Keep Pushing

As an educator, it is as if my new year begins when the school year begins, which can explain my minimal activity on my blog throughout the summer. However, I had to prepare for the new year during my down time and I also had to hold myself accountable for the goals I set for myself. Going into the new year, I became full of expectations. I had plans of the role I wanted to fulfill at work and I could almost imagine how my regular routine would be. However, my dreams of working in that role came to an abrupt end.

Unfortunately, I was not afforded the opportunity to move into the new position and although I was very dismayed, what made things worse was that I absolutely believed that I was the most qualified for the position and that I had a chance to work in that role! For me, this was a stepping stone. After all, I am the one who often sees the glass as half empty and for once I saw it half full, but it backfired. After taking such a major blow, I felt defeated and disappointed. Even though the feeling of disappointment still lingers (because I hold onto things a little too long), I know that I have to focus on the right now and eventually what will be ahead for me.

I am sure you have experienced setbacks and disappointments in your life, but what about the ones that hurt the most. You are constantly reminded of them because you have to live with them everyday. I am living with mine as I write this and it is a lot to get adjusted to. However, I was reminded that, Moments of beauty are birthed from pain. Embrace each step in your journey as a prerequisite for your breakthrough. Even though you may not see it, something beautiful will come out of all of those situations that cause you sorrow. I constantly have to remind myself that I have to continue to move forward because those situations do not define me. Ultimately, I know I have to keep pushing.

Now, I am not the typical “grab myself by my bootstraps” and keep it pushing type of girl. I have to do a serious pep talk along with prayer, writing, thinking, planning, and whatever else I think would be beneficial to me. The crazy thing is, while I am “preparing” myself to move forward, I have already begun the process. It is actually a subconscious effort and I believe this is the most important part of it all. However, there are times when I just do not feel like writing or praying about whatever my disappointment may be. I just want to stay mad and when it came to work, mad I was! However, I knew I could not stay in that negative space. After all, I did not want to lash out on my students or be cold towards my coworkers. So, that was where it began. Even though I had no plan or strategies to get over the disappointment, I knew what I did not want to do.

I think we can agree that when we are upset, we tend to hurt others unintentionally and often times, intentionally and let’s face it, it never helps nor does it solve the dilemma. In since I knew that being mad and staying stagnant in that negative space was not going to work, I decided to take it one day at a time. Each day, I tried to not think about how I felt about not getting the position and focused on doing what I did best. Besides, I figured my work would speak for itself and it did. My coworker noticed positive changes in my attitude and she pointed out that I was even smiling more! That, I could not believe considering the devastating news I, at the time, was trying to process. And if that was not confirmation, the department head said the same thing too! Imagine the shocked looked I had on my face. On two separate occasions, I was informed on how great a job I was doing. In that moment, I realized I had been living in the moment, something I find to be difficult for me because my mind is always focused on something that already occurred or something I cannot fix.

Yet, this process was new for me and it felt good. Actually, it still feels good. Instead of staying in that place of hurt, envy, and upset, I learned how to move forward and kept pushing. If you are currently in that space now, decide on what you do not want to do and realize if you cannot control the situation, take your mind off of it. Be in the moment because life continues, even if you are not there mentally and emotionally. So focus on the right now and don’t forget to keep pushing.

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Quiet Confidence

~I wrote this topic about 3 months ago, with every intention to share it, but I guess I had doubts about it. I must admit, this is a little out of my comfort zone!  Anyway, it feels good to open up with such transparency. Guess this is just the beginning. Enjoy!

Keisha J.

Confidence is a character trait I have always had a difficult time with. I never considered myself as one who would be able to walk into a room and be unbothered by another person’s stares or maybe even comments or compliments. I am sure you may be saying, “Who cares about what people think!”. Although that is a valid response, I was often in my own way because of the negative ways I thought about myself, which led me to believe that others thought of me the very same way.

Now, I know my confidence depends on how I view myself and not how others view me. This has caused me to determine what confidence looks like to me. When I ask, “What does confidence look like to you?”, what do you think of? Someone who is slightly snobbish and a know it all. Perhaps, a person who dresses in a manner that displays all of the stylish trends or someone with plenty of friends. Or maybe someone who displays qualities of a leader, who is able to walk in any room with their head held high and just beaming with pride. I believe all of these can be possible examples of confidence, but I often times believe that I do not fit those descriptions. For instance, one day during a discussion, the topic of confidence came up and I was told that I displayed certainty about myself and that no one would think that I had an issue with confidence. Yea right! I definitely wondered what she was looking at because it most certainly was not me! However, as I began to discuss what I thought confidence to be and how I perceived myself when it comes to being confident, I was told for every person, it does not have to look the same and that was when the term “quiet confidence” was born.

Quiet confidence is pretty much what it sounds like. Just because you may be an introvert who prefers to hang in small circles and have a better time at home than out with friends, does not mean you are unsure of yourself (boring…maybe). You can still be funny and charismatic, but have a subtle way of exposing it. If anything, just think of it as hidden gems and these hidden gems have no choice but to expose themselves on their own. Your confidence may not be something conscious to you, but it is apparent at work, with family and friends, and when you present yourself to others. For example, I always refer to myself as Lil Keish. I’m small in stature and I have a small voice to match. However, these are things that people seem to look beyond because my hidden gems seem to reveal themselves and that is what people gravitate towards.

I must admit, these are people who are precious to me. I believe they have been placed in my life for a reason and maybe for a season. They voluntarily express to me what they think about me, which I never ask for. Yet the crazy thing is, they always have something positive to say or participate in random acts of kindness towards me! These moments serve as confirmation that I am who I am and I should own it. There may be times when you become so consumed with what you are doing wrong that you forget to celebrate the things you are doing right and the positive changes you made, big or small, and it takes kind-hearted people to help you realize that you are not the mistakes you made. For me, they serve as little reminders and perhaps catalysts to the “ah ha moments” that reveal to me that I am on the right track and it is okay to have faith in myself.

After all, what would confidence be without faith? If you ever have any doubts about your confidence, always check your faith. It may be quiet, still, and small, but it is faith nonetheless. It may not look the same as someone who commands the room when they walk in, but it always seems to leave a lasting impression and that is what matters most.

 

 

My Very First Book!

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I am very proud to introduce my bookcover to my very first book!! “The Pieces of My Heart” is an inspirational read that not only discusses the struggles that your heart often entails, but how to reflect on these struggles and persevere. I cannot wait to introduce the book to the entire world and l can only hope that at least one person reads and decides to pick up the pieces to their heart and begin moving forward.

The Pieces of My Heart, Release Date: Fall 2016

 

Reader Shout Outs!

I hope everyone is enjoying the holiday! I wanted to take some time to welcome readers from around the world. Kenya, Philippines, Venezuela, and Portugal. It is very exciting to see the many readers checking in around the world! I know I have not posted in a while due to working on my soon to be self-published book, The Pieces of My Heart, but don’t worry. I plan on posting this week! Thank you all again and remember to read, share, and enjoy!

~Keisha J.

Sharing Your Heart

The heart is a vital organ to the body. It is essential to the body and without it, the body does not function. So, it is imperative that we take care of it physically by eating right and exercising, however, we often do not think about how important it is to take care of our hearts on a spiritual level.

Spiritually, you must be able to guard your heart and know who has the rights to dwell in it. I mean, it sounds loving and romantic when your someone special says, “I want your heart,” but do they really? After all, the heart is delicate and also the powerhouse of your soul. Can you really trust just anyone with it? The answer is simple…no. If you have not realized, opening your heart to someone is scary and it can also be dangerous. After being in a couple of failed relationships, romantically and casual, hopefully you will start to notice, but at times it can be difficult to fully comprehend. Besides, the concept of being in love and having someone cherish and adore you, sounds irresistible and if that is something you long for, you may try to find it in anyone who says and does the right things. However, I have learned, it is best to keep your guard up because you are the only one who can protect your heart.

Now, that is way easier said than done and when you are a hopeless romantic, such as myself, it is almost impossible! You often daydream of the person who is designed just for you because you know they are out there and you never want to give up or possibly miss out. So, you may try to fit someone or anyone in that position because they do the little romantic gestures, such as calling to see how your day has been going, sending cute emojis (the heart eyes and kisses…you know them), having long talks, listening to your dreams and aspirations, and sharing experiences that you would only tell a close friend. At this point, you have begun to expose yourself, which can feel vulnerable and risky. It is nothing more frightening than being exposed and allowing someone to come in to cling to your heart and do as they please. On one hand, they may understand that they have been invited into such a delicate and sacred space and they may embrace it or they may runaway. On the other hand, they may see it as an opportunity to control or they may not comprehend what has been given to them altogether.

I believe there are people who will be devoted and honored to be in such a sacred space, but there are others who know how to manipulate their way in and cause damage just to get what they want or they may not know what it is they want themselves and may say and do things just so they may feel wanted and when they end up too close to someone’s heart, they have no idea how to manage or care for it. This is when it can become dangerous, especially for a hopeless romantic. In essence, you have already allowed someone who does not have any rights to be in the space that gives you life. Now, it is at their discretion to handle it with care, abuse it, or abandon it. The heart, in my opinion, is too delicate to embrace any form of misuse and cannot be left unattended because it will not function properly which will lead to pain, and eventually will stop working in its entirety. This is when the unexplainable feeling of heartache and hurt comes into play. You begin to not enjoy the things you love to do, you avoid tasks or other people, and you are often sad or angry.

At this point, there are only a few paths to take. The path to destruction. You allow anger and hate to take control and think of how to seek revenge on the person who worked their way into your sacred space. Although this may cause brief satisfaction for you, this path almost never comes to a good end. The path to self-blame. It always seems to be your fault because you should have seen “the signs” and you wish you handled things differently or never responded to the text or picked up the phone in the first place. However, these are all learning experiences and if you did see the signs, but chose to ignore them, learn how to forgive yourself and move forward. The path to a hardened heart. You thought you guarded yourself to begin with, but no worries, you make sure to build a “brick wall” to ensure that no one comes into contact with your heart out of fear that someone else will hurt you again and the thought of love is just no longer an option. And the path to it was never meant to be. You settle on being alone or as I like to call it “the cat lady syndrome.” You stay to yourself and keep yourself busy with hobbies and work because you decide that the someone you knew to believe was out there for you is just an imaginative figure and you settle for, it will never happen.

Personally, I have taken trips down all of those paths and sometimes I stay there a little longer than I should. I really do not have the remedy for those thoughts and feelings that develop after sharing your heart with someone who is undeserving because after all, they are human too and have lessons to learn as well, but I do believe that there is only ONE who should have complete ownership of your heart and I know for a fact that you will never feel pain, loneliness, or emptiness because that ONE…is love. In all, you have to be guarded and must stay true to yourself first. So to all of you hopeless romantics out there, it will happen for us, just continue to believe and stay strong with your heart.

~I hope you enjoyed this post, because this will be featured in my book, “The Pieces of My Heart.” Please comment and let me know what you think!

Keisha J.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the mothers and the soon to be mommies! Also, I would like to share a special Happy Mother’s Day to my mother. Thank you so much for all that you do and continue to do and like you mentioned before, “You are done raising me.” Lol! I just hope that I will be able to make you proud and be the lady that you present to the world everyday. Love you mom!

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