It feels like a whole ass decade since the cast of Insecure pulled up to our living rooms and given us the dose of both humor and reality we didn't know we needed, but if you were wondering what Issa Rae was doing during her time off, it certainly wasn't… taking time off.
In the last 12 months, Issa invested in both a coffee shop and streaming analytics business, launched a record label, announced her leading role in not one, but two major motion pictures, and dropped the premiere date of Season 4 of Insecure and we're pretty sure that sis isn't human.
While it may seem like there's a lot on Issa's plate, that only proves that this 35-year-old Inglewood-based entrepreneur is ready to eat. Having multiple streams of income always pays off, and in a recent interview with Who What Wear, Issa broke down why not getting caught in your comfort zone is the key to securing a bag. According to Issa, while she found success as a screenwriter and actress, she's on a mission to make use of her other gifts, too. She told the publication:
"I want to try different things and see what I can do. I don't want to just play myself, so I want to be able to experiment. Some of the things that I have on the slate to actually act in are very different. I don't want to get caught in a comfort zone. I don't want anybody to be able to put me in a box."
Living up to the expectations of others can be exhausting and Issa says she's dead ass tired of it. In her latest role in the romantic drama, The Photograph, Issa says that she was intentional about pushing her boundaries and offering fans a side of her that we wouldn't normally expect:
"I think people are just expecting me to be funny, and the character just lost her mom, so she's going through it. Obviously, there are elements of humor within the movie, but that's not the driving part of the character, which is new for me because I do lean on humor. It's been a defense mechanism for a lot of my life. That's my go-to, I guess, because my comfort zone is humor. So to not be able to lean on that in this film was interesting."
The present is a present and no one can truly be sure of what the future holds, but Issa knows that her ability to leverage her talents is a gift in and of itself. In the feature, Issa emphasized the importance of keeping your options (and your opportunities) open.
"This year will determine whether or not I have longevity on a particular side. If these movies do well, then I'll have more opportunities. If they don't, I might not. But I'm not a person who puts all my eggs in one basket. I have too many baskets."
You won't be good at everything, and it's a leader's job to hire people that are the best at what they do. Along with constantly seeking new opportunities, Issa says delegation has been essential to making her multi-hyphenate hustle a success:
"There's a lot that I love to do. So I love being behind the scenes. I love producing. I love writing. I love business. We have a new record label, and even there, crafting other artists in an area where I'm weak—I can't sing. I'm not a rapper. I'm not an artist, but to be able to work with people who have that talent and to lend what I know to help their careers is very exciting."
To read the full interview, click here!
Featured image by Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com
Taylor "Pretty" Honore is a spiritually centered and equally provocative rapper from Baton Rouge, Louisiana with a love for people and storytelling. You can probably find me planting herbs in your local community garden, blasting "Back That Thang Up" from my mini speaker. Let's get to know each other: @prettyhonore.
How We Met is a series where xoNecole talks love and relationships with real-life couples. We learn how they met, how like turned into love, and how they make their love work.
I’m willing to bet that this is not the first time you’ve seen this couple. Dalen Spratt is a television producer, owner of a tailored men's suit line, and creator of Ghost Brothers: Haunted Houseguests, which is currently streaming on Destination America. Stacey Spratt is also a serial entrepreneur, focusing mostly on events and the nonprofit world, and she is the owner of two award-winning craft beer bars called Harlem Hops. But their accolades are not what united them.
The couple met years ago at their alma mater, Clark Atlanta University, when they were still working to create the life they have now, and if you had told them then that they’d eventually tie the knot, the pair probably would’ve laughed in your face.
Today, they’re new parents, flourishing in their careers, and each others’ “teammates.” When desiring love, Dalen recommends not looking to other couples for advice. And Stacey advises staying true to what you want. “Don’t put age or limitations on love and children. If God could do it for me, why can’t he do it for you?”
Here's How We Met.
How did you meet?
Dalen: We met in 2005 when she was advising the Greek sororities and fraternities in college. She was old as hell in college, and I was a young buck (laughs). Everybody had a crush on her, but I didn’t think much of it. Then, in 2007, we were in the same grad school class, but she still wasn’t trying to see me then either. I had to catch her five years ago; I was very patient.
Stacey: Yeah, everybody in our grad school class called him Young, Fresh to Death because he was always dressed in B-school (what CAU affectionately refers to as business major classes), and we’d just wear sweatpants (laughs).
So, I know Dalen was always attracted to you. But what about you? Did your attraction to him develop over time?
Stacey: So 2006-2008 – all the years went by. I don’t think we were really thinking about each other at all back then. Years later, I had an event in Dallas, and I booked him to be a speaker. Then, a few years ago, Dalen posted a photo of him on Instagram, and I slid in his DMs. I remembered him being so young and handsome, and I’m like, I should hook him up with my younger cousin. His response was: "If you’re not hooking me up with you, no thank you." But I still thought he was too young at the time, and he started pulling receipts. Taraji P. Henson was dating someone young at the time, Gabrielle Union–
Dalen: First of all, I didn’t do that. You did that.
Stacey: Okay, I did. I thought he was a cutie pie, but that age thing was on my mind!
"Dalen posted a photo of him on Instagram, and I slid in his DMs. I remembered him being so young and handsome, and I’m like, I should hook him up with my younger cousin. His response was: 'If you’re not hooking me up with you, no thank you.'"
Talk to me about the first date. How did he change your mind?
Stacey: Our first date was at Tin Lizzy's in Atlanta. During that time, he was living in Dallas, so it was long-distance. But he came into town, and we just had a good time. We talked a lot, which we still do. It wasn’t anything fantastic.
Dalen: Don’t downplay our first date.
Then, walk me through your courtship. How did you get to the next level? What was that conversation like?
Stacey: I think he knew at age 43 or 44 I wasn’t playing around. But also, I think it just naturally progressed.
Dalen: Yeah, it just happened naturally. And I’m going to be honest, I don’t think initially either one of us thought it would be as serious as it was. She thought I was too young and I wasn’t ready for marriage, kids, and all that. I think we both thought we were just hanging out. But after spending so much time together, a lot of stuff started happening. Like, she had to have surgery early on. It wasn’t just time together; it was intimate time. Next thing we know, we just never left each other. That’s why we still don’t have an anniversary date because we never really asked.
"It wasn't just time together; it was intimate time. Next thing we know, we just never left each other. That's why we still don't have an anniversary date because we never really asked."
What made you want to commit to each other?
Dalen: The moment I knew Stacey was for me was from a phone call. I don’t really like talking on the phone, and I can be really blunt sometimes. But we were talking, and I said, ‘I don’t really feel like talking anymore.’ And she was just like, okay, and hung up. I wasn’t trying to be rude, and she understood that. It sounds bad, but that’s how I knew she just got me. I felt like she could get my random awkward moments, and she does to this day.
Stacey: For me, I liked him as a person. Even when times get rough and tough, I could still like him as a human. He is my best friend. We have time. We laugh until we cry, and it’s just always like that. Even when we get pissed at each other, something happens, and we fix it. Also, how he treats his mother. That’s a momma’s boy, but I’m a daddy’s girl – so I get it. I know how I want to be treated, and I see how he is with her and that’s beautiful.
What are some important lessons you’ve learned about yourself through loving your partner in this relationship?
Dalen: I grew up an only child and she grew up with siblings. So, when you have someone who is used to doing things by themselves, there is definitely a learning curve when you get into a serious relationship. It’s funny now, but it was definitely a process.
Stacey: I agree – definitely the only child thing. There’s times I look at him like, did you ever live with anyone else? That comes from being momma's baby, too. I have to say, my “mother-in-love” spoiled him. But also with Axel (their daughter), that brings another level of patience.
Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images
What was the biggest challenge that you had to overcome together?
Dalen: We’ve gone through a lot within the years we’ve been together. We suffered two miscarriages – I’d say that’s the biggest.
Stacey: Having those miscarriages and trying to understand what’s next and what our options are was a lot. I had two myomectomies (fibroid surgeries), and he supported me through that time. Also, still, it was on my mind that he’s eight years younger than me. I was wondering if I can’t carry [a child] what that looks like for us. We had very real conversations pretty early in our relationship.
"Having those miscarriages and trying to understand what’s next and what our options are was a lot. I had two myomectomies (fibroid surgeries), and he supported me through that time. Also, still, it was on my mind that he’s eight years younger than me."
What do you fight the most about?
Dalen: Nagging. Stacey nags; she’s a complainer. She’s that momma that will look in a room and just hunt for something to complain about. Like, I’m worried for Axel when she's in high school.
Stacey: It’s because I like things to be in place. He leaves stuff all over the place. I can tell where he’s been in the house because something is left around. So he says I’m nagging – but it’s like, just get your stuff.
What are your love languages?
Dalen: Stacey is gifts all day.
Dalen: We’ve talked about this. xoNecole is about to cause problems in our home (laughs).
Stacey: Obviously I love you. *thinks again* It’s words of affirmation.
Dalen: That’s it.
What’s your favorite thing about each other?
Dalen: I’ve always respected her business-mindedness. That may sound superficial, but it’s not because I’ve never been with someone who thinks like me. It’s one of my most treasured things about her. I remember one day, I was just running through ideas with her, and each time Stacey had a suggestion on how I could make it better. It’s just very comforting. She takes whatever I’m doing and elevates it – including me.
Stacey: I love Dalen’s hustle and creativity. He’s been on multiple shows, and he continues to create, produce, and reinvent himself and the product he’s putting out. I love that we can create together and bounce things off each other. Even though we may be in different arenas, there’s nothing he can’t offer me great advice about. I love that drive.
Finally, how did you know it was love?
Dalen: Well – she said it – first. (laughs)
Stacey: And he looked at me and smiled! He didn’t say it back. We were on a trip, out of the country.
Dalen: We were arguing when she said it, and she just threw it out.
Stacey: But we continue to do that. We’ve spent holidays and everything outside of the country.
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March is a turning point and is when massive changes begin to occur. This is the time of the year when there is an inner awakening for more, and the curiosity that blooms opens new doors. In the stars, March is the month that ushers in Eclipse Season, when two eclipses occur back-to-back, and the transformations that come with it are inevitable. However, you are the leader of your life and are the one who can guide and embrace these changes as they come. March is the month to turn a new page, gain clarity, and get inspired.
March 2024 Monthly Horoscopes: The Month Ahead
Pisces Season opens the month for us, and being in this water sign energy always brings more emotions to the surface than usual. With Saturn also being in Pisces right now, there is a balance needed between what we are flowing forward with and what needs to be taken more seriously and grounded in. Mercury enters Aries on March 9, directing our will, passions, and integrity to where our most powerful ideas are flowing right now. Mercury in Aries tends to speak before thinking, however, and communication should be handled with a little more tender love and care for the time being. Be careful with impulsion, and write down your ideas and insights as they come.
On March 10, there is a New Moon in Pisces, and this New Moon is beckoning us to move forward with our creative passions, interests, and spirituality. What have you been inspired to learn more about or dive deeper into? This New Moon is a good time to set your inventions for any creative projects and also for where you want to see the magic grow in your relationships and love life.
Venus enters Pisces the following day on Mar. 11, and this is bringing in some sweet, romantic, and dreamy energy into matters of the heart until Apr. 5.
Aries Season begins on Mar. 19 this year, and we enter a time of fire sign energy as we close out the month. Aries Season is when the changes and transformations begin to light up the sky, and when things get moving for the collective. Mars enters Pisces on Mar. 22, and Mars in this sign is motivated toward love, creativity, and closure. Mars in Pisces is healing energy and is a good time to let go of anything heavy that has been weighing you down. With the Sun in Aries and Mars in Pisces, this time is all about feeling things through, not letting change overwhelm you, and seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.
At the end of the month, we have the first eclipse of 2024. This eclipse will be a Penumbral Full Moon Lunar Eclipse in Libra and will be on Mar. 25. This is the Worm Moon of the year and the time when powerful changes often take place. Remember, though, Eclipses tend to shake things up and make things unsettled for a bit before their permanence takes shape. Since this Full Moon is happening in Libra, the transformations now are typically ones to do with love, relationships, finances, and inner and outer harmony.
March is an awakening and opening to a new way of seeing the world, love, and the manifestations you want to occur.
Read for your sun and rising sign below.
1.ARIESARIESKyra Jay for xoNecole
This is your month to let go and rewrite your story, Aries. You are moving through culminations and new beginnings in March, and it’s best to go with the flow with the changes of the month. Emotions are high, and you are especially sensitive right now, so give yourself grace as you move through this time. Mercury enters your sign on Mar. 9, and this is helping you find the clarity and inspiration you have been looking for.
The New Moon on Mar. 10 is a chance to see the gifts of what has been let go from your life. You are processing your emotions this month and wiping away the pain of the past. Aries Season officially begins on Mar. 19, and you are ready to shine and create a new day. The end of the month is an enlightening time for you and once the eclipse occurs on Mar. 25, your heart is filled with gratitude for the love and new beginnings that are flowing in.
2.TAURUSTAURUSKyra Jay for xoNecole
March is awakening your inner magic, Taurus. This is the time to stay open to the mysteries of life and to give yourself a second chance at a new beginning. It’s about looking at your life, where your happiness is, and where you want to continue to grow. Friendships and your community are playing a key role in your life this month, and the New Moon on Mar. 10 is when you are going to see some of your intentions here manifest for you.
Venus, your ruling planet and the planet of love, moves into your 11th house of friendships, hopes, and dreams on Mar. 11, and this is the energy that you need to be in right now. Your heart is feeling the magic that comes from opening up and believing in yourself this month. On Mar. 19, Aries Season begins, and the sun moves into the very bottom of your chart, a preparation phase before your season begins. As the month comes to a close, allow yourself a little more time to rest, get grounded, and enjoy where things are.
3.GEMINIGEMINIKyra Jay for xoNecole
Your strength is needed this month as you overcome some mountains you have been climbing, Gemini. This is a month to turn the focus inward and to heal and regain your strength from there. Mercury, your ruling planet, moves into an area of your chart at the beginning of March that brings your dreams and inspirations into focus. You are thinking a lot about the future this month, and this energy is helping you move through the closures you are experiencing.
Once the Sun moves into Aries on Mar. 19, the energy is more favorable for you and you are no longer feeling stuck in your current circumstances. Obstacles move away, and you have more opportunities for happiness. The Full Moon Lunar Eclipse happening at the end of the month is happening in a fellow air sign, Libra, and is bringing some love and romantic energy into your life, and you are growing flowers from the weeds as March ends.
4.CANCERCANCERKyra Jay for xoNecole
March is about getting grounded, moving forward, and taking the lessons along with the blessings, Cancer. This is a month of growth, and also a time when you are finding your inner peace and settling more into the present moment. You flow well with the energy of the month with Pisces Season here, and the Sun is in your 9th house of adventure. This is a good month to think big picture, connect with nature, and honor the magic and wisdom within you.
The Full Moon Lunar Eclipse happening at the end of the month is shaking things up for you when it comes to the home, family, and foundations, and will be bringing things here into focus. Emotionally, you may be feeling some highs and lows this month, and this eclipse is helping you find a safe space to renew. Before the month ends, Vesta enters your sign, and this energy reminds you to tend to your emotions and the sacred fire within you. In March, you are breaking free.
5.LEOLEOKyra Jay for xoNecole
This is a month of honoring your free spirit, Leo. The pace is picking up for you in March, and there is a lot of happiness and opportunity surrounding you. You are feeling liberated in being your authentic self, and you are shining in the new spaces you are finding yourself in. The New Moon at the beginning of the month is awakening something within you emotionally, and you are moving through a rebirth in your life right now, one where you are seeing more of your inner power that has always been there.
Aries Season begins on Mar. 19, and the Sun moves into a fellow fire sign, further heightening the positive energy you are moving through this month. You are setting your intentions and seeing dreams coming true. Before the month ends, a Lunar Eclipse is happening in your 3rd house of communication, and you are allowing who you are to come to the surface as you express yourself. You are letting go of insecurities and allowing yourself to take up space this month.
6.VIRGOVIRGOKyra Jay for xoNecole
This is a month of reflection, setting your intentions, and focusing on the bigger picture, Virgo. You are remaining patient with what is coming to light for you, and seeking inspiration and empowerment in the present moment. Most of the energy in March is happening in your 7th house of love and partnerships, and you are finding your balance between your needs and those you are close to. The New Moon on Mar. 10 is a good time to set your intentions for love and to expect a blessing here.
Venus and Mars both enter your house of love this month as well, and there is something to say about loving yourself just as much as you yearn for the love of others. March is reminding you where it all starts, and showing you the beauty within and around you. The Lunar Eclipse happening on Mar. 23 is a time of closure for you financially, and you are ending a journey here as you prepare for another, more lucrative one.
7.LIBRALIBRAKyra Jay for xoNecole
You are one of the power players of the month, Libra, with a Lunar Eclipse happening in your sign at the end of March- the first one of the year. This is a month of moving from closures into a new door, and you are finding yourself in the middle of these transformations that are occurring. The Sun is in your 6th house of health, daily routine, and well-being for most of the month, and this is a good time to focus on what is going to be the healthiest path for you moving forward.
Aries Season begins on Mar. 19, and the Sun moves into your opposite sign. This energy brings in a time when the focus is more on your partnerships and the love you want to see grow here. On Mar. 25, there is a Full Moon Lunar Eclipse in your sign, and you end the month walking through a big change in your life. You may need some time to process and regroup at the end of March as old dreams are fulfilled and new ones are fueling you forward.
8.SCORPIOSCORPIOKyra Jay for xoNecole
March is bringing romance into your life, Scorpio, and is a time when you are leading yourself forward and letting go of the past. You are the creator of your world, and you are creating from the heart right now. With the Sun in your 5th house and a New Moon here on the 10th, this is a month to express yourself, get creative with life, and believe in a miracle in love. You deserve to receive the love and dedication you give, and it’s time to open up to allow it in.
Mars, your ruling planet, moves into your 5th house on Mar. 22 as well, fueling even more of your passion and intentions into being more confident and expressing who you are to the world. This is the month to get out of your shell and shine your light. The eclipse happening at the end of March is a big time of closure for you as you let go of what hasn’t been working out, heal, and breathe a little easier in the process.
9.SAGITTARIUSSAGITTARIUSKyra Jay for xoNecole
This is a month of adventure, empowerment, and divine purpose, Sagittarius. You are feeling inspired by the new doors that are opening for you now, and you are walking into them diligently. With Mercury moving into a fellow fire sign at the beginning of the month, you are moving into March feeling inspired, loved, and full of hope. This is an exciting time for you, and one where adventure is calling.
On Mar. 25, a Lunar Eclipse is occurring in your 11th house of friendship, community, and manifestation, and you are coming full circle with matters here. You are seeing some changes in who you surround yourself with at the end of the month, but you are also opening up to more of what is possible for you here. Pallas goes retrograde in your sign on the 29th, and this energy is reminding you to trust your inner wisdom and to think things through thoroughly this month.
10.CAPRICORNCAPRICORNKyra Jay for xoNecole
March is about making yourself proud, Capricorn. You are focused on the dreams you want to be fulfilled and the responsibilities you need to tend to, and your priorities are intact. The Sun is in your 3rd house of communication for most of the month, and this is a time filled with clarity, perspective, and hope. You are ready to take action on the things you have been pondering over, and you are in a good headspace to do so right now.
On Mar. 19, the energy moves from the mind and into the home, and the second half of March is more about tending to your needs at home, taking care of your emotional world, connecting with family or loved ones, and building your foundations. On Mar. 25, a Lunar Eclipse is occurring in your house of career and reputation, and you are seeing old projects come full circle, and congratulations are in order. The end of March is shaping things for you moving forward and setting the tone for the changes that will be happening within your career and professional ventures this year.
11.AQUARIUSAQUARIUSKyra Jay for xoNecole
This month is about acceptance and letting go, Aquarius. The year has just begun, but you have already been moving through more changes and opportunities at clarity than most, and March is no different. With the energy in a financial area of your chart this month, this is a good time to plan for the future financially, to let go of any unhealthy habits here, and to surrender to the good.
The New Moon on Mar. 10 is one of the best times of the year for you to set your intentions for abundance, and this month is about focusing on the fact that you are worthy of the things you seek in life. The Lunar Eclipse on Mar. 25 is happening in a fellow air sign, and you are feeling enlightened and hopeful as the month ends. This eclipse is closing a door of stagnation in your life and opening a new one of excitement and adventure. You’ll find that the gifts of your life come from acceptance this month.
12.PISCESPISCESKyra Jay for xoNecole
Your season is here, and it’s your time to shine and thrive, beautiful. With Pisces Season underway and the Sun in your 1st house of self, you are moving through March feeling empowered, loved, and divinely guided. A lot of the astrological transits of the month are happening in your sign, so emotions are also running high right now. The New Moon in Pisces on Mar. 10 is a time to set intentions for your future and to go where you feel guided towards.
Venus, the planet of love, enters your sign on Mar. 11, and relationship matters move through a time of healing this month. Love is flowing toward you, and you are feeling a positive transformation from it. Pisces Season ends on Mar. 19, but Mars enters your sign on Mar. 22, and you are still feeling motivated by your personal goals and dreams. This is a month to trust yourself and where things are moving and to be confident in the life you are leading right now. You deserve love and respect, and it’s coming your way right now, Pisces.
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Featured image by Kyra Jay for xoNecole