Archive for November, 2016
Since I am directionally challenged, one of the most practical gifts that I have ever received was a GPS device. Which way is North, South, East, and West? Why trouble my mind! I’ll leave it to the technology.
A GPS can take you directly to your destination. Your only job is to put in the address. I love them!
All mechanical devices have their shortcomings.
GPS’s cannot see construction zones and other deviations that might take you off course.
Their accuracies in part depend upon variables.
However, I have founded the best navigation system in the world.
When you let God direct and guide you, you can make it to your destination even if you don’t know where you are going!
God can and will place you on the right path.
God doesn’t need your input, satellite devices, or signals. He knows the world and you! Remember, he created both!
He can effortlessly recalculate your route; turn you around; and place your feet on solid ground.
Gravity is no issue with God!
Better yet, he can move other objects – people, places, and things – that may be obstacles out of your way.
Forget Rand McNally! God has the best roadmap, the Holy Bible!
So if you are lost, can’t see your way out, need clarity of vision, or a failed – proof system to keep you personally, professionally, and spiritually wise, put God behind the wheel.
Let him cruise you around and order your steps.
You will never get lost. Believe, be obedient to his Word, and be deep in your faith as you “go and let God!”
Happy Sunday! Blessings!
Photo credit: www.ziglar.com
The idiom – Absence makes the heart go fonder – is one that most of us have heard and others have experienced. The expression has been around for centuries. Dating back to Roman times, it became popular in 1850 when Thomas Haynes Bayly used it in “The Isle of Beauty.”
So what does this expression really signify?
I’m glad you asked.
“It means that when people we love are not with us, we love them even more. In other words, you feel more affection for someone when parted from them.”
Separation supposedly intensifies love.
Absence gives both parties time to reflect on their relationship. It helps you realize just how much you mean to each other. It can bring both of you closer, make you better individuals, and make your communications more meaningful.
In fact, researchers have validated that the expression is true.
Indeed, “distance may actually correlate positively with a happy relationship in terms of respect, satisfaction, intimacy, and communication.”
Let’s look at some contemporary equivalents to this old adage.
1. Sometimes the best way to appreciate something is to be without it for a while.
2. Missing someone is part of loving them. If you’ll never apart, you’ll never know how strong your love is.
3. Being away helps you realize how much you really need the person in your life.
4. Distance is not for the fearful. It is for the bold.
5. Just as absence makes the heart grow fonder, tears are only rain to make your love grow.
6. Yes, absence may make the heart grow fonder, but it sure makes the rest of you lonely.
7. True friendship is not being inseparable; it’s being separated and nothing changes.
8. If your presence is appreciated so will your absence.
Thus, we can conclude that we can derive positive benefits from our absence from each other. It’s akin to building a house. If you take the time to build a solid foundation, strong winds won’t blow it away.
For purposes of illustration, distance and wind are analogous. They test what we have built; what can stand the test of time.
Raise your hand if you “feel” what I am projecting!
As with most things in life, there is an opposite sentiment. It is said that just as absence makes the heart go fonder; it can make people forgetful. The expression – Absence makes the heart wander – has proportional validity. In street terms, “while the cat is away, the mouse will play.”
I’m positive that you have also heard, “familiarity breeds contempt.”
Allow me to interject some musical lyrics to bring this point home. In 1970, Crosby Stills Nash recorded “Love the one you’re with.” Remade a year later, The Isley Brothers had us rocking to the same tune.
Remember those words, “If you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’ll with.”
Yes, that right, we are given choices.
Nothing is casted in stone.
Life and love are not black and white.
They are sprinkled with colors; a rainbow coalition at that.
There are so many variables.
Don’t settle because it’s convenient and/or comfortable.
Neither will erase misery nor give true satisfaction.
Eventually, a decision has to be made.
Do so wisely.
The choice is yours!
I leave you with this conclusive thought.
Hopefully, it sheds a glimmer of light.
If you find someone that you want; someone who makes you feel whole and stimulate every nerve inside your soul; someone that you can love who loves you back – cast out your anchor. The ship of experimentation has sailed when your feet rest on solid ground!
Photo credit: www.beautifullyhip.com
Being at the top of one’s game means that you are good and as good as one is likely to get.
How can you accomplish what some consider not accomplishable or challenging because of the demands of their time?
Do you have the time?
Sure you do.
Let’s take in an expert’s opinion.
“Here is a list of every day routines that can help you with the process.
1. Set boundaries.
Only take on what you know you can do well. Delegate the rest.
2. Read a lot. Educate yourself.
Self-help books are great sources. In fact, reading a nonfiction book is like inviting a mentor into your home and having a training session with them. Authors generally give you their best stuff. So if you need inspiration, or just want to be motivated, books are excellent sources. Lest not forget its online equivalents and E-Books.
3. Ask someone you respect out to coffee or lunch.
4. Sleep. Self care. Routine.
These three things are what most self-employed people struggle to attain. It’s simple, but can make a huge difference.
5. Ask for help.
Accept it graciously when offered.
6. Demand high standards from the people you employ, especially your front line representatives.
7. Look good.
Your image and appearance stand to enhance your performance skills.
It costs you nothing, brings you closer to nature, and really refreshes your brain.
9. Be prompt.
Hats off to David Allen, the productivity expert who promotes getting it done in two minutes or less; particularly emails. Allen regards tasks as projects, not problems; do them and get them off of your plate.
10. Learn new skills, grow your knowledge, and practice working with people who have been there before you.” Why reinvent the wheel?
As we know, the expression – at the top of your game – contextually refers to athletic abilities. According to MSN.com, the top three athletes currently at the top of their game are:
A. #1 – Ronda Rousey, UFC Fighter, Age 28.
B. #2 – Lebron James, Cleveland Cavaliers Forward, Age 30. (Pictured is our hometown favorite).
C. #3 – Serena Williams, Tennis Player, Age 30.
Kudos to them! It just didn’t happen. Without question, they work/worked hard to achieve/maintain their greatness.
Just as athletes condition their bodies and minds to stay in tip top shape, so should we! It is necessary if we wish to stay at the top of our game -physically, emotionally, personally, professionally, and spiritually.
Are you up for the challenge?
It’s never too late and you are never too old to start.
What are you waiting for …?
Let’s get going!
Photo credit: www.bing.com; Source: www.psychologytoday.com
As entrepreneurs, it is imperative that you become your own brand. Besides, no one can sell you better than you. Agreed?
The question is: How do you become a brand; a recognizable brand at that? Let’s see what the experts have to say.
1. First …Become an expert on something that relates to your business.
2. Establish a website or blog under your full name preferably and/or theme a recognizable subject name that you can call your own.
3. Learn how to be a good source.
4. Generate brand awareness by networking.
Allow me to “Vernalize this.
In other words, become a knowledgeable brainchild whereby you unequivocally know what you are talking about; promote and establish yourself as an authoritative expert. It may sound complicated, but it isn’t.
In simple terms, educate yourself and showcase your talents.
Take it a step further and become a primary source so that people ultimately come to you for the quote as the recognized expert.
Sounds good so far?
As you expertly craft a good name and reputation for yourself in the stratosphere, your network and the world will recognize you for your skills, knowledge, talents, and of course your brand.
You now stand out from the crowd.
A good name is hard to beat; isn’t it?
Your good name or shall I refer to it as your brand will draw people to you like bees to honey.
Speaking of your drawing card, networking becomes one of your trump cards.
The four rules of networking that you should keep in mind are mutualism, giving, targeting and reconnecting.
A. Mutualism: You have to create win-win relationships in business. Mutual benefits will help.
B. Giving: Help someone out, before asking for anything in return. This makes people want to support you.
C. Targeting: You want to be very specific with the types of people you network with, in order to save time and to attract the right people to your brand.
D. Reconnecting: Never lose touch, that way networking contacts remember you when new opportunities surface.
These tenets remind me of the old folks sitting back in their rocking chairs on their screen porches in Mississippi.
Without anyone asking for their input, they voluntarily would put in their two cents. “That child sho nuff knows what she’s talking about. Her mouth might get her somewhere someday. For sho, she meets no strangers. She can work the room better than anybody I know. Can’t she?”
Though perhaps elementary, those old folks saw your shining star. Hence, you were creating your brand even back then.
As you move forward, continue the development so that all will materialize into positivities that sell and work.
In closing, you will know that you have become a recognizable brand if a letter is mailed to you with just your name on it (no address) and it arrives at your office doorstep.
Okay folks, don’t flood my mailbox with letters addressed to Vernalee.
If you do, I claim it!
It is the validation that my branding tactics have been successful.
Join me as we rebrand and re-position ourselves.
Photo credit: www.zcorum.com; Source: Entrepreneurs.com
Hold that razor!
I must admit that I was petrified a few months ago, when my son showed up at his birthday party with a bald head!
Certainly because we Mothers feel that we have no boundaries and the inalienable right to cross lines and ask/say to our children what we desire, my first word was “Why?”
I recognized that in recent years, he had sported a low cropped hair cut, but to cut off all of his curly locks was too much! He has really gone too far. Well, that’s was my thought, not his!
Since I have been preaching, “Stay in your lane and mind your own business,” for sure, I had gone too far! Certainly, my son knows how he wants to look! Was it my vanity and not his look because his baldness would perhaps reveal my age? Haha!
So when he respectfully and politely said, “Mommy, I like this look; besides I am going bald, so I cut it off.”
“Understood. No problem.”
Then I thought for a minute.
Back in the day, Telly Savalas (remember him; Detective Kojak from the television series) was the bomb with his bald head. Yul Brynner sported his nicely. Lou Gossett, Jr. had a coolness that melted ice. For sure, he brought ‘sexy back.’ Nobody could beat my man, my teenage heartthrob; the Black Moses; the incomparable Isaac Hayes whose album cover, “Hot Buttered Soul” showcasing gold chains on his bare chest hung on my bedroom wall from 1969 for at least a decade in our Mississippi family home. Let me not forget, my favorite NBA player, Michael Jordan. Oh yes, undoubtedly, Michael has the swagger.
So yesterday when the sculpted former wrestler turned actor, Dwayne Johnson, The Rock, was named the sexiest man alive by People Magazine, I realized that – Bald is in!
Unfazed by his new title, The Rock in his laid back voice said, “I still drive my pick up truck and change my baby’s diapers.” In other words, his look, (baldness and all), doesn’t determine his activities, outweigh his responsibilities, or define who he is.
It’s not the hair (or the lack thereof) that makes the man; the man!
It’s the man himself!
Why did I not see this before?
I know better.
I’m surprised at my premature naivety!
To my son, I say, “Do your thing!”
Visual marketing can sway us immediately.
Its powerful messaging influences our views and so much more.
I must confess.
It happened to me yesterday when I saw … The Rock!
Photo credit: www.thedailybeast.com
“A still tongue makes a wise head” refers to a person who only speak when it has been determined that it is appropriate to do so.
They are not chatter boxes and are wise enough to not just say whatever comes to mind.
It validates the theory that if one is cautious with their speech, and listens instead, he/she exercises control which in turn reflects their display of solid experience, keen knowledge, and good judgement.
A still tongue serves to protect and guard against unnecessary queries. Besides … Who asked for your opinion?
Who asked you to stick your nose into their business?
If they wanted your viewpoints, they would have asked. Right?
You see here lies the problem. If people mind their own business, the world would be a better place; less confusion for sure.
Allow me to “Vernalize” this thought.
Walk with me.
Once again, I say – Stay in your own lane and out of other folks’ business! Guard your thoughts; guard your tongue.
Be selective about what words come out of your mouth.
Besides, who has the time or energies to host someone else’s mess!
Proverbs 17:28 provides wise advice:
“Even fools are thought wise if they keep silent,
and discerning if they hold their tongues.”
It will behoove us to do just that!
Did I hear, “The cat got your tongue.”
For some, the perpetual chatter boxes and nosey roseys – that’s a good thing!
Silence can be golden!
Photo credit: www.pininterest.com
Growing up in rural Mississippi, I learned the art of driving by cruising down gravel and dirt roads before graduating to the two lane highways. As you travel in one direction facing the traffic in another, you learn to stay in your own lane.
Swerve too far to the right and you are liable to end up in a ditch. Move too far to the left and you are subject to have a head on collision with the other vehicle. Crash!
This driving precision teaches you much about life. The similarities are uncanny.
There is much to be said respective to staying in your own lane.
In order words, if you mind your own business and stay out of other folks’ affairs, it is smooth sailing. Once you enter the other lane, you are in someone else’s territory both figuratively and literally.
When you meddle, you cross the line!
Where you end up is where your intrusion takes you.
“You are an accident waiting to happen” when you start interfering. No speed will keep you safe in those types of circumstances. Fender bending becomes your outcome regardless of your destination!
The reference thus far speaks of a two lane highway. Sticking your nose into multiple folks’ affairs is probably an unmanageable interstate that may not be in your best interest to travel. Eventually, you might get side swiped in more ways than one – if you know what I mean!
Photo credit: www.i.stack.imgur.com
This week’s blog topics focused on relationships. We cannot end the discussion without talking about the greatest relationship of all – your relationship with God!
Your relationship with God is not only vital to your Christian walk, but it is critical to all of your relationships including your search for the right person.
It is often times difficult to find the right person, so it is imperative that we keep God in our plans for guidance and direction.
I share with you some memorable quotes that can be used in your journey to find the right mate.
1. You’ll know when a relationship is right for you. It will enhance your life not complicate it.
2. Pray together so that you can stay together.
3. Imagine a man so focused on God that the only reason he looked up to see you is because he heard God say, “there she is.”
4. When couples love God first, they love each other better.
5. When God knows that you are ready for the responsibility of commitment, he’ll reveal the right person under the right circumstances.
In Proverbs 13:20, we are told, ”Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm.”
1 Peter 5:6,7 tells us to “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
It’s quite simple.
Put God first; keep God first.
A God centered relationship is worth the wait!
Happy Sunday! Blessings!
Photo credit: www.indulgy.com
Alright, let’s get right to it!
Does social media have an effect upon your relationship?
Sure it does!
Let me qualify that response. It does … particularly when you use it obsessively wrong.
All types of hook-ups occur from those “winks,” “likes,” and friend requests! You betta believe it baby!
Infidelity, cheating, jealous rages, fights, breakups, and divorces have resulted from flagrant uses/abuses on Facebook, Instagram, and other social media accounts.
According to research, less matured relationships (under 3 years) take the biggest hits.
Here are some steps to take to prevent social media from ruining your relationship:
1. Stop being single online and in an actual relationship in real life.
2. Be cautious with “friending” exes.
3. Don’t get caught up in the hype because Facebook friends and other social media groupies give you much needed attention.
4. Stop it … with sneaky “stuff.”
Be open with your mate. If it looks like you’re hiding something, you probably are.
5. Have some limitations regarding your posts.
When your cyber friends are gone, your mate will still be there … hopefully.
So if you get caught red handed, don’t blame Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter for the fallouts.
You are at fault.
You took the photo with the girlfriend that your wife saw on Facebook.
It was your provocative comments that you placed on your page for all to view.
You crossed the line.
You put your business in the streets.
Your fingers did the clicking!
You publicized your infidelity digitally.
Place the blame where it belongs!
It was you!
Photo credit: www.genyu.net; Source: www.paulcbrunson.com
How do you tear down a wall that you cannot see? Is there an emotional wall up in your relationship? Are there things that should be addressed that remain standing?
Maybe, the issues are so delicate that you prefer not to address them. However, they will not magically disappear. Perhaps, if you delicately and strategically attack the issues, you won’t be met with resistance from your partner. Receptivity is your goal.
His guards are up; your mouth is closed; and of course, the problem behind the wall remains. What a triad!
Here comes the auxiliary problem.
Sometimes the issues take roots, multiply, and grow.
It’s not healthy for your relationship well-being, you, or him.
Walls are built for protection. You can’t protect issues that will penetrate beyond the fence that you and him have built. Besides, who and what are you protecting? How do you show how much you really care?
Well, if this invisible wall is keeping you from progressing, you have to tear it down; that is – if you wish to move forward.
You must gingerly remove the bricks one by one.
To do so, here are a few recommendations.
1. Share your feelings.
2. Create a safe place.
3. Work on a plan.
According to the columnist, Ask Jen, “Your loved one’s walls may never come completely down, but at least you can be standing on the right side of the wall so that the two of you can face the problems together as a team.” Breaking through your partner’s walls is a difficult challenge, but one that you must drive a bulldozer through if you want your relationship to work and flourish. All of this rhetoric and advice provide excellent remedies; don’t they? Moving from the theoretical to the practical is another thing.
Pushing the button is hard; getting the nerves to address the issue is harder. Doing nothing is worst!