Tag Archives: Monday Motivations

Monday Motivations: Fake Fashion, True Trendsetting

Monday Motivations: Fake Fashion, True Trendsetting

There are as many places on the net that will tell you what, when, why and who to wear. But there is something much more important than the latest instagram “selfie” or the latest and greatest place to find that killer look. More important than our outer appearance is the person we are each day when we “suit up,” our inner person. Have we achieved and clothed ourselves in the best qualities that will make us a better person each day? We live in a world fraught with frivolity, fifteen minute fame and superficiality. Reality TV titillates our taste buds for bad behavior and the exploitation of our women, perpetuates our propensity and toleration of the Man-child and ultimately corrupts our views of healthy relationships.

Lets get refocused. Let’s not be the social norm, let’s be true trendsetters. Let’s rally around substance over surface, selflessness over selfishness. Let’s stop trying to live the THE lifestyle and start living purposeful lives. Let’s start addressing the issues that keep us from having healthy relationships with our sons & daughters, husbands or wives, our baby’s mothers or fathers, Let’s start spending more time on the person we are on the INSIDE as we do on the outside. Let’s be character tailors, true trendsetters, let’s…

“Vestire Internamente”
(Dress Internally)


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Monday Motivations: Responding to “Black Male Anger”


Below is an article by Marie Roker-Jones @RaisingGreatMen That got a great discussion going on Google+ take a look at the link and leave your comments and thoughts on how men can heal the pain that anger sometimes hides.

My Plea to Angry Black Men

I know for some the knee jerk reaction to this would be a flurry of “unfollows”

(I re-tweeted this on Twitter) and banishment from Circles, or “you don’t really understand what we black men go through.” But really the issue of anger in men is a real one, even more so in black men. That said I think it’s important that we individually can be responsible for our anger and how we respond to the maligning of our group character.

As a black man I can truly say I’ve felt the frustration, anger and utter sadness at:

1.) The perpetual stereotyping of who they think I am

2.) My own brothers perpetuating that stereotype by responding incorrectly with many times even more violence.
How we respond to this kind of injustice is just as important as how we eradicate it. And that starts with self.

As Leo Tolstoy once said:

“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”

We need to model the behavior we want to see. We can be the role model in the small interactions we have with people in our everyday lives: our neighbors, co-workers, families or any other relationships we have.

When I think of role models I think of Sidney Poitier and Harry Belafonte. These men rose above the injustice of their time with strength, elegance, focus and intelligence. Finally, working on our personal emotional intelligence is key. How? Yes, visualizing may be one way, as well as acknowledging that those feelings of anger are actually a misinterpretation of hurt we as a group feel. These are just some of the building block’s to countering the reactive nature of anger.

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Monday Motivations: “No Makeup” Today

I don’t usually don’t write a lot of posts on women, but this Kendrick Lamar song struck me a certain way and I thought it best to talk to you today.

With all the pressures you face each day, the continuous assaults on your self-esteem, the pressure to keep up at work, at home and everywhere in between. This is an open letter of encouragement:

I know you’re single sister, trying to navigate through all the mishaps of dating, dressing  and Divatude. Keep stepping, keep reaching and just know that when the dust settles from all the moves you make, from all the goals you meet we like you when you’re just being yourself, Au naturel, tender strong, vulnerable and confident.

Wives, we love your support, your nurturing, your power, we want to woo you like The Song of Solomon, and appreciate you like Proverbs 31. You juggle your career, our house, our kids without missing a beat. Lean on us, trust in us and believe in us the way we believe in you. You inspire us to be better boys, better sons, better fathers, better men.

In the morning when you get ready in the mirror  remember-the lipstick, gloss, blush and eye lashes only enhance you…so in honor of that beauty….

We see  the real you. We appreciate the real you.

“No make up today.”



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Monday Motivations: A Gentleman’s Guide To Cool

Monday Motivations: A Man's Guide To Cool

When someone says “That’s cool” or “He/She is cool” we are acknowledging a certain something that makes a person seem different from the norm. Akin to being stylish, I believe being cool is a delicate balance of self-confidence and self-control. It’s more than what you wear because it has to permeate what you do and how you live everyday. You can’t “try” to be cool, you can’t “act” cool, it has to happen organically and for some people it’s almost innate. In a post I wrote called “The 7 Habits Of Stylish People” I talked about style being 70% character and 30% clothing. I truly believe that. The same could be said about being cool. No amount of self-promoting “Machismo” or bravado will make you cool. Cool is knowing & being. It’s watching, saying and doing the right thing at the right time.Cool is observing and listening to everything, then filtering out the things you don’t need. One can be cool if one is generous & has integrity. Cool is humble. Cool is quiet but powerful. Cool is purposeful. Mentoring is cool, Selflessness is cool. Sidney Poitier is cool, Martin Luther King Jr. is cool.  Harry Belafonte is cool.

Are you Cool?

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Monday Motivations: The Power Of Simplicity

Most men like to keep things simple, uncomplicated and uncluttered. I am NOT a simple man. I’m long winded, passionate and at times maybe even a little too serious. People who know me say that I can take 30 minutes to tell a 5 minute story. I will cop to this. I like details, embellishments, I like to hear and see all angles of a subject before I form an opinion. Sometimes though, only a few ideas or facts are needed to move us forward. With that said I’m learning to embrace the power of simplicity. It’s a work in progress but I’m getting there.

When I think about the climate of the world, I think we all could use some of that simplicity today; simple living that keeps us from spiritual, emotional and financial trouble. Simple living that helps us in times of adversity, simplicity that doesn’t resign itself to mediocrity but finds honor in living with charity, responsibility and clarity.

Simplicity allows us to let go, to strip things down to its natural essence, see things for how they truly are. It doesn’t mean that it will be easy; it just means that it is easy to understand. My grandparents & great grandparents were humble people with simple values; “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” was the adage that they lived by. My grandfather (90yrs) once  called himself a “Blue Collar Gentleman.” I laughed but found that incredibly cool. “Work hard, provide for your family, don’t live outside your means and have a little fun in between.” was his only advice to me. Simply put, powerful words, wise advice.

My life will always be filled with changes, stops, starts, fits, failures and successes, but through it all as I get older and raise my family, I slowly realize that the collective wisdom of my grandparents & great grandparents and the simple wisdom they lived by could be of tremendous help for us today.

See? I got this post done in fewer than 500 words…progress!

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