learn & love: 5 tips to build your self-confidence

blackwomanartQueen is written in your DNA. King is written in your DNA. Dig deep into yourself and find the root of you.

If you need help on how to find your root, perhaps Sarah Johnson can help with her 5 practical tips on building your self-confidence. Watch below.

If anyone knows the artist of this piece, can you please let me know in the comments so I can give proper credit? Thank you!

learn & love: your mate is your mirror

loveartYour mate reflects you like a mirror. Take note. The good, the bad and the ugly.

Good moments, good traits, good emotions are easy to trace back to you. However, it seems the bad and the ugly are oftentimes dismissed towards the other. Let’s dig into how the cracks in the mirror are part of the reflection for two people in a relationship.

It is so easy to blame the other in anger but it is best to use that energy to look within to see how you match the other person’s flaws.

Sometimes, two people in a relationship have the same issue but have two totally different ways to express it. For instance, two people may feel insecure. One controls what the other person is doing while the other one is following along to keep the peace in the relationship. The actions are different but the root is the same. This is one mirroring effect in relationships.

It is so easy to hold bitterness when a relationship ends and to say he or she is no damn good but it is better to use that energy to recognize both sides of the relationship and how you contribute to the result.

Let’s take the same example: it would be easy for the controlled one to hold bitterness once the relationship ends and say it is all that person’s fault that he or she is broken. However, one came to the relationship already broken or else one would not have accepted the other’s controlling ways from the get go. Let’s be honest. It’s not easy to swallow the truth sometimes but it is always necessary in order to truly heal. This process does not mean one blames everything on oneself and negates the other’s part but it does mean one holds equal responsibility for the relationship. Once one sees the reflection, one can see their own self a lot clearer and take note of what is needed to change or improve in order to have a healthier relationship the next time. If this does not happen, one will fall into the same relationship pattern over and over again, hoping for a different result–insanity at its finest.

It is easy to play the victim in a relationship but it is wise to be the victor in the situation.

It is so much easier to point the finger at the other as if one has no power energetically while with that person. Everything and everyone has an energy frequency and we align to energy that is similar to ours whether it’s high one day, low the next; we sense, we feel, we create the visuals, the emotions, the life that plays around us so of course, in an intimate relationship, both parties are playing a crucial role in its display. To hand out your powerful role to the other is not fair to yourself. One positive way to grab that power back is through compassion, forgiveness and appreciation. Forgive yourself. Forgive the other (for your sake). Find compassion towards yourself and towards the other (for it is obvious that person needs it just as much as you for you two are mirrors). Appreciate the experience the two of you shared and the lessons that came with it. Now, this does not mean that one has to make any contact with the other at any point, nor have to share their compassion, forgiveness and appreciation with that person. This action can be (and probably should be) an inner process for one to start healing those cracks in the mirror so the reflection is clearer and you find someone that mirrors you the way you wish to see yourself.

learn & love: the hard part about happy

yellow abstract

art by yours truly

Looking for happy? Relating to another for happy’s sake? Buying the latest to feel happy? Climbing the endless corporate ladder to reach happy? Reading someone’s unhappy to falsely gain happy?

Happiness is not a location, a person, a job, nor a thing. It is a state of mind but oh how we forget this very important fact. We can be happy at any moment, anyplace with anyone and anything if we ARE content within and we can be unhappy at any moment, anyplace with anyone and anything if we ARE miserable. The choice is up to us. Think about it. There are a lot of miserable rich people and there are a lot of happy poor people. Two people can be at the same place, going through the same thing and come away with two completely different perspectives–one pessimistic and one optimistic. The place and the action did not determine the results of the person’s emotions attached to it. The emotions were all the individual’s choice based on their “beingness.” Whenever we are in a sticky situation or a struggle of some sort, we usually ask “What are you going to do?” but the real question is “How do I wish to be in this moment?” If you wish to be happy, then start being happy. Sometimes, it is that simple but that’s the hardest part about it because we love to make our emotions complicated and that is okay. We are just enjoying our spectrum of colors and splashing them about on life’s canvas but if you desire one particular color like yellow? Then you have to focus on that color and paint with only shades of that color. It’s a choice. A hard choice sometimes but always a choice.

learn & love: my top 5 ‘learn & love’ of 2013

sunflower_learnandloveToday is the 4th Anniversary of The Jolyn Project and I wish to celebrate by highlighting my personal top 5 favorite posts from each section. Last but not least up–the ‘learn & love’ section!

1. Rapper’s Advice: A little wordplay on Rapper’s Delight, this post highlights great advice from rappers. Unfortunately, rappers get underhanded in the mainstream despite their overwhelming influence on current culture. I absolutely enjoyed putting this together because I love showing wisdom from unexpected sources because it challenges people’s perceptions. READ HERE

2. 10 Lessons We Can Learn From Children: It seems like so many adults treat children as second class when in actuality, they are people too with thoughts, dreams and wisdom! We can learn so much from children if we just pay closer attention. These are just ten of the many lessons we can learn from the little ones in our lives. READ HERE

3. An Opinion Based On Observation: Originally, I wrote this short piece for an untitled project but I was so excited about it that I shared it early. I also figured I wasn’t the first one to write it so no biggie. ;)  READ HERE

4. Watercolor Philosophy: This is one of the few poetry posts this year and it matched with this year’s theme of acceptance and unconditional love. An interview with Lilou Mace and Panache Desai inspired the poem so I also included it in this post. I think this is when the theme started to come fruition for me and then it kept repeating itself this year thereafter and I think it will be a constant theme that I will be conscious of throughout my life–to be accepting and loving of through all the moments of life. It’s more than a theme. It’s a mission.  READ HERE

5. Be Responsible For Your Own Emotions: This post is perfect when you’re mad or upset by something or someone because it will check you like no other. I needed this advice when I wrote it and I still need it at times. (Yes sometimes I need my own damn blog for help. lol) I hope you favorite this post so you can refer back to it whenever you need to check yourself and remind yourself to be responsible for your own emotions. READ HERE

learn & love: the power of vulnerability

One does not have to be afraid of vulnerability for vulnerability is a human quality that exudes your true self with someone else. Some may say the other person is a reflection of you. Therefore, vulnerability is a way to express your true self to you. Think of it like a mirror of sorts.

By the way, I found a wonderful presentation by Dr. Brene Brown where she expresses the power of vulnerability. She inspired this post. I urge each of you who is reading this right now to view the video below. You never know… It could change your understanding of love and life and vulnerability.

learn & love: a letter for peace


So the wonderful website, Bloggers for Peace, has a monthly writing challenge. For July, the challenge is to “write a letter for peace and send it into the Universe.” After reading a brilliant letter from one of my fellow bloggers, Kelly, I decided to give this challenge a try.

Dear God,

Thank you for the food poisoning yesterday. It made me feel like I was thisclose to death. I felt weak, vulnerable, scared and disgusting. I couldn’t even relax as planned. I realize that this sickness was a mere physical manifestation of my negativity. However, in the midst of it all, I was reminded of the fact that this, too, was a blessing. See, I am beginning to understand the metaphor of life lessons and how cleverly you can play those out in our lives. In this situation, I noticed that a lot of toxins were coming out of my body; however, it was not a mere physical reaction to a poison; it was also an embodiment of my spirit being cleansed from certain negative thoughts.

Most people would not think of puking for over an hour and a half as a sign of peace but I do. There is so much you know, and only you know, God, about my past and the pain that those experiences have caused and the current pain I’ve been feeling lately and how deeply it goes for me. However, I am learning that each of those experiences are blessings too. I would not have comprehended this lesson if it was not for your constant reminders. It seems like you repeat the lesson over and over again until we get it and finally, I am slowly getting it. They say that nothing worth having is easy and I am beginning to think it’s true. To reach a level of peace where even food poisoning is okay is pretty cool but it took me this moment of illness to get it. I still wish to reach a higher level of peace on my journey which I am sure will be available through a series of obstacles and challenges. Fortunately, now I have clearer eyes to see the blessing in the lesson and I thank you for helping me with my vision, stomach pains and all.



P.S. I’ve never forgotten what you told me a little while ago that “sometimes, we must go to the depths of hell to get to the heights of heaven.” Thank you for that message and thank you for this experience to fully understand the message.

learn & love: rapper’s advice

grafitti boombox

In the mainstream media, rappers are oftentimes depicted as a negative influence on society. Despite their overwhelming power over the general culture around the world, rappers are usually placed in a confined space marginalizing their true talent and intelligence. With that said, I wanted to share some videos I found recently of rappers offering great wisdom, honesty and advice. Hope you enjoy and learn something from these talented hip hop artists!

J. Cole

Kanye West



Kendrick Lamar

Pharrell Williams

learn & love: what is your pattern?

What is your pattern?

What is your pattern?

There are many patterns that are interwoven in our lives. Emotional patterns. Social patterns. Psychological patterns. Fashion patterns. Musical patterns. Family patterns. Genetic patterns. Energy patterns. Eating patterns. Work patterns. Relationship patterns. Political patterns. Societal patterns. Mental patterns. Sexual patterns. Love patterns. Fear patterns. Spiritual patterns. Life patterns.

Some patterns are more abstract. Other patterns are more concrete. Patterns can be playful and colorful or simple and monochromatic. Patterns can be productive or destructive. Patterns can be intertwined between two people or sewn together by one. Masterpieces could be woven if a collection of patterns are mashed together like a quilt. Patterns can also be massive pilings of discarded yesterdays and bitter tomorrows.

If there is something you do not like with your life, then you may want to take a step back and notice the pattern.  Whether the pattern is personal or societal, you have the power to take your thread, change the stitch and create something new, aligning closer to what is true for your soul design. You can also take a step back and be in awe of the pattern, appreciating what is there instead of harboring over fine details. Since, after all, we are all in a grand universal design.