parenting

Positioning Yourself To Win!!!

positioning yourself to winIt’s the start of a new year!!! Every year we make promises to ourselves to do better, to live our best lives, to prosper more this year then last year.  We are hot and heavy for the first few months and then BOOM, something happens and we get less and less enthusiastic about accomplishing our goals. Why? Why can’t we keep winning all year-long? I’ve discovered the answer to this question. We don’t take the time to position ourselves to win. We have the vision board, we have the calendar, we have the map yet, we forget how to implement the tasks to keep pushing forward. So, how can you keep winning. Check out the steps below:

  1. Preparation is key! What are you trying to accomplish? Setting clear goals for what you want to do may seem easy to do. How you prepare to reach those goals is what will make the difference. Each goal requires a different plan, mapping out these individual plans will help you maximize your vision. You must first set the goal, then create the plan. With plan creation you must list out the step-by-step process, this will keep you on track and hold you accountable.
  2. Do the work! Of course when someone else is doing it, it looks easy, but honestly you don’t know that it’s easy for them. Focus on what you are accomplishing and set your mind to doing the work to achieve your goals. Nothing happens by chance, putting in the work to be successful is a major key in positioning yourself to win.
  3. Realize Rome wasn’t built in a day. Timing is everything. Most of us need to realize that our timeline is very different from those around us. Instant success is very rare! Making it a priority to realize that it may take time to achieve your ultimate goal will help you be successful. Think of your vision like giving birth to a baby (it really is) it takes time for the baby to form, to make connections, to come to the age where the baby is ready for birth, and then once the baby is born there is still more work to do. While you may accomplish one part of the goal there is still time needed to be put into nurturing that goal. All of this takes time. When you come to grips that everything may not happen instantaneously, you will learn how to best utilize your time.
  4. Create time & space. You need to stay focused, but how can you, there’s laundry, school projects, dinner to be made, babies to be changed, date nights, the list can go on and on. In order to win you must create a space where you can focus on accomplishing your goals. Whether at home, the library, coffee-house, the park, wherever you need to go to have a space to concentrate you need to make getting there a priority. Once you find the space dedicate time to working in that space on your goal. This is where preparation plays a major role. If you are prepared with the steps you want to complete in the time-frame allotted you are paving the way to achieve that goal.
  5. Connect with like-minded people. One of the things that stumps us in the winning process is getting stuck. So many ideas, maybe no ideas, we tend to get stuck and stay there because we can’t figure a way out. Having people who are going through goal achieving processes as well will help you. They have been where you are and may be there now, encourage each other to keep going, take breaks and enjoy life with each other. You need to find your tribe, people you can call on in those moments you want to give up. This group may be different from the friends you have had for years, the purpose of this tribe is to keep you focused on accomplishing your goals. (Guess what? It’s okay to have multiple tribes)
  6. Start & then start again! The first step in winning is getting started. You have the vision, you have the plan, now let’s do something with it. Most have no problem getting started, it’s when life happens and we get thrown a curve ball that derails our plans we STOP! Guess what winning requires you to know you may have to restart the plan at some point. You are not a failure if you have to restart, you only fail when you quit. How many times you restart is based on you. I will say this if you are restarting in the same area each time re-evaluate your plan and see where you need to implement change.

Hotties we can be winners all year-long as long as we determine we want to win. It’s up to you, you have the power, now use that power to start WINNING today!

How do you document your goals? What advice would you give to someone who’s stuck? Let’s help each other keep winning!

parenting

I Don’t Wanna Go Broke!

blog photo 11.20.18Hey Hotties! How many of us remember that Toys R Us kid’s song. I knew when I heard it around the holidays Christmas was fast approaching. Well now Toys R Us is no longer around ( insert sad face), is that due to poor financial planning, biting off more than they could chew, like the Tootsie Roll commercial “the world may never know?!” What I do know is I don’t want to see any parent going broke trying to provide a “Christmas” experience for their family. So below you will find a few ways I am curbing my spending during this upcoming holiday season.

Forbes predicts that parents will spend $495 per child. With Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, parents are pouring out big bucks for electronic items, collector items, and lifetime experiences for their children. Our children are living their best lives and we are going broke for them to do it! So how do we stop the cycle of unnecessary debt and enjoy this season. I’m going to tell you what I’ve done and hopefully it helps you.

  1. I made a list of the individuals I was going to purchase gifts for. I would love to splurge on all my nieces, nephews, aunties, uncles, and cousins but that’s not feasible. I’ve kept the list very specific and assigned a dollar amount to each person.
    (example)
  2. Name Amount Spent Remaining
    Symone 150 75 75
    Jamiel 150 63 87
    Anissa 150 92 58

    Once the amount allocated is gone that’s it, there is no more to spend.

  3. I started shopping 2 months ago. I allotted an amount from each paycheck to go towards the holidays. This way I wasn’t rushing to buy things just because I had to get a gift and I was able to budget between bills and extracurriculars. Also while I love a good Black Friday or Cyber Monday sale, there have been some amazing sales going on if you sign up to receive promotions from those stores or vendors. While the emails may get to be a bit much at times, I love being the “first” to know about the sale and getting that extra 15-35% off because I signed up with them.
  4. All gifts matter! Here’s is where your parental guilt may cause you to break the bank spending this season. DON’T DO IT! If you can’t afford it, then that’s it, making a choice between paying a bill and your child having the new Jordan’s is a no brainer. Now don’t get me wrong I love seeing the excited look on my children’s faces when they get the gift they really want, but I’ve also instilled in them that appreciation for the gifts they receive is the greatest gift they can give back to me as a parent. (cause let’s face it they not breaking their little banks to buy us gifts). You are doing the best you can, don’t allow social media, TV, YouTube, or other parents make you feel guilty about what you can and cannot afford. You run your household and you know what you need to keep the needs of the family first not just the wants.
  5. Now if you are one of those people who just have to get EVERYBODY a gift, but you know you can’t afford it, here’s my back-up plan. Get photos of you and your family and have them printed, then create a holiday memory book for family members to display in their homes. Get artsy with it, no grandparent can resist a photo album with the little painted baby hands on it. Or you can bake cookies and give them out, this allows for you all to do a family activity and share with others.

Debt is something we should start teaching our children early to steer clear of. As much as we want to fulfill a want, discipline in spending habits will go a long way to secure their futures. What is your budget looking like this holiday season? How can you save?

parenting

My 5 Favorite Blogs/Social Media/Podcast! (My best friends in my head!)

createherstock-2018-Boss-Lady-Neosha-Gardner-11Let me start off by saying it was a difficult task putting this list together. There are so many wonderful HOT MAMAS out there doing their thing, these are just a few I feel have helped me in wanting to grow my brand, get my edges and my life together. I hope you go and support them, engage with them, and show love!

If you don’t know who Halani Lobdell is then your waist can’t be snatched or at least not snatched with the flame she can give you. Halani is @Mrs2Weeksout, GO OVER TO INSTAGRAM and be inspired! Initially I followed her because I was interested in the RI28 Days Challenge. I joined and let me tell you, it was not easy, 28 days of discipline, focus, and prayer that my body would transform. I’m happy to say it was all worth it and my weight loss journey was again going in a positive direction. I mean look at her, that body is a HOT MAMA dream, but that’s not the reason I continued to follow her. Halani has an inviting spirit, I didn’t focus so much on looking like her as I used her example of pushing my workouts, enjoying my family and loving one a man (HER HUSBAND IS FINE), to grow me as a person. Her confidence, her glow, her love for those around her attracts you to her. I wanted to know her and you should to. Thank you Halani for being an encourager!

#BWAFGU if you don’t know this hashtag by now, get into it. The dope queen behind this is Stevona Elem-Rogers! I had the pleasure of meeting her in person at a self-care retreat in NOLA! She is my spirit animal. When I think of the revolution not being televised I know it’s because Stevona has put pen to paper and we need to READ those word and FEEL it! She has a magical way of drawing you in and giving you the tools to be your own revolutionary. When I think back on her conversation with this group of women I shared a space with I remember this, I AM A BLACK WOMAN AND I AM NOTHING TO PLAY WITH! I was empowered by every word that dripped from her lips, she snatched wigs fixed it and put it back on so that your crown is a natural hot mama delight! Since this time I can honestly say I have lived unapologetically, remembering I am a black woman, I am grown, and I am a force to be reckoned with. Stevona you inspire so many with your words and actions, thank you for living out loud that we may not apologize for who we are, but instead embrace it and wear it like the jewelry our ancestors intended us to be robed in!

If you don’t know you will know now…I LOVE THERAPY! I believe everyone should have a 6 month therapy check-up if you don’t already have regular sessions scheduled. There’s something about getting the point of view from someone outside your circle that allows you to grow. When I can’t get my therapy I tune into “Therapy For Black Girls” hosted by Dr. Joy Harden Bradford. Now as Dr. Joy would tell you this is no substitution for a session with a licensed therapist, and she provides a way for you to find one. I love this podcast because it’s an inviting space for me to get well and have it formed for how black women think and understand others. You may think “how different is the way a black woman thinks?” If you asked that you will never understand our complexity and therefore let us have our therapy moments. Dr. Joy covers all aspects of our lives and it’s beyond encouraging to know we are not alone in the issues we deal with on a regular basis. For a long time I thought these thoughts are not normal and therapy isn’t for me. But I know now I should not be ashamed for loving my therapist and the time we spend together. Dr. Joy thank you for being a true comfort for allowing a space where black women can seek out the help they need to live empowered lives with our family and friends.

Grab your edge control you’re going to need it ANYTIME you encounter Sarah Jakes Roberts. I have to mentally prepare myself whenever I listen to the podcast Woman Evolve. I know that Sarah is going to bring that fire, that flavor, that heat!!! All that sauce and so much more. Sarah will bring you to the feet of Jesus and continuously remind you why you enjoy being there. Her love of God and her fellow woman is so powerful. She reminds you of who God created you to be and why you need to be uniquely you! I’m reminded that this world is not the final destination but simply a means to an end that is glorious, but that along this journey it won’t be easy, but that’s okay. We all need that friend that will keep it all the way real with you and doing so in love. Sarah your wildness has allowed me to unleash my own beast, to know that God loves me for me and that the more authentic I am the more people will see God in me. Imagine that God being seen in you! AWESOMELY AMAZING!

Are you looking for that person who will CHECK YOU?! The “normal” down to earth person that pops flavor and drips sauce?! Look no futher…Mattie James has come to give you all of that and so much more. I found Mattie James while making my re-branding plan. I was looking for specific women who were doing what I wanted to do, to get to know them and how they became successful. In this blogger game information is key and sometimes people are not willing to share their information. That is not the case with Mattie! She is encouraging, inviting, really real, she has those AHA moments that make you think as well. AND she shares information! She wants you to grow! Mattie is nurturing souls not only with her business savvy but with doing it God’s way. She realizes He is the Plug, He is the business model. It’s truly a blessing to know that there are other women who are not ashamed of their faith or feel their faith will hold back their business. God has the plan and desires for you to have it too. Who would have thought?! Mattie Did!

These women have given me so much to think about, they’ve planted a seed within me to not give up, to remember who I am in God and to not be ashamed. We all need those friends! So go on over and get what you need, I promise you won’t be disappointed. What are some dope peeps you follow that help you live your best life? Drop them in the comments.
formation photo 1

parenting

The Ministry of Sisterhood: The Ansari Girls

img_0425If you haven’t been paying me any attention then you missed the BIG ANNOUNCEMENT! Want to know what it is/was?! My sister, Ayesha, and I have launched a show on Facebook LIVE, IG LIVE, and YouTube to discuss the ministry of sisterhood. We are giving you a behind the scenes look into our lives. How are we handling success, balancing family life, being social, and keeping our groove, all while maintaining our sanity and our close relationship with each other and our devotion to God? That’s a lot to view. So what made us think that our lives were so special that we needed a show. Let me take you on a little journey…

It’s no secret to the people who know us that my sister and I DID NOT get along growing up. We were like oil and water, if and when we did agree it was probably to agree that we didn’t agree with each other. This is how our relationship was for most of our childhood and on into our teenage years. My parents were so annoyed with us, but the older we got, our bond began to form. Now we didn’t stop arguing or fighting, we just didn’t have to do it in front of our family or friends, we each had our own homes and our hang up game was strong. So when did our relationship finally turn around. I really can’t tell you, one day I just looked at my sister differently. I no longer saw her as the brat that was driving me crazy, I saw her as another woman, someone I enjoyed being around. I didn’t just love her because she was my sister, I actually liked her as a person, someone I WANTED to hang out with. As others began to see us together they noticed the difference in our relationship and wondered what changed us. Our conversations were now inspirational and encouraging, our phones calls ended in laughs, we began to appreciate our time together.

So what change? Our faith! As our own individual relationships with God began to develop he granted us access to see each other differently. I began to see where I’d slacked as a big sister (yes, the secret is out, I am the oldest) and I allowed her to see the vulnerable parts of my life I’d kept hidden. It was in these moments our bond was solidified and we could actually see each other. As we began to share our story, our struggles, our journey, people paid attention and they wanted to hear more. If you tune into Just One Hot Mom the podcast (available on Itunes) some of my favorite shows are with my sister. But Just One Hot Mom is my baby, and I can’t share it, so what could we do that would allow people to hear and learn from our stories. Nothing but get in front of the camera and share. So on Tuesday, October 2nd, we shared our first story on “The Disciplined Art of Essentialism!” (check it out on our FB page/YouTube channel The Ansari Girls) Every other Tuesday at 8pm, we are opening the doors of our lives and sharing them with you. Our hope is that by being transparent with you about our lives, you will become confident in who you are, inspired to share your story, and encouraged that you are not alone in this life. I wouldn’t want to do this with any other person.

So your assignment, go like or subscribe to our pages and share in our journey!

Facebook: The Ansari Girls
Instagram: thensarigirls
YouTube: The Ansari Girls

parenting

Tune in!!

Here are a few of my favorite guest and podcast episodes from the last year. I appreciate all my guest giving me the opportunity to share their story. Tune in! Click the links!

No Longer Powerless Featuring Sharone ThomasNo Longer Powerless Promo

Policing Our Communities Featuring Jamaal Ansaripolicing our communities

#BOSSMOM Featuring Sherita Carthonbossmom

Dating After Divorce Featuring Clotea Mackdating after divorce

Donnie Lynee Artist SpotlightDonnie Lynee Promo