One of the reasons why I think it's important to tackle topics like this is because it's a reminder that when it comes to finding the one who is truly right for you, it's not really a one-size-fits-all kind of process. It's wise to keep this in mind because, if you're not careful, you'll hear someone else's love story, admire it, then think that if you do things exactly like they did—BOOM your man will suddenly appear. And then be pissed if "he" doesn't
Yes, y'all, I get it. Some women have written a list of what they wanted in a man and everything on the list did indeed manifest. Along those same lines, we've featured stories on the site of women who had a tattoo that made a romantic connection happen, prayed a particular prayer and got married—the testimonies go on and on. But just like those ladies are individuals with their own unique romantic journey, sis, so are you. That's why it's essential to pray, meditate, ponder on what is the best "method" for you to take in your quest for love.
Oh, and if you're hellbent on comprising a list, here are some things you should seriously consider first—just so you are able to keep a balanced and realistic perspective on what a what-I-want-in-a-man list can—and cannot—do for you.
PRO: You’ll Have Clear Direction About What You Want
I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one who's heard that it's not a good idea to go grocery shopping when you're hungry and/or when you don't have a list in tow. If you do, everything that you see will look good to you and/or you could end up getting things that you already have, don't need or even really want. Along these same lines, that's why it can be a good idea to create a list of what you want in a man before getting into a relationship. While it's another message for another time that it can also be a good idea to not "shop for a relationship" when you're "hungry"—and by that, what I mean is needy—when you've taken the time to think about what you truly desire in a person, as well as a relationship, it can bring forth a clarity that cultivates the kind of self-confidence that reminds you not to settle for less.
CON: You Could Find Yourself Closed Off to What You Actually Need
If you don't get anything else out of this article, please hear me when I say that wants and needs are not always or automatically the same things. I can't tell you how many couples I have worked with who totally regret the spouse that they chose (if you quietly can relate, check out "What Should You Do If You Feel Like You Married The Wrong Person?") because they were more focused on what they wanted than what they actually needed. What's the difference? There's one woman I know who was caught up in her now-husband, ever since I met her. He's fine. He's talented. A lot of women lusted him. I get it. But his work ethic sucks. While she was out here being focused on wanting him, she didn't really focus on needing someone who would be a good provider (among other things). So now, she's out here doing most of the work (literally) and that's been the case for many years.
A potential con that comes from the "what I want in a man" list is you can be tempted to treat it a lot like a Christmas wish list. You're so busy thinking about what tickles your fancy, that you're not really pondering what would be good, long-term, for your mind, body and spirit.
It takes a lot of maturity to realize that needs should definitely come before wants, across the board, in life. If you do decide to compile a list, make sure that necessities always trump fleeting cravings and desires.
PRO: Your List Can Keep You from Being Superficial
A wise person once said, "If you don't have a map, you don't know where you are going." Along with that, I once heard Bishop TD Jakes say that if all you want is to be with someone, nothing but "something" could be all that you end up with. In other words, when you're not thoughtful about what you desire, it can be easy to get distracted. Trust me, I know from whence I speak. There are some men in my past who were able to reel me in, bed me up and totally waste my time, all because I was caught up in the superficial of what they had to offer—good looks, semi-great sex and something to do. That's cool but it's also pretty shallow and superficial.
That's why it's important to create a list that reflects the quality of relationship that you want, not just the kind of man that you desire. Hear me when I say that there is a lot of "fine nothingness" walking around out here who might be a good time but won't hold you down when ish hits the fan and you're looking for real long-lasting love and support.
CON: Your List May Actually Be Hypocritical and/or Unrealistic
Another potential downside of creating this kind of list is you can find yourself wanting what you, yourself are not. For instance, I know one woman who said that a man who'd been married before or had kids was non-negotiable. I mean, go off, sis—that is your right. But what's interesting about that is she was already twice-divorced with two children of her own. I know another woman who wanted a man with a six-figure income while she was in five-figure debt. Then there's the woman who wanted a man with a six-pack but said she refused to go to the gym herself because "her husband should love her just as she is".
Yep. It can be really easy to create a "what I want in a man" list that oozes with hypocrisy that may even teeter on the side of being unrealistic. One way to avoid this "con" is, after you finish your list, purpose in your mind to make sure you are what you desire. That significantly ups your chances of attracting what you wrote down anyway.
PRO: You’ll Be Able to Nip Ish in the Bud Much Quicker
If there is one thing that I do actually like a lot about creating this type of list is it can help you to spot BS much quicker. If you want a man who is interested in marriage, then you won't go past a couple of dates when someone who says he doesn't want anything long-term. If you want to be with a man who has certain values, you'll nix the potential for a relationship the moment he shows that he isn't on the same page as you are. If you want a man who is spiritually at a certain level, why keep seeing someone who couldn't care less about God or his purpose?
Time is valuable. It's something you can't even get back. One benefit of having this kind of list ready before you start seeing someone new is it can let you know if something should last for three dates or—not.
CON: You Might Not Recognize the Universe Is Operating in an Unexpected Way
What inspired me to write this is this con right here. There are some women I know who can personally attest to the fact that they were so—pardon the pun—married to their own list of what they wanted in a man that when their now-husband came into their life, they almost missed out on him. For some, he didn't look the way they wanted him to. For others, their husband had certain personality traits that, while initially they didn't think they would be drawn to, it has actually balanced them out in the long run. Some didn't want a man with kids, but they have come to adore his children as their own. Others didn't want a "dreamer" but now he's a thriving entrepreneur. Some wanted to meet their man at church but ran into him at a football game. Others wanted him to come at a certain time, but he either came much earlier or…much later.
I can pretty much guess what some of y'all might be thinking. When you take this particular point into account, why come up with a list at all? At the end of the day, what I'm really trying to say is a list is cool, but it's best to use it as a guideline not some written law that has no room for editing—or for the Universe to alter if it so chooses. Bottom line, if you want to write a list, do so. Yet allow space in your head and heart for life to surprise you too…with a lot of what you want and even more of what you really and truly need.
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Different puzzle pieces are creating bigger pictures these days. 2024 will mark a milestone on a few different levels, including the release of my third book next June (yay!).
I am also a Professional Certified Coach. My main mission for attaining that particular goal is to use my formal credentials to help people navigate through the sometimes tumultuous waters, both on and offline, when it comes to information about marriage, sex and relationships that is oftentimes misinformation (because "coach" is a word that gets thrown around a lot, oftentimes quite poorly).
I am also still super devoted to helping to bring life into this world as a doula, marriage life coaching will always be my first love (next to writing, of course), a platform that advocates for good Black men is currently in the works and my keystrokes continue to be devoted to HEALTHY over HAPPY in the areas of holistic intimacy, spiritual evolution, purpose manifestation and self-love...because maturity teaches that it's impossible to be happy all of the time when it comes to reaching goals yet healthy is a choice that can be made on a daily basis (amen?).
If you have any PERSONAL QUESTIONS (please do not contact me with any story pitches; that is an *editorial* need), feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org. A sistah will certainly do what she can. ;)
This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
Watching Angela “Blac Chyna” White’s transformation in real-time has truly been a sight to see. It wasn’t that long ago that she announced that she was reversing her cosmetic surgeries in an effort to go back to who she was before the world came to know her as Blac Chyna. In previous interviews, she stated that she was dissolving her facial and lip fillers, removing her breast implants, and getting a butt reduction, as well as removing the dimple piercings that enhanced her fame and controversial tattoos.
In a recent Tamron Hall interview, the mother of two said that she has “fully recovered” from the procedures. She is also celebrating one year of sobriety and opened up about being worried about how her new journey would be received by others.
“I’ve been in the entertainment industry for so long, right, and of course, like, you know, coming out, I’m like young, I’m gonna do wild things as we all have,” she said.
“...I feel like by me being vocal and showing everybody you can change your life and things can get better, like through myself, that right there is an accomplishment, and that’s a part of freedom, too.”
But as she started on her journey, many people have shown her grace, which is something she’s grateful for. “And then the fact that people have been showing me grace, it’s like amazing,” she said. “And I feel like when I did it, I just did it. It was more so like spiritual thing and I feel like people see that, and I’ve always been like my authentic self, so what you see is kinda what you get with me, and that’s just kinda what it is.”
Chyna, who recently received an honorary doctorate from Sacramento Theology Seminary and Bible College, has also repaired her relationship with her mom, Tokyo Toni. The social media celebrity surprised her daughter on the Tamron Hall Show. Prior to the sentimental surprise, Chyna dished on the reconciliation and having a better understanding of her mom.
“I must say, some of the things I have to take accountability for because, like my actions. As a mother, you don’t want to see your daughter doing certain things ‘cause it’s like it doesn’t matter what my past was or what we’re going through, I didn’t raise you that way,” she admitted. “So, it’s like, okay, maybe I was a little bit wrong. Maybe I was acting out a little bit. But I feel like as we grow older, I kinda see more, and I understand more.”
Chyna will be starring in season two of Fox's reality competition show Special Forces: World's Toughest Test.
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