Many of you know that I’ve been an advocate for survivors of abuse for many years. As a person who in the past has been physically, verbally, psychologically, and financially abused it’s important to me that we reveal all of the tactics used by abusers to wield a false-sense of “power” over their “victim”. I don’t simply wait until Domestic Violence Awareness Month to educate the masses. I’m focused on year-round help, healing, and empowerment. Since we’re starting a new year I decided to “dig in the crates” and find an oldie but goody message that I shared from the past on my Paradigm Life blog, and reposted here.

When we look at abusers, one type of person that often goes overlooked but always leaves you perplexed and bewildered is the narcissist. This is because the vast majority of us don’t know that someone’s a narcissist and many narcissists don’t even self-identify (why in the world would they accept responsibility and take ownership for something that doesn’t make them sparkle bright?). They’re simply labeled as “arrogant”, “pompous”, or “spoiled”. But it can go deeper and darker depending on how long this personality has been free to roam and stir up a path of destruction. Left unchecked and untreated they can disrupt families, workplaces, communities and more—and in their minds, everyone is to blame but them.

When we look at the #MeToo movement you can’t help but to see a common thread amongst the individuals being accused of harassment and abuse–decades of narcissism (of various degrees) on the loose. For the most part these are career-related, workplace scenarios being described. Or examples of powerful individuals using the power that they have achieved from their careers to take something from someone less powerful. Imagine the context with personal interactions within the home, with spouses, family and friends. This personality type can be toxic to any environment left unprotected.

Of course there are levels and degrees of narcissism (from basic to sociopath to full on psychopath) and there are many layers of tactics that they deploy (to include gas-lighting, revisionism, and the silent treatment). I’ve personally been on the receiving end of them all, hence one of the reasons that I share with others who may be experiencing some of the same trauma.

Read my October 24, 2014 post from my Paradigm Life blog as we discussed the art and madness of the dreaded Silent Treatment.

Now let’s also be clear, that not every adult who opts for the silent treatment route is a narcissist. They’re just immature and childish, and haven’t let go of the preschool antics. However, if you see and experience a pattern of behavior that frequently includes this tactic—you’re most likely tussling with a narcissist. Beware!

~Natasha

Copyright 2014-2018. Natasha L. Foreman/Natasha Foreman Bryant. All Rights Reserved.
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Here’s another message that I reflect upon from the past. On April 5, 2016 I wrote this message as a reflection to a Facebook post written by a man who was reflecting over his marriage and the ups and downs that he experienced trying to juggle marriage, career, and family.

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I shared the message as I share it today, with hopes that it reaches those single individuals who dream of one day marrying, those married couples who are struggling and contemplating divorce, those married couples who haven’t yet hit any bumps, and to those who are divorced and aren’t quite sure if getting married again is the thing for them.

Please read this message, reflect on it, share your thoughts, and then be sure to forward this message to others. With more and more people waiting to marry, others divorcing in staggering rates, or an increasing number of people opting out and choosing to bypass marriage altogether—it’s refreshing to look through the lens of someone who struggled, recovered, and reclaimed the connection he was losing because his priorities were misaligned. It can be a message that can help others before they cross that bridge, as well as those who have crossed it and are sliding down a collapsing hillside. It can also help those who have reached the bottom of the hillside and wonder if it’s worth taking the journey again.

I look forward to your positive comments.

~Natasha

Original post: https://natashaforeman.com/2016/04/05/a-post-on-marriage-family-career-and-community/

I think this week will be a week of deep reflection and taking small moments to browse my insights over the years–to see my areas of growth as well as stagnation.

I also know that I have new followers to my sites and social media profiles, and some people would guess to know the true me. Nowadays it can be difficult with all of the snapping, chatting, posting, and tweeting we’re doing.

We’re all, for the most part, great marketers and do a pretty good job of projecting the image that we want the world to “buy” about our lives and our values. By looking at my social media I think that you can tell that I’m definitely not “pitching perfect” or even any resemblance. I’m just sharing bits and pieces of my life as they unfold. But even with these small glimpses it leaves people to make assumptions about my life and the person that I am.

Well on June 14, 2015 I shared with the world some interesting facts about me. They are still true today. Oddly enough, I find that even when I speak openly about my quirks and flaws, boundaries, and values there’s always someone who challenges it, doesn’t believe it, tries to change me and my mind–and then is left dazed and confused when they get exactly what I said they would. Just like you I want to be accepted, flaws and all. Don’t make me more than I am or try to reduce me in any way. I’m not your Superwoman or your doormat.

So if you never had the chance to read this message, or you simply need a refresher, here you go!

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Original post: https://natashaforeman.com/2015/06/14/no-super-woman-here-get-to-know-natasha/

Let’s journey back to November 30, 2016 for a moment.

I wrote this message for girls and women worldwide, to add more positive energy to our #GirlPower. As I sit here in deep reflection I decided to look back on my past messages to see where my mind and heart were at those times. I saw this message and felt that it was more than appropriate to share again today.

These past several months have been a culmination of empowerment and shaming just in the US alone, and I wanted to pause for a moment in this sea of chaos to share some love and light. This isn’t an anti-male message, it’s merely a pro-female one.

Please read and share this with others so that we might all get the chance to breathe.

Original post: https://natashaforeman.com/2016/11/30/this-is-dedicated-to-women-and-girls-around-the-world-yeah-im-talking-to-and-about-you/

Copyright 2016-2018. Natasha L. Foreman/Natasha Foreman Bryant. All Rights Reserved.

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Today we celebrate and honor the life and legacy of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Rather than speak my own words I’ve decided to share his late great wife, Mrs. Coretta Scott King’s words about what this holiday should mean for all of us.

The Meaning of The King Holiday

BY CORETTA SCOTT KING

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday celebrates the life and legacy of a man who brought hope and healing to America. We commemorate as well the timeless values he taught us through his example — the values of courage, truth, justice, compassion, dignity, humility and service that so radiantly defined Dr. King’s character and empowered his leadership. On this holiday, we commemorate the universal, unconditional love, forgiveness and nonviolence that empowered his revolutionary spirit.

We commemorate Dr. King’s inspiring words, because his voice and his vision filled a great void in our nation, and answered our collective longing to become a country that truly lived by its noblest principles. Yet, Dr. King knew that it wasn’t enough just to talk the talk, that he had to walk the walk for his words to be credible. And so we commemorate on this holiday the man of action, who put his life on the line for freedom and justice every day, the man who braved threats and jail and beatings and who ultimately paid the highest price to make democracy a reality for all Americans.

The King Holiday honors the life and contributions of America’s greatest champion of racial justice and equality, the leader who not only dreamed of a color-blind society, but who also lead a movement that achieved historic reforms to help make it a reality.

On this day we commemorate Dr. King’s great dream of a vibrant, multiracial nation united in justice, peace and reconciliation; a nation that has a place at the table for children of every race and room at the inn for every needy child. We are called on this holiday, not merely to honor, but to celebrate the values of equality, tolerance and interracial sister and brotherhood he so compellingly expressed in his great dream for America.

It is a day of interracial and intercultural cooperation and sharing. No other day of the year brings so many peoples from different cultural backgrounds together in such a vibrant spirit of brother and sisterhood. Whether you are African-American, Hispanic or Native American, whether you are Caucasian or Asian-American, you are part of the great dream Martin Luther King, Jr. had for America. This is not a black holiday; it is a peoples’ holiday. And it is the young people of all races and religions who hold the keys to the fulfillment of his dream.

We commemorate on this holiday the ecumenical leader and visionary who embraced the unity of all faiths in love and truth. And though we take patriotic pride that Dr. King was an American, on this holiday we must also commemorate the global leader who inspired nonviolent liberation movements around the world. Indeed, on this day, programs commemorating my husband’s birthday are being observed in more than 100 nations.

The King Holiday celebrates Dr. King’s global vision of the world house, a world whose people and nations had triumphed over poverty, racism, war and violence. The holiday celebrates his vision of ecumenical solidarity, his insistence that all faiths had something meaningful to contribute to building the beloved community.

The Holiday commemorates America’s pre-eminent advocate of nonviolence — the man who taught by his example that nonviolent action is the most powerful, revolutionary force for social change available to oppressed people in their struggles for liberation.

This holiday honors the courage of a man who endured harassment, threats and beatings, and even bombings. We commemorate the man who went to jail 29 times to achieve freedom for others, and who knew he would pay the ultimate price for his leadership, but kept on marching and protesting and organizing anyway.

Every King Holiday has been a national “teach-in” on the values of nonviolence, including unconditional love, tolerance, forgiveness and reconciliation, which are so desperately-needed to unify America. It is a day of intensive education and training in Martin’s philosophy and methods of nonviolent social change and conflict-reconciliation. The Holiday provides a unique opportunity to teach young people to fight evil, not people, to get in the habit of asking themselves, “what is the most loving way I can resolve this conflict?”

On the King Holiday, young people learn about the power of unconditional love even for one’s adversaries as a way to fight injustice and defuse violent disputes. It is a time to show them the power of forgiveness in the healing process at the interpersonal as well as international levels.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is not only for celebration and remembrance, education and tribute, but above all a day of service. All across America on the Holiday, his followers perform service in hospitals and shelters and prisons and wherever people need some help. It is a day of volunteering to feed the hungry, rehabilitate housing, tutoring those who can’t read, mentoring at-risk youngsters, consoling the broken-hearted and a thousand other projects for building the beloved community of his dream.

Dr. King once said that we all have to decide whether we “will walk in the light of creative altruism or the darkness of destructive selfishness. Life’s most persistent and nagging question, he said, is `what are you doing for others?’” he would quote Mark 9:35, the scripture in which Jesus of Nazareth tells James and John “…whosoever will be great among you shall be your servant; and whosoever among you will be the first shall be the servant of all.” And when Martin talked about the end of his mortal life in one of his last sermons, on February 4, 1968 in the pulpit of Ebenezer Baptist Church, even then he lifted up the value of service as the hallmark of a full life. “I’d like somebody to mention on that day Martin Luther King, Jr. tried to give his life serving others,” he said. “I want you to say on that day, that I did try in my life…to love and serve humanity.

We call you to commemorate this Holiday by making your personal commitment to serve humanity with the vibrant spirit of unconditional love that was his greatest strength, and which empowered all of the great victories of his leadership. And with our hearts open to this spirit of unconditional love, we can indeed achieve the Beloved Community of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s dream.

May we who follow Martin now pledge to serve humanity, promote his teachings and carry forward his legacy into the 21st Century.

© 2018, The King Center

Retrieved from: http://www.thekingcenter.org/meaning-king-holiday

This month let’s connect and see how my team and I can help your new or seasoned business.

At Foreman & Associates, LLC we specialize in management consulting, individual and team training, and business support services—you can outsource work to us or we can help your team setup your systems of success.

Companies call on us for large and small projects, operations and management overhauls, full-cycle recruiting, and to coach owners and executives to be more efficacious leaders.

Visit FOREMANLLC.COM for more details. Let’s make some moves together so that it can be our best year ever!

~Natasha

Enter 2018 hopeful and with great focus and determination–ridding yourself of people and things that will hold you back, push and keep you down, or drain the essence that makes you uniquely you. This applies to all relationships—love, friendships, and business.

My intuition is strong and I read people and energy well. I know those who have the thicker skin to endure life’s challenges, and those with thin skin who are quick to complain and place blame on everyone and everything but self.

I’ve predicted the personal and professional relationships that would last years and those that would only last months. Not everyone is cut out to splash in the rain with you. Not everyone can look back and reflect over years of overcoming adversity to see opportunities and blessings, rather than obstacles and failings.

Look closely at the people around you and those who attempt to enter your inner circle—how do they treat their family and friends? How do they handle conflict, misunderstandings, and adversity? Do they shut down, pout, give silent treatments, play the victim, and dwell on all-things-negative? Do they refuse to address issues and opt instead to avoid them?

Run from that person.

Unless they are family, stay as far away from this person as humanly possible. They are toxic and don’t even know it—visualize the warning sign and steer clear. They will emotionally, spiritually, and physically drain you. Some may even drain you financially.

There are some people who are “ride or die” and then there are others who need constant coddling and reassurance, which means you’re supporting them more than they support themselves and definitely more than they support you.

Let’s be crystal clear–gender has nothing to do with it.

I’ve known strong women and weak men. I’ve known some men who latch on like leaches feeding constantly on your energy and talent. While I’ve known some women who simply say “tell me what you need” or “tell me how I can help” and they get it done.

A person’s character means more to me than loyalty. A person dependent upon you for both the tangible and intangible can be loyal—heck, they have to because you are their supplier. I want to see people in bad times not just good ones. If I know you will ignore and give your best friend and family members the silent treatment, I know you will do it to me. I don’t have time or patience for foolishness and definitely not for emotional abuse. If when it comes to other people you’re slow to forgive or refuse to do it at all, then it doesn’t make sense for me to expect any different from you when we have arguments and misunderstandings.

How do you respond to life when others are reacting? If your natural inclination is to break down and spiral into a darkness of dreary and negativity, then please keep your distance. I’m not here for hand-holding, coddling, or enabling. Get on your grown man/woman and rise to the occasion.

When life blindsides me are you going to stand beside me or ride my back? When I’m having a bad day, week, or month are you going to add to my grief or find ways to be a positive light? When it rains will you get out and splash around with me or will you give me one more thing to stress over?

Some people aren’t built for seasonal weather. They’re good in the sunshine and an emotional rollercoaster all other times. I’m not trying to carry around and manage your baggage. I’ve got my own. So excuse me I need to grab my umbrella and rain boots so that I can laugh and splash around a bit!

~Natasha