How to Deal With Having a Mental Illness

Written by Dominique Bancey– Dominique Bancey is the writer of our new column The Thought Banc, where she writes on all things mental health and black culture.

Having a mental illness is a very serious thing. Many individuals have one, or a mixture of some, and they don’t even know. Others are aware that they have it, but either they aren’t sure how to deal with it, or they actually don’t want to. There isn’t a straight and narrow way to deal with mental illnesses. There isn’t a perfect, dictionary way to go about it. Some things work for some people, while others just don’t.

Even though it may be hard to deal with it, you still have to cope with it. Here are some tips to follow, whether you’re the one with a mental illness, or you know someone who does:

Don’t allow others to belittle/look down on you.

When dealing with a mental illness, you already tend to belittle/look down on yourself, so then it’s even easier for others to do so. However, you having a mental illness doesn’t give anyone the permission to treat you worse than how you’re already feeling. Many times you’re flattered by the attention you receive from the individual, and they may tell you the exact things you want to hear, but if you do realize that they are treating you badly, let them go.

Find someone who accepts you.
Having someone who fully understands (or tries to understand) is a huge thing for someone with a mental illness. It’s the worst when you find someone, only for them to shatter your heart because they aren’t willing to be there for you. Be careful with who you let in, so they cannot damage you.
Get support.
Whether through a support group, or simply speaking with a therapist/someone you feel comfortable with, do so. Many times you’ll feel like you don’t want to talk about how you’re feeling. But you’d be surprised as to just how much you’ll talk about it when you’re completely comfortable.

Living with a mental illness is a struggle, especially when you’re doing it on your own. There are many other ways to cope and somewhat deal with your illness, these three (3) are just a start. I hope this helped in some way for you.

Until next time.

3 Signs You’re Suffering From Sleep Apnea and Dont Even Know It

Written by Salina Jivani

Sleep. It’s the one time you can be worry-free, right? Well, not if you’re one of the 22 million Americans who suffer from sleep apnea, a condition where you routinely stop breathing while you rest.  There are two types of sleep apnea: central sleep apnea, which is the less common one, and obstructive sleep apnea, the more common type of apnea where your airways collapse. Many people who have obstructive sleep apnea may not even realize they have it, but here are three signs that could indicate you do.   

You wake up needing to pee

When you stop breathing, your body applies pressure to your abdominal and diaphragm muscles in hopes that this pressure will help force open your airways again. This also causes pressure on your bladder, which can give you a sudden urge to pee. If you frequently awaken with the need to go to the bathroom, be mindful of other sleep apnea symptoms.

You awake with a pounding headache

When you stop breathing, your brain doesn’t get oxygen. Decreased levels of this necessary element can cause you to awaken with headaches. Also, lack of oxygen can cause your neck muscles to strain as they work to help open up your airway again, which can also cause those annoying post-sleep headaches.

You feel sleepy just after you wake up

Although it may feel like you got a good night’s sleep, apnea will rob your body of the rest and relaxation it needs to rejuvenate. The disruptions sleep apnea causes forces your body to work overtime throughout the night so it can make sure you don’t stop breathing in your sleep. This can lead to exhaustion during the day, causing you to feel excessively sleepy, even after a cup of coffee.

If you suffer from any or all of these symptoms, visit your doctor or a sleep clinic to get tested for sleep apnea. If left untreated, this condition can cause other, more serious conditions, like heart disease, stroke and other problems…so don’t take it lightly, and don’t wait!

King of Pops Co-Founder Steven Carse Covers the September 2018 Issue of VEU Magazine

We are pleased to have Steven Carse, the co-founder of King of Pops, the popsicle brand taking the world by storm, cover the Special Edition September 2018 of VEU Magazine. When Steven Carse, the co- founder of King of Pops, launched his own popsicle business, he didn’t have much. A couple of grand, a used ice cream push cart and boatloads of determination were the key ingredients to his company’s success. As for him, personally, his story started in Georgia, where he grew up and attended the University of Georgia, obtaining his bachelor’s in Journalism. Out of college, he jump started his career as a sports writer at Idaho Falls, Idaho. But within a short period of time, he moved back to Atlanta and tried his hand at insurance, where he learned some of his most valuable lessons about business, lessons he still believes in today. As luck would have it, the financial recession left Carse jobless—he was laid off from the company in 2009. But as they say, when that door closed, another one was ready and open. He decided to start King of Pops, and he hasn’t looked back since.

In this issue we also feature a list of 13 entrepreneurs and creatives you need to know. This list was curated by our assistant editor Tianna Maxon Little. “The 13 entrepreneurs and creatives on this list all are truly dedicated to their crafts and deserve to be admired for it,” she stated.

Click here to read the full issue online now

How to Prep Your Small Business for a Smoother Tax Season in 2019

Written by Salina Jivani

Taxes. It’s one word that gives most people a run for their money…pun intended. If 2019 will be your first year filing taxes, or you’re simply tired of the stress and chaos associated with tax season, now’s the time to make quick fixes so you’re not buried in an avalanche of stress (and paperwork) when tax time does roll around.  

Track your income and expenses

Most people start the year off strong, doing a meticulous job of tracking expenses, only to fall off the bandwagon about midyear. Now is a good time to start back up where you left off and log your gross receipts, sales, employee wages, and other such line items so that when it comes time to list everything on your taxes, you’re not having to backtrack and tally several months’ worth of figures.

Consider your deductions

Perhaps one of the greatest perks of taxes are deductions. Keep a thorough log of “ordinary and necessary” expenses so that you can quickly access these numbers when it comes time to enter in your deductions. Remember, deductions lower your taxable income. Losing track of your deductible items will mean that you’ll end up showing a higher income, meaning you’ll end up paying more in taxes.

Start gathering documents

By now, you should know the tax drill. You’ll need your previous year’s bank statements, payroll documents, accounting documents, etc. to submit to your tax accountant or keep on hand if you’re filing your own taxes. Start printing and putting these documents to the side each month so you’re not left hunting for a year’s worth of documents at the last moment.

Preparing in advance is the key to success for a stress-free tax season. If in the end, despite your preparations, you’re not able to get everything in order by the April deadline, be prepared to request an extension. 

Why These Statements Are Offensive to People of Color

Written by Dominique Bancey- Dominique Bancey is the writer of our new column The Thought Banc, where she writes on all things mental health and black culture.

People of Color, especially Blacks, have constantly been faced with actions and statements that are quite offensive, and some even very racist. The individuals saying them, however, don’t realize why it’s offensive. Therefore, they come to the conclusion that we are overreacting and it’s because of the color of our skin why we are so angry, of course, that’s the famous black trait – anger.

If you are also a person of color, then for sure you’ll be able to relate and understand why at times you feel angry or a tad bit pissed off when things are said to you.

If you aren’t a person of color, use this as a guide for what you should or shouldn’t say to POC.

“You’re so pretty for a black girl.” / “You’re the prettiest black girl I’ve ever met/seen.”

This statement isn’t only said by non-POC, but unfortunately, some POC say it too, not realizing how offensive they are being. This is offensive because it makes it seem as though all/most black girls are ugly and they are the one exception. To the POC who say this to darker-skinned women, telling her that she’s beautiful even though she’s so dark, that is NOT a compliment.

“Since *another black person* can do *this* then you can do it too, right?”

This is such a terrible generalization so it should be obvious just how offensive it is, yet it is still done. Just because one or few persons of a certain race can do something, doesn’t’t mean that they can all do it. Being black, white, asian, etc., we are all still individuals with different skill sets.

“Are you real/full black?”

This.. is a NO NO. You may be curious to find out whether a person is mixed with another race or not, but this is not the way to go about it. Even if they are mixed with white, or another race, asking if they are REAL black makes it seem as though they won’t be real if they are mixed. Whether mixed or not, POC are still that.. POC.

Unfortunately, there are many other phrases that could be mentioned, but for now, we’ll still with these. Who knows, maybe I’ll do a part 2. Hopefully you learned something and can apply it to your life.

Until next time.

Instagram Targets College Students With New Feature

Written By Aysha Chaudhry

Instagram sets its sights on Generation Z with a new feature meant to help college students meet up and connect with their fellow school peers. Considering Facebook was founded on the principle of connecting universities and owns Instagram, it makes sense that IG is looking to create student communities. Basically since 2005, Facebook had cornered this market but the company has to adapt, especially since it’s reported that only 9% of Gen Z use Facebook.

While this university community feature is still in the testing phase, it’s probable this will be rolled out soon enough. This is not the first time the photo-based app implemented new features and huge changes in order to attract a younger audience, most notably when it copied important features like “Stories” from the teen-friendly competitor Snapchat and integrated them rather quickly.

Beyoncé and Jay-Z OTRII Tour Earns $150M So Far, Paves Way for Further Education Access

Written By Aysha Chaudhry

There is no stopping Bey and Jay nowadays! The On The Run II Tour has officially surpassed $150 million in revenue, and there is still almost half of the tour to go. If they earn another $100 million, which looks easily feasible, the hip-hop power couple will have the highest-grossing tour worldwide so far this year.

In addition to that, Beyoncé and Jay-Z have pledged $1.1 million in total in scholarships to split among 11 senior high school students, each picked from a city from the OTR tour. This is not the first donation these two have given, and certainly not even the first scholarship donation. After her historic Coachella performance in April, Beyoncé donated $25,000 each to 4 students at HBCUs, totalling over $100k in scholarship money.

The Carters have not only solidified a place in the history books for themselves and their family as one of the richest and most powerful families ever, but they continue to provide others with the tools and resources they need to succeed as well.

Angela Yee Is Helping Side Hustlers Turn Their Dreams Into Reality

Entrepreneur and The Breakfast Club co-host Angela Yee is teaming up with AMP Energy Organic for the “Ultimate Side Hustlers” nationwide contest.

The Juices for Life co-owner will give contest finalists the chance to showcase their unique side hustles live at Power 105.1’s Powerhouse NYC 2018 this October. “When you want something bad enough you need to put in the work and keep going until you make it happen,” Angela Yee stated. “I’m excited to hear from people who are getting home from work and turning around to put the same amount of energy into their passion project. It’s also why I’m excited to partner with AMP ENERGY® Organic, which gives me a boost of energy with only five simple, organic ingredients, to help show how the hustle pays off.”

“Everyone wants to get more out of life, but few are willing to go the extra mile. AMP ENERGY Organic respects the hustle and knows that sometimes you just need an extra boost to stay unstoppable. We’re looking for the afterhours moguls and on-the-side creatives who are doing whatever it takes to turn their dreams into reality. We know these unsung entrepreneurs are out there and we can’t wait to help share their stories,” said Justin Schwarz, Marketing Director, Flavors and Energy.

The contest will kick off August 27th-September 16th, 2018, with a national call for entries in the categories of food, fashion, beauty, art, or music. Online submissions will be evaluated by the AMP ENERGY Organic team and Angela Yee. 

For more information about the contest visit

I Can’t Just “Get Over It” – Yes I Suffer From A Mental Illness

Written by Dominique Bancey

If you are an individual who has a mental illness, then I’m sure you’ve heard this at least once throughout your life, I know for sure I’ve heard it more times than I can even remember. The thing is, when you are someone without a mental illness, it may seem so simple to you, but it’s really not.

If you are one of those persons who tells a friend/family member/loved one, to just “get over it” when they vent to you about their mental illness, you have something to learn.

First off, simply telling them to get over it, is a slap in the face to them. They begin to doubt themselves and their existence even more because now they think that their problems aren’t a big deal and they’re just overreacting. That may not be how you wanted or expected them to feel, but that’s how it comes across.

Depression, anxiety, etc., is more than just a feeling or emotion.

I suffer from depression, social anxiety and insomnia. Nowadays I realize that whenever people can’t sleep they just throw around the word insomnia. “Oh I can’t sleep, I have insomnia.” It’s way more than that, but they don’t know that. Personally, I didn’t have issues with insomnia until my depression decided to show its face.


Depression, for me, is sudden. Out of nowhere, my mood changes, I feel absolutely helpless, I don’t want to do anything anymore, I don’t want to be alive. For someone to tell me to just get over it, hurts me because I wish it was that simple. Depression comes with no warning signs. It just attacks and takes over. There is no root to say, oh I’m depressed because of blah blah blah, NO. I’m just depressed because I am and I can’t jump over it or crawl under it.

It’s the cruel truth, but it’s life.

 This topic was more personal for me more than anything, hopefully a few lessons were learned.


Until next time.

The ‘Voice’ Behind ‘The Thought Banc’

Written by Dominique Bancey

It’s one thing to read an article or two from a complete stranger on the internet, but it’s another thing when you actually feel as though you know the person, or are acquainted with them.

That is why I’ve decided to write a simple introductory article, so that whoever comes across this column, will actually feel as though they have some form of connection with me and won’t entirely view me as just some stranger on the internet.

Of course, you already know my name from seeing it, however, what you don’t know, is that I actually don’t go by ‘Dominique’, most persons call me ‘Dom’ simply because it’s shorter, easier to remember and it makes me more comfortable.


How old do you think I am?

I am actually quite young. It’s a surprise to many when they hear my age because apparently I am extremely mature based on the way how I speak, write and carry myself. When some persons find out my age, they then proceed to underestimate my talent and passion. I think I will actually keep this one a secret for now, until another time maybe.

One thing that will definitely cause many of you somewhat feel more acquainted with me, is through what I like to do for fun, my hobbies. Well, it all depends on what you think of as fun. My fun, doesn’t tend to be fun for many other individuals I come across (maybe I’m just boring? Who knows).

I absolutely love poetry, whether to be the one writing it or even just reading it. I also love playing video games, lately I’ve been a bit stuck on Fortnite (ugh I know it’s everywhere right now, almost everyone’s playing it). Otherwise, I enjoy playing any sporting games like FIFA, 2K, etc. or fighting games like God of War. I’m not much of a party person, however, I will go to a few parties here and there.

I was born and raised in the beautiful island of Jamaica. I currently still reside there, however, I tend to travel quite a lot. I lived in the state of North Carolina for a year, and overall I’ve visited eight (8) states in the USA. I hope to start traveling to some countries in Europe as soon as possible and when I do, I will most definitely write about that and let you guys know what my time there is like.

I may give a more detailed article on more things about me and exactly who I am another time, but for now, I hope you now feel as though I’m less of a stranger, and more of an acquaintance and eventually a friend.


Until next time.