NEW: Sophia A. Nelson Blogging while Driving Across the USA

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Hey everybody. I love my life at times like this: trekking across the USA with the corporate team of MINIUSA and over 350 cars in a caravan across America. We just left Memphis, TN through AK, now in Missouri, headed to St. Louis. The kick-off started on July 27th in San Francisco and ends in Boston on August 10th. 

Please follow me on Instagram or on my Twitter feed as well as @MINIUSA which has DRONES taking LIVE photos of the entire trip. I will be writing for several outlets focusing on women customers, corporate executives and corporate diversity issues and how MINIUSA is changing business models and customer engagement across the globe with this bi-annual trek.

 

Sunday Sentiment: How Do You Heal from A Broken Heart: 3 Things You Must Do to Heal from the Hurt

healing your hidden hurts
“Every ending has a beginning,
it is when you choose
to teach what you have learned,
to accept what you have lost,
to smile from what you have cried
and to realize
that life is still beautiful
even if you have been hurt
by someone else.”
― Jelord Klinn Cabresos
Everyone keeps telling me that it will get better. That the pain will turn into purpose. That I will not just get through it, but that someday, I will get over it. Some days I believe that they are right. And on other days, like today, I am not so sure. What I do know, however, is that love once lost can have devastating consequences on our ability to love again.
Love as Tony Robbins once said, “Is oxygen to the soul.”
But, love is more than just oxygen to our souls. Love is that magical unexplainable “thing” that makes us feel as if we can fly.  Love is that feeling of strength, power, vulnerability and passion all wrapped up into one other human soul that while it lasts is simply amazing. Yet, when it is over, we feel lost. We feel hallowed out. We feel like the sun will never shine again. All of us have been there. And if we haven’t yet experienced heart break, we will. It is an inevitable part of living, and loving other people.
Ironically, scientists have conclusively proven that “broken heart” syndrome is more than just an emotional feeling or depression. It has real and dire physical consequences. People have died from a broken heart or what doctors call: Cardio Myopathy. It is an actual physical pain and stress that results from the loss of a loved one, intense grief or emotional loss.
That is why, after a break up or loss that we feel as if someone has literally reached inside of our chest and is squeezing our heart tightly. Our stomach hurts. We cannot sleep or eat. We experience physical distress from our emotional distress.  That is why couples that have been married for 20, 30, 40 or 50 years can often die within months of each other, if the other spouse dies unexpectedly or even of natural causes. The connection two lovers feel, and experience is spiritual. It is deeper than just eros (passion) or even agape (love between friends).  To love is to allow another human being to come into your soul landscape and take up residence there. It is a sharing and intercourse between two souls.
We tell people that they have “soul ties”. Our souls become connected to people that we exchange words with, or breath with in the exchange of kissing, hugging, touching, talking, crying and intimacy. Soul ties don’t just happen with lovers. We have soul ties with our parents, our siblings, our loved ones, and dearest friends. So that when there is a sudden or painful BREAK in relationship that we hold dear, we are literally in physical pain. We experience a tearing, ripping, and searing of our souls. It hurts. It literally hurts.
So, how do you mend a broken heart?
It is an age old question, with few answers. After all, the human heart is a very fragile thing. The Bible tells us to “Guard your heart for it is a wellspring of life.” (Proverbs 4:23) What King Solomon was trying to say is simple: Your heart is the center of who you are, how you live, what you need, and how you breath.  So guard and protect it from damage. From the wrong people, and the wrong kind of love.
Great advice, but love isn’t that simple is it? Love is complicated at best. But love should not hurt. By that I mean: love should build us, cover us, endure with us, and stay with us. Any kind of love that keeps hurting you, demeaning you, abandoning you, violating you, or mistreating you is NOT love at all.
Here are 3 things you must do (trust me I am going through this now after a break-up of a serious long-term relationship I was in, as well as some other emotional wounds I have experienced) to guard your heart but not “gate” your heart:
1. You must forgive yourself. This has been the hardest thing for me. I am such a control freak (or at least I was before I got the wind knocked out of me). But no-one can control love.  You have to stop blaming yourself for missing the red flags. For teaching him or her how to “mistreat you”. By that I mean, you accepted behavior that you knew was wrong. You didn’t honor your value. And when that truth settles in, you become angry with yourself. You feel stupid. You no longer trust your judgement. But in truth, it is not your fault. You got caught being human. Forgive yourself. Let it go.
2. You should seek the support of family, friends, Ministers and/or Professional Counselors. You cannot get through this alone. You must get through it with support love and time. The operative word is “through” it.  Not everyone you expect to be there will be. This was a hard pill to swallow when I hit rock bottom a few months back.  But there will be people who you can count on. Your true friends and family will stick by you. And if they cannot help you, they will find someone who can. That is where professionals come in. Get a therapist coupled with a person of faith who will pray with you. I did. And it helped.
3. You must forgive the person who hurt and left you. No matter how they left you. It really is that simple. You cannot forgive what you will not face. You cannot forgive who and what you hold onto. I began to forgive when I started to “accept” what happened. I have forgiven. But it is the final step of letting go which only occurs when we accept what happened. Acceptance frees us. Acceptance says I am ready to move forward having learned something valuable, albeit painful. And acceptance says, I will dare to love again, only this time a bit more wisely.
These three steps are non-negotiable when you heart has been broken. It is not going to be a short process. It will be a long, and challenging process. But, if you want to heal. As I do too. You can’t take short cuts.  Denial is not an option. Denial leads to deep depression and disaster.  But here is the good news: hearts are resilient and they can mend. Bruised maybe. But resilient again and again.

An Evening with Bishop T.D. Jakes & Author/Journalist Sophia Nelson a Grand Success

Over 2500 men and women from all walks of life gathered on Friday, June 23rd, 2014 at Jericho City of Praise in Maryland, for an evening of Purpose with Bishop T.D. Jakes and author Sophia A. Nelson. The host was Dr. Jasmin Sculark, Pastor-Select.  The event was shared LIVESTREAM over the world-wide web with over 10,000 people tuned in for the 45 minute discussion between Jakes and Nelson.

Below are some images & VIDEO clips of the powerful event around the #1 New York Times Best-Selling book, Instinct:

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CLICK HERE TO SEE some VIDEO snippets from the DISCUSSION:

 

 

“Unlock Your Life” Series featured in Conservative The Daily Caller/The Mirror Column

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The Daily Caller’s popular column; “The Mirror” written by Betsy Rothstein featured Sophia’s new summer AUDIO series:

Unlock Your Life. Here is what Rothstein wrote in today’s Mirror:

Spiritual author and blogger Sophia Nelson has a new book out in the fall: The Woman Code: 20 Powerful Keys To Unlock Your Life. Revving up to it, she’s hosting an “Unlock Your Life” phone series that is open to both men, women and people of any or no religion.

On Mondays and Wednesdays from 9 – 9:15 p.m. is her Unlock Your Life call, which she describes as “Oprah’s life class on steroids.” The topics are “work, love life, everything you need to succeed is inside of you,” she told The Mirror in a phone conversation this morning. Last week, her guidance was “know your value, get out of your own way.”

Then on Friday morning’s at 8 a.m. there’s Spiritual Coffee. This is “where we connect as people on the spirit level. I kinda shied away from a classic prayer call because people are Muslims and Catholic and Jewish and some are atheist and agnostic. I am unabashedly Christian, but I believe we are all connected by the spirit.”

To join in on any of these calls, dial in to 712-432-0075. The passcode: 120086.”

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2014/06/16/sophia-nelson-wants-to-unlock-your-life/#ixzz34p7VRD9w

[NEW] 5 Things Dr. Maya Angelou Taught Us About the Power of Living by Sophia A. Nelson for (Huffington Post Healthy Living)

maya angelouSomeone like Dr. Maya Angelou only graces the earth every 100 years or so. We encounter these “soul fireflies” so rarely, but when they show up, we instantly recognize them for the light that they bring.

They light up our world with their own brilliant light. They touch us and call us to find our own light. To raise the bar higher. To love a little deeper. To feel a little more connected. And to give just a little bit more of ourselves. Maya Angelou like Ghandi, Dr. Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, and Mother Theresa called us to be more. To do more. And to want more from our living.

Many stories, and tributes will be written over the coming days and weeks in honor of the woman we all fondly knew as “Dr. Maya”. That is as it should be. Yet, how fitting that a woman who dropped out of high school at age 14 (and later went back just before giving birth to her only son), would one day be presented with over 50 honorary degrees. Go on to teach American studies at one of the south’s most prestigious universities, and be known throughout the world as a poet laureate, author, lecturer, playwright, producer, dancer, singer, civil rights activist, counselor to presidents and a friend of humanity. Some may think it undeserved that someone who never attended college, would be bestowed such high academic honors and accolades. And become a heralded professor at Wake Forest University.

But “doctor” is a term so very appropriate for a woman who was in every way: a healer of others illnesses. Dr. Maya was a doctor of the human soul. And in this we should take heed to the powerful and healing guidance that she provided to us all not in the form of pills, elixirs or shots, but in the form of self-love, civility, humanity, integrity, forgiveness, connection and peace.

Here are five powerful lessons that Dr. Angelou taught us about the majesty and power of living a whole, healthy and fulfilled life:

1. Define yourself. Maya Angelou had a hard life. At times a very cruel life. And yet she refused to be defined or limited by her past. She refused to stay in a “cage” of another human’s making. She defined herself. She overcame her circumstance and she stretched herself beyond what anyone like her could have ever imagined they might achieve in one lifetime.

2. Raise your voice. When she penned, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings she was sharing her story with the world. A nobody from nowhere. Became a somebody that everybody would hear raising her voice and singing her song.

3. Treat people well. One of her most endearing sentiments was that people never forget how we make them feel. She was right. We can say things, and do things, but when we make people feel less than, or powerless we break something deep inside of them. And they may forgive us but they will never forget us. So we should do our best to treat people well. No matter what.

4. Never give up on your dreams. Dreams are the desires of our soul dancing at night. My words, but her meaning. Maya encouraged us to stay active, and engaged with life long past our so-called “prime.” She taught us that dreams have real power. That dreams can manifest in our lives long after we may believe that are gone. Keep dreaming. Dreams are oxygen to our souls.

5. Keep Living. Asked in an interview once what she thought of life and living, she launched into an amazing series of truths. Starting with the fact that you can learn a lot about people by how they handle a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas lights. She encouraged us to simply keep going. To look for second chances. To forgive generously. To open our hands. To throw something back at life. And most of all to love life.

There are many things that a life like Maya Angelou’s teaches us who are left behind. But I believe her most enduring legacy is that she gave us a perfect formula for resilience. For getting back up again and again no matter what. She taught us that a caged bird sings, not because he knows how or because he expects to be set free, but because he simply has a song in his soul. So it is with us. Many of us live as caged birds, waiting to sing. Waiting for the doors to be unlocked. To be set free. When in reality what we need is to sing loudly in the midst of our captivity. To raise our voices. Lift our souls. And share our song with the world.

[New Sunday Sentiment] You Must Rest & Set Boundaries

restTake rest a field that has rested takes a bountiful crop. Ovid

You and I must rest. Period. We are all tired. Weary. Burned out. Over connected. And when you move too fast, all the time; you get sloppy about protecting yourself. About honoring your boundaries and about connecting with your deepest voice inside.

Today is the Lord’s day. It is a day of worship and rest. Whether you are a believer in God or not, you can still appreciate that Sunday is a special day. We don’t work. We eat good food. We spend time with family and friends. We rest. So rest. Turn off the devices. Turn off the gadgets. Turn off the noise. Lay down. Put some music on and rest. Rest. Rest.

The next thing you and I need to do is evaluate how the people in our lives are treating us. How are we teaching people to treat us? It matters. Because you are in charge of you. Not them. You need to set some firm boundaries. Walls can be healthy when we use them to keep OUT of our lives those people and things that are bad for us. And there are bad people. There are bad things. Use today to REST, RESTORE and RECONNECT with yourself. It’s Sunday. It is a day of REST and REFLECTION to all who would embrace her meaning.

Love you!

Sophia

[NEW] “The Woman Code” to be available as an Audio Book. Rights Acquired by Brilliance Audio.

270426_Nelson_Small_WhiteSubsidiary Rights to “The Woman Code: 20 Powerful Keys to Unlock Your Life.” has been acquired by Brilliance Audio, a national leader in independent audiobook publishing.

“We are very humbled by the type of reception this book is getting,” said Author Sophia Nelson. She continued, “I knew when I first started thinking about the Woman Code as a concept in 2012, that if I got the right publisher, the right editors, the right team, and of course produced the right manuscript as an author that this book would be a great success. It has not even hit the stores yet and we are booked for media tours late summer as far away as Winnipeg, Canada. I am humbled and give thanks to God for his great blessings on this message that is deeply in my spirit for a new generation of women leaders.”

About Brilliance:

Brilliance Audio is committed to the art of audiobook publishing–turning printed books into listening entertainment that reaches a high level of quality and integrity. Brilliance Audio was founded in 1984 with a mission to provide a quality listening experience by recording bestselling books and selling them into retail stores at an affordable price. This was way before audiobooks were even called audiobooks. Most everyone just said, ‘books on tape’ and found them only at libraries. Since then, Brilliance Audio has kept pace with the growth of the audiobook industry itself, from publishing an inaugural eight titles in 1985 to over 2,000 titles in 2012.

The active publishing list of Brilliance Audio tops 6500 titles. The broad selection of titles and authors covers most genres found in publishing today, including the full fiction spectrum from romance to thrillers to science fiction/fantasy, classic literature and titles with a young adult/children’s focus plus many nonfiction subgenres ranging from inspiration and self-help to business advice, from memoirs and biographies to neuroscience and religion. Brilliance Audio has initiatives to publish audiobooks from the New York Times Bestselling Lists as well as unique pieces of literature that are stellar but may not have mainstream appeal.

[NEW] Sophia Nelson Wins Alpha Kappa Alpha Journalism Award at 61st Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference in Raleigh, NC

imagesCA7OJ6XNNelson, an award winning author, columnist and Freelance journalist for various outlets won the prestigious Bernardine Stoneham Smith Bailey Award this past week at the 61st Regional MAR Conference of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

The award is given annually by Member Blanche Hope Smith from Upsilon Omega Chapter in honor of her sister, Bernardine Bailey, who is a life member and Golden Member of Alpha Zeta Omega Chapter. Bailey, an advisor of her school newspaper, received the Gold Key on March 14, 1959. She also received the Golden Crown on March 13, 1975, from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association for outstanding devotion and service to the cause of the school press. The award was given for the first time in 1995. Sophia Nelson is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha and is active as a charter member of Psi Rho Omega Chapter in Virginia.

Nelson is the 19th award recipient of the journalism award.  She won the award for her feature story in Essence Magazine, February 2013, chronicling the inside lives of “First Ladies” of the Black Church.