Hey, You! Are you struggling or thriving through COVID-19. Well, I pray you’re thriving even through these times, but I have an announcement just in case you’re not.
Why hello there, how have you been my friend!
Me? Well, I’m here, blessed, and while the things of this year have been unpredictable, to say the least. It’s been good. I still have a roof over my head, food on the table (maybe not everything I’d wish), but it’s ALL good and more than what others have or will ever have. I have transportation to get around, although the other was wrecked! Yikes?, but thank God for insurance!
It’s been a year, but now that Christmas is here, it’s quite unique, would you say? Who would have thought that we’d be spending time over the holidays with family via Zoom, Duo, or FB Messenger? It’s a little weird, but if it’s one thing I’ve learned about society? YOU CAN’T KEEP THEM DOWN!
I won’t mention the word because well let’s face it, you’ve heard it enough. When things took a turn for the worse, it stumped people. It was a Green Giant (this is what I’ll refer to it as) bump in the road that people were trying to figure out how to get over. It was meant to keep most of us down, make us fearful and throw anything negative into our minds. And for a moment, it succeeded.
There’s always a but, once people learned how to navigate around the Green Giant? Everything imaginable was capable, and society figured out a way to do work, business, family, and even grocery shop (for those of us that always frequented the stores…me) in a different way, and guess what, it’s not so bad. Some people have done better since the mighty GG stepped on the scene, and life as we know it, changed!
Need a last minute “virtual” Christmas gift to send? >>> Check out this post for good virtual ideas!
I’ve learned this year alone to cherish the sun just a little bit more. To smell the grass a little more often and appreciate my health considerably, we take for granted the smallest things. This year has proven that we can’t take anything for granted, not even the smallest things.
I know this is a simply unique Christmas for you, as it is for me and millions of other people in the world and the nation. I don’t have a clue as to what 2021 will bring or hold but I’m praying it brings just a little more happiness and even if it’s chaotic and the Green Giant decides to stick it out just a little bit longer? As a society, a nation, culture, and creed – we will be ready to plan our work, execute that plan and build no matter what or who’s in the way.
What I will say is to NOT allow what’s going on in the world to keep you stagnated from starting that business, writing that book, going back to school, getting healthy, or taking this time to get to know you and the people around you. Use this time wisely and ask God for fresh eyes to see your situation from a new perspective. My motto is and always has been “There’s a positive in every negative situation, you may have to dig deep to find it, but if you look closely. You’ll see it.”
I don’t know where you are in your journey today, and I know you may have lost quite a bit this year, we all have, but my prayer for you is that you will push past that pain and allow God to catapult you into your purpose. I’m praying you have a simply unique Christmas, enjoy your family in whatever way you can, and cherish the smallest of things through fresh eyes.
I can’t say I will be blogging much but I am now on YTube (Inspirations with Roshonda). drop by, sit a spell and subscribe and hit that notification bell if you’d like (no pressure…wink). Feel free to check out the about section to learn more about the channel.
Inspirations with Roshonda – Mind, Body, SOUL CARE https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCK2X8yjHPX9pyCOmxruTFww
Disclosure: This book was gifted to me by Jacqueline Pirtle’s publishing company in exchange for my honest review. All views concerning this book are 100% my own.
I can always count on Jacqueline Pirtle‘s books to make me laugh, think differently, and get my energy aligned right. I have to say her latest book, “What It Means to Be A Woman,” made me laugh in the beginning. I was so glad that she put the Poop talk in the front because I had to hear her thoughts on this, even though I already knew somewhat about what she was referring too.
It took me back down memory lane to a relationship I was in at the time. While he was forgettable, the question he asked me was not. To this day I still think about what he said…
Do you ever pass gas? He asked questionably.
I’ve never heard you do it and just want to know if you ever do? The question came out of nowhere, seeing that his comfortability with our relationship garnered him to do it every moment he felt the need to release! Being the “good, understanding” woman, I was. It was okay, I said. “You can feel comfortable around me” words, in which I regret to this day that I gave him access to do.
Check out Jacqueline Pirtle’s First Book:
However, I didn’t know how to respond to his question. He really caught me off guard. “Yes, I do,” I stated somewhat embarrassingly. Oh, he said. I didn’t know you did things like that.
Uh, Yes! I do. It’s always when you’re not around or sleeping or those times when I sneak away to “go look at something” moments. Sorry ladies, if I gave away your secret. When I read what Jacqueline had to say about women POOPING. I was like YESSSSS!! Finally, someone is addressing the elephant in the room. Let’s get it out there, let’s talk about it! Poop is NOT a dirty word, although I understand why people would opt out of conversations discussing it. It’s funny because I asked a former best friend one day if she did it on a regular – Poop that is. I’m so happy Jacqueline decided to talk about this, which came by way of her overhearing some ladies discussing it and how men didn’t think women did it.
To the men out there that think we don’t ever do it? Trust me, if we didn’t. There would be some weird-looking women in the world, as a matter of fact, as Jacqueline states in her book, it’s quite a healthy thing to do. The smell is not fit for the nostrils, but trust me, your pipes are praising you every time you do it regularly! So, Yes – I’m happy to POOP!
I loved that point in the book, the other chapter I loved was “What is Your Purpose in this Physical Life.”
Everything that IS in your life, the good, the bad, the ugly. It is meant for you to allow as an expansion and receive like it is the grandest gift ever.Jacqueline Pirtle, Author
I’m a HUGE fan of Purpose. While life can throw some pretty hard lemons, I firmly believe that we’re all here for a PURPOSE. The creator didn’t create you because he was bored and had nothing better else to do. NOOOO WAY! If you are here, breathing, living, and going about this life? You, my friend, are here ON Purpose to fulfill PURPOSE.
Our life is already predestined for us in a big pretty gift box. This box not only holds ALL the good in our lives, but it also has some not-so-good moments, failed attempts, and sad times. But it’s our gift, and no matter what it contains, it’s just like Kelly Clarkson sing, “What doesn’t kill you will make you stronger.” Our lives are only a testimony to help someone else who may be in the same boat.
Check out Jacqueline’s 2nd Book:
As Jacqueline states, each of our lives is unique and should be embraced by stating, “I love my life, I love myself, and I love what I’m doing. That last statement stands very accurately, especially on a job we dislike! I’ve said it a zillion times myself. However, I believe Jacqueline wants to convey that you’re a woman, one of the most powerful beings on the face of the planet. Own that, accept the challenges placed in front of US and RULE. After all, it’s in our being!
As always, Jacqueline doesn’t disappoint in this latest book. There are so many chapters in this book that will fit any and EVERY WOMAN. No matter your background, color, size, or status, you’re bound to find yourself somewhere amongst these beautiful chapters of love, energy, mindfulness, and yes, POOPING!
Jacqueline’s book “What it Means to Be A Woman & Yes, Women Do Poop! and all her other bestsellers are available everywhere books are sold.
Disclosure: This book is 100% my views, I was not compensated in exchange for it.
Author, Robert Uttaro didn’t decide to become a basketball or football player, neither did he choose to become a doctor, lawyer, or even a musician when he grew up. The only thing Robert knew was that he wanted to help people. And by helping people, who would have thought that it would have been as a Rape Crisis Counselor at a center, he refers to as “The Healing Place.”
In the childhood section of his book “To The Survivors,” Robert discusses him taking a knife to a bathroom, getting in the tub, and putting small cuts starting from the elbows all the way down to his wrist. When asked by a friend what happened, he informed her that he fell into some thorns, and sadly she believed him. Without even questioning the whereabouts and/or what happened to make him fall in the first place. This incident had me thinking about various people whom I’ve come into contact with over the years who were maybe not looking so well one day, or they’d come to work, and you notice a strange bruise or even perhaps that something’s off with them. You ask, “Are you okay?” they more than likely will say, “Yes, they are,” or they’d say something like, “You know I was doing such and such and slipped.” And as a society, we take their words as solid truths and not say anything else about the matter. This makes me wonder…
Could those people have really been in trouble and I not didn’t take notice?
Did I miss the signs or the red flags?
Robert’s book is that of true stories (identities and places withheld for personal reasons) and the influential individuals he’s worked with over the years. Heroic individuals who wanted to share their vulnerability and traumatic stories of violence and sexual assault.
This book is a valuable guide to read, as well as understand the different effects a survivor may be feeling. To me, while this book is regarding survivors of sexual violence. I believe the twenty-three mentioned impacts on an individual’s emotions, such as shame, guilt, loss of control, shock, embarrassment, suicidal tendencies, and many more. It can also be used for someone who experienced a terrible loss or tragedy. These symptoms are sure signs that anyone should be able to look for in an individual and offer help.
While some people may find the stories within this book hard to read due to its nature and content, others will find it inspiring and motivating. It helps you feel as though you’re NOT alone, as you may even resonate with some of the individual stories.
I feel everyone should know that there is HOPE and a LIFE after a sexual assault or tragedy. It may not seem like it because when you’re going or have gone through such a traumatic experience, it can feel like you’re the only one facing it or like the walls are closing in on you all at once. I know those feelings all too; well, I’m a sexual assault survivor myself. Moving forward wasn’t easy, but I had to see it as me surviving so that I may help someone else survive. I’m a firm believer that EVERYTHING we go through in life is not just our experiences, but we go through them to help others get through theirs, and in return, maybe they’d turn and help someone else. There’s a purpose for everything, even in damaged goods. You CAN and WILL live a healthy LIFE. You just have to chose if you’re going to allow your past or it’s negativity to KEEP you in a jail of bondage, regret, and shame over it.
You have to determine when to put an expiration date on it and move forward.
And this next word is the icing on the cake that’s going to help you move forward, and that’s FORGIVENESS! I know it’s cliché, but as we know and have heard, “Forgiveness is not for them, but it gives you Peace” Now I know forgiveness is hard, as this is another chapter in Robert’s book that really spoke to me. It’s easier said than done, trust me, I know. But forgiveness is so you can move on and let the chips fall where they may when it comes to the perpetrator. I’m also a believer in seed planting. Plant a bad one, you reap the benefits of whatever grows up from that seed.
‘To The Survivors’ is a perfect example to show that you don’t have to be from the same place as someone else. Neither do you have to have experienced the same thing they’ve experienced? As Robert stated in his book, “Often our lives go in different directions than we plan or expect.”
A road or call from God, I should say, lead Robert Uttaro to a healing place to help bring blessings and healing to others. He answered the call, and because of it, many survivors have shared their stories and have helped others become heroic in sharing theirs. ‘To the Survivors’ is a book of hurt, heroism, and healing. The heroes are the ones that felt compelled to share their stories, but the main protagonist is the man, who felt the call, listened to the request, and acted upon it. Thanks, Robert, for allowing these influential voices to be heard.
If you know someone who has been sexually assaulted, maybe it’s you, perhaps it happened many years ago, and you feel it doesn’t matter now. Well, let me tell you, IT DOES! Your voice matters, it matters for the many women and men that are afraid to SPEAK UP. Your voice could just be the chain reaction that helps someone else get the healing they desperately need.
Please reach out to a counselor, trusted friend, or family member, or call or find a rape crisis center near you. Robert Uttaro’s book “To The Survivors” is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, and Kobo.
Featured Image Credit: Defendernetwork.com
Okay, say it with me…
THERE’S ABSOLUTELY NOTHING WRONG WITH GETTING HELP!
Now that you’ve said that, let’s dig into my topic above. March in my mind is Mental Health Awareness month, now before you get all technical with me, I know there’s a mental health awareness day somewhere during the year but if you ask me? It can be anytime you realize or come to grips that you seriously need to talk to someone.
That’s the realization I came to last month. I’m always there for other people, I always take out time to listen to them, their problems, issues, hurts, habits and hang-ups and I really do listen. Once their through talking, I give my two cents on the matter, in most cases I’ve prayed with them or include them in my prayers once the convo is over and they go on their merry way. NOW, how does this all play out when I need someone to talk too???
Do you hear the crickets??..
Yes, that’s usually what I hear OR if I do talk to someone, it’ll start out being about my issue and somehow it reverts to their issue and I end up helping them through theirs without getting my issue dissected. I once was friends with someone who did this on MORE than one occasion. I’d always love seeing them and hanging out, they’ll ask me about my day and how things have been going with me and I’ll respond and the next thing you know, there on themselves, their life, their goals, their family, their business and their this and their that and the list goes on and on and on. Most times by the time they’d work their way back around to what I had to say, I’d be too exhausted to answer them and all I can get out is…
“Everything’s Just Fine” but in my head, that was a LIE!
Anywho, that’s been my life with friendships and unfortunately personal relationships as well. I’ve always put others before “ME” and last month I found myself doing that yet again and decided that enough was enough. I have to talk to someone and if I can’t find people around me that’s willing to listen, I’d find a counselor that will.
Here’s what I found out with my insurance plan in regards to mental health and some tips on how you can put yourself FIRST starting now in 2020. Because It’s never too late…
Check your insurance plan
Mental health is on the rise and I’m so happy that more and more people are discussing it, the more we talk about it the less taboo it’ll feel. It’s nothing to be ashamed of either, hey – we can ALL use a mental check. In pursuing a counselor, I googled my insurance to see what counselors/offices accept it. Once I went through the list provided, I then called my insurance company to see if these doctors were in-network or out of network. Luckily the one I chose was in-network. Out-of-network is okay just know that you’ll be paying a little more in co-pay. I also found out that my co-pay was $25 and that my plan came with unlimited visits for that amount. Now that’s a win-win, so don’t be afraid to reach out to your insurance carrier, after all – that’s what you’re paying for every month. Might as well take advantage of it.
Realize Your Limits
Maybe seeing a therapist is NOT on your to-do list at the moment and that’s okay. However, you need to realize when you’ve reached your limit in a conversation. In the past, I’ve talked to people and have gotten the worst headache/migraine afterward or just felt like – BLAH!! We have to realize and I totally believe in this, people transfer their energy onto you. While you want to help a friend, you have to think about your sanity and your Feng sui as well. It can be thrown completely off if your friend is going on and on and on again about the same old drama you gave her or him pointers on months ago. Self-care is the best care. Sometimes you just have to say, “Look I gotta go” or “I just had something to come up – can I call you back?” learn to give yourself a BREAK even in the midst of a convo. And you better believe, your sanity is awaiting to applaud you.
You Better Get Selfish
This goes into the “Self-Care” regimen. I’m learning this even now, you don’t have to respond to every text or answer every call (unless it’s life or death) at the drop of a hat because someone needs you. You need you, your body and mind need you to be able to think clearly and focus on you and your needs. If you give EVERYONE in the world your time or what little you have after a long day of work. Then what’s left for you? Oh, my bad – THE BED! because that’s exactly where you’ll be going and nobody has time to work, do family, put out fires with your friends and etc and NOT be able to stay awake for at least 2 hours to do something for yourself. Life wasn’t set up for you to be that way, but you know how life works – it goes in the direction you lead it. Think about it.
Truth brings — CHANGE
I’ve had my share of toxic friendships and relationships, the thing is I didn’t really know they were toxic until they left me broke, dry and questioning my own sanity. Our life lets in what we put out – if you keep talking to people that just don’t get it or that keeps you in a box, everything else that comes your way will be the same way. We have to learn to speak up and I’m preaching to the choir on this one, I don’t speak up enough. I let things go on and I accept people’s “ish” because I either don’t want to lose them or afraid I’m being too pushy with my standards, so I digress. The one thing I have to constantly drill in my head is, to be honest with myself as well as the people around me. If it means they’ll leave me, then let them. It just means they were out of place in my life anyway. If it makes me uncomfortable, say it. If I feel as though I’m giving 100% and only getting 20% in return? then leave! And you know what? you don’t have to give ANYONE an explanation for doing so.
** ** ** ** **
Life is ALL about making the right choices that will push us forward into being the GREAT and AMAZING beings we were created to be in the first place and if that means being a little selfish and/or getting a little help along the way to accomplish that? Then, by all means, DO IT!
Do you have a counselor or go to therapy sessions? How do you handle a convo that pushes you past your mental limit? Sound off in the comments!
Featured Picture Courtesy of The Pursuit of Mindfulness
Have you ever heard that statement before? As sure as we live and breathe I’m sure we’ve ALL heard it or unfortunately have been there and done it ourselves!
I’ve often found myself in meetings or even talking with someone and have been somewhere else. The mind is a tricky thing and a terrible thing to waste as per the UNCF (United Negro College Fund). And it’s true! The mind is indeed a terrible thing to waste but while the UNCF was referring to an education, I’m particularly talking about the mind and it’s capability of filling up with SO many ideas, schedules, goals, relationships, what someone said and how you’d wished you had said this instead; all the way to what you want to eat later that day or even two days from now – type of stuff.
The “stuff” that keeps us from being “present and available” at the moment. We miss most great moments because our mind wants to take us on a vacay of “what to do next or after” and it’s bout time to put it to rest – just for a little while.
Do you find yourself being “unavailable” due to your mind traveling west when you’re trying to go east? Here’s a couple of tips to put the mind at ease so you can focus a little clearer, literally.
#1. Cut Down That List – Like NOW!
Listen, there are only 24 hours in a day and if you put EVERYTHING you have to get done on that crazy “to-do” list. You’ll be extremely exhausted, I mean you probably already are, right? If we allow our minds to do it, it’ll make us think that everything in the world is important and has to be done right now and that couldn’t be farther from the truth. It’s okay to schedule that oven cleaning to Thursday, it’s not like it’s going anywhere and you DON’T have to do it today.
Try to figure out what’s truly a priority vs. non priority…..what’s really important vs. not important today. Spread out the work and give yourself something to do everyday instead of all in one day!
#2. Schedule “Me” Time
I’m bad at this tip but it’s so needed. Have you ever scheduled “me time” on your to-do list? My mom would always tell us that Mondays were her “me days” – that meant, no calls and no coming over during a specific time frame on Mondays. She valued her alone times and while I didn’t always understand it because I was being the energizer bunny. Now that she’s gone, I totally get it. You need that time away from other people’s voices and faces, it truly makes you appreciate seeing them when you do. Now what she did during that time, I have no idea but “me time” is whatever you want to do without doing work or even thinking about the things you need to do. It’s a little moment to be selfish and only think about you!
#3. Put It “ALL” Away & Focus!
This one is going to take a little practice, however, remember when I said earlier that my body would be in meetings and my mind would be elsewhere? unfortunately this also happens with my children! They’d be talking to me and I’d be thinking about work, church, getting back to someone, email and etc. Not really focusing on their dilemma – in which to them, everything’s a dilemma!
Now, don’t get me wrong, tuning them out is sometimes therapy for me but when it comes to a failing grade or them having concerns in regards to a friend or teacher or themselves, those things need my undivided attention. So when cases like this happen, I’ve learned to put my phone away, sit with them and totally give them eye-to-eye attention. This way, I can provide feedback if necessary and it gives me insight as to what’s going on with them. We can easily miss serious moments when we allow our minds to time travel. Realize where you are and tell your mind that you’re going to focus on the matter at hand because, in reality, we can train our minds to do whatever we want it to do.
#4. You Need A Sleep Schedule
This definitely may sound crazy but you really do need to “schedule sleep” – if you don’t, you won’t get it and while your mind is on the go the body will shut completely down! Ever been restless at night because your mind was wondering about things you should be thinking about in the morning? I’ve been here too, more often than I’d like to admit. Most times I get up and work and others I just lay there and talk to God or just look…lol.
If you find your mind wrestling with you while you’re trying to go to sleep, try drinking some hot chamomile tea or sleepy time tea before bed (decaf of course). I also like listening to peaceful sounds such as thunder (I know this is not so peaceful but it’s calming for me). I love listening to rain sounds or ABIDE – which has sleep meditations for the nighttime. It’s also wise to put your phone on silent, so you won’t awake to every notification known to man. 30 min before bedtime, get these things in order so by sleep time – you’ll be all set to ZzZzzzzZZ.
All of these tips will not only help you be more present but more focused on what’s really important. Train that mind and don’t allow it to train you, remember YOU have control over it and not it over you.