Be Prepared for Emotional Hijackings!

An emotional hijacking occurs when we find that our joy is being controlled by others.

FAITHGIRLBeware of Potential Emotional Hijacks

My number one tip for today and every day is to, “Get prayed up!” BEFORE you face your day because you never know what life will greet you with. Some days are just perfect and everyone makes joyful positive deposits into your emotional account. Other days, it’s like an unrelenting torrential downpour of other people’s distracting, destructive, or draining energy. Each of us has some of our own internal negative chatter going on and that’s natural.  But, when our own fears, worries, and doubts intertwine with the barrage of negative input and sorrow that’s everywhere, an emotional hijacking can occur quickly.  The problem is that when this happens we are no longer in full control. We lose much of our power, perspective, and feeling of self-control temporarily much to our own detriment. Emotional control is critical if we are to make the most  of our days and the most out of our lives.

I’m a motivator by choice, chance, and career.  And, even I find it hard to maintain that joyful inspiring energy some days.  But in everything there is a lesson to be learned and I am determined to learn it and to share it. I’ve been pondering lately the amount of energy it takes to keep myself and others motivated especially during the trying times that so many people are experiencing. We can’t bottle joy and drink it when we need it, but we can find in on our knees (in silence) and in exciting goals and purposeful work.

And, That’s What We Call Life.

Life presents us daily with new lessons. We can’t control the tests and difficulties, but we do chose the lab in which to learn the lessons that we were each put here to learn. It may be through our jobs, our relationships, or other pursuits. Our ultimate job,  journey, and mission is to do what we must to stay our own course despite what occurs around us. Things will always occur and distract and drain our power if we let them.  At the same time, there are ALWAYS positive empowering people, messages, and energy all around. We just need to recognize when it is happening and learn how to redirect our focus more quickly on input that fuels us and makes us stronger!  Truly what we focus on multiplies in our lives, so we must be careful to keep our own emotional tank full. This is even more critical when we are the one that people tend to call on when their emotional tanks are low or empty.


I share my personal formula for success often. G+E+T!  And today I had to remind myself of it. Yes, it’s a given that we must goals (G) and time (T) to achieve those goals, but equally important and perhaps more important is the E (emotional energy) that jump starts us into action and keeps us moving in the direction we choose. Prayer, meditation, sunlight, empowering people and messages, and joy and laughter fuel me and keep my emotional tank full. Negativity, complaining, stressful competitiveness, judgmental people, injustice, insensitivity, selfishness, and unkindness drain me.  You and I have to recognize what fills our tanks and  that which drains it, so that we do not run out of energy in this journey we call life.

Emotions get us INTO motion and KEEP us in motion.  They even have the power to thwart our intended motion and render us impotent or in a state of lethargy.  We are always in motion, either going towards that which we want or drifting or remaining stuck with that which we don’t want). And, be clear,  we do it both in our minds and bodies.  In conclusion, just remember that you are in charge and do what you must to keep your emotional tank full so that you have the energy you need when you need it to help yourself and others! Emotional hijacking affect us must less when our tanks are full, so “get prayed up” and “stay “prayed up!”


You Could Have Been An Onion!

You Could Have Been An Onion.

You Could Have Been An Onion.


Before you complain again about anything, appreciate the fact that YOU HIT THE CREATION JACKPOT.  You could have been an onion, slug, a roach, or a piece of sand. Instead you are blessed  to be human beings, to have the potential to mirror the attributes and qualities of God, and to be so valued and trusted as to be given consciousness, free will, and dominion over this world. Just think about the billions of  creations in this magnificent world of ours.  There are untold numbers of fruits, vegetables, plants, insects, birds, fish, organisms, and animals.  And yet, if you are reading this, you hit the creation jackpot because YOU GOT TO BE  A HUMAN.

“Humans have conscious thought and are aware of their consciousness. With this power, we can create or destroy, love or hate, believe or fear, take from others or serve them unselfishly. Circumstances may not be to our liking, but at least we have the capacity to change things and that’s the miracle and blessing of being a human.  Humans can create new reality.  Humans can make new and better choices.  Humans can willingly choose to change their circumstances through decisiveness, commitment, and focused action.”

Barbara Talley is a professional speaker, poet, and author.  Her presentations focus on vision, values, and virtues.  You can find more about her programs at

RGIII – The Newest Member of the NBC (Not Black enough Club)

Screen Shot 2012-12-14 at 8.28.02 PMESPN Commenter Parker made the remark that Robert Griffin (RGIII) wasn’t black enough and the Stuff#*@ hit the fan. As a celebrity, he’s now a proud member of the “Black, but Not Black Enough Club” joining the likes of POTUS Obama, Tiger Woods, Clarence Thomas, and OJ Simpson.  Comments flew from outraged people from both sides of the fence;  some  were agitated that ESPN would censor the black commenter from speaking his mind and others incensed that we’re still talking race in 2012.  Robert Parker called out Griffin on the air, asking: ”Is he a brother, or is he a cornball brother?” Some of Parker’s rationale for calling RGIII “NOT black enough” was his engagement to a white woman, talk of him being a Republican, and that he was “not real.” One African-American person commenting on the ordeal on responded:

“Being Black is a matter of political reality that affects and is affected by the words, deeds, actions, and experiences of other black people. That being said, EVERY black person that is a part of that experience has a right to an opinion. That includes “how black” somebody else is or isn’t based on how they conduct themselves, what they say, and what they are about. Ali understood this. Jim Brown understood this. Hell even Doug Williams understood this.” 

In closing, the conversation may begin with the question “What is Black Enough?” But, personally, I don’t think that is the right question to ask.  We need some honest education, engagement, and intelligent conversations around this emotionally charged issue of race.  It has become intertwined with culture, nationality, and ethnicity.  As a society, we pretend racism doesn’t exist.  Some even block it out all together. I’ve been told, “I don’t see your color.”  But, my color is part of me although it doesn’t define me. Let me explain it this way.  If I were a red rose in a vase of white roses, my color would be a beautiful attribute of my identity and I would be contributing to the beauty of the bouquet by being noticed.  First and foremost, I’d still be a rose, equal to all the other roses and not some other minor specie. The key is to get to the point where we recognize color but don’t judge by it.  I’ll sum it up in the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. who dealt with race and identity on a daily basis, but still understood the most important criteria for identifying a person was by their character.

“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”  Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Christopher Peterson after addressing this issue about character in Psychology Today  sums it up with: “Perhaps Dr. King’s dream would be realized if we choose to look at actual people and not the demographic groups in which we so conveniently and carelessly place them. Good one, Christopher!  While many might assert that this is a “non issue,” apparently it is a an issue and a big one for millions. A quick google search came up with the following hits in less than a minute:  817,000,000 results (0.32 seconds)  on the term “Black Enough”,  7,510,000 results (0.42 seconds) on the term “Black Enough Griffin” and  255,000,000 results (0.46 seconds)  on the term “Black Enough Obama.”  Hundreds of millions of people are searching, thinking, and interested in this term.  So I ask you three questions, 1) “What does it mean to be black enough?” 2) “Who gets to define what black is? And, 3) “How, where, and with whom do we address the question of race once and for all? (Please comment!)

I’m Barbara Talley, the poet who speaks and inspires.  To find out more about me check out my promo sheet or visit  my website.

“Ouch” – BLACK ENOUGH? Remark About RGIII Hits the RACE Nerve.

one planetSo, just what does it mean to not be “black enough?”  While it was the most recent controversy between two high profile black men in sports that brings this question to the forefront, the questions of race and identity and what it means to be black have never been sufficiently addressed.  First of all, I’m not into sports, so the fact that RGIII is a celebrity, makes little difference to me. But the race and identity discussion does catch my attention, since I am African-American, I work in Diversity, and this question unfortunately hits too close to home.  As a mother, I’ve been dealing with this issue on behalf of my children for decades unabated. My fifteen year old daughter was outraged just a few months ago when she experienced this in her “magnet school” that lacks much diversity. A kid at her school told her she wasn’t black like the kids at a different school.  I too faced this same challenge as a child when my father took us from the north to the south while doing migrant work.  My sisters and I were often mocked and ridiculed by the other kids who said, “We talked proper.”  It didn’t stop there, many times in my career have I heard the ignorant comment, “You’re different!” What’s that supposed to mean? Although it was usually meant as a compliment, it left me with the same distaste as it did as a child.  I interpreted that comment as:”I’ve got this definition of what it is to be black, and you don’t fit it!”  Rather than the person admitting that perhaps their definition of blackness was flawed, instead I was the anomaly.  “I was different!”  So I got it from both sides, both black and white.

Who gets to define what “black enough” is: black people, white people or no one?  Before I go on, let me point out one thing.  Color is just an accident of climate.  People who live closer to the equator have become darker over the centuries than those who live in more cooler climates. Race does not define a person’s values, character, or identity.  There are those with good character and values and those without it in every ethnic group.  And finally, we are all members of one human race. There is no black race, white race, or brown race.  We are all humans and part of one race, one human family.  You are more apt to pick up traits from your environment and culture than from people who have the same “color”  as you. We all have different traits, yet we are predominantly the same:  “There are more than three million differences between your genome and anyone else’s. On the other hand, we are all 99.9 percent the same, DNA-wise.” 99.9% says it all. Race and color are cloaks for other things, racism, imperialism, and a convenient way to separate people to justify preferential treatment for some and disparate treatment for others.

I’m Barbara Talley, the poet who speaks and inspires.  To find out more about me check out my promo sheet or visit  my website.

How Much Is A Black Youth Worth?

black youthI want to bring your attention to three recent tragedies that seem to have three things in common, their race, age, and gender. They were all young, African-American males, who were attacked because of their race.  Most recently seventeen year old, Jordan Russell was killed by a white man in Florida because he was playing his music too loud.  Ironically another seventeen year old unarmed Trevon Martin was shot dead in February in Florida holding nothing but a can of iced tea and a pack of Skittles.

Twenty-one year old, Chavis Carter was shot in the head with his hands handcuffed behind him while in the back of a police car in Arkansas in August.  While the police say that he committed suicide, the evidence does not support how the left-handed Chavis shot himself with his right hand while handcuffed.  He was with two friends when the police apprehended him. They were let go. They just happened to be white. He was arrested for giving a false name and reports say he had  $1o worth of marijuana on him.  Some states have now made that legal, but too late for this young man is dead.

How much is the life of a black child worth? These stories are not isolated cases.  There are others.  But it seems the frequency or severity of these types of atrocities do not faze people anymore. They just shake their heads and go back to their regularly scheduled programming.  Few will even comment and show that they care or feel anything.  I empathize with the mothers who are mourning their children today.  Today I think about those lives changed forever or snuffed out entirely and I try to make sense out of senseless brutality, hatred, and cruelty.  I appease my own conscience by shining the light on these cruel injustices so that their pain was not in vain and that they are not forgotten.  After that, I too shake my head and think, what now?

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me–and there was no one left to speak for me.

(Quote by Martin Niemoller)

I’m Barbara Talley, The Poet who speaks and inspires.   To find more about me, check out my promo sheet or visit  my website.