Mya Cullins is a Business Woman, A Mother, An Author, A Speaker, A Wife, A Woman of God and A Prominent Community Leader of Greensboro, North Carolina. As a woman of color in business, Mya represents what every strong ambitious woman deserves in life. Mya Cullins has written her first book “Behind The Veil” that will be on the big screen very soon and speaks to her community about Ambition, Women Empowerment and Entrepreneurship.
A Little about Changing Phases Inc:
Changing Phases Behavioral Support, Inc. (CPBS) is a professional organization that is known for providing Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services since February 2006. Changing Phases has experience in providing everything from Residential Treatment , Substance Abuse Groups, Individual Counseling and Assessments in North Carolina. Changing Phases also currently provides Community Based services in the Greater Atlanta Area. Changing Phases recently decided to incorporate outpatient opioid treatment services as another measure to successfully address ongoing opiate dependence. Changing Phases takes great pride in maintaining the values, mission, and direction of the organization. Changing Phases always provides a comprehensive treatment experience resulting in a desire for the best outcome possible for all persons served.
There were only 5 clients before the true success and moving to North Carolina proved more success to Mya and Quinten Cullins where they could best serve their community as the services were desperately needed. Mya is currently pursuing a Doctoral degree in Human Services and is very strategic in balancing her personal life and career so that neither will spill into the other.
The Official AO recently Interviewed Mya Cullins, the Co-founder of Changing Phases Inc. As a family woman, Mya wants the best outcome for not only her family, but also her community.
The Official AO: What Inspired you to Write “Behind The Veil”?
MC: I was inspired by my family and marriage. The book is based only on real life experiences.
The Official AO: In your Opinion, What are the 3 keys to success?
MC: Have a vision, Fulfill vision, and Never give up.
The Official AO: What Can We Expect Next?
MC: My book, “Behind the Veil” to be on the big screen and Major Network offers for our own Reality Television show.
The Official AO: Why do you love serving your community so much?
MC: I enjoy giving back and making a difference in the lives of others that are in need. Giving back in something that was inspired by the acts of my great grandparents, grandmother..etc. This is what led me to start my own non-profit organization Sarah Jettie Community development Corp @ www.sjcommunitydevelopment.org
Mya Cullins is an inspiration to the ones who feels like there is no way out especially in mental health where leadership is greatly needed in all of our communities. We are deeply appreciative of such the leader you are to your community in North Carolina and communities world-wide. All of the compassion that you give to the youth and families, you are a perfect example of how we all should serve our people.
To stay updated with everything Mya Cullins is doing for her community and a chance to purchase her book “Behind The Veil” please check out her website below.Read more
This article may step on a few toes, but this needs to be said… apparently everyone isn’t seeing the bigger picture in this situation. These girls are someones:
daughter, sister, cousin and is MISSING as we speak. Why is this not getting the media attention that it deserves? Every time something like this happens they tend to sweep it under the rug and try to forget it, but this time they can’t do that. This needs to be brought to everyone’s attention, because mother’s can’t keep passing out flyers to find their child. A flyer can only do so much and reach so far without proper media, but in this case most of the media are turning down the story for some odd reason. Now lets say these were white girls I`m pretty sure there would be amber alerts in every state and all over the news interrupting our favorite shows just to inform us. I’m not trying to pull the race card, but let’s be honest this happens all the time.
A few celebrities have spoken out about this situation such as Chaka Khan, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Taraji P. Henson, but we need more of them to speak up about it. We should also call up a community meeting or start a Facebook page about it and go to your local news station and spread the word. These girls matter whether we know it or not and each girl meant something to someone. Imagine, your child is missing and being held hostage at an unknown location. See this from the parents perspective and tell me how you’d feel ? We need to get it together and fast! Every minute were not looking for them these girls are being taken somewhere else and farther away.
So lets get to work and help find our girls.
Currently, 15-year-old Jacqueline Lassey, 13-year-old Yahshaiyah Enoch, 15-year-old Antwan Jordan, 15-year-old Juliana Otero, 15-year-old Dashann Trikia Wallace, 13-year-old Aniya McNeil, 15-year-old Dayanna White, 16-year-old Talisha Coles, and 15-year-old Morgan Richardson are all still missing.Read more
Who is Brittany Dixon and how do you inspire women in the fitness industry?
That’s a really good question…”Who is Brittany Dixon” the funny thing is, I’ve been on a self discovery journey to find out exactly who I am, what I stand for and what truly makes me happy. I had to step out of my comfort zone to find out. I discover the good, the bad and the ugly. Most of all, I finally found the beauty within me. I was able to tap into a piece of my brain that I was afraid to unleash out of fear. Once I let those fears go I was able to live and have piece of mind. I free’d my mind, and it’s a feeling like no other. I feel heroic as if I can concur anything. So to answer your question, I am a woman of happiness, positivity, a go-getter and a woman of “yes” who isn’t afraid to say no. I am a brave woman, but most of all I am a woman. A woman that can relate to other women. At first, I believed posting my fitness videos inspired women to workout, (which it did), but since I’ve stepped out of my comfort to pursue my passion of becoming a fitness model, I’ve gained a new following of women (and men) wanting to purse their passion but afraid to take that first step. I think the fitness videos is that extra value to your lively-hood of feeling good and looking good…it totally builds confidence and gave me the energy I needed to not give up. Working out gave my day structure and taught me discipline. I learned results don’t happened over night and to stay consistent. I applied every mental challenge from fitness into making my dream come true. I am living proof of what it means to be fearless, take that first step to reach your goals, believe in yourself, put in the work, there will be blood, sweat and tears but the reward is so worth it if its what you really want.
What are your goals when it comes to teaching in health and fitness?
My goal is to push the importance of happiness and piece of mind. Use fitness as a way to release stress, tension and toxins from the body and use healthy eating habits to nourish, repair, and fuel your body. These are what kept me going and keep a positive mindset.
What drives you to continue to inspire young women?
Sometimes I feel I’ve been brainwashed as to how a female is suppose to think, look, and act. I’ve lowered myself, my value, and thoughts just to fit in the box of what a woman have been painted to be. I’ve been told “girls can’t play sports”(Although I received a track scholarship), treated like an object, and deemed “psycho” because I’m single. Ummm, that doesn’t even make sense! This nonsense and unfair treatment is what drives me to inspire young girls…because it drives me crazy!
What are some of your biggest achievements in your career thus far?
My Biggest achievement would actually be doing my very first fitness modeling job for Silk Almond Milk. I call it my biggest achievement because, I quit my job to chase my dream of becoming a fitness model. I put in the hard work, gave it my best and it worked! Even though I was only shown for seconds at a time…I can truly say I am a working fitness model and ready to continue building my portfolio.
How did fitness help you keep a balance on your mental health and what did the beginning struggles look and feel like to you before transitioning over to becoming a professional fitness model?
Fitness was and has always been my escape zone…It was my mental and physical therapy and it helped with getting in rhythm with my body and making sure I kept breathing. Yes, breathing! Breathing is super important in fitness, when you properly breath in rhythm with your body, your able to execute the exercise much easier. If I feel stressed, I stop to take three deep breaths to get back in tune and think clearly. The biggest struggle when I first started modeling was not knowing when or if I would get an audition and/or booked. Going on auditions are nerve wrecking, because you don’t know what the casting director wants…especially when image is everything. Before ever audition I do my breathing exercises “Three big inhales and exhales”. Transitioning into a fitness model was exciting and I was eager to go on any audition I got. My first audition was for “REAL VOLLEYBALL PLAYERS” and I never played 1 day in my life…so I had to fake the audition to the best of my ability. The casting director saw right through it and gave me a look of “please leave” lol. I learned after that not to lie about your talents, practice the requested skills (if you can), never look unsure, always look confident and just be yourself. The best part of being a fitness model: it is my job to stay in shape, so I’m able to distress on a daily basis.
With all of your accomplishments in TV Production and Entertainment do you ever aspire to keep with it and combine both fitness and production together?
YES, ABSOLUTELY!! It is my dream to merge wellness and entertainment together. I have written so many ideas and shows that I could have my own channel worth of content. I have a few videos on my youtube channel all professionally shot by an Atlanta based production company and produced/created by me. However I would like to have my own production company where my work is being cranked out 24/7 and produce content for others.
How has following your passion in fitness lead you into a happier and more fulfilling life?
I can truly say nothing is impossible and words are powerful.
What advice would you give to young women today if they came to you and said, “My mother wants me to do this, but my real passion is…” What would you tell them?
I would say never disregard advice, but make sure you’re happy. I was fortunate enough to have a supportive Mom who at first feared my career jump from the office to model, then later embraced it, then got inspired to do her own thing once she saw my success. Now she is making extra money from a company she built in less than a year just by taking a leap of faith and believing in herself. My mother warned me of the things that could go wrong, but never of the things that could go right. We were taught to fear. So, I would tell that girl to listen to your mother and be prepared for the challenges ahead, but know yourself worth and make sure you’re happy, you never know who you may inspire.
Do you have any events or classes coming up for young girls to join and support?
Yes, I am currently putting together a fitness and women empowerment event later this year. I will give you all the details soon.
How can people watch you online and follow you on social media?
You can follow me on Instagram @Brittanynicole.fit
Twitter & SnapChat @BrittNicole_Fit
you can follow my career switch journey on my blog at www.brittanynicole.fit
Thank you so much for this interview, I am truly horned!Read more
Curvy Chick Fitness Guide to Running. Your Heart Will Thank You Later.
by Celebrity Fitness Instructor “Charity Lynette”
Hello Everyone, A healthy heart is a very important factor in living a long life. Understanding how movement can change your life and reduce the risk of heart disease and high blood pressure, is an integral part of daily life. I really wanted to put together a guide to help everyone with beginning your running or walking experience. It is important to know even if you are not actually running, the same concepts will apply if you are power walking. So I will always be referring to both and point out the difference if needed. You still need proper footwear, apparel, etc. I really want to share with you some things that will help you get started with your journey.
If you are new to working out and running you may need to speak to a physician because, as much as you want to do certain exercises you may not be able to. You need to make sure you are cleared to participate in certain workouts. Especially, if you are over 40 and not used to working out or more than 20 lbs over weight.
Every great workout and new routine begins with the proper shoes. If you are not sure if the shoe you are in is good for you, then try your best to get to the closest Running Store. Even if you think you have the proper shoe it never hurts to make sure! Jack Rabbit is a great place to go because they do a gait analysis (watching you run) and record it so that you can see exactly what is going on with your feet. From that footage they can recommend the best shoe for you. Jack Rabbit is a great resource in general because majority of the staff are runners and get taught the technical breakdown of most shoes as well as running nutrition, apparel, and recovery options. Just remember don’t let someone recommend a shoe to you without watching and recording you running or walking.
You might think that you can just wear whatever while you run/workout but the truth is dri-fit is best. When cotton gets wet it stays wet and while you are running you don’t need clothing weighing you down. Same thing goes for socks, cotton socks can give you blisters while running you want synthetic socks that wick dry so your feet stay dry. Running socks also don’t lose their shape so they won’t slide down into your shoe the way cotton socks do when they get over stretched. I honestly thought some of running stuff was a bunch of hoopla until I tried it out myself. I literally cannot run in anything other than dri-fit clothing. Don’t believe me? do a test run in different material and see how it feels. Also be aware of temperature especially when working out in the winter. Keeping a running journal is helpful in the beginning. Keeping track of temperature and what you were wearing especially in the winter will come in handy when trying to figure out how many layers you need for what temperature.
Now that you are correctly fitted lets talk about actually running. Scheduling runs is going to be key to holding your self accountable. Now if you want to start running to add something different to your workout routine then how long you run won’t be as important. If you are not thinking about entering races then just run when you can but if you are going to enter a race of 10k which is 6.2 miles then you may want to think about a more strict running schedule. My piece of advice for scheduling runs is to try and carve out 3 days of 30 minutes to dedicate to running whether it is morning or evenings. I can testify to preferring morning runs. I personally can’t run with too much food in my system so in the morning I have much better results and no cramping. Try to be a little more realistic when starting any new exercise regime. Going from no days a week to 5 days a week is most likely not going to happen. Take your time and ease into it. As you progress in your running/walking cross training is going to be something that is essential to running. Cycling, weights, and even yoga are great components that you can add to the routine. Recovery is extremely important and you need to have adequate rest days. Foam rolling, stretching, and off days need to be incorporated in the routine as well. I have added the Couch to 5k training schedule this is the one I felt the most helpful when I started running. Couch to 5K is a program that help you go from an actual couch to a training schedule that will get you ready to run your first 5k which is 3.1 miles. Another helpful tip is to use your current ability as markers when to walk and jog. For example if you can only run/jog for 45 seconds at a time use that as a marker. So jog for 45 seconds and walk for 45 seconds or longer if you need to, but the key is to alternate from jogging and walking at your level for a period of time. This is also called interval training. When you can jog longer do so. If you are interval training a few days a week for 30 minutes those 45 seconds will lead to a minute, a minute and a half, and so on. Running is about your own progression no one elses. If you are a walker you want to alternate between power walking and a slower walking pace. Soon that power walking will turn into a jog, I promise you just have to keep at it.
A few key things to remember before you begin, first knowing why you are starting this is something you can reflect back on when you are feeling discouraged. Second, you are your own competition just try to focus on getting better and beating your own time. Third, find a way to keep yourself accountable whether it’s using an app or finding a workout partner. Try considering running/walking as an outlet and something your body needs and wants no matter how sore you may get vs a chore that you hate. Most importantly have fun and listen to your body. There is a difference from being sore and an injury. When knees and ankles are in long term pain or swollen that is something that should be checked out by a physician.
Good Luck with your journey and keep me posted with all your running activities highs and lows by using the hashtags #ccfrunners #curvychicksrun
Viola Davis won The Best Supporting Actress Role in “Fences” at the Sunday’s 89th Annual Oscars in Los Angeles, CA. Viola Davis is such an inspiration to us all and she shows us what it takes to be an African American woman in Hollywood who doesn’t take NO as an end all.. What a wonder woman! Viola was nominated amongst the elite in Hollywood and did not let that stop her.
The greatest quotes of Viola for the night was, “People ask me all the time, What Stories do you want to tell, Viola? and I Say, “Exhume those bodies, Exhume those stories of the people who never saw those dreams to fruition”.
That’s just it, what about the ones who didn’t get to make it and be heard? As an artist, how will your music or craft speak for those unspoken for? Viola Davis does an AMAZING job at getting those voices heard loud and clear. Viola, our hats goes off to you and congratulations once again! Keep making dreams come true as you are a true inspiration to all of the creative world and beyond!
“I became an artist — and thank God I did — because we are the only profession that celebrates what it means to live a life,” Davis said during her acceptance speech. “Here’s to August Wilson, who exalted the ordinary people.” – Viola DavisRead more
The CLASS Network takes us on a Journey To The Crown, A Self-Love & Healing Experience This Valentine’s Day Weekend In New York
The event will focus on women narrating their own journey of overcoming self-hate, helplessness and insecurities to discover their power and inner beauty.
The CLASS Network hosts Journey to the Crown Experience, an inaugural event that will allow women from around the globe who’ve experienced self-hatred, helplessness and insecurities stand in solidarity as they explore their past, present and future ambitions.
The Journey to the Crown Experience will allow women to celebrate their individual journeys to self-love, self-determination and healing while utilizing these experiences to discover and fuel their passion. The crown symbolizes conquering and reigning over obstacles and the beauty that stems from taking control of your story.
Ellen Osei, Founder of The CLASS Network, is an occupational therapist and doctoral candidate at Columbia University, humanitarian, and former pageant titleholder and coordinator. As a therapist, her life mission is to support individuals in obtaining optimal quality of life in all their daily activities. Ms. Osei’s inspiration for this event stems from experiencing how many women were able to use the pageant platform to overcome their obstacles and serve as a leader, develop a new business idea or career path.
“What makes everyone’s beauty unique is the passion that radiates from within…passion that stems from proclaiming victory over that thing that was once was an obstacle, and walking in your purpose. That is a true crown of beauty. It is my belief that this journey to glory is one of the most important milestones in every woman’s life. Our mission is to help every woman discover and embark on that journey, be equipped to persevere and conquer obstacles along that journey, obtain her crown, and reign as her journey continues,” says Osei.
The JTTC Experience will create a welcoming social environment through lounge style panel discussions, seminars and workshops, introduction to a 90-day curriculum designed to guide each woman to discovering her purpose within, networking and meet and greets with community and celebrity influencers such as TV Star Ariane Davis, America’s Next Top Model Runner Up Mamé Adjei, Essence & Instyle Magazine’s Keisha Lamothe, International Media Personality Madison Jaye and much more.
Date: Saturday, February 11, 2017
Location: 165 Allen Street, New York, NY
About The C.L.A.S.S. Network (Circle of Ladies Above Societal Standards) :
The current mission of The CLASS Network is to share and provide supportive resources to women of all walks of life, encouraging them to follow their dreams with poise, power and purpose as they embark on their journey to success in their respective fields of interest.
Our vision is to serve as a primary international network where men, women and children may turn to one another for mentorship and professional development in the areas of leadership and entrepreneurship virtually and within their respective communities.Read more
Hello friends! My name is Symone Fairchild and I want to begin my very first post, blog, or whatever this might be (I’m soooo new to doing this type of thing) by introducing myself so you know who you’ll be conversing with in the future. Okay…here goes…I am me, first and foremost, and I will never under any circumstances compromise that, I am a woman, a mom to the MOST AWESOME 2 YEAR OLD BOY ON THE PLANET :), an actress, film and television producer and writer, a 2nd degree black belt in Wu-Shu (lifelong study), and I’ve worn about as many hats as you all can possibly imagine. In this crazy town called Hollyweird, you have to be multi-talented to survive, let alone prosper, so I’ve done all sorts of things, except the norm…wait tables or bartend. I have done everything from teaching martial arts, kickboxing, tai-chi and self-defense classes to touring the country taking down casinos as a card-counter.
Life has been quite exciting in L.A., but of course, it has been quite challenging too. I learned a lot and very quickly (with GOD’S blessings and leadership) and it took a lot of time, strategy, strength, and faith. It wears you down after a while and from time to time, you need a safe place to go for a strong dose of positivity and support. This is what my blog/post 🙂 is for. All of you can come here and vent, ask questions, offer advice, whatever, on anything…something you have read here, to something in your own lives, something you experienced out and about, to something you have read in the news. Whatever it is, this is the place for it. Feel free to let it all hang out! You will be met only with support, encouragement, and positivity. So, with that being said, all I ask is that you all understand that that is a two-way street. It’s okay if what you might need advice on is a negative issue, great…that’s mostly what we all need help with anyway, especially in our current cultural climate. But, I will only showcase responses from readers that are positive. I mean to lift people up here and make them feel comfortable.
I was reading the news last night and I saw a couple of stories that touched me, on in which I will share with you guys to show you that there will always be light in the darkness! Mia St. John, female boxing legend/5-time world champion/ex-wife of Kristin St. John, lost her son to spice a few years back. He was an extremely talented street artist who battled bouts of homelessness due to schizophrenia. In her grief, she decided she could not live without her son and was going to take her own life to be with him. On the very same day as her decision, she had a chance encounter with a homeless man who influenced to her to reconsider. As a result, she ended up opening a boxing gym in her son’s art space, in his honor, in Palm Springs. It is only for the homeless! Members of the gym say that it helps them escape their problems and offers them a place to heal! Who knew?! This is so awesome! I’ll bet she had no idea her life would take such a turn AND that the love and spirit of her son would live on and positively impact those in such need!
We all need a little help now and again. Please feel free to email me at email@example.com. As of now, I will be doing blog/posts every Monday and Friday. I will try to showcase as many submissions as I can (my blog/post is only but so long so bare with me please ;)! Have a wonderful rest of the day and know that you are never alone! Blessings!Read more
Losing a child to gun violence is a hard thing to deal with. TheOfficialAO.com had the opportunity to talk with a mother who had lost a child to gun violence. Her name is Chandra Shaw and her son Michael Shaw, died at just the age of 20 years old. Michael left behind his 2 year old daughter Brooklyn Shaw who will now have to grow up without a father to look up to. Imagine, having a fatherless child and how they would yearn for their father’s love and attention.
Tell me about your son? What was he like, how was he portrayed in high school?
Michael had a big heart and was very over protective when it came to the people he loved. We used to call him “Iron Man”, because he was strong and tough. My son was book smart, he loved math and loved his daughter. We had a bond like we were brother and sister, he could come to me about anything, We used to get together once a month with the family and have movie nights and throughout the movie he would be the only one joking and laughing. He always had a smile on his face even when he got mad there was always a smile there. I knew when he would lie and I would know, because of his smile.
Do you recall the day he was killed? What happened?
October 10th, 2016, Michael went to his friends house to hangout. As they were hanging out, the conversation about one of his friends sister came up and they started arguing. One of the friends tried to break it up but by the time he could the other friend had shot him in the back of his head twice.
Is it hard living without him? How do you cope with his death?
Yes, it is very hard, because he used to sleep in the same room as me and I’ve been more protective over my other children since his death, because Memphis is a very dangerous place to stay in. You never know what could happen to your child, they cant even go to the movies without some being shot.
Would you want to help other parents who have been in this type of situation?
Yes, I would like to help other parents, because we can`t keep sitting around watching our children die like this. A mother never wants to bury their child first, but sometimes God has other plans for our lives.
At the end of the interview, I offered my condolences to her family. As I said before losing a child isn’t easy. Parents have to deal with a lot after they lose their child, because that may be their only child and if they have more they become over protective than ever, because they wouldn’t want the same thing to happen to their other children.
There has been approximately 227 homicides in Memphis, Tennessee since January 2016 to Present time and 184 has been recorded as Gun Related deaths. When will our youth learn better ways? It is up to the older generation to come together and educate our youth so fatal outcomes such as Michael’s would not happen so commonly.
Always remember to take ahold of your loved ones and love them dearly, because you never know when it’s going to be the last time that you will be able to see them.
For more information about Michael Shaw’s family and if want to help support the family in anyway please reach out to The Official AO at info@TheOfficialAO.comRead more
The new Memoir “Feeding A Monster” is a riveting story of a mother and daughter’s journey through a family tragedy, and their triumphant return to love. A genius blend of comedy, tragedy and the lessons they’ve learned along the way.Author Veronica Loving celebrated the release of her new Memoir with a book signing held at The Study on December 8, 2016 in Los Angeles with a host of celebrity support. Celebrities in attendance included Ciera Payton(CBS NCIS), Dasha Chadwick (Tyler Perry’s The Have and The Have Nots Season 2), Anthony Pazos (WE TV’s “L.A. Hair”), Alyssia Joy Powell (NBC’s The Mysteries Of Laura), Ali Levine (Celebrity Stylist), Rob McBass (Producer),Jazzmine Jackson (Artist), Carmi Greene (Actress), and many others.
Author Veronica Loving was inspired to write her first book, a Memoir entitled “Feeding A Monster,” when tragedy struck her family and destroyed her 20-year marriage damaging the lives of her and her children. Veronica is now a motivational speaker and advocate for Sexual Assault and Abuse victims. Her work in this field has led her to start a non-profit organization called “Loving You Through It,” where she helps victims of Sexual Assault, Molestation and Domestic Violence move through their circumstances and begin to step out of survival and begin to thrive to their highest potential. She also partnered with an organization called “Fatherless Daughter” to become a certified advocate for the organization. Feeding A Monster can now be purchased at www.FeedingAMonster.com andhttp://www.AmazonPrime.com.Read more
York, PA is the home of the 1969 Race Riots and while some may not be surprised by the recent hate dripping off of this election, One young lady decided she would do something about it.
We recently saw in the news that hurtful headline:
Video catches students shouting ‘white power’ while marching with Trump sign at Pennsylvania school
Well Tajira revealed in an interview with EJ of theofficialAO.com, she wasn’t happy. That hate doesn’t reflect our city. Our youth are better than that.
I’m am so happy about the affect of the blackout day we only expected York high to join but I’m glad all over York everyone is supporting equality.This movement was not for the protest again Donald Trump it is to show that us minorities when we stand together we are a powerful movement I love my city❤️❤️ #AllLivesMatterYC
A parent from York, PA was quoted as saying: Here is why I am hopeful! Our youth are definitely the future and I am excited. Students throughout York county banned together to support their fellow students from Vo-Tech and wore black to symbolize United we stand. Kudos to Tajira and Marcelina for organizing the students from York High, York Suburban, and Dover High School for standing in the gap.