Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Road to Self-Awareness – Journey to Emotional Intelligence By Peggy Arthur


I was panicked in the back of a New York City cab tears streaming down my face as I ride along the highway that separated New Jersey from New York. It was the weekend of my thirtieth birthday and I was deeply depressed to turn thirty. I was not accomplished I was not the version of me that I envisioned at thirty and my phone wasn't where I needed it to be. My phone was left in the previous cab and now at Bloomingdale's (which was a $60 cab ride from my girlfriends who had met me in New York for my birthday) in the hands of a fellow yuppie.

As I look back at the picture of me in the back of the black cab taxi tipping the driver a cool ten-dollar bill to cover the shame I can see my growth. I thank God for turning thirty. At thirty things finally begin to either make sense or have become much clearer. By becoming innately aware of myself I was able to explore my environment and the relationships therein. The concept of knowing oneself is also known as self-awareness. Self-Awareness is apart of the Emotional Intelligence (EI) Model.

Emotional Intelligence is defined as “the ability to identify, use, understand, and manage emotions in positive ways to relieve stress, communicate effectively, empathize with others overcome challenges and diffuse conflict” http://www.helpguide.org/mental/eq5_raising_emotional_intelligence.htm. For all intensive purposes you can think of EI as the way in which you act and the study of your actions with others. 

As you can see EI is a vital concept it is highly unlikely that one can get very far in life both personally or professionally without it. Look to leadership for example; imagine a political figure that could be classified, as a tyrant running for school superintendent is likely that you would vote for this individual? You are looking for an intelligent figure that is just and kind. You want a figure that rates in regard to emotional intelligence.

There are four attributes of emotional intelligence, which are as follows: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and relationship management. In order for us to be truly success we must learn to master emotional intelligence. Recent literature suggests that one cannot be an effective leader without emotional intelligence.  As you navigate through the maze that we call life stay present and aware of the environment it just might just prove to be useful. The best way to increase your emotional intelligence is by practicing the skills.

By Peggy Ann Ellen Arthur, MBA
Founder and Creator of Curl Kitchen and Video Blogger



Connect with Peggy Arthur on Twitter @consciousafro and to get more information about products and services visit Peggy online at curlkitchen.com

Monday, July 21, 2014

HOW? STOPS NOW! By Jamila Thomas


You may be asking yourself what is HOW? STOPS NOW!? Yes, it sounds good. Yes, it is a “catchy” phrase. However, is there truly power in this phrase? Will this statement catapult me into my newest endeavor? Will this statement bring clarity about my vision or dream? Will this statement lead me into my purpose, the purpose I know I have been called to live out? Will this statement expose my purpose because I do not know what it is?

 My answer to these questions is an emphatic YES! HOW? STOPS NOW! This is my philosophy… I do not believe you are given a dream or a vision without provision. I do not believe you were placed on this earth with specific fingerprints but were not born with a specific purpose which is embodied in the visions you receive. The battle is to not become consumed with what you envision a dream or vision is supposed to look like.

 Essentially, you should not compare your vision to society’s standards or someone else's life because you will be disappointed each time. If you do, it is at that very point in time that you begin to miss the glimpses of your purpose. You begin to covet someone else's life simply by your limited view into a window of their home WHEN you haven’t seen what is upstairs, downstairs nor have you seen what is in their closets.

 It is not my intent to tell you what you can and cannot do with HOW? STOPS NOW! My intent is to encourage you to dig into the depths of your soul to reach for the courage that you were given WHEN you were born. It is the inner voice that speaks to you in the quiet moments of time. It is the voice that you hear as soon as you receive a vision and you think to yourself, “Yes, I can’t wait to make that happen.” It is my intent to help you believe that yes your vision matters. Therefore, HOW? STOPS NOW!

 Your life’s journey is a journey of purpose. Your life is a journey of purpose embedded with choices and decisions. WHEN we experience life lessons we have the opportunity to take a peek into our purpose. This statement is profound because the expectation is that you believe you are always aware that your life experiences, whether you consider them bad or good, are the driving factors pushing you towards your purpose. The reality is…this concept is hard to believe and therefore even harder to accept.

 WHO walks around feeling like they are walking in their purpose…when you are concerned about your job performance, your business is failing, stressed about bills, concerned about financial debt, rising college tuition payments, facing foreclosure, consumed by drug addiction, extramarital affairs, suffering quietly because of infertility, behind in mortgage payments, incarcerated because of a crime committed, single, divorced, married, homeless, defeated…and on and on and on and in no particular order. Equally important to this concept is the positive alternative to the scenarios I listed above. All may be well in your life, but it doesn’t beget the feeling that you are still not living and breathing in your designed purpose.

 The scenarios I listed above are LIFE experiences that will cause you to lose sight of what you think your purpose is supposed to be. This list was not meant to be all encompassing but rather a glimpse of some life experiences that will cause you to ask yourself HOW when you have been given a vision!

 If you are in tune enough to embrace your journey, and committed to identifying your purpose you will recognize that in the midst of LIVING, your PURPOSE has always been on the following continuum: LIFE Experiences, LIFE Choices, LIFE Decisions, LIFE PURPOSE…

 HOW? STOPS NOW! is a lifestyle. HOW? STOPS NOW! is a mindset. It forces you to accept that YES, You have been called to something great, therefore HOW? STOPS NOW! Life experiences are chances to embrace WHAT we ultimately are born to do. Yes! I believe our mistakes are included. Yes! Failures are included! Yes! Questioning your ability is included! How do you think I arrived at HOW? STOPS NOW?

 WHAT we do, WHERE we go, WHEN we go, and WHO we meet on our life’s journey are all part of the designed path to purpose! It is in LIFE’s moments of experiences that our purpose reveals itself. It is in LIFE’s moments that we receive visions for our lives. It is time to stop discounting the moments WHEN our spirit tells us to do something. It is time to say, HOW? STOPS NOW! Are you Ready?

To learn more about the HOW? STOPS NOW! Movement and the HOW? STOPS
NOW! Boot Camp please contact Jamila Thomas, www.jamilathomas.com

Connect with Jamila on Twitter @@JamilaCThomas

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Dealing with the Lack of Support from Friends and Family By Marita Kinney


It’s not uncommon to experience the lack of support from those who are closet to you. In fact we have all experienced it at some point in our career.  Whenever you started your business endeavors you were excited and wanted your loved ones to be also. It doesn’t take long to realize who is truly there to cheer you on. This can be very difficult to accept. The disappointment of support exceptions can become extremely over whelming.  So what do you do?

Once you have discovered your non-supportive family and friends, it’s challenging to prevent it from affecting your relationship with them. Being around them can feel dreadfully awkward. Wherever you’re passionate about your career it’s easy to take offense when others don’t understand your vison. Avoiding these people may seem like the easiest solution, however it may further strain the relationship. I know some of us can cut off relationships rather quickly instead of revaluating where we have placed them in our lives. The reality is that, not all of your family and friends are going to become your customers, clients, or biggest fans.
Promoting to a warm market may be okay for some people, but don’t forget that business is business. Identify you’re your target market and spend your energy there. If some of your loved ones have been identified as your targeted market, remember that they still have options and or not obligated to do business with you. Either way, respect their decision. Mixing business and personal relationships can be far more damaging than their lack of support, especially if money is involved.

Entrepreneurs are a rare breed and you cannot expect everyone to understand your way of thinking. Misunderstandings could also be misinterpreted as rejection. If someone chooses not to support you and your endeavors, I encourage you to not take it personal. You must always consider the source. The background of the source is critical.  If you’re doing something that they’re unable to do themselves, often times they will process that as if you cannot do it either. When it comes to business, surround yourself if likeminded people. Discuss business related topics with business savvy people. They can appreciate your creativity and what you have to offer. The time that you spend trying to convince people to believe in you, you could be rerouting that energy towards evolving in your field. 

I have come to understand that people are in your life for different reasons. I have certain friends and family members that I can discuss business with. Whereas others ones I may share another aspect of my life which involves spirituality, family, entertainment, etc.  Your life will go much smoother once you categorize everyone appropriately. However, after doing so, you may realize that some people have no place in your life. Those are the people that you want to reconsider having in your circle of influence. Everyone in our life has a role to play and everyone’s role is not going to involve your business. Please remember this does not mean that they do not love you.

Connect with Marita Kinney on Twitter @MaritaKinney  and to get more information about products and services visit Marita online at maritakinney.com