Something #formymisses to Keep in Mind this Holiday Season: What You Give, You Get

Something #formymisses to Keep in Mind this Holiday Season: What You Give, You Get

IMG_5377IMG_5378

IMG_5379
Photography by Myron Watkins

The holiday season is upon us, which has brought about some mixed feelings for me this year, however, one thing that hasn’t changed is my love to give. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that I have good taste (he he). But no, seriously, it makes me feel so good to put a smile on someone else’s face, and it makes me wonder why I don’t go out of my way to do it more often. Why wait for a special occasion when we can make our own?

After feeling slighted one too many times in 2017, this time of year also made me acknowledge my tendency to give away all the good shit up front. If I view you as my family or friend, I automatically want to help you with whatever dilemma you may be facing – no matter how it may inconvenience me. I support you in all your endeavors and want you to be the best you can be. Ultimately, I want you to be happy. But in 2017, and even long before that, I came to realize I was giving away my time, attention, effort, help, and concern to people – people who never even asked for any of it. And yet, I gave some more. I gave until it hurt.

IMG_5380
Photography by Myron Watkins

My intentions were good, I swear. But the truth is not every one will appreciate my gifts, and what I have to offer, so it is that much more important to be selective going into the new year – not selfish. I say that because I don’t want to turn cold and stop caring for others altogether, but I can be more mindful of who and what is most deserving. There is nothing naughty about keeping a little some of that good stuff for myself, too.

For My Misses Who Are Feeling Burnt out – How I Re-lit My Hustle

For My Misses Who Are Feeling Burnt out – How I Re-lit My Hustle

 

So I am sitting at my desk listening to the rain fall, watching my cursor blink until my eyes burn. It’s the kind of grey Tuesday that pairs perfectly with the overall blah-ness still hanging over my head from the weekend. Today would be the perfect day to spend in bed, because frankly, ya girl is burnt the fuck out.

Thanks to social media, it’s no secret I’ve been going hard to turn my dreams into a reality. I’ve been putting in work 7 days a week for so long I’ve lost count. Between clocking overtime at my whack-ass 9-5, setting up photoshoots, promoting my new book, and working as a brand ambassador on the weekends, my life has room for very little play right now. Like, VERY little. But, in order to be great sacrifices must be made. . .

I’ve always viewed my ambition or my “hustle” as a good thing to have until about two months ago when I went to LA for the first time. And while I enjoyed my time there, I can still remember standing in the middle of my Air bnb on that first day and just feeling like, “Okay. I’m here. I made it. Now what?” Surely, there should be someone I should be calling or somewhere I had to be by a certain time. I felt uneasy and anxious at first, and it had nothing to do with the fact that I just traveled across the country by myself.

I’d just released book number four the day before I flew out. Technically I was on vacation, and I for damn sure earned it, but there I was feeling guilty about not being productive – even if only for a few days. For the first time in a long time I legit had nothing to do, and I didn’t know how to feel about it. What I will tell you though, is the peace I felt on the rooftop as the wind blew through my curls and the sun bronzed my skin was a feeling I hope to recapture next week. Lord knows I needed that.

Not that there is anything wrong with working hard. I just think it’s important to set limits and be selective. Lucky for me, I came home to more interviews and my very first hosting gig, but my time away taught me that I cannot take every opportunity presented to me – even though the do-it-all in me might want to. In order to keep making progress it is important that I take time for myself and rest. Coming home from LA helped me realize I can still find ways to get things done, and that it is okay to give my body/mind the time it needs to catch up.

What the Price of Instant Gratification Could Cost You

What the Price of Instant Gratification Could Cost You

I want what I want and I want it now! Sounds familiar right?

nownownow

Waiting is hard, especially when we live in a culture that has been re-designed to fulfill our desires at the push of a button. But in the end, what are our wants really worth when we don’t work for them? And is instant gratification really a bad thing?

I don’t remember where I was or what I was doing, but I could sense this need for instant gratification slowly seeping into every aspect of my life, and not just online. Perhaps you have yet to notice, but the evidence of short-term satisfaction is everywhere you look. From the way we shop down to the way we love one another, the beauty of social media is the ability to exchange ideas and opinions with the rest of the world; however, there is no denying the negative ways this tool has shaped our lives as Millennials. And while none of our needs are new, our expectation of what is ‘fast’ is 10x faster than our parents’. Because who has time to wait, when you have a million other things to get done?

More and more retailers are helping us not leave the house by offering same-day delivery. Bits and pieces of the daily news are sprinkled throughout hashtags and timelines as we bullshit through our workday. Quick fun has become more important than learning regardless of age. Practically every beauty product on the shelf claims to offer ‘instant’ results, even though 90% of their labels are nothing but lies. Excuses provide us with material things we don’t have the money to buy. And sadly, some of our closest relationships suffer when Facebook or Twitter is preferred over what could have been a five-second phone call.

Personally, I noticed this habit popping up most notably when dating. I had to check myself when I realized that as soon as I meet a guy I like, I become obsessed. He’s like my new favorite song and I can’t get enough of him. I’m clocking all his moves and interests online. I make an effort to talk to him damn near every day. But the problem with this is that by having these needs fulfilled so soon, actions lose value. I came to realize that I cannot place expectations on foundations that haven’t been built yet, or else my trust would crumble. So instead of day-dreaming about romance and what the future holds, I am allowing the person I am interested in to meet me there. As time goes on, even the smallest gestures will mean SO much more.

So while instant gratification can serve as a great source of motivation, my point is it can also hinder us from what it is we really want, ultimately leaving us unsatisfied. I also think that most of us treat the future like a myth until we wake up the next day, which is why it is so important to practice self-control and accountability before you are faced with long-term consequences. From now on, when I set my goals the first thing I look for is long-term value, without allowing short-term pain to distract me from my success. And while patience might be one virtue I have yet to fully grasp, I can’t let my need for instant gratification cost me something I can’t afford to lose – my future.