Networking in Atlanta

Hi Passionista-

I have been attending some really dope networking events and mixers lately. So I thought it would be a great idea to share recaps and key takeaways from each event on my blog. If you don’t already know, I currently live in Atlanta, GA. And as I take this journey to grow my side hustle into a business I NEED to networking. Last year, networking and going to events were a struggle for me. I would scroll through Eventbrite or Facebook and see so many events that I wanted to attend but failed to actually go because I had no one to go with me. Now, I am putting that fear behind me and getting out of the house more. I must say, I have connected with some really DOPE young moguls who are making things happen.

It’s always good to connect with like minded people for inspiration and business connections. This weekend I met at least 5 people I want to stay in contact with to work with on either a event or business collaboration. So if you are in the Atlanta area, I want to encourage you to GET OUT AND NETWORK. Follow me on IG for upcoming events (on my IG story).

January 5th: LEVEL UP: Caught Between A Dream and A Job

This event was hosted by Young Entrepreneurs of Atlanta, featuring some dope panelist that shared their business startup stories and advice for living in your purpose.

Some of the panelist were:

Pinky Cole -Owner of Atlanta’s NEWEST restaurant, Slutty Vegan (Plant-based, Black- Owned Burger Joint) | IG: @pinky907

Tiara Johnson,The Dream Coach and Owner of TLJ Agency for Brand Management and Public Relations | IG: @tljagency

Erica Dias, Owner of The B Firm PR and Creator of Table of 20 | IG: @fashion101ed

A few of the key life hacks and gems I took from the panel discussions:

#1 Stay FOCUSED; Focus on what YOU really want and keep you focus on making it happen | Just do it!

#2 Be a good person! Stay mindful of who you are and how you treat others. You will not be successful when you are trying to break others downs. Treat people how you want to be treated.

#3 Your character is important. When you’re starting a business, networking and working with other people, you need to be likable and a pleasure to work with to keep a steady flow of business and partnerships. If you are a negative and nasty person, people are not going to want to continue to work with you. You can be the result of your own failure.

Young Entrepreneurs of Atlanta Foundation

http://www.yeafoundationinc.org

IG: @ye_atlfoundation

January 11th: Ask me what I do Networking Event

I love a turn up after work happy hour/ open bar event. The Ask me what I do Networking Event hosted by My Networking Appeal ( IG: @mynetworkingappeal) was not you ordinary networking event. Of course there was food, a DJ and free drinks, but this event also featured a DOPE Photo Booth from Moment in time rentals and a cool networking game throughout the event. Upon arrival everyone received a email for the “Networking Game”. Everyone was challenged to meet 5 people working a 9-5 and have a business, 3 people that’s ready to quit their job for their business and 3 people with a dope elevator pitch, etc. To keep the game going there was about 2 to 3 rounds of this game.

I thought the networking game was a really good idea to encourage people to talk to someone that they didn’t know. Because I will be honest, when I arrived I scanned the room and jetted over to the people I knew as soon as I spotted them. That’s not really NETWORKING. But I was thinking if stick with them, I might be introduced to someone else they may know that I don’t- or I could introduce them to someone I knew that they may not of known before the event. That’s how I tend to make connections. But the networking game encouraged people to go up to one another and just start talking. My shyness got the best of me until a Real Estate Agent just walked up to me handing me her card and asking me my name and what do I do? Of course that sparked a healthy conversation that lead to meeting a bartender and stylist. That’s what networking is all about.

January 12th: Glitter and Goals Vision Board Party

Last year, I connected with TLJ Little League (IG: @tljlittleleague) as a mentor for young girls in the Atlanta area. We meet once a quarter to mentor girls from 4th grade to 12th grade. ” Girls with dreams, become Women with Vision”. As I am walking in my purpose and living my dreams I want to always be able to reach back and instill that into our young, brilliant, beautiful females. Back in October, I got the chance to host a self care session with the girls- teaching them how to make DIY face mask and body scrubs. I think I enjoyed playing “beauty” just as much as the girls did. It warmed my heart to see them participating and engaging in the session. This weekend we had the 1st event of the year that was had a major turn out. This time we had more girls (all ages) attend and we even have more mentors now. The program is rapidly growing and I cannot wait to see what’s in store next.

January 12th is National Vision Board Day, so you know exactly what we did… MADE VISION BOARDS. We started by giving each girl a paper butterfly and asking them to write down their DREAM. “What do you want to be when you grow up?” With their DREAM in mind the girls started on their vision boards and setting goals for what they need to do to make their dreams come true. Kids are so creative and innovative, I was surprised by the level on context some of the girls gave when explaining the finished project. Everyone made such creative vision boards with great ideas and goals to put behind their dreams. I love listening to youth speak passionately about their future.

Advertisements

2018 Reflection & 2019 Goals

Hello Passionista,

2018 was a good year! So much happened. So much to be proud of. So much to be grateful for. So much meaning to life. I’ve completed yet another chapter of my journey, and so have you.

2018 I actually did some traveling. I walked the wall of the Old City in Jerusalem. I prayer at the western wall. I walked the Via Dolorosa. It’s still surreal to me. That’s something I never in a million years thought I’d do in my lifetime. It wasn’t even something that I planned, it just happened and I’m forever grateful for the opportunity. I also went to Paris…. FRANCE!!!! Although it was only for a short period of time, I saw Paris. I stood in front of The Eiffel Tower!

BEYCHELLA happened this year. I stayed up until 2am just to watch Queen B slay the stage for BEYCHELLA. The first BLACK FEMALE headline for COACHELLA (ain’t that a 🤬).

My girls and I survived a road trip to Washington DC for a music festival, in my brand new ride. I can’t believe it’s almost been a year since I bought my 1st car on my own.

I continued to improve my blogging skills and event planning skills to grow my business. I booked several successful events; gender revealing, baby showers, parties, and weddings. I pray for more increase in 2019.

I turned 27 years old, I’ve had to reflect on a lot things in my life that I need to work on. I’ve accepted a lot of things and I’ve made a vow to myself to change certain things. I’ve made a promise to never compromise who I am for someone else and keep my dreams alive by never giving up no matter what obstacles I may face. I’m a one women show!

  1. 2019 Goals

I want to continue providing creative content 3x a week. My goal is to be better prepared and plan out materials. I strive to have each month’s content planned out at least 2 weeks before the month begins.

I want to work with brands for brand ambassadors or sponsorship opportunities. My goals is to stay consistent and market my content through my social media channels to attract brands lookin for ambassadors or paid sponsorship programs. If I can work with at least 3 brands in 2019 that will help me take my brand to the next level.

I want to monetize my blog and brand. My goal is to make $1k per quarter as a additional stream of income for sponsorships, events, custom decor and gift, as well as starting a shop on my blog. I tried using Etsy before but I was just to complicated for me. I strongly thinking about upgrading my WordPress plan.

BLOGMAS Day 23 | What I use to blog!

Hello Passionista-

Everytime I meet a blogger, the conversation always results to blogging tips resources and equipment. I’m not one of those people who doesn’t like to share information. I like to find out what other bloggers are using to blog and post videos, as well as share my resources and tips. We can all learn from one another. There are a few blogger and influencer groups on Facebook that I’ve found to be very helpful. It was another blogger that I met online that really encouraged me to move from 1 post a week to 3 posts a week. There was an instant increase of traffic on not just my website but my social media accounts too.

Blogmas has been a blessing because I feel like I’m getting new traffic on both my social media accounts and my website. I want to keep you all coming back to Passion Locked and build a online community of moguls that want to learn, grow and support each other. I’m now in an intense planning mode for 2019. I want to get better at preparing content and finding new innovative ways to bring readers to my lil ol’ blog.

Today I want to share with you the equipment I used to blog. Although I’ve been blogging for almost 3 years now, I still consider myself a starter blogger… lol ! I say that because I started blogging as a hobby and its still a hobby. Don’t get me wrong, it’s hard work but I’m not getting paid for it…YET!!! I plan to grow my blog and brand to another level next year .

Most of the things I use to blog are really cheap, but they work and get the job done for me. The most important things are my Macbook and iPhone. I take all my pictures on my iPhone, edit them on my iPhone as well. Over time I hope to invest in a camera and better blogging equipment.

Here is what I use to take blog pictures

CamKix Wireless Bluetooth Camera Shutter Remote Control for Smartphones

Camera Phone Tripod+ Universal Tripod Smartphone Mount for Apple, iPhone Samsung and Other Brands Smartphones+Carrying Bag

Amzdeal Photo Light Box Portable Photography Tent Small Foldabel Shooting Tent with LED Light 9.4X9.4 Inch

<img src=”https://s7.orientaltrading.com/is/image/OrientalTrading/PDP_VIEWER_IMAGE/better-than-paper-sup—/sup-gold-shimmer-bulletin-board-roll~13820697&#8243; alt=”Better Than Paper® Gold Shimmer Bulletin Board Roll” width=”223″ height=”223″/>

Glitter Poster Board

New editions that you have not seen on my blog yet, but soon will is…

Julius Studio Photo Video Studio 10 ft. Wide Cross Bar 7.4 ft. Tall Background Stand Backdrop Support System Kit with Carry Bag

Julius Studio 6 ft X 9 ft White Photo Video Photography Studio Fabric Backdrop Background Screen

J

BLOGMAS Day 8 | What I listen to in a day!

Hello Passionista, 

My day to day activities are fueled by my energy levels and mood throughout the day. Sometimes I’m happy and cheery, sometimes I’m angry with an attitude, and sometimes I’m just in my feelings. Music and podcasts are my outlets for changing my moods and staying in my lane.

I start my morning out with my bible app or inspiration podcast. I use my bible app to listen to daily scriptures and plans. I am currently completing the Luke 12 day plan.  I have a few inspiration podcast that I like to listen to here are my favorites: 

Mediocre to Masterful

Oprah’s Master Class

Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations 

                                                                                                      Women Evolve 

Around lunch time I need my music to keep me focused. A good upbeat Apple Music playlist or my Tevin Campbell (trained) station on Pandora music. 

Here are my favorite Apple Music playlist to listen to midday: 

Growing Up Millennial

Millennial Soul

Beyonce Essentials

I am a lover of true crime. I like True Crime documentaries, shows, movies, books, and podcast. An afternoon pickup (around 3pm) for me is a Murder or investigative podcast. This is what I listen to: 

True Crime Garage

Sword & Scale

Serial

My Favorite Murder

On my way home in the evening I love listening to audible books. I am currently listening to Becoming by Michelle Obama.This audible is 19 hours and narrated by the ONE and ONLY Michelle Obama herself and I love it. I will be driving home listening to the books, and she’ll say a word and I’ll start talking about like we having a real conversation. Sometimes, I have to pause the audible just  to talk to myself. Queen Michelle Obama is speaking a word of honesty and truth in this book and in such a gracefully unapologetic manner. I LOVE IT! 

Once I get home I want silence. Pure Silence for at least 30 minutes to an hour. No TV, No phone, No music. That’s my distressing time. Then the good podcast come while I’m cooking, cleaning and blogging- and those are: 

Lip Service 

The Read 

Small Doses

Jesus & Jollof

What do you listen to ?

This is L. Organic Pads and Tampons | Use and Review

Hello Passionista

We live in a world that overlooks the beauty behind being a women and the female body. It’s sad but true. I believe there is a generational divide in the appreciation of women and their bodies… everything from our hair and outer beauty to our well being and health. Every since I can remember I question by products like pads and tampons were on market to be conventionally sold in stores but birth control is free. I’m pretty sure I can go into a deep debate with just about anyone who feels like women should have to buy pads and tampons.

img_0942On top of that fact that we have to purchase these items, companies started using thing like pesticides, chlorine, and fragrances to manufacturer products we need as women. What type of foolishness is this? For years, I didn’t know what was in the products I used for my monthly. I never thought to ask. My parents gave me “the talk” told me what to do and things went from there. It was until the Tiffany Haddish Breakfast Club interview, “where she told her experience with Toxic Shock Syndrome, that I became curious in what products like pads and tampons were made up of. To my surprise it was awful !!!! So many thoughts raised in my head… “How could a company honestly sell this stuff to women knowing what is in it? How could the government allow this? How many years has this been going on?”

img_0944

Finally one day in Target, I cam across the This is L. product line. The packaging is what drew my attention to the product. I like how clean and chic the packaging of the products look. My favorite is the clear pale that the tampons come in. I like to reuse them to store other stuff. I currently have like 2 of them under my bathroom sink, full of hair rollers and accessories. I was honestly surprised to see organic female products on shelf in a mass retail store like Target, for the same price as the other brands. My thoughts then were, ” if organic products can be manufacturer and sold at the same price point why add all the pesticides, chlorine and dyes in the first place?” It honestly blow my mind. But I was excited to try the organic pads and tampons. I honestly, thought the products were too good to be true. For the same price as Always and Kotex brand I will try.

img_0941

Some of my concerns were about comfort and leaks. So the first time I tried the products I used them over a weekend that I was mainly at home. I didn’t want to be out and have any accidents in public. But to my surprise there was nothing to worry about. The tampons felt like tampons. The pads felt like pads. The panty liners felt like panty liners. I was amazed and proud.

I buy organic pads and tampons and I’m not going back to those old harmful products. Click here to learn more about This is L. Inc. and purchase products online, also sold in Target.

Guest Blogger| Passionista Brandi Thompson |Just Give Me Jesus

Hello Passionista-

img_0902

Brandi Thompson is a dear sweetheart I had the pleasure of meeting during my days attending The “Unsinkable” Albany State University. She has a joyful spirit that makes you smile every time you are in her presence even if you’re not in the mood for smiles and laughs. I had a change to watch her grow from a freshman to the AMAZING women is she today. I look forward to more of her greatness as she walks in her passion.

Now introducing my FIRST ever Guest Blogger and fellow Passionista, Brandi Thompson…. 

img_0895

 

Living in a world filled with famous sayings, its hard not to start a blog without one… For the longest, my favorite was: “not all who wander are lost”. Little did I know, I was living my “best life” on a lie.  For 22 years, I wandered. Truthfully, I was lost. Dangerously, I was so lost I didn’t even realize I needed to be found. Honestly, all who wander are lost.

 

 

How lost, is lost?

img_0894

From the age of 11, the taste of liquor satisfied my curiosity for the “good life” I would see on VH1 and MTV.  It was like the stock market – high risk, high reward – The higher the shelf, the better the taste. For 11 years, I struggled with blacked out drunken nights, near death intoxication, and a loose sense of moral direction.

From the age of 13, I chose to jump in and out of relationships with guys just to appease my insecurities. Being touched cured my need to be loved. A title soothed my longing for identity no matter where it came from. For 9 years, I indulged in a series of soul ties with many men (and 1 woman if I’m being honest) whose inner connection gave me “peace”.

From the age of 18, my wandering led me away from the nest of home to a new land to roam – ready to be conquered. With no sense of identity, purpose, and security, my aimless journey led me into the arms of an emotionally abusive man. I convinced myself that ‘leaving was easy’ and ‘my damage has to be worth something’. For 3 years, I endured an emotionally debilitating relationship built off a false perception of mental fortitude all to say I was “loved”.

img_0893

For 22 years, I wandered and filled my heart with the joys of the world, adding layers of darkness to my heart, building a life on sinking sand. My wandering grew dark, cold, depressing… the person I displayed was never an accurate depiction of the dying person I was on the inside. I was beginning to understand why suicide seemed to be the answer 9 years ago.  Being at war with my reality and convictions created a battle of inner conflict that I began to question my own purpose for being here.… After 22 years of wandering, all of the questions I had, the “good life” I was longing for, the “peace” is desperately needed, and the “love” I was searching for all could be found in one place…. The answer to it all was Jesus.

img_0901

“There is nothing I desire that can’t be found in you. You’re everything that I’ve ever needed… Just give me Jesus!”

 

 

 

The new passion I found to live the life God has called me to live has redefined my life. His plans have surpassed my expectations of the life I thought I was supposed to have. His will has created a new perspective of what really matters in the world.

img_0903

What good is my business if my family isn’t truly saved?

What good is owning a home & nice car if salvation hasn’t reached all four corners of the Earth?

What good is my life, or anyone else’s, without Jesus?

In Him, you will find your identity – the knowledge to recognize you’re a child of the most high.

In Him, you will find your purpose – the reason He created you to be here.

In Him, you will find your stability – the foundation to stand firm on your purpose.

Inwardly, there has always been a love to help people with a problem and to have a great time with amazing people. No wonder event planning and designing party décor became my career aspiration. As I continue to give my life’s plan to God, He continues to open my eyes of how HE wants me to solve problems by having a great time with HIS amazing people for the Kingdom.  There is so much peace in his plan! You may be thinking, “well what about my dreams?”

Be passionate about your business. Be dedicated to your education. Be invested in the present life you are walking in. Embrace the development taking place in each season you are in. Seek correction and direction from the wise ones who surround you. Develop your talent, master your craft, and perfect your gift. Do all of this while posturing your heart to desire the One. In Him, you, your plans, your goals, and your business will have identity, purpose, and stability!  

img_0900

 

What good are our passions without a true Passion for Christ?

All who wander are lost… but I pray you wander into arms of Jesus.  

 

 

 

Shirt can be found at www.dopeanalogy.com

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jkIaJo7T3Bc

#SelfcareNovember | Week Recap

Hello Passionista…

VOTE TODAY! YOU’RE VOTE MATTER! YOUR VOICE CAN BE AND WILL BE HEARD!

img_0850

 

November has been pretty amazing so far. There is so much to look forward to between now and the end of the month. If you follow my social media accounts, I have been posting my daily recaps of the #selfcarenovember challenge. This challenge has really been going well for me. It is helping me slow down and be more mindful.

img_0777

Day 1: No Complaining for a day

I thought no complaining for a day would be hard, but what it lead to was me not talking much that day.  It was different but not so bad. I listened to music and podcasts most of the day and I felt much more energetic.

Day 2: Do something kind for someone else 

It was a long work week for me. Honestly, I don’t know why. It just seemed like the week dragged out. Friday on my way to working, I thought I’d get Krispy Kreme donuts for the office. Sweet treats always make me feel better and nothing is better than a warm donut about an hour after lunch. And I know if I had a long week, so did my coworkers.

Day 3:  Buy yourself a gift (something you really like)

img_0798

 

As I was in Big Lots I came across some nice smelling candles. I love candles, But I only buy bath and body works candles. I thought to myself, I can buy other brands of candles. If you like the scent get it. So I bought it. Big Lots is dangerous. I spend more money there, than I do in Target. That’s bad! Not really tho, cause Bigs Lots as great discount stuff for everything.

 

 

Day 4: Pamper Yourself 

Sunday was a great day for pampering myself. I woke up early and started cleaning up my place. I was even in the mood to rearrange some of my furniture for comfort. Once I was done cleaning, I took a hot bath, relax and listening to ” Don’t settle for safe” by Sarah Jakes Roberts.

Day 5: Write a letter to someone

I decide to write my letter to a decaesd loved one. It felt good to release some of those inner thoughts in a open letter.

Are you taking the challenge with me? How’s it going? Let’s dialogue!


Passionista Featured Deal 

Au Naturale Cosmetics

Au Naturale

Click here for free shipping on all orders over $50

All things Fall Mood Board

Hello Passionista

Fall is my favorite time of year. I love to be wrapped up in cozy fashions, drinking warm tasty drinks and enjoying the cool breeze.

Scarves

An fall outfit is not complete with a cozy scarf

My favorite places to purchase… Target, TJ Maxx, Lane Bryant

Cardigans + Booties Fashion

My fall fashion favorites are oversized cardigans and wraps with thicks socks and booties. I’ve even thought about trying to make my own winter body wrap scarf (comment below if you’d like that idea)

Favorite Places to Shop: Target, Boohoo, Debshop, Old Navy

Fall Eye Shadows

I love natural flesh tone eye shadow colors for fresh face fall. Everything from light pinks and blushes to marker wine (burgundy) and navy (blue) colors

Best Fall Palettes: BH Cosmetics, Covergirl

Knitting + Crafts

I am crafty and I love making stuff. Something about fall brings out the creative in me.

Best craft store: Hobby Lobby and Joans

Starbucks

Favorite Drink: Warm Sugar Cookie Latter

Candles

Candles set the mood for warm cozy comfort. So everyday I light candles all through the house.

Favorite Candles: Bath & Body Works

Autumn Sangria

Fall cause for celebration… with celebrations come cocktails and a cranberry sangria or autumn sangria are my choice of fun!

 

Lifestyle | Top 5 Obsessions

Hello Passionistas-

To start off the week, I thought I would share some of my latest obsessions ..

img_0384 Podcasts 

I think I listen to podcasts more than I do music. And definitely the radio. The last time I listened to the radio, I was living in New York and would listen to Power 105.1 /the breakfast Club on my way to work every morning. But now, podcasts have all my attentions. I just watch the breakfast club on Youtube now, okkkkkkkur !!!!

Although true crime was my introduction to podcasts, I have grown to love and connect with so many podcast.

  • The Women Evolved Podcast by Sarah Jakes Roberts is a new listen for me but for the past 2 weeks, I have been binging every episode… honey! I love how inspirations she is. I first saw her on Facebook discover page clips of her preaching and I would always say this lady is speaking to me, Then somehow I found she had a podcast recently… it’s lit very morning on the ride to work thinking about if I agree with the rescue eve or not.
  • The Read with Kid Fury and Crissle is my weekly treat. I love the energy they put out into the world and the grind they are on. I support !!!! I’m a fan!!! So I every morning I get up and go to work like adults do and then I get off and grind for myself and the things I want to accomplish. Then Thursday evening comes and I lay back on my nice comfy sofa and laugh my ass off. Culture I Stand For.
  • Serial was the first podcast I ever listened to when season 1 launched. This was my introduction to investigative and true crime podcast. I am obsessed. I am loving season three, inside the court room. Stay ready so you don’t have to get ready.
  • Small Doses with Amanda Seales is becoming another treat. Well, maybe self care resource. Amanda is legit smart, funny and black.
  • Mediocre to  Masterful is a new podcast that a new friend of mine hosts and it is full of self help informations. After listening to 2 episodes my journal is full of charts, lists, and pages of reflect and planning for better.

 

img_0413

Beyonce graced us with the Vouge – September 2018 Issue and I thought I was going to miss out. Honey, every store I went to seem to not carry vogue, like huh? Where do I buy this magazine? Randomly, I went to CVS and found just 1, so I bought it. PURE BEAUTY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! She is BEAUTY, I love it. Queen was working it.

 

 

 Youtube has taken over TV. From Vloggers to Bloggers and web series and educational content. Youtube is just like google. I love the Ellies, Giants, Raven Elyse, 85 South show

Almost every week I’m ordering from Amazon & I have even subscribed for Audible through amazon.

I bought a Plants (Aloe Vera) from Kroger and I have been loving having it handy for my skin. I’m aloe to cut pure aloe just to rub down my body in the showers or blend up a mask for my face and hair.

 

What are some of your obsessions?

Moisturizing Body Rub|D.I.Y.

Hello Passionista…

I enjoy making body scrubs and facial… stuff for my skin in general. One thing I like to do at least every other week is a moisturizing body rub using Lipton Green Tea. I do a lot to take care of my face but the rest of my body needs the same tender love and care. Honestly, I love having soft smooth skin. Today, I’m going to show you what I do and how to make this moisturizing body scrub.

What you’ll Need: 

5 Pure Green Tea bags

Aloe Vera Gel

Organic Virgin Coconut Oil

img_2963

Pure Green Tea helps promote healthy skin and reduces inflammation.

Aloe Vera Gel is hands down the best thing for curing scars and blemishes on your skin. Not just you face, it can be used all over your body.

Organic Virgin Coconut Oil is great for just about everything. Its a natural moisturizer. It helps lock moisture in your skin.

To start… use 5 tea bags to make a pitcher of green tea to enjoy later.

Once your tea is finish brewing, cut open the tea bags scooping the tea leaves into a bowl.

Add a 1/2 cup of aloe vera gel and a 1/2 cup of coconut oil. Stir.

I like  to place the mix in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Then apply the cool moisturizing rub all over my body. Let it sit for at least 15 minutes (to as long as you would like). To remove, I get in the shower  and rinse everything off  and air dry my newly moisturized skin.

Try it… Share your thoughts…