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Life

Life-learned lessons, relationships, marriage, faith, lifestyle, and everything else in between.

Filtering by Tag: women empowerment

Stop The Bullying. Spread the love.

Debora Manusama-Sinaga

I didn't really plan to write about this until yesterday when I was reading an article and found out that October is the National Bullying Prevention Month. We have so many good causes being campaigned and celebrated almost every month here in the US. However, beside human trafficking and child sponsorship, bullying prevention is one of the very few that are truly dear to my heart. Just like many of you, I have experienced bullying when I was a child. However, sadly enough, I had to experience it until as recently as 6 years ago, when I was in my early 20s.

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With the social media and advanced technology these days, it's so easy for people to voice their opinions about others without even checking the facts or filtering their thoughts first.

I experienced cyber bullying a few years ago due to a horrible mistake that I had publicly made in my workplace. I owned my mistake, I had apologized for it and made amends with all parties involved and damaged by the incident. Even though it was really hard, I had decided to gather the shattered pieces of myself and start over. But women around me were not all excited for me. And I get it. What I did was wrong. But it was none of their business either and it did not validate their being mean to me.

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Many of them trash-talked me on social media, deliberately looked the other way whenever I said hi to them, and they never really got over being mean to me until months and months after.

I don't know what is it about women, but we tend to feel threatened when another women are doing something good for themselves. It's as if they're when they start doing something good for themselves, we ask ourselves "But what about me?" - as if that person is better than us. Better according to whose standard? Don't we realize that we are all works in progress? We tend to compare ourselves with other women, and either beat ourselves up for not having what they have, or beat them up and bully them for our own insecurities.

Why the negativity? Why the hate?

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So today I'd like to encourage you to love others, be kind, be supportive, without being a doormat. You can be selective when it comes to choosing the right friends, because some people are just not worth your time and energy. However, when it comes to being kind and friendly, we can do that to all.

Feel free to pin or share these images I have created to encourage y'all to be kind to others and listen to these songs that might encourage you too :) If you'd like to campaign the anti-bullying cause in your community or at your kids' school, reach out to organizations like Bee Friendly, Pacer, or Stomp Out Bullying and be part of the solution.

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[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GXoZLPSw8U8]

Love how she talks about loving yourself despite what people tell you. A beautiful and powerful music video too.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gOcLz3YJGCc]

Life might throw your heart to the ground, but the heart of life is good. Love the lyrics, very encouraging. One of my all-time favorite pick-me-up songs. [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ism8dBjxKvc]

I am not the mistakes I made, what my family did, or the color of my skin. I am light. India Arie slays as usual in this song.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XEVXlTxY_Wk]

This awesome dude is my cousin! This song talks about a little songbird who stopped singing because 'those girls and their circles' talked about her. But then the song went on to encourage the songbird to never stop singing. So beautiful.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTrt6FFuqdA]

This song is to encourage you to embrace your flaws and all the bad things that might have happened to you because they have only made you stronger.

The One Who Time Travels Through Stories

Debora Manusama-Sinaga

I'm super excited about this month's heroine. She is a dear friend of mine who seems to know just the right thing to say at the right time. She founded this community called Openseat, press play and watch the video before you read this article :) https://youtu.be/EVF9wkmzj54

She is a queen in the her own right, a storyteller, a speaker, and most of all she is a wife and a mom. This is Queen K. Smith :)

You describe yourself as a story teller. How did you get into it? Why are you so passionate about it?

I grew up in a very community centered culture in Cameroon, West Africa. We must have coined the phrase, "it takes a village to raise a child,'' lol! One of my fondest memories was when the whole family, 18+ of us (yep you read that correctly!), would gather around the fireside and listen to stories from the elders. My father was an incredible story teller; I guess you can say like father like daughter. I remember being captivated by stories at a young age. Those stories allowed me to time travel, and every time a story was told I felt something different. It didn't matter if I had heard the story before. I pulled courage and inspiration from the moments shared.

During some of the stories I held my breath during the conflict and exhaled when hope was about to break through! Now as an adult nothing has changed. I still marvel at people and their stories and I still love eating with people I meet. I want to know where they have been/where are they now/ and where they are going. As a story teller I get to take you on a journey (without paying for airfare lol).

A lot of people write stories, but not many are good in telling them. What makes the two so different?

I know some amazing story tellers, I honestly think everyone I encounter is a story teller. When I do I share, I do so with intention to build and not to destroy. A good story in the wrong environment does not accomplish anything. A great story teller paints a visual picture that will not appear if he/she is disconnected from their audience and merely just sharing an experience.

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Do you personally feel like stories could make an impact in people's lives? How has it helped you personally?

Girl yes! Stories are up there with chicken tacos with avocado! Stories help encourage, reveal, teach, to pass knowledge and they help us other understand others. I have personally learned from other people's story to avoid mistakes. I have personally helped others uncover their story and their core. Stories often times bring clarity and wisdom. 4

 To you personally, what makes a good story?

Truth and Authenticity makes a great story. The key is to not make your story look like someone else's.

 

 You are a mom. Have you always wanted to be one? 

Always!! I come from a huge family and I have dreamed about having a football team as well, jk. We have a beautiful 2 year daughter that I prayed for. I think she looks like me, that’s my story and I am sticking to it lol. Everyone thinks that she looks like her dad. I love my family.

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Do you tell stories to your daughter? If yes, what's her favorite story?

I sure do and I go all out.  She is two and I can already see in her eyes that she thinks I am dramatic. She has the beginner's bible with stories about Jesus for children; we thought that was perfect for her to learn about Jesus, the ultimate story teller.

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The cool thing is that most of the stories are the miracles Jesus performed, I want her to dream big. She loves all those stories.

 If people want to listen to your stories, where should they go?

I get to do Story Telling at our Open Seat Community and different conferences/events. One upcoming event in particular will be at the Miss Africa Texas Pageant this Saturday in Plano, TX. I also have a YouTube channel under the name, Queen K Smith. I have some upcoming stuff that I am going to doing specifically geared towards stories. Be on the lookout, you may visit my website and subscribe for upcoming activities and events.