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Let’s Do Better

At some point, we all have to make an effort to improve our quality of life. It’s not easy and it doesn’t happen over night but we need to do it if we want to continue to grow and improve. This past Sunday I watched a sermon from Church of Highlands and one the phrases mentioned stuck out to me.

“Every day we have to choose joy.”

The reason this stuck out to me is because of the choice in wording. We have to CHOOSE joy each day. We have to make a conscious effort to walk in joy each and everyday. Emotions run high, life hits us hard, and we all struggle. That’s why making the choice to walk in joy is so important.

I’m a glass half full type of person. Unfortunately, that side of my personality clashes with my depression and anxiety. I’m usually stuck somewhere in between believing everything will work out and thinking nothing ever will! Ugh! That’s exactly why this message touched home for me. Every time I operated with the intent to stay positive no matter how my day went I saw a change. The way I viewed situations was different. I wasn’t approaching each one thinking about how bad things were, but instead thinking on how it could have been worse but wasn’t.

This is why being intentional is important. It’s not easy to shrug off financial issues, mental health problems, car problems, relationships issues, etc. These are things that could make anyone crawl back into their hole of depression. The key is to put effort into not letting these things color who you are and how to continue to operate. I’m not telling you not to feel. Cry or scream if you need to but keep pushing forward. Keep going even when it’s hard and decide to walk in joy!

Pastor Chris Hodges brought up something that really made me smile and reconsider some things. Tigger from Winnie the Pooh is so positive about his outlook. A Tigger can do anything, a Tigger is great at everything! Tigger doesn’t go into a situation doubting his ability to do it. Even when he fails at it he doesn’t sweat it, he tries again, until he can do it. That innocence allows him to see the world in a different way. At some point that was us! We believed in our ability and our potential. It’s not too late to start believing again.

I think it’s important to start reorganizing our lives in a way that allows us to live up to our potential. Steve Harvey always talks about a vision board and I believe it’s important to have one. Yes having the board is a great idea but what I want to emphasize is the vision. Some of us have gotten so caught up existing that we aren’t living anymore. Stress has become an accessory for so many people and we wear it every day. We need vision again. We need drive. We need a willingness to let go and let God. Let’s make more of an effort to be intentional. Take time to reorganize your life, your mind, your spirit, and CHOOSE to walk in joy.

Let’s do better 💕

Let me know what your vision is? What’s been stopping you from walking in joy? Let me know in the comments. I hope this post has helped you in some way. Be sure to follow my blog Vitamin Key for more!

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Mr. or Ms. #MeToo

The #MeToo movement is a subject that gets a lot of people talking. It’s great that it has provided a platform for there to be more discussion about rape/sexual assault and rape culture. More women and men feel brave enough to come forward about the things they have experienced. It has been an opportunity to help each other heal and get justice for victims who felt they never could. This movement has also shown how vastly different everyone views these types of things, and to be honest it’s not a pretty sight.

Part of the issue is the lack of education. For years certain behaviors have been normalized or gone unchecked. Either people who do it knew it was bad and never got punished, or they didn’t know because the line for certain sexual offenses is so grey. Some answers aren’t so clear and can leave people wondering if the person is really guilty of a malicious act or if they’re simply ignorant to the fact that what they did was wrong. This isn’t the case for everyone but there are instances where this is the case.

There is also the issue of normalcy. Some actions are seen as okay because that’s how they have always been. When I was in junior high boys grabbing girls on their behinds was normal. It was an everyday thing and no one thought twice about it. Most of us actually laughed or playfully hit them for doing it. Even I’m guilty of it if I thought he was cool enough. Imagine that same thing happening now as an adult. Most of us would be inclined to retaliate in some way. Being 25 now, when the same thing happened to me in New Orleans I was angry, disgusted, and felt somewhat embarrassed. I wondered how or why someone thought it was okay. The problem? Normalcy. It’s what a lot of us grew up doing or let happen to us. We have to stop these things at the root before it grows into behavior we think is okay as adults.

Another issue I see is an unwillingness to change. Some people don’t want to change their behavior and will justify it in anyway they can. One of the biggest excuses? Too many women/men lie about this type of thing. Big excuse #2? Some people are just looking for a payday. Even if there are some instances of this, the likelihood is low. The vast majority of cases that we see involve celebrities. It’s much easier to use this type of logic for a celebrity, but what about a woman who gets raped by a part time worker at a fast food restaurant. Was her motivation money? The chances of that is very unlikely. As for lying, that’s something only God and the people involved really know. As outsiders it’s not really within our ability to know the complete truth. Even so, we should have the decency to afford the victim the same benefit of the doubt that some give the person being accused.

As someone who has had something like this hit very close to home, I want to see change. I want to see more victims step forward and claim their lives back from the people/person who victimized them. I want to see more survivors who are pushing forward and out of the darkness something like this brings. I know soooooo many people who have been affected by sexual assault/rape and the majority of them have never pursued the justice that they deserve. About 90% of them were too afraid to tell someone because they didn’t think anyone would believe them. Maybe 10% tried to tell someone and they didn’t believe them or they were blamed instead.

Some men are victims of sexual assault or rape, but don’t view it that way. I know several men who lost their virginity to a woman two to three times their age when they were underage. Some as young as 8 or 7. The difference? Men aren’t taught to value their bodies the same way that most women are. I believe this leads to a disconnect. They in turn grow up now valuing the bodies of others the way that they should as a result. They are taught to look at sex as a badge of honor so although some end up having their innocence taken away at very young ages, they don’t view themselves as victims. Let’s reverse that and say it’s a grown man doing the same with an 8 to 9 year old girl. The image isn’t as palatable, and that’s the problem. Neither should be palatable. Each instance is very much a problem.

What we need is a change in outlook. Too many people view this movement as an attack on them personally. The #MeToo movement is not about the perpetrator but the victims, the SURVIVORS. It’s a movement that started so that more people could come forward and break free the chains that have bound them because of rape and/or sexual assault. This isn’t about making every man (or woman) feel attacked but about empowering the men and women who had theirs taken from them. According to the NSVRC (National Sexual Violence Resource Center):

  • One in five women and one in 71 men will be raped at some point in their lives
  • In the U.S., one in three women and one in six men experienced some form of contact sexual violence in their lifetime

RAINN (The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) claims that:

  • On average, there are 321,500 victims (age 12 or older) of rape and sexual assault each year in the United States

The saddest part about these statistics is that most, if not all, of these reports are based on reported crimes and/or interviews. That means that the number is likely much higher but has gone unreported. So many people are affected by this, but are too afraid to speak up. It’s not an easy topic to discuss. Very little people actually want to but it’s important that we do. We have to stop sweeping it under the rug and acknowledge that this is a problem. Be an ear for someone who hasn’t had anyone to talk to. Be a voice for someone who hasn’t found their’s yet…or find yours. If you can’t talk to someone you know call the National Sexual Assault Hotline: 800-656-4673

Your voice deserves to be heard 💕

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Insecurities: It’s Okay, We All Have Them

What’s the hardest thing about learning how to be more confident? For me it was learning how to stop caring what other people thought about me. Most of us underestimate the amount of power we have given other people. Their words, their feelings, and their actions have some much influence over who we are and what we show the world. I think just about everyone has had a moment where they wanted to post a picture, but didn’t because of how they thought other people would react to it. Is this the right angle? Does this color look nice on me? Do I look fat? Does my hair look right? These are just a few questions that many of us ask ourselves before we finally post a picture.

Obviously this isn’t the case for everyone, but it serves as an example of how much we let other people influence us. I still have some insecurities about things, but I have learned that this is normal and does not devalue my self-worth. Of course you want to look your best and love what you see in the mirror, that’s normal! BUT! Is that because you dislike what you see? Or because someone else does…

Like my grandma always says, “People are gonna talk about you while you’re living and long after you’re gone.” As long as you exist there will be other people who feel like they can weigh in on who you are and what you do. You have to learn how to understand that this does not mean that their opinion is fact. There’s a reason that there is a distinction made between fact and opinion. One is the truth and the other isn’t, simple as that! You needing air to breathe is a fact. You not being beautiful is an opinion (one I wholeheartedly disagree with).

I want you to challenge yourself to love yourself more. Take time to invest in your own confidence and self-love. Everyday make an effort to love yourself a little more. Start by complimenting yourself and someone else everyday. Even if it’s just you telling yourself you did a good job at work today and commenting a compliment on social media, do it. Be consistent and watch how your confidence begins to build. Building yourself up doesn’t happen overnight and sometimes you might not even believe the compliment you gave yourself. That’s okay. Practice until you believe it. Practice until you start to see the amazing individual I know you are.

The only to combat insecurities is to change them or to embrace them. If there’s something you don’t like and you can change it, then do it. Just make sure that you are changing it because you want to change it. The quickest way to fail at something is to start it for all the wrong reasons. Doing something for other people is only good when it’s out of the kindness of your heart. There is a huge difference between donating money to charity to help others, and losing weight because other people tell you that you should.

I remember someone I follow on Instagram had lost weight due to stress. Instead of people asking her if she was okay they complimented her on how much weight she had lost. She was going through one of the roughest times in her life, and no one thought to ask her how she was doing. People associate losing weight with the word good and gaining weight with the word bad. Her weight loss had actually led to more medical issues and depression. Once she started to regain her confidence and became happier she gained weight. It wasn’t until then, that people started asking her is she was okay. She admitted that his made her start dieting excessively, but she stopped when she realized that the only reason she was doing it was to make other people happy. She didn’t have a problem with her weight, others did.

Stop giving other people power they don’t deserve. It’s okay to have insecurities, we all do. Just don’t let them be the ones other people tell you that you should have.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. I hope this dose from Vitamin Key helped you in some way. Please don’t forget to like, share, comment, and follow me for more content. #LetsTalkAboutIt

 

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A Little Girl Talk: Messy Couch Chronicles Part 1

Hey loves! This new year has reminded me that I have to get new perspective on a lot of things in my life. A new year doesn’t mean a new you, but new opportunities to change, to grow, and to really blossom into the person you want to be. With that in mind I’m making an effort to get back into being more consistent with my blog posts. Baby steps! So it is my goal to at least post once a week.

This week I’m introducing you to one of the new segments I want to start on my YouTube channel: Messy Couch Discussions. I want this to feel like girl talk time. I am inviting you into my house and I want you to grab a seat, sip a little tea, and enjoy the fun! In this video me and my best friend discuss competitiveness among women.

Why do women feel so threatened by each other? Why do they instinctively have an issue with each other before they even get to know each other? It’s sad because when you meet a new person that is an opportunity to uplift. You can be the difference between them having the best day ever or the worst day they’ve had in a long time.

I think the reason it’s so hard for women to get along is competitiveness and a lack of self-confidence. Women grade themselves against each other and feel like other women threaten their opportunities. But that’s ridiculous! Another woman being successful is not meant to be competition but inspiration. Don’t be so worried someone else’s piece of the pie when you could be cutting your own slice. Let’s stop tearing each other down and start pushing each other forward. You could find more meaningful connections by being a source of light instead of darkness.

Please check out the video below from my YouTube channel Vitamin Key. We talk more about this topic. Do you agree? Have you had similar experiences? Were you the one judging or being judged? Let me know in the comments. #LetsTalkAboutIt !

Oh and as always don’t forget to like, share, follow, and subscribe for more content. Stay Fluffy Loves!

 

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Dating!

So today I did a podcast with my best friend about dating (I’ll leave the link to my podcast at the bottom). We talked about some dating pet peeves, gave a little advice, and just had a blast discussing the topic. I felt like I needed to make a blog post to accompany that podcast since there were a few things I didn’t get to for the sake of time.

Dating can be pretty hard to maneuver nowadays….*sigh*. It’s just not what it used to be. Everyone is so busy living in the moment that they don’t care nearly as much about their future. It’s almost as if they’re afraid to look forward. I understand, it’s easier not to get hurt when you don’t commit in the first place but where’s the fun in that?

If you want something worth having you have to work at it. That applies to a lot of things including a meaningful relationship. The problem is, most people are too afraid to risk getting hurt because they’ve been hurt before. The worse situations are when people hurt others with a “get them before they can get me” type of attitude. What you end up with is a world full of people who have relationship phobias.

I can understand it. At one point I vowed to be single for the rest of my life, and I told myself that it would just be me and God until I R.I.P. The problem with that mentality is that I was avoiding the problem. I didn’t resolve the issue I just hid from it.

What ended up happening was I got lonely. I started to see that I was only doing it because I was still hurting and didn’t want to face that hurt again. That’s not healthy! Instead I turned my focus towards rebuilding my confidence. I forgave my ex and told myself that I would concentrate on being happy with myself. You have to get to the point where you take care of yourself but don’t close yourself off from the possibility of a wonderful relationship.

Everyone claims to be happy with their “situation” until they finally get more. It’s okay to want more. It’s alright to desire a deeper connection and admit that you’re afraid it might never happen. What’s most important is building happiness within. Once you start to change you’ll see opportunities appear that you didn’t think would. Today I want you to allow yourself the chance to take a chance!

On a more lighthearted note, don’t forget to tune into my podcast Vitamin Key titled: Dating! Feat. Nae McCall

Podcast Link: https://anchor.fm/keyra-dominique

(Me and my best friend Nae)

And you know the drill, let me know what you think. Don’t forget to comment, like, share, and follow.

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https://www.instagram.com/keyradominique/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/keyra_thomas?s=09

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https://www.facebook.com/kdt1993/

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I Love My Haters

Recently I ran across an article on Revelest.com titled:

Blogger Points Out Sexist Double Standard In Wake Of Tess Holliday Cover Backlash

By Emerald Pellot

Tess Holliday, a plus size model and just overall amazing person received quite a bit of backlash over her cover on Cosmopolitan Uk. As outlined in the article, most of the flack came from people who felt her being on the cover was endorsing being obese. If you want to read the article here’s the link:

https://www.revelist.com/internet/tess-holliday-cosmopolitan-backlash/13426/of-course-piers-morgan-was-one-of-the-trolls/5

For anyone who doesn’t know, Tess has always been an advocate for body positivity and embracing herself/her body no matter what the haters say. That is the mentality behind the #effyourbeautystandards movement that she and many women (and men) around the world have started to embrace. At it’s core this movement is just about acceptance of yourself and letting other people know that regardless of what they think, you still love yourself.

I believe that it’s for that very reason, that the backlash she’s getting is so disgusting to me. Disgusting sounds like a strong word right? Well I think it fits this situation perfectly. The cover is obviously meant to promote self-love and body positivity, but people turned it into a weight issue. Let’s be honest, although people say it’s about health it’s not. In a society that has finally started to embrace more diverse types of beauty, people have looked for more politically correct ways of insulting people.

How is a woman loving the skin she’s in a way for her to promote obesity? How is she the poster girl for being unhealthy? It’s because people are threatened. They try to mask it behind “concern” for her well-being but we all know that’s not what this is about. This is about other people’s insecurities and them being uncomfortable.

As hard as it is to believe, there are people who genuinely feel offended by other people and their confidence. They have fought so hard to look a certain way or live their life a certain way so that they can finally feel accepted within society’s standards of what is an acceptable life. Then here comes a woman who has decided that she loves each and every inch of herself when all she does is live her life.

There are also those who find plus size women disgusting. They can’t fathom how anyone would want them. In their minds plus size women cannot be attractive and they should be ashamed of themselves. This type of mentality is more common than you would think. More often than not, the trolls with fake profiles are the ones who boldly leave comments like this. Others just like it and keep it moving because they are afraid of the backlash they could receive.

I can’t help but feel that their frustrations are severely misplaced and insulting. They have twisted her message of empowerment to suit their needs and I am not here for it. The reason I chose the picture I did for the featured picture is because I want people to see the cellulite, the stomach, the thighs, the scars, and the stretch marks. I want people to see my story. I love who I am and you don’t have to.

If you want to hear more about this tune into my podcast Vitamin Key. Let me know what you think. Also, don’t forget to comment, like, share, and follow!

Here’s the link:

https://anchor.fm/keyra-dominique

P.S. My Podcast Vitamin Key is also available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and Google Podcasts

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Stop Hating On the Confidence

I always advocate for self-confidence and body positivity because I know how important it is for people to find love for themselves. There’s nothing sadder than believing you have to ask others for permission to love yourself. I see so many people do this and when they don’t get the recognition they seek, they fall into depression. I have been in that place myself and I know just how easy it is to fall into the habit of looking to others for the approval that you can’t find within yourself.

What’s crazier is that people actually want you to seek their permission to love yourself! Have you ever noticed how people want someone who is confident, but also want them to seek their permission to be confident? They want someone who loves themselves, but they put people down if they don’t fit their criteria. People want you to look a certain kind of way, dress a certain kind of way, or live a certain kind of way in order to gain their approval. I refuse to do it and so should you. You don’t need anyone to tell you that it’s okay to love yourself.

I have seen men and women alike post a picture of themselves and take the picture down because of comments that were negative. Sometimes the comments came from total strangers and sometimes they came from people that they know. When they uploaded the picture they loved it but it only took a matter of minutes for them to lose that confidence. It’s extremely easy to sit behind a keyboard and talk badly about others, especially when you don’t even like yourself. Social media has led to what I call “troll culture”. These people make it a point to troll others and make people feel bad about themselves but guess what? Not anymore.

Take your power back! Take your confidence back! Take your self-love back! Tell the trolls to STOP HATING ON THE CONFIDENCE and find some. You weren’t put on this earth to be judged by the people around you, especially if that judgement is making you unhappy. I want people to see that I have stretch marks. I want them to see that I have fat. I want them to see that my hair is kinky. I want them to see my eczema and acne scars. I WANT PEOPLE TO SEE ME!

The reason for that is, I want others to embrace who they are without worrying about what everyone thinks. I know it’s not easy but trust me it is so worth it. You will see a lot of differences in the way that you think and act. That shirt you didn’t think you could wear? You’ll wear it. Those shoes you thought you were too tall for? You’ll wear them. The outfit you’ve put off wearing because you didn’t think you could pull it off? You will rock it and dare a hater to hate.

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I talk more on this subject in my podcast Stop Hating On the Confidence. Be sure to listen and let me know what you think. Also, don’t forget to comment, like, share, and follow!