You Gotta Get Up.

It’s hard to fight the funk.

Lately, I’ve been battling with thoughts of being in the way. Being in the way of my goals and milestones. Being in the way of others and their own progression at my expense. These past few months have been the most transformative as I’m preparing to step completely out of my comfort zone, and embark on a brand new beginning.With that, there’s been a lot of new changes in my life that have required a lot of community. I’m in one of the most vulnerable spaces I’ve been in for quite some time. It’s uncomfortable, as it should be. But it can also make you question a lot if you’re used to doing it all on your own.

Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it. (4)

One of the best parts about these past few months is being able to step back into church and embracing my church family. In a recent sermon, the pastor made a remark about the acronym: “TIS” or “SIT”.

T – Thoughts

I – Influence

S- Suggestions

He says it’s easy to stumble when the Enemy tries to gain influence over you in the only way he knows how to – your mind. His impact can effect your thoughts, which then becomes an influence, and a suggestion for you to do something that you shouldn’t.

Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it. (5)

When I think about this acronym, I think about the many ways I’ve allowed myself to feel small. It’s been xx months, and I still haven’t gotten this part of my life together, or I’m still struggling to find my footing in media, or I’m still attracting men who don’t value me the way I value them, or I’m feeling alone because my community is distant.

These thoughts are the catalyst for a downward spiral.

Me not having my life together must mean I’m not meant to have one.

Me not finding my footing in media must mean I won’t ever be seen in this industry.

Me attracting the wrong men must mean I’m not capable of ever finding love.

My loneliness must have a direct impact on who I am.

These thoughts all suggest one thing: quitting. Quitting on life. Quitting on trying. Quitting on loving. Quitting on existing. Quitting on your goals/hopes/dreams.

Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it. (6)

I can’t say that I take pride on quitting anything, but it almost became an easy choice for me. Coming off of last year’s car accident, and the downward spiral of things that erupted from that, every day is a new journey and a process. We are no longer living in our past, but that doesn’t mean that more obstacles won’t stir up old feelings.

I’ve had to remind myself that God makes no mistakes. Only I do. And there’s a purpose behind that. DJ Khaled says: “failure is a major opportunity to learn something.” The mistakes you make teach you not to make those again. The mistakes you make show you that there is another way, another option to achieve what you want.  But you’ve got to be willing to take the risk. And no, it won’t feel easy. It won’t feel great. But it’s a powerful risk that leads to a powerful change.

It’s hard to fight the funk, but you gotta get UP.

A word that stuck with me from hearing P. Diddy speak at the REVOLT Summit is: “As long as you keep getting up, that’s going to inspire other people to keep getting up.”

Your responsibility is not always your own. But your dedication to self is. 

 

#WomenSupportingWomen

Women empowerment is not a cookie cutter phrase. It’s real work. It’s a celebration of who we are, what we accomplish, and overcome on a daily basis.

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I was reminded of all of that this past weekend after attending “Black Women United Day of Unity” in Atlanta, Georgia. Before attending the day’s festivities, I started incorporating the hashtag, #WomenSupportingWomen as a way to acknowledge the work women are doing in and around the Charleston, SC area in which I reside. I also make it a point to acknowledge those who may not be in close proximity as a show of solidarity and support.

It was only right that I was told about this incredible event from an equally incredible woman, who also happens to be my sorority sister: Davida Roach. Davida is the owner of Hair Bakery Boutique LLC, Dear Deanndra, and the creator behind her new blog, Davida’s Diary.  She is the epitome of a true girl boss. 

The event took place inside of the Georgia State Capitol. Upon walking in, we both couldn’t help but to really take everything in. The fact that we were attending this important event inside of an important space where laws are created and talked about, and important people dwell, to just seeing so many brown women in one space, in their best attire, ready to take in any messages received. I didn’t quite know what to expect, because I didn’t know that I would be there. But there was so much confirmation in the messages spoken.

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For starters, Glenda Williams of MEG Enterprises says ” I recognize what it took to protect yourself, especially as a Black woman.” It went hand in hand with universal messages of sisterhood, and caring for others , and being honest about your personal journey. She encouraged everyone in the room to “rise above hurt, understand healing, and what it takes to push beyond the odds.”

Imani Baskins, who moderated the event, made a powerful statement on vulnerability. She says,” Vulnerability is our super power. Sometimes, what looks like a flood is a cleansing.”

As a Black woman, I can honestly say that it is very hard to stand firm in being vulnerable. Simply because there is a lot to take on in my own day to day life that requires me to be strong, and to carry the weight of it all in order to simply survive. It’s HARD. But vulnerability is like a doorknob. You have the control over how much the door opens, and what you let in or out. The power is in the capacity in which you give. But you can’t afford to not give anything if it only holds you back. We can’t allow ourselves to give in to fear.

Renee Peoples, of The Peoples Network says, “You have to find that happy place within yourself that you can go to, that no one can tamper, despite all of the voices in your head.”  And on the same note of allowing ourselves the energy to be selfish with our emotions and protecting of that energy, Glenda Williams says, “As we grow and build, sometimes we leave ourselves out.”

In that moment – over a dozen women chose not to leave themselves out of healing. Everyone came for something. Whether it was shared with a fellow woman there, or kept quietly tucked away in their minds for them to hold, women were being fed what they needed to take home with them and really get things going.

I know because I was one of those women in the room. Taking notes. Physically and internally. Intently listening to what each woman on that panel had to say. The energy around me was filled to the brim with emotion. As a Black woman, I don’t often talk about my experiences with being a Black woman in this world. I don’t always get the chance to talk openly about my experiences and what they mean for me as I continue growing into womanhood. Being in a space where that didn’t really matter at all – but in fact was embraced, was just the medicine I needed to recover from past traumas of self-censoring for the appeasement of others.

I was embraced.

I was loved.

I was lovingly criticized.

I was seen.

And with this simple hashtag, I want women to feel the same. As I continue to do more with my own works, I hope that everything I do has an underlying foundation of women empowerment – and not just the sister circle of, “Yass Queen!” and “Black Girl Magic”, but real hard conversations, centering moments of clarity, and collaboration without competition.

What does supporting women look like for you?

 

 

I hate Love Songs

Love is not just a verb, it’s you looking in the mirror 
Love is not just a verb, it’s you looking for it maybe.”

-Kendrick Lamar, Poetic Justice

Confession: I love listening to love songs. The melody. The patience the artist gives every element, creating beautiful harmony, accompanied by smooth vibrations and rhythms that take you into a new universe. But I hate them too. I hate how vulnerable I become listening to every word of patience, hope, monogamy and embracing the imperfections of someone who embraces yours.

 

I’m only 24, but I have felt the powers of love’s heartbreak, beat skips, control and self-awareness.

The term love has always been a weird one for me. Growing up, I would consider that I was surrounded by lots of love. My mom showed me day in and day out how much she loved me, mostly with actions, but she was never above sitting me down, holding me tight and letting me know that she loves me, all parts. My grandmother was the most intimate. She had such a comfortable hand squeeze, and you just wanted to hold her. Her laughter showed how happy she was with every moment. Her love is unconditional and knows no bounds. Then there was my grandfather who was the first real impression of love I’ve seen from man to woman done well. Not perfectly, but enough to withstand all trials and obstacles that came in the way of the relationship. It wasn’t all gifts and glamour. (Think “Everybody Hates Chris” Father vibes) but it was true and honest. It was “I only see her” and “She is my Rib” (Genesis 2: 18-24).
But as much of the positive sides of love I have seen, I realize that there have been many instances of toxic love as well that I’ve either witnessed, or experienced first hand. For example, I didn’t grow up in a typical father and mother household. At the age of seven, my parents were signing off on a divorce. My first relationship in theory was perfect in the way they showed me love, but as life went on, I realized that I was undergoing mental abuse in the sense of always feeling low and insecure about my abilities to please and keep them around. While I was trying to show them how much I loved them, there was always push back, which often led to accusations of whether or not I was being faithful and if I could be trusted. That set the tone inadvertently for my attractions to men after and overstaying my welcome in relationships or not walking away from harmful situationships.

 

My last relationship was every piece of right and wrong with a perfect balance. On the one side, I had a best friend I felt I could rely on. He made me feel comfortable sharing my inner thoughts and insecurities, and was very gentle with those things. He wasn’t necessarily a provider, but if there was something I needed, for the most part I never went without. But on the flip side, arguments on my feelings and the validity of actions were very one-sided. I was often made to feel like I read too much into things that turned out to be very true. The level of emotional intimacy given didn’t match what was being poured out, causing ruts of feeling like I wasn’t in a relationship at all. For every “I love you” and “you’re beautiful”, It was almost always paired with something that would make me cry or cause me some sort of pain and loneliness.
Reflecting on each of those instances isn’t being said to make any of those men come off as not capable of giving the right kind of love to the right person. I’m grateful for what has been shared in those relationships. And I value the way they did love me. But it also shows me the red flags I can’t ignore when it comes to allowing someone that kind of access to me. And it starts with me seeing my own red flags.
For one, being a lover of love, I can fall very easily for a person who shows me the level of intimacy I’m looking for. Everything from enlightening conversations, to the way my hands or hips are held to direct eye contact. It’s very easy for me to ignore anything else that taints my vision of that person. But that has gotten me in the most trouble.
I can also be very one sided in the way I love. My love can be overbearing because all I want to do is provide the best physically (i.e. experiences, gifts, etc) and emotionally so that my partner never feels left without. Left without a shoulder to cry on, or someone to vent to, a partner to trust and help with whatever is needed, etc.  But subliminally it really shows how insecure in myself I really am. It stems from my need to always perform and be validated constantly.
I am learning how to listen more. What is a situation telling me when it comes to what I should do? One of the best words of advice was written by a famed poet, Maya Angelou: “When someone shows you who they are, believe them.” I can be very bad at that, but I think in some ways It’s normal. A person really only shows what they want to. You then learn more with time.
Over time, I’ve come to understand that love is very complex. There’s no true guide on how to love and the right and wrong ways to love a person. There’s not enough on how to truly love yourself and how that connects to the way you love others. In my own experiences, I have recently only realized much about myself and the things that need to happen in order for me to truly open myself up to being accessed fully by my next partner. One of the things I realized is that i’ve never fully given myself time to be alone. Therefore, I don’t truly know who I am outside of a relationship. These past several months have been the most uncomfortable because of it. But I’m learning how to better appreciate this time and what it could lead to.
I have plenty of moments where my singleness gets the best of me. Where many days I think something is wrong with me because i’m not in a relationship. Or feeling frustrated when a guy tells me “Yes, You are the ideal girl, but you’re too perfect/good for me.” I am learning, daily, that I was created to be who and what I am, and that is enough. That all of who I aim to become is extraordinary. That even on days when I can’t recognize myself, where I falter because of my desire to be loved (back), or when I’m just way too hard on myself, that I will make an effort to pick up the pieces and try again.

I Lost My Car, Still Searching for Life

This series was supposed to start a little differently.

I was supposed to go into some background on why “Unwritten” exists. I was supposed to tell you how I’ve had a lot of pent up feelings and situations that I never really spoke about, and how being more vulnerable and transparent has been my thing lately. So, I wanted to be open and honest. Not just when things are good, but when things are rough too. I wanted to open up more about fears, and how scary mine are, but how I’ve been working to not let them define me. I wanted to be transparently motivational (we’ll coin that as a term for now).  But then, I lost my car. And to be honest, the world around me stopped for what feels like 10 years.

I want to preface this by saying – It’s not about the car. If I had to choose between my life and my car, thank God for breathing. But that’s the thing. I haven’t been breathing. I haven’t been living. I haven’t just been for the entire year. If I’m being honest, life has been extremely hard for me. I’ve lost something, or have gone through something, every. Single. Month. In the year 2018. So losing something that I’ve worked so hard to get at a time where, in my eyes, I had not much more to lose, really did something to me.

I’ve been trying to find the words for those feelings, while silently piecing together everything that’s been happening to try and find myself again. To find the lesson. But I haven’t been very good at it.

Back in February 2016, I made a down payment on my first car. This comes years after broken promises from someone I’ve been trying to establish a consistent familial relationship with for years that it would be coming “soon”. But, soon never came for me. After becoming friends with the clerks at Greyhound stations all over the East Coast, to finally making enough to “upgrade” to Amtrak, maybe picking up a few rentals here and there, I got her. Miracle. I found my Miracle.

From long evening drives and loud speakers when my mind just didn’t want to process my day to day life, to surprise visits to my mom or brother, to just getting out and seeing parts of the United States and helping to make curating random events easier. Miracle has been a lifelong treat, and a great start to my adulthood.

But then I lost her.

October 11, 2018 – I was heading into work after a hard conversation with a friend about how hard this year really has been for me. How things are changing before my eyes in my then relationship, my family life, and even down to my career. I was dealing with change after change after change that I knew I needed to take action on and finally figure out.

When I walked away from that conversation – I had a little more confidence. Perspective.

And then I pulled out – and I was hit. Directly. Hit and knocked unconsciously for what felt like hours.

A few weeks prior, I wrote a sticky note with wise words from Pastor Michael Todd: “Your hardest hit will be the one you don’t see coming.”

And that was my hardest hit of the year.

That was the icing on the cake for me.

And internally I lost it. At that time, I wasn’t even thinking about how I would even get around. I just couldn’t believe that after what was a year of me constantly LOSING – there was still MORE for me to LOSE.

Those who knew gave me a lot of reassuring messages and helpful words. And then there were some who I expected to show up a little more – and they didn’t. And that hurt.  To lose again at a very tender moment of my life.

After the accident, I only had about 3 days to only focus on the accident and affairs (which is a whole other internal battle). And then it was back to work, but I wasn’t present. Suddenly, this entire year started to take over my entire life and I couldn’t catch a grip.

I found myself waking up, and immediately crying. Every. Single. Day. It became a routine, or I should say it took over my routine. I would force myself to take extra time out to find something positive to focus on. Whether it be a few things I was looking forward to each day, having tough talks with God which never ceased, or focusing on a quote or message that could get me through. But it was hard.

I couldn’t find the motivation to work at my best, which made things even worse because I am my own worst critic. And in some ways, I felt like no one around me could understand what was happening. I began secluding myself – shutting off my social media, breaking my phone (on accident) with no rush on having it turned on to further silence things around me. I was no longer making regular appearances at events. While I couldn’t force life to stop for me,  in doing those things, I felt I had a break.

When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.

In my break down, I’ve learned so much about myself. The biggest being I can and will overcome any obstacle that comes my way. I am the light that shines through in my darkest times. Though I may feel alone, I will always have the love and care of God by my side. And thankfully, He’s blessed me to have a strong support system even when I do feel too down and out to notice.

I’ve learned that there is no such thing as pity in the work force. It’s a great disservice to me to be off of my game because it gives people ammunition to think that I cannot handle what comes my way, and that is simply not true. I have also learned that it is okay to be human and communicate. Communicate with your team and your bosses, no matter what you feel. Your feelings are important.

My focus has increased much more on what my needs and priorities are. In eliminating distractions and zoning into my feelings and emotions, I was more able to acknowledge and accept that right now, I am not my strongest self. That it’s okay to step away from anything that doesn’t allow you to take care of yourself. If it is meant to be, the opportunity will be there.

As we enter the new year, I encourage you to place self-care at the top of your goals. I encourage you to be honest with yourself about where you are, and what you need. I encourage you to be honest with your friends, your loved ones, and even those around you in the work force. You don’t have to be this all powerful supernatural  being. My “in my head” mentor, Myleik Teele made a very big point on her October podcast “How I’m Learning to Ask for Help”: “Accepting help is hard because it requires you giving up control.”

This year, I had no control over any aspect of my life. And that was very hard for me to accept. I was prideful when it came to asking for help, and in some ways, I still am. I have the idea that asking for help equates to me being a burden. But, in having help from others, I could have probably avoided a lot of situations made worse due to “fear”. In 2019, we’re breaking up with “fear” and we’re entertaining “confidence” and “joy”.

In the coming months, my new blog series, “Unwritten” will unfold into spirals of transparency and hard conversations. I will be my most honest, and I hope you don’t mind having a seat at the table and taking off the mask with me. Thank you in advance for your community.

 

Getting Back to Me

2017 was all about growth and creating a solid foundation.

On January 1, 2017, I entered this year on the worst term possible. I was struggling with my relationship. Struggling with my self esteem both personally and professionally. I had maintained a lifestyle in Charleston doing my career that I love wholeheartedly, and not being able to afford to live the lifestyle I was “living” in.

But as the saying goes, it’s not how you start. It’s how you finish.

In February, my rocky relationship came to a traumatic end. I would be broken down in the worst way, and would have to find myself again.

In March, I decided to step out on faith with my goals and shifted my focus to The Conqueror Movement, which is my communications platform that serves as a connecting point for Black millennial creatives and professionals. With the help of my two best friends, we created “Falling In Love With Your Passion”. This event would host 50 people in one room, most of who I had never met before personally. The idea of this event was to encourage Black creators that what you do and what you’re passionate about, you must maintain a relationship with it. It must be something that you dedicate your time and energy to as if it were a one on one relationship. It would be the successful catalyst for a great year for my platform. My solid team would go on to create several events and opportunities throughout the year that would help these creators grow, learn and evolve, such as monthly brunch meetups, an annual celebration , of the company, and a documentary showing called “Find Your Light” . But not only did these projects help others, they allowed me to get back to myself and see what my true potential is.

I was pushed in ways I had never been pushed. Pushed to persevere. Pushed to trust the process. Pushed to trust others.

Now that I think of it, that would be the foundation of what I learned this year about myself and what I would learn I need to do for myself.

I learned that energy can be toxic if it’s wrong. Be protective of yours and don’t allow others to steal your joy.

My life experiences are constantly shaping me, and that’s important.

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If you cannot learn from what you do, what you see around you, and even the people you find yourself around, you are doing things wrong.

Looking ahead, I want to be more open about the things I have experienced so that those things can help others. I also want to be more real with myself about where I am, where I want to be, and just learning how to be more unapologetic.

In 2018, you will see a lot more from me, starting with this website.

Things have changed since I last debuted it on my birthday, May 30 of 2015. I have acquired my dream job, I have grown from a youngin’ to a young woman, and I am more confident in my abilities. You no longer need to see the labor of my work, you know what I’m capable of. The question now is: Who Is Khadijah?

You will find out alot more than you could imagine.

Going into the new year, I hope you will visualize your biggest fear and conquer it. I hope you won’t let it define you.

Stay tuned, friends.

Because Life Is: About Growth

A new year brings many different thoughts about growth, where you should be, where you see yourself, and whether or not you really changed for the better. Some do it through resolutions. Some do it through reflection and acknowledgement. Others simply just keep it moving and work on answering those questions a day at a time.

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This is where some of the hardest moments start to sink in for me that not a lot of people really know about.

I’m so thankful to God for the amount of growth I’ve been seeing in myself, and it all really dates back to 10th grade.

I will always remember that time of my life because that was a very hard year for me, and it really led to a downward spiral in so many ways. I remember myself back then not really knowing about who I was and the potential I had to be everything that I wanted. God really placed some obstacles and challenges in my life that were hard to overcome. At that time, I didn’t have any intentions to overcome them. I had given up on myself.

I remember being around my friends in class, and getting a message from my mom to meet her. I had no idea what the message was for, or the intent. I just know that if it’s important enough for me to be pulled out of class at 1 PM, something big is happening. Fast forward, we’re making a u-turn in the middle of the highway to follow an ambulance back to the hospital.

My grandmother was the patient.

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Many people who know me well knows that my grandmother is the closest person to me in my family. It can be debated, it can be argued. But, she is the G.O.A.T (Greatest of all time).  But suddenly, I was worried. My grandmother had been sick for a while at this point. She had multiple hospital visits and surgeries, but things appeared to have been going well. But that day, I was sitting in a hospital room, and I was so confused.

Hours later, my grandfather quietly walks up to my mother. I cannot see his face. I can only hear his voice. He said the words I never thought he would say.

“Mary is gone.”

My heart paused for a few moments. It felt like hours. I wish it were days I could just sit and not process anything.

I think at that point, I burst into tears.

Not the cute tears either.

I felt my whole world fall apart. This moment. I was heartbroken. I was angry. I was young and confused by what was happening. I always hate reflecting on that day because it was just a downward spiral. From having to tell my brother and my cousin, to having to tell my great grandmother that her daughter has now gone to be with God. It was a lot. And I wanted out.

I was known for being a very happy go-lucky individual. Even now, people tell me I bring life and joy to every conversation and encounter, but it was that day and that moment that I couldn’t be happy. I couldn’t make myself smile. I couldn’t be for myself what I was to everyone else. It was like a reality check for me, because it allowed me to feel emotions I had suppressed for such a long time because I always felt like I had to be okay.

In highschool, I was a very different kind of girl. You know my name for the 90s hit show, “Living Single”, but if you looked at my ipod, you wouldn’t even recognize the names of people I listened to. From Three Days Grace, to Bullet For My Valentine and Slipknot. Powerful, hard heavy metal. I believe what a person listens to really says a lot about who they are. The kind of tunes I listened to back then were very hard hitting, emotional tracks. They spoke on various things, but they spoke on depression a lot. So, during this grieving moment, I began to face a battle with the infamous D word.

It became normal for me to sit in my room alone, blasting my music and crying myself to sleep at night. I had contemplated a lot of things back then. Ways I could disappear without causing any kind of pain to my family. I thought about overdosing. I prayed to God at many points that he would take my life away. It became a rollercoaster ride to wake up and try the same routine of going to school and coming home and tip toeing around my grandmother’s name and memory. My best friend noticed a lot of these changes in me, and played a big role in why I am still here. She questioned me about the motive behind my thoughts, prayed for me, and just existed with me, even when I didn’t want to explain or answer any of her questions.

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It is so important to have people around you like that in those hard moments. That was a very hard moment for me, and even now, it’s difficult. I know my grandmother would be proud of the woman that I am and the accomplishments that I’m making.

But, I didn’t share all of this with you for it to be a sob story.

This is a situation that I never found the strength to open up about, because it was the weakest time period of my life. But looking at myself now, I realize it was the catalyst for the strong woman I have become. I needed to hurt in order to grow. I needed to be pushed. I’ve been motivated by that hard time in my life to never cease fighting for the very things I want in life and my desires. I never stopped learning how to be more and more of a strong woman like my grandmother in all aspects, from relationships to my career. But it’s all a learning process.

So as you face hard moments in your life, face them head on. Acknowledge that they exist. Take a moment away if you need to in order to get back on track. You don’t have to always be okay. It’s okay to not always be okay. Develop a strong support system around you that you can be real with in every way because then the going gets tough, they’ll never leave your side.

What’s a hard moment you find yourself struggling with? In what ways are you working to face that head on and become a better you?

In loving memory of Mary Pressley Nesmith

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(pictured with her is my grandfather who has also since gone to be with the Lord a year later)

Because Life Is: about being humble

All about being humble.

It’s almost the very end of 2016, and it feels like I have nothing left to give to the year.

It almost seems as if I don’t have the energy to rejoice for 2017.

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This year was a very hard fought year. Meaning, I fought for everything I earned and took no prisoners: (schemers, leeches or negativity) along with me. This year was full of learning lessons that needed to be learned at the perfect time. While I think it’s important to focus on resolutions and things you want to attain for the next year, sometimes it’s necessary to sit back and look at all of the things you accomplished right now, and even placing a focus on the things you needed more of that could better serve you in the year to come.

What I realized about 2016, and almost every other year prior, is that I’m really good at being there when others need me. I’m also very good about being in 5 different places at one time. But what I didn’t realize is how unhealthy all of those things really were when I wasn’t inserting myself into the equation.

College fed into my need to multitask. I felt like I always had to get everything done in a timely fashion. Most of that meant sleepless nights or writing out works in the car, in other classes, or avoiding sleep at all costs. Now, cheers to adulthood where none of that is possible! Literally – try producing a show in your sleep. You’ll be very disappointed when you prepare for the day and breaking news happens.

I have a weakness even while adulting that allows me to believe I can still do those superhero things and not feel any consequences of it. But how I was wrong. In college, you had an idea of how your day would go, and it wasn’t uncommon to sprinkle things in where you felt they were the perfect fit. I wake up daily now and I never know how my day will go (even this blog post was unplanned). It’s just the nature of life.

But just because I can’t tell the future, doesn’t mean I have to ignore making rest and happiness a mandatory objective in my daily life. I realize that lack of sleep is not quite what I need to thrive if I want to succeed and grow daily. I need to give back to myself in the biggest, but smallest ways. I can’t ignore those moments when my body tells me, “you’ve done enough.”

What exactly is enough?

That’s something I could never really define, and I’m having a hard time figuring that out even in this very moment. Because I know the path I’ve chosen to take with my career and passions, I should be content, right? Things should be good, right?

But what happens when others around you take a different path?

I have friends from all walks of life, many of them with the most creative spirits. They’re not aspiring to be journalists. They’re aspiring to get their art off the ground. They’re aspiring to have freedom. They’re aspiring to travel more, enjoy life a little more. Maybe become doctors, lawyers, attend graduate school. Become a nomad?

All of these journeys have their influences, but what many people don’t quite tell you is that they also have the ability to make you doubt yourself and your own passions and your own path. I can’t tell you how many times this year alone that I thought I wanted to quit because things weren’t quite going as I expected. When things just didn’t seem to be worth it anymore. But then I realized why those feelings were setting in.

It goes back to humility. The act of selflessness. The act of appreciation. I wasn’t separating myself from my past life of college fun, freedom to be a journalist and a poet and an artist all at once. I wasn’t allowing myself to transition into the now moment of my life to really appreciate what’s happening and how blessed I truly am. If the people around you don’t motivate you to want THAT kind of lifestyle, it could either be one of two things:

  1. Check your friends, boo.
  2. Check yourself.

In this instance, I knew my friends were DOPE. I needed to check THYSELF.

Going forward, I want more humility sprinkled into my daily life. I want more joy and peace with my journey and more of an appreciation for what God has blessed me with. Someone posted a question on Twitter, asking their followers to reflect on the things they accomplished this year, and encouraging them to celebrate themselves. When preparing my answer, I realize my track record is a high one and very groundbreaking. To graduate college and almost immediately get my dream job in my desired career field is nothing but the grace of God. To live in a new area that is filled with hope, light and love is the icing on the cake. To be in a position where one day I can better provide for myself, soon enough giving back to my family all they’ve given me in the simplest gestures. It’s very encouraging.

2017 is a promising year, but honestly, I can’t even bring myself to focus on resolutions when I haven’t quite yet finished up celebrating me making it through this year.

So cheers to 2017, but also, cheers to the journey of 2016 that is preparing me to move into a better way of life.

“Always stay gracious”

  • K