The Year of the 24

Can I tell you guys that I started year 24 with a lot of hope. I was determined that it would be my best year yet especially, as my supervisor reminded me, it was my year according to the Chinese. Year 24 has been challenging, frustrating and rewarding. Most importantly, it is the year that I’ve learned to be brave and find and define the positives.
 After almost three years of chosen singleness, I felt ready to be open and step out again. Fear and indecisiveness ruled me until my friends took matters into their own hands. Before I had time to think, I was agreeing to do to something different. My friends would ensure that I went on at least one date per month! 
That challenge was successful in a way that I didn’t expect! It turns out that my friends’ taste in men may be as atrocious as mine but these were experiences worth having. I still haven’t found “the one” but these were experiences worth having. For example:

  1. Mr. April, a friend, reminded me to listen. I was blown away the simple yet considerate touches he made to ensure our date was memorable.
  2. Mr. May, the lawyer who boasted constantly about himself and his successes reminded me of the grace and dignity which exists in being humble. 
  3. Mr. June, the guy who felt the need to tell me exactly where he thought a woman’s place is – in the home and breeding – reminded me of the importance of chasing after what i believed and never letting anyone, but God, stick a label on me.
  4. Mr. July, the guy who made me laugh until I cried, reminded me of the joy that came with smiling from within and being silly just because and the joy that exists in sharing that light. 
  5. Mr. August, the guy with the gap in his teeth who tried to grope me, gave me two lessons. The gap reminded me of a close friend I had a few years ago who disconnected when we had a major fall -out. Realizing how much I missed him, I reached out and we reconnected. He also reminded me of the importance of treating persons in the way that I expected to be treated. I walked away without giving him the kick my indignation said he deserved.
  6. Mr. September taught me to be open to expressing myself and slowing down and taking the time to savour the things I enjoy. I now ensure that I take the time to stop and smell the roses and, most importantly, to relax.
  7. I didn’t go on a date with Mr. October but he reminded me of the biggest and most painful lesson of all. Crying when disappointed or hurt is not an indication of weakness or defeat but of strength, especially when after you are done, you get up and get back in the game swinging with all your might. Weakness is your unwillingness or inability to deal with the hurt/disappointment and allowing it to take root and fester inside. He reminded me to BE BRAVE!

More than 3/4s of my experiences so far haven’t been anything to write home about but they have been very eye-opening. In fact, I look forward to continuing the challenge right up to the end of March 2018. You see guys, no matter how despairing, disheartening and disappointing the situation may seem, it’s all about perspective. 

I prefer to believe that there is a good reason or positive light to every negative. God has too much in store for you for you to only focus on the negative side of any experience you have!

The glass is only half-empty if you choose to see it that way. As for me? I prefer my glass half-full with a lot of room for possibilities, opportunities and…good wine. 😉 What about you?

XOXO
Chañel.

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What Letting Go Has Taught Me…

After a long week, I took some time to just reflect on life and where I’ve progressed to since the year began. I realized something about myself. Many of the persons I had started the year with, has disappeared. This made me pause and reflect on how I felt about their disappearance. I realized I was okay.

A few months ago, I wrote a post about keeping persons to your standards. A confession, sometimes I write very good advice but I am generally the last to take it. What do they say about the counsellor? They need the most counseling… For weeks after that post, I would find myself getting annoyed with myself when people walked all over my standards and I kept them around. Frankly I was miserable and I decided to actively do something about it. I must say that once you begin to stand up for yourself, you will be amazed how quickly persons either pulled up their socks or disappeared.

Some of these persons tried to reappear later but I stuck to my mantra and eventually they would leave for good once they realized what I now stood for. I can’t moan about the disappearing acts, frankly, good riddance.

Another thing that changed was that I stopped allowing persons to drag me into their drama. I am a regular Miss-Fix-It. Maybe that is why I make such a good Project Manager… It is simply amazing how much energy it takes to deal with other persons’ drama. What makes it worse is when sometimes, these are the persons who you can never depend on. It made me wonder, what was the use, if these persons were only in your life to drain you. Now, whenever I want to say something or intervene, I beg the Lord to hold my tongue or simply walked away.

My final habit that changed was my “Superwoman mentality”. This on many occasions caused me to burn out and persons often took advantage of my inability to say “no”. I have begun to say “no”. Frankly, it feels good to be able to have time to myself and be able to do the things that I want to do. This meant that a lot of people walked away once they realized I was no longer available to be twisted around their fingers. Frankly, that set leaving was a breath of fresh air.

Friendship, I found, is never about quantity. It’s simply the quality. I would rather have a few good friends who look out for me than an entire army of friends whose actions are a guarantee to my destruction. I prefer to walk into my peace. Don’t you agree? Let me know your thoughts on the subject in the comments area below.

XOXO,
Chañel.

Shut Up and Act!

 

 

“Talk is CHEAP” is something my mentor used to tell me constantly. Actions have always spoken louder than words. In fact, if you think about it, the man generally feared is the one who metes out the judgement barely promised. He is the one who generally is considered deadly because his actions line up with his words.

 

When I was a child, I loved but feared my father. He wasn’t a man who spoke a lot. He would perhaps give a warning look or speak once in a calm voice if I was misbehaving. This was the total opposite of my mom who talked, threatened and warned a lot. My dad was the greater fear because he was the unknown force whose talk meant something.

When you do a lot of talking about your dreams and carry out no actions towards fulfilling them, you are like the little mongrel dog with a lot of noise and no bite. He will make a lot of noise when you approach his  gate but the moment you open it or raise your hand is the moment he takes off. Are you always just talking about your dreams? Where is the action towards fulfilling them? Do you run from or start to make excuses why you can’t take a presented opportunity? It is past time you move to the biting stage. The gates have been open, surely you don’t need God or anyone to push you through. You can reach you goals. It is time YOU STOP TALK THE TALK AND WALK THE TALK.image

XOXO
Chañel

Don’t Be Discouraged


“Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance.”

-Psalm 42:5

I’ve been reading “Battlefield of the Mind” by Joyce Meyer for a couple of weeks now. She was discussing the topic of Chapter 4 “Little By Little” which is simply saying that the renewal of the mind is a process that will bring forth progress…and it happens LITTLE BY LITTLE. In further discussion she added a sub-topic “Don’t Be Discouraged” with the scripture reference Psalm 42:5.

My mind travailed and I started thinking deeply of myself, within myself and how much I overthink, how much my mind strays, how often I get discouraged, how much I let the wind of a lie disquiet me and I was deeeeeply and honestly disappointed with myself. That simple thought alone, told me that my mind needs renewal.

Then I started thinking about my actions, “life’s” disappointments and all the things of the world that DRAGS ME DOWN & is DROWNING ME. Yes…DROWNING ME! It’s not easy when you can’t slide your troubles to the back of your mind without those dirty little mood killers and, depression setters finding their way back to the very surface and stifling all the positive thoughts that you had.

BUT…there’s hope yet. I was encouraged to NOT BE DISCOURAGED. Probably you’re saying to yourself, what is she talking about! How can I elevate myself to be encouraged when I’m caught up in all of this negative web. That’s because you CAN elevate yourself. Remember you are “drowning” in your thoughts….you have not “drowned”! There IS still hope. Drowning means to be overwhelmed by, while Drowned means to be totally submerged with or under and to die. You are not dead! There IS still hope.

I will leave with you a two simple passage of scripture, Romans 12:2 – “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” and Proverbs 18:21 – “Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.”

Be not conformed to lies, to the thoughts that will bring about actions that will hurt you…but be overcome with peace. Be not discouraged, whether in thoughts or in life. Conquer every bad thought with something good. No matter how much retrieval from archives you have to do within that mind of yours…DO IT and OVERCOME!

XOXO,
Mahogany

A Jigsaw Puzzle

As a child, I was fascinated with solving jigsaw puzzles. I would spend hours matching pieces just to see the whole picture. Even today, though I am no longer an ardent player, I still spend time playing the jigsaw app on my laptop.

Have you ever noticed just how nicely two pieces will fit when they are meant for each other? I mean you don’t have to deal with the stress of squeezing the end of one into the hole of the other. They just fit in a way that takes the process one step closer to solving the problem and making the picture much better.

How many of your relationships have been like? You meet persons and they just fall neatly in place. I have many friends who came into my life like that. Even now if I don’t see or talk to them for years, when we meet again, it’s like no time has passed. That is how your relationships should be. You shouldn’t have to force it. If you have a friend which you have to continually fight to keep, maybe that friendship shouldn’t be. If you are in a relationship in which every day feels like a battlefield, maybe the universe is trying to tell you something.

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Emotionally-Unavailable is NOT AVAILABLE

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An encounter with a friend this weekend raised something in my mind. I am confused! Why do females always try to change a male’s mind? This is something that seems to be in females’ make-up, we always believe that we can change a man’s mind! The fact is, this doesn’t always work out so well for us and we are left holding a crap hand of cards.

“If a man tell you that he is not ready for a relationship; believe him the first time.” – Steve Harvey.

Life is too short to waste time trying to change a man’s mind. It is my firm belief that a man shouldn’t need help knowing if he wants you or not. If he tells you that he isn’t ready for a relationship, believe him, no matter his reasoning. I’ve seen cases where the man is still hanged-up over his ex. Do you know what that makes him? It makes him emotionally-unavailable! While I applaud you females for thinking you can make him emotionally-available or change his mind, aren’t you forgetting your value and all your self-worth that you will probably have to sacrifice if you fail?

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When you encounter God…

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A few weeks ago I was having a conversation with a friend about the way youngsters who are Christians behave. She was lamenting the fact that they don’t really behave like Christians. The only thing that came to mind to tell her is that it’s because they haven’t encountered God for themselves yet. A few nights later as I knelt at my bedside praying, that same thought came to me: things will not change until you make it your duty to encounter God.

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