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Choices

Hope and FearYour life path is heavily dependent on your choices.  Let your dreams, hopes, and aspirations dictate your path not your fears.  2 Timothy 1:7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.

 

Shade, but YES Shade: Find out why it’s OK to be Shady!!

Shade Tamar

“Shade, but no shade,” shady boots,” “throwing shade”….all these terms have recently become very popular.  From my recollection, the use of the term “shade” started with my girl Tamar Braxton from Braxton Family Values and Tamar and Vince. What can I say; I have a weak spot for Reality TV! :-) According to my handy dandy urban dictionary, the definition of shade is as follows:

“Keeping it Real, Stating the obvious, bringing light to questionable behaviors in a “non-judgmental” or slightly comical way. At times, when necessary, can be used to be condescending. The phrase can be placed where ever the user feels most appropriate “throwing” shade… in a sentence. This phrase gives the user a “pass” for saying something that may typically be viewed as off-putting/ offensive.”

As we all know, everything in life is open to interpretation. So go with me as I put a little spin on the definition of shade… Continue reading Shade, but YES Shade: Find out why it’s OK to be Shady!!

Who’s Sleepy?! 6 Tips to Getting Better Rest

Tips for Better Rest

“I am so sleepy!!” I think I say this about every day! I know that I am a night owl, but something has to give. I try my best to go to bed at a decent hour, but something always comes up. Now I must admit; there are times when I’m glued to the TV watching the Wendy Williams show, which by the way, comes on at 12 AM! What can I say, I love me some Wendy Williams…don’t judge me! LOL! However, with more things being added to my plate and with more things that I want to do, it’s time to discover ways to become more productive. I know that NOT feeling sleepy half of the day will definitely add to my productivity! I recently ran across an article that gave great tips on how to achieve better sleep. Check out some of the tips below that I thought were pretty interesting!   Continue reading Who’s Sleepy?! 6 Tips to Getting Better Rest

New Music Monday: Time to go Behind Bars!

behindbarsfrontcover  It’s not every day that you come across a listen worthy mixtape. However, Big Tim’s “Behind Bars The Mixtape ” is one of them!  With a versatile arrangement of the industry’s hottest tracks, Big Tim certainly delivers; from the high energy “High Beams On” to the trap inspired “King”. Traditionally, Christian rap has always followed a certain formula. Big Tim has definitely broken that mold and created his own sound.  Continue reading New Music Monday: Time to go Behind Bars!

3 SureFIRE Ways to Keep your COOL!

how to keep your cool Responsible, Cool, Level-headed, Even- tempered…these are all words that people have used to describe me.  I consider myself to be the calm in the storm; the person that everyone gravitates to for sound advice when things get a little hectic.  And let me tell you, that doesn’t always go over well!  For instance, it gets on my mom’s nerves sometimes! LOL!  She likes a reaction!  If she’s upset with something, she wants me to show the same level of emotion as her!  Don’t get me wrong, I believe that emotion is good!  It’s great actually!  We are all human.  There are things that will make us happy, sad, mad, excited, confused, etc.  We are extremely complex, so it’s natural for us to experience and display a range of emotions.  But one thing I’ve always worked on is making sure that people, things, and situations don’t get the best of me.  I never want to be so affected by someone else’s actions, situations, or the lack/abundance of things that my emotions go haywire every time the wind blows!

Life is a beautiful complexity, isn’t it??  We have control over nothing and at the same time have control over everything!   On one hand, we don’t know what’s going to happen from day to day, hour to hour, or minute to minute.  On the other hand, we have control over ourselves!  In this crazy, unpredictable world, you have the power to control you. .. control your thoughts, actions, and words.  The way you view situations, the way you handle adversity, the way you handle blessings, the things you say… everything you do shapes your reality.  We all represent different threads that make up the fabric of the world in which we live.  Although there are things we can’t control, so much of what we do as individuals impact the world around us.  Don’t let the world change you, you change it!  Remember, a thermometer changes based on the environment in which it is emerged, a thermostat sets the temperature and controls the environment in which it is used! Have a thermostat mentality… set the atmosphere, don’t let the atmosphere set you!!

3 SureFIRE Ways to Keep Your COOL!

  1. Focus on what you can control- Why stress over something that you have no control over?  It will only make you more upset!  Focus on what you can do and do it.  It will give you a sense of control, accomplishment, and progression.
  2. Understand that in every situation, you win-   Regardless of the situation you encounter, good or bad, you learn something.  And you know what they say, when you know better, you do better… and with that YOU will definitely become BETTER!  We can all agree that becoming a better person is always a WIN, right?!
  3. Be Grateful- You may not have been expecting this tip, but it’s probably the most important one of them all.  There is always somebody dealing with issues and situations that are worse than yours.  When you keep this in mind, it will put everything back into perspective.  It will take you from the mindset of “why me?” to “why not me?”  When you get to that train of thought, you begin to go back to Step 1- Focusing on what you can control…and doing it!

Now go out there and be COOL!

Elle Zsanee

Why Being USED can be a Good Thing

AuuBannerImage2011FBProfileWhen I was younger, I always made sure my homework got completed on time and studied for every test.  Well since everyone knew that, a few would want to copy my homework or cheat off of my test…and I wasn’t having that! LOL!  My philosophy was, “Oh no! You’re not going to use me!  I didn’t work my behind off while you were out having fun so that you could just copy my work!”  Years later, I noticed that I developed a problem with sharing, always afraid of being taken advantage of.

So fast-forward to today, one day before the one month anniversary of the loss of my stepfather.  Sometimes that word “stepfather” can have a negative connotation, like it’s a step below or beneath your biological parents.  So I’ll call him my “bonus” Dad!  He was in my life since the age of 1 years old.  With Father’s Day around the corner, it hit me while I was shopping for Father’s Day cards that I don’t have to get two cards this year.  I usually get one for my Dad and one for my “Bonus” Dad.  I can’t lie; I shed a couple tears walking out of the store that day because the fact of the matter is… he’s gone.  I’m pretty sure that when his birthday comes around and when we hit the major holidays it’s going to be tough.  But one thing that gives me joy is that he’s basking in the glory of HEAVEN!  And we will definitely meet again!

With the death of my “Bonus” Dad and the recent death of Dr. Maya Angelou, it really hit me, more than ever, that life isn’t promised.  We won’t be here forever.  God has blessed us with so many gifts and talents and has provided an abundance of wondrous things in this world for us to view and explore.  Don’t be afraid to share what God has deposited in you because you’re afraid of people taking advantage of or belittling what you have to offer!  Get used up!!  When your time has come, you shouldn’t want there to be anything left to give!  Live life in a way so that everything that God has deposited in you will be planted as a seed which will grow and bless many generations after you!!  Be USED, Be BLESSED, and Be a BLESSING!

Elle Zsanee

Why the idea of being #1 Scares You?

inspiration motivation

The word “first” according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is defined as preceding all others in time, order, or importance.  “Afraid” is defined as feeling fear or anxiety; frightened.  The root of fear is most commonly the unknown; and  let’s face it, I don’t care how much of a daredevil you are, we all want to have a slight idea of what to expect when going into a situation!

As you continue reading, keep these three words at the forefront of your mind:

  1. First
  2. Afraid
  3. Unknown

The African American Network at my company hosted a Black History Celebration honoring elementary students who wrote essays regarding influential African Americans in our history.  Garrett Johnson, CEO and co-founder of SendHub, was invited to be the guest speaker.

Initially I was expecting Garrett’s speech to be centered only on SendHub.  However, it was an extremely inspiring speech on how he went from being an undergraduate at Florida State University to a Rhodes Scholars Recipient (1st African American Male at FSU), to the Senate, and now an entrepreneur!  The most inspiring piece of advice that he gave was simply this:

“Never be afraid to be the first.”

As simple as that may sound, so many of us have not taken action on our dreams and our passions because we’re afraid to be first; afraid of the unknown.  Being first, means being a trailblazer.  Being a trailblazer means blazing a trail of unknowns.  Blazing a trail of unknowns can make us afraid.  It can be a trail of being the first person in your family/social circle to: graduate from college, create a new invention, become a multimillion dollar entrepreneur, become a famous actor/actress, and the list goes on and on…

Don’t let the fear of the unknown be the reason why your dreams continue to be just that….dreams and NOT a reality!! Never be afraid to be different, to be bold, to be singular…to be the FIRST!

Garrett Johnson, CEO and Co-Founder of SendHub and I at the Black History Celebration
Garrett Johnson, CEO and Co-Founder of SendHub and I at the Black History Celebration

Be Blessed!

It’s OK to NOT be OK…

ok

I’m the person people call when they need encouragement.  Whether they are upset, need advice, have relationship issues, career issues, or overall life issues.  This is the main reason why I started this blog.  I believe that I have a God-given gift of being uplifting, positive, and encouraging and I wanted to embrace that fully.  If I can uplift or inspire one person, that is a reward in itself.

Even though I try to maintain a positive attitude, I’m human.  I go through life issues too!  And I must admit, I’m a little tired ya’ll!!  I’m a single woman, and  trying to navigate this single life, while keeping your mind and heart in check can be draining!   On top of that, my Stepdad has been battling cancer for about 2 years now.  It’s not only extremely  tough on him, but the family as well.  An 8-5 job, working on new business ventures, exercising 3 to 4 times a week, participating in community programs,  Sorority commitments, family commitments, etc can  just become a lot to manage at times.

I’ve just been feeling spiritually drained lately.  Have you ever felt tired even though you’ve gotten physical rest?  To me that’s a sign that you are spiritually tired…an inward type of tiredness.  I know I’m not the only one going through life issues, as a matter of fact, I know people are going through much worse.  So all I’m saying is that there are days when I’m not OK, but it’s OK.  We all go through valleys in our lives, we just need to not be consumed by them.  Here are a few steps to help you with “not being OK”…

  1. Admit that you are feeling some type of way.  You don’t even need to know what that “way” is.  But by acknowledging it, you give yourself an opening to explore and understand your feelings freely without any additional feelings of failure, guilt, or shame.
  2. Say a “May I”.  This is something new that I came across while watching a YouTube video of Tracee Ellis Ross.  A “May I” acknowledges where you are at,  yet invites you in a gentle way to where you want to go.  A “May I” can be anything you want it to be.  One of Tracee’s most popular “May I” is: “May the space between where I am and where I want to be inspire me.”  Tracee’s You Tube channel has really been giving me life!  Subscribe to her channel if you want to get great little nuggets of knowledge in a quirky way!
  3. Last but not least, keep God FIRST.  Every time I get out of sorts, it is a direct sign that I’ve taken my eyes off the prize.  Mathew 6:33 says, ” But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”  When God is first, he will put all your broken pieces back together in a way that makes an even better picture!  I actually just signed up to do the 3030 Challenge with Joyce Meyer.  It’s time for me to get my focus back in order… God first, and then everything else.  If you would like to take the challenge with me, feel free to sign up here!  Life can be draining at times, and the Word is the only thing that can truly refresh your soul.

Hopefully, after following these steps, you will become much better than OK!  Don’t get consumed in the valley…the mountain top is just ahead!! :-)

Be blessed!

Elle Zsanee