What We Can Learn From Joe Goldberg from “You”

By now you have either watched or heard about the Netflix series “You”. I binged season 1 and 2 as soon as they appeared on my New Releases list. I won’t necessarily spoil it for you in this post (but if you’ve not yet watched it and don’t want to know anything about it, step away from this post and come back later) but I will tell you something I just realized regarding the series.

I truly enjoyed both seasons and am sad that I have to wait a year for season 3. I enjoyed it so much that I did what I always do, recommended it to family members to watch. Yes, I’m the one they ask if there is something good to watch on Netflix. Oddly enough, if you were to have a glance at the types of movies and shows we watch, you’ll notice we like movies that deal with the psyche.

I saw all of the memes going around social media with things Joe might say regarding various situations. Here are a couple:

Joe is the kind of guy who believes in love at first sight. It’s kinda romantic until you remember that he is basically stalking people. What I noticed about him that was brought to my attention by my brother is what Joe notices about people while he is stalking them, Not only does he stalk them for his own guilty pleasure but he is attempting to upgrade them. Hear me out. It took my brother repeating this over to me and me seeing the endless memes to better understand it.

Joe analyzes his subjects and sees what he considers as their flaws and how he in some way could improve them.. for him and them. He definitely has some type of mental health issue (definitely not trying to label him as a narcissistic psychopath but his shoes fit well).

Now go back and watch both seasons, the memes, and let me know your thoughts!

Christmas Movies: For Our Viewing Pleasure?

I must admit, I have never been into the sappy Christmas movies that we see yearly on Hallmark,  Lifetime and now OWN.  As of the last two years I have gravitated towards them more. Not necessarily for the “you can only be happy at Christmas if you have your Knight in Shining Armour to take home to your family” message.  Yes, it reminds us that nobody wants to be lonely; but true love comes when it’s supposed to come. What I have found seems to be a deeper message.

Don’t get me wrong, every year I watch “It’s A Wonderful Life” and cry my big eyes out! It’s my favorite traditional Christmas movie of all time! I know every year that Clarence will get his wings but it makes me cry nonetheless. The hardships we saw with poor George Bailey and his family just simply trying to make it holds a special place in my heart. The sappier Christmas movies these days attempt to do the same but don’t bring the same effect of movies of their prior days.

Life gets busy and often hectic. We get into our own routines, we make plans for bigger and better, and we often find ourselves feeling like we are missing out on something. Next thing you know time has passed by and we wake up feeling unfulfilled.  The Christmas movies have these reminders that we need to take a step back, remember who we are, what’s important, and to take charge of our lives.

I always watch these women who remind me of myself: overworked,  slightly jaded,  and ready for something new.  Sound familiar? I think these are a few of the reasons many of us snuggle up on our couches winter after winter to watch Christmas movies. Maybe…just maybe… the little child in us still believes in Christmas miracles!

Protecting Your Peace

The most important thing a person a can have is inner peace. One word I have heard more than I have cared to hear this year is toxic. Typically when one speaks of toxicity, they are speaking of others and not themselves. I am hopeful that in 2020, people are more accountable for their own actions instead of blaming others. The constant shift blaming to deflect guilt, to avoid shame, or to downright have pure angst towards someone else MUST be draining.

I’ve consciously made it a point to not take myself around anyone if they do not bring me peace, joy, or happiness in any form. I believe in protecting my space and energy. If you’re an empath like me, your energy can be thrown off by someone else’s energy because you are attuned to other’s moods. The positive and negative vibes emitted from them can attach themselves to you and either energize or drain you.

Negativity is not only something that you don’t want to be around, but also speak. There is power in the tongue. You’ve heard that before, right? When you speak what you want you’re manifesting but did you know when you speak negativity you’re also manifesting it? Begin speaking the things you want into your life instead of dwelling on the bad.

One thing that I like to do for myself when I get home is light a candle. For me, this small act of lighting a candle signifies a few things: warmth from the flame, soothing aroma from the scent, and an overall sense of calmness. This might not be your daily routine of relaxation, but find one. What you may find is that whatever you had to deal with outside of your home doesn’t matter for those few moments that you’re taking for yourself.

Let today be the day that you rid yourself of your bad habits. Make a commitment to yourself of being positive in your decisions. Do not wait until 2020 to protect your peace. Dedicate the next few months of your life to you and see how amazing things go. You’ve done so much with trying to please others, let’s work on you now!

Here’s a shot to you! Cheers!

Nola, Kela?

So I have literally been missing BUT very much in action the last few months. I was promoted with my company and relocated to New Orleans a few months ago. I’ve been learning my new role, adapting to the minor culture shock, enjoying the food and learning my surroundings. It has had it’s challenges but the free spirit in me has always been able to adapt to change.

I’ve always been a small town girl with city girl dreams so when the opportunity was presented to me I went for it! I’ve lived in a few major cities and what I can say about New Orleans is that it has it’s own unique flair. I cannot wait to share with you all the next journey of my life here.

Stay tuned!

I’m Sorry

I’m sorry! Let me be perfectly honest with you. I don’t accept “I’m sorry” as an apology. Jaded much? The reality of those words to me is that it simply isn’t genuine. You ever have someone do something that was extremely foul and they say that they are sorry but there is no emotion behind the words? They force their words upon you yet have no remorse. It’s more of a here take this only because it’s probably the right thing to do type of apology. It’s usually wrapped in a “I’m sorry that you…” as if you were the one who did something wrong.

I think of I’m sorry in this way: is the apology to benefit you or someone else? If the answer is not the latter than uttering those words makes your apology empty and worthless. I had a boyfriend who would apologize for doing the same thing over and over. For me, changed behavior and true self-reflection was always more meaningful. For him, his repetitively negative behavior followed with a routine apology was acceptable.

Please do not misunderstand me. I do think that apologies are needed. If you mess up, allow yourself to be human. Be in the moment, be free of excuses and blame. Be cautious of your tone. Make eye contact. Take responsibility. Learn from the situation and be understanding or know that those apologies are falling on deaf ears.

Expecting You in Others

I’ve been seeing memes on social media where people have been posting about having to stop expecting “you” from people. I am in agreement with that because when people don’t behave in a way that we would we are immediately upset, hurt, and unable to fathom how they do the opposite of what we would do.

Here you go again. Setting those expectations that everyone is as considerate as you, as sincere, as loving, and that you can rely on them. Disappointed… again? Another birthday passed in which none of your loved ones attempted to make sure you were celebrated. Somehow you only assumed that when you tailored their birthday gifts to fit them perfectly or changed your plans to attend their at minimum mandatory $50 birthday dinner that they would do the same.Did you stay on the phone to listen to your friend tell you all about how her man has cheated for the fifteenth time and how her job is so stressful but has never asked you how you were doing one time in the forty-seven minute phone call? Better yet, are you the dependable one that everyone ask for money when they are short but never ask you if you need anything?

Expecting you from others is exhausting. We wonder why everyone can’t do the simple things that they would want to be done to them or for them. Is it too complicated or is it only a complication when we have to put forth action that doesn’t reward us? I do believe in doing things out of the kindness of your heart with no expectation of receiving anything. This prevents one from feeling overwhelmed and used. Give what you can afford and don’t give what you can’t: love, time, energy, etc.

Dear Girl of the Absentee Father

Understand that you have done absolutely nothing wrong. Your existence is no accident. Whatever his reasoning for not showing up in your life is no fault of your own. When we understand that we cannot control others actions we allow ourselves freedom to let go of guilt we carry for their lack of involvement.

I know that it gets tough this time of year around Father’s Day. Everyone is declaring how amazing their fathers are and you’re wondering if you could’ve done something to change his behavior. If you could’ve done something to make him see you. See you for who you are and want to actively be that hero you waited to tuck you back into bed when you had nightmares. He wasn’t. He may never be that father that you wanted. Guess what sis, it’s okay. You’re going to be just fine.

I ask you not to fall into that space of having Daddy Issues. It’s not worth it in the end. Trust me. That guy may not love you who reminds you of the gentle glimpses you saw of your father. That guy who is emotionally/physically/sexually abusive to you is not your project to fix. You’re worthy of so much more. You are not your childhood circumstances. You are not a victim. You are wonderfully made and deserving of the utmost respect, honor and love. Remember that love come first from within and you will attract it.

As I speak to you I speak to myself. Daughter of divorced parents. Father who chose himself in every way possible. Being from a small town and living less than ten minutes from someone who chooses not to show up in your life is hard. It makes your heart cold and distrustful. One thing I learned from his absenteeism is that you can either become bitter or better. So from bitterness and mistakes, I am on a life transit of becoming better by forgiving myself for carrying someone else’s load. You should as well.

Meet Justin: Breaking Color Barriers Diving the Deep Blue Sea

It’s crazy to me that we (African Americans) will host a pool party but no one gets into the pool. If they do get in, they have to be able to stand. Or we will plan a day at the beach but won’t go and get into the water. It’s the old stereotype….Black people don’t swim. Well call me a unicorn! I’m something you don’t see every day. Not only do I swim like a fish, I love to swim with them. I am black man that scuba dives. It’s kind of crazy at times when I think about it. Often times getting on a boat or going on a dive trip I’m the only one like me there. Getting all the stares and puzzled looks, but when I’m in the water it’s a whole different world. No cell phones, no technology, no social media. It feels great to be at peace and at one with nature.

Floating along 80 feet beneath the surface weightless watching as turtles, barracudas, goliath groupers and sharks swim right by. Yes, I said sharks. I know what you’re thinking; but you are wrong. Last year only 5 people in the US died of shark related injuries and not one of them was a scuba diver. Here is a secret for you: Sharks hate bubbles lol.

More and more celebrities that you know are catching on and breaking barriers. Will Smith took his whole family diving, Lil Duval is living his best life while diving and the Great Tiger Woods not only scuba dives but spearfishes as well.

It’s always been something I’ve wanted to do. I loved it so much that I want others to experience it as well. I am currently one certification away from becoming a dive instructor. It is my hope to start diving program for kids who are gaining interest in marine biology.

By the way I’m not the only one. I started a small (as of right now) dive club called Unicorns of Diving. Though small in number, we are growing every week as people see us together. We get quite a stare wherever we go, but love to show off our skills and show belong as well.

Follow Justin’s journey on Instagram here

Bohemian Faux Locs

I love simple and quick styles that I can get up in the morning and go. I decided to do Bohemian Faux Locs because they literally speak to my inner spirit. The hippie in me rejoices in the carefree look. I absolutely love anything that doesn’t make me look like the next person. Don’t fit in, stick out!

Picture Hair Goddess Lisa Bonet standing in front of you.

I have always been influenced by her style. Super bohemian chic and I am here for it! So I purchased hair from my local beauty store of course to recreate my own version of this look.

I initially purchased 6 packs of hair in 20″ in the hues 1B and 27. I later purchased 2 additional packs to add more length. This was so easy. I honestly wish i had recorded a tutorial of it on my YouTube channel. I will do this look again this summer so the opportunity is still possible.

I started with clean hair and began at the nape of my neck and begin sectioning the hair to start my locs. I first began with twisting my hair as if I were doing a two strand twist and then braided the hair down and twisted the ends. I untwisted the crotched locs from the ends and placed it to the side. I used a crotchet hook and using the tip of the crotched loc (similar to process of doing crothcet styles ) pulled the hair through my twisted roots. At this point you should have the two pieces of crotchet loc hair and your own hair, I put my hair with one of the pieces of crotched hair and wrapped the remaining piece around them in same manner of doing faux locs. Whenever I wanted to add length, I would untwist a crotched loc and tie it into a knot around the loc i had created and repeat the process.

Have you tried faux locs?

Art of Five Love Languaging Your Friendships

I was recently asked what my love language was from a friend. Simple question. But I sat in silence because I wasn’t sure if they were asking as in dating or as in friendships. My friend usually ask me for dating advice. Yes me! By the way, I give great advice. My dating life… well that’s another post for another day. I decided to think about this question proposed to me on a level of how I interact with my friends rather than in dating.

The Five Love Languages: Words of affirmation, gifts, acts of service, quality time and physical touch. I’ve always tried my best to be that friend that pours into a friendship instead of draining it. Here are my thoughts on trying to make sure you are using love languages in your friendships.

Affirmations

Sometimes a simple thank you for listening to me vent is a good start. Listen, I get it. I understand. Life can be so stressful and sometimes you want to run to that friend or call them and tell them about everything bad that’s going on in your life. But is that all you’re doing? Are you only telling them when things are wrong? Do you even ask what’s going on in their life?

I’ve had many talks with friends who I’ve felt were either draining, inconsistent, or let’s just be honest, not good friends. It’s a hard talk. It’s one of those talks where you feel like you’re breaking up with your significant other or if you’re deciding if you want to make it work. It’s worth it.

Gifts/Acts of Service

It’s the thought that counts. Nothing says thinking of you more than receiving something minor that you absolutely love. You know your friend likes the Avocolada smoothie from Tropical Smoothie. Go get it. You heard them mention how much they liked the new Fenty Stunna Lip Paint you were wearing then go and pick it up for them. They will know how much you’ve actually been listening to them.

Quality Time/Physical Touch

So in friendships I am combining these two love languages. We all get busy with our daily tasks. Make time to spend with your friends. I calendar in time with people who are important to me. Send your friends a text and ask if they are available on a particular date at a certain time. This is a better alternative than the elusive statement “we should hang out soon or get drinks sometime”. You’re actually setting up an appointment and it helps you to stick with seeing them.

Understand that just in your dating life that your individual friendships will have certain love languages that they prefer. My friendship love language is quality time.