Jet Magazine Joins The Grown Zone

Senior Editor Marcia Talbert to be featured speaker at Grown Zone Self Love and Healthy Relationships Retreat, Nov. 22-24, in Chicago

Jet magazine (JetMag.com), America’s No. 1 African American newsweekly, with more 7 million readers, has agreed to a media partnership in support of the Grown Zone Self Love and Healthy Relationships Retreat, set to take place November 22-24, 2013 in Chicago at the Welcome Inn Manor, a sumptuous bed-and-breakfast venue.The Grown Zone Retreat is a production of A2Z Personal Growth Enterprises, owned by Zara Green and Alfred Edmond Jr., best known for their Grown Zone multimedia personal growth initiative focused on moving beyond adult rights to healthy “grown” decision-making.

The Grown Zone Retreat weekend will consist of seminars led by Green and Edmond, who will show attendees how to lay the foundation for healthy relationships and to recognize unhealthy behaviors detrimental to such relationships, while providing a reliable framework for making better relationship decisions, rooted in principles of self-love.

Jet Senior Editor Marcia Wade Talbert will be a featured speaker at the Grown Zone Retreat in Chicago, Nov. 22-24.

Jet Senior Editor Marcia Wade Talbert will be a featured speaker at the Grown Zone Retreat in Chicago, Nov. 22-24.

As part of Jet’s media partnership, the newsweekly’s Senior Editor Marcia Wade Talbert will be a special guest speaker at the Friday evening reception to kick off the retreat. In addition, the Grown Zone will contribute blog posts on healthy relationships to JetMag.com, beginning during the week leading into the Retreat Weekend.

The reception will be hosted by Cameka Smith, founder of The Boss Network, an extensive network of successful career professionals and entrepreneurs. A screening of the film Still Standing: In Spite Of It All, Our Marriage Still Stands, produced by Tyler New Media, will also take place during the reception. The DVD of the film will also be available for sale during the retreat weekend.

For more more information and to register for the Grown Zone Self Love and Healthy Relationship Retreat, go to gzchicago.eventbrite.com. Also, for additional updates via social media, check the hash tag #GZRetreat on Twitter, Instagram and other platforms.

FAQs: The Grown Zone Self Love and Healthy Relationships Retreat

What, exactly, is the Grown Zone?

The Grown Zone is a multimedia initiative produced by A2Z Personal Growth Enterprises, a media company owned by Zara Green and Alfred Edmond Jr. focused on the development of products, events and communications to inspire personal growth and better decision-making. The mission of the Grown Zone is to help you to shift your focus from what you may have the absolute adult right to do—destructive as those choices may be—and what is in your best interest to do—grown decisions—in order to achieve honor, esteem, respect, prosperity, health (mental, physical and emotional/spiritual), good relationships and self-loving behaviors for your life. In the Grown Zone, we believe that our common purpose as human beings is to love, learn and grow. Loving nourishes personal growth, and personal growth increases our capacity to love. Anything that blocks our capacity to love and personal growth is unhealthy.

Who should attend the Grown Zone Self Love and Healthy Relationships Retreat?

GZ Chicago updated JETAnyone—male or female, single or married, divorced or “booed-up,” and especially those in “complicated” situations—who wants healthy, respectful, emotionally secure, sustainable relationships should join us in Chicago, November 22-24, for the Grown Zone Retreat. Over the course of the weekend, we will teach you how to lay the foundation of a healthy relationship and to recognize unhealthy behaviors detrimental to such relationships. Best of all, you will leave the retreat with skills, action items and a guaranteed framework for making better relationship decisions, rooted in principles of self-love. The valuable information you will gain includes:

How to assess the worthiness of potential relationship partners before making choices with lifelong consequences. Is that the light of love at the end of the tunnel? Or the light of an oncoming train wreck? At the Grown Zone Retreat, you’ll learn to tell the difference before your life is devastated by poor choices that you may have the adult right to make, but are not in your best interest—not Grown!

How to recognize and reject unhealthy relationship choices and behaviors—many of them endorsed by parents and other family members, friends, church (yes, church), as well as television, movies and books—that are keeping you from identifying and sustaining healthy relationships.

How to understand temperaments and individual priorities, in order to progress from stressful, dysfunctional and destructive; to happy, healthy and productive.

If you’re seeking a relationship, deciding whether to commit to a relationship, or looking for ways to restore health to an existing relationship (or a framework to decide whether such an effort is even worth it), you need to be with us in Chicago, November 22-24.

You can get additional details and updates via social media by searching the hash tag #GZRetreat on Twitter, InstaGram and other platforms.

What does the retreat registration cover?

Each registration is all inclusive for the weekend, covering all of the seminars led by Zara Green and/or Alfred Edmond Jr. on Saturday and Sunday, as well as all seminar materials (including pens, notepads). It also covers the Friday evening reception; Saturday breakfast, lunch and evening cocktail reception; and Sunday brunch.

Is lodging included?

Welcome Inn Manor

Welcome Inn Manor

Lodging is NOT included with registration. To get the special rate for Grown Zone Retreat attendees to stay at the Welcome Inn Manor, host venue for the retreat, please speak to Innkeeper Mell Monroe directly at 312-493-2953, and use the Promo Code Grown Zone. You will not be able to reserve rooms at this rate via the Welcome Inn Manor web site; you must speak directly to Mell. As Welcome Inn Manor is a bed-and-breakfast inn, not a hotel, not all retreat attendees will be able to lodge at the Manor. If there are no vacancies at the Manor, there are many conveniently located hotels in Chicago. In addition, Mell can also make recommendations for lodging options.

Who else is supporting the Grown Zone Retreat? How are they involved?

Jet Logo_single-01-01We are proud of and grateful for a number of key relationships that will make the Grown Zone Retreat a truly power experience for those in attendance.

JetMag.com is a media partner of the Grown Zone Retreat. Senior Editor Marcia Wade Talbert will be a special guest speaker at the Friday evening reception. In addition, the Grown Zone will contribute blog posts on healthy relationships to JetMag.com, beginning during the week leading into the Retreat Weekend.

The BOSS Network is a supporter of the Grown Zone Retreat. Founder Cameka Smith will be our host for the Friday evening reception, in addition to providing social media promotion for the event to the group’s extensive network of successful career professionals and entrepreneurs.

We also enjoy a fruitful friendship and budding partnership with Lamar and Ronnie Tyler, the founders of Black And Married With Kids (BMWK), the top African American marriage and parenting blog on the web. The Tylers have also been promoting and endorsing the Retreat to their impressive network. In addition, we will feature a screening of the film Still Standing: In Spite Of It All, Our Marriage Still Stands, produced by Tyler New Media, during the Friday reception. The DVD of the film will also be available for sale during the Retreat.

When you say “healthy relationships”, what do you mean? What is “healthy”?

In the Grown Zone, we believe that all people, though each person is unique, are created with one universal purpose: To Grow and To Love. Love produces growth, and growth increases your capacity to love. Anything that prevents your ability to love and grow freely is unhealthy for you. A healthy relationship is one in which each person is committed to loving, strengthening and supporting the growth of the other. This defines all healthy relationships, not just romantic ones. Healthy relationships cannot be achieved without an uncompromising commitment to self-love (i.e. an unwavering commitment to your own health, security and growth), as well as the lasting, sustaining qualities of compassion, fidelity, loyalty, emotional security, discipline, accountability, respect and unconditional acceptance. By contrast, what most of us are taught to seek and value in a relationship—physical/sexual attractiveness, shared religious beliefs, family background, social status, fame, wealth or earning potential—have little or nothing to do with a person’s capacity to commit to and sustain healthy relationships.

In a healthy relationship, to paraphrase Stevie Wonder, “He/she doesn’t use his/her love to make him/her weak, he/she uses love to keep him/her strong.” Unfortunately, too much of what passes for “love” in adult relationships promote and embrace the exact opposite: emotional drama, reckless sexual behavior, betrayal, infidelity, possessiveness, and other neglect and abuse of self and others. (You know: rachetness.) If you are tired of that and want to do better, you want healthy relationships. You need to be at the Grown Zone Retreat.

I love the Grown Zone. I listen to your show on BlogTalk Radio every week and follow the @GrownZone on Twitter and all of the other social media platforms. What will I get at the Grown Zone Retreat that I am not already getting?

On Twitter and other social media, we can tell you WHAT to do. In our Grown Zone blog at GrownZone.com and on our BlogTalk Radio show, we can tell you WHY you should to do it, and even what happens when you don’t. But there’s a difference between telling and teaching, just as there is a world of difference between hearing and learning. It takes face-to-face engagement, away from distractions and with the ability to address questions directly, for us to effectively teach, and for you to learn, HOW TO DO IT. What and why are important, but you can’t make your NEXT DECISION BETTER if you don’t know how. At the Grown Zone Retreat, we will teach what is impossible to learn from tweets, status updates and blog posts: How to achieve and sustain healthy relationships.

Register HERE

PERSONAL GROWTH SPECIALISTS ZARA GREEN AND ALFRED EDMOND JR. TO HOST GROWN ZONE WEEKEND RETREAT NOV. 22-24 IN CHICAGO

Alfred & Zara

Alfred & Zara

Personal growth specialists and social-media power couple Zara Green and Alfred Edmond Jr. will be in Chicago to host the Grown Zone Self Love and Healthy Relationships Retreat, November 22-24, 2013, at the Welcome Inn Manor, a sumptuous urban bed-and breakfast inn. The weekend retreat will provide in-depth teaching and interactive guidance, in a relaxed and intimate setting, to those seeking a framework to recognize, prepare for, attract and maintain healthy relationships, romantic and otherwise.

The Grown Zone Self Love and Healthy Relationships Retreat kicks off on the evening

Cameka Smith, BOSS Network

Cameka Smith, BOSS Network

of Friday, November 22, with a reception/mixer hosted by Chicagoan Cameka Smith, founder of The BOSS Network. A full day of seminars and workshops led by Green and Edmond will begin on Saturday, November 23, including “Self-Love: The Foundation of ALL Healthy Relationships,” “Making Better Decisions” and “What A Healthy Relationship Looks Like.” The retreat will conclude with a wrap-up session, including open discussion and Q&A, on Sunday, November 24. Registration, which is limited to 45 participants, includes a Friday evening reception/mixer; breakfast, lunch and evening cocktails on Saturday; and a Sunday brunch. For more information about the retreat and other Grown Zone offerings, go to www.GrownZoneA2Z.com. Register for the Grown Zone Self Love and Healthy Relationships Retreat at www.gzchicago.eventbrite.com/.

Welcome Inn Manor

Welcome Inn Manor

The Welcome Inn Manor (www.WelcomeInnManor.com), the host venue for the Grown Zone Retreat, is located at 4563 S. Michigan Avenue in Chicago and co-owned by husband and wife Mell and Angie Monroe. Located in the Lakeshore South neighborhood, the Welcome Inn Manor is about a 1 mile walking distance to Lakeshore Drive and a few blocks to several El train stops. Street parking is free and garage parking is available.  A Queen Anne historic home built in 1893, with cozy and uniquely appointed rooms, themed in tribute to the likes of Nat “King” Cole, the Welcome Inn Manor is an ideal location for an intimate and luxurious weekend getaway. Named a 2012 Top Vacation Rental in Chicago by TripAdvisor’s FlipKey online reservation site, the Welcome Inn Manor also enjoys a top TripAdvisor Traveler Rating, based on traveler reviews. Those registered for the Grown Zone retreat can secure special room rates at the Welcome Inn Manor by calling 312-493-2953 or e-mailing to mell@welcomeinnmanor.com with the promo code: Grown Zone.

Life and business partners Green and Edmond are co-principals of A2Z Personal Growth Enterprises, a media company focused on the creation and delivery of personal development products, communications, content and events. The company is best known for the Grown Zone, the mission of which is to teach the difference between adult choices—what people have the right to do—and “grown” decisions—those choices that honor the Grown Zone principles of “Self Love, Better Decisions and Healthier Relationships.”

“The Grown Zone is our response to repeated requests from our social medGrown Zone, Header croppedia friends and followers, particularly over the past year, to share our principles of self-love, better decisions and healthy relationships in order to achieve a happier life,” says Edmond. “As much as we both love social media, live events allows us to do this in a deeper and more engaging and personal way than we can on Twitter or Facebook. So we were thrilled when we were invited to bring the Grown Zone to Chicago.”

“Our goal is the same whether live, social media or traditional media,” Green adds. “We are both excited by and committed to the mission of helping people make better decisions that lead to better outcomes for their lives and relationships. We want to help people learn to distinguish, embrace, accept and respect their individual differences, and to require the same of others. By accepting self and others for who we are, and taking responsibility for our choices and outcomes, we can achieve our true, common purpose in life: to love and grow.”

Green and Edmond are recognized, especially on Twitter and Facebook, among social media’s most popular and respected power couples, known for their unique combination of “heat and light” and “cool refreshment.” They are host and co-host, respectively, of the weekly Grown Zone on BlogTalkRadio, every Saturday at 12:00 noon EST. Green and Edmond also host a Grown Zone Live discussion series in New York City, and have garnered the attention of other media, including the Tom Joyner Morning Show, which featured the Grown Zone “Love and Money” series during Financial Literacy Month in April 2013.

Green is an author, speaker, trainer and former broadcast journalist specializing in personal growth, resiliency development and individuality advocacy. She is best known for helping others to understanding individual temperaments as a key factor of healthy, productive life management, in order to empower them to make their Next Decision Better™.

She is also known for her popular Grown Is Sexy™ and PooNannie Principles™ content and products, which focus on teaching healthy relationship choices founded on love of self, respect of others, and taking personal responsibility for securing both. For women in particular, Green has garnered a passionate and local following for her teachings on helping women to proactively make H.E.R. ™—Honor, Esteem and Respect—a non-negotiable priority in order to secure happy and fulfilled lives.

Edmond, best known as an award-winning journalist, editor and media executive with Black Enterprise and host of the nationally syndicated radio feature Money Matters for American Urban Radio Networks, is a widely recognized expert on personal finance, entrepreneurship, mentorship, leadership development and the practical application of faith in daily living.

A highly sought-after public speaker, Edmond is also known for his A Grown Man Knows™ content on the values and behaviors of responsible, life-affirming manhood. Well known for his sense of personal style, Edmond is also co-designer of a signature line of bow ties, the Alfred Edmond Jr. Collection, in partnership with Nashville, Tenn.-based Windsor Neckwear.

For a daily dose of Grown, Join us in The Grown Zone!

Connect with us on these platforms:

Twitter: @GrownZone

Facebook: /GrownZone

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Have You Been A Doormat? Here’s How You Courage Up

I’ve been known to call people “punks” because they won’t stand up for themselves. Punks are like screaming doormats. When you lay down and let others walk on you it’s supposed to hurt!

In the Grown Zone, before anything, we’re about self love.  People who love themselves don’t allow others to treat them with disrespect. You teach people how to treat you. Before you demonstrate love for anybody demonstrate it for yourself. That’s one way to always know that you will not be disrespected more than once.

When others try to Bogart you in any way or you give into pressures from others more than once on the same issue, don’t blame them! The first time you get a pass because you didn’t see it coming. But after that you have to Courage UP in order to stop it!Doormat sign

Find your voice – your truth; that authentic sweet spot:

  • What makes you, you? Know your traits: good bad & ugly like you know your name. Start listing them – refining the good ones, safeguarding the bad and doing your damnedest to control the ugly.
  • Embrace that you’re worthy of respect! When you believe that you are you’ll prove it by protecting your mind, body and spirit with better decision-making.
  • Be willing to teach others how to treat you; what’s acceptable and what is not.

Get off the ground and commit to growth; that’s where peace lives!

You’re invited to Enter and LIVE in the Grown Zone.

For a daily dose of Grown, Join us in The Grown Zone!

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My Daddy Is A Fatherless Son But Not His Father’s Choices

Daddy In The 70's

Daddy In The ’70s

My father only had one directive for all of us – do better than I have. But let me tell you, even with only an 8th grade education and his being an abandoned child from the racially segregated deep south of rural Louisiana, those are some big shoes to fill.

Abandoned 3 Year Old Boy

As my father tells the story of the day his mother left him with his father, you can still hear the pain. He was crying and begging her to take him with her. Holding his baby sister on her hip and pushing him back into the screen door repeatedly she said, “You have to stay. I can’t take both of you.” She moved out of state.

My grandfather was far more interested in womanizing than he was parenting. Daddy was often left by his father to fend for himself, or with women who mistreated him. He knows what it is to be hungry, forgotten, alone, and to be unloved. His father has never, in his entire life, given him anything, not one dollar. And although Daddy forgave him (not that his father asked for it) and took care of him up to his death at age 97, he still never got his attention, affection, nor approval.

Daddy decided early that he would not be to his children what his father had been to him. He decided that he didn’t have to live out his father’s choices.

Self Reliance Was Expected

My father was ultimately raised by an uncle and his wife (who couldn’t have children). They believed and taught my father that educated or not, a man  was to use what he had and be innovative about how to multiply and make the most of it. All of the men on that side of the family worked and provided for their families well. Never dependent on others, all practiced self-reliance.

My father is no different. Daddy has always worked hard and smart! He’s a military veteran – a Navy man – and naturally curious, with a photographic memory. As a result, he’s been a student of life and made the most of every place he docked and lived all around the world. A reader and a history buff, he loves the Discovery Channels, so when you experience him – especially upon learning all he’s accomplished – you’d never know that his formal education ended at the age of 12.

He knew that he had to earn and has always been more focused on what he could do then on what he couldn’t do. And he has never – even in the segregated south of the 1950s and ’60s – concerned himself about who could stop him.

His uncles taught him that a man is defined by how well he provides for his wife and children.

Side Note: Daddy was (and in many ways still is) an excellent provider to his children. And on top of that he’s never missed a game, recital, award ceremony, graduation or any of my surgeries. When I was in need he showed up!

How He Did It With Little Education

As a young man he bussed tables while going to barber school. He met and married my mother during that time. As a young barber, he rented a building which had an apartment attached; it became his barbershop. He rented chairs to other barbers, rented the apartment and used a back room as a TV repair shop, for which he became a certified technician. He started a pest control service and had a truck hauling service. That’s just the beginning of the legitimate businesses (hustles) he’s had that eventually earned enough to buy the building he worked in; the first of many real estate properties which enabled him to provide for his family and many others in the community.

The Best vs. Your Best

Daddy ingrained this in me: You don’t have to be the best, but you do need to always do your best. My father is not a perfect man, nor was he the perfect parent – no parent is. But he was perfect for me.

In my adult life, one of the things that I’ve learned to appreciate most about my Dad is that he has lived unapologetically! He knows he’s not perfect – has never professed to be – nor is he striving for perfection. His goal is to always be better than he’s been. I love that! And I’ve lived it.

Though he started with so few resources and so little support from his parents, he didn’t let that define him; instead he decided to do the best he could. While he knew that he might not ever be the best, he always gave his best. And even when he failed miserably, his best was always sufficient for him.

I’ve  learned as much from his flaws as I have his successes. When I’ve done my best, even if it’s not enough for others, it’s always enough for me. In those times, I’m unapologetic for my decisions and certainly for me – who I am – because I’m always enough for me. My goal is always the same, to be a better me.

Thank you Daddy for being a constant example of courage and commitment. I love you, Sam Green, Sr.

For a daily dose of Grown, Join us in The Grown Zone!

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LIVE Grown Zone Monthly Series Launched in NYC

Grown Zone, Logo2Earlier this week we launched the LIVE Grown Zone forums in NYC and it was a success! The January topic was: Courage Up In 2013 and Make It Your Best Year Yet! It’s taken me a couple days to digest the excitement and feedback so that I could effectively share it in writing. Here are a few of the consistent messages we got:

  • Personal & relatable
  • During Q & A: great listeners & provided “how to” explanations
  • Fresh, relevant, never experienced anything like it.

    Alfred & Zara

    Alfred & Zara

Partners in life and business Alfred Edmond Jr. and I, Zara Green are co-principals of A2Z Personal Growth Enterprises, producer of The Grown Zone discussion series, which focuses on key themes popularized via our respective social media platforms, as well our @GrownZone collaboration on Twitter. Both “Do-Better Fanatics”, we’re jointly leading sessions on personal growth, self-love and resiliency, healthy relationships and “grown” decision-making at monthly live events in NYC, and others scheduled across the country.

WHY THE GROWN ZONE?

Our mission comes down to a single truth: We must do—and inspire one another to do—better.

The mission of the Grown Zone is to help you to embrace personal growth, and to shift your focus from what you may have the absolute adult right to do—destructive as those choices may be, and what is in your best interest to do—grown decisions—in order to achieve honor, esteem, respect, prosperity, health (mental, physical and spiritual), good relationships and self-loving behaviors for your life. Ironically, many of us make self-destructive choices—including fiscal irresponsibility, dangerous sexual behaviors, abusive relationships and other unloving treatment of self—out of a desperate hunger for these positive outcomes. The Grown Zone is dedicated to the proposition that there is a better way, one that begins with self-love and a commitment to personal growth.

Not in NYC?

Join us every Saturday at noon (EST) for Grown Zone Radio. You can listen online or call in from any phone: (714) 364-4724. On this week’s show (tomorrow) we will take the 1st part of the show to recap our inaugural LIVE Grown Zone before moving onto segments of our February LIVE Grown Zone topic.

February’s LIVE Grown Zone Topic: Penis Led vs. PooNannie Wise

In recognition of February’s association with romance and relationships thanks to Valentine’s Day, this will be a no-holds barred discussion on the choices, actions and standards that must be set and enforced in order to establish and sustain healthy, mutually respectful, romantic relationships. Registration  is required and limited. At 6:30pm on Wednesday, February 20, 2013, we will welcome those who want to make winning decisions in life, love and relationships to the latest Grown Zone monthly live discussion event at the Shetler Studios & Theatres at 544 West 54th Street, 12th Floor (between Broadway and 8th Ave).  Bring yourself, your mate, or your friends but don’t miss this discussion: Penis Led vs. PooNannie Wise.

We hope you’ll join us in the Grown Zone!

Connect with us on these platforms:

Twitter: @GrownZone

Facebook: /GrownZone

Blog Talk Radio: /GrownZone