Confidence is Key : Ways i ENCOURAGE and motivate my black son.

In a world, where young black men are often downplayed as thugs, irresponsible baby daddies, drug dealers etc. It is important to teach our children about the images that are not often on the news. The positive images. Black people are thriving and there are many positive representations of “black boy joy” and “the black man can” to inspire our sons to be their greatest self. However, many times those positive images are hidden behind all the negative depictions. We must obviously educate our young kings about what is necessary to survive, but even more so on how to thrive.

Let me tell you about 5 ways that I am encouraging my son to be his greatest self. As well as, to celebrate himself with confidence!

BOOKS …

I love the fact that there are many positive books for young black boys. Some of my favorite books come from Hey Carter Books by Dr. Thomishia Booker. These books teach my son to be comfortable and proud to be in his beautiful brown skin. They show positive representations of strong, gifted young boys. I adore the message presented to young children. My son is five and we have been reading these books since the beginning of the pandemic. We end our day with a book to help encourage him through tough school weeks and to keep reminding him of his greatness.

KNOWLEGE OF PEOPLE WHO CHANGED THE NARRATIVE…

I think it is so important to show my son examples of people who did the unthinkable. Showing him people who beat the odds. Life is not going to be easy and there will be obstacles. Showing your child a pretty perfect picture can often set them up for disappointments and defeat when they enter the real world. Instead, I show my son that obstacles can build character and that he can conquer the toughest of situations.

I also spent some time explaining to my son that even though I am his number one support system that it can be done without me. I try to teach my kids to rely on themselves, because we never know when we will only have ourselves. We must believe in ourselves when others do not. I also let them know that there are people who were successful without support so they will be a force to be reckon because they actually have support.

Lately, my son has been showing an interest in Science, but said other kids in the class thought he was weird for wanting to be a Scientist. I explained to my son that there are so many benefits of picking an unpopular purpose driven career choice. It is so easy to push our sons to athletic careers or the normal doctor, lawyer etc. These careers are also great, but I let my son know that it is possible to create a lane for himself and be damn good at it.

Extracurricular Activities…

Not only is it a great idea to keep your son in extracurricular activities for his health and wellness. It is a way to keep your child’s mind occupied with positive activities. Sports help with teamwork, leadership, focus, discipline and many other great values that will keep your child stay the course. Both my children are also following in their moms footsteps and wants to play musical instruments. I think it is very important to keep my children focused on their strengths and the positive talents that they can contribute to the world.

Positive males in his life…

My son is blessed to have a good active father in his life. He sees his dad multiple times a week and every other weekend. They have bonded since birth and he is pretty strict on how he raises Jr. I trust that he has Jeremey’s best interest at heart, and will keep him on the right path. Him having men in his life that show him how to value hard work, respect and morals will keep him focused. Many of the men in his life, dad, grandfathers, uncles, etc.. are hard-workers so he knows that nothing will just be given to him, but earned. I will also make sure that he is provided with mentors when it comes to different areas of his life. Mentors that are outside of the family that can help him with guiding him through his personal and professional life choices.

Positive self talk, Affirmations and compliments…

I am the mom to hype up her kids. I am also the mom to yell when I get upset, but I am learning that there is so much power in what you say. Giving your children positive reinforcement and positive affirmations will build them up. In a world where they will meet people who will deliberately cut them down, the last thing they need is you saying bad things about them. I definitely think this is something you have to work on daily, because as parents sometimes we tend to always correct and point out flaws, but we must focus on our children’s strengths. Especially, our young black boys who will always have to try a little Harder.

Tahnee Cole

After Work… Unwind

My music selection was Toni Braxton. Matter of fact, it was her latest featuring HER called “Gotta Move On”. How befitting to how I felt. I had cut off a man who I was on the verge of being in love with last week. He was an emotional liability. To be all the way honest, I am emotionally handicap. I can’t feel the way I use to. Nor, can I contain another persons insecurities while trying to reach my goals, survive during this pandemic and raise solid successful kids.

I needed a spiritual and physical detox.

I had my phone on low. Since my kids were away I couldn’t put it on do not disturb. I laid back in the tub and let the bubbles touch my ears. Candles lit, darkness and wine.

Just me, myself and I.

I had hit 35 and refused to settle for less. Inadequate relationships whether platonic or romantic, was a hell no for me. Hell, I wasn’t even eating anything that wasn’t bring me satisfaction. My expectations were high and I wasn’t letting that shit change for anything.

As I set back I thought, damn, I need to do this more often.

It felt good to relax. Of course my phone ranged. I glanced to make sure it wasn’t important. it wasn’t. I closed my eyes and drifted into relaxation again.

On most days I was moving around. Cooking and cleaning like a slave. Trying to make sure the house was blogger mom perfect. It felt damn good to unwind. I deserved it. I needed it. My mind, body and soul had been craving it. Why was it so difficult to put myself first? Why had I got to a point where I felt guilty about doing for me? Why was I so damn concerned about everyone’s needs, but my own? When it came to fulfilling my needs, I was hesitant.

All of these thoughts in the tub. To some people a simple bath is just a bath. To me it was as sacred as a baptism. The Most High provided us with water. Water is the most powerful force on earth. Being immersed in this water was providing me major healing. It was revealing to me how dehydrated I was. Not in a sense that my thirst was quenched. But that my physical body needed to unwind. To release. To replenish. To be fulfilled.

The need to unwind after work was definitely needed…

The Bitter Baby Mama…

Remember the bitter baby mama, yeah that’s what you called her.

You first saw her in the grocery store, right? She was standing there yelling at her kids, using all types of profanity.

“Don’t touch a motha…” Is how she started her first sentence. Telling her three kids to keep their hands to themselves.

She looked tired and worn out, but you didn’t give a damn. Even though you saw her five year old touch the M&Ms 10 times, after she said not to, you judge her. Harshly. You said she was a pathetic mama to talk to her kids like that.

And when you overheard her saying she was a single mama, you rolled your eyes.

You said to yourself, “how could she take it out on her kids? They didn’t ask to be here. Nobody should have to suffer behind her poor choices.

Another bitter baby mama.

You looked down upon her with disgust, as you guarded your children as if you were blocking them from some contagious rare disease. You watched her struggle to carry her baby, push the cart with several grocery bags and walk in her raggedy high heel shoes.

You even joked with your partner and said she was probably on the government’s assistance. She probably bought her groceries with her EBT card. You didn’t know that woman, but you threw so much dirt on her name you would have thought it was planting season.

Then you watched her grabbed all her groceries and walk to the bus stop. A baby on her arm, one barely walking and an older child trying to carry as many groceries as he could. He was filled with shame too.

“These kids deserve a mom they could be proud!” Is what you had the nerve to say.

You were looking from the outside in, thinking you had it all figured out. You saw her rolling her eyes defensively sitting with her three kids at the bus stop.

You stared at her and said, “How could she be so stupid” Nobody told her to open her legs and have kids before she got married. Why wasn’t she on birth control?

You even said she is probably one of those women who won’t let the man see his kids, put him on child support and hate any new chick he dates. The drama type. The bitter baby mama type.

You gathered that all in one trip to the store. Never spoke to this woman one time. Didn’t even know her name.

 

Well, Fast-forward…

It is funny how life flips. When you got home one day, the love of your life let you know that he wanted to move on.

After 15 yrs of playing house, he confessed he had not been happy in years, He wanted to find himself (whatever the hell that means) and you didn’t do it for him anymore.

He left and never looked back. You called to ask if he would drop money off or the kids, but he wouldn’t respond. Now you are contemplating on putting him on child support.

The kids are hungry and you have to go to the grocery store. Taking them to the store without help is not something that you are used to.

The trip to the store is a disaster.

Your kids are crying and grabbing items, the people at the back of the line are giving you the same looks you gave, well the bitter baby mama.

After the grocery store chaos, you sit down in your car exhausted. Putting groceries in the trunk and strapping kids in by yourself is no joke.  You open up your IG for a quick second and you see your ex with his new woman, you are furious.

Of all days, your car won’t start. Nobody can give you a ride, so you have to wait for triple A.

Now you are waiting for the tow truck, with crying hungry kids in the back. With tears in your eyes.

You stare intently at the same bus stop that sat the mom you judged. You finally felt remorse for your ignorance, you felt sorry. You became exactly who you judged. Finally, you understood her pain and sympathized for her story.

This made your understand the importance of never ever looking down or judging anyone, because the tables can turn.

As you focused on your kids, and the anger your felt in your heart, you realized that now you are also viewed as the Bitter Baby Mama…

Everyone has a story.

Tahnee Cole

BABY MAMA SERIES: 7 HABITS TO HEAL

Dealing with post relationship trauma is not easy. Especially, when a child or children are involved. However, you can still manage to have a productive and healthy co-parenting relationship and happy life.

On a road to recovery there are things that you must do on a consistent basis to make sure that you are being your best self.

So, things didn’t work out. He left or you had to leave. You may feel guilt that you are not providing a two parent household for your child or children, but that’s life. Nothing is promised. People’s feelings and emotions vary day to day. Life happens and no situation is perfect.

Here are some tips:

1. Accept it-

Don’t ignore your emotions. Don’t keep daydreaming that everything will mend and the perfect family will return. Accept how you feel. It is ok to be angry, upset, or even sad. Allow your body to feel the emotions, no suppressing. Accept the place your life is right now but remember it will get greater later!

2. Focus on your child-

The center of this union is your child and that is exactly where your focus should be. I feel like putting the focus on making your child happy will keep you in line with what is more important. Most parents motives are pure when it comes to their children, so putting a focus on them will eliminate the need for being vindictive and petty. I’m not saying forget about you, but your child needs a fair chance at loving both parents without confusion or judgement.

3. Focus on you-

In addition to focusing on your child at some point you will have to focus on you. Do your best. Quit worrying about the other parent. Some “baby mamas” can’t heal of move on, because they are FB stalking their kids dad or mad because he isn’t contributing. You can’t help that, but you can help what you do. Focus on  your glow up and you will do just that!

 

4. Set boundaries-

Stop entertaining BS unrelated to your child. Is it possible your ex is doing petty things to make you upset or jealous? Absolutely. Be upfront about your concerns and expectations when it comes to your role in your child’s life and then move on. Honestly, you CANNOT control what happens when the child is at the other parent’s house. But what you can do is cut off anything that allows you to see the nonsense. Establish a way to communicate, a place to meet and a drop off and pick up  schedule. Those are all ways to minimize foolery (if you co-parent). If the dad is totally out of the picture and does not want to be, you got to move on without him!

 

5. Physical Contact/ Sexual Contact-

A lot of women are still saying “I did not have sexual relations with my baby daddy” (In my Bill Clinton voice). Be honest Sis, a lot of women go back to the familiar, but seriously if you want to cut the attachment and establish some respect, you must quit. Check out my article NO SEX WITH THE EX

6. Set goals-

Instead of you starting to worry too much on what things are not right, focus on improving your life every year. Focus on your goals and what you can do better. Focusing on improving yourself and your kids will help you put a less focus on irrelevant things you can’t control.

 

7. Have Patience-

With any situation have patience with the progress, yourself and others. Nothing improves overnight. Focus on staying committed, positive and focused. Celebrate minor milestones and understand that you will have setbacks, but they will set you up for later success.  Just keep going. You got this Sis!

 

Tahnee Cole

“The Mommy Motivator”

 

THE “BABY MAMA” SERIES: MENTAL HEALTH

Let me tell you the double standard…

I was talking to some coworkers about a story on the news. A dad was so stressed out that he came home killed his children and himself. As we discussed how sad it was a few of my co-workers started bashing the mother.

surprised

What type of mom let the dad have custody? She had to be a shitty mom for the dad to get custody. She knew his mental state!

And of course my favorite: If they were the mom, their kids would not have been with a dad like that.  

I listened before I gave them my 20 cents. I would say 2 cents, but yawl know that I am long-winded.

I started my speech with, ” But if she didn’t send the kids to their dad’s she would be considered a bitter baby mama or bitter bitch. Judged for depriving her kids from having a healthy connection and relationship with their father.”

So I guess its a lose, lose for this mom. She may have very well told the court system, police or even family that she seen some mental imbalance in her children’s father, but it is very hard to prove that in court. Especially, without a thorough medical diagnosis or a criminal history,

The baby mother is the most criticized stereotyped party in the baby making pair. I often hear people say things such as: She needs to get over it, and move on. Let that man see his kids. So does it truly matter the mental state the dad is in? And the audacity to give the dad a pass for his mental state; however, moms are expected to be strong despite their tribulations.

I can’t help but feel like every breakup where a baby mama is involved,  it turns into a bash party. So if she takes a stand to protect her kids, she is a bitter bitch.  It doesn’t matter is she is sending her kids to the dads house, and he has an unstable girlfriend. One who secretly hates her just because she is the mother of his child (there are women like that). How safe is that environment for her child?

She better send them.

It doesn’t matter if dad has a hoe house with different chicks watching the kids while he is out kicking it.

She better send them.

So baby mamas are put in rough predicaments and placed under huge judgements and scrutiny.

Let take a minute and think about your friend(s) who was discarded, left by the baby daddy of perhaps things just didn’t work out. This woman is now dealing with raising a child/children on her own , many times completely alone. Honestly, visitation does not equate to shared custody. Hell shared custody sometimes ain’t 50/50. Many times, the mom has to deal with mental overload. The emotions of her child due to the back and forth tug of war, as well as, her own emotions.

I remember when my son was still small and was going to his dad’s house. I was still nursing him, I remember as my breast were filling up with more milk I was developing more anxiety. It didn’t help that when I would text his dad to check on him, he would be petty and ignore my text.

That was a lot to handle for a mom suffering postpartum depression, having a small child spend nights away and still trying to maintain sanity with working and raising another child.  Moms constantly worry about their children and there should be respectable communication between the parents. But hey, send him to dad right?  Society says, “toughen up baby mama!”

Never mind the importance of a child being nurtured and cared by their mother during their vital early years. Never mind the emotions a woman has postpartum, and the support she needs as well. Never mind that it is difficult to properly nurture your child when you are dealing with distress, drama, lack of stability and a fucked up judicial system.

The general consensus is that the mom has to give her baby over regardless of the mental, physical or emotional abuse she suffers. On the flipside, the moms who do hand their child over are judged when shit goes wrong. Just like the mom I told you about earlier.

Of course, every situation is different and there are some baby mamas who are the cause of many issues. But that doesn’t represent all. My point is think twice before you judge anyone and you don’t know their story.

It is extremely important that we acknowledge and support our baby mothers too, as they play a major role in shaping our future. Instead of being looked down upon they need to be uplifted and cared for. The village is not just for the child. We are a village and we must keep uplifting all parties that reside in this shared space.

-Tahnee Cole

It’s My Birthday!

Today is November 13, 2017 and I am 32 years old. There will never be another day like this and I am truly enjoying the change God has brought into my life. Some good changes, some unexpected changes and some huge plot twist. I woke up this morning and I was honest with myself. I decided it was time for a change and that I was the one to make it. No more excuses about the cards that life had dealt me. It was time to play the cards and win. I am a walking success and I have to claim the greatness God has placed before me.

I have been blessed with many talents and most of them I have hid due to insecurities. Others talents I just took for granted. Then of course, there were the talents that I  used when they were convenient for me. However, ignoring the gifts that the Most High gives to you is a form of disrespect. There is no higher respect than the respect that I have for my Creator. So going forth I am required to show my appreciation and honor for his gifts.

Most of us question why we are not happy. Happiness is truly a choice and I realized that I have been existing rather than living. I decided for my birthday I would give myself the gift of living through enjoying my life and pursuing my purpose. Not waking up and going through the motions, but waking up and living for a reason other than paying bills and required responsibilities. I no longer want to live only out of guilt that my children need me around. Obviously, I am still alive so I have a special mission to accomplish. I could have been killed many times, but I was offered the gift of life and it is up to me to live. It is up to me to be happy and to be a blessing to others.

My purpose is to help, inspire and encourage others. My gift is through writing and my voice.  Going to college was my security blanket just in case my dream did not work. However, what is meant to be will always come back around. Although, I am proud of my college degrees and certifications; I understand that there is a deeper burning desire inside of me. I wake up and go to sleep thinking about writing. I envision encouraging other moms to live their lives, raise their children, have financial freedom and pursue their dreams. For my birthday I made an oath to dedicate the rest of my life perfecting my talents. I will also enjoy a fulfilled life as a mom, wife, daughter, friend, sister, aunt, grandmother, cousin, motivator, and so forth.  Yet, most of all as a vessel from the Most High utilizing to my full potential the power he invested within me.

From the Desk of

Tahnee Cole “The Mommy Motivator”

Your Self Worth and Your Success

As a mom leader SELF WORTH is one of my main focus. I truly believe that the more you value yourself the more successful you will become. Not only will you attain, but you will sustain your success. You will be unstoppable! People with high self worth value their time.  They prioritize and organize their days.  People with high self worth focus on spending time on their gifts and developing their purpose.

As a Mom Leader Navigating the Workforce having a POOR Self Worth Affects these areas:

Work Performance– When you do not take pride in who you are you will not take pride in your work. When you lose ambition sometimes it shows in your work area appearance and how you present yourself. It will also show in the quality of work that you do. Once you realize that everything that you do represents you and your brand you will make more of an effort to always present yourself accordingly.

Reputation -Hanging with the crabs in the bucket. The gossipers, the complainers, the Debbie Downers and Donald Don’t Do’s will all be apart of your Great fall. They are the people who encourage you to always see the glass half empty. They spend time complaining about the success of others. They tell you that you should do less and support you only when you speak negatively about the company that you represent. Yes, the company you represent. Even if you do not agree with something keep it to yourself and refrain from using the coffee room for gossip hour. Save your complaints for your superiors who can make changes. Do not get caught up talking bad with these people. They are the same people who will talk about you when you began to elevate to higher levels.

Presence: If your self worth is low it will show in how you present yourself.

  1. Meetings- Are you afraid to speak at meetings? Are you unsure of yourself and want to hide under a rock? Or are you just not interested? Once you improve your self worth you will have no problem voicing your opinion and being a part of the group.
  2. Salary- Do you believe your are valuable enough to receive a significant pay increase? Do you believe that your quality of work is great enough to receive a higher compensation?  Are you confident in approaching your manager in a professional way about your compensation? Once you know you value you will have no problem negotiating your salary.

 Advancement– Are you confident in yourself enough to step out and go after the career you want in your corporation? Are you confident enough to ask for helping building a career path with your Supervisor?  Are you confident in seeking employment outside of the company your work for? All of these questions will come as you increase your self worth and understand that you have the power to create the life you desire by understanding how valuable you are.

As a Mom Leader creating your own Business A POOR Self Worth affects these areas:

FAITH– If you have poor self worth chances are you will not believe in yourself enough to start working on the goals you desire to achieve. People with poor self image will constantly make excuses and talk themselves out of making things happen. They will always look at the negative rather than the positive rewards that could come from them believing in their vision.

RISK– If you do not believe you will not take the risk involved in making your dreams come alive. Many people with poor self worth will not invest in themselves or even get started. They will use the excuse of waiting for the perfect time to prolong taking the risk. Another year goes by and the perfect time will never arrive.

Branding–  One you have a positive self image and respect your self worth you be cleaning up your image and working on self development. You will not still hang around people who will bring you vision down. You will be mindful of how you look in person and on social media. You will only participate in activities and association that will bring positivity to your purpose.

Price– There are people who start their business and still do not think they are valuable enough to charge what they deserve for their products, services and ideas. Many people go in thinking that they have to start small to attract bigger, but it is the total opposite. If you start way too small it is harder charging more as time goes by. If you want to have a business that sells high-end products or services you have to appeal to clients and customers who only purchase high-end. Stop second guessing and doubting yourself.

Elevate your self worth and elevate your life!

 

-Tahnee L. Cole

 

 

 

My Perspective on Fear

I’m a firm believer that you should not live in fear. Fear holds you captive. If you live in fear how can you function? I knew someone who would not catch a plane because of their fear they would die in a plane crash. She later died in a car accident. A car accident from driving a long distance to another state. Ironically, she worried about crashing during a half hour flight. That taught me that no matter how much I feared I could not avoid the unavoidable. I could not beat the inevitable.

I vowed to recognize my fears but not succumb to them. This does not mean to ignore your fears. Some of our fears are valid. As I write this article some of my unknown fears have surfaced. I guess I am only afraid of dying because I worry about my kids. However, I can’t control my death date. I can control how I take care of my body to preserve it a little longer, but any sudden expected ending could still occur. I hope for the best, but I have an active life insurance policy. I have appointed guardians. I have my prayer request to God. There is no more that I can do.

Some of my fears have brought out the best in me. I have made some decisions out of fear that have changed my life. I feared dying before writing my book, letting my voice be heard and helping others. December 2016, I finished writing my first book. I will talk about my book in another blog post. I feared not living my dreams which is why I am working so hard to accomplish all my personal goals. I fear not growing as a woman, a mother, a friend, and a family member which is why I am focusing on self development. If I didn’t have these fears I would not be motivated to make change.

Embrace your fears. Let your fears fuel you to bring out the best version of yourself. Do something that you fear. Please do not allow your fears to keep you living a sheltered life in paranoia. Allow your fears to let you coexist with the other brave hearts that found their passion during times of fear.

Fear less. Be fearless!

-Tahnee Cole