Natasha’s Inspirational Quote of The Day 1.4.11

“Be a blessing today. Even a smile and ‘hello’ can be just what someone needs to start or end their day in a positive way.”
-Natasha L. Foreman

Natasha’s “Revenge” Quote of the Day 12.15.11

“The best revenge is living well. I don’t need to focus my attention and energy on ‘getting even’ with anyone– because I’m already ahead of them. It would require me to turn around, go back, and invest time and resources trying to hurt them. I’d rather carry myself with grace all the way to victory. I don’t need confirmation of my greatness. I don’t need someone to tell me I’m special or brilliant. I don’t need validation. I know who I am, whose child I am, what I’m made of, and what I will and won’t tolerate in my life. I also know that the eternal will stick around while the temporal will eventually fall to the wayside, so I don’t need to hold on to things or people. As my Dad always told me, “you can’t lose what’s rightfully yours”. Everything has its purpose and place in life. So heal and let go of the past. Heal and move forward in your life. Heal and live with dignity. Seek greatness and not revenge in your life so that your remaining days on Earth are well-spent and legacy-defining.”                                        

– Natasha L. Foreman, MBA

Copyright 2011. Natasha L. Foreman.

A Focus on Dignity and Non-Violence at Coretta Scott King Young Women’s Leadership Academy

By Natasha L. Foreman, MBA

On April 15th I was honored to lead a Dignity Day session as a HOPE Corp Volunteer through Operation HOPE (HOPE) at the Coretta Scott King Young Women’s Leadership Academy (CSKYWLA) in Atlanta.

What is amazing is how the majority of this class of ninth graders were initially completely turned off to the idea of having to listen to yet another speaker that day as they were just returning to their classroom from an assembly that focused on the theme of 100 days of Non-Violence…so they were shifty and closed off. But about 15 minutes into our conversation some of the girls who had crossed arms were soon raising their hands and answering questions.

I started off by talking about the concept of legacy and that that day we were laying the foundation and road map for them to create and eventually leave behind a strong, dignified legacy. I had them define the term legacy in their own words and then share some of their dreams, goals and aspirations. Then as our conversation deepened I shared with them the history of how HOPE was founded, the services and programs that HOPE offers, and I started to weave a story where life included them and their legacy.

I think helping them share the names of empowered and dignified women they see in their family, community, and elsewhere who had similar or worse lives growing up helped them to see that they too could be those same type of women- that they are these women but in-training and with the potential to do more and help more in the long run because they are being equipped with the tools at a young age; and our adversity isn’t an excuse to let life pass us by or a crutch to coast through life doing and expecting the bare minimum, but a reason and motivation to excel and succeed.

These young ladies were shocked to hear that the civil rights movement as it pertained to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and Ambassador Andrew Young was sparked, motivated, and pushed along due to their wives Coretta Scott King and Jean Childs Young- two women who endured and overcame adversity and strife. Hearing this information made many of these girls sit up straight in their chairs and listen intently.


When I spoke about not holding grudges, and that forgiving people is not to benefit the person they were forgiving but to help themselves heal, grow, and overcome- some girls shifted in their seats their seats, a few others rolled their eyes in disbelief; but then when I mentioned Oprah Winfrey, Maya Angelou, Iyanla Vandzant and their ability to forgive their abusers and using strife as a launching pad towards success- some of the girls started naming other people like Fantasia and Tyler Perry who was sexually and physically abused and how he also overcame and pushed himself to success.

We discussed the concept of family and that it isn’t just our immediate family we need to be concerned about but our neighborhoods, cities, state, our country, and our global family. Because I know that girls can be equally as cutthroat as boys, I made sure that we had a heart-to-heart chat about trash-talking and “clowning” people and how although initially it can be lighthearted and funny, it can also be crippling and tear apart our “extended” family.

We discussed being relevant not only in this country but globally, and that true wealth (spiritual, financial, etc) can only be maintained long term by leading a dignified life, not by living up to the negative stereotypes that are projected globally about Black females. We discussed self-empowerment and not waiting on the government or specific programs to help us, that we have to help ourselves. That we shouldn’t be waiting for someone else to pick up trash on our sidewalks- we should pick it up ourselves.

We shouldn’t be waiting for someone else to cover the graffiti on our walls and buildings- we should paint over it ourselves; we shouldn’t wait for someone else to beautify our streets and parks with trees and flowers- we should plant them ourselves. I explained that they should be volunteering in their community through church or some other organization taking pride in restoring, building, maintaining, and beautifying their neighborhoods.

We had a pretty good time. We laughed and talked about boys and expectations of being respected by males and all people when you carry yourself with respect and dignity. We discussed the language of money and being financially literate, and how this literacy will empower them. It was refreshing to see that many of them have savings accounts and that two of the students had traveled abroad- one to London and the other to the Bahamas. Two young passport carriers living in an underserved and underrepresented area of Atlanta- doesn’t that give you hope? It gives me hope and encourages me to continue my work in the community, and my work through Operation HOPE.

I hope more men and women find it in their hearts to invest one hour of their time at least once per month to volunteer in a church, in a class room, or in a youth center through Operation HOPE. One person can make a difference!

Copyright 2011. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

>Incredible Response to my Feb 8th Love and Life Thought of the Day

>I have already published the comment posted below, which can be viewed immediately after my February 8th post on Love and Life Thought of the Day- but I wanted to share it with all of my readers and thank my friend and classmate Steve Woodsmall for sharing it with me. We all need words of encouragement!

Thanks Steve!

1. No man or woman is worth your tears, and the one who is won’t make you cry. 

2. Just because someone doesn’t love you the way you want them to, doesn’t mean they don’t love you with all they have. 

3. A true friend is someone who reaches for your hand & touches your heart. 

4. The worst way to miss someone is to be sitting right beside them knowing you can’ t have them 

5. Never frown, even when you are sad, because you never know who is falling in love with your smile. 

6. To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world. 

7. Don’t waste your time on someone, who isn’t willing to waste their time on you. 

8. Maybe God wants us to meet a few wrong people before meeting the right one, so that when we finally meet the person, we will know how to be grateful. 

9. Don’t cry because it is over, smile because it happened. 

10. There’s always going to be people that hurt you so what you have to do is keep on trusting & just be more careful about who you trust next time around. 

11. Make yourself a better person & know who you are before you try & know someone else & expect them to know you. 

12. Don’t try so hard–the best things come when you least expect them to. 

From Steve W.

>Something to Consider…Let’s Take a Trip Back in Time

>Have you ever thought about what you would be doing in your life if you weren’t doing what you are doing right now? “Huh?” you ask. Sounds like a tongue twister or a riddle, doesn’t it?

Basically it comes down to this…are you doing (in your personal and professional life) what you envisioned for yourself twenty years ago? What about 15 years ago? 10 years ago? 5 years ago? Did you think you would be where you are in your life today? What were your dreams and goals way back then? Did you reach them or excel beyond them? Did you fall short, or are you still climbing trying to get there? Have you completely changed your dreams and goals from long ago to something more fitting of your character now?


Twenty years ago it was March 11, 1990 and I was a freshman in high school…my sister was born February 12th that year so I was beaming all over the place ecstatic at having a new addition to the Foreman family. March meant track season…and I was one of the captains on our team. I was 14 years old and in my mind I was a future Flo Jo who would also have a successful career as a sprinter, journalist, lawyer, and teacher. In my mind I had it figured out. I knew I could juggle all four careers without a hiccup.

I’ve always loved writing. It was a passion of mine to write books and articles, and travel the world documenting all of the beautiful and ugly things that I saw. At the age of 14 I had already envisioned being married by age 21 or 22, and having 4-5 children before age 30. I saw myself owning a Tudor home somewhere tucked away in Southern California on a few acres.

Visitors would have to drive up a long driveway lined with Weeping Willows and other flowy trees and flowers, that eventually led to a circular driveway that had a cute sculpture in the center with water cascading along the sides.

I could see my grand doors, the foyer, my spiral staircase, and the deep mahogany wood throughout the home. I would slide on the hardwood floors with my children and our dogs as we chased “daddy” around the house. Somewhere on that property I visualized a swing that is seen on most ranch-style homes (definitely not a Tudor) but I’m not sure where exactly…it was a detail in my dreams I could not pinpoint.

One thing that I did know was that the grass was always green, the pool always sparkling, the horses were always happy, I never was chased off from a bug or insect while I read under my Weeping Willows, and my home always felt warm with love.

I saw myself taking law courses at USC Law School and every lawyer that saw me dreaded losing to me…they knew I knew my “stuff”. My husband would also be a force to be reckoned with. I hadn’t put much thought into his career path, but I knew he would be highly intelligent, highly visible and sought after (in a positive way of course). I knew he was attractive, with a great smile, athletic, charming, and had a great sense of humor. I knew he would love me and our children, and that we would love him unconditionally. I never could picture his face, only the richness of his skin and the firmness of his hands. His voice seemed strong and reassuring…that’s all I knew. I used to wonder if I would meet him in high school (we’d share classes or something silly like that), like my mom and dad when they dated in high school. Or would I meet him in college, or while traveling the world?

I was just giggly thinking about my first encounter with my dream husband. My dad put a sour taste in my mouth when he said, “number one you won’t be getting married or having children until your mid-thirties, and number two your husband is gonna be just like me”. Oh gosh no…an anal-retentive, “is that ‘A’ work or ‘C’ work?” husband like my father…oh heck no…and there was no way on God’s green earth I would be waiting until my mid-thirties to be getting married and having kids. This man was crazy!

I contemplated going to a university in California for my undergrad studies or leaving the state and attending the University of Oklahoma (like my parents), Tennessee State University (like Oprah), Clark Atlanta University (a great mass communications school my friend Ericka and I discussed attending together), Texas Southern University (I can’t remember why I considered that school), or another school. Being in a journalism class, involving myself in community affairs, focusing on my growth and development, only reinforced these dreams and goals. My leadership skills throughout high school became more and more apparent; my desire to work within the community and to help others became a mission.

Coordinating political and social protests, using my position as editor of the school newspaper to highlight (and then blast on) the ignorance that was plaguing my community locally, regionally, and nationally irritated a lot of parents, teachers, and administrators. Forming the Los Angeles Recovery Helpers (LARH) immediately after the L.A. Riots in 1992 to provide food and clothing to those displaced and affected by the riots, began to reveal a side of myself my parents recognized when I was in 8th grade (but I didn’t notice until that moment). My true essence was shining through.


Fifteen years ago it was 1995 and I was in my second year of undergraduate studies at California State University, Long Beach. I never moved out of state, nor did I attend USC. I stopped dating guys from my high school my senior year- so there went that theory of meeting my future husband there. I can recall a few of my teachers that Spring semester at CSU Long Beach…Dr. Maulana Karenga (Black Studies 101) happened to be one of them…and a motivating force behind changes that I made in my dreams and goals. That semester I switched my major from English and a minor in Philosophy to Black Studies with a minor in Philosophy. I scrapped broadcast journalism (yes, I was going to be on television like Oprah Winfrey) as a major after the OJ Simpson trial began. The yellow journalism I saw on television, and in magazines and newspapers disgusted me and after speaking with a professor about my morals and ethics- I knew I could not “sell myself” to mainstream journalism.

It became clear to me that I would be a Civil Rights lawyer and teach Black Studies at local high schools. I was going to be a solution to the socio-economic problems within the Black community. I would help those who did not quite know how to help themselves. I would fight for those who didn’t know how to fight back. I would be the voice of the voiceless. I found my calling! I even began tutoring at Compton Community College through a partnership that my professor Dr. Amen Rahh had formed with students in his classes and CCC. Every Saturday I devoted several hours to tutoring students from elementary through college in several subjects. I loved it. I was also still heavily involved in my community service efforts working in both Santa Ana and Los Angeles with the underserved.

I was 19 years old and was living an exciting, yet stressful life trying to do way too much in a short period of time….but I enjoyed the adrenaline rush! I was in school, working as a personal fitness trainer (while I had another part-time job), partying, and enjoying the last of my teenage years. I was also dating this sexy football player from Chapman University at the time- he wanted to play in the NFL. Ah…we were in love. We were going to get a townhouse together in Corona or Chino Hills, California and conquer the world together. Yeah, that love lasted until November of 1995!

So what has happened since then? You have to check out tomorrow’s blog to find out!


© 2010 by Natasha L. Foreman. All rights reserved.