Featured

Clarity! The Key to Changing to Your Life

I heard growing up and even today still use the phrase “when you know better, you do better” and I wholeheartedly believe that when you know what it is that you want in life, you get fully in the flow of going after and getting it! You’re focused. Committed and undistracted. You’ve accepted life for what it is and was and have made the decision to make life what you want it to be. You begin to live the life you love – like you should!

I know it sounds cliché. Successful and simply bright people have told me this. My mom and dad taught me this, but when I was living a life of excuses, I would simply write this common-sense advice off as the blahzay-blahzay that people say when they want you to pay for their services or just the stuff people say to make you feel good. I thank GOD for the day that I felt like I had lost it all and was crying my eyes out about my life. I was crying the ugly cry and pretty much called my mom to talk me off the ledge.  She thought I had just lost my mind but like all great moms, she listened, told me to stop crying, and got me together real quick. Even though things were going well in my life, I personally wasn’t fulfilled, my confidence was wavering and I was feeling like a robot, just going through the motions. I had a great job, a business, an investment property, a home, was blessed with family and friends, yet I was low-key feeling like I was losing. HOW is that? people asked. I had what most people dream of.  I had what I prayed for. I was comfortable, and practically coasting through life (although my life wasn’t perfect by a long shot and news flash, it still isn’t!!), yet I felt like what I was waking up and repeating every day just wasn’t enough.

It may sound selfish but hear me out. I’m a grateful person and I thank God every day for every being, thing, and opportunity in my life, but back then, I felt lost. Like somewhere down my path, I stopped engaging in areas that were truly impactful and I found that I wasn’t doing the things I was passionate about. I was jumping at phone calls, emails, always responding to requests from people, going where they wanted me to go with them, and doing things that I thought I had to do, but Lord knows I didn’t always want to. I was showing up for the world but I wasn’t really showing up for ME.  Not to mention I had a ton of bills and my business wasn’t as successful as I was hoping it would be.  I was constantly on the go and felt like every day, there were withdrawals instead of deposits in my life. My most fulfilling role, however, was and still remains, motherhood. No matter what my days looked like, my four beautiful children loving and relying on me, was all the joy, reminder, and kick in the butt that I needed.

I did some soul searching. The question kept popping in my head, well what is it? What’s wrong, what’s missing? Since you know what you don’t like, what DO you like? What do you want to do? What are you passionate about? I had to literally go through a series of challenging questions to myself; I even enlisted others to get to the heart of what I was truly wanting in life. I finally got CLARITY! I also accepted that all of my 30+ years of experiences, struggles, bumps, successes, bruises, and aha moments were all a part of the process that got me to that glorious moment.  Everything that I had gone through was necessary. Then it clicked and was clear as the day that I realized that it was ME, I had to get back to ME, unapologetically ME. Not the version that others wanted, or saw in me, but the real me, and I had the power to regroup and reset ME. Everything that I needed, was already within. I just had to change my mindset, and decide. I had gotten back to the basics.

Getting clear on what I wanted out of life helped me to start living more intentionally, changing my thought process, my habits, and my circle. I re-established boundaries, focused more on what mattered and I started to go deeper – thinking deeper and living deeper, into my greater and fuller self. My point is this. You and only you can change your life. No one will do the work for you. There are people who will help you, support, encourage, and cheer you on though. 

If there’s something burning within that keeps you up thinking at night or constantly wondering, “what if”, that’s that thing you should pursue! I’m not talking about a person. I’m talking about passion. I’m talking about your DESTINY! You can push yourself, one day at a time to a life flowing in greatness and intentions that you set for yourself. I hope you will.

If you need a coach or an accountability partner to help you get back to you, connect with me!

Peace & Blessings ~

Featured

Divine Southern Mustard and Turnip Greens with Smoked Turkey

So, fresh greens are my thing, but baaabyyyy, there’s something about a pot of southern style mustard and turnip mixed greens with smoked turkey tails (wings, or necks are great too), that just does it for me. Now this is a Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner staple in my family, going back as far as I can remember as a child, and they’re so good that I can’t help but make a pot almost monthly in my house, oh and that includes collards, and even kale. I love them all but prefer the way mustard greens sort of melt in your mouth. Growing up, my great-grandmother Amy would pull greens from her garden and casually prepare a wonderful, soulful dinner. I have tried to mimic her since, minus the garden, smh!

First things first, to make my stock, or “pot liquor”, I wash and then submerge 3-4 pieces of smoked meat in a large pot of water, 2 tablespoons of chicken bouillon, 1 tablespoon of onion powder and garlic powder, and boil on medium-high heat, covered for about an hour.

Then I thoroughly wash the greens in cold water. To do this, first grab the bunch and cut the stems at the base of the rubber band about an inch off the leaves, remove them from the stems (my great-grandmother taught me to keep some of the stem for the nutrients so I just pull the thickest part of the stem from the bottom). Pull out yellow, or slimy greens from the bunch and toss. Roll them up and chop horizontally to medium pieces, and finally lay them in salt water to clean. You don’t want any sand/dirt, bugs or grit on your greens so it’s important to wash them, remove from the dirty water, place into a clean bowl to rinse, wash and repeat this step (usually 3-4 times) until your water is clear, and your greens are free from debris.

After cleaning, add greens to the pot of smoked turkey, and add about 1-2 cups of more water if needed to slightly submerge greens (not too much). When greens start to wilt down, add 2 white turnip roots (cut in half), 1 diced onion, 1/2 diced green and red bell peppers, 1 tablespoon of crushed garlic, 1 tablespoon each of garlic powder, onion powder and my favorite, creole seasoning (or a little more, I like it spicy), and about 2 tablespoons of apple-cider vinegar. Cook on medium heat for 2 hours. Taste and add more seasoning to taste if you like, and when they’re tender, they’re done!

I hope you enjoy as much as my family does. For more recipes, follow @RobinsDivineDishes and Instagram. Plus, get some of my top requested and cooked recipes of 2020 here!

Ingredients

  • 2 bunches mustard greens, 1 bunch of turnip greens, washed and cut
  • 1 lb smoked turkey tails (or necks)
  • 6-8 cups water
  • 1 diced onion
  • 1/2 diced green bell pepper
  • 1/2 diced red bell pepper
  • 2 white turnip roots
  • 2 Tablespoons creole seasoning
  • 1 Tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 Tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon crushed garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons apple-cider vinegar

Thankful

This is a short but sweet note on why I’m so thankful and blessed! I woke up reflecting on my blessings! All of them, and even those that did not look like blessings at all.

I’m grateful for so many things, and people, experiences and lessons. Too many to count or spell out. I’m taking the time to listen more, and express and share LOVE, more. Also, taking time to rest, rejuvenate and restore because I’ve realized that if I’m not good, how can I be of any good? I hope you’ll take more time to reflect, and take good care of you, and the people around you.

Wishing you all the blessings and warmest wishes this season.

Love,

Robin

4 Strategies for Staying Productive

While the world, our families, careers, and businesses demand all of our time, how are you managing to stay sane, and productive? Here are just a few (out of several) strategies that work for me.

  1. Set a routine – Yes, get up and get going with a routine. Consistency is a major key to success so what does your routine look like? More of us are working from home now so it’s important to get up and get dressed like you’ve got somewhere to go because you do. Yep, down the hall to your home office, where you’ll be taking calls and video meetings, and making magic happen. Plus, when you look good, you feel good and perform well.  For me and my house, my youngest and I get fully dressed for virtual school and remote work, but before school and work start, my routine begins with prayer, affirmation, stretching and exercise, and inspirational music. Sometimes gospel, jazz, or hip-hop. I then take extra special time with my youngest cuddling and snuggling her out of bed and preparing her for her school day. Oh, and I prepare a hot breakfast for the kids too. Now getting my high-school age daughters to get up and dressed for their virtual classes is not my battle. I set the tone for my home, and believe our days are set up for success when I get us going with a positive routine.
  2. Plan your day – First things first. Make your schedule and your time your friend.  Review your calendar and to-do list, and create an action-plan to execute what’s most important FIRST. Prioritize what you “have to do” before doing those optional or less urgent tasks. What do you need to prep for? Who do you need to meet? Do you have all of the details to execute? Give yourself adequate travel, transition, and prep time between meetings so you’re not late, and so that you show up prepared and ready.  Plan time to review and clear out your emails. What’s urgent for everyone else, doesn’t always mean it needs to become your priority (except, and unfortunately in some workplace scenarios).  Plan out your workouts, social time, and dinner dates too. For sanity and productivity’s sake, planning makes the difference so plan for each day, but take it a step further with weekly, monthly, and quarterly planning.
  3. Eliminate or minimize distractions. It sounds crazy because we’re constantly interrupted, especially us working from home moms (sorry dads, but moms get interrupted more than you do, just admit it). With that being said, if we cut down the social media, and internet scrolling, we have more time for actual work. I swear I feel the information overload daily so I have had to set boundaries, and be intentional about protecting my time, space, and energy from those inundating distractions. The day that I learned NO was a full sentence was everything. If saying yes prevents you from being and giving your best at what is REQUIRED of you…you know what to do.
  4. Get Organized. To help you focus, it’s important to be organized. It’s not just about having a neat and organized space, although that is an important and helpful aspect – cluttered, unorganized space contributes to cluttered thoughts, confusion, and chaos.  I’m referring to having systems and strategies for how you get things done. What can be automated? Do you have checklists to keep you on task? If you constantly respond to emails or text messages, have some text ready to send. It usually takes time to get your systems in place but once you invest the time and resources in getting organized, those tools can work for you for a lifetime.  

After a productive day, celebrate your success, and just update your plans for the next stay. Then, exhale. Take a deep breath in, and let it out – a few times. Quiet down the noise (around you and going on in your head), then begin your night routine. I’m so grateful for my 5-year-old Lauriel because she keeps me honest with my daily routines, including our daily doll playing and TikTok dancing routine (inserts the crazy face emoji). Finally, rest. Our bodies and minds need to reset so that we can wake, be our best, and CONQUER the new list of people and things awaiting.

It’s A Beautiful New Day

(PHOTO BY OLIVIER DOULIERY / AFP) (PHOTO BY OLIVIER DOULIERY/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES)

Happy BLESSED Sunday. What a crazy week we just made it through. Waiting on the results from exercising our right to vote, and take our country back turned into the most stressful watching paint dry moment but thankfully, we made it through, and we now have a new President-Elect, and a new Vice-President Elect. Congratulations Former Vice-President Joe Biden, and Senator Kamala Harris – not only our 1st woman – but 1st woman of color to serve in this role. I’m so proud. My nerves had taken hold of me the week prior, and my brain was in information overload mode, so guess what I did this weekend… NADA. Nothing. Absolutely nothing is right. I took a moment to clear and relax my mind, body, and spirit. I didn’t even answer my phone much, and I didn’t get to organizing the pile of paper I was planning to clean up. Oh. Well.

It’s a beautiful new day, the sun is shining and we’re alive and able to make today great so that’s what I’m doing today. I just wanted to encourage you to stop what you’re doing right now to take a moment to reflect, clear your mind, cleanse your heart, and declutter your plate. If you’ve been running on fumes, ask yourself if everything you’re doing that’s keeping you so busy, is everything you WANT or SHOULD be doing? If not, what’s stopping you from stopping? Sometimes we spread ourselves so thin. Why do we do that to ourselves? For me, it has been because I’m so passionate about many things, so I get involved, and just start doing. I’ve realized though that I can’t afford to keep doing that to myself, or others. I’ve made the decision to stop doing some things, and to re-prioritize myself and my family, and to prioritize doing what makes me happy. If this is you, make some adjustments. Free yourself, and most importantly take good care of you, because YOU MATTER. Your health matters. Your mental wellness matters.

2020 has proven to be a year for the history books but I’m optimistic and prayerful that it will end soon peacefully. We need a fresh start, so I’m taking steps to purge and cleanse so that I can walk into the New Year ready! Are you ready?

Why You Need a Coach

I’ve paid experienced and well established experts to COACH me. I’ve obviously had my own experiences that I’ve learned from, but as I’ve grown as a person, personally and professionally, I’ve grown in mindset, and decided to seek out others who could help get me to where I wanted to be. I’m not going to lie, at first, it almost KILLED me to pay someone to help me, but when I tell you the value I received from them was worth every penny to help me get to making six figures!!

First of all, I’m a full-time professional, full-time mother, full-time daughter and heck, there’s not much more time time to be… well, yes there is – but the reality is, to be great, I needed to cut out or carve out some extra time for my learning. So there. I have had coaches, and I’m grateful for every last one of them. They helped me get clear on my goals. They showed me how they got to where they are. They gave me actionable steps to achieve what it was I wanted to achieve. You see, at 40 years old, I no longer have time to spend spinning and figuring stuff out. Every single one of my hours is valuable.

What I want you to know is this. I’m passionate about what I do, and it is my sincerest goal to see people WIN and move towards whatever success looks like for them. I love GOD and I know exactly where my blessings flow from. My passion, my gift and my purpose is to help people. That’s it. What I learned over time though is that when people want to help themselves, they DO, and they open the doors and let others in.

You’ve got to ask yourself “what do I want?”. If you are ready to move forward, let s work together.

5 Habits to Break in 2019

Happy New Year friends! I’m so grateful to have made it! Like me, I’m sure you experienced a few challenges last year. You may have even picked up or carried over some habits that you simply could live without.

This got me thinking, and I came up with five habits that some of us could break starting now:

  1. Procrastinating. Just stop putting things off. It makes no sense to keep doing this. Seize the moment, and take action NOW! (I’m definitely talking to myself with this one)!
  2. Being an angry, resentful YES person. SAY NO and mean it. You can’t effectively be everything to everybody. Focus on what or who you truly want to contribute your time and energy to. It’s ok to turn things down every now and again. People are understanding. Remember, this is YOUR life and you only get one.
  3. Eating any-and-everything while in the next breath saying you want to lose weight. No one believes you anymore and we are sick of hearing it. Don’t change for others but do change because you want to (or need to).
  4. Puh-leeeeze stop spreading negative and toxic energy… at home, work, social gatherings, in church! While you may not care, you look crazy, and if you haven’t noticed, people run away from you. Not only that, if you truly reflect, how has your life been treating you? Could things be better? It takes good energy and work to commit to that draining lifestyle. Why not use that energy for good? Last but not least, number five.
  5. Putting yourself last. We tend to invest in others so much every single day that we forget who we are. We believe that we exist to help and be there for everyone else that we don’t leave room for ourselves to need. We blank that idea from our minds, and give, and give, and give, and give until we are left with nothing, and in some cases, no one.

With the start of a new year and new month, let’s change our mindset, and make some positive and healthy life changes!

Happy and healthy 2019 blessings to you and yours!

%d bloggers like this: