How Trusting My Intuition Changed My Dating Life

 

People may judge me for this, but I love The Steve Harvey Show. My favorite segment on his show is Love Him or Leave Him. In this section of the show a woman usually expresses her relationship woes and asks should she “love her man or leave him”. It’s rare that Steve ever suggests that the women “love him.”  Steve gives great advice to the women who seek his wisdom but the interesting facet of this segment is the woman always knows whatever she is dealing with is out of line.

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It made me wonder,  why do women seek validation to leave a situation that they already know isn’t working? Women consult everyone in the process of a break up; our friends,  family, even Steve Harvey. Why don’t we listen to our intuition? If we listened to our first minds, we would save ourselves from so much anguish and wasted time.

There is nothing wrong with being willing to work through an issue.  Compromise is a prerequisite for any relationship, but to what extent? I think certain levels of forgiveness are earned. Breaking trust at the beginning of a relationship is a preview of the coming attractions which leads me to believe that the willingness to commit to a bad relationship is easier than running for the hills. After finding something that feels like it could work, the thought of being thrown back into the dating market can make you feel like working out problems that you should walk away from.

Intuition is a thing that one knows or considers. It’s an instinctive feeling rather than conscious reasoning. I think fear can make you distrust your intuition because it’s not always tangible evidence. Second guessing yourself can have you on the inevitable search for hard evidence that can lead to going through his phone, stalking, creeping low in the trash can watching him from a window, to name a few things.

Just like there are 8 Stages of Anger there are three stages of knowing when to walk away.

 

Recognize

Something has changed, but you just can’t put your finger on it. What you are feeling could very well be a misunderstanding. It’s your responsibility to communicate with the person you are with. If after communicating the issue or concern, the follow-up actions doesn’t match what was originally communicated, the time has come to believe what that person does and not what they say. Maya Angelou said  “when a person shows you who they are, believe them.” It is easy to always want to see the best in someone, but when you only get to deal with the worst in them, it can become very draining. People always will reveal themselves, and it is usually in an understated fashion.

Acknowledge 

A revelation always shows up like an epiphany in the mist of chaos. It hits you, he’s cheating, he’s untruthful, he’s irresponsible, and my favorite, he’s crazy. I can honestly say from personal experience I realized a persons truth early in a relationship and not just in romantic relationships.

The reality is we all have faults, and you won’t find a perfect person walking this earth. Every time you acknowledge a downfall of a person doesn’t mean that you have to immediately write them off. The problem arises when you know that flaw is a deal breaker. Women are taught to silence themselves and their needs, If someone has a toxic flaw, a woman will likely show compassion in an area where she should be demonstrating constraint.

Acceptance

If I had a dollar for every woman who knows exactly what is wrong with her relationship and/or her partner, I could quit my job and be independently wealthy. I know people who are in great relationships who can identify areas of weakness. Acceptance at the beginning of a budding relationship occurs because nobody wants to go back to being back on the dating market. You know what’s wrong in your relationship, so you lower your standards of acceptance in order to accept a quality that you don’t want to deal with.

The reality is, in relationships you have to operate on a full stomach because when you’re hungry your more prone to making a bad food choice. You don’t go into the grocery store hungry the same can be said about a relationship. You have to come into acceptance of yourself and your own downfalls before you can accept someone else’s.

The reality of the 3 stages of your intuition is they can work for you and not against you. Since coming into an understanding of these three steps I use them to my advantage. I’m much more conscious in conversation with men. When I hear a key phrase or a statement that is out of alignment of how I want to operate in life, I come into acceptance immediately.

For example, I was having a conversation with one of my male friends who I know is a renown bachelor, and he said “I love women.”   I broke down that sentence ” I- love- women” women is plural. I recognized that I never see my friend with one individual woman.  I acknowledged his use of the word “women” which is plural, and I accepted that at this time in his life he is more concerned with the enjoyment of women than he is into committing himself to one woman. Meet people where they are in life.  It makes everything easy and you don’t have to waste time over exerting unnecessary compassion for an issue that won’t change.

There is a saying, “If you throw a frog into boiling water it will immediately jump out of the pot. If you place the same frog into cool water and gradually let the water boil the frog dies”. If a man approached you all wrong from the start, you would immediately dismiss him. What if you had more time to get acclimated the fact that you are incompatible? Don’t allow a situation to get to the boiling point trying to adjust to something you don’t want.

Exercise you intuition and stop blaming outside elements for poor decision making in relationships. At some point, you have to take ownership of making bad choices and stop making them. It is that simple. You have to make the conscious effort to separate hopes from reality. You can get what you hope for but you can not get what you are hoping for from every relationship.

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DIY Heart Wreath

I am team single this Valentines Day but being single never stops my fun!! Valentines Day is the only holiday you can rock pink, buy conversation hearts, and eat as many boxes of chocolate as you want!  I have no issue with being my own Valentine. I wanted to usher the spirit of love into my home by making this  DIY heart shaped wreath.

For this project you will need:

Coffee filters ( I used two packs, but the amount depends on the size of the heart)

Two tea bags ( I used Tazo Passion Tea for the color)

Cardboard

A heart shaped item/ or you can freehand a heart

Scissors

Box cutter

Satin ribbon

Hot glue gun

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Boil water and steep the tea bags, being sure to press the tea bags to get as much color from the tea as possible. Saturate the coffee filters in the tea for at least 10 minutes or until you achieve your desired color.

PS. Dying the coffee filters this way is time-consuming which is why step one is optional. You can always spray paint the coffee filters after you adhere them to the wreath form. I just wanted the delicate color that comes from dying with tea.

Step two:

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Allow the coffee filters to dry completely. In this picture, I have them stacked, but the filters dry much faster when you lay each filter out individually. I learned the hard the hatd way!!

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Trace your heart shaped item onto the cardboard. I used a cardboard project display board from the dollar store and a foam heart from Michael’s.

 

Step four:

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Cut the heart shape out with the scissors to create your wreath form.

Step five:

 

Once you have cut out, the wreath form find the center of the heart and create a slit with a box cutter.

Step six:

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Pull the ribbon through the slit you created with the box cutter. Tie the ribbon into a bow so you can hang your wreath when you are finished.

Step seven:

Fold a coffee filter into fourths. You can do this by folding in half four times.

Step eight:

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Glue down the folded coffee filter. Continue folding and gluing down the petals until the heart is complely covered.

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The finished product should look like this:

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I styled my DIY wreath by layering it over a wreath I found at the dollar store for extra dimension. What do you think about layer wreaths???

I love how this wreath turned out.This project is an awesome DIY project for a wedding or for a girl’s princess room. You can also use the dyed coffee filters to create paper flowers and use them as decor. (pictured below)

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For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter @ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

How Successful Failures Lead to Breakthroughs

I got the pleasure of hearing Jeremy Cowart tell his transformative story about how he got into the field of photography. He explained how he found his deeper purpose in life through art and creativity. At the end of his speech, he was asked what disciplines does he practice to help him achieve success.

He said, ” I have a routine, but I don’t wake up at 5 am. I don’t write out my goals every day before I leave the house. I work to my strengths, and I work with people who play to my weaknesses.” When he said that it felt like the confirmation that I needed.

This month I am all about vision, but sometimes a glimpse of the past can make you feel like a future isn’t possible. Jeremy’s  story was all about failure and how his faith and active pursuit of things that scared him launched him into success. Just hearing the success story of someone creative who took risks inspired me. It also has inspired me to tell my story.

 

 

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From the start, I was a rebel. I relished in breaking the rules because rules are for boring people. When you don’t fit in with your peers, you have two choices wallow in shame or be a badass. My rebellious soul didn’t need validation or confirmation from a crowd of sheep following the herd.

It’s hard being an unpopular, quirky, black girl in middle school at a time when everyone wants to be cool.  I am still to this day incredibly headstrong, so if I wasn’t interested in a subject, I flunked the class. I would eventually pass it so I wouldn’t fail the entire school year, the only classes I enjoyed were art and English.

In high school, I only wanted to do three things: raid Gwen Stefani’s closet, fall in love with Darius Lovehall (Love Jones), and be a fashion designer. Did I mention I wasn’t popular with my peers? I only managed to skip school, fail gym and get knocked up by my Darius Lovehall wannabe boyfriend. Getting pregnant at 16 was traumatizing, and I felt like a failure. I felt people were going to count me out before I even became an adult.

Failure is a Motivator 

I think that’s when I realized failure motivates me to do better. After the initial shock of being pregnant, I came up with a plan. The plan rescued me from becoming a juvenile delinquent. I enrolled in vocational school and took communication (television and radio).

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I discovered that I liked school when it had a purpose. I was also in a class full of weird people, so it made me the coolest kid in class. (Knocked up and all) What initially felt like a failure pushed me in the direction that I needed to go into to move towards adulthood. I finished school but moving into the field of radio and television felt far fetched with a sea of unpaid internships to choose from. I could only see the need to buy diapers. I quickly used my communication skills to find a job.

Be Prepared to Be Wrong About Your Life 

It is difficult transitioning into adulthood particularly at a young age; you get caught up in trying to achieve life events forgetting the fundamentals. I thought that if I mastered and exhibited wife like qualities that I would land a husband. If I found a husband, I would somehow erase the shame of being a teen mom.

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That plan failed miserably.  Entertaining guest on a Martha Stewart-like level is irrelevant when your fiance is drunk and masturbating in your bedroom on Christmas Day. True story and his parents were there. Not to mention I had brined a turkey, and it was perfect!

So there I was 23 years old canceling my wedding three weeks before the day. I went back to my parents house with all my cookware and a notebook filled with poetry that I had secretly written. I started posting the poems on my MySpace page, and my friends would read it and tell me that I should go to an open mic and let other people hear it too.

Fight to Find Your Voice

I think the first time I went to an open mic I just observed. The second time I put my name was on the list, but the host didn’t call my name until midnight. At the time, I was working third shift, and I was calling in late just to go to open mic.  I was so mad about reading poetry at the end of the night that I was determined to be just as good as the regular open mic poets.

The process of me bettering my spoken word performance style went on for months. I found myself rearranging everything so that I could go to open mic. I also picked up a part-time gig writing for an online magazine. I had even found a dayshift job paying me way more than my third shift call center job but after three months of work, they let me go. Once again I am filled with failure.

I kept freelancing, and I got a job as an assistant manager in retail. I convinced the online magazine to let me write articles about the poetry scene in Ohio. I wanted to interview a poet who was pretty popular at the time, and he said that he would be in town featuring at a local bar. This is when I met my best friend and one of the great loves of my life. ( I cringe calling him that, but what can I do, it is what it is.)

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From meeting the woman who would become my best friend (seriously my life line!!),  to everyone else that I met through spoken word, it became the best of times in my 20s. I finally felt grown up, and people respected me and my craft. I stopped freelancing and hit the poetry scene hard. I traveled and met the best people. At this point in my life, I can’t imagine what my life would be like without poetry, without spoken word. What if I never got fired from that job, what if I got married, all the what ifs make me grateful for the failures.

When You Finally Feel Successful and The Bottom Falls Out

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If I had not gotten involved with the man that I would equate to what Mr. Big was to Carrie Bradshaw (Sex in the City), I might have never bonded with my best friend. When you get knocked up at 16 you lose your friends unless they get pregnant with you, mine did not. I went through half of my twenties without having a close girlfriend.

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If you want to know about Mr. Big and me,  Carrie Bradshaw said it best “we are so over, we need a new word for over.” Now we are over, but back then there was a lot of back and forth. I learned a lot from that failure but overall he’s my favorite mistake of my mid-twenties  Him breaking up with me forced me to pick myself up off the floor, dust myself off and pursue bigger and better things. I even made more friends.

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I should say more family. The women in this picture are more than friends to me they’re my sisters. We bonded over everything and supported each other through so much. In the thick I could never see anything that would change what we had.

We were going to take over the world. I was so proud of us. We were performing spoken word together captivating audiences. It was our season, and I had never felt more a part of something than when we formed as P.I.M.P Hand Strong. (Progressive, Intelligent, Motivated, Poets)

Everything was set.  We put on formal production and I had never worked so hard in my life. It felt like we were standing on the launching pad ready to take flight. The play was a success, but it took a toll on our relationships. I tried to hide my pain, but eventually, it caught up with me. Time passed, and we mended our friendship but my emotions spiraled for a long time.

Eventually I ended up in a funk. Not interested in poetry as much as I once was. I tried to fill the lack of relationships with a relationship and that failed too. You can read How a Crop Top Ended My Relationship.

At the end of 2014, I felt trapped and unable to express myself creativity. I felt like I may have been choosing failure because I was afraid to try again. Being in a group was great for me.  I could exhibit my strengths and  ignore my weaknesses. I loved contributing creativity and then allowing someone else to carry the torch. It meant people could like my creativity without it being attached to me directly. It meant I didn’t have to stand on my own.

I wanted to find a way to write, to speak to women, and to exhibit my creativity. I always wanted to be a journalist and involved with art. I wanted to blog and be my own magazine. I was just afraid of failing, scared that no one would like my contributions on their own.

I had only one choice to start a blog. The worst that could happen is no one would read it and I would invest my time into yet another failed venture. I am almost a year into Oh Wize One and I now believe that every failure, every attempt at being creativity employed was all to get me here. If I had accepted failure at one point in my life I would have let my mistakes defeat me.

The breakthrough is accepting failure as a necessary pathway to success. Every new beginning comes from some other beginnings end.

 

 

New Year, New Squad Goals | Vision Board Party

As 2015 was coming to a close, I noticed people complaining about New Year, New Me. As if the desire to improve one’s self at the start of each year is an inconvenience to all of mankind. I see nothing wrong with resolving to be better. You don’t have to feel obligated to be who you were in your past. Don’t let a meme talk you out of personal enrichment.

It is so easy to be inundated with negative images. Everything we read or see is subconsciously affecting how we operate in daily life.At the start of the year, I feel that is important to input the first images of positivity in my mind. Creating a vision board helps remind me of the identity I have before worldly influence.

This year I wanted to start my year by creating a clear mind space and encourage positivity in the lives of the women in my sister circle.  I invited all of my friends over for a vision board party. I provided the magazines and poster board and told them to envision their 2016.

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You can make a vision board alone but gathering your friends for this activity creates a sense of accountability. Once you share your goals and desires, they become real. It also sets up an encouragement team. After we had finished our vision boards, we all agreed to check up on each other throughout the year.

What you will need to throw a vision board party:

Poster Board

Magazines

Permanent markers

Glue Sticks (traditional Elmer’s glue ruins the magazine paper)

Optional- Wine (wine always helps)

One of my 2016 goals is to create community and grow within my “tribe” Your tribe is a group of people who you plan to develop with and achieve success. I encourage you to gather your good friends and exchange your game plans for 2016 because it takes a village to get a goal accomplished. The people in your circle may have access to tools that you may need, even if all you need is a push in the right direction.

For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter @ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!