Friday, January 30, 2015

New Year! Now What!

By: Arlene Rodriguez
As the first month of 2015 is winding down, our excitement of beginning new goals may have gone from “New Year New Me” to “New Year Now What.” Ask yourself? What do you want to invest in this year? How would you feel once you reach your specific goals that you set for yourself? 

There are seven areas in our lives that important to invest in. These areas include physical, intellectual, career, social, financial, family, and spiritual. These very same factors make up who we are. Finding time to balance these important areas in our life can be extremely difficult so here  are some tips that may assist you in reaching your goals. 

Let's look at at a goal plan for a common New Year's Resolution: Weight Loss.
      1)  First, once you have an idea of your goal or reach area, identify the specifics of your goal.
General Goal) “I want to lose 20 pounds by the beginning of the summer”
Specific goal) I will lose 2 pounds each month by monitoring my portions, increase physical activity, and drinking more water.
 **Helpful to make small steps to reach your main goal.

2) Identify if your goal are measurable, meaning, do I know when I would like to reach that goal?
Measurable goal) I will lose 10 pounds by July 6th, 2015 by monitoring my portions, increase physical activity, and drinking more water.
**By having a specific date, we could keep close tabs on their progress each month and feel a sense of accomplishment.

   3)  Last, Own your goals. It’s so easy to do what others expect from us and what we THINK      others want us to do. In these cases, we make lose sight of these goals if we don’t OWN our set goals.
 Example) “I want to lose weight to feel good and to feel confident in my clothes.”

No goal is too big or too small. It’s helpful to keep track of your steps towards your goal and “own it.” Live well and take care..

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Make 2015 YOUR YEAR!!!

As the New Year Approaches, our timelines, text messages, and emails are flooded with phrases like the one above. We read post after post of people proclaiming that this year will be different, this year is my year, this year my dreams are going to come true. It is honestly a New Year's tradition; out with the old and in with the new. When the clock strikes at midnight, people erupt into a celebration because they can begin to write the first entry of a 365 page book. 

Unfortunately, by the middle of February, the same promises and proclamations we made are already broken. We are fused to same problems and bad habits of the previous year and we, once again, anxiously await for the new year to change. 

I completely understand the excitement that the New Year brings. I know it is a chance to start a new and the opportunity to change, but why do we wait until a special day on calendar to change our lives, chase our dreams, and make things happen? Why wait?? 

If you want to change your live, change your career, chase a dream, end a bad habit, or get out of an unhealthy situation, why are you waiting for the New Year. This day does not hold some secret to changing your life, you do. There is so much power in you because of who created you, so utilize your strength and your power to make things happen right now!

Here is the secret:

1) Set a specific goal that is measurable. When setting goals, think of all the smaller adjustments you can make in you life to accomplish that big goal and list them on a piece of paper in a form of a to-do list. Master each "sub-goal" checking them off one by one until your "big" goal is attainable. This helps you to truly change your lifestyle and accomplish your goal in a real way.

For Example: Big Goal: I want to loose 20 pounds this year!
                       Sub Goals; I will cut out junk food three days a week, I will walk around my block                                             three times a week,I will do a mile on the treadmill, I will count calories,                                               etc...

2) Visual Your Goals: Post visual representations of your goals in the places that you frequently look at. Seeing a visual reminder of your goal every morning before you start your day can definitely help set the tone for a day that breeds success in relation to accomplishing your goal.

3) Stay accountable to your Goal: Find a friend or family member that wants to see you win as much as you do. Tell this person your goal and share your struggles and triumphs with this person as you endure this journey of change.

4) Celebrate your success: With each milestone accomplished and each positive step you take, celebrate your success. Write a brief note to yourself explaining how proud you are of yourself, meet with your goal buddy to celebrate your success, or treat yourself.

NOW is the time to CHANGE your LIFE!! DON'T WAIT!
All the best and Happy New Year

Thursday, January 8, 2015

My Hair Won’t Grow…Heeeellllppppp!!!

Fear not curl friends, the truth is your hair is always in a state of growth.  I’ll have you know that there are four phases of hair growth:  Anagen, Catagen, Telogen and Exogen.  Each hair on your head is in one of the three stages, therefore your hair is always growing.  Hair growth and length is largely determined by genetics.

Top 5 Tips for Retaining Length.  

Consider this:

1. Detangle gently with conditioner.  Conditioner gives the hair plenty of slip. Don’t forget the best tool to use is your hand.   

2. Trim split ends regularly.Split ends cannot be mended or repaired.  They must be cut!  If not, they will continue to split until the hair eventually breaks off.

3. Keep hair moisturized.  Properly moisturized hair is less susceptible to breakage.

4. Utilize protective styles and low manipulative styles.  

5. Avoid excessive heat styling.  If used too much, heat tools can dry out the hair making it dry and brittle.

Cheers to healthy hair and length retention!

Jasmine Stephens, BA
MsJStyles The Salon

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Monday, January 5, 2015

2014: NCJ's Recap!

    2014 was truly an amazing year! I am so thankful for each and every moment: the challenges that prepared me for the blessings, the joy and love from my family and friends, the goals accomplished, the dreams realized, the vunerable moments that placed me on my knees in total worship and submission trusting God and the moments thanking God for his blessings and favor! It has been a epic and transformative year!

    I have truly learned so much about myself this year; I learned how to be a better christian, wife, mother, teacher, friend, daughter, sister, family member, and I am shocked by the boldness and tenacity inside of me that I allowed to be dormant for so long. I have transformed my personality from that of a introvert to budding extrovert. I feel enough boldness to talk to people, listen to their stories attentively, ask questions, and get answers.

    This year, my purpose of empowering young girls and women was revealed to me. It was peculiar because it was always been there, but I was too afraid to embrace it fully. Speaking of fear, The biggest lesson I learned was to replace my fear with my faith and because of that I know the best is still yet to come! 

    I can't wait to see what God has for me in 2015! 

    Hugs and Love.
    Happy New Year! 
    Blessings to you all!


Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year!!!!

Happy New Year!!! Wishing you all the best as you embark on this uncharted journey of 2015! Dream Big and Accomplish even bigger goals! 

Hugs and Love, 

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Love, Marriage, and Kids....

I still remember when my husband and I began dating. It felt like we were living out the script from the most romantic movie. I was the center of his world and he was the center of mine. We spent every waking moment thinking about each other, calling each other, doing the sweetest most romantic things---we were quite frankly an annoyance to all around us.. lol

Well, My husband and I have been married for almost 10 years and quite frankly, we are still that annoyingly cute couple that we were when we started dating almost 14 years ago. Like most couples, having a baby can completely change the dynamic of even the strongest marriage creating a wall of separation between husband and wife. Becoming Parents has definitely made it more difficult to be the annoyingly cute couple, but we still manage to keep our love for each growing and burning stronger with these tips.

1. Remind yourself that you were a couple before you became parents....
A new baby can change your life and your priorities. It can mature you and develop you in ways that you can't imagine, but it shouldn't under any circumstances change your personality as a couple. Try to keep your identity as couple by still doing the things you used to love to do together before babies entered the picture. Even though you may not be able to easily plan a date or spontaneous trips, you can still spend some quality time together by having a move night at home, staging a romantic dinner at home, or speed dialing the grandparents or other family members and have a quick night on the town.

2. No Guilt Zone: There is absolutely nothing wrong with taking some time away from the kids to spend time with your spouse. You are not a bad parent if you decide to take some time to reconnect with your spouse and keep the proverbial fire of passion burning! In fact, this makes you an excellent parent. Happy couples raise happy and healthy kids. Don't get so caught up in child-rearing that you neglect each other, grow apart, and inadvertently loose the glue that holds you together as a couple. Nothing negatively impacts children more than unhappy, arguing, fighting, distance parents. Model healthy couple traits and ppositivelyimpact your children's future dating habits and relationship choices.

3. Remind yourself that you are still Vibrant, hot, and FUN: Yes, as a woman, your body changes, you feel like you have less time in the day, you feel like you are a "Mommy." Yes all these things are true and accurate feelings but these feelings are not all there is to you. After my first and second child, my body shape changed and my waist line fluctuated LOL! These changes didn't stop me from getting my hair done, my nails done, buying clothes that made me feel amazing, treating myself to a relaxing and pampering day. Remember that No Guilt Zone- Don't make your self feel guily for taking care of yourself. A healthy you will help create a healthy marriage and maintain healthy life for your children.

4. K.I.S.S- Keep It Simply Silly!: I really don't know who started the myth that couple time has to be this over the top, balloon riding in the stars, overly expensive dinners, diamonds and rose petals, etc... Couple time should be simply and intimate. It's the simply things that draw couples closer together and simplicity is a must if you are juggling your responsibility as parents with maintaining a healthy relationship.

Hope this helps! Hugs and love,