Be The Light

It has been a little over a month (or two lol) since I have posted. Thats due to personal challenges, fear, and a bunch of other things we can get into a little later. What got me out of my “hiatus” was a message I felt people should hear.

When this idea came to write on this topic, I was in tears. This was days after news broke that Nipsey Hussle was shot and killed. Usually, when a celebrity dies, I say a prayer, pay my respects, and keep it pushing. This one hurt different. I was really hurt. I cried like he was my own. I was crushed. One of the main reasons I was hurt was because I felt this world is so evil. His death had me thinking about how people are so wicked and this world we live in is a dark place.

I thought about all the individuals who lost Nipsey, all the children in the world who are suffering, everyone who is going through one thing or another, or all the people of color who have been killed…..I thought about everyone. I just felt it all at once and my entire day was ruined. I couldn’t even focus at work. I just kept thinking about everything that was wrong with the world.

To distract myself I went on Instagram (I should’ve been praying tbh, lol) and I saw my explore page was full of Nipsey. There were a lot of clips from interviews that he had done. I watched a number of them. In each one, he drops knowledge, whether it be on business, financial freedom, or personal development. He had alllll the keys. But in a few of them he talks about love and goodness and letting your heart be pure. He spoke about being a change maker; a light.

His words stuck with me. I thought about it and I remembered, in my church, they often talk about how we are the light of the world. They reference Matthew 5:14, “you are the light of the world. A city on a hill that cannot be hidden”. It was no secret that Nipsey was indeed a light, a pillar in his community, and his light was not hidden. When you have this light, you have to know that there are also people of darkness. They live to dim your light. Nipsey knew that and he moved in his light anyway. He didn’t live in fear of anyone……he just shined.

I believe everyone has a light in them, even people of darkness. They have just allowed this dark world to take it away. We can’t do that. We all have a purpose; to inspire, teach and help. Thats why you face trials and tribulations, but that is why you also overcome. This happens so you can help those after you. Your light leads the way for others.

This world is crooked and evil, but we cannot conform to it. We rise above it. We keep our hearts pure, and we move with LOVE. This isn’t an easy task but its one we are all given.

You have to let your light shine. By doing so you “unconsciously give other people permission to do the same”…… How do you be the light? By being your absolute self, fearlessly. It means pursuing your dreams, living vividly, inspiring, laughing, teaching, not playing it small, but most importantly, loving. It means to live with love and share it with others. We  all are to be the light, the light that is needed light up this world.

We are born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others”.- Marianne Williamson

I want to dedicate this post to Nipsey Hussle. I may not have been his biggest music fan, but that mans words have helped me in one way or another. He inspired me in some of my darkest times and even in death he continues to do so. He was an Angel here on earth and his legacy will forever remain.

Lately

Usually, I’ll come up with some catchy name and a cute graphic, but this time I just wanted to be raw and transparent about how I’ve been feeling lately with life and about my journey. 

Lately, I’ve been going through a whirlwind of things. Life has really been coming at me and its like PAUSE………….what did I EVER do to life?! Like why do I deserve this, lol. I’ve been feeling lonely, powerless, confused, lost, all the above…despite this I have moments where I have “power feels” (where I feel spirts of motivation and I feel unstoppable), but then life levels it out and I crash. I feel like my world is collapsing. Everything I am going through at the time just hits me all at once.

Issues with my job, finances, living away from home on my own, not being in a relationship, not being where I planned to be has contributed to my feelings of doubt and sadness. These are things I deal with regularly, but as humans we all come to a point where we feel enough is enough, and I was there.

I was feeling extremely low and it physically showed. You could see me and tell I was going through it. You ever heard the saying “I thank God because I don’t look like what I’m going through”? Well, I looked like what I was going through times two, lol. The good thing about being low is that you’re your most vulnerable state, and you are honest with yourself. Its during this time, you hear yourself the most. 

One day, I was laying in bed thinking. Like okay boom…..this is the problem, this is how you feel, do you want to feel like this forever or do you want to change your situation? This is when I found my power. I realized we control our narratives. Yes, we know life will not be easy, especially being a Christian, but wallowing in pity and self doubt does nothing for your tomorrow. It’s about what you will do in the face of adversity.

I tend to read on powerful and influential women for inspiration, and out of all the inspiring stories I read, I noticed 1 similarity about all these women. When times were tough, they never gave up. They looked each trial and tribulation and took it head on. Of course they had their moments, but it wasn’t for long. They adjusted their crowns, and got back to business. I decided this was the mentality I wanted to adopt. 

Lately, yes, life has been kicking my ass, but I have been putting up one hell of a fight. In my time of struggle, I am realizing my power. I am more resilient, I am strong, I am beautiful, I am a fighter…I am so much more than what I am currently facing. And me realizing this has caused to me to love myself so much more. I’ve been in my bag, getting things done, and feeling a little more sexy (my weight loss has also contributed to this s/o to Allison!). I see what I am truly capable of and I love it.

All in all, what I am trying to say is that when you have your moments and everything around you has come crashing down, it is in that moment that you rise. These situations are temporary and they allow you to see what you’re made of. You access and harness a power you didn’t even know you had. Ayabas don’t let temporary defeats keep them down. They look situations straight in the face and go beast mode. I just wanted to send words of encouragement, because I know lately I have been in need of it, and I’m sure someone somewhere needs it too. Don’t let your lately determine or affect your tomorrow. Put your faith in God and always have hope. My mother tells me where there is life there is hope. That means as long as you’re still breathing there is a chance for change to come. Keep going. Decide to be unstoppable, then become it. Do not let anything stand in your way. 

Valentine’s Day: Single Edition

As we all know, February 14th is that divine day of love. It is a day where you shower your significant other (or loved one)  with undeniable love and affection. It is a day full of I love you exchanges, bae probates, roses, and just a general outpour of love for that special person. Now, what do you do if you’re………single? If you have been single for as long as I have, you know a thing or two about spending that special day alone. Now, I’m not saying this in a sad or heartbroken way, but I can admit I know thing or two about “maximizing your singleness”. This post is to help you do the same once “doomsday” hits.

Often times once V-day comes around, we see those “bitter bettys” all up and down our timelines. It’s like they’re the “grinch” of love. They try to take away the “awwwwww” moments from us. I know because I was that girl! BUT I have been deliveredT. Besides, this year we are not doing that! We are going to be genuinely happy for others and that is that on that. We will waiting patiently for our bearded Kings to arrive, okay. Ayabas are never haters, it’s distasteful. So instead of being sad, watching romance movies, while eating a tub of ice cream and crying on and on about how we wish this was us, you could be doing the following instead:

  1. Treat your damn self: Excuse my french, but treat your damn self, seriously! Use this day to love on you. Spoil yourself. Take yourself shopping, do a little TLC, or even take yourself on a date. Spend it doing whatever you want to. After all, whose going to love you more than….you?
  2. Celebrate Galentine’s Day!: Galentines Day is a V-day but with your girls! You all hang around each other and spread love to one another. I remember one year, my best friend Jillian surprised my other friends and I with a Valentine’s Day care package. It had Hot Cheetos (our favorite snack), cake pops, and a card letting us know how much she loved us. 

Another year, my friends and I had a cute little sleepover the night before Valentines Day, then that night of, we got super dressed up and took ourselves out for a cute little dinner. It was so nice and it made me love my girls even more. This day, you appreciate your friends. You bask in the blessing of sisterhood!

Use this time to have fun with your girls, for example, have a “love-a-thon! You can spend the day being inspired by love by watching all your favorite Romance/Rom-Com movies. From The Notebook, to Friends with Benefits, even the Netflix show You (WARNING: That show is wildddddd), you have the world of movies at your fingertips! 

3.Go out!: Just like you are single, there are hundreds of other people who are just as single. Get up, get dressed reaaaaaaaaalllllll nice, and meet someone! You get in your bag, and bag whoever your little heart desires, RESPECTFULLY. We are not home wreckers ladies. If that man is taken, peace be unto that side, pls. Use this time to meet new people! I mean why not? You’re attractive/beautiful, you have goals, you’re ambitious, anyone would be lucky to have you. Don’t be afraid! Just go out and have fun. You never know who Cupid can pair you with. After all, it is a day for love :).

4. Cut Them Offfffff: This day is also the day where some people lose their God demn (yes, I said demn) minds. Especially the ones you kind-of sort-of just started talking to. At this point, you’re in that phase of “are we Valentines orrrr is it too early”? Instead of him/her being upfront about their stance, my friend decides to do one of the following:

a) Go ghost a few days before.

b) Picks a rubbish fight a few days before to avoid the holiday

c) Completely ignore the day

I had C happen one year. Mans said he doesn’t believe it. I respectfully let him go. If any of the above occurs, let that child go! If they cannot communicate despite the conversation being difficult, that person is not the one, period.

Just because Valentine’s Day is a day usually spent with your special someone does not mean you cannot participate. Spend it doing whatever you want with whomever you want, in the name of love. It is not a day for us to sulk about us being lonely. It is a day for you to spread love. Even if that love is to yourself. Use the time alone to love on you and work on you. That way when your bearded King comes, you’ll be readdyyyyy. I hope you’ve been inspired to be happy this Valentine’s Day and to spend it loving love! Happy Valentines Day Ayabas!

P.S. I do want to emphasize the fact that it should not take a holiday for one to proclaim their love, it should be an everyday thing! 

Purpose

Does anyone know the story of Esther? No, not my story, haha. The story of Queen Esther in the bible! If not, thats cool because you’ll get a cliff notes version today! If you are a non-believer, do not let this discourage you, keep reading! I promise you will still learn from this. It’ll resonate with you. The story of Esther is one of my all time favs. Not because this amazing woman and I share the same name, but because this story speaks to what it means to have a divine purpose. 

Esther was what we call the “underdog”. She was counted out. She had all the odds working against her. She was a poor Jewish orphan that was raised by her Uncle Mordecai. At this point in history, Jews were not it. They were the “lower” race. The King at the time was looking for a new wife (he kicked the old one out). So he did an “America’s Next Top Model” search. He took all the land’s most beautiful women, placed them in a palace, pampered and, had them undergo etiquette training for a year or two before deciding his next Queen. The moment he saw Esther, he was immediately in love. He knew she had to be his wife. So he chose her. She was picked out of the hundreds of women in the land. Pause……Remember this!

Now, she’s in the palace living her best Queenly life.The King has a very evil and wicked right hand man. The King doesn’t know of his evil ways (not a point I was going to make, but please be mindful of the company you keep), but this man was indeed evil. Right hand was not very fond of the Jews. In fact he hated them. He got into the King’s ear and concocted a plan to have them all killed. Esther got hip to the plan, and she knew she had to do something. At first, she was scared because no one in the palace knew she was a Jew, but her uncle encouraged her. He told her “who knows if perhaps you were made for a time such as this” Esther 4:14. Pause……Remember this point too! 

Esther made the choice to put her fear aside, took action. She secretly sent a message to all the  Jews in the land to pray and fast with her for three days; at the end of three days, she would confront the king (despite her fear), and fight for her people. Pause….Remember this again! To cut the long story short, Esther ended up saving her people and the evil right hand man was killed. I shortened the story very much, so I urge everyone to take the time and read it!

Now what exactly did we learn from this story in relation to purpose?

1. When you have a particular purpose, no matter how many are in that lane or field, you will succeed. You will find favor and success will be yours. Remember point #1. Esther went up against endless women. Every single one, beautiful. Others, even more beautiful than her, others, more rich than her, and most likely other were more cultured than her. Despite all that, she was the one. Why? Because sis served a purpose! God placed her there for a reason. To save her people. 

In life, there are certain dreams and aspirations that we have that are there for us to fulfill our purpose. We want them to manifest, but we fear they won’t come to pass because that area of interest is “oversaturated”. “I want to make a youtube channel, but everyone is doing it”…..”I want to be a makeup artists, but so does everyone else”……..”I want to start a fashion line, but….” My response to that is so? What is destined for you will be yours, no matter how oversaturated that market is. Do you know how many other blogs are out there? Others are more advanced, others have more followers, and others have more influence. One thing I know is that not anyone of them have a me. 

2. The second thing I asked you all to remember is that verse, Esther 4:14.                                   Who knows if perhaps you were made for a time such as this? I came across this verse while I was doing the Black and Gold Pageant for Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. My pageant mom Amber (Shoutout to Amber!!!) blessed me with this verse. Up until then I knew nothing about it, but ever since, it has been my life’s motto. That sentence is purpose in itself. There are moments where you realize that wow, I was created just for this. I’ve been through a number of things in my life, some you cannot even imagine, but it used to really get to me. I came to the realization one day that everything I have ever faced is for a purpose. How can I preach about lack of self love when I haven’t even known how that feels? Without my experiences, this blog would not exist. Life can be hard, but understand it is all for a purpose. There will be trials and tribulations coming from situations, people, and just uncontrollable circumstances, but they all serve a purpose. Imagine if Esther was not a Jew. Those people would’ve perished. With her being Queen, she saved them, and in her new position imagine all the things she could’ve done for them. 

3. Finally, when you know/have your purpose, you have got to face your fears.  Esther had to let it be known that she herself was a Jew in order for her to save her people. To keep it stack, sis could’ve been killed right then and there, but she looked fear in the face and went for it. What fear is holding you back from fufllinig your purpose? When you have purpose, things like this will come, but you have to push through. Till this moment I get thoughts about how I should quit blogging, but I push through. I do my part by doing it anyway. Then I get messages from Ayabas telling me how I have helped them. This gives me confirmation that I am living in my purpose. 

My purpose is to help others. I want to do this in so many ways. By being a doctor, blogger, influencer, entrepreneur, and so much more. In every field I aspire to be in, I’m helping people in one way or another. I know that in my journey I will be hit with hardships, I will see others that may even be better than me, but what I know is, despite all that, this is what I was put on Earth to do. No matter what I am living in my purpose. Ayaba, are you? If not, put aside doubts, fears, and hardships…..pick your head up, fix your crown, and go forth. It’ll be apart of your story to tell. Live in your purpose!

2019: On Your Mark. Get Set. Goals!

First and foremost, Happy New Year to all my Ayabas and Obas (Kings..the few of you that do read, haha). I hope the first couple of days into the new year have been nothing but blessed. Really quickly, I want to take the time to acknowledge and thank each and everyone of you for the support you have given me. Every view, every time you read, every time you share, it means so much to me. As you continue to bless me, God will continue to bless you. Again, thank you so much!

Now……now that we are in a new year, it is a time for endless possibilities. It is a time to do things anew! A time for renewal and reinvention. Endless opportunities for new beginnings. This includes new goals.

Every year we know during the first month everyone sets their resolutions. By week 2, majority of people have given up, myself included. Lack of consistency is a lot of our downfalls. This year, that stops. Can you imagine what your life would be like if you never quit on your goals?Can you imagine what you could’ve accomplished if you just stayed the course and stuck it out? Your life could be completely different trajectory. Some may argue “God’s time”, yes everything is indeed on his time, but this should not be an excuse. We tend to get in our own way. Many of us also like to argue that our schedules are the issue, but if you really want something, you’re going after it no matter what. Why are we so quick to give up on things just because it got hard? We commit to so many other things, but when it comes to our goals….the desire to get it done is gone.

Do we really want these things as bad as we say we do? Are we really vested? These are the things we need to be asking ourselves. Now, per usual, I am speaking from experience. This was/is me (‘cause God is still working on me, lol). I used to set goals, write them down, and just not commit to them at all. I did this because of laziness, fear, procrastination, etc, but it got to a point where I saw my life was becoming stagnant. I was not progressing in any way, shape, or form. I literally was just there.

2019, I told myself I AM doing it. I am fully emerging and committing myself to the completion of my goals and dreams. This time I did things different. I involved God. Before, I tried to do it all on my own. I realized (very soon) that I simply cannot. I need God. I am firm believer that God places these desires in our hearts, and I was afraid because I thought that I would fail. The fear of failure took me out. BUT I know God has plans for me. Plans to prosper me and not harm me, and that was my motivation. There is nothing that I put before God that does not come to pass. In the case that it doesn’t it simply means there is better planned for me. Things may not happen on my time, but they will happen right when they need to!

This means whatever you want to do, or whatever goals you have set for yourself and your future, it is done. All that needs to happen is for you to do it. God has anointed it, trust in him and see it through. Go for it without doubt, but in faith. Believe in your power. You have to. Invest in your dreams, goals, and most importantly yourself!

I am a firm believer that this is going to be a breakout/breakthrough year for a lot of us, all it takes is for us to DO.

With all that being said, I want to give my Ayabas a few tips on how to stay on top of your goals this year:

  1. Write them down: This is my favorite point because I literally write everything down. I feel as though when you write, those things are stamped.They are written in the book of life! Plus, this allows you to go back to remind yourself of your goals. Also, after you have completed them, you can see your progress and all that you have accomplished. Once you write them down post them. Put them in a place that you will always see them. Put them on sticky notes or make them your screen saver. It should serve as a reminder that you are working towards this goal.                             
  2.  Affirm it: As you write down your goals, affirm them.”I AM going to….” or “I WILL get….”. There is so much power in the tongue. Put these things into the Universe…put it before God, watch him work. Affirm it, visualize it, believe it, and it will actualize itself. There was an interview that Jay-z did and he said he believes you can speak things into existence. You really can. That is how powerful you are. The more you say it, the more you believe it, and you will actually begin to do it. I am telling you there is power in the tongue!                                                                                     
  3. Be realistic: Set realistic goals sis. Have goals you can realistically accomplish. For example, do not tell yourself you will lose 20 pounds in two days, kolework. It is not going to happen. Set short term goals (goals that you can achieve within a few days, weeks, or months) and set long term goals (goals you can achieve within years). Give yourself an appropriate time span. Make sure your goals are achievable then, crush them!                                                                                                                                     
  4. Keep it to yourself: Sometimes we get so excited about what we’re doing and what we have planned that we just have to tell someone. Let me tell you, I identify with this first hand. I used to do it all the time, but I quickly learned not every has your best interest at heart. Everyone  that smiles in your face is not for you sis. Many act like they are your friend and pray on your downfall. You ever been in a situation where you shared a plan with someone and it fell through and didn’t workout? Yeah. You have to trust and speak with caution. Keep it to yourself for a while. Till things are set into to play and confirmed, work in private, shine in public.                             
  5. Invest: If no on ever told you this, I am telling you, you have to invest in yourself. Invest in you, your goals, your dreams, your well being…YOU. It is so important to put yourself first this year. It is time to be selfish and do what you have to do for you. One of the biggest lessons I got out of 2018 was this. Everyone else is taking care of them. They’re making sure they’re good. You need to do the same. In order to make things shake, you have to invest all of you. This includes your time, your money (sigh, unless it’s possible for you to get investors lol), and yourself. I am fully vested in the fruition of my goals, and you should be too.

Everyday you wake up, you have the will to determine not only your day, but your life. The decisions you make now will affect your life in the future. Are you doing what needs to be done to better your future? Is it putting you in a better position? Are you living up to your full potential? If not, this year…make that change. Boss up. Shamelessly and relentlessly go after whatever it is you want. Real Ayabas are go getters, we are persistent in what we want. No matter how long it takes or how hard it may be, we make it happen. We don’t talk, we do. The only person that can change your future is you. Make things those happen this year. What you were afraid to do last year do it this year! Make this  a staple year. A year that changed your life for the better……forever.

Esteri Ayaba

The Self Series: Self Discovery

 

The journey to self-discovery is not a short one. It is on-going because throughout life we are evolving. The person you were last year isn’t who you are right now. You are always growing and that is the beauty of life. Although you are forever changing and evolving, there is something that stays consistent, that is the core of who you are, your character.

Self discovery is the process of acquiring insight into one’s own character. Self discovery is about finding out at the center of your being, who are you really? A lot of us go through life wearing a mask. We put on a front for the approval of others. Especially women. We put on a front which attracts the wrong people, and along the way, we lose ourselves. I see this a lot especially with my students. The young girls do things to try to fit in or get the attention of the other little boys, and I realized that us losing ourselves start from a very young age. We can all think back to a time in middle school or high school where we just wanted to fit and, we’d do anything just to be apart of the in-crowd. This was the start to us losing ourselves.

One of my biggest struggles was/is for to completely be me, 100%. Accepting who I am is a challenge for me. Even as I have entered into the world of blogging, it has hard for me to find my “identity”. This has been something I have struggled with for as long as I can remember. I remember back when I was in college, people used to tell me how I “should” be. I was too rough, I was too outspoken, I didn’t know how to be a woman, I’m too headstrong and it’ll cause me to be lonely…..I have heard it all. For a while, I listened. I became who they thought I should be, but thats honestly annoying and fake asf. I was struggling to find my identity and to live in the skin God designed for me. This affected my self esteem and what I felt to be my purpose.

With self-discovery, when you find yourself you ultimately find your purpose. Once you know who you are, things fall into place. You know your worth, your potential, your power….it is vital for us all to embark on this journey. If you don’t, you’re honestly just cheating yourself, and you’re taking away a gift from the world. That gift is you! You being yourself authentically and unapologetically. You being you 100% of the time holds so much power. By you not being you, you’re not being who God called you to be.  When you’re at your full self, you can do anything. You can move some mountains. There is a saying that says the most powerful thing a woman can do is realize who she is. Once you know who you are, and you walk in your power….the world has no choice but to adapt. As we’re going into the new year, dedicate it to you and your growth, your development as a person, or whatever it is that you need to do, do it. We need you as your full authentic self! Get to know you, transform. Go through your journey and be who you are meant to be.

There are so many people who want to start, but may not have an idea how. Here are a few ways I began my journey:

1. Write: A couple of years ago my best friend Stephanie bought me a journal, and I can honestly say that was one of the best gifts I’ve ever gotten. That was the whole reason I started all of this to be honest (so thanks Stephie!). I literally wrote everything. I wrote all of my secrets, my wins, my losses….I wrote so much. I used this to reflect over my life and myself. I wrote what I wanted to accomplish, change, and fix. I’d work at it and update my progress. I would go back and read where I once was, and it pushed me to keep working towards my best self.

2. Read: If you’re lost and don’t know where to start, it is important to read books, especially self help books. Self help books guide you and help you attain knowledge and insight. It helps you to get to where you need to be.

3. Do!: In addition to reading and writing, you have to actually do things to help you discover yourself. This includes prayer, meditating, (many things you do to practice self care can also intertwine with self-discovery).Take a dance class, get into art, “date” yourself. Get to know you. Figure out what you like and what makes you happy.

4. Join: Don’t go on this journey alone. Ask friends to do it with you. You’ll be more encouraged. Make it a challenge with your friends. Debrief after activities and invite new perspectives. This will also bring you all much closer

5. Embrace: Embrace your journey. Embrace yourself. Accept the fact that you are a work in progress. You are young. It is okay to not have it all figured out, but understand you are fully committed to finding you. Discover your true self and who you are, embrace you and your journey.

Self discovery is not an easy journey. You will have to confront certain parts of you, parts you do not want to face. You will have to unpack and figure out who you are and determine your purpose. Do this and be you. The world needs you……like today. You are a gift. You are here for a reason….for something or someone. Not being yourself is not doing what God has called you to do. Embrace you. Love you. Take care of you. This upcoming year, make it a year of self. You deserve love, care, happiness, and so much more. Even if that means you have to give it to yourself.

The Self Series: Self Care

 

In today’s world, there is so much going on. We are a busy people always on the go.This is really emphasized in the millennial generation. We are a focused group. We’re either getting to the bag, chasing a dream, or building our empire. When we aren’t doing that, we’re taking care of others, paying bills, and overall making sure everything and everyone is straight. In doing so, it is so easy to forget to take care of yourself. It is so important to take care of self, and a number of us don’t. I honestly did not know what self care was until I moved to Miami, and I am so happy I am aware now.

I am a person that loves to take care of others. I put other people before me ( a blessing and a curse), and seeing others happy makes me happy. Although this can be a really good trait to have, it can be extremely draining. I was doing it to the extreme. I worked a lot, spent my time and money on others, and I often ignored signs my body would try to tell me whenever I needed to slow down. At the beginning of the year, all this began to catch up to me. I was stressed to the point that I began to have headaches, and I started having really bad anxiety. I’d just be in a constant state of stress and worry. My face broke out, and I’d get constant migraines.

During the summer I was at training for Teach for America. We had a seminar where it talked about self care. As a teacher, you cannot go into the classroom and teach if you are not at your full capacity. It dawned on me that I could not give anything my all if I didn’t take care of myself. You cannot pour into others from an empty cup. It is that overflow that other people get from you. From that seminar, I started taking care of myself. I asked so many people about their self-care routines and things they did to de-stress. From my inquiries, I learned self-care is not just physical and skin related. It is mental, spiritual, emotional, physical, financial, etc.

Self care isn’t a general concept. It is individual. It is based upon the needs of the person that is practicing it. It is a healing; a medication in fact. It requires you to medicate in all aspects. Self care is so crucial because if you do not stop and recharge, you’re literally going nowhere. People think self-care is a luxury, no! It is a necessity. It’s needed. With our phone, we’re so quick to throw it on a charger when it drops 1%, why can’t we take care of ourselves the same way?

I’ve learned work will always be there, bills will always be there, but you only have one life to live. Do not spend all of your days just working. If you’re sick, take off! If you are not there mentally, take a personal day. It is so important to do things to maintain a healthy mind, body, and soul. It is so easy to throw on a face mask and scream self care, but are you really taking care of self? Are you catering to your needs? To have self care isn’t just physical it is so many other things. With that being said, here are some ways I practice self care:

  • Pray: Let me say this right now, prayer is the key to everything, okay. When I feel stress, anxiety, or worry, I drop everything and pray. BUT, understand that you have to put some work behind what you just prayed for. Faith without works is dead, and so is prayer without works. This means to pray against anything that is harming your sanity or peace, and once God reveals it to you, LET. IT. GO.                                                    

 

  •  Unplug: Sometimes self care is as simple as logging out. It isn’t healthy spending the majority of your day looking at your phone screen. We expose ourselves to so much, we don’t realize how much social media can really affect us. You see so many influences (both positive and negative), you don’t see that subconsciously it affects our mental. Just do yourself a favor and log out!

 

  •  “Me” time: My roommate and I love me time, haha! This is a time dedicated to YOU. During this time you do whatever you want. You unplug from the world and spend time with you. It is no work, just you enjoying your own company. That can mean putting on a face mask, sipping wine, watching Netflix, getting a massage, sleeping, or you can even use this time to balance and budget your finances! Ayaba, you spend this time doing whatever it is your heart desires! It is completely up to you.

 

  • Get Physical: One of the best ways to let go of some stress is through the body. I know times when I’m really overwhelmed, I go to the gym. Getting physical should not be limited to the gym. You can try out boxing, yoga, swimming, or something as simple as taking a walk! Plus, you’re getting your body right. Thats a two-for-one. Who doesn’t love a two-for-one?! Lol. 

 

  • Feed your soul: It is so important to feed your soul! Everyday so many things are thrown at you to influence you. If you are not careful, it can throw you off. So you have to do whatever it is to keep you grounded. This includes meditating, reading, listening to positive music/podcasts, or even taking a lavender bath! Whatever makes you smile from within, do it!

 

  • Cut it: Cut off anything or anyone that is disturbing your peace. It is about to be a brand new year, and we’re not bringing that negative energy into 2019. Protect your peace sis. That job you don’t like, quit it. That friend that always has you in drama, cut them off. That toxic relationship, let it go! Free yourself and be your own peace. Peace and self care go hand in hand. Peace is what you get as a result of taking care of yourself.

One of the reoccurring things that I believe God wanted me to understand this year is that life is too short. Tomorrow is not promised. We should not take anything for granted. We are supposed to be using our days to make us happy. We should be taking care of us and our individual needs. It is okay to be selfish sometimes! This upcoming year start treating you. Make it the year of self. Take care of your needs. Actually take the time to cater to you. Listen to your body, pay attention to your thoughts, and remove anything that is contrary to your progression and growth.Anything that is disturbing your peace, do away with. Start doing whatever is it you need to do to take care of you. If that is meditating, praying, going to therapy, journaling, or laying down doing absolutely nothing, do it. You deserve it!