Empty Picnic table setting

Bring LOVE to the Table

As we began to talk, we first started with the question of why people (mostly women) continue to stay “at the table” (or in relationships) longer than we should. The question was asked,” How will we know when it’s time to get up?

So, you would have thought we would discuss mistreatment or incongruency in relationships; lack of support and compassion; being unequally yoked (whether talking about an intimate love relationship or any other relationship/friendship). But the conversation took a turn.

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Shift Happens

Shift Happens

When shift happens it’s usually beyond our control and with no pre-warnings. One day we just wake up and we’re in the middle of SHIFT. And because we could never quite have expected it, in those early moments, SHIFT feels like sh^t. But do not categorize them in the same way. Sh^t is meant to hurt and draw attention to the despair of where you are. Shift comes to help you evolve to the next level of yourself and get you closer to where you were purposed to be.

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Dawn and Leon Green

And They LIVED Happily Ever After…

I too wanted the fairytale; and my assumption was that my husband would give it to me. He’d be my Prince Charming. But let me tell you this…DISNEY LIED! Disney only presented a very SHORT part of the “story.”

A STORY presents us with characters, a setting, plot, conflict, and a resolution. In the fairytale stories, all the final credits end the same way…”and they lived happily ever after.” The conclusion? The conflict was resolved. They fell in love. The End.

But there is a misconception about that closing phrase…”and they lived happily ever after.” The focus on the HAPPILY…and not on the “LIVED.” For if we focused on the LIVED, we would know and expect that living does not come without tests and trials. We don’t give merit to the fact that as one story ends…another story begins.

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Unfriend

unFRIEND: Leave the Circle

The term UNFRIEND has become an ugly word. Not just an ugly word, but an offensive word. But I’m here to play devil’s advocate I see individual messages on FaceBook about this topic all the time; and I’ve had some conversations with a few friends about it. People are usually very bothered when they realize they’ve been unfriended. I, however, am on the other side of this. One because, I’ve unfriended some folks a time or two, and I’ve also been unfriended by people. Here’s my take. Unfriend has less to do with the person who was unfriended and more to do with the well-being of the person who took the action. Learn more…

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Friendish or Friendship

FRIEND-(ish) or Friendship?

In this modern-age of social media, many of us have increased our “friend” base tremendously; yet, people report more often feeling friendless or alone. Why? Because there is a difference between mere friendship and frientimacy. True friendship does not equate to quantity; it equates to quality. In other words, friendship has less to do with having a relationship or the number of relationships one has, and more to do with connectedness and intimacy within the relationship.

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Not Looking for the Worm – Here for the Seed

“The early bird gets the worm” is an expression I’m sure you’ve heard. You may have even said it to someone or had it said to you; especially in preparation for students returning back to school. But in my latest revelation, I believe the term “The early bird gets the worm” should be reconsidered; as it seems we’ve taken the term out of context; as it seems we place more emphasis on the bird’s timing and position, rather than its preparedness.

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Arrested Development

ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT

Rather than referring to stunted physical growth, I’ll be referring to stunted emotional and relational growth. Not only referring to the kind of emotional blockage that occurs as a result of children’s experiences, but also the emotional barriers that continue to present themselves in the lives of adults still dealing with the residue of the emotional distress. The damage – that though suppressed, ignored, and hidden – continues to plague both their maturity in certain areas and their relationships.

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When life gives you lemons, make lemonade

Use Your Lemons

If we think about it (and most of us don’t have to think about it too long), we can all think of times where we felt like we were handed a bag of lemons; whether it be in school, on our jobs or businesses, in our marriages and relationships, with our children, or in our health. We’ve all faced some difficulty to give us cause to become bitter. No matter our age, race, gender, or socioeconomic status, none of us are exempt from experiencing difficulties, or has the ability to control how or when they come; but we can control of how we respond and process through them. In any case, our goal should never be to become bitter…but to get better.

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When It Rears Its Ugly Head

“Rear its ugly head” is a term I have heard people say when referring to problems. Meaning, as soon as things seem to be going well, here comes something bad that happens that “rears up its ugly head.” When trouble “rears its ugly head” don’t get off course or become afraid. Make the necessary adjustments, but don’t quit.

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Bloom Wherever You Grow, Dandelion!

Bloom wherever you grow, Dandelion! A different take on a familiar story – Bloom where you’re planted.

The saying, “bloom where you’re planted,” and the lesson associated with it, continue to hold true. So, with this blog, I wanted to somewhat revisit the topic, but this time from the uniqueness of another flower – the DANDELION, which doesn’t actually “bloom where it’s planted,”…but rather, wherever it grows.  

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Love AND Marriage?!

Love and marriage. This combination of words comes to my mind as both a statement and a question. Can they coexist? Along this journey we’ve learned that though there is a distinct difference between love–an affection towards a thing or person; and marriage–committed consensual and contractual union with someone….they can coexist with as long as there is willingness by both parties (husband AND wife) to commit to them both.

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4-Gift Rule: Release Yourself from the Stress of the Holidays

Release yourself from the financial pressures of the Holidays by using this simple rule. If you are tired of over-spending for Christmas and tired of the stress and burden that comes with it; you’ll appreciate this helpful tip that helps lead to financial freedom and less stress

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BACK-TO-SCHOOL IN A PANDEMIC: IS THIS WORKING?

Going back to school can be stressful enough, even in normal circumstances; however, going back to school in the middle of a pandemic brings on a level of stress and anxiety that can probably only be described as…overwhelming. Is this working?

Here recently, I had the opportunity to have a conversation with some educators, parents, and students from Texas, Louisiana, Georgia, South Carolina, and Tennessee. It was interesting to hear the similarities not only in measures taken (or not taken) to prepare and protect students and teachers for returning to school (both in-person and on-line); but it was also surprising and profound to learn just how much mental health is being affected, particularly in the teachers expected to give the instruction.

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Support: Life Requires it; Get Good BRA-S

We are framed to be gentle; yet nothing about what women carry is light…
So, you tell me, who’s your support system? Do you have you some good BRAS (Battle-Ready Reinforcement and Assistance)? Or is it time for a new fitting? Because always remember, just like with an actual bra, even when you know your size, you still may have to make some adjustments.

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Our Fathers, Who Art…in LIFE

For some reason, I can’t seem to escape the connections with my personal life and what is happening in the universe. I always think I have an idea of what is relevant to me and my reflections, then something will present itself and I’ll know in that moment…THIS is what I have to share. Our fathers, who art…in LIFE. This phrase should sound somewhat familiar. In the Book of Matthew, Chapter 6, Verse 9; this expression begins the “Our Father Prayer.” Most of us learn it as small children. And as strange as it may seem, so many of us have an easier time imagining the goodness of “Our Father” in heaven than we ever have in imagining the goodness of “our father”...

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Overcast, With More Rain Expected: A Response to Civil Unrest

Our nation has been asthmatic for generations. I don’t think it coincidental the parallel to our nation’s condition and the symptoms of the coronavirus. We all have to be ESSENTIAL WORKERS if something is gonna change. Liberty and justice can’t survive social distancing. We all have to get to work.

Unfortunately, wearing masks won’t stop the contagion of injustice.

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Dawn of a New Day

Dawn of a New Day 365. Who ever thought that the 4-letter word I almost hated as a child...would end up being my platform? Hello! My name is Dawn Charleston-Green, and I am pleased to welcome you to my new blog. The name again is... Dawn (like the morning), Charleston (like the city), and Green (just like the color); and yes, I play off my name all the time, but it wasn't always that way. A little history As a child, I disliked my name. I won't say that I hated it...but I wasn't particularly fond of it AT ALL. I knew that it was different...but why was it different? And better yet, why was it so short?

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Marriage

To Have and to Hold

To have and to hold. Sounds romantic, doesn’t it? To choose someone and to physically embrace them, hug them, and hold them. That’s what the vow implies. And it probably literally used to mean that all those years ago when it was pegged. But, if you’ve been married or in a relationship for any length of time, you know that the holding gets old. I mean, don’t get me wrong, the holding is necessary…and it feels good. But the holding doesn’t get you through everything. Consider the other components of the vow — for better or worse, richer or poorer, in sickness and in health. Yeah, if you struggle with any of those elements, holding someone will be the last thing you’re thinking about.

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Satisfaction

DON’T FORGO SATISFACTION FOR GLITTER

Listen. I’ve decided, whether it be my nails, my car, my relationships, my hair, my faith…if it doesn’t serve me, consider me, advance me, or enhance me…it cannot retain my loyalty by default.
I will no longer settle for MEDIOCRITY from someone else TOWARDS ME to make them appear EXCEPTIONAL to OTHERS. When we continue to give service and honor to establishments, organizations, and people who don’t reciprocate the appreciation, we are ultimately giving an inaccurate reference or stamp of approval for others on the outside.

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Scars

From Battle Scars to Beauty Marks

From battle scars to beauty marks…sounds like a bit of a S T R E T C H doesn’t it? No pun intended. But, that’s only if we correlate “battle” with trauma and injury which seem so infinite. However, I believe, if we submit and commit to the process of healing, whether physical or emotional, transformational beauty is possible. 

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Forgive

F______ THAT! (Forgive)

I know sometimes as we face certain obstacles and frustrations in life, our defenses tell us to “F it” or forget it. But that’s only in theory. Those offenses or emotions that we put out of our mind, on the backburner, or that we suppress…are only lying dormant. They’re not gone. They’re just waiting for the right time to resurface. And by right time I mean a time where we’re forced to bring those offenses up or to face them.

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The Valley Has Lights

Embracing Your Wilderness: The Valley Has Lights

Embracing your “wilderness” might seem hard to fathom; especially when you’re right in the middle of it, or when it also feels like your wilderness is in the depths of the valley – your lowest point.
These two (the wilderness and the valley) don’t always take place together, but the uncertainty that is felt with either, sometimes makes them feel interchangeable or interwoven.
It’s seemingly difficult to imagine all the purpose which is actually manifesting itself out of the experiences of the unknown. But honestly, it’s actually more likely to happen that way than you think. In fact, I would argue that the wilderness and valley are necessary elements in discovering your place of purpose…

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7 Steps to Creating Time with God

7 Steps to Creating Time with God: A Checklist and Step-by-Step Guide (with free printable download!)

A glimpse inside this blog: If you are looking to develop and/or deepen your faith walk, the 7 Beginning Steps to Devoting Daily Time with God – Checklist and Step-by-Step Guide is a step in the right direction. This checklist and guide come with a FREE 18-page printable PDF version for your convenience.

The guide provides steps to help you set a daily atmosphere for communing with God, in a way that yields connecting and understanding. I use and created this checklist to help bring structure and routine to my own daily time with God. Because women have often asked me what I do to maintain my faith and to stay prayerful, I decided to share it.

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