.
Life has been hard and thrown a few curve balls your way… You have a few bruises and bumps from the journey you have embarked on …. You are weathered and worn… You are tired… So tired… After all of that you still have the choice to decide how you see the trials you have faced. You can either choose to be a VICTIM or a VICTOR. Sure life has not been easy and I understand the feeling of not wanting to struggle and fight any longer. To lay down and rest without worrying about the future. I understand the lure of ignorant bliss. But hiding your head in the sand is not going to make the problems go away. And neither is being the whipping post of your own destructive mind.
There is no such thing as a victim in my mind. Some of us have gone through issues of abuse both physically and mentally and yet we survived it. Some of us have been attacked and had to fight for survival, yet wesurvived. Some of us have been treated like the scum of the earth simply for being different and yet we survive. What about that horrible childhood? Or that disease that ravaged our bodies?… Yes we survived that too….That makes us SURVIVORS not VICTIMS.Choosing to not be a victim is pivotal in growing a thicker skin over the pain of the past. Some scars are not meant to be forgotten but they do not have to rule the rest of your life. Let go of what you can not change. Memories are supposed to fade once the lesson is learned. If that lesson is important it will remain important even through the passage of time.
We talked about being a prisoner of you. Of holding yourselfhostage with the things that we say or do. This extends into holding unto the pain in your life and looking at yourself as a victim. That ‘Whoa is me’ cry should have no place in your mouth or mind. People say things like ‘ There is always somebody worse off than you.’ as if the fact that someone else is suffering should lessen our individual pain. News flash! It doesn’t. To me everything that happens and the way that I react to it is entirely my deal. Its not that we don’t care about them, but knowing that someone is starving in another country is not going to make me feel better about being a battered woman. Its is not going to change the feeling I have of poor self image due to being bullied and harassed. It doesn’t lessen their burden and it doesn’t change the hurt that I feel in this moment.
Accept responsibility for your own actions. In the voyage to survival, sometimes the key to moving beyond certain issues is acceptance of culpability. Not everything is the fault of an outside party or circumstance. Sometimes we are the instruments of our own headache. For instance, imagine going in to work every day an hour late until you have been written up so many times you get fired… Is the reason because your boss is a jerk or did you mess up? What about in a relationship and you are constantly accusing your spouse of infidelity without proof, hanging out all night, treating that person like crap? If they leave is it because they were never in love, or they were too lazy to fight to save the relationship? Could it not also be even though you did not force them to leave , you share half the blame?
Understand that oftentimes we choose our own poison.I hear men and women say all the time ‘There are no good men or women out there’. That is an untruth. There are good men and women its just that we keep choosing the wrong ones for us. That is not the fault of the man or woman but the person in the mirror. Change you and change your choices and maybe the man or woman you attract will be the better person for you because you are better.
Someone may have hurt you but they do not hold power over you. There are literally millions of survivors of different crimes against them. Whether it be molestation as a child, battery, assault or mental devastation once you have escaped the torment work on removing the power of that moment. You don’t have to forget it but allow the memory to fade as it should. Take control of you. Live for you. Forgive yourself if you can not forgive the one that hurt you. Release the pain that you carry. Don’t allow the one who hurt you the pleasure of knowing you are still hurt.
You hold control over how you see you. You are never a victim only a survivor! As a survivoryou deserve to be the VICTOR. Be happy. Be free. Be accountable. Be alive. You can’t change the past but all doors to the future are open if you choose to see them as such.
When you wake up in the morning whom do you see in the mirror? Do you see you or the imperfect you?… This is that one unclouded moment, before makeup and shaving and sometimes before brushing your teeth. In that moment you are all that you are. Not all that you can and will be. You are just as valuable staring at your reflection as you will ever be any other time. In a previous post I asked everyone to do an exercise where you stand naked in front of the mirror completely bare and with closed eyes hope and wish that everything about you that you don’t like changes. Lets try that again. Keep standing there with your eyes closed until it feels uncomfortable…. Now open them. What has changed? Nothing right. You are still the same fabulous person you always were but this time you are finally looking at the person in the mirror hopefully with acceptance.
This time lets try a different approach. This time looking in the mirror think of all the things about yourself that you don’t like.All the mistakes that you have made, all of the failures that have happened, all of the self doubt and anger that colors your happiness. Think of everything bad about you…. Now open your eyes. The person in the mirror is still the same but the time has come to kill the negative you… That person has no place in your new positive future. Negative you must be laid to rest. The day I died was years ago. I looked in the mirror and for the first time in all of my years I saw ME. I realized I wasn’t perfect and that I made mistakes. I looked at all that was bad about me and I realized I was my own worst enemy. I was making ME miserable.I couldn’t look in the mirror without being ashamed of my weight, my smile (I have a chipped tooth), my clothes, my home, my car. I unconsciously compared myself to the women around me and found myself wanting.
I wanted to be sexy, beautiful and desired. I wanted to be perfect. I never knew until that day that I was already perfect. I may not be perfect by anyone else’s standards but for ME I was. I was still flawed but I was fine with that. I now know and embrace being perfectly imperfect. I looked in the mirror and cried myself into a frenzy. I stared at the negative me for so long that I literally wept and then I looked at that me for the last time. After all my tears were shed I realized that the me that I saw was a product of my own fears, misconceptions and beliefs. It wasn’t real. Before I turned away I again closed my eyes and thought of all the things good about myself. I thought of everything about me that I liked. I thought of my weight and began telling myself that the extra was just more of me to love. I chose to lose weight not to be better but to feel better. I smiled fully, chipped tooth and all and I finally I laughed. From then on every time I pass a mirror I smile. Not because I am vain but because I am amazing and so are you.
The death of you needs to be the same.Think of your transformation as if you were a phoenix rising from the flames. You are NOT the negative things that you hold onto.That part of you is being cauterized and removed. The negative you is dead. There is no chance for that person to resurface because you now know you are worth so much more than being your own whipping post.Don’t be afraid to see yourself in the mirror and smile. Don’t be nervous about seeing the real you. Take a photo diary if you must of the new you on a daily basis and allow that person to grow and blossom. Be vain with YOU! Yes YOU are all that and two bags of chips. You know why? Because GOD and nature never makes mistakes. There is only one you. Embrace the breathtakingly, magnificent you.
Drama, drama, drama….There seems to be no end to the amount of drama that surrounds us all. Whether we create it ourselves, inviteit into our homes, watch it in the media or associate with it from friends and relatives,… Dramahas become a part of life. Now the question is how do we break away from this headache called drama?… Do we hide in caves away from the world? Do we become antisocial and limit all contact with others? Do we destroy all forms of media? What do we do? Seriously how do we handle this dilemma?
Why is drama so ingrained in our culture? It seems as if men and women are not comfortable with a world without ‘dramatic undertones‘. The media helps feed this fascination with created conflicts and exaggerated situations but that is still only one medium. And of all the things that we can change removing the influence of dramatic media from our lives is the easiest thing to do. Some times the drama isn’t the issue but the toxic people in our lives are the real cause for alarm.
Drama in the media: There is nothing wrong with watching reality shows and different movies and programs, unless you start to believe that the manufactured scenes are really real and begin to emulate them or associate their theatrics with everyday life. ‘Real Housewives’, is fine as a show but most women do not act the way that the women on there do. We don’t respond to the same issues in the same manner and it is not really much of a coincidence to see daily arguments over something mundane or who has the bigger ego. We all know this yet we tune in everyday for our fix of drama. We read celebrity gossip as if the people we are reading about are really influencing our lives…. Most of us don’t care if Angelina Jolie likes blue daffodils…. Or that Rhianna frequently goes with out underpants….. I just don’t care but the rest of society does. If we want to beat the beast called Drama, we need to be willing to step outside of the gossip mill and concern ourselves with what is really important in Our lives.
Friends and relatives:We all have that one friend or family member that is forever gossiping or getting into one conflict after another. They are the ones talking about this and that person. They bring drama to us and we willingly hold the door open for them. They are toxic for our well being and yet we do not see it. These Toxic peopledon’t have to bring gossip. Their poison can be something as simple as forever involving us in the chaos that is their lives. They can surround us with negativeenergy and being under the guise of friend or family we are not so quick to build up our guards. Even though we may assume that we can separate ourselves from the dramaof others most of us have a hard time doing so. Think about it if you are in a relationship or friendship with someone and no matter what every time you are around them you are inundated with negative vibes then that person may be toxic for you. Not BAD however. There is a difference. A bad person is not good for you either mentally, physically , psychologically or all the above. They are not meant be in your life period. Whereas a toxic person may not mean you any harm personally. They are simply corrosive to your psyche and may need to be either removed or limited access.
Toxic You: What is the toxic person is you?Are you always taking offense and creating drama for yourself? Are you the one spreading lies and rumors? Are you the one angry or jealous of another simply because they are different than you? Are you constantly at odds with others over something that you said? Are you the center of most of the conflict around you? If you answered yes to most of these, if not all, then it really doesn’t matter who is toxic around you since you are your biggest cancer. Find out why you are so full of venom and change yourself.
Drama is not reality, nor is it healthy.Removing toxic behavior from yourself first and then from the rest of your life will leave your eyes unclouded by conflict. You might like how simple life can be if you cleanse yourself of the poisons and negative energy that it brings. You more than likely will be able to finally breath freely. Change is never easy but in this case it is well worth it.