Jasmine Oguntuga (DearJasmineP) is a Houston native and a graduate from Prairie View A & M University. Jasmine loves to write and motivate others in her free time. Currently she is pursuing her Masters in Public Administration at Texas Southern University. In the near future she plans to open a nonprofit organization that will mentor and inspire kids around the world. She hopes to expand her brand later this year but until then you can find daily updates and inspiration on her instagram platform @DearJasmineP.
Check out DearJasmineP, EVERY 3rd Wednesday of the month.
You don't know my story.
You saw my Facebook?
You saw my Instagram?
You saw my Snap Chat?
You still don't know my story.
See, the problem with social media is that we see one side of things and past our judgments on a person’s life or current situation.
Social media tells one side of a story and often times it's the glam side.
I know I am not posting all of my struggles online.
Please, so y'all can laugh and point at my misery.
So I can be the next screenshot in the group chat?
Nope. Instead I keep most of my struggles to myself or close friends.
I am guilty of posting the glam side and so are you.
I mean think about it.
Got me a new car (let me upload this)
Lost 25lbs (let me upload this)
Traveling to France (let me upload this)
New job (let me post this)
He took the knee (let me post this)
We have all done it.
We are all guilty at some point.
The questions that I am now asking myself is
Do we post because we want to update people on our lives?
Is it because we want to show off?
I think it might be a little bit of both (you can disagree I am okay with that).
Social media allows us to portray whatever we want people to believe.
Sometimes you find yourself feeling a way about a certain individual’s life.
Yet, you don't know the whole story or what this person did to get there.
We refer to this as smoke and mirrors.
See the smoke refers to what we see and how it fogs up a mirror, but when you wipe that mirror of,f you can see the real image.
Then you might ask, "Why do we love social media so much?"
We love to think we know what's going on in a person’s life.
We log to keep up with "The Joneses".
We love to have access.
We all want to believe we know a person from what they post but in reality.....
We don't know their story. We don't know what they are truly going through.
Today, I write to you in hopes that you won't use someone else's image and start doubting or condescending on where you are.
We shouldn't see something online and think "Man, "such and such" is really on the come up”
How come I'm still struggling?
Is your struggle truly worse than someone else’s?
Is there a time limit on how long it takes you to rise to the top?
Today, take a step back from what you see online.
Take this opportunity to get yourself in order not just for a status update.
Sometimes, we hinder ourselves with comparisons to other people.
After all it’s all just smoke and mirrors anyway.
Until we meet again,
Smoke and Mirrors
June 15, 2016
Fear had crippled me
Fear had found its way into my soul and I couldn't seem to get it out.
I confess I was scared from my previous failures.
In fact I was so scared that I had refuse to try it again.
My mind had set me up to believe that I couldn't do it.
I wanted to do it but my mind refused to let me believe that I could.
Fear will set you up.
Fear will have to feeling left out.
Fear will have you sitting in a corner.
Faith had me feeling restored.
Faith had me looking forward to my future.
Knowing that I could have faith gave me a new mind set.
I was ready to erase the fear I had once felt and replace it with faith.
They say you only need a little faith.
Faith to believe that what ever you want can truly be yours.
I was ready to walk on faith and not fear.
Faith had me ready to run my race.
I was determined to see my dreams through because I had faith in my corner.
Is it strange that both words begin with the letter F?
Is it a coincidence that one word has one more letter than the other?
Which one will you choose to walk in?
Fear or Faith?
Fear vs FAITH
July 20, 2016
Do you ever find yourself being pressured by society?
I'm almost sure you have been and you probably don't even know it.
Society has a way of pushing the idea of what things should be.
We're living in a world where a lot of things are happening around us.
To add to it social media gives us an opportunity to see what everyone is doing.
I must admit I've felt pressured to live in a certain light.
For example, I've been engaged now for a year and for most people my age that's standardized fact the day after we got engaged the questions started to pour in.
“When's the wedding? Where will it be? Who will be your bridesmaids”.
At the time we planned for the wedding to take place the following year.
Welp. Life happened and things didn't go as we planned.
So there I was mentally freaking out..(Dang, now how can I keep up with Kim K). I was thinking to myself “seems as though everyone except for me is having an elaborate wedding”.
But in reality am I in a position at this exact moment to have my celebrity wedding? No.
Don't get me wrong I want/wanted one, but is it only because that's what society is doing?
I had to stop myself in my own tracks and say "Jasmine, you don't have to do what everyone is doing"
When did it become mandatory to copy?
For a long time I was beating myself up thinking "If you don't keep up with the Jones people will be talking about you"
Well, aren't people going to talk anyway?
That's when it all clicked society has a way of getting inside our heads making us feel like we MUST do things a certain way.
So what if your not dating someone and your 27.
So what if your still with your boyfriend of six years.
So what if you're not in your career at the moment.
So what if you haven't graduated college.
Ask yourself.. Are you working towards it?
Are you aligning yourself in a position to make it happen?
Are you letting society get inside your head to tell you your not ok?
For some of us it's just a small reminder that life sometimes doesn't go as we planned it.
For others this might be a deal breaker.
Don't get me wrong nothing is wrong with following the path, but it's certainly nothing wrong with veering off the path.
Don't let the expectations of others keep you from living in the light.
Don't let life pass you by because you waited for society to accept it.
Do what makes you happy.
Do what's best for you.
Forget the blueprint.
Forget keeping up with the Kardashians.
After its all said it done it's your life.
Keeping Up or Living it Up
August 17, 2016
“I would like to change the world, but I have yet to change myself”
So instead I'll start small.
With all of the negativity going on in today's society it's easy to get suckered in.
I believe that once you’re in a negative space it can be hard to leave.
You start feeling like nothing in your life could ever be positive or that no one cares.
In these dark moments we could all use a little love.
About two years ago I decided that instead of only celebrating my birthday in the month of October that I would celebrate other people as well. With this in mind I created a 31 day calendar of random acts of kindness or ways to show gratitude. It's a simple list things, such as writing a letter, or giving someone a hug.
Once I realize that it was truly making people smile it made my heart truly happy. So the second year I posted it on my IG and I even sent it out to a few people via email. Doing this challenge I realize it's easy to do for people you know. The goal of this is to actually reach out to people that you wouldn't normally reach out to.
The first year was amazing and the second was even better. Here we are at year three and I decided to take it one step further! I reached out to my Facebook community. Surprisingly, about 10 people requested the calendar via email. I'm extremely excited for what this month’s random acts of kindness will bring.
In all honesty I believe that true blessings come from doing for others.
I've always been a giver. I believe that when you give from the heart it always come back. Most people might feel like "I don't have money to give". Most of the time it’s not about the money it’s the thought that counts.
I encourage you to try to incorporate at least one random act of kindness or gratitude in your life. Maybe it's weekly or maybe for you it's a monthly thing either way make it happen. Giving from the heart is a selfless act. You don't have to be rich to give.
October 19, 2016
Click on the PDF link for the "October Gratitude Calendar"