Motivation

Creative Inspiration

Deepak Chopra + The Power of 2015!


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Deepak Chopra

Reblogged from The Irish Times online, here’s something to look forward to this coming weekend:

Last year brought us the new phrase “conscious uncoupling”; now it’s time for “conscious business”.

The people behind this Friday’s Pendulum Summit in the Convention Centre Dublin are, according to their marketing bumpf, in “the business of conscious business”, which apparently means empowering people in every sector so they can “live the life they dreamed of”.

To some, self-help speak about empowerment, motivation and mindfulness is like nails on a blackboard, but for others, the promise of fulfilling their potential will have them signing up for the Pendulum Summit faster than they can say “New Year’s resolution”.

The organisers have attracted an impressive line-up of speakers who will, we are promised, “shower the audience with truth and inspiration”.

Among those doing the truth-showering will be top thought leader and New York Times best-seller Keith Ferrazzi, personal development and stress-management expert Jack Black, and professional adventurer and entrepreneur Debra Searle.

Home-grown speakers will include International Airlines Group chief executive Willie Walsh, Greencore’s Patrick Coveney, Dundalk native Una Fox who is vice-president of enterprise data technology at the Walt Disney Company, and much-loved Ballymaloe chef Darina Allen.

Even Taoiseach Enda Kenny will be in attendance, kicking off the event with an opening address. To top it all, Deepak Chopra, surely nulli secundus in the motivational guru game, will be making the keynote speech.

But anyone considering attending should beware – the promotional material contains the following caveat: “The Pendulum Summit is not for people who want an easy life; it is for people who want an exceptional life.”

And the event is not cheap, but then can you really put a price on self-fulfilment? It seems the people behind Pendulum can – entry comes with the somewhat de-motivating price tag of €425.

Deepak Chopra Quote

Blog

What is Your Truth? (Part One)


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Firstly, here's what it's not

In my acting classes at the New York Film Academy, we were often taught about embracing our inner truth. I never understood the concept. I originally thought it was just an acting thing! My teacher was strong, loud and confident. She was sure of herself and what she liked and didn’t like. She had so many stories about her days in acting class with Bradley Cooper! She was in touch with an incredible inner “knowing” of who she was. It was a core strength of utter authenticity. Over and above her clothing, there was an X-factor. It transcended a 1 dimensional existence. It was mesmerising! It was attractive! I wanted it! As the months rolled on, I threw myself into her teachings and soon came to a total understanding of the word “truth”. It wasn’t just an acting thing, it was a human thing. I ‘got’ that if we could learn to be free in our own unique footprints, we’d be so much more victorious in every day life.

So what is “Truth”?

1. It’s Not a Brand

If you’re going to try and contain your inner workings, human psyche and organically fluctuating creative spirit (also known as being a human being) in a box labelled “brand”, you’ll drive yourself crazy.

When it comes to business, there are things to a brand which must be in place. They are super relevant and should be well-planned. But publicists globally have now started a trend toward extending that concept to the personal human being. To be honest, I did enjoy reading the Personal Branding for Dummies article on developing your private brand!

Personal branding has become a huge money-making realm. Coaches in it teach us to:

+ calculate every part of ourselves precisely.

+ manipulate ourselves to portray a desired “angle” to the public at all times.

To me, that’s not branding. That’s a forced existence. It also opens up the can of worms of living for others. Can we be free in our own thoughts, feelings and emotions if we are living for others?

2. It’s Not Boxing Yourself In

Why do we have to harness the expansiveness of the human spirit to limit it to a specific way of being?

– a logo

– a colour scheme

– a fashion style

– a haircut

– an attitude

– a music taste

– a behaviour

– a profile on a social platform

I believe in giving people the freedom to come and go as they want. I believe it’s everyone’s right to decide how they want to do stuff. I personally like innovating constantly. I believe its a good way to be effective. When we box ourselves in to do certain things, we shadow the multi-faceted prism of human nature. We run the risk of putting a blanket over our natural glow which changes all the time. As individuals, we aren’t a business. We have an ebb and flow of likes and dislikes. We don’t have to box ourselves in the way businesses have to.

A Brand is the “design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s product distinct from those of other sellers.”

– Wikipedia

3. It’s Natural Distinction

We all like distinction. But we must remember that we don’t need to do any work in trying to be distinct. As humans from totally different backgrounds, countries, personal histories, families, religions and cultures, we already are distinct. We can simply stand in that. We don’t need to try harder to stand out more. We are already individual just by being here. No one else has our story.

I wouldn’t be looking at this topic if it hadn’t come up as a theme in my own life. Many people ask me about how I crafted my “brand” and I have no idea what they mean. I’ve always gone with the flow of my spirit and what it likes, when it likes it.

The whole idea of personal branding highlights the importance to me to draw the distinction between being human and being a brand. It’s my belief we should do away with the pressure of “branding” ourselves if we’re ever to live naturally and freely in the world.

We want to live naturally so we can be empowered in ourselves; so we can be happy. I think people can confuse themselves by trying to assign adjectives and labels to their being. Some spend hours crafting their behaviour and appearance across all their portals because they think they should. It stops being healthy when it comprimises your sanity.

4. It’s Your Own Style

I have friends who are actors, writers, designers, musicians, bloggers, models. They’re people with good talents first and foremost. They’ve started:

– dressing in a certain way to be “appealing”

– posting updates on Facebook about topics they’re not really into

– instagramming certain things

– speaking in a certain way

– tailoring their Facebook pages to be a certain “look”

There’s a part of them that feels they have to. But it sounds like a lot of effort to stage themselves for the world. Rather cultivate your own style of talking online; post about what you really like. I value the power of branding and marketing/PR strategy in the workplace. But when living as a personal entity, I see more power in authenticity. We can have many tastes and celebrate our varied preferences on a daily basis. There’s no need to label any of it, or change it to suit the world. It’s our individuality that makes us special.

At castings, I see people come in having changed their hairstyle or “look” because their agent said they must be a different “brand”. They change themselves. They try to be someone they authentically aren’t. It’s a disservice to their natural strengths, which no one else has. People can make the mistake of thinking fashion defines them. It doesn’t. You can choose to be classic and simple this week, and next week wear a scruffy sundress with messy hair. One of the constraints personal branding puts on people is to stick to a certain fashion. Fashion can hide who we really are. A lot of time can be saved when we realise we don’t need to focus too much on the tactics of branding as the world knows it in our personal capacity. Simply have core principles and the rest is fat on the bone.

5. It’s Your X-Factor

If I think about it, let’s look at it practically. My husband one day won’t fit in to any “brand”. All I know is that the essence of his spirit will transcend what he’s wearing, what he’s driving, what music he’s listening to, how he acts, what his website looks like, what his instagram looks like, what he tweets or how popular he is on Facebook. My impression of him will be superior to all that. His business is one thing, his human-ness and personality is another. That’s his X-factor. His business needs a brand, he doesn’t. I know he will change every day. His tastes will evolve according to his truth, his fashion sense will transform over time, his values will change, his passions will vary. His simple, elegant “way of being” will fly in the face of any personal brand he meticulously crafted once. He won’t overthink his existence. And I won’t be able to put my finger on why I like him.

6. It’s Your Common Sense

Some things to me are common sense, not brand buzzwords. Things like:

– Be authentic

– Treat others with respect

– Stand out in your own way

I also believe we all know these things on a instinctive level. There’s a deep X-factor which is all of you that you cannot force or change. You can try to dress it up or manipulate it to stick to an “angle”, but that wouldn’t be truth. That wouldn’t be your common sense.

7. It’s Changing Everyday

When you put labels on yourself, you create a need to be loyal to “consistency” which brand building entails. This is pressure. As human beings, we are naturally inconsistent. Things are happening to us every day which shape how we think and how we do things. What I feel today will be different to what I feel tomorrow. To force yourself to be the same all the time could be suffocating. To force others to be the same is also suffocating. That’s a huge disservice to the mind. We should all give ourselves equal permission to flourish.

When you agree to trust and surrender to who you really are on a daily basis, you’ll have a deep contentment. You’ll stop needing to control yourself or others. Business is the only thing that needs a “spin” on it.

Truth begins with knowing who you are this morning and that you will grow and adapt by sunset. It’s enjoying your personal way of being and of doing. It’s not trying to understand it, it’s going with the flow of it. It’s being proud of it. My teacher knew that.

– It’s Not a Brand

– It’s Not Boxing Yourself In

– It’s Natural Distinction

– It’s Your Own Style

– It’s Your X-Factor

– It’s Your Common Sense

– It’s Changing Every Day

My teacher embraced these things. As a result, she was whole. It made her energy irresistable.

Sell your cleverness and purchase bewilderment.

– Rumi

Photo: Death to the Stock

Blogging

Finding Your Voice Online


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1. Speak like you do in real life, online.

Communicate to your virtual audience in the same way as you would talk to the one person in the world who you feel most comfortable with. Why? Because that’s who you really are. That’s the way you talk, those are the things you say. So just type in the same way you would talk to this person in real life and that is your “voice” online.

2. Find a comfortable way of writing to communicate your thoughts online.

What things interest you? What things make you smile? What do you really think/value/believe in/feel? What do you find amusing or not so amusing? Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Google+ and the countless other realms are only conduits for you to reflect your inner spirit in a cyber realm. There’s no one else like you! Embrace that. You surely want the expression of you across all your platforms to be accurate, don’t you? That way there’s no mixed signals with the people you care about. On top of writing about your interests, you need to write so people won’t get bored.

How to write with ease and make your posts effective:

  1. Use simple language
  2. Use short sentences
  3. Use bullet points
  4. Use metaphors
  5. Write many drafts of your article/status updates/posts before publishing them
  6. Use photos
  7. Practice using your “voice” in everyday stuff. Really look at how you write text messages, respond to comments on public platforms and in e-mails. Get to know how you express yourself and keep it congruent with your online platforms
  8. Respond kindly to all comments/e-mails/tweets and virtual interactions
  9. Do regular audits of your old blog posts, status updates and posts.
  10. Encourage your audience to approach you!

3. Constantly look for inspiration.

I love Pinterest, music, other blogs and everyday things that are happening to me! I use these as catalysts for articles and updates/posts because they mean something to me and chances are they will be relevant to my audience, too.

4. Keep up to date with your goals.

This involves “thinking on purpose sessions” as Joyce Meyer instructs. And wine. These are fun brainstorming sessions I would suggest having with yourself at least once a week to brainstorm new topics/angles for what your audience would like to read.

5. Get up-to-speed with your field of ‘expertise’.

If your blog is topical (deals with a specific field), get up to speed on current happenings and events so you can offer something valuable and relevant to your desired audience.

6. Be Passionate about what you are writing about.

Because it all begins there.

7. Hone your intention.

Is it to help, enlighten, entertain, inform, discuss?

8. When using your voice online, run the “Digital Presence” Four-Way Test

(my personal adaptation of the Rotary Four-Way Test)

+ Is it the Truth? Do you believe in what you are saying… really? Are you saying it with comfort and ease; expressing your honest personal and creative views?

+ Is it Fair to all concerned? Think about whether your audience will feel repelled or energized. Think what makes you feel repelled from other people when they post stuff. Then don’t post that kind of stuff. The aim is always to make sure your audience feels better after having read your stuff than they did before they read it (life lesson in general)

+ Will it build Goodwill & Better Friendships? Will people reading your material feel like they can comment and interact with you? Would they want to have a coffee with you in real life?

+ Will it be Beneficial to all Concerned? Is what you are saying helpful to your audience?

9. Things you want to aim for with your blogging/social presence in general:

Credibility 

Your readers respect that you have a fair share of experience in life/your field and can truly give them good insight and guidance to help them.This is especially true if you’re running your blog as a business (for profit)

Authenticity

Your readers feel you are being transparent and open with them. You are being the ‘you’ who you are in real life

Mutual Respect

Your readers will honour you if you honour them. They will interact with you if you take the time to respond to them and visit their portals.

Visual Appeal

Your readers are human beings and need to feel visually engaged in what you are writing about. Make sure to include photos and infograms (don’t know what an infogram is? I didn’t either. But now I love them. I have a collection of them on Pinterest here.) Include a couple personal pictures also so your readers feel connected with you. Keep it exciting!

Sustainability

Don’t start something you can’t finish. Keep the creative energy flowing. Keep the content high quality and truly ‘you’. Continue sharing and embracing the beauty of others who you have learnt from. Link back!!

 

Twitter – https://twitter.com/TamikaDoubell

Instagram – @misstamikajade  http://instagram.com/misstamikajade

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/TamikaDoubellLiving

Linkedin – http://www.linkedin.com/pub/tamika-doubell/3b/63a/16

Photo: Death to the Stock Photo

My Life in Africa

Rest in Peace Maya Angelou


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Tamika Doubell
Photo by Sarah Keogh
My favourite poem from the renowned author, poet and activist:
Phenomenal Woman 
Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a womanPhenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
‘Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Blog, New York, USA

Here We Go: US Open


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I went with my brother to the US Open Men’s Quarterfinals at the Arthur Ashe Stadium in Queens. I watched Andy Murray vs. Stanislas Wawrinka. It was such an awesome vibe, even Sean Connery was in the crowd! They played James Bond music during one of the breaks, he was smiling, it was loads of fun 🙂 I was shocked with Murray’s performance, he looked like he just gave up half way through. I couldn’t believe he mangled yet another racket, but I would too if I was up against Wawrinka who was playing near-flawless tennis. He deserves his place in the semi finals!

(more…)

Blog, New York

Breakdown of My Course at NYFA


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Tamika Doubell New York Film Academy

I really enjoyed my course at the New York Film Academy in Manhattan. They call it “NYFA” for short. I was impressed with all the school has to offer in every aspect of motion picture, film-making + showbiz in general. Aside from their acting courses, they also offer courses in film-making, producing, editing, photography, cinematography, 3D animation, game design, digital editing, screenwriting, broadcast journalism, documentary film-making, musical theatre, music video creation + so much more. We had class daily from 8:30am – 5pm, in which we studied:

  • Text / script analysis
  • Audition Technique
  • Scene Study
  • Monologue Techniques
  • Acting for film
  • Voice and Movement
  • Improvisation
  • Branding & Marketing for the actor

We had these classes with various coaches every day at NYFA campuses across the city. One of our campuses was at a place called “Pearl Studios” + it’s where all the Broadway shows go to rehearse and hold auditions! We had “Jersey Boys”, “Phantom of the Opera”, “Rock of Ages”, “Wicked”, “Newsies” rehearsing + holding auditions for the new season every day. Exciting stuff! What I loved about NYFA is that they coached us in every way possible … we would act, film ourselves acting, watch ourselves + critique ourselves / have our coaches critique us. We did monologues + scenes with scene partners where we got assigned a partner + a scene from an award-winning play or film. We practiced with each other during structured rehearsal blocks in the week. We then filmed it on location with professional equipment + crew. At the end of the course we had material for our showreels which was great. Another awesome part of the course was having industry professionals come in + talk to us. They’d give us coaching advice, which I found invaluable. All our teachers were actively involved in the industry themselves, working either in feature films, sitcoms, television shows or commercials. I loved getting taught by them, trained by them + I especially loved getting their advice. What amazed me most was all the avenues students in acting can branch into. Some of our teachers studied acting for screen + then went on to work on “Saturday Night Live” (NBC) or “30 Rock” which is its own career. I would personally enjoy the experience of working on feature films. I loved the talk we had one evening from the Director of Photography for “World War Z”, Ben Seresin. Below is a picture of my class outside the Union Square campus.

New York Film Academy 8-week acting for film

See more articles about my time in New York:

– Meeting the Rotary Club of Wall Street

– My Experience Eating The Big Apple

– The US Open

 Here We Go: East Village

 Shoot with John Tona

My Short Film

In Class with Someone Famous

– I love Polaroids

– Art Meets Fashion Event in Brooklyn

– A Night out in NYC

– Remembering 9/11

– My Life in New York in Pictures

 Prices in New York

– Quote for the Day

– Photography Thesis

New York Film Academy

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New York Film Academy

❤ Africa, My Life in Africa

I Live in Africa!


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I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

Even though I now live in the U.S, I was born in South Africa. I try visit as often as possible. We are surrounded by so much beauty there everyday! I thank God for the wild + exotic marvels he provides for us in that part of the world.

I don’t think tourists realise just how beautiful it is there. I don’t think they understand the similarities there with where they’re from. When they book their trips to South Africa, I’ve heard they expect to find mudhuts all over the place with animals walking through dirty streets in a 3rd world pocket of nothingness. That’s simply not true. Of course they’ll always be poverty wherever you go, but the picture they have in their head is completely innacurate. I remember back to when I lived in New York. People didn’t think South Africa was developed at all. I hope to change that misconception!

When they land, tourists are always surprised to find that we have a very normal lifestyle there with bars and nightclubs just like them. We have attractions, schools, universities, businesses, buildings, highways and entertainment just like them. We have a well-developed and working infrastructure. I’ve been all over the world and our international airports are the best I’ve seen.

They gasp at our beauty. They enjoy our top-class hotels, our polished service and our commercial culture – just like they have. They see our world-class education facilities, our safe amenities, our well-spoken citizens, our clean streets, our modern households, our friendly attitudes, our quirky sub-cultures and our huge fashion scene.

They recognize our healthy lifestyle in amidst stunning settings. They love the open space, the land, the people, the views. They marvel at the Cape Winelands, the game reserves, the nature, the beaches, the rolling hills and the mountains. They toast to our sunsets and drink wine under our starry skies. They visit heritage sites of our world leaders like Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu.

Our greatest assets are our minds. We as a people are very forward-thinking and cosmopolitan. What I love about us is that we’re also down-to-earth and mindful of those less fortunate.

Our wildlife is part of our beauty.

In South Africa, you can get up close and personal with our animals. It’s unlike anywhere else in the world. Around where I grew up on the east coast of the country is a lion park. It’s called “Seaview Predator Park”. If you’re planning a trip to South Africa, this is definitely a place you want to go. 

Even though all the animals are in cages, trust me, they are well-looked after. They are tame and sociable with tourists. Check out Seaview’s Facebook Page here and scoot over to Pinterest to see my Africa board. 

Each and every time I watch the video my business filmed of them, my passion for my homeland grows stronger. Cape Town and Johannesburg have made their names famous internationally, but don’t underestimate the lesser-known places off-the-beaten path such as Port Elizabeth (5 hours from where Nelson Mandela was born!).

All in all, our time is coming.

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

I Live in Africa

Photos: Dane Doubell

Cover Photo: Death To The Stock Photo

© Tamika Scripps and The Starlit Path, 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Tamika Scripps and The Starlit Path with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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My Life in Africa

March’s 3 New Things


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These are 3 things I would love to do this month in my down time: 

  1. See an arty film. Now I love mainstream films with all their glitzy movie stars and action-packed storylines. They usually leave you with a satisfied and uplifting feel when you leave (which is a good thing, right?) You can just mindlessly watch and you’ll enjoy them so much without having to think too hard. But every now and then, I really believe it’s a treat to go and see something you would otherwise never see. Just to broaden your mind and make you think. Art movies are usually much longer than ‘normal’ films and they very often carry with them deep and profound messages. Often they are based on true stories. They don’t always have a happy ending (in fact they almost never do) and they are totally dedicated to depicting life in its rawest form. Here in Cape Town, we have a great Cinema Nouveau at the waterfront. We also have loads of DVD shops and a DVD Nouveau right near where I live. I don’t care if I hire it out or go watch it, my first goal for March is to go see something which I would otherwise never consider watching. 
  2. Bake something! Even if it’s terrible. The last time I baked something was 2 years ago when I did a short cooking course at Silwood. I want to capture the Italian house wife in me again! I challenge myself to make a decent milk tart/scone/red velvet cupcake – I’ll figure it out!
  3. Look up interesting things to do in Lisbon. Since I’m going to Lisbon for a Rotary Convention in June, I figure it’s time I compile a really educational list of things to do while I’m there. I don’t want to wait until the last minute, I want to look up beautiful sights, foods, places and spaces I should make sure I see!

Working too hard has got me totally consumed these days. I’m neglecting the side of me that needs down-time … I’m hoping these can provide that for me. What about you? Do you have goals for March? Here are pictures of a course I recently did in cooking at Silwood School of Cookery

Silwood Cookery School (2)