I am forever grateful to have been in grade school at a time where teachers taught students life skills versus curriculum based on standardized tests. My favorite grades in school were second and fifth. I can recall two lessons that have a profound effect on me as an adult.
In second grade (circa 1989), my teacher spoke about common sense. I can’t remember her entire speech about common sense, but there were two sentences that stuck with me. Common sense cannot be taught. You either have it or you don’t.
As an adult, I never realized how many folks have no common sense. All the book sense in the world, but couldn’t chew gum and walk to save their lives. Baffles the hell outta me.
In fifth grade (circa 1992), my teacher taught my class how to complete IRS form 1040EZ. For someone who hates math, this was a fun math lesson. I learned the importance of independence. My teacher explained that if you don’t learn how to do your own taxes, how will you know that someone else would do them correctly for you? Makes sense right? I refuse to pay someone to do something I can do myself.
I’m so appreciative to all the educators who taught me life lessons that have carried into adulthood. Now that I’ve finished this post, I’m going to finish unclogging the dishwasher.
See ya tomorrow,
There are times when I can’t see my way out of a situation. While considering possible outcomes, I end up creating more roadblocks for myself. It gets so frustrating I would just rather wallow in my misery than face another roadblock. Misery breeds negativity and I’m trying so hard not to find comfort in my pessimistic nature. Here’s the thing. Negativity won’t get me anywhere. What will get me out of that situation is so simple and requires absolutely no manual work.
Believe that it’s possible.
That’s it. The hardest part is believing in the possibility that a positive outcome can happen. Once I adopted a positive mindset, the roadblocks dissipated. A positive mindset gives way to a clear mind and that is the driving force behind finding a solution. Sounds like a no-brainer, but when you’re a pessimist, this feels damn near impossible. All you have to do is try…
…then stand back and watch shit happen.
Oftentimes, people will talk about all the things that they want to accomplish in life.
I want a promotion.
I want to own a home.
I need to finish my requirements for my degree.
Blah, blah, blah.
In some cases, what you don’t hear is how they plan to achieve these goals. See, some people want things out of life, but they don’t want to do the necessary work. Getting a promotion is great, but understand that you have to put in the work to get that promotion. Buying a home requires budgeting and saving. Earning a degree requires that you pass the required coursework.
All of these examples have one thing in common…SACRIFICE.
Sacrifice is a necessity. Working overtime for that promotion. Forgoing a vacation to save for the down payment on the home. Not going out with friends so you can finish that paper on time. All of these examples required some sort of sacrifice.
Rarely is anything in life handed just given to you. In most cases, you work for them and while working for them, you’ll find that you will sacrifice something to get it. In order to get, you have to give, or get nothing. The choice is yours to make.
Let’s be honest, Saturday is the only rest day on the weekend. Part of Sunday is spent wallowing over Monday morning. I wanted to share some of my Sunday thoughts about Mondays with you.
Here we go!
1. Do I HAVE to go to work?
2. Did I charge my Zune?
3. I hope ________________ called out sick.
4. Maybe the phones/system go out.
5. Lemme pray that the power goes out.
6. Perhaps I’ll get called for an interview today.
7. I should call out today.
8. If work offers a 4 day/10 hour schedule, Monday is my rest day.
9. Why does Monday exist?
10. Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday should join forces and remove Monday from the calendar.
Do you have Sunday Thoughts about Mondays? Share in the comments!
For the past three months, I’ve been working on a manuscript that began as a writing challenge. When I discovered that I could submit an unfinished manuscript , I jumped at the chance. So here I am, splitting my time between editing the manuscript and writing this blog post.
I know that I’m good at telling stories. By no means am I bragging, but I know that I’m good. The problem is that I didn’t believe this manuscript was good. I didn’t believe that I had a manuscript that was good enough to be published.
To boost my confidence, I sent a few chapters to a friend of mine. She’s an avid reader and has NO problem letting me know her opinion. I was so nervous waiting for her to finish reading. I remember sitting around watching TV and being bombarded by text messages asking where were the remaining chapters.
It was that moment that I realized I needed to really believe in myself. While my friend believes in me, none of it matters if I don’t believe in myself. There are so many dreams I want to come true however, none of it will happen if I don’t believe it will come true.
Just believe in yourself and the rest will fall into place.
We don’t always get it right the first time around.
I would like to believe that we have all failed at something at one point in our lives. Skipping classes to be social resulted in me flunking out of school Spring 2002. Since I was still on academic probation, I was banned from attending any four-year college/university for five years.
After sophomore year, I enrolled in my local community college to start classes the Summer 2007 semester. I took classes part-time while I was working full-time, but I graduated from community college July 2007. My five-year ban ended around that same time.
At this time, I was 26 and determined to have my bachelor’s degree before I turned 30. I submitted my admissions application to Old Dominion University to enroll for the Fall 2008 semester. I remember being riddled with anxiety while I waited for a response. That ban and my grades at the time of the ban felt like a black eye that wouldn’t clear up, regardless of my associates degree.
I got that acceptance letter and all my anxiety disappeared.
I busted my ass at ODU. Carried a full-time schedule Fall 2008 and Spring/Summer/Fall 2009 while working a 40 hour job. My health was in shambles from sleep deprivation, but this was my last chance and I was holding to it for dear life. This is it for me. Do or die. Sink or swim.
A good night’s sleep came the day I found out my graduation application was approved. All of that hard work and lack of sleep had paid off. I made good on that second chance.
Words can’t explain how it feels to get a second chance. You do everything you can to make sure that you will not blow it this time. Second chances aren’t guaranteed and third chances are nearly impossible. When given the opportunity to try again, take it and prepare to run…all the way to the finish line.
*This post is dedicated to my sister, who got her second chance to get it right.*
I believe in premonitions. I’m aware that it may sound absolutely ridiculous to some, but we all have to believe in something and that’s what I believe in.
For several months I’ve had a recurring premonition involving a car running a red light and hitting a truck.
Fast forward to Saturday, April 18, 2014.
I’m sitting at the bottom end of the intersection, waiting for my light to turn green. On the left side of the intersection is a pickup truck waiting to make a left turn. Across from the truck on the right side of the intersection is a small four-door sedan in the right lane.
The lights change for the left and right sides of the intersection. The truck proceeds to cross the intersection to get into the closest left lane. Meanwhile, the sedan makes a right turn and gets into the same lane as the truck.
The sedan slammed into the truck, pushing the truck over the median and into the opposite lanes of traffic. Thankfully, red lights kept those cars from coming down the lanes. The driver gained control of the truck, moving it back across the median, across three lanes of traffic, and into a parking lot.
*insert slow blink here*
It’s one thing to dream that this happens but to literally watch your premonition play out in front of you is insane. I was definitely shaken up for at least an hour. I’ll never second guess these dreams again.
Emphasis on “never”.
A friend of mine was tweeting about her upcoming December graduation. She mentioned that it felt like she had been in college forever. After congratulating her on seeing the light at the end of that very, very long tunnel, my spirit was moved to tweet out some words of encouragement.
There are so many detours in your way, that you lose sight of your path of travel. I was a freshman in 2000 but I spent so much time not going to classes that I was voted off the academic island in 2002. Even though I was suspended from attending any four-year institution for five years, I didn’t let that discourage me from my goal of finishing school before I turned 30.
So I enrolled in community college as a part-time student May 2003. While working full-time, I graduated July 2007. Yes, it took me four years and two months to finish community college. But you know what? I finished and that’s all that matters. By the time I graduated, my suspension period was over. I applied for admission in a four-year university for the Fall 2008 semester.
I got accepted. At the time, I was 27 years old.
I carried a full course load Fall 2008, Spring 2009, Summer 2009, and Fall 2009. Insane doesn’t even begin to describe my physical and mental state during that time. Stress from the course load made me sick every semester. At some point, I had surgery on my wrist, came home, and wrote an essay that was due that evening. Don’t judge me.
On December 19, 2009 at 2 p.m. EST, I graduated from Old Dominion University. I was 27 years old.
I’m thankful everyday that I went through this. Without struggle, I wouldn’t be aware of my own strength.
And that, ladies and gentleman, is worthy of an applause.
This post is inspired by the following question that appeared on my Twitter timeline:
How do you deal with being cheated on?
My response? Leave.
There are some things that can be forgiven (e.g., forgetting a birthday, anniversary, paying the cable bill on time, etc). Cheating ain’t one of ’em.
For some, the logical decision to leave isn’t so clear-cut.
Trust is a hard thing to gain to begin with. It’s earned, not given by default to any ol’ body.
Once that trust is violated, it’s damn near impossible to get back. I can recall an instance where I knew that he was cheating but my heart wanted to stay.
It can work, I would tell myself. Now matter how hard I tried to make it work, there was no amount of forgiveness to make me forget.
I didn’t believe anything he said anymore. Questioned his whereabouts each time he came home. Raised an eyebrow anytime he used his phone. Made myself anxious worry about him instead of packing to leave. Anxiety is the byproduct of worrying. It wrecks havoc on your well-being. No amount of delusion can fix the damage that has been done.
When trust flees the scene, that’s your cue to leave as well.
Petty behavior can block blessings.
If it hasn’t happened to you, I’m sure you know of someone this has happened to. Here’s a scenario. Your best friend has a major life event happening. You would love to attend the event, however, financial constraints won’t allow that to happen.
You explain this to your friend, hoping that he/she will understand your situation. No such luck. Instead, your friend proceeds to explain that if you really wanted to attend the event, you would move whatever mountains were in the way to make it happen.
It’s bad enough that you can’t attend the event but to have the person that you care about so much basically tell you that you aren’t shit for not being there for him really stings. Granted, this is going to be a sore spot for a while but focus on what you have. Be grateful for having this person in your life. Do you know how hard it is to find a loyal person these days? Yes it sucks that your best friend can’t be there for you this one time, but cherish all the moments that you two got to share.
Instead of zeroing in on this one particular let down, be grateful for what you do have. Being petty won’t get you far. Choose what matters and live accordingly.