What is Equality, Anyway?

What is Equality, anyway? 

Is it two arms, and two feet

one brain, and a mouth to eat

if we were equal, would we not be less gentrified 

gentrification being white

there is the obvious: equal pay, include gay 

what if equality went deeper,

than skin color, sex or religion 

to

True Freedom 

respect, kindness, compassion 

a country of people accepting, not judging, each other 

and accepting themselves, too;

for we project how we feel about ourselves onto others to various 
degrees, which explains the contamination of hate, 
a lack of cultivated love 

to accept, you have to acknowledge and reflect 

our country is lost because not enough people utilize time to

breath, reflect, accept and then use discernment, a spiritual 
judgment, for good  

Yes, equality starts with acceptance 

-Hello Poet

 

 

 

When will we free our                    shackled hearts?

 

 

Free Yourself from the Shackles of Shame

April 10, 2017

Dear….You,

Spring is my favorite season, and Passover and Easter are my favorite holidays. While I’m not super religious, I do reflect on the meanings of these holidays and celebrate, and from what I’ve learned Passover is the celebration of when the Israelites were freed from slavery out of Egypt, and Easter is the celebration of when Jesus was freed from the world into Heaven. Both holidays celebrate people overcoming adversity, and in celebration, there is the best food, wine, and company. Sign me up!

In light of the Spring season and holidays, I’ve been asking, what do I need to free myself from so that I may continue to bloom? 

I found my answers in meditation, opening my eyes to what’s around me and curiously listening. I found I need to free myself from thinking I am unworthy because of where I come from, because the catastrophic effects of living in shame tally up over time and are heavy, and I want to live in Light, not Dark. Thank you dark slaving thoughts; you’ve taught me well, and now it’s time for me to let you go. This Spring/Passover/Lenten Season, I free myself from shame and move deeper into Life by breaking my silence, self-compassion, and changing my thought direction.

A few stories:

When I was in college and joined a sorority, something I never planned for, I felt so ashamed of where I’d come from because I compared myself to the other ladies (Ladies, never compare yourselves to others. It robs you of the Joy in front of you and nothing is worth sacrificing Joy). Most of the young ladies grew up upper-middle-class, had Daddy’s credit card, didn’t have to work, didn’t have to pay their own dues, and hadn’t yet experienced the same adversity I had. These women knew their family members (aunts, uncles, cousins), knew where they came from and were given everything they needed and more (aka Millennials I envied). I didn’t grow up with anything like that. We had totally different perspectives on the world; we were foreigners. I felt so unworthy to be part of what I thought was a classy group of ladies I wanted to learn from, that I volunteered for three years to be on their executive board to prove my worth. Cinderella scrubbing away at the floors.  I was VP Finance for 2 years and Chapter President (CP) for a year. In fact, when I was running for CP, my own sorority sisters called me white trash, behind my back and to my face, re-affirming I had no right to be there and throwing in my face like dirt my weakness: the place I came from. Not even a man has broken my heart as bad as that sorority did. I thought these people were my friends. Albeit I was also working 40 hours a week and taking junior level accounting courses (Ewwwww!); something had to give, and it was sleep. I cried many nights to God, praying for strength to carry on, to continue seeking. Every time I saw a sister, I pushed passed the negative thoughts and leaned in with curiosity and a hug. I fought with kindness. Not only did I end up elected CP, but I forgave the people saying those hateful things about me. We also turned the chapter around that next year. Thankfully the ones who stuck by me during that time are some of my best friends today. Regardless of my insecurities at that time, I feel so lucky to have met all of those people. Here’s how I am now going to think about this story: Trina, kudos! You didn’t retaliate to meanness with meanness, you retaliated with kindness; you didn’t run away and hide, you faced it; who cares that you came from a different place, you learned we all come from different places; where you come from doesn’t matter, it’s in the past, what matters is who you are now; I’m sorry you felt unworthy, at some point most people struggle with this; you had every right to be there, and you have a right to be here now; also, you learned you don’t have to prove yourself to anyone; keep shining girl!

When I first moved to New York and worked for Ernst and Young (E&Y) in 2009 during the financial crisis, I was one of two people within the Financial Services Office E&Y had moved to NY from out of state. I still didn’t believe I was good enough. When I learned where my colleagues had gone to school, NYU, Notre Dame, Columbia, Michigan, Lehigh, amongst others, I felt like nothing. I was embarrassed that I went to the University of North Texas (UNT), a school I picked because I was paying for it and it’s what I could afford. I didn’t know what I was doing in NYC because I couldn’t get passed not only the school I attended but, again, the place I’d come from. I wanted to feel like I belonged, so I spent two years trying to prove my worth by slaving away to their clocked demands. I still couldn’t work as fast as the born-and-raised New Yorker, but I tried. I wish I had believed in myself more. I moved back to Texas when my Father (the step-Father who raised me and is forever my hero) had a stroke and my youngest sister was failing out of school; I knew I could nurture them both back to life. They nurtured me back, too. I will say I met some of the most amazing, talented, smart and loving people in NY that I still keep in touch with today; in fact, one of them is coming to see me in May! Despite my insecurities at that time, I feel so lucky to have met all of those people. Here’s how I am now going to think about this story: Trina, kudos! You didn’t need a big name school to get to NYC; they moved you there because you’re smart and hard-working; I’m sorry you felt unworthy at that time, it’s ok though; now you know you are worthy, and how cool is it that you ended up at the same place at the right time with all those amazing people despite where you came from, a testament to your determination; it’s ok you tried to prove yourself again, most of us do that at some point; you learned you don’t have to prove yourself to anyone, and for the record, you’re totally worthy; keep shining girl!

When my mom committed suicide last March, again I felt ashamed and unworthy, this time of Randy, his family and the life we shared together. I thought, “Now I am forever stamped; there’s no denying the crazy world I came from, and how could anyone love someone who’s mother committed suicide?” I thought for sure Randy would end our relationship because he’d feel embarrassed by my family, and I would have understood why. I was surprised to see he loved me deeper. Thank you, sweetheart, for being so kind to me when I fell apart. I am forever your angel. Here’s how I am now going to think about this story: Trina, you’re not forever stamped; you’re not your mother; others have dealt with similar things, others have very different struggles, but the key is so many people this past year reached out to you and shared their struggles; reached out! You have a great ability to listen to others and empathize with them; you are a spiritual warrior and healer in this world. Also, instead of shutting down, you’re opening up more than you ever have, you’re using your voice to connect; keep doing that, keep shining girl.

What I now see after writing this is that shame has taught me very valuable lessons, and that we don’t have to stay in that place, that it doesn’t define us; where we come from doesn’t define us, either. We can open up and try on different perspectives that re-connect us with others and ourselves. I guess the scariest part of this post was allowing myself to feel the deep roots of shame, name it, and share it. It’s not easy admitting insecurities, but it’s freeing as hell.

Thank You, God, People, World, and Universe. I hear You and will continue the good fight for Freedom. Thank you Spring for igniting a new flame year after year. I will continue to look for you. Thank you to the previous and current generations of all people everywhere who have fought for freedom, you are worth celebrating! And finally,

I am not ashamed of where I come from. I am not ashamed of where I come from. I am not ashamed of where I come from. I am grateful.

What do you need to free yourself from?

Love,

Trina LaShae Segura

I Dreama…LOVE

“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” – George Bernard Shaw

In May 2012, I met one of the most influential women I’ve ever met, Gail. She’s now my life coach, positive encourager, and friend. I met her in the Napa area, randomly. I was visiting my chef/foodie/bestie-“seester” when, suddenly, my sister had to move back to Texas. I was like, “WHaaaaat?! Now??? Like you’re moving back right now? Like…while I’m visiting you?!”

Needless to say, I was flabbergasted. But heck, I wasn’t about to go home after a much needed 9-day trip to the beautiful wine country. Yes, that’s right. Nine whole glorious days.

I was celebrating my birthday, so I took off the entire week. Always wanted to do that. Check! I quickly got over the unexpected change in plans and rented a car, found a hotel, and continued on with the twisty-turny adventure. Little did I know my entire life was about to change.

windy road love-inspirational-daily free yourself entering napa

California is exactly the dream you imagine – sunny paradise, relaxed people, chic vibe, beautful natural backdrop mixed with art, barrels upon barrels of wine, savory food. Napa is that dream on steriods; it’s Disney World for big kids, “sophisticated” ones at that (ahem – have developed palates).

While at the hotel, I met Gail standing in line waiting to order another glass of wine. Immediately friendly with a sunshine-happy personality, she initiated conversation, and I followed suit. I was happy she reached out to talk to me; before I walked up to the bar to order another glass of wine, I was enjoying sitting by myself outside at a table writing in a beautiful journal I had just purchased. I love pretty journals; actually use them, too. While writing, I could see Gail sitting with another lady out of the corner of my eye; I’d glance up occassionally after hearing Gail laugh;  they looked like they were having fun and I longed to be part of it. Why hadn’t I just gone up to them and joined in? The new me today would have, but I was a different woman nearly two years ago. I was a woman who didn’t love who I was.

After conversating a bit, I learned she was there for a life-coaching convention. I’ll never forget one of the first things she asked me, almost as if she already knew exactly what I was going to say:

 what_do_you_want

“What do you want?”  Gail asked with a smile on her face.

Perplexed, yet completely open to answering, I inherently responded,

“I want love.”

I wasn’t referring to romantic love either. I actually didn’t know where that response came from or what it meant. It did, however, change my life. And now, through much discovery, I know that the life I always dreamed was a life full of love.

Over the past two years, out of curiousity I’ve explore the word “LOVE” – what it means, how it feels, what it looks like, its very essence; everyday I learn something new about it. It is a lifelong mission to continue exploring love. I also concluded that the reason I had said that is because I didn’t feel I had love in my life at the time; when we want something, it’s because we believe we don’t already have it. Digging deeper, at the time I didn’t love myself. Heck, I didn’t even know who I was. How do you love someone you don’t know? And how do you love your neighbor as yourself, if you don’t know how to love yourself?

When I began exploring how to love myself, I started clearning the junk out of my mind with Gail’s coaching, unclogging the big artery to my heart. I was her first student, and we both entered into a relationship we each were open to. I started learning how to let go of my past so I could walk forward as a confident adult. What I didn’t expect was my heart to open up. I started being kind to myself – for the first time. I started smiling more, for no reason at all. I started seeing all the good things in my life. I even started believing in myself, at first because Gail believed in me. There were lots of prayers on my knees, tears, solitude, a mix of emotions, breakdowns, and breakthroughs – I could feel myself growing. When I felt I was collapsing in on the limit of my endurance, grace found me.

I began noticing love all around me – in the air, in the sky, in my dog, in everyone, in myself.

Most importantly, I started valuing my life as something special, and I became grateful. Then,

I became love.

Because I have always been love, and so have you. For the first time in my life, at 26 years old, I looked at myself in the mirror and said, “I love you.” This changed my heart. Changed my life. I started becoming the me I always wanted to be.

This wasn’t without the coaching of Gail, though. She told me to tell myself I loved myself! So I had to, right? At first I felt like that might be narcasistic. Then I thought, “Heck! If I don’t love me, who the heck else will?!” Gail taught me to believe in myself, free of judgment.

Why is this important? Why does it matter that you love YOU?

Think of it this way. How do you give of yourself, if you don’t know and love yourself? When you love yourself, you accept yourself. You’re not looking for someone to fill a void. You’re not looking for someone else to accept you. Not knowing yourself, not loving yourself, not accepting yourself and embracing yourself as already whole and complete right here right now, flaws and all, is like an empty hole in your heart, and you’ll spend all your days searching for something to fill that hole up to complete you, when really, you can complete yourself, because you are already complete. Right Now.

Breathe. That’s a lot to take in, I know.

Right now, you are whole. You are love. You are beautiful just the way you are.

love-is-you-love-30949107-500-445

When you realize this, then you can give your whole heart to someone; this is the best you. You can live wholeheartedly in the present moment, making life enjoyable. You don’t feel like something is missing, you feel complete and balanced. Do you know how much peace I gained from discovering this? And without even trying, my inner joy started overflowing, and my happiness became contagious.

Today I’m able to focus my attention and love on those around me better than ever, because I let go of being victimized by my past and created myself as someone who forgives, gives, loves, receives, smiles, laughs, and gently moves forward. I’ve allowed myself to become the woman I always knew I was, and I love her! Once you find your balance, you can give more to others. Sure, there are still things I have to deal with within, that will never change, but I do so with kindness, ease, gentleness, and acknowledge the person within. I listen to that inner voice and gut and honor it. It takes work though! No one ever said love was easy.

After all this, my new life mission is simply “to be love.

Gail also taught me to have a life mission, and it’s ok to change it; life is evolving, so, too, is your mission. Your mission comes from your core values.

A few things I’ve done over the past 2 years to become love are:

– Meditate and practice simply being.

– Yoga.

– Focus on the present moment (this can be done by focusing on one of your 5 senses for 10 seconds or more). A good book on this is Positive Intelligence.

– Wear pretty lingerie, just because.

– Find the scent that says, “This is SO you!”

– Dream. Often.

– Slow down. Take it all in.

– Leave money in a random spot for someone to find. Don’t become to attached to anything in this world, especially money.

– Smell pretty flowers. Buy yourself pretty flowers.

– Hug, a lot.

– Laugh, as much as possible.

– Seek the silver lining; there’s love there, usually a lot of it.

– Take care of your body; think about what you put in it.

– Go with the natural flow of life. Life loves you! Over-controlling usually stems from a fear. Life will treat you nice if you open up and let it.

– Listen to the voice within, and set healthy boundaries for yourself.

– Open up. Be vulnerable and resilent.

– Shine! Be you.

– When a bad thought comes up in your head about yourself, acknowledge it, then let it pass, and say, “I’m ok, that was just a judgement, and is not who I am.” We all have judgements.

– Reflect.

– Journal.

– Smile!

– When you make a mistake, embrace it! “Perfection is a disease of a nation,” (thank you, Beyonce).

– Nurture faith over fear. Be courageous! Take chances.

– Speak up for yourself. And others.

– Be kind.

– Be patient.

– Learn to let go and forgive.

– Don’t worry about others accepting you. Learn to accept yourself, believe in you! I believe in you.

– Pay it forward. Treat others how you want to be treated.

– Discover what it means to respect yourself and others.

– Take vacations.

– Eat with loved ones, without cell phones.

– Nurture relationships that are important to you.

– More bubble baths and smell goods.

– Realize that self-care is not self-ish. It’s your duty and obligation.

– Have fun!!! For crying out loud, we have one life, have fun!

photo

I often think back to that spring day in May 2012 and wonder what my life would be without Gail and without having been open to all the coaching. You never know who you will meet or where, for life is a great journey. And now, thanks to her coaching, and my openness to change, I am living the life I dream – a life full of love and happiness. You attract what you are, and now that I am love, love is all around me in abundance! I wish to spread that everywhere I go and to everyone I meet.

Thank you Gail for changing my life! Thank you for helping me become the woman I am today. Thank you for believing in me when I didn’t believe in myself. Thanks for taking a chance on me. I am forever grateful.

What will you do today to take a chance and start living the life you’ve always dreamed – in otherwords,

What do you want?

Much love,
I Dream of Trina

love-inspirational-daily

Smile!

Smile!

It really does make you happier.

Not every day is perfect or full of sunshine.

I’ve found though that some of the best days are days you had to fight for the sunshine – to create the sunshine yourself from your most inner being (deep, I know).

The truth is, the simple act of smiling helps with happiness, no matter what kind of day you’ve had.

This doesn’t mean “fake it to make it,” because I’m not sure if I believe in that (although I really have faked it to make it to a certain point); it doesn’t mean you’re not authentic if you smile when you’re unhappy; but when you do it enough, it actually can bring you out of that bad place you may be in.

imagesPLUS – what if it’s YOUR smile

that makes someone else’s day who may be in a worse place than you?

Now that’s worth smiling in itself!

Cheeze!

http://science.howstuffworks.com/life/smiling-happy.htm

smile_____by_aoao2-d4adzvn Untitled