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Life

It Was All Written: Love Yourself First

Rakiya George

Love is a necessary force for any human to survive; to feel, to remain complete. We as mind-evolving people try to figure out what love can do for us daily; but do we understand it? Do we truly know what love is? Have we really experienced it? What is its purpose?

Captured in Jersey City, NJ | Shot by  Joel Serrano

Captured in Jersey City, NJ | Shot by Joel Serrano

He takes you out and buys you nice things… But how does your heart feel? Have you guys grown together? Have you grown as individuals? What are his aspirations in life? What are yours? When you speak about the future is it ‘we’ or ‘me’? What does he want to accomplish? What do you want to accomplish? Does he pray for you? Do you pray for yourself?

Everyone doesn’t find their love at the age of five in a playground, or at a basketball game in high school, or during homecoming in college. Often time’s people lose themselves in lieu of what they perceive love to be.

I think as we grow older, we endure times where we lose track of what is and isn’t. There’s disconnect between our mind and our actions. We become blind; numb in some cases. When it comes to love, I’ve seen people lose themselves entirely by the idea of someone loving them, when that love wasn’t even present. There is a difference between being loved and being cared about. I can speak from my own experience and say that it isn’t the prettiest picture to paint.

Captured in Jersey City, NJ | Shot by  Joel Serrano

Captured in Jersey City, NJ | Shot by Joel Serrano

I loved someone, but I was more so fixated on the idea of that person being mine. Claiming me. Leaning on me. I held him down. But we weren’t in love; I hurt him in ways where one shouldn’t have to fathom that type of pain. Then that same pain was reciprocated right back to me; we matched each other’s carelessness and forgot our purpose for being together.

The relationship was over before it started. We said we loved each other, but the journey was a constant battle. More tears of pain than tears of joy. My mind became so cloudy; I didn’t even know what I was involved with anymore. This wasn’t a relationship. We held on because we felt like we needed to. Love isn’t an obligation; it’s something that you should want to do/feel, it’s something you cherish.

Captured in Jersey City, NJ | Shot by  Joel Serrano

Captured in Jersey City, NJ | Shot by Joel Serrano

I wasn’t happy, but I didn’t want to let go, nor did I want to be alone. Being alone was one of my biggest fears… but when the water ran dry, I had to pick up the pieces and rebuild myself. I felt like I didn’t have anyone and I didn’t know how to accept the pain of being without him.

See, I wasn’t raised to be weak or dependent on anyone; it took time, several months to almost a year to be exact because my heart yearned to be loved. But I realized I was happier without him, I thought differently, I laughed more, and I was content. I started to love myself again. I realized that I’m a gem and I could preserve my worth on my own. 

It’s a process to appreciate one’s solitude because you aimlessly spend time thinking. It’s as if your mind is a blank canvas and all of your thoughts are being thrown in millions of colors and it’s jumbled. You just have to breathe, because baby girl life goes on. Life is actually great and whoever decides to give you their all will bless you the way God intended them to do so. So you may mess up here and there, and your judgement may not always be the best, but when that love comes in all its innocence and purity, you will be the most fulfilled woman in the world. Don’t look for love, let it come to you. Stand your ground and love the hell out of yourself, because if you can’t love yourself, how can you love anybody else? – signed a self-loving black girl

Captured in Jersey City, NJ | Shot by  Joel Serrano

Captured in Jersey City, NJ | Shot by Joel Serrano

I N S E C U R E

Rakiya George

I've named this piece "Insecure", because it's Hella Relevant. 

There is a great gain in finding yourself; I think that mental growth is truly needed and once you obtain that, anything is humanely possible. For years I've been extremely insecure about myself, and I never really had a legitimate reason as to why. 

Captured in Hoboken, NJ | Shot by  Joel Serrano

Captured in Hoboken, NJ | Shot by Joel Serrano

Overcoming insecurities are a part of life and this can dive into many aspects. Insecure means that you are not confident or assured; uncertain and anxious. Why do we think like that? Why do we get into moments of uncertainty and talk ourselves out of something; we think low of ourselves as if we are not good enough. For a long time, my biggest insecurity was speaking up; I used to love falling back and being silent and allowing for people to speak for me. I was always worried of judgement, which I think is a main factor for people not living their best life. 

Judgement has got to be the root of all evils and insecurities. Everyone lives life differently and in their own way, so who are you to judge the next person because they tie their shoes differently compared to how you tie yours? When I was younger, I always felt like no matter my decision I would be judged; especially in college. Your name and the way you carry yourself is everything when you see the same people everyday, and that definitely meant a lot to me back then. 

Captured in Hoboken, NJ | Shot by  Joel Serrano

Captured in Hoboken, NJ | Shot by Joel Serrano

Another insecurity that I faced dealt with my interactions with people I cared about. Whether it is a close friend or a boyfriend at that time; I always felt weird discussing or opening my feelings to a person. If I was dating someone and had an issue, I would never step forward and it would either be pulled out of me, or gone unnoticed. You should never feel the need to hide how you truly feel towards someone whether it's good or bad; just let that shit out. 

Dabbling even further into relationships, I was really insecure in regards to my own boyfriends. That always worried about what they're doing and who they're talking to phase was such a mind controller; it's draining. All of that energy wasted on being worried. I think this is a general problem women face until they learn how to get over it. I can say for myself that I've gone crazy over a person that I was with because of being insecure. That alone can damage a relationship; I get it, trust is a main factor but you need to learn your own value and realize that anyone that has the gall to cross you, doesn't see your true potential. So why worry? Be confident in who you share yourself with. 

I'm Hella Poppin; you outcho mind if you don't want me.

Captured in Hoboken, NJ | Shot by  Joel Serrano

Captured in Hoboken, NJ | Shot by Joel Serrano

At this particular point in my life, I'm not insecure about anything. Why should I be? Life is precious, and it needs to be lived beautifully. Got a plan? Execute it. Something's on your mind? Speak on it. You love someone? Tell them. Don't. Hold. Back.

I'm pretty forward and open with my feelings; I'm beyond confident in myself. Conquering this unnecessary fear did take some time; over the years I've learned to love being by myself so that naturally helped. When you take time out of your day to figure out who you are, certain things don't really bother you anymore. I walk with a purpose, and I cherish everything life has to offer. I don't hold back and that is why I am here today sharing stories of vulnerability and being as honest as possible, because I know there is someone out there that has been in my shoes before, or is currently at a stand-still now. 

You're Hella Dope, Let The World Know.

Captured in Hoboken, NJ | Shot by  Joel Serrano

Captured in Hoboken, NJ | Shot by Joel Serrano

 

 

Walk With Me

Rakiya George

Take a moment to close your eyes and breathe. Smell the air, feel the wind caress your face, exhale anything that's holding you back. Now check yourself. 

Captured in Jersey City, NJ - Shot by  Aaron Culmer  | Sweatshirt by  Black After Party

Captured in Jersey City, NJ - Shot by Aaron Culmer | Sweatshirt by Black After Party

I took my time with creating this platform because I wanted it to be important and meaningful to me. I wanted the pieces on here to resonate in your mind and make you understand that we are all human, and at times think alike. I'm selfish when it comes to something I love, so if something wasn't right, it wasn't being put into existence. I think patience is a virtue that many people overlook, when in actuality it's purpose is to benefit you in the long run; make you a better you. 

On my journey of creating this platform, I was always asked by people "so when is your blog coming out?", and at first I was flattered to see people rooting for me, but I eventually became overwhelmed and actually dreaded the question. "It will be ready, when it's ready", became my answer to most; it came from a bitter, uneasy place because I felt like once I was asked, it was perceived as though I wasn't working. At this point I didn't want to speak on what I was creating. I was also annoyed by the rush of MY project.

Captured in Jersey City, NJ - Shot by  Aaron Culmer  | Sweatshirt by  Black After Party

Captured in Jersey City, NJ - Shot by Aaron Culmer | Sweatshirt by Black After Party

Everything in life doesn't need to be rushed, and eventually people will understand that. This past summer, I was talking about a close friend and how they were getting shit done, and how proud I am of this person, and in the midst of this conversation, I was asked "So what are you doing with your life? Because clearly everyone's doing something except for you." Not only was I furious with that comment, but I was hurt... I actually ended up crying on the inside because for one the person that made this comment knew nothing about my life, my process, or my goal. That entire moment replayed in my mind and I became very cold for a while, I almost believed the person that said these words to me; I thought I wasn't doing shit.

Captured in Jersey City, NJ - Shot by  Aaron Culmer  | Sweatshirt by  Black After Party

Captured in Jersey City, NJ - Shot by Aaron Culmer | Sweatshirt by Black After Party

You see, ignorance will never get you anywhere and until you find something that you're passionate about, you cannot speak on something you've never lived for. Like seriously ask yourself "What am I living for?" and if you say something generic or if you are extremely hesitant, then my dear you do not have a passion. I checked myself at this very moment, because in all honesty, I could've went completely out of character and served this person on a shiny gold platter solely with my words.

I gathered myself together and began to really evaluate where I want to go in life, and who did I want to touch with my words. That conversation only made me want to do better, and get more shit done. Before you knew it, I was knocking out articles and photo-shoots; really putting my baby together the way that I wanted to. I think this moment was a reality check for myself and only wanted me to create more and more. 

Do not ever feel discouraged because you are not one to rush things. Past experiences have proven that rushing will only leave an end result that you are not essentially happy with. That's valid in all aspects of life. Take. Your. Time. Check yourself and proceed. I'd rather take a nice, long and thoughtful walk to appreciate the flowers rather than rushing to an end that hasn't fully grown yet, filled with weeds and thorns. Sometimes life calls for harsh moments that wake you up, and at that time you may undergo a whirlwind of emotions, but never be too harsh on yourself.

"What is meant for you, will be for you, and only you."

Captured in Jersey City, NJ - Shot by  Aaron Culmer  | Sweatshirt by  Black After Party

Captured in Jersey City, NJ - Shot by Aaron Culmer | Sweatshirt by Black After Party

Pilot

Rakiya George

Captured in Los Angeles, CA - Shot by  Nareasha Willis  

Captured in Los Angeles, CA - Shot by Nareasha Willis 

I’m going to keep this essay as real and as honest as possible. I realized coming into my 24th year of life that I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t truly living how I wanted to; I made excuses for why I’m not where I want to be in life. Don’t let me misconstrue you, but 2016 had to be one of the crappiest years I think anyone has had to endure. I lost a car, I lost myself (mentally), I held onto things I had no control over and my heart was heavy the entire year. I was completely numb; a lost soul latching onto any ounce of possible life or happiness or fulfillment.

By November 15, 2017, my 25th birthday, I am going to be doing something that is fulfilling in regards to my plans as well as my happiness. I want to spend the rest of my life creating and being a part of things that I love. I want to inspire others during that process. “I” is my favorite word this year, because for once I am choosing to put ME first.

Captured in Los Angeles, CA - Shot by  Nareasha Willis

Captured in Los Angeles, CA - Shot by Nareasha Willis

 

Everyday people are finding their calling and enjoying their lives, and I’m far too young to limit myself from living. In 2016, I held myself back from a lot of things for several reasons. I held myself back because of fear; fear that I wouldn’t have enough money to pay for a bill or a car; fear that I wouldn’t be successful. I held myself back due to judgement; “what if no one likes what I’m creating?” “what if my message isn’t getting delivered?” I held myself back because I was shy; “I mean I’m okay, I’m not the prettiest”. All of these factors were cop-outs; miniscule reasons that have deterred me from getting shit done.

I don’t know if this year has been a wake-up call in disguise, but from the moment I was fired this past January from a crappy full-time franchise job, the wheels have been turning in my head. I’ve laughed more, I’ve lived more, and I’ve become more social, all in the first month of not having this job. I’ve taken myself out to dinner, intrigued myself through the arts all on my own and I’ve become pretty damn fearless.

First of all, this job had nothing to do with my degree or the long amount of experiences that are included in my resume. I just needed money to be stable, but at this point in my life if I’m not incorporating my talents through the job, I don’t want it. I’ll always find a way to make some cash, but I refuse to get lost in a career that wasn’t made for me.

Captured in Los Angeles, CA - Shot by  Nareasha Willis

Captured in Los Angeles, CA - Shot by Nareasha Willis

When you can’t sleep at night because there is a recurring idea in your head, you have to take that and run with it. Put it on paper, and make it happen. Don’t question it, Trust Your Path. The purpose of my platform is to show the world just how hard people my age are working. The men and women that will be featured throughout this platform are all self-starters that don’t thrive on hand-outs; they get things done on their own.

Everyone has a set path; it’s just a matter of figuring out your purpose and sticking to it. I have an immense love for people who are not only on their grind, but stay true to their-selves. This entire experience is to be a humbling one because I don’t expect much out of this besides the joy of knowing what I created shed light on a fellow entrepreneur.

My education cost me around $80,000, and I’d be a fool if I didn’t put that to use. Sometimes doing things by the book doesn’t necessarily work, you have to create your own full-fleged novel and share it with the world, page by page. This year has been all about growth, stability, and happiness. These are things that I plan to achieve abundantly throughout RakiyaG.com; enjoy!

Captured in Los Angeles, CA - Shot by  Nareasha Willis

Captured in Los Angeles, CA - Shot by Nareasha Willis