I was having a conversation with my dear friend, Courtney, about some of our other mutual girlfriends who we always support but never seem to support us. It dawned on me that for much of my adult life, the women (outside of my family) have rarely supported me in the way that I have supported them. Women seem to think that everything is a competition; that everyone’s out to get them; that there isn’t enough room in the sky for every star to shine. And I just don’t think like that. First of all, the only woman I compete with is Sean. Every day, I want to beat the old me! Secondly, I am too busy to be out to get you when I am out to get mine! Finally, my light does not diminish yours; in fact, two lights make the room brighter. Therefore we need to support one another! Here’s why:
- We can empower, encourage and uplift one another.
- We’re stronger in numbers.
- Every one of us is fighting an inner battle. Why create outer battles for fellow women to fight as well?
- In this misogynistic world we are still living in, why should we be against one another when the world already is?!
- Beautiful minds can inspire one another.
- Team work makes the dream work.
- We need to teach the younger women what sisterhood looks like so they’ll be more Golden Girls and less Real Housewives!
- We can learn from one another.
- You need a sister to show up for you in the times you cannot show up for yourself.
- What you give to others, you give to yourself.
It’s WAY past time to stop honoring and supporting women with our mouths but not with our actions. It’s WAY past time to stop forming these cliques that only serve the purposes of clucking louder in the hen house. It’s WAY past time to stop discriminating against other women based on size, education, skin color, sororities, religion, and all that other garbage! It’s TIME to be real. And real women know they cannot do it alone.
After seeing so many posts about the #InMyFeelingsChallenge, I finally watched the video. Clearly, Drake is going through something. But aren’t we all? When I’m in my feelings, my thoughts go haywire and if I did everything that came to mind at the time, I’d likely end up prison. These past few months I have been working on being very intentional about not staying in my feelings when I get in them. Here’s how:
- Don’t react right away. This used to be a BIG problem for me. Something would happen and the minute I felt offended in any kind of way, I was popping off that the mouth and trying to run people over. As much as I’d love to think of myself as a highly rational being, I’m sometimes not. Knowing this about myself, I work extremely hard to not react right away.
- Prayer is my saving grace in my darkest moments. I take a moment to ask God for His divine intervention in revealing to me what is truth versus perception and what I must do.
- Mindful breathing. I learned this from my friend, Lilith. Mindful breathing relaxes my body. I start by taking a deep inhale through my nostrils, holding my breath for a few seconds, and then taking a long exhale through my mouth. These deep and intentional breaths decrease my heart rate, relax my tensed muscles, and refocus my concentration.
- Apply 5Ws. I use the 5Ws (Who? What? When? Where? Why?) to write down what ACTUALLY happened. Facts only. Not my perception or feelings about what happened.
- Assess feelings. TRUTH BOMB: Our emotions don’t always represent the truth! Just because I feel a certain way, doesn’t make it a reality. Once I have written down the facts, I can then start to assess why I am in my feelings. Am I hurt because it’s true? Did I receive the situation in the wrong way? Do I have PMS? Am I hungry? Was I already upset about something else? Will this situation even matter a week, month or year from now?
- See the bigger picture. I remind myself that every step is an ordered step and everything that has ever happened in my life, whether good or bad, has served a higher purpose. I try to see past the moment and distinguish the greater meaning, trusting that even in the midst of being in my feelings, there is purpose.
- Journal. Journal. Words are powerful and when I am in my feelings, I have trained myself to use my words to describe, improve, and transform my situation. I write until my hand hurts in order to physically liberate myself from my pent up emotions.
- Thought exchange. I replace negative thoughts with more positive ones. The thing about choosing to stay in your feelings is that you’re also choosing to bind yourself to negative thoughts which will eventually lead you to a cycle of negative life patterns. The constantly bitter people in your life are probably allowing themselves to remain in their feelings so long that negativity becomes their new normal. Think on good things!
- Ask for Support. Sometimes we need someone to listen to us, pray with us, or guide us into a more positive place. FYI: The negative Nellies in your life are not the ones to go to! Avoid toxic people!
- Help someone. I find that when I am taking care of someone else’s problems, God takes care of mine! You don’t have time to stay in your feelings when you’re out in the world changing it for the better!
What do you do when you’re in your feelings?