Friday, October 26, 2018

Where I am, Where I've been, + Where I'm going | Life Update

I said was back, then I left again. Story of my life...

For the past year or so, New York has been calling my name and for a while, I didn't exactly know why; that's just where my heart was telling me to go, like my destiny is tied to this place. Earlier this year, I even booked a one-way ticket from ATL to LGA for August 2018, months in advance. Before I knew it, it was August and I ended up missing my flight. As upsetting as it was, I'm convinced it happened for a reason, God's way of telling me to slow down, because at that point, I was so unprepared and wasn't exactly ready to take that leap.

The few months that have transpired since the missed flight have been a whirlwind, to say the least.  In attempt to fall in love with my home city again, I instantly became complacent; latching on to complacent ideas, toxic habits, and started to settle on the idea that I was going to be in this city for a while, so there was no need to resist the inevitable. Completely disregarding what I wrote on the topic of 'How to Choose Love Over Fear', only a couple of weeks removed from my scheduled departure, the fear of failure took reign. Furthermore, some unexpected negativity came waltzing into my life and I subconsciously welcomed all of it with open arms. 

In the meantime, I fell in love with a puppy and I was lured into the role of pit bull mom once again. His name is Nikko. It has been quite the challenge, especially with my parents' older, low tolerance dog already in the house and him being only a few weeks young when I brought him home. He's been the absolute light of my life; learning exceptionally fast, growing even faster, and it's been an overall rewarding experience thus far. This part seems irrelevant to mention, however, he's a significant component in this life update and a pretty accurate depiction of the transitional phase I'm in, as well as the journey I'm about to embark on very soon.


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Friday, August 17, 2018

How to Choose Love Over Fear (pt. I)

I don't want to be afraid anymore.

Sorting through all the emotions and reflections that have unpacked over the past few months, this was the thought that emerged out of sitting with my thoughts for hours this morning before starting my day. It was a simple, yet daunting, statement that I've concluded has a few different layers, so for a little while longer, I just allowed my thoughts to drift back to that mindset. I don't want to be afraid anymore, or - better yet - I don't want to live in fear anymore, played like a broken record in my head. It felt like an epiphany, a breakthrough of every seed that's been planted and every lesson that didn't make sense until that very moment. Only naturally, it was my first instinct to take a shot at writing the breakdown of that realization in hopes that it would all make sense to someone else as well.

If it really were that simple...to just wake up one day and decide this is how I want to live my life from now on, would we then choose to live our lives differently than we normally would if we only had two choices: love or fear? What if the only thing needed to not fear something was to choose to not fear it? These were some of the questions that presented themselves to me when I told myself that I do not want to be afraid anymore, which to me, could mean an array of things. 

I've never been clinically diagnosed with anxiety or depression nor have I been prescribed any sort of medication to help with certain mental imbalances, so I try my best not to mock those people who have to live with these very real conditions every day by labeling myself with those things. Based on what I've read about mental illness, there are different behaviors I've exhibited in the past that connect to anxiety and depression. For instance, I've had to deal with myself about obsessing over scenarios that only exist my head, questioning why I legitimately fear things that may not ever happen. I've had to really sit with myself and sort through all the negative shit I think about daily; things that directly affect everything, from why I react the way I do in certain situations to how I interact and deal with others. For whatever reason, all those self realizations and questions came rushing to me during my quiet hours with God this morning, forcing me to look at reality through a new lens.

The questions became gradually expansive, such as: What if the key to achieving everything you want to achieve in this lifetime was a matter of taking your mind into a new dimension? And although that sounds really heavy to some people, what if it's not as complicated of a task as we believe it to be? What if we truly do have more power than we think...more discipline, more self control...over ourselves, our perception of reality, even the reality outside of that? Considering that everything is a matter of choice - not necessarily in a sense that you are always able to choose what happens to you, but in a way that you can choose how you respond to what happens to you and choose how to make things work in your favor - what if the only thing separating you from your destiny is a choice? Digging even deeper than that, what if the only two options you had were love vs. fear and that's it? Even thinking about the statement Love conquers all: is love strong enough to overpower everything we fear, including our own darkness?

The Catch 22 is having all these questions with no concrete answers attached to justify the truth; only theories with no quantum backing that I know of. What made it all resonate with me was having heard snippets all of this before (i.e. The Laws of Attraction) and finally connecting the dots that tied everything together. Therefore, I didn't feel like I was completely lost it or that I was insane for thinking such things, because I've been introduced to these things at different points in my life from multiple sources. How many times do you hear things like there's nothing to be afraid of before it starts to really make sense?

Ideally, I'd like to dive deeper, but for the sake of keeping it as short and sweet as possible, I may just break this up and write as I uncover/discover different parts, because it certainly is a lot to try to squeeze into one post. To be honest, I don't think the internet deserves everything I come up with, but that may just be the narcissist in me. But, if it eventually turns into a book, will you buy it? Will you read it? Will you be able to digest and understand the message and context? Another set of pridefully wonderful question that I believe time will inevitably reveal. 

Regardless of the outcome of this series, I'll conclude with a question that I hope whoever is reading takes the time to really navigate and if you're willing to share your answer with me feel free to: 

Do you operate primarily from a place of love or from a place of fear?

Follow me on Twitter + IG: | ♡ @ChymereA
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Sunday, July 29, 2018

Music Collective: vol. 65 {My IG Music Playlist vol.I}


On Instagram story highlights, one of the categories listed is 'Music', which is only fitting for a music-head such as myself. It's a compilation of albums and songs - some old and some new - that have really stood out to me during my daily jam sessions, shining light in some of my darkest hours of 2018. Since this collection is pretty lofty and I plan on adding to it, My IG Music Playlist an ongoing sub-series, much like I did with the Life in Sounds trilogy a while back.

Albums:

  • Hive Mind - The Internet
  • Good Man - Ne-yo
  • KOD - J. Cole
  • Role Model - Michael Christmas
  • Buddy - Harlan & Alondra
  • Whack World - Tierra Whack
Here's a Spotify playlist of all the songs I've featured thus far with over 4 hours worth of good music. This playlist is also soon be available on Apple Music. 

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Friday, July 27, 2018

Allow me to Re-introduce myself...

My name is Chymere Anais, multi-dimensional creative, founder and editor-in-chief of The Sky Box Suite, and freelance web designer. Over time, as my personal and professional interest have varied, I've made a point to document the entire journey through blogging, opting to share my thoughts, opinions, perspectives and certain life experiences via the internet. Although I've been M.I.A. for the past few months, it does feel good to be back.
Navigating adulthood along with learning/adapting to the ends and outs of being an entrepreneur is a struggle sometimes and maintaining balance doesn't always come easy. Honestly, one of the reasons why I've dropped the ball on blogging was due to the fact that it's not making me money, so it hasn't been a top priority as of late, which is wild because it's never been about the money - as my creativity and the freedom of self expression is why I carved out a space for myself here on the internet in the first place. Remember why you started is valid advice in most instances. I didn't necessarily lose sight of that but - perhaps - somewhere down the line, the answers to my why have evolved. 

Instead of forcing content during my absence, I simply "fell back" and told myself that, when the time is right, I'll get back to blogging eventually. After months of nothingness in terms of personal branding and often falling short when it came to writing about sports, it finally feels like the time is right. I think it's important to maintain a space that gives me complete creative control, where I'm not constantly thinking about articles like I am for #TheSkyBoxSuite or reshaping my creative ideas to fit someone else's vision like I do with web design. As much as I love both and the opportunities that have come out of executing those ventures, I'm so incredibly thankful to have a space to express myself freely. 

As far as life updates are concerned, perhaps I'll save the more intricate details for another post. In a nutshell, I'm probably more career focused that I've ever been, my heart is open to love, and every single day, I come up with new/more improved ways to fall deeper in love with my entire self, especially on the days I battle with waves of depression and struggle to get out of bed in the morning. One day, I'll open up more about how hard that is, especially when you have a business to run and deadlines you're hired, and therefore obligated, to adhere to. Despite what is happening - whether it's inner turmoil or circumstances outside of my control - there is so much to be thankful for when I take the time to  stop and smell the sunflowers, because genuine gratitude really has its way of putting things into perspective. Simply put, nothing is perfect, but life is good...even on days it could be better.

To those of you who are new here, welcome. To my A1, Day 1 members of my internet family, thank you, thank you for your constant support and unwavering patience. It is my intent to keep creating and hopefully my inspiration will follow suit, so that I can continue cultivating this little corner of the internet that is still, very much near and dear to my heart. 

Follow me on Twitter + IG: | ♡ @ChymereA
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Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Music Collective: vol. 64 {Nice for What}


There are so many things I love about this song and its stellar visual component. With the fusion of Lauryn Hill's "Ex-Factor" and classic NOLA bounce, 'Nice for What' is a feel good song from start to finish. In typical Drake motive operation, he focused in on what is likely his largest demographic: women. Once again, all summer long Instagram will be oozing with Drake lyrics as captions. 

Directed by Karena Evans, this video spotlights some of Hollywood's most notable women, including a few of my personal role models, such as Yara Shahidi , Misty Copeland, Issa Rae, and Tracee Ellis-Ross. The other phenomenal figures featured in the video were as follows: Olivia Wilde, Letitia Wright, Zoe Saldana, Rashida Jones, Jourdan Dunn, Tiffany Haddish, Syd (from The Internet) Elizabeth and Victoria Lejonhjarta, Bria Vinaite, Emma Roberts, and Michelle Rodriguez. What better way to celebrate women worldwide than to hire someone who is a woman herself? Smart move, Aubrey...smart move.

Reminiscing on some of the best years of my life, Drake has always dropped feel good anthems just in time to show up on playlist curated especially for day parties and road trips. Naturally, the team behind him has found a way to tap into his audience extremely well. Whether it's a marketing ploy or not, every year since '07, Drake has given the ladies something to relate to. It's no mistake that his latest release, 'Nice for What' follows suit. 

 Follow me on Twitter + IG: | ♡ @ChymereA
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Friday, March 2, 2018

Currently.

♡ In Love with: my life at the moment; peaceful, calm, creativity over-flowing, and drama/stress-free

♡ Working On: content for The Sky Box Suite; writing a business plan for my side hustle; filling out the FASFA + preparing myself to continue my education (again). There seems to be so much going on right now, but it honestly doesn't feel like chaos. I wouldn't trade what is happening in this moment for the world.

♡ Favorite Visual: I'm rarely able to capture a mood, but I believe I was able to do so quite beautifully in the photo below. I felt so vulnerable, so full of life and ideas, yet incredibly calm. I wanted to see if I could possibly translate that in a photo. Took a few shots, but I did it and loved it.


♡ Music [favorite sounds]:
  • Talk to Me - July 7
  • Django Jane - Janelle Monae
  • Love Lies - Khalid & Normani
  • I Like You - Childish Major ft. Dram & 6Lack

♡ Anticipating : the things I have lined up for the weekend in my attempt to be a little less anti-social, as well as what is about to take place circa August 2018. I've adapted the "move in silence" mantra for a while now, so I'm keeping things under wraps for the time being. Just know, many major things are on the way!

♡ Reading : Hustle: The Power to Charge Your Life with Money, Meaning, and Momentum by: Neil Patel, Patrick Vlaskovitz, and Jonas Koffler

♡ Watching: Spike Lee's 'She's Gotta Have It'

♡ Favorite Words: "...deep in my heart, the answer, it was in me / and I've made up my mind to define my own destiny..." -lyrics from 'The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill'

♡ Thinking about: the possibilities of the future and the opportunities that exist right now

Loving: who I am in this exact moment, knowing I'm only getting better. Also loving life at the moment, because life is good, even on days it could be better.

♡ Dreaming of: a creating a life that is both abundant and fulfilling; adventurous and balanced; moving intentionally, but still allowing life to unfold naturally

 Follow me on Twitter + IG: | ♡ @ChymereA
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Monday, February 12, 2018

How I Turned my Creativity into a Profitable Side Hustle and Thriving Brand


Don't you just love when the creative ideas are flowing steadily and everything is working out perfectly in your favor? Although incredible in essence, these rare moments occur once in a blue moon. They key to making my ideas sustainable was learning how to tap into the momentum that drives my ambition and brings my creations to life...and I'm here to motivate you - whoever you may be - to do the same.

The book I'm currently reading, 'Hustle: The Power to Charge Your Life with Money, Meaning, and Momentum' by: Neil Patel, Patrick Vlaskovits, and Jonas Koffler was the launching pad to get some of these ideas of the ground. Not even halfway through the book, the message - clear as day - resonated and page by page, I began to rediscover the dreams inside of me that I shamefully allowed to sit dormant for way too long. Without spoiling context, the book explores the art of the hustle in a unique, yet quintessential way and it's highly recommended for anyone interested in owning their dreams, as Patel, Vlaskovits, and Koffler so equolently put it: 

"Owning your dreams feels different, perhaps even strange. It involves living an engaged life; making your best, most decisive choices; not being afraid of the consequences; and correcting your course along the way."

Although I am currently studying to eventually become an engineer by trade, it's a passion of mine to write, because as my bio suggest, I am a multi-dimensional creative. I too would like to write and publish books to help guide creative entrepreneurs in their success journey and through adversity, but how could uphold my integrity and script an entire book based on what I have yet to do? My morality discerned that there are levels to teaching other people how to be successful, which is one of the many lessons I've gained since opening this phenomenal book. 

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Friday, February 2, 2018

5 Must Read Books Every #GirlBoss Should Add to Her Coffee Table Collection | The #CreativeBossBae Series

On this week of The #CreativeBossBae series, I'll be giving you a short collection of recommended books every #GirlBoss should absolutely read, own, and add to her coffee table collection for easy reference. As important as it is to plug in to books that empower us to be better people, too much self-help can be overwhelming, so I kept this list short and sweet with really awesome books that have personally helped me along my journey. All of them are pretty simple reads, but packed with so much helpful information, versed with unique perspectives. 

01. 'You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life' by: Jen Sincero
aflakra
Original photography CA
02. 'The Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person'  by: Shonda Rhimes

Image found via Today, I'm Bobbi
03. 'Women Who Run with the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype' by: Clarissa Pinkola Est├ęs


04. '#GirlBoss' by: Sophia Amoruso [read my review here]


05. 'Normal Gets You Nowhere' by: Kelly Cutrone [read my mini-review here]

Image found via Melanie Sutrathada | Lace and Combat Boots
Happy Reading!!!


 Follow me on Twitter + IG: | ♡ @ChymereA
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Friday, January 26, 2018

Music Collective vol. 63 In My Zone (Side A // Side B)


Most of the albums I loved from 2017 - over the past couple of years, actually - are still in heavy rotation. Projects such as Ego Death (2014) and 99.9% (2016) are aging like fine wine and I listen to those records often. Having recently compiled the annual Musical Year in Review on The Sky Box Suite, many of my favorite releases from last year, like 4eva is a Mighty Long Time, Flower Boy and Ctrl, still get weekly spins from me, so don't mind if you notice some kind of repetition happening on this play list. I've just been super satisfied with my collection lately, which is partially why I haven't posted something music related much on here, aside for the year end compilation. Some old, some new, a lot of Drake for whatever reason, and somewhat random of a compilation, here's what I've been listening to lately. In My Zone (Side A // Side B) will be available for your listening pleasure on Apple Music + Spotify 01.27.18. 

+ S I D E  A :
  1. Diplomatic Immunity - Drake
  2. Whip It - Bia
  3. So Am I - Ty Dolla $ign ft. Damian Marley
  4. Dat Side - Cyhi the Prynce ft. Kanye West
  5. Neon Guts - Lil Uzi ft. Pharrell
  6. Worth It - Dave B. 
  7. Walk It Talk It - Migos ft. Drake
+ S I D E  B :
  1. Not Discuss It - St. Beauty
  2. Sweet Holy Honey - Sango & Xavier Omar
  3. Buzzin - Alina Baraz
  4. Rather Be - H.E.R.
  5. Call Me - Hudson East & ESTA.
  6. After the Storm - Kali Uchis ft.  Tyler,  the Creator & Bootsy Collins
  7. High - Ledisi
  8. Selfish - PnB Rock
  9. Anita - Smino ft. T-Pain
  10. Never Be the Same - Camila Cabello
+ A L B U M S +
  1. November - SiR
  2. Skin&Earth - Lights
    • sidenote: Shoutout to LJ | A Journey East for recommending this incredible album. As I was listening to it early, I realized that this album is probably the first time I've ventured outside of hip-hop/R&B/soul scene in quite a while. I'm so impressed.
  3. blkswn - Smino
  4. No_One Ever Really Dies - N*E*R*D
  5. War & Leisure - Miguel
  6. Nothing Was the Same - Drake
    • It blows my mind that this album is slick a "throwback" now...
  7. P2 - Dave East
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Tuesday, January 9, 2018

How to Live Your Best Life and Be a Success Symbol in Any Industry | The #CreativeBossBae series

It's the first month of 2018 and the #CreativeBossBae series is finally back!!! The most recent segment, 8 Steps to Becoming the Woman of Your Dreams, premiered Summer 2017 and goes hand in hand with this one, so the continuation of the sequel was long overdue. Because my creativity has been heightened by the ambiance of a new year, I figured what better time than now to bring this series back. 

 I created this life guide of sorts, because I'm surrounded and inspired by so many creatives in varying fields. The whole purpose of this series is to highlight some of the things I'm constantly learning on my own creative journey. Hopefully, it inspires someone who is actively seeking insight on what it takes to chase dreams the creative way (because the "right way" doesn't necessarily exist). With that being said, I present my 7 tips on how to live your best life and be a success symbol in any industry: 

Photo Credit: Melissa B. Cortez via Unsplash
01. Live on Your Own Terms 

We all have the freedom to define what success means, whether it's having a bomb career, taking care of a family, both, or something completely different from the norm. Who cares if everyone thinks college is a waste of time and money? If education is important to you, pursue it. If you want to climb the corporate ladder, do that. If your only aspiration in life is to work, read, and travel the world, do that shit. On social media especially, we're so exposed to so many different opinions about how people should live their life, but at the end of the day, it's your life. Your dreams - no matter how crazy they are to outsiders looking in - are valid, so don't allow society to alter what matters to you. It's all a matter of...
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Thursday, January 4, 2018

Music Collective: vol. 62 {Drippin' in Finesse}


It all began yesterday afternoon with Bruno Mars tweeting about a midnight release of his collaboration with Cardi B., remixing Finesse, a track that premiered on Mars' 3rd studio album, 24k Magic.  A few hours later, he mentions Ms. Cardi B, casually teasing about dropping the video as well. 

Watch the video + read my thoughts on it here 

 Follow me on Twitter + IG: | ♡ @ChymereA
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Tuesday, January 2, 2018

When Preparation Meets Opportunity | Cheers to the Next 10 Years

Photo by Joe Hu on Unsplash
As I spent some time towards the end of 2017 reflecting on the year, I started to think about the last time I sincerely believed a year was my year. It's around this time that people are typically putting stake in the claim, entering a new calendar cycle with this whirlwind of optimism that was bound to sizzle by April. I know for a fact that I've been this person many times before, where - almost naturally - blank canvas and new beginnings excite me, but the momentum dies down by mid-year, if not, early spring at best. However, something about two thousand eighteen just feels...different. 

I looked to my old journals for reference, because I really wanted to know what my thought processes were over the past several New Years. I finally found my answer. Although I'm always pretty optimistic, the last time I truly believed within myself that it was my year was back in 2008 and honestly, I don't have much to show for it now. Damn. 

With that time frame in mind, I gave some more thought into what my intentions are for this year. The concept of 10 whole years going by was pretty surreal to me. I could remember being that young, bright-eyed girl; so care-free and full of excitement and hope for the future. Then, my mind couldn't stop thinking about what happened to her, like that version of myself was just some rag doll I traded for a fair shot at adulthood, and I really started to miss her. 

Slowly, but surely, the person I used to be crept into my quiet time as a reminder to my current "grown-up" self that that same girl is still very much alive, and all I needed to do to revive her is let go of all the fear that has been holding me back, all the pressure to fit into a certain box, and just believe again.  It was that simple.

Strangely enough, this conversation I was having with myself inspired how I want to move in 2018. Considering the last time I felt super amplified by a new year was a full decade ago, I decided on the spot that everything I touch this year will be a set up or preparation for the next 10 years, therefore if another 10 years flies by before I feel like I've reached a pinnacle again, I can look back knowing that I 1000% maximized the opportunity to make 2018 my year. I'm entering a very pivotal phase in my life where I really want to focus on purpose and making sure everything within my reach has long-term value.  Time is precious, so - in my mind - I only have one shot to get it right and for whatever reason, that kind of pressure leads me to think that this is going to be one of my best years yet. 

 Follow me on Twitter + IG: | ♡ @ChymereA
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