Tuesday
Aug112009

Evaluating Behavior of Famous Men For Value To Black Women

Cross-Posted by Faith at Acts of Faith In Love & Life blog

I've been watching the T.O. Show on VH-1. If you've followed some recent sports headlines you may be familiar with Terrell Owens and his foibles. I was bored and flipping channels when I stumbled upon this latest reality show. I find it interesting on many levels aside from some of the blatant advertising. His complicated family relationships may lend an air of familiarity for some. The assumption of glitz and glamour has appeal to others. Some like to peek into the life of a famous athlete. We should remember that they are not perfect and should not be thought of as more important than others. Regardless there are lessons I think can be learned from this show and it only takes 1 (if you're prepared to pay attention) or 2 (for the deniers) times to watch his behavior to actually get it.

watch?v=aFZGEnRehMA
  • Be careful about who you give your support and time to.
  • We need to stop celebrating the individual pursuits of blacks as if it's something that automatically uplifts everyone.
  • You should find out if these black male (actors, athletes, music artists, politicians, etc) are willing and able to uplift women like you.

Notice how his "friend" points out that his dating trends are limited to white and "exotic" women. He doesn't date women who look like her. This is where I react and not because I think black men belong to black women but because of the apathy and disregard that has become the norm. It's so one-sided where we are rejected for no reason at all other than the poor attitude of these men. His underlying disdain is so obvious. He doesn't value black women as romantic equals.

There isn't anything we can do about it - or should try to do about it actually but WAKE UP. If the role was reversed and it was black women exercising their rights to date and bed all the non-black or "exotic" men they wanted black men (and some black women who don't want us to have choices) would be howling. Like this poster at The Black Snob who has no verifiable account to trace back to them but is complaining about Black Women Empowerment bloggers who "constantly talk about black men" and "push mating with white men". Ha! The lack of reciprocity and blatant hypocrisy is what infuriates me.

I loved her reply to him though how any man she's with would notice her quality as a mate and not hold wearing a scarf against her. Even Anthony Bourdain knows what a doo-rag is used for. Are you paying attention ladies?

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Monday
Aug102009

How to Make Lemonade Out Of Lemons In Love & Life

Cross-Posted by Faith of Acts of Faith In Love & Life blog

There's a list of 51 Lessons in this article by Regina Brett and here are some of the gems with my thoughts on them:

1. Life Isn't Fair, But It's Still Good

Our lives have unique challenges aside from individual upbringing and personal development. Modern black women also have to content with a landscape that is more openly hostile to our fulfillment as individuals and as a group compared to other women. We are collectively on our own if we are relying on getting support from depleted sources (i.e the "black community"). What's good about this is that we are free to seek resources elsewhere and should do so with haste. We have a purse of more than $750B to spend wherever and however we like. It's time to stop wasting our thoughts, time, energy and resources in any way that doesn't benefit us.

2. When In Doubt, Just Take The Next Small Step

Put one foot in front of the other literally and figuratively speaking. Some concepts regarding our free agency may be difficult to grasp even after we think we've accepted them. It's called getting stuck. You know you can't go back but you're afraid to make a misstep in going forward. So you stand still. Wrong! You must keep moving. Think of it as being on a conveyer belt. You can't block the propelling motion but you can trip over yourself up trying to stop it. Resist the urge to go back. Wherever you go next it's still so much better than where you've been. Just keep moving.

3. Make Peace With Your Past So It Won't Mess Up Your Future

I modified this from the author's quote of it messing with one's present. We are in the present right NOW. Or at least we should be. I find myself drifting off into reevaluating my life that I look back at all the mistakes I've made as well as how other people have messed me up with their foibles. For some of us it may be even more damaging. We can't wave a magic wand over it and make it go away. I find doing affirmations and some of these "new age" techniques make me angry because it diminishes my experiences. It doesn't make it all better. What I have found is that I can think about what I'd like my life to look like for the immediate future. I have created a "Day In My Life" scenario where I think about the life-affirming things I can do for myself. I think about specific activities, what type of relationships I want, how those interactions take shape and what choices will get me there. I am reworking an entire life Vision Board (goal setting) for myself.

4. Don't Compare Your Life To Others

This stops the what ifs, the if onlys and the could would shoulda urge to kick ourselves. 

5. Life Is Too Short For Pity Parties

As we realize certain models no longer have value it's easy to be tempted to look back and wallow. We have to acknowledge our experiences but keep going forward.

6. No One Is Responsible For Your Happiness But YOU

If we stop looking to external circumstances, relying on others to "act right" or resorting to magical thinking we will realize no career, person, x amount of money or anything temporary will truly satisfy us. Peace of mind is the goal. Which means we have to take care of ourselves first and foremost. 

7. Get Rid Of Anything That Isn't Useful, Beautiful Or Joyful

That includes deadbeats, negative thought patterns, holding onto the past, having doubts, seeking approval, being accepted by certain people, shifting physicality whatever will be an obstacle to our living our best lives. 

8. Read the Psalms - They Cover Every Human Emotion

I think having a solid spiritual practice is a necessity. Many of us will have to replace the time we've spent supporting "religiosity" that was so dependent on following a list of rules and not studying/questioning anything with something more meaningful that we take responsibility for. That's up to us as individuals to determine what works best for us. Exploring this as well as other tenets is a good place to start.

9. If You Don't Ask, You Don't Get

We're not an island. We need help from time to time. We have to build relationships and alliances. We also have to try new things and be bold. Instead of thinking about the obstacles we have to find solutions. That can be more challenging than what is comfortable. So the variation of this theme is: if we don't go for it, we'll never get it. We have to try in order to "fail". Those failures will often lead us to a victory or breakthrough of some sort because we put ourselves out there to begin with. As opposed to hiding under the covers and letting life pass us by.

10. The Best Is Yet To Come

This is my kind of affirmation. Whatever has happened is done. We don't have to repeat it. Today is a new day. We wipe the slate clean. If we're still alive this is our "do-over". This is why we put one foot in front of the other. This is why we look and move forward!

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