My Favorite Quotes + Books to Read in February

I recently wrote about my belief that “Your vibe attracts your tribe” and how those vibrations brought me two new opportunities this month. By the way, there is still time to register for Saturday’s event, Athleta Namaste After the 5K, where I’ll be leading a half hour of post-run yoga.

The great response I got to the post got me thinking about other useful quotes for life and business, so here are the phrases I keep in mind is trying and triumphant times.

Despite what the media likes to spout about Millennials wanting to lead before they can walk, I’ve found many young professionals do a great job of asking questions and sitting back to allow experts to share. I’ve worked against the socially ingrained need to fill the silence in networking and business settings by considering it an opportunity to learn from others. Most of the time, when I tap into the topic that makes the other person tick, they’re wound up and won’t stop for a while. It also helps me understand how my skills, connections or expertise can help them without directly asking them.

This phrase comes in handy when life gets nutty and you feel yourself being pulled into someone else’s vortex. One of the greatest things that yoga teacher training introduced me to was the “TED Drama Triangle” in which people cast themselves as the Victim, Persecutor or the Rescuer. The “not my monkey, not my circus” quote comes in handy when you find yourself wanting to be the Rescuer to someone’s Victim. Once we accept that we don’t have to be drawn into everyone’s issues, we walk away from draining situations and people and find our own happiness.

My last quote comes from one of my favorite #girlboss innovators Myleik Teele. I like this principle because it applies to both your personal and professional life. How many times have we stayed in relationships and jobs that didn’t benefit us, accepting less than what we should, because the unknown was scarier than what we are experiencing?

*raises hand*

Two things helped me change my path. One was Nicki Minaj and her famous “Pickle Juice” video (seriously, if you’ve never watched this, do it now).

The second was a dose of loving kindness from a friend saying “You already know what you’re going through, so what could be worse than inaction and remaining unhappy? Take the risk, try something new. If it doesn’t work out, at least you tried it and can learn. If you end up going back to a corporate career, at least you won’t be where you are.”

Basically, you gotta make a move because inaction will paralyze you.

Hopefully, the above quotes spoke to someone. Be sure to share the phrase that you’ve applied or will apply in your life.

Books to read in February

Emotional Intelligence 2.0 by Travis Bradberry and Jean Greaves

My mom has been telling me to read this book for over a year. She gave me the book during an especially trying time in my career when I was working on balancing my soft and hard skills. Basically, learning not to deliver my personality like a jerk. Levo is doing a series about Millennials and emotional intelligence that reminded me to pick up this book and get into it.

The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene

I’ve heard this book recommended over the years, and though I don’t agree with the level of manipulation it encourages in some places, I have to read the whole thing before I pass judgment.

Talk back to me: What useful quotes or books are on your radar this month?

Getting To The Why of Reading

If you ever want to know why a person whose face is always in a book does that, think of this quote:

“Fiction can show you a different world. It can take you somewhere you’ve never been. Once you’ve visited other worlds, like those who ate fairy fruit, you can never be entirely content with the world that you grew up in. Discontent is a good thing: discontented people can modify and improve their worlds, leave them better, leave them different.”

Taken from “Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming

Another favorite excerpt, from a very personal perspective:

“I believe we have an obligation to read for pleasure, in private and in public places. If we read for pleasure, if others see us reading, then we learn, we exercise our imaginations. We show others that reading is a good thing.

We have an obligation to support libraries. To use libraries, to encourage others to use libraries, to protest the closure of libraries. If you do not value libraries then you do not value information or culture or wisdom. You are silencing the voices of the past and you are damaging the future.

We have an obligation to read aloud to our children. To read them things they enjoy. To read to them stories we are already tired of. To do the voices, to make it interesting, and not to stop reading to them just because they learn to read to themselves. Use reading-aloud time as bonding time, as time when no phones are being checked, when the distractions of the world are put aside.”


What I’m Reading – August 5, 2013

I’m delayed, I know!


I’m currently reading “Open City” by Teju Cole, which transports me to the innermost thoughts of the protagonist. The layer by layer reveal of information about the narrator is suspenseful and keeps me coming back. Concurrently, I’m reading “Now Is The Time To Open Your Heart” by Alice Walker. Her narrative is so dense and packed with rich language and imagery that I must slow my speed and let the prose stay and rest in my mind so I fully comprehend her story.

I’ve been wanting to read “Thinking, Fast and Slow” for a while so I’ll likely have to renew that rental. “The Little Black Book of Success” is a classic personal development text and it came highly recommended from one of the best, my mom.

Finally, since I just finished reading “Super Sad True Love Story” and I love me some io9, I have to share this story. The book’s author, Gary Shteyngart, tries out Google Glasses, which are conceptually similar to the “äppärät,” a central device Shteyngart’s characters use to communicate with friends and family, blog, live stream and email.

What’s on your reading list? Any sci-fi or business books?

What I’m Reading – July 3

I said it would be semi-regular, so here is the latest passel of books picked up from my local library. I’ve been slightly biased to Black women writers in the recent weeks, aside from Karen Russell – Vampires in the Lemon Grove was excellent – so I’ll be diversifying soon. Perhaps mixing in some historical non-fiction; recommendations welcome! Additionally, I’m here for Octavia Butler and I recommend you get into her as well.


What’s on your list? My next quest will be for Zadie Smith’s short stories and some Margaret Atwood.

What I’m Reading – A (Kinda) Regular Feature

I realized today, as I backed up from my local library branch, that I had an adrenaline rush that was likely akin to what shopaholics feel when they leave the mall. Slightly flushed and smiling to myself, I looked over at the short stack of books I checked out and imagined the perfect silence in which I wanted to read them, curled up on the couch with the sunlight spilling through the living room window behind me. Ever since I finally figured out how to use the online request system for Dallas Public Library, I’ve been tagging books and eagerly awaiting their arrival at the nearby branch.

Much like a overly enthusiastic shopper, I also like to share my finds with the world. As an effort to share with the audience outside of my Instagram and Twitter followers, I’m going to begin posting photos of my loaned treasures on here.

My Latest Haul

I’d love to hear what you’re reading as well, since word-of-mouth is often how I discover new writers. Well, word-of-mouth and my sister who truly will one day bury herself, Hoarders-style, in her living room with the amount of books she has.