I enjoy being me. My life is blessed, even during the roughest of storms. I’m determined to see my life and myself through the lens of love and appreciation, even when I feel like crap.

Every now and then I want to make myself smile and laugh hysterically. The other day I decided to play with filters and overlays on Snap. Below are the results of my adventure. There are even two videos (at the end) of my silliness.

Lesson embraced: don’t ever stop having fun, don’t look to others to entertain or uplift you—do it yourself!

Hopefully this message speaks to someone who takes life and themselves way too seriously. If your stress levels are maxed out (or almost there), take a load off—lighten up with some self-love!

Love always,

Natasha

Copyright 2019. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

Someone needs to hear this, see this, speak this, and know this.

The stumble is NOT the end. When you choose to stop walking, THAT’S the end.

Don’t stop walking.

When you stumble, if you happen to fall down, then get up and dust yourself off.

If your fall was dramatic you probably are discombobulated and unsure of the correct direction in which to go. Yes, it happens. It may take a moment to figure out which way to go, and it may require counsel or input from others, but once you have confirmed the way to go—get to walking!!

Don’t be concerned about the pace. As long as there’s forward movement, then there’s progress. As you strengthen and increase your confidence, your pace and intensity will also increase. The focus should be on continuing the journey—by any means necessary!

~Natasha L. Foreman

P.S. Thanks Arleen for inspiring me to write and share this with others. I’m paying it forward. Love you sis!!!!

IG: @msnatashaforeman
FB: @NatashaLForeman
Twitter: @NatashaLForeman

I’m so excited to hear and see the announcement from Valeisha Butterfield Jones, promoting her new YouTube channel, “Valeisha’s Desk” that will begin streaming in January 2019.

Valeisha’s been delaying this idea for over two years, and with a lot of prayer and loving encouragement she has accepted the journey to share her story and daily walk to help others along their journey.

I was excited to share my two cents with her several weeks ago when she posed the question on her Instagram account of “should I do this?” My answer was a bold “yes” and then I explained my reasoning. I even admitted that my encouragement and loving push to her was also my self-talk to stop delaying my calling to do and be more. She read my comment and replied with thanks. I then crossed my fingers and toes, with hope that enough positive responses would cement in her mind the urgency of taking this big leap. Eventually there were tons of people commenting and supporting her idea, and I was giddy with anticipation.

Now some of you may be scratching your heads and wondering “who is this woman, and why does Natasha want me to watch a promo video about her?”

If you don’t know Valeisha Butterfield Jones, let me provide a very quick bio:

She has been an executive with Google since 2016, where she first served as Head of Black Community Engagement. This year she accepted a promotion to become the Global Head of Women and Black Community Engagement for Google.

For the past 10 years she has also served as the CEO of Women in Entertainment Empowerment Network (WEEN)—a nonprofit that uplifts and mentors women working in entertainment while striving to promote positive images of women in society.

Her prior professional journey led her through careers in politics and entertainment serving in various roles such as: working for the U.S. Department of Commerce (under the Obama Administration), EA to the president of HBO Sports, and working her way up from intern to Executive Director at Rush Communications (entertainment and fashion mogul, Russell Simmons, media firm). These are just a few of the stops along Valeisha’s professional journey.

On the personal front: Valeisha’s married to NBA star Dahntay Jones, and they have two super awesome sons. Many of us in this big ole’ world look forward to watching this family grow, shine, climb, and serve together. I know that I look forward to witnessing snippets of their life.

So without further ado, please check out Valeisha’s promo video and then subscribe to her channel. Thanking you in advance!

~Natasha

Wow…wow…wow…I’m 43 years young (as of yesterday) and it’s amazing to make the attempt to process that. What does it mean, beyond the fact that this whipper snapper has only been on this planet for 43 years?

I’m really not sure.

I’ve been raising hell on some level since my head poked out of my mom’s womb. I’ve seen, done and experienced a lot. I’ve laughed more than I cried.

There’s still so much more that I want to do, see, and experience. I’ve traveled to several countries, but there’s more than 100 that I still want to visit and explore. I’ve met hundreds of people, yet my heart yearns to meet and connect with hundreds more. I look forward to learning and sharing with people from different faiths, nationalities, and backgrounds. I look forward to years of continued service in all of the spaces and places that many others would never consider.

I want to experience more “firsts” and doing so boldly. I look forward to my best and brightest days. I look forward to smiling more. The picture that I share with you today captures the love that I felt at that moment and the love that I feel today. I enjoyed every second of my birthday. I enjoyed being loved on and sharing in that love. Thanks to everyone who sent me birthday wishes and to those who provided birthday treats. Thanks KLB for the pamper day. Here’s to more love, life, and light!

Happy birthday to me!

~Natasha

Copyright 2018. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

Many of us prefer noise to silence, because in the stillness of silence we are alone with our thoughts and feelings, while at the same time closely if not fully aligned with our highest energy Source—our Creator. That massive power can be intimidating to many people. It reflects your greatness as the creation, and it shows your smallness in relation to the One that created you.

Here’s a great quote from Mother Teresa:

It’s easier to avoid the realness and deepness that is required in silence, when we instead hide in the chaos of noise caused by technology and human chatter.

In my opinion there is nothing more beautiful than those brief moments of silence. That’s why I love “sensory deprivation” pods and chambers, especially the ones that allow me to float in water; as they blot out sight and sound I’m free to tune in to self. The energy that flows through you is exhilarating and restorative. I feel centered and truly “woke” beyond human description. You don’t need any devices or routines. Just sit or lie in silence, breathing naturally, and listen. Researchers stated that these chambers and pods simulate what life is like for a baby in a womb. It’s an absolute state of peace if you allow yourself to surrender to the experience.

To those with active auditory and visual capabilities, you may think that you are at a greater advantage than those who do not possess those capabilities. On the surface, yes you can see and hear what others can’t. But when you go below the surface, below your limited human comprehension, you realize that those who don’t possess the auditory capabilities to hear sound as the majority of human populations, actually have a deeper awareness of and connectivity to that Energy within because they live in that active “silence” each day—hearing, feeling, and speaking with our Creator. Remove the additional capability of vision, and the depth expands. The experience becomes richer.

While you think they may envy you, and some may, the irony is that the absence of the stimuli we are obsessed with and consumed by is a blessing to them. They are free from these hindrances. You can actually say that they have almost distraction-free conversations with God every day. I say “almost” because our internal mind chatter and ego can get in the way. But other than that, the internal link that I’ve described is like having a wifi connection that never weakens or breaks. All you have to do is tune in.

For the rest of us we have to fight to disconnect from the countless visual and auditory stimuli, then get out of ‘our heads’ so-to-speak, relax our breathing, and then turn inward in silence. If we can….

Ponder that….

~Natasha

Copyright 2018. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

I love this quote from Hannah Whitall Smith. It is featured in the book, 100 Days of Grace for Women [published by Freeman-Smith].

I keep reading these words and visualizing my circumstances from the outside looking in.

Try doing this.

How many times did your mind wander from your visualization? Did you lose focus?

It requires the ability to be both patient and present, to tune out the clutter that normally distracts us, and tune in to what’s before us and in us.

In every spiritual text that we read we’re taught to be patient and to be present. We ignorantly avoid both instructions. They require stillness to not wander, faith to believe in better, strength to persevere, and courage to embrace the unknowns and face the fears that surface.

Yes, it’s difficult during trials and tribulations to stand in the presence of now, look around and see and feel the hurt and anguish that our present provides. But there’s no escaping it. All of the options of escape are not healthy and don’t allow us to live fully in our current bodies. We can attempt to run and hide, barely existing in a constant state of depression, a dark cloud surrounding us; we can try to escape through alcohol, drugs, and sex—all have temporary highs and long-lasting lows. The attempt of escape is wasted energy; it is futile; it is pure insanity. We will always be returned to our present, to the now, and faced with the reality of what is and isn’t. When we measure the pain of the trials and tribulations in comparison to the self-inflicted pain we bring upon ourselves through the constant acts of escapism, the wise can see that the latter is far more painful than the former—and oddly enough, the route of escapism takes much longer than had we just been patient in the present state of tribulation and waited for the gateway to be revealed to us so that we could walk from here to there without chaos. Our depression is caused by chaos from our past that was never resolved and healed. We’ve brought our past into our present, and if we don’t resolve it now we are destined to drag this bag of crap into our future—never escaping it, never being free, just allowing ourselves to be drained by it day after day until we take our last breath. Misery exemplified.

Spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle teaches that our past is only a series of moments that were at that time the “now”. They are no longer. We mentally and emotionally dial in and access those records to connect with what used to be. An occasional reference point is fine, especially if we learned lessons from that time. An attempt to dwell in that space means that we are no longer present in the now, our backs are turned and our focus is on what was and most likely will never be again, which is a waste of energy—-and steps closer to our spiritual and physical death.

You probably just gasped when you read those last words, but let’s consider something. What happens to all batteries that are drained of energy? They die.

If they aren’t rechargeable batteries, we discard them. That’s most of our batteries. Used up and tossed out. A great number of our batteries die from our improper use; we leave them engaged inside objects that we rarely use and those objects simply drain the batteries day after day, sometimes even forcing the battery to leak acid (creating a mess for us to clean up).

We leave batteries in flashlights, toys, kitchen gadgets, and the like. We don’t think to remove the batteries after we use the item and before we put it back in a drawer, closet, or container. We know that the battery will die at some point, but we still waste its life, unnecessarily, by leaving the batteries inside and walking away. We move forward to leave those batteries behind us, in our past, as we now focus on our new present. But that doesn’t stop the batteries from using energy, even at a reduced rate. They are still connected to a source that is slowly draining the batteries of energy.

We are like those batteries. Energy continues to be drained from us when we’re still connected to things from our past. Those sources still engage us and day by day we lose more and more energy. Because of improper use we drain too soon and just like those batteries, we’re removed—no recharging, just removed and not reused in the future; unless you believe

in reincarnation, but even then, you aren’t coming back in the same body picking up where you left off with friends, family, work projects, and goals. That life is the past.

We choose which sources we want to engage with. We can also choose to disconnect and go elsewhere. We can learn how to properly use and recharge our batteries.

Tolle also teaches that trying to keep our heads in the future for too long, (usually because we’re dreading our present and hopeful that the future has all that we don’t have in the now) is also harmful, because the future is not possible (it will not one day become our ‘now’ if we aren’t dialed into and focused on the current now.

We can cast a dream of a better tomorrow, but don’t get consumed by and lost in the dream. Smile upon it for small moments and then return to your present experience.

Be present.

Be in the “now” as Tolle teaches.

Looking at what is taking place right now, at this very moment, and not fixated on the past—and how we got to the present—or obsessed with a future that we hope is better than our present; but instead, just taking in our present and seeing it for what it is—an IS—and navigating through this present state as an observant and alert captain; not over-processing what is seen, heard, or felt; not trying to rush the moments to get to the next days; just being in the here and now, and at some point realizing that this inconvenience, this trial, this discomfort may just be a necessity so that your learned lesson may open a doorway or window to something else—possibly better, more comfortable, less trying.

Maybe.

But it’s not about looking for the doorway or window. It’s about being present, observant, emotionally in tuned, mentally decluttered, and not distracted. It’s about finding, realizing, and knowing who you are as a spiritual being. It’s about knowing that you are the “I Am” and that your ability to see and embrace the blessings in your present moment, to be grateful for even the smallest things, means that you are (or almost) prepared for what lies beyond the gateway, the door, the window. Then they will not only appear but you will see them, you will know what to do and when to do it, and then you will do it. There won’t be doubt. And even if fear rises up to resist, you will walk through the opening anyway, because you are ready—and you know it. But it’s not possible if you have one foot in the past, one in the present, and trying to dangle your arm into the future. That’s like trying to be in three rooms at the same time. You’re going absolutely nowhere and accomplishing absolutely nothing, while learning, at most, that you’re good at being stuck.

Our feet must be planted and sturdy in the now, in today, in this very moment—controlling our minds, not being controlled by them, connecting to and channeling the positive energy that flows around and through us, and letting go of the excess that would prevent us from one day before forward effortlessly.

Take care of today, today, or tomorrow you will be struggling with juggling the now and the past, while desperate for the future. What an insane merry-go-round that we choose to ride. Get off of the ride. Choose internal peace. Choose joy. Choose health and healing. Choose to be present.

You never know what gateways, doors, and windows may open for you.

~Natasha

Wow. I’ve been on a roll this year. It’s July 17th and today I finished reading my nineteenth book so far for 2018. For most book worms this isn’t a big deal. But for those of us who are always “too busy” to read anything that doesn’t have something to do directly with work, what I’ve accomplished so far in the first half of this year, is jaw-dropping amazing. I’ve gone from maybe reading two to three leisure books in a year, to 19 in 7 months. Guess what? I’m currently reading four other books, three of which I should be done with this month—which means 22 books read by the end of July.

This is bananas!

What I’ve discovered is that through reading books I’ve cut back tremendously on the amount of time I spend watching television, and since I took a break two months ago from social media (slated to tiptoe back in some time in August, maybe) my face isn’t planted in my phone or online as much as I’m accustomed to, and I feel more creative and ‘light’ in my approach both professionally and personally.

So you’re probably wondering what I’ve been reading since January.

Well, today I wrapped up an awesome fiction novel titled “Truly Madly Guilty” by Liane Moriarty. It’s an excellent read. I love the storyline and the characters. The story makes you question what you would do, how would you respond, and how you would recover and grow after tragedy.

This book along with several other fictional novels (listed below) are so well written that you swear that the events written by the authors actually took place, that these characters actually exist.

Check out the other novels that I enjoyed reading below (starting with the most recent read):

  •  A Girl Before by JP Delaney
    • This one made my heart run wild. It’s a page-turner indeed. Oh my goodness! When you think you know, you find out you’re wrong!
  • Still Me by JoJo Moyes
    • Which I also had taped to my vision board as a book I wanted to read
    • A great story that reflects upon how our growth in life can cause those in our inner circles to think and believe that somehow we’ve changed so much that we’re no longer the same person
  • Glass Houses by Louise Penny
    • A super awesome thriller based in Quebec. It has lots of twists and turns that keep you at the edge of your seat and on your toes.
  • The Ex by Alafair Burke
    • Mind-blowing; you don’t want to put the book down
  • The Wife by Alafair Burke
    • Alafair is a phenomenal writer and creative. I read this book before reading The Ex, and I’m still smiling wickedly at the twists and turns this story provided.
  • Into the Water by Paula Hawkins
    • Oh my goodness, the characters in this story were amazing, the story sucked me in and I was left breathless so many times that I didn’t know what to do with myself
  • Never Let You Go by Chevy Stevens
    • This story made me scream with excitement; my adrenaline stayed ramped up to high from beginning to end
  • The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
    • Another book taped to my vision board
    • I swear Colson was alive during this time period; the imagery is breathtaking
  • The Girl on The Train by Paula Hawkins
    • I love the book way more than the movie; isn’t that usually the case?

Starting from my most recent non-fiction reads, I enjoyed soaking up the words from:

  • 100 Days of Grace for Women by Freeman-Smith LLC
    • I’ve read this book a few times now, and I’ve already started back reading it again—practice makes perfect, right?
  • How Successful People Think by John C. Maxwell
    • It’s true, change your thinking and change your life
  • You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness by Jen Sincero
    • Bold, beautiful, brilliant, and badass!
  • Option B by Sheryl Sandberg
    • This one ripped at me deeply. After reading the first few pages I cried so hard I had to put the book down; it is an awesome story
  • Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil DeGrasse Tyson
    • I swear my IQ rose considerably after reading this brilliantly written book
    • The only non-fiction book that I’ve read this year that isn’t a “self-help” or spiritual book.
  • What Happened by Hillary Rodham Clinton
    • I grew to have even more respect for her, what she has accomplished, and her many roles—both professionally and personally, after reading this book
  • Believe Bigger by Marshawn Evans Daniels
    • I will be reading this a second time, to layer the lessons shared and to reinforce what I know that I need to believe and have bigger. I’m so proud of my dear friend Marshawn for allowing God to speak through her and for her vulnerability to share her story—a story that so many people would be silenced to share, because they would be more concerned with people judging them than with helping those who need to hear and read it.
  • Overcoming Hurts and Anger by Dwight Carlson, MD
    • I blogged about this book earlier this year; it has been life-changing. It has helped me to not only identify my hurts and anger, but also use techniques to address and heal from them, and to tackle issues as they come rather than let them fester and build into anger later.
  • Power of I Am by Joel Osteen
    • Another book that has greatly changed my life and made me conscience of the words that I speak and think after I say “I am…”

Here’s three non-fiction books that I’m currently still reading:

  • Power Prayers to Start Your Day: Revitalize Your Prayer Life by Donna K. Maltese
  • Failing Forward by John C. Maxwell
  • Abundance Now by Lisa Nichols and Janet Switzer

And for my fictional reads:

Here’s a book that I’m reading, written by my friend DL White. It’s a fiction novel, but with all of DL’s books, I always feel like there’s some threads of non-fiction blended in; her characters feel too real to be fictionalized:

  • Leslie’s Curl & Dye by DL White

So what should I read for my next fictional thrill quest? What’s on your non-fiction “must-read” list?

Share your suggestions in the comments section below! Thank you.

~Natasha

Copyright 2018. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.