Listen Silently

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communication

What my work experience has taught me over the last 10 years is that interpersonal communication is the most VITAL and central part of our successes and failures; obviously this is true simply with life in general but I’m speaking more about our professional aspect.

Yet, 99.9% of people do not know how to express themselves or communicate effectively. Sometimes this can come across as anger, annoyance, or the most popular -speaking in a patronizing or condescending manner. It’s as if we can speak our hearts out all we want, but the receiver will almost always miss our point entirely; like there’s a thick window in front of us -you can see but not hear.

Make a conscious effort today to really LISTEN to what others are saying. Not just their words, but their meaning. Slow it down and not only think before you speak but really give your attention.

What communication skills do you feel everyone should have? If you have any tips or tricks, please share!

©MoniqueAdrianne

What I’m Taking With Me -Lessons Learned in 2014 (Part Three)

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3. Tolerance and understanding.

As some of you may know, I am a slightly strong-headed individual… I’m sensitive, take things too personally; I’m open and very honest with what I’m feeling and at times I can come off as a little harsh to those around me.

There’s a difference that I’ve learned recently between assertiveness and aggression. Assertiveness is when you are confident in your decisions without being combative. I am positive and self-assured; yet, I’m particularly aggressive when it comes to voicing my opinions and feelings. My annoyance for those around me has only increased in recent years –even those that are not directly affecting me. If another’s opinions are directly in contrast with my own, I take it personally –I feel that their judgments are aimed straight at me. It’s thoughtless and rash to react in this way and I’ve come to recognize that.

As with any experience, I aim to look for the meaning and the lesson behind it. Of course it can be very difficult to look past infuriating moments to get to the core of its message. For example, in my office, it is quite common for openly racist, sexist, and elitist remarks to fly around constantly each day. It has become a very harsh environment to be exposed to.

I am of Mexican ethnicity and I have never caught on to learning Spanish. When racist comments are made regarding Mexican people, I make a point to remind them who I am. However, their dismissive responses are always, “We know, but you’re not that kind of Mexican,” or “You’re not really Mexican.”

There have been discussions expressing their opinions of impoverished, poor people –they believe that their financial standing is merely fault of their own and that they are lazy.

There have even been appalling statements made to the extent that any woman that claims she was raped is simply lying.

While all of this is discussed in front of me, I sit there, shocked and disgusted, attempting to keep my mouth shut. I know that voicing my difference of opinion will only cause friction and possible combative arguments. I realize that I alone may not be able to change their minds. The cost of speaking up is too high.

There is a reason why I am so passionate about what I believe in. When there are certain injustices in the world and the notion, “Someone should do something about this,” pops into our minds, we are meant to be that someone.

I understand my purpose, yet I am still frustrated with this anger that I feel when these comments arise. Tolerance and understanding is a lesson that I am currently being presented with. It is an open-ended understanding that I have not yet acquired and it could take my whole lifetime for me to comprehend. What am I meant to learn from these unpleasant people?

I’ve been pondering my moral dilemma for a few days and decided to ask a well-intentioned friend for his opinion. He said:

“You don’t have to be tolerant of their views but to get past the anger towards these people, an effort should be made to understand them instead. When we can recognize why another thinks a certain way, we don’t have to agree with them, but we can at least have consideration for where they’re coming from.”

I feel that his response was expressed perfectly! Our opinions, our beliefs, our emotions –they are each uniquely our own. We are shaped and molded by our personal experiences. Learning and growing to understand the distinct differences of others is the first step towards empathy. We do not have to agree with everyone. However, it would better ourselves and those around us –our communities, our states, our nations, and our world –to make an effort to understand each other. Acknowledgement of another’s struggles could be the missing key that is needed to expand our empathy and compassion–at the very least, it could diminish the anger that we feel towards others.

©MoniqueAdrianne

What I’m Taking With Me -Lessons Learned in 2014 (Part Two)

The following is part two of four parts in a series that I will be posting over the next few days.

These are my own personal lessons that I learned in 2014; hopefully you can take something from them as well. <3

What lessons did you learn in 2014? Let me know in the comments below! :)

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2. Let it go.

*starts singing Frozen song*

All Disney references aside…this year was very significant for me. Through a very difficult experience, I found another layer of forgiveness. I realized that I needed to stop holding onto things that no longer served their purpose in my life.

I believe that forgiveness and letting go is one of the most trying lessons that one can experience –sometimes others are never able to accept it. We’re only human –when we get hurt, our instinct is to close up like a shell and what hurts us is etched into our minds and hearts. Most of the time, remembering that pain leads us to clenching onto even more of our anger, fears, and other negativities. Our obligation to ourselves is to release these harmful reactions.

There was a very distressing event that I had experienced towards the end of 2013. I don’t think I’ve ever been more hurt or as angry as I became over it. It’s been a very tough process going through the repercussions including post-traumatic stress. Not only this, but the pain and hurt I feel towards the people involved as well as those that turned their backs on me continue to be heart wrenching. I still want to cry as I simply reflect. I feel it now in my heart –the tightening of my muscles as I still grasp onto the little bits and pieces of anger and misery that are remaining.

Letting go is in no way a simple practice –it’s a continuing and infinite progression. Memories spark emotions which lead to going through the process all over again –but it’s as if our weight gets lighter and lighter –chipping away until all we have left is the mere lesson that we were meant to acquire. No agony comes without meaning or depth –why do you think these emotions are so strong and overwhelming?

For a very long time, I continued to contemplate: what good would come from what happened? Over and over again there were still no answers. The only thing that began to make sense was my perspective in retrospect of the situation. The more I let go of my negative emotions, the clearer and less foggy the occurrence and the lesson behind it became.

Letting go and forgiving those that have hurt us is a tricky road but it is needed. We really cannot move forward if we are carrying all of the rocks and stones of the past –it’s just not possible. How can we embrace a loving and positive future when our hands and arms are full of animosity?

©MoniqueAdrianne

What I’m Taking With Me -Lessons Learned in 2014 (Part One)

I am very enthusiastic and motivated for this New Year! So many different possibilities and opportunities that can be created!

During the transition of each year, I personally reflect on what I’ve discovered and grasped from all of my distinct experiences –I find it an enlightening and fulfilling exercise.

At the start of a new journey it can be easier to begin fresh when we have a solid jumping off point; and in order to do so, we need to know what insight we can take with us into our future adventures.

The following is one of four parts in a series that I will be posting over the next few days.

These are my own personal lessons that I learned in 2014; hopefully you can take something from them as well. <3

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  1. Living with purpose.

For longer than I’d like to admit, I merely went through life’s routines –I woke up, did what was necessary, then I went back to sleep at the end of the day. This is not living –it’s essentially sleeping your existence away; and more often than not, it’s brought about from depression which I most certainly have faced throughout the greater part of my lifetime.

Living with purpose is being conscious of our decisions, as well as our thoughts and feelings. We will not always make the ‘right’ choices –however, slip-ups are part of being human, and learning from these mistakes is part of our spirit and soul.

The last four months, I’ve been running non-stop, persistent in succeeding with my school objectives. I didn’t realize how much I’ve craved it and how much I’m not acquiring from my current job (and the ones prior).

My passions and motivations are clear and vibrant when I’m working towards my goals. It’s become apparent how much my ambitious attitude has been missing.

This determination did not occur overnight. There have been countless catalytic agents over the last year that have led me through confident, love-inducing self-actualization. Our dreams can only grow so far –they need to have roots to stabilize and sprout from. These roots are founded upon the love and the relationship that we have with ourselves first.

Create your dreams, draw up your goals, and spark your motivation and inspiration. You alone know how and when you thrive well. Advantageously, clearer objectives will come to fruition more effortlessly.

Living with intention is only possible after we have become assertive in our actions and this stems from self-love. Envelop yourself in appreciation for the incredible person that you are and everything else will fall into place.

©MoniqueAdrianne

Let Your Love Light Up the World

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Let your love light up someone’s day.
Share as much love as possible each and every day with as many people that you can. Let it overflow through your fingertips; let your love be filled with so much positive energy and intent, that it powerfully changes and shifts those around you.
Remember how much of an unstoppable force you are. Change the world around you with love, passion, positivity, and intention. <3

©MoniqueAdrianne

Be Like the Moon

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Be yourself. Fully. Entirely. Without fault. With flaws and imperfections.
Never, ever, compromise who you are by pleasing those around you. You’re the one that gets the pleasure of being with yourself always, every day. So make sure it’s the ‘you’ that’s unapologetically themselves. Because that’s the best you!! Don’t tip toe around others, trying not to make a splash. Express yourself exuberantly!! Dance and swim to your heart’s content. It’s your happiness and you’re in charge of it -so choose to be happy!! :)

©MoniqueAdrianne

Duty of the Artist

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When I first started my website, I created a business plan. In this plan, I depicted my purpose, my mission statement….even my friend helped me incorporate all types of questions to reflect on. What are my readers’ needs? How do they assess the world around them? What are their desires? And most importantly, what do I want them to take from my writings?
Over the past year, I have strived to inspire, spark passion, & incite you to ask questions about yourselves…I’ve given advice & shared my stories & experiences with you.
I certainly do NOT know all of the answers. However, I am clear in my understanding of what my purpose here in this life is –I am meant to be a messenger. I do my best to share each lesson that I’ve learned, & in turn, I hope that it helps & aids you in each of your journeys.
I aspire to be a catalyst for your inspiration & passion; I do my best to encourage your self-realization & I always have my words come from a balanced, positive, loving, & gentle place within myself. Through what I write, I become more self-aware & continue to learn more about myself & the world around me.
I thank each & every one of you for your many kind words, your support & your love, & most of all, your consideration & awareness for what I attempt to express. This has become such an incredible, healing, & creative outlet for me & I hope to continue to motivate & encourage you in all of your endeavors. <3 :)

©MoniqueAdrianne