Last Day of Summer….

Summer

Today is the official last day of summer and for most of us it is just another day. However, I believe this is the best time to spend it in reflection. Reflecting is a great therapeutic tool to slow down and gather your thoughts. In this process you can reflect on the last nine months of this year. You might decide to reflect on goals that were achieved, relationships that ended, new things that have entered your life and where you want to be at by the end of 2017.

Reflection is a good way to look at the past, embrace the present and prepare for the future. As you prepare for the autumnal equinox take this day to sit back, sip your favorite beverage and revel in the beauty of Fall.

How do you plan to spend your last day of summer? (Leave your comments below)

5 Reasons Why You Are Settling!

I believe there has been times in your life where you settled for less. Settling in any area of your life can be detrimental to your growth. Settling is synonymous to mediocrity and will keep you in a state of stagnancy.

When you begin to gain clarity in your life you will begin to raise the bar. But first it is important that you become  aware of why you have settled for less. Below are five reasons to help you understand why you are settling for less in your life .

1) Fear. Many times we settle for less because of fear. We fear the unknown so we choose to stay in our comfort zone. However, nothing extraordinary ever grows from a comfort zone. So, it is important to let the fear go and launch out into the unknown. Life happens outside your comfort zone.

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2) Uncertainty. Another reason we settle for less than we deserve is because we are unsure about what we want. If you are struggling with knowing what you want in your life it may be time to explore life. Exploring life will help you discover the things you may want in your life. When you go through a period of self-discovery it will expose you to the world. Each life experience we help you gain clarity on the  life you truly want to live.

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3) Impatience. When you are impatient it can make you miss out on your greatest life. Many people settle for less because they are too impatient to wait for what they really want in life. When you wait patiently for what you really want you alleviate  unnecessary stress. So, wait patiently for what you want!

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4) Not Knowing Your Worth. If you do not know your worth you will settle for the wrong things. If you do not spend time to build your self-worth, self-love, self-confidence and self-esteem you will discount your worth. I have learned in my life that people will treat you how you treat yourself. It is important to nurture love and confidence within yourself so you can recognize your worth.

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5) Mediocrity. The last reason we settle in life because we become okay with mediocrity. We become comfortable with just existing instead of living a life to our fullest potential. Mediocrity keeps you stagnant and it creates procrastination.  You will never be fulfilled with a mediocre life. So, let go of mediocrity so you can grab hold to an extraordinary life.

Action Tip: This week take some time to focus on how you can stop settling in your life by putting one of the five reasons into practice.

In the comments below share with me the reasons you have settled for less in your life. 

Coming Into Your Own!

If you never step into your own shadow and become a great illuminating giant you will become lost in other people’s shadow. ~Stylicia A. Bowden~
 
 
As women we are prone to be told what we should look like, how we should think, and how we should dress in a society filled with judgmental views. The world’s view on beauty, fashion and personality is shoved down our throats. We become configured into something we are not and lose the person we are as we try to find our authentic self. We go through life carrying the world on our shoulders constantly running to the rescue, saving everyone else but ourselves. We imitate what we think is right but really is wrong because we have no idea of who we really are as we chase the ghost of acceptance. I, too have been in this dark hole living my life on the terms of what other people thought was best for my life; however, after my youngest daughter’s death in 2007 I was resurrected. The person I thought I was could no longer exist because God was calling me out of the shadows into his marvelous light to be a woman on purpose to fulfill my God given purpose.

It is an exhilarating feeling to come into your own going through the journey of self-love, self-preservation, self-worth and most of all self-acceptance. I use to spend my time explaining every move, every life decision and thought to others as if I truly needed their approval on how to live my life. Nonetheless, in the last four years I have been on many transitional journeys and the current journey I am strolling through is the journey of self-acceptance. I am learning to accept myself for the good, bad and the ugly. For so long, I would punish myself and tell myself I did not deserve happiness, love, joy and peace because of my sins of the past, present or future. Now, I am facing the fear of failure realizing failure is a beautiful thing because it develops who I am supposed to be in life. I am starting to embrace who I am on so many levels breaking the satanical strongholds of self-condemnation.

I am consistently reminded by the spirit of God that I never have to condemn myself because Jesus has already set me free. I am starting to love the skin I am in, in the awe of my brilliant self I revel at the idea knowing God made me extraordinary. I am like no other and cannot be duplicated. I currently understand my life trials, victories, and tribulations are structured to fit me to touch people who need my inner light. So often we hide our light to subject ourselves to hiding behind the spotlight. It was never meant for us to hide the awesomenesswe hold inside to appease others. I am learning to do what is best for me no matter what people think, feel or say I should do I am truly my own woman.

I use to crave validation from others as an act of approval but now I realize people will manipulate who you are to get what they want from you. If you never step into your own shadow and become a great illuminating giant you will become lost in other people’s shadow. I challenge you today and every day of your life to fight the shadow of validation, approval, pleasing others and accommodating others. This season and time for your life is truly for you to embrace and if others do not understand or approve it does not matter because God made this stage of an “extraordinary” life for you! Come Into Your Own….

Picture Reference:
Extracted from http://www.thesleuthjournal.com/people-choose-freedom/#

Born "Alpha", Woman That Is!

I know who I am, I embrace who I am and who I am is what I accept; no validation needed. ~Stylicia~
 
 
Its has been almost two years since I threw away the carbon copy of who I thought I was and traded it in for the unadulterated woman God created me to be. In this journey I have learn so much about myself and realized the authentic me had to emerge. I lived my life for years being a fake, pleasing other people because of my insecurities. In 2011, I got an epiphany and have not been the same ever since.  My circle of friends have changed and I realize this road to authenticity can be lonely when you start dancing to the own beat of your drum. In the first two months of 2013 the revelation of myself started to go deeper when I went on a 30 day soul detox. The big reveal was that I am not an ordinary woman but extraordinary woman. God created me with unique characteristics that I did not want to embrace. Have you ever asked God, “Why did you make me this way?” The simple answer is God loves me just the way I am and does not mind being patient with me to tame or deliver the things that will harm my success. So yesterday in deep conversation with a dear friend I brought up “The Alpha Woman”. I told her we are Alpha Women, born to be this way. You may ask me, “Stylicia, what exactly is an Alpha Woman?” After intense research on the Alpha Woman I have complied a list of some characteristics that make me or you an Alpha Woman. Let’s look deeper and embrace this “Alpha Woman” phenom.
 
The Unveiling Of The Alpha Woman : Characteristics
 
Characteristic #1: The Alpha Woman is Confident. She knows what she wants and go for it. Go Getter Mentality
Characteristic #2: The Alpha Woman is Independent. She believes in pushing her own weight and making things happen for herself.
Characteristic #3: The Alpha Woman is Purpose Driven. She knows her purpose in life and everyday she sets a target to fulfill her goals.
Characteristic #4: The Alpha Woman is aware of her power. She uses her feminine power to lead in a positive light. She is subtle and like the finer things in life.
Characteristic #5: The Alpha Woman is classy. She is wrapped in all things elegant.
Characteristic #6: The Alpha Woman is a trendsetter. She inspires people through her words, her style, and most of all through her presence.
Characteristic #7: The Alpha Woman does not have to demand respect, respect automatically follows her; everywhere she goes.
Characteristic #8: The Alpha Woman can sometimes be demanding. She lives her life on auto inspire & auto make a difference. She is out to change the world.
Characteristic #9 The Alpha Woman is confident.
Characteristic #10 The Alpha Woman is authentic.
Characteristic #11: The Alpha Woman is intellectual. She loves to gain knowledge through educating herself for the next big takeover.
Characteristic #12: The Alpha Woman is unique. She never tries to blend in because she knows her worth and she knows she is an original. No one can imitate her.
 
Does this sound like you? Well if so, join the bandwagon I AM AN ALPHA WOMAN, TOO! Embrace who you are, allow God to perfect it and balance you out. Never be ashamed of who you are be that “Alpha Woman” you were born to be!
 
Examples of Alpha Women:
 
1) Beyonce
2) Oprah Winfrey
3) First Lady Michelle Obama
4) Tyra Banks
5) Jada Pinkett
6) Alicia Keys
7) Queen Latifah
8) Angela Bassett
9) Mary J Blige
 
 
 
 
 
 


What’s Holding You Back?

Passion is what keeps me alive even when I want to fall asleep I can’t because there is always a burning to do more. Passion is the desire or burning fire to produce something greater on the inside of you inspite of what it looks like in your life. When you know your life is changing and something greater is about to take place in your life it is hard to sleep because passion is keeping you woke. In the last seven days I have been immersing myself in my mental detox with no tv, no music, no social media etc., literally no distractions. This mental detox has purge me in my mental capacity in order for me to produce the life I want for myself. So many times we applaud other people for living their dreams but believe it could never be us. This is a sad vision because God has given us all the power to create our lives but we limit ourselves with our own personal thoughts. I realized in order for me to go to the next level in my life my mindset had to shift and I truly had to dig deep into myself to face my those defeating thoughts. The mind is such a powerful weapon because it has the power to produce or not produce.  All of your dreams and aspirations do not lie in someone else power but we have the power to unlock all the wealth, joy, peace, and abundance that lies on the inside of us. We allow fear of the unknown to stop us from taking our lives to another level. Fear is your worst enemy if you never face it. 

This year I decided to face my fears and it has changed my life. I am able to conquer “the fear of the unknown” because I needed to walk out on faith. Faith is the only remedy that can cure the fear that is holding you back from living an abundant life. The old clique states “A mind is a terrible thing to waste” which is true when you waste it in fear. The world will show you images of death to keep you living life in fear. However, you have to decide to live life in faith. I was in the military for nine years it taught me how to be fearless. I lived in two foreign countries on my own and it taught me how important it was to walk out on faith. I was never fearful about life. I was adventurous and embraced each moment. It is time to get out my comfort zone and live life on edge again. Since I have lived back in the states for the last six years it has made me comfortable and complacent. Now, I am ready to break out of my shell, live life on edge and be fearless again. I have not found any fun in being comfortable because being comfortable is boring. When I decided to step out of my comfort zone I really started to live life again. Since the adrenaline rush is back I am determined to move full speed ahead in this fearless state. 

Now I ask you, what is holding you back? 
What is keeping you hostage to a comfortable life, living life in the comfort zone? 
It’s time for you to gain an adrenaline rush to live life on edge. So take inventory, free yourself & make a decision to be fearless!

Unapologetic

I rarely blog about celebrities but we have to understand they are human too and who are we to judge..everything was made through God so none of us are a piece of junk but imperfect masterpieces navigating our way through this thing called life. ~Stylicia~


Rihanna is infamous for being in the news, if it is not about her music it is about her relationship woes with Chris Brown. However, I believe this young lady is still trying  to find out who she really is as a young woman. People have judged her and ridiculed her as if they know the real Robyn “Rihanna”. But how can we cast the first stone when we all have a past and we all were 24 years old once upon a time. I remember when I was 24 I was young, carefree, risky and dumb. However, I did what every 24 year old did in life when you are still trying to find your authentic self. Yesterday when I saw the unveiling of Rihanna’s new album cover I was awestruck by the message I saw that surrounded her in words. As a poet I saw the artistic style in her message but as a writer I read between the lines to see a young lady who have emotions. We all have emotions but why do we have to be defined by what other people think. A person who is authentic is real with who they are and unapologetic for being who they were born to be. I believe in society we have allowed rules, regulations and people’s opinions to conform us to a false image of ourselves. When people had a chance to view Rihanna’s interview on Oprah’s Next Chapter they saw a young lady who was scared, shy and loving.  We live in a society where image is everything so as a business woman I understand the image of my brand will hurt me or help me. However, I also know what people observe about me through social media does not mean they really know who I am. Everyone has multifaceted sides to who they are depending on who they may be around. When I am at home my daughter sees one side of me, when I am doing business then colleagues will see another side of me and when I am with my family in Detroit I feel free to be totally unadulterated “Stylicia”.  Rihanna is a prime example of a young woman in search of love, ruling the world in her genre and being forced to live up to the standards of being a role model to other young girls. However, her message is profound saying ” I am who I am, I may be what you think I am but I am unapologetic for being true to myself”. The best lesson I took from her new album cover is hiding who you really are will hurt you so it is important to be honest and open with yourself. Authenticity can only be resurrected when you no longer live your life on other people’s time table but grow from your mistakes. Growth is a process and Rome was definitely not built over night. We all are handcrafted by God to be a unique extraordinary design framed by him and him alone.

Live Bold. Live Loud. Live Authentically. No apologies needed!

The Power In Loving Yourself

If there is power in loving yourself then why are people doing less of it….

There is a great power in loving yourself from the crown of your head to the sole of your feet. I use to lack this gift of love because I did not believe in putting myself first. I was so use to putting everyone needs before my needs and it drained me. Once I started to love myself unconditionally I felt a sense of self worth. For so long I put my self-worth in people and my identity was stuck in the men I dated and my friends. I had an identity problem which affected my life in a great way. However, when I began to love myself my circle of friends changed and my relationship with men changed as well. I decided to love myself, started to become my own best friend and soon my road became an individual path. The road to self love can sometimes be a lonely road but you have to decide that  loving yourself is worth losing some people. I had the devastating blow of a 14 year  friendship ending over my new found self love. Do I regret the choice? No, I never regret putting my love for myself first. People will  dump all their emotional and mental trash on you as long as you allow them to do it. The road maybe lonesome but becoming your own best friend is optional. It taught me how to dig deep within to give myself what I  needed. Everything we need is planted on the inside of us, but we become busy looking for love, peace, joy, etc. in other people. God has equipped us with all the significant tools to live an abundant life. Whatever we are lacking all we have to do is seek within ourselves to pull out our full potential. Once I began to nurture my love for myself I found my joy, peace, laughter and friendship in myself. I am no longer looking for friendship because I am learning to be my own best friend. I am no longer looking for peace, love or joy because I am discovering it within myself. The journey is endless and the process is continuous to finding  the solutions inside of me yet it is the most rewarding path I have taken….There is a great rewarding power in loving yourself!

P.S. I am unapologetic for choosing me…Never apologize for loving yourself!

The Michelle Obama Era

 

It never does us any justice to live below our standards, to hate anyone, to ridicule or tear down someone else character. We live in a world where anything is possible but we first have to deal with our demons and become better women and men. We have to be willing to stop hiding our greatness & let maturity sprout to its full size so we can be effective in this world & not defective. ~Stylicia~

 
 
Everyone has a calling to be great in their life but we sometimes let circumstances, laziness, excuses, and mediocrity take center stage. We carry baggage that eventually affect our relationships especially our sisterhood. As I have grown in this personal journey in my life I realized how important sisterhood is in my womanhood. If we do not deal with our own demons we will handicap or disable another sister from growing to her full potential. I made a decision this year to get to the root of my issues and deal with them up close to repair the damage done in my own heart and life. I made a decision to unleash my own insecurities & setbacks to become a better sister to my sister girls of all shapes, sizes and ethnic backgrounds. I realize it is my duty to be a better woman, to be a whole woman so I can help other women journey into being their authentic self. When you are hurting you cannot be effective in providing help to someone else. It is true hurt people hurt people and it can infect relationships to the core. I have personally experienced in my life sisterhoods growing apart or falling by the wayside because of hidden issues I did not address in my life. However, when you begin to deal with your wounds and face the demons in your closet you can heal. I started to heal when I faced roots that were sprouting from weeds in my own backyard. I tried to help everyone else but I was running from my own emotional baggage. I got sick and tired of being sick and tired when the same issues in my sisterhood were being repeated. I made a decision to be mature enough to deal with me and find out what was the root of my pain, anger, bitterness and often harsh attitude. If we never choose to deal with the root the weeds will continue to sprout in other forms of our lives and then it will have a cyclical effect. We are in an age where women can conquer anything and be whoever they want to be but if we do not face our baggage we will never grow to our full potential. Michelle Obama is a woman I admire because she knows her worth, she has the confidence and boldness to exude her power to change the lives of other people. She uses her power in a profound way to heal, uplift and inspire other women to be powerful effective women. We can learn many things in this era of First Lady Michelle Obama by understanding sisterhood has the power to connect us with your God given purpose. If  we are hurting and need assistance with the healing process maybe we should reach out to people who are qualified for the job such as therapist, psychologist, spiritual leaders etc. When two women are hurting then they cannot be each others strength because it is impossible for two wounded souls to help each other. Since we are now in an age of women evolving, soaring to higher heights we have no excuse not to be great & walk in our God given purpose. Sisterhood is about being whole within yourself so you can help someone else find the path to their authentic self. Let us let go of all the baggage and raise up to the standard of being phenomenal women who can change the world….Let’s not forget women of all shapes, sizes and ethnic backgrounds can do anything because we are now living in “The Michelle Obama Era”…..Let’s move out of our own way!

Letters To My Past

In order to heal sometimes you have to be willing to write a letter to your past and the people in your past. ~Stylicia~

Recently I realized the root of my anger, my temper and flying off the handle for every little thing; the root was my past hurts, scars and wounds I have not acknowledged. I also realized I had not forgiven the guy who raped me when I was 18 or the men who mentally and emotionally abused me. I have been carrying around this baggage without acknowledging it. I knew I had to bring closure to these issues instead of blocking them out of my life. I needed to also forgive female friends who treated me wrong and manipulated our friendship. My anger has been an issue for me for a long time, I would go off on  friends, family, and become very harsh. My daughter brought it to my attention that I was never happy but got angry at every little thing. I have not been at peace because there was a residue of all this junk on the inside of me. I started my journey 2 weeks ago but it took full form when September 1st, 2012 was ushered in. I am on a journey to find peace within but first I have to allow God to do a D&C to scrape out  the residue so I will not get an infection. I cannot take this load in my new place or new journey. My new life, new me and new journey begins now!

Below is a personal letter to my past & things I have bottled in my soul too long it is time to be free and open. I share this with my readers because I am no longer ashamed of my past and I can be free in order to help someone else to be free. Let’s begin……

Dear Past,
I acknowledge the wounds, scars and residue you left me to deal with so today I made a decision to face these issues. I would like to first address my issue of looking for love in all the wrong places and wanting that special guy to love me. I did not love myself so I settled for sex as a form of love but it never really satisfied me because I still felt empty. At the age of 18 years old I was raped and I never fully acknowledge it because in some way I thought it was my fault because I did not scream for him to stop. I just laid there letting the act take place because I had a fear of fighting for myself. I did not want the physical intercourse at all but fear paralyzed my words to say “NO”! Today I forgive this faceless man who I cannot remember and I would like to tell him I will not hold on to my anger and bitterness anymore. I will no longer let him steal my peace, joy, happiness and love for myself. So, I forgive him for the rape and I will move on free and happy in my life. The next thing I would like to acknowledge is the consistent mental and emotional abuse I went through with certain men in my life from my past. One man that I remember in particular who threaten my life, my daughter life and stole some personal possessions from me 7 years ago. He abused me mentally and emotionally by tearing me down, ripping my self esteem to shreds but today I forgive him because I have been holding on to this pain for too long. I forgive the abuser and wish him well. I let go of the past scars and I will now be free to live a joyful life. I forgive him for the threats, for stealing my personal possessions and wish him well in his life. I also forgive all men who have abused me in some way. I stopped playing the victim role several years ago and today I am a victor. I forgive female acquaintances who have talked behind my back, slander my character and manipulated our friendship for their own personal gain. I also forgive friends who cut off the friendship without even communicating the issue with me. I forgive them and have no anger or hurt towards them because the time they had in my life was strategic and it taught me about myself. I also want to acknowledge the pain and hurt I caused them as well. Forgiveness is a two way street and never should be thought of as one way. I know I have wounded people in my life and I pray they can forgive me for my attitude, selfishness, and anger in the past. I pray they heal from the personal scars I inflicted on them. I want to make peace and so I will walk in peace by letting my past scars go. God I thank you for gutting me out, getting to the core of my soul and scarping the residue of my past. I am no longer the insecure, unhappy, angry, bitter or selfish “Stylicia” people remember I am a new woman and I walk boldly into the woman I am on today and everyday. Past, I say goodbye to you and I am finalizing our connection. I do not regret my past because it made me the beautiful person I am today. I do not regret the people I met, the friends I had but I cannot take you Past into my future because I am made new. I will remember the memories and smile when I think of you. I appreciate you because you formed me for my future. Past hurt, pain, manipulation, low self esteem and every other negative emotion that was attached to my past I say goodbye to you. I will no longer revisit the hurtful part but smile to know it all was for a bigger purpose, a purpose greater than me. I am made anew..Behold God has done a new thing and now it has sprung forth!

For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland. Isaiah 43:19 ( New Living Translation)

A Peaceful Journey….

In this new journey I am undergoing it is requiring me to look at myself and life in a different spectrum. I have always been a person who allowed things to easily upset, frustrate or annoy me. I would find myself losing my composure enticing my emotions to jump off the deep end. However, in the last two weeks I have been taking lessons in being a calmer person. My daughter has given me great lessons in learning to embrace life on a whole new level. My daughter is only ten years old but I realize how much her presence in my life has been a gift to me. As I observe her I have found out that my daughter has a gift of tranquility. She is such a sweet, pleasant, quiet, and humorous person to be around. Her spirit has truly enlighten my life in great ways in the last two weeks. It’s funny how God uses the small things in life to get our attention in order to produce the person he want us to be. Peace is important to have because it teaches you how to be still when chaos, turmoil, anger and other emotions are present. The negative emotions we convey are like a hurricane ready to tear up our lives to destroy our peace. It is imperative to learn to not run away every time life seems to be stressful but to learn to stand and command your peace to be still. When you are always trying to escape your life then you find yourself running from things because you do not have any peace from within. Vacations are great but in life it requires us to learn how to escape chaotic situations by taking small vacations of peace. This peace journey has challenged me to see how important it is to calm down and regroup my emotions before I allow them to get the best of me. Peace is the essential key to unlock the great blessings of our lives. When you have peace from within you will learn how to enjoy the simple pleasures of life. Peace will overtake you and you will find it to be valuable throughout your life. Many people search for peace but never find it because they fail to realize where it lies. Peace lies within us all we just have to learn to connect to the source of it.

Below are simple steps you can take to receive, walk and live in your peace:

1. Get to the root: Realize that everything that needs to be dealt with has a root. Get to the root of your problem. Once the root is found then uprooting process begins….

2. Takers: Understand the cause of what have you allowed to take your peace. Peace is a free gift given by God since the beginning of time. Figure out the “taker agents” (who or what have you allowed to steal your peace)

3. Inspect That Gadget: Inspect the environment you are in and observe whether you have been the cause of your own chaotic state. Sometimes we can create our own chaos and drama so we begin to attract these same things in our environment.

4. The Source: If you do not know who is the source of your peace then no matter what journey you take you will continue to detour down an endless road. In Christianity Jesus Christ is our source of peace because he is peace. So be willing to find the source of your peace

Having peace can sustain you and keep you mentally, emotionally and physically stable in life!