Trusting the Process of Life

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

As I mentioned on social media a few weeks ago, I’ve been dealing with some personal issues. My husband and I are currently separated. And while I was hurt and taken aback by the way it happened, I’m not totally surprised by what happened because we’d grown apart and had our issues (and I’d actually been going back and forth with it myself).

Due to our separation, my daughter and I have been staying with my parents for almost two months, and needless to say, it’s been an adjustment. It’s been…interesting, to say the least, because although moving back had crossed my mind, I didn’t think I’d actually have to do it — and definitely not now. So, basically, I’ve had to create a new normal and trust whatever comes next.

I believe that everything happens for a reason and things happen when they’re supposed to, even when it doesn’t feel good or necessarily make sense to us. Admittedly, it took me a really long time to learn this (maybe it’s one of those things you learn after 30?), but now that I know — for sure — it’s true, I generally go with the flow of whatever happens in my life. Trust me, it hasn’t been easy, but here’s how I learned to do it:

  • I constantly remind myself that I can’t control everything. I’ve pretty much always been someone who likes for everything to go exactly how I envision. And when it doesn’t, I had the tendency to kind of freak out about it. But getting older — and having a child and life itself — has helped me really see that I can’t control everything. And that’s okay.
  • I focus on what I can control, and take inspired action. Here’s what I mean by taking inspired action: Instead of acting from a space of desperation and lack, I listen to my intuition and Higher Self about what steps I should take next, even if Spirit tells me to be still.
  • I (do my best to) stay present. Practices like meditation and yoga have helped me learn how to be more mindful in my daily life and focus on what’s happening now.
  • I practice gratitude and look for the good. When we have situations that are less than favorable, we tend to focus on how much it sucks, and notice the other things that suck, drawing more sucky things to us. On the flip side, when we focus on the good (either in the situation or in general), not only do we feel better, we also attract more good to us.
  • I reflect on other situations where the Universe had my back. If you’re like me, you’ve made it through other times when you didn’t know how the hell you would. And you’ll do the same now!

Trust the Universe (or your Higher Power) and the path you’re on. Life loves you and is always conspiring in your favor! Know it with every fiber of your being!

Affirmation:

I choose to trust the process of my life.”

 


Black Girl's Guide to Calm

 

Guided Meditation for Self-Love & Self-Worth

Having a healthy sense of self-love and self-worth are two important aspects of feeling whole, joyful, and a peace. Self-love can also bring your more confidence, create a more positive mindset, and allow you to better handle life’s challenges.

This video shares a guided meditation to help increase your self-love and self-worth because:

“You are a unique, beautiful soul.”

Guided Meditation to Get Grounded

Are you feeling anxious, off-kilter and all over the place? You may need to clear/heal your root chakra so you can feel more centered. Located at the base of your spine, the root chakra relates to our sense of groundedness and safety. When it’s in balance, we feel secure, safe, stable, and positive.

This guided meditation will help you balance your root chakra and get grounded!

Join My Yoga Challenge: #30DaysofYoga

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

September is right around the corner…and that means it’s almost time for National Yoga Month, a great time for you to get started — or get back on track — with your practice.

And I have the perfect way for you to do so: #30DaysofYoga, an Instagram yoga challenge! Just in case you’re like, ‘Ehh, I don’t know if this is for me,’ here are a few reasons to start your practice. Yoga:

  • brings you peace of mind
  • can make you happier
  • gives you inner strength
  • can encourage self-acceptance
  • can improve your confidence

Now that that’s out of the way, here’s how the challenge works:

  1. Every day, starting September 1st, I’ll post a pose on Instagram (and/or send it to your inbox).
  2. You practice the pose, and post your photo on Instagram, using the hashtags #30DaysofYoga and #Blackgirlcalm.
  3. Participants will be entered into a giveaway for my forthcoming affirmation cards.

To keep up with the pose of the day, follow Black Girl’s Guide to Calm on IG and/or sign up here to get it sent to your inbox.

“The body benefits from movement, and the benefits from stillness.” – Sakyong Mipham

15 Simple Ways to Relax

 

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

In our fast-paced, technology-driven world, most of us find it hard to simply relax. And a lot of times, we don’t even feel it’s necessary to do so. However, having some down time has many benefits. It:

  • helps prevent stress from accumulating
  • reduces general anxiety
  • increases your energy level and helps with productivity
  • improves your concentration
  • boosts self-confidence

Now that you know why you probably need to unwind more often, here are 15 simple ways to relax:

  1. Do some yoga.
  2. Meditate.
  3. Read for pleasure.
  4. Take a bubble and/or spiritual bath.
  5. Spend some time alone.
  6. Laugh.
  7. Listen to your favorite music.
  8. Take a phone/social media break.
  9. Nap and/or sleep in.
  10. Visualize/daydream.
  11. Netflix and chill…with yourself.
  12. Create a gratitude list.
  13. Spend some time outdoors.
  14. Journal.
  15. Color

What are your favorite ways to relax? Let me know by leaving a comment!


Black Girl's Guide to Calm

4 Tips for Beginner Meditators

Meditation and concentration are the way to a life of serenity.” – Baba Ram Dass

Have you been interested in starting a meditation practice but feel overwhelmed by the thought? I get it, with all the tips and information out there, it can be difficult to just begin.

In the video below, I’m sharing 4 tips to help you get started.

 

 


4 Crystals for Total Beginners

crystals

I first learned about crystals in 2015 while attending my friend, Trelani’s, Between Words and Water Writing Retreat. I ordered my first batch from Third Eye Naga, and I’ve pretty much been obsessed ever since. I keep them on my night stand, wear one around my neck, wear bracelets, and even carry them in my bra (don’t judge me!).

However, if you’re new to crystals, trying to figure out which ones to use can be overwhelming because there are sooo many to choose from. So, here are four that will get you started:

 

Smoky quartz is my favorite, go-to crystal. It’s related to the root chakra and absorbs negative energy, increases positive energy, helps you stay grounded, increases your vibration, and assists in releasing past hurt.

Affirmation: I am calm, grounded, and at peace.

This crystal is all about love of all kind. Related to the heart chakra, rose quartz promotes unconditional love, joy, and emotional healing, strengthens hope and faith, assists in overcoming despair, and brings calm.

Affirmation: I deeply and completely love and accept myself.

Clear quartz is known as the master healer. It magnifies energies, cleanses spaces, increases energy, cleanses and charges other crystals, and provides protection. While you can use it for all chakras, it’s mainly related to the crown.

Affirmation: I am divinely guided and inspired.

Amethyst improves your intuition and inner sight, helps with insomnia, promotes restful sleep (I often sleep with one under my pillow), and supports your connection to the Divine and your higher Self. It’s related to both the third eye and crown chakras.

Affirmation: I always honor and follow my intuition.


Where to Buy

While there are literally hundreds of places to get your crystals, here are places where I’ve purchased mine:

Individual Stones

Third Eye Naga

Greenville Gemstone Mine

Enter the Earth

Asheville Raven & Crone 

Everyday Magic 

Crystal Jewelry

Chakra Candi

Pure Energies

Prolific Expressions

Which crystals have you tried? Which are your favorite? Let me know by leaving a comment!


10 Quotes to Inspire You to Live in the Moment

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

Over the past few years, I believe the Universe has been trying to teach me to live in the moment. As a daydreamer who has been developing her patience forever (it seems), being present and allowing everything to unfold the it is has not been my strong suit. I am, thankfully, getting better at it. Because what I’ve come to realize is that the only moment/time there is is the present moment, and fretting/obsessing over what’s to come does nothing but stress me out and cause me anxiety (and it probably does the same to you).

If you have trouble staying present and living in the moment, here are 10 quotes to inspire you to do so:

  1. “Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.” – Eckhart Tolle
  2. “Joy comes to us in ordinary moments. We risk missing out when we get too busy chasing down the extraordinary.” – Brene Brown
  3. “Trust the timing of your life.” – Unknown
  4. “I know that the big miracles we’re waiting on are happening right in front of us, at every moment, with every breath. Open your eyes and heart, and you’ll begin to see them.” – Oprah Winfrey
  5. “Wherever you are, be all there.” – Jim Elliot
  6. “Be. Here. Now.”– Unknown
  7. “Mindfulness is paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally, to the unfolding of experience, moment to moment.” – Jon Kabat Zinn
  8. “Breathing in, I calm my body. Breathing out, I smile. Dwelling in the present moment, I know this is a wonderful moment.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
  9. “Wherever you are, be there. If you can be fully present now, you’ll know what it means to live.” – Steve Goodier
  10. “Living in the moment brings you a sense of reverence for all of life’s blessings.” – Oprah Winfrey

Having a meditation practice is a great way to learn how to live in the moment! Download my guided meditation to get started.

Black Mom's Guide to Calm

 

On Taking Care of My Mental Health

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

As a Black person in the South — and really, as a Black person in general — mental health and wellness is something rarely talked about, and when it is, you’re told to simply “pray about it” or “Jesus will fix it.” Now, there’s nothing wrong with praying if it brings you comfort and peace, but for many people dealing with mental health issues, it isn’t enough.

My journey to taking my mental health more seriously started after having my daughter. Being a first-time mama was incredibly overwhelming, and I found myself feeling frustrated and disappointed most of the time, particularly because I felt like I didn’t have enough help from my husband. And looking back, I believe I was dealing with some post-partum depression as well.

The breaking point came when my husband asked me if I still wanted to be with him. That was when I realized I had to do something different, not just for the sake of my marriage, but so I could feel better and more at peace.

I wrote new affirmations around how I wanted to feel, and because I’m a researcher by nature, I Googled ways to better my marriage and myself. Through my research, I rediscovered meditation and began my practice, which also led me to restarting my yoga practice and really focusing on taking care of myself. As cliche as it sounds, these practices literally changed my life. In addition to feeling more calm, grounded, and centered, I now know how to tap into my inner peace whenever I need to.

Of course, I’m human, so I still deal with stress, and I have anxiety as well, so making sure I include my mental health as a part of self-care practices is an important part of my daily life. Some ways I do so (that you can, too) include:

  • Meditation and yoga
  • Practicing mindfulness
  • Taking social media breaks
  • Saying affirmations
  • Reading inspirational books
  • Listening to inspirational podcasts
  • Going to therapy

Whether you’re dealing with a mental illness or the stress of your daily life, I encourage you to begin making your mental health and wellness a priority.

“Caring for the mind is as important and crucial as caring for the body. In fact, one cannot be healthy without the other.” – from”Approaching the Natural: a Health Manifesto”

Find Your Calm Week

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

April is Stress Awareness Month and to celebrate — and help you stress less and find your calm — I’ve created Find Your Calm Week! It’s happening April 4th-10th, and will be hosted on Black Girl’s Guide to Calm’s Facebook page.

The topics and tools I’ll be sharing:

  • Learning Your Stressors (Monday, 8:30 PM)
  • Meditation (Tuesday, 8:30 PM)
  • Incorporating Self-Care (Wednesday, 7:30 PM)
  • Knowing Your Stress Signals (Thursday, 11:30 AM)
  • Yoga (Friday, 8:30 PM)

Make sure you like the Facebook page so you don’t miss out! I look forward to helping you incorporate more calming practices in your life! Oh, and feel free to share with a friend — or on social media!

We don’t realize that, somewhere within us all, there does exist a supreme self who is eternally at peace.” – Elizabeth Gilbert