z 40 ROCK Quarterly Magazine Issue No. 3
TO HAVE OR NOT TO HAVE YOU CHOOSE ARE YOu A Mary OR A Martha? Feng Shui
40zRock MS. JULY
NOT WHAT YOU THINK
POWER of a Teacher Strong Inspiring chic
CONTENTS / Issue No. 3
ON THE COVER Sheila Lewis 40z Rock Ms. July
34 Sheila Lewis
40zRock Ms. July
36 Too Much Too Soon 38 Body Shapers:
No Longer Your Grandmother’s Girdle
42 To Have or Not to Have? You Choose
46 What is Feng Shui? 50 Man Rules for Dating Someone New
53 Poetry 54 Shine, Sista, Shine
In Each Issue 4
6 Must-Haves: Editor’s #1 Top Picks
8 Healthy Living: Vol. 2, Managing Your Diabetes
1 2 Food: A Fruity Salad to Take Down the Heat
1 3 Entertainment: Things to Do in Your Free Time
1 4 Q&A With Mia:
Let’s Get it (W) Right!
1 6 Beauty: Aging Anyone?
1 8 Fashion: 7 Tips to Select the Right Swimsuit
20 Fab Finds: Top 5 2014 Spring/Summer Fragrances
22 Spirituality: Daughters of the King: Are You a Mary or Martha
24 Relationships: A Few Ways to Know if Your Relationship is Unhealthy
26 Education: Power of Teachers from Around the World
28 Finance: Financial Assessment in Your 40’z: Seven Things You Need to Do
F orty, Fabulous & Free Fabulously Flowing into Forty
T ravel Off the Beaten Path But Still on the Grid
40zROCK / Editor's Letter
This Seat is Taken Last month, after attending an event and meeting some very interesting people, I decided that it was important to address “seating etiquette” in this month’s issue of 40z Rock. Some maybe offended, while others may agree and think it is extremely funny. Here’s what happened: I arrived early enough to the event in order to obtain my prime choice of seat. I sashayed down to the front row and began to walk toward the seat only to discover that the ROW of seats were being saved by one person who acted as the seat police. I kindly asked, “Would you mind if I sat here?” She replied, “No, I am saving these seats for my friends.” I responded with, “Well are they here?” She said, “Not yet, but they are on the way.” I sat down in the seat anyway and she got really upset. I know you are thinking….”Ha, that’s silly!” But…. At the end of the day, I can certainly understand saving one seat for a friend, but anything beyond that, becomes an inconvenience for early or on-time guests. There has to be a penalty paid for tardiness. I really try not to save any seats for anyone, but instead, encourage my guests to please be on time so that we can all sit together. What do you think? Has this ever happened to you? Does it bother you as much as it bothers me? I am just curious because I know some may read this and think, “Really?” But until it happens to you….You truly cannot appreciate what I am trying to convey. Out of respect for those who arrived early and to avoid any serious confrontations, the best thing to do is encourage those late guests to be on time so that we can avoid the drama and everyone can have a great time without having to fight for a seat. Furthermore, you should consult with the venue on their policy of saving seats or the possibility of reserving seats for your chosen event. (Smile) Until next time…Live, Laugh and Enjoy your 40z!
Sandra A. Wyckoff Editor-in-Chief
Follow 40zROCK /
40zROCK Sandra Wyckoff Editor-in-Chief
Melissa Fox Rhonda M. Anderson Kim Evans Lawson Ann Inez Hardell Keving Jeffries SMG (cover + page 34) Sean Nicolas Amey Photography (page 30)
Vibe Hair Studios
Lee Cowan Finance: Financial Assessment in Your 40's – Seven Things You Need to Do
Tiffiny E. Dixon Fashion: 7 TIPS to Select the Right Swimsuit Mena Freeman Man Rules for Dating Someone New
J aquetta Michelle Garrison To Have or Not to Have? You Choose
Tezzie Gilbert Too Much Too Soon
imberly Handy K Body Shapers – No Longer Your Grandmother's Girdle
Cheri Alphonse Hayes, ED.S. Education: Power of Teachers from Around the World
Danielle Johnson Healthy Living: Vol. 2 – Managing Your Diabetes
tephanie D. Mckenzie S Relationships: A Few Ways to Know if Your Relationship is Unhealthy
J acquie Parish Beauty: Aging Anyone? Travel: Off the Beaten Path But Still on the Grid Jeneé Pierre Shine, Sista, Shine
Wendie Rice Spirituality: Daughters of the King: Are You a Mary or Martha? Julie Ray What is Feng Shui? It's Probably Not What You Think
Stacy D. Wilson Forty, Fabulous & Free: Fabulously Flowing into Forty
Mia Wright Q&A With Mia: Getting It (W)Right! 40ZROCK.COM
40zROCK / MUST-HAVES
La Tourangelle Avocado Oil Beauty in a bottle 100% pure, all-natural and handcrafted from fresh premium avocados. Avocados translates to better skin repair and anti-aging benefits, as well as better elasticity and thicker, more resilient skin. $13.99
Produced by Faith, Author Devon Franklin. In his first published book, DeVon Franklin reveals the movie making process in correlation to how God produces and manifest the successes in your career and life. But even more captivating and moving, is the theme of trusting God that resonates on every page. Franklin declares if you boldly stand for God and are committed to his purpose for your life, you will supersede your dreams and goals beyond what you ever thought imaginable.
Shown in Coral Fever. $8.00
Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs Give your legs a sun-kissed look. This water-resistant spray-on formula will help you achieve that perfectly tanned look in an instant, and it comes in a variety of tints to match your skin tone. $13.99
Liquid Neutrogena Facial Cleansing Formula – Fragrance Free
Maybelline New York Lipstick
Made with glycerin and other high-quality ingredients, so it's exceptionally clean-rising and won't leave any pore-clogging residue. This hypo-allergenic, fragrance free formula is dermatologist proven to be mild. $8.00
40zROCK / HEALTHY LIVING
[ VOL. 2 ]
Managing Your Diabetes by Danielle Johnson
“Chile, did you hear…Sis. Jones has got Suga Diabetes?!?!” That’s just ONE of the old “all too common” phrases from my childhood that I’m reminded of each and every day I set out to work to make a difference in the lives of those suffering from Diabetes. I wish that I could report that Sis. Jones would be the only person that I knew affected by this now known epidemic but sad to say, I can’t.
As I examined my family tree on my
Diabetes. Pre-Diabetics are at a higher
to make their quality of life better. Think
mother’s side, from my great great-
risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes and
about that family member, friend, church
grandmother on down the line, almost
other numerous health problems such as
member, or colleague who has lost a
every single family member had died
heart disease and stroke. It’s important
leg, gone blind, suffering from ESRD
due to complications of this dreadful
to note that without the recommended
and are on dialysis. Just put yourself in
disease or still lives with uncontrolled
lifestyle changes, such as diet, exercise,
their shoes for one minute. Not know-
diabetes today. I know that I’m not the
and medication compliance 15% - 30%
ing if you’re going to have a good day or
only individual with this familial testimo-
of pre-Diabetic patients will progress
bad day because of your sugars. Hoping
ny because according to the American
into Diabetes. The American Diabetes
that the same carbs you ate today will
Diabetes Association nearly a whopping
Association recommends that your A1Cs
have the same positive affect tomorrow.
26 million adults and children have been
are less than 7%.
Having to prick your fingers multiple
diagnosed with Diabetes, which is about
times of day from the time you rise in the
8.3% of the population! Now, if you think
lism-the way the body uses digested
morning until the time you lay your head
that number is appalling, then the statis-
food for energy. People with Diabetes
down on the pillow to rest at night just
tics for those who suffer from pre-diabetes
have high blood glucose, also called
to make sure that your readings are with-
will really blow your mind!! According
high blood sugar or hyperglycemia. Dia-
in range. Not to mention the depression
to the Centers for Disease Control and
betes develops when the body doesn’t
that affects so many because of the lack
Prevention, 79 million Americans have
make enough insulin or is not able to ef-
of support from family and friends while
pre-diabetes BUT approximately 7% of
fectively use the insulin produced by the
fighting this uphill battle or the inability
those persons have actually been told
pancreas. As a result, the glucose (sugar)
to gain control of their sugars. However,
by their healthcare provider that they
builds up in the blood instead of being
the biggest challenge still remains with
have pre-diabetes. Let’s analyze that
absorbed by cells/organ systems in the
“79 million” number just a bit further.
body. Over time, this continual buildup
Of that pre-diabetes group, 35% of
causes severe damage to the nerves and
much more than just a quick visit to
them are 20 years of age or older, that
blood vessels, which can ultimately lead
your healthcare provider and walking
is 27,650,000 people!!
to complication such as heart disease,
out with a prescription…so very much
stroke, kidney disease, blindness, dental
more!! Every diabetic is responsible for
scientific overview of the differences
disease, and amputations…to name the
his/her own treatment and care after
between Pre-Diabetes and Diabetes…
they walk out of the physician’s office so
are you ready, let’s go!!! People with
Disease Management is a MUST!!
Pre-Diabetes have blood sugar levels or
disease state down, take a moment to
A1C’s (a measure of your average blood
think of someone that you know that has
is AWARENESS! It’s important to know
glucose control over the past 3 months)
either died due to those complications
what makes your blood sugar levels soar
that are higher than normal, but aren’t
or are currently living with this disease
out of control or fall into hypoglycemic
quite high enough for a diagnosis of
and what you would want them to know
valleys. There’s a saying that we all live
Now, for a very basic and quick
Diabetes is a disorder of metabo-
Now that we have the basics of this
Treating this disease state is SO
The goal for Disease Management
by and it goes, “Control the things that
2. Physical Activity is just as important.
of these medications depends on timing
you can control” so that’s what has to be
Exercising helps to utilize glucose (sugar)
and size of dose.
done when managing Diabetes. There-
for energy and enhances the body’s
fore, let’s start with the top 3 key factors:
response to insulin. These two factors
a. S tore insulin properly in order to maintain its effectiveness.
1. Control Your Diet. Healthy eating
help to reduce blood sugar levels. Keep
is the cornerstone of diabetes manage-
in mind, the more strenuous the activity
ment. Not only what you eat, but how
the more lasting the effects!
much and when.
a. T alk to your physician about an exercise regimen. Make sure that all exercises are appropriate for you and ONLY YOU! Incorporate the right amount of aerobic and musclestrengthening exercise.
a. K eep a food diary. Your blood sugar level is highest after you eat and then begins to fall after about 2-4 hours. You can manage the ups and downs by eating around the same time every day. Eat several small meals a day or healthy snacks at regular times between meals. b. Create well balanced meals. Plan for every meal to have the right mix of starches, fruits, and veggies… don’t forget proteins and fats. It’s of extreme importance to eat about the same amount of carbohydrates at each meal and snack because they have greater effects on blood sugar levels. c. P ortion Control. Learn what portion size is appropriate for each type of food. Simplify your meal planning by writing down portions for the foods you eat often. Using a scale or measuring cup can be of a big help when in the kitchen! d. C oordinate meals and medication. Too little food in comparison to your medications, especially insulin, may result in dangerously low blood sugars …otherwise known as hypoglycemia and vice versa. Too much food may cause a rise in blood glucose levels resulting in hyperglycemia. Make sure to talk to your healthcare provider to best coordinate meal and medication planning.
b. Keep an exercise schedule. Talk to your physician about the best time of day for you to exercise so that your workout routine is coordinated with your meal medication schedules.
b. R eport any problems to your healthcare providers. If you feel as if your blood sugar levels drop too low, the dosage or timing may need to be adjusted. c. B e extremely cautious when trying new medications. Consult your physician or pharmacist about any new medications that you’re ordered to take that may demonstrate a negative effect when used in combination with your diabetes medications.
When it comes to treating this
modern day epidemic called Diabetes
c. Know your numbers! Determine what blood sugar levels are appropriate for you before you begin exercising.
there still remains so much informa-
d. Check your blood sugar levels. Before, during, and after you exercise it’s important to test, especially if you take insulin or medications that lower blood sugar levels. Some of the warning signs for low blood sugar levels are: feeling weak and shaky, lightheaded, tired, and hungry.
can make the necessary lifestyle modifi-
e. Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water while exercising because dehydration can affect blood sugar levels. f. Be prepared. Always keep a small snack or glucose pill with you during exercises just in case blood sugar levels fall. 3. Medications. Insulin and other diabetes medications are designed to lower your blood sugar levels when diet and exercise aren’t enough but effectiveness
tion to share. It’s our job to continue to educate ourselves and others so that we cations to enhance the quality of life for those suffering. It’s our job to know our family history and make adjustments that would offset or minimize our risk of developing this disease. So, if it takes losing a few pounds, giving up smoking, incorporating exercise into our daily schedules, and most importantly, modifying our diet…then why not!?!?! All of these things are within our control! It’s about “managing Diabetes, not letting Diabetes manage you! Healthy living is not always an easy choice BUT it’s always the RIGHT choice!
40zROCK / FOOD
A FRUITY SALAD TO TAKE DOWN THE HEAT Bring berries to the dinner table to make them really shine. Why save all that sweetness for dessert? TRIPLE BERRY SUMMER SALAD Ingredients 9oz baby spinach, torn 1 cup sliced strawberries 1 cup raspberries 1 cup blueberries /2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
/3 cup chopped basil
1 avocado, chopped 4oz goat cheese
DIRECTIONS: Divide baby spinach between plates then top with berries, almonds, basil and chopped avocado. Crumble goat cheese on top then dress with salad dressing. I recommend strawberry balsamic vinegar, but any olive-oil based vinaigrette would be fantastic. ď€ś recipe from iowagirlseats.com
ENTERTAINMENT / 40zROCK THINGS TO DO WITH YOUR FREE TIME
JULY / LOS ANGELES
July 4 July 4th Fireworks Spectacular at Six Flags Magic Mountain This Independence Day visit Six Flags Magic Mountain for a thrilling salute to patriotism and our freedom.
Hornblower Newport Beach Dinner & Brunch Cruises Enjoy the sights of Newport Beach, one of the largest small-boat harbors on the coast, with a luxurious Hornblower dinner or brunch cruise.
AUGUST / CHICAGO
Aug. 1-3 Latino Festival Fiesta del Sol delivers live entertainment, local art, diverse cuisine, carnival rides, but no alcohol on W. Cermak Rd. between Morgan and Ashland. Free.
Aug. 9-10 Aug. 15-17
Vegetarian Festival Veggie Fest as a food court, kids’ activities, demos, exhibits, speakers, and music in Naperville. Free. Beatles Festival The Fest for Beatles Fans has a Beatles marketplace, guest speakers, a dance party, look-alike contest, games and exhibits at Hyatt Regency.
Aug. 23-24 Taste of Greece Enjoy Greek restaurant food, traditional music and dance, handcrafts, and children’s games at Taste of Greektown at 400 S. Halsted Street. Free..
SEPTEMBER / WASHINGTON D.C.
Sept. 4-7 Prince George’s County Fair Upper Marlboro, MD. Carnival rides, live animal displays, family circus, fireworks, live entertainment, food.
Sept. 7-8 The 46th Annual Maryland Seafood Festival Sandy Point State Park. Live music performances, local charities selling delicious treats, creative craft booths and featuring The Capital’s 23rd Crap Soup Cook-off and the Department of Natural Resources’ Maryland Fishing Challenge. This family fun and feasting event is expected to draw 20,000+ visitors from across the mid-Atlantic region.
Sept. 14 Washington Redskins Opening Game 1:00 p.m. The Washington football team plays against the Jacksonville Jaguars in their home opener. Enjoy the football season and cheer for the Redskins.
40zROCK / Q&A With Mia
Let's Get It (W)right! Mia inspires people to embrace spiritual change and live fulfilling lives. Here, she answers your questions.
Q Pastor Wright, I have a girlfriend who is 47 and single. She is very active in the church and is sold out for the Lord. The only problem is my friend doesn’t realize that her harsh sold out approach could have her end up alone. She gets a date, and any man she goes out with she thinks, “God has sent me my husband” After about the second date she starts asking the man, so, what are we doing? You know I’m in the church and I’m looking for a husband not a friend. I could be wrong, but I think she is unknowingly exuding desperation to men... I want to know what is the best way for me to tell her without seeming as though I’m trying to be funny.
A Always, learn to be prayerful before sharing with friends. Proverbs 25:11 says, “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.” Bringing to her attention that her dating habits may actually frighten men, and run away any potential suitor could make her feel uncomfortable. I hope that your friendship is solid and that she will receive your input in a positive manner, knowing that you are genuine in your sharing and caring. We often make dating as a Christian complicated when it doesn’t have to be difficult nor frustrating. Dating should be
?'s / 14
an exciting explorative time of getting to know someone else. Generally speaking, when a woman dates, she is thinking long term. Would this person be a good in a long-term relationship? However when men date, most are thinking short term, about the moment that is happening. Some women miss out on building relationships because they are only thinking in the long term and miss the current moment. There is absolutely nothing wrong with establishing boundaries early in a dating relationship and expressing ones desire to be married, but it is how we express that desire that can kick start a relationship or derail it from the start. Every man that comes along is not “Boaz”. It is interesting that you say that she tells the man that she is not looking for a friend. The foundation of any relationship should be friendship. Lasting marriages are made of people who have learned to become good friends. Perhaps it is change of perspective that your friend needs. It has been said that it is better to marry a friend and make them a lover than the reverse. Helping your friend to see that taking her time to date and enjoying the experience could lead to a long term relationship will be a good thing for the both of you. Friends always seek the best for each other.
Mia Wright Co-Pastor & Motivational Speaker
Q Mrs. Wright I am 42 and in a 1.5 year relationship with a older gentlemen who every now and then, allows his temper to get the best of him. I have explained to him that in a healthy relationship people get angry and they don’t always agree, but I still think there is no excuse to scream and punch things while your having a heated conversation. His excuse is, he just wants to be heard. I am afraid that his temper could be an indication of things to come, do you think its unfair for me to walk away based on what I think could happen.
A It is good that you recognize anger issues before your relationship progresses, as they can be indicative of future problems. Anger is a normal, usually healthy, human emotion. When it gets out of control and turns destructive, it can lead to problems. It is not normal for people to expresses emotions to the point of physical harm (i.e. hitting walls or punching things).
you have some life pressing questions you need to get answers to? Ask Mia and get it (W)right! Do Email: email@example.com / Twitter.com/40zrock / Facebook.com/40zrock
The American Psychological Association suggests that there are three main ways to approach anger – express it, suppress it, and calm it. “Expressing your angry feelings in an assertive—not aggressive—manner is the healthiest way to express anger. To do this, you have to learn how to make clear what your needs are, and how to get them met, without hurting others. Being assertive doesn’t mean being pushy or demanding; it means being respectful of yourself and others.” [source http://www. apa.org/topics/anger/control.aspx#] This includes screaming to be heard. People are better heard when using calm measures to express themselves. Rather than walk away, be a help to him. If you love this man, then encourage him to get into an anger management program. These have been effective in helping people to learn to process anger differently. And yes, you can modify behavior at any age.
Q Pastor Wright I find myself constantly doing for everyone except for myself. I can never seem to say NO! I find myself at age 46 starting to feel resentful, because I feel like all the people I am constantly helping, when I need them they are no where to be found. I feel like people take advantage of my kindness. I don’t want to change who I am, but I do want to figure out how to say NO and not feeling guilty about it.
A Unrequited support is never a good feeling. Too often we are doing for others, not doing enough for ourselves, and not experiencing the same support in our time of need. Constantly helping others because you feel obligated, guilty, or that you believe if you don’t, things will fall apart, can lead to frustration and bitterness as you are experiencing. Resentful feelings are a clear indicator that things have gone too far and that you need to regain control of your generosity.
It is important that you recognize why you cannot say no. Learn that an answer of “no” can be healthy and helpful. Setting boundaries for how, when, and who you assist are also beneficial. Once you set these boundaries, stick to them and make them applicable in all situations. Others can and will take advantage of your kindness and generosity when you allow them. Boundaries help you to maintain control. Years ago, I realized that loaning friends money often led to friend problems. From those experiences, I decided that I would not give loans but rather gift the need, if I have the resource to give. If I do not have it then I am unable to help. I also limit the number of times that I gift a friend. This has helped tremendously, allowing me to be generous within my limits. Adopting similar self-imposed boundaries will help you to maintain good relationships and not feel as if you are being taken advantage of.
40zROCK / BEAUTY
AGING ANYONE? by Jacque Parish
Aging is unavoidable and everyone has to face it sooner or later, but what’s really important is to age gracefully. Here are a few simple home remedies everyone can try out at home to keep your skin looking fresh, youthful and reduce the signs of aging.
helps generate new skin cells. For fresh
tamin C naturally fades melanin pigment
young complexion all you need to do is
which is the substance that gives freckles
splash on a little milk each night after
and dark spots their color. To erase age
washing your face.
spots you need to apply a few drops of lemon juice everyday for up to six weeks.
RAW POTATO: A simple and effective
The key is to leave the juice on the spots
home remedy to remove marks and
for 15 minutes before rinsing off.
pigments on the facial skin. These can be removed by rubbing raw potato on
CALCIUM D-GLUCARATE: Fruits and
areas having marks or pigments.
vegetables contain high levels of calcium
COCONUT MILK: Can help you get
D-glucarate, which expedites the remov-
that radiant look of your skin. Take raw
HOME MASK: Many of us suffer from
al of disease-promoting compounds, like
coconut and squeeze milk out of it or
pimples and blackheads and they really
estrogen and also minimizes lipid (fat)
buy a whole coconut and take the milk
ruin facial appearance. A simple home-
levels in the blood. This home remedy
of it. Apply this coconut milk on your
made facial mask for this is applying a
for anti aging can be found in broccoli,
face and it will give your facial skin a
mixture that’s made up of equal quanti-
cabbage, oranges, apples and grapefruit.
ties of glycerin, lime juice and rose water
For anti-aging treatment, eat these foods
on the skin before going to sleep.
three times a day.
a lot of natural oil, as we age our skin
HONEY BEE: Can serve you as effective
The benefits of using home-made
become dry, avocado really helps to give
agent against fine lines around the eyes.
remedies are such that they won’t cost
you a young and fresh look because of its
Apply best quality bee’s honey around
you too much. Home-made remedies
oily nature. Simply apply either the mash
the skin of your eyes and it helps combat
save your time and money, plus they are
or slices of avocado on your face and your
this tired looking eyes.
AVOCADO MASK: Avocado contains
skin will get that rejuvenated look. LEMON JUICE: It does wonders for MILK: It is one of the gentlest and most
everything from whitening teeth to
effective substances for removing dead
fading freckles, age spots and darkened
skin cells. Milk contains lactic acid; clini-
elbows and knees. It contains vitamin C,
cal studies have shown that lactic acid
which have a great bleaching power. Vi-
40zROCK / FASHION
TO SELECT THE RIGHT SWIMSUIT by Tiffiny Dixon
Ready or not its that time of year again. Whether you spent the winter months getting it right bouncing from one 30-day fitness challenge to another or maybe you just never got around to finishing that squat challenge (join the club). It doesn't matter where you fall on the body type spectrum , apple, pear, tiffiny lamp, newspaper or hourglass, the swimsuit is the equalizer that leaves most of us with similar body concerns. Either way, bikini season is here and I have a few tricks that will have all of us looking our best on the beach or poolside.
LARGER BREASTS: Your major goal is to get the most support
you can get for your girls. Don't rule the bikini out as an option. Look for for full coverage bikini tops that have underwire support and thick straps this will give you the lift and separation your girls need. If you would rather cover them
SMALL BREASTS: For you ladies it's all about creating an illusion.
Give your girls a boost with embellished, ruffled and padded tops.
BROAD SHOULDERS: Balance your look out with a suit that
up a bit more , look for bandeau tops
has paneling on both sides with a solid
or tankinis with a built in bandeau.
mid-section. This panelling illusion will balance you shoulders & hips.
LOVE HANDLES: Send them back to the winter instantly with a high
waisted bottom. Make sure the bottom comes up high enough to cover your
AMPLE BACKSIDE: Let's be honest for a second here, noth-
belly button. We don't want to create a
ing you wear will ever completely cover
muffin top out of your love handles.
your girlfriend back there. But there are
ways to make sure you're not pulling
SMALL BACKSIDE: If you are looking to give the illusion of a bigger
back side, this is not the time to be shy
CURVY: Looking to add some
out a wedgie every 5 minutes. Look for
curve appeal to your bikini look.
or try to hide your bottom. Flashing a
suites with solid full coverage bottoms
Avoid the one piece, bandeaus and boy
little bottom and side cheek with your
& printed tops as they will balance your
cut briefs. They will only enhance a lack
bikini will help it appear bigger. String
bottom with your upper body.
bikini bottoms are your best friend. ď€ś
of curves. Instead rack up on suits with padding, gathering and super feminine colors/patterns.
40zROCK / FAB FINDS
2014 Spring/Summer Fragrances
4 20 /
Live at Aloft Every 3rd Friday Live at Aloft Hotels Sip on specialty cocktails, munch on a snack-attack menu and listen to cool tunes. Rock out with live acoustic performances by the hottest, emerging artists or get your groove on with eclectic beats from sassy dj mixes.
Aloft Houston by the Galleria 5415 Westheimer Road Houston, Texas 77056
ÂŠ2014 Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Preferred Guest, SPG, Aloft and their logos are the trademarks of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc., or its affiliates.
40zROCK / SPIRITUALITY
Daughters of the King: Are You a
MARTHA? by Wendie Rice
In today’s world, many women take pride in the fact that we are smart, responsible, talented, gifted, leaders, multi-taskers, in-charge, and in control. All of these attributes are great to have as women, because there are many aspects of our life that we must navigate through and these attributes can sometimes work to our advantage. Examples of this include: Being a mother, a wife, a career woman/entrepreneur, a daughter, a friend. Having these character qualities can only be a virtue. Look at the Proverbs 31 woman. This woman is a woman in the grandest sense of the word. She’s resourceful, she’s an early riser, she’s business savvy, her husband and kids adore her. But as I reflect on what being a true Godly woman is, I can’t help but to consider other examples of women in the bible, and two in particular come to mind. Mary and Martha.
Mary and Martha were sisters, and
Jesus on more than one occasion to the
ed by all the preparations that had to be
like any of us who are sisters, sister-
home where she, Mary, and their brother
made. She came to him and asked, ’Lord,
friends, orsisters-in-Christ, we all have
Lazarus lived. “As Jesus and his disciples
don’t you care that my sister has left me
different qualities and personalities that
were on their way, he came to a village
to do the work by myself? Tell her to help
make us our own unique selves. Mary
where a woman named Martha opened
me!’ ” Luke 10:38-40. “Six days before the
and Martha were no different. They were
her home to him. She had a sister named
Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where
sisters who both loved Jesus and were
Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening
Lazarus lived, whom Jesus had raised
friends with Him. Martha welcomed
to what he said. But Martha was distract-
from the dead. Here a dinner was given
in Jesus’ honor. Martha served, while La-
more pre-occupied with engaging with
overly focused on service or works. We
zarus was among those reclining at the
the Guest of Honor, rather than helping
can ask ourselves, who is it that we are
table with him. Then Mary took a pint of
to serve the meal, clean the kitchen and
truly serving? Could it be self? Remem-
pure nard, an expensive perfume, and
such. Mary sat at the feet of Jesus and
ber that God is all powerful, all mighty,
she poured it on Jesus’ feet and wiped
listened to His word. On another occa-
all by Himself. He doesn’t “need” our
his feet with her hair…” John 12;1-3
sion, we see that Mary greeted Jesus by
help. He multiplied fish and loaves of
Mary and Martha both demon-
anointing His feet with her most pre-
bread to feed masses. He turned water
strated their individual personalities in
cious perfumed oil and wiped His feet
into wine to serve guests at a wedding
their interaction with Jesus during these
with her hair. From these illustrations,
feast when the wine had run out. If we
visits. As we can see from the scripture
would we question whether Mary truly
turn things over to God, we can be as-
reference, Martha was a woman who
loved Jesus and loved being with Him?
sured He’s got it. “Cast your anxiety upon
was very service oriented. She was a
Him, because He cares for you.” 1 Peter
doer, task-driven, an organizer. But
Jesus; I think she truly believed her
5:7. As we submit ourselves unto Christ,
Martha was also distracted and worried.
service was in honor of him, but anxiety,
“His” mighty work can be done through
“And Jesus answered and said to her,
worry, and doing seemed to take prior-
us as we serve Him.
‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and
ity, whereas Mary chose the better. “And
anxious about many things.’ ” Luke 10:41.
Jesus answered and said to her, ‘Martha,
relationship with us first. He delights
Some other traits we could suspect that
Martha, you are worried and anxious
in our sitting at His feet for a time and
Martha encompassed were that Martha
about many things. But one thing is
hearing what He wants to say to us. He
played the victim, she felt entitled. It
needed, and Mary has chosen that good
greatly appreciates that we will sacrifice
might even be safe to say that code-
part, which will not be taken away from
our time and highly prized possessions
pendency played a part in Martha’s
her.’ ” Luke 10:41-42. So as we assess the
to honor Him.
approach to things. Nonetheless, Martha
contrasting personalities of each sister,
was a woman who believed in Jesus as
we can say that Martha’s intentions were
ing and being worried that taking time
her Savior. Her service to Him and oth-
good, but Mary’s interest in relating to
out to be in the stillness of Christ will
ers may have been an extension of her
Jesus versus doing for Him was better in
cause you to drop the ball? Jesus tells us
belief in Him and love for him. But did Martha’s service best dem-
that we need not worry or be anxious.
He also tells us to “Seek ye first, the King-
onstrate her love for Jesus? Let’s look at
that there is nothing intrinsically wrong
dom of God and all His righteousness
her sister Mary. Now Mary didn’t seem to
with being busy), the idea is that we
and all these things will be added unto
have much of inclination to run around
must ask ourselves where our priorities
you.” Matthew 6:31-33.
and scurry about like her sister Martha.
lie. Even in our service for Jesus. We must
As we find in the scripture Mary was
be cautious that we don’t become so
Going back to Martha’s love for
As we live our busy lives, (and note
Jesus desires a personal, intimate
My sister, is your life so full with do-
40zROCK / RELATIONSHIPS
A Few Ways to Know if Your Relationship is Unhealthy by Stephanie D. McKenzie Author of The Business of Dating
Coach Steph has been featured on Yahoo.com, galtime.com, yourtango. com, WVON Chicago, LATalk Radio, WSEV Los Angeles and in Shape Magazine, to name a few. Recently, she facilitated a tele-seminar for relationship powerhouse, eHarmony.com.
Unhealthy relationships are becoming an epidemic. More often than not, people are remaining in relationships that cause themto be hurt, confused, mistreated, and even abused. But why are they staying when it is blatantly clear to everyone else that they should walk away? Why do people connected to someone who is making their life miserable? Why don’t they just walk…err, run away?
Great questions. Last night, I facilitated a workshop at a local women’s shelter, and all of the women there had endured some type of abuse. At some point, they walked out and that decision landed in the safety of the shelter. It was an honor to sit down with this diverse group of “sheroes” and it caused me to think more about relationships, in general and unhealthy relationships, more specifically.
WHY DO PEOPLE ENDURE UNHEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS? Perhaps they don’t know that it’s unhealthy. After leaving the shelter, I was later on air doing an interview, and we discussed how jealous and possessive behavior can look “cute” and “endearing” at first. The fact that he (or she) shows up where you are, and seems overly interested in your activities and attire, makes them seem as if this person really cares about you. As the incidents of jealousy and possessiveness increase, sometimes we remain oblivious to the changes that are obvious to others in our lives. You may not go out anymore, your clothing may change, you seem distant. But it’s all done in the name of preserving your (unhealthy) relationship, and that shows
committment, right? No…it shows that you are losing yourself to a force that is attempting to subdue you, and that if you continue to accept this behavior that it will be to your detriment. Then again, perhaps they know it’s unhealthy, but have no clue what to do with that reality. Or, (and this happens often) they know the relationship is bad, but they have decided that they want to win. So, this means that every piece of “leave him or her alone” becomes motivation to stay with this person and make it—if only to avoid the “I told you so’s” of the people who cared enough to tell you that your relationship was not a good place to be. This is the wrong time to ”let your haters be your motivators,” as the song says. Whatever the justification, it is steeped in the fact that by the time any relationship becomes undeniably toxic,
both parties are vested so deeply, that it almost seems easier to remain in dysfunction, than to escape into loneliness (or I told you so’s as previously stated). Sadly, this keeps many people in relationships that will impact their lives negatively now, and some, for years even after a breakup. Perhaps it’s less unhealthy than their last relationship. Now, this is the kicker. Some people actually believe that as long as this relationship is not ”as bad” as their last relationship, then everything is ok, and there’s not a problem. This is not okay. Despite the fact, that this person only cheats on you consistently and the last person physically assaulted you, that comparison does not make either one of these relationships better than the other. They are both bad, and they are both unhealthy, you cannot continue to deny the truth, nor can you ignore the fact
that you must do something about it. I could go on, but then there wouldn’t be a part two. If you happened to see your relationship characterized in this article, then you can no longer claim ignorance. It’s time to make some changes because if nothing changes, nothing changes. If you need help, I am here, if you have questions, ask. This is not the time to think about loyalty, or committment—unless you’re thinking about the loyalties and the commitments that you made to yourself. I told the group last night, and I am telling YOU now: As Katt Williams says, “it’s all about your star player…this means you.” Now you know better, so I hope you’ll at least think about doing better. Every action begins with a thought (hint-hint). #CSHS #StopDomesticViolence
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40zROCK / EDUCATION
POWER OF TEACHERS FROM AROUND THE WORLD by Cheri Alphonse Hayes, ED.S.
As this school year has ended and report cards have been disseminated with promotion and retention comments, what happens now? Here are four teachers from various parts of the world sharing tips on Fun and Educational Activities to indulge in this summer. Enjoy…
2 1 Kimberly Gunn Port Wentworth Elementary School, Port Wentworth, Ga., United States of America Pre-K-5 Educational Activity: Read at least 30 minutes a day and study multiplication facts. Fun Activity: Join a summer camp or start your own charity/organization.
Tonya McGee Weight Netzaberg Elementary, Netzaberg, Germany 1st-5th Grades Educational Activity: Summer Reading - Read as many books as you can about different locations. Think about where you would like to visit when you grow up. Fun Activity: Talk to people about the books you read and why.
No matter where you are in the world, at some point in time, even educators take a break too! Do they stop working? No! Educating the future is a full-time, non-stop effort that never really gets turned off in a teacher’s heart and mind. Across the globe teachers are making a difference in countless lives every day. They may not reach each child, but making changes, problem-solving, nurturing, caring, and facilitating lessons impacts student’s at the most unexpected times. We refer to those, as “Ah hah!” moments.
4 3 Mary Ellen Arthurs Ahmed Bin Zayed School, Al Ain, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates Grade 5, Math, Science and English to girls only Educational Activity: Using an iPad or cell phone camera try making a video in the spirit of Bill Nye The Science Guy (he’s my hero!!!): Pick a topic, and use the internet to find some facts, easy experiments and video clips to incorporate in your video. Fun Activity: Travel somewhere you have never been and keep a photo journal or scrapbook of your adventure!
Janet Thomas-Lane The Sullivan School, Yokosuka, Japan K-5 Educational Activity: Check out your local library in your home town. They usually offer a summer reading program for all ages. Most libraries have a summer reading book list or you can Google a book list from your home town library that is age appropriate. Also, the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge is another way to keep them reading all summer long. Kids can read and earn rewards. Check out the Scholastic website for more information about this reading program. Fun Activity: I have 3 great nieces that visit for a week during the summer. I create a chalkboard bucket list with colored chalk and display the many activities that we can do for fun. A check-off box is included beside each activity. Once the activity is completed the activity is check marked.
40zROCK / FINANCES
FINANCIAL ASSESSMENT IN YOUR 40’z
SEVEN THINGS YOU NEED TO DO by Lee Cowan
Write your goals down and look at
Draw up a financial checklist to discuss
them regularly throughout the day. The
any issues relating to you and your
physical act of writing anything down
partner’s combined financial needs.
commands your subconscious mind to
This step is vital at this stage because
think on the action. You’ll attract resourc-
in your 40’s you are more likely to have
es, information and anything you need
settled down with a partner or have
to attain that goal. To keep yourself con-
your partner also insures his life. This is
sistent, as soon as you achieve one goal,
critical if you have children that would
set new goals. Keep a constant “Things To Do List” for your life — it’ll keep you motivated and active. Just focus on setting the right goals for you especially now that you’re in your 40’s!
Review your insurance needs. Make sure you understand what benefits your company or your own business entitles you to. Financial benefits offered to you
and/or your partner, are often cheaper to maintain, however, make sure that what they offer is enough. In addition, reassess anything that may be lacking in your name or needs to be updated.
FOUR Take out life insurance and make sure
depend on your income in the event of your death. It is also imperative that your partner take out life coverage on his income if you don’t work.
FIVE Kick-start your pension by saving now. If you haven’t started saving toward your pension, it’s never too late. In your 20s’s, we advise saving 15% of your gross income towards retirement but when you are in your 40’s the guideline is to save 20%.
and how your liabilities should be handled.
most interest, such as department store
A valid will is an essential element of
credit cards. When it comes to savings,
estate planning and includes everything
particularly when your pension is
you own and owe – from property and
concerned, it is never too late to start!.
cars to investments and debts.
SEVEN When you’re in your 40’s, there are always financial decisions to be made.
You may have accumulated a lot of
If you haven’t already done so, now is the
debt. The best way to tackle debt is to
time to draw up a valid will. Your will is
concentrate on paying off your most
a record of how you want your assets to
expensive debt first. In other words,
be distributed amongst your loved ones
reduce the debt that costs you the
40zROCK / FORTY, FABULOUS & FREE
Fabulously Flowing into Forty by Stacy D. Wilson
If a year ago you would have mentioned to me that I would be living the divine life in China, at the onset of turning 40, I probably would’ve thought you were sipping on that purple drank. Don’t get me wrong,
He is the ultimate gift giver. He is plenty
party of forming my life around mini-
resourceful in how the gift comes to frui-
vans, buying property and life insurance
tion and He beautifully proved this to be
policies? Was Mr. Right For Me just a
true, on my 40th birthday.
childish creation like Santa Claus and the
Easter Bunny? What about the wrinkles,
I always longed for the opportunity to experience new people, languages, and cultures while getting “paid” to do it. It’s just that, this dream that I had planted in Universe was supercalifragilisicepialidocious. So big in fact, I half heartedly thought it might be ridiculous or impossible.
With excitement and a dash of
nervousness, I was painstakingly looking
grey hair or even the mysterious morn-
forward to my coming of age day. My
ing aches and pains? Are they going to
excitement stemmed from learning,
move in on me like an out of town rela-
the direct relation to 40 and the fulfill-
tive looking to start a new life? But the
ment of promises. Rain fell on Noah’s
real looming question was in reference
Ark for 40 days and nights. The Israelites
to the battery on my biological clock.
wandered in the desert for 40 years
Was it getting tarnished, undependable
before finding the “Promise Land”. Also,
and nearing retirement?
Jesus’ remaining on Earth 40 days after
All daunting questions to ponder, but
his resurrection. Trust me, I did the math,
nevertheless, landing into the new terri-
hoping I would focus on the plethora of
tory of 40 was inevitable. But thankfully,
pluses of turning 40.
I had a new relationship that might help
It’s so interesting how quickly one can
to cushion my descent. The series of
put God in a box, limiting his power
ing fabulous and youthful, the minuses
conversations he initiated about the part
and greatness when in fact one of his
raised by my turning of age, kept creep-
he would play on my big day, helped to
many remarkable characteristics is that
ing into the equation... Am I tardy for the
distract me from my perceived anxieties
Even in knowing the truth and feel-
of turning 40... little did I know that my
tionship that was the deciding factor
ing attachments put me in a position to
expectations would be sidetracked by
for China. Everything just happened in
accept the challenge.
perfect order. I feel by closing doors that
On the morning of my 40th birth-
weren’t meant for me to walk through,
raveled the way that it did. Even though
day, I got a wakeup call alerting me, that
opened doors that were more suitable
everything happened faster than I was
the plans that I thought we had for an
for the divine life I desired.
capable of wrapping my mind around,
amazing celebration had changed. He
it was excellent timing. I could not ask
hadn’t requested to take the day off,
at a Bible study, I was encouraged to
for a more perfect 40th birthday present
even though he had previously stated
revisit my dreams of grandeur that I had
from the Universe.
that he would. Instead he indifferently
forgotten. On my way home I stopped at
suggested that he make it up to me by
a gas station and had a friendly conver-
saw to be true at 40 was the beauty of
taking me out the following week.
sation with a stranger from Houston who
going with the flow. Not fighting against
was currently living in Los Angeles. Their
the current has been my most valuable
a surprise to his calendar, this casual
discussion about their amazing adven-
weapon in living life thus far. I know now
proposal left me dissatisfied and shaking
tures while working and living in China
that there is purpose in everything, being
my head. A timely, “Babe, I’m working
for 10 year relit my fire for living abroad.
single, divorced, childless, being in a
on your day but let’s make plans on my
Soon after, I excitedly sent my
career that may be lacking something…
scheduled day off” would have been
resume to a corporation I respected in
absolutely everything works towards the
appreciated. In fact, this small detail of
China. They quickly interviewed me and
fulfillment of the divine life that we were
consideration might have saved this
matched my enthusiasm with an offer
created for. God is just waiting for our
sinking ship but it didn’t happen and
of a supersized salary, stipend for rent,
agreement. So to anyone and especially
neither did we. This was the last of a
among other perks that sealed the deal.
those of us in our 40s I will be the first
sequence of miscommunications that
Mind you, I had been looking for another
to say our best days are in front. Let’s
gave me the courage to say “goodbye
job opportunity within the US, for more
continue to say, “YES,” and go with the
relationship”, “Hello 40s” and 2 month
than a year, so when China fell into my
flow into the foreign land of our 40s
later, “Ni Hao” to China.
spirit, everything seemed to fall into
and stay rooted in knowing that the
place. China came as a perfect fit. I was
time is now, to receive the blessing of
ready for change and having no loom-
Due to my birthday not coming as
Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t the
after taste of the disappointing rela-
Two weeks after the break up, while
I’m so grateful that everything un-
The first lesson that I learned and
40zROCK / TRAVEL
OFF THE BEATEN PATH
JOSÉ IGNACIO, URGUAY
It's easy to see why modern travelers feel so burnt out: our globalized world is littered with tourist traps, letdowns, overrated destinations and crowds. What if you could get out ahead of the curve and visit a places BEFORE they become famous?
KOH RONG, CAMBODIA
(1) JOSÉ IGNACIO, URGUAY
(2) KOH RONG, CAMBODIA
Only about 300 people actually live
Visiting this Cambodian island is like
here, but in winter (aka South American
stepping into a screensaver. With only
summer), José Ignacio is clogged with
a few bungalows, some killer snorke-
Latin A-listers like Shakira. A new luxury
ling, and fishing villages (there are no
hotel, Bahia Vik, is in the process of
roads!), many say it's like Thailand was
opening, and José Ignacio is gearing
20 years ago, before tourists trampled
up to host an international art fair. For
the untouched beaches. Ferries started
at least a while longer, though, you can
regularly shuttling tourists to Koh Rong
cruise artsy bohemian boutiques and
only a few years ago, but things are
enjoy savory steaks at La Huella in
still pretty quiet.
(relatively) paparazzi-free peace.
by Jacquie Parish
(3) SOFIA, BULGARIA
passed by tourists heading to the coast
Ottoman mosques and Red Army monu-
Price of Travel named Sofia Europe's
or the ski resorts, but they’re missing
ments topped with air-punching Soviet
cheapest tourist city for 2014. We're sure
out on something special. Sofia has
soldiers, but these days they share the
Bulgaria's capital won't stay a secret
a young and dynamic vibe, like a city
skyline with glitzy shopping malls, five-
much longer. By far Bulgaria’s biggest
waking up after decades of slumber,
star hotels and the best bars and clubs
city, Sofia (So-fia) is one of Europe’s most
and is becoming a confident and cos-
the country has to offer.
compact and walkable capital cities,
mopolitan European capital. The old
although it’s still one of the least known-
east-meets-west feel is still here, with
by foreign travellers. It’s usually by-
a scattering of onion-domed churches,
BUT STILL ON THE GRID. 40ZROCK.COM
MS. JULY At age 40, this 40z Rocker is excited and continuing to live life to the fullest. While fulfilling her passion of Elementary Education for the last 18 years, Sheila continues to nurture her students, stand firm on modeling success, and aggressively conquer the challenges of todayâ€™s educational community. Her current role as Assistant Principal allows her to make an impact in the lives of students, parents, and staff.
She does all of this while
balancing her career, motherly duties, and being a wife of 14 years. She is excited about being in her 40z and experiencing all that life still has to offer. I Rock, You Rock, Together We ROCK! ď€ś
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TOO SOON by Tezzie Gilbert
Just recently I started dating a guy who gave me some great insight on how women give entirely too much too soon.
anything that you have no peace about! Peace is always a sign
Here are a few things that I asked him…
Me: At what point should a woman start volunteering to clean and cook?
that you are on the right track. Ignoring your inner voice that’s saying, “rethink…don’t do it…stop!” Will probably render you single more times that you would like. Men need space to be able to recognize that what they
have is rare and should be taken off the market as quickly as possible. It is hard for them to really understand this when you are so busy going out of your way to PROVE and SHOW him
Him: Never. Realistically, if you want your man to continue to
your talents and skills.
work for your affections wait until you are in a solid committed
relationship…or on your way to marriage before you start
bare essentials. For me that includes: calling a couple of times
acting like his wife. Doing these types of things too early will
per week, setting the expectation that all dates should be
definitely make us complacent.
scheduled in advance and not last minute and thinking outside
Me: How much is too much when calling? Him: Well, you want to make sure he knows that you are interested but you don’t want to turn into a stalker or appear needy. A few times a week will keep him interested just enough to continue the pursuit.
Me: Sexting…When is it too soon? Or should it be done at all for a woman 40+?
Him: Um…sexting….probably should be done at a bare minimum. Men like to sext, however do not use this as an opportunity to push your way into our space. Most women over a certain age come across too aggressive because they often get upset once they send a sext and do not receive the answer they are looking for or do not receive an answer in a timely manner.
After talking to him I came to my own conclusion…
If it feels like too much it is probably because it is. Never do
Make it your priority to ensure that you are only doing the
the box on the best way to keep his attention without offering your body and fantastic talents. Trust me…there are ways for you to do this without always sacrificing yourself and putting your heart on the line.
If it feels like too much it is probably because it is.
No Longer Your Grandmotherâ€™s Girdle
by Kimberly Handy
The first Body Shapers were known as corsets and date back to the 16th Century. They were a stiff undergarment with laces made to fasten the garment. The initial purpose was to lift the woman’s breasts to make them look more voluminous. The length varied and reached from the pelvis to the chest. Some even had sleeves (to control the under arm flabby
THEY COME IN (4) CATEGORIES:
area). They were the main accessory for women during the the body into an hourglass shape. They laced up in the back
1. U LTRA-LIGHT WEIGHT L eotard, unitard or a capri leg style
and sometimes the front to allow for easy size adjustment.
Victorian Era. The corsets were made with whale bone to force
These garments were firm and very unforgiving once they were laced. Many women were known to faint while wearing the garment because their breathing was restricted.
Through the years, Body Shapers have become more
comfortable to wear with the introduction of new elastic material. Some brands are even known to offer therapeutic and orthopedic value that corrects posture and eases back pain.
C amisole leotard - may have spaghetti straps, low cut necklines or scoop backs S oftly smooth’s and provides ultra-light support
2. LIGHT WEIGHT
P rovides support similar to a control-top panty hose
M ost common in the form of briefs, camisoles and capris
3. MEDIUM WEIGHT
WHAT IS A BODY SHAPER?
Squeezes your body a little tighter to create a very slim look
Made to target certain areas to reduce bulges and lumps by smoothing
spandex, lycra, nylon or a combination of all three. Depending
Made with targeted compression bands
on the fabric weight, they may have compression bands and
Not known for shaping
panels to control specific areas of the body such as the back
Commonly used after breast surgery or for other medical or surgical reasons
A Body Shaper is an undergarment designed to temporarily alter or reshape the body to give the appearance of a shapelier figure by smoothing the body’s shape. They are made of
4. FIRM WEIGHT
Offers the highest level of shaping and support
Has built in compression bands, panels and boning
Shapes, smooth’s and alters the body shape
Provides support to lift the breast and buttocks and flatten the stomach
Often used in combination with a weight loss program
...44% of women over 40 were shape wear regularly. 53% of women over 50 wear shape wear and control briefs regularly.
BODY SHAPERS ARE NOT JUST FOR WOMEN Men also desire a sleek silhouette and some use Body Shapers to achieve this look. They don’t want to display their bulges either. There are many compression garments available to men to compress their chest, puffy breast and loose hanging skin in the groin, flank (back area near the under arms) and abdomen area. WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW With the arrival of spring and summer we see shorter hemlines, more fitted clothing and lots of cocktail dresses, semi-formal and formal wear for Mother’s Day, prom, weddings and endless party events. Naturally we want to look our very best just in
the more control the shaper offers you, the more discomfort
case we fell short of our New Year’s resolution to slim down.
you may experience. Test your garment out when standing
and sitting. There is a big difference.
It is very important to be properly fitted for the correct
size if you are going to wear a Body Shaper or you can do
more harm than good. The goal of the Body Shaper is typi-
ing a Body Shaper if it is too tight and does not fit properly:
cally to create a shapelier, curvy figure by cinching in the waist and supporting and lifting the breast and buttocks. If the fit is not correct, the pressure points of the garment will be in the wrong place and could cause discomfort.
Each garment manufacturer has different sizing guides.
If you are a size 36 in one garment, this may not be the same size you are in a competitors garment. Once you have de-
Some women have experienced the following while wear-
S hortness of breath
A cid reflux
D izziness and nausea
Some doctors have even advised women to limit their
time in a shape wear garment to three hours or less if possible.
termined your size, you need to decide what level of control or compression is best for you. Think about your problem
HOW MUCH DOES A BODY SHAPER COST?
areas and your comfort level. Decide if you want light weight,
Depending on the brand and what you are trying to accom-
medium weight or firm weight and what type of activity you
plish with your shape wear, expect to pay anywhere from
are going to be doing while wearing your garment. I remem-
$20 to $350. In recent years, sales of these garments have
ber wearing a firm weight garment to a formal event once.
increased considerably. Currently 44% of women over 40 wear
My body looked amazing. My curves and enhancements were
shape wear regularly. Fifty-three percent of women over 50
all in the right places. As soon as I sat down I felt the boning
wear shape wear and control briefs regularly.
of the garment pinching my sides, digging into my waist and
putting extreme pressure on my rib cage. I tried to eat and sip
lengths to alter our physical appearance. Body Shapers deliver
water but couldn’t. The garment was so tight and firm there
a quick fix and have an appeal to women of all ages, shapes
was no room or flexibility for it to expand. It was a nightmare.
and sizes. Some even double up on their shapers. They all
Needless to say, I had to leave the event early. As soon as I got
have one thing in common. They make our bodies look more
in my car I took the garment off and exhaled. Keep in mind,
beautiful, even if it’s temporary.
History has shown that we are willing to go to extreme
To Have OR Not to Have?
YOU CHOOSE by JaQuetta Michelle Garrison
“Not tonight”, I thought as I found my seat on a late night flight to Houston from Atlanta. There I was, very tired from a long, sleepless weekend in Atlanta and I found myself sitting across from a mother with two young children, a girl and a boy. The baby girl looked to be about 2 years old as she scrambled around in her mother’s lap. Her blond haired brother looked to be about 5 years old and was obviously excited about having his own seat as he jumped in and out of it over and over again. Exhausted, I thought to myself, “It’s going to be a long two hour flight.” Little did I know, I was about to be reminded of a lifelong lesson I had learned about making decisions.
As I watched the energetic toddler unbuckle his seat belt and
get up out of his seat several times, his mother became more
stood, wide eyed, contemplating all of my options. I would stand
and more frustrated. She would demand for him to take his
at a fork in the road considering the consequences of either
seat in a commanding mother’s tone, and he would quickly
taking Freedom Blvd. or Restriction Rd. Now, Restriction Rd. has
obey the sternness in her voice. However, soon as he remem-
all the instant bells and whistles of easy traveling with the ex-
bered the moments of fun he experienced while up and out
perience of overwhelming gratification, at least for a while. Oh,
of his seat, he forgot about his sternly and clearly expressed
and let’s not forget about all of the company you will have on
instructions from what was the ultimate authority in his life
this route who are enjoying the same instantaneous pleasures
and was back up again. The mother, convinced that her vocal
that lured you down this path. However, we all know and have
instructions alone were made in vain, finally grabbed him by
experienced how quickly this road leads to Regret Lane.
the arm and looked him square in his eyes and said, “You have
two options, you can either sit down and play video games on
and for good reason. Actually, there are bells and whistles on
my iPhone or I will take you to the restroom to deal with your
this boulevard; they’re just not at the beginning. There is an
disobedience with a spanking and you will sit in silence for the
abundance of overwhelming gratification, but it is only equal to
rest of the trip.” Then she said something that was so simple
the effort you put into traveling down Freedom Blvd. at the right
and reminiscent that it triggered my recollection of this life
pace in a correct and more sensible way. Unlike the popular Re-
lesson I’m writing about. She said, “You choose.” As the ador-
stricted Rd, if you move too fast too soon, you will undoubtedly
able toddler stood there wide eyed, I immediately put myself
miss what you needed when you decided to make the journey in
in his shoes as he looked to be contemplating his options. After
the first place. A road may not have much to see, but a boulevard
pondering his two options, he decided to take the phone and
is decorated with experiences and lessons that could make the
have a seat to at least enjoy the challenge of outsmarting the
trip more than worth the effort. In other words, there is a distinct
games on his mother’s iPhone. He wisely spared himself the
difference between a “Road” and a “Boulevard”.
anguish of the trip to the restroom and stayed in his seat for
the rest of the flight. Lesson learned.
spiritual belief, we all have to make decisions in our lives on a
daily basis. Some decisions will have a bigger impact than
As I closed my eyes to try and catch a quick nap, I thought
There have been so many times in my own life where I
On the other hand, Freedom Blvd is the “road less traveled”
No matter your age, race, gender, economic status, or
to myself, what a brilliant way to teach such a young boy how
others. With these decisions, there are some universal options
to be responsible and accountable for his own decisions. This
we must choose to enjoy a favorable outcome.
entire family episode reminded me that for every decision we make there is a consequence. In every aspect of our lives, be it financial, physical, emotional, and/or spiritual, we have to
LET’S WEIGH THESE FOUR OPTIONS TOGETHER:
(1) To “have” a life of financial freedom with little or no debt,
make decisions that will usher us into a place where we have
you must, without compromise, set financial goals. Then,
to choose between freedom and bondage. Like the little boy
to develop and adhere to a monthly budget is a manda-
on the plane, we can decide to have a seat and enjoy the ride
tory step in the decision making process. Unfortunately,
(freedom) or defy the instruction of wisdom and be restricted
some “have not” experienced this because they habitu-
to the seatbelt and silence (bondage). Think about it, all of
ally have to travel down Restricted Rd to get that irresist-
your decisions will lead you to “have” what your heart desires or
ibly flawless new dress and shoes to match for every new
to become accustomed to settling with a lifelong collection of
girls night out, even though they couldn’t afford in the
“have not’s”. You choose.
first place. Likewise, using their over the limit credit card
is a part of the norm and paying the monthly minimum is their idea of paying down their debt. In this case, they can go ahead and put their blinker on now, because they will be making a turn down Regret Lane.
(2) To “have” good health and physical well-being, you
(4) To “have” spiritual liberty and victory, we must follow two of the greatest steps of the Twelve Step program (http://12step.org/). Step #2 says that we must come to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us. Step #3 says that we must make a decision to turn
must eat clean, exercise on a regular basis, and drink
our will and our lives over to the care of God as we un-
plenty of water. However, many “have not” reached this
derstood Him. The key is to believe and to get your own
goal because their shopping cart is always filled with
understanding of who He is in your life. It’s a personal
processed foods and junk treats. Their idea of exercise is
understanding for a personal relationship that will last
reduced to painstakingly working their fingers to turn
and benefit you for eternity. Unfortunately, there are
the remote control. Lastly, let’s agree that drinking water
some who “have not” decided to surrender all to get that
doesn’t count if it’s carbonated in a soda or melting ice
understanding. As a result, their raw and natural abili-
in a cocktail.
ties are not enough to overcome the evils and spiritual
(3) To “have” peace and harmony govern your life, commit
bondage of this world.
to daily meditation as a way to escape the hustle and
Making decisions will forever be a way of life for all of us.
bustle of life allowing your state of being to digress to
Along with decision making, there are options that afford us
a place of stillness. Also, making a conscious effort to
the opportunity to choose the consequences we will bear. The
saturate your mind with positive thoughts that distract
next time you’re faced with making a key decision that will im-
you from all the evils that can cause a mental state of
pact your life’s journey, stand wide eyed and contemplate your
depression is priceless. Also, having a grateful heart for
options. Decide to use wisdom and follow the steps to lead you
everything you already have and not focusing on the
down the road that will allow you to “have” the life God
things you don’t have will absolutely lift you to a place
has desired for you as opposed to a life of those who “have
of contentment in whatever state your life is in. Allow
not”. It’s time to plan your route. Will you start the journey
your past be a great teacher and not a prison of regret
to enjoying Freedom Blvd or end up restricted and dismayed
and unforgiveness. Those who “have not” experienced
on Regret Lane.…. You choose!
this find themselves surrounded by negativity and chaos. There’s always some dramatic movie playing out troubled waters. If one’s mind is cluttered with everything happening all at once, there is no time to reflect on what’s going right in your life. I will declare that if you were able to get out of bed, make it to the bathroom, look in the mirror and actually see your beautiful face, and have a mind to comprehend that it’s a new day,
in their life because their energy stirs up episodes of
then you have at least four things that went perfect for you already today!
feng shui? It’s probably not what you think! by Julie Ray
Have you ever walked into a building or a room, and immediately felt uncomfortable? I’m not talking about your dentist’s office where there probably was a reason for being uncomfortable; I’m talking about a space such as an office building, store, or even a friend’s home. If you did, you probably felt uncomfortable because you were experiencing a space that was in desperate need of a touch of feng shui. (Your dentist’s office could probably use a bit of feng shui as well!)
I’ve had people ask me if feng shui
is a religion. It is not. In fact, there is a section in your home that feng shui designates as a place where you can enhance your own spiritual beliefs. If I have completely lost you, just hold on, it gets easier to understand.
Okay, picture your house divided
into nine sections. Each of those sections represents different things. The sections are: Love & Marriage, Creativity & Children, Helpful People & Travel, Career, Knowledge & Self Cultivation, Health & Family, Wealth & Prosperity, Fame & Reputation, and Center. Chi (chee) is another word for energy. We are all made of chi, and chi is all around us. A feng shui consultant’s job is to make sure that each of the nine areas in your home or office is properly nourished with good chi, by suggesting changes and enhancements that are designed specifically to help each area. HOW CAN FENG SHUI HELP YOU? Feng shui can help you in several ways. One of the biggest ways that it can help is by eliminating clutter. Clutter kills chi. If the chi in your home or office can’t HERE IS A QUICK AND EASY DEFINITION OF FENG SHUI:
areas of our spaces that correspond to
circulate properly, it creates a block. If
different areas of our lives. Feng shui also
Feng shui (pronounced fung shway) is
there is a block, whether it is a pile of
focuses on clearing clutter and living
over 3,000 years old and started in China.
unopened mail on your desk, or a large
with only the things that we love, while
Feng shui translates from Chinese
piece of misplaced furniture in your
creating comfort and beauty in our
as “wind” (feng) and “water” (shui).
home or office, there could possibly be
surroundings. There are several schools
It is a way of using chi (pronounced
challenges in the area that the block is
of Feng Shui, but I will be focusing on
chee) to enhance and nourish different
in. A feeling of unease instead of comfort
Essential Feng Shui® in this article.
could affect the space as well.
If a space is full of clutter, not only
CLEARING OUT CLUTTER
does it look bad, but it can also cause
I make it a point to go through my
you to feel a great amount of stress. Do
clothes, jewelry, handbags, shoes, and
you misplace things like your keys or
decorative objects in my home at least
glasses on a daily basis? Do you have to
twice a year. I take really good care of
go on a treasure hunt to locate a bill or a
my things, so they stay looking good
note to yourself? How many hours a year
for a long time. Because of this, I end
do you waste looking for something?
up having way too many clothes, etc.,
Think about all of the fun things that you
so I have to weed things out, or else my
could be doing instead.
things that were once pretty, turn into
Dealing with clutter is frustrating,
and it actually does harm to your
get rid of anything that is stained, or
PICTURE IT Wouldn’t it be nice to have your home become a beautiful place of
When I go through my things, I
broken beyond repair, and then I divide everything else into four categories: Repair. If there is something that can easily be cleaned or repaired, I put it in this pile. After an item is fixed, it is then put back through my sorting process.
unhealthy personal relationship + Aisnconsidered emotional clutter. Keep this in mind when dealing with that friend who takes advantage of your good nature, but who is never there when you need a hand. HOW HAS FENG SHUI AFFECTED ME? I have experienced many great things when I take my own advice.
If I don’t, and let clutter accumulate,
I find that my life gets challenging to a certain degree. I have more days where it seems like nothing goes right, and I develop a big case of the blah’s. When I contain my clutter, I find that my life seems less complicated and my stress goes way down. I can relax a lot easier when I’m not looking at a pile of unopened mail, or a freshly washed load of laundry that’s
Keep. I only keep clothes and accessories
peace and tranquility that you can
taking up space on my couch.
that fit me well, and can be worn often.
escape to instead of from? And what
My tastes change periodically, so I only
being, I find that when I work on my
keep decorative items for my home that
wealth area, I usually get a call for a job
about your office or cubicle? Some of
Besides helping my mental well
make my eyes happy.
within a day or two. I only wish that I
us get to work from home, but since
Donate. I give things to my friends
could remember to work on my wealth
most of us spend about forty hours
and family if I know that they could use
area every day!
a week at our jobs away from home,
something I have, and then I donate the rest. There is nothing better to me
it is just as important to have your
than giving someone a gift. Whether it is
work space be a place that you don’t
new, or slightly used, given to someone
mind spending time in. Even if you’re a delivery driver, and your office is a truck, feng shui can help you too.
I know, or don’t know, the feeling I get when giving is wonderful. Sell. If money is a little tight at the time, I will sell some of the items in my donate pile. (I usually end up donating everything anyway!)
FENG SHUI CONSULTANT – HEAL THYSELF! It sounds too good to be true.
If I weren’t a feng shui consultant,
and experienced what I have in my own life as well as in my clients’ lives, I would think that it’s all just a bunch of phooey. Different people experience different things. One of the main things that every client of mine has experienced after a
consultation is a sense of peace in their
invited me to a party they were throwing
is inexperienced works with chi, it
home that wasn’t there before.
in order to show their friends their
could potentially cause a lot of serious
newly feng shui’d home, and I was to be
problems for the person that they
PEACE WAS JUST THE TIP OF THE ICEBERG FOR ONE COUPLE.
the guest of honor. During the party, I
are trying to “help”. You need to hire a
Many years ago, I did a consultation
noticed that the couple never left each
consultant who has received extensive
other’s sides, and that they either held
training from a reputable school. If you
hands, kissed, hugged, or all-of-thee-
would like to apply feng shui to your
above for most of the evening! The
own space without a consultant, my
couple’s friends all made it a point to talk
teacher, Terah Kathryn Collins, wrote an
to me, and to tell me how amazed they
easy-to-follow book called, Home Design
were by the dramatic changes they had
Feng Shui A-Z. While this book doesn’t
noticed in their friends. (They also asked
get super deep into feng shui, it is a
for my business cards!)
really good starting point.
for a married couple. During their consultation, even though the couple seemed friendly toward each other, their home showed me that their relationship was in big trouble. I gingerly brought the subject of their relationship up, and respectfully asked them if there was anything in their relationship that they would like to improve upon. The wife started tearing up, and the husband looked like he was fighting tears as well. They explained that they were contemplating separation because they lost the feeling of closeness in their relationship, and had been unable to find it again.
As we went through their home, I
pointed out to them each thing I found that could possibly be attributing to their relationship’s challenges. We
STILL NOT CONVINCED? Sure, it could’ve been just a big ‘ole case of coincidence in each and every one of my clients lives and mine when good things happened after a consultation, but what if it wasn’t? What if feng shui really does work? What if besides being a wonderful
I hope that I have helped you to better understand what feng shui is all about. If you have any further questions, feel free to contact me at: FengShuiGirl@live.com and www.FengShuiByJulieRay.com
way of decorating a space, it could also
Take care, and remember to keep clutter
have a tremendous affect on the lives of
out of your life!
the people who live or work there?
finished the consultation and I left them
WHAT IF FENG SHUI COULD MAKE YOUR LIFE A LITTLE BIT EASIER?
with a list of everything that they should
Feng shui is a powerful and wonderful
do, in order to balance everything out in
thing to experience, and can benefit
their home from a feng shui viewpoint.
people of all ages – even their pets.
(I’ve had many consultations where
A few months later, I received a
HAVE I HELPED YOU?
phone call from the couple. They told
the family pet was involved.) Feng
me that they had done everything on
shui can’t hurt you unless you hire a
the list that I had recommended. They
consultant who read a book about feng
also said that their relationship had
shui one day and decided that they had
greatly improved since our consultation,
the credentials to go into someone’s
and that they felt like newlyweds again.
personal space and play around with
(I was shocked – in a good way!) They
that person’s life. If someone who
Julie Ray is a certified feng shui consultant, animal lover, and author of the book, HOTT FLASH: The Adventures of a Fifty-Year-Old Superhero.
ot everyone will get the same * Nresults as my clients. Every feng shui consultant is different, and every client is different, which means that every consultation will be different, so the results will be different.
MAN RULES FOR DATING SOMEONE NEW by Mena Freeman
NO FIBBING GUYS If it’s online dating, tell the truth on your profile. If your favorite thing to do is watch the Dallas Cowboys slaughter the Jets on Sunday afternoon in a sports bar, just say so. It’s my favorite thing too! Even if they are playing the Giants, Texans, Steelers etc. Don’t say that you like to go horseback riding, but you live in Inglewood, California and are afraid of horses. If she is an equestrian and chooses you because of that, you will be really embarrassed when she invites you out for a ride. I, for example am from Tyler, Texas. So, if you really like horseback riding we can hang out with one of my cousins anytime. But if I invite you and find that you can’t ride, we may miss out on what could have been an otherwise great relationship. I will never be able to trust you. If you like bowling, just say you like bowling. Don’t say that you are a professional ball player. Many girls love to bowl. My best friend travels all over the country in bowling competitions and can talk about it all day. Not my thing, but she is awesome. If you are a party disc jockey, please don’t say that you are a music producer. There are plenty of music loving women who would love to know you. However, if you are a music producer, just say that too. Good for you! No problem with who you are. Just be yourself. NO BAD MOUTHING A FORMER PARTNER Most of us have had good and bad relationships. We really don’t want to hear about it, especially if it is an ex-wife. Most of us single ladies over 40 are also ex-wives. We know, “If you do it to her, most likely you will do it to me”. What does it matter anyway in our new relationship. Keep the conversation simple. If there is any degree of chemistry, we will discover it through a casual conversation. When we speak on the phone, don’t barrage me with personal questions. I don’t want to talk about how long I was married and does it matter what kind of car I drive? Do not try and see if
I am accepting other “offers” on the dating site. First of all, we are
per day, there is this magical red button on your phone which
on a dating site. Of course, I am surfing. Of course you are surf-
allows you to simply hang up. I’ve used this button since the 80’s
ing. That’s why we are on the site.
when it was a real button on top of a dial phone. It still performs
ONLINE DATING CAUTION
the same function.
Be careful of the dating site that you use. Gone are the days
To smoke or not to smoke. If you are a smoker, say that you
of the generic “Match.com” where a sbm seeks a sbf for long
are. Let her decide as to whether she wants to date a smoker.
term”. Instead, there are dating sites for those who are seeking
There are many women who also smoke. No worries. Just say
freaky sex with strangers, as well as those for Christians seeking
so. A few of my male friends are members of cigar bars. I’ve
other Christians. If it is a Christian woman you are looking for,
gone with them a few times and am amazed at how many
she most likely will not be on a dating site entitled,”Former Top-
women are there as well. It’s not for me, but many women en-
less Cheerleaders Gone Wild”.
joy an occasional cigar. However, unless you both smoke, just
don’t do it. It could be a real turn off for women with allergies.
By the way, it is really creepy when I am on a dating site
and you wink at me. That only encourages me to use the delete button. Ok? With that said, my dad would always tell me to “be careful what you ask for, because you just might get it”. Are you really looking for a gorgeous woman with a perfect figure? Or, are you looking for a wonderful woman with a loving spirit? Sometimes those two characteristics do not exist in the same package. Decide which characteristics are most important to you. Spend some time thinking about your answer. Your dream girl, or perfect match does exist out there somewhere. You just need to know what you are looking for. FOR FIRST ENCOUNTERS Be on time. We all run a bit behind from time to time considering traffic, jobs and family responsibilities and pure karma. It is so much better to arrive 15 minutes early than 10 minutes late. If you can’t be on time, call and give her a heads up. Remember, you are trying to make a good impression. It may cost you some dating points if you aren’t considerate of the other person’s time.
Finding the right place. Always meet for the first time in a public place. Admit it guys there are some scary women out there that you may not want to meet more than once. Meet all strangers in a public place. Safety first for everyone concerned. Avoid overly crowded or noisy places. The idea is to get to have a conversation. Coffee shops or parks or wine bars are usually good. Unless it’s a busy Starbucks on a Saturday morning. Remember you are trying to get to know each other. Atmosphere matters. You may want to check out local cafes. I love them. In my community there are several small places that are quaint and charming. A place of this nature provides us with an enjoyable atmosphere and a chance to talk and get to know each other. If you live close to a downtown area in your city, I have found that the museum districts usually are home to many unusual eateries. I found one some time ago and it only serves a variety of teas in the morning with locally grown fruit with fresh baked pastries.
There she is; I have found that the best icebreaker is a
Give her your cell number. In todays busy environment, with
smile. The best indication of being receptive is also a smile.
traffic jams and our extremely busy lifestyles, sometimes there
A smile should be given automatically, whether there is
is interference. If she turns out to be crazy and calls you 25 times
chemistry or not. It’s just a nice gesture.
BE A GENTLEMAN Picking up the tab. Just do it. Remember the first date should
knows her a bit better. I’m only speaking about allergies,
be casual and easy. It’s a baby step. The check shouldn’t be
religious reasons for not eating certain foods or simply dislikes.
more than $20.00 or so. With that said, please pay. It truly
Also, there are so many people choosing a more vegetarian
speaks volumes about character.
Mind your manners. Be courteous to the wait staff. They are
Three’s a crowd. If you run into an old pal, just speak briefly
usually kids putting themselves through college. Even if the
and let him move on. For recently divorced, if you run into
service is not that great, remember we all have had a bad day.
mutual friends of both you and the ex, they will certainly be
No worries. Tip the guy anyway.
curious. What to do? Be polite and keep it moving. Is that your
Stay away from movies on a first date. Be creative guys. Going to the movies on a first date is just a bad move. If there is no chemistry you will end up spending three hours in the dark with someone you do not like. You are stuck and so is she. What if it’s a good movie? Still not a good date option. It robs you both of the opportunity to really get to know each other. No pet names. What’s in a name? A lot. Names are important. If she introduces herself as Carmen, call her Carmen. Do not call her babe, sweetie or baby girl. That is a clear indication that you don’t think that she’s worthy of taking up a few brain cells to remember her name. It starts with knowing her name.
home boy sitting across the room? Perhaps you want someone else to give his opinion about this new lady. Therefore, you asked your pal to be there to tell you what he thinks. Nope. Not a good idea. What if it turns out that the two of you like each other and are having a good time? Your boy is still sitting there with the critical eye. You’re not feeling her. Life is not a soap opera. Even if it didn’t go well, please walk her to her car anyway. Sometimes it takes more than one date to experience some chemistry. I’m game for a second try. On of us could have possibly had a bad day. There was an initial attraction at some point. Take your time to adequately explore the possibility of a second date. Do not
Take separate cars. First dates should be a casual meeting.
be robbed of the opportunity to get to know her. She might
No one picks up the other person. You do not want to be held
be the one. We may not have any romantic chemistry, but we
hostage because you only took one car. Of course there is the
could possibly be good friends. Relax. If there is not a second
safety issue as well. You do not know me and I do not know
date, that should not be life altering. It’s just time to move on.
you. By the way both guys and girls, let someone know where you’re going and with whom. Let me order for myself please. Although, it is sweet for a man to order something for a lady, he should wait until he
Finally, trust your instincts. If it looks like a princess and smells like a skunk, it is most likely a pretty skunk.
POETRY My Comfort Zone
Inspired by Maat Petrova (The Refinement Group) Your comfort zone is good for you, but not for me You see...Â Your comfort zone allows others to take you to places you don't want to be Your comfort zone won't let the truth set you free You see... Your comfort zone is different from mine Because I love who I am and you're still trying to figure out why Why? Well, you see... My comfort zone "always" allows me to be me It gives me my courage, my strength and my attitude It takes me to new depths and defying altitudes My comfort zone tells me it's okay to stand out Because others would rather see it stomped out It's loud! It's bold! It's strong!Â It breathes... My comfort zone speaks only of Me! So in my comfort zone, I don't have to agree With everything you say, do or see Your comfort zone is not where I want to be I want to be where I am free and I can be Me! Written by Cheri Alphonse Hayes
Shine, Sistah, SHINE by Jeneé Pierre
“What I will say is that what I have learned for myself is that I don’t have to be anybody else; and that myself is good enough; and that when I am being true to that self, then I can avail myself to extraordinary things…You have to allow for the impossible to be possible.” ~ Lupita Nyong’o ~
We can be our worst critics at times. Worst to us and to oth-
the space for the opportunities you want in your life by being
ers and this nega-tivity are many times shaped by the images
real with the you inside of you. This is what I call self-checking.
and conditioning in this world along with our experiences.
If you want someone who is loving, financially secure, and
What I have found in my own experiences and in my work with
spiritually sound – you need to take a hard look at yourself and
women, it’s realized when we can only see what’s wrong, we
within yourself and ask honest yes/no questions that reflect
create mental, physical and spiritual bondages for our-selves.
what you desire to be and have for your life. Am I faithful? Am I
Ultimately, this lack of freedom manifests into blockages from
positive? Am I secure? Am I loving? Write your questions down
happiness, new opportunities, and healthy relationships. You
and answer them honestly. No, really. Dig deep when asking
block your light from within and the light of others to reflect
yourself these questions and be real with yourself – the first
on you. When we see others as truly connected to us, we can
person you are ever dishonest with is you. Actually, every No is
accept them for who they are. However, before you can truly
a success because now you are holding yourself accountable.
connect beyond physical attraction to others, we must first
Once you have the courage to face you – it makes it a smoother
process to create a new you. Take all the No’s and work towards
Your purpose is what I call your personal life book that you
changing your behavior and space to create Yes’s. For all the
write with every experience along your path. Everyone has a
Yes’s, allow that light you bring to the universe to shine on
story and is writing pages in their personal life book and some
others and when you see it in others, celebrate it. Encourage
of those moments make you cry tears of joy and some of sad-
it! Someone may have a great career and be in a wonderful re-
ness. However, you are who you are, and as long as you have
lationship, breathe in and celebrate their Yes! Don’t frown and
breath…you have purpose. In order for you to truly accept
dwell on your No…when you celebrate someone else’s Yes….
others for who they are and apply the skill of compassion, you
you open the doors for Yes’s to be your reality. Self Check, work
have to accept yourself. Whoever did that to you or whatever
towards Yes, and walk in light.
mistake you feel you made that you must tell over and over
without moving forward…well, that’s like writing in your
endeavor to write honest and evolving pages in your personal
personal life book, erasing what you wrote and writing it over
life book and allow for your reflection through self checking,
and over again….on the same page. The goal is to be produc-
it is so important that while you are being your best every-
tive and evolving. You never turn the page and move forward
thing – you feel awesome about it. Be your best in kindness,
to allow the space to create more experiences for yourself and
be your best in relationships, be your best in business – be
ultimately for others. For example, dating someone who is not
your best. When you are your best, you manifest your positive
the best partner for you over and over…sure he may have a
desires that result in many good things to happen to you and
different name and face, but, the same in that the relationship
for you. Be okay to be blessed - in challenging times and in the
is not nurturing and assisting you to evolve. There is something
best of times. Here is the big one, while being your best, you
you are not releasing and accepting to allow to have space for
find others may be envious and they are near and far – be your
a new relationship that will contributes to your positively and
best in kindness and be your best in love. We are all in differ-
holistically. There is nothing that someone has done to you or
ent chapters in our personal life books and we are at different
you have done to someone that cannot be forgiven and re-
levels of self checking, however, we are all connected. No need
leased. No matter how tragic the circumstances were, you owe
to dwell on why this person is acting a certain way towards you
it to yourself and your personal life book to move forward and
for this or that. Create experiences to acknowledge the connec-
create fulfilling chapters full of light.
tion while leading by example. And, when it seems impossible,
remember to allow for the impossible to be possible. And,
So, you want a great relationship or perhaps a new career
or job? Be the person you want to attract in your life. Create
Don’t be afraid to shine. This part is so crucial. When you
while you walk in light, shine, Sistah, shine.
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ENTER Register at www.40zrock.com or http://bit.ly/1mBsL0B Upload a 30sec video telling why you ROCK! Submit a $40 processing fee per entry
BONUS Contest entrants become part of the 40z Rock magazine talent pool and may be contacted to participate in future editorial features.
CONTEST ENTRY OPEN UNTIL:
Have a fabulous friend, enter her too!
AUGUST 1, 2014 (11:59pm CST) #40zRock
STAY TUNED ... WINNERS TO BE ANNOUNCED! 56 /