Category Archives: technology

Social Media Do’s & Don’ts


eyes computerAm I the only one in a love/hate relationship with social media these days? At times I find myself spending too much time on sites such as Facebook and Twitter, and being less productive in my personal and business goals as a result. Does that sound like you? In order to overcome this challenge in the new year, I’ve created some social media guidelines in order to discipline myself and the time that I spend on such sites. These suggestions for participating online are my attempt to intervene social media addiction. Having an online presence is a great networking and marketing tool for business; finding like-minded groups of people with similar hobbies/interests; and for staying in touch with family and old colleagues. However, individuals should assess the time they spend online and if it’s making him or her counterproductive. An intervention may be necessary; as I mentioned in an article post on Yahoo Voices, “Social Media Burn Out: Do You Need An Intervention?”. It is my hope that these unspoken rules will help me maintain focus and monitor time spent online for greater productivity in my life because “time is money”. Enjoy!

1) Do give yourself a weekly or daily time limit. It can be addictive; so all day everyday is not cool. There’s a real world going on outside of social media.

2) Don’t use it to communicate with close family and friends—unless it’s only for fun.  Talking on the telephone is more intimate, and sending a text message is more personal than communicating online; even in business.

3) Do use it for positive social networking, business connections, and promotions. You never know who you might meet that can invest in your business idea or become a potential client, customer, business colleague, or employer.

4) Don’t use it to “vent” about your personal life or personal business unless it’s funny lol. Remember every one of your FB friends or Twitter followers is not necessarily your real friend; some of them are just lurkers and “haters”.

5) Do use it to keep current with media, social, and world news; especially if you don’t have a TV like me. I’m going to get one of those antenna devices this year and get some local news and TV programs running so that I know what’s going on in the world.
computer burn out

6) Don’t over-post random shit. Your Timeline is constantly being bombarded by randomness from you, your friends, celebrity and support group pages you follow. Give it a rest sometimes. If you are annoyed by some of the same posts that you see all day everyday, people are probably annoyed by your posts as well.

7) Death to the “Selfie”. I am guilty as charged on this one. If you must take selfies, pictures of yourself, personal photo shoots in your bathroom, just text the selfie to a friend, boyfriend, or girlfriend. Resist the urge to constantly post them on your social media sites; even Instagram, because some people are lurking or could be stalking you without your knowledge. I’ve watched enough “Criminal Minds” and “Lifetime” movies to believe that serial killers do exist. I have over 100 selfies stored in my phone and all of them have not been posted online, but many of them have. I’m thinking of deleting some of them off of my Facebook page and saving them to my computer’s hard drive. If you happen to go through an introverted social media phase, don’t become the “lurker” or stalker yourself because you really don’t have time for it.

8) Don’t use it as a public display of your relationship status especially if it changes weekly and “it’s complicated”. Social media has turned us all into V.I.P.s so stop being the headliner of the day or week. I’d love to change my status from “single” and post lovey-dovey pictures, but I have none to post. Suit yourself on that one.

9) Do use it to check-in with old classmates and networks from past jobs, church, or groups with whom you’ve been affiliated . Your former colleagues may have job leads or information about a city to which you want to relocate. I believe in its inception some of these social media sites were created for these purposes only. There was one called “Classmates”. It pre-dates Facebook. Also, I remember when Facebook first began, you had to be a college student or in one of the school networks in order to join the site. Now it’s open to everyone and everything. Social media has definitely changed in the last ten years.

10) Don’t believe everything you see or read on there. Everyone is not who they say they are online. Don’t feel bad if your real life doesn’t match your online life. I believe in stretching the truth and acting as if to become all you desire to become; thereby creating the life that you desire. However, you don’t have to become a totally different person as some people online are doing. I believe this tidbit of advice will help those who are considering online dating, certain job posts, or Craigslist advertisements. Just be cautious overall when dealing with people you meet online. You won’t know who’s who until you actually meet them in person.


Miss Positivity


Happy New Year’s Eve Everyone!  The last day of 2012!  We have made it through another year filled with ups, downs, life and love lessons.  It’s time for us to move on into 2013 with a sense of peace and purpose.  For the entire month of December I devoted myself to a 31-day challenge of keeping a positive mindset.  I tried my best to monitor my thoughts, actions, and behaviors; what I read; what I watched and listened to; and who I hung out with.  Although this past month and my endeavor of staying positive was met with some challenges, which are sure to come to us in our life, I can say that my efforts paid off.  I actually feel that I’m getting back to my true self; who has always been a “glass half full” type of person. 

 glasshalffullI’m looking forward to keeping the positive lifestyle for 2013.  This is the only way we will accomplish and manifest the life and love life that we truly desire.  We want to experience all that God has for us; God’s best!  If not, then what is the purpose of living?  In reality, we aren’t promised to have only good days; but we can have awesome days everyday if we alter our perceptions of what’s really going on around us and in us.  Change is inevitable.  Without it, we are not growing.  When I was little, my granny would ask me everyday or whenever I saw her at least once or twice a week, “whatcha know”?  I always wondered why Granny would ask me that all the time.  I would always reply “nothing”; sort of dry-like and confused especially once I was in my teenage years.  Now as I reflect on that simple question, “what do you know”, I realize its importance, and why Granny felt the need to constantly pose it.

The more we know, or the more we are seeking out new experiences; knowledge; insights; the more we are growing.  That’s the purpose or meaning of life.  The acquisition of knowledge, or knowingness, and the ability to share what we are learning with others.  I’m sure Granny hoped that one day I’d give her a new answer; and I’m sure she knew that I knew more than “nothing”.  New information is constantly presenting itself to us everyday; especially now in this instant information age in which we live.  You literally have to be living under a rock or in a cave to miss out on the happenings of the world.  Sometimes it’s an information overload, and for me taking in all the new can become tiresome because some of it is meaningless and unworthy of spending good energy entertaining.  That’s why we must watch what we watch and listen to; too much negativity is exhausting, and we must combat it with positive energy, music, and thoughts. 

 Books-06Today is a great day for making resolutions for the New Year.  We always feel positive about the changes we want to make, but we don’t always stick to them.  Let’s seek to make our goals realistic and attainable enough to become a way of life.  Just like I promised myself 31-days of positivity, which may have become annoying to some of my Twitter followers, let’s promise ourselves to commit to making changes for the New Year that will impact us for the rest of our lives.  Becoming a better person; detoxing from negativity; obtaining a job or entrepreneurial idea; weight loss; seeking a healthy love relationship; whatever the goal or dream is not instantaneous.  Everything we are seeking to accomplish involves a process that begins within and will not manifest until just the right time.  The more positive we are about seeing the result; and the more we believe in its inevitability; and the more work and effort we put toward seeing it come into reality, the easier the process becomes.  Before we know it, we will have all that we desire.  Sometimes it will show up nothing like we expected, but the outcome will be good!

So what is it that you desire for 2013?  Write it down and start working on making your dream a reality.  In 31 days, I didn’t obtain the goals, dreams, or desires that I had written down, but I can truly say that my rewards are intrinsic.  I started the process of constant belief.  I decided to stick to something; staying positive about my life and the direction in which it is going despite its external conditions.  Just because you don’t see your dream right away, it doesn’t mean you give up; it means you keep going and keep pushing because there is a lot of work being done behind the scenes.  God knows; the Universe is working on your behalf because you believe.  I am believing with you.  The time is now!




STL Author’s New Book Takes a Unique Journey Through Love


STL Author’s New Book Takes a Unique Journey Through Love
by Raegan Johnson

Like many women, Raechel Rivers, 32, grew up with dreams of meeting prince charming, having a few kids and living happily ever after.  But, roughly 42 percent of African American women have never been married—and Rivers is one of them.

“When I reached my late twenties, I began to wonder when is it going to happen?” she says. “I watched friends get married, fall in love, and I wondered why my time hadn’t come. Then I realized I was on a journey toward love, but it didn’t involve anyone else.”

Rivers’ new book, Journey to Self; Journey to Love, is a collection of personal poems, thoughts, and blog entries from her journey through love.

“This book portrays a young woman crossing over from the confusion of adolescence to the responsibility of womanhood–with a sense of self-knowledge,” she says. “In my search for love, I’ve continued to make a full circle back to myself and my Creator. Some of the stories are sad and some funny, but all are worth sharing.”

Journey to Self; Journey to Love is available for $13.99 on or $14.99 at Barnes & Noble and on

“When blogging first became popular, I would post my reflections and thoughts about love and dating,” she says.  “I received a lot of positive feedback. People were inspired and could relate. They suggested that I document what I was posting.  So I did, and it became my book; sort of like a journal.”

Rivers says writing the book was liberating as she faced inner struggles and learning to love herself.

“Through the book, I was able to move forward without dwelling on failed relationships and develop new, healthy relationships. This book is geared more toward single women; but it is also for anyone who wants to discover or re-discover how to love their own person, love God and love others.”

With so many love and relationship books on the market, Rivers says authenticity makes her book stand out.

“I keep it real!” she said.  “I do not sugarcoat how it feels to be single. I do not sugarcoat what single women go through in finding ourselves and navigating through dating and relationships.  I’m not afraid of the truth; it is what sets me free.”

For Rivers, Journey to Self; Journey to Love is just the beginning.

“I’m working on the Self-Love Handbook as a follow-up book,” she said.  “It is more of a guidebook than a tell-all. I am also working on a possible fiction book and a screenplay.”

Follow Rivers’ blog on,,

90 Days Probation: New Boo Is Your New Hire


So you are still high off of the fresh new Boo you met a couple months ago…or are you?  Well, this is still the probationary period.  Let me tell you how it goes down:
The 1st 30 days:

He is fine, intelligent, has some money or knows how to get it.  This man has swept you off of your feet (showin it out) in the first two weeks, ten days to be exact, of knowing him.  You have the ultimate connection.  He listens when you speak; he adores you.  Y’all tweetin, talkin’, textin’, and Facebookin.  (The technology age).  The only part you heard God say was “be fruitful and multiply”; not that “fornicators wouldn’t see the kingdom of heaven”.  And you for dang sure didn’t listen to Steve Harvey when he told you to “Act Like a Lady, and Think Like Man”; something about “no cookies for 90 days”.  Since you didn’t put your cookies on ice or in the freezer or whatever, these first 30 days are like a Las Vegas wedding and honeymoon.  Quick, fun, and easy!  Pun intended!  *wink* So the rose-colored glasses are on, and he can do no wrong.  All is well!  Plenty of dates, plenty of communication, plenty of cookies and desserts to go around because he made it clear that “you don’t need a man, you need a champion”! (Eat, Pray, Love)  So your 90 days is clearly going to be different than the ones Steve, Granny, God and Momma prepped you for.  You 2012 women just make your own rules…no wonder we have less marriages and more sperm donors these days.  I’m just sayin, don’t shoot the messenger!

The 2nd 30 days:

You have become an online stalker trying to figure out Boo’s patterns, other women (potentials), and where he is when he’s not at work or with you; if he is some sort of “FB or Twitter whore”.  He’s still a gentleman explaining that those forms of social media are purely for entertainment; which he owes you no explanation because he’s not your man.  You are still on probation; remember because while you are putting your new hire to the test he’s also testing you Chica!  He has to change it up a little, and keep you guessing, because that’s what they do.  I mean, sister, you are supposed to be doing the same you know.  It’s so romantic to get caught up and give your all, but everyone, you and your beaux, loves a challenge.  So now you are feeling leery or a certain kind of way about Boo and your relationship.  It’s still a relationship/friendship; you just don’t have a commitment/title.  Boo has to find out where the crazy woman within you resides and what he can do to expose her, usually unintentionally (because I don’t really think guys think or strategize as much as we attempt to when it comes to dating).  Because in the first 30 days, both of your representatives showed up to Woo and Wow each other 😉  Now, Mr. New New is working, busy, with friends and family, etc; no time for talking on the phone; and minimal texts and tweets.  Wth?  Now what you gonna do girl?  Is he seeing someone else?  Is he really working or where he says he is?  Why is he not showing it out anymore?  You are thinking “this man has got it twisted!  He doesn’t really know me huh?  I can’t expose the crazy, insecure woman.  I’m too grown for that.”  So needless to say, your next 30 days is going to be interesting.  Since you didn’t listen to the advice of your elders, and you didn’t hear me out in “Journey to Self, Journey to Love”; this is how it must go down:

3rd month with your New Hire:
Because you were lost in the ideal of love, you neglected friends, family, and old Boos (and some of the new candidates who had been trying to get at you).  Now you have to come out of hiding, save face, and re-strategize.  New Boo may not be seeing someone else, he may really be busy working on his Master Plan, but where do you fit in with his schedule? (or maybe he just realized that he enjoys being single and not having to report to anyone; he’s not ready for a commitment; the relationship is still in its infancy)  Okay, so now you need a schedule, which you should have had in the first place, but we all come into these situations at different points in our lives, which is the beauty of it.  Some of us are work-a-holics and some of us may be unemployed.  So what to do while waiting for Boo?  You have to do what you didn’t do in the first 30 days when you dove head first into the sea of much-needed romance.  I have said it a thousand times; make yourself busy girl!  You don’t have to write a book, but there are tons of constructive things you can do rather than destructive.  Human Ego nature will want to call up those old Boos to go on dates, because the one you’d rather be with now has limited time to date you.  I mean keeping your options open is always an option right?  You are not in a committed relationship.  How will your new love feel about this?  Does he have to know?  It really depends on how you feel about him.  Does he make you want to “shut down your operation”?  Then calling the old loves is not the best decision.  If they call you, cool but there is a reason why you are no longer involved with that person.  We move forward not backward.  Ya know?  You definitely need to check in with your girls and get out and have a good time; and although you are not looking for someone new, you are probably going to attract someone new; which can be fun, but remember you have someone new in your life, who you happen to really like, and he is still on probation.  He has 30 more days to show you what the deal is.  I’m not saying that you are going to get the coveted relationship title in 90 days, but this does seem to be a great way to measure who this person is to you and in what capacity you would like him to be in your life;  and how long he wants you in his life.  You also have to remember that we all bring a certain amount of baggage to new relationships.  What happened with your last love interest?  Are you ready for a commitment?  What happened in his last relationship?  Is he ready?

Healing from past loves takes time.  If this man is worth it, you will give him an extension and grace period.  As women, we have to remember to stay in our lanes.  Never try to wear the pants in the relationship.  Show him that you are the smart, beautiful, prize that he first met; not by acting out on Twitter, not by serial texting him about his Twitter, but just by being you…it’s like when you first meet a man and he expresses his interest in you.  Somehow, me being the “Queen of Hearts” and Love Doctor that I am, I have ingrained in my Soul that there is something extra that I have to do to get and keep my man.  The truth, there is nothing that we “have” to do.  The desperate energy of women today is leading us to believe that there is a shortage of men, and that we are in a competition especially with the reality, “non-reality” shows on the snooze tube.  But I don’t buy into that…I know I’m a prize and should operate as such.  A real man, no a champion will recognize your beauty, grace, and confidence.  That’s how you attract and keep him.  All you have to do is show up!  Let him pursue you…let him show you the champion he is; if he is one; let him move mountains for you!  You are a woman…be treated and carry yourself as such!  You may be “a fool for love”, but you ain’t no fool…

So in the last 30 days, will you and your new love interest Fizzle or Sizzle?  Will you keep your new hire around for permanent employment?  Does he want the job?  He will let you know by his actions…and if not, you will have to take new applications.  Simple?  Not always, but life is short and three months of your life should be enjoyed in this process.  If he is a champion, and he decides that he wants you, he knows that the clock is ticking…I wish him luck!  😉

Digital Love


Has technology enhanced or complicated our love and dating relationships?

Now this is a topic I have been wanting to discuss for some time. When you hear the phrase, what do you automatically think? E-harmony? Facebook? Myspace? Online dating…Internet dating…the virtual hook-up…well whatever you think of, it’s all the same. Do you really think that people are “networking” on myspace and facebook? (Some are…either that or being nosy, trying to see what past lovers are up to and if he or she is married/in a relationship what have you) That’s just something you say when you don’t want to seem desperate for a date…”networking” yeah I’m making some assumptions here…lol Anyway, how is the digital environment affecting the dating scene? I will tell you my thoughts, and then let me know what you think.

I think online dating/mating is and can be fun. Yes, I’ve tried it! Lol “networking”. If you’ve never met the person before, it can be a lil scary, especially upon the first meeting. You don’t know what to expect, and you pray that the person is really who they say they are or the same person as the picture on their profile. Beware of people who try to “holla” who don’t post a pic at all. I don’t think anyone is that silly, but you never know. If you are meeting someone you met online for the first time in person, please bring a friend…and try not to just make it a “hook-up” unless that’s just what you are on (protect yourself).

Some of the benefits of the digital love world include e-mail, texting, instant messaging, and video/camera phones and web cams (I don’t have one of those), these amenities aid in keeping in touch especially for long distance relationships. Yes, we’ve come along way from the pen pal method. This works if you met the person out and about or online. The only disadvantage is that sometimes these methods can replace the need for “real” time or even just time on the phone. Believe you me, “there is nothing like the real thing baby” so the lil cute daily texts and e-mails are enough to sustain you while you’re at work or doing whatever it is that you do. When it’s all said and done though, these ways of communicating get you ready for the real time. Do you agree?

In reality, some relationships need not go any further than digital. Sometimes it’s just flirting…but when signals get crossed it can become hazardous…I mean you could really be feeling a person, but do you really know them if you’ve never really spent time with them or even talked to them on the phone? The digital world does help us with our busy schedules. Sometimes it’s just easier to drop a quick e-mail than actually spend time on the phone. This type of communication has turned me into a non-phone person. When it comes down to it, dating digitally or physically is just like this song my girl always sings “if your heart isn’t in it…” But it’s true…”where your treasure (time, money…emphasis mine) is, there also will your heart be” (Matt 6:21). So what are you making an investment in? Are you really just networking and having fun, or are you really trying to get to know someone? Or just making an online booty call? LOL! Regardless of your dating methods, the intentions of your heart will be revealed.