***Before I get into this, this is not meant to bash my ex. We simply just didn't work out & it was just hard on me dealing with the reality of it. But he's overall a great guy. This is NOT shade, This is me sharing my testimony for women who are in the worst stages of the battle.
Stop equating your worth to the attention that men give you. That was the first lesson.
For years I spent so much time wondering why I’m not enough for a man when I knew that I was solid. When I got out of my last relationship, it wasn’t just me leaving him, it was me leaving everything that I was comfortable with. He was literally the only thing that tied me to who I used to be. Everything around me was [and still is] different. I’m in new places, new jobs, new positions, a new era of my life but that was the one thing that was always constant. So when we broke up… Whew chile.
The worst part of the break up actually happened at the best time of my life. I was in DC, interning with the Federal Government in one of the most prestigious fellowship programs in Agriculture. On top of that, I just became Senior Class President and the first Coca-Cola Campus Ambassador for my campus. But in the midst of all of that, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life AND the one person I saw a future with is drifting away, CHILE.
I was heartbroken, depressed, stressed, and sick [yes, physically].
The reason I stayed so long is because I didn’t want to see the next woman “get what I deserved” I was the one who was there since he was 18. I watched him develop from a boy to a man. I was there. But at the same time, I locked a man down at his prime and wanted to play wife. Every argument, I knew deep down in my heart. So for months, I was taking it out on him. But after the fighting and arguing, we just came to a mutual agreement that we didn’t need to be together no matter how much we loved each other. The last time I kissed him I felt the 4 ½ years of growth slip right through my hands.
That was the second lesson. Time in a relationship doesn’t mean you’re meant to be together.
Around my 21st birthday was when I really just let go and put it in God’s hands. I came to peace with knowing that I was solid and that you can’t make nobody stay with you or love you the way you think you should be loved.
Alright so I’m at peace with me but what’s next. Mind you, I’ve been in a relationship since I was 16 years old. All I knew was me & him. The last half of Summer 2018 was getting to know Sharon without him. On the outside, I’m that girl everybody thinks is perfect with the jobs, titles, etc. that goes off and has concerts on Snapchat but I needed to know who I was deeper than that.
You cannot date or love someone when you don’t know or love yourself. Lesson number three.
At the end of August, the whole board (for one of my organizations) had a Women’s discussion where we literally poured our insecurities out, cried, really showed our vulnerability. When I told them what I went through since January, another woman cried and hugged me saying that she was going through the exact same thing and how it was refreshing to hear that from me. Watching her cry, I felt the worst part of pain that I experienced for months. After, I looked at myself cried because I’m so proud of the woman I am right now. I swear, I don’t have it all together but I know where I’m going and where I want to be. I used to be the girl that was super perfect, had the grades, the job, the man, and plans of coming home to secure the bag and play wife for him. Literally EVERY plan that I made since Fall 2015, shattered right in front of my face. Don’t get me wrong though, I am very blessed. This year, I just came to peace with the fact that God is steering me to my purpose. Let God take you to yours.
This post is sponsored by Waiakea Hawaiian Volcanic Water. All opinions of the product are mine and the product was purchased with my own money before agreeing to sponsorship.
Alkaline Water is the new black… A hot commodity. Personally, I have always been picky about my water. Around my senior year of high school, my body [vagina, let’s be real] started going through a lot changes. I started getting BAD cramps. I’m talking about to the point of hospitalization which most likely started from my latte addiction (There have been links towards heavy caffeine consumption and bad cramps) But, it wasn’t until I got hospitalized for dehydration when I realized that I need to take my health a lot more seriously. After that point, I would make it a habit to drink at least a bottle a day.
An Alkaline Water that I would recommend is Waiakea Hawaiian Volcanic Water. Waiakea Alkaline Water has a pH between 7.6 to 8.2. Remember how I said that I LOVE my Starbucks Lattes right? Well, those same lattes are also acidic (6.30 pH for White Chocolate Mocha in Grande or Medium, I typically get Venti or Large). Now the neutral level is 7 so you’re probably thinking that this is not that bad but, dentin – the tissue behind your enamel, dissolves at the pH of 6.50. Who wants yellow teeth and urine? Not I! Alkaline water helps neutralize the acid in the mouth that causes cavities. So basically, I can still have my lattes and keep my body balanced & teeth white.
Why not regular water?
Well first of all, all bottled water isn’t good for you; contrary to popular belief. For example: Dasani Water = 4.5, Deer Park = 6.3, Crystal Geyser = 6.0, and the list goes on. (According to: https://www.alkalinewaterplus.com/analyzing-comparing-brands-of-bottled-water/)
Waiakea water is one of my newest alkaline water discoveries. Waiakea tastes like PURE WATER. No additives, just water. Alkaline Water like Waiakea can help people with: High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, Acid Reflux, Skin diseases (like eczema & psoriasis), Hair Loss, and this is not even the half of it. It may also help with dry eyes – especially if you wear contacts.
Waiakea water is not only good for you but their company really takes pride in what they do for the environment. All Waiakea water bottles are 100% biodegradable. They also donate a weeks worth of clean water to those in need for every liter that’s purchased. Waiakea Water is available at Wawa, CVS, or Quick Chek. If you’re bougie, you can order the water to come straight to your doorstep at store.waiakeasprings.com
Get it together and drink some Waiakea water. Your body will thank you. Any further questions may be answered here!
Statement from Waiakea
Waiākea’s mission is to provide naturally healthy, delicious, Hawaiian volcanic water with as little impact as possible, while contributing to and promoting conservation and access to clean water and education for people in need throughout the world. This is embodied by Waiākea’s slogan “Drink Healthy, Drink Sustainably, Drink Ethically”. Waiākea volcanic water originates in Hawai’i through both snowmelt and rain on the pristine peak of the active Mauna Loa volcano, one of the purest environments on Earth. The water is then filtered through thousands of feet of porous volcanic rock that enriches Waiākea with a variety of trace minerals, making it electrolyte rich and naturally alkaline, before emerging at its source, surrounded by rich forest preserves just outside quiet Hilo town.
Black Twitter is back at it again with yet another hashtag. This time, we're getting nostalgic with memories of Myspace, BabyPhat, & Chris Brown posters on our walls. Check out some of the funniest tweets of #TweetLikeThe2000s below!
As you can see, I’ve been managing my time terribly since I haven’t posted anything in weeks. I am a full-time student, I work a “part-time” job [I work in Residence Life. There is no part time], a member of multiple student organizations, a board member for a non-profit, and finally - I run my own website. This may seem overwhelming but I have a method for my madness.
I developed a color code system so I can see the area where I have to do the most work. This helps me schedule out my days as well because I'm the type of person that likes to get a bulk of work done in one day then chill for the next couple of days. Since I have Tuesdays & Thursdays off, I like to use these days to get work for my organizations done or I use them as my relax day. Since I have class Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, I would rather get my academic work done on those days since I'm already in "class mode". Here's a look at my color code system below.
Green = Homework/Class
Yellow = Organizations/ Events
Pink = Work
Orange = Tests/Quizzes
Blue = Essays & Projects
The main way I manage my school schedule is “killing two birds with one stone”. I literally LIVE by this motto. The Pink usually takes up a lot of time and since I have three online classes, I use my time at work to knock out my online classes so I won’t have to worry about it for the rest of the week. While I’m at work, I also get any flyers or graphic work I have to do, done. For most of my organizations, I make all the flyers so this gets VERY time consuming. I also make sure that I have a set time for everything! I’m the type of person where I need to physically see everything that I have to do in one day either by a checklist, my schedule in my planner, or even by my phone calendar. My checklist is my baby because it also helps me feel better [or worse] about my day because I can see how much I got done.
Now onto the part about me not going crazy. As y'all can see I do a million and one things in one day. Sometimes it does get a little overwhelming which is why I try to stick to my schedule the way I do because if I don't work can pile up super quick. I also always make sure I have at least one day out the week to do NOTHING! This gives me a chance to clear my mind so I can work better. So many people ask me how I manage everything I do and self care is honestly the way I keep my head above water. Whether it's getting my nails & feet done, a face mask, a day at the mall or in my bed - I make sure I make a day to relax a priority. Do not let people tell you you have to work like a slave to gain success. Yes, you have to work hard but don't kill yourself in the process!
What are some of your methods of scheduling and self care?
I know I'm not the only one that sits at work and literally laughs at my timeline. Since y'all so funny, I decided to share my favorite tweets on the week on my site! Shoutout to Me, Diva, Snob & Cory's twitter group chat because that's where I got most of these tweets from lol. Have fun laughing!
As I'm writing this, I'm listening to this podcast and lowkey bashing myself for not writing a post or editing a video in two weeks because I was trying to finish up my summer internship [#Prioritize]. Black Girl Boss is one of those podcasts that will get yourself together professionally, emotionally, and mentally. Curated by Tatum & Milan, "Black Girl Boss" is a podcast meant to encourage and give advice to young Black Girl Bosses all over the world. I actually came across this podcast on Instagram because I follow Milan and her company U Management LLC. After listening, they have both become my what I like to call them, my Fairy Boss Mothers. I started listening out of order but I'm starting to get back on track now. So far, my FAVORITE episode was "Episode 7: Black Women, Depression, Daddy Issues". When I tell y'all this episode had me crying in my car, YO! The knowledge that I've gained professionally from this podcast has helped me develop this website and put me onto some game in business. If you're an entrepreneur, you NEED to listen to this podcast. The links on various platforms are listed below as well as the hosts, Tatum & Milan's Instagram accounts.
Black Girl Boss on Apple Podcasts, Soundcloud
Tatum's Instagram: @tatumtemia
Milan's Instagram: @theemilanmobley
I KNOW I KNOW ALL THE DAYS WON'T BE PERFECT BUT BABY CAN YOU STAND IT!? That’s just my song nevermind me but y’all… Lets just say adulating got real, real quick. So I’m at this rest stop in Delaware right. I pull into the rest stop right on 95 to get some Starbucks real quick, I come out and someone hit my car! Of course I’m sad but Baby Blu is in the shop (#GetBetterBLU – Issa movement). Thank God for insurance because that repair price was looking SUPER hefty. Y’all got a stack laying around? A year ago I would say no, but I’m telling y’all living on my own this summer got me together. I cannot stress the importance of saving your money for a rainy day! Shoutout to Geico but if I had to come out of pocket for this, I would’ve been good (by the grace of God). Having that security of knowing I could’ve paid for it made me feel myself a lil bit.
Saving is not easy. It takes discipline and two trusty apps [that are secured by the FDIC]. Both apps are available on the Apple App Store and Google Play. Digit is a savings app that I’ve been using for a while. Basically what it does is it takes small amounts of money out of your debit card and it holds it in this Digit account [Think of this as a third party savings account]. What’s so dope about the app is that you forget that you have it then you check back and you have a couple hundred saved up out of nowhere. You can also put money into the Digit account through the app or by text message. Another thing about Digit is that: 1. You can withdraw your funds at any time through the app or by text message, 2. It texts you every morning and tells you your current balance on your debit card. This app got me together a couple times with my spending because my account would drop just off me buying food [SMH]. You can either choose to save like small dollar amounts or even cents at a time [Personally, I just let Digit do what it do and save my money w/o me peeping]. Overall this app is extremely helpful for those who are just starting to grow their savings account.
Side note: Sadly, Digit is now charging 2.99 a month now but it’s a very small charge and it helps me save so ehh, I guess.
Had to blur out my $$$ because y'all can't know a girl finances OKUR.
Next up is an app whose notifications I’ve had to put on mute a couple of times because they kept reminding me about how much money I spend on food. Mint is by far the BEST finance app in the App Store [Your account will also be accessible on Mint.com]. So boom, you can connect all your debit & credit cards and your savings accounts as well. Mint shows you: 1. Your balance on each card, 2. Your overall cash balance [on all cards], 3. Your “cash flow” or how much money is coming in, 4. How much money you spend on EVERYTHING [I’m way over budget on food and Starbucks but what’s new]. Another dope thing about Mint is that you can also see your credit score on the app as well. Literally any major changes that they see in your account, they notify you. Mint is super convient because if you’re like me, you bank with multiple banks so you have a BoA, Chase, TD, etc. on your phone & you gotta log into each one and all – yeah it’s annoying. Mint you literally see all of your money and where it’s going.
You can sign up for Digit here – you’ll get $5 just for signing up!
*Affiliate link used for Digit*
Also sign up for Mint here! Have fun saving your coins!!!
I've been adulting all day so this is my way of venting it out. Today, I paid off my credit card and opened up another savings account so I'm feeling like money right now and I feel like talking that talk. Credit is one of those things that you learn as you go. You always hear about it but no one really teaches you about it until you get it [just like taxes, banking, loans, etc. but that convo is for another day].
Personally, I call credit "my trust level". Basically, credit just shows how responsible you are with keeping up with payments. Credit is also one of those things that's like a job, nobody will hire you without experience. I realized Summer 2016 that I should start building credit. At the time, I was working at Macy's and they have a store card so I figured I could open an account with them since I'm employed there. That was a dub and I got denied. Then, I applied for a Victoria's Secret card [honestly, just so I can buy sweats and build credit at the same time] and they denied me too. At this point I'm thinking like nobody is going to let me borrow money until I'm $30,000 in student loan debt then FINALLY, Amazon approved me for a credit line. On my Amazon card, I made sure that I did not go over 30%. This is the number one piece of advice people will give a college student on credit. Now what do they mean by not going over 30%?
For example: My first credit limit was $700, meaning I was not allowed to have a balance over $700. So what they mean by not going over 30% is not having a balance over 30% of your limit. In my case my 30% was $210.
I actually just came from opening up another savings account and the representative saw I was young, so she asked about how my credit was looking so we got to talking and she actually told me store credit cards are the best ways to start building your credit. She also told me that having multiple lines open at a time [no more than 4] and making those payments on time looks even better than just having one. Banks just want to know how responsible you are with your money before they give it to you. Credit is the easiest way of showing that.
One easy way of building credit that most experts recommend is to use your first Visa/Mastercard/ etc. credit line for gas and just pay it off every month
Another myth is that only your credit score matters. Your credit report is equally important, if not more, as your score. Your score is a basic number on a scale showing how responsible you are, your report on the other hand is showing EVERYTHING. Think of it like your GPA. Your cumulative GPA is usually on a 4.0 scale so it goes from 0.1-4.0. With your credit score, it goes from 300-850. Your report is like your transcript that shows that one bad semester. One thing I learned from my fave podcast [S/O to Platanos and Collard Greens], is how it's actually your credit report that most people look at before either approving you for a loan or even getting certain jobs. Just like you want to stay in that 3.0+ range for school, you want to stay in that 650+ range with your credit. Once it's down, it can take months or more likely years to build it back up again.
Mini Story Time: Freshman year, one of my professors gave the class this speech about credit and she told her story about how she applied for a college credit card and had a $3,000 limit. She spent it ALL and she made late payments. She told the class that she is just now starting to get her credit back together from that [she has a child in middle school right now so I would say she's in her late 30's/early 40's]. This was in COLLEGE and that one mistake she made followed her into her adult life. Everybody makes mistakes but these are some you can avoid.
Credit is not something to be scared of, you just need to make sure you're responsible with it. Credit is actually lit because when I was waiting on my paycheck, I was ordering groceries on Amazon with it. Lil bih gotta eat. Establishing credit now is easier than doing it down the line when you're trying to buy your first house or lease a car in your name. Don't wait, be prepared
Just know y'all gon hate me for all these Jay Z references I use but bear with me
Everything and everyone in your life has seasons or stages. Friends, Acquaintances, Boyfriends/ Girlfriends [Whichever floats your boat] all come and go. Of course there are some that stay forever but some people are simply in your life for a purpose. It could be for a lesson, an opportunity, or even for growth. When I look at topics like these, I like to look at Jay Z. Yes, there are people who speak highly of him but there's also people who throw dirt on his name just because he leveled up and left them behind, Dame Dash and Jay Z for example. In summary for those who aren't familiar, Dame Dash rode for Jay since day 1 of Roc-A-Fella Records. Watching the documentary, "A Genius Leaves The Hood" [Shoutout to the Platanos & Collard Greens Podcast for putting me on], people referred to them as Good Cop, Bad Cop. Jay being the Good Cop was chill and really moved in silence, just as he does now. On the other hand, The Bad Cop [Dame Dash] was the one that was like "Get this sh*t done or I'm sending hittas up to your office". At the time, being an independent company, you had to use that kind of force to break these barriers down but, it came a time where Jay grew too much as a businessman for Dame who is also his business partner to be conducting himself in that manner. Dame was simply a hot head that became a liability.
Now as I'm sitting at my desk developing my business plan for my internship, working on my site, and working on branding for my organizations all at the same time, I stopped and realized like damn I'm really doing all of this. It was a realization of how far I've come and how now I feel myself coming into a place where I have to prioritize my time and energy more. There’s also some people that make me feel crazy for doing something creative that most people don’t do. People are too comfortable where they are... I don't need that energy. Some people are cool with just going to school and working a summer job then after graduation, getting a 9-5, but that's just not me [Not knocking the hustle though]. I want to do more because that makes me stand out. I'm not saying cut off everybody you cool with that isn't an entrepreneur but if they aren't trying to do better in life, reevaluate that friendship.
"You become who you hang around"
Personally, I like having friends who are doing better than me because seeing them forces me to want to do better. Cleansing your circle is not only good for your productivity it's also good for your stress level which regulates everything else. Some things and people are toxic to your well-being and your grind and nobody wants to be sad and broke. That's not cute. It's easier said than done but again, let us look at Jay Z. I'm pretty sure he had some hard times cutting people off that he came up with just because they became toxic to not only his image but his well-being and his grind. Let's be more like Jay Z.
Although I'm barely home, I'll never forget where I've came from. I'm hype about this continuous series recognizing the home team. Jersey girls are beautiful, stylish, bossy, educated with edge. It's not just for bloggers or "social media girls" [I hate that term anyway], it's for all my favorite women who are flourishing! This week, I thought that I would recognize my two favorite Jersey girl bloggers for my first post.
From: Elizabeth, NJ
Blog: Karen Civil, Live Civil
Karen Civil is a personal favorite and inspiration to me. This Haitian GirlBoss hailing from Elizabeth, New Jersey, studied at Union County College. Since graduating, she has been running with the legends of the Hip Hop Industry. From assisting DJ Funk Flex of Hot 97 to Marketing Director of The Diplomats [DIPSET, DIPSET, DIPSET!] Karen Civil quickly made a name for herself in the early 2000's. After leaving her Marketing Director position with The Diplomats, she then began to work directly with heavy hitter artists like Nicki Minaj, Drake, Lil' Wayne, J.Cole, and more. In 2008, she launched her blog site, KarenCivil.com, where she keeps you in the loop of the latest in Pop Culture. She has held positions like Digital Marketing Manager for Beats by Dre. What other young black woman is making major moves like that!?
In 2014, She gave back to her homeland, Haiti, by building a playground for the youth to give them a safe haven. Her book, "Be You & Live Civil", published in 2015, outlined her past, her highs and lows, and how she built her media empire. Buy her book now here, and check out her sites, LiveCivil.com and KarenCivil.com!
From: Newark, NJ
Christina Bright, a vegan momma bear blogger, has made her stamp in the Tri-State area's creative circles. Her blog, EverydayIsChrisMiss, transparently showcases her journey through life struggles shows her audience that the journey to wherever you want to go is not always fabulous. Her blog also calls you out on your inner bullsh*t that you would never tell the world, but it's definitely that reality check that you need. Her hashtag #CoParentingMatters shows her journey of having to raise a child with someone you are no longer with in a positive light. Contrary to popular belief, this is achievable.
"ChrisMiss" is also known for her curating her event and podcast, "The Art of Convo" in New Jersey, New York, and Philadelphia where she forces people to really talk about topics such as Relationships and Sex, Politics, and even Drugs [Not the crazy stuff, just weed]. Christina continues to push to envelope of being different in every way. Christina also is active in the community of Newark. Christina is a domestic violence survivor and she recently spoke at the Shani Baraka Women's Resource Center located in Newark to share her story. To learn more and read Christina's work visit her site, "Everyday is Chris Miss" here!
Send your faves to my email or via social media. Thanks for reading!