Don’t Text Me Back: Modern Romance in 2017

In the age of technology and instant messaging, one would think communication is almost TOO easy. Our means to communicate is literally at our fingertips, but does that mean we’re still effectively communicating? I suspect were actually subconsciously learning how to disassociate, isolate and neglect ourselves.

Unfortunately for my generation, we do not know how to communicate. We know how to swipe left, we know how to Snapchat and we know how to slide into a DM but the art of communication is suffering. Ways to organically experience a potentially new partner is fading. Instead of meeting people through friends or in real-time, where meeting people online, texting, messaging and not interacting face to face.

Modern Romance in the age of text messaging is often measured by how many texts you get from your man in a single day. Or if you like a guy, how often he’ll text you back or if he’ll text you first. There’s a strong emphasis on texting. I’m guilty of this as well, expecting a text back, or expect a good morning or a good night text. But that’s just it; we forget that texting is literally just texting. A text is just a text so don’t read too much into it. Texting originally known as SMS that stands for short message service. SMS is also often referred to as texting, sending text messages or text messaging. Did you catch that? SHORT MESSAGING! I think this is one thing we often forget when communicating with our fingers and not our mouths. Texts aren’t meant to be 4-page love letters or resignation letters during a breakup. They should be utilized as thoughtful forget-me-nots throughout the day.

To be fair, I can’t speak on the behalf of all women but I can speak for myself and I decided to let men know how I, myself as a woman really feel.

The Text Commandments: 

  • Text me to let me know I’m on your mind
  • Text me if you want to
  • Text me to find out if I’ll answer
  • Text me to shoot your shot
  • If you like me, don’t text me back. Ask me out.
  • If you like me, don’t text me back. Call me.
  • If you like me, don’t text me back, show up to my door with flowers.
  • Here’s the biggest one: IF YOU LIKE ME THEN JUST TELL ME!!!!!!! Shoot your shot son. 

I refuse to believe that chivalry is dead or that courting is a lost art form. I have encountered enough men in my life to know that when men like what they see, they go get it. If a man wants you he’ll do whatever he needs to do to get you and act accordingly.

New phone, who this?

New phone, who this?

So why as women do we get so caught up in wanting a text back or a text at all? Since when is getting a text validation of a man’s interest?

Sure, if he wants to talk to you he’ll text you, but what if he’s busy? What if he’s at work? What if he’s at an event? What if he’s just a bad texter? I don’t think I’m making excuses, I think I’m actually trying to give us all (myself included a reality check.) Men, don’t flatter yourselves. I’m reckless enough to let you know the deal and speak how I feel. If I like you, you’ll know it and I’m not about playing games. However, I understand that men like to chase and that you have to play hard to get to maintain levels of interests. So if I give you a read receipt then rightfully so, I had to because that’s the way laws of attraction are designed these days of modern romance.

Yes, today, social media and cellphones create open lines of communication that make everyone overly accessible but does that mean you or men have to then are, all the time available? Having around the clock access to someone is almost draining and scary if you think about it. Since when is it socially unacceptable to be alone & logged off, are we allowed to unplug ourselves?

Here’s what I mean: 

Honestly, truly, I don’t want a guy I’m interested in or my man to text me ALL DAMN Day. There are levels to this shit. If I’m single (I mean I am now) and you’re lucky enough that I find you interesting…text me, let me know how you feel, but I would very much rather a phone call at the end of the day to know you’re serious about me.

If I’m in a relationship with a man, then I expect him to text me and let me know he thought about me during his lunch break or to simply let me know he can’t wait to see me later but I would prefer to let him sizzle while we can go our separate ways and still be securely attached to one another without the need for constant communication. I don’t want my partner I’m in a relationship with to feel burdened or suffocated by the need to check-in or constantly communicate with me. We’re all human and we all need our space. Sometimes absence makes the heart grow fonder.

So, I’m suggesting that instead of our generation continuing the habitual way of overanalyzing texts, overthinking responses and overindulging in each other, can we learn to communicate for real? How can we expect to live in moments as they happen if we’re all too preoccupied with our cell phones and the instant messaging world?

NEW ALBUM ALERT: I Decided to Review Big Sean’s Album, I Decided.

Whenever new albums drop I like to wait until the hype dies down to give myself the clarity to conclude my best honest opinion and unbiased viewpoints.

HOWEVER! As I’ve been a Big Sean fan since his’ “What You Doin’” days and Finally Famous, watching his evolution has me so happy for Sean the Don. Obviously, with him being in my top five, I already had I Decided on pre-order.

Whoa, dere!

When his album dropped on Feb 3, 2017, I was in Vegas. Luckily I wasn’t drunk yet, so I gave it my first listen. As it’s been a few weeks and with his album going physically today, I can confidently say this may be his best piece of artwork yet.

Thoughts: I Decided is Big Sean’s fourth album, and instantly my favorite and here’s why: In comparison, His first album Finally Famous and this album now shows Big Sean hasn’t only evolved as an artist but he has transformed into a man with a new mindset. In his debut Finally Famous, Big Sean raps about lofty goals and dreams of becoming famous while remaining insecure about his destiny as he fantasizes about the limelight.

After spending a minute in the game and working closely along some of his idols and peers, I Decided shows us what Big Sean is made of and that there’s something truly remarkable about this album. He’s sharing his deepest thoughts and decision-making skills. Exposing himself mentally and emotionally through his references regarding his internal conflicts, intentions, and permanent life-long decisions. It appears he is constantly battling, accepting or challenging his past decisions and his current ones but remains untainted living within each present moment however still suffering the consequences or the rewards of said decisions. In some songs such as Owe Me, Sacrifices, Favors, and Voices In My Head, he reflects on his organic experiences with women, haters, and public opinion, revealing these decisions have ultimately shaped his life and bringing him to where he is today. That’s just it; Big Sean has decided.

MESSAGE: Every decision is a choice. So choose wisely or don’t, either way, life goes on.

Analysis: Throughout every hook, every bar, every rhyme and every verse there are layers upon layers of subconscious turmoil or self-seeking validation. Despite some turbulence in poor decisions, there’s a strong emphasis on his spirituality and newfound ”wokeness” a.k.a enlightenment in this album (at least in my opinion, and I’m honestly digging of out of it! )

Previously, Big Sean in his music, there have always been mentions of religion, God, and acknowledgment of his upbringing, his parents, and fundamentals which are key ingredients that have shaped his moral compass in life indirectly shaping his decisions as well. However, in this new album, I’m hearing Big Sean talk about other insights for the first time ever. His bars consist of forming manifestations, maintaining his high vibrations and energy, remaining optimistic, faithful and practicing alchemy. “I realized that there’s no dream that I can’t fill, I manifested while I’m the man still”Stick To The Plan, This is a strong metaphysical application that insinuates he’s current perspective on his life and how he is dealing with decisions daily. I’ve always appreciated Big Sean’s driven ambitious dream-like mentality so to hear the lyricism in his conscious mindfulness to date is an evolution that is invigorating. This is easily one of the best albums of 2017 serving as an underdog’s anthem. I’m currently vibing and thriving hard af to this album because it’s on my same wavelength.

 

big-sean

source: giphy

Top 5 Favorite songs and why:

  1. Moves- Basically, the beat slaps and he’s the man making moves! This is the perfect theme song for all underdogs who are underestimated. But again, Big Sean has layers, subconsciously letting us know how he moves, when he moves, and that his strategic moves in life are always with purpose and intention which is why now he’s coming up on top. I’m feeling it.!
  2. Sacrifices Big Sean is talking about all the decisions he has had to made in his career, love, and life to get to where he is now and how people around him besides his mom or his girl can not understand his hustler mentality. He suggests his great aunt was a slave who didn’t die for him to be lazy or take anything for granted, he is hungry, he is motivated, remaining humble he vows to continue to make the proper sacrifices to be one of the greatest rappers alive.
  3. Bounce Back As I see it, Bounce Back isn’t just an instant banger, but also, a revelation. Listen to the lyrics? “If you a real one then you know how to bounce back. Last night I took an L but tonight I Bounce Back.” Big Sean is someone with drive and determination showcasing his resiliency in any form and remains persistent in life by “bouncing back” from poor decisions and detrimental “Ls” he will continue to come back harder or stronger and be untouched.
  4. Halfway off the Balcony My interpretation here is that Big Sean is speaking about either an alternate universe or his exact reality when his occupying hotel rooms and entertaining groupies while his girl is upset with him. Or perhaps he’s tired of being a public figure constantly being criticized. Sounds like he doesn’t want to participate in risky behavior in fear of losing it all, because he’s making it but having to fight his demons to stay strong and remain focused.
  5. Voices In My Head/Stick To the Plan I can relate to this song, because Big Sean is orchestrating an internal conflict within his mind, the voices in his mind are reminding him to stick to the plan but also that he can do better, and be better than he is now. Self-criticism as his own biggest fan or his own worst enemy. Reminding himself to not get caught up in the drama or Hollywood’s fast life.

Lastly, the Duet with Jeremih on Light reminds us all to never dim our own shine. The outro on Bigger Than Me left me feeling so uplifted and genuinely resonated with me as it’s extremely relatable. It’s as if, Big Sean is directly telling me through his lyrics in his song to not just enjoy living in the moment, but recognize my life my moments a.k.a my decisions are bigger than myself. I’m doing this for everyone who ever believed in me, as a true dreamer or doer, I must strive to live my best life. It’s confirmed, I Decided is my favorite album of 2017 thus far.

What’s your favorite song off the album?

Check out Big Sean’s Hot 97 Breakfast Club Interview

A Poem: Dear Ex-Lover

Dear Ex-Lover,

Somehow, I still manage to sleep at night

But just to feel right

I hug my pillow, tight.

At night, every night.

Just right…

Now tighter

Cuddling…

Pretending…

I’m hugging you.

And my pillow is your chest

The same place I used to fit

So perfectly in

My comfort zone

My sanctuary

My home

There are scars from those rug burns

Marks on my knees

Wrapped in my sheets

Reminding me

Of the pain you caused me

Our love fades and so do memories of you

Or do they? Come lay with me…

Please

Remember that time you kissed me in the rain?

I guess I can’t complain…

You taught me everything I never knew I deserve

And more,

I don’t want you

Anymore.

Good riddance.

cozy.

cozy.

5 Apps to SECURE YOUR BAG!

#SECUREYOURBAGALERT

#SECUREYOURBAGALERT

One of my resolutions this year (ha, every year if I’m being honest) is to BE WAY more responsible with my MONEY HONEY! (JK, I hate when people call me honey, honestly truly, it just rhymed..moving on..) Follow me (and DJ Khaled) through the journey of more success & cash bags.

I realized that this year is the year I STOP thinking or planning my finances and start DOING what’s right, for real this time…seriously. Since I’m addicted to my phone, I decided the best way for me to save money is with these five mobile applications: *Did I mention each app is FREE!?

1.Ebates: If you’re like me, you like to spend money. This is the MAIN reason I’m finding ways to get cash back for my hard earned money! I am the definition of treat yo’ self! So who says you can’t benefit twice as nice from each treat? Ebates is a great online and in-store shopping tool that often times has coupons for purchases along with cash back percentages for each purchase made. It does take money, to make money, but I’m not complaining. You get a BIG FAT CHECK about 4 times a year and it’s always a nice surprise when you get a check in the mail isn’t it? Download it now & Treat Yo’ SELF!

treatyoself

treat yo self. always.

2. Square Cash: This is the best app to transfer immediate funds, (although there are some same day instant transfer fees usually no more than a few extra cents) you can get your money NOW! Making it easy to send money ASAP! I prefer square cash vs. venmo as it will take the funds out immediately, you don’t have to play a guessing game with your bank account after sending too much money to different people or waiting several business days. Square Cash is instant or takes as long as a day to withdraw from your account and deposit into someone else’s. It’s easy to link to any bank account and even offers a “virtual card” feature.

3. Qaptial: This is one I JUST discovered and I’m already loving it! Qapital is your very own keep the change and save away, savings plan. You can create goals for things you plan on saving up for, whether that means a vacation, moving out of the country post-Trump inauguration or Christmas presents. The best thing about this app is that it will pause ANY deposits if your account is below $100, that’s right; it has its very own overdraft protection. Right now I’m saving up for life and I’ve also opted for the 52 week challenge, that will automatically save me money every week in 2017, with $1 on week 1, $2 on week 2, $3 on Week 3 until I get to $52 by the end of the year/week 52. You can apply multiple “rules” to several goals, or just apply all to one big goal. I recommend NOT touching this and turning your notifications off so you won’t feel the need to count your coins every day. I still like to keep my physical change in a real piggy bank as well, call me old school I guess, but a penny saved, is still a PENNY EARNED!

4. Stash: Become an investor with just $5! YES! 5 bucks, you heard me! I invest $5 whenever I can (aka decide not to buy another Starbucks) and right now, I’m already getting dividends after only investing about $30 of my own money, I’m at a total return of +2.74%, plus it’s pretty cool to own stocks in Amazon or Facebook. The app also gives you a better understanding of a healthy portfolio and investing basics, so it doesn’t hurt to try!

5. Mint: The best budgeting tool there is! Why? All your finances in one place! You can easily link your accounts and cards, create a budget, set up bill reminders, and even review a breakdown of expenses! Mint lets you know if you’re under or too close to your budget or if you’re overspending. Giving you a better idea of where you’re spending money when you don’t need to! I also like this app because it offers advice on credit cards, informs you if you’re paying above average for car insurance and more!

Have fun stacking your coins! What are some ways you guys save, spend or invest money? I want to know!

#ForTheCulture: My Personal Thoughts on Casual Racism

Today I want to discuss my thoughts and perspective on casual racism and lack of diversity in the workplace. Not to play the victim here, but sometimes it’s hard to deal with, and it’s now become an all too common occurrence in my day-to-day.

Key takeaways I have noticed more recently since coming into adulthood:

  • Most leadership is Caucasian. Not to point out the obvious, it’s just very rare to see anyone from a different background as the CEO, General Manager or really any high-level executive at companies that isn’t WHITE. Since graduation, all of my superiors have been Caucasian. I have yet to have a boss who is of color. This simply can be attributed to the fact that I live in the Bay Area more specifically Silicon Valley where there is a large Caucasian, Asian, and Hispanic demographic. Even when I attended San Jose State, only 3% of students were Black, How diverse is Silicon Valley?
  • Most of my supervisors have been white men; I’ve only had one supervisor as a woman.
  • Most of my friends who aren’t Black will never know what it’s like TO BE BLACK. And that’s OK. However, even when I’m among friends or among coworkers who think we’re friends, I encounter occurrences of casual racism, and I know they don’t mean it, I’m sure it’s innocent but these days I’m having a hard time dealing. I can’t even.

After graduating college, I was extremely hopeful. With the desire to chase my dreams and succeed, I was ready to take on the world. But then reality set in when I landed my big girl job, I found myself counting the brown faces in the offices on one hand. As a young person, a millennial, a black woman; it’s intimidating that there aren’t many or any black people in the office let alone anyone that looks like me in the leadership role at these companies. Being black in corporate America is extremely difficult because even when people don’t mean to come off racist, they still do. Check out this video that went viral last year:“White Fragility Workplace Training.” This is literally an accurate depiction of dumb shit I’ve been through at work.

Racist AF.

Racist AF.

Who else have friends like this?

Personally, I have friends from various backgrounds and friends that live all over the place, as I grew up a military brat. I  considered myself, American first and foremost. Living in America and other places such as Korea and Guam has taught me to be open-minded as well as exposed me to all forms of different cultures and ethnicities. I’m very perplexed whenever I encounter people who are oblivious to how much culture exists in our country. Sure you could argue that most of the culture present here is diluted and Americanized, but there are so many cultures represented in our own backyards. You don’t necessarily have to travel the globe to be exposed to each culture or each other, and I feel more people should be more open-minded to exploring cultures and learning about their customs.

Last year, I shared with you moments in my career where I was questioned about my ethnic background and intimidated by everyone who wore blue for #BlueLivesMatter. Since then, I’ve been subjected to extreme displays of people who suffer from a serious lack of culture. For example in the past week, I’ve had to show my boss how to eat a tamale because she claims she’s never had one before.  I also had to give my coworker a brief history lesson on Chinese New Year as she was convinced it is a made up celebration. Things like this bother me because living in America exposes you to so many different people, so celebrating other people’s cultures and acknowledging that these customs exist matters and is exactly what makes this country great!  I urge everyone to open up to each other more and learn from people outside your immediate demographic. It’s OK to have friends who don’t look like you. As the token black woman in the office or among a group of friends, often times my peers look to me as the voice of all minorities. However, I do not believe this is not my civil duty to uphold. We should all be more mindful and appreciative of diverse backgrounds and held accountable for recognizing diversity in America.

In my opinion, being a black woman in America has never been more obvious than it is now. Obvious in the sense that we stick out, sometimes we’re seen as threats and other times we’re just seen as big fluff balls of hair. We’re more than that. As black women in America, we’re still making strides in history, we’re showing the world how capable we are, making Forbes 30 under 30 lists and becoming Olympic gold medalists but yet, our family members are still being shot and then we’re dealing with racist remarks almost every day. I didn’t realize there was a name for this type of thing until I listened to NPR’s podcast, Code Switch on Casual Racism. The podcast discusses how each host has dealt with casual racism and if they feel it’s their duty to correct people when this occurs.

I have been very fortunate to vote for Obama twice, the first black man in the white house. This has shown me that it is possible to take on leadership roles, however, casual racism and lack of culture continue to perpetuate stereotypes. After the recent election, as I continue to navigate through this thing called life and adulthood, I’m noticing there is a serious lack of sensitivity around race in politics which I’m sure has only been more amplified due to the recent election. Now more than ever, with President-elect Trump taking office in the next days to come, our country is subconsciously and/or consciously showing Americans that it is OK to basically be a bully who is a prejudice racist and honestly, no one is safe. As Trump as our leader, he will be a poor example of how to interact with diversity in America, it worries me that others may revert back to traditional conservative exclusive ways.

Meryl Streep said it best at this year’s Golden Globes:“… Ryan Gosling, like all of the nicest people, is Canadian, and Dev Patel was born in Kenya, raised in London, and is here playing an Indian raised in Tasmania. So Hollywood is crawling with outsiders and foreigners. And if we kick them all out you’ll have nothing to watch but football and mixed martial arts, which are not the arts…” (transcript found here)

Obama OUT.

Obama OUT.

What are some of your thoughts on casual racism and what do you think are good coping mechanisms to utilize in your daily lives?