Spotlight Tuesdays Presents: The Activist

Madina

ac·tiv·ist
/ˈaktivəst/
noun

a person who campaigns to bring about political or social change.

Madina is truly one of a kind, so full of life! From the moment I met her, I knew she was a forced to be reckoned with. An advocate, activist, author, poet, social worker, and game changer. She stands with all communities of color in solidarity. She fights on the frontlines and challenges the system. She proudly advocates and spreads a wealth of knowledge about her people in the Afghan community. An inspiration with an amazing story to tell.

Here’s her story:

Tell me a little bit about yourself? How did you meet Bree?

I’m the child of Afghan refugees settled on Tongva land in what is now called Los Angeles. I describe myself that way because decolonization, of our minds, of our language, our education, it’s all important to me. My parents survived the Afghan civil war and had me one year after. I was raised in a progressive Pashtun household. The Pashtun people are the largest matrilineal tribe in the world, and I’m proud to come from such resilient people.

I always wanted to work in a service capacity and this brought me into the field of social work & mental health. I’m especially passionate about using my privilege as a non-black, non-Indigenous person of color to fight for equity and promote anti-racism. I had the privilege of meeting Bree while we both served at Covenant House, a transitional aged youth shelter in Hollywood, CA.

What inspired you to start your blog? How long has it been up and running?

I always wrote long Facebook posts and have had something to say since I was young. The Afghan & Iraqi occupations really influenced my desire to speak out against oppression & injustice. I always wanted to write in some capacity. Burqas & Beer was born after the Israeli assault on Palestine in 2014; this was the year I became highly involved in grassroots organizing in LA, and I documented my experience through my blog.

Continue reading “Spotlight Tuesdays Presents: The Activist”

Pause, Reflect, Create

PAUSE RESET CREATE

pause

/pôz/

verb

1. interrupt action or speech briefly.

noun

1. a temporary stop in action or speech.

When’s the last time you truly sat with yourself and took a deep breath in?

When you allowed your natural body clock to awaken you without the aid of an alarm.

When you rolled out of bed and took time for your morning skincare routine, to prepare breakfast, and drink your favorite cup of tea.

Living in the unprecedented times of COVID-19, I’ve gotten the chance to sit with myself and embrace my season of stillness.

For a while I was frustrated because I felt stuck creatively. I saw other bloggers and content creators I admired that “took advantage” of working from home and seized the moment of producing consistent content for their audience. I felt like I wasn’t doing enough to consistently engage with those who follow and read my blog. Writers block is real and I didn’t want to force myself to create for the sake of having ample time and opportunity to do so.

So, I PAUSED.

I shared my frustrations with my cousin who is my writing partner and kindred spirit. She shared that she too, hadn’t felt inspired to create during these times and reassured me that the inspiration will slap me in the face when it’s time lol.  

It’s important to PAUSE and REFLECT often especially during a season of stillness.

Here are my 5 Reasons Why You Should Take A Break!

Continue reading “Pause, Reflect, Create”

Spotlight Tuesdays Presents: The Encourager

Wyvetta

en·cour·age
/inˈkərij/
verb
give support, confidence, or hope to (someone)

 

Michelle is such a sweet spirit! From the moment I met her, I knew she was destined for greatness. She always manages to uplift my spirits with her encouraging words of wisdom on her blog. From always keeping it real, spreading love and light, to reminding us of God’s goodness and grace, she is definitely doing work for the Kingdom!

Here’s her story:

Tell me a little bit about yourself? How did you meet Bree?

I’m a young married woman with a sweet baby girl on the way! I have worked in the physical therapy world for about four years now, but ministry and people are my heart. I met Bree at Cal State Dominguez Hills. She was a mentor of mine and I always knew that she had something everyone else didn’t. Come to find, it was the light of Jesus!

What inspired you to start your blog? How long has it been up and running?

What inspired me to start my blog at @allthingsrealtalk was the need to have a safe community where women could find solutions to real life issues. So many times we try to cover things up in our walk of faith and feel embarrassed to be vulnerable about our struggles. I wanted to embrace these issues and provide a source of strength through Gods Word. My page has been up and running for about two years now.

Continue reading “Spotlight Tuesdays Presents: The Encourager”

5 Benefits of Journaling

5 Benefits of Journaling

Who remembers when they kept a diary?

It was most likely pink or blue donned with a cute design, stickers, and gel pens were used for added effect.

Dear Diary, was the classic opener.

A book filled with love letters to the cute boy in class, days when you’re mad because your Mom said you couldn’t go outside to play with your friends, or even better, you wrote a full fledge three pages venting about the argument you had with your bestie on the playground.

Little did you know, your diary would quickly become your refuge, a place to escape.

Living in this digital age, most would say that journaling is outdated, gender specific (for girls/women only, most specifically tweens), and just all around a waste of time.

I’m here to dispel the myth and tell you that:

Journaling is for any and everyone who enjoys writing.
Journaling is for self-expression.
Journaling or “expressive writing” is therapeutic and is one of the most beneficial kinds of writing.
Continue reading “5 Benefits of Journaling”

8 Creative Women You Need To Follow

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In Honor of Black HERstory month, I’m highlighting the women in my life who inspire me daily, who keep me on my toes, who pray for me, and ultimately are on the quest to make an impact in this world.

  1. Jacquelyn of Genuinely Jacq

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She’s a PR Maven on the rise that keeps it real at all times! She creates amazing and organic content while looking classy and stylish too. What I love most about her content is that she is genuine through and through. She caters to the “Good Girl” in us all, as she debunks the stigma of Good Girl/Good Woman portrayed in media and every day life. She reminds you that it’s okay to strut to the beat of your own drum!

  1. Rosie of @Roseavore

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She’s the ultimate Boss Babe. She wears many hats, from writing poetry, to painting beautiful portraits, to community activism, to modeling, to her healing hands in massage therapy – Rosie effortlessly executes whatever she puts her mind to. What I love most about her content is that it’s edgy, screams the message of body positivity, and is informative. As she spearheads her nonprofit, the Compton Artist Alliance, she urges you to tap into your creative and intellectual genius. Continue reading “8 Creative Women You Need To Follow”

Trusting The Journey

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Have you ever had a burning desire in your heart? No matter how hard you tried to ignore it, the gut wrenching feeling wouldn’t leave.

I believe we all have.

I’ve been writing ever since I could remember. From writing daily in my journal at the tender age of 8, to writing short stories, haikus, and poems in middle school, to creating even more elaborate stories that would circulate through classrooms in high school and eventually landed on fan fiction websites, to journaling in high school and beyond, to keeping numerous blogs in my early 20s – writing is my solace. It’s the easiest way for me to communicate my feelings, when I can’t utter the words aloud. It’s my creative outlet.

This blogging journey hasn’t been easy to say the least. I was doing extremely well with being consistent during my recovery from my fifth and final open-heart surgery. It was the spring of 2015 when I launched my blog Thee Heart of The Matter. Back then I didn’t feel the exact pressures that I feel now. Though I was aware of having an audience, gaining followers, and maintaining engagement with my audience … it wasn’t my main concern. Continue reading “Trusting The Journey”

Actuellement …| August 28th

.. time; 1:55 PM.

.. feeling; a bit overwhelmed, discouraged, and tired.

.. missing; living in the Playa Del Oro apartments with my roomie Amanda and our wine nights, sitting on the couch talking about life.

.. should be doing; trying to get my life in order – that entails many things … job apps, organizing my space here, and some. I marked off some things on my To-Do List so I guess I’m cool, for now.

..affirmation for the week: Be Patient. Sometimes you have to go through the worst, to get to the BEST!

.. listening to; Freudian – Daniel Caesar is amazing! The album has been on REPEAT!

.. reading; the Bible – 1 Samuel.

Also, I’ve been trying to find the PDF for Emily McKnight’s book, “The Don’t Before I Do”. I read the sample this past week during my flight to Seattle and fell in love!

.. watching; I binge watched The Handmaid’s Tale last week and now I’m sad that I have to wait until Season 2 comes around.

Duh, I’m watching Insecure (because Issa Rae is hilarious and Jay Ellis is BAE in real life… as for Lawrence… he’s a NO for me dawg), Being Mary Jane, Greenleaf and a whole list of others lol

.. enjoying; the down time. I’m always on the go and have a million things on my mind at all times. I feel like I have 10-15 tabs open daily haha.

Continue reading “Actuellement …| August 28th”

Self Care: Indulge

Many people talk about self-care but don’t actually practice the act within their daily lives.

During the last year of my graduate program, my fieldwork professor preached to the high heavens on the importance of self-care within the helping field. She warned us that therapists, counselors, and social workers experience the most burn out in the field because we are constantly giving of ourselves daily. Every week she would ask each student in class to name something that they did for themselves over the weekend. Many of us would say sleep, catch up on shows, watch a movie … you know things that don’t really apply to self-care. Our responses were more of a break from the routine of our hectic schedules.

Self-care is actively setting time out of your busy schedule to cater to you.

That means mind, body, and spirit.

Self-care goes far beyond getting eight hours of sleep. It’s in your thoughts, your actions, how you carry yourself, what you do for others, and your outlook on life.

Continue reading “Self Care: Indulge”

Actuellement …| February 22nd

.. time; 11:06 AM

.. feeling; a bit sleepy, but mainly hungry.

.. missing; my bed.

.. wishing; for a day off somewhere in the near future. #NoDaysOffLikeWale

.. should be doing; preparing for my next session and this group mediation within the next hour.

.. thinking: on how good my lunch is about to be… I’m starving!

..talking to: Lila – client talk about our kiddos.

..affirmation for the week: You are Worthy Of ❤

..plotting: my next adventure;

.. listening to; at this very moment I’m listening to Part Of Me by Musiq Soulchild.

Continue reading “Actuellement …| February 22nd”

Valentines Day, 365

To be treated like a Queen is every girls dream. To be heard, to be seen, to be clothed in grace, to be loved – effortlessly.

I will not be sad on this day, for I have experienced Valentine’s Day, each and every day for the past year. I have been showered with love, gifts, hugs, kisses, prayers, encouragement, and unwavering support.

I will not be jealous on this day, as I sit back and watch others celebrate their love. I’ll reflect on a love that I experienced not too long ago. I will bask in the beauty of flowers received with my girlfriends. I will help them pick out the perfect outfits for their dates. I will wait by my phone to listen to their stories. I too, will smile in glee.

Continue reading “Valentines Day, 365”