The Growth Factor

Every relationship that you enter into, and I’m not just talking about the “love” – type of relationship, that is to say every engagement with a person should warrant, on your end, personal growth.

I’ve become more aware as I grow mentally and spiritually, that my personal relationships with which the people I surround myself have a more of a profound impact on my life, than ever before.
You must learn to let all of your relationships, whether they are still going strong, have ended, or will be fostered, allow you to grow as a person. No one person was put into your life on accident, by mistake. There’s a reason behind every relationship and a purpose behind every person.
Friendships should teach you value, communication, trust, and one of the purest forms of love. When you have a true friendship you value that person for exactly who they are, not what they can give to you. Your communication should be honest, truthful, and real. I have come to believe that a true friend is not afraid to tell you the truth, no matter how harsh it may be, no matter how much you do not want to hear it. That is not to say, go hurting your friend’s feelings just because. Rather, when the situation calls for it, be truthful. Love in a relationship is not the physical sense of the word, but the emotional, the mental, the spiritual, the untouchable. Giving love to a friend or maybe even a complete stranger requires that you put that person ahead of yourself. It may require that you pray for them daily, give them advice, bail them out, help them out, or simply be there for them. Whatever it may be, when you have a friend by your side, it’s merely another person in your corner, who loves you, who wants to see you grow. They want to be a part of your growth factor. Friends are there to make the growth process easier. They see the potential in you, when you may not even see it in yourself. They believe in you, even if you don’t believe in yourself.

Relationships, should not hinder your growth as a person, but rather add to your growth. Relationships in the sense of “boyfriend/girlfriend” are always a touchy subject. You love it when you’re with that person, can’t stand it when you’re not, it may hurt when you’re with them, and it may hurt when you’re not with them. But, regardless, it should teach you more about yourself. The capacity to love another individual, should show you of your endless and self-less ability to feel and experience an overwhelming emotion for someone other than family. If you’re currently in a relationship, remember that you are still an individual. “Never leave the “you” out of a relationship, just in case the other person decides to leave” <– Perhaps the most key quote to remember. Never forget that you must continue to look after yourself, physically, spiritually, and mentally. How can you continue to give your "all" to a person, when you left "you" at the door?
On the other end of the spectrum, if you are no longer in a relationship, don't forget the you, whom you used to be, before that person. Just because that person is no longer with you, does not warrant that you should not work to grow for yourself. Rest on the comfort of knowing that that person was put in your life to teach you something. Just like life itself, one that person's mission is complete, they are taken from you. The "taken" process, is generally the hardest for most. You dwell on the realization that they are no longer a part of your life, your storyline, your script. But, completely eradicate the purpose of the scene. Moving on to the next act, the next episode is where your growth factors in. Taking a few moments daily to really think about the purpose that person had in your life, makes growing and learning from the relationship easier. While every day may feel like a battle once you walk outside your door, even if it's 0.00000001% easier…it helps.

Using my past relationships as example, I've learned that I have the capacity to love beyond everything. There is no limit to what I'd go through for that special person. Hanging on to the hope, that the lessons I've learned, the lengths I've grown are not in vain, satisfies me that my future husband is going to have it all – my all. I'm being molded daily, into the virtuous woman that he so truly deserves and I giggle at the fact that he already loves all my flaws, short-comings, mistakes, and transgressions.
You see, my growth factor was when I learned, that all of my relationships are a part of my process. They are merely chapters in my book, inscribed indelibly for that special someone to read some day. Yes, while in the present, it may be hard to sit next to that person I went through many experiences with, not being able to hold their hand, feel the warmth of their touch or hug, or even feel the softness of their kiss. But knowing that what they taught me will stay with me for the rest of my journey and that my [someday] husband will be receiving the best of me, feels much better.

Above all be blessed,


Clearing the Air

My past is a indication of future mistakes to avoid making in the present.

Had to start off with something deep for ya, to get your mind thinking. I don’t claim to be perfect (far from it), I don’t claim to never make mistakes (I do all the time), I don’t claim to never change (because I have and will continue to). Please never forget that. When you say something, let you words work to speak that something into existence. If you say you’re going to do something, do it. What you says manifests itself in your actions.

My manifestation of my change is the person that I am at this very moment. I know my flaws and it’s a battle that I wake up everyday prepared to go to war with. I have the tendency to complain, to nag, to start arguments. Why? I’ll let you know when I get the complete answer. Seeing how I used to act and how it affected those around me, I work everyday at not being that girl.
Let’s clear the air about a few things and I hope I don’t sound rude, I’m just very adamant about this. I’ve changed. I’ve said I would and I did. Don’t ever tell me what I won’t be able to change or that there’s a high probability that I might slip back to where I was. When GOD puts something on someone’s spirit, it multiplies and multiplies, until it takes over. And that’s JUST what happened. I’m sorry that you’re not able to see the change face-to-face, but it has happened. There’s always a chance I might fall back, but I wake up every morning with THAT as a constant reminder, and I prepare myself through prayer that I won’t allow it to happen.
I don’t want to sound rude, but I don’t want to convince you or persuade you. I’m not put on this earth to please man, I’m put here to please GOD and do HIS will. I only have to prove myself to HIM, not anyone else. He started something within me that makes me want to be a better person, a happier one. I didn’t see it then, but it’s clear to me now. Let’s clear the air, I said I wanted to change, and speaking it into existence was just what I did.
I took a risk and trusted GOD completely. HE worked on me, and it still working on me. I’m no where near perfect, but I’m seeking perfection in HIM. What I need for you to do, is take a risk also. Believe that “hey, maybe it IS possible that what she’s saying is true.”..”Maybe she has changed and does want better”

I just wanted to clear the air about a few things.

Above all be blessed,

P.S. – just a little something I found pertinent

“Love takes courage. Be courageous.”

Pulling the Wool Off

We do this every day. We walk around, going about our own business, immune to the plights of others, thinking that what we’re doing is more important, that no one else matters. We step on people’s toes, lives, heart, and feelings to satisfy our own basic needs. We forget that our brother or our sister is only human – that they matter. We walk around with the wool covering our eyes, thus blinding us from everything that is going on around us. We begin to think and believe only what we allow ourselves to think and believe, never REALLY knowing what is going on on the other side. We think we know, until we step into the light and have no idea what just hit up. We have to take a moment to collect ourselves, then figure out the next step to take.
We must pull the wool off. We must no longer to blind to our brothers. Hurting them for our pleasures. We must see and critique our actions for their worth. If you are constantly and consistently doing the same thing to hurt him or her, without cause, concern, or care for that person, you do not care for them. You can say you love them, but you’re not loving them. Know the difference. You claim that you never want to hurt that person, but you’re doing exactly that. If you are saying that you want to change, be better, and make things better, you have to put your words into action. You saying that you want to change, but doing exactly the opposite. You cannot expect that person to believe your same old tired lies, as if saying it more times means it’s more likely to happen. You can fool yourself as many times as you let yourself, but fooling another person, not even a magician can master.
I’ve fooled myself long enough. I’m pulling the wool off mine own eyes. I’m being “told about myself”, about my issues, my problems and I’m more than thankful. It’s ironic, that I write this, because I’m going through this. But when I write, I step beside myself to get my words out, then jump back in and put my $0.02 in. I was fooling myself the entire time, thinking what I thought it was, when really it was nothing close to what it REALLY was. I fooled no one else, everyone saw the fool that I had made myself. And honestly, that’s fine. I’ve learned that I’m the type of person that fails the 1st time, then rises up and shows you how to succeed the 2nd time. I’m not that good that I can do it and get it right the first time. I struggle, I fall, I fail, I fall short. But, I learn. With GOD’s help, I learned to pick myself back up, dust myself off, and try again.
We all need to pull the wool off, and stop being oblivious, acting like we’re the best of the best, like we got all of our ducks in a row. We all fall short, we all fail, we all don’t get it right the first time. THAT warrants our learning. I believe the BEST friends are the ones that tell you the 100%, cold hard TRUTH about yourself, regardless of whether it hurts or is harsh.
I think, a person’s heart is most sincere when they’re told about themselves. When they’re pinned against a wall, with no foreseeable escape route. They have neither no where to go nor no choice to make. When your heart’s sincere, when it’s 100% NOT working for your own personal benefit, that’s when you know you’re heading in the right direction. When you leave your feelings, opinions or thoughts out of whatever situation you got yourself in to, THAT’s when you’re being truthful, when you’re being real. Ulterior motives have only one place, a dictionary, so we know how to define them, that’s it.
This is me with my back against the wall. I have no moves left to make. This is no longer about me, I am no longer a factor in this equation. I’ve realized I’m more broken than I actually thought. My life is infinitely “Under Construction”. I’m coming up from that deep, dark chocolate layer that I lived in because I can’t hide it in anymore. I’m pulling the wool off my life…

Above all be blessed,

Never Leave Your Baggage

Just like when you go on a vacation, you never leave your baggage. When you’re at the airport, you never leave your baggage unattained. Equatable to all of these situations, is how you should conduct yourself in a relationship.

Motivation Speaker, Tony Gaskins once stated, “When in a relationship, leave some room for YOU, just in case the other person decides to leave”
Probably one of the most important personal rules, that we all manage to break, some way of another. We get caught up in relationships. We tend to put our “all” into the other person, with the belief that THAT will somehow make the relationship flourish or be better. What we fail to realize that the more we invest into ONE person, the less we invest into ourselves, meaning that we deteriorate in the process.

Never leave your past relationships out of your current or future relationships. This about this. Your past is the culmination of your present self. The you, you are now, is made up of your past experiences, whether it be relationships or experiences. Where you came from and what you went through make up the person that you are at this very moment.
I was talking to a friend that was going through a breakup the other day. She said that she hoped that she didn’t carry over the negative experiences of this previous relationship into her future one. I told her, that she was being ludicrous. That she should be proud of the experiences that she went through and she should also be willing to pick up what she went through and bring it to the next, because that is how she became the woman that she is. I say this, so that you never leave your baggage. The next man or woman, that you enter into a relationship with, should be an “upgrade” from your last. That is to say, that he/she should be more than able to handle your past experiences, helping you grow and learn.

Never leave your baggage. You wouldn’t do it at an airport, on a road-trip, or in a different country. Why would entering into a relationship any different? Your next destination, if it is not your final, should be a stepping stone. It should carry you forward, allowing you to grow as a person, molding you experience by experience. If it hinders your growth as a person or pushes you backward in your walk, you might want to reconsider the relationship.

Above all be blessed,

Rediscovering Yourself

Becoming the person that you want to be, the person that you see yourself as, is no easy task. Self-discovery is one of that hardest Zen’s to achieve, because few people honestly know how to look at themselves from the outside, to evaluate what they need to change on the inside. Anyone can say, “I want to change this” or “I need to start doing that..” But it’s those rare type of people that put their words into action. What they believe, becomes what they say, which manifests into what they do. Self discovery, as this talks about is the process of being true to yourself. It is not simply, noticing a change, and doing it. But rather, working toward making each day better than yesterday. It is putting your words into action on a daily basis, keeping yourself in check. This is rediscovering yourself..

There is almost always a catalyst that leads to a person desiring to understand themselves more. Unfortunately, most of these events, are negative. We pick back up an addiction, we break a promise, we cheat, we’re abused, we lie, a loved-one passes away, or a relationship ends. Regardless of the situation you were in, learning to live your life, the way YOU want to live it, is as easy as you make it. Taking back control of yourself starts with one simple step: changing the way you look at life.
Anyone that’s ever been depressed, knows how everything closes in on you. How small you think your world is, how you think nothing is ever going to be good again, or how you think your life is over. But anyone who’s ever overcome, such a situation, knows, that, “the trouble don’t last always.” You’re only unhappy as long as you keep allowing yourself to stay in that mindset. When all the thoughts you’re allowing to penetrate your mind are negative and self-mutilating, that’s all your situation is ever going to amount to – unless you take action and change it.

Tricking your mind into believing that you won’t always be unhappy is the key to breaking free from that grey rain cloud over your head. The more you tell yourself that you’re going to be okay, the more the odds are in your favor that you will be okay. I speak personally in all my blogs. With that said, I thought it was over (like always.) I wanted to do nothing, but lay in my bed. I’d go to class, get back in bed. Go to a meeting for my job, get back in bed. If it wasn’t mandatory that I do it, I didn’t do it. My bed was my comfort zone, no one could hurt me, I could fall asleep and wake up in peace. But the truth was, I fell asleep in a puddle of my own tears, and woke up the same way.

What changed for me, was GOD, that divine being that came and literally took all my sorrows away. Yes, I still have bad days, I’ll think about it, and get into one of those moods where your thoughts take over. But those are slowly fading away.

I do more for myself. I go shopping by myself, I take myself to the movies, go get coffee by myself. Just to reiterate the fact that, I’m okay. That I don’t need someone to be complete. Yes, the company was amazing and all the other details were a blessing. But I am also a blessing by myself. I’ve strengthened friendships, but most importantly I’ve made it a point to be a blessing to others more than they are a blessing to me.

When you rediscover yourself, everyday is a new opportunity. Every opportunity sets a fire ablaze inside of you. You will have bad days, but everyone has bad days. But the more you reinforce your positivity, the few and far between the bad days appear.

I look at my mistakes, my failures, my past “regrets”, as stepping stones. Because they all brought me to where I am now. Every boy I’ve loved, only made me able to love the man I’ll one day be blessed enough call my husband. Every friend I’ve had, kept, and lost, only made me able to be a better friend to those in my life now. Every mistake, only made it easier to be cautious of the next. Every failure only made me more passionate to succeed. Every past “regret” only made me more blessed, aware, cautious, passionate, and thankful because I learned.

I wish the woman that I am now, could, in some way, go back to that night, when the old me was curled up on the floor, drenched in tears, so I could pick her up and tell her it’s going to be okay, that you don’t have to cry. But, like a wise friend once told me, “’s a process that you have to go through..that you’re still going through.”

Remember, it’s a process. It’s a day-by-day thing. You can’t plan ahead, call in advance, or RSVP. It’s a flow as you go, stay on your toes, shoot first ask questions later, type of process.

Above all be blessed,

If You Let It…

This is one of my more personal pieces. Like I said in “Concept of a Blog – The Beginning”, I am only using experiences from my life or that which I see through my eyes. This is about holding on…

Negative experiences are bound to happen in our lives. People hurt us, they lie to us, they cheat, they steal, and sadly, they kill. Each of the aforementioned situations being sinful in nature. I speak from a Christian point-of-view because that is who I am – a Christian woman.

Holding on to grudges does nothing but allow that person to dwell in the house of your heart. When you hold on to how someone hurt you, how they lied, how they cheated, what they stole, whom they killed, you’re only giving them the power.

From a Christian standpoint, holding grudges is a sin…if you think about it. Let’s think. If we sin, but we are serious about our faith and religion, we ask for forgiveness from the LORD. We ask that HE forgives us our sins, renew our hearts, guide us, and keep us. Or something along those lines. With a sincere heart, the LORD will grant us our wish, because HE sees the complete potential in us. And HE knows that if we’re true to our word, that we will stay focused. HE always forgives. The ONE thing that ALWAYS trips me out if that the LORD, can forgive easily, but MAN…oh Man is a completely different situation. Man will hold onto grudges for extended periods of times. Why do they think they’re more high & mighty than HE, that they can hold something over someone’s head. Do you know that it does no good for you to hold on? Yes, I know I hurt you. I know I said things that I wish I could take back. But the fact of the matter is, that I can’t take it back. What I said was 100% in the heat of the moment. I didn’t think about how it would or could affect you. But does that one moment, or a small culmination of bickering spats mean that it’s all completely over? I never thought it would amount to that, but it did. I can’t change that or your mind.

Next to holding on, is the topic of belief. I believe in an relationship, regardless of whether it is “just friends”, best-friends, or one of love, that belief in the other person should be a constant. People change, people make mistakes, and they say things that they don’t mean. But, you’re accountable to that person, you should always believe in their utmost potential. When you love someone you only want to see them be successful and happy. You work to make sure that happens for that person. You build them up. When your loved one changes, you have to believe that it’s for the best, then you have to make the best out of it. When they say things they don’t mean, you have to believe that they are truly sorry. When a person says they changed, you should believe them, no matter how many times they may claim, because you don’t know what GOD did within them, you don’t know what HE’s been working on in their spirit. They could have become a better person, but you lost the belief in them, that you just walked away. Yes, I’ll acknowledge that there may be a point where enough is enough, but when you believe the best in a best, you’ll know.

I read a comment, by a woman of GOD that meant a lot to me, she said, ” When in a relationship…remember Love is about SERVICE and CONTINUAL FORGIVENESS…they go hand in hand & it is a choice.” When you think about it, she’s absolutely right. Love is about service to GOD, praising HIM for providing you with that person, with that outlet. It is about service to that person, making sure their needs are met, they are focused, provided for, cared for, and loved. And, when the situation calls for it, it’s about continual forgiveness. No one ever said that we’re perfect, we’re designed to mess up, make mistakes, and fall short. That doesn’t mean that we’re bad people, it means we’re human. Continual forgiveness makes you, as a couple stronger, because you can always grow and move forward together. If you’re in a relationship, constantly remember and trust GOD. Keeping HIM first, is the key to keeping your relationship.

As I come to know more about myself daily, I find that no relationship is too far gone. Yes, some people just “can’t be together”, but if they worked at it, there’s NO telling the miracles that they could create. I believe there are guidelines and issues that must be communicated, but I believe that every relationship has the opportunity to be something great, if you let it.

Above all be blessed,

Picking Up the Pieces

I am a afraid that the only way to begin this article is through a child’s story, one that we all are quite familiar with – The Three Little Pigs. There is not need to rehash the story, but it goes as following. There were 3 pigs, all of whom were building houses. There was a wolf, who wanted to eat the 3 little pigs. The first pig built his house out of straw, because it was the easiest thing to do. The wolf blew that down, as easily as it was made. The second pig, built his home out of sticks, because it was stronger than straw. But, the wolf blew that down too. The third pig, after seeing what his brothers went through, decided to build his home out of bricks. The wolf tried, but he failed to blow the 3rd pigs house down.
You’re probably wondering what a child story has to do with life. Well, it has everything to do with life. There are possible a dozen or more morals that you can take from this fable, but one that I would like to elaborate on is “Third Time’s A Charm”. We’ve all heard it, it’s based of the knowledge that the first time you try something, it’ll probably fail. Your second attempt is meant to learn from the first, and if that fails. You know what NOT to do for the 3rd attempt – making it the most successful. Let’s acknowledge that, there are some circumstances that make require more than 3, but for the sake of the argument, let’s assume 3.
We are human, and thus immortal. We can be broken down, only to be built back stronger than before. The number of times in which we will be broken down is innumerable, leaving our strength to be infinite.
The proverbial human heart was designed to break, so that it could build back stronger than before. Through the course of our lives, we go through various experiences that leave us depressed, broken-hearted, confused, bewildered, or lost. The one thing that you must do for yourself and only yourself, is pick up the pieces of your life. We’ve all been there, and yes, we’ve all done that. Laying on the floor, crying your eyes out, blaming yourself may be a huge release, but it cannot last forever. You’re eventually going to have to get up, dry your eyes, and move forward. And while it may be a long, hard, emotionally trying experience, it’ll be one of the best lessons of your life.
I want to talk more about heartbreak, because it’s a topic that most people have in common. While it maybe be different for ever person, the one common denominator is that it hurts. I choose to believe that no one person enjoys heartbreak. Being in a relationship with someone, sharing a part of your life, engaging in emotional experiences, and devoting time to that person are all things we are not able to get back once they’re gone.The ending of a relationship, if you let it, can be a traumatic experience. Speaking 100% from my situation, heartbreak has been emotionally, spiritually, physically, and mentally exhausting. I’ve blamed myself on more occasions than I can remember. I’ve cried, more tears than there are raindrops in the sky. I have been more broken-hearted than I could have ever imagined possible. What sparked the change in my life was #1 GOD. I am a complete believer that HE will never put more on me than I could bare. So, I know what I am going through, HE will bring me through. After belief being restored was the need for personal gratification. No man or woman should be responsible for your happiness. You have to be happy for yourself, you have to want your own happy, and it will come. Making the decision to no longer want to waste time crying over spilled milk, will allow a flood a endorphins to enter your life. Try something new, start exercising, doing something for yourself. Proving to yourself that you can be happy again without you significant other by your side, will help. I’m not saying you won’t have bad days, there will always be bad days. I still can’t help myself, it’s life. You just learn to wish harder for better days.

Heartbreak doesn’t have to last forever, it lasts for as long as you let it. If you decide to do nothing, you chose to receive nothing.

Here comes the cheesy portion. If you’re experiencing heartbreak, or anything of the such, you’re not alone. There are others that have went through it, and many who have gotten through it. There’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to either. Every person deserves to be happy, regardless of whether they are single or in a relationship. The best way to start your happiness is with yourself.

Above all be blessed,