Being an advocate means fighting for something bigger than yourself for someone who shouldn’t have to fight alone. When it comes to mental health advocacy, I’m all about voicing your concerns in a productive and strategic way that lends authenticity and compassion to others.

In this post, I’ll talk about the 3 Best Mental Health Advocacy Tips that will transform your life and the lives of those impacted by various types of mental health problems.

As a self-advocate, I learned that my experiences and struggles can be overcome and transformed into a lesson for those still within the challenge, themselves. By using my life as a model for mental health recovery, I shed light on stigmas associated with mental health. I also highlight ways to live despite the challenges that I face daily.

I had the pleasure of putting myself in that role recently, and it was a remarkable experience. Advocating with thousands of others for a cause that affects me and my loved ones, changed the way I view advocacy. It’s not just talking about mental health, but vigorously promoting change and compassion for the community.

Below, you’ll find 3 Mental Health Advocacy tips that will benefit you in your journey to advocacy, change-making, and positive growth.



I have mental health issues and I have major depression. Point Blank. I’m no longer ashamed of discussing it or putting it out in the open. I’ve learned that what I’m dealing with (mental illness) is not me, but just a circumstance that I’m in.

So discussing the topic with friends and family who inquire has become easier for me. I take the time to answer questions about being a mental health advocate. I answer questions about the symptoms of mental illness and how they differ for everyone. I also provide resources for those seeking therapy for depression or getting help for depression.

As an advocate, it’s my responsibility to encourage those in need to seek mental health programs in their locality. By providing positive mental health promotion, I help end the stigma associated with mental health and mood disorders.



By educating yourself on mental health reform, mental health care policy (Mental Health Care Act, and mental health issues regarding discrimination, legislation, you can make a huge impact on your community.

Volunteer to help others after they’ve been discharged from mental health treatment centers. You can support others by helping them find mental health assessment tools, online mental health services, and alternative treatments for depression.

You can be the one to advocate therapy for mental health challenges and depression. Encouraging someone new to the community that the road to depression recovery or mental health recovery, doesn’t have to be a long lonely one.



I’m not a certified mental health counselor, but I’m willing to sit down with those needing a listening ear. Most of the time, that’s all people want, someone to hear them out.

Inpatient mental health treatment has its advantages, but what happens when you are discharged? Develop a plan to succeed and grow from mental illness to mental wellness.

Try not to allow the stress of depression impact you negatively to the point that you isolate yourself from the rest of the world, with fear. Depression stress is the worst kind, keeping you from being productive on your road to mental health recovery.

Self-Advocacy is about setting a game-plan for yourself to avoid having to return to the hospital. It is with your customized mental health recovery model that you can gain perspective on how you can defeat mental illness, the stigmas that come with it, and come out on the other side thriving.


Overall, advocacy is all about making positive change for yourself and others like you. You can learn the system, then put what you learn to use. By educating others on the things you know, you pass that information to those that really need.

By writing letters, attending legislative meetings, voting, and keeping your ear to the wire to learn policy changes and news, you set yourself to be an incredible advocate for mental health.

Tell me how you advocate for mental health. If you have other ideas to advocate, please leave a comment below and share!

4 important Things I want to Do and Experience at the Blogalicious Conference #BYOE15

4 important Things I want Do & Experience at the Blogalicious Conference #BYOE15 by gaptoothdiva.com


I’m so excited about Blogalicious weekend, coming September 10th through September 12th in Baltimore Maryland. This huge conference is dedicated to connecting and educating digital influencers, bloggers, and content creators from everywhere. This will be my first time attending, only because I was forced to cultivate the courage to apply. I always followed Blogalicious online and often promised myself that one day I would be good enough to attend, but later realized there was no such thing as “good enough” when the main purpose of this conference is to educate members and demonstrate more creative and impactful way to make better content and improve your digital influence.

The Blogalicious mission is…

“To grow a supportive and vibrant community of influencers that celebrates digital diversity.”


For as long as I’ve been blogging and working in the digital space, most of the people who I connected to were only online. Where I am, I know there are some amazing bloggers, speakers, digital professionals out there with websites, brands, and insight on digital marketing and influence, but most of the events and meetups for bloggers like me, were either too far away or too expensive of an investment for me at the time.

Other times, when I connected with a blogger, the vibe wasn’t right. I truly enjoy what I do, although my consistency can be an issue. However, my passion is there in a different way than many others. I always come into contact with content creators that obsess over the numbers, the analytics, & the profits, but gloss over the true purpose of why they started in the first place. It’s easy to get wrapped up into that mode, the desire to be the best and outdo any and every one to be on top. I often struggled with finding that group that lies happy in the middle of hustling and happiness.

So from afar, I was networking, connecting, admiring, and learning from awesome individuals who took what they loved and truly made something incredible and profitable for themselves and their families.

When I follow Blogalicious, I see a huge family of people who truly love what they do. I see professionals that understand the potential of what they have, how profitable it can be as a business, but how enjoyable it is to keep striving to improve. They love their content, they are aggressive in ensuring that it reaches the masses, but they also consistently reach out to help others take steps towards that same greatness.

4 important Things I want Do & Experience at the Blogalicious Conference #BYOE15

As I prepare to attend my first conference ever. I look forward to…

Making new friends IRL:

Blogging, freelance writing, and content creation can be a very lonely thing, if you’re like me. No one does what you do within 20 miles of you, nor do they fully understand it. So as excited as you may be to upload that video, finally finish that post, or create the perfect sponsored campaign, sharing in that experience with your non-blogger friends and family, will often leave people with their eyes rolling and looking lost. So I’m excited to meet some friendly passionate bloggers that I can connect, collaborate, and keep in contact with at the conference and after I leave.

Learn Until My Head Explodes:

I want to soak up as much knowledge as I possibly can. I’m not joking. Don’t be surprised if you see my recording video, audio, taking notes, and studying during lunch. It’s not every day that you can pick the brains of experienced and knowledgeable people who you have admired for years, so it’s not the time to be cute and arrogant. I will humbly get my “learn on” with no shame or hesitation. That’s what conference are for, right? Let’s not waste money here.

Giving Back & Sowing Seeds:

I volunteered to work with the Social Squad for Blogalicious, which is a group of new and veteran bloggers who donated a portion of their time to ensure that the conference went smoothly. I’m excited to help out in any way that I can, because it’s another learning opportunity. You can meet more people while assisting in the efforts of the event that you are also attending. I look forward to meeting the individuals that do so much by putting gatherings like this together for people who truly love the business and art of blogging and digital media. There will be some creative people there and with that type of energy, I can’t wait to be a service and use my skills to make it awesome for everyone right along some great bloggers who are equally passionate.

Coming Back Better Than Before:

I can’t imagine going to this conference and not coming back better than when I left. Every time I watch a Periscope, listen to a webinar or most recently check out a Blab, I’m enlightened. These veterans really know their stuff, and they share so much information that I sign up for webinars just to hear them speak passionately about making others bloggers better at what they love. I want to become a better blogger, but more importantly I want to stay motivated. That’s exactly what I expect while attending Blogalicious. Motivation from some of the most profound influencers in the online space, which will propel me from where I am into someone who can truly build her own empire. I look forward to using everything I learn to take me from isolated blogger, to someone building an engaged and interactive community of like-minded individuals. I honestly feel like this is my chance to leap into the next level of what I love so much, so I’m definitely going to be a whole different person when I come back. Watch out!

So overall, if you haven’t realized it yet, I am so hype. I have some packing to do for this trip, because I want to be cute but comfortable. I also checked out Divas and Dorks article: The Best Apps & Gadgets to Pack for Your Next Conference Trip, which was extremely helpful in letting me know what I should not forget. Now my only issue is, I definitely might over pack. The first day of school is that same week, so it’ll be interesting to still be in back-to school shopping mode, PTA mode, all while getting prepared for this conference. Nevertheless, I can’t wait to meet some new faces and learn some new things that I should be doing and some old things I probably should stop. Watching the contributors of Blogalicious and connecting with attendees in our Facebook group has made it easier, so I’m cool.

Look forward to more updates as the conference approaches. If you can, please join me at this year’s Blogalicious conference by registering here. It will be great to connect with other bloggers while learning new ways to improve your business and brand. Hope to see you there!

Go to http://beblogalicious.com/ for more information about Blogalicious, their events, and to join the Blogalicious network.

Follow and Connect with them today!

Blogalicious on Twitter at https://twitter.com/beblogalicious

Blogalicious on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/BeBlogalicious

Blogalicious on Instagram at http://instagram.com/beblogalicious



GTD Lip Logo (clear Background)





Here is a video recap of the pop up meetup Blogalicious did in Maryland for #BYOE15 by Cassandra Vincent 


Treat Yourself Monthly With Jewelry You’ll Absolutely Love + Rocksbox Review

GaptoothDiva Rocksbox Review
I was not compensated for this review. Rocksbox is a jewelry subscription service that I signed up for with the intention of providing this review. By signing up using the code provided I may receive additional discounts and rewards.

I absolutely adore accessories, jewelry, and anything that can take your outfit from basic to bodacious. It’s pretty hard for me to keep up with the large selection of accessories I already have, so going out to purchase more on a regular basis, doesn’t make sense. I usually wear something once or twice and then hang it up with the other pieces that I covet, but dare not wear out.

Rocksbox subscription service sounds like a great solution to getting cute and stylish jewelry monthly. With your membership you take a short survey about your style, check out pretty pieces and add them to your wish list. Every month you’ll receive three awesome pieces to wear (on loan).

You also get $10 in your Shine Spend account which you can use towards any piece that you decide to keep for good and purchase. Any pieces you don’t really like (enough to purchase them) you return back for free. All the while you are encouraged to refer your friends to get additional credits toward future purchases.

It’s an easy and fun way to add new pieces to your wardrobe… even if it’s temporarily. You can try out new pieces that perhaps you wouldn’t have selected if you were shopping in the store. By subscribing you get the freedom of experimenting with your style, with no commitment if you don’t want to. However, if you love it all, you can purchase it all. That sounds like a win-win to me.

GaptoothDiva Rocksbox Review

My first box came in fairly quickly and I could not wait to open it. I wanted to wear the three pieces selected for me in various ways. Each piece was interesting in their own way, and adding it to the outfits I already have, was extremely easy. I have a review for each piece below, but the overall service is awesome.

Perry Street Amelie Crystal Necklace and Sophie Harper Pave X Ring in Silver

I absolutely loved the Perry Street Amelie Crystal Necklace, which was the ultimate statement piece. I love big intricate pieces like this necklace, and loved how this coordinated nicely with several outfits in my closet. The weight of the necklace made it comfortable to wear, however it didn’t feel so delicate that I thought I would break it. That’s a concern for me, because I’m always on the go, looking cute, and still managing to interact with my boys. I didn’t have to worry about accidentally breaking the necklace or snagging it on anything when little Dash decided he wants to jump on mommy. It is very pretty and how especially like the crystal setting and how it glows in the sunlight. This was definitely my favorite piece in the entire box.

Perry Street Amelie Crystal Necklace GaptoothDiva in Rocksbox

The Sophie Harper Pave X Ring in Silver was my second favorite. It was a simple piece that I thought could glam up any outfit. The ring looks great on, and I’m usually not into a ring that isn’t large, gaudy, and bold. If it doesn’t make a statement, I usually don’t even bother. However, this pretty ring had intricate details and I love the structure of the “X” on my finger, which gave the impression that I had two interlocking rings on at the same time. I will say that it’s easy to forget that you’re wearing it (I don’t think that’s a good thing), but I love the chic and simple appeal.

The Sophie Harper Pave X Ring in Silver GaptoothDiva in Rocksbox

I wasn’t really feeling the Margaret Elizabeth Mini Cushion Cut Drops in Labradorite earring set. It wasn’t my style at all. Considering I selected a few awesome pairs of earrings on the Rocksbox website that I did for my wish list, I was a little surprised to find these earrings in my first box. I couldn’t even pretend to like them just for a picture, because my hair was so big and luxurious. My big curl hairdo was hiding the small set and I was worried about losing them in the curliness of my ‘fro.  Eventually I got very frustrated, so I placed them back in the box immediately.

Margaret Elizabeth Mini Cushion Cut Drops in Labradorite earring set

How it works

Sign up to be a Shine Insider

Take the style survey and add items to your wish list

Get 3 pieces to wear on loan

Receive $10 in Shine Spend each month to apply towards a purchase

Refer your friends to receive additional credit toward buying jewelry

Not in love? Return anytime to get 3 new pieces

Free prepaid shipping both ways

Cancel at anytime

Want to try Rocksbox? Sign up now at rocksbox.com and use code: Gaptoothdivaxoxo to receive your first month free. Make sure to add pieces to your wish list, to give the stylist an idea of what you would prefer to receive.

Check out Rocksbox and follow them to see more incredible deals and new items all the time…

Twitter @myrocksbox

Instagram https://instagram.com/rocksbox

 Do You Love Stylish Jewelry? Want To Try Rocksbox?

Apply at sign up to get a special offer for only my closest friends… you!

Use the following code: i’eshabff to sign up for an awesome Rocksbox today.

The Most Sensible Summer Reward from Weight Watchers

I recently did a review with Influenster for the newly re-designed Weight Watchers ice cream. Before the end of the month of July, considering it is #icecreammonth

I wanted to share my video review on my website before the end of the month to show my respect to all those ice cream lovers out there.

The Most Sensible Summer Reward from Weight Watchers

Side Note: I will be sharing more details about my weight loss plans, very soon. I’m actually going to let you in on my personal journey and I have plans to make it extremely interactive. I’m excited, so just wait!

Check out the video review below. In this video I show you my kid’s reaction to the ice cream sandwiches from Weight Watchers. You will also see the full unboxing of the English toffee crunch flavor from Weight Watchers, and you will hear my honest review about the ice cream.

Watch the Full Product Review and Unboxing:

Influenster Weight Watcher’s Ice Cream Review

For more details about Weight Watcher’s and #weightwatchersicecream, go to http://www.weightwatchers.com/shop/categoryshowcase.aspx?pageid=1056751&navid=moreww

The Most Sensible Summer Reward from Weight Watchers

To participate in Influenster programs to try out products that you may love and enjoy talking about, sign up here: www.influenster.com/r/840609


I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.

Dress for Success Central Virginia Red Carpet Runway 3rd Annual Fashion Show & Fundraiser [Video]

This past weekend there was an incredibly awesome fashion show that went down at the Canal Club. It was the Dress for Success Central Virginia Red Carpet Runway Fashion and Fundraiser. This event is to raise money for the organization, as well as challenge designers to take donated items that aren’t particularly the most fashionable and upcycle them into runway and/or wearable styles that are updates and unique.

It was great seeing who the designers incorporated their distinctive take on each item to create something totally different and unexpected. From gowns and creative dresses with bold silhouettes to everyday wear with an edge, the designs were incomparable to anything I’ve seen lately, and only ignites more creative inspiration in someone like myself.

I really enjoyed the show and was very pleased with how well the event was put together. The many volunteers and staff with DFS Central Virginia should be patting themselves on the back. Bravo!! The models were beautiful and definitely wearing every item as if it truly were their own (although some ladies were walking a little too fast for runway). It was even cute to have some little girls from the crowd join the runway to show off their little skills, which was extremely adorable. The crowd obviously came out to support their friends and family, as you can hear cheers and hollering at a ten for some of the lovely models.

Overall, it was an exciting experience and I can’t wait to see what else Dress for Success Central Virginia has up their sleeve. We donated a Flawesome gift pack (ft. a Flawesome Book, T-shirt, and a set of lipstick) to any beautiful winner in attendance. Since the goal of Dress for Success is to help women prepare for a life of self-sufficiency and economic independence, it was my hope that by reading the book they will also learn to love themselves and overcome all of life’s obstacles one day at a time.

Watch the Full Video Recap of the Fashion Show and Fundraiser Event Below: 

★★ Liked the Video? Subscribe: http://bit.ly/GTDchannel  ★★

I attended the Dress for Success Central Virginia Red Carpet Runway 3rd Annual Fashion Show & Fundraiser, which featured fashions and upcycled designs from local stylist and designers in the Richmond, Virginia area. Dress for Success receives generous donations from the public and often, those items may not be suitable for work/corporate environments. Nevertheless, every year DFS host their recycled fashion show to raise money for their organization, challenge local designers to see beyond the original garment, and to bring something fun and unique to the community.

Stylist and Designers were asked to remake outfits out of old clothes and repurpose designs for an original flair, while being judged by local celebrities, fashion experts, and leaders in the community.

To learn more about how you can help women move towards self-sufficiency and economic independence visit http://www.centralvirginia.dressforsuccess.org.

Join the Audience:

Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/GaptoothDiva

Twitter: http://twitter.com/GaptoothDiva

Facebook: http://facebook.com/GaptoothDiva

Dress for Success Racap red carpet runway 3rd annual fashion show and fundraiser

What Do You Think About The DFS Fashion & Fundraiser?

InstaNatural Dead Sea Mud Mask Review | GaptoothDiva Beauty

In this video I review InstaNatural’s Dead Sea Mud Mask, an all-natural detoxifier and purifier that comes from the renowned and sacred Dead Sea. This mud mask (when used once weekly) will positively impact healthy skin. In the review, I discuss my experience with this product and the two other products sent as well.

The mud mask was amazing, once you get past this initial discomfort of it drying on your face. After washing it off, my face felt refreshed and rejuvenated. I liked the results after using it weekly for almost a month in addtion to the Night Cream moisturizer and the Retinol serum, as well.

Check out my full review on these InstaNatural products

(sent complimentary through Brandbacker)

Get InstaNatural products – http://instanatural.com/collections/body-hair/products/dead-sea-mud-mask

InstaNatural Dead Sea Mud Facial Mask –

InstaNatural Night Cream Moisturizer Treatment for Face – http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00OHXPMCM/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1427129005&sr=8-3&keywords=Night+Cream

InstaNatural Retinol Serum – http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00Q301WXK/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1427129049&sr=8-3&keywords=Retinol+Serum

★★ Liked the Video? Subscribe: http://bit.ly/GTDchannel ★★

FTC: I was not paid for these reviews. My opinions and experiences are 100% my own. I received these products complimentary for testing and review purposes only.

Join the Audience:
★ Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/GaptoothDiva
★ Twitter: http://twitter.com/GaptoothDiva
★ Facebook: http://facebook.com/GaptoothDiva

For more on this topic and many others, head over to my website and join the conversation at…
★Official website: http://GaptoothDiva.com

Beauty, skin, care, dead, sea mud mask, cosmetics, gaptoothdiva, review, retinol, moisturizer, clean, face, healthy, youthful, appearance, instanatural, regiment, facial wash, skin care, how to, tutorial, frugal, makeup, pores, detoxifying, wrinkles, plump, young, daily, weekly, routine


Conversations & Cupcakes with Global Girls Opened Up Hearts and Minds

This past weekend I had the pleasure of attending the Global Girls Cupcakes and Conversations event held at the Glen Allen Library 10501 Staples Mill Road in Virginia. This event promised to be an eye opener for everyone that attended and I’m pretty sure they accomplished that goal.

Global Girl’s was founded in 2007 during a seminar/bible study taught by it’s founder Danielle Branch. The vision for this organization is to establish a support system producing powerful, confident, successful ladies by providing resources, education, and training helping ladies reach their full potential across the globe.

GaptoothDiva discusses Global Girls Cupcakes and Conversations event

Global Girls is devoted to empowering, educating, and unlocking the dreams and aspirations of ladies of all ages. In the recent event, which I believed to be their first, Global Girls greeted everyone in attendance warmly and positively. I was honestly pleasantly surprised that I had to do a double take to see if I knew the majority of the room. Every lady welcomed me like we all have known each other for years. It was an incredible feeling from the jump. Continue reading → Conversations & Cupcakes with Global Girls Opened Up Hearts and Minds

Fashion Night Out RVA Highlights Incredibly Talented Emerging Designers This Fall

This past weekend I had the pleasure of hosting an incredible fashion event presented by Runway Couture owner Christian Crawford and Le’laMone’ owner Lakisha Greene. The event held at Broad Streets Mix Gallery in Richmond, Virginia was like no other fashion event this fall. Chock full of some sophisticated and trendy pieces created by some brilliant designers, this event was one for the books when it comes to highlighting DMV style and creativity. Continue reading → Fashion Night Out RVA Highlights Incredibly Talented Emerging Designers This Fall

Runway Couture’s Boutique Soft Opening: Faith in Yourself & Hard Work Goes a Long Way

Let me start off by saying that you should definitely get to know Richmond Designer Christian Crawford of Runway Couture. This woman, with her beautiful spirit and positive attitude has dressed and adorned many of Richmond Virginia’s stylish and talented with her custom made designs. I, myself enjoyed the custom chevron romper she created for me for the Camp Diva’s Girls Are Talking Conference. She works diligently, and all of her hard work was exemplified during this Sunday’s surprise soft opening. I say surprise, because I had no idea that she was even working towards having her own boutique store. I knew that she always worked on her custom pieces from her home, often making appointments there as well. However, to see her push herself to get her own brick and mortar location, in an up and coming Church Hill neighborhood, it’s truly astounding.

I'esha GaptoothDiva reviews Runway Couture's Boutique Soft OpeningRunway Couture, located at 801 North 21st street in Richmond, is a quaint and charming boutique on the corner. Christian decorated it herself, detailed reflections of what women love in every corner and on every wall. Diana Ross stands picturesque over a rack of stylish pieces, colorful t-shirts and accessories abound. The Runway Couture Boutique soft opening was incredible. The DJ played awesome music, while Christian provided her attendees with food and refreshments. Party goers were able to shop the racks and take pictures with the lovely lady herself, all in support of a huge milestone in her life and career.

I'esha GaptoothDiva reviews Runway Couture's Boutique Soft OpeningSeeing how proud she was of her accomplishment, had me thinking seriously about how often many of us take for granted the steps we take when it comes to our goals. Christian wasn’t located in some posh shopping center, where most of us can’t even afford to shop. She wasn’t flexing on her colleagues and friends by living above her means. The shop was anything but ordinary, but with a little sweat equity anyone could have put together something this elaborate. The gorgeous motif of the location, represented its owner, genuine, realistic, and stylish. The pride that she showed in her work is something you rarely see nowadays, with so many entrepreneurs ready and willing to show off at the expense of themselves, instead of showing out quality and passion. She made no apologies for anything, because there wasn’t anything to apologize for. The people who were there, were real friends and supporters. People who loved Christian came out to show her how much, dressed up or down, they supported her efforts. She was among a community of friends, who weren’t looking for her to wow them any more than she already does. In her eyes, I could see happiness. She exuded an attitude of “Yes, I did this!” instead of “Do you like it?” That’s an attitude I think all of us should adopt.

I'esha GaptoothDiva reviews Runway Couture's Boutique Soft OpeningWhen you’re passionate about something, it shouldn’t matter if other people approve. You should always love what you do and do the very best that you can. In an era where even entrepreneurs are always trying to keep up with the “joneses”, it’s refreshing to see one woman who did her very best, and that was enough. Her boutique is an example of doing what works for you, so that you can walk one step closer to your goal. Christian needed a spot to sew and design without impeding on her personal space, a place she called home. In turn, she found a second home, Runway Couture’s new Boutique store, bringing fashion and style to the masses and firmly placing a strong line between personal and professional.

I’m proud of her and I was really inspired by what she was able to do. She didn’t boast or brag about what she was planning to do, nor did she give off any indication of doubt in what I know she believed to be her purpose and path. We could learn a lot by her ability to just work towards it, never looking left or right. She went for it, and it turned out more amazing than any of us could ever imagine. When you get a chance, stop by her boutique and give her a huge hug, I know she’ll appreciate it. Show you support and love to Runway Couture and check out the racks of awesome and creative designs from not only Runway Couture, but many other designers and stylist in the DMV that she aims to support through using her store to showcase others like her. It’s incredible, and I believe you’ll agree. Just stop on by and tell her GaptoothDiva sent you.

Contact Runway Couture – Strut Couture for Sure at info@shoprunwaycouture.com

Follow her on Instagram – @Shoprunwaycouture

Follow her Twitter – @Myrunwaycouture


Other designers featured at her new boutique are:

Albert Miller Collection – Custom Bow Tie & Vintage Tie Collection

Follow at Facebook.com/albertmillercollection

New Vintage by Sam

Follow on Instagram @newvintagebysam or check out newvintagebysam.bigcartel.com



For the latest in fashion, entertainment, culture and lifestyle follow me on Twitter @GaptoothDiva or on Instagram @GaptoothDiva



GaptoothDiva Logo