SoapBox: Don’t Take It Personally.

Dealing With A Loss-2

People sometimes suck. Being the kind-hearted person I am, I am always expecting people to treat me the way I treat them. But that’s not always the case. People will hurt you, slander your name and not even think twice about it. Which is so strange to me because in school growing up we were always taught – “Treat others the way you want to be treated.”

But maybe that’s how they pull it off – the people who treat you poorly, never expect to be treated badly or are ever actually treated badly. When people don’t treat you with the same decency, respect or kindness that you have shown them, you could get super angry, irritated and upset. OR you could not take it personally. The way people treat others has everything to do with them, and hardly anything to do with the people receiving the actions. For example, if my friend Sally treats me terribly, that says more about Sally than it does about me – especially if I know that I’ve continually treated her kindly or with respect.

At least that’s how I look at it. So continue to treat people kindly and with love – it’s honestly the only way to live with a clear conscious and also it just feels better. 🙂

Love you all bunches,

– Tanesha J.

 

 

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SUNDAY SOAPBOX: Stand Up For Yourself

Over the last week, I stood up for myself – for the first time in a very long time – against somebody I considered a good friend. I’ve grown so accustomed to just letting people walk all over me and continually being the bigger person. But as much as I think that kindness will take you far, there are some people who will abuse your kindness. I don’t say that to be discouraging or negative, but rather just so you can be aware of it. I’m by no means saying that you should stop being the kind, big-hearted person that you are, but I am saying that you should consider yourself first. Is this person causing more harm than good in my life? If not, cut them off. Am I happy most of the time around this person? If not, dissolve the friendship. Especially if they don’t even care to see why you’ve stopped communicating. You deserve to surround yourself with people who are going to fill you up emotionally with encouragement and happiness, not people who constantly bring you down.

 
Despite all of the heartbreak I’ve experienced (romantic and otherwise), my feelings being trampled, people who I like or love treating me worse than a stranger, I’m still going to be kind, still going to love people hard, still going to treat everyone in the best possible manner, BUT there’s going to be a hard limit (So that I am not continually getting my feelings hurt). I shouldn’t continue to put up with unkind people. So I won’t. And neither should you, especially if you know you are being the kindest person ever to them. Standing up for myself was the hardest thing, yet the most liberating thing I’ve ever done. (Even after seeking reassurance from my mom that I wasn’t just overreacting about the situation.) the more I stand up for myself and my feelings, the stronger I will become.

What are some ways that you stand up for yourself? Share below in the comments!

 

XOXO,

– Tanesha

Unplugged part 2. 

So it’s been officially a week (and a few days) of no social media!

I thought I would have this miraculous feeling of freedom and motivation but I don’t. I honestly feel almost the same as I did with social media, but I will say I don’t feel this invisible audience watching me all the time or criticizing my pictures or snaps. I felt like I always had this enormous pressure on my social media to say the right things, only post the most perfect pictures with the perfect caption – not because I’m a perfectionist (I mean, I am, but that’s not the reason), but because I want to be a person and source of inspiration to people. I want people to say “seeing you be great, inspires me to keep pushing towards my dreams and goals.”

 
However, people (including myself) get caught up in other’s folks perceived perfection. I’ll be the first to admit I’m struggling with that. We don’t see all the hard word, blood, sweat, and tears that went into a person’s achievements. I want to be more transparent about my life and my struggles (which is honestly why I blog). There is this weird strength I feel when I am vulnerable with people – and if (or when) I go back to social media I want to integrate more of that vulnerability.

 

So, I went to the beach on Friday and I really wanted to snap chat the moment because it was so beautiful and peaceful. This was the first time since getting off social media that I really debated downloading it all back. I just sat for about an hour and a half and read my book Perfect Match by Jodi Picoult in silence. It was so wonderful (until this lady and her 5 obnoxious and loud children decided to sit wayyyyyy too close to me – but that’s another story). And it just kinda hit me (while writing this) is that those private moments when it’s just God, me and nature are somewhat destroyed as soon as I share it on social media. The special and precious moment then becomes God, me, nature and my 150 snap chat followers, plus my 1,000 IG followers plus whoever else follows me on various other platforms. (I know I’m contradicting myself by sharing a picture – I’m not perfect! It was a beautiful day!) There’s something to be said about moments that only you have the privilege of knowing. It’s like holding on to and protecting the last bit of privacy you have in the world. It’s sacred.

 
I’m not going to lie, some days I really miss social media because it’s great entertainment and time consuming (especially since I’m not doing much these days). But also because it helped connections with my friends. Instead of having to check in with them by way of a call or text, you can just check their social media and be kept up to date about what they’re doing. And that’s the part that sucks, I thought more of my friends would’ve noticed that I wasn’t on social media (especially since I notice when they’re not on as much).

 
It’s only been a week and some change, maybe it’ll be different soon. I also am finding that I’m just holding my phone sometimes – just staring at it like, “what do I do with this thing now?” I also think I’m getting addicted to playing games on my phone, so I might have to delete those soon too.

 
XOXO,

 
– Tanesha

Dear Trying to Help a Friend,

Hola Ladies & Company, one of my very best friends wants to tell her guy best friend (not her boyfriend or anything, just good- er GREAT friends). She’s always going to him with her problems, and he’s never failed to be there for her. He’s such a great dude, overall. Well, about a week or so ago, she told me that she realized that he’s the one. Like “THE ONE.” She said that she realized it as she was sleeping over his house and he was talking about his GIRLFRIEND and all the problems they’re having. She said that she realizes that the only person who would be good for him would be her and that she wants them to break out. Honestly, I don’t even think her guy best friend realizes she has feelings for him. They’ve known each other since they were 7, but nothing has ever happened intimately with them. Should she tell him, how she feels? or wait until the time is better (and he is single)? – Trying to Help a Friend

Dear Trying to Help a Friend,

Well, first I commend you for trying to help and seeking out advice. That’s such a great friend thing to do. There should be more friends out there like you.

So to your friend: it is normal to have feelings for someone you’ve known since 7. Just because you’re in close proximity with that person. Psychological research has shown that being in a close proximity with someone physically plays a huge role in attraction. For example, if you see a good looking guy at the mall, and then never see him again. Most likely you will forget about him in a few days. However, if you keep seeing this good looking guy the more attractive he will seem. You won’t forget about him because the stimuli (the good looking guy) has been reinforced in your mind. Now, what physical proximity does is that it ensures that continues exposure (of the good looking guy) keeps happening until attraction intensifies. Now, just because you are attracted to your friend, does not mean you should pursue him. In my opinion, you should respect the fact that he has a girlfriend. If it’s true love, it’ll show itself when the time is right. I think you should hold on to your feelings, for now, and when the time is right, you can tell him. Honestly, if you love him as much as you say you do – his happiness should be the ultimate goal even if that means with his girlfriend.

Keep It Classy,

– T. Renae

Dear Best friends or more,

So hi Ladies and Company, I just graduated [from high school]. And there’s this guy and he has been my boy best friend the whole way through my senior year of high school. He was talking to my friend and having sex with her. But he didn’t want a relationship with her. She thought that she could keep him that way, you know with sex. And me and him being “best friends,” we workout together, go bike riding together, talk on the phone for hours and are always there for each other. I like him a lot but considering the fact that he was kinda with my friend, i dont know. My feelings don’t have an on and off switch. Am I wrong for wanting to be with him, since I’m pretty sure he likes me back but he’s been with my friend? – Best friends or more.

Hi sweetie,

I don’t think that your feelings are wrong, but I would not act on these feelings, for numerous reasons. The first reason is because this is your friend, your boy best friend. You don’t want to jeopardize/ruin your friendship over these feelings, that may or may not be reciprocated. The second reason is because even though they (your boy best friend and your friend) aren’t in a committed relationship, they are still engaging “activities,” which could potentially grow into a relationship (It also could not – we never know with these things). Even though he says doesn’t want to have a relationship with the friend, he’s already smashing. As a woman, and young lady you really only have two options: (1) approach your friend and tell her how you feel and ask her to back off, or (2) tell her how you feel about the best friend and tell her you want her to be happy so you are backing off.

If it was me, honestly I would pull a Frozen and just let it go. You just graduated high school, and there will be plenty more (better) fish in the sea for you!

Keep It Classy, 

T.Renae

How to start working out (and stick with it)!

Decide you are going to change your lifestyle. Literally this is one of the hardest part of starting to work out. Make the decision to start working out. Start next week, or today, or tomorrow. If you pick a day in the future. STICK TO IT! Do not keep pushing it back. This is basically a date with yourself, why reschedule? Just start!

Pick somewhere you are comfortable with working out at. Maybe it’s the free gym on campus, in your dorm room, at home, Planet fitness, One Life or wherever! Just find somewhere were you feel good about going to work out! (Me personally, I love going to Planet Fitness. I don’t feel judged, or like I have anything to prove to anyone but myself. ) You could even start with doing a challenge like the one below.
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Get a workout partner. A workout partner isn’t just someone to work out with, it’s someone to hold you accountable to keep you on the right path! They can also motivate you to keep pushing yourself further.
Eat healthier. I’m not saying, Cut out all the junk food in your life cold turkey, unless you’re really about that life (I am not). I’m saying make healthier food choices, really control your portions, drink a lot more water, get healthier snacks.
Don’t be too hard on yourself. If you miss a day, or eat something super fatty, it’s OK! Just be sure to get back on track, and do not waver on you path. In my opinion I would worry less about the number on the scale, but more about how you look (before and after pictures!!) and how you feel.  And don’t compare your workout journey to anyone else’s. Your body is as unique as your fingerprints, so how your body changes and the rate at which it changes will be different from anyone else’s.
Overall, just start somewhere and keep going!
How I got started working out: I really started by doing the mini 30 day challenges, and then eventually upgraded to doing like 4 at a time, and then really upgrading to going to the gym. So right now I go to the gym, do a challenge or two, and starting Monday (May 4th) drinking a gallon of water a day (I will do a before and after review in 4-5 weeks)!
Slow and steady wins the race and good luck with your healthier lifestyle transition.
Keep it Classy,
– T.Renae

On Things I’ve learned about relationships….

From Pinterest, my mother, other relationships, etc

  1. Never EVER, under no circumstances talk bad about your significant other to other people. As far as the rest of the world knows, he is the most awesome person who has ever entered your life, even if he is not. Trust me, it prevents unwanted holes from being in your relationships, especially if you do not create the holes yourself, for other people outside of your relationship to fill. A dear friend of mine said “a relationship consists of two people, keep it like that.”
  2. Going off of that, Haters are going to hate. With that being said, there are always going to be people who are not a “fan” of your relationship, and you will have to deal with the nay-sayers. But so what, who cares if people don’t like or care for your boo, they don’t have to like him/her, you do!
  3. Speak Life into your significant other. Don’t put them down; believe in their dreams, especially if this is a person you foresee yourself being with them for a while. The more life you speak into theirs, the better yours will be.
  4. Don’t let your relationship run your life. It is great you are in a relationship, but you should always be working towards perfecting yourself. Don’t let that relationship be what defines you. Still do you, but do it accompanied with your sweetie.
  5. “How you get her, is how you keep her.” What you did at the beginning of the relationship, you should be able and willing to do throughout the relationship. Like if you’re sending 8 paragraphs good morning pages at the beginning of the relationship, and then you stop suddenly, your partner will be upset! Consistency is key!
  6. Be Spontaneous. Having spontaneity in your relationships creates more laughs, and even more good moments. Per a good friend of mine – sing your lady a song on her voicemail to make her day when you know she’s busy, send him a random letter, etc, because a boring relationship is one that does not last
  7. Communication is Key. Be sure to have and be able to have transparent and adult conversation with your significant other. Also, watch communication with members of the opposite sex. Make sure, your significant other knows that this person stands here in my life, and visa versa. There should be no grey areas here. Also make sure you try to understand where your other person is coming from, and see from their point of view. (*side note: NO ONE is a mind reader, therefore say what you mean, and mean what you say. )
  8. Learn to compromise. This kinda goes with communication, because when you both cannot agree on things, you will have to comprise. Not saying you have to be a push over, but some times you have to let the other person be great. Especially if you are trying to keep this person around in your life.

I hope this helps you in your relationships!! And let me know if you have some tips to add in the comments section!

-T. Renae

What to do when all your friends are “falling in love,” and you’re not,

Last year around this time I was becoming EXTREMELY depressed. It seemed like every one of my friends were going out on dates, and becoming infatuated with some guy and being oh so happy, etc., etc. I was a little on the jealous side… OK fine, I was a lot of the jealous side! But here’s what I did to overcome these feelings.

  1. GET BUSY. It doesn’t matter what you get busy doing, just do something. There is no worse feeling than on a Friday night, and you’re sitting there looking at a wall. Invest in Netflix and binge watch at least 6 shows, take up a new hobby (I took up making waist beads, and anklets), explore your local city, rediscover your library, just do something!
  2. Speaking of library, READ SOME BOOKS. More specifically read some women empowerment books! Here’s some: Power of the Pussy (part 1 and 2) by Kara King, Lady in Waiting by Jackie Kendall and Debby Jones, Mrs. Right by Tony A Gaskins Jr, Gentlewoman by Enitan O Bereola II (if you need more empowerment books email me at taneshajohnson@icloud.com)
  3. REVIST YOUR “CHECKLIST.” What I did personally was made a list of priorities vs. preferences. Priorities – are things that your man should not without. For example, one of my priorities on my life, is he has to know Christ, and have a relationship with God, while a preference is that he has huge muscles. See the difference? This will help you determine what really matters in a relationship, and recognize what really matters.
  4. FOCUS ON OTHER FRIENDSHIPS. Don’t cut off your friends who in the relationships. I mean sure, they now have an extra person in their circle, that does not mean you have been kicked out of their circle. It has just been a little expanded. You could also try to go out on group outings, inviting singles and couples. You could also just find other people in your “outer circle” to hang out with as well if you don’t want to be third-wheeling it.

Keep It Classy,

T. Renae

Building A Better Me

Most of my life I found happiness with other people, I felt I needed to be surrounded by a lot of people to feel validated or I had to be in a relationship to feel beautiful but once I was alone I felt empty, unattractive and envious of those who had it better than me. Of course with age comes wisdom and I understood you don’t need a lot of people around you to feel happy.  You have to know your self-worth and every things else will come. Before I started Hampton I knew I had to really work on being myself and knowing who I am. I’ve learned the hard way, you can’t allow others to have so much control over your happiness and the way you act. When being yourself, you may lose those people who you thought were your friends but God will place people in your life that will help you grow into the person you need to be. When building a better you there are steps you have to take and I’d like to share a few steps I’ve taken. Even though I’m not finished growing I’ve come along way thanks to prayer and support from my loved ones.

When building a better you the most important step you must take is learning yourself and realizing your self-worth. Self-worth is the sense of one’s own value or worth as a person. Before you realize your self-worth you try to find validation through the attention of others. You need someone to compliment you or you need guys to hit on you before you realize how beautiful you are.  Then when you’re alone or no one validates you, you  think you’re having an off day. Once you comprehend your self-worth you don’t need all of that, you know without a doubt you are beautiful and a person would be honored to have you. When you’re confident in yourself you have a certain glow about you and no matter what you have on or how you look you no longer need their validation. Make sure you tell yourself you’re beautiful every day!!!!

Another big step is examining the people around you. Sometimes God puts people in your life for a season so don’t try to make them permanent because that will only affect you in the long run. God will give you signs if should remove people from your circle, you just have to relax and listen. Surround yourself with people who want the best for you, who will help you grow and who have your back. You don’t need a lot of friends, QUALITY OVER QUANTITY! Other than your parents your friends have a huge influence on how you act and behave, so choose your friends wisely. Make sure you and your friends complement each other and they accept you for you.

One of the prayers I pray:

Lord thank you for your many blessings. Lord please examine me, continue to mold me into the individual you want me to be. Remove all the negative influences in my life and please continue to bless me and my loved ones. In Your precious son’s name, I pray. Amen.

More steps to come!

– A. Rochell