Archive for January, 2016
There is an old saying that “setbacks may eventually set you up.” After the storm ends, the sunlight and the rainbows appear. Though life is full of challenges, no one wants to be knocked down. We don’t sit in our rocking chairs waiting for setbacks to occur; quite the contrary. Being knocked down is a happenstance of life that is often uncontrollable. Rather than concentrating on the knockdown; focus on picking yourself up. Focus on your refusal to stay in a downward position. Prepare and get ready to meet and conquer your challenges. Be positive. Gear your thinking for your big comeback, not defeat. Diligence, persistence, and determination will pay off. My Momma always said, “hard times don’t last always.”Once your storm passes, you can regroup, dust yourself off, shake off the negative residue, and move on. Higher grounds await you! The rain will end. The storm eventually passes over. Then, you will see the light of the day and the bright glaring sun shining brightly in your face! You may even become an illumination of faith, perseverance, and courage to others! Your storm and test provided a testimony! God provides the needed encouragement that uplights our spirits. In Psalms 30: Verses 4 and 5, we read:
4 Sing praises to the Lord, O you his saints,
and give thanks to his holy name.
5 For his anger is but for a moment,
and his favor is for a lifetime.
Weeping may tarry for the night,
but joy comes with the morning.
Happy Sunday. God bless.
Photo credit: www.adaptmag.com
In a memorable Today Show episode, there was a survey that queried if it was disrespectful to call your parents by their first names. 94% of the participants said Yes; 6% said No. I pondered that question for a moment. In our household, not only would it have been disrespectful to call my Mother or Father by their first names, I might have been backhanded. I cannot fathom the thought of speaking to my parents, now or then, by uttering a first name salutation. “Hey there Phoebe and Walter …. What’s happening?” Oh my! Out of reverence and fear, I never even considered the thought. I was taught that a child should stay in a child’s place. Dignifying your parents in speech and conduct with the upmost respect was part of that decorum. Being in their presence commanded a high sense of etiquette. Their authority was not to be questioned or challenged. Alright, I will confess. I like most kids was no angel. What I could manage to achieve behind their backs without getting caught was another thing. So much for my adolescent mischief … moving along! Passing the torch of respect, I would never permit by children to call me by my first name. Though trendy today, hopefully, they never considered a first name greeting. “Honor your Father and Mother” is not out of style. Call me old fashioned if you like. I call it respect!
Photo credit: www.metroparent.com
Thanks to the tutelage of my Daddy, “I have never been in a physical fight!” My Daddy told me, “Smart girls can talk their way out of trouble. Good Lord, as much as you talk, that will be easy! But if someone aggressively attack you, knock them out; knock them to kingdom come!” My Daddy sage advice kept me in the driver’s seat respective to the avoidance of physical entanglements. By my own admission, I have been left in the dark often when it came to emotional battles. When a friend violates you, it can be a surprising and devastating punch. It hurts! You don’t expect betrayal from them! Getting up from a friend’s rope a dope attack can be so difficult that you may need help to be peeled off the ground. Your emotional battles can be incapacitating if you allow the mental scar tissues to bruise your ego. If you are holding on to the memories of emotional fights that happened so long ago that you cannot remember the origin or how they started, that’s scary! It’s a lingering internal spar that knows no origin! At some juncture in our lives, we have to “peel back the “friendship” onion.” When you get to the core, either you will see the problem, the solution, or realize that you have nothing or something left! Of course, you will shed some tears from the onion juices or from your emotional frenzies. Because of the closeness and knowledge that we have of our friends and they of us, a fight with them can be excruciatingly painful and hard to conquer. It can tear you up emotionally particularly if a betrayal was involved. It is a violation like no other; an emotional strain to say the least. The licks can spank you. Is it worth the turmoil? Forgiving and forgetting – are vital steps toward reconciling our differences and ending Hatfield / McCoy battles. If we don’t, the unpleasant stench from our battles will never subside! Friends or those who have become former friends – should never want that, but the road has to end somewhere. We have choices – we can kiss and make up or we can terminate the closeness that we coveted and enjoyed. Sometimes, we can’t fix what’s broken; the wounds are too deep. As the clock ticks, things will work themselves out one way or another even if the outcome is expectantly different than what we desired. Ultimately, we will move on – friend or foe!
Photo credit: www.wikihow.com
First impressions are lasting impressions. You never get a second chance to make a first impression. People size you up within seconds after meeting you. Therefore, put some serious thoughts and efforts into the process prior to meeting someone for the first time. Approach is key. Lasting impressions can be enhanced if our moves are right. The ultimate goal is to be – memorable. According to experts, there are several steps to this process. Read below:
10 Tops Tips for making a great First Impression:
1. Maintain eye contact.
2. Keep an opened friendly face.
3. Have good body language.
4. Be genuine.
5. Don’t boast.
7. Appearance matters.
8. Use the person’s name.
9. Have a positive mindset.
So plan your meeting. Be prepared; be smart. Make your first impression count. Have a good introduction and a firm handshake. Look good; smell good. Leave knowing that you will be remembered. Achieve the objective of the meeting … by walking away leaving your mark! As a final tip – Please don’t be late!
Photo credit: LinkedIn.com; Source: Business Content PLR
The “good cop bad cop” phrase references a commonly used interrogation technique in which one cop appears to side with a criminal and another remains firm and uncompromising. The concept extends to other social settings where two people (who are actually not cops) use a similar ploy that plays upon your emotional psyche for devious purposes and defined results. The goal is to position your thinking into a belief that of the two, one of them is empathetically compassionate toward your predicament and is on your side. It’s a game of influence designed against you to achieve their objective. So if you fall for the trick and become prey to the cop that you perceive to be “good,” just remember that unbeknownst to you, you are feeding information to the bad cop as well. Basically, who you perceived to be “good” is really not! Their chameleonic ploy made you putty in both of their hands. In other words, you have been “had,” bamboozled, and “played!” If you think that you have never been victimized, think again; think hard; think back! Managers frequently and effectively use this technique to obtain desired results. Behind your back, they secretly “gang up” on you with the purpose of conditioning your thoughts, swaying your opinions, and convincing you to do or not do certain actions. Sadly, the good manager (good cop) is usually someone that you thought that you could trust! Hopefully, he or she wasn’t a person that you regarded as a friend. Ouch! They achieved their results; you were left “hanging” in the sling! Betrayals can be devastating. You may not see them coming, but if and when they arrive – they stink and hurt!
Photo credit: www.zdnet.com
Have you ever been “nicely” told off or insulted? “Nice nasty” people (as they are called) can give you a piece of their mind, sometimes calling you every name but your own. I know that you know or have dealt with a few. The words – Nice; Nasty – are two extremes, but we have people who can nicely mix them together. They chastise you diplomatically which makes it hard to get angry at them. They have an amazing talent as they have mastered the art of “sticking it to you” while smiling and concurrently reciting their displeasure with your behavior. It is not unusual for them to find something wrong because they look for the needle in the haystack. Never forget that “nice nasty” folks personify the definition of the combined words – thus, making it difficult to access whether they are nice or nasty or “nice nasty!” It’s too confusing! Don’t waste your time trying to figure it out! Rather, spend your time with a focus on you…nice and easy!
Photo credit: www.bbc.co.uk
On “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” the original Aunt Vivian was played by Janet Hubert- Whitten. She was replaced by Daphne Reid for the last three seasons of the series. The actresses changed; the show continued! In fact, it became more popular! It’s no different in life. Let me show you what I mean. Recently, a colleague was asked, “How are things at work since the menacing chief left?” There was a noticeable time consuming pause. What a thought provoking question? Reflecting, it was soon realized that though the troublemaker had departed, he was only a pun; the arrogant instrument who had become the team spokesman; their mouthpiece. In other words, he carried the ball for the management team, but he didn’t call the plays. He of course in that role, was given freestyle to intermix his personal flavor of distasteful actions. No denying, he was indeed a workplace bully. Although the toxicity of the atmosphere was static; one that his unethical behavior harmoniously fitted, he was by no means the exclusive problem; he was a mere piece in the puzzle. Organizational behaviorist classify workplace cultures of this type as “tainted.” We laymen translate that classification to street language, namely “The pot can’t talk about the kettle.” They both get heat from the same fire. Conclusively, it is the same stage different actors. Though the “Fresh Prince” had years of a successful run, the show eventually taped its last televised episode … and so will this “show” if the current dysfunction remains unchanged! Where’s Aunt Viv today? Where’s the management team’s bully? Who knows? They were never the headline stars. Despite her changing roles, Aunt Viv’s Will Smith became a superstar! The show’s popularity continues in syndication. Hopefully, the Will Smith model will take place in this real life scenario. Never rule out a turnaround. No one wants a “Concussion!”
Photo credit: www.mentalfloss.com
Some years ago when I was on my first journey of “Walking through the Bible” in one year, I vividly remember crying when reading the scriptures leading up to Moses’ death. I had grown so close to him. I felt as if I personally knew Moses. Maybe, it was from visualizing his character in the movie, “The Ten Commandments” or maybe, it was just the closeness that one develops when there is daily contact. Your daily biblical reading provides unbelievable closeness to God. It is a communicative exchange; a fluid dialogue of sorts. Through your faith, you realize that God loves you, provides rules to protect you, and will never leave you. What an awesome feeling! What an awesome God! Happy Sunday!
Photo credit: www.nowtheendbegins.com
Interesting, we don’t frequently see their portrayals, but there are over 60 Black female superheroes featured in Marvel, D.C. Comics, movies and the like. Iron Man, Superman, Batman … Look out! For those who think that our strength as women is limited to our sheer existence, think again! We are and have always been a force to be reckoned with even if the media does not give us the deserved recognition. From the days of slavery, we maintained our mental saneness though our precious children were taken and sold. Never a stranger to hard work and difficulties, we worked in the cotton fields from sunrise to sunset; coercively became our Master’s mistresses; nursed their children; and cooked and cleaned their houses. Need I say more! History tells the story better than me. Yes, we Black women have endured a lot! Through it all, we have maintained our dignity and respect. We have amazing inherited strength that has been passed down through the generations. No wonder we are super-heroes!
Photo reprint: Black Wonder Woman – illustrated by Anthony Pugh.
Loving a “no good” man and loving a “good man” require the same effort, but what you get in return is substantially different. It’s a night and day contrast. The “no good guy” can always provide excuses for his misconduct. He can rattle them off effortlessly and continuously – one by one! Making the changes to correct them, well…that’s another subject! Sometimes, we spend too much time trying to make something out of nothing. One day, the light bulb will come on in your head and you will realize that only he can make those necessary changes and improvements for himself; not you. If he doesn’t change, if no more, it is imperative that you stop looking for qualities in him that aren’t there; qualities that you will never find. You can stop the fabrication to family and friends to validate him for actions that were so insignificant that they bear not mentioning. Everyone knows who and what he is! Though it may be hard, there comes a time to pack your bags and move on! Roll him out on your glossy samsonite luggage on wheels; the maneuverability is easier; you can shift the weight! It has been said that “A good man is hard to find!” True that! But there is someone out there worthy of you; someone who will love you the way that God says a man should love a woman; someone who is real and not a figment of your imagination. Keep an open mind, but sometimes in order to receive, you have to dispose. Find the strength within and muster the nerves to rid yourself of a man who really doesn’t matter! Nothing from nothing leaves nothing! Once the zero is eliminated, you will walk upon the man “where you are everything and everything is you!” Once that happens, you will as so many women before you ask one pivotal question. “What took me so long?” ….Better late than never!
Photo credit: www.healthworks.my