Akosua Dardaine Edwards

Let's Share Lessons on The Journey

Akosua Dardaine Edwards - author, writer, coach, gender specialist, speaker

 

Healing Does Not Happen through Avoidance

You don’t heal just because you avoid triggers. You don’t heal just because you avoid being wounded. Healing doesn’t happen through avoidance. Healing happens through deliberate and intentional brave work. Healing happens by standing in the ebb and flow of life and relationships and finding new ways to communicate your pain and be heard. Healing happens when you find people who love you more than they need to defend and protect themselves. Healing happens when you listen and they listen. Healing happens through the bravery and courage. 
Do not wish for a life free from triggers. Do not wish for a life free from pain. Wish and choose the abundant opportunities that allow you to have new endings to old stories. #mindfulmft 

The strong narrative - the one where we are given points for not crying in public, in fact, points for not crying at all - the fellas are given that badge.

the one where we act tough as nails - pure hate and acting normal.

The silent narrative - the one where we are encouraged to "keep it quiet" not to shame anyone, and most importantly not to shame the family.

the one where we are also encouraged to "keep it quiet" until "it" is "fixed"

 

How does that work when "it" starts seeping out of us in the form of illness, emotional eating, being defensive, avoidance through overworking, shopping, sex, drugs? 

Avoidance was my choice.

Just deliberately stay away from the situations that trigger me

Trust me, that shit is not a long term solution.

I am not saying to go looking for drama, I am saying if you are supposed to have a conversation, have it before the proverbial shit hits the fan.

If you ae avoiding hurt by not dating or getting close to someone, or isolation - this action will not heal the hurt or find you that partner.

Whatever you are avoiding, find the courage to face it, there is something empowering about not being an observer.

Peace

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

Choices

Choice - to select your preference or desire from the possibilities presented. Your choice is your power, it is a function of your free will given to you by the creator. When you make a choice you are saying to the Universe that there is a desire, an idea, a vision, an intention, a dream that you are choosing to advance. When you fail to make a choice you are saying to the Universe that you have no power because every choice you don't make is a choice you are making. - Iyanla Vanzant

I was having a conversation with a someone yesterday, there was a difference of opinion on a matter at hand. I said in the end it is always a matter of choice. They did not believe this as many times "people have no choice"

This led to a further discussion about  what is "having no choice"

I believe that we always have a choice, this is where our power lies.

Making no choice is also a choice

Blaming others is also a choice

Accepting a situation is also a choice

regardless of the circumstances, any move that we make is based on a choice we make either consciously or unconciously.

So let's say one was sent to jail for a crime that they did not commit, the choice there is - what do I now do with this situation that I have found myself in, one which it seems at the moment that I have absolutely no control over?

Therein lies the choice

What do you do in a situation, any situation based according to Iyanla, the possibilities presented.

Many of our choices are based on our beliefs- and many of our beliefs are never questioned. The beliefs we have either comes from our family, our parents, our experiences, religion and society. Beliefs demand loyalty. When one believes in something they remain loyal to it, going against the belief brings up guilt. So rather than feel guilty about questioning the belief or discomfort from being different, we make a choice.

Mind you, I am not saying anyone's choice is wrong, to me if it is working it will be reflected in how you live your life,in how you feel, in your health, in your relationships

The most beautiful thing is, with free will, we can choose again, choices are unlimited until we die

So, how do you make choices?

Do you do it based on fear or love?

Do you make choices based on unquestioned core beliefs or not?

Do you make choices to avoid uncomfortable situations? (this one is me!! my hand is up!)

Do you make choices to enhance how you feel?

Do you make intentional choices?

One thing I have learnt is - every day in every way we are all making choices

Look at your life and it will tell you how well those choices are

Peace

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

Self Confidence Redefined

You must maintain unwavering faith that you can and will prevail in the end, regardless of the difficulties, AND at the same time, have the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be. James Collins

The Make Muse Magazine provided me the opportunity to share lessons on the Journey on Self Confidence. I defined or redefined it how I believed it to be

Self Confidence redefined as:

  1. Knowing that there is no one way to do anything – looking at alternative methods of achieving, doing and living.
  2.  Failing forward – using failure as feedback rather than a reason to stop.
  3.  Listening to their Intuition and being guided by it despite how it looks or sounds to others.
  4.  Being nudged by the messages received through intuition even if it makes absolutely no sense!
  5. Using non-traditional financing methods – women entrepreneurs are masters of this. On many occasions, traditional financing institutions either flatly refuse to extend credit, or believe the risk is too high to invest and choose to not extend financing. Because of these and many other circumstances women are not able to access credit, venture capital funding and loans. Women find a way to fund their enterprises despite these challenges.
  6.  Using non-traditional partners and allies – corporation over competition. Rather than compete in the traditional sense, there is more of a thrust to work with those already existing in the space.
  7. Believing that there is always a way through no matter how it looks.
  8. Sharing the vision openly – the ability to share the vision without fear and reservation. Everyone involved is given a clear picture of what the vision is, what the goal is. It is easily and simply communicated.
  9.  Being open to sharing, being passionate and most importantly being authentic.
  10. Expressing all their feelings without fear or favor

Read the full article here

Self Confidence Redefined

Peace

It's the Little Things

Be open to inspiration anytime, anywhere.  Cleo Wade

I was sitting in the porch, doing the usual morning ritual of eating breakfast and writing in the journal that I keep. As I sat there eating a mango, a bird flew in and looked like it was begging for a taste, I looked at the bird, it seemed deathy afraid of coming close to me or the plate. The bird advanced for a while then decided, no, she maybe too scary to approach frontal and all!

The bird flew away, I thought, oh dear, maybe I can leave a piece of mango on the porch and the bird will return. Just as I was about to the bird returned - with a new strategy. The bird flew directly on the table and picked the mango and flew away

I thought for a moment about how I approach my own "scary tasks" I fly away and sometimes hardly ever return! I was immediately inspired by what this bird did


Go away for a minute, regroup and fly back with an unstoppable courage!

How many times do we miss the opportunity to be inspired by little things because we are somewhere else mentaly, worrying about what we must do, have to do, cannot do, will not do, don't want to do- all in the future which none of us know for certain as the present moment is all that we have for sure!

I'd bet right now one of you is thinking about another time- past or present

Today, I am taking the opportunity to be present and look at the little things, who knows what I may discover or uncover


Peace

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

 

Almost Everything Starts Small

Everything you eventually do in your life happens because of tiny moments. But for some reason, when it comes to creating your future, tiny is no longer acceptable. Maxie McCoy

Start small. 

Start small and build.

Start small and believe.

Start small and know

because planting seeds take time, it takes patience and it takes doing the work.

How many times have we started:

  • the diet
  • the book
  • the business
  • the relationship
  • the project
  • the programme
  • the friendship

and we want it to be grand immediately? We want immediate results!

The diet is one week old, no weight is falling off- you stop!

The business plan is just finished - the profits are low or non existent- you stop!

How many times we put a time limit on our growth?

It must be done by a particular time,

Yes, we have learnt about goals being clear and time bound. However, there are times when our timing is layered with doubt and anxiety, with people pleasing, with guilt. If that is the case then what happens is any progress can be looked at as not enough, as too small, as slow!

We don't want to be in that moment where there is growth, where there is discomfort because there is nothing to show for it. Nothing to show others. 

When we tell others we are doing something or declare it to the world and they ask how is it going - there is nothing concrete to show.

It takes 9 months before the baby comes

The oak tree takes a while

short crops takes a short while

Trust the processs

Maybe hush a little bit and just do the work

Keep doing the small tasks as they add up

and believe

Peace

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

Branding....

Obsessing over "on brand" stunts your growth. Because if you stay the same, you're not expanding. Find a happy balance between staying true to yourself,and evolving into who you still can be. And that person may or may not feel "on brand" with the you of today. Maxie McCoy

There are a few people who tell me that " you are your brand" 

I get a little anxious about it, why? because brand to me denotes so much capitalism and inauthenticity. Yes, I know that perception is a choice that I have made and I can make another choice. A brand to me also signifies being static at any point in time.


So this offering of what brand is by Maxie made me smile and pointed me to making another choice.


I can decide what my brand is, I can decide what it is based on, the pillars, the representation, the growth. The brand can even be called something different. I get to chose.

Once I let this sink in I let go of the anxiety of "having and protecting the brand" becomes less and less.

This frees me up

Peace

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

Keeping it All In

Creativity deferred or denied morphs into guilt, shame, rage, depression, anxiety, envy and jealousy, among other things. We are made to create. When we aren’t creating, we feel powerless; and, in our powerlessness, we become destructive — to ourselves and others. Hiro Boga

What have you been postponing? What are the things that are inside of you screaming to come out?

What are you stopping yourself from making, creating, coming out because:

I'm too old

I'm too big

I'm too small

I have no money

I have no support

My family will not understand

The bills will not be paid

The economy

yada yada yada

What are you denying yourself from doing because?

1. Travelling

2. Painting

3. Writing

4. Cooking

and the list goes on

Listen, start something, anything, start small because what is inside of you is waiting to come out, and when it gets trapped inside the consequences are enormous. It will kill you, literally!

Trust me!

Let it out

Create or

Die

Peace

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

What Have I Learnt on Purpose

Purpose, in this sense, is a pathway built into our DNA, one that is both revealed and traversed through our everyday choices and actions. It’s the pattern that our souls hold for the perfect unfolding of each of our lives.

Or, to reach for a different metaphor, purpose is the fulcrum to which we apply the lever of our genius, willingness and power to create the shapes of our lives, the shape of our world.Hiro Boga

There are many theories about on what is our purpose and how one ought to go about "finding" it.

The ones that resonates with me the most are the simple ones - y'all know I am a simple gal.

Your purpose ought to bring you joy - I'm digging that one!

Your purpose is what you were born to do, something, however large or small, that you do well - I'm digging this one as well

I have learnt that your purpose does not have to be this grand thing, if it serves with love, grace and joy just one person, that is enough!

I have also learnt that our purpose is not static and can change with time. It can grow, it can recalibrate, it ought not to hold you hostage.

I have learnt not to compare your purpose with anyone else's we all have a unique one to fulfill

I have learnt that living on purpose may not look or seem logical to others, it may not ever satisfy the status quo, it may be challenging but when it is realised it is the best thing ever!

Peace

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

 

“The great secret of getting what you want from life is to know what you want and believe you can have it.” —Norman Vincent Peale

A friend of mine said to me that "You get what you ask for"  I believe that with all my heart. It was a reminder that asking involves more than saying it out loud to the person that you want that particular thing from.

Asking for what you want is:

1. Believing in the request

2. Having patience

3. Aligning thought, words and deeds

4. Being Flexible

It makes absolutely no sense to ask for something and your thoughts and actions are in direct contravention of it!

It also defeats the purpose when we ask for something and not believe we will be sucessful, sometimes the response does not look like what we had in mind, this is where the flexibility comes in and the faith.

I asked the Universe to work with women and young women. I had something totally different in mind, but when I got over myself I realised that I am working with women and girls, not in the way I envisioned it in my mind, but who is to say this is not a stepping stone to that

To dismiss what I am doing right now to say "nah sah, this is not exactly the way I planned it" would be ungrateful, to put it quite bluntly!

 

I learnt that keeping an open mind and believing are essential ingredients in this art of asking for what we want!

Peace

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

 

 

Speak it Kindly

Choose to speak the truth. Speak it kindly, fiercely, clearly. Without equivocation. Unattached to outcome. Speak it because the body of truth is sacred. It needs no veiling or adornment. It simply is. Hiro Boga

There is a school of thought that says once the truth is being spoken it can be delivered in any way, be it harsh or cruel, or sharp. So those who follow that school speak the thruth, or their truth in a manner in which they take no consequences.

How do you speak your truth?

Do you speak it harshly?

Do you speak it kindly?

Do you speak it confidently?

Do you speak it in fear?

How you speak your truth can determine how it is received.

If it is spoken in fear it can be received in fear- not that you have responsibility for anyone's feelings on how it is received.

Speak your truth and speak it kindly and watch what happens

Peace

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

Are You Doing It Out Of Fear?

Too many people are thinking of security instead of opportunity. They seem to be more afraid of life than death.”

— James F. Byrnes

What do you do when you are overwhelmed?

Do you ever get overwhelmed?

Confessions on the Journey- the past few days have been overwhelming. There seems to be no time in the day to do anything because I am doing something else, and what I have learnt is that I get overwhelmed when I am doing things that I don't want to do. When I am doing things because I believe that I will not be able to pay my bills when they are due, when I am doing it for the cash, out of fear, rather than for the love and service

I took some time to pay attention to the feeling and asked it to reveal to me what and why they were showing up.

Since Monday I have been going and going and going and going. There was just enough time for me to get a short run in on Wednesday morning, apart from that- call me the energizer bunny, going and on the go.

This morning someone asked me about something I promised them to do and I felt bad because I havent been able to do it up to now, that triggered me asking the question - why am I so overwhelemed? And the answer was clear- you are doing these tasks out of fear.

Which prompted the question- what else am I doing out of fear?

Are you doing anything out of fear?

Share what you have learnt

Curious minds want to know

Peace

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

Make a Decision. Take a Risk

When resistance comes up in your body, you want to shut down or run away. It may feel like you just don't want to be bothered. Unfortunately when you shut down, you, you will miss a valuable growth experience and an opportunity to get in touch with yourself.Listening what is said does not mean you have to act. Allow yourself to feel it and decide what to do about it later. Make a decision.Tak a risk - Iyanla Vanzant

One of my favourite lessons - I got this one out on the Continent, is to live intentionally.

To live with a purpose, whatever it is!

To come off auto pilot

Because not making a decision is a decision

I decided that I would live with intention, a very simple one that would guide all of my decisions

I would live a life of love and service

Love

Love of self

Love of people

Love of situations - however challenging

Love does not mean I like the situation all the time it just means that I accept the now and make a decision to do something about it other than moaning about it

Service to self

Service to others

Service to my community

It ain't gotta be nothin big, it can be small but it will be intentional

This is a life where decisions are sometimes are unpopular or illogical, I have to be mindful of the noise

but what I have learnt is - when I make a firm decision to live this way, I make the sacrifice

Peace

 

Have you read any of Akosua's work?

What Did I Learn Today? Lessons on the Journey to Unconditional Self Love

Nyabo (Madam) - Why Are You Here?

Daily Lessons on the Journey - A Journal

Follow Akosua on

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

NiNa Vacation Camp - Day 7

None is more impoverished than the one who has no gratitude. Gratitude is a currency that we can mint for ourselves, and spend without fear of bankruptcy.” —Fred De Witt Van Amburgh

The young ladies were excited to have a graduation off site, they planned the programe, they wanted to decorate the place, to shop for the decorations, to have music, and to dress nicely with makeup. The buzz was contagious. On the day they all looked so beautiful, they showed up all dressed up with a level of excitement that hung in the air.

They really stepped up, they sang, they said poems, they danced, as they said "nervous and frightened" but they did it despite the fear! I looked on in admiration at their courage

 A few of the supporters showed up and got an opportunity to see how their dollars were spent, I appreciated the support

The mentors were wonderful!

The two angels who showed up to give this thing wings, were as susual, present, supportive and accepting- I appreciate them so much

I must say that this is always a highlight of my year, no matter what I do and where I am

Peace

NiNa Vacation Camp - Day 6

Make a pact with yourself today to not be defined by your past. Sometimes the greatest thing to come out of all your hard work isn't what you get for it, but what you become for it. Shake things up today! Be You...Be Free...Share.”  Steve Maraboli

 

 

 

Today the young ladies were scheduled to do their pitches for the judges- they were supposed to pitch their idea and receive feedback from the judges

They were all nervous

They were on edge

Then an argument broke out

They decided that they were not going to do the pitch

flow

Anger flared up

OMG I thought, this is a test! 

I sat down and spoke to them and asked them do the pitch as a favour to me because I trust them and know that they can do it

They did it and they were absolutely fabulous

I am so grateful for the opportunity to be around them.

They are so real, so unfiltered, so genuine

it reminds me that one of the qualities that aid in living a life on purpose is authenticity

and I thank them for that

 

Peace

NiNa Vacation Camp - Day 5

Love is friendship that has caught fire. It is quiet understanding, mutual confidence, sharing and forgiving. It is loyalty through good and bad times. It settles for less than perfection and makes allowances for human weaknesses.” – Ann Landers

 

I have heard it before, you may have also heard it before as well - Love is the answer.

Total cliche - this was my perception when I heard people say it. Now I can tell you with absolute certaintly that I believe it, I believe that love is indeed the answer.

Love - wanting nothing from another person, wanting only the best for them, holding no ill will or malice

 

Spending the week with these young ladies whose stories vary from not knowing their parents, from knowing their parents but not living with them for a variety of reasons, from the "bad girls" and the list goes on and on to the break of dawn. Spending this week with them made me know for sure that in our actions  which show them that we want only the best for them and nothing in return has been the answer

The answer to the anxiety

The answer to the building of trust

The answer to the the uncertainty

 

When someone feels loved, they feel safe, they feel needed, they feel supported

and if all I can do is show some love then I have done something

I cannot solve their problems, nor can I make them go away but what I can do is let them know that there are some people they know who love them regardless of what has happened in the past

and that is an answer

 

Peace

NiNa Vacation Camp - Day 4

Learn to ask for what you really want- Iyanla Vanzant

These young ladies are bold, they are unfiltered, they ask for what they want regardless of how it sounds, how it comes across and how anyone feels about it

They just ask and ask and ask until someone says stop!

I love how they just ask! A reminder to self, that if I don't ask for what I really want chances are I would only get what others think I want and what others want to give

Today the girls cooked my favourite food for breakfast! Love over Love times Love

Peace

Your story is inspiring, your delivery is real
— Barbara Ince, President - Maloney Women's Group
The students who attended the function were so inspired by you they want all their friends to be exposed to your story.
— Cherisse Rawlins - Teacher Moruga Secondary
I must thank you for your presentation, many people were blown away by it.
— Sharon Christopher, Dep CEO First Citizens Bank Limited
It was a pleasure hosting you. Your reading from Nyabo (Madam) Why Are You Here? - was both thought provoking and insightful, thank you.
— Consulate General of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago - New York
You are an inspiration to us all
— Marlene Charles, YWCA President
I can’t stop telling people about your presentation. You changed my life forever!
— Michele Celestine, Executive Director Heroes Foundation
What an honour and priveledge it was for me and my wife to host you during your stay in Washington DC
— Anthony WJ Phillips-Spencer, Ambassador Extraordinary Embassy of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago
Unveiling was exactly what I needed, thank you.
— Participant at 2017's Unveiling- Looking into the Mirror of Self
Akosua, congratulations and thank you for that fabulous and thoughtful sharing from your book. I did NOTHING for the weekend but read your books. Madam, I found your story telling light and entertaining, true Trini style but DEEP.
— Sandra Ferguson, Agency for Rural Transformation, Grenada W.I