Today, my heart is heavy; yesterday, March 27, 2021; Our Princess went back to God. Princess was more than a canine to us; she was a comforter, a confidant, a joy, and an unconditional loving family member. You are never able to prepare yourself for the physical separation of a family member. The gift of love is what connects us all (especially animals). Princess was my wife and I first “baby” of our new life after being honorably discharged from the United States Navy. Princess was born in Dallas, Texas, on May 8, 2005. She traveled to Atlanta, Ga, shortly after. She has 1 brother (Papi). Princess comes from an extensive canine “Show Dog” bloodline.
On July 21, 2006 my wife and I were walking around an Atlanta, Ga mall. While rushing to leave due to hunger, I was speed walking past a pet store. “Wait, do you see that?” My wife said. “What?! No, we need to leave … to eat … it’s getting late,” I said abruptly. “But, look how cute she is.” My wife said as she was gazing into the “puppy in the window.” “No, I don’t want to look cause I am going to fall in love, and I am not trying to fall in love with a puppy we are not going to get,” I said adamantly. “But, she’s the only pug, you said you always wanted one, and she’s all by herself … and she’s so cute.” My wife said, walking into the pet store. “Okay, fine … but we’re only looking … 5 minutes … then, we grab something to eat and head home, okay?” I said with a bit of excitement. The first time I saw Princess, I knew we were not leaving that place without her, I couldn’t … she was perfect for us and us for her. “You wanna hold her?” the owner asked. “NO … no, I do not want to hold her,” I said, feeling my heart well up with love. “Yes, you do, you want to … let me grab her, no harm in a little puppy hug.” The owner said, partly laughing. He handed Princess to me, and I immediately fell in love, like real LOVE. She smelled like a baby … I didn’t even know that was possible. Before I knew it, some random kid asked to hold her … when I didn’t want to let her go, I knew she was our baby now.
We were blessed to have Princess in our life for 15 years and 10 months. I will always be grateful for everything she did for me, our family, and my life overall. I will always love and miss you, little mommy … always. Thank you for your unconditional love; we will hold you in our hearts forever.
Let’s start by saying, there is a lot is going on in the world, in society, and everywhere. I have come to realize that regardless of whether you want to admit it, race is a factor of systematic discrimination. Period. I am sure you have stories, I have stories, and there are plenty of stories in the news to be outraged about. There comes a time when talking just isn’t enough. Talking is an outstanding motivatng factor for initiating strategic change. But, real change comes with direct actions. Action is the true synchronized mobility for change.
Too often as a black woman, I’ve been asked by people that don’t look like me how it is that I’m able to stay motivated, positive, and successful. Truth be told, it’s hard. It’s hard waking up and remembering that my natural hair has to be tailored to a customized fashion in order to appease people that don’t understand my hair texture. It’s hard to ensure that I find the right cosmetic foundation that matches my skin tone. It’s hard to ensure not to slip up and accidentally use an urban phrase or term in a meeting for fear of being labeled “ghetto.” It’s even harder to go to the grocery store and pick up a vegan or gluten-free item without receiving unsolicited and passive aggressive opinions about how “good it is” that eat well. Overall, it’s hard being black.
Although, I would not change my culture and my background for anything. What I would change is how people see it as a great divider. Statistically, I should not have college degree, be married, own a business, own home, speak “well” or be a vegan – just to name a few of my attibutes. I often speak in motivational settings about success and staying focused. As a segway several speaking topics, I talk about academic disparities I faced. In tha same thought I speak about how I “blew it out of the water” and earned a Doctorate in my early 30’s. I realized early on, that I had to mindfuly use approachablity tactics when speaking to predominantly non-black audiances to reduce my intimidation factor. Yes, black women have to think about things like this – along with everything else.
Way too often, when I’m approached by peers and executive leadership to engage in “small talk” about myself. I find myself having to explain my cultural background, academic career and how I was able to do it. The conversation is almost always passive-aggressive. During a diversity meeting at one of the organizations I previously worked for, we had an open forum about “Race in the Classroom.” I knew how it was gonna go, I knew what was gonna be said, and I knew that there was gonna be no change put in place after the dawnting three-hour conversation was over.
At the end of the meeting, nothing was resolved, and nothing was written down toward strategic actions for ensuring the organization had more cultural sensitivity in the classroom. What did happen was myself and a co-worker we’re casually discussing the overall conversation. I was asked specifically what it was like to be black? I gathered all of the strength from my black ancestors and started to regurgitate a default answer from memory, but instead stopped myself. I decided to anwer honestly, instead of using my rehearshed template. I specifically said “it’s hard being black, especially a black woman knowing that each and every day I have to prepare myself for the world mentally. The world does not see me as an educated woman. The world sees me as a black woman. The world does not see any of my accomplishments, accolades, dreams, or fears. The world does not see what I’ve done for my community, what I do for my students, or my motivational drive to ensure to be a good role model to little black girls and boys everywhere I go.” I remember realizing that it was more than my co-worker could handle. And decided to stop speaking. She finally removed her hand from her mouth. I will never forget the look on her face. She simply replied with “That must be exhausting, I don’t see how you do it.” I replied, “I have no choice, it’s just the way it is – for now.”
Unfortunatly, the primitive factor of the color of your skin matters – it shouldn’t, but it does. But I’ve decided that the color of my skin is not a hindrance or a burden, it’s a gift. I love being black, and I am a strong, educated, outspoken, sponky, lesbian, black woman. Regardless of what the world throws at black folks, we always regroup, dust ourselves off and try again. It is literally in our DNA. We have a right to be happy, to be upset, to be angry, to be successful, to voice my opinion, to choose who to love, to do anything that brings happiness, positivity, and light to this world. That is where we stand, that is where we are coming from, and that is what we deserve.
People often say as a closing or departing phrase, “Take care of yourself.” One smiles and replies with the same or adding an additional pleasantry. When you think of taking care of yourself, you may think of eating healthy, exercising, or keeping mentally upbeat. When in fact, “Take care of yourself” as a statement is one of the most beautiful phrases one can say to another. Bear with me, simple but true – “Take Care” implies that you should pay attention to how you are taking care of yourself. When you think negative thoughts, you are not taking care of yourself. When you decide on grabbing fast food for convenience, you are not taking care of yourself. Even negative mental “chatter” about how far off from a goal you are, is not taking care of yourself. Deciding not to live out your purpose, is not taking care of yourself. Can you think of ways you can honor the proclaimed statement, “Take care of yourself?”
Let’s start with our thoughts, whether we believe it or not, thoughts become things. They may become negative or positive things that affect our lives in different ways. Today, make it practice to focus on not only taking care of yourself but paying attention to ways that no longer serve you in positive ways. It can be something as simple as waking up and starting a new practice of saying aloud, “I am awake, and for that, I am grateful.” Those that start their day with an “attitude of gratitude,” tend to take better care of themselves and those around them.
We all have talents. We have strengthens. Do not be afraid of your own motivation and success. We know we have accelerated knowledge in our skill-sets, even when others try to emulate our work. The infringing part of impersonation is, it is never as good as the original. The original is just that, one of a kind, not able to be duplicated with slight or extreme differences. The best part about “the original” is there is and will always be, only one – of a kind. You are one of a kind.
Photo: Luke Webb
In this uncertain time, it is not the time to get mad. Instead, get motivated. Get motivated to be the very best you, you can be. There is always a way to look at the brighter side of things, even when all seems far off. You can do this. What have you wanted to do that you didn’t have the time to do? Do you want to get healthier? Come up with a plan. You don’t need a gym to work out and feel great. Have you wanted to start a blog about your favorite hobby? Do it, and there are a ton of free resources for you to get started. You don’t need an elaborate fancy website to share your ideas. Is there a new career venture you have been putting off? Why? The only way to know is to go for it and truly put your whole self into it.
We all have the time to think and seriously ponder on what makes us intrinsically happy. I am sure you have chatted with friends and family about all the things you love to do, that you are currently not able to do. The great part is you will have a chance to do those things you love to do – just in different ways. What will emerge from this significant time in our history? Some of the best ideas came from great disasters (natural and human-made). It is time to get motivated and stay focused. We are all important and have greatness to contribute to this beautiful world. Don’t get mad; get motivated.
When we think of a goal, we are often in a state of motivation. A conversation sparked an idea, a movie prompted an inspiring thought, or perhaps a song brought forth a vision to embark. No matter the prompt, there are a few things that need to happen before you get to “happy slappy” about how great it is going to be once you accomplish “that” goal. The idea, vision, and thought are the easy part … the hard part is the work put into achieving the goal. I once heard a motto that I will never forget, “The work between an idea and a goal is the arduous steps that are required toward completion.” That statement has driven each and every goal I have set out to accomplish. You have to remember, there will be hard work involved to attain any goal that is worth your while.
It is in the middle, the hard part, the work, the sweat, and tears … that is where the goals start to come to fruition. That is where you discover who you are and what you are made of. Too often, when things get hard, we simply stop. But, it is in the “step-by-step” brainstorming and mulling over the tasks over and over where the motivation kicks us into high gear. Motivation is not something that you get from a PodCast, YouTube Video, or phone call from a supporter. Motivation is the still and small voice that reminds you of why you started on your “Goal Journey” in the first place. You are welcome to use that phrase to remind you of the hard work you will put in.
I have worked in the private, public, and federal sections. It was in the midst of one of the greatest opportunities that I found my passion for education. I recently found an old photo of myself. I was sitting at a Play School desk, and if you are a Gen-Xer you know the one I am talking about, heck you probably had one too. I actually remember the moment when I fell in love with learning … it was that moment. Fast forward a few years, I was in one of the darkest places in my professional career and reconnected with my love of learning. But, I had to allow something new to emerge. It was from a candid conversation with my supervisor that I realized my life purpose was to work in education. I researched and found the perfect Doctoral Business Management program for my needs, and started out on my goal toward earning a terminal degree in business management, with the goal of working in higher education.
Was the goal hard and far off? Yes. Did it take longer than I thought it would? Of course. But the point is I started. Just start. Start now, you cannot worry about the details if you have not made a decision to start. Start where you are and start now. Stop comparing yourself, your situation or your life to others. Truth be told, there are probably others comparing their lives to yours. Instead of all of the reincarnations of iterations of what we think we should be doing, let’s break the cycle and set an example for “Doing It Your Way” … oh … I think I feel a book birthing out of that last statement. Be the best you, you can be … unapologetically.
Let’s keep this good, highly positive energy going. I have to say; it has been a while since I have written two articles in a row. Normally, I try to post at least 1 article a month. I found my time slipping through my fingers minute by minute. People always say, “We all have 24hours in a day – it is up to you to make the most of it.” Let’s digest the “24 hours” we all have:
6 – 8 Hours – People normally spend sleeping
2 Hours – Getting ready for work, school, date or other events, which can take up to (start to finish – bathing, dressing, make-up, getting kids up and ready, etc.)
3 Hours – We seem to take up several hours to eat (in totality)
2 – 3 Hours – Then there is the “Waiting” on something or someone, all together (depending on how fast traffic takes, public transportation, elevators, walking dogs, etc.)
And you guessed it, most of us work at a minimum of 8 hours a day – that is the rest of it. That is what most people’s 24 hours may look like, give or take some adjustments in tasks and responsibilities. That is how one can find time slipping through one’s fingers.
How is this positive, purposeful, or productive information, Jenice?!? You may be asking with learning this frustration realization. I am glad you asked. The key to taking back your time is realizing that you have more than enough of it … simple, but true. Now that most of us are finding ourselves teleworking, on a compressed or flex-schedule, we literally are being the gift of time. Each and every day, you get to choose (hopefully), how you spend your time now.
Getting positive – if you still are employed in a safe working environment, be thankful. Getting purposeful – If you are working, then what you are doing is purposeful, and thank you for all you do, every day that you do it. Focused on Production – Production is not everything; poor quality is worst than producing nothing. Production is nothing without quality time spent ensuring the product is of good value. Instead of listening to all of the negative jargon all the time, do yourself a favor and find something to be positive, purposeful, and productive about. You will find you have more time than you could have ever scheduled on your calendar.
How often have you wondered why you respond to situations or events as you do? Have you tried to change your behaviors for the better? How successful have you been? The link may be in your intrinsic personality traits.
I have often implemented real-life assignments into my class lectures for students to grow both academically and personally. The Myers and Briggs Personality (MBTI) Test is a consistent tool that is used by several academics for student success. This is a fantastic way to get to know your students and for you to better gauge your behaviors and personality traits. There are plenty of ways to utilize this for everyday situations. I have used the MBTI Test as a for-credit assignment on several topics to include: accounting, business management, organizational behavior, human resources, financial management, and many others.
I often have found that peers enjoy completing the MBTI Test as a way of expressing their strengths. It has been used in leadership training across organizations looking for employees to gain a better understanding of their professional relationships for collaborations. I find it to be incredibly insightful. Since you have all of this time on your hands, you may want to dive in and get to know yourself a little better. Be well, Jenice
We are all doing what we can to stay safe and stay healthy. There are those whose career it is to be on the frontline in this arduous time in our history. It makes me think of my own family and friends, those who are currently working in hospitals, mortuaries, grocery stores, restaurants, security, groundskeepers, janitorial services and etc. While there is plenty of negative chatter and sights, there are just as many positive sights in view.
Grandma Charlene at ABC Market in Los Angeles, Ca
My Grandmother, Charlene Armstead, worked for ABC Food and Market in Los Angeles, CA for over 30 years. It was a grocery store that was community-based. Everyone knew everyone and always lent a helping hand when a member was in need. I can recall being as young as 2 years old, my mother bringing me to see my Grandmother (who often worked overtime), and everyone in her line knowing that I was her firstborn grandbaby, “There goes my grandbaby, yall are going to have to just wait a few minutes! This is MY GRANDBABY.” Grandma Charlene would yell, at least I know where I get my “loud whisper” from … but do you think those customers minded? No, because they had great respect for my Grandma Charlene, as she also had them as well.
We need to show one another more respect than some of us have displayed. They say you find out who someone really is during hard times, it is easy to be nice and thankful when all is well – but, what about when it really matters? Thank you to all of you who go out each and every day during this treacherous time in our history of COVID-19. Thank you for putting your lives on the line, so all of us are able to stay as safe and healthy as possible. I appreciate you going to work while I stay home – you are very much appreciated.
Happy New Year, it is time to “Marie Kondo” a few things. We all have a few things we need to clean up, throw out or condense. The New Year means setting new goals, removing old goals and reflecting on accomplishments. Let’s start off small, boundaries. Don’t click off of the page just yet … boundaries are good. They help us to conduct a self “check-in” and ensure things are as they should be for our mental health. Establishing boundaries assist with stress management, self-value, and creativity. Whether we want to admit it or not, boundaries are healthy.
Boundaries do not have to be long and drawn out. If you have never thought about boundaries, they are pretty simple to implement – be swift and simple, i.e. “I will not accept friend requests from people I do not know on social media.” Simple and moderate. It is necessary to be specific, “I will not accept a position for a lower salary than my asking baseline.” Super simple, yet specific. Make sure your boundaries are also positive and represent your values, “If I am approached by a random person who has little respect for my person, I will choose to remove myself from the situation – I deserve to be respected at all times because I respect others.” Consequences are a must if a boundary is crossed – give yourself permission to speak up and say something. Address it, and make sure to state how and when the boundary was crossed. Consistency and communication are keys to boundaries. Communicate your boundaries clearly and ensure you are understood by the person(s) involved. Ensure you inform the person(s) how their lack of respect for your boundaries have caused you to invoke consequences. This assures there is no negotiations for your boundaries and your expectations are clear. Make sure to be open if they would like to discuss their boundaries. You may learn something about their character. Remember, you have a right to establish and exercise your healthy, positive and affirmative boundaries. Have a great year, and remember – you have a right to happiness, health, and wholeness.
Reflect and keep these simple boundary indicators as a reference to establish and exercise your own boundaries in your professional and personal endeavors. Happy New Year.
Every year, we strive for new goals. How about striving for a new attitude? An attitude, not merely a positive attitude – but, a better one? Being positive is more than just a state of mind. Being positive is about our interactions with ourselves, others and with difficult situations. We’re often told to “stay positive,” but no one ever tells you how to stay positive. Emotional intelligence is the ability to understand that things are going to happen to you, good, bad, and indifferent. The ability to exercise self-control and realize that just because we fail or something negative happens to us, does not mean that we are bad people or that we have a bad experience entirely. Just as it is unhealthy to be Pollyannaish, it is equally unhealthy to be overly pessimistic. How do we balance the spectrum between being positive and being overwhelmed with life? The first step is to remember that there is something good in the situation that you can learn about yourself, others or how to handle the situation better in the future. The second part is to forgive yourself for being negative about a situation. The third part is to realize that your best is going to change from moment to moment. It comes with the realization that you are not a perfect being, none of us are. That is the beauty of life, we can do things differently and in a more positive aspect every time we engage or interact with the negative situation. Keep that in mind this new year, as you go into new challenges, new ventures, new relationships, new everything. Let’s be mindful of our emotional intelligence and our ability to control several aspects of a situation. Truth be told, you have more control over a situation than you think you do.
Reference: Bradberry, T. (2014). 3 Powerful Ways To Stay Positive. Retrieved 2019, from http://www.talentsmart.com/articles/3-Powerful-Ways-To-Stay-Positive-1120740708-p-1.html
There has been a lot that has conspired since the last time I have written to you. I’ve gone through a career change, I’ve changed my eating habits, I have decided to face financial items head on that should’ve been addressed a long time ago, and I have a completely different view on life. Being a holistic teacher has taught me a lot about myself and about those that I educate. I realize it is not only my responsibility to enlighten you with knowledge of business and human resources, but with actual, practical, tactical life skills to help you get to where you need to be in life.
I have been doing a lot of research on the need for understanding the basics. Without the basics of anything, we have a foundation for nothing. The basics provide us with the understanding of why we are doing what we’re doing and where we need to go with what we’re doing. If you’ve been following me or reading my articles for a while, you know that my life mantra is “more being, less doing.” By that I mean we need to decide to be more and stop thinking that just because we say we’re “busy” means that we’re doing something of meaning. In actuality, we are doing nothing if we are not deciding to be more in every moment for the purpose for our own lives.
It is time to think more, challenge more, understand more, realize more, interact more, empathize more and be more. I know firsthand that many of you are going through many different struggles, we all have things and situations that we’re currently dealing with on top of finding our purpose in life. What you must ask yourself in every moment is “Who am I being and what are my doing?” Einstein said something that resonates with me since I have been researching and studying holistic thinking. He said “If you can’t explain something in the simplest terms, in the lowest common denominator then you don’t have a true understanding of it.”
These are the times that we are currently in. We must understand and acknowledge things from the lowest common denominator to get to solutions for the big problems. These are my thoughts, and this is how I will continue to research, think, grow and learn. I thank you for your support, and I hope that you would provide your feedback and input on different topics that you would like me to research, discover and share with you.
Peace and blessings to you and all of your endeavors,
Fears and anxieties arise from a lack of control of the situation or event. When others have a fear of change, unforeseen circumstances and other things out of their control – fear and anxiety start to fester. Today’s Wisdom Wednesday focuses on not taking on others fears and anxieties. When you realize who you are, how to get things done and the purpose of things – your fears and anxieties will turn into motivational driven abilities towards a goal. Goals are great ways to keep track of what you want to do, where you want to be and how you want to get there. We are all human, and fear and anxieties come with the human experience. The growth and understanding comes from understanding that fears and anxieties out of your control may get out a hand when not dealt with face on. One way to deal with fears and anxieties – for example in the workplace, is to gain a better clarification through communication with others. Although communicating with others may not provide absolute clarity, it can provide enough clarity to gain an understanding of how to handle the situation. Make a point to pay attention when you have fears and anxieties come from you by the way of others emotions and reactions to situations. This is a great way to gain understanding and provide yourself the ability to stay cool, calm and collective in any given situation.
Happy sixth birthday to my very first published book “Lesbians Have to Eat, Too!” Six years ago today, I self-published my very first book – cookbook to be exact. Not only was this a huge accomplishment, but it was the edification of my ability to grow myself as a brand and share my ideas with the entire world. Many people don’t know how “Lesbians Have to Eat, Too!” came about as the concept for my first book. Being that I have sporadically shared the story with people that have asked me about the title and the stories of the recipes – you would learn I did not know how to cook. Which is what made this accomplishment all the more rewarding. For those of you that have not read my first book, “Lesbians Have to Eat, Too!” it is all about how I self taught myself how to cook. In “Lesbians Have to Eat, Too!” I wanted to be super transparent. Mission accomplished! “Lesbians Have to Eat, Too!” was birthed with the idea of sharing amusingly and comical stories about myself, my life and ultimately my family. The feedback over the years from those who have read the”Lesbians Have to Eat, Too!” has been enlightening and exciting. Many people have said that they purchased “Lesbians Have to Eat, Too!” for coffee table conversations, for their significant others, for those who need the basics on how to cook simple and healthy meals and overall for the pure fact that the title made them explode with laughter. Truth be told, the book took me three years to actually write, it was born of sticky notes and recipes gone bad. I want to thank my wonderful supportive wife who ate every meal whether it looked bad, tasted bad or even smelled bad. Through all of it, I realized it was ultimately necessary that I publish not just a cookbook, but a cookbook where I was intrinsically embedded in each individual page. Thank you all for all of your love and support. You are very much appreciated.
Happy sixth birthday to my very first edification of self transparency, “Lesbians Have to Eat, Too!”
Lesbians Have to Eat, Too! By: Dr. Jenice Armstead
Dr. Jenice Armstead
Professor & Author
United States Navy Veteran
You are the best version of you that there ever will be, could be and must be. You are the only you that will ever exist now until forever. You possess skills, knowledge and abilities that are uniquely define to you. You must realize that there’s no way to be, or experience outside of yourself. You must keep your word to self and realize that you are intrinsically yourself – entirely. You are the best you, the highest level of you and the all seeing of your own self. In order to be the best, you must acknowledge that you are intrinsically yourself.
It is important to understand who you are. Who you are is more than your physical being, what you wear or what you look like. Knowing who you are involves understanding where you want to be. Understanding who you are and knowing how to obtain positivity within any situation is an intrinsic skill of Spirit. We all have everything we need within us. We are all like trees. A tree understands exactly what it needs from beginning to end from the spirit within. Nature provides us the ability to go within and become everything that we need without anything that we need. Going within must come from without. Knowingly starts with understanding what you are not. The truth is, you are everything that you ever could be for now, for the present and for the future. It all starts with knowing and accepting who you are and how to get there. Spirit knows all things, but our human experience must possess the ability to take action and become one with knowing.
We are officially into the new year. The new year brings new aspirations, new resolutions, and new things that we want to do that we forgot to do last year. The good thing about the new year, is with the new year you get new opportunities and new ways of being. If you have been reading my articles from past years, you will know that the common denominator of many of my articles is “more being and less doing.” Today’s Monday Morning Mindset focuses on not only more being and less doing, but how you are being and how you are doing it. Resolutions are great, the important thing to remember is that while you are accomplishing your resolution – who are you being is just as important. Are you becoming a new person and implementing new ways of eating or exercising? Or have you decided to take a more holistic look at your life and decided to focus on personal growth? All these items are great, but resolutions fail when one loses their ability to be more in their ability to let go of who they’re not. Being more is just that simple, deciding to be more of yourself. Either way, in this new year take the time to “be more and do less.”
Today’s Forgiveness Friday focuses on “Residual Mistakes.” We as humans have a tendency to residually make the same mistake over and over and over. Learning from one’s mistakes is healthy, rather than continuously making the same mistakes without learning from it. The growth comes when you realize the residual mistake is not only a mistake, but also a lesson. Residual mistakes can impair our ability to grow, learn and develop. But they also allow us to take a self reflection of what’s actually important to us. The intrinsic nature of mistakes is to learn and grow from them. It is time to come up higher, grow and learn from our mistakes and no longer blame them for lack of ability to be happy or successful. Today, take the time to reflect on your residual mistakes and see if they are working in your favor or against your ability to grow.
This week’s Monday Morning Mindset focuses on “taking responsibility for where you’re at.” We all have challenges that we all will face at one time or another in our lives. The way you handle your challenges will determine your ability and maturity for growing past your past. We all come from different backgrounds, cultures, environments, family dynamics, and financial abilities. The one thing to focus on when taking responsibility for where you are is to understand self accountability. There are situations that are out of our control, things we can’t do anything about and situations that can get out of hand. With all that in mind, it’s important to remember that you are overall control of your life, your purpose and your destiny. Taking responsibility for where you’re doesn’t mean there’s going to be any immediate changes, but it will provide you with a outline or roadmap towards how to better yourself and improve your situation. The first step is to take responsibility for where you’re at, not blame others for your obstacles and to embrace change as much as possible.
In life we have the ability to be our worst enemies or our own best friends. We can push ourselves to no degree, or we could be our best comforters. In all, we have flaws either visibly or non-visibly that we share in times of deeply connected relationships. The more intimate the relationship, the more visible your flaws. We often have a tendency to treat those closest to us the worst. One of the reasons for this is because of the comfort of knowing that you will be loved regardless. Regardless of your flaws, regardless of your background, regardless of your physical ability or regardless of who you betray yourself to be – flaws are parts of you. Eventually, those intimate relationships become solidified in knowing that your flaws are not just a part of you they are you. Choosing to accept your flaws and moving forward requires great strength, admiration and the ability to want to grow. Today, take some time to review and accept your flaws and then move forward knowing that your flaws do not make you who you are. You are who you are innately by your purpose. Your purpose is what sustains you and provides you with the understanding that tomorrow your flaws may not be as visible to you as they were to you yesterday.
This Forgiveness Friday we focus on “knowing who you are.” Knowing who you are involves an awareness of your past, your present and how you plan on moving towards your future. Often we live our life forward, yet we only can understand it backwards. Reflecting on past obstacles, challenges, dilemmas and oversights are all part of growing your self-knowledge of who you are. When you’re able to reflect on your past, you are able to understand yourself the full aspect of your personal growth and development. It’s important to set aside time each day to reflect on things that you’ve done, said and plan on doing or saying. When you’re conscious of your thoughts, words and deeds you’re able to affiliate positive change towards future events. Truth be told, many people do not know who they are and rarely take the time to self-reflect. Forgive yourself this and you take the time to get to know yourself. You may be surprised at who you come to find yourself to be.