Tag Archives: taji mag

24Oct/17
As You Should Taji Mag Shallah Tiara

As You Should

I guess this one is for the ladies. I got the fellas later.

You ever find yourself not lowering your standards, but suppressing your self-worth in order to keep someone else up? Dimming your light, to keep someone else’s light bright?

I was in a situation where someone was intimidated by the fact that I loved myself, that I gassed my own head up. That I know I am a good woman, and I was well worth it. I felt like any time I would start feeling myself, they would either find a way to tear me down verbally, or be like “alright chill, that’s enough”. It’s not the fault of the other person, but rather just an eye-opener for myself to know that I was in fact too much for that person at the time. I reached a level where I enjoyed my own company, and I liked what I saw I the mirror, beyond the physical, I was happy with myself and my accomplishments. Some people don’t understand how long it took to get to that place, shit, I’m proud of myself. As I Should Be.

Ladies, do not ever let any man, or woman, make you feel like you can’t embrace the woman you are in total. If someone can’t take you loving yourself and speaking on yourself in a positive light, they should not be given the luxury of sharing your energy. You know yourself, you’re the shit and they don’t need to be taught that. Its either they get it, or get out. Do not water down the queen that you are for anyone. Chase that bag, get that degree, start that business, travel, party, influence, love, laugh. Do whatever it is that you want to do for you.

That’s another thing, don’t let people make decisions for things that impact your life. Whether it be a relationship that’s romantic or not. You have a say, you have a voice, and it should be heard and respected just as much as the other party. I’m just learning this now, but some of us women don’t know the power that we have when we love ourselves and speak positively about ourselves and our fellow queens.

When you love yourself, and the people around you, its only natural for others to gravitate towards you and reciprocate the same energy that you’re giving off. You the shit baby girl, don’t let anybody tell you otherwise. Don’t let anybody trivialize your worth. Big up ya’self, as you should.

As You Should Taji Mag Shallah Tiara

17Oct/17
Saliyah Itoka Taji Mag

Saliyah Itoka Lives a Duel Life as a Singer & Model

Saliyah Itoka Taji MagSaliyah Itoka was born and raised in Queens, NY but currently resides in Albany, NY. She’s been singing since she was really young, but she didn’t start taking her music career seriously until January 2015 when she also started modeling.
Saliyah has been writing since she was 11. Her creative passions come from working with other artists sharing in their positive energy and learning from them. She has collaborated with other singers and rappers on her project and is very excited to hear the results. Her debut project is in the works and the name that she’s chosen for it is “The Stoop Sessions: Part I”. She’s inspired by singers from the 90’s and early 2000’s such as Aaliyah, Chris Brown, Beyoncé, Toni Braxton, Anita Baker, Tank, Rihanna, Brandy, Whitney Houston, Drake, and The Weeknd. In full light, she wanted to create a project that represented her on all levels. One of her favorite songs on her new project is called “Loving You”. It has a Tevin Campbell sample and has that feel good vibe that she loves about R&B.

Saliyah Itoka Taji Mag

She’s done 8 shows since she started her music career, but her most memorable experience as an Artist was her very first showcase because it was the first time she had ever performed her original music. She was nervous but it felt good knowing that people really liked what they heard. As a model, she performed at the February 2015 Atlantic City Fashion Week. It gave her that boost of confidence that she needed to confirm that she was runway model material.
Saliyah is working really hard to complete her project and make it perfect. In her modeling career, she just finished a show during NYFW and she’s just grinding and pushing for the next show and next casting. She just wants to continue to pursue what she loves to do and prove her doubters wrong.
Saliyah Itoka Taji MagFor both music and modeling, contact Saliyah at: [email protected]
Check her out on Facebook at Saliyah Itoka and Instagram @saliyah_itoka.
07Oct/17
NY to Paradise

NY to Paradise Podcast is Inspiring Entrepreneurs

Business owner, Coretta Ryan shares her podcast series titled, NY to Paradise: Creating Your Own Success. Launched August 31st, the monthly audio series highlights various entrepreneurs from around the world who haven’t been afraid to reshape their daily experiences by taking risks, staying true to their personal stories and living their lives intentionally.

NY to ParadiseThe show was created and co-produced by Coretta Ryan to be used as a tool to motivate aspiring and fellow entrepreneurs in their journey. The idea behind the concept is in finding out the “WHY”. The reasons behind why entrepreneurs may create businesses or the source of the passion they have for their work. Coretta says “I wanted to share the process, the thinking behind what shapes the ideas that develop into businesses.”

NY to Paradise can be found onlinePodbeanSoundcloudApple Podcasts and across social media at @crprllc with the hashtag #nytoparadise.

07Oct/17
Love Afrique

Love Afrique Launches, Offering Unique African-Inspired Accessories

Love AfriqueNew company Love Afrique launches their line of African-inspired head wraps, handbags, and jewelry. The new brand works to help women feel great and express their culture through their collection. “We aim to have women of color glamorously and unapologetically reflect their roots,” said the Love Afrique team. Via their website, customers can peruse and purchase the full range of Love Afrique items. Customers can receive an exclusive discount on their first order when they sign up for the Love Afrique newsletter.

Visit their website for more information!
Love Afrique
Instagram: @love.Afrique

Love Afrique

05Oct/17
Gabrielle Union book

Taji Mag Book Club | We’re Going To Need More Wine with Gabrielle Union

Gabrielle Union bookNone other than Being Mary Jane herself; the grossly talented and radiant bombshell, Ms. Gabrielle Union’s new book, We’re Going To Need More Wine, has been picking up quite the buzz. Sweetheart of black cinema and star of some of our favorite movies, she is now vying to become one of our favorite authors as well.

“Throughout my life, I’ve often wondered aloud ‘how the hell did I end up here? Why me? Not sure I’ve found the answer to those questions but in this book, I share my journey. The good, the bad, the WTF. You will definitely need more wine for this one.” – writes Union in her Instagram post announcing the upcoming release of the book.

A ‘powerful collection of essays about gender, sexuality, race, beauty, Hollywood, and what it means to be a modern woman’, the book has already garnered praises and accolades galore. En lieu of her book release she has given several interviews and has snatched a few magazine covers. With a matching book tour starting in New York City the day before the book debuts, she has even released an exclusive excerpt of the book. A longtime activist for women’s reproductive health and against sexual violence, in the book Gabrielle opens up about her personal experiences with both. With topics such as her on-going fertility struggles with hubby Dwyane Wade, it seems that her writing will be an expression of what it truly means to be Gabby. A Black Woman and an Artist, now an open book.

To that I say: Bring It On.

We’re Going To Need More Wine releases on October 17th and is available for pre-order.

Click Here for her book tour.

Stay tuned for my review of the book, coming later this month.

 

04Oct/17
Don't Sweat

Don’t Sweat The Small Shit

Let’s say some shit happens between you and somebody else. I’m talking have you wanting to throw hands, or had one too many drinks while listening to ABoogie all night type shit. Because of what happened, it’s automatically considered a bad day. At the end of that day, if I was to ask you how your day was, instead of talking about all the negative stuff, ask yourself these three questions.

1. Did it take any money out of your pocket?
2. Did it take the roof from over your head?
3. Are you or anyone you know in any physical pain or danger?

If the answer to all these questions is “NO”. Then guess what, IT DOESNT FUCKING MATTER. Why do we insist on being so ready to decide that it’s a bad day overall? Things happen, and the reality is, they’re going to keep happening. People my age have what, maybe a good 60-70 years left in this world? Come on, it’s unrealistic to think we can ever progress or move forward in life if we direct so much focus and energy towards the negative.

I won’t lie, I dead used to be that way. It was a really hard habit to get rid of, but I started to ask myself, do I really wanna be mad or sad, or any other negative emotion everyday? Hell no. I got tired of it, and I knew if I continued allowing myself to choose the negative, I would start doing that in everything else that I do. Whether it was dance, work, this blog, relationships… anything. I would always be negative.

It had to become part of my morning ritual to literally say out loud to myself, “I’m choosing to be happy today, and I’m going to make sure today is a good day”. Regardless of anything that happens, if it didn’t take your life, there’s no reason to sweat the small shit.

Don't Sweat

01Oct/17
Bravery not Perfection

Bravery, not Perfection

Coming to terms with the importance of striving for bravery instead of perfection is what forced me to start writing. One thing all humanity shares is the acknowledgment of the certainty in the phrase, “Perfection is an illusion.”

We all understand that perfection cannot be personified. In fact, it bathes in non-existentialism:

It is as unattainable as the promises of someone who has passed away… as unrealistic as composing a 10-page paper in under an hour…And as mythical as a pill that promises a snatched waist in less than a week.

However, we still remain subconsciously attracted to, and even driven by what ends up being its shadow: we buy the diet pills and waist cinchers; and wait until Sunday night to start a paper that is due the following morning, (assigned two weeks prior).

This phenomenon affects our productivity tremendously. With the fear that the perfect outcomes we envision could possibly never prove themselves evident, we choose comfort at the expense of discovering all that there is to our own abilities. We device amazing plans, but quickly deviate at the sense of any awry possibility.

We purge our lives of the glory in the journey, forgetting that the experience itself almost always trumps the end results.

It is imperative to recognize the tremendous rewards in simply participating: if not for us, then for all who are observant of us.

“Teach Girls Bravery, Not Perfection,” a TED talk by Reshma Saujani, an American Lawyer, and politician, is leveraging not just for girls, but everyone. It puts much emphasis on being ok with taking a leap simply in the name of bravery. Ms. Saujani highlights the idea that even if one does not arrive at the most favorable results, they would still have confronted their doubts, and discovered much more strengths along the way.

Making perfection the end goal has the might to render us crippled with fear of attaining the reality of something less than perfect. We would then cowardly choose indolence, and reach the end of our lives only to realize that we never really lived.

The ghost-count of books not written, speeches not made, lives not impacted, continuing to overwhelm our archives of “could-have(s).”

So, Dear hidden gems: In skepticism of whether or not taking a leap is worth the outcome, think “bravery,” instead “perfection,”  The origin of starting this blog alarmed by the possibilities of everything going haywire is my way of jumping on this wagon. I hear it guarantees an odyssey of refinement that “perfection” can never measure up to.

So as if there is no next week, once the door of that airplane has been opened, rest assured that your breath alone guarantees the necessity of your footprint. The urgency in fueling your potentials must start at the end of this post.

So on the count of three, dive into that open sky…

or better yet, do it on two.

Bravery not Perfection

30Sep/17
Nanii Acosta

Afro-Latino Nanii Acosta Releases Her Single “Sittin Sideways”

Nanii Acosta is an Afro-Dominican singer/songwriter based out of Brooklyn. She has released her single “Sittin Sideways” that is an interpretation of everything that she is – a woman of strength, bilingual tongue, and a strong inclination to music and spirituality. All of which have been cornerstones of Black culture.

“Growing up I had always struggled to maintain an identity to be proud of my Afro-Latino heritage. Because I didn’t fit the mold of what a “Latina” person looked like I was always told “you’re not Dominican, you’re black”, or  “you’re lying”. Unknown to the ignorant ones, Black people come in all different shades and speak a spectrum of languages. We are creators of life and therefore our culture and variants of it can be found in every corner of the globe.

Those comments and ones similar formed deep cuts that lead me to dislike myself. There were instances when I wanted to sit in bleach or pray to God that my hair would be straight and long. The emergence of black culture across the internet and media has been a godsend and a form of healing. I am not only proud of my bronze skin and thick coils but also the excellence that my people represent.”

Nanii’s song can be found on iTunes and Spotify!

28Sep/17
identity crisis rhisa parera

Identity Crisis : Road to Unapologetic by Rhisa Parera

My parents told me when I was born I was so white the hospital thought they gave my mother the wrong baby until my father was called in to prove he was my dad. Growing up I was the only Black/Hispanic girl in the neighborhood. I remember the small block parties we had. My mother worked Saturdays so I’d be with my dad and the other kids with their fathers. Everyone knew when my mother was close to home because she would come flying down the street blasting her Gilberto Santa Rosa through the windows. At the time, part of me felt embarrassed to be the mixed one but deep down I felt this sense of pride to be different from everyone else having this mom who made an entrance in the neighborhood. I couldn’t put it into words how I felt about my mom. She was fierce and strong and held her head high. I wanted to be just like her but I was scared to stand out more than our Black skin already did.

The white men in the neighborhood would tell me how gorgeous they thought I was and that I should be a model. They would touch my hair and sometimes hug me a bit too tight for my liking. My elementary school was probably 95% white. The Black kids were known as the troublemakers. They were in a different class then I was and I never understood why. They would call me a white girl for not being in their class. I wasn’t sure where I belonged or why I was kept so far away from people who looked like me.

My Mom said, “We are not Black, we are Puerto Rican. Y ciento por ciento Boricua and don’t forget de pura sepa! (100% and pure)” Then one day this kid asked my dad why he had a Black child and in my head, I’m over here thinking, “I’m not Black, I’m Puerto Rican!” My father responds, “because her mother is dark skinned” as if it was a mistake or something. “She’s Puerto Rican but she’s Black.” That sentence haunted me for years.

In junior high, I remember being bullied by other Black girls. I was confused as to why the girls who looked like me didn’t want to be friends with me. I went into a phase of fearing Black people even though I wanted to be part of the group. I longed to be like them after being in a school with no one who resembled me, but I felt like an outcast again. I went home one day, took a knife out of the kitchen drawer, and put it against my wrist, wondering if I sliced it straight across would I die instantly or would it take a while. I didn’t know much about suicide and, honestly, I don’t even know how I knew that, all I remember is my mom opened the front door and I threw it back in the drawer.

In high school, I wore a Puerto Rican flag every day, whether it was a bandana, a book bag, shirt, purse, whatever! It was my way of not having to explain what I was when people asked or having to give them a history lesson of Black people in Puerto Rico. I started to speak Spanish more and part of me didn’t even want to speak English. I just wanted to be surrounded by Latinos who understood me. Or anyone who understood me at that point.

I remember having a discussion in college and saying exactly what my father said about my mother’s skin tone and a professor asking me, “what do you mean, BUT she is Black?” He told me that I didn’t have to apologize for being Black. I’m about 20 or 21 sitting there like, “wow I knew I was Black!” It may sound stupid but it’s true…

From that day on I began to identify as Black and not feel the need to explain that I am half this or that or why I’m Black or how the hell we became Black or what fuckin ship my family came on or how they ended up in PR. I was negra and it made me feel proud, the way I did when my mom drove down the street in the whitest neighborhood ever in Staten Island with her salsa blasting.

Written by Rhisa Parera
Facebook  | Instagram