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Feeling Thankful: Time To Grow!

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Yes, it’s true! It continues to be an awesome journey as I pursue my passion and purpose to impact as many lives as possible by helping women all over the globe, achieve freedom at the crossroads! To all my followers, colleagues, and visitors, please follow me to our new awesome space at freedomatthecrossroads.com! 

Join me as we expand this platform to further connect, engage, and gain freedom at the crossroads! Blessings on the journey to fitness, health, growth, and the freedom to pursue your passion and purpose! YOU are WORTH IT and YOU are BEAUTIFUL!

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Mirror, mirror,  on the wall..?

wp-1485222487543.jpgInstagram, Pinterest, Facebook, etc. Wow, who can keep up with all the social media plans? I love having different media to explore, but the unrealness  of some of it all, boggles the mind! So what’s your story? I always wonder, as I look around at the various shapes, sizes, and body types,  “what’s going through her head, when she looks in the mirror?” ( I do this a lot when I’m people watching by the way, *snicker*). Just by the facial expressions alone; some look happy, sad, and the others? Well, I’m not so sure of their place in this colorful complex world-but hey, we all have to find “ourselves” and come into our own at some point.

I can’t say I get it as to why we women, seem to struggle so much with finding and embracing who we are; be it in terms of our physical shape and weight (facial features, physical attributes, etc) or some “thing” about ourselves that we perceive as our individual shortcomings or the less “pretty” parts of ourselves. What ever it is, we all need to stop and evolve beyond these destructive tendencies. Which leads me to my next rant-bullying! I remember, many moons ago (*air quotes*), when bullying amongst girls was not the norm (or maybe that’s just in my head). While it did in fact occur, it was far from pervasive. Fast forward to the 2017, and I’m slapped into the present by an act of bullying that has hit close to home. What happened? A family member (young girl) has recently been forced to deal with bullying from a group of girls at her school stemming from “someone” else’s (a former friend and classmate) insecurities and petty jealousy!

I won’t go into details but suffice it to say, it was “mean girls” on steroids; nothing funny about that at all. As an adult I get it: insecure, inadequate, immature women (and some adults in general) have a tendency to lash out  or project their problems on to the closest target, usually manifesting itself in bullying or some other destructive behavior ( at least that’s been my observation). If there is one thing we really need to outgrow as females (of any age), it’s turning on one another, comparing (and finding deficiencies or inadequacies, etc) ourselves to other women, and trying to fit ourselves into mainstream media’s warped image of the “perfect” female!

I truly believe that if  (or most) mothers and fathers out there, taught their daughters to value themselves based on what they carried within (as well as the beauty contained embodied in their uniqueness), rather than what’s on the outside,women and girls would find it much easier to be true friends and colleagues, rather than predator vs. prey, mean girl vs. the nerd, same vs. other. I guess I’m just disappointed to see that we still allow ourselves to be victimized and manipulated by both the media society as we struggle to find ourselves even as we stare blankly at the girl in the mirror…I’m still hopeful that in the end, we (women and girls) will finally get a clue and realize that we are own worst enemy.

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“Paying” for Beauty?

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Nordstrom 2016 Beauty Event goodies!

The Oakbrook Nordstrom Fall 2016 Beauty Trend Show hit the ball out of the park in terms of creativity and content (at least for the most part). As a savvy skin care shopper, Nordstrom is near the top of my list when it comes to product availability, style, customer service, and bang for my buck! Who’d have thunk it? A major department store that gives the customer luxury experience as well as price points for all? They did it right this time when so many major retailers are doing it wrong with such things as “restrictive” coupons, misguided marketing campaigns (a.k.a. bait and switch) poor customer service, and anything less than the luxury experience they claim (i.e. Macy’s).

However, let’s get back to the positives and all that was right in terms of showcasing the Fall 2016 Beauty Trends and the awesome fun-filled experience for the woman who knows what she wants-Nordstrom Oakbrook Center, ya did good! While I don’t always comment on these types of events, this time Nordstrom pulled off a creative event in which most went away satisfied (a dramatic improvement over the Spring 2016 Beauty event) having had the luxury experience that we all need a little of from time to time.

This past weekend was all about being the #PhenominalWomanIBe and appreciating myself as a woman. I often tell my clients, “if you are an empty well, there is nothing you have to give to others”; this is so true and unfortunately too many of us think that if we keep being “super woman” others will eventually find us worthy! That’s an untruth many woman tell themselves as they struggle at the “crossroads” of their lives, trying to find contentment as they spin on that hamster wheel going nowhere. I hate to break it to you my sisters, but if YOU do not see the value and unique beauty that YOU bring to this earth, there are few who will see that special essence that you carry within.

I’m not trying to rain on anyone’s parade or pander to the negative; I’m only stating a simple truth that comes when you realize that a healthy and balanced life requires that you set boundaries (protecting and respecting your inner core). Ultimately, you must grow comfortable in your own skin, realize that you can’t please or be everything to everyone, and take care of both your physical and mental health. I’ve made no bones about the fact that I’m a skin care freak and as such I’m always looking for new tips, tricks and all things natural for maintaining healthy radiant skin.

So what did I DO this past weekend? Well, this #SkinCareFreak was on the hunt,  and I decided not to miss out on attending Nordstrom’s Fall 2016 Beauty Trend Show in at the Oakbrook Mall (Oakbrook, IL)!😘💄 That’s right ladies, my “crew” and I camped out at the Oakbrook Mall in the wee hours of 4am to get first dibs at the beauty trend items (anti-aging, renewal, replenishment, hydration, etc) coming into the season. Needless to say, it was all about protection for the winter, fragrance and yes, cosmetics!💄🙌🏽

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Early bird gift!

As a health and fitness strategist, I believe in creating working strategies for the “WHOLE” woman; not just shedding the unhealthy weight and relationship with food, but also helping EVERY woman appreciate herself and all of the quirks and imperfections that make her uniquely beautiful in her space. In other words, attending this beauty event was not just about checking out the latest in skin care, but about making sure I did what was necessary to “do me”!  That is not to say that one needs ALL these things to feel good about oneself; but what I am saying is, there is something inherently therapeutic about treating yourself to some “me” time, reorienting yourself, and ultimately getting in balance!

Bottom line? A girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do and there is absolutely nothing wrong with feeling great and loving what you see when you look in the mirror! Get fit, healthy, and change the way you see yourself by growing and developing on the inside out!Blessings!😘

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Getting it right, for YOU!

I’ve since arrived at the conclusion that when it comes to weight loss, fitness, and over all toning and conditioning, every woman’s body responds differently. I’m always amazed at all the lies and downright hurtful gimmicks aimed at women! Dang IT! We women seem to be the targets of a lot of negative media and social attacks! Part of it stems from the larger problems within our society that are currently being stirred up and played out on the  socio-political stage.

Given all the shifting undercurrents we are being subjected to as well as marketing aimed at all of our insecurities, it’s no wonder that women across the board are more stressed, overwhelmed and feeling pressured to not just fit every role created for us, but to also live up to standards that have little or no basis in reality! Don’t even mention those that are being forced upon us by segments of society that seek to strip women of all the socio-political gains we have fought for over the years. Am I pissed and ticked off? Duh!! Yes! WHY  you might ask? Well it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that “THIS” whole “THANG” (forced social, political, and gender roles) has to do with power and “WHO” gets to wield it over some one else.

It’s unfortunate that we still still live in a world and society where there are those among us who seek to subjugate, control and dictate to other human beings simply because “they” will it to be so. I’m on a rant today because we WOMEN are still forced to deal with this crap in the 21st century while the other segment of the population glibly marches on with their “special” privileges. NOW, with that context nailed down, add to the mix an unhealthy body image, a skewed relationship with food, etc-EXACTLY! A life out of balance and on that hamster wheel going nowhere! 

The most obvious signs of imbalance for us women tends to be an unhealthy image of our bodies (or ourselves in general), weight gain, insomnia, and so forth. How do get off that crazy train? STOP! Do some real soul-searching and then, make a DECISION, get a PLAN, and then, take ACTION! I never said it would be easy, but you’ve got to come to the realization that YOU are WORTH IT! Why we women struggle with self-worth is NOT a hard thing to figure out when you look around the media and society in general. Hmm, I never saw myself as the proverbial feminist before but if that means, NO more trying to please everyone, NO more trying to fit some one else’s ridiculous image of the ideal woman (i.e. shape, color, size, personality, behavior, etc), and DEFINITELY  NO more “trying” to dictate my biology, THEN F***KING SIGN ME THE HELL UP!!

Now that I’ve got that off my chest, “back to the regular programming”, ha-ha! Bottom line, we women need to stop beating up ourselves about what we see in the mirror or how others perceive us, and just focus on our individual truths, places that need growth (and do what needs to be done to get there), realize that we need to put our health and fitness at the top of our own lists (because if you’re unhealthy there is nothing you can do for anyone else if you’re dead!), and engage in those things that will bring BALANCE and FULFILLMENT to our lives. Now, that IS my “WHY” when people ask me about why I do what I do, but the real question is, WHAT’S YOUR’S? ARE YOU finally FED UP and sick and tired of being sick and tired??

LET’S GET YOU STARTED ON YOUR JOURNEY TO THE REAL YOU!>>BOOK YOUR FREE CLARITY SESSION NOW<<

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#TGIF: Time to, relax, relate and release!

So it’s Friday and, WHAT? Well, it should mean or translate into a powering down, reconnecting with our inner selves, and releasing (letting go) of the stresses of the week, and the past. LET IT GO! Hanging on to regrets and that old dead “woulda, coulda, shoulda” only leaves you with a sense of failure, frustration and an inability to focus on reorienting yourself so that YOU can achieve your goals.

That’s not to say that reflection isn’t necessary or that regret is all bad; what I am saying these things have their own place within the context of a well-balanced life. If we don’t reflect (in a constructive manner) on where certain things went wrong in the past, we are more likely to repeat those same mistakes. In a similar manner, if we are incapable of feeling regret (again, within the proper context), that speaks to a lack of personal development or growth as well as a lack of emotional depth.

All of that aside, knowing when to a “system shutdown” is part of living a healthy and balanced lifestyle. Remember, “fitness” and “health” applies to more than just the physical; it’s also about the mental and emotional aspect of who we are as individuals.

Experience has taught me that the fitness journey is more than weight loss, eating clean, exercise, etc. It’s about the mental and emotional components of who we are, coming in to balance and alignment as part of living a healthy and fulfilling life.My advice? Take the weekend to get outside, break away from technology, connect with the earth (a.k.a. get some nature / outdoor therapy) and decompress! Blessings on the journey…👣

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Who are Y…?

You know what I’m learning? The more I reflect on the inner me, what it means to be me, my truth such as it is, I realize this whole personal development thing equals POWER! Lately I’ve found that my thoughts and words to paper, are more focused inward within the context of this thing called health and fitness. 

Why? Because there in lies the true solution and powerful momentum necessary to break free of the “Matrix” (damn I can’t believe I still haven’t gotten tired of watching “Neo” break free from the deception of mediocrity and bondage) of the hamster wheel going nowhere! 

Yes, it’s NOT just about finding or discovering “your truth”, it’s about being brutally honest about yourself, who you are, your situation, and ULTIMATELY, YOUR STORY! Boom Shaka Lanka, BOOM! Before I started my business, I used to run away from “PD” aka, Personal Development stuff, because I thought it was a load of poo poo, peddled by psuedo motivational gurus eager to lighten your pocket with a bit of “enlightenment”, hahaha.

That’s not to say there aren’t any charlatans out there causing more harm than good (I’ll leave it to God and the universe to mete out their just desserts), BUT the real truth is, we ALL need to reflect, expose and grow as individuals if we ever hope to tap into our inner potential and unique gifts. As I sit here typing ( yes at 0115 in the a.m.), my heart weeps for all the lost opportunities, gifts, and development that I and others out there could have accessed, if only we had made the DECISION (after a long hard look in the mirror), made a PLAN, and taken the necessary ACTION to change the direction of our paths so that we could live our full potentional.

As a woman, I feel like we are saddled with the extra load of society’s demands and strictures of both culture and of our own making, a.k.a being our own worst enemy or biggest critic. I’ve gotta confess I’ve finally found the antidote or the “kriptonite” needed to shut that toxic waste dump down! Investing in personal development is not a luxury but a necessity and will in the end, save your life and spare you uneccesay pain and dare I say, some “teachable” moments too?

 Getting fit is NEVER about just getting physically fit or strong; it’s a total mind-body thang, and anyone who TRULY wants to experience a full, empowered life, MUST do the work in this are too! I’m learning and have learned some hard lessons in this area, BUT I will NEVER be able to say, I regret these experiences because they have ALL contributed to bringing me into my own, personal awakening and all I have to say is, WHAT’S YOUR STORY? How do YOU want it to end? Having said all that I recommend that EVERY woman (both young and old) read “I AM THAT GIRL: How to speak your truth, discover your purpose, and #bethatgirl” by Alexis Jones.

I’m just getting started with this dose of truth, and if the fact that her words struck a cord in me and nearly made my shed tears in relief, is any indication of the insight I will take away from her book; all I have to say is , “preach it sister, preach”! Blessings on the journey…👣

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What are you…?!

Soo today is another day that’s bringing us all one day closer to the end of the week. One thing is driving driving me nuts and I lterally feel like screaming,  “what the F***” are you ladies doing?! That THING? Well, it’s the fact that I truly realized that so many off us are stuck in the crossroads, that hamster wheel going no where,  BUT yet, people are content to just stay there.

I’m asking myself why, and I’ve come to some tragic conclusions about why we do this to ourselves; myself included, and yes we women seem to do it too well. First of all, it has to do with a cultural conditioning  ( i.e. culturally defined gender roles, mores, etc), past experiences, and the big T.W.O.,  fear and insecurities. 

The problem with  ALL of this is that we get locked and stuck in both mind and circumstance in the “crossroads”; a matrix (my Matrix movie reference, hehehe 😂) power and potential that, depending on YOUR choice, can be for good or for evil! I know it sounds dramatic,  but when it comes to LIFE and the difference between having it and losing it, yeah I’m dramatic. 

The TRUTH is, YOU don’t GET to do a :DO OVER” if you make the wrong choice at the crossroads of this life, so my advice to any woman out there who is stuck, on that hamster wheel going nowhere, in bondage, etc, PLEASE VALUE yourself enough to be courageous and CHANGE your life and CHANGE your STATE!👊