Category Archives: Random Thoughts

I Admit To Failing

There’s a preconceived notion that people who are successful are equally successful at everything they do and in all areas of their lives. People who are successful often have experienced failure; not only prior to becoming successful at what they’re good at, but also in other areas. Every first attempt at anything can result in failure just as repeated attempts at the same thing can, if a person isn’t learning more and growing during the experience.

As successful as other people think I am in my business and career, many attempts I’ve made to develop different ideas and projects over the years, have failed. Some worse than others, even to the degree that they won’t be attempted again. I receive a great deal of rejection emails from companies and brands I seek support from for my events and projects. I’m averaging approximately two rejection emails per day. They are always accompanied by an explanation. The most popular being:
•We’ve already supported events for the year.
•We only support specific causes and this doesn’t qualify.
•We don’t have the personnel to assist at this time.
•You don’t have a large enough social media following.
…and the list goes on.

Not only have I learned to expect rejection, I’ve learned that I have to decide in the beginning of the project or idea that I want to pursue, exactly how I’m going to move forward without any assistance or support, so that I don’t have to rely on others who may only reject me when asked. Being prepared to handle everything alone reduces the likelihood that I will have to feel disappointed later. It’s also partly how I came to be known as Super Woman; I go it alone whenever necessary.

I’m not nearly as successful as I’d like to be and it will take a lot longer than I’d like to get there because I started my business as a second career that I never planned for. I’m literally learning about my own business every day. I know that my level of success is determined by many factors and I weigh them all; including my accomplishments and failures in other areas of my life.

There is one area of my life where I admit to being a complete failure:

Dating and relationships.

It’s just something I’m quite terrible at and I have been my entire adult life. The older and more mature I become, the more I fail at dating. It has gone from me dating a lot, without anything serious developing, to men not asking me out at all and only offering me compliments privately on social media. I’ve been on about 5 dates in the last year. Men just don’t want to court me. Of course, they also have a variety of explanations, including, but not limited to:
•”I’m not interested in dating anyone.” (wants to remain single)
•”I’m not ready for commitment.” (has commitment phobia or already in one)
•”You’re too busy for me.” (is codependent and lacks confidence)
•”I’m too busy with other things in my life.” (doesn’t want to give attention to one woman when he can have many)
•”You don’t need a man in your life.”
•”There are plenty of men who want you, so I can’t compete.”

Those last two I can’t translate any other way and are complete fabrications by the men who have said them in my opinion. I have never said that I don’t need a man and I have no idea where all these imaginary men who want me are supposedly residing or even who they are. But I digress.

Of course my friends and relatives have made considerable attempts to keep hope on life support, by telling me how awesome I am, by introducing me to single men that they assume might be interested in me and they try to make me feel better with logic by telling me:
•Men think they’re immortal so they are waiting to get married later in life. (yes, but I don’t want to date anyone my father’s age or older)
•Men are intimidated by you/your success. (sigh, it’s only going to get worse then)
•Men all just want to be players and date a bunch of different women. (doesn’t that get old eventually?)
•Men are just stupid and confused. (and?)
•Men assume you’re already taken. (why? and why not ask me?)
•Men fear rejection. (so do women, big deal)
•You’re just not meeting the right men. (where are the right men?)
•There are plenty of men wishing for a woman like you. (but they clearly can’t say so)
•Your Boaz will find you one day. (Oh, God)
•You’re still young and there’s plenty of time for marriage. (if you say so)

Regardless, whether these statements are true or not, I still fail at dating. If I can’t date anyone more than one time, how can I ever expect to get married again and have it last for the rest of my life? Whenever the rare occasion arises that I actually like a man enough to want to date him, he friend zones me indefinitely and showd no interest in dating me in return. When a man asks me out, I don’t know if I’m even on a real date or not. The few men who actually asked me out in the last year, do so inconsistently (every six months or longer) which is a clear indication that they are just not that into me. That inconsistency presents new concerns for me to contemplate because it’s been so long since I’ve seen that man. I wonder:
•What should I wear?
•Should I expect food?
•Should I be prepared to ask for separate checks?
•Should I drive myself or ask him to pick me up?
•Should I shake his hand or hug him  when I see him?
•Should I thank him when I leave?
•Is he only asking me out because he wants free book publishing?
•Is he only asking me out because he expects sex?
•Is he secretly married or in a relationship and I don’t know it?

All of that is too much to worry about and by the time I get dressed I’m a nervous wreck, for no reason at all. I don’t believe in dating for just for “fun” or to get a free meal. At the age of 40, if I give of my time, rearrange my schedule, spend time and money to get my hair and make up done, put on something impressive, leave my house and allow a man into my personal space, my goal is to find out if there’s any interest in developing a committed relationship between the two of us, over a reasonable amount of time, or not. That is my only intention at this time in my life. I can have fun and a meal with my friends, by myself or with Super Son. After all, I’m busy.

My schedule is often an excuse men like to use against me. Many men have claimed they don’t ask me out because I’m always working or going places. What they don’t realize is that my ambition was born out of me not having a reliable, consistent, interested and loyal man to share my life with. Instead of crying and complaining about being alone, or wondering what’s wrong with me, I decided to find ways to occupy that increasingly extra time in my life more productively, with hopes that it would eventually make me wealthy. My goals are an equal and opposite reaction to the rejection I’ve received during my failed dating experiences.

My bad dating experiences have altered who I am on a deeper level and changed me into a very driven, ambitious, goal-oriented, single, business woman, who is very mindful of what and whom she invests her time and energy towards. It’s a huge benefit for me in business and since I wasn’t successful at dating and relationships to begin with, I don’t see the need to change for ‘what ifs’ that may not ever materialize. To some degree I’ve even convinced myself that no matter how successful I become, how well I take care of myself (financially, spiritually, physically), how well I dress, how engaged my social media presence becomes or anything else, there’s a great possibility that I will still fail at dating and relationships. Some of the best advice I ever got from a very successful, married man (guess who that might be), was that I need a man who realizes that you are the missing element in his life and success”. However, if men don’t see me as a woman they want to combine lives with, that is something beyond my control. All I can control is making sure I don’t waste my time or energy needlessly trying to convince a man otherwise. That is time I can’t recoup and energy that I could’ve put into myself, one of my causes, or others in my life who need me.

I know that saying I’m a failure may seem to be a self fulfilling prophecy. But it isn’t. Admitting that I don’t succeed at dating actually makes me more self aware of what I am good at doing. It creates a deeper appreciation for the achievements and blessings I do have. I may be single, and bad at dating, but I am a great mother, a published author, a published writer, a business woman and I use my gifts in ways that inspire others. Would a man want to date a woman with all of that going for her? Maybe. Maybe not. I’ve discovered that some men don’t want the “next Oprah Winfrey” for a wife.

The good news is that today we don’t have to find out. Instead my energy is going where it is currently needed; into the Super Woman Brand. I’m able to focus on the opportunities coming my way and broaden my business relationships, instead of lowering my standards or wasting my time. I can’t share the details of the opportunities until the ink dries, but when I do share them, know that they have been a work in progress by myself or whomever I’m working with on them. Overnight celebrity, or Instafame, have never been my goal. My goals are bigger than that. As a result, through the practice of patience, I strongly prefer slower growth that builds strength and resilience, so I can withstand more, both professionally and personally.

The trees that are slow to grow bear the best fruit. ~Moliere

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.