Reevaluating Your Inner Circle

 In an attempt to learn Spanish, I began watching a Spanish soap opera, Lady La Vendedora de Rosas, based on a true story. In the show, the main character, Lady, and her family grew up in the slums of Columbia. Her single mother had a drinking problem and needed Lady, only a little girl at the time, to help the family out financially by selling roses on the dangerous street. Child services ended up taking Lady from her home and put her in an orphanage with nuns. There, she was raised and didn’t go back home until she was a teenager. When she came back, she kept the same values she learned from the nuns in her heart and was able to take better care of her family then her mother ever could.

Meanwhile, her two childhood best friends, Alex and Yurani stayed home and connected with a bad influence. Alex ended up becoming a gangster and Yurani became a drug addict. I mentioned to my sister that it was funny how Lady ended up becoming so responsible and successful while everyone else in the story was doing terrible. She reminded me that Lady was raised around the nuns and like-minded girls, in a safe environment. Alex and Yurani were surrounded by people that didn’t care enough to have their best interest at heart.

We are still in the beginning of the New Year and I know that everyone has their heart set on changing for the better. But you will only be as good as the company you keep. I’ve fooled myself many times in the past by saying, “we are friends but we are nothing alike and she can’t influence me because I am my own person.” That is a lie. That is not possible. If you are consistently hanging out with someone, their values and their mindset will eventually start to rub off on your own, without you even realizing it.

I’m not saying to abandon your “day ones,” but if your friends are lazy, unmotivated, or are doing things that compromise your values, then it’s your responsibility to distance yourself. Your company is a reflection of you. And believe me when I say that you are a product of who you surround yourself with.

Make sure though, that the friends you choose are actually friends. The best way to tell is by analyzing how they support your good decisions, and seeing if they love you enough to correct your bad ones, in ways that align with your core values.

The right friends to keep close in the New Year are going to be the ones that are positive and motivated to becoming the best version of themselves possible, while also encouraging your growth. The right friends will clap loudly when you win. They should be your biggest fans. They will always be there when you need them the most. And they will give you the advice you need to hear rather than what you want to hear.

Who you surround yourself with is a main factor that will ultimately contribute to your personal growth. So choose your friends wisely.

xo, Brittany Kayla

ASK BRITTANY: After checking his phone, I don’t know if I could trust him

Dear Brittany: I need advice desperately! I am a single mom and I started talking to this guy in November. He is sweet, fun to be around, always makes me happy, and accepts my child (which most guys wouldn’t). When we first started talking I had told him I wasn’t looking for anything serious as I had just gotten out of something serious and was hurt. He agreed. I messed up and saw him enter his phone password. (I know I know, I messed up there). So one night I looked through his phone and he was talking to 2 girls. He never hung out with them, just harmless flirting. We spoke about it and he said he was testing the waters because he didn’t think I wanted a relationship. I figured since we were seeing each other 3-4 times a week, we were getting more serious. I told him that I do want a relationship. He agreed to immediately stop talking to the girls but a week later I check his phone again and there’s another girl. He said she was a girl he always liked but never gave him the time of day and he wants to be with me but he feels like he is only used for pleasure. We went back and forth for over 24 hours and at first, I was done but something told me to give him another chance. He suggested he’d change his number and since then (2 weeks) things have been great. I still have my guard up and I’m scared to get hurt again. What should I do?

Okay, so let’s dissect everything you’ve said.

“He accepts my child which most guys wouldn’t.”

Don’t settle! I know that finding a man that accepts your children is difficult, especially if they don’t have any of their own. But the right man for you and your child is going to be the one that you can trust unconditionally. If a man can’t respect you, then he definitely won’t respect your child.

“I had told him I wasn’t looking for anything serious.”

Okay so to make things fair, you did tell him you weren’t looking for a relationship. You can’t really get mad if he flirts with a couple of other girls here and there at this point. Don’t allow your past relationships to dictate how you will treat and trust the next man.

“I looked through his phone.”

Unfortunately most men need you to spell it out for them. Although you assumed that your “situationship” was starting to get serious, you did originally tell him that you weren’t looking for a relationship. That being said, you shouldn’t have felt comfortable enough to look through his phone until you’ve had the “what are we?” conversation for the second time.

“I told him I do want a relationship.”

Boom, here you made the right step. Communication is one key to a successful relationship. You’ve voiced that you do want a relationship and he agreed. You voiced that him texting other girls was a problem and he understood. There should be no more issues regarding that matter from this point on.

“A week later there’s another girl.”

Annnnnd here’s an issue. There is no reason for him to be texting a girl that he wanted (or wants because otherwise why would he still be texting her)? His excuse that you are using him for pleasure is LAME. He should come up with a new one! He is still keeping his options open because he is not ready to commit.

You clearly don’t trust him and I don’t think a person should have to change their number in order for that to happen. If he doesn’t have enough self-control to not entertain other women, then he is not worth your time. Also, it might seem like he has changed, but he might have just gotten good at hiding.

Notice how you’ve been faithfully asserting all of your attention onto him, without him having to remind you not to entertain other men. Why? Because you like him! When you really like or love someone, you no longer feel the need to get attention from other people. The person you are dating becomes enough for you. And guess what? You are enough for someone too. Don’t allow social media to distort your mind into thinking that you have to settle for a man that “harmlessly flirts” with other girls because it’s the “guy thing” to do.

If you decide to stay, I would still absolutely keep my guard up. Especially when you have a child to think about. Checking his phone all the time is definitely a sign of mistrust. And a healthy relationship requires trust. I know personally this could be hard but try not looking through it unless he’s giving you a reason to believe he is hiding something. In other words, if he’s acting different, distant, or secretive. Don’t entirely let him back in until he’s proven himself worthy. But monitoring his every move is not the answer.

Stay alert and don’t ignore the red flags. You’ve already received red flag number 1.

Sincerely,

Brittany Kayla

If you would like to ask an anonymous question for you or a friend, click here and it will be posted on Ask Brittany!

8 tips to accomplish that goal you’ve been struggling with

We’ve all said it. “This is my year! I will finally accomplish the goal I’ve procrastinated on my entire life!” And by the end of the year, we still haven’t done it. I’ve personally set aside a few goals for myself this year and I wrote down the steps that are going to help me accomplish them, as they have helped me in the past.

 1. ATTAINABLE GOALS 

A lot of people strive for things they will never be able to have. You can’t say, “I want my body to look like hers after the New Year,” because someone else’s body has a different anatomy and build then yours. A lot of us need to revise our goals to things that we can actually accomplish. Otherwise, you will be running forever with no finish line.

 2. BREAK IT DOWN 

Break your goals down into easy steps.  The reason why a lot of us haven’t accomplished our goals yet is not because our dreams are too big, but because they are too big to accomplish right now. You don’t say, “I’m hungry, I want a sandwich” and the sandwich just appears in front of your face. You need to make it, step by step and ingredient by ingredient. Be sure to come up with a plan that has clear instructions on how you are going to accomplish your goal. My blog posts are only step one of my personal dreams! What are your steps?

 3. WRITE IT DOWN 

After you’ve broken down your attainable steps, be sure to write them down on paper. This will assist in making your dreams a reality. It’s also a good idea to put your dreams down on a vision board. Fill it up with your goals, steps, and photos to keep you encouraged! I recommend using magazine clippings for the pictures.

 4. KEEP YOURSELF ACCOUNTABLE 

The way I keep myself accountable is by journaling. I write down my feelings, my struggles, and my accomplishments. Let’s say my goal is to eat healthy. I’m going to feel real bad writing down the fact that I pigged out after lunch today! Although journaling is personal and no one is going to read it, trust me when I say, you will feel a lot better about yourself when you’re writing about how you accomplished today’s goal rather than messing up.

 5. ACCOUNTABILITY PARTNER 

Find someone who is seasoned in the goal you are trying to accomplish. If your goal is to become closer to God and you struggle with remaining consistent in praying and reading the Bible, ask one of your trusted church leaders to text you from time to time to keep you accountable! It’s also good because your accountability partner can participate with you. They can study the Bible with you, they can work out with you, etc.

 6. MOTIVATIONAL VIDEOS

I watch motivational videos, TED talks, and preachings several times a week! They keep me inspired throughout my journey to keep on pushing. I also follow Instagram pages of other inspirational people who have already accomplished my goals.

 7. PRAYER

Prayer is so important throughout your entire journey. Pray for guidance, pray for strength, self-control, and discernment. Pray, pray, pray! When you keep God first in life He will always help you out.

 8. GET BACK UP!

If you fail today, try again. If you fail tomorrow, keep going. If you ate badly at lunch, don’t use that as an excuse to eat badly at dinner. Don’t stop! Consistency will get you where you want to be.

ASK BRITTANY: I’m engaged but I still think about my ex…

Dear Brittany: I’m engaged to an amazing man that I love so much but I still think of my ex here and there and I just don’t know what to do… My fiancé is amazing to me but I feel like he doesn’t deserve the fact that I’m thinking of someone else when we aren’t talking.

This is a tricky situation! It’s going to take a lot of self-reflection on your part to figure out what to do and why you feel this way. But I personally don’t think I would go through with the marriage until I’ve figured everything out first.

If you are still thinking about your ex, this leads me to believe that you were never really over him in the first place; even before you got engaged. Maybe you agreed to the engagement because you felt pressured to say yes because your man is such a good guy??

You need to remember that being a good faithful man does not mean he is the one for you. I know that a good man is hard to find in a day and age like ours; but I’ve realized that we easily settle for people that we don’t really want just because they are giving us the love we’ve always craved.

Is there something about him that is not satisfying your needs? What are the things that your ex did for you that your fiancé can’t? Communicate this with him if so. Remember, communication is key to a successful relationship.

Why did you and your ex break up in the first place? If he wanted to get back together and you weren’t engaged, would you take the offer? If so, then your fiancé is probably not fulfilling enough for you and I would let him know.

These are all questions you need to ask yourself. But I know that I know that I know, you should not be thinking of your ex when you are about to commit yourself to someone else for the rest of your life.

Now let’s say you want to be with your fiancé for the rest of your life, without a doubt, but you still think about your ex because you never got closure. Then I would say to shoot your ex a text and receive the closure that you need.

You might also just have cold feet. It’s scary thinking about committing yourself to one person for the rest of your life! Perhaps your hesitation stems from fear of the unknown. Talk to other married women to see if they had cold feet before their wedding!

If I were personally in this situation, I would pray and ask God for guidance. Ask God if it is His will for you and your fiancé to be together. The Bible says in Jeremiah 29:13, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” So when you are seeking God with all of your heart and you are praying to Him, you will get the answers you are searching for.

The last thing you want is to be stuck in a marriage that is not for you. What’s most important in this situation is that you are following your intuition and your heart.

You know what you want out of life so live it the way you want. Don’t live the life others are expecting you to live. Don’t stay in a relationship you are not completely happy in. You are in control of your life and your happiness.  So take complete control.

xo, Brittany Kayla

If you would like to ask an anonymous question for you or a friend, click here and it will be posted on Ask Brittany!

The dream GOD gave me that put my frustration to rest!

A few nights ago, I cried myself to sleep. I began to feel like my life was remaining stagnant. I have such big plans for my future that when things slow down I get nervous. And when I don’t see God doing the things I want Him to do in my life, I get frustrated. I started reading horoscopes more than I read the Bible because I began to lose hope.

But when I fell asleep, I had an odd dream. In the dream, I was at the mall with a cousin. Suddenly an alarm went off for a big storm coming through the area. People began running frantically for safety. I remember seeing the walls of the mall crumbling down as waves of water from the storm came colliding. My cousin and I were desperate to get home to our families so we caught a ride from a little boy. After driving through the storm, the little boy dropped us off to my cousin’s house. However, I wanted him to take me to my house so I could be with my family. I begged and pleaded him to take me home. “Please, please take me home so I could be with my family!” But after several attempts, his final answer was no. The boy wanted to go home before the storm got too bad. Defeated, I walked with my cousin to her house, but to my surprise, my family was there.

When I woke up, I thought to myself, “Wow, they ended up being there all along.” If I had actually gotten my way and he took me to my house, I would have been disappointed and alone.

God wants me to tell you that sometimes, when we are going through a storm, we have our own ideas of where we should be, and get frustrated when we don’t reach that destination. You might never reach that destination. But the place God has in mind for you will be so much more rewarding and beneficial.

I then started to think about the little boy who gave us the ride. I actually recognized him from real life. I work for a children’s program and the boy, named Micah, is actually the tiniest child in the program. Although, he is too small to be driving a car, I relied on him in the dream to take me to where I wanted to be.

Sometimes when our faith in God decreases, we start relying on people or things that are UNQUALIFIED to take us to our desired destination.  God then told me to look up the meaning of the name Micah, and I found out that it means “Who is like God?” And of course the answer to this question is no one!

I needed that reality check. I needed to be reminded that horoscopes are not God. People are not God. I am not God. So what I have planned for my life just might not be what He does. And that is okay, because what He has in store for you and me is so much greater than we could ever imagine ourselves. Don’t be discouraged. God has a plan.

xo, Brittany Kayla

When Life Spins Out of Control

My Easter definitely didn’t go as planned, as I had gotten into my very first car accident. I was actually on my way to church, driving on the highway, when my rear tire popped and car spun out of control into the side of the highway ramp. When the tire first popped, I thought I’d be able to safely brake and pull

over onto the side of the highway. But once my car started spinning, I realized I had zero control over the situation. I didn’t know what to do. There was nothing I really could do. I could have tried to maneuver the wheel in different directions to avoid hitting another car, but that might have made the situation worse. I could have asked my passenger what to do, but they wouldn’t have had the answer. The only thing I knew I could do, was call on God. As the car spun, I held onto the wheel tight screaming, “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus!”

My car ended up landing safely on the side of the highway where no cars could interfere. Both my passenger and I left without a scratch. You see, when all of your faith lies in God, He will become the first one you call to for help in the midst of your life spinning out of control. I realized that some situations are just too big for me to handle on my own, and relying on friends can be problematic. But if your life is spinning out of control, and you give your issues to GOD, He will ensure that you end up landing in a safe and comfortable place.

A lot of us say that our faith lies in God, but He’s the last one we call on in the midst of our storms. Why is it that when we get bad news or are going through a tough time, we run to the phone and call on people who have zero power over the situation? Why is God, who has all control, not the first one we run to?

Some of us even try to handle our storms on our own. A few hours after my accident, I heard the news about Steve Stephens, a man who senselessly murdered innocent Robert Godwin Sr. on Facebook live. Stephens claimed Godwin was his 14th victim, and he had been killing innocent people all day simply because his life reached its breaking point.  As I watched this man’s video explaining why he did what he did, all I could see was a cry for help. I don’t know what Stephens was going through, but I can’t help but to think, “if only he gave his problems to God.”

Even when you’re at your breaking point, and you feel like no one is there, call on God. Even when you feel like He’s not listening, still call on God. Even if He doesn’t respond right away or as fast as you prefer, call on God. Even if He doesn’t handle the situation the way you want it to be handled, still call on God! When your faith lies in God, you can have peace, even in the midst of your storm and life spinning out of control, that He will work it out the RIGHT way.

Stop trying to take control of the wheel and maneuvering it in different directions. Stop calling on your passengers for answers. Hold on tight, and call on the one who has all control. “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus! Take control of our lives!”

xo, Brittany Kayla