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Choice Philosophy #3~ You are who you hang with.

Who impacts us the most on a day to day basis? The people we hang out with, of course. It’s the core group of friends in our lives. People need people, and people influence each other heavily. People associate you with who your friends are. Even if you don’t have any part of their lifestyle. For example, if you have strippers for friends, but you are not a stripper, you will attract the wrong kind of attention. If you have friends that drink heavily, do drugs and or parties all the time, but you don’t take apart in their actions, you will attract the wrong person. Your friends can be your best or worst asset especially when trying to find love. Sometimes, the friend groups we get ourselves involved with brings us down, being in the wrong crowd may be a hindrance and in some cases, we begin to conform to their ways.

Now you may not have any friends of the sort which is fine, but even those that appear to be your friends may not be. I had a friend that was not involved in any negative behaviors, I trusted her with my thoughts and feelings. I told her things about my relationship and was looking for her best advice. While she told me how she felt, it was in a more negative connotation. She wasn’t looking out for me and what would make it better. She was envious and single and looking for love herself. I didn’t realized it until we had a falling out. Another scenario is my partner had a friend that she shared everything with; private stuff as well. Her friend started spreading rumors and lies which put me in a bad light. If it wasn’t for our trust in each other it could have tore our relationship apart. The people in our lives have a huge impact on what road we take. They influence us and help guide us on how to deal with situations by the advice they give. Whether it is good advice or bad, you are the judge.

It is a simple rule of the universe: you become who and what you surround yourself with. If your around successful people, you will learn how to be successful and rich in life. If you hang around healthy fit people, you will naturally get into better shape. No, I’m not telling you to drop all your friends because they are not rich and fit. Just start evaluating your friendships and determine whether or not they have a positive or negative influence on you. Are they negative? Do they gossip or put other people down? Are they someone that empowers a bad habit? These people need to be gone from your life, however you can give them the opportunity to change, by telling them the blunt and honest truth and hold them at arms length until their actions prove otherwise, not just their words.

Lastly, Are you the Problem? You may be the person in need of the most change. Like attracts like, so you tend to attract certain types of people more than others. It may mean there might be some work necessary on your part before others will want to hang out with you.

It’s ok to be selective about who you hang around. You are a direct result of the thoughts that you think, the people that you spend time with, and the books that you read. Therefore, if you want to change your life, then you must change your thoughts, change the people that you hang out with, and change the books that you read. It is all about change for the better, so don’t be surprised when you need to make some initial changes in order to attract what you desire in the future. One year from now, will you be the same exact person that you are today? The choice is always yours.

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Choice Philosophy #2 Your Home Tells Your Story

Your walls can talk without saying a word. Are you adventurous? Well-travelled? Creative? These are personality traits that, in a sense, can be written on your walls.

So, what does your home say about you?  There’s a reason the saying, “Home is where the heart is” resonates with people as a commonly accepted expression. No matter where your life takes you, home is the place you come back to time and time again. In its very essence, your home is meant to be a place of comfort, safety and self-expression—it’s supposed to represent who you are. Is your home telling the correct tale or do you need to write a new story?

Everything in your home says something about you. When you first walk into a home we all notice first how it smells and how it looks, before we notice what color the furniture was. The interior color palette is going to immediately set a tone for the home’s overall sense of atmosphere. Warm colors versus modern cooler tones define the home’s purpose within seconds of walking in. A home that displays an openness gives the sense of “family” that enjoys the continuity of time together. Nothing feels off limits and there is a real sense of community. Alternatively, a home with a more closed-off feel with doors that are shut creates a sense of mystery and intrigue—or could even go as far as saying that the you are closed-off and private, or potentially hiding something.

Now we all know a clean home is a happy home. Your home shouldn’t only be clean because you’re expecting company. It should always be clean for unexpected surprises. Anything broken, missing pieces, or dead, must be removed. No matter how well you dress or look on the outside, if your home is dirty and disorganized, you are dirty and disorganized. It is a true reflection of your normal self. This needs to be a lifestyle change. Not something you do in the mean time to get the person, but to keep them.

So with that being said be more conscience of your living space. Again, what does your home say about you? Something as simple as photographs place around your home can say a lot. Pictures can represent good or bad, it may show that you are active, have friends or love family. On the other hand it can show you hold on to past memories and not create new ones. A picture of your nephew when he was, lets say 6 months old, when in reality he is currently 5 years old is not okay to be displayed. This photo should be put away. A pet that has passed away should not be displayed. All photos that are displayed for all too see in your home should always be semi-current.

Objects can also have emotions attached to them. Every item from past boyfriends or girlfriends and marriages should be removed. Like that sweater you stole from his house, because it had his scent, lose it, fast. That blanket you used to wrap around her when she was cold, get rid of it. It creates the wrong kind of energy, and it sends the wrong message. Even though your potential doesn’t know it….you do and your holding on to a an emotional memory.

Isn’t it amazing that your home has the power to tell your story without even saying a word? Luckily, you’re never stuck with one story. As life and preferences change, so can your home and what it says to others about your life—and that makes your home the ultimate storyboard for great things to come.

Philosophy #3 coming soon.

Choice Philosophy #1~ It Starts with You

A cluttered mind leads to a chaotic lifestyle. My gosh how true it is. Take a step back and look around. I’ll wait…. While this practice is true for your outside living such as cleanliness of your home or bedroom. We will get into that later. It is most important for your mental health. Ask yourself, Am I mentally ready to love?

When I was younger I was sexually abused. This clouded my judgement on what real love was. Love wasn’t a feeling, it became a need. It was like a drug, I just wanted it no matter how it came. I had no feelings.

As for my partner she encountered family issues. Her surroundings consisted of alcohol and drugs. This type of lifestyle was abusive and disrespectful, not your ideal situation to know how to love.

Holding on to things that happened to you in the past, failed relationships, and or family issues, can harbor your ability to find your equal. In past articles that I have wrote, I speak on looking at how you live your life, an decide to make a change. Most will repeat the cycle and re-date the very same personality they left. Why does this happen? Well it’s because they didn’t set themselves free. Free from the pain, abuse, mentality, destruction.

We found that you must tell yourself and believe  you deserve all that life has to offer and you must do what it takes to succeed and receive your wants. We had to renew our mind, all that we were taught and was around, we had to trash it. I encourage all to do this before you get involved with someone, even though we didn’t have the opportunity to do it separately.  We were not mentally ready to love and it almost ruined us because we were two broken people trying to fix each other for years. Our minds were cluttered and in turn it made our whole lifestyle chaotic and corrupted. We could have avoided all this had we repaired ourselves first. Finally, we were put in a position where we had to make a decision. Please reference back to past articles to hear the full detail story of us and how we prevail.

So I am telling  you all, facing your fears and understanding your wants allows you to overcome any and all past dilemmas. Close all chapters of the past. There is no need to allow a person who is entering your life to know how screwed up your past was. Let it go? The End.

Next article will explain the first step in de-cluttering.

The Choice Philosophy~ Intro

So many people we have came across would look at our relationship and wish they can have what we have. Little do they know, what we have came over time and the willingness to not give up. However on the other hand, they state it’s “different”…. Ok let me explain; you see we are a same-sex couple, and most of the people around us are heterosexual. But what most people don’t understand is in many ways it is the same and maybe even more difficult. People like to make excuses for why their relationships don’t work. Don’t get me wrong, some are not meant to work, but most people give up rather quickly without trying everything to save it.

If you have read the previous articles,  you already know us but just to reiterate, to this day we have been together over 13 years. In those years we have overcame a lot and even some things most couples don’t encounter. In the early years of our relationship her family couldn’t stand me. Her mother hated me and the situation. She has made threats and tried to run me over. Being in a same-sex relationship, while it isn’t a problem now, when your in high school it is. Yes, we have been together since high school days. There have been infidelities, incorrect communication and imbalance in the first years of our relationship. In this situation most people would walk away from it. It’s just too much and you’re so young. Why stay and deal with it? Is it really worth it?

Overcoming all these challenges creates a different bond with your partner. If you truly love the person you are with and that person loves you the SAME way, you can make it work. You can have “what we have”. Not every relationship will go through the same issues. Each is as unique as the people involved. Our “what we have” is a relationship with boundaries, respect, trust, and communication. We are fair, honest and forgiving. We find space and balance. We are each other’s equals. Confident in the position that we are in, we have built such a solid foundation. At this point it has not been penetrated or cracked. While we have had trials, tribulations and outsiders tried to sabotage, we stand firm to what we believe and what we feel and know is right. Over the 13 years we have noticed what made “what we have” so strong. As a unit we have philosophies and practices we use everyday and in every situation that may arise.

As you read on you will learn our philosophies and practices, and what we learned about great relationships. I challenge you to use them, not only in your relationship or love life, but in your everyday life. It can be used for almost every situation. Always stay positive and remember “There is always some madness in love. But there is also always some reason in madness.”~Friedrich Nietzsche

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Autopilot

We are creatures of habit and change is meant to be difficult. We spend 80% of our day in autopilot mode. Okay, Autopilot is not all bad, it helps for repetitive activities like driving home. While on autopilot it allows us to focus on other or new activities that come up. But lets talk about habits……..

Since the 1960’s most psychologist agreed with the statement that it takes a minimum of 21 days to rid yourself of an old habit and/ or for a new habit to stick. I have found out, this is true and yet false. Why? Well because the research was not scientific, it was from the findings of a Cosmetic Surgeon by the name of Dr. Maxwell Maltz. He stated that it took approximately 21 days for his patients to become used to their new features. An with this new knowledge we, as humans, took it and ran with it and why you ask….. well its psychological, it allows us to have an end point. But in actuality it’s a setup. It makes it easier for us to feel like a failure if you didn’t succeed in this time frame.

Now I am not writing this article to discourage you, its to help you rethink. Breaking a bad habit or picking up a new positive one is worth the effort and in turn breaking a habit really means establishing a new habit. You can’t stop doing something habitual without a replacement behavior and besides it is much easier to start doing something new.

Habits are meant to be resistant to change and this is because its an habitual and repetitive action/ behavior that is imbedded in our thoughts, all while creating a routine without thought. Guess what this means!!!!!!! It means we have the capability of programming and reprogramming our brains. However, the longer you’ve had a habit, the longer it will take to get rid of it. The good news is, people are always capable of doing something else when they’re made aware of the habit and are sufficiently motivated to change.

So lets talk numbers, since I know now that we need something to hold on to. Finally scientist did the research and now the new average is 66 days, and for some it can take up to 254 days. I know you just died inside, but changes do not happen by magic, it takes work. Stay strong, you can do it. Matter of fact “Just Do It”.

So here are my Thoughts and Challenge…..

I challenge you to pick a new habit you would like to possess, use this to replace a bad habit you want to refrain from. Go on and think…… Ok ready…..

You will need 6 months minimum, true commitment, a strategy, and of course practice. It will also require the following:

Availability- how easy it is to start a new habit

Strength and Motivation- It must have personal value, and not pressure from others.

Mental and Physical- you must have the ability to change your thoughts and physically be able to do the work.

Because our brains works off the reward system, just like a little child. Start small by giving yourself a new reward for completing the task and eventually the brain will drop the old reward value and the new one will takes its place.

Embrace the process, commit to the system. Embrace the long slow walk to greatness. Treat failures like a scientist, give yourself permission to make mistakes, while developing strategies for getting back on track quickly. Forget about the number and focus on doing the work. “He who cannot obey himself, will be commanded”~ Friedrich Nietzsche.

The Revive

Getting a second chance at life was the best gift ever given. We knew this time around we had to make it right. Our life now is nothing like our past. We realized in order to be revived, you must leave EVERYTHING behind. Revive means to “Start Again or Bring Back to Life”. We left all the drugs and fast life behind and brought in eating healthier and saving money. We decided instead of being upset about our past, we embraced it and understood that it made us who we are today. We created our own family and have adopted meditation practices which helps us deal with our stresses and anger. We restored our thoughts and renewed our minds. Changed our entire world and lifestyle, and with it came many blessings. All in all we have developed our own methods to all the madness and we found what worked and what didn’t.

But still, so many people have questions regarding our relationship. Such as, how did you overcome family issues? Have you ever been a subject of prejudice? How was Brooklyn (our daughter) created? How do you guys have such a great relationship? What is it like being in a same-sex relationship? Well today is your lucky day, I am going to answer them all for you right here, right now.

How did you overcome family issues? My family has always had an adoration for Tip (my wife). They always treated her like family and Mom loves having her as a Daughter-in-law. As for Tip’s family..(long pause)……. Lets just say even after over 10 years its better, but not great. We just don’t give it any energy and I avoid it at all cost.

Has your relationship ever been under prejudice? Yes. One situation stands out the most in my memories and it will probably forever be imbedded in my mind. Tip, our daughter (4months old), and I were all at the grocery store and an older white lady came over to see the baby and said ” Oh she’s so gorgeous” then looked up at myself and Tip. She then looked down at our child and says “You poor thing”. My body said “Punch her”, but my mind said “She’s ignorant.”

How was Brooklyn created? So most people thought that I had a random one night stand with a guy….. wait..WHAT! Uhm No. Brooklyn was created with the help of Fertility clinic. She is a product of how many single women now have children if they do not have a partner, but yet wants kids.

Why do you guys have such a great relationship? This is simple. We are Friends. Like Friedrich Nietzsche states “It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.”

What is it like being in a same-sex relationship? For whatever reason people think our relationship differs from any heterosexual relationship. Guess what guys… It doesn’t. All relationships require work, even friendships are relationships.

If you have any other questions that you would love to know, I am an open book and will respond to all. All you have to do is ask.

The Promise p.2

Being out on your own at a young age is never gonna be easy. I wish someone would have told me this, however, even if they did I still would have thought it was better than what I was going through at home. I was working and going to college at the time and every night I had thoughts of dying. I became very numb and emotionless so much so, I would hurt myself to see if I can feel the pain. Of course at first it stung, but eventually it too became numb.

During these times my best friend Tip, now my wife, was dealing with a lot at her home as well. Her parents were both very verbally & physically abusive towards her. Letting out all their aggression, towards each other, onto her and it didn’t help that she was openly gay. We hid our affection towards one another for a very long time until, well it just came out. This broke the facade of their family and in turn they gave up on her. She moved out and, of course she moved in with me. Here we were to broken teens trying to figure out what we were going to do next.

I was always very mature for my age, so of course I took the lead, or at least I thought I was in control. We had a blast living with each other and we had a lot of horrible times. Tip introduced me into a new world to help me cope with my pain. That new world was DRUGS. I mean what was a mate to do when all the she wanted was for me to feel better and she promised me that it would. It was magical times. SEX, DRUGS & LOVE (in that order). You see Tip was only showing me what she knew. Her parents were happier when they were under the influence so this is what she learned and I was accepting to it because it showed me love, which is what i desired. This went on for years, and despite two overdoses, and a couple alcohol poisonings, we didn’t stop. We had money, new outfits every weekend, friends, partying, drugs and drink, all the things that matter for a young adult. It was the life and we were the life.

Until it all came crumbling down. We lost our jobs, we lost our place, and we almost lost each other. We realized in order for us to deal with our problems, we have to DEAL with them. Our love was worth more than our failures & worth more than our mistakes. We vowed in order to be better for each other we had to be better within ourselves. We had clearer visions and we began to restore and renew our minds. We were given a new life and a second chance.

Friedrich Nietzsche* said “All truly great thoughts are conceived by walking.” This is why Reek Of Royalty was created. We have prevailed, learned a lesson and vowed to not allow our past to destroy us. Turning tragedy into triumph. We know we have a bigger purpose here on earth. “*That which does not kill us makes us stronger.*”

The Promise

A daughter of two immigrant parents of Honduras, I was brought to the US with a promise of a better life, what I got…..well just keep reading.

We traveled a lot during the first few years of my life. So much so that I went to 10 different elementary schools and 2 different middle schools. Don’t ask me what my parents were doing, I plead the fifth. I never saw my parents argue and they never gave us an idea that anything was wrong. Until my father decided to leave my mom for a stripper, Welcome to Las Vegas!

I was turning 13 years old and it was the first time in my life I felt really alone and abandoned. Not only because my father left, might I add he never returned, but I lost my mom as well. No my mom didn’t die, she just forgot that she was a mother. She was chasing her feelings of being alone without a man and it was killing her. So she got with the first person that gave her attention, was accepting she had 3 children and he had money. He sold her this wonderful dream and bought her the world. She was happy and it only cost her the innocences of her two daughters. What were we supposed to do? We finally saw our mother was happy and at the same time we were fearful. All I could do was plan my escape.

I was 15 years old, I worked my ass off all summer, didn’t spend one dollar and hid all the money under my bed. At the end of the summer, I finally took a moment to count it all and realized it wasn’t going to be enough, but I was willing to take a chance. That night I pack all the money in my backpack with clothes and left. I made it all the way down to the front entrance of our housing community and was terrified, I started hyperventilating and I didn’t know what to do. It was at this point I knew I had to come up with a better plan. I went back home telling myself it will only be a few more days of this.

I endured a whole additional year of sexual abuse, until one day I realized it was approaching a whole other level. My brother tried telling my mom what was going on and he denied it, and two weeks later they kicked my brother out the house. I was almost 17 years old and I knew I had to leave this time, but I had to be smart.

I found an apartment that was willing to help me, due to my age. I didn’t tell anyone I was moving out. I woke up the next day packed up my car with all my belongings and at that time I told my mom I was leaving. She was very taking back and yet wasn’t upset or tried to stop me. My sister was a wreck.   I made a promise to my sister that I was coming back to save her, but first I had to be stable.

Now here I was 17 years old on my own, finally away from my abuser, and I was depressed.

Stay Tuned for Part 2……..

The Verticals

Most people believe in life you get the hand you’re dealt and that’s it. You are as smart and hardworking as your going to be and there’s nothing you can do to change it. That’s called a fixed mindset.

What’s the difference between a regular (straight line) person and a vertical person??? Answer: a Successful Mindset. Let me school you:

  1. Verticals don’t fail, they see failure as an opportunity. We ask ourselves “What did I learn from the experience?” When we experience a setback, we don’t dwell on it. We assess and move on to the next thing.
  2. Verticals accept who they are, they have a great relationship with themselves. It is important to us know our strengths and weaknesses. We have even taught ourselves how to “correct ourselves”.
  3. Verticals set high goals and work towards achieving them and don’t stop until they reach them. Having a dream is great, but goals turn the invisible to visible.
  4. Verticals don’t hope for the best, they take control to make things happen. You always have a choice, you can control your mind or you can let it control you.
  5. Verticals will see a problem as a reason to be creative and come up with a solution. When you focus on problems you will have more problems, but when you focus on solutions you have more opportunities.
  6. Verticals are always learning. If you want to go far have a learners mindset. Be open to learning and growth and development, free of bias.

To become a better version of yourself, you first must learn to hear your current mindset, recognize that you have a choice, talk back to it using a successful mindset, then take action.

Read this article a few times and once you begin to fully understand, start making executive decisions. You are the CEO of your own life.

From the words of my favorite philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche “He who has a WHY to live, can bear almost any HOW.”

Straight Line

Think about what a straight line looks like. It’s on-going, consistent and never changing. With 75% of us living as “straight lines” it’s time to make a change. Living this way is very robotic. Wake up in the morning, take a shower, brush your hair and teeth. Get dressed, make sure the kids are up and getting ready. Do your make-up rush out the house, drop the kids off and be on your way to work. Sounds like an average morning huh! For most working women this is the norm.

Then you get to work, and this is where I see it the most. You complain all day at work about your job, co-workers, low pay, all while fantasizing about where you want to be at right now. This is the same time of day when you talk about all the things you want to do, when in reality you are too terrified to actually do it. Then you get off of work and become robots again, just to wake up in the morning to do it all over.

Stop complaining about everything and do something, period.

Make tomorrow different. Change can’t happen without action. Take that course you were always thinking about and stick with it. Take that vacation you always wanted. Make the decision to look for a better more rewarding job, or start that business you dreamt about as a kid. I can almost guarantee you that when you decide to make a change, your life will be different.

Also remember, once you have made a CHOICE to do something different you must follow it through. You can’t be all talk and no action. That’s what got you here in the first place.

There’s a reason why Nike says “Just Do It”, because its that simple. Stop co-existing and start living.