Creating a Space That Brings You Joy (No Matter the Season)

Tuesday, February 16, 2021


If anyone is wondering, we absolutely JUST took our Christmas decor down and honestlyyyy, I'm sad about it. 300 something days until they're back up..but who's counting (definitely me)? 

Obviously Christmas decor makes me happy; but whether it's holiday decorations, or everyday home decor, it's important to create a space that brings you joy no matter what season it is...especially now that living and working from home have become our norm. These are the walls you have to look at everyday, the bedroom you have to find peace in and the living room where you will binge watch your favorite show for the thousandth time, so you should love it! We may not be able to control the chaos that's going on in the world, but we can definitely control our home and the way it makes us feel.

Some questions to ask yourself: How does your current space make you feel? When you walk in, do you immediately experience peace? Do the rooms in your home make you feel inspired and creative? Do you feel more or less stressed when you spend time in your home? On your worst days, is there an item in your home that can instantly bring you joy?


Here are some tips for creating a space that will help you endure your toughest days and find the joy in your best ones:
1. Create designated areas for each part of your day. A joyful space isn't just about the decorations, it's also about the intention of the space. For example, if possible, separate the place you rest from the place you work. Try to avoid doing work from bed -- if you have a desk or dining room table, use it! If not, purchase a lap desk and create a WFH nook in your room or living room.

2. Invite color into your space! Color plays a really important role in how you feel while in your space. Red is a great accent color, but too much of it can radiate anger. Colors like yellow, orange and green encourage happiness and fresh energy. This is especially important for those of us who live with seasonal depression -- there may not be much color outside during certain seasons, so bring your favorite season into your home!

3. Declutter, clean and organize your space! Yall, I knooooow we get comfortable with the organized chaos of our homes; but there is something so peace inducing about a clean space. Pick one day each week to clean up your spaces and sit and feel the difference!

4. Find scents that embody the way you want to feel in your home. A joyful space engages every single one of our senses! It's something about burning my favorite candles while I'm cleaning, or working, or relaxing that makes me feel like I'm doing something right! If you want scents that last beyond the candle, buy some plug-ins and place them at the entrance of your space, the living room, the kitchen, your bedroom and bathroom - pick scents that match the emotional feeling of each room.

Let your home be your safe space and be intentional about creating that safety in a joyful way!


  

Dating Yourself in Your Single Season: 3 Date Night Ideas for Singles

Friday, February 12, 2021

 

Hey you! Hey hey...nah, we're not about to be bitter this Valentine's Day. We're not gonna be sad. You're gonna show love to your beautiful, single self and you're gonna like it...GOT IT?!

In case you were wondering, I was definitely talking to myself! I have been single for what seems like foreverrrrrrrrrrrrrr and I'm not going to lie to you, a lot of times, I do not enjoy it at all. If I'm being honest, here lately I've had some feelings come up that I was so sure I'd dealt with. These feelings taunted me about the fact that I'm still single...these feelings tried to make me resent my friends who are receiving the love they deserve. These feelings told me that I will be single forever.

With some reframing, I acknowledged my feelings as lies that the enemy was using to convince me that I was not deserving of the love that I have always desired. I won't always be single; but, I will be single until God has completed His work in me in the season I am currently in. Let me tell yall somethin' (insert Cardi B lip smack), I AM IN MY BAG this season, okay?! The opportunities and ideas and partnerships and everything else that have been provided to me during this time have been more than I ever even fixed my mouth to ask for -- so yeah, I am willing to wait until the time is right and I am ready.


With that being said, that doesn't mean that I can't have fun dating myself in the meantime! Think about the intention behind dating, right? The purpose of dating is to get to know another person; what they like/dislike, their personality, their goals and values. So why wouldn't I want to learn all of these things about myself before consuming myself with that of another person? 

What I have learned in this season is the importance of enjoying ME. I am being intentional about spending time learning about myself and loving everything I discover. Imagine loving yourself on a deeper, less judgmental and more grace-giving way...yeah, I love it here! 

Enough about me, here are 3 date night ideas for you as you learn to enjoy your single season:

1. Go on a staycation and explore your city!
 For me personally, I know there are sooo many places in Durham (and Raleigh) that I have yet to visit and enjoy. Book a 'telly (a hotel room) for yourself and create your own weekend itinerary! Try new restaurants, visit museums, discover all of the murals downtown...be touristy and intentionally explore the place you call home.
  
2. Book a spa day!
That facial you've been wanting to get? That massage you desperately need? That pedicure you've been putting off? Yeah, all'at - YOU DESERVE. You don't have to or need to wait on a partner to pamper yourself, friend. 

3. Plan a solo dinner and a movie!
So obviously we're still in the middle of a parfait, so this will take some creativity. Look up a recipe you've been wanting to try, find a new movie (or your favorite movie you've seen fifty'leven times) on Netflix or HBOMax (this is where alot of the movies that would be going to theaters are being shown). Then get dressed up, pour a glass of wine or a cocktail, set your dining room table for 1 and enjoy yourself!

These are just a few ideas! The point is that I want you to love on yourself the way you'd want a partner to on Valentine's Day -- cause your love is quality, so show yaself some...or a lot!


 

PITCH Better Have My Money: 4 Tips for Pitching to Brands

Wednesday, January 27, 2021


I have had several people reach out to me about how to pitch to brands -- SOOOOO, I wanted to provide you all with tips on pitching and getting well-deserved coins! 

AND THAT'S ON MARY HAD A LITTLE LAMB. 

In this post, I am going to give you FOUR basic tips for pitching to brands! These tips have helped me get comfortable enough with pitching that I am able to give them to yall, so I hope they help. 

After you get all of the pitching tea, make sure you download and save my free pitch template!

TIP #1: Create a Media Kit and Keep It Updated

If you don't know what a media kit is, it is basically your digital business card! Your media kit should be a representation of you and your brand so that the brands you're pitching to can get an idea of who you are. Your media kit can be created for free on Canva and should include a bio, social media statistics/analytics, your audience demographics and of course, your blog/website. Here's a detailed post on creating your media kit.

Once you've created your media kit, be sure to keep it updated! Before you send it to brands, make sure all of the information is as up to date as possible. 

You should be attaching your media kit to every pitch email you send out -- I suggest sending it as a LINK when you are emailing brands for the first time (this is because your email may go to spam if you attach the media kit to your email and the file size is too big). **DO NOT ATTACH YOUR RATES IN YOUR INITIAL EMAIL.

TIP #2: Introduce Yourself and Your Brand

A BIG mistake that folks make when pitching to brands is jumping straight into business. Don't be rude! Introduce yourself! While your email should be as concise as possible, it shouldn't bypass basic email etiquette. It doesn't have to be your entire bio (because if you applied TIP #1, your elaborated bio is in your media kit), but it should grab the brand's attention. Here's the way I typically introduce myself when I pitch:

 
 See, quick and simple! I pulled this from my brand mission statement so it's consistent with what brands will see when they open my media kit and when they visit my website, and even when they visit my socials.

TIP #3: Make the Brand Blush

Okay..so maybe they won't literally blush, but you can still put the effort in! Show the brand that you're not just after their money -- show them that their mission and values align with your's (THIS IS SO IMPORTANT). 

When pitching, you want to make the brand feel like you've done AT LEAST the bare minimum research on their company and you're not just trying to get money from them (even though we want the coins also). So after introducing yourself and your own brand, tailor your email and make it personal to the brand you are seeking to collaborate with. That personal touch goes a LONG way. Here's an example:


Use key words that the brand uses often, tell them what you love about their brand, etc.

BONUS TIP: Look on the brand's website and IG for PR/MEDIA/INFLUENCER contact info. If you aren't sure whether or not you have the right contact information, try sending the brand a DM first. An IG pitch can go something like this:

Good afternoon!
I am a micro-influencer in the Raleigh/Durham area and I'd be thrilled to create social media content and/or blog posts for [brand name].
Could you please direct me to who I can send my pitch + media kit to?

TIP #4: PITCH PLEASE!

This is the fun(ish) part! Now is the time for you to give them an idea of what type of content they could expect from you and in what form the content will be delivered if they choose to partner with you. BE CREATIVE. Take ideas from how you already use the brand/products and create content that will draw other people to the brand.

A tip is to curate your pitch ideas around the season/upcoming holidays, or campaigns they have been promoting on their website and/or socials. Your pitch doesn't have to be SUPER detailed, but it needs to give the brand an idea of what you're going to create! The WAY you pitch may be different based on the industry you're in and the brand you're pitching to. Here is the format I've adapted: 


Okay, yall. That's all I got for now.

GET YA PITCH ON AND GET THE COINS! I'm here to help if you need me!

OH. And here's a FREE pitch template...(:


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Affirmation of the Week

“You have always been a blessed thing, and goodness has no trouble finding you because goodness is what you deserve." – Upile Chisala