I’ve had this incessant need to say YES. Yes to help , yes to serve, pretty much yes to everything. It’s the main reason why I’ve had so many opportunities and experiences in the media industry at such a young age. I’ve never felt that I was too “big” to perform any task. I’ve worked the door and I’ve worked the stage. Learning, growing, making errors, making amends, letting go, staying, walking away from it all… it’s been quite a journey thus far. One that I do not regret in any way.
But sometimes, the ‘yeses’ kill you. Sometimes enough is enough. And you have to say ‘NO’.
There was a time when I had to walk away from a situation where my peace of mind was being challenged. My desire to please was threatening my mental health and my emotional well-being, not to mention, the sacrifices began to outweigh the benefits. So I left. At first I thought that upon leaving I would feel this huge sense of relief, but the only thing I remember feeling the next day and continuing for some time was a large bout of guilt. I felt empty, useless and alone. I had assigned all of my worth and value to this thing for such a long time that when it was over I thought, surely, I was too.
Weeks went by and the emptiness grew inside of me. Did I make a mistake by saying “no”? Who would I be now that I was no longer there? I felt like everything I had worked towards had disappeared. I felt like I had let myself down ; like I had failed.
One day during this dark period of self doubt, my mother and sister encouraged me to write. “Write your story” they said, “whatever it may look like… write it all down” .
Believe me this was much easier said than done. It involved many ripped pages, many tear-stained pillows, but it began a process of healing and self-awareness that I desperately needed. I needed to give myself a break. I had spent so much time helping, serving, fixing everyone else all the while neglecting myself. Sis was burnt out. Sis was tired. I was sis. And instead of looking at this new season as one of rest, recuperating and restoration, I was hating on myself for finally choosing me.
I chose me. That was worth celebrating. I slowed down. That was worth celebrating. I took my power back. That was definitely worth celebrating. And that I began to do! I began spending time with myself. Finding things to do that I was interested in and that benefited me.
Don’t get me wrong, I am all for being productive and going after goals, but I’ve learnt that rest and relaxation should be goals too.
I am a foodie so relaxing meant wining and dining myself. I ordered this amazing brunch box from ‘Mood for Food’ with all my favourite things – pasta, wings, chocolate chip cookies, fries and apple juice. I sat down and watched my favourite shows, in the comfort of my room and had a good time with the best company ever – me! It felt so awesome to just be at peace and not worry about meeting a deadline or missing a call or an email.
I encourage everyone to do this. Slow down, give yourself a break, do something enjoyable and remember that food is always a mood!
Cut Yourself Some Slack! Remember, It’s Not a Sprint.
Whew. November has been a year! I don’t know how to begin unpacking all the things that’ve taken place. Between the number of times I’ve had to type “R.IP.”or “condolences”, the amount of Covid-19 cases rising globally and other disappointments here and there – I’m going to need December to give us an ease up, please and thanks.
It’s been tough and equally mentally exhausting. For me, at times I’ve been feeling stuck, like I’m not doing enough, not achieving enough or not pushing as hard as I should be. It’s frustrating to say the least, especially when you look on social media and others appear to be doing big things and moving forward in life.
From time to time, my mind goes to that place of negative self-talk as I begin to compare myself to others and the unrealistic standards set by ‘society’. But I’ve had to remind myself that this life isn’t a sprint nor a marathon – it’s a journey and on this journey there are many paths to follow. Everyone’s path is different. Everyone’s speed/progress is different. It doesn’t make anyone more special than the other. It just means, we’re all unique.
Believe it or not, everyone is dealing with some sort of challenge or issue and trying their very best to push through it. Honestly, there are days when I complete all the tasks on my to-do list and then there are those days where getting out of bed is the biggest achievement. Sometimes when you’re in that zone the simples, everyday task can seem like the most difficult thing to do.
If you’ve felt like this or you’re presently feeling this way, please know, it’s okay. Take a breath and release some of that pressure. You’re human and you’re allowed to feel drained, tired or even demotivated. So cut yourself some slack because we all feel this way at some point.
In those moments what helps me the most is reminding myself of all things that I have been able to accomplish thus far. This allows me to see that I have made some sort of progress along the way. It also helps me be kinder with myself so that I don’t judge ‘me’ too harshly for feeling the way that I do.
Another thing that really works for me is doing activities that relax my body and put my mind at ease. Don’t call me weird but I love the smell of vanilla 😂…. Something about that scent calms me. I find peace in those little things, like scented candles or drinking a cup of freshly brewed coffee or tea. Taking these intentional moments to pause, I get to destress, recharge and refocus for all that I have to do next.
Recently, I found myself in desperate need of these sacred moments. So, I contacted the folks at Boxed Kreations on Instagram, and explained my dilemma. I told them some of the items that I really like and I later received a beautifully wrapped package with coffee, scented candles, chocolates and body lotion! Much to my delight every item they selected was either in the flavour or scent of vanilla!
Needless to say, break time has never smelt so good! Cut yourself some slack and call ’em up for that special fix that’ll sooth and restore you! We all deserve it.
Fight For Your Fairytale. And This Is Why!
Love is not a drill.
I grew up in church hearing accounts of a love that never failed. A love that took on the blame of others and made a way for them to be saved – A love that surrendered and conquered all.
In my personal life I felt that to love someone meant to work hard to please them. Make them comfortable at all times , become all that they needed, avoid conflict with them, never anger them, aways ensure that they were happy…. So, that’s exactly what I had set out to do in this world.
But, as you can imagine, I was utterly disappointed by the harsh realities of life. I failed on every account. And no matter how hard I tried or how committed I was to ‘making things work’ – I never found the ‘love’ that I was searching for.
You see, love isn’t one dimensional. It’s not this or that – it’s everything. And between the burning and learning, the heartbreaks and the ups and downs, I eventually acknowledged that I was ‘doing it wrong’. This fairytale-type idea of love that I had wasn’t ideal, or was it?
I was neglecting myself. Scrap that. I didn’t know myself. I didn’t love myself. I didn’t even know what love was. Yet, I was desperately searching for something that I knew nothing about.
I was kind, patient and committed to being the best thing everyone ever had except it was a facade. I wasn’t kind to myself. I wasn’t patient with myself, nor was I committed to being the best version of myself for me.
It took being alone, with nothing but my thoughts to begin this process of self-discovery and love. Every bit of love that I had ever given out so freely I had to call back to myself. Imagine always being around someone you disliked. Well, that’s how I felt about myself. Sad, right?
Repairing that broken image of myself in my mind took a lot of intentional work and rebuilding that relationship I had with myself took a long time. It really wasn’t easy. But, in order to live a fulfilling life it was necessary for me to do.
I started with baby steps. Learning to say kind words to myself, looking in the mirror daily and giving myself a compliment, allowed room for growth. Spending time alone and getting to know me, doing therapy- all in all, it was a lengthy undertaking and I’m still learning and growing, but I’m 100% not where I used to be and for that I am grateful.
Nowadays, I know myself and my worth. My time, my love, my energy, my loyalty is precious and I choose very carefully what or who I invest in and/or align myself with. I didn’t come this far to settle nor am I compromising my standards for anyone or anything. I do not negotiate when it comes to my peace of mind. I will block, delete or walk away from anything that no longer serves me. I deserve the best. Even when things don’t go according to plan or disappointments come, I know that I’m working towards a greater purpose for my life and everything will move into place as I continue to push through and progress.
Within the process of learning me, I set goals and have a vision for my life. I know my purpose and I want my fairytale! My happily ever after where I achieve all of my goals and fulfil my destiny, with or without ‘Prince Charming’.
So yes, I want my cake and I want to eat it too…once it comes from Sweet Surrender TT though. Their pies, cupcakes, cakesicles, cakepops, cookies and more are to live for! Those delicious goodies can be the best pick-me-ups, desserts, treats or anything you want them to be. With mouth-watering flavours like Cappuccino, Baileys, Ponche de Creme, Blueberry, Caramel chocolate, Milk Chocolate, Red Velvet… Need I say more?
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