Business, Lifestyle, Thoughts of a Black Girl, Uncategorized

Who’s Who: Remaining Level- Headed Amid Success

Ever find yourself among a certain group of people or situation that calls for a drink or three to get through? This was me a few nights ago, but before we go there let’s start with how we got here, or moreso the leading question that inspired this post. Is the question “what do you do for a living” within 5 minutes of meeting someone a common question all over or just one that comes with living in the city. I’ve come to find the question rather annoying. Not because I’m not excited to share what it is I do, and maybe even throw what I’m passionate about and currently working towards on the side in this answer, but because most times it doesn’t seem genuine. In fact, it’s as if this question is asked to determine whether or not I’m of use connection or networking wise or If I’m in their socioeconomic bracket. Iv’e even experienced rather blatant dismissiveness if my response doesn’t meet their expectations. Now, this brings me back to my few nights ago event. At this particular non- networking gathering, sure enough, once again, this question was asked. Frequently. Outside of all the occupations being revealed, a lot of very ego-based conversations seemed to be taking place. But what made matters slightly uncomfortable and called for a drink was that two kept referring to people they didn’t like or people a part of these stories as outsiders and others. They spoke so low of them as if their existence wasn’t as valuable as theirs because of what they did or wore. There was so much emphasis on aiming to be among the “elite” or associate themselves with those who can further their career agenda.

Friendly reminder: Nobody’s shit smells like roses. Despite how hard we may have worked for something or maybe how easily it may have came, things can change and it can be swept from under us in the blink of an eye. Our occupation or whatever else material things we may have doesn’t make us better than the next person. Circumstances and advantages definitely allow us to be better off than others, but not better than character wise and certainly doesn’t diminish the value of another individual’s life. I imagine we all have our arrogant moments. I’m guilty. But, emphasis on moments, and hopefully it isn’t too frequent. Work hard. Strive for what it is you want in this life. To know me is to know that I will always encourage people to go for what is you want in this life, the possibilities are endless! But as we climb our own individual ladders of what we deem to be success, try to remain level headed and always give thanks to the source! AND understand that networking is not basing possible connections off of one individual’s occupation or appearance. You never know who may know who and be mindful of how you dismiss people, you never know if or how you may cross paths with them again in the near future!

Hope everyone has a fabulous week!


#MustKnow, Business, Business, Uncategorized

New Year’s Resolutions: How About Now?

Out with the old in with the NEW. Who says you have to wait until January 1st to switch things up or start “new year’s resolutions.” In fact, what better time than to start now. Dust that notebook off or purchase a new one. NOW is the time to write down our goals, our plan of action, and begin working towards manifesting them. It takes 21 days to form a habit. Do we really want to wait until the first of a new year to start working out, eating right, finishing a book, managing our finances correctly, ect…. again? Discipline is key! Do exactly what you said you were going to do, set deadlines, and DO share it with those who you KNOW will hold you accountable. My mentor always tells me, “never take on an assignment without creating a deadline.” I’ve honestly been applying this concept to areas in my life outside of work and it definitely has been contributing to my overall peace of mind and pushes me to accomplish small milestones. Did you know that according to studies only about 8% of people accomplish their dreams? That means 92% of us  leave this earth with unfinished dream related business, or without even going for them. Realistically, many of us will fall into the 92%, but God willing, you and I won’t, but that starts with decisions we make moving forward. Which percentage are you trying to fall under? Why wait to do tomorrow what you can do today.

Check these motivational videos out regarding discipline and goals!



#MustKnow, Beauty, Community, Health, Healthcare, Lifestyle, Relationships, Uncategorized

Peace of Mind

At what expense is your peace of mind? Money? Great sex? Nice things?  A conversation came up within the work place the other day. Relatively new, I mind my business and simply listen. A colleague was going on and on about how unhappy she is with her current boo. In summary, boo thang is trash. She was asked why she stayed and her response was because of the lifestyle he offered. His company came with cash and gifts. I’ve too found myself holding on to things or an individual not because it’s of value or because it was healthy per se but because of what it promised or came with. I’m usually not the one to blame it on the alcohol but I will say that a few days ago it definitely contributed to me being in my feelings. Frisky feelings to say the least, which resulted in exchanging some photos with an ex. I’m not sure if it was that the liquor was wearing off, my inner self trying to talk some sense to me, or a combination of both, shoot maybe it was God, but what originally started off as enticing and sexy, to say the least, turned into me feeling sick to my stomach. I felt rather awkward and began to think to myself.

What good is great dick if it comes with lies, confusion, and heartbreak? What good are lavish gifts if they come with entitlement and no respect. What good is money if you have to compromise who you are at the core to obtain it. What good is that high paying job if the work environment is toxic and literally tearing at your self worth or mental space. What good are thousands of followers and fame if you feel empty inside? Need I go on? You get it. Disclaimer, if an uneasy mind is due to underlying mental health issues, then it’s out of our control and we must not be afraid to seek professional help. But if it is not, understand that health is wealth and so is our peace of mind. A healthy mental space has got to be a priority. Maybe the things mentioned aren’t what contribute to you having a restless mind. None the less, it’s important we pinpoint what it currently is or may be and avoid it. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the notion that money, among other tangible things, are a cure all and will bring happiness. I’m not rich, but I can easily think back on a few moments where I thought receiving a certain amount of money or a specific item would fix a situation and it didn’t. I had to get to the root of the issue. The underlying issue that was making me lose sleep and wasn’t sitting well with my soul. This being stated, make your mental health a priority, choose peace!


Careers, Featured

Women to Know Wednesday: Chef Ai

Any food enthusiasts or those interested in entering the hospitality industry? Today’s woman to know spotlight is Ashley Dalrymple, a.k.a Chef  Ai. She is an 8-year Culinarian and proud owner of the restaurant Main Course Tampa. It is a restaurant based out of Tampa and known for its variety of entrees and flavors. The main entrée served is dependent on the day of the week. All items are freshly made to order and exceptionally delicious! Chef Ai is a Tampa native, was a chef for 8 years in the army, and became a restaurant owner less than 7 month of being out of the Army! Definitely a woman to know, we wish you nothing but success!


Check her online platform for more info!

MainCourseTampa- IG




Don’t be too hard on yourself: You Are Enough

First day on the job and I’m fired. Yes, fired. I cannot make this up. Your girl got fired on my very first day on the floor. Unaware of how or why this just happened, and in complete shock, I calmly respond, “oh wow is this a joke… well can I at least come in next Friday and pick up my check?” I walked out and immediately called the one friend I can always count on to answer. I vented, she said her encouraging piece, and I hung up. I called back in 30 minutes and it wasn’t long into the conversation before I broke down in tears. Why exactly was I crying? It wasn’t exactly because I got fired, from that job at least. If I’m honest I planned on quitting right before my birthday. It was more so the overwhelming emotion of not feeling good enough that came over me. I began to reflect on all my, what I perceive as, short comings in life. Here I am, almost a quarter of a century and nowhere near where I want to be in life, success and financial wise. How was I fired from a job that doesn’t require a degree? Why am I being rejected from so many jobs that require my degree and qualifications? I followed my heart and moved to a city far away from loved ones and now what? My sister looks up to me and sees me as having my shit together, but that is far from the case. When will the shit I got going on behind the scenes start being enough to pay rent! So many negative thoughts crossed my mind. I was being extremely hard on myself. The next day at work, I was definitely operating off of low energy and it didn’t help that two “how are you’s?” turned into them pouring all their fears and complaints of the current state of their workplace on to me.

I took a day to reflect, only entertain those and things I knew would uplift me and I prayed and meditated a lot the next day. I realize I was and have been extremely hard on myself these last few days. I wasn’t acknowledging all that I had accomplished up until this point. I’m literally experiencing some things I prayed to come to past, leading up to me being here. This being stated, there’s no set timeframe or manual on how to live this life. Work hard, stay consistent, and press forward. Do your part and shit will come to pass. Don’t forget to give yourself credit for all that you have done. A lot of people can’t do what you have done. God tends to open doors that are needed vs. our wants. A lot happens for a reason and it’s all a part of your designed purpose. Remember your why. Remember who you are. And always remember that you are enough! Don’t take rejection personal.

“Enjoy the fruits of your previous labors- ” 


Networking: Taking the initiative & Standing Out

There’s so much more to networking than simply showing face. You went to the event, spoke to a few people, and even handed out a few business cards, now what? Networking is defined as the exchange or sharing of information and or experiences for professional or social purposes. However, in order to ensure we reap the most out of the networking seed sowed, we must be mindful, and in some ways even strategic, with our level of engagement and we must maintain contact! Think back on the last time you received a business card. Did you follow up with that individual? Did you thank him or her for their time and further inquire on what you two spoke about? Networking comes and can be executed in various forms.

Check out these tips to get the most out of networking opportunities. Furthermore, feel free drop a comment and share what networking strategies have worked for you.

1. Body language.

It matters. It’s a pretty big deal.

  • Be mindful of your posture, movement, and facial expressions.
  • Slight tip & or nod your head up and down to show that you are engaged and he or she has your full attention.
  • Make eye contact!
    • Remember, 3-5 seconds of eye contact then a quick look away rule of thumb. Avoid the awkward “staring into your soul” contact.

2. Listen. 

No, but really. Listen.

  • Take in the details. Never interrupt the guest. Then ask questions.
    • Networking with a stranger doesn’t always have to be a “selling myself” conversation. Sometimes we get so consumed with responding or getting that perfect answer out we don’t take everything in & fully listen.

Find a balance!

3. Ask questions.

No, but really. ASK questions.

  • Once the initial generic career related questions are covered, ask questions that will lead to knowing this individual on a deeper level.
    • Doing so leads to the possibility of discussing something that you two may relate on, which will make the conversation stand out and you being more memorable.

Network event?

4. Research & Prepare.

  • Find out what businesses are  sponsoring any part of the conference and get familiar with the key people.
    • I recommend having a list of at least 10 questions prepared or memorized.
    • Questions should be based on the theme of the event and the attending speakers.

5. Don’t gravitate towards people you may have come with or may already know.

 6. Follow Up & Follow through.

  • Always follow up after the initial conversation, respectfully no later than 48 hours.
    • Whether this be a quick email or Linkedin connect AND message thanking him or her for their time. Be sure to not only thank them for their time but to reflect on at least two points from the conversation.

7. Keep in touch!

  • Follow up after the follow up! Request an info session or to be put in contact with a friend or colleague.
  • Did you attend a meeting or training that reminded you of the conversation held with this person? Shoot him or her an email and tell them.

8. Business cards

  • Always keep a few personalized business cards on you.
  • Be sure to not only hand them out but take one from each person you speak to OR would like to speak to in the near future.

I’m sure we’ve all heard the saying, “it’s not what you know but who you know.” Correct! “Hey how are you?” or “Hope all is well” messages from time to time go a long way. Therefore, check in with people from time to time to maintain a connection. No one wants to hear you need a favor or job after years without contact.

The tips are endless. Be confident and bold when seeking out new connections and opportunities. Attend workshops, trainings open to the public, professional mingling events, and or community meetups with people who share a common interest as you. Check out this link for even more useful tips when networking.

Networking tips 101



Women to know Wednesday: Mali’s youngest & first Foreign Affairs Minister, Kamissa Camara

This week’s Women to Know Wednesday acknowledges Mali’s youngest and FIRST Minister of Foreign Affairs, Kamissa Camara. She is a woman dedicated to spreading knowledge on culture, religion, and information as it pertains to West African politics. The mission of her work centers around the aim to strengthen and “build intellectual bridges between sub-Saharan Africa, Europe and the United States.” Born and raised in France, but by West African parents, she holds a B.A in Applied Foreign Language (English & German) specializing in International Relations & a M.A in International Economics and Development. Camara also holds Yale’s Women Campaign School under her educational belt. She has held various leadership roles related to political, government, and global affairs as well as partake in fellowships that entailed research and in depth African studies.


You may have seen her on Television before or hear her on a radio station from time to time because her speaking engagement opportunities are endless! CNN, Voice of America, just to name two out of many. Well informed, beauty, and brains Camara is definitely a woman to know and to continuously keep an eye out for because we know the list of accolades and positive impact she is currently doing will only get longer and stronger as she climbs what seems to be a political ladder! Congrats Kamissa!

Interested in reading more about this modern day beauty? Check out her online platforms!


Dating, Love

Singleness: Being The Best Version of You.

I feel like all aspects of my life are flourishing right now, but my love life. I’d be lying if I said the thought of being in an amazing healthy relationship with the love of my life doesn’t cross my mind from time to time. Fall has arrived and what isn’t appealing about spending these soon come cold months with a significant trusted other? Such a feeling is normal and I imagine I am not alone, but in contrast, my current love for being alone and newfound mindset to embrace my singleness comes first.

I feel as though we live in such a relationship- crazed society. Whether it’s #relationshipgoals for a couple we know nothing about other than the cute pictures they post, reality TV glorifying scandalous, toxic, drama filled relationships that are endured out due to history, or what seems to be this unsaid expectation to have somebody. Whether that having somebody entails being in a official monogamous relationship, a situationship, or someone we can call up at midnight to pull up. Nonetheless, the expectation seems to be that you have somebody.

If we are not careful, we internalize this unsaid expectation. Such subtle societal norms I believe can cause us to settle, go from relationship to the next, and fail to enjoy our singleness. I’ve  come to the realization and embrace the fact that being single isn’t a bad thing. Especially if your peace of mind is in tact. Especially if it’s due to coming out of a relationship that wasn’t fulfilling you emotionally or that you felt was less than what you deserve. Singleness should be a time to work towards being the best version of you. Being honest about what went wrong in your last relationship: what you could have done better or differently, red flags that you’ll be sure not to ignore moving forward, creating or getting back to your standard. Not a time to search for love or dread being alone, but instead a time to focus entirely on you and your goals.

Enjoy these moments that you can sleep in or take a spontaneous trip. Enjoy these moments where you are not obligated to answer to no one. Take this time to essentially be selfish as hell and put yourself out there in various interests and opportunities. Take an acting class. Go on dates. Don’t date or entertain anybody. Whatever you decide, it’s all about you. And when you do meet a guy or girl, pay attention to those red flags! Do not settle because he or she is attractive, you’re lonely, or feel you can’t do better. Understand that you are amazing with or without a partner, work on being the woman that you feel you need to. You don’t “need” someone to complete you or feel whole. Be the woman of your own dreams, mentally, physically, and emotionally. Love will come.

Although you may be currently experiencing a period of heartbreak, discouragement, or loneliness, one day it will come and priorities will shift. Don’t rush the process. When it’s right, it is right. Therefore, be encouraged and fall in love with you.


#MustKnow, Education, Featured, History, Motivation, Uncategorized, Urban Issues

Women To Know Wednesday: 19 Black women running for judge

Black women making political history will always be refreshing news. In this specific case, not one, not three, but 19 women to be acknowledged! In Harris County, Texas, 19 black women will be running for judge in the upcoming election. This will be the county’s largest number of black women seen on a ballot and the FIRST time in history this number of black women will be running for various judicial seats in one county. Definitely women to know!  This being stated, congratulations

Sandra Peake,

Judge Ramona Franklin,

Germaine Tanner,

Angela Graves- Harrington,

Cassandra Hollemon,

Tonya Jones,

Dedra Davis,

LaShawn A. Williams,

Latosha Lewis Payne

Linda M. Dunson,

Toria J. Finch,

Erica Hughes,

Lucia G. Bates,

Ronnisha Bowman,

Michelle Moore,

Sharon Barney,

Shannon Baldwin,

and Lori Chambers Gray!

Furthermore, special thanks to Christin McQueen for capturing such a moment with all candidates in one picture. Congratulations ladies!  Click the link below to see which judicial position each woman is running for.

Women to Know Wednesday

#MustKnow, Featured, History, Motivation, TheMBG

Women to Know Wednesday: Jahana Hayes, First-Time Candidate, Wins Democratic House Primary in Connecticut

It’s not how you start, but how you finish! Jahana Hayes is proof of this. Born & raised in the public housing projects of Waterbury, Connecticut under the care of her grandmother, Hayes became a mom at the age of 17. Becoming “just another statistic” and a product of her environment seemed to not have been an option. She did go on to attend and graduate from Southern Connecticut State and eventually became a teacher. With over 10 years of educator experience in subjects such as: World History, Roots of American Citizenship, Civics & Geography, U.S. History, and African American History, she was named Teacher of the Year in 2016. This nomination was honored by President Barack Obama, himself in the flesh, May 3, during National Teacher Appreciation Week at the White House!

She is an active member of the Connecticut Education Association and passionate about education and reminding our youth that their circumstances do not dictate their outcome and that they can do anything they want to do, dream wise. After receiving Teacher of the Year in 2016, she took the following year to represent educators all around the nation and be a spokesperson for the teaching profession through travel and various speaking engagements. This modern day beauty who is now 45, had little to none political experience, AND a first time candidate WON the Democratic House Primary in Connecticut making her the first African- American Woman to represent Connecticut Congress. Jahana Hayes is definitely a woman to know!

Screen Shot 2018-08-29 at 6.03.51 PM

 “Being constantly faced with negative media perceptions surrounding teaching practices and a perceived lack of accountability makes me much more determined to be vocal and supportive of teachers and teaching as a profession.”

If Hayes is elected in November, she will be the first black woman of either party to represent part of New England in Congress. To all my modern day beauties I encourage you to do your research, get involved, and if through research you find one of our sisters deserving of the position they are going for, GET OUT AND VOTE!