It’s That Time of Year Again.

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There are 17 days left in 2016.  I’m sitting here really thinking, where did the days go?!  It seems like I was just counting down, “Three, two, one.  Happy New Year!” …OK. What I meant to say was that I woke up at 12:13 AM to missed phone calls and texts, followed by me rolling back over. Welcome to the 30+ club. But, that’s another topic in itself.

This time last year, I had set goals for myself.  Like so many people I know, I created a vision board.   There was only one problem.  It seemed like my 2016 vision board was dang near the same as the 2015 board, and damn it the 2014 board. WTF???!  I had repeat goals for the past couple of years. So what was holding me back?!  I saw a few people around me who were doing their thang'(meaning they were completing their personal goals), yet I was stuck bringing in the old. Again.  Don’t get me wrong, I did complete some of my smaller goals, but why wasn’t I checking off ALL of the goals on my board when I had the same 365 days to do it as everyone else?

According to a study done by University of Scranton,  only 8% of people  actually complete their new year resolutions.  We tell ourselves that we are going to accomplish XYZ (i.e. lose weight, go back to school, organize more, get closer to God, buy a house, go on 5 trips a year, take better care of our hair, etc.), but sometimes the goals we set are out of reach at that particular time in our life.  For instance, I put a house on my board, yet I hadn’t even been saving up for a house.  So how in the hell did I think Image result for man with question marks memeI was going to purchase a house this year?! The Lord says ask and you shall receive, but He also gave me wisdom.  So if faith works=dead, then the house was just a figment of my imagination.

I can attest, the people who complete their goals are DEDICATED and MAKE GREAT USE OF THEIR TIME.  If we want to reach our goals, we have to figure out what changes need to occur for it to happen.  We can’t keep doing the same thing we’ve done in the past and expect a different outcome.  As I mentioned in my first post, procrastination has been a major issue, but I’m working on it.  Even though I didn’t get my dream house, I was able to complete other goals and do great work.  Hey, I even started this blog, and it hadn’t even crossed my mind earlier this year.

As my wisdom increases, I’m learning that even though it is important to write down my short term and long term goals so that I don’t lose sight of them, I’m not in a binding contract with them.  Circumstances change throughout the year.  I may develop a new interest and want to focus on that instead.  I don’t have to beat myself up if I didn’t do what I set out to do.

Take each day in stride and realize that every year of your life is a separate marathon race.  It’s not your typical 5K race where you just sign up, no preparation needed, and bam you’re at the finish line grabbing your medal.  This marathon race called life calls for you to sign up (set goal), train (set mini goals, develop a plan, allow for time to practice), and run at a steady pace (Just Do It!). You will appreciate yourself more you realize the blood, sweat, and tears you put into it.

So, here we are.  We have almost two weeks left in 2016.  Here comes the, “New Year, new me.”, “Steppin’ into 2017 like…”, “Leaving ____ in 2016”.  Don’t be that person.  There’s no better day to start, than TODAY! Life is just a vapor.  Trial and error. One minute we’re here.  The next minute, we’re gone.  Cut those people you need to cut off today.  Start the workout plan today (Christmas is one day…again ONE DAY), start looking for a new job today.  Start planning your business today.  Communicate the truth to them today. Tell them you love them today.  Stop playing yaself’ today.  At the end of the day, give it our all.  Be a winner, not a whiner.

SB

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Cubs Win!

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Teammates Celebrating (photo courtesy of NBCNews.com)

Last night, you may have fell asleep and weren’t able to catch the full game where the Chicago Cubs beat the Cleveland Indians.  The Cubs won the 2016 World Series Title.  The last time they won was in 1908.  That was 108 years ago.  Man. Words can’t describe the way they must’ve felt after the time ran out in the last inning.  I have so many people on my timelines in support of the team.  Some of the people have been die hard fans and have followed them every year.  Others are being called “bandwagon fans”.  A bandwagon fan is a person who has shown no interest in a team.  However, when the team begins to win games, appears to be a loyal fan because they are doing well. I’d like to challenge people to think outside of their personal box and believe that people can actually be Sincere when they shout, “Yay, they won.”

How many times has a friend put you on to new music and suddenly you start finding old music from the artist that you enjoy?  Guess what happens next?!  You can become a fan.  Just like that. Fans are CAN be created overnight. There is no time limit people.  When you show interest in a person or team’s journey from where they were, to where they are now, you begin to show admiration or respect for them.

I must admit, I have never been an avid baseball watcher. My lack of patience has had me fidgeting in my seat at previous games.  Nonetheless, I gained respect for this team.  I may even watch a couple games next season.  For those who don’t believe people are sincere in their sentiments, just stop.  There will come a time in everyone’s life when they are not the first person to learn of a new or old group, artist, team, topic, etc. Bandwagon fans can take interest at any time.  Be okay with this and enjoy the celebration. Go Cubs!

SB

Makidada.

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You and me, Us never part
Makidada
You and me, Us have one heart
Makidada
Ain’t no ocean, ain’t no sea
Makidada
Keep my sista way from me
Makidada


Many of us know this song from the movie, The Color Purple.  We sang or mumbled the words while airing the hand motions with a sibling, cousin or friend. It wasn’t until I was an adult that I figured out what they were saying and how important this song was to Celie and Nettie.  Makidada.  In Swahili, this means little sister. Growing up, I was the little sister.  But, who says that your “little sister” has to be younger than you?

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I hadn’t had a good week due to some family problems that recently had unfolded.  I was about to be in a downward spiral.  I mean, I was ready to sit on the couch all day, Netflix and Chill by my damn self, and binge out on episodes of Bob’s Burgers and Chopped…all while crying my eyes out. I just couldn’t seem to get out of my emotions this particular day.  Listen. Everyone reacts to stress differently.  For women, it may be that time of the month.  It could be that we had a bad day at work or school.  It may be that our child(ren) have worked our last nerve, or even a spouse or significant other made us upset.  Shoot, it could be all of the above.  Now, don’t get me wrong, we are all entitled to get in our feelings sometimes, we just can’t stay there.

As I’ve entered my 30’s, I’ve realized that life just isn’t fair. We graduate from college with expectations of landing a dream job making boo coo (do people still say that?) dollars, we see people around us get sick or pass away unexpectedly, we have ‘friends’ talk bad about us behind our back, folks get married and/or having children, or we see other people making major moves, and it’s actually working.  Meanwhile, we’re trying to figure out how to get from point A to point B.  During these times of internal or external conflict, it’s always helpful for me to reach out to my friends also known as my makidadas.

If you really know me, you know that I don’t just go around calling everyone a friend.  There’s levels to the people I associate with.  My girls: we speak to each other almost every day by talking on the phone, texting, video chatting, or by social media.  We know things about each other that we probably shouldn’t know.  We know that we will take those secrets to the grave.  We confide and lean on each other during hard times.  We know that if some something goes down, we’ll be there to help each other through.  My friends are similar to my girls, but they don’t know some of those crazy situations that I’ll be buried with. R.I.P.  An associate: this person, is someone I speak to when in mixed company.  We get along well when we’re around each other, but I’m definitely not telling you my business.  Sorry. We coo…but not that cool.

Over the years, I’ve learned (and am still learning) to set boundaries with people I open up to.  Everyone will not be genuine.  They will want to know your business, and run-tell-that.  Or, they will want to use you as their personal therapist, but you ain’t getting paid!  The conversations with these individuals are mostly one sided.  I am NOT saying that you shouldn’t be there to listen to your friends because often times, we are our friend’s therapist.  They talk.  We listen.  However, some so called friends will leave you feeling drained after EVERY conversation with them.

I’m sure you’ve heard folks say ‘people are in your life as a blessing or a lesson’.  They are right.  You will definitely have more lessons that blessings though. As you get older, your circle becomes smaller.  Situations arise and you find that certain individuals are dead weight, so you cut the line on that anchor.  This does not mean that these people are bad or immoral.  This does not mean that you have to stop talking to them all together, it just means you have to redefine what you want out of the friendship.  If you are okay with a one sided relationship, so be it.

We need faithful friends to get us through the hard times.  We need friends that make us laugh so we can get out of the funk we’re in.  We need friends that uplift us.  We need friends that correct us when we’re wrong.  We needs those ride or die friends. You know the ones you can call and say, “Ride with me real quick.” They grab their coat, and ask questions later.

In friendships, I learned that you cannot put a time frame on it. I’ve met individuals and felt as though I’d known them a lifetime.  We feel comfortable around each other, which makes us open up more.  Yet, I’ve known other people for years and they began to look more like strangers.  Life experiences and growth change our perception.  We grow apart.  This is okay too.   Some of our seasons last longer than others.  Enjoy it while you can.

Remember when Celie and Nettie saw each other again

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“Nettiiiiiiiiiiiiiie….Celie”

after all those years they’d been separated???  They reconnected as if they never parted.  The gift and curse of getting older is that friends move away to plant their life elsewhere.  Yea, this allows me to have a FREE vacation anytime (JuJu’s on the beat), but it doesn’t allow me to be in their presence.  As I age, I acknowledge that even though I don’t get to see my girls as much as I want, when we do get together, it’s like we never split. Those are the true bonds that I need in my life.

Now remember earlier I told you I was in the midst of my downward spiral, but I remembered that I had been invited to a gathering that afternoon. I had 2 choices.  Sit around and mope, or get out the house and socialize.  I chose to get up and out.  I Drake’d it out a little bit on the ride over since the hurt feelings were still there. However, when I got to the house, it was nothing but love *sees friend and sings you and me us never part, makidada in my head*.

One minute into being at the gathering, my overall mood shifted to a happy space.  It wasn’t because I forced it.  It was because I put myself around friends that treat me as family. Our god bodies give us healing power.  Healing power that we can use for ourselves and for others.  We are spiritual beings with keys that unlock good spaces (i.e. gifts, talents, communication, love, etc.) in souls. When we tap into our God given gifts, we begin to see why certain people were placed in our lives.  It’s so important to have supportive people in your corner. Friends that genuinely care about you.

I was able to move out of a dark space that day.  The food was good, the music was great, and the wine was even better.  But the one thing that beat all of that, was the people and conversations that consumed the room. Our friends become an extension of ourselves.  We need and want them in our lives. In the case of my friends, I hold them dear to my heart.  I may be older than some of you and younger than some, but we will still be each other’s makidada.

SB

Procrastination is a Motha’

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The Struggle is Real.

I do this shit every time. I wake up and say, “OK, I’m not going to bullshit around today.” But then, 1 hour and 3 minutes later, I’m still in the bed STILL scrolling through my Instagram, laughing at the Snaps, and rolling my eyes at the posts on Facebook. Then I get up, say a quick prayer, and hit the ground running. I don’t know what it is about putting tasks off until the last-minute that gets my gears churning, but it does.  You’d think that having more time to complete something would be more beneficial, but it’s something about that rush that gets me going.

 

I’ve told myself that I was going to create a blog for years. Yet, I never completed it. I put that shit to the side. I also said I was going to write a book.  Guess, what? That ish is still “in the works”-meaning I have names of the chapters.  I logged on to WordPress today because my procrastination leg was officially over.  I received a notification saying that I created this site one year ago. One more time. ONE YEAR AGO.  How triflin’ is that?  I had intentions of creating my blog, yet I never completed it.   Merriam-Webster’s simple definition defines procrastination as:  to be slow or late about doing something that should be done: to delay doing something until a later time because you do not want to do it, because you are lazy, etc. I was shaking my head in agreement until I read “lazy” * clutches pearls*.  Me…lazy? I don’t think so! But, as I sit here and think about all the things I have put off (school, work tasks, folding laundry, working out, doing my hair, etc), I’m come to the realization, that it was out of sheer laziness.

Let’s face it.  I can complain all day about all the things that I need to do.  But as long as I put them off, the stuff simply wont get done.  Success won’t happen when I put things off for a later date. I can’t get back “now”.  Every second that I procrastinate could be time invested in myself or others.  It’s time to stop procrastinating…well let me keep it real-not do it as much and work towards my dreams. Hey, I just finished my first post.  It may have taken a year, but in the words of Mrs. Sofia, “Things gonna change ’round here”.