It’s the Way You Live, Not the Way you Talk.

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Recently at work, we had this exercise called cross training, where our team members stepped into each other’s role to truly appreciate what the other accomplishes on a daily bases.

During a visit at my location, one of my coworkers and I happened to start talking about life, the future, and where we wanted to be within the next few years.  The next morning when she came into the office she proclaimed “I told my husband about this beautiful Christian young lady that works with me, I told him all about you”

Naturally I was a little taken back. Not once within our conversation about life or the future did I mention my religious beliefs. I never mentioned faith within my goals or the reason for my goals.  I told her I was not upset with her comment but simply wondered why she assumed my faith.

She simply stated. “well am I wrong? You will learn in this life time, it is not the way you say but the way you live your life”.

She made perfect sense. There is a striking difference between people who always talk about God and his word and people who carry his word through their actions and live a life that is centered around performing good works with humility that comes from wisdom.  Occasionally when I come across people who preach God’s word within every aspect of life, I feel that I do not always properly represent my faith in God.

Within my life, I have moved a way from established religion because I stumbled across so many people who would preach one message but actions did not align to the word they  taught to the masses. As a teenager this was the first independent thought that really started to separate me from my parents and family. It was the first decision I made as a young adult. To align my actions when possible to my faith and beliefs. Not just live the truth on Sundays and to formulate my own beliefs and not take everything at face value.

As I grew older and slightly wiser, most of my actions and who I am are directly tied to my faith.  As pointed out within the book of James in chapter three, your actions should match your word. If you are wise and understand your faith than do not prove it through your words and praising God in front of others, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom. If deep down there is a selfish ambition within your hurt, your actions will directly reflect this even when you tell others about the word or your faith.

Some people have told me that by not speaking on my faith, I am essentially hiding my beliefs. By leaving God out of my blog, I am not truly living up to my true purpose outlined by God.

To this I would like to combat that words and speaking God’s name is only half the battle. You can announce to the world your love for God and the good works you perform on his behalf, you can hide behind a religious mask and cast judgement based on your definition of the word of God, but I have also learned that teachers of the gospel are held to a higher standard. Your actions must always match your words. To me personally it means more that my actions are able to communicate all the words that I do not necessarily speak.  It means more to me that I perform what is true in my heart, that I do not speak ill of others, that I perform works that align with my beliefs and not to fit in with the crowd or my peers.

Preaching God’s word can be powerful but living a life and performing God’s will and purpose is even more powerful and affects a larger demographic. Not everyone is willing to hear the word of God but can connect with someone performing the work of God more easily.

My take away from this conversation with my coworker My actions and constant state of changing my environment and self is a direct reflection of my beliefs without me once uttering the name of my lord and savior.

So my challenge to each and every person is to live a life that aligns with your own purpose and goals.  Allow your actions to speak louder than the words you will ever speak.

Perform good deeds without recognition. Do not point out all the good or bad you do. Remain silent. What you do is important, in most cases more important than what you say. You cannot preach one thing in public and think your private whispers will never surface.

Until next time!

-Bella

 

 

Chasing Butterflies 2.0

Within the past year, I have adopted and coined the phrase ““Chase the butterflies, because that is when you feel truly alive”.   Anyone who actively follows my writing has read multiple pieces about chasing the feeling regardless if it comes to love, changes in life, or something as mundane as sharing your soul through your work.  This has been a constant motto when I decide to actively pursue a new adventure in life.

Every human naturally has the instincts to alert them of danger and unknown territory.  We are naturally programmed to distance ourselves from things that are not natural to our-self. When things are not familiar we begin to feel afraid, our hearts starts to race, we become nervous, we avoid the unfamiliar, and ultimately we stay within our comfort zone.  We are simply creatures of habit.  Our brain is also programmed to tell us “you cannot get this done”, “this is crazy”, and any other phrase that stops us from pursuing something head on.

Due to my natural inclination to remain within comfort, I have made it my personal goal to chase the butterflies, to push past all my fears.  To become truly alive.  Fear is such a huge limitation even when we do not even recognize fear. Personally my anxiety and the expectations that I see within society limits the things that I pursue.  The truth is I limit myself in so many ways in life, as do so many other individuals.  We constantly tell ourselves that we are not good enough or allow society to tell us what is acceptable and what is not.  Chasing the butterflies has become a constant reminder that at the point when the fear of the unknown comes within my life that  I will constantly pursue that unknown.  That moment when you fear jumping the most is when you need to take the leap because growth is not developed within comfort zones.

As I coined “chasing the butterflies”, I have never stopped to think of the symbolism and importance of butterflies within the world view.  Butterflies have a vast amount of meanings depending on the person and the culture.  Within the christian religion butterflies signify resurrection, other people around the world see it as symbols representing endurance, change, hope, and life. There are so many heartfelt stories and meaning to each person that you come across.

Today as I hastily began to get ready for my last Sunday within my current position, I look up on my mirror and see a green butterfly. My first thought was that I was going to remind my niece to stop placing stickers on things throughout my house, and something told me to blow on the sticker, as i began to blow the wings of the butterfly fluttered and than moved to another position.  This was in fact a butterfly in my bathroom at 7 am in the morning was pretty peculiar and it was my favorite color.

I am not a person that believes in coincidence or mistakes.  That butterfly was my symbol.   It was a symbol for my life and the current life circumstances that I am at right now.  I am making a huge career move, and I have been questioning if my abilities will be suited well with the new responsibility. I have been struggling with my confidence to drive steadily into the future without looking back.  I have had butterflies and have felt the fear lingering within the dark corners of my being. Not only with my career but also within many aspects of my personal life.  The color green is a symbol of growth, ambition, harmony, renewal, and energy.  It is time for my new path. I am going to chase my green butterfly and start to feel more alive than ever before.

You will always catch me chasing the butterflies.

 

A Trait better than the Rest

There is a character trait that is overlooked but is the key to success. So often people before hiring an individual, dating someone new, or trying to feel someone out for the first time look at so many traits that are important but lack a growth aspect.  Most people look for skills or traits of kindness, intercommunication skills, sociability, and team work ethic. All of these skills are beyond important but there is one that is often overlooked and more valuable than any other skill.

This is being open minded.  Being open minded is the difference between someone who can get anything done, and someone that is willing to get everything done considering every factor.

A broad definition of open mindedness is receptiveness to new ideas. Openmindedness relates to the way in which people approach the views and knowledge of others, and “incorporate the beliefs that others should be free to express their views and that the value of others’ knowledge should be recognized.”

This is not saying that they do not hold their own opinions and have strong opinions on a subject. It means that they can function within a team with people who may not hold the same beliefs. That they are willing to hear a topic.  That although they may never change their mind on a topic, they will at least hear out someone’s opinion to gain new knowledge or appreciation of a new perspective.

People who are open minded are naturally more empathetic, knowledgeable, and well rounded than people who have a fixed belief while disregarding any other belief system.  Personally having an open mind always leads to bigger and better places.  It shows that you are flexible and can tolerate circumstances that may be out of line with what you know.  It makes you a life long student willing to share with others their knowledge and beliefs on a topic.

It is never too late to take off the rose colored lenses and see life through others shades of lenses.  You might just like what is out there.

What Are You?

This poem/ open word piece is dedicated to anyone who has been wrongfully identified as a different race or ethnicity. It is also a testament of how I feel when people judge or make an assumption based on my physical features.

Your almond shaped eyes are so deer like, Are you middle eastern.

Your skin has a golden brown hue, Are you Puerto-rican.

You eye brows are dark, thick, and well defined, are you Italian.

You are hips are larger in proportion to your tiny waste, Are you African American?

Your nose is round and lacks a defined ridge, Are you Mexican?

Your hair creates the most perfect spiral curl, Are you Dominican?

Your lips are so full, are you Latin?

You speak Spanish, You must be a Latina.

You speak English with a lack of ethnic accent, you enunciate your words, you know the difference between to, too, and two. What are you?

I speak multiple languages, fluent in two and can understand four because I have a desire to communicate to every person that crosses my path. I do not expect everyone to know English. I speak Spanish because I yearn to travel the world.

My full lips allow me to speak up when everyone falls silent. It helps me to spread a positive message to the world, and call people to action. My lips are full of action.

My curls decide to twist, wrap, and take a different course everyday. Just like life my curls take their own direction. Sometimes I see them as a mess where others see their beauty. My curls are there to show a perfect representation of my life. Its crazy and a mess but outsiders only see the beauty of it.

My round nose that lacks definition. It does it’s job. It smells the small things like flowers budding, chicken frying, and my dirty dishes. It may not have a defined look, but its purpose is to allow me to appreciate the little things and warn me against hazard.

My large hips protects me when I fall. They allow me to bounce back. The also bare all the negative comments about women and how their bodies should look. They hold me upright when I should be falling apart.

My eyebrows are dark, thick, and well defined. They protect my eyes from dirt and anything that should not be within my precious eyes. They are well defined like my perception on things that do not belong in my life. They are thick because they had to shield my eyes from the world.

My golden hue skin. This was created from love. Two people who did not see color but love. I golden hue is unique like no other because it is never the same hue. It changes with time. The more light in my life the darker I become. The more I see darkness the lighter my skin becomes It reflects my life and mental health. It is an indicator of where I have been through.

Lastly my eyes. The beautiful almond shapes sees the world as it truly is. It sees that brown people are not viewed the same as the white man. My eyes see that the color of my skin is a predetermination of guilt. It sees that when I speak Spanish because of a language barrier others look at me like I do not belong. I see the the media wants to cast people of middle eastern decent as terrorists. I see that not all men are treated equal even if we are created equal. I see the injustice. I see the pain that is caused by injustice. Most importantly I see you judging me for who you think I may be from only my physical features.

What am I?

I am human like you.

Meet my Squishy.

Squishy: A person who carries their emotions on their sleeve and are open to express emotions to others. People who are not afraid to share their love, heart, and soul with others. A person who appears to be more vulnerable but open to the possibly of love and romance.

One of my best friends is of the opposite sex. We both meet in college and learned that personality wise we are pretty similar. Although I have theories on the nature and cause of our dynamic personas, it all boils down to that we just vibe and understand the underlying nature of one another on a weird level because in many ways we are practically the same person. We know our downfalls, and what outside forces change our beings.  We are different enough but face similar obstacles in many realms of life especially in regards to trusting others.

Due to our natural similarity, my dear friend figured out my love life by fixing and accomplishing the impossible within his own.   He is due to be married to the love of his life within the next few weeks, and along the way discovered our weakness.  Our weakness is the squishy.

To allow some history, I am a guarded person. I keep my emotions in place and never allow myself to truly love someone on a romantic level. I am great at making people like and most of the time love me without returning the same mutual feelings.  By nature I do not feel emotions on the same level as “normal” humans. I rarely get “butterflies” in my stomach, I do not see wedding bells and future children, and I never plan on them meeting my family or friends (which are a huge part of my life). That does not mean I do not date because I date and get a decent amount of interest, but usually my friends and family find out by me talking about “this” guy I dated last month.

Recently I had a slight change.  I was introduced to someone who intrigued me initially, annoyed me beyond measure, but ultimately made me have the “normal” emotional feelings that people have. As my friend, mentioned at the beginning,  would say “I met my squishy”, a person that felt natural to be around, but also gave me the butterfly feeling. Someone who I did not shut off within the first three hours of meeting.  That I laughed at the very things that usually would make my skin crawl… you know the horrible pick up lines, being philosophical for no reason at all, talking about how sexy Latinas’ are (because he assumed I was a Latina which drives me crazy), making everything into an analogy that makes absolutely no sense at all, not being direct, and making  unnecessary rash and rude comments as a joke to prevent people from getting mad. In general he is everything that I never go for in a guy, but felt drawn to him for no good reason.  I finally felt vulnerable. Being near him felt natural and familiar. For once I did not give half truths to someone that I hardly knew from a random stranger on the street. A light finally went off.

To put everything into perspective, and to get to the point of this whole thing, I finally felt something.  I felt the mushy, squishy feelings that I have suppressed and never thought possible. I met one of my “squishes” .  Luckily, I have a guide who has went through the same process as me to help figure out my feelings and to make me recognize that he is not the only squishy I will encounter. I will find one that one day, I will ultimately marry (which if anyone who knows me well enough knows is a frightening thought for me). One day I will become truly vulnerable, and this person will awaken every emotion that is buried deep inside.  Until than (which I am glad it is not now because I am truly not ready for it) I will go through life carefree and know that deep down I am actually human and not a machine without feelings. I will constantly be searching for the person that gives me instant butterflies, and will be my forever squishy.

My advice is to open yourself to unexplained feelings.  If you are an over emotional person who falls for each person that crosses your path, know that there will be someone that will one day reciprocate those same feelings.  For those who guard your heart and soul, you will find someone that will destroy every barrier that you are hiding behind.  It is okay to be afraid of the vulnerability, it would more concerning if you are not. Regardless, you will be loved beyond measure and  you will love like you never imagined possible. Romantic love is in the cards for you. Just have faith or run away both are viable options (in my unemotional, unprofessional opinion).

Spoiler alert: This first squishy was not a squishy meant for me. He is meant to rescue someone else (and I am meant to rescue another-at least for the time being), but I have determined that without him disturbing my unemotional state, I would never have gained the knowledge that there is someone out there that will awaken my soul like no other person has.  A special thanks to my best friend, his future wife that some how manages to love him and be great friends with me (two people who are resilient and tough as nails), and of course to my first squishy who has shown me what life as an emotional person feels like,  who unfortunately will somewhat remain in my life due to mutual acquaintances.

Until the next time…. I will continue to chase the butterflies.

-Bella Kat

Each raindrop in a Bucket adds to a full Bucket of Water

Life is unpredictable and most of the time unexpected. There is no rhyme or reason to the events that happen within our lives. Although I am not an expert on any particular subject, events within my life has proven time and again that there’s a purpose for everything and has added to my premature wisdom.

Recently I have experienced a major life event that has helped put my world back into perspective. Each day you can learn from the events and obstacles that is placed within your life.  You can learn from each one or chop it up to horrible luck.  After a near death experience I have learned that what I do indirectly affects many people. The way I drive, the way I complete my job, a compliment I give to a stranger, the person that I gave two dollars to, the meal I bought for the homeless guy on the parkway, the money I donate to charity, being distracted while driving, donating clothes to crisis shelters, offering a listening ear, giving life advice, and any other small seemingly obsolete action.  Our actions and words affect other people on daily basis for the good and the bad.

As humans we need to realize the impact of our actions and think twice before sending out negative vibes and personas to the world.  Never underestimate your impact on your environment and the world itself.

Stay safe and make positive impacts on the world

 

-Bella Kat

What is Success?

Success is a concept that each person within society is constantly trying to achieve. It is the hopes and dreams of every parent for their children to be successful and happy. It is woven into our character, and helps society define our worth, but what is success? More importantly, how do we obtain success?

The most common definition of success as defined by the internet and various dictionaries are the following: the accomplishment of an aim or purpose; the attainment of popularity or prosperity; and a person or thing that achieves desired aims or attains prosperity.

While I do not disagree that success is strongly linked to obtaining accomplishments. The definition that is provided by so many dictionaries directly link success with monetary accomplishments, name recognition, power, and status within society. Although most of society may consider those definitions the true definition of success, personally these definitions seem incomplete or not truly encompassing success as a whole.

This lead me to research what is success defined by individuals that society consider successful.  How do “successful” people define the concept of success?

Arianna Huffington, the founder of the Huffington Post, stated in her book entitled Thrive that society “tends to think of success along two metrics — money and power — we need to add a third”. She states that the third is more like a multi-branch pillar that contains “well-being, wisdom, wonder, and giving”.  Success includes this last multi-branch pillar because to be successful, one truly needs to thrive and attend to their psychological well being as well as the role society creates for them.

According to the inspiring writer Maya Angelou, “Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.” She explains that success is sought through obtaining happiness within the decisions and paths that you have taken as an individual, and the enjoyment we find in it.

Spiritual teacher Deepak Chopra believes that success is a matter  of constant growth. He states in his book, “success in life could be defined as the continued expansion of happiness and the progressive realization of worthy goals.”

Unlike the three previous success stories that focus on the psychological well being of an individual, many others focus on the drive or path to success. Winston Churchill stated “success is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm.” It is being relentless in your future and never giving up on your end goal.

Like Winston Churchill, Thomas Edison focused on the work to obtain success rather than what defines a successful person. He’s definition “success is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration.” He focused on constantly putting in the effort to reap the benefit.

I saved my personal favorite definition of success for last.  According to legendary basketball coach John Wooden, success comes from competition within ones self rather than competition with others. Wooden stated “success is peace of mind, which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming”. His idea of success comes from self fulfillment and goals of success that is set by the individual.

The common theme that is universal in each of these successful individuals definition is success comes from self awareness. Regardless if it is self fulfillment, hard work, continual self growth, relentless efforts, self love, or altruistic service to others; the key to success comes from within.  It is one thing to be successful to others, but the bigger obstacle is to truly gain success within the strict defines that we place upon ourselves.

I have not yet became the successful person that I would love to become, but I am proud of my progress and my relentless efforts to gaining success. Remember you are only more successful than the person you were yesterday.

Success lies within the heart, soul, and mind of the beholder.