Worth Far More

A women must understand her worth before embarking on the ruthless world of dating. She must have a mind of royalty and know that she is worth more than what most men she will encounter are willing to give her.

One of my favorite passages in the Bible is Proverbs 31. In this passage a wife is described as noble, hardworking, fearless and worthy. The bible describes her as being worth far more (not just a little bit more) than rubies. Rubies are rare, unique and regarded as more valuable than diamonds.

As women, we must know that we are worth more than we could ever imagine. More than putting up with a man’s cheating ways, more than being treated as an option instead of a priority, more than being his little secret, more than putting up with a man’s abusive tongue or fist and more than settling as a friend with benefits.

If you are still wondering exactly where you fit on the worthy diagram, take time away from dating and build your confidence. You are rare and any man that seeks to find you must know just how precious you really are!

-Live Life, God Bless

Sincerely, A Falcons Fan

I think I speak for everyone who watched Superbowl LI when I ask what in the heck happened last night? I was dressed in red and black from head to toe, even painted my nails to match my attire, spent money on several appetizers and dinner, AND FOR WHAT? To watch you practically place the victory in Tom Brady’s hands?

By the end of the fourth quarter, I was so confused and ashamed that I left the bar early. When I realized that the Patriots were getting the ball first in overtime, my heart couldn’t bare another minute. I’m still trying to figure out how we got to overtime in the first place. I mean, at one point we were literally up by 25 points for goodness sake.

When the “We lost” text came in from my younger sister, I screamed in frustration as I drove down 75 South. I tried to look on the bright side but couldn’t find the light!

I’m super close to withdrawing my Falcons Fan Membership because my heart just can’t take those types of Ls.

When I woke up this morning and replayed my night in my head, I was hoping it was a horrible, cruel nightmare. But after laying there for a few moments I realized…no that really happened. We gave our Superbowl rings away because of stupid mistakes and let’s face it, we just couldn’t cut the mustard against Tom Brady and his seasoned team.

Until I officially withdraw my membership, Falcons you played a good game and did a much better job than a lot of people (including me) thought that you would do.

#RiseUp

fan-forever

Live Life, God Bless

My Working Weekend

So I am currently working. That statement is not so out of the norm, except it’s Saturday and I absolutely HATE working over  the weekend. Saturdays and Sundays are my days to relax, unwind, watch all of the ratchet television shows that I missed during the week, Netflix binge, harass my family and spend quality time with myself.

So you can only imagine how I felt when my boss “suggested” that I work a weekend to give a few of my colleagues a break from another department? My first emotion was irritation. “Out of ALL the people he could have asked in the other department, he comes over and asks me!”

My next emotion was probably frustration. Again, why am I helping a whole other department? I don’t even directly work with them, so I was frustrated that this idea was even “suggested” to me. 

Next I went straight into woe is me mode. Oh poor me for having to work 1 weekend to give another person a break to spend time with their family. 

In hindsight, it’s quite pathetic and embarrassing that I got so emotionally flustered. And it’s not like I kept my frustration, irritation and woe is me mentality to myself. I made sure that at least a few people knew about how unhappy I was about the decision ūüôĀ.

Now that my working weekend is here, it has not been a horrible experience. I had an opportunity to learn new skills which makes me more valuable within the office, I got to meet and work with some new and interesting people and I have the satisfaction of knowing that I helped someone else have a better weekend. 

I guess I learned a few things: don’t get frustrated about things you can’t change,  be more deliberate about looking on the bright side and whatever it is, it probably won’t be that bad in the end! 

Enjoy your weekend. I plan on enjoying what’s left of mine!

-Live Life, God Bless 

Start S.M.A.R.T.

Yesterday I had a chance to attend a professional development session about setting and achieving goals in 2017. I registered as soon saw the session being offered because I have had a hard time getting my 2017 goals off of the ground. I have yet to eat salad at least one time per day, walk into a gym or finish a project that I have been working on since last year.

The session was informative. It didn’t give me any mind blowing information that I had never heard before, but I was ultimately glad to be out of my office and in a new environment. Here is a little bit of what I “learned”:

Goals have an end date, a desired result and it is a direct object of a person’s ambition or effort.

People do not accomplish goals because of insufficient resources (money, knowledge, etc.), their goals are not specific enough, they set unattainable goals and they do not set a timeline.

It is best to use a S.M.A.R.T. approach when setting goals.

S – specific

M – Measurable

A – Achievable

R – Realistic

T – Timely

For example, I want to pay off my car. When using the SMART approach I would say:

  1. I want to pay off my car by December 31, 2017 by paying an additional $200 per month.

It seems simple enough but I realized that I was making a lot of general “goals” and then becoming irritated when I didn’t achieve them. I wrote down 14 goals from the session and for the rest of the week I plan to apply the S.M.A.R.T. approach to all of them in hopes to finally achieve them.

Wish me luck!

-Live Life, God Bless

Remember to Rest

Since January 1, 2017, I have constantly been on the move. A few of my goals for the new year were to get out of the house, experience new adventures, frequent new restaurants, travel as far as my salary will take me, save money and be thankful for each moment. Somewhere between these 25 days, I forgot to rest and now I am beyond TIRED!

Read about my first new restaurant in 2017 here: Ethiopian Delight

My lack of rest started before the new year. My plan was to relax during my two-week vacation but since my best friend was in town from York, England and my sisters and friends were also off of work, I wanted to make sure that I maximized my time away from the office. We all did so much that I can barely remember everything. I had a good time and before I knew it, it was time to go back to work. Within my first hour back at work, my supervisor gave me two new assignments (which I am grateful for) and I have been running nonstop ever since.

With the type of work that I do, we have extreme peaks and valleys. During peaks (like now) I work odd hours and long days. Even when I am not working, my mind is still at the office. I am replaying the day’s events and planning my next day at the same time. I get no more than six hours of sleep per night and my diet is horrible.

In the new year my friends want to spend more quality time (Now this I L‚ô•VE). I have had at least three friends tell me that they want to try 1 new restaurant a month and asked me to accompany them. This is great for me since I am trying to get out of the house and experience new things but goes against my goal to save money this year. With everything going on thus far and thinking about the great things to come, I am starting to feel overwhelmed.

Last night when I got home I was exhausted but my mind wouldn’t let me sleep. I kept thinking about writing, the home repairs I need completed, my job and being intentional about reading my Bible and praying. I haven’t prayed and read the Bible enough in the past few weeks and it really bothers me.

Even though I have a lot of things currently happening and a laundry list of things I hope to happen soon, I have got to start scheduling time for rest. I mean even God rested and he commands us to do the same.

And God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy, because it was the day when He rested from all His work of creation. ~ Genesis 2:3

Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. You have six days each week for your ordinary work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath day of rest dedicated to the Lord your God. ~ Exodus 20:8-10

As unnecessary as this may sound, I am going to start scheduling time for me to relax. I will schedule vacation days so that I can sleep in, I will decline events every now just to watch television instead and I will be more intentional about setting aside time for me to physically and mentally rest

I hope that you do the same.

-Live Life, God Bless

 

What to do While Single

I know people who literally sit at home and whine when they are not a relationship. They do not want to leave their house (I am not sure how they expect to meet anyone), eat, work, or smile. They would rather be in an unhealthy relationship than dare to be single. Living life as a single can be used as a time for growth and believe it or not, it can be really fun. Here are a few things that you can do to grow as a single:

Be Celibate

Becoming celibate was the best thing that I have ever done for myself (thanks little sister). I think more clearly and can make sound decisions about men without sex clouding my mind. I ultimately chose to wait until marriage for sex to honor God. During this time, my relationship with God has grown tremendously and my life finally feels like it is on the right track. Another added bonus is that as a hypochondriac, it is better for me to abstain than to wonder about my health status every other day.

Ditch Social Media

I have not had a personal social media account since July 2016. Yeah, you heard me – no Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Snapchat (I know, crazy right?). I started to notice that I felt as if my life was falling behind my “friend’s” lives. Everyone on my timeline was always on vacation, LOVED every minute of their jobs, were meeting a man, getting engaged and then married all in the same week, and had an event to attend every night of every week. Ditching social media has helped me appreciate more in my own life and contrary to popular belief, I didn’t suffer from FOMO.

Try removing all of your social media apps from your phone for a week and see how much better you feel and how much more productive you become.

Learn How To

Complete the sentence with anything that your heart desires. Since you do not have to worry about what another person is doing at every waking moment, take time to invest in yourself – learn to cook, salsa, sign language or be a better friend. Read a book a month and learn what it means to truly invest in yourself.

Eat Healthy and Exercise

We all know that this is true but finding the will to do it is a whole other blog post. Since people usually gain weight while in a relationship, it might be a good idea to get below your normal weight so that you can still fit into your favorite pair of pants when your significant other does come along. I know when I eat well and workout consistently I feel like a better person. I think more clearly, I am productive and I am just in an overall better mood.

Get to Know Yourself

Before I was single as an adult, I thought “getting to know yourself” was so cliche. “How can you not know the person that you can’t get rid of?”, I thought. Well since my last relationship me, myself and I have gotten more acquainted. I can articulate my likes and dislikes, beliefs and disbeliefs and exactly what I need/want from a significant other. I can no longer be tricked into dating a counterfeit because I know exactly what I want and need.

I hope that these tips help and encourage you to live while waiting on your future mate. The time will pass anyway. It is best to fill it with good moments, good food and good family and friends while you become a better you!

-Live Life, God Bless

Volunteering

Yesterday I had the opportunity to volunteer with an organization that feeds, clothes and assists the less fortunate in my community. It is quite sad to say, but I have not volunteered since college – over 8 years ago.

With yesterday being Martin Luther King Jr. Day, it was a perfect day to give back and do more than hit my snooze button and sleep in. Prior to arriving, I had no idea what I would be doing but I was excited about whatever the experience would bring. Here are a few takeaways from my time volunteering:

Be Grateful

When I arrived, there was a long line of people with bags waiting to receive goods from the organization. They were there before many of the volunteers just hoping to get food, water, clothing and toiletries – basically anything for themselves and their families. I remembered in that moment that I need to be grateful to God that I have ability to provide for myself. Any and everything that I have can be taken away in an instant. I too could be standing in a line hoping for basic needs. I must remember to thank God for EVERYTHING, especially those things I sometimes take for granted.

Start with my Community

The organization is 15 minutes from my home and I never knew it existed. I often give spare dollar bills to the homeless but it is usually downtown and many miles away from where I reside. After yesterday, I see that there are many people who have great needs in my own backyard, and I plan to volunteer there much more.

Volunteering Brings Joy

Being there brought me great joy! I had an opportunity to meet some great people who were interested in helping just as much as I was. It reminded me that there are still good people in the world who have a heart to help someone other than themselves.

It is My Responsibility

Volunteering reminded me of scriptures in the Bible, where God instructed his children to assist to the poor:

But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just. – Luke 14: 13-14

Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed. –Proverbs 19:17

Whoever closes his ear to the cry of the poor will himself call out and not be answered. – Proverbs 21:13

Whoever has a bountiful eye will be blessed, for he shares his bread with the poor. -Proverbs 22:9

Of course, we should not help the poor to receive blessings from God, but we should help because we love God, and this is what he requires of us. I have been slacking in this area of my life but after yesterday, I will make it a priority to volunteer more. No more just handing spare dollars out of my car window. I will give my time, which is the most expensive thing that I have to give.

Yesterday was the first day of many!

-Live Life, God Bless

10 Ways to Appear More Confident 

We all have times when we need more confidence. You know right before that job interview, ¬†when you’re about to make an important presentation or when you sing karaoke for the first time? Worry no more! Here are 10 ways to make you seem confident, even if you aren’t:

1. Smile

A great smile won’t go unnoticed. Giving everyone your big genuine smile, commands their attention and raises your confidence stock immediately. Even if you don’t like your smile, make more of an effort to show it off. You and everyone around you will be glad that you did!

smile

2. Fix Your Posture

This is something that I work on daily.  A sloppy posture can make you seem unaware and lazy. Straighten your back and you will automatically look more productive and assertive.

sit

3. Speak Clearly

It is essential to speak loud enough for your audience to hear you and pronounce every syllable clearly. I promise, just doing these two things will make you sound more “important” and like you really know what you’re talking about, even if you don’t.

speak

4. Gain Knowledge – Travel and Read

Learning has never been so easy. With flights out of the country as low as $300 and books being available at every corner,  it is almost effortless to learn a new language or experience a different culture. With a little planning and saving you can gain more knowledge through life experiences.

book

5. Become More Social – Join Groups

Learning how to communicate with others is necessary for business and personal relationships. Practicing this skill will prepare you to start a conversation with anyone. If you’re an introvert (like me) you will have to practice this skill a little bit more than others.

group

6. Accept a Compliment

The next time someone tells you how nice you look just smile, say thank you, compliment them if you have a genuine compliment and move on.  No one really wants to hear about how you felt ugly this morning or how your hair is actually a mess. Just accept it as if you already knew, show gratitude and keep walking.

beautiful

7. Set and Achieve Goals

Make and achieve measurable goals. With all of these #goals floating around it is easy to lose sight of real life goals. Having a “power couple” relationship is a facade, not a goal. Strive to achieve goals like graduate from college, lose 15 pounds or earn a promotion. It is best if you don’t broadcast your goals to the world and just check them off one by one. Let your progress speak for itself.

checklist

8. Exercise

When I workout consistently I have a burst of energy, my skin glows, I sleep better,  I fit into older pairs of pants and I just live a life better! When I exercise, my body craves foods that are good for me. Eating good for you foods also leads to a more confident lifestyle.

exercise

9. Love Your Self

After loving God, loving yourself should be your next priority. ¬†You need to learn to love every part of you. When I was younger, I hated how dark my skin was. It wasn’t until I became a teenager that I realized that I was ‘stuck’ with my skin for the rest of my life and I needed to at least tolerate it. ¬†Today, my skin is one of my favorite things about myself. Taking time to love and accept yourself will give you confidence in every part of your life.

love

10. Dress and Groom Well

Buy and wear jeans that fit. If you’re short, like me, make sure that your pants are hemmed and don’t drag the floor. ¬†Be sure to keep deodorant at home, ¬†in the car and at your desk (don’t act like you never forgot to put it on before leaving your house) and always leave the house confident in how you are presenting yourself to world (except when you’re running in Walmart. No one cares how you look there!).

suit

*Bonus

Seek God in all that you do! Seeking Him is the most important advice out of everything mentioned above. God will give you all the confidence that you need to make it through any situation.

“Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the LORD your God is the one who goes with you He will not fail you or forsake you.”- Deuteronomy 31:6

Continuously building your confidence is essential when trying to live your best life. If you work on it daily, before you know it, you won’t have to appear confident because you will be confident.

-Live Life, God Bless

Enough Already

gods-best

You don’t need to learn new “tricks” to become worthy of a person’s love. If they can’t see how fabulous you are, how bright you shine, how they should feel lucky that they are in your presence then leave them behind…for good. You are already more than enough.

You don’t have to lose or gain weight, wear more makeup, learn to cook a fancy meal, dress more like “a lady”, run a mile without stopping, stay in the salon for hours, buy all of the latest sneakers, have a better job, eat less than 1,000 calories per day, read 1 book per month or anything else to “enhance” yourself.

Take time to admire and embrace your whole self, not just the parts that earn you your most frequent compliments. God made no mistakes when he created you. You are his best work!

-Live Life, God Bless

Failure Alert – 2016

So it is already January 3rd, 2017 and I still cannot believe it. When I was younger, I would often hear my parents, their friends and our family talk about how fast life was moving. As a snotty nose kid who couldn’t wait to become an adult, (I thought 18 years old was an adult. Ha!) I thought they were all crazy. Every birthday seemed years away and the school year never ended. Now as an adult, I was issued my “life is going by too fast” lenses and I don’t like them much!

In 2016 I had 1 big goal – that’s it. Just one. Of course there were other things that I wanted to achieve but nothing quite mattered liked losing 50 pounds. I actually need to 100 but giving myself a goal of 50 pounds seemed more attainable. On December 31, 2016 I was sad to see that I only lost 10.

10 pounds?!?

I must admit that it is hard for me to not feel like a complete failure in life. I lost 20 pounds beginning in October (I guess I work better under pressure) but I quickly gained some back during the holidays. It was hard for me to resist the cakes, the pies, irresistible dressing, the ham, the roast, and of course the mac and cheese. I am amazed that I didn’t gain all 20 back.

For the new year, I have decided to restart my 50 pound weight loss goal. I think it will be easier for me if I break the large goal into 5 mini goals of 10 pounds each. For some reason my mind is able to handle that better. Once the first 50 pounds is gone and I cry my eyes out in disbelief, I will begin tackling the 2nd 50 pound goal. Food addiction, emotional eating, the ‘just one more spoonful spirit’ and the lack of a continuous exercise routine have plagued me for as long as I can remember. It didn’t spiral completely out of control until I stopped dancing in high school, gained my Freshman 30 and then managed to pack on 20 more pounds on top of that.

2017 is my year to prove to myself that I can lose 50+ pounds and work hard to keep it off… for life!

I know losing the weight will give me a more pleasurable life and will send my happy meter even more through the roof. This is something that must be done some year, and there is no better time like the present.Please pray for me as I continue my journey.

-Live Life, God Bless