Let's talk about a topic that's avoided, ignored, and forgotten altogether...Vulnerability.
Being vulnerable has always been difficult for me. I'm afraid of trusting people, and I don't, just in order to protect myself. I don't open up easily about my feelings because I feel it's sometimes easier just to keep it all to myself. The fear of getting hurt is greater than my desire to grow, which frankly is terrible on my part.
What does any of that do to help myself? How will I ever grow being so closed off and protected? How will I learn to rise from my failures if I'm too afraid to even fall? I've been asking myself these questions constantly lately. I've been too afraid to open up to some people. I've been too afraid to say what I'm actually feeling. I've been too afraid to ask the questions that have been eating me alive.
It's OKAY to be a little reserved. It's okay to protect your heart, but you have to let a bit in, in order to grow. Failing is what makes us stronger, not weaker. I've been trying to switch my mentality to this lately.
I've been telling myself every day to do one thing that makes me vulnerable in any given situation. Yesterday I told someone how I really felt instead of holding back. Today I made sure I made friends with at least 2 new people in my classes. Tomorrow, I hope to do something that makes me feel even more uncomfortable and sets me on the path of growth.
You don't need to spill your deepest, darkest secrets to be vulnerable. Once a day, do something that makes you nervous. Something that allows you to open yourself up to the idea of getting hurt. If we all learn to be passionate about the journey instead of the final results, that's when we'll be most content with ourselves.
Be vulnerable. Open up. Get hurt. There's nothing wrong with that.
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Change can't happen tomorrow, because we're already 100 years behind today.
May 25, 2020: the day that will forever be remembered as the day George Floyd lost his life at the hands of cops.
The day that systematic racism again reared its head at full force in 2020.
Eat your way through this country's greatest food — from your couch.
Call it the easily bored Gemini in me, but I'm constantly looking for new food to try. Usually, travel quenches my taste for new and exciting cuisines, but given the fact that international travel is not always a possibility, I've begun exploring alternatives.
In the interest of wanting to support the Black community and Black-owned businesses, and also wanting to try some of the country's greatest food without having to get off my couch, I started off (pessimistically) doing research, only to find that the options were vast.
From small, boutique brands to legacy fashion brands.
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Police brutality against Black people is not new, and isn't going away till we start dedicating resources to fighting it. Many of us, as individuals, have only begun in the last week scratching the surface of what it means to educate ourselves on race, historical race relations, and how to be an ally to the Black community.
Your weekly wellness boost from Odyssey.
No matter how good (or bad) you'd describe your health, one thing is for sure: a little boost is ALWAYS a good idea. Whether that's reading a new, motivating book, or listening to a song that speaks to your soul, there are plenty of resources to help your health thrive on any given day.
I don't know if you've heard, but there's a lot going on right now, particularly in relation to George Floyd's death, Black Lives Matter, and public protest of racial injustice in the United States. While we can all agree that this deserves conversations, change, and actionable good, social media arguments with Great Aunt Linda are not where social change begins and ends. Spending too much time scrolling through your phone has never been healthy, but now it's even more addicting — what does that one person from my hometown say about this? How can I further education within discussions? Am I posting enough?
You won't be able to put them down.
I don't know about you, but reading is at the top of my to-do list this summer... especially with all the social distancing I'll still be doing. If, like me, you're hoping to pick up a romantic page-turner (or a couple dozen), here are 23 romance novels by Black authors you'll absolutely LOVE reading.
Treat yourself and your loved ones while supporting Black creatives and artisans.
The world is taking action against the injustices and under-representation plaguing Black lives, and one small but impactful thing you can do to actively make a difference is support Black-owned businesses.
Etsy is likely one of your go-to sites for gift-buying, but have you ever paid attention to which independent artists and sellers you're buying from?
There's a line between self-care and self-destruction.
Anyone who hasn't been living under a rock for the past few years has seen something somewhere about self-care whether it was on Facebook, Twitter, or their Instagram feed. Oftentimes it's pictures of celebrities or influencers sipping green smoothies or slathering on mud masks with #selfcare. It's posts like these that made me realize that "self-care" has become the ultimate buzz word, soaring in popularity but in the process, it's lost most of its original meaning. It's time to set the record straight and reclaim the term.
Although self-care has been around for quite some time, within the past few years it's been misconstrued and commodified as our capitalist society tends to do with things it thinks can be profited off. Self-care is now being peddled as something that can be bought and sold on the shelf at Target rather than something that takes real work to achieve. This fake self-care movement is not only enabling people to over-indulge themselves, but it has created a crutch for people to avoid the responsibility of taking true care of themselves. Instead of doing the work that needs to be done, many people fall into the trap of rewarding themselves for doing nothing at all — this can quickly become an unhealthy coping mechanism, especially with corporations cheering us on (to buy their next product). Long, hard day at work? Just grab your third iced coffee of the day! Fight with your SO? Buy that 50-dollar face mask, it'll make you feel better! This is how self-care becomes self-sabotage and self-destructive.
Pure art for your body.
Minorities are consistently under-represented in our day-to-day lives, notably in the world of fashion. It's likely you're looking for a way to support black artists. Whether that's the case or you're just a fashion-lover in general, these brands aren't just some of the best black-owned fashion brands — they're some of the most innovative brands of our time, period.
From luxury staples to fun accessories and loungewear, these brands aren't just stunning names you should definitely be following on Instagram, each honors the founder's roots in unique ways with the power of storytelling through artistic expression that manifests in pieces we can't wait to wear.
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