“4 Essential Keys to Effective Communication”

🚨 MAJOR KEY🔑 ALERT 🚨

This one is going to seem like a no-brainer. It’s not.

It would seem as though we ought to have these skills down. We don’t.

I can only speak for myself when I say that literally anything can be broken down more effectively, or conveyed more empathetically.

Bento C Leal III (honestly, lets just take a moment to bask in the regality and phonemic fun that is this author’s name. “I am Bento, of House Leal, not even the first of my name!”henceforth referred to as BCL3) ‘s bite-sized book is an easy but nutritious read. It’s full of takeaways, and highly applicable.

Although tempting, DO NOT give it away to your best friend, or little cousin, or blabber-mouth coworker. Especially not in an earnest but shady attempt to get them to shut up and listen. You’ll find that to someone, and perhaps even to yourself, that you may be the blabber-mouthed, hard-headed, non-negotiator. Keep it and reread it. Find a few on Amazon, stock up for the holidays, or send them the PDF. This book makes an excellent turkey, stocking, or pie hole stuffer.

Trust me, I’m a person that was thinking about going to medical school doctor.

4EK’s twelve brief chapters set the scene and take the reader from symptom, to diagnosis, to cure. He starts in chapters one through three with an anecdote that rings all to true: routine conversations with friends, coworkers, strangers and loved ones. He outlines how we might easily convince ourselves that in our many years of travel around the sun, we simply MUST have picked up real and successful communication skills. We mustn’t.

Continue reading ““4 Essential Keys to Effective Communication””

2019: Year of Compatibility

Today marks two weeks of travel into the new year. Exactly fourteen days of reflection, goal-setting, and a lot of backsliding. I’m digging in: committing to making my one and only life work. In the last few weeks I kept hearing a word come up in conversations, in books, on screens. My new theme.

Last year…

2018, for me, was defined by a particular word. A running theme that spanned 365 days of challenging, irritating, and patience-building circumstances.

That word was resilience.

From relationship woes to impending unemployment. From seeking to securing to adjusting to a new and more exciting job.

From stress-induced fender-bender to a car accident that totaled my baby Harriet (Tubman because she freed me). Crying for months on the phone with – and in the offices of – unaccommodating car catastrophe-related personnel.

I had to tough it out. Find stores of resilience in myself because no matter how inconvenient and painful, ultimately not one in that series of unfortunate events, would kill me.

There’s something both empowering and disheartening in knowing that you can survive more. In knowing that you can -and one day will have to- be even stronger still. To my genuine dismay I’d have to make it, and keep making it until I encounter something that actually could… kill me.

2018 brought me my first major loan/credit debt-builder while simultaneously rewarding me for my fastidious and measured money management. That gave me the chance to buy a new newish new-to-me car without a co-sign.

2018 brought me a new apartment and a supportive and enjoyable new roomate. Desperation forced our hands, and leases loomed, but a great new friendship formed with each passing month.

Finally, 2018 brought me a new job and plenty of opportunities to learn more about coworker relationships, leadership, and the bureaucratic entities that govern worky-desky-sitty jobs. I’m learning to detect and define my red flags: in romance, in myself, and in my past.

This Year…

In all that I experienced last year, the greatest lesson, and this year’s word, is compatibility. Too many times I’ve forced interactions, and ignored red flags. I’ve wanted things and people more than I’ve wanted peace and flow. I’ve sacrificed compatibility thinking it would yield results in the long run while suffering daily. Living in-authentically. Incompatibly.

I’m committing myself to effortlessness. No matter how contradictory that sounds. 🤦🏾‍♀️🤷🏾‍♀️ I’m working everyday to create a free-flowing life. Disciplining my time and my life to allow in the types of opportunities that I want to experience and take advantage of. If I can nail down my habits, I will have the discernment necessary to adjudicate over delicious new experiences with the time and preparation to appreciate them. What I’ll need is discipline.

Plot twist: Discipline is this cool new form of self-care where you follow a schedule, prompt yourself, and do things that benefit your life. Get this, if you push through your reluctance, and fatigue and keep to your word, you actually see your life improve! Crazy, right!?

My new Mantra. It gets me out of bed. Out of the car for work. Into the gym despite this unusual cold snap. I mumble it to myself in traffic, and as I set my alarms. “Discipline is love. Discipline is love. Discipline is love.” In the shower when my mental to-do list at work gets disparagingly long, “Discipline is love.”

Discipline is the new hygge. Discipline is the new pilates, hot yoga, and cycling combined. For the last two weeks I have set a schedule for myself and begun sleeping at a certain time, setting particular days to work out or study for class. I’ve taken specific steps to make myself ready and remove excuses.


Shoutout to @Amaa_Official on Twitter for Inception inseminating my mind!

Ways that I’ve been utilizing discipline to increase compatibility in 2019:

  • I speak immediately on the things causing me anxiety and don’t murder myself by over thinking the outcomes and avoiding difficult conversations
  • I put my clothes out the night before AND check the weather
  • I schedule my workouts and don’t stress if I miss one. I just resume immediately at the next scheduled opportunity
  • I meal prep to save money, keep on diet, and feel like a grown up
  • I try to do things at the same times each day to create routine and run on muscle memory
  • I can spend time with friends and family more often if I make them shorter outings. (for instance, I can say yes to a party without anxiety because I know be there for no more than 120 minutes)
  • I let my phone die on Saturday mornings, and don’t power up again until the evening. A whole day off the grid to work on my blog, homework, connect to loved ones, work out, get domestic, or just relax
  • I refuse to be inhabited by guilt so I leave work at a reasonable time and wake up early to recap before I sit at my desk. No more unfocused late nights churning out half-assed results from a foggy anxious brain drain

I want to be calling things, relationships, experiences, and opportunities toward me. I want to create a space where growth, love, and contentment are welcomed. I want to have room for change, and be the person with the mindset to make use of that change. Discipline is love. Love for me, for my friends and family, love for my readers, and the individuals I serve. I want to love my life more, so I need to discipline it.

Discipline is love.

#Throwback Thursday Deliberate Action

I’m learning bit by bit to be more aggressive in the pursuit of my wants. They are important. To communicate quickly in self-advocacy. My adversities are valid. To be wholly present in the moments that I dedicate to myself. My me-time is crucial.

Most of all, I’m realizing that my advice is for me too. It’s actually mostly for me. I need it.

lftu

Life is a generous teacher; giving you multiple opportunities to to learn lessons and retake tests.

Read more at the link above!

Continue reading “#Throwback Thursday Deliberate Action”

A Week Without Netflix

Well, a work week.  Actually, ” A Monday through Friday Afternoon Without Netflix” would be a more appropriate title.

It started out so noble. smh.

Anecdotal Introduction:

[Group therapy setting with counselor that looks suspiciously similar to Brown Sugar actress and Black People Movies starlet Sanaa Lathan]

Group Counselor: “Please stand, say your name, and own your shame.”

Roze: “Roze… *Counselor Lathan stares entreatingly* … Goes?”

Sanaa: “Now, to the group, name your shame!”

Roze: *rises slowly from creaky/rusted/tan/ metal folding chair* “My name is Roze,  *throat clenches* and I am addicted to Netflix!”

black princess.jpg

Sanaa Lathan: Roze, When did you first fall in love with Hip-Hop Netflix? {I KNEW IT!}

End Anectode

My earliest  memories of Netflix started around 2010. I was about two years into undergrad, and they were only brief flashes. At a friend’s house, glancing over at a neighboring computer in the library. Stolen passwords and shared accounts. Being kicked off from too many users; the beginnings of a relationship.

We got serious a few years ago. I struck out on my own, cable was expensive, and I needed something stable. Netflix was there for me. When my work was unfulfilling and I didn’t feel creative. When I wanted to go adventuring, but couldn’t be bothered to put on pants. When I wanted to learn something new, but was still too shell-shocked from undergrad.

[Narrator from Snapped voice] But soon, the honeymoon would be over…

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I was refusing invites. I told myself I was saving money. Watched Friday nights melt away and soothed myself with BBC mystery shows set in quaint old-timey villages. I was in a rut. Putting off real life for imagined ones. Busying myself with nothing. We were spiraling; co-dependent.

co dependent

One day it got to be too much. My fingers stained orange from the bags and bags of hot fries. My bonnet had fallen off long ago. I could hardly recognize myself.

I was only then that I realized I didn’t NEED it. I didn’t HAVE to live this way. I could make another choice. The choice to get out.

It was hard at first. SO reflexive. Fill the silence with Netflix. I would roll over in the night and my fingers would find the power button almost on their own. So easily accessible, the both of us. But I needed to change. I did.

One afternoon melded into another, one week became two, and then it hit me. I had gone WEEKS without Netflix. I was better, stronger, faster. *makes bionic man sounds with mouth*

Now, we’re more casual. We see each other on the weekends, and I’m fine with it. I busy myself with the hobbies Netflix kept me too hopped up to remember. I read. I’m back to making crochet crop tops. I’m planning for my future.

Anyway. You’re sitting on the couch… 

This week, challenge yourself to quit something. At least Monday through Friday afternoon. Learn to crochet. Say yes a few more times. Spend a little more time outside. Take a trip. Quit your job. Stare directly into the eclipse. Blind yourself! Be adventurous!

Roze Goes,

I missed you! (yes, you!)

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Self-Care Sunday: SMonday

I woke up this morning with the sincerest intentions of changing my entire life.

That didn’t happen.

What I did do was decide to start small. I put on some leggings, tied up my Pumas, and headed for the door to walk the beautiful park near my apartment.

That also didn’t happen. I got hungry.

After scrambling an egg, realizing joyously that the orange juice was indeed still good, and watching an unhealthy amount of U.K. crime shows, I really really actually for real   got going.

Girding my loins (ew) as the relentless Inigo Montoya, and the Once and Future King of the North, Ned Stark taught me, I prepared to go to battle with the dreaded SMonday.

SMonday is the inevitable hope-crushing, weekend-ending, heart-hurting ogre of a monster that steals the twinkle from your weekend’s eye. It forces you to have three too many mimosas at brunch, and binge on Netflix in the hopes of multiplying your weekend as is discreetly saps itaway.

The SMonday monster ties you to the couch and blinds your eyes to the laundry they needs doing. Before you realize, it’s 11:30 pm and Monday has already arrived!

Who you gonna call? Ro-Zee-na!    

Nope, dont ever say that.

I fight the dreaded SMonday by getting just a little productive. Not enough to feel like work, but enough to make the remaining weekend taste just a little sweeter. With proper pre-planning you can spread out your errands, chores, and Sunday Funday activities evenly. You may even go to bed before Monday comes creeping through the night pressed against your windows like thick fog.

My SMonday battle list is as follows:

1. Journaling/To-do listing as early as possible in the day. Whether I wake up at 7 or 11, one of the first things I do is jot down my feels and track what I need to do to BE and FEEL successful. This helps me get off to a great start for the week.

2. Meal-prep is the  🔑🗝 to success. They don’t want you save money. They don’t want you eat healthy. #blessup

Breakfast jars!

3. Cleaning up MySpace  my space . Your space. You can’t think if you can’t even see the carpet. Wipe down your  surfaces. Spray some smell-good or light a candle.  For me I NEED to make my bed.

4. Finally, deeply invest in your weekend. Get the most if it, so the Monday morning vaccine wont hurt so much. For me it’s watching the first episode of Insecure season 2!

#wtfLawrence #bonnect #choregraphy

Take care of yourselves! A weekend well spent brings a week of content! Or new content, who knows!

Roze Goes… into the work week with a sweet new SMonday fur coat!