Monday, January 23, 2017

It's Time...

After 8 years, I've decided to release my blog, Big Diva HQ.

When I started it, the purpose was to share lessons that I learned along my journey.  I talked about growth, personal development, and wellness, plus I shared some pretty vulnerable and heartfelt posts. It was therapeutic and definitely helped me grow as a person, but most importantly, I hoped that what I shared helped others in some way. 

I always thought that BDHQ would be a part of my enterprise.  At one point it was even the focal point.  Even when I stepped away for a while, I still always believed that BDHQ fit into what I was doing, until things changed. 

My purpose shifted and the blog became more of heavy obligation and a bit disconnected from who I grew into being.  I really wanted to hold on.  I thought that I could redesign, revamp, and return with brand new material, but in my core, it didn't feel right.  

I've denied it for long enough and now I've finally accepted that it's time to let it go.  
I'm grateful for how long I've done it, how far it's gone, what I was able to share, and I'm most grateful for how many of you that I was able to touch and help in some way through the blog.

I plan to leave the blog up until January 31st, so feel free to visit and read my posts until then.  You can leave comments if you want.  I'll see them and respond if I can.  

So What's Next?

I firmly believe that we attract more blessings when we have the courage to release and let go of things that no longer serve us.  The bigger and harder it is to release, the bigger the blessing that comes to take its place.  While I'm releasing BDHQ, all of who I am is taking its place. 

I am an Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) coach now and I host and facilitate vision board workshops and seminars.  (My next one is on February 11th.  Join us if you're in the Philadelphia area!)  I am an avid traveler, who is two states away from visiting every state in this glorious country.  I'm a business strategist and enthusiast, and I'm passionate about helping women of all ages (especially young ladies) build self esteem and confidence.  I can finally share more about all of this on this page.  

I can tell you about how you can successfully incorporate vision boards into your life, invite you to the live and online events and trainings that I'm hosting, help you shift energy with EFT, post about my travel adventures, take you through some visualizations, and share my lessons learned and personal wins.  Oh!  And don't worry!  We'll still party on Fridays with our Jazz Hands Friday Dance Break. lol   

I'm so excited about what's to come and I hope that you are too.  Thank you for being a part of this and supporting the blog all these years.  I appreciate you.


Biba aka Ms. Pillowz

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Time Out

Photo by Nicolas Raymond
I should have been honest with you, but instead, I skipped out on two posts without saying a word.  

It's been difficult to write, let alone post things since vacation, but that is no excuse to flake out on you guys. 

Today, I'm going to say what I should have said two posts back:

BDHq is out for the rest of the summer. 

This leaves plenty of time to catch up on some of the old posts.  Plus, it gives me a chance to get through my busy work schedule and write new material for the fall.  

Thank you guys for your support.  Enjoy the rest of your summer and I'll see you soon!  

Photo credit lurve: Photo by Nicolas Raymond 

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Post Spotlight: 10 Questions to Answer Before Doing the Master Cleanse

Hi all!  I hope that you are staying cool on these hot days.  Summer is upon us already y'all!

Besides this heat, I've noticed that everybody is detoxing.  I've seen juice cleanses, fruit fasts, and even water cleanses (which can be dangerous).

It brings me back to when I did the Master Cleanse, a 10-day fast where you only drink a mix of lemon juice,water, maple syrup and cayenne pepper.  It was really an eye opener each time that I did it.  I received so many questions, that I decided to write a post about it.  

Many are drawn to cleanses to lose weight in a short period of time.   They don't think about how it affects the body and mind.

This particular Post Spotlight is for the people who have made the decision to do a cleanse, any cleanse, but haven't started yet.

People who have succeeded in their completion of a cleanse will tell you that, yes, you will lose weight and it's hard to stay committed, but you gain so much if you succeed.

Not only did I do the Master Cleanse for 10 days, but I felt so great, that I added 5 more days.  I credit my success to answering these 10 questions and getting myself into the proper mind state first.

If you plan to do a cleanse, this could help you get through it too.

Post of the Hour: 10 Questions to Answer Before Doing the Master Cleanse

About: Questions that can prepare you for getting through all cleanses

Inspiration: This was part of my response to reader questions      

Favorite quote:  One thing that helped me during my first cleanse was to prepare for the worst, so to speak.  I wrote out and answered 10 questions, which made me think about different possibilities, so that I was better prepared if they actually happened.

I've posted the questions here for you to review and think about before you start. 

Read the full post by clicking here!  

Good luck!   :-)

Thursday, June 4, 2015

How To Solve Problems the Hard Way

Photo by Johnny Ainsworth

You wanna know how to solve things the hard way?  Of course you don't!  But the reality is that you're already doing things the hard way.  It's how we're wired.  Lessons are hard to learn if there is no pain involved.  Right?  We think that if it's too easy, then something must be off. 

The hard way is so much worse than you know.  Think about it for a second.  There is usually left over damage done to ourselves and to others.  What's worse is that the damage doesn't really go away.   It just shows up in other places like through illnesses and disease, in relationships, in our beliefs, and similar and sometimes more severe problems.  It may seem like negativity pops up out of nowhere or something small happens and a heavy curtain of negative emotions comes down on top of it.  You're left wondering why you feel so strongly about it. 

Let's shift our focus on the word solve instead.
to find the answer or explanation for; clear up;explain
What stands out to me is that there is a sense of finality in that word.  This is possible for any problem if you handle things the right way.  Let's go through a recent example.

I have a friend who I think is making a big mistake.   I've tried reasoning and pleading my case, but no dice.  The decision has been made.  When we last spoke,  I felt really sad and a bit disappointed about it.

So here we have a problem and usually when a problem comes up, it's so easy to talk ourselves out of how we feel, because who wants to feel sucky?  No one, unless you're a masochist.

Well, what we don't know is that our feelings are the solution. 

Say what now??  

You read right.  Our feelings are the key to solving the problem.

It is vital to allow ourselves to feel how we are truly feeling in the moment.   We have to get deep into the emotion to unlock what it is here to tell us.  By pushing away negative feelings in favor of better feeling ones, we are ultimately inviting the problem to stick around and come back anytime wearing different costumes.  Lol

But that is so hard!  I don't want to go down that rabbit hole and I know you don't want to either.  But ask yourself, isn't that easier than having to deal with the same problem over and over again?
There are so many techniques of there to help you work through the emotion.  Meditation, yoga,  prayer, journaling, therapy, nature walks, hypnosis, and so on are all there to help you push through what you are feeling.  I like to use Emotional Freedom Technique or EFT.

Photo by BK

Here's how I applied it to my problem:

I tapped on how I felt: sad and disappointed.  I tapped on how it felt in my body.  It felt like my stomach was hollow.  I tapped on the situation in as much detail as I could.  I did a few rounds.  Those feelings began to subside,  but rejection and a sense of loss came up for me, so I tapped on those feelings too.

Since it was late at night, I was worried that it would be hard to fall asleep.  I was also worried that I would have uncomfortable dreams about the situation and then wake up feeling the same way.

In the morning, I woke up before my alarm, which never happens.  I had a great night sleep without any dreams about what happened.  I felt lighter, but I still felt a tinge of sadness, so I tapped on it again.  

The feeling disappeared almost immediately, so I tapped on the belief that had caused the sadness.  Then I tapped on how I wanted to feel and on the lesson that I could learn from the situation: the true meaning of friendship, dangers of fear, living life to the fullest, and such.  By the end of the session, I felt this sense of peace. 

What makes it hard is having to go through and truly feel the feelings that make you uncomfortable.  They are trapped until you acknowledge and release them and feeling them is the way to do it.

When you release the feeling, your problem turns into something that happened.  It may still need to be handled, but the emotional charge is lessened greatly or no longer there.  This makes it easier to work it out. 

So give it a try, think of a problem and ask yourself the following questions:
  • How do you feel about that problem?  
  • Where in your body do you feel these feelings?  
  • What's the intensity of those feelings? 
  • Is there anything else that comes up when thinking about this problem? 
  • Do you feel a sense of anxiety? 
  • Does this remind you of a problem that you've had before?  If so, break down the problem.   What are the similarities?  We're looking for a root cause here.
  • Do you find that situations like this have warranted the same emotional reaction? 
  • How have you reacted to the problem?  
  • How do you want to feel if a problem like this ever comes up again? 

Write down your responses and read them allowed.  Sit with the emotions in silence.  Acknowledge them.  Ask what the emotion is there to show you.  I know this sounds a little weird or woo woo, but when my therapist took me through this exercise, surprisingly, a response would come up for me and I was able to work through it.

Sometimes the emotion is there to show you something that needs attention or to teach you a lesson that you need in going forward.  The intensity of negative emotions usually makes it hard to hear the message. 

The message that I got was that people are human beings on this Earth to do things with free choice.  It reminded me to have compassion for what others go through.  The biggest lesson was that life wasn't meant for me to sit on the fence.  Every decision may not be a perfect decision, but I have a great support system to help me through anything that happens.  Don't let fear force your hand.  Have faith and be patient. 

In the end, this problem was really an answer and a lesson.  What are your problems telling you?  

Please feel free to share as your experiences below as they are very helpful to others who are also on this journey.

Are you following me on Instagram??  You should!  I'm not a mad poster, but I do share some of my travel adventures, positive quotes and things that speak to me, as well as some personal updates.  Be sure to follow me, so you don't miss out!  Until next time, peace and blessings to you all!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

I Think I've Recovered...

I think that I've fully recovered... enough to finally out up a post, at least.  My apologies, y'all, but a girl was exhausted!!  Prague wore me out!

I'm still in shock that this dream of mine came true.  I used to study my mom's atlas when I was young.  I ripped up sheets of paper and used them as makeshift bookmarks.  I poured through the pages of the maps and descriptions of different cities around the world.  For every place that stood out to me, whether it was the people, colors, houses, or overall beauty of the city that struck me,  I inserted a bookmark and vowed to visit one day.    

Prague was one of those places.

I've been planning this trip every year for the past 3 years.  I would walk into my boss' office and say, "I'm taking vacation on these dates.  I'm going to Prague this year."  Every year it proved to be untrue, until this year...

It happened around Christmas. I was surfing around on Instagram and I came across a few airfare deals.  I kept scrolling until I landed on Prague.  I made up all of these reasons why the deal was too good to be true.  I confirmed that it was real through the airline's website.  I took the next step and booked my ticket.

I waited months to finally go on the trip, but every week sped by so quickly until I looked up and the trip was here.  I was so nervous, but I knew that this trip would be a game changer for me.

I'm not going to talk about all of the details an the things that I did, but I will say that Prague is one of the most beautiful cities that I've ever seen.  It was so much more than what I've seen in pictures and movies and even my thoughts based on firsthand accounts from people who've been.  It was one of the best gifts that I have ever given myself. 

Even though I'm back now, I can still feel how much this trip has affected me and I am forever grateful.

Check out some of the pictures I took below.   If you ever have the opportunity to travel to Europe, I highly recommend adding Prague as a must-see destination.

Astronomical Clock

Statues along the Charles Bridge

St. Vittus Cathedral


Wenceslas Square

Library at the Strahov Monastery

Church of St. Nicholas

Secret Garden

Mill Colonnade at Karlovy Vary

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Break time!

Hey everybody!

I do apologize for missing out on the last post. I was prepping for my vacation.  Of course, I waited until the last minute to pack and I wasn't able to update the blog before I left.

And now I'm back!  But, I am still getting my sea legs, so I am giving myself a little time off.  Don't fret!  I will be back with a brand new post in the next 2 weeks.  See you then!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Lessons From a Lost Journal

Photo by Scott Miles Love
At the time that I put up the last post, I was on a road trip across the country and was still in the process of writing what I had intended to share.  Read the finished product below:

I lost my last journal on a flight home.  This one was extremely personal, more so than the others.   In it, I wrote about beliefs that I've allowed to limit me, innermost fears, and past experiences that I still feel guilt and shame about.

I searched high and low for it.  Then I realized that my worst fear was true.  It was gone.

A deep funk crept up on me and I went through nearly a month long period of grieving.  I simply could not function.  I couldn't write another word.  There are plenty of other empty journals around, but I wanted MY journal back.

How could I have been so careless with something so private??  Why wouldn't I check to make sure that I had it before I deplaned?

Then I thought about someone reading all about me: stuff that I've held onto for a lifetime, stuff I've told to very few people, stuff that I've thought, but never said out loud, and it just killed me.

I wasn't ready to "share" any of that, but what choice did I have?  What if someone read it instead of tossing it?  Did they share my brand of crazy with others?  Did they all have a good laugh at my expense.   Did they cackle at my exposed feelings?  Judge my not so finest hours as harshly as I had?

Or maybe, there was something on those pages that spoke to them...

Maybe my words gave them a sense of solace in knowing that some stranger (me) had made big mistakes too.  This stranger had done things for which they weren't proud.  They too exhibited old wounds and scar tissue from living, but despite all of that, they're still standing.  Those words were written as a way to release the pain, to experience forgiveness and peace.    

There was a huge lesson in this experience and I'll share it with you here. 

There is nothing that truly belongs to us.  There is nothing for us to keep.  Not possessions.  Not secrets.  Not these bodies.  Not these gifts or talents.  Not life.  Nothing.  None of it is ours forever.  What we've acquired is only here for now and all of it is meant to be shared.  

We aren't in control.   These things have the power to exist forever, but not within our possession.  Ask yourself what's the purpose of keeping these things to yourself?  Why hoard it, guard it, sacrifice life and limb for it?  Why spend so much time and energy doing that when we can't take any of it with us?  It could all be gone within a blink of an eye.  

Against my will, my journal was gone, thus I was exposed.  I wrote things in it that I've hidden even from myself, that I finally had the courage to put out there, on paper, and now it's wherever it is.   As much as this hurt me, it taught me that our true purpose is to give: these lessons that we're learning, our joy, our pain, our light and our darkness, all of who we are.  This is what creates a legacy of which to be proud.

Through giving we get back tenfold.  Then we give that away too.  Closed hands can't grasp new blessings.

I thought that I understood everything about my intention.  I intended to let go of emotional baggage, weight, the past, old wounds, clutter, and things that no longer serve me.  Now, this intention has shape shifted.  Now I know that I have to let go of my attachment to everything, not just the negative and painful stuff.  EVERYTHING.

Oh.  My.  God...  I can finally see it!  

Next destination: Surrender... 

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Excerpt: Untitled

I'm currently out on a work trip across the country and in the process of writing a new post. 

Below, is a super rough draft of what I've been working on.  The completed post will be up in the next two weeks. 


I lost my last journal.  It was extremely personal. In it, I wrote about beliefs that I've allowed to limit me, innermost fears, and past experiences that I still feel guilt and shame about to this day.  I was writing in it on a flight home and thought that I packed it in my bag upon descent, but that wasn't the case.

After I lost it, I went through a nearly month long period of grieving.  I simply could not function properly.  I was in such a funky mood that I just couldn't bring myself to write another word.

How could I have been so careless?  Why wouldn't I check to make sure that my journal was in my bag before I deplaned?

Then the thought of someone reading all about me: stuff that I've held onto for a lifetime, stuff I've told to very few people, stuff that I've thought, but haven't said, just killed me.  I wasn't ready for that, but what choice did I have? 

Not sure whether someone read it and shared my brand of crazy with others.  Maybe they all had a good laugh at my expense.   Cackled at my exposed feelings, judged my not so finest hours as harshly as  I have.  Or maybe, there was something on those pages that spoke to them... 

Let me know what you think so far!  The completed piece will be up the Wednesday after next.  Have a great day!

Photo credit lurve: Photo by Jimileek

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Post Spotlight: Reminder

Hi guys!  I hope that all is going well for you!  What's been up?

I finally watched the finale for How to Get Away With Murder and my mind is still blown.  Why did no one tell me that it was such a roller coaster ride?!  Next season is going to be nuts!!  Watching that show really took my mind off of the things that have been coming up lately.

At the start of the new year, I made an intention to release: release emotional baggage, release clutter at home and work, release unforgiveness that I have towards other people and myself, and release all things that aren't serving me in this moment.

This intention has lead me to have deeper relationships with people through being more open and vulnerable, books and podcasts by people I've never heard of, and situations that are revealing feelings that I thought had left the building eons ago.  This has truly been a scary, painful, and yet, enlightening and freeing process.

I've had so many aha's and epiphanies that my head hasn't stopped spinning.  One of those aha's was about the power of fear.  I recognize now that I've let fear dictate my circumstances.  I've been so in my head about what could happen based on what has happened or what could happen.  I finally understand the power of now and what it means.  I get how it has transformed so many lives.

I was looking for a good post to use for the Post Spotlight.  This is what came up.  How perfect, right??

Post of the Hour: Reminder

About: Fear and faith.

Inspiration: How my cat provided me with a reminder that the Universe has my back.      

Favorite quote:  Our responsibility is to fulfill our purpose.  Allowing fear to stop us means that our faith isn't big enough.  Your faith needs to be big enough to move around fear.  Know that the Universe is truly in your corner and will provide you with whatever you need to make that happen. 

Read the full post by clicking here!  

Meet you back here on March 25th with some fresh new content.  Hope to see you here when it goes up!  :-)

Photo credit lurve: Me  

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Post Spotlight: The Struggle of Imperfection

Photo by Malik ML Williams

It all started with a TED Talk about vulnerability.  Then, it seemed like Dr. Brene Brown was everywhere.  Her appearance on OWN's Lifeclass made me look at vulnerability in a different way.  I started to look at it as a tool for healing as opposed to a tool for causing heartache.  It's become a tool that I feel the most uncomfortable using, but whenever I have done so, magic happens.  (More on that next time.)

Post of the Hour: "The Struggle of Imperfection."

About: How vulnerability is the cure for perfectionism and not fully living life.

Inspiration: Dr. Brene Brown's appearance on Lifeclass.

Favorite quote:  
...when I think about other things in my life that I have not completed, have obsessed over to the point of being sick, or things that I've totally shut down for fear that it isn't perfect and people will criticize it or me, I feel sad.  I feel sad for the time that I've lost worrying so much about how I would be judged.  Most importantly, I am sad for how hard I have been on myself.  I recognize that I am judgmental, but I judge myself the harshest.