Grow with the Flow

We’re not where we want to be.

Here’s the question though…

Are we taking steps to get there…

Or are we too busy putting ourselves down to move forward?

Here’s another question…

Will we ever be exactly where we want to be in life?

I hope not.

As we reach goals, our aspirations should change and increase.

We should always want more and better for ourselves.

Even if we have all the money that we can ever need, goals to positively impact our family and communities should get bigger.

Change and growth is normal, so be okay with growing into yourself!

Be okay with never being exactly where and who you want to be.

Be okay with a lifetime commitment to moving in the right direction – even if that means taking a rest or a side step.

Acknowledge where you have come from.

And give your permission to grow into yourself.

Feeling Stuck with Achieving or Setting Goals?

If you are a woman and are feeling stuck, I invite you to schedule a free brainstorming sessions with Life Coach Margaret. Schedule your call now.

Not ready to chat? Grab a notebook and write. We have two notebooks you can purchase to get those thought out of your head. Get out large handmade notebook or our smaller spiral notebook today.

Grow with the Flow

Don’t Forget to Enjoy Life – A Note To Self

Sal’s Branch Trail at Umstead State Park in Raleigh, NC

You cannot buy your children’s happiness.

The nice clothes…

The new shoes…

The video games…

These things are not what the best memories are made off.

The best memories come from the walks in the park, the late night talks and the silly faces.

The best memories come from cooking together, late night drives to no where, and feeling valued.

Your children don’t care about your job. They don’t care about how much money you make. They care about you attentively listening when they speak.

Friday night movie night… exploring new and old favorite places… a small investment for a joyful return.

Go Outside and Play!

Your job is important but not more important than your family (or your health). Close your laptop, put away your phone, and go outside!

Go for a walk around the neighborhood or a local park! Grab the basketball and play a game of HORSE! Get out in the yard and finally trim those trees.

Get out and enjoy life. You deserve it!

Reflecting on a Good Day

Too often we get stuck on “the bad”. Let’s make an habit of sitting and reflecting on the good.

Grab a notebook [get a Not Mad. Motivated. Notebook here – our handmade notebook will be available April 15, 2022], a pen or pencil, and write about a good experience that you had today. Did you learn anything from that experience? What can you commit to doing to make sure that you are not leaving joy “on the table”?

Don’t Forget to Enjoy Life – A Note To Self

What Can I Do Before the End of 2022?

I recently finished a five-session, 1:1 writing to heal program with Writing Coach Shamina Williams of Life Lines Professional Services. First, if you have never taken some kind of writing class – for fun, to jump start your creativity, or to help in your healing – I highly recommend you give it a try. (I will write more about my experience in a future post.)

In one of our sessions, Coach Shamina challenged me to create a list of ten goals for me to work to achieve before the year is over. As a young student, writing my goals or my “to-do” lists was an important self-accountability tool. There was a sense of excitement and accomplishment in checking off each task!

How do you reward yourself for achieving goals you have set for yourself?

However, sometime while adulting, I neglected the habit of making lists. There was a time when I experienced being ridiculed for “relying” on a list. Lists were spoken about as a character flaw or weakness. But the truth is, I was stronger with my lists. I was more focused and more driven. I was more . . . well. . . more me. Creating a list of goals is like having an accountability partner – especially if you share your list with other. So hold me accountable, y’all!!

10 Goals for the Rest 2022

My intention for the list below is to increase my overall happiness and to increase satisfaction with myself.

  1. Improve my worship to The Creator
    1. Pray on time
    2. Read/learn more
    3. Memorize at least 5 Surahs
  2. Lose 25 pounds
    1. Increase physical activity
    2. Reduce sugar intake
  3. Spend more quality time with sons
    1. Movie night
    2. Go new places together
    3. Cook together
    4. Learn together
  4. Replace my social security card
    1. Call SS office for requirements
  5. Get a Passport for me and my sons
    1. Confirm requirements and cost
  6. Get new window treatments
    1. Measure windows
    2. Order windows treatments
    3. Schedule installation
  7. Update my yard and deck
    1. Schedule deck estimate
    2. Contact HOA about rules
    3. Schedule deck installation
    4. Schedule yard estimation
  8. Finish organizing
    1. Keep up the kitchen and living room with daily “reset”
    2. Have and enforce a cleaning schedule
    3. Organize additional space until completed
  9. Create healthy night and morning routines
  10. Be more productive at work
    1. Organize my workspace
    2. Set work goals/priorities for the day/week
What are your short-term goals? Take a screen shot and post this picture with one or two of your goals added. Tag me @notmadmotivated or with #notmadmotivated.

Writing to Set Short-term Goals

There are many reasons to grab a notebook and get to writing. One reason is, that can be made into a very regular habit, to create goals and to-do lists. You can even set rewards for your goals by giving yourself small, yet meaningful gifts once one or a group of goals are accomplished.

Grab a notebook [get a Not Mad. Motivated. Notebook here – our handmade notebook will be available April 15, 2022], a pen or pencil, and write down goals you want to accomplish before the year is over. Focus on one to three during a period of time. As you accomplish one, cross it off your list and add another goal to focus on. If you haven’t crossed off all your goals at the end of the year, that’s okay. Celebrate what you do complete – that is the important part. Also, some goals may never be 100% completed, and instead they are constantly improved upon.

What Can I Do Before the End of 2022?

Make Your Priorities A Priority

I started noticing my weight gain in 2015. That was a hard year. The year started with my youngest son being seriously injured. Three weeks after my son’s injury, my father was killed by an impaired driver. My sister and nephew came up from Texas and stayed for a few months. Once she left, the binging begun.

It was the very first time in my life that I was not living under adult supervision or with peers. I was the adult. And I was overindulging. In October of 2021, more than 9 years after my youngest son was born, my weight reached an eye-opening peak – 80 pounds heavier than my heaviest pregnancy weight.

Jumping In (and Out) Action

Days after that peak weigh-in, I began to participate in Fit Muslimah’s Ten Day Sugar Detox. Ten days, no added sugar… I thought it would be impossible for me. I did well and lost about 10 pounds.

Salads are super versatile and helps make healthy eating not so boring.

The progress I made in the 10 day detox inspired me to join her Burn Belly Fat challenge. My participation was not perfect. After both programs (40 days total), I was down close to 30 pounds. Imagine my excitement. I decided to participate in the challenge again and completely disconnected from the support group and eventually the program after a couple of weeks into my second rounds.

Getting Real with Myself

Stop making excuses. You have discipline. You control yourself around food during Ramadan, with help from the Creator. You have stopped eating sugar and you physically felt better doing so. Your goal is much bigger than losing weight. Sure you want to look at yourself in the mirror and be happy with what you see – but that is a secondary reward of eating better. The true goal is to live.

You have 3 sons. One of your sons is non-verbal with special needs and he is only 10. You must preserve your life for them. Eat the food that will help – not harm – your body. Make your priorities a priority!

It’s not enough to know your priorities, you actually need to make them a priority.

The instant “gratification” of a donut or cake is not the priority. Those donuts and cakes will compromise your physical ability and health, which will eventually compromise your ability to care for your boys. Plus, you are setting them up for complications of their own.

You want to eat better. You want them to eat better. You enjoy many healthy foods. The junk food often makes you feel disgusting. You got this. You’ve done it before and can do it again. Every day, every hour, is a chance to make better decisions. Let’s Go!

Talk to yourself. Affirm your beauty and all things positive. But also tell yourself to do better when you know you can.

If it is safe for you, grab a notebook [get a Not Mad. Motivated. Notebook here], a pen or pencil, and tell yourself the truth (with love) about the excuses you are making for one of your negative habits. Remind yourself of your previous successes and build on those. Do you have regular “priorities” that you are not prioritizing? Remind yourself of why they are important. The real why, not the surface why.

Make Your Priorities A Priority

Black – Muslim – Woman

I Am Black.

My ancestors were captured and enslaved. They were ridiculed and abused. They were falsely accused and lynched. They were treated inhumanely and many of them planted seeds of their trauma into the generations which followed.

I am a firm believer that impact of slavery, and the systematic racism that followed, continues to negatively affect the descendants of the enslaved. I cry when I hear, read, or see accounts of some of the horrors of Being Black. I cry to know that not even babies were immune from despicable treatment.

As much as my heart aches for the past and present oppression of the Black community, I can also realize the privilege within my own Black experiences.

This wheel, from the North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCCADV) advocate training, describes how certain identities hold power over others in society today.

It is my privilege that my grandparents – and many of their siblings – had the resources to relocate from South Carolina to Pennsylvania prior to my mother being born. It is my privilege that my mother had a support systems of aunts and uncles – even if it was just a visit to get out of the house. It is my privilege to have a childhood that was never void of love.

Growing up being able to recognize and experience LOVE as a child should not be a privilege. However, if you speak to enough people, you will find that knowing love and feeling loved is not always guaranteed. One of my most significant privilege is knowing love. Another is having faith.

I Am Muslim

I grew up Christian and attending a Baptist church. We weren’t the go the church everyday type of family, but we went most Sunday, some Saturdays for the youth programs, and some days for chorus rehearsal. For me, my favorite part about church was the music (and how we sometimes ate together afterwards).

When I was pretty young, my grandfather asked me what I learned in church after returning home one Sunday. I had no idea – if it wasn’t music, I didn’t really care. The question followed me for a long time.

Regardless of what I thought about church, I felt that my Faith was strong. There was something about my family that taught me to have Faith. When it came to religion, I remember thinking, “What I Believe doesn’t change the Truth!”

In my hardship with domestic violence, I started learning about Islam. I was open-minded, raised with love, and fell in love with Islam. It took me many, many years to practice, but now it is obvious to most people who see me that I am Muslim.

Many Muslim woman wear head coverings, such as hijabs. Hijabs make Muslims women “easy” targets of hate related behavior toward them.

Being Muslim is another part of my identity that many people have been taught to hate. It is a too common practice for Muslims across the world to be killed, tortured, falsely imprisoned, or forced to live in deplorable conditions.

And just like Black people were made the “enemy” in America, Muslims have become a “worldwide enemy”. When people are convinced the “enemy” is being destroyed, it’s easier to accept the mistreatment. I have cried many tears of sorrow in regard to oppression of the Muslim Community. I have also found privilege.

It is a privilege to have a non Muslim family that didn’t blink an eye about me accepting Islam. Some reverts to Islam are never accepted by their biological family. Some families are so consumed by the hate that has been instilled in them that they choose hate over family. But I had a foundation of love and that makes all the difference .

It is a privilege to be fulfilled by my religion – there is always more to learn and to be comforted by. It is a privilege that my religion shows that there are so many ways to worship God and to be pleasing to Him. It is a privilege to worship a Forgiving God. It is a privilege to be inspired to be better, to do better. My Faith is my most needed privilege.

I Am A Black, Muslim Woman

When I step out my door and into any room, being a Black, Muslim Woman is very evident. Of all things I identify as, these three are front and center. As many difficulties and hardships that each identity can present, the love, strength and beauty of them all is to what I hold on. When I explore my identity, it is easier to see the love, strength, and beauty that resides in me.

How can writing to explore identity benefit you?

If it is safe for you, grab a notebook [get a Not Mad. Motivated. Notebook here], a pen or pencil, and explore the aspect of your identity that most impact you. How can you be empowered how you identify? Check out the identity wheel above, or find one online. Can you find “privilege” in identities that have been historically oppressed? Share what you would like in the comments, tag us on Facebook or Instagram with #NotMadMotivatedLife, or email us your comments or feelings about exploring identity.

Black – Muslim – Woman