Hold a Kate Spade

With the recent death of Kate Spade, I felt compelled to re-post this about dealing with mental health. I was so saddened to hear that she ended her life – and for what reasons we’ll never really know.

The first thing that came to mind: did she ever seek professional help? Were there any signs? Could someone have helped her in time?

Mental health with women is real. We face the challenges of managing our households and careers and anything else that falls in between–and it’s a beast. While we’ll continue to hold a Kate Spade–no more “holding.”

________________________

Breathe. You have a lot going on and decide to buckle down, not think about what’s really happening (mentally) and hold it together. Umm no. If you need help, ask – and I don’t just mean from family and friends.

Too many people live in a dark place when they need help. They don’t ask for it in fear of what others will say or simply because of pride. We reject the idea of a therapist, marriage counseling, life coach or whatever a licensed professional can offer.

Mental health is just as important as physical health. And for people that look like me – mental health tends to be overlooked. Instead, we are told to “pray about it” and carry on. I do agree that praying is important but we also need to be wise when we know something needs to be adjusted.

African Americans are 20% more likely to report having serious psychological distress than non-Hispanic Whites, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Services. Yet young adult African Americans, especially those with higher levels of education, are less likely to seek mental health services than their White counterparts, according to a study published by the American Psychological Association (Ebony Magazine).

We don’t have to hold ourselves together all the time. That’s called being normal. And if it gets to a point where it’s too much, I can not stress enough, please seek professional help. You will thank yourself later #noholding.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain.

Sun Taylor

Photo Credit: Warmly Whit

Back and forth? #deuces

“Stop going back and forth on your ideas because of fear. You’re confusing the universe. Decide what you want and stick with it. You’ll notice things starting to shift in your favor.” #bossbabe (trademarked)

I could not agree more. This literally hit me in the face last week; now is my time and I’m thankful.

For the past two and half years I have been back and forth in my work “sit-e-ation.” After one job didn’t turn out the way I wanted it to, I focused on my family for about a year and then decided to go back to work May 2017. Guess what? The company was bought and that story ended in severance pay.

Was this the final sign to really push through on the small business front? Or do I grind and find yet ANOTHER job? We have a family of five so what does one do?

I started to teach and take on projects here and there with nothing on the 9-5 job front coming through. So I continued to work on my business. After a while, I noticed more opportunities- and then more- and then more.

Throughout this process I continued to look for work, projects, and prayed for guidance. I hustled for clients and taught at a junior college with hopes of finding a j-o-b soon.

Then it hit me: STOP GOING BACK AND FORTH.

I’ve had doubts because of fear, because of what others think I should have been doing, or because of all the luxuries I see of others, comparing myself (big no-no). It definitely had me confused. However, in my heart, I knew what I was supposed to be doing but continued to go back and forth.

No more. We have to trust ourselves enough to know we can do it with prayer, a plan, and determination. Don’t confuse yourself or the universe. Stick with what you want to do and go hard. You will have doubts, you will get tired, you will want to quit and take the easy way out (present company included). But don’t shift. From this point on, it’s going to be about Taylord’d Events & Media.

So here’s a big arse #deuces to back and forth; FAVOR has showed up.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain . . .

Sun Taylor

At the buffet…WUT!

About three weeks ago, I decided to write out every task I completed over the course of three days. The golden number (and I’m sure I missed some). . . ONE HUNDRED THIRTY-THREE. WTH?

Now let’s talk about the “buffet” and piling up way too much. I like to get steak and potatoes, while grabbing a roll and salad and then decide I need a dessert, drink, and coffee. Oh, and I forgot a vegetable. Why?

According to a Forbes article, piling up our plates or multitasking actually hinders production by about 40%; way too much shifting between tasks and lack of focus. We pile high and then wonder why things become overwhelming.

Before we get to the overwhelming state, we take on the “we can do it” attitude. Everything is done simultaneously – talking on the phone, cooking dinner, helping with homework, and answering client emails; multitasking on steroids #guilty.

Back to the buffet: how did I fill three days with over 100 tasks? Is it really that serious? Let me provide some background as I’m certain a lot of you can relate:

  1. I am a mother of three; it probably should just end there
  2. My husband and I own and operate two businesses
  3. I teach two classes at a local college
  4. My kids are all under the age of 7
  5. I work in and out of my home – clients, calls, cleaning, scolding, molding, folding, sweeping, wiping

When I shared my list of 133 items with fam and friends, the response was “WUTTTT!” or “you are doing the most.” Yes, but I’m learning – some things have to get done, while others can just wait #workinprogress

Also what I can delegate or pay (minimal) for someone to do for me? Like my new friend InstaCart (online grocery shopping delivered) Next is finding a laundry service. If you know me well, laundry is a *&%$@.

Ultimately, I did this to see where I could make changes and had my husband do the same. It was an exercise to show where we could help each other at the buffet – or pull back altogether.

At the end of the day, it’s no longer about what I didn’t get done, but what I did get done – and it will include paying someone—deuces!!!

Because the sun always comes out after the rain . . .

Sun Taylor

Break or Spring?

Guess what? Spring Break is coming up. Will you “break” or “spring” it up? No clue for me at this point for the Taylor household #behindthe8ball.

Clearly, spring break is the onset to get your “ish” together for the summer. You have about two months before the mayhem of kids everywhere but can look forward to lighter traffic and less driving across America to ALL the kid activities–maybe.

Here are my top five predictions for spring break:

  1. Weather: It appears winter and spring are confused. They probably should have a conversation and get it right so we can go back outside and get some Vitamin D.
  2. Kids: They’ll be the same – driving us krazy – asking all sorts of questions . . . we have no clue about. . . and then we’ll fake the answer so they’ll go away #sorrynotsorry
  3. Family: If you’re like me, involve family in some form. Hopefully, you’ll get a call similar to “hey, want to bring the kids over?” YESSSSSSS.
  4. Activity/Trips: The park, museum, and painting look real good right about now and anything free! I’m sure I’ll have to call A-T-and M several times during the week.
  5. Break – And after everything is turned upside down or possibly broken, I’ll need a BREAK!

The silver lining – our kids are happy, healthy, and we all continue to provide wonderful experiences. Parents unite, try to have a blast, and remember the importance of wine. Cheers!

Because the sun always comes out after the rain…

Sun Taylor

 

 

 

Holding

“Get it together!”

“Why are you acting like this?”

“What is wrong with you?”

These are all too familiar when you are trying to keep it together and can’t. You have a lot going on and decide to buckle down, not think about what’s really happening, and operate on “holding.” Guess what? You don’t have to.

We get stuck when we think we’re supposed to just “suck it up” and move on. Umm no. If you need help, ask – and I don’t just mean from family and friends.

Too many people live in a dark place when they need help. They don’t ask for it in fear of what others will say or simply because of pride.  We reject the idea of getting a therapist, marriage counseling, life coach or whatever a licensed professional can offer.

Good mental health is just as important as physical health. And for people that look like me – mental health tends to be overlooked. Instead, we are told to “pray about it” and carry on. I do agree that praying is important but we also need to be wise when we know something needs to be adjusted.

African Americans are 20% more likely to report having serious psychological distress than non-Hispanic Whites, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Services. Yet young adult African Americans, especially those with higher levels of education, are less likely to seek mental health services than their White counterparts, according to a study published by the American Psychological Association (Ebony Magazine).

We don’t have to hold ourselves together all the time. That’s called being normal. And if it gets to a point where it’s too much, seek professional help. You will thank yourself for saving yourself. I plan to and that’s perfectly fine #noshame.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain.

Sun Taylor

Handle your business

“I’m not a business-man’! I’m a business . . . man! Let me handle my business, damn!”

-Jay Z

Woooooooooooooosah. I’ll just get right into it as business owners across the world UNITE! We kick butt when we’re good at operating our businesses- because it’s not easy.

And on that note, there were five (5) lessons that knocked me right over the head this week: some were reminders while others were new. It’s all about growing pains and I grew about 20 inches this freakin’ week.

Business is business 
Don’t take situations or business decisions personal. It’s perfectly OK if people don’t understand your business acumen (or vise versa) –  just keep moving. We can still be friends . . . maybe #workinprogress.

Your response (or lack thereof) speaks volumes 
Please always respond and not a week later. A complaint goes further than a compliment and people will talk when you are not on top of your game.

Manage expectations
If you can’t do it, then say it — but have another option. Don’t over promise and under deliver. Do what you say you’re going to do with no excuses. It’s just that simple.

Time is money 
There’s really no further explanation needed here. Don’t waste time when you (and I) could be making money. That same energy could be put into a new client — because “I needs my coins.”

Charge what you’re worth and then add tax
I actually read this on social media and it resonated immediately. Yes, there will be times when you may have to work out a deal (to get your foot in the door) but always know your worth. If you don’t know it, people won’t understand WHY you’re worth it.

I am certain there will be many more lessons but in the mean and between time: handle your business.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain. . .

Sun Taylor

#ProudCousin

Happy Friday! This has been some week but today I am thankful for family and the moments I continue to share with them.

Growing up as the only child, my cousins remain some of my best friends as my sounding boards and ride-or-die chicks. They have endured the loss, illness, and rearranging their lives to care for a parent but continue to keep a positive attitude. They’ve also gone on to get master degrees, nursing degrees, starting businesses, and remain straight up jet setters.

Meet Tameka “Meek” Monroe.  I met this fashionista cousin for the first time during a trip to see my father in Houston. On our first encounter I knew what she was made of immediately. Strong. Bold. Sweet. Funny. Smart. Bosslady.

Practically 15 years later, she’s a wife, mom of two beautiful girls, executive, fashion blogger, the list goes on. Every time I talk to her, I get some pearls of wisdom . . . and then some fashion advice. Tee hee :o)

Last week she launched an online fashion boutique – Skinnee Girl Couture.  The name comes from her blog, Skinnee Girl Confidence – growing up as a skinny girl she was constantly teased about her body. But she turned it completely around with confidence. As I mentioned, smart– and the clothes are for a variety of sizes.

While Meek has taught me a lot over the years with our crazy conversations, giggles, and family visits, I continue to be inspired by all my cousins— their accomplishments, the lessons I have learned from them, and the times they showed up for me.

I’ll always be that #proudcousin

Because the sun always comes out after the rain . . .

Sun Taylor

You Can Handle It!

The professor is back! Let the adventure begin…or maybe I should say continue?

Mama decided to head back to school and teach two classes this semester; another chapter re-read with many lessons along the way.

The first week has passed and things went pretty well. I have about 20 students between two classes: Media, Culture, and Society and Public Speaking. God knew smaller classes would be perfect for me considering the other things I have going on – one husband, two businesses, and three kids – whew! Thankfully, no dog.

On first thought of going back to teach, I was a little apprehensive since it was practically six years ago when I last step foot in a classroom. This was right before our first son was born. Ok, so how will this work out? Will I be dated? How will they react to me? Syllabus? Lecture notes? Slides? Wait. . . what? Did I really mean to sign up for all of this?

But I quickly remembered that God doesn’t give you anything you can’t handle and to RELAX…you got this. I put my crown on, flicked my hair, called up  Professor Mac (a professor friend of mine!) and got to it.

First lesson I learned – EVERYTHING is online. No need to actually print a syllabus; your grading system is online; all communication to students is online, and all the notes for one class already came loaded through an online teaching tool. WOW!

Second lesson came quickly – Since the classes are about 10 students each, there will have to be less lecturing, more discussion. I wasn’t trying to put them to sleep talking, talking, talking. I remember when I was in college and some professors, all they did was talk- snoozers. Not over here.

And the third lesson (with more lessons to come) – Relate to the students but also stand your ground as the instructor. We can be “cool like that” but I will fail you. Smile!

Onward and upward as there is always some adventure awaiting but you can handle it.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain. . .

Sun Taylor

It’s a lifestyle . . . change

Happy New Year!

What are your plans for 2018? I decided not to make any resolutions. Sometimes they can be lofty and when I don’t accomplish them, I feel I’ve failed. The better bet? Lifestyle changes. With turning 40 last year, my perspective has changed.

As I was perusing social media in my “spare time,” I saw someone post “I don’t make resolutions; they’re BS.” Yep. I couldn’t agree more at this point in my life. I’d prefer to make overall lifestyle changes.

So what did I do? Came up with a list of things starting now until I feel they are done and a part of me, not necessarily tied to accomplishing in a year. Lifestyle changes are more of a process, but worth it in the end.

Here goes:

  1. Argue less – Settle down because sometimes the juice ain’t worth the squeeze. A simple “ok” is better for my gray hair anyway #yesgray
  2. Do what I can – And if the other stuff doesn’t get done, oh well. Maybe tomorrow but don’t hold your breath.
  3. Alone time/girl time – Three kids. A husband. Need I say more? And if they can’t get with this (or anyone else), too bad. Deuces.
  4. No self doubt– Repeating and recognizing “I got this” and I had it a long time ago. Move to the side please because mama is making moves.
  5. Proud no matter what– There’s a lot I should be proud of and I tend to shame myself. No more. Chin up buttercup.

So what lifestyle changes do you plan to make? Please comment below!

Because the sun always comes out after the rain. . .

Sun Taylor

 

Part Deux: Umm No…but Merry Christmas!

Happy Holidays!

As we all prepare for Christmas in 10 days, I wanted to post an oldie-but-goodie from this time last year with some added commentary :o) There is a lot to be thankful for and it’s not just what’s under the tree. Remember that and say  “uh no” to the shenanigans.

Enjoy!

________________________________

Ho, ho, ho, Merry Christmas! It’s the season of getting cranked up for that special day attending this party and that one and buying gifts galore. Sure.

Well, this year there are a couple of things I decided NOT do. It’s really more so to keep my cool and not stress over the minutia.  I’ve learned so many lessons along the way when it comes to celebrating Christmas – and most important, honoring the birth of Jesus.

However, commercialism has geared us away from what should be the true focus “of the most wonderful time of the year.” Like family, good friends, and being thankful you made it to another Christmas because a lot of people didn’t.

With that being said, here is my top five list of  “um no ” not this Christmas – with three days left to spare:

  1. Going overboard with baby’s first Christmas. – I love my new little one and she’s my only girl. But . . . there is no need to go crazy on gifts and more gifts. Do you remember your very first Christmas? Exactly. However, I will get several pictures – and honestly it’s going to be about loving on her that morning.
    And the same goes for this year as we celebrate her second Christmas. Easy-peasy.
  2. Buying toys and more toys for the boys – As you all know, I also have two boys who have taken over practically every room in this house with toys. And then the big toys- why? I don’t need to see the toy before I walk into the room. Their grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins have this covered anyway. I’ll move out the old to replace the new – Goodwill here I come.
    Little to no toys again!
  3. Christmas cards going to Terry, Sherry, and Kerry – I can recall sending Christmas cards to all my wedding guests post our nuptials years back. Just kidding. My point: instead of sending and signing all those cards (Where is my hubby?), New Year’s cards will go out to the nearest and dearest. For the others, smile, you know I luv you.
    This may or may not happen; maybe a text message to close friends but see #4.
  4. Mass text messages to a gazillion people on Christmas Day – I was guilty of this in my former life, ain’t gonna lie. It gets messy because most reply ALL. Well “message rates apply.” Like when my aunt Bea responds seven times because she doesn’t know how to use her phone. I have a couple of those in my life #lmbo.
    Don’t. Please and thank you. 
  5. Eating everything in sight because it’s the holidays – Really? This means I’ll have to be carried away from the table. And all my hard work for the last couple of months goes down the toilet – literally. LOL. I will eat but within reason. Being healthy is a lifestyle and takes commitment; I’ve learned this the hard way.
    No-way-Jose. 

This is one of the best times of the year as people come together to help each another. If you took away the gifts and all the other nonessential buzz of Christmas, would it still be Christmas? “Um yessss!” Merry Christmas.

Because the sun always comes out after the rain. . .

Sun Taylor