LAWD! Moms, Y’all good? During this whole COVID crisis, I’ve had so many emotions, and today I’m sharing 3 things that are helping me to survive self quarantine! Whether you’re a new mom, expecting mom or connected to a mom… this video is sure to be helpful!
Okay sooooo, this past week hubby and I watched the show “Love is Blind” on Netflix!! Did you see it? No? Do yourself a favor and catch it during this COVID19 lockdown. You will not be disappointed.
I saw Vanessa Lachey (she hosted the show with her hubby Nick) and immediately thought of this Christmas movie, A Twist of Christmas. She was some sort of reporter and had an opportunity to interview a best selling author who was the face of “managing it all/you can have it all” for moms! Yes, this man was the “expert” on keeping all things at home in order. Crazy!!! Lol
During this interview, she mentioned how she felt like somewhat of a failure because she hadn’t been able to keep up with all that he spoke about in his book. She felt like her life wasn’t together, especially as a single mom with a career!
Then it happened… the author slipped up and shared his secret to success! He goes “Oh, I have people for all of that…” He has:
🗣 a maid
🗣 a cook
🗣 an assistant…etc
Lawd! A whole lie! This man wrote a whole book as if he were doing it all, when in reality he had people working behind the scenes for him! Y’all, I was feeling some sort of way… yelling at the screen with all my black girl magic! 🗣😂
Okay! I know it’s just a movie, but man oh man, did it give me some serious perspective!
1. Don’t compare to others. (Obvi, but I needed the reminder)
In the movie, Vanessa felt like a failure because she couldn’t keep up with the ideals/lifestyle put forth in that best selling book. But how many of us as women/moms/mommypreneurs feel like failures/”less than” because we feel that we can’t keep up with our counterparts based solely on what we see posted on social media? I know I did at one point! I follow a lot of influencers who are also moms, and Before Dream got here I thought I could manage my life/time/business the same way they did.
Not only was I wrong,but I soon realized as I got into the “thick of it” and actually had to raise Dream, not many spoke of their challenges. Yes, some shared an “it’s challenging” post here and there, but the images seemed so perfect I thought there was no way that they could relate to my situation. For a moment, I felt alone in this mommypreneur space. Not fun. Thank God for my people who swooped in and quickly got me together!
Comparison kills in every area of life! And for me, comparing what I’m able to do in this season with what I see others doing, isn’t wise! God has graced me to live MY LIFE, not theirs. So with that, when I see others going on vacations, or other mommypreneurs who are traveling/speaking/hosting/ living baby free, and showing up in life and business differently than I am… I cannot compare. Their “behind the scenes” isn’t the same as mine and that’s okay! Whether they decide to share what’s happening behind the scenes or not, it’s none of my business. I still celebrate! I truly want us ALL to win, however, I don’t live my life trying to keep up!
“God has called and graced me to live MY LIFE, not theirs”
2. Be REAL and authentic with your platform/message/story
As I’m sharing more of what it’s like for me to be A WHOLE MOM, who is also building her empire… I have to be real!
🗣It’s fun at times, and other times it’s EXTREMELY FRUSTRATING!
🗣I get it right some days, and other days… Lord Help Me😭😂
I’m here to use my journey, my story (Lessons learned and victories), to empower other mommas who are building as well! I love pretty pictures, and I’m pretty good with sprinkling my words with just the right amount of sparkle to keep up appearances. But is that impact as God designed?
The word says “His power is made perfect in my weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). So when we share our story… those authentic, imperfect parts of us that won’t fit behind an Instagram filter… I truly believe God’s power shows up in a mighty way!
So I’m grateful for this opportunity. I’m living what I share.
I don’t have a maid, a cook, or an assistant, but I do have:
🗣 A voice
🗣 A story
🗣and the passion to help myself and other women in my shoes OWN everything God has for us!
I recently shared a post reflecting on how things have totally changed over the past 365 days (read that here). I went from being a solo-preneur standing smack dab in the middle of purpose… to birthing a mini boss, and instantly becoming a mommypreneur. LAWD! Talk about TRANSITION. So, Today I’m taking it a bit further and sharing 3 ways I’ve been able to find harmony in my life! Whether you’re a mom of 1 or a mom of 5… a new mom or have been a mom for some time… this post is just for you! Especially if you are navigating that space of building an empire! Read with an open heart and Be encouraged!
1. First things first.
I’m not sure how you prioritize your life, but this year I’ve been extremely intentional about mine:
2. Family/home (Dream and Keem)
With my priorities in check, I’m able to better manage how I make business decisions. If a business decisions or commitment doesn’t align with what God has spoken over my life, or pulls me away from my family… it makes it easy to say “not this time”. I think may of us as moms don’t have our priorities straight. We say, “Family first”, but our decisions say the EXACT opposite. The first step to finding and maintaining harmony in your life as a mom on a mission is to keep your commitments in alignment with your priorities and values! Ask:
-What’s most important to you?
-How can you better prioritize your life, keeping first things first?
“Harmony is achieved only after you’ve identified what’s most important and prioritize accordingly”.
2. Pray & plan ahead. Pivot as needed!
There are certain things that I know I want to complete weekly and if I don’t plan for them, like literally write them down in my planner AND on the calendar, I know I will miss it.
Whether it’s setting aside time to write an article, recording a new video series, hit the grocery store, pump (yes I’m still nursing), coordinate visits/play dates, update my website, do the laundry, correspond/meet with clients, ETC… it takes some SERIOUS and Intentional planning. And how I plan lines up with what I’ve prioritized! Yes, there are days when I just go with the flow, because that’s the only way to survive the day (😩😭😂), but I have a general plan for my week, in writing, to keep me on target!
I’m all about FLOW! And no, this isn’t a perfect situation. There have been times where I’ve planned things out to a T, and Dream just wasn’t on board. Take this post for example. I planned and set aside time to write, during Dream’s nap time. However, my teething 8-month old needed her mommy (poor thing)! And so here I am, typing while nursing! Anyone with kids will tell you, no two days are alike. So pray, plan and pivot as needed!
What are your weekly non-negotiables?
How can you plan ahead to account for those moments when your baby/babies aren’t in agreement?
“Planning ahead and taking action is a success strategy. Prayer and staying connected to THE Source is key”!
3. Check in, OFTEN!
Whether it’s communicating with your spouse, or checking in with yourself and reflecting on what is working… check in often! Celebrate your wins (no matter how small), and adjust as needed. For me I seriously had MORE time to work in my business when Dream was a little younger. I could put her in her bouncers/swing for self play and use those moments to get things done. But now… NOW that this little yummy nugget is mobile, and I barely have the time to even respond to an email. Why? Because I have to keep my eyes on her at ALL times 😭😭😭. With that, I had to do three things:
1. Check in with myself to determine what I needed to flourish in this season. I had to reassess my commitments how I plan to keep them.
2. Adjust my daily “routine” while I’m home alone with Dream to be in alignment with my current reality. She is sleeping much less during the day, so my availability and “free time” is no longer the same. I have to adjust accordingly.
3. Communicate with my hubby to figure out our schedules, to see how I could add in some productive/work time while he’s home. I also had to cut bak in other areas
Once I made the shift, harmony was not that far behind. I went from being overwhelmed and frustrated, feeling like I couldn’t get ANYTHING done… to discovering creative ways to pursue purpose! God is bomb like that. As you acknowledge HIM… He directs you’re every move! His is the MASTER CREATOR, and there is no part of your life that He can’t remedy!
-How have things changed for you over the past few months?
-How can you adjust to reignite the harmony in your life?
As things change around you, YOU MUST ADJUST. Check in often, acknowledge the change, seek God for wisdom and PIVOT!
Bonus: GET DRESSED!
I shower and get dressed every day. I have things in my wardrobe that are easy to throw on but are well coordinated to make me feel like somebody! Okay! I cannot stress the importance of showing up for yourself in this way. For me it’s an instant mood boost. Walking around in my robe all day vs. walking around in a jogger set or a cute pullover and some leggings. It makes a difference. Especially when I’m able to sit and work. I’m in a mental space to produce when I’m dressed.
-How can you show up for yourself with what you wear?
-What wardrobe adjustments can you make today?
“What you wear and how you show up for work is important… especially when you work for yourself”
It took me a little under a month to complete my vision board! Here’s why along with 3 takeaways that will help you SLAY your goals in 2020!
1￼. I had to be Intentional
One of the main themes in my life is to “Be Intentional”. My first attempt at a vision board years ago, didn’t go so well. I was a bit all over the place. I literally grabbed a couple of magazines, and started cutting and pasting pretty images with no real vision. To be honest, I was more concerned with making sure my board looked good, over making sure I picked images and words that were intentional and spoke directly to who God created me to be/what I wanted to manifest in my life. I know better now! I took the time to write out exactly what I was expecting God to do in my life, and this time around I found the images and words that aligned with this vision. Not only did I picked the bold, aesthetically appealing images, I chose them with purpose!
Takeaway: Write the vision, Make it plain… then find the images that are in alignment! Be intentional!
2. I wanted to make sure my goals were Actionable and Measurable.
Another things that was a complete shift this year, I made each goal actionable and measurable (Hello S.M.A.R.T planning). Where I once used to put everything on one big board, I actually used the last few pages of my 2020 planner*. I created what I am going to call vision pages! I broke down my vision for 2020 into 5 specific areas of my life; Faith, Family, Finances, Fitness and Business. And on each of those pages I focused on what I wanted to manifest! So my “Blog monthly” from 2019, turned into “Post 3x to blog monthly before the last day of that month”. And my very general “Workout” turned into the page you see in the featured image; complete with health and wellness goals and a mindset/affirmation to bring it all together. And Now when I check in at the end of each month, I’m very clear on where I hit the mark, and where I need to adjust!
Takeaway: Set actionable goals that you can measure! Check in monthly/quarterly, and adjust as needed!
3. I took the time to write out my Prayer requests in the form of praise reports!
This is not a new practice for me, but it is SOOOOO worth sharing! I am a writer (obvi) and for the past few years I’ve been very intentional about writing out specific prayer requests in the form of praise reports**! This started the year before I met my husband! I note this because in January of 2013 I wrote:
“Thank you, Lord for introducing me to my husband. I thank you for making me whole, and allowing me to experience real love from a man who loves and honors you”!
February 2013, I started dating Keem!
Now don’t get it twisted this is not a magical formula, nor is this a how to get a husband post. The key is how we frame our requests. If you look at what I wrote, I understood that I needed to be “whole” and complete in Him, before meeting the one! I took my eyes off of what I wanted and set my intention on what I needed… for God to work on me! Sometimes our prayers are so one sided, we forget to include the work we need to do! (Reference Psalm 37:4)
Framing our requests to God in the form of a declaration and praise is a game changer. Don’t get my wrong, there is totally a place for those broken moments when we lay it all at the feet of Jesus and know that only His strength can carry us. Listen, I have those meltdown moments in the presence of my Savior, too. (Oh, He is The Good Good Father and cares about EVERY SINGLE TEAR)! And I’m so thankful that He also responds to our faith as we declare His word over our lives, and shows Himself FAITHFUL every single time!
Takeaway: Fuel your prayers with faith. Give God praise in advance for what He is doing/going to manifest in your life, and watch God work out the details! Move as He directs! Delayed obedience could delay your promise!
*Shout out Patrice Washington, who inspired my idea when she mentioned her “Dream Journal”.
** Shout Out to my sister, Chris for this best practice!
A little over 7 months in and I did it! I kept my commitment to my “no excuses” weekly workout plan, and hosted my first wardrobe audit. Yaaasss!
I gave myself the time I needed and refused to stress myself out trying to become a member of the “I snapped back in 6 weeks” club. No ma’am not me! I came to terms with this truth, well before Dream arrived and I’m so thankful! So 6ish months in, I finally ventured in for a wardrobe audit, trying on some of my most prized wardrobe pieces. Here are three lesson I learned through that process:
1. Give Yourself Grace.
I’m constantly reminded to give myself grace as I navigate #momlife, and I’ve been very intentional about giving myself that same level of grace in other areas of my life… especially with my body. Listen, being pregnant changed my body completely (😭😭😭) and I’m embracing the process as I “bounce-back”. Girl!!! It has taken me nearly 6 months just to get to a place where I am even comfortable facing my closet, and that is okay. This is a process, and I refuse to rush it or add unnecessary stress. The only person I’m graced to keep up with is MYSELF. And on this journey, grace really has my guiding light! Give Yourself Grace.
2. Things around you MUST shift as your life changes.
My social life has changed. The way in which I conduct business is shifting. When and where I go and how I am able to show up is no longer the same… so my wardrobe must follow suit. I knew that some of those special pieces wouldn’t serve me the same way as they did before I had Dream, so I had to get really real about what I wanted to keep. Ironically, as my life has expanded, I’ve decided to embrace a more minimalistic lifestyle. This means that I can only embrace the things that can serve me right now. Yes, I kept a few date night and girls’ night out ensembles. But As my life has become more “demanding” with a baby, I made it a point to keep the majority of my wardrobe chic & edgy, yet comfortable and quick. Now don’t get it twisted, I am and always will be #SnatchedforHisglory! I Just had to pivot a bit. The idea is “grab and go”, while still being fabulous! Things around you must shift as your life changes!
3. If it doesn’t serve you, Let it go!
This goes beyond holding onto things that no longer fit. This is more so about holding on to things that no longer serve me. This is about that dress I wore when I went in for my first interview (that I haven’t touched in 2 years), and that gorgeous gown I wore for my baby shower (yes just a matter of months ago). Those garments were seasonal and I need to thank them for what they did for me and release! Yes, they bring me joy when I remember when I wore them, but when I think of how to incorporate them into my wardrobe NOW… it’s a bit overwhelming. Almost like mental clutter, SERIOUSLY!! They could easily be passed on to someone else for enjoyment! I know for some of us the mindset is “it’s in great condition”, or “I only wore it once”, but the real question is how will it serve you now? And if it’s causing mental clutter trying to sort it all out, release it! If it doesn’t serve you, let it go!
So… in honor of letting go… I’ve set up shop with the hopes that some of my most cherished garments will end up with women who will love and cherish them as well!