“What about your friends
Will they stand their ground
Will they let you down again
What about your friends are they gonna be low down
Will they ever be around or will they turn their backs on you.”
~ TLC, “What About Your Friends, from the album Ohhhh On the TLC Tip!
Now I have to admit, the fact that this song came out in 1992 makes me feel some kinda way… I mean there are kids running around who have never heard this song!
But anyway, thats not the point of today’s post. Let’s talk about friends.
There are alot of songs that talk about no-good friends: “Friends” by Whodini is the first one that comes to mind… fair-weather friends, friends who steal your man, etc etc. But we’re not gonna talk about them either today.
Fridays are like mini national holidays. I love Fridays and I bet you do too. We always say “thank God its Friday”, so I want to know what you’re thankful for on this Friday.
I’m thankful for:
- new insights
- another chance to get it right
- wonderful family
- great friends
- the hope of a restful yet fun weekend
- “me” time
- and getting some housework done
How about you, what makes you thankful today?
Yesterday, I was heading to happy hour with a friend, when an Altima zoomed past me in the rain. The fact that the driver was speading didn’t give me pause; I was perplexed because it had TVs in it.
An Altima…. with TVs….
The first thing that came to mind was how people prioritize wrong (for real though – TVs in an Altima??). Now you may be saying that TVs are a bad choice in the first place (or you may have just watched the TVs in your car while driving home from work), but putting them in a car like that seems backwards to me. That’s probably a result of the driver putting his priorities in the wrong order.
In a more commonplace example, we sometimes prioritize for our goals incorrectly too. I might say I want to meet a new guy, or save money – but continue to attend free events that the type of man I’m looking for doesn’t attend, or continue to spend money on clothes that aren’t necessities. There are lots of different ways that we all prioritize incorrectly, so lets look at some ways where we can prioritize correctly.
Decide what’s most important
This first step is a subjective one. What I hold as important will not be the same as what you deem to be most important. In my Altima example, clearly the owner and I have different defintions of what’s important. And thats totally ok. Your goals are the end points of what you desire, and to me, life is about enjoying the pursuit of those desires. So I won’t find happiness in pursuing your goals, and you won’t find fulfillment in mine. As long as you pursue goals that are important to you, and that don’t cause detriment to you or someone else, then you should feel confident in your choices. Don’t allow anyone else’s judgment to affect the level of importance you assign to a goal. Just as we shouldn’t try to influence the level of importance that others assign to their goals (myself included. So my apologies, Altima TV guy – I needed a compelling example for this post).
Keep an eye on the big picture
Once you have ranked your goals by level of importance, you should determine how these goals fit together or conflict with each other, and how the time period you’ve assigned for their attainment will work together. For instance, if you’re 25 and your goals are to get an MBA and get married before you turn 30, you’ll realize that you have to make certain sacrifices to stay on top of your coursework while making time for a social life that will include meeting new men. This will also prevent you from blowing your budget on winter boots when you’re saving for a new car (with TVs in it…lol) or from making too many Youtube videos when you should be working out.
Be honest about your limitations
You may be the type of person that thrives on being busy, or you may be the type that gets overwhelmed by multi-tasking. You need to be honest with yourself about which one you are. I used to thrive on being busy – the more I had to do, the more time I found in which to reach my goals. But I’m finding that the older I get, I don’t have the stamina to pursue 5 goals at a time or the desire to go out more than twice a week. So knowing these things, I have to take account of my idiosyncracies when prioritizing my goals and setting timelines for their completion.
Hopefully, by following this strategy, you’ll reach the goals you really want, in a manner that allows the greatest enjoyment possible. As I keep saying, the journey is more important than the destination, so arrive in a way that works for you.
This post is a continuation from yesterday’s post. To read Part I, click here.
6. Set your own value.
Sometimes we struggle as black women because we’ve been socialized to believe that our value is not as high as women in other racial groups. We’ve also been taught that we have to work harder than other races to be deemed just as good. At what point does a black woman stop believing the hype, and start believing that she’s beautiful, wonderful, intelligent and competent just as she is? For me, I’d say it was around the age of 28. I’d stopped comparing myself to others and started really appreciating everything about myself and finding contentment in my own company. When you begin to really know yourself, then you know that you are worth more than your weight in gold. But if you wait for others to recognize that before you do, then you’ll be waiting a really long time. We teach others how to treat us and how much value we have by how we treat and value ourselves, and by what we will and won’t accept. So set your own value.
7. Feel the fear and do it anyway.
Whenever I had to step out of my comfort zone, I experienced the fear of uncertainty. My early coping mechanism was to ask others about their experiences, but as I’ve said above, that doesn’t always work. My old roommate mentioned this phrase to me and I’ve found that its very helpful. Instead of beating myself up for fealing fear, I know that others feel that same fear yet move ahead with the goal that they’re pursuing. Sometimes this can be a comfort to me because no one wants to feel like a coward. Knowing that other people have the same anxiety and discomfort at wearing new mantles of responsibility certain helps to ease the process until I become comfortable. And living by this principle also removes the option of being ruled by fear. Fear doesn’t stop others and I won’t let it stop me, either. Do you feel the same?
8. You are responsible for your own happiness.
Are you waiting to get a new job in order to feel happy, if your current one makes you miserable? Are you looking for a mate, so that you can feel happy and complete? What about losing weight, is that your catalyst for happiness? I’m sure you’ve heard it before and you already know its true that only you can make yourself happy. What happens if you achieve these things, and yet you’re still unhappy? Do you find another job, another mate, or lose more weight? And those of us who study and practice the law of attraction know that you won’t be able to manifest the job, mate or release the weight you want unless you’re happy first. It takes alot of practice and changing your self-talk, but being happy right where you are is achievable. I think the biggest part of that is living in the now. And let me tell you, not allowing external people and circumstances dictate how I feel, is one of the amazing aspects of getting older. I guess you can call it ‘not sweating the small stuff’, but I also like to think of it as living an unconditional life. My happiness is not based on what condition my reality is in.
9. When people show you who they are, believe them.
Has someone every done something to you, that you didn’t like? What happened the second time that they did it to you? Did you complain that they keep doing something stupid? Or did you move away from this person, so that they don’t continue to offend you? Its sometimes hard to accept people just as they are. We want to admire the qualities they have that we like, and want them to stop indulging in their qualities that we don’t like. But if you know that the finest guy in your rotation is a liar, that you have a girlfriend that’s in ‘secret’ competition with you, or that one of your coworkers indulges in office politics, then you really can’t get mad or upset that these people do these things to you. Because you were already on notice. So make sure to take the blinders off and govern yourself accordingly. I had to learn to stop holding out hope for some folks, wanting them to change and wasting time expecting certain things that are outside of who they really are. By the same token, recognize when someone is good friend or boyfriend material and believe who they are, too.
10. Know when to swallow your pride and ask for help.
This is a very recent lesson for me. I was brought up with the principle of “mother may have, father may have, but God bless the child that’s got his own”. I think I might take this principle to heart more than others…. swallowing my pride is one of the hardest things for me to do, but I’m finding it easier. I do not want to be seen as weak, incapable, lazy, etc. But at the same time, I’m appreciating that your friends and family don’t mind helping you if you’re able and generally self-sufficient. I realized too that not one of us lives in a vaccuum and people need others to survive. But this isn’t something to be abused, and I’m thankful for the times when I reach out for help and others do so if possible.
Did you look forward to turning 30, why or why not? What are some of the things you’ve learned along the way to your 30s?
Today is my 30th birthday! Happy Birthday to me! *doing the cabbage patch*
I’ve been uber-excited about this day for the last year. I know that generally most women are bummed when they turn 30, but not me. I made up my mind that I would usher in this day with great fanfare, and I did. My friends and I had a blast this weekend and this is definitely my best birthday ever! Thank you to those who came out to celebrate with me, who sent birthday wishes and words of support.
Another reason that I’m so excited is because my 20s sucked! (lol) I did some great things – fell in love, moved to DC, went to grad school, studied/traveled abroad, and started my own business… but my 20s were filled with growing pains, having to develop a thick skin, dealing with uncertainty, failure, and disappointment. I can confidently say that these experiences have made me a much stronger woman and today I stand tall as I bask in my grown-womanhood… but I’m SO glad that decade of my life is over!
I’m ready to dive into new experiences, learn to love myself even more, do it all in style and have fun along the way! Here are the biggest lessons I’ve learned during the last decade:
1. You are the authority on you.
No one can know you as well as you know yourself. Take the time to fully learn what your likes, dislikes, passions, skills and weaknesses are. You’ll get so much more out of life if you learn to live it to the fullest every day, and one way to get more out of each day is doing at least 1 thing daily that makes you happy. A good example of this lesson is that I have a big, goofy sense of humor. I used to be embarassed by my humor until I realized that the more I laughed, the happier I was. So if people don’t like when I joke around, they’ll smile and move away, but I won’t stop being happy Prosechild (I do know when its inappropriate however). This lesson was one of the first ones I learned and one that I feel is integral to the other lessons.
Mothers can be the most enthusiastic cheerleaders in the world for their children. They were there to encourage our first steps, teach us our first words, and we trust that they’ll generally have our backs when we need them. We often look up to our mothers for examples of strength, perseverance and success.
Sometimes, though, a mother’s desires for her daughter aren’t the same desires that a daughter has for herself. Even more complicated is the situation where both women want the same thing but there’s conflict over the methods that the daughter employs to bring her goal to fruition. As ambitious adults we’ve all been there.
In particular my mother and I struggled with my singleness in my 20s and the fact that she wanted grandchildren sooner rather than later. We definitely went through alot during that time and our relationship is stronger than it was before. I won’t say that the arguments added to the strength of our relationship – I think our ability to move beyond them and the perspectives we’ve gained about each other contributed to how we relate today.
Here are four lessons I’ve learned and the ways in which I’ve adapted so that my relationship with Mom can be more harmonious and conducive to my goals.
When sharing information, be selective.
Notice that I didn’t say lie. I don’t feel its necessary to be dishonest with Mom in order to keep the peace. Sometimes we tell too much because our moms are one of our best friends. Then later on Mom will bring up something we’ve said, done or didn’t do and that will cause an argument. I suggest that before you share intimate details of your life, that you consider how your mother will react to this information and what she feels your priorities should be. That way, when telling her that your date with the hot surgeon didn’t work out, she won’t blame you for something that was beyond your control. In that instance, she doesn’t need to know why he isn’t worthy of you, only that he isn’t. Being resilient against your mother’s questions may take some time and practice to master. Once she sees that there are certain things she’s not going to know about you, some of the tension you feel when having particular conversations will dissipate.
We may be used to dishing everything to our mothers, but sometimes its better for our sanity and to keep the peace if they don’t know everything. And think about this: do you know everything about your mom??? (Think about that for a second). Trust and believe that Mama has mastered the art of selectively sharing the things with you that she feels you need to know. “Need to know basis” might be a helpful tactic for you to employ.
Firmly communicate your definite goals and aspirations
Conflict can also arise when we don’t tell our moms what it is that we’re working toward and how this goal fits into our lives. A great example would be my pursuit of a graduate degree. At 25, my mother’s priority was her first grandchild while mine was career advancement. She saw additional years devoted to education as delaying her goal, while I saw them as an investment for my future and the betterment of the lives of my future children. After having a few arguments with her about me working too hard, spending too much of my life in school and neglecting my social life, I sat down with her and explained how the degree would improve my career, enhance my marriage prospects, and affect the lives of my children. Before I could have this discussion I had to make sure I had mapped this all out in my mind. When I made things clear for her then she changed her tune. She still encouraged me to go out when my schedule permitted, of course.
Now this might not work all the time. But I’m willing to bet that your mother will appreciate the fact that you’ve given this goal major thought and you are clear on what it is that you want. Moms are good about supporting us when they don’t agree with what we’re pursuing.
And if that doesn’t work, then go back to #1 and be selective. Don’t bring up the topic often and don’t allow your mom to badger you about it. If she doesn’t agree she’s not going to have much positive to say to you about it. You don’t need any negativity toward your goal, even if your mother has good intentions or believes she has your best interest at heart on this one. We’re adults and sometimes we have to train our mothers to treat us like adults… unless we want them to treat us differently.
Don’t antagonize your mother’s beliefs or methods
One thing that vastly separates us from women in our mothers’ generation is the information age. Your mom might be old-school; she might not see the benefits of iPhones, Blackberrys, Facebook or Match.com. In her guerrilla tactics to see you married, she might tell all her church friends about you and set you up with men who just don’t do it for you. She might not see anything wrong with your current weight and frustrate your efforts to shed pounds by bringing her mac & cheese or sweet potato pie to your house. What does a woman do in these situations?
Explain what it is you want, and why.
Now if you Mama doesn’t respect that enough to cease and desist her efforts, then you’ll have to put your foot down. But don’t expect her to see your point of view. She’s a different creature than you are and her beliefs run deep, just as yours do. Make sure you selectively mention the men you’ve met from online dating sites, limit your smart phone time in her presence and have dedicated people to donate her baked goods to. There’s no reason why your difference of opinion should stall your goals. And recognize, too, that sometimes our moms just need to do things for us. Even though we’re grown they still feel the need to take care of us, and your mom’s misplaced but well-intentioned efforts may be her way of feeling closer to you and like you still need her. So don’t fuss at her about it, try to get her to see ‘reason’ or anything like that. Just accept her and learn how to integrate her actions and beliefs into your life, so that you continue to move forward when you’re in opposition.
Ask for help and advice when necessary
The flip side of moms needing to feel needed, is our need for help. One characteristic that my mother and I share is a strong sense of pride. I had to swallow mine a few times and ask for help with things I felt I should be able to handle as an adult. My mom quickly let me know that I was being silly and that I should feel no hesitation in coming to her. It may be hard to reconcile the fact that you’re grown and on your own with the fact that sometimes you need assistance. Be thankful when your mom can help you out and know that she gives out of her love for you.
This method may be a no-brainer for you, or you may struggle with this like I used to. My mom used to tell me that I wasn’t too old to get a whooping when I did something wrong. By the same token, if I can still receive discipline (lol) I can still receive comfort, advice, help and love from my mom and so can you. If you have a strong pride also, think of it like this: your mom is one of the few people who you can let your guard down with. You’d help her if you could and she feels the same way. She doesn’t mind doing things for you and it makes her happy that her child still needs her. Now don’t wear out your welcome so to speak, but realize that it may be to your detriment to refuse to ask for help when its readily available to you.
Writing this post has made me appreciate my mom more, and I hope you have the same reaction. Go call your mom and tell her you love her, just because.
After writing yesterday’s post on creating a vision board, I started thinking about the vision board that I’m currently making. I’ve outlined what my goals are and I’ve begun to collect the pictures to accompany them.
One thing I notice about other people’s vision boards, is the prevalence of material things. Most people include pictures of exclusive homes, luxury cars, designer clothes, exotic vacations and sometimes jewelry. And I don’t feel that there’s anything wrong with that. I just wonder, sometimes, why people choose these things when you can literally attract anything you can possibly desire to you?
I am definitely a proponent of dreaming as big as you can. Dreams serve as the gasoline that keep our motors running on a daily basis. Life is short and I feel that there is nothing more important than being happy. Alot of people equate the feeling of happiness to having certain things. And again, thats ok too. I just question if deep down, people really want those things, or if its an automatic answer thats been socially ingrained into us. I wonder if people really dig deep enough to determine what makes them happy, every moment of every day?
Usually the thing that we really want is not the object itself. For example, I have a picture of a 2009 Audi 8 saved in my files, that I will print out and add to my new vision board. While I love this car – I think it is a beautiful machine, and can’t wait to drive mine – what I really want are the feelings of comfort, luxury and exclusivity that I feel when I visualize myself driving this car. I’m sure that paying an exhorbitant amount for car insurance isn’t going to make me happy, but attaining something that I’ve dreamed about will.
I think alot of people have problems manifesting their desires while following the law of attraction because of a few reasons: they don’t really believe they will receive the desire (resistance); they don’t want it bad enough (burning desire); or they are not focusing on the true desire. Its easy to cut pictures out of magazines, write affirmation statements and read books, but its harder to change your thoughts to align with your desires and to truly believe that well-being is always flowing to you.
Making Your Dreams Come True
I think our culture promotes material things as markers of success. These can be markers of financial success but there are other arenas where one can be successful. In my opinion, to truly be successful, you must strike a balance between the different areas of your life. We’ve all heard stories of business giants who were married 5 times, or spiritual leaders who’ve had financial problems. Its hard to be happy with your perfect mate if you’re worried about keeping the lights on, or be dedicated to your career when you have no one to go home to at the end of a long day.
One thing that may help you along your journey is evaluating how close your dreams are to who you really are. Your best friend may want a white, two-story house equipped with picket fence, husband, 2.5 kids and a dog. Whereas you may be driven to reach CEO status of a major corporation. She won’t be happy reaching your dream, just as you’ll be miserable in the attainment of hers. Thats why I question the one-size-fits-all markers of financial success that alot of people cling to. Whats different about me, though, is that I don’t believe that money is the root of all evil and I don’t have a negative viewpoint on material possessions as goals. I just want you to really understand what you’re asking for, how it will fit into your life, and if that possession will truly make you happy.
There’s nothing worse than achieving a goal, only to realize that it didn’t make you happy.
On the flip side of that, I believe that one of the reasons that we live is to experience the journey of life. So you should enjoy the manifestation of that mansion on your vision board, just as much as you enjoy turning your new keys in the lock for the first time. If its solely about the thing, then what happens when you get it? You should ask yourself these questions as well.
Lastly, another pitfall of material possessions as markers of success is the emptiness that can come after their attainment. Once you have the house, the car, the vacation, what next? What will you dream about after that? If you choose goals that are true to you, your dreams will grow and change along with you. So for me, once I manifest my Audi, my luxury home and my wonderful husband, my next dreams will be based on our shared goals and other personal goals, such as writing my first book, expansions of my online business, etc.
You can be, do or have anything and everything you want. What are the goals, dreams and aspirations that you’re working toward?
Don’t you just love vision boards? I’ve only made 3 and feel that they’re a great way for a visual person to keep their ‘eyes on the prize’. But even if you’re not a visual person, you’ll derive alot of benefit from making one. Vision boards are fun to make and because they’re so personalized they can net powerful results for you.
What is a vision board?
(btw, this is not my vision board lol)
So first of all, what is a vision board? A vision board is board, as big as a wall or as small as a sheet of paper, that you adorn with pictures and words that make you feel good. Remember when you were a teenager, and you cut pictures out of magazines, collected photos of you and your friends, bought posters of your favorite stars and plastered them all over your walls? Well, this is the same concept. Those pictures made you happy and made you feel good, and this is no different than that. Those of us who utilize the law of attraction use vision boards to focus on the goals, dreams and desires we intend to manifest in our lives. That visual reinforcement helps a person to build a burning desire for that goal and stay focused on what it is they want, instead of being focused on what their current state.
The key to success with a vision board is actually using it! Display your vision board in a prominent place, that you’re sure to see it everyday. You should also visualize what it will be like, once you attain the things you are gazing at on your board. And really get into it – you should feel like you are in possession of that thing. One of my vision boards is actually in a notebook because I felt hesitant to display the board when I had a roommate. It was also a way to gaze at my vision during the day – when at work, on the train, or before a movie.
If you feel hesitant at first, thats ok. The more you look at your vision board and visualize your goals, the more comfortable you’ll be with the process. And if you feel like looking at the pictures and reading the words are a waste of time, then you’re missing the point. The whole point of a vision board is for you to see your goals, create that burning desire to attain them, and promote the belief that the things you desire will manifest in your life. If you feel like this is a fantasy, that you won’t reach your dreams, well then you should work on your limiting beliefs first before you create one.
How to create your vision board
Shanel Cooper-Sykes posted an excellent note on Facebook about creating a vision board. So instead of recreating the wheel, I’m posting her instructions here. These are the most creative, personal steps I’ve seen on making a vision board. And if you make one, please reply here and let me know!
Over the past few weeks I’ve had people all over the world creating their VISION BOARDS! First off… If you made one, I’M PROUD OF YOU. If you’re making or planning on making one, I’M PROUD OF YOU! KEEP GOING!
I wanted to elaborate a little to help you FINE TUNE your board. I don’t want people just making vision boards with a bunch of random pictures and quotes on them that have no meaning… then you look up a year later and NOTHING has transpired from your board. So here are STEP BY STEP instructions to create a POWER AND IMPACTFUL vision board to really help you CREATE THE LIFE OF YOUR DREAMS!
Tools you need: Large colored construction paper or board. Glue stick. Magazines- (Forbes, essence, “O” Mag, Health, Money and Black Enterprise ect.) Pen and Paper.
Before you get started… Sit down and ask yourself “What do I want?” Make 2 columns on a piece of paper and label it “Right Now” and “Long Term.” Under “right now”, think about the MATERIAL things you desire to have in your life TODAY… Example:
- I want to earn $4,000 in monthly income.
- I want to release 10 pounds and flatten my tummy.
- I want to buy a pair of Christian Louboutin shoes that cost $800.
- I want to take an acting class.
- I want to buy a new car before winter (A new Camery)
- I want to begin to date new people and increase my social life.
- I want to take a trip to Jamaica this fall. ETC.
Now- you must have a DEADLINE to acquire these things! So next to each one write the date you intend to make those things happen!
Long term, think about the BIG PICTURE of your life:
- I want to acquire $1,000,000 over the next 5 years.
- I want to live in a 6 bedroom house on the beach in Miami.
- I want to marry the man of my dreams (describe IN DETAIL the man of your dreams)
- I want a Bentley and a Range Rover.
- I want to open my own hair salon.
- I want to fund a Ministry and open a church.
- I want to loose 100 pounds and create a lean, healthy vibrant body.
- I want to be an Oscar Award Winning actress.
- I want to go to the NBA.
- I want to be a Doctor.
- I want to take a trip to Egypt.
- I want to be a guest on the Oprah Winfrey show. (NOW Lots of people put pictures of Oprah on their boards… be specific about what it is about her… You want to BE LIKE her, BE A GUEST, and AUDIENCE MEMBER… HAVE $ like her, MEET her BE SPECIFIC!!!)
- I want to be financially free.
- I want to have an extravagant wedding. ETC.
You need to have a deadline for your long term things as well… so next to each write: 1 YEAR, 10 YEARS, 6 MONTHS ETC.
Now: Flip through the magazines and clip out pictures and phrases that represent those things that you listed on paper. So a picture of a body you want to create, a big house, picture of a Camery or a Bentley, picture of a doctor, a wedding ring, picture of the beach, picture of money ECT..
Next: Find some pictures of yourself and write or type out some encouraging phrases I.E. I AM AMAZING. I HAVE THE POWER TO CREATE THE LIFE OF MY DREAMS. I DESERVE TO HAVE ALL OF MY DESIRES. GOD FIRST, THEN PEOPLE, THEN MONEY. I WILL DO THE THINGS THAT OTHERS WON’T, TO HAVE THE THINGS THAT OTHERS DON’T. I AM SEXY. MONEY FLOWS TO ME IN ABUNDANCE. HAPPINESS IS MY BIRTHRIGHT. ECT. AND make sure you put…
Now: In the middle of your board place the picture of you and all of the encouraging quotes around it. (This should separate your board into 2 sections.) On the left… post up all of your “RIGHT NOW” visions in order of importance… So most important start at the top. On the right hand side of your board, post up all of your “LONG TERM” visions in order of importance. Then randomly place pictures of yourself in between the magazine pictures.
SO- when you look at your board there is order and structure so you can actually SEE WHAT YOUR ARE WORKING TOWARDS EVERY DAY! As you go along…check off the things that you have accomplished! Then replace it with something new that you want.
FINALLY: After posting your board… yes you will have a great since of accomplishments and you will feel good about your dreams… but MOTIVATION IS LIKE BATHING… IT’S RECOMENDED DAILY! So you need to create your PERSONAL MISSION STATEMENT!
A personal mission statement is for you to remind yourself what you are working towards EVERYDAY! It should be memorized and repeated twice daily. SO- Stand in front of your vision board every morning and every night and review your dreams. Then read out loud your personal mission statement.
Examples of a powerful mission statement: “I am in the process of creating the life of my dreams. I am committed to excellence and greatness and will accept nothing less than that. My goal is to become a doctor and empower people of this generation to be healthy and physically well. I am working everyday to achieve my goal and live within my purpose. I will only engage in activities that add value to my life and are in alignment with my goals. I am on a mission to be one of this generations greatest doctors! I am POWERFUL”
OR you can keep it simple and general…
“I am in the process of making my life better than it has been for the past 20 years. I am going to eat better, get more rest, drink more water and smile more. I will save more money and learn how to be financially savvy so I can one day be financially free. I will tell my family and loved ones how much I appreciate them today. I am an amazing woman and God has a purpose for my life. Today I will take a step towards that purpose. I will not live in fear, as I have extreme faith and I know that everything that has happened in my life thus far is shaping the amazing life that I am preparing myself to live. I am POWERFUL”
OR… I will earn $4,000 in monthly income. I will give use my God given gifts talents and abilities to acquire that amount of money. I will use that money to get my financial issues out of the way as I am building my company and I will one day earn more than $15,000 per month from my business this time next year. I will work out 3 days a week to increase my energy and I will take a class to sharpen my skills as I am building my life. By December 2013, I will have acquired $500,000, purchased my dream home, marry the love of my life and take a vacation every 2 months because I deserve it. I am POWERFUL!
MEMORIZE YOUR PERSONAL MISSION STATEMENT! So as you go through your day- if something is distracting you- or you get frustrated or overwhelmed… repeat it to yourself OUTLOUD then re-align your thoughts and actions with your mission!
I CHALLENGE YOU TO DO THIS FOR 30 DAYS STRAIGHT! I guarantee you see results in your life IMMEDIATELY! As you are taking this challenge… INCREASE YOUR PRAYER… and decrease distractions i.e. TV, radio, partying, gossiping, unnecessary sleeping, doing nothing on the internet. CONGRATULATIONS TO YOU FOR STEPPING INTO THE REALM OF BEING EXTRAORDINARY!
There is more about VISION AND PURPOSE in my book “STILETTOS IN THE KITCHEN” available at www.stilettosinthekitchen.com
Part 5: Historical Firsts This list is a celebration of the black women who have blazed trails and paved the way for us to continue on to further success. My hat goes off to these ladies who boldly went where other black women had not gone before.
|Madame C.J. Walker||Althea Gibson|
|Bessie Coleman||Florence Griffith-Joyner|
- Madame C.J. Walker – businesswoman, hair care entrepreneur, tycoon and philanthropist. She was the first woman to become a self-made millionare. Her empire began with her first business, the Madam C.J. Walker Manufacturing Company, that produced and sold a line of beauty and hair care products for black women.
- Cathay Williams – the first black woman to enlist in the US Army. She served as a Buffalo soldier after the Civil War under the pseudonym William Cathay.
- Dr. Mae Jemison – physician and astronaut. Jemison became the first black woman in space when she went into orbit aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour on September 12, 1992.
- Bessie Coleman – pilot. Coleman became the first black woman to earn a pilot’s license and first American of any race or gender to earn an international pilot license. She could not gain admission to American flight schools because she was black and a woman. No black U.S. aviator would train her either. So Coleman studied for and received her licenses in France in 1921. In order to support herself as a professional pilot, she became an exhibition flyer, where she was dubbed “Queen Bess”. In 1989, First Flight Society inducted Coleman into their shrine that honors those individuals and groups that have achieved significant “firsts” in aviation’s development.
- Dr. Sadie T.M. Alexander – became one of the first black women to earn a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1921. During that same year, Georgiana Simpson at the University of Chicago and Eva Dykes at Radcliffe also earned Ph.Ds. Alexander was also the first black woman to earn a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and the first black woman to be admitted to the Pennsylvania bar in 1927.
- Althea Gibson – tennis champion. Gibson achieved many black woman firsts: Grand Slam champion in 1959; played in American Lawn Tennis Association championship; to play and win at Wimbledon; to play in the Ladies Professional Golf Association. Gibson was ranked in the world top ten from 1956 through 1958, reaching a career high of World No. 1 in those rankings in 1957 and 1958. In 1971 Gibson was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.
- Florence Griffith-Joyner – track athlete. In 1988 she became the first American woman to win four medals in one Olympics. She holds the world records in the 100 and 200 meter races.
- Rebecca Lee Crumpler – physician. She was the first black woman to become a physician, when she graduated from the New England Female Medical College (now part of Boston University) in 1864.
- Sheila Johnson – team president, managing partner, and governor of the WNBA’s Washington Mystics. She is the first black woman to be an owner or partner in three professional sports franchises: the Washington Capitals (NHL), the Washington Wizards (NBA), and the Washington Mystics (WNBA). She was married to Robert Johnson for 33 years. Together they founded BET which they later sold to Viacom. After her divorce, her net worth was $670 million. Johnson sits on the boards of VH1’s Save the Music Foundation, Americans for the Arts, the Curry School of Education Foundation at the University of Virginia, and the University of Illinois Foundation.
- Sarah Jane Woodson Early – educator. Early was the 1st black woman to become a college instructor. She graduated from Oberlin College in 1856, as one of the first African-American women college graduates. In 1858 she joined the faculty of Wilberforce University.
Who are your she-roes? I couldn’t fit everyone onto this list. Who are the notable black woman who should be mentioned?
Part 4: Civil Rights Leaders The pioneers featured for today are not just limited to the Civil Rights Era of the 1950s. During and after slavery, black women were visible advocates for our equal rights. Hopefully this list will inspire you to take part in the ongoing fight that exists today in your local communities.
|Mary Church Terrell||Constance Baker Motley|
|The Little Rock Nine with their advisor, Daisy Bates|
- Sojourner Truth – abolitionist, women’s rights proponent, minister, lecturer. Her most famous speech, Ain’t I a Woman?, was delivered in 1851 at the Ohio Women’s Rights Convention in Akron, Ohio.
- Harriet Tubman – abolitionist, humanitarian, and Union spy during the Civil War. After escaping to freedom, Tubman made 13 rescue missions and helped 70 other slaves to escape along the Underground Railroad.
- Mary McLeod Bethune – educator and civil rights leader. Bethune started the Literary and Industrial Training School for Negro Girls in Daytona Beach, Florida in 1904. This school merged with the Cookman Institute for Men, and is now known as Bethune-Cookman University. Next, Bethune founded the National Council of Negro Women in 1935. She also served as an advisor to President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
- Mary Church Terrell – one of the first black women to earn a college degree. She graduated from Oberlin College in 1884, and went on to earn a Master’s degree from Oberlin in 1888. Terrell worked closely with Frederick Douglass on civil rights campaigns, and was also an active member of the National American Woman Suffrage Association. In 1896, Terrell became the founder and first president of the National Association of Colored Women. And in 1909 she was a founding member of the NAACP.
- Constance Baker Motley – civil rights activist, lawyer, judge, and state senator for . During her legal career she worked as the lead trial attorney for the NAACP’s Legal Defense Fund. Motley wrote the original complaint for the Brown v. Board of Education case, and was the first black woman to argue a case before the Supreme Court. She was a key legal strategist in the civil rights movement, helping to desegregate Southern schools, buses, and lunch counters. She was the first black woman elected to New York State Senate in 1964. In 1966 Motley became the first black woman to serve as a federal judge.
- Women of the Little Rock Nine -Elizabeth Eckford, Carlotta Walls LaNier, Minnijean Brown, Gloria Ray Karlmark, Thelma Mothershed, and Melba Beals integrated Little Rock High School in 1957. Segregationists protested and Governor Orval Faubus ordered the Arkansas National Guard to form a blockade and prevent the black students from entering the school. The group was later awarded the Spingarn Medal and Congressional Gold Medal for their courage.
- Daisy Bates – civil rights leader, journalist, publisher, and author. In 1941 she and her husband started their own newspaper, the Arkansas State Press, which became a voice for civil rights issues before a formal movement began. In 1952, Bates was elected president of the Arkansas State Conference of NAACP branches. She advised the Little Rock Nine during their desegregation of Little Rock High School. The Bates’ involvement in the Little Rock Crisis resulted in the loss of much advertising revenue to their newspaper and it was forced to close in 1959. She continued to work in her community. The state of Arkansas honored her by declaring the third Monday in February “George Washington’s Birthday and Daisy Gatson Bates Day” an official state holiday.
- Fannie Lou Hamer – outspoken voting rights activist and civil rights leader. She organized voter registration drives throughout the South and was Vice-Chair of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party. She also organized the Freedom Summer of 1963. Hamer attended the Democratic National Covention in 1964 as a delegate. Two of her famous slogans are “Nobody’s free until everybody’s free” and “I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired”.
Tommorrow is the final segment, Part 5: Historical Firsts.