Browsed by
Category: Work Your Package

Circumstances Come and Go, Character is Permanent

Circumstances Come and Go, Character is Permanent

“It’s not my fault if he/she/they didn’t do…..then I would be in this situation now.”

The most frequently used excuse for not owning up to taking responsibility for your life.

It is an easy cop-out to say that you are a product of your environment. It’s easy to blame someone else for your current state of affairs. It’s even easier to blame someone else for your anger and anguish. You are not a product of your circumstances but of your decisions. You have a choice to be happy. You have a choice to see positivity instead of negativity. You have a choice to rewrite the narrative as the victim. Making decisions is hard because then you are the one who is ultimately responsible for its outcome. But imagine for a moment, where one decision can change your trajectory for the rest of the day or the next month and maybe into the next few years? Make a decision that supports your dreams. Make a decision that supports building your character. Your circumstances will always change, but your character should not.

With love,

Face The Music

Face The Music

“I love that you have wild ambition but don’t get in your own way.”

“You are a titan, but you are like a bird with no place to land.”

“You know I support you but do you have time for this?”

I won’t go into detail about what prompted the statements and question but I will share this: If you cannot fearlessly share your goals and challenges with the people on your personal board of directors, you are surrounded by the WRONG people. I declared that I was going to take a little bit of a break. That break lasted for about a week. My people will not let me off the hook that easy. My people have called me out on my nonsense. They held up the mirror and forced me to see my hardheaded ways. Don’t laugh. I’m willing to bet you have hardheaded ways too. Are you turning away from the mirror? Are you ignoring the calls and text messages? Are you telling yourself you just have to get “everything under control” and things will be better? The Perfectionist Trap is real.

Whenever you feel overwhelmed, take a moment to write down everything that is currently on your proverbial plate. Be honest with yourself and if you have a hard time doing that, ask a member from your board of directors to “remind” you of your commitments. Are you overcommitting yourself? Success is awesome but you won’t be able to enjoy it if you are a hot mess.

With love,

 

Your Scars Are Your Credentials

Your Scars Are Your Credentials

Exhausted. Irritated. Overwhelmed. That was me last week. Multiple responsibilities from home and work collided and I was left feeling defeated and depleted. I had nothing else to give to anyone or to myself. I didn’t feel like working any of my “packages” and felt guilty about it. I shared my feelings online and received permission to be still. Understand this, I didn’t need or ask for permission. What blew me away was that the people who told me it was okay for me to take a day or several days off were the people who I serve. The people who have attended Work Your Package conferences, have bought the book, read the weekly blog and double-tap my images on Instagram. It was confirmation that I could be vulnerable and transparent to the people I was created to serve without being viewed negatively. Additional confirmation came in the form of a sermon preached by Pastor Battle of Zion Church. The name of the sermon was “A Wounded Witness”. Here are some of the lessons I learned from that sermon:

1. Your wounds are a witness.
2. Some of the stuff you’ve been through, you can’t hide.
3. Being transparent is one thing, being touchable is another. (Reminds me of Dr. Brene Brown’s teaching on vulnerability)
4. Sometimes you have to reopen a wound in order to help someone else.
6. Stop giving a censored version of your wounds.
7. Wisdom, grace, life, compassion come out your wounds.
8. Don’t ask why you went through what you did. Ask why you survived it. It’s your credentials. You’ve been to hell and back so that you can help others.

It looks great on social media to appear like you have everything together but behind closed doors that facade is exhausting and eventually, the truth will seep out and your authenticity will be in question. It’s okay to say that you are tired and feeling overwhelmed. Sharing the challenges of life doesn’t diminish who you are as a person, tarnish your “brand” or your effectiveness as a leader. Wounds lead to scars and scars lead to lessons that will help others.

With love,

Grow Anyway

Grow Anyway

I’ll be the first to admit that sometimes life can just suck. Like sucks to the point that you don’t want to be bothered with anything other than remembering to breathe and to blink your eyes. The amount of negativity the average person can face each day is enough to make your want to throw your hands up in defeat and question why you started in the first place. I get it. I really do. Now here’s where you will probably roll your eyes at me and sigh deeply. I need you to GROW ANYWAY. The concrete in your life can be anything from family members who tell you can’t do it based on your past mistakes to sabotaging co-workers. GROW ANYWAY. Ask for the promotion. Create the business plan. Enroll in school. Lose the weight. Write the damn book. No one ever said that your individual journey would be easy. If you are looking at someone else’s journey and you think they had it “easy”, invite them to have lunch so they can tell you the truth. Success is hard. Following and fulfilling your purpose might be even harder. But I can tell you that it is worth it. Don’t let a little bit of concrete stop you…GROW ANYWAY.

With love,

The “Aha” Moment

The “Aha” Moment

When you know your “why”, obstacles become lessons, not barriers. When I realized why my life experiences were primarily centered around encouraging others and helping them recognize how extraordinary they were, everything else started to make sense. The whispering from the little birdie no longer left me baffled and questioning my capabilities. The doors of opportunity that continue to open are no longer met with skepticism and doubt. There is a freedom that comes with realizing who you are and why you are on this earth. If you are paying attention to the little birdie, actions that may look insane to others make perfectly good sense to you. And guess what? You no longer feel the need to explain your actions. Truth is, if you are surrounded by the right people, you won’t have to. It’s not your job or responsibility to explain your journey and path. Folks are either going to support you or wait for you to fail. And guess what? You might fail the first, second or third time but I’m encouraging you to keep going until you are successful. If you haven’t figured out your “why” take a look at the repetitive requests for your natural talents. Your “why” is there and is waiting for you to discover it.

With love,

 

 

 

 

 

Your Network, Net Work and Self-Worth

Your Network, Net Work and Self-Worth

Mark Petticord said, “The sum of your net worth will be the result of your network.” While I believe in having a diverse network, I also believe your network reflects your self-worth. I can pretty much tell how people feel about themselves by the people they surround themselves with. When I see people surrounded by a bunch of bobbleheads and people who don’t challenge them or their ideas, there is a strong possibility that person does not see how much they have to offer and has low self-worth. On the contrary, when I see someone who is surrounded by people who are smarter than they are and receive constructive feedback, I know that those people are dedicated to improving their self-worth which ultimately impacts their ability to grow their network.

Your relationships are a reflection of how you see yourself. If you are surrounded by people who constantly take from you but don’t replenish you…you are hanging around with the wrong people. Surround yourself with people who genuinely care about you and have your best interest at heart. Is there some truth that your network equals your net worth? Maybe. But I dare to say that when you know your self-worth making those connections in your network will be a lot easier.

With love,

 

 

 

 

Register today for the 4th annual Work Your Package Women’s Conference on October 6 & 7 in Laurel, MD: www.wyp2017.eventbrite.com

 

3 Lessons from History Makers

3 Lessons from History Makers

Katherine Johnson – an extraordinary mathematician who calculated the trajectories for Glenn’s Friendship 7 mission and worked on the Apollo and space shuttle programs. (Photo: www.nasa.gov)

My family and I saw the movie “Hidden Figures” starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae over this past weekend. The actresses portrayed three remarkable women who made history at NASA…Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson. These women were the brains behind one of the greatest engineering feats in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit. I took my daughters to see the movie, hoping that they would be inspired and encouraged and maybe just a little bit intrigued about STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Math). I didn’t expect to walk out the theater with three lessons…for myself.

Lesson #1 – There will be times when you will be the ONE in the room. Being the ONE can be many things – the only woman, the only person of ethnicity, the youngest, the oldest or the smartest. Being the one in the room has a myriad of challenges to include feeling isolated and heaven forbid inadequate. You might even ask yourself, Do I really belong here? The answer is YES. Often times the other people in the room didn’t have the influence necessary to keep you out of the room. You are there to be a brilliant, strategic, witty, compassionate and a problem-solver. You aren’t in the room by chance.

Lesson #2 – Just because they love you don’t mean they will understand your “why”. Your love ones mean well, but let’s face it….they will not understand your “why” especially if they don’t have one of their own. Listen, a woman who is driven and focused can drive the average man insane. When you know you have purpose for your life greater than what is right in front you, you will seek that purpose as that purpose makes room for you to excel and be extraordinary. That type of focus can be hard for the people who love you to understand. Don’t lose focus. Keep going until to you make history.

Lesson #3 – Folks will try to limit your elevation based on their insecurities and prejudices. There are some of you reading this right now who are doing a job that your aren’t being paid for but are expected to do. You are managing major projects, you are managing a team, you are nurturing crucial client relationships, you are saving the company millions…but you haven’t been recognized for it. This is what I know, when you consistently showing up and deliver your best, your talent will make a way for you in the most unexpected ways. That promotion you keep asking for and rightfully deserve might not come to you in the way you expect. The people who have the power to promote you aren’t always the people who supervise you.

So what did my girls learn from the movie? They learned that you can do anything you put your mind to no matter what someone else may say or if they try to stop you. They learned that putting a man in space requires lots and lots of math. They learned that when women work together and look out for each other, good things happen. Out of the mouths of babes, but truer words have never been spoken.

With love,

 

 

 

 

Registration for the 4th annual Work Your Package Women’s Conference is open: www.wyp2017.eventbrite.com

 

 

5 Ways to Find Balance During the Holidays

5 Ways to Find Balance During the Holidays

12-28-09 ornaments083.jpg

The holidays are supposed to be filled with joy, merriment, cheer and happy memories. How many of you experience the complete opposite? I spoke to a previous co-worker the other day and she said that she had a social engagement every Friday during the month of December. Insert bewildered look right here. Every Friday? Good grief. While well-intended, between the shopping, cooking, cleaning and attending events, the hustle and bustle of the holidays can drain you and throw you out of whack. Here are some tips to help you find some balance during the holiday:

  1. Build in some “woosah” into your schedule. Before accepting another invitation or saying yes to baking another batch of cookies, make it a point to schedule some quality time with your family and friends, and activities that help you recharge.
  2. Say “NO” to the activities that sap your time or energy. Take stock of activities that you participated in last year that didn’t enhance you in some way. To quote Uneeka Jay, “If it’s not a hell yes…then it needs to be a no.”
  3. Rethink your errands and tasks. Consider whether you can outsource any of your time-consuming household chores or errands. Select certain days to accomplish tasks such as baking, shopping or wrapping gifts.
  4. Get moving. It’s hard to make time for exercise during the holidays, but it may help you get more done by boosting your energy level and ability to concentrate.
  5. Remember that a little relaxation goes a long way. There are 168 hours in the week…surely you can take a few to yourself. Read a book or get a massage. Make yourself a priority.

With love,

Signature first name_1

The WYP2016 T-Shirt Is Here!

The WYP2016 T-Shirt Is Here!

I’m so excited to offer the exclusive and limited edition WYP2016 t-shirts! The catch? They will only be available for purchase at the Work Your Package Women’s Conference. No need to worry, more designs are coming soon.

watermarked_big-black

watermarked_big-white

watermarked_big

With love,

Signature first name_1

 

Don’t Quit When You Are Looking At the Finish Line

Don’t Quit When You Are Looking At the Finish Line

Here’s the truth, planning a conference or any live event can be hard. While they can be emotionally rewarding, they are also a pain in the ass to plan and execute. As you know, I’m in the midst of planning the third annual Work Your Package Women’s Conference. In the past two weeks I’ve said that I’m going to cancel the conference. I’ve said it at least 10 times. I’m very serious. I didn’t care about the money I had to refund, the money I would lose or the money it would cost me to honor contracts. I just wanted out. Then I had a “come-to-Jesus” meeting with myself….

I haven’t cancelled the conference. Why? Because I believe in it. I believe in the value that it offers to professional women who are rocking it out at their corporate gigs and have a passion and purpose outside of their profession that feed their souls and heart. These women, don’t give up. They don’t throw in the towel. They don’t put up both middle fingers and say, “Screw it”. They take a step back, shift their plans and mindset and then they get the job done.

Here’s what I’ve learned during this leg of my journey:

  • Your Friends and Family Will Not Always Support You. It’s not that they don’t like or love you (or maybe they don’t, maybe it’s jealousy…whatever) but if you are in the habit of giving all of your awesomeness away for free, they do not feel the need to pay for it. They are privy to all your greatness on a regular basis. They are accustomed to seeing you make a dollar out of fifteen cents and have absolutely no frame of reference for how much it costs in time and money to plan a successful event.
  • Don’t Take It Personal. Seriously, don’t. There are some people who will support you no matter what.  Then there are some who never even sign up for your newsletter. Don’t take it personal. Don’t waste your mental bandwidth to entertain their “why”.
  • It Takes A Village. You cannot plan an event by yourself. Had it not been for the input from my committee, I would have been up the creek without a paddle at this point. You need other eyes, additional insight and sometimes a dose of real talk to keep both you and your event on track.

The 3rd annual Work Your Package Women’s Conference is going to be awesome. Not because of the quantity of attendees but because of the quality. The women who are attending are some badasses in their respective professions. It’s my job to make sure the conference is an amazing event for them.

When you are passionate about something, quitting is not an option.

With love,

Signature first name_1