How many times have you declared something for your life and then within a matter of months and for some even weeks that thing falls off the radar? I know I've been there in my own life more times than I would like to admit. Yep, I've been there with men, with my finances, and with my body.
I've learned over the years that making real change only begins with a declaration. The rest requires WORK! I MEAN REAL WORK! The question then becomes how low do you have to go to make the positive changes in your life to be the best you for you? Like when do you get fed up with yourself to do what you were capable of in the beginning?
I understand the first step is acknowledging the need to change, but some people have learned behaviors that become their "Norm" and that is a way of life. Like with me and men. I had to learn something new about myself, men and relationships to get to this place where I actually understand that sex is not love or that good sex, chemistry with a man will not determine if he will treat you right.
Lawd that was painful, and it took a lot of therapy to help me get to the root, so that I could pluck it out. Then plucking was hard, and it left me lonely but overtime it left me liking me and then in more time, loving the me that I liked.
My growth has been a journey in and of itself. I watch on Twitter all these positive thinking women telling other women about self-love as if it's just that easy to will it so, baby, you gotta make it so. But first you gotta change your mind. My first love used to say, change your mind and your ass will follow. He ain't never lied. But you first gotta understand the need for change and what got you there in the first beginning. I remember Oprah saying, once she realized that she didn't just like potato chips, but there was a reason she ate the whole bag instead of a few, she could then work on her weight in honesty.
People say when you know better you do better, but that shit ain't always true. It just ain't TRUE! I know I shouldn't spend my last dime on some designer shoes, but I've done it anyway. Not just one time, but two, three, four and five.
I had to have EVERYTHING I saw, #ForReal. At first the need to change was out of necessity, speaking engagements had dried up and money was not rolling in like it had in the past. But I was still stuck no matter how hard I tried. I would always find an excuse to spend my last dime on something I truly didn't need in the first beginning. It was a vicious cycle. I would save and then spend it on bullshit in a matter of minutes.
Then as I was writing my memoir a few years ago, it hit me like a ton of bricks. My relationship with my mother started me on that path. Mama was an interesting functional alcoholic. She went to work every day, drank her liquor from the pantry, beat and cuss me at whim but she took personal care of me right down to the letter T. I never went hungry and I never wanted for a thing, not ONE thing. In fact, it was the only consistent thing in my life. I asked and Mama gave, the more she gave, the more I asked. I remember asking for that Maxi leather coat in 8th grade. She raised hell, but she got it. Now looking back that was deep, she didn't come to my 8th grade graduation, but she bought me a coat that was probably at the time, as much as her paycheck. That was sick and her sickness nurtured my sickness. So knowing better, does not always translate into doing better.
To make real change in your life, you must dig deeper. You must be willing to answer the difficult questions. How did I get here? Then you must answer with raw honesty. But then after that is all said and done, you must be willing to do the work. Facing yourself is the easiest part, actually applying it will be the only thing that will ensure change. Is change possible? Absolutely! But you have to put on your boxing gloves and go all 10 rounds with yourself. This is your life, your battle and your victory to being the best you for you.
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