Activate Your Vision Board Party with Lucinda Cross

Friday, February 13th, I had the opportunity to attend the Activate Your Vision Board Party presented by “The Chief Activator” Lucinda Cross. Cross has been featured in this years January edition of Essence Magazine. She’s been making vision boards for 10 years, and has received great results. The latest vision board she purposed to be featured, and that is exactly what came to past. She has also been featured on the Today Show, and is also a contributing writer for Black Enterprise and Huffington Post.

Lucinda is a woman who has overcome incredible struggle and is now helping others through a method that has helped her reach this level of success. She has dedicated herself to going around the world and sharing how “the power of vision can set your goals on fire.” She did and now you can too. During these parties, Cross let’s others know the real purpose of creating a vision board and how to clarify your goals and dreams.

Friday’s event was held in Harlem, NY at Raw Space, which is a nice intimate space with beautiful paintings donning the walls. Upon entering the venue, there was music playing, mingling, and the atmosphere was set. The tables were decorated lovely, with magazines, mood rocks, and wine glasses with beautiful quotes. There was then a table with materials to create the visions boards, as well as Lucinda’s vision board that was featured in Essence.

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Cupcakes were being served by the volunteers who did a great job the entire evening. Food was then served, as more people gathered in for the night. Music, eating, and talking commenced for a little while. The sponsor for the evening was donutologist, Todd Jones. He made delicious homemade, mini donuts. He’s the owner of Sweet Dreams, where they bring the donut experience to you. As well as, Cuzzin’s Duzin, where you come to the donut experience. These donuts were mouth watering.

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Then to start the evening off, Dr. Stacy NC Grant came up to speak to this room filled with anxious ladies, ready to write the vision and make it plain. She discussed the purpose of us being there, all the while dropping some encouragement as well. On this cold frigid night, she commended those in attendance who “came out on a cold night to warm their dreams”. She encouraged everyone to jump and grow their wings on the way down. As well as posed the question, “what seeds are you going to plant tonight?”

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She then introduced the financial motivator, author, and speaker Ash Cash. Having heard him speak previously, I knew he’d have some great encouragement for us all. He started by sharing a little of his story. He grew up in Harlem where many people around him either ended up in jail or down a path of negativity. But he went against the grain, and came out on top. He’s been in banking for 15 years and is the author of a best seller. He’s been featured in many publications, such as Black Enterprise, Essence Magazine, and more. As well as popular radio stations, Hot 97 and WBLS 107.5.
Ash went on to share a story he heard about a brick wall. The father told his son he broke down a brick wall and wanted him to rebuild it. The father then had to tell the son, because in his mind it was too much, don’t focus so much on the wall, focus on one brick. It’ll be so powerful, you can’t break it down. Often times we try to handle everything at once, when it’s important to put our focus on one thing at a time. He left us with these powerful sayings..
•The work that you put in today is all that matters.
•The power is in your vision.
•Don’t wait until later to do something. Do it now!

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Next up was the energetic, Katie Kozlowski. Started by saying, if you believe it, then you’ll see it. She shared how she knew there was greater ahead, but wasn’t sure how it would manifest. She uses play as a way to reach success. She believes the journey should be joyful and fun. It shouldn’t have to be a sad process. She briefly shared how she took her own worth away and wondered how she would create something golden. And she was able to do just that. So she encouraged the audience that the past is the past and you have an opportunity to change who you are.

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Then the lady of the hour, Lucinda Cross, came up to speak. She shared how she was able to accomplish 80% of the things included on her vision board. It’s more than just a vision board, but a faith board. If you believe it, you’ll receive it. For example, she put Keke Palmers’ picture on her vision board, and she was later one of the speakers for the Activate Conference. That was one amongst many manifestations of the vision board she created. Below are a few powerful points she left us with:

•No one is obligated to support our dream. You have to go after what you want.

•Its important to have abundant thinking when it comes to your dreams.

•Link up with people who have manifested some things. You need a success entourage.

•Say no to certain things, so you can say yes to greater.

•Show up strategically. Lucinda shared stories where she showed up for an event. She wasn’t the main speaker, but someone asked her to come. She said she would, and although it wasn’t a large gathering and she stood in the back, after the event and her sharing a few sentences; someone approached her and asked what she did. The person was someone from Essence Magazine and it led to her feature.

•You have to be a demonstration of a blessing.

•Mantra: “My vision is coming to past, just like that.”

•You have to be ready. Will you be ready when they call? Lucinda shared the moment she received the call for Essence magazine and they told her they were bringing full camera crew for an interview. She was ready, she just purchased a dress and didn’t need the wardrobe that Essence brought for her.

•You’re asking for more when you haven’t finished what’s on your plate. Focus on what you have, so that you’re able to get more.

•Use what’s in your hands.

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After her great speech, we were led into beginning our boards. Those in attendance took all of the encouragement and motivation they received to pour into their boards. They were already excited from the beginning to put their dreams and goals down on their boards, but was given that extra boost. There were some who were moved to tears by what had taken place. This event touched and changed the lives of many.

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It was also important to have others around you who have the same goals of success in mind. Towards the end Lucinda did an exercise to show how we have the support of our sisters. Two women sat back to back with one another after briefly sharing what their goals were for the year. Everyone in the room then walked up individually to whisper words of support, wisdom, and encouragement that they needed.

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This event was so empowering. To have someone who’s gone through a certain process, a rough process, but was able to have enough faith to make it and reach her goals is amazing. But it’s even more amazing for them to dedicate themselves to changing the lives of others through that. Special thanks, to Lucinda Cross and her team for the opportunity to cover this incredible event. Stay in touch with Lucinda Cross by visiting her website and social media networks, http://www.lucindacross.com. Instagram: @lucindacross, twitter: @lucindaspeaks

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(Miss Jones and Lucinda Cross)

The Songstress, Songbird

Songbird is a 23 year old singer of Haitian American decent. She was born in Brooklyn, NY and raised in Long Island up until the age of 18. She then made her way back to Brooklyn. She’s been singing since the young age of seven and has been following her dreams. Not only is singing her dream, but she is also currently in school pursuing a nursing career. She has already received her LPN license, and has planned to continue on. She believes that one should always have a concrete plan and plan b.

I had the pleasure of interviewing this lovely young lady, who gives off nothing but good vibes. Very positive and all around great person. Below you’ll see more of a glimpse of who she is, her journey thus far, and what’s to come down the road.

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Miss Jones: When did you discover your love and passion for singing?

Songbird: My older cousin is actually the reason I’m singing today. She’s my favorite cousin, and when I was younger, I always wanted to be just like her. One year during our family reunion, my grandmother wanted all of her grandchildren to sing. We all gathered together and sang ‘Can’t Give Up Now, and for some reason I just grabbed the mic. And I loved being in that moment. And I sounded good. That’s when I knew this was something I loved.

Miss Jones: When did you realize you wanted to make this a career?

Songbird: It was in junior high school. I struggled with a speech impediment. I stuttered very badly, and wasn’t able to reiterate some things because I couldn’t speak properly. But when I sang, I didn’t stutter. Singing helped me gain confidence and control of my stuttering. I felt like a totally different person when I sang. It literally changed my life.

Miss Jones: What do you love the most as a singer?

Songbird: I love that I can always switch it up. I don’t always have to be stagnant. I can do R&B, but I can also turn around and do a jazz set. You can also add various live bands. Through all of it, you improve and create art. I can be transparent or a chameleon. It’s a never ending cycle of change.

MJ: What do dislike about it?

SB: When you’re an artist, it’s bittersweet that you put yourself into your art, you give a piece of yourself. I don’t like that people can tear you down or tell you that you’re not doing it right, jus because it’s different and not a trend. I also don’t like the lack of privacy sometimes. Once people are locked in, they assume they get to know every detail. Lastly, I don’t like that some think I should be more sexual, like only sex sells. I have gotten opportunities stripped away because of things I wouldn’t wear. People took songs and studio time away from me because I refused to be something that I’m not. But my artistry and my love for this keeps me going.

MJ: What are some of the mistakes you’ve made during this process?

SB: I’ve been a bit naive in the past and believed everyone had my best interest at heart. I had to learn to let people prove things to me. I’ve also been so quick to jump into things, not knowing much about the business. I had to learn that it’s important to have my manager alongside of me. I can’t do things on my own. It’s so much better when I have my team. People respect you more when you do.

MJ: What has been your biggest accomplishment so far?

SB: It’s not tangible yet. So far, believing in myself and having confidence in myself. It hasn’t always been this way. I was going to give up at one point because of people. I’m now in a place where I can love my life for me, and I’m not letting anyone else tear that away from me. My biggest accomplishment is restoring my faith in God, and my inner growth.

MJ: What do you hope to gain?

SB: There are different levels. On the level of an artist, I want more freedom to write and create. I’m still a little afraid at times and it takes me a while to get inspired. So I hope to gain that freedom as an artist. I also hope that I can become a bridge that can connect people. Music is where complete strangers can bond. I want to become an artist that can help bridge people together. I want to be another source of music that can create a sense of ease, to the emotions of others. Even if it’s just one person, I can inspire others and keep the circle going.

MJ: Who were your inspirations?

SB: Musically, Chrisette Michele, Lauryn Hill, and Erykah Badu, who I’ve had the pleasure of being in the presence of. Her spirit is so lively. As she walks in a room, you can just feel it. She’s so humble, positive, and full of life. So free. Generally, when it comes to artistry and reaching your full potential, I would say Beyoncé. She performs effortlessly and has produced great growth. Lastly, in the health profession, I would say my aunt. I’d like to follow in her footsteps. As a nurse and as a person. She has changed the lives of everyone she’s encountered.

MJ: What is some advice you’d give to someone who’d like to pursue your same career path?

SB: Be ready. Be ready for the roller coaster ride. It’s not a degree or a trade. You live and breath this daily. This is something I didn’t realize when I started. It’s an everyday thing. Someone once said to me, “how can people say you’re singing if you dont devote yourself to doing something towards your career everyday?” If you’re going to do it, understand that it’s a lifelong journey. It’s like my change jar, I would put something in to it everyday. Also, be yourself. For real, for real. So many people want to emulate someone else. Just be yourself.

MJ: Have you thought about motivational speaking at all?

SB: With the program that I’m involved in, the Scholarich Music Group, all of the artists are expected to. We set out to make education more appealing through music, clothing, and art. We help young people write music and go into the studio. I’m trying to now branch out and start my own girls group. I want to ultimately intertwine health and music. We have total control of pro creation. If we reach kids at a certain age, we can create change and hold them responsible. I always feel the need to give back. Teaching young ladies with class, and show them that it’s a different way to come off. It doesn’t always have to be revealing to be appealing. Letting them know it’s ok to be different.

MJ: What can we look forward to from you?

SB: My single, The Break Up Song will release February 26th. My EP, Sweet and Sour will also be released this year in April. It’s all about the sweet and sour of life, the good and bad of everything.

It was great to talk to an intelligent young lady who knows exactly what she wants and has accepted her process; and used it as a way to continue to pursue her goals and dreams. Songbird will be one of the performers at Tha L. Spot’s 3rd year anniversary concert at the Roulette Theatre in Brooklyn, NY. Be sure to check it out.
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To stay up to date with Songbird, be sure to connect with her through her networks. Twitter and Instagram: @sheissongbird. And also visit, scholarich.com/songbird.

Charlie Wilson: Comedian, Host, Producer

Comedian and host, Charlie Wilson, was born and raised in Shreveport, Louisiana. He was always involved in acting, drama, and public speaking at school and in church. He attended LSU, while working two jobs. At some point during his life, he moved to Dallas, Texas with his high school sweetheart. While he was there, he auditioned for various stage plays and continued down the path or arts and entertainment. After two years of acting in these plays, one day he was joking around on stage and was asked has he ever considered comedy. He never thought about it up it to that point. This was the start of his pursuit as a comedian.

After many years of being together, Charlie and his high school sweetheart had given birth to a little girl (who was born with sickle cell). Shortly after, Charlie decided it was time to get married and make a full commitment to his family at the age of 23. Two weeks after they wed, their daughter passed away. This was a very difficult period in both of their lives, and they responded differently to this unfortunate circumstance. While she moved closer towards God, Charlie moved forward with things in a negative capacity. One day his wife decided she wanted a fresh start and thought it would be a good idea to move to New York. Charlie however, didn’t think that would be a good move for him. He felt that he was too much into his career and also a cars salesman. So he told her to leave if that’s what she wanted to do. After being without her for several months, Charlie had time to think. Before they decided to divorce and put their whole marriage to rest, he wanted a fresh start. He moved to New York with her. And they built together. They struggled while living in NYC, but they were able to overcome. They are still married and now have another daughter, who is two years old.

A month after being in NY, Wilson did an open mic and that was the start of his new journey. He was then told by the manager of the establishment that he did well and could do a one man show. One night after a show, one of the audience members wanted to talk to him about a talk show. He shot a pilot for a daytime show. This is where Charlie Wilson TV originated. The woman in charge of the daytime show passed six months ago. However Wilson kept the name as he continues to pursue his career. He’s had many accomplishments, such as: opening up for various people, Shaq’s All Star Comedy show, starting his online show, as well as hosting many showcases. Although the journey wasn’t all easy, Wilson has embraced his process, continuing on.

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I had the pleasure of interviewing Charlie Wilson. He kept me laughing all the while sharing his life and his journey. Below are a few highlights of the interview.

Miss Jones: How long have you been in this industry?

Charlie Wilson: I’ve been doing this for about four years now.

Miss Jones: Where does your material generally come from?

Charlie Wilson: It comes from life experiences, and I turn it around into something funny. I make it relatable according to the scenery.

MJ: What were some of the mistakes you made in this business?

CW: I would say, moving a little too fast. I was trying to produce shows and my budget was a little too much I know there’s money to be made, but not initially. Ultimately, my mistakes were losing my focus and moving too fast.

MJ: What were your biggest struggles?

CW: Trying to get people to know who I was. I know I have the talent and ability, but in NYC trying to build your name, it can become a little difficult. Trying to have a crowd and an audience is tough. Instagram and Twitter is one thing, but having people show up is different. Trying to build a loyal following is hard, but you can’t let that slow you down. You have to stay focused and consistent. And act like its a full house every time.

MJ: What was your biggest accomplishment?

CW: my first national TV appearance in the Wendy Williams show, a year ago. Someone reached out to me and let me know about the street talk segment and I was able to be apart. It was great because my family who can’t see me often was able to see what I’m doing. It showed that I’m not just talking about it, but I’m actually doing it.

MJ: What do you hope to gain?

CW: I want to have a platform doing what I love to do. I was to be able to inspire others through this as well through the power of influence. I want to be able to build for myself, then step into a middle school and encourage and empower this next generation.

MJ: What advice would you give to others?

CW: really find out if this is what you want. Always stay focused and embrace your process. It’s easier to accomplish things when you don’t allow the low moments to overtake you. Many people want to do this because it’s a trend, but are you really willing to sacrifice and go without.

Be sure to check Charlie Wilson out as he hosts Tha L. Spot’s 3 Year anniversary at Roulette Thearter in Brooklyn, Thursday March 12th.

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To stay up to date with this funny guy, check out his networks. Instagram and Twitter @charliewilsontv and visit his website, charliewilsontv.com! You can also check him every Wednesday night from 9-11pm on his radio show, streaming live on 15moferadio.com. He’s in the move and has many events coming up soon!

Black History Month: Continuing a Legacy of Change

It’s Black History Month, and as a black woman how can I not take this platform I’ve created to pay homage to those who have paved the way; as well as encourage the world today to follow in their footsteps.

As I contemplated how I would start the month off, the two pressing things that remained in my mind were the movie Selma, and the recent issues that brought about the statement ‘Black Lives Matter.’ There were so many correlations from that time until now. And although most of the words that can be said, have already been said, it’s up to us to continue to do so.

Selma was an incredible depiction of that era. The biggest thing that stuck out, not only from the movie but from history, is that they stood for what they believed in no matter what. They came together and stood up for what was right. They were beaten down, but yet they remained. All for a purpose.

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This leads me to thinking, these few past recent events where black men were gunned down by police officers, and there was no conviction. Our black men and women took a stand for what they believed in. It was a proud moment in America. Whether people protested, raised awareness via social media, and the many other ways to raise this issue plaguing our society.

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Through both circumstances, it was realized what needed to be done. People had to come together in unity, fighting to create change. Seeking and going after that dent in society that would leave a lasting impact. As seen in the movie Selma, they fought for some time to create change so that black people would be able to vote. As we continue to declare that Black Lives Matter, we must know and understand that some won’t agree with our thinking, or with our methods of standing up for what is right. But we can’t allow that to stop us. Our ancestors fought long and hard to create some of the greatest moments of change and transition. We must continue in their footsteps as we now fight and stand up for what is right.

As this month continues, there will be at least one post a week dedicated to celebrating Black History Month. Dedicated to the lives of those that came before us, and those who will come after us. It’s time for us to stand up and do our best to make an impact and create a lasting change.