Category Archives: Random Thoughts

Productivity Is Addictive

I don’t smoke.

I only drink when I’m happy and my limit is two.

I’ve been celibate and I haven’t been on a single date by choice for seven….wait, eight months now.

I admit that if I have any one addiction, it is that I’m addicted to doing things well and being productive in my life and career.

It is an addiction that has cost me friends and relationships for several years. However, I’m not willing to go to rehab to trade-off being productive in exchange for making other people happy. I don’t know if this addiction is genetic or if it was learned behavior; both of my grandparents were hardworking people. Maybe I’m just highly ambitious or I’m aware that having the ability to do what I’d like to do in life isn’t free in the sense that some people think it is. Regardless, I’m an addict. I wake up in the morning and the first thing I do is check to see if I received any important emails while I was asleep. I quickly try to get replies out, often while squinting my eyes as the adjust to the light of the smart phone in the dark. To some people, that may be an annoyance and I’ve had people say to me “you get up early”. Well, I figure if someone can email me late at night, I can reply early in the morning.

I have my ‘to-do list’ like the planner I am, but I try to allow flexibility in my list for the Master’s Plan. I’ve learned that the plans I make will often need adjustment for one reason or another, particularly this year. I hired an assistant and she is amazing. That helps me to remain calm, focused and productive and people who know me very well can see the improvement. I now have exactly fifteen minutes extra every day that I can use to work on whatever I’m working on of importance that day. And when the day is over, I feel really good. There are events and commitments on my agenda up through December 2014 already and I’m looking forward to each and every one of them. The sacrifices I’ve made are well worth the blessings and opportunities I have received thus far. Sometimes you have to give up something you wanted to receive something you need.

I have goals that include expansion of the Super Woman Brand on a global level and I’m taking the small, yet necessary, steps to achieve those goals. I view each collaboration as an opportunity to introduce more people to the Super Woman Brand and its value. I couldn’t do half of what I’ve done, or a third of what I’m going to do in my career this year without my addiction.

It keeps me going. It wakes me up in the morning. It hugs me close in bed at night. It’s why complete strangers say I’m successful.

My journey hasn’t been without its challenges but I can truly say, my addiction (need) to be productive is definitely paying off.

 

In Dedication to Mark England

On January 18, 2014, the very talented Mark England left this Earth.

Some people call him their stylist. I refer to him as the man who cultivated my style.

Some people call him fashionable. I refer to him as a fashion guru.

Some people call him inspirational. I refer to him as a mentor.

Some people call him Mark. I refer to him as my friend.

It’s been a long time since I lost someone who I cared a great deal about. Mark England was one of the few people in my life who I knew was genuinely concerned about my success. The only thing he expected of me was for me to do my very best. That was very important to me. I’m glad I didn’t wait until the end to tell him that I cared about him and how important he was to my life and career.

Mark will be laid to rest before his family, friends and celebrity clientele on February 1, 2014. I’m extremely sad about the death of my friend, but I know my friend would expect me to continue moving forward with my career plans to the best of my ability in spite of my grief. So that is what I’m trying to do. Mark England had such a positive influence on me that I have decided to dedicate my upcoming book “Breaking Through the Black Ceiling” to his memory with a portion of sales of the book going to Karmanos Cancer Institute in Detroit, Michigan, pending their approval. I also dedicated the Friday, January 24, 2014 broadcast of The FabLife Radio Show to Mark’s memory. Mark and I had made plans for him to be a guest on the show this year. Since that can’t happen, dedicating a show to him and dedicating my book to his memory are the very least that I can do for someone who did so much for me over the last few years.

The Mark England Collection wasn’t just clothes, it was the embodiment of style, grace, class, and haute couture. Mark England took me from pretty to amazing. Mark made cameras flash at me even though photographers had no idea who I was, and often didn’t bother to ask. Mark England gave me a reason to embrace my feminine curves with every dress he made for me and every ensemble he personally selected for me. Mark made me look ten times more confident than I may have felt inside every time I walked into a room or stood before an audience. Mark England will forever be an influence on me and how I do business and what I wear. I thank God I had the chance to have such a wonderfully inspiring person in my life while I did.

If there is someone in your life that means a great deal to you, please take a moment to tell them so. 

 

The Gift of ME

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to YOU! 

Happy Birthday to ME! 

I am so happy to be alive to celebrate the many achievements I’ve had over the years. First, a moment of transparency: I didn’t give any Christmas gifts this year.

From where I sit, I AM the GIFT.

I have given my friendship, loyalty, knowledge, encouragement throughout this year to others, without expecting anything in return and often without any reciprocation from the receivers. I have invested my own personal funds to provide opportunities and programming for the community in which I reside. I have volunteered my talents. I have given of my time and had it wasted, and I consider my time to be very valuable. I have done a great deal more and sometimes I haven’t even been told ‘thank you‘. In spite of whatever I did or didn’t receive in return, I keep doing for others because I believe in being a blessing to someone else, because I have been blessed. Even those who have been ignored by me were being given the Gift of ME.

As a society, we have gotten so accustomed to working hard all year-long just to put ourselves in debt to make other people happy, that we have lost so much of the meaning of Christmas in the process. Yes, it’s nice to give, but you shouldn’t feel obligated to give on one day a year. If you give of yourself throughout the year to others, whether you know them personally or not, you have done well. I have literally watched people operate under pressure as if they absolutely must buy someone in particular a gift and it must be wrapped and in their hands on Christmas day or the world will come to a screeching halt. I refuse to live my life that way. Anyone who doesn’t appreciate the Gift of ME, doesn’t have to be bothered with me. To me, it’s really that simple.

When you decide that you’re not going to spend your hard earned money for the sole purpose of making others happy, a few things will happen:

1. You’ll have more money 

2. You’ll find out who your true friends and loved ones are

3. Because of 1 and 2 you’ll have less stress in your life 

4. Because of 3 you’ll be happier and healthier

You’re more than welcome to continue to brave the malls and stores throughout the month of December in an effort to get the best deals, if that is what you want to do. I actually have some investments in those stores, so I thank you in advance for your contribution to my dividends. However, before Christmas comes in 2014, I encourage you to examine more closely WHY you spend the money on the gifts you buy and the people you buy them for. If the purpose is to say ‘thank you’ to someone, there are cards for that and I’ve heard some people are very partial to hearing the words. If the purpose is to impress others, please understand that they may not be impressed or like you because you bought them something anyway. If the purpose is to make yourself feel good, you won’t be feeling so great when that credit card bill comes, or an unexpected bill comes and you don’t have the funds to pay it because you spent money on gifts to give to others.

The best gifts I ever received were items I actually needed, could use to make my life simpler, that would save me money over time, or related to an experience I wanted but might not have had the money or time to get for myself. When shopping for someone next year, keep that in mind: What do they need? What could they use to make their life better or save them time? What might help them save money over time if you buy it for them? What would they like to experience? Gifts that make people’s lives better or even saves them time could be you hiring a house or carpet cleaner for that person. A closet organizer (person or system) is also a great option. A example of product that a person can use to save money would be a drinking water filtration system for someone who buys bottled water or an at home soda machine for someone who drinks soda. I have both and they work great. I love gifts that provide an experience. A gift certificate for the movies, tickets to a play or concert tickets are thoughtful gifts because they provide an experience for a person and often don’t cost a lot of money. Your time is a great gift to give to anyone. Because we have such busy lives and so much technology at our hands, we often let time rush by us and use ‘quick’ means to communication. Calling someone instead of texting them so that you can actually have a conversation with someone is a great gift to give. It shows that you took time out for them and that they matter to you.

I’m 39 years young today. I almost didn’t make it to this age. So I’m thankful just to be here and hearing ‘Happy Birthday‘ is an awesome gift to receive for me today. Today also marks my personal countdown to my next milestone birthday in 2014 when I turn #FabLife40. I don’t want any gifts then either. I just want some of my friends and family to celebrate with me in St. Maarten. Those who can attend, will. Those who can’t attend will miss a fabulous Christmas celebration full of margaritas, palm trees and sandy beaches. Either way, next Christmas, just like this Christmas, everyone will receive the Gift of ME.

By the way, Super Woman Productions and Publishing is the official Media Sponsor for Finding My Way Home on Saturday, February 15, 2014 at Royal Oak Library.

A Disturbance In The Force

It always amazes me how you can know a person for a very long time, then wake up one day and realize that you barely know them at all. Then there are the people who, no matter how much time or distance is between you and them, they ALWAYS know when something isn’t right with you or in your world. During those instances when someone or something has disrupted my flow or thrown something in my life out of balance, even slightly, Super Son will say “I sense a disturbance in the Force“, which for those of you familiar with Star Wars (1977), you know that is in reference to a classic line said by Obi Wan Kenobi. It may be my body language, my tone of voice or my overall mood he’s picking up on, but he’s rarely incorrect. Right now, there is definitely a disturbance in the Force.

Everyone has a least one person with the innate ability to access when you’re not 100% yourself or at your best. Everyone has that one person who is in tune with them to the degree that they can easily sense a disturbance in your Force. Whether you had a hard day at work, encountered a difficult person in the grocery store (it can’t just be me) or had a disagreement with someone you love. That ability is also referred to as empathy. It is completely natural, but not often utilized in our society because we’re often too self-centered to notice what others may be dealing with.

Lack of empathy is why some people are so quick to say that people should “get over” the verdict in the Zimmerman trial, because it wasn’t their child that was murdered. Lack of empathy is why some people are able to watch an elderly man being brutally beaten at a gas station and not make any attempt to help him or even dial 911. Lack of empathy is why some people don’t have any respect for human life. Until…they become a victim and want someone to help them.

Being empathetic towards others doesn’t make a person appear weak. If anything we have the capacity for empathy because it makes us stronger. Being able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes for a brief period of time, can actually help you to make better decisions for yourself longterm. Knowing, even through empathy, what it is like to lose a child, a spouse or a parent can improve how you deal with others in a similar situation. Knowing, even through empathy, what it is like to have cancer, depression, dementia or even a broken heart, can help you to help others, and yourself, in the same or similar situation. Knowing, even briefly through empathy, someone else’s struggle, pain or tragedy makes for a more compassionate and understanding human being and human experience. I think we could all use a little more empathy in our lives.

This disturbance in the Force that I’m experiencing will soon be resolved and I’ll be back to my normal. Nothing lasts forever and I’m very resilient. Plus I have a lot of positive distractions I can focus my energy on. But now I know what this feels like and so does Super Son. Now, if a day ever comes and he goes through a similar experience, he will likely have this time to reference back to in order to help him through his disturbance. And may the Force be with him.

 

 

 

 

Reflections On My Younger Self

I don’t think too much about my past unless a memory is triggered. That’s because I don’t believe that you can move forward in life if you’re always looking behind you hoping, wishing and praying about what you would have or could have done “only if things had been done/turned out differently”. However, I have grown to realize that my experiences have value, not just in the woman I have become, but also as a motivating factors to others.

I receive a lot of emails and messages from people who tell me something I did or said changed their lives in a positive way. I feel blessed to be a part of other people’s personal or professional growth process.  Those seemingly small gestures of gratitude from others is one of the things that keeps me motivated as well.  Knowing that I make a difference is its own reward. That is why I have intentionally made an effort to be more transparent with you, my Super Fans, about who I am as a person and some of my challenges, both professionally and personally. I hope that you enjoy this brief article written by me for another media source and feel free to share it with someone else who may benefit from it.

~ Smooches 

The Power of Self Worth 

 

If We Didn’t Stop Growing, We’d All Be Giants

When human beings reach adult maturation, we eventually stop growing taller. As a result, we remain whatever height we are at that time, for the remainder of our adult lives. People are different heights due to their DNA. Regardless of how you think man came to exist here, one thing is true: There had to be an off switch for growth, otherwise we all would be giants.

Sadly some of us also have an off switch when it comes to realizing our potential. We put limitations on ourselves and our way of thinking which stifles our personal growth. We make excuses for not exceeding mediocrity. We blame others for our failures. We don’t take personal responsibility for the direction our lives are going in. We limit ourselves. We stop growing. Regardless of our physical limitations, there shouldn’t be limitations placed on our other abilities. Instead of “I can’t”, more of us should learn to say “I will”.

What hinders you most? Is it what you think of yourself or do you absorb the negativity that others think of you? Is it easier for you to be mediocre than great? Is greatness too much responsibility for you to handle? Understand what I mean by greatness. Greatness isn’t the same as being rich, being a celebrity or even being the boss. Greatness is taking whatever God-given abilities and talents you have and using them completely and without apology to be the best at whatever it is that you do. I don’t care if you sweep floors, greatness is doing your personal best at sweeping those floors.

There’s a lot to be said for putting forth a little effort. Almost every idea I’ve had thus far has come to fruition. I’ve discovered that when I take one step towards making an idea a reality, everything I need to continue comes to me; the people, the connections, the resources and the money. Even when I’m down to the last few dollars I have to invest in the idea, something happens that makes those last few dollars feel like a million dollars. Remember this: everything I’ve done during the last five years that I have been in business has been financed completely by me. I’ve never had a bank loan or financial investor in any of my business endeavors, and I’m still here. Yes, I’ve taken some minor losses, but they haven’t been anything I couldn’t claim as a business expense. I’ve never had to sacrifice the roof over my head or use anything I own as collateral. I haven’t had to visit a single pawn shop or sell anything that I hold dear. That is all because I don’t stop trying. Even if I fail, I take the experience as a lesson and try to do it again but a lot better the next time around, OR I acknowledge that particular endeavor just may not be the right fit for the Super Woman Brand and I set it aside with grace and move on to the next project.

I believe I’m bigger than any of my so-called failures. I believe that every opportunity that comes my way will be something I can touch one day. Maybe not today, but one day. Provided that I continue to take small steps towards it. I know that there are a lot of naysayers who don’t believe in me or anything I do. There are also a lot of doubters and people wishing for my demise with every breath they take. I could care less. I don’t do anything that I do to please those people. I don’t live for those people. I don’t work for those people. They are not my competition, not will they deter me from my goals. Everyone isn’t going to want to ride in my life’s boat with me. Not even when it becomes a beautiful yacht. I don’t even waste time inviting everyone to come aboard. Some people aren’t worthy and if they are included, they will only try to push me overboard off of my own life’s boat. Those people who are worthy will be put in the proper time and place for us to meet. How do I know that? Because it happens almost everyday.

I refuse to let anything or anyone stunt my growth. Growth is more important than money to me. Growth adds value to a person’s life that money could never do. Yes, being a profitable business is important. But also doing something to inspire others to reach their full potential is equally important to me. I don’t have the time to personally mentor everyone who asks, although I wish I did. Many people have unfortunately declined opportunities with me that would have inevitably helped them in the long-term. I learned that can’t give forth thought to short-sighted people so I don’t waste my time trying and I don’t let it upset me. I just continue to move forward with my own goals and show by example what can happen when you make a decision and stick to it.

When I was a child I nearly towered over everyone I went to school with. Occasionally there would be one or two other girls taller than me that would distract people from staring up at me and saying “WOW! How tall ARE you?!?!?

Now, as an adult at 5’10” tall, I still  get that question and I still tower over many people, even ones who are physically taller than I am, simply because I strive to continue to grow.

I strive to grow in my industry.

I strive to grow in my business.

I strive to grow in my community.

I strive to grow my bank account.

I strive to grow my employees.

I strive to grow my network.

I strive to grow my influence.

I strive to growth my value.

And I will continue growing until I become a GIANT

 

♦Super Woman is showing other women how to become a GIANT. Attend or Sponsor the upcoming I Feel Good! Mind, Body and Soul Women’s Conference © Sponsored by Wayne State University on August 17, 2013 at Wayne State University.