Fat Pocket Chocolate Goddess.

So, here we are with another work week in front of us (boooooo!). I’m just coming back from a wonderful best friendaversary trip with my beautiful best friend! We’re celebrating 10 wonderful years. 💕

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To celebrate, we decided to go on a five day cruise to the Bahamas and honey, it was beautiful and extremely hot, but so much fun! I don’t know if any of you have been on a cruise before, but people have way less inhibitions about the way they dress, which I can appreciate. As the body positive person I am, I thought why not celebrate my body for all that it is. Every roll, every lump, every bump and cellulite. I celebrate all of it because it’s all of me.

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Now, wearing a midriff top, or a bikini as a fat girl is not to be understood by many, but who cares! Fat people vacation too and if someone smaller than me can cool down by wearing her belly out, why can’t I? I choose to show my fat pockets because it’s my right to wear weather appropriate clothing YEAR ROUND.

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Of course I got some stares. I always do when I break the fat girl norm, but since my body belongs to me I wear what I want. I’m not going to lie, the first time I ever wore a bikini I tugged and tugged at it looking for more material to cover my stomach. Eventually I got more comfortable in who I am and in my skin and now I rock my clothes with no regrets. It was 90 degrees in the Bahamas and this fat girl was not about to roast in pants and long sleeves to make others feel comfortable. If you don’t like what you see, DON’T LOOK.

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If you’re reading this and you wonder how to get some of the black girl magic, chocolate goddess delight, fat pocket having confidence I will tell you that it takes lots of time to develop your confidence and a lot of hard work. Luckily, if you’re in the Charlotte area I provide all of the tips and tools that I use to boost myself up and remind myself of my worth in a series of workshops in my program called A Look in the Mirror. If you’re interested please sign an interest form below:

A Look in the Mirror Interest Form

 

Protect your peace, honey!

Listen…life is nuts maintenant, but guess who is thankful to be working towards something!

So, I am really good at extending myself to things that do not serve me and I’m good at holding on to relationships for longer than I need to.  These are my confessions.

I am also a magnet for people who need a hug and a friend, but sometimes maintaining relationships with people who are in repair can be draining, and I don’t think that it’s selfish to put yourself first sometimes.  So, I’ve lived by the following rules for the past few months:

  1. Will the world end if I don’t attend?

  2. Is it going to cause me stress and a very large mess?

  3. Am I going to have to talk through my feelings afterwards?

Is it worth it to get the short end of the stick all the time or should you care for yourself?

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GIRL, IF YOU DON’T PUT YOURSELF FIRST!

Of course it’s easier said than done, but it’s so much easier done once said.  You’re more inclined to do the things you speak about.  No more putting everyone else’s feelings before yours.  Who’s going to take care of you?  Your needs come first because you wake up and lay down with yourself every day.  Put yourself first and protect your peace, honey!

The F Word

Hey y’all!

So today we’re discussing the F word…that’s right.  Forgiveness.  I think it’s quite intriguing how we, as people, shy away from talking about forgiveness.  It’s such a life changing experience.  Watch below as I talk about my dealings with forgiveness:

 

While forgiveness is a great route to freedom, don’t forget that anyone or anything that is toxic to your life is not needed.  Like I mentioned in the video, forgiveness starts and ends in the heart.  There are instances where we may forgive someone who is very toxic to our well-being.  You do not have to keep this person in your life!  Forgiveness doesn’t always mean reconciliation.  It’s okay to leave toxic people out of your life if they can cause harm to you.

I hope this has touched you.  Keep me posted on how it goes!

He makes ALL things new…okurrr!

Hey darlings!

So, I’ve been super busy with things that I love to do and this post serves as an update to life!  I’ve discussed on here before the distress with my job and how I have been waiting for something greater.  After the last unpleasant incident I decided to focus solely on my God given gifts.  I have a knack for planning and organizing events and things and I also always have a new idea.  I also like to use my experiences to help others going through the similar things.  So…

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I’ve decided to buy my blog domain name!

I know it doesn’t sound major, but it means that I’m willing to invest money into myself…which in turn means that I believe the things I do are of value to this space.  That’s big FOR ME.  Who knew that I’d ever be confident enough in myself to take steps like this?  If you would have told me this 10 years ago I would not have believed you.

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I’m also in the process of creating the curriculum for a self-esteem program for children and teens.  Once I focused more on God and the gifts that he has placed in me, my whole outlook changed.  I’m grateful for my gifts and I’ve been enjoying this newness.  I’m also trying to blog more and post more videos and things, so be sure to follow this blog and also my YouTube.  I’ve made updates to this wordpress site so take a gander.  As usual, thanks so much!  Even if no one ever reads my blog…at least I tried.

Let’s Chat!

This week I got a chance to relax and reflect on life and all the joy and pain it brings.  I thought about all that led up to my life today, and I felt compelled to share.  I’m not too shy about sharing my journey to a better Ashley, but I often hear a lot of the same things when I share.  So, I decided to make a video and talk about my journey and to shed some light on self-esteem, self-worth and self-love.

 

LOSER!

My name is Ashley, and I am a loser.  You’re probably a loser too.  The definition of a loser is a person that has lost something or that loses. By definition, I am indeed a loser. I’ve lost family members. I’ve lost job opportunities. I’ve lost a countless number of other things that I have no idea about. Losing has been part of my identity for a while. Since the day I realized what it meant to lose, I’ve been a loser because I’ve experienced lost. I remember the first time I actually realized and felt how much of a loser I am. It was right after I graduated from school. My grandma had recently passed, I had to move back in with my mom and finding a job was a struggle. I went to job training all the way in South Carolina for a week just to not get the job. I drove all the way to the other side of my city for job training just to not get that job. I came home crying so much and I told my mom that I was a loser. But all my losing wasn’t bad. I’ve lost out on opportunities that may have been more harmful than good for me. I’ve lost out on guys who may have ended up mistreating me. I’ve lost out on job opportunities with places I would not be happy at. So, yes, I am a loser, but I’m a proud one.

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The way I see it, there are two types of losers: A Losing McLose Pants and a Winnie Winning Loser.  A Losing McLose Pants loser decides to live in the land of rejection.  I completely understand because I’ve lived there before.  It’s easier to accept defeat!  Accepting defeat means you’ll never win.  Never winning means you’ll never move forward and lots of people are okay staying where they are.  A Winnie Winning Loser takes their losses and learns from them.  They find some solace in knowing that every loss brings you closer to a win.  Even if the victory is small, you’re one step closer because you’ve taken your loss and gain something from it.

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Losing fostered resilience in me. That did not happen overnight.  Some things that I’ve lost were my own fault.  I would never try because I didn’t want to fail.  I didn’t want to feel like a loser because feeling like a loser made me feel worthless.  When I separated loss from self-worth, it became clearer that losing is not always such a bad thing.  Now, I lose…a lot, then I get back up and try again…a lot.   I lose, but my faith isn’t shaken and I handle the loss with stride.

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 I’m humbled by my losing. Nothing will keep you more grounded than getting denial after denial, but don’t stay in that place of feeling like you’re worthless because you’re always losing. I’m so humbled by my losses because everyone doesn’t get the opportunity to lose. Some people are given things that they later regret. I’d rather gladly lose than unhappily win. Now when I look back, I realized that the jobs I wanted then have absolutely nothing to do with what I want to do now and they may have been more harmful than anything.  There’s always a purpose and a plan to life’s ups and downs.  You’re probably reading this and thinking that you’re a loser too.  Yes, you are indeed a loser because everyone experiences loss, but don’t give up. Get back up. Let this loss teach you what it means to be a loser. Be a loser with pride. I am a big loser, but I’ve gained so much in my losing.  I am proud to be such a wonderful loser.

Does it feel windy in here, or is it just me?

So, I’ve been going through what my pastor likes to call, a Whirlwind.  He defines a whirlwind as a moment in time where it seems like several things hit you all at once.  During a whirlwind it’s hard to find your footing and it seems like it’s never going to get better.

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Right now, I’m in a bit of a whirlwind and so are several members of my life.  It’s quite interesting that so many people I am close to are going through difficulties.  Luckily we’ve been able to lean on each other, but what do you do when things just seem to never end?

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The most wonderful thing about going through things is knowing that there is a purpose that lies within.  My pastor says that we go through things so that we can help someone else.  My desire is to help others, so if I have to go through things then I will.

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New levels, new devils…right?  It’s hard to understand when you’re getting hit from multiple sides, but when you’re being elevated you’re going to go through.

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The thing that keeps me going is knowing that I’m close to coming out of my whirlwind.  I just gotta stay strong and rely on the support of my friends and family.  We literally rely on each other.  We send each other scriptures and talk through what’s going on.  Listen…everybody needs a good squad.  I’ve got a God squad.

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They say things get better, right? So, I’m gonna believe it until it happens.

I hope you do too.

 

 

New year, who dis?

Happy New Year!

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I usually spend New Year’s Eve at church, but this year I opted for a quiet evening at home.  I wanted to reflect internally without the excitement for the next year in my mind.  Truthfully, I’m not excited about 2018.  I am hopeful for a more positive duration of the year.  Baby, I got GOALS.

Last year’s goals for 2017 was simple, but complex in action.  My goal was to set intention for the entire year by starting new habits early on.  So, I started writing more, exercising, cooking more and sharing my positivity with others.  I went so hard at the beginning, not preparing myself for a potential break, that I burned out…in all areas.  Work took over and made it hard to write.  I got out of the habit of working out and eventually burned out.  I felt like no one appreciated my positivity so I kept it to myself.  I literally spent my last vacation of the year with periods of high activity and periods of sickness and exhaustion, but no true rest.

2017 taught me a lot on how I’m going to make things work for me in 2018, so here’s how I’m going to get my entire life for the whole year:

  1. I’m setting my intentions daily towards weekly goals. Setting yearly goals can seem overwhelming, especially when it’s January 1st and you’re still in your PJs at noon instead of at a Zumba class.  Start small.  It’s okay to make smaller goals that contribute to your larger goals.  Life is about taking baby steps.
  2. It doesn’t matter if you land on your feet…just land. I’ve dealt with some hard times this year, especially at my work.  Your job is where you spend the most waking hours a day…and that’s depressing.  This year I’m going to continue to work hard, but I’m not going to make my work environment work for me.  I’m going to continue to nurture my entrepreneurial dreams while working my 9 to 5.
  3. Rest your weary eyes and your equally weary mind, chile. I am EXHAUSTED.  Mental and physically.  Self-care is monumentally important and I am lacking in that department.  This year I intend on resting.  I’m going to take more walks to clear my mind, I MUST KEEP WRITING and most importantly I have to be consistent with my journaling.  That’s the major key.
  4. Give it to God and go to sleep. Pray intentionally, consistently, purposefully and take a nap.

Ending this new year on a positive note is important to me.  I want to look back on it all and see all my hard work in front of my eyes.  Most importantly I want to take care of myself.  How do you set intentions for the next year?

My Life is Rose Gold.

I’m backkkkkkk!

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 Temporarily or forever.  Time is a social construct.

Any who, I’ve noticed that the last time I blogged a lot was going on, especially in my state.  Things have changed…we have a whole new president and a new administration and a new set of things to be concerned about.  Nevertheless, I’m alive and in my right mind, as my Grandma says, so things are okay.

Lately I’ve tried to live each day with more intention.  I’ve tried to find the joy in the little things so that I can keep chugging along on my journey.  Some days have been tougher than others, and some have been easy.

TRANSPARENCY AHEAD 

I’ve been really hard on myself lately because I’m not where I want to be in certain areas of my life.  I’ve found peace with a number of areas in my life that I’ve had difficulty in, but I’ve been struggling with feelings of incompleteness.  Now, I’m complete in many areas of my life: I’ve finally in a place where I truly love myself, I’m in a loving marriage, I know I’m valuable and I know that I’m great.  Lately I’ve been feeling like money could solve all my problems (which is funny because this is the most obedient I’ve been with my finances in a really long time).  I’ve only been extending completeness to loving feelings, but I’ve learned that it extends far beyond that.

I was napping after church, like I usually do, with a lot on my mind.  I woke up with a something I felt I should share.  Almost everything I’m ever given from God is always for me, but what’s the point in not sharing.  Sharing is caring, right? Right.  When Jesus died for us we were instantly granted the freedom to go to God for ourselves.  We were made complete before we were even born.  The cross goes beyond what I had ever imagined and I’m so glad to know that I’m complete, with or without money or any other material thing I needed.

This by no means is a spiritual blog or a blog on religion.  It’s a blog for and about me and the things I go through.  I’m thankful for all the life lessons I’m able to go through.  The key for me is to remember that I don’t go through things I GROW through things.