Strategic Silence

strategic silenceI have a lot on my mind. I have a lot to say, but I am not a talker. I am not into wasting words. On the other hand, I am truly turned on by real conversation! I love having conversations that stimulate the mind, make you think, and cause growth. Small talk is not my thing. I tend to limit my conversations with individuals that are known to have long, small talk conversations. What do I mean by small talk? How are you? How is your mom…dad…children…job…cousin…your grandmother? Did you see that rain? What are you eating? Cooking? How bout those Mets?!! Blah, Blah, blah. I try to save my conversations for times when I believe I will get something deep back, something with personality. So I am what I call strategically silent.

I am somewhat of an outgoing person. I love meeting new people and learning about different cultures and upbringings. I thought that everyone would be that way. Many people, I find, like meeting people for selfish reasons or to look for someone to judge, I just to learn and love people. I will basically talk to anyone for a short time. I was never afraid of that. My mom told me that I would say Hi to anyone who made eye contact with me. When I was young, I was not afraid to just be Cher, with no apologies. strategicsilence2Becoming an adult has  given me a chance to experience many people who criticize and judge my decisions. When you have a lot of judgement and negative things said to you, you change your mind about some decisions and find yourself following everyone’s advice. I was guilty of that on occassion. The longer I live, the more I realize that I am the only one living my life. I want to do it my way. I want to spend my days without regret, for me. I am a full-grown woman now!! I use the criticism of others to push me toward what I truly want. It is not the only thing I use but it is definitely part of it. I used to argue with my haters about what I want to do…can you believe that? Haters don’t understand your drive or your hustle. They want to have the guts to do what you do and they don’t like themselves because of it.

Being quiet brings on the small-minded people who wanna bring on “the hate”. They think I think too highly of myself or that I may have an agenda of some sort. The haters exist for a reason. They are conditioned by society to think and feel a certain way and if anyone “colors outside of the lines”, they don’t understand so they believe that it is their job to bring on the criticism, set you straight. Some people just can’t see things beyond their own little world. strategicsilence7They waste all kinds of energy trying to tear others down instead of doing what makes them happy. They can be working on making their mark on the world epic but instead, they would rather work against themselves while bringing negativity to you. Haters gonna hate!! Let them!!

Use the hate that those negative people bring your way for motivation for you to go harder after what you want in life. I know that it includes happiness and Peace, for me it does. They don’t have to believe in you! Cut you down? Let them try. Its not what they say that makes you who you are, its what you believe about you. What is your perception of you? You cannot feel bad about yourself or think negatively about what you are doing and be successful. And you sure won’t be successful caring too much about what others are saying when they criticize you. Let it all be fuel for the fire in you that drives you to win!

You are responsible for you, what you feel and how you think. Take responsibility for where you are trying to go and focus on the steps you have to make on your journey. strategicsilence4Use everything along the way to help you learn and grow, even the negative things. Don’t worry about comparing yourself to others. Be your own competition! Run your race. Hear what the people who you love and trust have to say, yes, but trust yourself, love on you more. Gain a drive to see your dreams come true so strong that nothing and no one can convince you to change your mind or quit.

You are not going to please everyone no matter how you do things so don’t try. You are the one who matters. Don’t worry about being liked by everyone and don’t take their dislike of you personally. That is their issues, not yours. Their shade that is thrown at you is really them exposing their insecurities…oooppps! That is their character showing. Know your truth so that their comments don’t break you. You define your life so know that what they think and say is more about them than it is about you.

 

 

 

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Tea Time

tea timeI used to feel like I got cheated because I did not have a daughter when I felt like I was done having children. I wanted 3 children because for some reason my life always included that number so it feels pretty lucky for me. I wanted a GIRL!!! I mean why not? Growing up I was a little on the tomboy side but after becoming a mom, I began to embrace my diva and I felt like I should have a mini-me. I did not receive one and I am definitely not bitter about having the young royalty that I was given, but it would have been nice.

tea time2I was given the pleasure of being a godmother to a sweet little girl a few years ago. Not my mini-me but my sweet little sugar cookie nonetheless. Spending time with her is fun. Little girls are so different from boys!! Boys are easy. I just throw my boys around a little and play some sports, watch a few cartoons and play video games. With girls, you tend to not be as rough and I had to learn how to play with dolls and little kitchen sets. Of course with my sons, I look for teachable moments in it all. I don’t want them to think there is ever a time when I am not being mom…even when we are hanging like friends. I do the same with her when we spend time together.

Anywho…I finally decided to give my little goddaughter a birthday party! I wanted it to 6EA34977-59AC-4E9B-B429-9DBB4E87C888be all about her but still have a god-mommy (or Cookie, as she calls me) stamp on it so Tea Party theme is what it was! I am a planner as far as things like parties, vacations, and such goes in my life so I started the planning 5 months before her birthday. I wanted to pull out all of the stops. I did all kinds of research because I did not have a tea party as a young girl, nor had I ever been to one.  I wanted to do it for her….my sugar, so she could have an experience that I did not have as a child. (I also wanted to do it for me!!)

The planning was fun!! Looking for everything tea party! I was online looking at IMG_8682Pinterest, on Amazon and in the thrift and antique stores searching for my pots, cups, and other things to decorate the party just so.  The menu, the drinks (appropriate for young girls), tea pots, tea cups….cucumber sandwiches! I cannot even begin to tell you how much fun party planning is. This one, in particular, took me back to being a little girl and the innocence of being a princess, and remembering to be soft, feminine, and pink! Everything from the invitations to the party favors were all about being elegant and girly. Their party favors were decorated boxes that had candy, white gloves and pearls. I had parasols and hand-made flowers everywhere!

Being feminine is a gift that we should give our girls, our own and the ones we are IMG_8653attached to. We have to remember to be soft and feminine too, even though we have to stand strong at the same time. We have to remember that we have curves and emotions,  we are delicate and beautiful. We have to have and be all of these things and be confident and bold enough to demand our respect and honor all at the same time. We cannot allow ourselves to be walked on and stepped over.We have to own our flaws and dare someone to say that we are not what we say or think we are. Prove it!! Walk and talk like it, speak like a lady and smile

IMG_8683at that beautiful face when you look in the mirror as you admire the beauty you see before you. Every curve…every crazy emotion, how soft and feminine you are. Someone was made to love every inch, every emotion, all of your femininity! Your job is to love you first!! Show the world that you love you by treating you like a princess, a queen in fact! Show them how to do it! Teach them what is acceptable and what is not. Know that you deserve the best, the very best. You make your world better simply by being you and being present. I love being feminine. It was easy when I was dressing like a tomboy, but there is nothing like putting on a dress and seeing how it brushes passed all of my femininity. IMG_8679I love being a woman! It is not easy but it has been a pleasure to bring life into the world and be responsible for rearing human beings.  We have so much power, even in our softness. We can make or break us and/or them, remember that! Embrace your femininity every once in a while. I know you are running around after children all day or working in a career field that does not call for it, but you will have a day off. Don’t stay in your pajamas all day. Take a shower and get dressed, something sexy, even if you are staying home. You will feel sexy and your spouse will enjoy seeing those legs before we get to no-shave November. I am just saying…I practice that one!

IMG_8772If you have little ladies in your life, teach them to love their hair, their softness and crazy emotions.  Embrace their femininity and not to be ashamed of their curves. Self love is paramount in raising confident women that do not attached themselves to someone that may possibly abuse them, physically or otherwise. Be the example. Embrace yours…watch them follow.

 

 

Influencing Others

influencing others4Over the last couple of months, I have become addicted to listening to podcasts, audiobooks, and talk radio…more than listening to music. It was so strange to me at first but it feels like I am being more productive. I talk about reading more and improving so when I am driving in the car, sitting at work between clients, or a home cooking, cleaning and relaxing in the sunroom, I am listening to people who already learned something that I want to learn. These people that I am listening to are some creative and innovative people that approach life with so much vim, vigor, and positive energy and they have learned how to live and influence everything in their environment. We have the option to accept everything that happens in our world or push to influence them. We are the ones who write our own stories. What do you want your story to say?

We all love a good story. Whether we hear it in a song, read it in a book, of over-hear a juicy piece of gossip, we wanna know the story. The bigger, juicier, more interesting the story, the more attention is given to it; the more impact it is going to make.

I believe that I have a good story to tell and that is why I am writing this blog. I have a lot images (5)of stories to tell and I know that my delivery is raw and authentic as I attempt to relate to, entertain and inspire the readers.  If you can influence others to listen to your story, you can have others on your side that will support you and spread your value to others that may need to hear your story and become inspired by your journey. Influence can get us what we want in life. We can gain friendships and relationships with those that can inspire us and support us in our journey….and we can return the love!

So what is your story? Whatever it is, you should be honest about your experiences. A lot of people try to make their lives look so perfect, especially on social media. Don’t be that girl! Authenticity and transparency wins the race. Yes, it is true that not everyone deserves to hear your whole story. That does not mean you have to sell anyone a dream. influencing others3Dreams are not bad, but most people can smell the bull a mile away….just saying. Show the people you communicate with that you have substance. Show them that being in relationship with you will add value to their life. That will give you staying power and influence with the ones that are inspired by your honesty. This means you are going to have to do some things in order to have a story, some experiences to talk about. You have to go out there and LIVE! You have to live through some things, savor some of life’s ups and downs. You have to travel, talk to people, be open to learning something new, get out of your comfort zone…..fail. You have to get out there…just get up and do it.

Your story is your perspective, your truth. No one else’s story will be like yours. Your influence on others will depend on your ability to tell your story with honesty and empathy wrapped up in your boldness. I am not going to tell you that I have mastered this at all. I am very reserved because I do not like to talk and share just for the sake of hearing my own voice. I am not attracted to drama and wasting words is not my thing. Some may say I am quiet, others think the total opposite, just depends on the person you ask. Like I said, not everyone has earned the right to hear my stories.

In telling my stories, I have learned this…

  • Do not try to tell a story to please others. Making promises you can’t keep is not cool. Don’t waste time telling people what they want to hear. I believe that you show just how powerful you are when you display your honesty about your struggle and the journey to overcoming it.
  • You are not perfect; it is okay to be wrong. Everyone’s experience will not end up like yours because we are all different. No one has it all figured out and showing your transparency will gain you some respect even if the experience is not the same for others.
  • Be Yourself!! PLEASE. Allowing others to see who you really are can help your influence go a very long way. Attempting to be someone else or like someone else is not going to do you any good. Eventually, the real you is going to come out. Commit to learning more about what you are trying to share or just share what you know, that way those who are listening don’t lose their trust in you.

Influencing others1Everyday I am getting better at telling my story. It may be uncomfortable at times and honestly, I love what I feel afterwards. I am grateful for the freedom to have the experiences and I show my appreciation for it (sometimes after I have a fist full of tears). Celebrate your scars and successes equally. Because of them, you are the winner that you are today….

Dealing With Their Judgement

judgement blog 1Whether we are home with family or in a room full of strangers, we are all being observed and judged at some point. What you are wearing, smelling like, how you are rocking your hair, what you are doing, saying, or otherwise is all being watched and someone will always have something to say. And sometimes it will come from the person that you least expect. We may try to act like we do not care what anyone has to say, but depending on our personalities, backgrounds and upbringings, our feelings can be really hurt. I know as a young girl, I hated that someone always had something to say. I even partook in having something to say as well. I mean, why not? They were talking about me too! And…that..was …when I was a child. Now, I am realizing how much time I wasted worrying about what someone else was doing, saying, thinking and wearing when I could have been working on myself. I could have been making sure that I was being myself, working on myself…improving and loving ME!

I did pay a lot of attention to what people had to say. I even latched on to what they said and owned it at times. I am a little embarrassed to say that some of the ugly things that were said affected my emotional and mental health as well as my growth. I sometimes believed what they said more than I believed myself, or what I knew God said about me. judgement blogI wasted a lot of time. Then I decided to grow, regardless of what anyone had to say about it. You don’t always make friends when you are attempting to grow but that’s okay. Not everyone will be ready for the grown-up you anyway. Growing “weeds out” the weighty people in your life that slow you down or may even stop you from growing and going to the next level in your life. Nothing that anyone has to say about you should keep you from doing what you love to do, being the whole and complete real you. Whatever you want to do, do it! Put in the work and you will accomplish that thing…for real!

As a young girl, I knew who and what I wanted to be. I always knew I wanted to be a wife and mother for sure. I wanted a successful career doing any of the many things that I love to do and be my own boss doing them. It was never my plan to become a millionaire; it was definitely my dream to be surrounded by love…lots of love! I am a very driven person so when I caught an interest in something, I pursued it, learned it, got a degree or certification and then wanted to do more. Fast forward to now and I have done most of those things. There was no straight path to any of them and I didn’t like the journey the whole time, but I know that it was necessary. And I did it! I continue in my pursuit. I appreciate the good and the bad that has happened and I am growing. I am a learner. The world is just one huge school for me. I want to be transparent with you and say that I have never really given my studies 100% of me, even my “life” studies. I give a lot, don’t get me wrong, but 100%… I’m working on it. I cannot imagine what I would have accomplished if I had truly applied myself. I will admit that I am not at all disappointed in the woman that I have become with the effort I did put in. Presently, I am so much better at being “present” in whatever I am doing and with who I am around. With all of the distractions in the world, that can be difficult. I realize that our experiences are limited, “days are numbered.” We never know when we will have our last conversations, holidays, or argument with someone we care for. I want to LIVE the experience, not look back at a picture and not remember if any words of wisdom were spoken, laughter or tears exchanged in the room while I was trying to get the right lighting for my selfie.

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With anything that you say or decide to do, with each step, you will see a possibility of someone judging you, questioning your moves. Let them say what they want, you cannot let what they say affect you, especially not stop you. Stay strong and continue to move forward. You should pursue your passion and your opinion is the only one that counts. We can listen to others but not be offended or affected by what they have to say. You know what they say, “opinions are like assholes…everyone has got one.” (excuse the language, its a quote! So why do people judge us anyway? In my opinion…heeeheeeheeehee… I think that a lack of understanding is a huge part of why people judge. We live in a microwave world and not everyone fully listens to fully understand what is being said or the intention behind it. Hurry, hurry, hurry!! The world we live in. Everyone has somewhere to be, something else to do, and they rush and lay their own perspective, life experiences, and observations on what you share. We can look past that initial opinion and see that ignorance can be the culprit and know that it is not worth your time to get your feelings all wrapped up in their thoughts.

 

I handle people and their judgement of me with empathy…most of the time. Have not reached “Jesus” status just yet. When the time and patience allow, I try to explain what I am sharing more. If you are dealing with an unreasonable person, it may be a waste of time to explain anything. People that can handle everything others have to say and not be affected at all are some of the coolest people on this planet. I am inspired by them and hope to join that club one day. If you are not like them yet, just keep doing what you do, saying what you say and let the negative things roll right off of you. Keep being awesome, or at least reaching for it. Not everyone will fully understand you or your aspirations and that is okay, they don’t have to. One day, when you get to that place, doing whatever it is you have dreamed of, those that laid their unsolicited opinions and judgement on you then, will understand your hustle.

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Never waste your time trying to explain who you are to people that are committed to misunderstanding you…..

Don’t allow anyone’s words to slow you down or stop you from realizing your dreams. You are strong. You are determined. You are worth it! Keep pushing!

Affirmations

images (25)I am someone who loves to help others. I want others to be able to have the strength and encouragement to get through anything. The ability to help people feel better is a gift but not one that many people have. It is not normal by a long shot, I had no idea! I was told that I am an Empath, and she told me that the proof of that is that I am always having to explain my thoughts and feeling to other people. An empath is someone who is affected by other people’s energies, and they have an innate ability to intuitively feel and perceive others. It is much more than being sensitive and its not limited to emotions. An empath can feel physical sensitivities, spiritual urges, and can have the ability to know the motivations and intentions of others. You cannot learn to be an empath, you either are or you aren’t. For some reason I believe that my method of communication is clear but I still have to explain what I am thinking and feeling all of the time..(blank face)..it is frustrating!! I am used to it now. It has been an ongoing part of my life experience. I have been in a place where I realize that I have to explain my thoughts and feelings; that most people cannot see my emotions as clearly as their own, especially not when they are deep in their own. Talking to people that are “in” their feelings…..anyway, that is not what this post is about. When I communicate with others, I can feel their struggle or suffering and I tend to want to fix it, or even worse carry all of their baggage for them.  Why do I do that?! I mean, I really do not want the pressure of being needed by others beside my boys, and I do not care too much about being liked or wanted.  I actually like spending time with myself and the carefully chosen people that I do spend my time with, which is very few. Although, I need to expand my horizons just a bit to glean off of individuals that are already where I want to be.

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I have read a couple of books about Empaths and codependency to see why I was getting so frustrated with the individuals I am communicating with. Was it me? What was I doing/not doing that made talking so exhausting and/or draining. Even that line of questioning to myself, is me taking the blame off of them right? It just cannot be them right? That’s me!! But I am working with myself on that one too. I have been told that I can read minds at times. I really do not know how it happens. It amazes me many times and I do not question it anymore. It used to be scary, not so much now though. And I try not to mix my energy with the energy of others. It is important that every person have their own experiences. Sometimes being there to help others can make you a stumbling block to their growth. Being an empath, that is the last thing you want. We do not want to stop anyone from having their time to learn lessons vital to their growth. When I think about that, I back up and mind my own business. I do not want that responsibility! No, not me. I have my own problems and I no longer get involved in anyone else’s emotional drama. Every experience we have, the good and the bad, have lessons for us to learn. I am thankful for all that I have experienced, even the things that threatened to take me out. I am so much stronger because of them.

Feels good when you know that your life’s journey does not have to be taken alone. Howdownload (13) have I been getting through? I have been using affirmations to give myself a pep talk when things are trying to get me down. Affirmations are phrases that help you practice positive thinking and self empowerment. Now when I feel that someone needs encouragement or help in their walk, I go to the affirmations that are helping me to push through in the times I need to be empowered. I have plenty of them but I will share 5 of them with you here.

  1. I release what is not mine to feel. (you can repeat that one a few time to feel it. I have a problem worrying about what other people are feeling more than my own occasionally) You are only responsible for your own feelings and actions.
  2. What they are feeling is none of my business. Again, I am only responsible for my own feelings and nothing I do can control how they feel. Feelings are a choice. No one can make you feel anything!
  3. I don’t have to fix everything for everyone. LAWD HAMMERCY! When I started getting that! It is so freeing to know that I am not GOD and I don’t even have to try to be. I am toasting to that one.
  4. I forgive those who have harmed me in my past and peacefully detach from them. This is some grown woman stuff right here! This I can not say is completely conquered quite yet but I am on my way.
  5. I am a powerhouse. I am indestructible. When you know this, you handle the trials of life with a different strength, one that is not your own. Nothing and NO One has the ability to take you out of the game.

download (11)If you are someone who has affirmations you live by, share them. I would love to learn more. I was taught that for every negative thought I have about me, I should have at least 5 positive things to claim over myself. I am actively doing that and honestly have less negative things to say about myself unless I just feel like being petty that day (smiles).

 

Trust Yourself

images (17)I have to admit something. I am very very very good at giving advice….that I do not always take myself. (I am laughing and shaking my head at myself). I know that I am not the only one. Right now I feel like, at my age, I am in-between life stages and still searching out my purpose. I am forty-something years old, I have two grown children, and a 10 year old that thinks that he is grown. He looks it, no doubt, but he is 10! Because I am still a young lady and in the prime of my life, I have finally decided to actively take my own advice. I am not sure if I will go into details on this advice, but I will say this, it is going well so far!! I am trusting my instincts and working my mental muscles and going for what I know.

One thing that I am happy about is that I followed my instincts about going out of the corporate salon and working for myself. I had been working for a franchised salon for about 11 years. It was a mobile job, convenient for a military family. A guaranteed paycheck, no matter how small. It has been 3 years since I took the leap and went from an hourly paying salon to a 100% keep-what-I-earn and pay booth rent salon and I have to say that it was scary but I am doing really well. I have a great clientele that refers others to me so when I am at the salon, I am busy! When I was at the franchised salon, it did not matter if I took care of 1 person or 30, I was getting hourly pay. Now, I get everything and it is truly worth it. Being able to make my own schedule is priceless. My children benefit just as well as myself. I don’t have to miss special times and we can create some as well if the salon is slow.

I did have plenty of self-doubt going into this. I thought about clients not following me images (19)from the salon I was in and what if there wasn’t enough walk-in traffic to help me build. At the same time, I believed in myself….a whole lot! When the opportunity came to leave, it took me a few weeks to really think it through and it didn’t hurt at all that I prayed a bunch before making my decision. I took the time to tell the clients I had about my decision to go out on my own and my desire to have them come with me. When I got a lot of positive responses, it gave me the momentum to start counting down the days when I would finally be an entrepreneur. I am working for myself ya’ll!!! I feel so grown(giggles). Long story super short, it has been a great 3 years. I work part time in the salon, I homeschool my youngest son, and I am pursuing other things that I have always wanted to do. Life is good, most of it. But that is for another time.

I have trusted my intuition and it is paying off in so many ways. I mean I am not a millionaire, but we are happy. We have more time and money to do things that keep us building our relationship as a family. Eventually my boys will grow all the way up and move away. I need to spend as much time with them as I can now and make plenty of memories and traditions that they can carry with them to their own families. The mommy legacy can live on!! I dove right in when I finally made the move. I did make sure that my ducks were at least close to being in a row. That is important. I had a little savings so that if I had a slow couple of weeks, we would still be okay. I used to think that I would have to work 40+ hours to take care of my children. That is what I was doing over there. All weekend, all week. I now work half the amount I was working before for twice the amount of money. I can only go up from where I am. I am winning! The move was worth it and I am happy that I trusted  myself.

images (23)Now, I am still busy! But now I truly love what keeps me busy and that makes a huge difference in my stress levels. As far as my business move goes, I am free of that old self-doubt. This is not to say that I do not get discouraged. I just keep going and things still balance themselves out. I have learned to budget my finances and I took on a new hobby, couponing!! I am aiming to get myself to the point that in everything I do, I am being productive in that the activity that I am doing is getting me another step closer to where I want to be. There is a time or everything, my clients, my boys, creating the blogs or planning events, my hustle, love, warfare, and relaxing. I am trying to have less wasted space and time in my life. I have goals! If what I am doing and who I am doing it with, will not get me another step closer, I need to reevaluate, and quick.

If I can give anyone some advice that I have been actively taking myself, I would have toimages say trust yourself. Get to know who you are and treat yourself well.  You are in a relationship with yourself and you need to make an effort to make you happy. Take yourself to dinner and a movie, pamper yourself, learn what you love and what you should avoid. Set clear boundaries for yourself and respect them. Stay committed to you, your goals and those boundaries that you set. Do not forget to surround yourself with others that do the same.

Vacation Time!

images (15)Road trip! Cruise time! All-inclusive Beaches and Resorts! The lists goes on and on for what we define as a vacation. We all need them, the long and the short ones. Summer is coming to an end and that is when most people plan their vacations, although a lot of us will take them anytime of year. Taking vacations are not just fun, but they are also good for our health, physical and mental health. We need an occasional break from the hustle and bustle of work, schedules, and family lives we run.

I was looking at some statistics and a 2014 Employment Confidence survey says that theimages (12) average U.S employee takes half of their vacation time. Out of those people, three out of five do some type of work on vacation and 25% of them are answering calls from coworkers and supervisors about work-related issues. They are still working!! This cannot be good. Taking time away from the workplace has great health benefits so not only should we take time away physically, but we should distance ourselves completely. It is only temporary. If we prepare them to function without us, it is possible to really take a real vacation and enjoy it. If we do not take advantage of our vacations, we are shortchanging ourselves from those benefits. What benefits?

  1. Decrease in heart disease. The Multiple Risk Factor Intervention for the Prevention of Coronary Heart Disease conducted a trial of 12,000 men over nine years. These men had high risk factors. The study found that the ones who took a frequent annual vacation were 21% less likely to die from any cause and 32% less likely from heart disease. Women who did not take a vacation were eight times more likely to develop coronary artery disease or even have a heart attack in comparison to those who took at least two vacations a year.
  2. Less Stress. When you are removed from activities and environments (an some people) that tend to be the source of our stress, it can reduce our stress. The time away gives you a chance to care for your emotions and relax.
  3. Decreased depression. Leisure activities and vacations contribute to higher positive emotions so that will mean less depression. Even a day long get-a-way to the beach can benefit you. A vacation will lower our blood pressure and can also result in a smaller waistline too.
  4. You will be more productive. When I come back from a vacation, I am rejuvenated! I have gotten a chance to clear my mind and relax my body and now I can perform better at work. Before that vacation, I may have been thinking about quitting altogether, but now I am ready.

images (16)images (11)Vacationing, however you choose to do it, helps you to achieve balance in your life and keep you functioning at optimal health. It is important that we take care of ourselves and learn to manage stress and enhance our wellness so that we can take care of our daily responsibilities and face our challenges, getting positive results.  Right now as you are reading this, hopefully, I am in the Western Caribbean enjoying some fun in the sun (Hurricane Irma??). Some time I believe that I have earned and can’t wait to experience. So get out there and relax…it is good for you!