When I think of protests, I think of these images.
Nonviolent resistance. Sit-ins. Rallies. Marches. Picketing. Making love, and not war. Standing up for what you believe in. Influencing everything –the music, TV, film, literature, art…
That’s how real change is sparked. How you inspire millions to move together for a cause.
Anti-war, women’s rights, civil rights…Martin Luther King, Coretta Scott King, Bob Dylan, Gloria Steinem, Bob Marley…all of these movements and their leaders ignited real transforming action. They influenced an entire generation to take charge and make a difference –peacefully.
Looting and violence is not a protest. Combatting brutality and violence with aggression only creates more hostility. This is not how change happens. Violence produces more violence and bloodshed.
Take note from those that came before you. Realize what succeeded and what did not. Research and get inspired. There’s a better way to create change.
“Be the change you wish to see in the world” – Gandhi
Be the woman you want to spend time with.
Inspire, motivate, build her up, be kind to her.
(Do not call her names, tear her down, or be cruel)
When she dresses up -compliment and smile at her. Assure her that she is beautiful.
(Do not glare, roll your eyes, or give jealous stares)
Encourage, support, and speak positively to her.
(Do not call her any negative expletive: “bitch,” “slut,” or “whore.”)
When she is bold and strong, praise her.
(Do not view her strength as cattiness or competition.)
Do not ever turn your back on her.
Feminism is the belief in the social, economic, and political equality for both men and women, all sexes and all genders. (Let’s move past this idea of binary categories- sex and gender are fluid across all spectrums)
If you believe in this, you are a feminist. Do not let the negative connotations that patriarchal societies create deter you from supporting one another and making the world a better place -for EVERYONE.
I’ve always been encouraged throughout my creative career to sell my artworks or showcase them. Each time, I cannot bear the thought of it. Each drawing, painting, photograph, poem, story, and article that I have ever created, I have infused and forged a piece of myself into it. It’s as if I have chiseled pieces of my soul and placed them in each word, each drip of paint, and each click of the lens.
Every message and phone call exclaiming that you’ve seen these pieces of me encapsulated in my art is precisely (what I feel), every artist truly desires. That acknowledgement, that inspired reaction, the recognition, the…acceptance.
My hugest craving in life is to feel appreciated and loved. And when someone takes the time to notice and acknowledge my creativity, my heart flutters like a butterfly in my ribcage.
Artists create to express, and when their work sparks and ignites more creativity and passion –that’s ultimately what it’s all about. Thank you. ❤ 🙂
(Quote originally by Henry Ward Beecher but I changed “he” to “she” )
No matter what happens, I am right where I need to be. What I desire is not always the Universe’s plan. Sometimes God has something much more marvelous and amazing in store for us.
Now is the time for inner work, meditation, patience, and having faith that the door will open when I am ready for it to be opened. There are clearly more lessons that need to be grasped.
Thank you for all of your love and support. It means the world to me having such incredible friends and family at my side.
“If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.” -Woody Allen
(artwork by Carly Marie)
“Teach me how to trust my heart, my mind, my intuition, my inner knowing, the senses of my body, the blessings of my spirit. Teach me to trust these things so that I may enter my sacred space and love beyond my fear and thus walk in balance with the passing of each glorious sun.”
-Lakhota Prayer (the indigenous people of the Great Plains of North America)
Learn to trust ALL of yourself. You’re being unfair to your soul if you do not. ❤
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.
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. ❤
What lessons did you learn in 2014? Let me know in the comments below! 🙂
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?
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. ❤
- 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.
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. ❤
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!! 🙂
A little over 6 months ago I was ready to give up on my dating search. Then I received an out of the ordinary, sweet and simple message from a very fetching and handsome gentleman. We spoke continually for a few weeks; he wasn’t at all pushy or insistent, and then finally we went out on our first date. His flatteringly, dazed face when he first saw me in person is still the look he has when I catch him gazing at me. It’s taken about 6 months for me to (almost) get used to how well he treats me –you will be happy to know that I finally “allow” him to open doors for me without refusal. He’s become a person in my life that really compliments me rather than consumes and engulfs me. He’s become my best friend that I can be my absolute and ridiculously nerdy self with. I’m still surprised how easily we get along and how similar we are to one another. I am so grateful every day that he found me and I’m certainly blessed that he is my boyfriend. I love you him much.
Happy belated 6 months!!!! ❤
Your dreams shouldn’t debilitate and incapacitate you. After years and years of working towards realizing and completing your goals, shouldn’t we be willing to sprint towards the finish line when we’re within earshot of them? Dreams shouldn’t be feared when we’re so close to achieving them. But sometimes they can be –they can be really scary and frightening because we’ve struggled all this way. What if it’s not everything that you hoped it would be? What if you don’t think you deserve it? What will you do afterwards?
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, is in my collection of favorite books (I highly suggest it!!). Within it, one of the lessons that are taught is this: “People are afraid to pursue their most important dreams, because they feel that they don’t deserve them.”
When we have worked so hard and long towards reaching our dreams, sometimes when we see it within our grasp, we tend to let it go because we don’t feel that it’s ours to attain. But it is! It is YOUR dream after all, isn’t it?
Over the past 10 years, I’ve struggled with finishing school –I’ve been taking classes to transfer to a 4 year college. Life hit me with one situation after another –some veered me off course, but others sent me back to where I needed to be. I’m SO CLOSE to transferring to a 4 year –I’m within grasp of it; and now to be completely honest, I’m freaking out quite a bit over here.
We have our ups and downs with our dreams for exactly this reason –it’s a test to see if we REALLY and TRULY want it. Are we willing to work towards it? Are we going to put in the effort it takes to get to where we want to be? Dreams are dreams for a reason –they’re a journey of time, patience, passion, and dedication. Fulfilling a dream shouldn’t be the frightening part but maybe the conclusion and ending of that dream is what is truly terrifying –having to find a new one.
Having myself so close to where I want to be is just….overwhelming. I’m excited. I’m terrified. I’m happy. I’m despondent and distressed. And I’m stunned and dazed. I have self-sabotaged myself SO much over this and I’ve realized that it’s not for the reasons that I had once thought. It’s because I’m afraid of what comes after this –it’s the unknown part. But that’s okay! I don’t think we can truly and fully experience life without having that little bit of fear –it’s when we tell ourselves to let our faith in our dreams be bigger than our fears –that’s how we endure and attain our dreams; that’s how we push ourselves into the unknown –to go and find a new dream.
“Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself.”
Just in case you didn’t know. But it’s cool! 😉 Don’t stress! Mondays are a chance for a fresh start to have an amazing week!!!! Enjoy the day! Embrace it. If there’s ever a moment when you feel like you’re fading into negativity, catch yourself, take a breath, and think of something that will make you smile. 🙂
No one has ever accomplished their goals overnight. Dreaming is a process. Let your passion spark your dreams. Do everything in your power to make your dreams a reality. Even those times when it doesn’t work out -it’s okay. This is just the Universe’s way of making sure that you really want it. You have to fight for your dreams and endure in order to really be grateful for them. So move in the direction of your dreams, and don’t give up when you get discouraged. The journey is just as imperative as the accomplishment. ❤
I never really understood the extent and significance to this statement. Once you learn to relax and let loose the massive grasp of control you have on every detail in your life, the more likely the Universe will be able to intervene more impressively. I have always struggled with anxiety and depression and the one thing that has become my safety net is my attempt to control everything around me –because in my eyes, this is how I can become less anxious, and less fearful of what may happen –I “know” what will happen, because I’m “in control of it!” Right? No, fortunately this is not the case in life. Yes I may feel “safe” and “guarded” due to my safety precautions, but in reality, I am not letting myself live my life –I am forcefully controlling and steering, and that’s truly not the point. This leads to anxiety, frustrations, and negativity. We are meant to be steered and guided by a greater force –in whatever you believe, the Universe helps and aids you in every aspect of your life. Once you open up, and let yourself be helped, your world opens up to these extraordinary possibilities.
Over the past year I have been trying to go back to school. I only need a few more classes before I am able to transfer to a 4 year. Because of my domineering attitude in my decision making, one obstacle kept springing up after another. “I need it THIS way, not THAT way. I CAN’T do it that way, I don’t WANT to do it that way.” Because of this, I became increasingly frustrated, and was very close to giving up. I took a break from my endeavor and unceremoniously came back to it recently. It just so happened that the day that I tried to sign in to apply again, my old password came to me, and some way or another, I signed up exactly a week before classes started –not only that, but the one class that I needed in order to transfer had a few spots still open and it fit into my schedule right after work. There are honestly no words to express how extraordinary and amazing the Universe is… how things come to you, how things just fall into place at exactly the right moment. All you have to do is learn to relax and let go and really absorb and understand exactly what that means. ❤