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For My Twenty-Something Sisters Who Are Seeking Marriage.

Must read !!

sincerelycree

Lately the topic of marriage has been on my mind heavily. Perhaps, because I just got married a little over 2 months ago? What I’ve learned over the past two months is that marriage is literally everything people say it is. It’s beautiful, it’s warm, it’s rewarding, it’s satisfying, but it also takes work… A lot of work. However, this post isn’t about my marriage at all. This is for the women in my age range (I’m 25) that have their eyes set on one particular goal – MARRIAGE.

So often I see Instagram and Facebook posts of wedding inspiration or cute families… I mean VERY often. Girls my age are ALWAYS talking about how they can’t wait till someone proposes to them, or  “My husband better do this…” Please don’t get me wrong – it is VERY important to have goals and dreams. I am not saying to stop…

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10 TIPS TO FIGHT WINTER BLUES

So needed !

PocketsOfLife

Hey everyone,

This time of year is the time when people are so happy and having family all around. For some, however its a very depressing time. There are so many reasons why, I know for me the cold can easily put me into a funk. Below you can find my tips to help you shake off the winter blues……

1.Meditation, and Aromatherapy ….

This time of year problems come out of the woodworks,whether your just over everything dealing with stressful situations or your just alone, shit can get tough. When you mediate, even if it’s just 5 minutes a day, it can bring such a calm and peace to the rest of your day. On the other hand aromatherapy is another helpful tool to pick you up. We have access to candles, incense,and  teas that can help us.I’m currently meditating with Citrine, and burning incense that brings balance…

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to be uninspired & unproductive . . .

and how a few drops of baby oil and a running shower might have changed it all.

Let me explain.

For the last month or so my creative tank has been on empty, duly noted by the lack of blog posts since then. I guess you can say I’ve been in some sort of inspiration rut and the farthest thing from my mind has been creating , whether it be YouTube videos, blogging , designing etc. For the last month I have been disgustingly content with doing  absolutely nothing; allowing myself to fall prey to the mundane routine of everyday living, again. Why the heck am I in Los Angeles doing exactly what I left Delaware to escape?! Why am I not taking advantage of the many opportunities so conveniently laid out for me ? Well, yesterday I think I had a breakthrough. While sitting in my new apartment (blog post to follow) doing , you guessed it, absolutely nothing , I had a bright idea. In my head it sounded silly and crazy ; right up my alley. I’ve always loved the wet shower look in photo sessions , think Rihanna Esquire UK shoot. (a photo for your reference)

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So I pulled out my makeup bag, a bottle of my roommates baby oil  (thanks Cnythia !) , a tripod, my Iphone 6s plus and decided to have a photo-shoot. Hey , it was something to do! And at the least, I could laugh at myself later about it. But 20 mins and about 10 B&W edited shots later, I realized I had made magic. Slowly I saw my creativity crawling back to the surface and here I am typing this post as proof. The lesson in all of this and that sometimes you just have to stop thinking and do! Sometimes all the inspiration you need , is you.

As always, thanks for listening ❤

-Taj

( I’m no Rihanna, but , that’s ok. This will do .)

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"rainy dayz"

 

to be overworked & underappreciated . . .

Hello my name is Nataja Zanelle and I am TIRED.

Not just physically, but mentally and emotionally , spent.

Monday-Thursday I live the glorified “9-5 just to stay alive” ( more like 12 hours barely surviving) and then I go back to my designated corner of space ( i.e my friends couch ) and sleep my life away until it’s time to do it all again the next morning. I came to LA for something new , different and exciting and while the most of my time here has been in some way or another , I slowly see myself falling back into the monotonous life-sucking drain that is (was) my tedious daily routine. Work, sleep, work , sleep. There has to be more to life than just working to survive. I want to be clear, I know that I am blessed to be employed and I don’t take that for granted; the opportunities that I have been afforded are not lost on me. I’ve just always believed , what’s the point of working to exist if you never get to live? I made a vow to myself that I would start doing what I love regardless of whether I was compensated for my  work and I have, but , a little recognition would be nice. I write this blog post with a headache from getting too little sleep last night and I have a 12 hour day ahead of me; I could vomit. Yet, I press on. Last week , I took an  unexpected sabbatical from social media; no procrastination , but no productivity either. I am always running full-speed to where I want to be that I forget that it’s okay to slow down, stop and take a breath, realizing that life is a marathon and not a sprint. I know, this blog post is everywhere and no where at all, sort of like my thoughts, but fellow creatives and dreamers will understand. Sometimes it’s hard when people don’t see or care to see your vision, but the ugly truth is that not everyone will. You have to be willing to love what you love even  when your the only one that does. For the dreamer , who constantly works to both live and exist, but still feels invisible in the big picture , I SEE YOU. Never stop doing what makes you happy; money won’t buy you peace of mind. From one creative to the next: Keep working, I appreciate you 🙂

 

As always , thanks for listening

-Taj

Join My Mailing List!

FREE GIFT FOR THE FIRST 20 PEOPLE

Would love for all my new followers and some of my old ones too , to sign up for my mailing list ! I wear so many creative hats and want to be able to share them all with you ! Be the first to know about blog updates , poetry events , YouTube videos and etc . Will also like to have weekly contests for ‪#‎GOALS‬ reached ! It’s all about supporting one another and creating to our heart’s content ❤️

Click this link to take you to the sign-up form .eepurl.com/b6zB1r

 

As always, thanks for listening ❤

Taj

 

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to be big & beautiful . . .

“Beauty is when you can appreciate yourself. When you love yourself, that’s when you’re most beautiful.” -Zoe Kravitz

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VENICE BEACH x PEACE SIGN

I hate my arms, I barely ever wear them out. The scarred lines of stretched skin both embarrass and disgust me. Damaged. That’s how I feel . I hate that I have a beer belly and have only drank beer maybe twice in my lifetime; it’s a taste I have yet to acquire. Since moving to LA I’ve gained back the 30lbs. I lost and added even more . It seems like I yo-yo this 20lbs every couple months when I decide to “get back on my fitness journey,” never  quite sticking it through to the end. My thighs combined are the bulk of my weight and I keep them covered at all cost, even if that means jeans in the summertime; you won’t catch me dead in a pair of shorts. Always covering up , overcompensating for what I feel I lack. I hate to admit it , but I resent the term plus-size and I refuse to step foot into Ashley Steward. Maybe because apart of me doesn’t want to accept that I am apart of that community and because somehow admitting makes it true; I don’t take it as a compliment. I hate that I think that way, that I have somehow been programmed to believe that big is only better if we aren’t talking about people. Its hard loving yourself where you are when where you want to be seems so far away. That’s what this photo shoot was about for me. My friend Ari Leticia , aspiring songstress and photographer, was very instrumental in the success of this shoot, single-handedly scouting out places that would fit the theme and color scheme of my personal branding image. Of course I waited until the last minute to throw together looks , but I am very happy with the finished product. Really all I desire to do is inspire women to love themselves right where they are. It’s okay to want to change things, but don’t let how you look on the outside define who you are on the inside; beauty is more than skin deep. * Disclaimer: I am no model, but for a day I felt pretty and that’s all that matters.*

Griffith Park + Venice Beach x Nataja Zanelle , let’s go!

First up: Griffith Park x Pink Train

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TRYING TO SMIZE ( LIKE TYRA TAUGHT ME)
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I’M SURPRISED I’M EVEN POSTING THIS ONE *STOMACH*
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THIS IS WHAT HAPPEN WHY YOU TRY TO LOOK FIERCE LOL

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ONE OF MY FAVORITES

Next UP: Venice Beach x Graffiti Walls

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MEDITATION FOR THE MIND
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THERE’S THAT RESTING B*TCH FACE *sighs*

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SEE, I DO KNOW HOW TO SMILE 🙂

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LEARNING TO LAUGH HAS BEEN THE BEST LESSON

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ON TOP OF THE WORLD
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THE REAL ME

All these amazing shots were taken by the beautiful and talented Ari Leticia and I would like to take the time to thank her for bringing this shoot into fruition and really capturing who I am as an artist and as a creative soul that longs to find her way and a place to call home on this here green earth. I experience a rainbow of emotions on any given day , but I. AM. HAPPY. And that’s all that matters. I am learning to love my body just the way it is until I am able to change it . I pray you all find it in your heart to do the same for me, but most importantly , for yourself too.

 

Ari Leticia – Photographer

Contact Info for Booking & Pricing Info

Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/arileticia_

 

As always , thanks for listening ❤

-Taj

to be a boss babe . . .

” The dream is free, but the hustle is sold separately.”- Unknown

Two post in one week? Whaaaa? The end must be near, ha!  I guess this week I’m feeling particularly chatty. Feel like listening ?

Well much thanks go out to the beautiful Fatou B. Balde and her blog ( that I just found today and I am all here for) I am now starting the “7-Day Boss Babe Challenge.” And if you can’t tell, I am really excited about it. I had already had a pep talk with myself earlier today about trying to increase my social media presence and my audience engagement , but I didn’t really know how I was going about doing so. Then in comes Bossbabe.me to save the day. This challenge is said to be for people who are interested in

  • Growing a real online business
  • Build a personal brand that you freaking love
  • How to build an audience online that it’s obsessed with your work and will buy from you time and time again.

I don’t know about ya’ll , but that sounds like exactly what I am trying to accomplish in addition to making my myself a household name ( Big dreams, I know.) From what I gathered there are going to be seven days of varying challenges all setup to  ” challenge you with actionable steps and measurable goals” which will help in the end goal; to build a successful personal brand. I think I am up for the challenge , pun intended. Any one want to join me ?

As always , thanks for listening❤️

-Taj

to be socially awkward . . .

Fun fact: I have a very difficult time keeping eye contact with someone for an extended period time. The aforementioned statement is even more true if you’re a guy . And I like you . Ah the joys of social anxiety. 
My entire existence has been a nothing more than a mish mash of awkward moments and socially inappropriate reactions; it’s become some what apart of my personality. I laugh at the most unfunny moments and I  find it near impossible to console an emotional person. In addition to falling somewhere on the “very socially awkward” spectrum , I also suffer from a syndrome commonly known as Resting B*tch Face. My facial displacement doesn’t help my already reclusive nature. Simply put , I am screwed. Ha. It’s weird , I am one of the most outgoing yet shy people that I know , unfortunately if you don’t know me personally you’ll believe the latter before the former. My social awkwardness seems to operate on the same switch schedule as my mood ; easily flipped , uncontrollable and unexpected. Seriously , it’s so hard to know when I’ll be carefree socially upbeat Taj or run for the hills , cower behind my too soft voice and quick smile Nataja. I’m working on it guys , I promise. I can’t be the only who comes up with just the right words to say to the cute guy you met at the bar , 6 hours after you’ve already left the restaurant. I can’t tell you how many facepalms I’ve self-delivered because I just couldn’t fix my mouth to say hi . Or even worse , blindly missed an opportunity to engage in playful conversation because I had already convinced myself I wasn’t his type ( even though his words and body language CLEARLY communicated otherwise.) I’ve found that I’m not as socially awkward with/around women , but I’ve had my share of missed connections due to anxiety/ insecurity. I discussed a little a bit in my last blog ” Be Shameless . . . For Introverts” about how my social anxiety negatively impacted a very important networking event for me and I realized at that point that maybe it was a little deeper than “just my personality”; something needed to be done. Where are my fellow awkward turtles ? What do you all do to soothe your anxiety ? Is there a way to make an awkward moment , less awkward ? I’ve decided that my solution is to try to get out of my head and live in the moment, to be present. I want to try to live outside of my comfort zone , push my limits and just see what happens. I’ve dealt with insecurities all my life and it’s like as soon as I’ve almost rid myself of them here comes this crippling  anxiety; can’t win for losing. There’s nothing wrong with being different and quirky , I actually admire that about myself , but I do admit that being shy has had its disadvantages. I think the best thing that I can do is be more proactive about being who I am unapologetically , despite fear of rejection or not being accepted. Here’s an ode to my socially awkward , overwhelming shy and mind-bendingly anxious friends / fam , may you always the love silliest/incomprehensible parts of you and attract people who do the same. 
P. S – to the manager at the BWW on Hollywood Blvd , you were hecka cute and in another life I would have told you so , but in the famous words of the beautiful Elle Varner “not tonight.” 

As always , thanks for listening ❤️

Taj