Motivational Tip: enjoy every moment

Saying life is short is definitely a cliché, but it really is very short. Do we want to spend this short life that was granted to us, complaining, being bitter and resentful, angry and unkind to others and ourselves? Or do we want to learn all we can, do all we can and enjoy all we can, before it’s too late. Think about it! Good and bad things happens to us all, and we can either choose to learn from these situations or be forever miserable about them. What path are you taking or going to take? As I reflect on my life and the life of others around me, I realize more and more that we have to be grateful for every day that is given to us, every breath that we take, every moment that we have here on earth. Someone can literally be here now and gone the next minute, it is that serious. If you are facing difficult times, seek help, pray, find a way to rise above the situation and make it out stronger. If you are seeing great times, enjoy it, be thankful, and if you are able share your abundance, share.

The following poem was written by Maya Angelou, in memory of Michael Jackson. And even though these words were written specifically for him, they can be applied to anyone who has lost their life. May their souls be forever at peace and may their love one(s) whose lives may have been affected by their death, also find peace as they continue their life journey without them.

 

 

We Had Him

Beloveds, now we know that we know nothing
Now that our bright and shining star can slip away from our fingertips like a puff of summer wind

Without notice, our dear love can escape our doting embrace
Sing our songs among the stars and and walk our dances across the face of the moon

In the instant we learn that Michael is gone we know nothing
No clocks can tell our time and no oceans can rush our tides
With the abrupt absence of our treasure

Though we our many, each of us is achingly alone
Piercingly alone
Only when we confess our confusion can we remember that he was a gift to us and we did have him

He came to us from the Creator, trailing creativity in abundance
Despite the anguish of life he was sheathed in mother love and family love and survived and did more than that

He thrived with passion and compassion, humor and style
We had him
Whether we knew who he was or did not know, he was ours and we were his
We had him

Beautiful, delighting our eyes
He raked his hat slant over his brow and took a pose on his toes for all of us and we laughed and stomped our feet for him

We were enchanted with his passion because he held nothing
He gave us all he had been given

Today in Tokyo, beneath the Eiffel Tower, in Ghana’s Blackstar Square, in Johannesburg, in Pittsburgh, in Birmingham, Alabama and Birmingham England, we are missing Michael Jackson

But we do know that we had him
And we are the world.

Maya Angelou

Motivational Tip: Captain of the soul

“Invictus”

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

Invictus is a short poem written in 1875 by the English poet and editor William Ernest Henley (1849–1903) after he had a leg ambulated due to a long battle with Tuberculosis that affected his bones in childhood. It had been said that he wrote this poem in protest of possibly having to loose the other leg and that a missing limb was not going to hinder him from being successful in life. Mr Henley’s story is a reminder that anything is possibly and we are only limited by our minds and the goals that we set for ourselves. Do not be discouraged by failures and set backs that you experience but use them as tools and stepping stones to learn from to make you a better you.

Motivational Tip: Phenomenal Woman

Phenomenal Woman

By Maya Angelou

“Many women wonder where my secret lies.

I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size   

But when I start to tell them,

They think I’m telling lies.

I say,

It’s in the reach of my arms,

The span of my hips,   

The stride of my step,   

The curl of my lips.   

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,   

That’s me.

 

I walk into a room

Just as cool as you please,   

And to a man,

The fellows stand or

Fall down on their knees.   

Then they swarm around me,

A hive of honey bees.   

I say,

It’s the fire in my eyes,   

And the flash of my teeth,   

The swing in my waist,   

And the joy in my feet.   

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

 Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

Men themselves have wondered   

What they see in me.

They try so much

But they can’t touch

My inner mystery.

When I try to show them,   

They say they still can’t see.   

I say,

It’s in the arch of my back,   

The sun of my smile,

The ride of my breasts,

The grace of my style.

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

 

Now you understand

Just why my head’s not bowed.   

I don’t shout or jump about

Or have to talk real loud.   

When you see me passing,

It ought to make you proud.

I say,

It’s in the click of my heels,   

The bend of my hair,   

the palm of my hand,   

The need for my care.   

Cause I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.”

Motivational Tip: Accepting your natural hair and beauty

Accepting your natural hair and beauty:

For many years people have been trying to change what God has made perfect. I don’t know what is happening all around the world apart from what I see on the television, read on the internet or hear on the radio. I can therefore only speak about what happens in my neck of the woods, here in the Caribbean and, more specifically, in Antigua and Barbuda where I live.

To me most of us here in the Caribbean are still unknowingly mentally enslaved, a consequence of the days of slavery under the UK rule. We believe that if something is from another country then it is better, or the lighter your skin the more beautiful you are, or the longer your hair the “nicer” or “better” it is, and for me that is mental slavery.

Why is it that people cannot accept and appreciate what they have or the way they are made? I am not saying that everybody should be natural or that you should not wear makeup, colour your hair, shave your leg, wax your eyebrows, pierce your ears, etc. because I do not have a problem with the way anybody chooses to wear their hair or skin and each person has their own decisions to make. Everybody has a reason for doing what they choose to do.

I am not criticizing anybody who chooses to wear their hair chemically straight, wear a weave or a wig, or just be natural, but it’s really sad when somebody tells me that my hair is beautiful BUT it could have been better if it were relaxed (permed). WHY!!! Why should another person or society determine what is beautiful or acceptable for me.

I love my hair and all the curls, I would never be jealous of someone else’s hair just because it’s straighter or longer. It also makes me sad when somebody asks me if I am mixed just because my hair has a looser curl pattern to it. I am proud to be the way I am and no I am not mixed.

So don’t judge me because of the colour of my skin or the texture of my hair. I love the way I was made, every curve on my body, every curl in my hair and I’m happy with it so why aren’t you?

My point is that we should all learn to accept the way we were made and love every aspect of ourselves. However you choose to wear your hair or carry yourself, do it with pride, without criticizing other persons because of how they choose to present themselves. Self love is an expression of freedom. Love yourselves people!