Happy Half Birthday to Me: Fun Facts, Confessions and Lessons

Happy Half Birthday to ME!!!!!

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Half inspired, half challenged by Courtney Saunders of Passionate Woman Blog‘s Post about being 25 and Winging It. This post will include fun facts, confessions, and lessons thus far.

Fun Facts

  1. I am a HUGE ANIME FAN. I feel like anime is becoming trendy, but I have been watching since I was in middle school (2006 to be exact). I started with the basics Naruto and DBZ, and I just fell in love. I don’t know what it is about anime – maybe it’s the reading of subtitles, the animation, the stories, or something. But I will always be a huge fan.
  2. Black is my FAVORITE color. I don’t know why I’ve just always loved it, black is just pure to me. It is also the color I wear the most of.
  3. I am a huge animal lover! I wanted to be a vet when I was younger (pre-my lawyer phase). My dad kinda ruined that dream by telling me I had to stick my hand up a cow’s butt when I went to Vet School.
  4. I am OBSESSED with my dog, Nehemiah. He has made the transition to living alone sooo much easier because without him I would never leave my apartment.
  5. I loveeeee flowers. Especially lilies. I believe it is because my dad always buys them for me, so I associate them with love.
  6. I love to watch weddings shows, wedding videos, engagement videos – honestly anything where people are in love. It brings such joy to my heart. It’s funny because I currently don’t want a huge wedding ceremony, just a reception with my closest friends.
  7. I cry at everything! Happy, Sad – it doesn’t matter. I am such a crier. Which is super ironic because if you ask my parents as a baby – I NEVER CRIED. I guess I am making up for lost time?
  8. I love the beach/lakes/ocean. The ocean/the beach makes me so happy and calm. Whenever I felt anxious or overwhelmed in college, I would go to the beach. Maybe because I was born on an island (Guam).
  9. I love to read, but not really non-fiction/self-help. I think it’s because I use books as a way to escape/live a different reality. I do think there is a great value to self-help and non-fiction books, just for some reason I am not into them. (If you are on good reads/interested in what I am reading – follow me here)
  10. I loveeee playing games on my phone – however, if a kid asks me I will always say no. Idk why but currently I have 19 game apps on my phone. A gamer at heart?
  11. My brother is probably my favorite person in the entire world, probably more than my parents. He can never do any wrong to me. We even got matching tattoos!
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Ancient Greek: φιλία, often translated as “brotherly/sisterly love.” | matching tattoos with my brother, cause no matter what we got each other.

Confessions

  1. #MeToo. If I say no, that doesn’t mean convince/coerce me. Listen the first time.
  2. I battle with imposter syndrome and severe anxiety DAILY. I am working on it. I am working on it by putting myself into more uncomfortable And working on my confidence especially when it comes to school. I know that my research and my academic perspective is necessary.
  3. I honestly feel every emotion super deeply. I’m not sure why but I do. And I also take on other people’s experiences and emotions and experience them myself. It’s hard but a gift.
  4. I am generally the person that everyone goes to with their problems, however, I have a hard time trusting people with my problems.
  5. I worry A LOT about being a Black woman whose professional life is BOMB but whose personal life is lacking. I feel like most people want me to focus solely on my professional life and graduate school, but my personal life is equally (if not more) important to me. I struggle with trying to balance both of these circles.
  6. I love blogging and vlogging – but sometimes I worry that my content isn’t that exciting or engaging enough to keep folks interested in what I have to say or produce (on YouTube).

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Lessons

  1. It is okay not to be okay. I have learned this really within the past year or so. With the passing of my dearest friend last year, losing my uncle a few days ago, dealing with a lot of rejections for graduate school, insecurities – I have been dealing with a lot lately. And honestly, I have been trying to hold it all together, but I can’t. It’s unhealthy for me to try to hold everything in. BUT I have found solace in confiding in the very few people I trust.
  2. Experiencing multiple emotions at one time is absolutely normal and you are not going crazy.
  3. Closure, for me, is such a blessing and a curse. A blessing when it closes a chapter nicely, however more often than not has been a curse and made me feel worse than not knowing.
  4. As much as I believe that I need to be superwoman, I cannot save everyone or do everything at once. It is okay if the only person I save is myself.
  5. I am learning that my worth is not dependent on ANYBODY’s ability or disability to see or acknowledge it.
  6. Change is inevitable, and the quicker you can learn to adapt or roll with the changes the better it will be.
  7. Sometimes you just have to go with the flow. If you know me, you know I am such a planner and type A – but I am learning to just let go of my strict plans and remain strict about my goals.
  8. (BONUS) I am learning how to say no (and you should too!). For years I thought that saying no implied that I didn’t like someone or was trying to be confrontational. However sometimes, saying no is the kindest thing you can do for yourself or someone else.

Challenge: Do you have any Fun Facts, Confession, Lesson you’d like to share? JOIN THE CHALLENGE – OR share below 🙂

I challenge Samantha of Melanin Project Blog and Khari of Twelve-Eight

Best,

-Tanesha Renae

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Let It Be Done In Love!

Let It Be Done In Love

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“Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.” Ephesians 5:2 NLT

A few weeks ago on my YouTube channel, I talked about how to be a better person and one of the things I said to do is to do things with love. In the video, I didn’t go into a lot of practical ways to live in love so that’s what this blog post is about.

  1. Love yourself. This is first and foremost! I mean, honestly think about it – how can you live in love and let love follow freely from your heart if you don’t even love yourself first. Your heart should be filled to the brim with love and once you start to love yourself more it will overflow and pour out into everything you do and touch.
  2. Be Considerate. For me, this is done by considering other people’s feelings and what they might be going through in their lives. For example, if someone is being a poor friend to me, instead of lashing out, getting upset, or even cussing them out – I always first try to give the person the benefit of the doubt. Maybe my friend is under a lot of stress and pressure these days, or maybe this person doesn’t know they are being unkind.
  3. Perform Acts of Kindness. This one is pretty self-explanatory. You don’t have to go all out or even spend money (such as paying for the car behind you foods/Starbucks behind you). You could just hold the door for someone and say “I hope you have a blessed rest of your day,” or if you see someone frowning tell them hello! You never know what people are going through, and your smile or hello, or “have a great day,” might help them get through those tough situations in their life.
  4. Love encourages more love. The more you outwardly live your life with love, I firmly believe that the more love will return to your life. I honestly feel like the more I’ve been intentional about being kind and living in love – the happier I have been. I no longer allow people to upset me, and just love them in spite of themselves.

I hope this encourages you to live in love! What are some ways you will begin to live your life in love? Share below in the comments!

XOXO,

– Tanesha Renae

Valentine’s Day Impromptu Date Ideas

Happy Valentine’s Day

Some folks go out with their girls to dinner and movie (like a date with their girls), while others sit in the house and sulk. Honestly, my friends all live in different states and sitting in the house and sulking doesn’t sound appealing either. So what am I to do? I decided to come up with some impromptu “date ideas”! These are great ideas for you go out with your significant other, your girls, or even go out solo!

  1. Have an intense workout session.
  2. Go to a museum or an art gallery
  3. Buy Yourself some flowers or pick some!
  4. Get up early, make breakfast, and enjoy the quiet morning.
  5. Write yourself a love letter
  6. Send your girls a heartfelt text message (or call) about how much you love them.
  7. Go out to dinner (I love good food!!)
  8. Take a long walk in your favorite park
  9. Go to the library or Barnes & nobles to read for a while (I guarantee it won’t be crowded!)
  10. Get a mani/pedi – or even give yourself one at home!
  11. Go see that movie you’ve been waiting to see!
  12. Have a “Night In” – eat junk food and watch a movie marathon!

Don’t be forced to stay home on this day full of love – Enjoy the love you have received over the years and give some love away (maybe a random act of kindness?)

XOXO,

– Tanesha

 

SUNDAY SOAPBOX: Happy New Year!

Welcome to the first page of the 2017 book! You have 365 days to make this year the best one yet! Remember a minute of unhappiness is 60 seconds of happiness you are losing. I know, at least for me, 2016 was uncomfortable. But as my mentor once said, “Growth isn’t comfortable, and it shouldn’t be.” I hope that 2016 brought you the trials, tribulations, and lessons that you needed to make 2017 your year. I know everyone says “Oh, this year will be my year!” like every year, but I truly believe that it will be the year you need it to be. It will be exactly what you need it to be, trust me.

For me, this year I want to be better overall. I want to become healthier, happier, more involved with things that bring my life joy, closer to the Lord and not sweating the small things anymore.

What are some things you want to manifest in the new year – a new job, career change, happiness? Share below in the comments!

XOXO,

– Tanesha

Sunday SoapBox: Practice Self-Care

Self-care is ANY activity that you do to help maintain your health – not just physical, but also mental and emotional health. It’s often done to help a person when they are feeling overwhelmed with their daily lives. I am always saying that I am going to practice more self-care, but often I am putting it at the bottom of the totem pole of my responsibilities.

My friends who are in business always say, “Pay Yourself First,” The same should go for your self-care time. So starting today, I am going to take time once a week to practice more self-care. Quite frankly, I deserve it, and you do too.

Here are some examples of self-care that are pretty simple that you can easily integrate into your life:

  • Sit in silence and meditate for 15 minutes: I promise you won’t miss anything in those minutes
  • Go for a walk: Especially now that it is fall and the weather and trees are beautiful, just a quick walk down the street.
  • Declutter your space: You don’t have to do an entire overhaul of your house, maybe just straighten up your desk!
  • Spend an hour alone doing something you love: It could be a bubble bath, or drinking Starbucks, or reading a novel

What are some of your favorite self-care practices? Share below in the comments (because I want to add to my list!)

XOXO

– Tanesha

Monday Mindset For Love: Week 1

Welcome to the month of loveeeeeeeee! This month I decided I wanted to do a series that runs every Monday in February called Mindset For Love. So I will be giving “assignments” out every Monday for you to work on your love life.

Someone once told me you have to be ready for love to come into your life because love is serious and affects not only yourself but other people too. In my opinion, you shouldn’t just date to date, you should, at least, see yourself somewhat with them long term. So with that being said, one of the first steps in preparing yourself for love is to consider what you bring to the table. What attributes will you bring to the table?

 
“Assignment” – Consider and write out everything positive you will be bringing to the table to your relationship. Also, write down on a separate sheet of paper all of the baggage, and negative feelings you are still holding on to such as self-hatred, past relationships, etc. Take the things you bring to the table and post it on your mirror. And take the sheet of paper with your baggage on it. Take a day to really think about these things and the reasons you’re still holding on to them. Then pray about it and let them go.

 

(I am particularly fond of ripping it up, and flushing it – but whatever you decide. )
Comment below what things you bring to the table!
Keep It Classy,
– T.Renae.

Unconditionally Loving Yourself

On facebook one day, I saw this quote, “This day, I vow to myself, to treat myself as someone I love truly and deeply – in my thoughts, my actions, the choices I make, the experiences I have, each moment I am conscious, I make the decision to love myself. ” It really took me aback, because I feel like in today’s society everyone is pretending to be confident. Which could just be my perception, but I really want to live my life in a way that exudes unconditional self-love. I said unconditional because when I was younger I used to say things like, “I’ll really love myself when I lose 15 pounds,” or “When I get older I’ll love myself more.” When truthfully, I should love myself right now, because I exist and am deserving of the love I express to others.

So, I decided to share with you all my steps to self-love, and I hope that you can use some of these steps in your journey to self-love.

  • Remove Toxicity. Your space is sacred. Get rid of everyone and everything that threatens your peace. I don’t know about you, but this is extremely difficult for me because I sometimes feel like removing people from my life is an act of anger, but it’s often an act of self-preservation.
  • Find happiness in everyday things. Happiness is often all around us – someone laughing at your joke, the sunset and it’s beautiful colors, making it through the day without complaining – These are all things that could make you happy. Choose to look for the good in the world, and acknowledge the bad – but don’t let it consume you. I like to think that keeping myself happy is a form of love.
  • Relieve stress in positive ways. Stress is a natural part of life and there is no way to avoid it. However, how you deal with  and react to the stress is entirely up to you. Learn to deal with stress in a  positive manner. Such as if you get too overwhelmed with stressed, take 5 minutes to just think about nothing, or work through your anxiety by doing an intense workout routine. Keeping your mind in a healthy state is a part of upkeeping your overall wellbeing healthy.
  • Indulge in Good Karma. Treat others good, not for them to reciprocate, but to make yourself feel good about yourself. Doing something good for someone 9 times out of 10 will make you feel good. Just don’t do too much for another person, where it is creating a burden in your life. Love yourself enough to spread the love to others.

How do you work on loving yourself unconditionally – Share below in the comments!

Keep It Classy,

– T. Renae

Tanesha’s Truth on Relationships

Prior to dating my current boyfriend, deep deep deep down inside, I hated relationships, with burning passion. I always felt like I was putting in more effort than I was receiving and that they weren’t really worthy of my precious God given time. So for a while I just kinda stopped dating, I mean I still talked to guys here and there, but nothing serious. And if I am being completely honest with myself, I knew I was wasting my time with these guys. Sure they were nice, but no one I wanted to be with long term, or even be serious with. So once I was out of that phase I decided that I needed to make some boundaries or better standards for myself when it came to dating. The rules I made, if I do say so myself, worked out pretty well because I am now dating the most amazing guy on Earth.
So here we go.
  1. You must really intimately know him for at least 2-3 months before beginning to date him. – I knew that being in a serious long term relationship meant that we would first have to be extremely good friends. People always say that the best relationships come from friendships. So I figured why not test this theory.
  2. He must meet all of your serious dating MUST HAVE checklist – No, I’m not talking about that superficial checklist where the guy has to be 6’6, basketball player, with a sensitive soul. I’m talking about the things he must have to even be considered in these dating games like honesty, respect, humbleness, etc.
  3. Effort must be shown consistently. – Both parties are involved in this. Relationships in my opinion are 100/100, and I refuse to be giving 100, and he’s only giving 50. It makes no sense and leaves one person hurt, usually the person who is putting forth the effort.
  4. Never settle for less than butterflies. – I feel like I deserve to be wow-ed. Dating today has become boring and effortless and not in a good way. I knew I wanted a long term relationship with someone who floored me all the time. Not necessarily with materialistic things, with like good-morning phone calls, random flowers, cute little notes, compliments, surprises, etc.
  5. Your gut must say yes too. – Sometimes a guy can have everything you want and need and STILL BE WRONG FOR YOU! Trust me I know! Listen to your womanly intuition, and trust it, because 8/10 it’s right. If your gut is say stay clear, STAY CLEAR!
What I’ve learned keeping these boundaries and standards, is that the right guy for you will meet all these and more. These standards are not asking for too much, Serious, long term relationships are nothing like in the movies, where you meet him, the next day fall in love, and then have earth shattering sex, and then everything is great, and ya’ll live happily ever after. I mean, it is a possibility that it could end up that way, but it is also a possibility that it won’t. Relationships take five important components: Communication, Time, Commitment, Effort, Consistency, and Fun. Communication is valuable and needed for any relationship to flourish. Its not about how much you talk, rather the QUALITY of the conversation. Without communication your relationship will not work. It’s literally that simple, so if you’re struggling in this domain like do not pass go do not collect $200 do not go on to the next level because you’re not ready for for a serious relationship. You both have to put in the time and effort into the relationship, its really that simple. You are going to have to be there for that person, and it shouldn’t feel like a burden, you should want to be there for your significant other. Relationships shouldn’t feel like work, they should feel more like an extension of your happiness. Your happiness, and your significant others happiness should expand over each other kinda like a Venn Diagram. Similarly a true, real, genuine relationship should swirl into each other. Relationships should make you a better person, well rounded, want to achieve more, not the opposite. And with that one of the main things I am doing in my not new relationship is that I’m making sure I don’t lose who I am, and what I want to become, and he doesn’t lose who he is, or what he wants. Making sure we achieve our individual’s dreams and goals, so we don’t lose ourselves is apart of our healthy relationship. So in essence my truth on relationships, maybe different, but it has truly worked for me, and I hope it can work for you too!
-T.Renae