You Betta Step!

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A new year is approaching in less than 24 hours and the timelines are jumping on every social media platform. It all looks and sounds so lovely as folks share their favorite scriptures, quotes, sermons, cartoons and resolutions. It’s convincingly inspiring EXCEPT… it’s mostly a bunch of empty promises! Another way that society has learned to “keep up with the Joneses” by displaying all of the right things that will insinuate that this coming year will be full of change, success, and happiness. Let’s move the cute banners and catchy phrases out of the way and get to the nitty gritty. If you TRULY want to get your life this coming year, YOU BETTA STEP!

 

Yep, spelled exactly like that, too. It’s time out for appearing as though we have our lives the way we imagined. There are 5 simple ways that will ensure that your life is stepping in the right direction and I want to share them with you.

 

#1 – You betta… STEP OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE!

The saying goes that if you want a different result that you must do things differently. If this indeed were easy, there would be no “success stories” or lists of influential people for the population to look up to. In order to achieve things you’ve never had, you will have to do things you’ve never done on a consistent basis. Whether small or large, whatever that “thing” is it will cause discomfort! Otherwise, you would have already been doing it. As my husband says, “you better get comfortable being uncomfortable if you want to live a different life!”.

 

#2 – You betta… STEP OUT OF YOUR OWN WAY!

Most of the time we are not living the life God is calling us to live because we are in His way. That’s right…YOU are messing you up! I realize that life can dish many blows that can knock us down or cause delays to our blessings, but the bounce back time can be a LOT quicker if you don’t do whatever it is that you do that is contrary to what God is asking of you. It doesn’t matter how harmless that thing is either. If God is calling you to be still, but you’re constantly moving to help the church, to build your network or help with the needy YOU ARE WRONG AND IN THE WAY! You can’t say you want better, but don’t do better. Get out of your way and listen to God and whoever God has placed in your life to lead or guide you at this time.

 

#3 – You betta… STEP INTO YOUR PURPOSE!

It is my opinion that you are wasting your life away doing things that don’t pertain to your purpose. Now, that may seem harsh, but once you are cognizant of the fact that you have a purpose on this here earth it then becomes your innate mission to begin to fulfill it. The Word of God says to seek ye first the kingdom of God in his righteousness and all these things will be added unto you. Why waste precious time doing things that you KNOW have no value to your life’s mission? Or worse, why waste time doing nothing? What are you waiting on? Your quality of life will improve when you purposefully step into your God-given purpose!

 

#4 – You betta… STEP TO THE BEAT OF YOUR OWN DRUM!

Listen, you were meant to be different. There is absolutely no reason to be like anyone else in any way, shape or form. It doesn’t matter if your drum beat is moving fast or slow. Listen to and step to your own drum. Your life will unfold so much more smoothly if you catch this sooner than later. Success only comes to you when you are in your lane. Stop swerving! Keep to the beat of YOUR drum! Your life is tailor made for you, no one else. Live it the way you were made to. PLEASE!

 

#5 – You betta… STEP WITH CONFIDENCE, HUMILITY AND JOY!

Life is short! The best way to get your life is to be grateful for what you already have now. To understand that your life could have been way worse. To realize that God didn’t make any junk so enjoy the life that you’ve been given. To fully embrace that this world needs whatever God put in you so confidently go after your dreams. Confidence shows God that you trust Him; consequently, you’ll be trusted with more to steward. Humility shows God that you know that you know where all blessings come from and that you are grateful; consequently, He will be pleased and keep you in a state of abundance. Joy shows God that no matter what circumstances present itself in your life that you know that the real treasure is being His child; consequently, He will keep you in a state of perfect peace wanting nothing. Don’t drag your feet anymore! Go through life giving God glory and expressing gratitude…it will completely change your life for the better.

 

Where is your life heading today? Are you living the life God predestined for you? If not, get your life! YOU BETTA STEP!!!

 

For one-on-one help bringing your God-given vision to fruition reach out to certified life coach, Djuana Ross, of Tru S.T.A.R.T. Life Coaching today at http://www.TruTalentPro.wixsite.com/TruStart

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GRIND…My 2016 Vocabulary

“G-R-I-N-D; I’m on my GRIND.  G-R-I-N-D; I waste no time.  G-R-I-N-D; it will all be mine cuz I AM ON MY GRIND!” – D. Monique

For the past 3 years, I have chosen one word to focus on for the entire year.  You see, I’m a believer in new beginnings and absolutely love fresh starts.  (Sometimes to a fault, I must admit.)  Instead of having a laundry list of goals and “to dos”, I had ONE WORD that would imply every possible goal, desire and “to do” throughout the year.  It’s been an interesting journey for me so far.  Let’s backtrack a little…

In 2014, my word was PUSH… hoooooneeyyyyy, I most definitely was pushed in more ways than one!  I was pushed out of my comfort zone.  I had to push back at certain somebodies and situations to protect my growth.  I pushed my way up and down I-75 as my mother faced brain surgery.  I pushed others harder than I’d ever had before to do and be their best.  I even found myself doing push-ups! (LOL really…I hate those things though).  To sum it up, I’d say my 2014 sounded a lot like this song…

“It Pushed Me” by JJ Hairston & Youthful Praise (Click the link to listen)

Lyrics:

God gave me a vision of where I would be

But He didn’t show me what I’d go through on the journey

 But everything that I faced prepared me for what God has for me to do

So now that I’m here I can praise Him for all that I had to go through

What the devil meant for evil God used to get the glory

It pushed me into my destiny.  God used it to make me who He called me to be.

All of the test and trials were apart of God’s plan.

They have all made me stronger and taught me how to trust Him

That’s why my praise is so crazy and often misunderstood

Cause what the enemy thought would destroy me

God turned it around for my good…

Thank You for PUSHing me!

In 2015, my word was GO… Yo,  I was so ready for this word!!!!  I fired up a new Pinterest board, created a new vision board, compiled an extensive music playlist and made it a part of my lesson plans for all of my music students.  This word really had my wheels turning and I must say that those two letters pack a LOT of power.  Embodying this word enabled me to quit my job and trust God with a new one (I didn’t have one lined up when I resigned).  I had increased my clientele in my business.  I had been hired to do 7 jobs in that year alone!  I was so blessed that I had to turn down 4 of them.  I learned to let so much stuff go – literally, figuratively, emotionally, physically and relational.  I got to go to a Stevie Wonder concert for $35 with fantastic company AND we got the VIP treatment (a random God -induced blessing).  Shoot, my husband and I left an entire state on faith before we had jobs or our own place to live!  That worked out, too, in case you were wondering!  To sum it up, I’d say my 2015 really got going and many of the things on my vision board AND bucket list got crossed off (in completion).  If my 2015 were a song, it would sound like these…

“Go Go Gadget Flow – Live” by Lupe Fiasco

I’m from a city in the midwest, best city in the whole wide wide world…

I got that go go go go go go go go go go gadget flow! (Love the intensity!)


“Go Hard” by Lecrae feat. Tedashii

Go hard or go home!  Lord, use me…

[…] Man, forget my flesh.  I done been crossed over, see the full court press

I’m a full court mess if the Lord don’t use me

Runnin’ from my trials thinkin’ everything’s groovy

If the Cross don’t move me, then I don’t wanna breathe no mo

If I ain’t seein’ Christ partna, I don’t wanna see no mo…

[..]So for God I go hard but I don’t wanna die tonight

But it’s too many people out here who ain’t heard about the Christ…

Go hard or go home!  Lord, use me…
[..] Aw man we ain’t focused on the war we just kicking it

worried about our image and our space up on the internet

Take me out the game Coach, I don’t wanna play no mo

If I can’t give it all I got and leave it out there on the court

Thank you for the grace, for the will and the desire

Got me living for Your glory instead of living to retire

But I pray I never tire of going hard for Messiah

I don’t need no motivation…You’re the reason I’m inspired!

Go hard or go home!  Lord, use me…


AAAAAAHHHHHHHHH….LET’S GO!  I LOVE THAT “GO HARD OR GO HOME”!

So, I know you can’t believe it, BUT we’re more than halfway through the year 2016!  My word for this year is GRIND.  The word grind means a lot of things, but to me it is all about working diligently with a relentless perseverance until my goals are achieved.  The Grind. Always easier to talk about than to be about.  However, it rings true that if you are not actually grinding then you have no grind.  That’s what I set out for my 2016 to be about.

I must say that this year has been a challenge, but a welcomed one.  I have been working toward mastering my grind one day at a time.  My quote of focus for this word comes from the movie, Creed.

6a323a00c145507ce13db5fad8c665b9“One step at a time.  One punch at a time. One round at a time.”  There are SO MANY GOALS in my vision that I am not only focused on reaching one of them but ALL of them.  The application of this quote to my life is making it a lot easier to accomplish more than I ever have.  I’m no longer overwhelmed with so much to do, but rather will tackle one task or one room (when cleaning) at a time.  Before you know it, you’ve won that fight.

The NEXT blog post will go into depth about how the movie, Creed, enhanced my life and my grind.  Look for it to post next Thursday, August 4th.

Instead of listing all of my goals, I will list a few of my results from my GRIND thus far.

  1. I’ve lost 10 pounds!  Just 50 more to go.
  2. I’ve paid off 3 of my smaller debts.  Paid in full!
  3. My car is clean and is well-maintained.  Still running smoothly. Thank You, Jesus!
  4. I have a savings!  (I didn’t have one before.)
  5. My hair is finally at a healthier stage.  I cut those tresses off, honey…had to be done.
  6. I’ve checked off 3 more things on my life’s bucket list already.
  7. I wake up early every day!  As a result, I get more done.
  8. I read more!
  9. My life is better organized.  I threw away everything I didn’t need and took pictures of momentos that were collecting dust.
  10. My marriage is happy, healthy, better AND fun!!!!!!!  I luh my baby!
  11. I’ve helped launch my husband’s new business, Maine’s Express.  It’s doing well.  Check it out!
  12. I’ve started a regular Periscope broadcast, Miss BJB Scope.  Watch live on Fridays @ 8pm EST. (@TruTalentDiva120)
  13. My company, Tru Talent Productions, has restructured and redesigned a few things and is still developing.
  14. I created my first app, Tru Divas Club!  It is available on Google Play Store right now.  Coming soon to the Apple store.
  15. I started a podcast, Tru Talent Diva Podcast.  New podcasts available every Tuesday.  Listen here: trutalentdiva.podbean.com
  16. I finally have peace of mind, especially in dealing with people.  (This is HUGE!)

…and there’s more in progress and to come!  Folks, it’s only July!  I’m so pumped.

 

The point of it all…

What this activity of choosing one word to focus on for the year has taught me is that you can do and have ANYTHING when God is the Master of your life!  I know it’s the middle of the year, but I recommend asking God to show you what ONE WORD you need to focus on for the rest of this year.  Then, gear up and see what God will lead you to.  That Proverbs 31 Woman status is attainable as long as I’m aligned with the Man above.

My grind is made possible only by the grace, mercy and favor of God!  

32 Ways to Get My Life

January 20th has been MY day since 1984…it’s my born-day, the day of my birth.  I remember almost every birthday I have had since I was 3 years old.  I won’t bore you with my mundane memories, but I must say this 32nd one actually made me feel different lol.  There’s a first for everything, right? 🙂

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What I mean is that I have always placed an enormous amount of emotional weight on celebrating my day of life.  To be completely honest, I have felt unwanted all my life.  364 days of the year I spend giving to others so when January 20th rolls around I want people to care and think about me.  It’s just the truth.  The thing is is that I have generally been disappointed by my set expectation year in and year out.  So since I turned 26 years old I began turning my unrealistic expectation around and just made it about me, no tests of love or loyalty.  This year I wasn’t able to do much for myself AND I didn’t count my texts (FaceBook posts in the past) in hopes to quantify how much I am loved or remembered.  You don’t know how proud of me I truly am for not feeling low because I couldn’t do anything and not many people contacted me on my birthday.  #PatMyselfOnTheBack

So… I’m 32 years old now and I realize that I truly need to get my life in its entirety.  You may not have noticed but I’ve cleaned my blog “house” a little bit.  I had to streamline for ease and consistency.  I’m getting too old to have so much stuff going on at once.  Back to getting my life…

32 Ways To Get My Life…

  1. Consistency is KEY!  (I have great schedules and ideas, but my follow-through is horrible)
  2. Keep my prayer closet occupied.  (War Room taught me some stuff and I’ve started, I just need to do #1)
  3. Listen more.  (I have been working on this…it is NOT easy.  Pray for me.)
  4. Take more baths aka RELAX (I work too hard…period.)
  5. Initiate contact with friends of old and new…stay in touch.
  6. Have FUN, even if I have to do it alone.  I only have one life.
  7. Prevention will be my middle name.  (I will continue to ignore other folks who don’t think about future consequences.)
  8. Pamper myself!  (I’ve been waiting for others to do it…nah, it’s on me shawty)
  9. Remember the bigger cause which is the Kingdom of God.  (Literally, NOTHING else matters)
  10. Write journals…Write books…Write manuals…Write blogs…WRITE!
  11. Block out all negativity.  (It comes from everywhere; I have to fight against it constantly.)
  12. Read!  (I’ve gotten started and I truly have missed it.)
  13. Laugh when it’s funny.  Every time!
  14. Never waste an opportunity to speak life-changing truth.
  15. Be afraid of NO ONE and NOTHING.  For Christ, I live and for Christ, I die.
  16. Be still…(I can’t keep moving; there’s some things that I will consistently have to face.)
  17. Keep my emotions to myself.  (This one is a tricky one, but I know that most people honestly don’t care and I keep shooting myself in the foot.  So, I’m going to just stop and that’s all there is to it.  Gotta guard my heart.)
  18. Cook!  🙂  I enjoy food and most people don’t make it well anymore, so I got it.
  19. Vlog!  (I have a LOT to say.  I will express myself while I have a chance…strangers tend to hear me more than people who “know” me do.)
  20. Keep saying “no”.  (It’s been keeping me out of trouble.  I’m going to keep doing it.)
  21. Know MY truth.  (People keep telling me who I am/what I am/what I’m capable of and I again will look INSIDE instead of to others.)
  22. Let it go!  Whatever and whoever it may be…I can’t fight anymore.  It hurts too much.
  23. Tell my story.  There are so many people out here that are going through what I’ve been through and they just need to know that God CAN take them through it.
  24. Call out bullcrap immediately.  (Only when it’s necessary to do so.  I want my peace now more than being heard or being right.)
  25. Understand that people do not change.  (I’m an optimist, but I get it now.  My optimism does not trump facts.)
  26. Be pretty! 🙂  (It’s just time, lol)
  27. Protect myself at all costs.  (I’m talking spiritually… guns… finances… emotions… all the way)
  28. Get it done early.  If I get it done as soon as I get it, then I won’t have to worry about it later.
  29. Be grateful.  When I look back over my life, there’s a lot of pain.  HOWEVER, God has been TOO GOOD to me for me to not be more grateful than what I am.
  30. SMILE!
  31. Get my business in order.  (I have made strides; I have to keep going.)
  32. Grow up and never grow up simultaneously!  🙂

Below is my vision board from 2015…and it’s still kicking now.  I hope it encourages you as it does me.  I will probably update it soon though.

Vision Board 2015

32 has been hard on me already…time to do #2!

 

 

 

Watch God Do It!

 

Giving Him the first love

Just in case you didn’t know…

GOD IS AWESOME!!!!!!

Many times over the course of my 31 years of life, I’ve heard people say, “God works in mysterious ways.”  I knew what that meant intellectually and have seen Him work in people’s lives to where that statement had certainly been proven.  Here lately, God is SHOWING UP and SHOWING OUT in my life, just for me.  He has made me shake my own head and say audibly, “God sure works in mysterious ways.”

Jeremiah 29:11

It’s almost my bedtime (I’ll blog about that later), so I will keep this brief.  In less than one month, I have stepped out on faith and resigned from a pretty secure place of employment with no sign of prospect, no savings and no true plan of what to do next…I listened to the leading of the Lord and just TRUSTED HIM completely (for once in my life).  Within HOURS of that deed being final (no backsies), God had a dear old friend text me with a new job opportunity!  If that isn’t enough, He has allowed me to see MORE of what the professional vision God has designed for my life and He’s allowing me to walk in it already.  THEN, He has blessed my families (mine and the in-laws) by working in and through us family members to HEAL, RECONCILE, FORGIVE and BE DELIVERED! Aaaaaaa-aaa-amen!

Now, don’t get me wrong things are not all honky dory in every way YET.  I see God moving and I just hear Him saying, “Watch Me work!”  Don’t that make you excited?!!!!  In response, I just say to God (for my life), “DO YO THANG, DADDY!”

 

GOD IS ABLE TO DO ANYTHING  When we pray  ask God to help us raise a garden to feed others, we glorify Him...

DJ’s Beatz, Vol. 2: Overturning Distractions

Just in case you wondering…

It seems as though I’m experiencing writer’s block…smh.  I’m trying to get a handle on it.  I promise!  I am still committed to being on 120%!

Now back to our regularly scheduled post…

This week’s song: “Golden Days” by Kem featuring Jill Scott.  I have been COMPLETELY distracted by everything in life it seems.  Later in a video, I will share with you WHY this song applies and why YOU should listen and glean the nuggets of wisdom this song presents.  Since my latest post (“Know Your Lines” video), my life has been inundated with a plethora of distractions, situations, circumstances and even feelings. UGHHHHHHHH!  My nerves have been overworked this week and you know what….

IT’S ALL MY OWN FAULT!

Life has been throwing continual monkey wrenches into my everyday motion of things that I have allowed to throw me off course.  Though I cannot control every situation or person, I can control how I respond.  I’ve simply given too much power to people and to my emotions!  It’s like everything irritates me.  At first, it seemed that my monthly visitor may very well be contributing to the curtness of my rudicity (I am not completely certain that that is a word, BUT my version means the state of being RUDE) in response to people.  That alone is not why I’ve been “spazzing”, as my husband would say.  People provoke me!  I’ve grown extremely tired of a few things and that has honestly been the catalyst in why I am distracted.

MY MONKEY WRENCH LIST (If you’ve read my blog before then you already know how much I love lists, so here we go!)

  • People not doing what THEY SAID they were going to do

Seriously, it has irritated me to no end for people to insist on doing something or asking me to assist them with something when they are NOT even holding up their end of THEIR OWN project/favor/request!

WHY is this a distraction?  Answer: When I agree to do something, I attempt to give my all and it takes time to do that.  Remember, I am on 120%.  So, if I have to wait on you and beg and plead for you to do what you originally set up it throws me off.  It stresses me out; thus, I spend more time on YOUR stuff than my own.  That is just not cool!

  • Becoming a part-time parakeet

I. DO. NOT. LIKE. TO. REPEAT. MYSELF!  Point, blank, period.  I’m not a complete impatient person, BUT if I’ve said it, oversaid it, used pictures, mimed it and sent in written examples….what else do you want from me?!?!  I don’t like to talk for my health, I really don’t.  This is not just a statement toward the youth that I work with, but toward several adults, too.  I am not a parakeet.  It does not bring me pleasure to continually say things that I’ve already said.

  • My Sentimentality

To put it plainly, my feelings have been all over the place toward many situations.  This is a monkey wrench because my feelings weren’t invited to the party that I’m attending right now.  As ET (Eric Thomas) says, “at the end of your feelings is nothing”!  I tell you that God is calling me to some places that my feelings cannot have a majority vote.  Sometimes I’m SO compassionate and SO emotional that it becomes distracting and I can’t clearly see (spiritually and naturally) what is really going on.

I’ve had to really just overturn every distraction that I have.  At the end of the day, distractions are MY FAULT only.  I control who and what can deter me off course.  The bible says that you must seek the kingdom of God FIRST and all of these other things will be added unto you.  My affections must be on Him before I give attention to the things of earth.  I have been distracted and I have found a way to GET MY LIFE!  Watch the blog post below for the SOLUTION to distractions, please.

Know Your Lines

Good early morning, blog world!

I have been through hell and back this week trying to post this blog! Just problems left and right…smh. I figure what I have to say must be relevant, so here you go.

I present to you my thoughts on the importance of knowing your lines to obtain and sustain true freedom and inner peace. Please watch. 🙂

I look a mess, but the message just may be what you need.

All I’m saying is KNOW YOUR LINES!

Let’s get our lives, people!

Love and peace,

Tru Diva

Fully Activated

Once again, I had a ridiculously long hiatus away from this blog…(smh)

However, recently I have changed the radio station in my life and there’s some new songs I’m singing and living out now.  With this new mindset that I have, you will DEFINITELY hear from me on a more regular basis.  (STAY TUNED TO A NEW POST EVERY SUNDAY NIGHT!)  So long are the days of 2-3 posts a year…which was sad to begin with.  In the words of my aunt, “I’m a disgrace!” (LOL…inside joke, you had to be there to get it)

You may be wondering what is this new mindset that I claim to have that is going to make my commitment to my blog and the goals I write about actually stick this time.  I’ll be happy to elaborate on my new “status” of living.

It’s simple, really.  I finally said that ENOUGH IS ENOUGH, prayed to God for guidance and set out to actually GET MY LIFE”, as Tamar Braxton puts it!  Ladies and gentlemen, your girl has been in transition and a shift has taken place.  To put it plainly, I am FULLY ACTIVATED.

I’m on 120%!

Fitness Motivation

Yes, people…I’m living life with 120% effort and nothing less.  I have written posts and have talked, talked, talked to folks about how I want to get my health in order and get my life in order.  Well, I’ve been ready to get it.  Day by day, I bring forth some effort to actively reach my goals.  Every day is not easy and sometimes I do not reach my daily goal, BUT I am maximizing my time.  THAT is proof that this Tru Diva is not giving up and I am COMMITTED to being all that God has purposed me to be!

Like most things in my life, I did not get to this mentality by happenstance. As a matter of fact, I’ve prayed, fasted, read the word, listened to inspiring people, let go of people, the past and ill-conceived perceptions, discovered the power of motivational videos by the world’s most respected speakers and flat out just looked at my true self in the mirror and decided to stop making excuses.  This has been a very involved process and I know that God’s not done with me yet.  He certainly is not.  He has been giving me signs and clear messages to get me through and to it.  One of which is the number 120.

Seriously, these numbers have been allllll up in my face for over a year now.  When I turned 30 years old, I started writing private introspective journal entries…you know, reflecting on my life thus far.  While writing one of them, I’d discovered that not only was I born on January 20th (1/20), BUT I was also born at 2:01pm.  That discovery lead to me paying attention to many things in my life that involved a number of some sort.  For example, my favorite number is 2.  I became a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.(founded in 1920) in 2010 AND my line number is #2.  LOL…you may think I’m crazy at this point, but I’m just connecting the dots.

I can see it more clearly now.  I am DESTINED to live my life ON 120!!!  That’s just it! 

Can I tell you that since I’ve discovered this connection…it has been a lot easier for me to revive my dreams and encourage myself to believe that I can do everything that God placed inside of me?  It truly has.  Right now it is after midnight and my tablet’s musLook at this #zulilyfind! Black & White 'If You Change Nothing' Brick Décor #zulilyfindsic player is shuffling through songs to fill my writing environment and the following songs play in this order:

  1. Mariah Carey’s “Make It Happen”
  2. followed by Brian McKnight’s “Win”
  3. followed by Erica Walker’s “Show Me”
  4. followed by Kalenna’s “Stronger”
  5. followed by J. Cole’s “Crooked Smile”
  6. followed by Whitney & Mariah’s “When You Believe”
  7. and last Athena Cage’s “All Or Nothing”

My mindset – AND even my electronic devices – is on “what else can I do to fulfill my purpose before I go to bed?” 

Amen. #Quotes #Inspiration I have committed to God and myself that it’s “all or nothing” in everything I do and am a part of.  I work longer, work harder, work when it hurts, work when no one else will, work when I don’t want to…and then I must go the extra mile to achieve excellence!  I won’t even allow myself to listen to music that is not adding value to my life.  Listen to any or all of the seven songs above to see what I mean.  IJS

Ladies and gentlemen, before I completely become annoyingly redundant, I am going to close this blog post with this…

Let’s get FULLY ACTIVATED in our lives!  I AM!

You only get one so live it on 120%, that’s the only true way to do it!

good reflection questions

The Comeback

It’s true… Absence has definitely made the heart fonder!  It’s been a LONG time, but

I’M BACK!

I have been gone for over a year trying to get my life right.  The truth is.. the ups and downs of life kept me very occupied and the last thing on my mind was losing sleep to write a post.  Officially, blogworld…I apologize for committment issues.  Please forgive me!

 

Tamar Get Your Life Heart Girlie T-Shirt

Now… there are several things on my mind.  One of which is The TRUTH, plain and simple.  My next few blog posts will deal with my truth, people’s perceived truths and ultimately God’s Truth.

STAY TUNED! (I’ll be back this time, lol)

To Have Or Not To Have…Why Am I Obsessing?

Hello there, world!

I was preoccupied with a summer arts program for 2 weeks, which left me no time to blog!  I feel the need to say, “I’m sorry”.

As you know, I’m on my whole “Extreme Life Makeover” kick, and I’m doing…OKAY.  Eh, my mindset is more positive and my goals are right in front of me.  I haven’t done very well with maintaining a regular fitness regimen, but at least I’m more aware of what I’m doing than I used to be.  Plus, I’m happier…in a way.

Most of my happiness comes from just knowing!  That reassuring feeling that you know what you want to do with your career and you know where you want to be in 6 weeks, 6 months and 5 years.  I can’t stand not knowing, and it just makes me feel better to finally have a sense of knowing!

Yeah, but there’s a part of me that still doesn’t know and it’s lowkey driving me insane…

I have been secretly having this inner battle about HAVING BABIES for almost a year now.  At first, my “baby fever” was just fantasizing about the superficial stuff.  Ya know, nursery decorations, baby shower games and baby names.   And it would only pop up once every few weeks or so.  Never very intense, but just way more present than I was used to.  THEN, I had a late period last summer…

I went out and bought my very first pregnancy test.  I didn’t tell anybody, not even my husband, that I was suspicious of being with child.  I Googled the mess out of which pregnancy tests were more accurate and could detect pregnancy the earliest.  I spent 14.96 on a box of ClearBlue Digital Pregnancy Tests at WalMart.

NOW TELL ME THIS…I was nervous, a little embarassed and wanted some privacy while in the pregnancy test aisle, right.  I had NEVER done this before.  So, WHY did I run into somebody WHILE I was in the aisle trying to figure out which one to get?!  And, of all people, I ran into my brother’s wife AND my little niece and nephew!  Why is it every time you try to do/buy something on the low, you ALWAYS run into somebody you know?????

Long story short, I wasn’t pregnant…and I was mad because the first test in the box was defective.  Back in August 2011, I was kinda relieved then.  It was like, “whew, we’re just not ready”.  Ever since I took that test, this “baby fever” has gotten worse and worse.  To top it off, it seemed like every lady I ever knew was pregnant, getting pregnant or had a baby after that test.  I mean, EVERYBODY!

Since I took that first test in August, I have found that at least one woman from every era of my life had a baby or got pregnant.  My sister-in-law had twins in October.  My old college roommate and college classmate had babies in November.  My big sister from my first church home was pregnant with her first baby.  My high school road dawg had gotten pregnant with her first baby this winter.  More of my high school and college classmates were popping out babies and announcing pregnancies right and left from August 2011-present.  Now, I’m EXTREMELY HAPPY for them all!  I think they’re going to be fabulous mothers!

But now, my “baby fever” has intensified because it’s in my face ALL THE TIME!  It’s definitely not their faults (sort of lol) that they’re pregnant, delivering babies at the same time.  I don’t blame any of them at all.  I blame myself…

First, let’s get this straight…I LOVE CHILDREN!  I have worked with youth my entire life, and I love it.  On the flip, I’d never wanted kids before I got married really.  There’s something about love that can change even the most stubborn of minds. Plus, I believe I’ll be a good mother one day.   Nevertheless, he and I never stressed the idea of children.  We’re content if we have them; we’re content if we don’t.  We have so many nieces and nephews that we already feel like we have children.  So, he definitely hasn’t placed any pressure on me to have a baby.  Until that pregnancy test, I never wondered about whether I was pregnant or not when my period was late.

Let me tell ya, ever since then my period has been late approximately 4-5 times since then.  I have been a ball of confused nerves every time, too.  It’s the same cycle every time…

  1. my period is a day or 2 or 3 late –
  2.  my PMS symptoms are more intense (they’re SUPER similar to pregnancy symptoms) –
  3. I convince myself to wait it out, but the not knowing kills me so I take a pregnancy test –
  4. then the results turn up negative –
  5. my period shows up the next day.

This mess drives me CRAZY!  I learned through more Google research that the Dollar General pregnancy tests work just as well, so I stocked up on them.  (This time only $1 each…this testing mess can drain a pocket if you’re not careful.  I’m cheap!)  What I hate most is the EMOTIONAL rollercoaster I ride during the process though!

This is my internal battle:

I am disappointed that I’m not pregnant – Relieved that I’m not pregnant…

I am hoping that I’m carrying a baby – Glad that I’m not carrying a baby because of xyz…

I really want to have a baby now while I’m in my prime – I prefer to be financially stable before bringing a baby into the world

I believe we’re ready to have a baby – We haven’t had enough time to ourselves yet

Just back and forth and back and forth with this…

AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!  WHY CAN’T I MAKE UP MY MIND?!

More importantly, WHY am I obsessing over this?  I never used to before.  I just didn’t.  Now every time I have a cramp the wrong way or if I’m an hour late for my period, I think I’m pregnant.  Just typing this blog, I’m wiping my forehead in frustration still waiting for my period to arrive.  (I took a test today, it was negative.)  I believe that I want a child, but the real question is WHEN?  I think that must be it…I obsess because I don’t want to miss my time to be a mommy, but I also don’t want to have one too soon.  I believe that God will bless or not bless us with one when it’s time, I do.  It’s just the not knowing, that has me touching my belly every month to see if my fat is hard underneath or still squishy.

Ooh wee, pray for me!  This baby thing is taking its toll on me already…and I don’t even have one yet!

To Populate or Not Populate…that is the question! 

 (ROFL!!!!!  R. Kelly know he a MESS for using that word in his song!  It just doesn’t sound like natural conversation…I laugh out loud every time I hear that part.  POPULATE! Bwahahahahahaha!)

DJ’s Beatz, Vol. 1: Seeing It Before You See It

This Week’s Song: “It’s Not Over” by Karen Clark Sheard

If you’ve read my previous posts, “Change” or “Just Do It…No More Excuses” you would know how dissatisfied I am with my life at this time of my life.  Rather than just complain about it, I’ve taken an Extreme Life Makeover approach to transform my life into the one that I believe God has called for me to live.  There’s a LOT that I need to change, accomplish and reprogram about my life.  And honestly, it’s DAUNTING and DIFFICULT!  Nevertheless, I will not give up!

It’s just that sometimes a monkey wrench gets thrown at you and you’re caught with that “Really?!  Why even try?” feeling.  This week my finances and employment situation has me so discouraged.  I work as a part-time music teacher and the school year is now over until August.  Unlike most full time teachers, I don’t have paychecks coming to me through the summer months.  When I’m not in the classroom, I don’t get paid.  Consequently, I have been on the hunt for a summer or additional part-time/full-time job since JANUARY!  JANUARY!!!!  I have applied to seemingly a hundred jobs and I have only been called in for ONE INTERVIEW, of which I did not get called back for the second interview.  I haven’t given up, but the bills with due dates are coming and I have no income.  Oh, and technically, I’m not unemployed since I’m expected back to school the next school year.  All in all, I just feel overwhelmed and discouraged.

So while paying never-ending bills with my last school year paycheck at 6am, I just lost it!  Nothing but tears of frustration and hopelessness.  All of my money is basically gone now.  😦   Just discouraged.  Then, I saw my Karen Clark-Sheard CD laying on my laptop and decided to pop it in.  If nothing else, I needed to get in the presence of God.  Mind you, I haven’t listened to this CD in maybe a year or more.  I, clearly, forgot how POWERFUL the songs were!  Let’s just say that through the progression of the CD, I heard God’s voice in song reminding me of who HE is.  I was reminded that I have to have faith and that He’s never failed me.  I was back at my center, emotions back in check and then “It’s Not Over” came on…

The line that got me was, “You gotta see it before you see it, or you never will see it!”  My life no longer felt hopeless after she sang that.  I could feel that God’s truly got me!  I just gotta BELIEVE He’s going to work it out…or better yet, He’s already worked it out! So tell me, has life got you down? 

Does it just seem like it’s just not going to work out?

I was readily reminded, while in tears, that you MUST walk by faith and not by sight.  Everything in life will not be the way I want it and I may even struggle sometimes, BUT GOD has and will take care of you because

IT’S NOT OVER UNTIL GOD SAYS IT’S OVER!

HALLELUJAH!!!!

The lyrics to the song “IT’S NOT OVER” by Karen Clark Sheard are below. Be blessed and have faith. God’s got me and you!

View a YouTube video of the song here.

Song Lyrics:

It’s not over til God says it’s over

It’s not over til God says it’s over

He’s with you through stormy weather

Oh, the God I serve… He fails you never

He is a man of His word

It’s not over

Just hold on to your faith

Oh, it’s not over

He’ll make a way for your escape

Oh He has the last say

He’s never lost a case

You cannot go by what it looks like

We walk by faith and not by sight

You must believe in what Jesus said

He’s a man of His word

It’s not over

Hold to your faith

It’s not over

He’ll make a way for your escape

He’s never lost a case

It’s not over

“Is my living in vain? Or is my praying in vain?

But the Bible says, when thou prayest, you gotta go in your secret closet.”

Whatever you need it’s in the closet (referring to the prayer closet)

I’m coming out, I’m coming out, I’m coming out

I’m coming out of this thang

It’s not over

“One Sunday morning, I heard my pastor say, ‘You gotta see things that are not as though they were.  You gotta see your way out’

You gotta see it before you see it, or you never will see it!

You gotta see it before you see it, or you never will see it!

You gotta see it before you see it, or you never will see it!

You coming out, I’m coming out, We coming out

We’re coming out of this thang!

Just Do It…No More Excuses!

Yesterday, I addressed how one of my B430 goals is to lose all of this dagblasted weight and wear a size 10-12.  I have been engaged in the Battle of the Bulge since I was 15 years old.  At the time, I didn’t realize that I had NOTHING to battle.  I was too influenced by my environment and my own self-esteem issues to see that I was a FOOL!

My high school Senior Pic…not as small as the other girls, but not huge either.

I’d give anything to have that body back!  Hindsight, I tell ya.  Nevertheless, I realize that I’m definitely not meant to be this overweight, mildly obese at all.  I looked great and I will look even better someday.  In the pic above, I wore a size 14 comfortably.  So, now I’m on an official journey to reach my B430 goal of a size 10-12.  Let’s get it!

Truthfully, I tend to get unmotivated easily.  I have started this journey countless times to no avail.  With my 30th birthday looming over my head, I think I’ve finally found my “muse” to stick with it this time.

I’m not new to the health and wellness game either.  I had a nutritionist at the age of 16, because I was “overweight”.  (Yall know about those weight charts where you had to be like 110lbs if you’re 5’2″ tall.  As a young BLACK girl and with my genes, I was never going to be the size those charts said.)  I also worked at the YMCA for 2 years.  I worked side by side with great trainers, had free access to the best exercise machines and rubbed elbows with top notch aerobics instructors.  So, I learned a lot about how to get fit, what to eat, what really works, metabolism, the smart way to lose weight, all of that stuff…

I JUST NEVER DID ANY OF IT!  

I know it works, too.  I did it once during a Biggest Loser Contest and lost 12lbs in 3 months.  I felt good, looked good and didn’t feel deprived or miserable throughout the process.  I lost my way as soon as I had to quit that job.  Thus, I know what to do and how to do it.  So now comes the time for me to be like Nike and “JUST DO IT”!

To get me started here are my current goals, plans, etc. for the month of June:

DAILY GOALS

  • Drink lots of water!  Specifically, a gallon of water 3 days a week and 2L of water 4 days a week.
  • Eat home-cooked meals with more veggies/fruits, less fats and sugars.
  • MOVE! Get up and do something everyday.  Stretch, crunches, jumping jacks, walk, jog, something!!!!
  • Track my food and exercise activity with MyFitnessPal!

My NUMBERS PLAN

  • 5 dress sizes down
  • 10 inches off waist (all of my fat goes to my belly- I’m APPLE shaped)
  • 25 percent increase of healthy eating (more produce and protein)
  • 40 minutes of exercise daily at least 4 days a week
  • Lose 65 pounds

EXERCISE GOALS

  • RUN!  I’m a heavy chested girl who has always hated running!  So, I’m biting the bullet and going to learn how to run properly.  My goal is to be able to run a 5K by late fall.
  • Complete Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred!  It’s only a 25 minute workout, BUT she will kill you!!!!  I’ve made it 9 days once, but I’m determined to complete it before this year is over.

If you haven’t notice by now, I LOVE LISTS! 🙂  Anyway, to get me started, I found a nice workout plan to couple with my run/walk regimen to help me reach my goals.  Remember, I’m supremely out of shape right now.  I need to crawl before I walk.

 

So, let me get my Workout Music Playlist together…let’s get it!

Change

I. AM. FED. UP. WITH. MY. LIFE!

I thought that by the time I reached my late twenties, I would have achieved 80% of the goals that I’d set for myself as a child.  I had so many examples of what NOT to do, that I just KNEW that I was going to be where I wanted by now. I just knew it!

Well, I am less than 2 years away from turning the 3-0 and I am sooooooo not where I wanted to be in life!  I feel like a failure when I think about it in detail.  My 10 year high school reunion is coming up next month and I feel like I am nowhere near who I thought I should be or would be.  I find myself asking,

“What do I have to show for my life in the past 10 years?”

“What amazing things will I dazzle my classmates with about my life?”

I, like most of the girls I hung out with in high school, had dreams, goals and visions of grandeur.  My mind takes me back to the hotel room in Atlanta on our Senior Trip, where my closest friends and I were hashing out everything that we wanted to do and be by the age of 30.  There were literal lists and at that time, everything seemed very attainable.  I remember even thinking to myself while the others were describing their futures, that I would reach all of my goals BEFORE 30 with a year or two to spare.  I loved challenging myself.  Being an overachiever is what kept me out of trouble all of my life and I didn’t think that would change just because I would be an adult.  When my turn came, I had a whole list of things that I confidently spewed out of my mouth.  I had faith in God and myself to know that I will be everything that I dreamed to be.  Let’s go back in time to revisit this list…

  1. I would own my own successful record label or music company of some sorts.  At the time, I called my future label, “DJWORKS RECORDS”.
  2. I would be married, then have 2 children.  Marriage FIRST was very non-negotiable for me.  I told everyone that would listen that I didn’t want kids.   So, the children part I always kept to myself, because kids worked my nerves so bad.  But deep down inside, I’d always knew that I want to pop out 2 kids (a boy and a girl, to be exact) before age 30.
  3. I would be a homeowner, living in LA or NYC or ATL or anywhere but Ohio.
  4. I would be wealthy.  Not so much a millionaire, but more like a thousandaire.  Having no debt whatsoever.
  5. I would buy my mother a house with my wealth.
  6. I would be a stone cold fox wearing a size 8-10.  (That was my dream size at that time.  I was a size 14 in high school.)
  7. My hair would be long, straight and beautiful all the time.  Seems super shallow, BUT I had never had my hair the way I wanted it throughout my entire life.  And what I wanted was that long, silky hair that I would blow in the wind and sculpt into intricate styles of ghetto fabulousness.
  8. I would drive a convertible Mercedes Benz.

Seriously, I believed that I could do everything on that list by my deadline!  I have always been one of those people that STICKS TO whatever she said she was going to do.  I had to make good decisions the first time because I DID NOT LIKE TO CHANGE!

Welllllll….

Not only have I NOT reached any of my “Before 30 Goals”, I’ve changed many of them as well!  For me, that’s a HUGE STEP.  A really, really big step and indication that I, as a person, have changed in the past 10 years.  I must admit, I am not happy with the fact that I only reached half of one of my goals (#2) even though I changed most of them.  Time and life experiences has taught me that it is oftentimes necessary to change your dreams.  That doesn’t even bother me.  What bothers me is that I haven’t reached any of my NEW goals either!  Take a look at my REVISED goals before 30:

  1. Own, operate and generate a successful profit from my company, Tru Talent Productions and its many divisions.  This is PARTIALLY reached. I own it and even operate it, BUT we have yet to find that niche to generate successful profit so that I can only work for myself.
  2. Have two children, a son and daughter, with my husband.  I have only been married for a little over a year now.  We do not have any children,  and yet we are neither sad nor glad about it.  We believe that God will bless us when it’s time, but I can’t help but to hear my biological clock ticking….tick, tock…..tick, tock…
  3. Live in North Carolina, MAYBE owning a condo or townhouse or small home.  The economy and housing market recessions changed my mind considerably.  The last thing I want is a huge 30+ year debt that could be taken away from me because I got laid off and missed a payment.  I am open to owning something that would take maybe 10 years or less to pay off.  PLUS, I am not ready for all of that responsibility!  Even at age 28.  I have a landlord of some sort all of my life.  DIY projects and home improvement are just foreign to me and seem super risky.  I’m just not ready for all of that.  However, I AM ready to leave OHIO!  All in God’s timing, of course.  I just did not think that I would still be here at all!  I mean not at all!  North Carolina is calling, and hopefully before 31 I can call NC home.
  4. I just want to be out of debt! I don’t need to be wealthy at all.  They seem to have too many problems anyway. Mo money, mo problems is what they say.  I just don’t want to owe anybody anymore!  My goodness, someone should have told me that credit cards are the black hole of finances!!!  I just paid off one and I have 2 more store charges to pay off THEN I tackle the major credit card.  They’re not even that bad considering that I still owe Sallie Mae.  I HATE SALLIE MAE!  My prayer often is that there is this major systems crash that erases every trace of my existence and debt.  I want to sign in one day and see that my account doesn’t exist or just find that some stranger paid it all in full.  School loans are the devil incarnate!
  5. Wearing a size 10-12.  Now this goal only went up a size, but it’s generally the same.  The major difference is that I no longer wear a 14.  Now I have to get all of the rolls, love handles and fluff off of a size 18-20!  Ugh…how could I have possibly allowed myself to get this big?!  I have never been this big before and I’m uncomfortable and just outright hate it!  Nevertheless, it’s my fault.  I kick myself for thinking that I was fat in high school!  Back then, I just had big breasts and a little gut.  Now…I won’t even go there.  I’m working now on reaching my goal size before 30, and I AM GOING TO DO IT!  I cannot live this way any longer.
  6. Growing my very healthy and natural hair down to my collar bone.  I want to see my naturally curly, sometimes straight hair bounce up against my shoulders.  When, or if, I decide to straighten it with a low heat iron it would drape across my cleavage.  Overall, I wish for my hair to be super healthy!  I’ve embraced me for me and this is way better than any other vision I had for my hair otherwise.
  7. Driving a PAID OFF crossover vehicle.  Yeah, I’m no longer interested in the Benz or any other luxury car for that matter.  Just like with the house, I do not want all of that responsibility.  It just costs too much for me to maintain, plain and simple.  I have my eye on fuel efficient, stylish cars with awesome dashboard/console features.  That’s darn near all I need and want.  Oh, and I don’t want ANY car notes by age 30.  However, unless a miracle is worked out…I will not make this goal by 30 either.
  8. Want to make a difference in my community, letting others see Jesus in me.  Now, I was saved in high school, but this was never a goal of mine.  I guess I’ve matured in Christ.  I, literally, want my days to be filled with spreading God’s love and His word to others throughout my life!  I have learned that everything that I have mentioned and want to attain means ABSOLUTELY NOTHING if Jesus Christ is not glorified!  “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these other things will be added unto you” 

So, basically, I realize that I need CHANGE.  I can reach some of these by age 30 if I sacrifice and work really hard with God’s help.  Realistically, I will not achieve some of the others in time.  I can deal with that, but what I will no longer deal with is MY OWN DEFEATIST ATTITUDE ABOUT MY LIFE!  I am declaring a spiritual, mental, emotional, physical and financial makeover to take place in my life NOW!  I am tired of being fed up; tired of feeling like a failure.  It’s time to get it….go get my blessings! (Thank you, Mary Mary for that life anthem!)

So for starters, peep my 2012 Vision Board…I figure that if I can’t see it before I see, then I never will see it!

This is my vision board for 2012!

IT’S TIME FOR CHANGE!