Getting My &*#@ Together Series: USE – YOUR – WORDS

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I keep saying this week’s blog post is going to be about routine and its importance, but judging from the sporadic release of these blogs, I don’t think I’m the beacon of hope for sharing my thoughts on the subject. I figured we could just put that off until a later date while I literally get my s__ together –

I told you this is a process.

So this week, I’m focusing on what I have become quite good at over the years:

USING – MY – WORDS!

 

You like a man?

Tell him.

 

Do you feel uncomfortable?

Say it!

 

Feel like you’re being overlooked for that position at work?

Tell them you’re interested.

 

When we learn how to live our truth and then work through the process of putting words to it, we eliminate the guess work.

Relationships: If a man knows you like him, you put the ball in his court on how to move forward. It eliminates the ambiguity about the nature of the relationship by opening a dialogue and letting him know exactly where you stand. What he does with that information is up to him. But you can then listen to his thoughts on the subject, pay attention to his actions, and be able to react accordingly when they do or don’t match up with your clearly stated intentions.

Comfort: It doesn’t matter if you’re at someone’s house and they’re doing some wierdo/creeper sh__ or out in public and someone is doing something you don’t like, make it known that you’re uncomfortable with a situation and move accordingly. Most times, just saying it out loud will put a stop to whatever is going on. When it doesn’t stop, you can then politely gather your things, say goodbye, and give everyone the back of your head. NEVER, EVER allow yourself to stay in a situation that makes you feel uncomfortable, even the slightest bit.

Work: Whether they choose you or not, put your hat in the ring for that position you want. I’ve seen far too many people passed over for jobs I know they would have gotten if they’d just spoken up. So, tell them why you want that job, how you’ll be a good fit, and what you’ll bring to the table. After that, it’s up to them. While this doesn’t guarantee you’ll get the job, you put your desires into the atmosphere. If they decide to go with another candidate, see bullet one “Relationships” and react accordingly.

Find your truth, live your truth, SPEAK your truth, folks.

Until next time, be kind to yourself.

Love and light,

Erin

 

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Getting My &*#@ Together Series: HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY

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This week’s blog was going to focus on the importance of establishing a routine, but I forgot tomorrow IS VALENTINE’S DAY!

So instead of sending myself flowers to my job with a heartfelt “I love you, Erin. From Erin” written on the little card, I’ve decided I’m going to switch gears.

On this man made holiday smack in the ass crack of February, we’re supposed to celebrate the beauty of L-O-V-E.

And while there are many who will be relishing in the feeling, we all also know LOVE can suck donkey balls through a coffee stirrer. Come to think of it (and I’m writing this over a glass of wine so forgive me if I’m mistaken), it’s the only thing in the world that can simultaneously fill you up and drain you; feel like heaven and hell; be so warm but so cold; simply occupy such polar opposites that it’s maddening.

I think that’s what’s behind our attraction to love.

As much as it can hurt, we all know how good it can feel. Regardless of what we tell ourselves or post on our social media platforms, we all want to be loved.

What we fall into sometimes on this day, however, is the trappings of our idea of romantic love – and lack thereof.

Whether it’s societal, familial, or personal pressure, the weight of romantic love and its perceived importance on Valentine’s Day can push feelings of inadequacy to the forefront when we aren’t greeted with flowers and candy at some point during the day.

IF this is something you struggle with, this year …

…  I want you to remember two things:

  1. In less than 48 hours, all of that delectable chocolate is going to be 50% off.
  2. A partner doesn’t validate your existence or somehow translate into completeness. For those who have them and are in healthy relationships, they’ll tell you it’s more like a bonus; like the gumbo was already bomb, but their partner just added the right amount of cayenne. Don’t let anyone or anything make you think you need another person to have fire sauce, folks.

Until next time, be kind to yourself.

Love and light,

Erin

 

Mouth watering for more of my BS ramblings, check out last week’s blog at: https://theladywrites82.wordpress.com/2018/02/05/getting-my-together-series-its-ok-to-cut-people-off-living-your-truth/

Getting My &*#@ Together Series: It’s OK to Cut People Off / Living Your Truth

There are probably millions of witty memes floating around about cutting people off.

Clearly, it’s becoming a popular thing to do.

But unless you’re one of those people who believe everything they read online, you know that what’s popular isn’t always productive.

What we’re doing when we are cutting people off in this sense is isolating ourselves because some people just aint *&@$, not an elimination of “noise” to focus on self. But that latter is what we should be doing.

I remember starting on this journey and not even knowing what the hell was going on. I just knew I couldn’t be around other people too much because the thoughts, feelings, emotions, and energy of the people around me was stifling my thought process and, by extension, my growth.

So for two months, I decided I’d do nothing but work,

come home,

and take care of children;

no talking to friends,

no social media,

and limited interaction with family (we’re very close, so they would have kicked my door down if I didn’t answer their calls).

I just felt like I needed to be alone, with only my thoughts; free from the input and impact of the people around me.

I called it a cocoon.

When I came out on the other side (and I’m still not sure if it was because I’d become accustomed to being learning to enjoy my own company), I didn’t have the desire to connect with people who didn’t bring out something good in me; that I didn’t feel good around; couldn’t be my true absolutely self with or learn something from. It almost physically hurt to be around people who didn’t “feed” me in some way.

Can you imagine how difficult that made getting through a work day? I mean co-workers are cool and all, but the majority of them are not doing anything to contribute to any positivity in my life.

That removal process was surprisingly easy. What I hadn’t expected was that I, too, would be removed.

Let me tell you another story (if you haven’t guessed by now, I love telling a story to illustrate a point).

The TRUTH is absolutely necessary for growth of any kind, it also is about as pretty as a cheap lace front.

The more I grew in this way, the more honest I was being with myself and those people I still allowed in my space.

A few months went by and I found myself getting estranged from what I considered my best friend for 20 plus years. She literally stopped answering my calls one day. I tried to reach out to her a few times and while we connected, I could feel her energy toward me and our friendship had changed.

Eventually we lost touch. <Insert your sad face emoji here.>

At first I was hurt, then I realized one of a few things had happened.

Maybe my change and growth showed me in a light she had decided wasn’t right for HER journey.

Maybe she didn’t like the person I was becoming.

Or maybe through her growth she realized she never liked me in the first place …

because just like me, others are growing too.

Regardless, of the reasoning, I have come to realize everyone is not meant to come with you on your journey. Whether you’re the one separating yourself or the separation is forced upon you unexpectedly, the outcome is still the same.

Your journey is your own.

I’d stripped myself of everything, except for my basic needs and responsibilities, looked at myself in my truest form and rebuilt from there worked for me. It involved confronting my best and worst qualities, then deciding what I could live with and what I felt was getting in the way of living my best life and being happy.

It was only then that I could attempt to restructure my world around what I saw currently and what I saw for my future.

This restructuring takes so much dedication and focus that some people just won’t fit anymore. And that’s ok. But it’s this structure that took me to the next phase of my growth, but more on that next time folks.

Until then, be kind to yourself.

Love and light,

Erin

 

 

 

 

Getting my &*#@ Together Series: Know Thy Self

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I started blogging a few years ago and would write about a variety of topics, from celebrity bs to my take on love and relationships.

Here I was, doing my best impersonation of an adult, working, going to school, taking care of kids, and I’d lost who I was – or to be more accurate, I never really knew who I was, but got distracted from that fact by all of the responsibilities that adulthood brings.

I found myself slowly losing the motivation to be creative and slowly, but surely, I stopped writing.

But the embers got stoked again recently and I found myself writing, but I also found that is just wasn’t the same as last time.

And that’s when it dawned on me: I finally figured out who I am and that has manifested itself in so many ways, including my content.

So in an effort to live my truth and add some structure to my baby online empire, I’m going to dedicate the next few weeks (or until I run out of things to talk about) to sharing my trials, errors, and triumphs on the road to getting my ___ together.

Please believe me when I say that I’m no expert by any stretch of the imagination, but I can say that I’ve come far and have no problem talking about how I got here.

The day it finally hit me, I was so hyped! I called my mom and screamed into the phone “I found myself!”

And in true mother form, she told me how happy she was for me.

I had meditated, grounded myself, prayed, cut some people off, and set proper boundaries with others … everything everyone tells you needs to happen on your path to finding yourself.

And I felt great; like I was floating on air, dipping and dodging all of the negativity in the world.

A few weeks past and the feeling started to fade. Before I knew it, I felt lost again and I was pissed.

So I did what any self-respecting adult would do … called my mom again.

It was at that point I realized two things:

  1. While I adore my mom, there was nothing she could do to help me. (sorry, ma)
  2. Finding yourself and being at peace with who that person is is not only a personal process, but something that I had to constantly work at every day.

So here I was pissed again.

I did all of this introspective work and I had to do it all again. What I didn’t realize was that finding yourself isn’t like running a race. You don’t get to the finish line, plant your flag in the sand, and breathe a sigh of relief that you’ve finally achieved something. You get to the finish line, plant your flag in the sand, breathe, and keep going because there’s another road ahead.

Nuts and bolts, we change every day, b.

Our thoughts, feelings, experiences, the music we listen to, the people we surround ourselves with, each passing moment, it all shapes us. It’s up to us to determine if we’re going to use these things to help us grow or not. When we fail to acknowledge this, we stop growing and when we stop growing, we lose ourselves.

So I keep at it. I take pictures of things I think are beautiful, have conversations with people with whom I know are going to give me a full belly laugh, sing songs in my car with the volume as high as it can go. I do it all, I feel it all, because it all helps to shape me.

The trick to it is making sure the things around us are feeding us the right “food”.

But more on that next time folks, because I could seriously go on for way longer than you’d like to be staring at this screen.

Until then, be kind to yourself.

Love and light,

Erin

A Few Things We All Can Learn from Our Sister Mo’Nique

 

 

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By now we’ve all heard about Mo’Nique’s plea to boycott Netflix.

Before I launch into my take on the situation, let me first say that I applaud sis for standing up

for herself. As women, we live in a world that tells us to be invisible; not to speak too loudly. I can’t even count how many times I’ve heard someone say, “yeah, she (insert name of beautiful woman here) should just stand there and be pretty.” It takes a lot of courage to stand on your convictions and be unafraid and speak your mind. So, for that I give her a standing ovation.

On the other hand …

I think Mo’Nique has missed the mark because she apparently has failed to understand a few things.

  1. It’s all about the money.

Mo’Nique is asking a people who will never see a half million dollars in their lifetime to boycott Netflix for not paying her the same amount of money. To the average, working class person, that’s life changing money so we really can’t identify with her turning down that check. Not to mention, most people are either too broke or too cheap to have their own Netflix account and are therefore piggybacking off a relative’s log in, so there really isn’t a financial investment coming from the consumer’s end.

  1. Knowing your Worth?

Mo’Nique has clearly been able to quantify her worth in her mind. What she hasn’t done, however, is much in the public eye lately to demonstrate that her vision is worth good old physical currency. Hell, I’m worth all of the money in the Federal Reserve to me, but unfortunately for the both of us, we have to put the work in every day to build enough loyalty with an audience to demand this kind of money. I’m not saying that she isn’t worth it, but I haven’t seen Mo’Nique since she was on TV complaining about “Oprah n nem” and let’s just say that wasn’t her best moment.

  1. Starting Over

While I haven’t seen Mo’Nique in a while, one can’t deny her body of work (especially that retched, swine of a whore she played in the movie Precious). But sometimes, when we haven’t been practicing our craft for a bit, we have to take a step back to take one forward. The climb is a bitch and I can attest to working so hard that you burn yourself out and have to take a break. But once that battery gets put back in your back, you can’t be upset when your audience has moved on to whatever else is bubbling. You just have to take the L, get back on the horse, and ride that bitch to the mountaintop.

  1. The Real Deal

Lastly, and I think most importantly, sometimes we don’t have to say something is riding on our spirits for it to be apparent. Call it angry, an attitude problem, or just plain bitter, sometimes it’s not our words, but the way we speak, communicate, or bend our faces that tells the real story. I’m watching this sister articulate herself and couldn’t help but feel the anger, pain, and slight sense of entitlement behind the words she was speaking. Her outer appearance was poised and confident, but I could see the fire burning behind her eyes. This is the most important lesson for me in all of this because it’s a reminder to make sure my intentions are pure and that I’m speaking, acting, and behaving from a place of honesty and truth, not just pure negative emotion.

All in all, I feel for Mo’Nique. I can understand exact how she’s feeling, but I think it’s time for her to pull up at the table and eat a slice of humble pie. It tastes like shit going down, but I think she’ll be better for it.

On another note, the sad part is that even if people were on her side, this Netflix boycott would last a smooth two days until a new binge worthy show came on (see also, Shea Moisture, the NFL, Dove, and H&M).

IJS

 

Single in the City: Three Types of Guys I’ve Encountered in My Single Life

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To say it has been a while since I posted anything would be the understatement of the year. And while that may be a more impactful statement a few months from now (being that it’s still January), I still think it says a lot. But to the subject at hand: dating is a huge bag of dicks sometimes.

That’s right; I said it: DATING SUCKS. I mean getting to know people can be fun and it’s supposed to be an exchange of information; likes, dislikes, ect. But Babeeeee, when I tell you that idealistic notion of what’s supposed to happen and what actually happens are two completely different things.

So for my newly single friends or my attached friends who just want to laugh at my misery, I proudly present to you the three types of men I’ve run into while dating in this urban jungle.

  1. The Self-Employed, Starving Artist

He’s adorable; just completely adorable, his slightly disheveled hair falling slightly over his eyes when he laughs his full bellied laugh. He’s also smart and ridiculously creative, two qualities you love to have in a man. Then to top it all off, he’s ambitious, but in a very Hamlet kind of way. We all remember struggling through that book in high school and while we may not remember all of the intimate details, we know the moral of the story was that the main character’s ambition caused him to do some horrible things. The self-employed, starving artists I’ve run across have this same issue. Now I’m all about following your dreams and doing what you love, but there has to come a time when you also have to understand that we all have to do fancy things, like eat. But seriously, I’ve run across some men who are so hell bent on following through with their dreams that they completely neglect their day to day responsibilities. Case in point: the self-proclaimed “professional protester” I dated that refused to hold down a regular job or even a place to live because he needed to “be gone at a moment’s notice to fight for the cause.”

*Insert the biggest eye roll ever known to man.

  1. The Married, but Single in his Mind Man

He’s kind, gentle, and incredibly patient. He shows up for dates with flowers and candy and always opens doors. You keep pinching yourself, like “damn sis, he just might be a strong contender.” You casually mention a restaurant you’ve been wanting to go to and he surprises you one evening by pulling up in their parking lot. You’re smiling ear to ear as you have a great conversation over a wonderful meal and cap your night with the sweetest kiss at your front door You have to finally admit to yourself that you are absolutely fucking smitten until your phone rings ten minutes later. His name pops on the screen so you put on your sweetest voice and say “Hey baby.”

 

“Baby?!?!?!  Well, this is (insert the fuckery’s name here)’s wife. And I was just calling you to speak to you woman to woman.”

 

WHHHHHHYYYYYYYYY????

 

  1. The Man Boy

This one doesn’t last very long for me because it doesn’t take long to sniff out their stench. So yeah, I don’t have a long, drawn out description to set the mood for this type of fuckery. If I have to explain to you what income taxes are, how to open a bank account, or any other basic shit that has to do with being a marginal adult, I’m not interested. By no means do I have all of my ducks in a row, but I can at least do my best impersonation of an adult on a day-to-day basis. Sheesh!

And ladies and gentlemen, that is it and all for this edition of the dating chronicles. Go ahead, laugh at my pain. I don’t mind. It’s all a part of the process. And while there has been some antics and shenanigans in these dating adventures I’ve been engaging in as of late, there have been some decent dudes I’ve run across. Just have to take it all with a grain of salt, while trying not to end up salty.

Peace and blessings until next time.

 

The Top 5 Things That Annoy Me about Working in an Office

 

In honor of … well, there isn’t actually a holiday to correlate with this blog, so let’s make something up.

 

Ahem …

 

In honor of The Annual I Just Feel Like Complaining Celebration, I humbly present to you …

 

Drum roll please …

 

The Top Things That Annoy Me about Working in an Office

 

  1. The asshole who drinks the last of the coffee and doesn’t make another pot.

 

I counted the other day and it literally takes 35 seconds to empty the filter, rinse the pot, put in some fresh grinds, and press the “on” button. The only way the coffee machine manufacturer could have made it simpler is if the contraption flew to Madagascar, picked the beans, and ground them on the flight back home. So please, please, please explain to me why you just fill your cup and walk away. I can see by the pep in your step and paranoid looks over your shoulder during your departure that you know you’re foul.

 

Or perhaps you think that just because there’s still a trace of brown liquid in the pot means you’re in the clear.

 

Either way, all it will take is half a minute to correct your awful office faux pas.

 

Just remember Dear Sir, “If it’s not enough for a cup, fill that bitch up!”

 

  1. The women’s bathroom.

 

Women are supposed to be these tidy, demure creatures, right? Um, yeah, NO. If nothing else will convince you of this fact, take a trip into the women’s room at the office. It’s a vile, disgusting place filled with a sour mixture of aromas, bodily fluids, and unflushed toilets. I’ve seen boogers on the walls, finger prints in smeared poo, and unflushed concoctions in toilet bowls that would rival anything seen in any bar on the East Coast. I often overhear my co-workers saying things like “if these people treat this bathroom like this, imagine what their bathrooms look like at home.”

 

But I think that’s the crux of the problem. If your bathroom looks like a foreign dungeon in the privacy of your own home, have at it. You’re the only one that has to clean it up. But that’s obviously not the case at the office. To leave the bathroom in such a state of disarray is not only disrespectful to oneself, it’s disrespectful to the poor soul that has to clean up that mess. If I use the bathroom 6 times during a typical work day (I drink a lot of water), there’s something questionable going on in the stalls during at least half of those trips.

 

Let’s face it. I’m a woman, I understand how things go, but there’s nothing going on that can’t be cleaned up with some tissue and wet wipes (a must have for everyone). Get it together, ladies!

 

  1. Not being able to talk about our differences.

 

While I understand WHY we should be talking about topics such as religion and politics at work, there’s a small part of me that doesn’t. Looking at the average American workplace, you’ll find all kinds of people, of all kinds of backgrounds. There was one point where to the right of me was a middle aged Jewish woman and to my left, a 22-year-old recent college graduate from Poland. In front of me was a 30-year-old Puerto Rican woman from the inner city who also happened to be a Jehovah’s Witness and behind me was a 25-year-old young man from the Caribbean. Talk about a melting pot! There were so many different things we could have learned from each other. From food to cultural norms, understand who you’re communicating with and gaining insight into how they think could prove to have far-reaching, positive impacts. Our strengths, weaknesses, points of views are all a part of who we are and it’s all important, especially when a group of people are working toward a common goal. And if nothing else, it would be nice if when describing someone (ie: another employee whose name is escaping you) you didn’t have to whisper, “You know, the tall black guy” out of fear of sounding “racist”.

 

 

 

  1. Not being able to tell the truth.

I am by no means advocating the elimination of “little white lies”, like telling your boss you had to make a phone call when you snuck out for a quick cig break. What I am advocating is just an elimination of all the BS. Why can’t you tell your boss they’re getting on your nerves if they really are? Why can’t they tell you your desk looks like the shred box threw up on it? Why are we walking around adding all these extra words to our sentences because it’s simply not polite or professional to tell your co-worker their breath smells like shit? In my opinion, if you’re interviewing for another job in another department, you should be well within the confines of acceptableness when you say, “Listen, you know my boss is really irking me lately and I want to come and work for you for a few months or years until you start to irk me too.”

 

Simply put, I really wish we could just cut the bullshit.

 

 

  1. Being considered lazy or lack ambition because you don’t want to stay after 5.

 

Companies all over the country talk at length about how they provide environments that foster good work/life balances for employees. What they don’t say, however, is that if you’re in that parking lot at 5 p.m., you’re fall in the ranks of the slackers.

 

I’ll do whatever is asked of me (as long as it’s legal) from the hours of 9 to 5, but I have to draw the line somewhere.

 

Has anyone ever thought that the employee still present at 7 p.m. doesn’t manage their time effectively? Better yet, ask someone who consistently works 12 hour days for someone else without compensation — because they’re salaried — if they’re happy. I bet you $100 more times than not the answer will be “no”.

 

I am away from my family for the majority of the day. If you see me running to my car in the parking lot, I’m not running away from work, I’m running to my family!