I Got Caught Up

Dear Readers,

It has been about three months since I posted. Here to let you know that both my dragthepen WordPress blog and my brand Conversations with J. R is doing well. I have been busy getting my books out, currently working on the sequel to A Different Flavor of Love, in production meetings for my first film The Conversation, due out Summer 2023, during all this something amazing happened. After 16 years working in the field of education, I thought it was time to take a break and try another profession. I updated my resume, released it out into the universe, crossed my fingers, and prayed. And in July,  I was hired as an Independent Living Specialist for residents in transitional housing. Bear with me I titled this ” I got caught up”, But what I should have said was ” I was overwhelmed” meaning, I was not ready for the changes that were coming.

I was excited about being a part of a dynamic organization making a difference in people’s lives helping them to obtain permanent affordable housing. However, as time progressed, I noticed that this new opportunity was chipping away my personal time. I was not blogging, or creating videos for my YouTube channel, I stopped working on my manuscript, and I constantly had to reschedule my book photo shoot. It was not just my creative side that was suffering; I was always feeling physically and mentally drained. I consider myself to be an active person, and never have I ever been a lazy person. During this transition period I developed unhealthy habits, like eating junk and fast-food, I stopped cooking and Grub Hub became my new best friend, I gave up on exercising and I let go of my favorite pastime reading. To make matters worse I have a puppy and he felt my frustration when I came home and did not want to interact with him, so he started acting out. 

My mood changed and I became antisocial because the new position was sucking the life out of me. Here is the scary part. Since I created my brand Conversation with J. R. Floyd, I advocate for self-care and during my conversations l ask my audience to think about WIN What’s Important Now, learn to slow down and prioritize life in the order of what’s important first, what can wait, and what’s not needed. I became caught up in the excitement of something new and the increase in salary, and justified sacrificing myself, time with family and friends, self-care, vacations, even a well-planned staycation to reset and rejuvenate. I saw the increased salary the pathway to the life I want until I understood what’s sacrificed. Think about this: being caught up in careers and higher salary to the point that relationships suffer, marriages breakdown, family falling apart, and developing physical and mental health issues. In my situation I had to stop and think about what’s happening and why? 

That was six months ago, and I began the slow process of rearranging my life and adjusting getting myself back on track. My creative side is the best and most powerful part of me. When I create a podcast, blog post or producing ideas for a new book, this gives my life meaning and purpose. I used to think that when people say phrases like, ‘ take back your life” that it sounded corny, not anymore. Due to what I have experienced these pass months I honestly understand how I allowed key areas of my life to slip away from me, it was simply ” I got caught up”. I became caught up in the hype of being around new people in a different working environment, and I forgot to practice balance. It was a difficult adjustment transitioning from higher education to an office setting.

I think by now you got the point of this conversation. Reminder, the holiday season is fast approaching, and people are, going to become stressed with planning, shopping, cooking, cleaning, overspending, and holiday parties. I am going to end with these wise words. 

Trust the process that everything will fall into place

Slow down and savor the present moment

Make time to enjoy the small joys in life

Do your own thing because you want

to and not because you have to

Give your mind and body the love and attention it deserves

Don’t take things personally just work towards the best version of yourself

Pause and reset

My Week

Dear Readers, 

I have a week off. No remote teaching until February 9, and job number 2, where I worked as a Director Support Professional in a group home only scheduled me for one day.  My first reaction was anger, I had planned to work a few extra days to pay for my birthday trip in March. I thought this sucks, what am I going to do with myself for an entire week?

As luck would have it this week off worked in my favor. First, I live in New York City. We recently experienced a snow storm that dropped 12 to 18 inches. Second, I compiled a list of things I really needed to accomplish, however, I’ve been in procrastinating mode. Here is my story. I am planning my retirement by building a tiny house ( 200-250 square feet) during my research and online chats with people in the tiny house community. They recommend that I begin to downsize and decide what I can and can’t live with or without. 

So, I began with the filing system. I never knew I had so much old paper. In three hours I shredded six ( 13 gal sizes) garbage bags. I will need to schedule another to reorganize new files, but the good news is all the old stuff is gone. And the new rule is check the filing system every six months. I took a coffee break and moved onto the next project, my CD and DVDS.

I can’t live without my music. I am an oldie but goodies kinda gal. I was able to let go of ten DVDS, but I know there will be more. I let go of 20 CD’s and kept about 40 of the classics. That was easy, now for the hard part my books. I had previously downsized my collection twice over the last three years. I don’t buy new books, but if I see a good deal I read them and let them go. I have about 80 books, including photo albums, I don’t think I can let them go. Therefore, when I build my house, space for my books is very important. I didn’t mention the box of journals that I’ve been keeping in an airtight container in my closet. I’ve kept a journal each year since 1992. My goal is to hire a typing pool of college students and have my journals bound into books for my grandchildren. 

I have always lived in small spaces because of affordability and I’ve learned to buy only what I need. I was also advised by the people in the tiny house community to preserve and recycle any items that can be included in building my house. The hardest part of this downsizing is going to be my kitchen, I want to keep everything. I like to cook, bake and entertain, so this will be my last project. 

In the meantime, I am learning from the people in the tiny house community, to cut spending as much as possible, only buy what’s necessary, clean up my credit, pay off all credit cards, and practice living like a minimalist advice that I am taking very seriously. 

Before the sunset I ventured outside for a fifteen minute walk in the snow and rewarded myself with a muffin. So, this is day two of my week at home. The next three days I will spend completing two books I am reading at the same time, and preparing for next week. I am ready to get back to teaching and going outside traveling to work at least two days a week.

I enjoy this time at  home, but I do need to have interaction with others and not so much isolation.

Thank you for reading. How is your week? 

A Reflection

Dear reader, recently I embarked on a 90 day journey of reflection, discovery and renewal. I would like to share with you my three-day mental break, not a vacation or staycation, my first ever mental break. Let me explain, its been a long time since I have taken a break that did not include going to see the grandchildren ( the three loves of my life) or visiting my mother who lives in South Carolina. I have had the romantic get away  and the girls road trip. But I have never taken a mental break and go where I wanted and just do nothing. This is the summary of my three day mental break and what I learned.

Its  been years since I have taken a time out and retreated from life with a purpose.  I choose a beautiful space in the country to take for refection, and renewal of my body,  mind and spirit. I needed to get away from the responsibilities of work, writing, blogging, and think about the new direction for the next stage of my life. I have come to this conclusion,  I am going to be patient and stay focused and not allow distractions to take me off my path. I deserve to surrounded myself with pointless people, meaning people who do not support my growth in all areas of my life.

Goal number 1. Complete all writing projects by Before June 1, 2019. Goal number 2. Complete my Masters (I have one class remaining) fall 2019.  Goal number 3. Clean up my finances.  I have stated this journey to reclaim my health, and to reflect  and  begin  a new path in life where I can reap better results.  I am preparing to live the life that I have visioned. The writing projects is for personal satisfaction. Completing my education is about  making a new career goal. Cleaning up my credit reports and focusing on my finances will afford me the money that I need to keep taking mental breaks, better vacations and to move out of New York City, a goal that I have been talking about for years. At this stage of my life my personal life is not important.  I need all my time and energy to achieve my goals , and I seriously need to ponder if I really want to be in a relationship. I need time to reevaluate that part of my life. In the meantime, I must get busy I do not have any more time to waste.

I hope reading this will inspired  you to think about starting  your own journey of reflection, discovery and renewal. Take a step back and think when was the last time you had a real mental break.

What Say You/


Dear readers,

We run around like rats chasing after cheese moving from hole to hole. In New York City, I’ve observed people commuting on trains and buses gulping down slices of pizza before reaching their destinations. Most of then are suffering from heart burn, acid reflux or some form of indigestion.

People walk fast in New York City, claiming that’s how a true New Yorkers moves. Hogwash. They walk fast trying to keep pace on this virtual treadmill called life. They speak to each other in passing shouting as the distance between them grows wider and wider. New Yorkers rush around huffing and puffing to catch a train, plain, car or bus they’ve so carefully  scheduled, and if they are one minute off, boom, the entire day is ruined

Weekends has become a marathon of chores  and trying  to caught up, this means, racing against the clock trying to complete impossible tasks before the dreaded MONDAY. Vacations have turned into a stay-cations, mostly due to the boss needing you close to work because he/she is on a real vacation, and might call you asking some questions about the project you’re not supposed to be working on during your backyard  stay-cation.

I once heard some one say, choose your struggle and stick with it.

I say, breathe and visualize this.

Imagine all the people living in peace~ John Lennon

What say you?

#the struggle is real