5 Ways To Stop Letting Your Personal Issues Impact Your Work

5 Ways To Stop Letting Your Personal Issues Impact Your Work

The boundaries between our personal lives and professionally lives continue to get blurred – and it’s easier than ever to let one impact that other. Especially since millennials are the “most stressed out generation” according to an American Psychology Association survey. (Hmm, I wonder why.....?) It’s impossible to flip a switch and leave all the personal happenings behind when you step into the office, but it’s essential you try to prevent your personal issues from impacting your work.

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Why Millennials are Swearing off Dating

Hello Lovely,

Have you ever hung out with a guy or gal and everything seems to be going swell until they say, "I'm not looking for a relationship right now." That line has easily been decoded to mean, "I don't want a relationship I just want to mess around." I've met some interesting people since ending my last relationship and learned a lot about the current dating scene. I even met a guy who had the opportunity to get back together with his ex-girlfriend but chose not to because he wanted to sleep around some more. Dating as a millennial can make people as replaceable as the latest iPhone. So why aren't millennials dating or getting serious about who they date?

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1. We realised the Disney fairy tale is a lie

Our parents fed us a huge lie and we fell for it; until now. With the spike in divorce rates there's been a new level of awareness for what you don't have to tolerate in a relationship. We believed in happily ever afters because of Disney, however, Disney is based on morbid fiction, but got sprinkled with magic pixie dust to make us see the beauty in the world. The problem is, no one is that charming in real life. Most of us are actually the villain. It's hard to hold onto that fairy tale when all around you are single parent homes and moms and dads who hate each other.

2. The rules of dating have changed drastically. 

Remember when you had to send a note to your crush looking like this? 

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Then there was the awkward movie date and a whole bunch of rules and bases you had to pass before that person even became your significant other. We took dating more seriously back then. We planned weddings in primary school and swore to be together forever.

Now you don't really need to know anything significant about the person before jumping into bed with them. Dating can now literally be defined by Netflix and Chill. No one holds the door open any more, goes to restaurants or even calls. Courting has become a series of texts and dick pics. Have you noticed guys don't even try to dance with girls in the club any more? While there's been a lot more emphasis on being relaxed and letting things happen organically, it can be a little confusing to navigate. Does putting out early push him away or keep his interest? And no matter how many guides they write on this stuff, there's really no one-size-fits-all. Dating is about trial and error making it way too complicated for people who have "more important" things to do.

3. We're too career driven

Thanks to baby boomers, it's a lot harder for us to be taken seriously in the workforce. We were constantly told as kids to stop focusing on boys/girls and get an education. My mom always taught me that two people shouldn't be "unequally yoked" and I need to be so successful that no man can ever say, "If it weren't for me you wouldn't ______________". So that's been my approach to dating ever since. I pushed myself to get a Master's Degree and now I'm focused on fixing up my resume. I've even begun looking for new supplemental courses to take to increase my market value. Why? Because life isn't cheap. Housing is expensive and the average cost of living is ridiculous. It's worse when we're trying to travel so that we can "see the world" like everyone is telling us to. So we have to be educated, well travelled, and fiscally responsible before we can even begin to think about settling down. With this kind of focus, it makes it really hard to pick a mate.

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4. Seriously, these are our choices? 

The microwave generation has done a lot of amazing things, the least of which is the invention of reality TV and social media. When you're able to see what everyone is thinking with a single swipe, it makes it easier to eliminate people from your dating pool. Typically, our generation has two types of people: the career driven person who understands that it takes hard work and dedication to sustain a family, and the instant gratification person who sees nothing wrong with earning a living from their living room. The career driven person is usually too busy to date and can sometimes seem out of touch, while the socially driven person seems too lackadaisical and not serious about life.

The recent culture shift has also put a huge strain on traditional values. Do we honour a traditional relationship or is it okay to "go Dutch"? Women have been forced to step up and provide for themselves at the expense of being labelled, bitches, control freaks and insubordinate. Yet our men get away with being dead beat dads, unemployed and still living at home with their mom. But don't forget, men are supposed to be the "head of the household". So it's back to that "unequally yoked" theory.

5. "Don't catch feelings, catch flights"

I've heard this cliche more times than I can count! Somehow, it's become the cool thing to just not show any kind of emotion. God forbid you see someone you like and actually pursue them. Even if it was just a random hookup, it's assumed you "caught feelings" just because you text them the next day. No, it's called being a decent human being. There's a post-modern trend to simply forgo labels and live in the moment. One of my best friends actually chastised me for calling myself a "hopeless romantic". I was angry about that because I never said it was a bad thing. I have no problem being a hopeless romantic and someday I know I'll find someone who's a hopeless romantic like me.

I met a guy who said he doesn't kiss. What are you afraid of? She'll suddenly think you're totally in love with her and want to get married just because you romanced her a little before getting her into bed? People, it's okay to show emotions and and it's okay to form attachments (as long as that's what both parties want). We weren't meant to do life alone so stop acting like you don't need anybody.

These are only 5 reasons why Millennials don't "date" any more. If you have your own reason share it in the comment section below. I'd love to hear from you!

Many people have found love and even got married using free dating websites, so keep at it! 

We Love Dates is a dating website that caters to many different niches. We Love Dates is free and gives people the opportunity to find likeminded people in their age range and location.

If you're an adult looking for an adult dating website, try this one: http://www.nostringsdating.net/uk

Looking for lesbian dating? Try this one: http://www.dateLesbianSingles.co.uk

Over 50 and looking to date? Try this one: http://www.older-dating.co.uk

And if you're looking for gay dating try this one: http://www.dategaysingles.co.uk/

How to Make the Most of Your Mental Health Day

How to Make the Most of Your Mental Health Day

Some people think taking a mental health day means staying at home doing nothing. If you’re feeling burned out, it can be tempting to use the day to stay in bed and catch up on shows and movies. But lounging around all day is more likely to leave you feeling lethargic than rejuvenated. So if you're looking for new ways to take a break, here's a few suggestions for how to make your next mental health day count. 

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5 Secrets for Speaking & Presenting Confidently

Hello Lovely,

How many of you hate public speaking? I remember as a kid my dad enrolled me in Toastmasters. I hated the programme. I wasn't a social kid so going to the meetings was torture, and to be honest, I didn't really learn much from going to them.

I didn't actually get good at public speaking until the beginning of my senior year in college. I was working on a research project with a team. We each had to take turns presenting the information at an on campus research symposium. I was so nervous. I watched my classmates fumble and forget parts, but when it was my turn, something about it just came natural to me. And my professor noticed. She was so impressed by my performance she made me give the same presentation about 3 more times in her classes to her students before administering surveys to gather more information. I say made because she was one of those professors you just couldn't say no to. 

After that I never had a problem speaking publicly again. But that doesn't mean that I don't still get nervous. I recently gave my final presentation for my graduate degree (that's right, I graduated, woohoo!) and I had the worst anxiety leading up to it. So today I'm sharing my tips and tricks for speaking and presenting confidently. It's okay to feel nervous before public speaking, but there are some really easy things you can do to move past that nervous feeling and rock that presentation!

1. You'll do a better job if you actually care about what you're talking about

I think one of the reasons I did so well back in college was because I cared about the information. It was a project I was emotionally invested in and I love psychology. I find it easy to talk to others about mental health and disorders, because I'm passionate about the topic. If you love what you're talking about, it'll be easier to talk about it.

2. Know what you need to say

Memorise the material as much as you can. Nothing is worse than constantly having to refer to your notes when speaking. If you want to speak and present confidently, you have to know the material. Be prepared for a Q&A if time allows. 

3. Practice really does make perfect

No one knocks it out of the park the first time, so keep practising. If you can, use friends and family as your practise audience. That way, you can get feedback on how to improve before the real thing.

4. Dress confidently

It definitely puts a pep in my step when I know I look good. I exude a level of confidence when I'm wearing something pretty. If I'm nervous about doing something new or speaking I plan an eye-catching outfit. First impressions are critical so if I look like I know what I'm talking about, it tends to make me feel more confident and capable.

5. Get to know your audience

If you are booked to speak at an event, always get the logistics of the audience before preparing your speech. You don't want to give a speech tailored for middle-aged adults to a room full of teenagers. I've seen this happen to many people. They think they can use the same powerpoint for everyone because it's the same topic, but the powerpoint ends up being way too long for the alotted time frame or simply out of touch. Based on the age group and other demographics of the audience, it may be more appropriate to include jokes or speak from a more faith-based approach.

BONUS TIP: If you can, bring someone you know and you're comfortable with. Their positive energy and support will help you get through the presentation

I hope these tips give you the confidence you need for the next time you have to do any kind of public speaking. Do you have any other tips or tricks? I'd love for you to share them in the comment section.

How To Be a Boss Without Being a Bitch

Hello Lovely,

I’ve never thought of myself as a boss. Sure I see myself as a leader, but I never liked the title “boss”. It could’ve been due to the narrative I heard as a child that “bossy girls” are bad and no one likes them. Another part of it is I believe that leaders are meant to inspire, while bosses simply order you around without concern for your wellbeing. Lately I’ve been loving how women have reclaimed the boss title and now many women are proud to be called a “Girl Boss.” However, being a girl boss means that sometimes you’re going to have to say or do some tough stuff that may rub some people the wrong way. Yesterday was one of those days for me. As the creative producer in my church, I had to give some tough feedback to fellow volunteers. If you ever find yourself having to make hard-hitting decisions regarding employees, co-workers etc. here are 3 tips to help you to be a boss without being a bitch.

1.      Revise your language

The way you word a sentence marks a clear distinction between boss and bitch. You want to make a point, not alienate a crowd. Now is the time to be direct without being overly critical. Your tone should be even, not harsh; so that the person knows you’re coming from a good place and not on a Prozac withdrawal.

2.      Be constructive, not destructive

Okay, so they messed up. Like really messed up. And maybe you’ve tried to help them in the past but they’re insubordinate and insist on going off script. This is where your language can either help or hurt. Body language plays a role in this too; watch how you hold yourself. That lets the person know what you think about them. Remember you want to inspire them to do better, not kick them while they’re down. If there are any strengths you can point out, include that. Maybe their performance is being affected by personal struggles. Give them some pointers so they’ll know how to improve. If this is the last straw for you and there’s no room for improvement, let them know what it was about their performance that was so disappointing for you and how it has affected the team and the company. Even if you’re terminating this relationship, the constructive criticism will help them in future positions (if they take anything you say to heart).

3.      Learn how to trust

I added this point for myself. This is an area I am genuinely struggling in. If I know something needs to be done, I tend to not tell someone else in detail because I assume they won’t do it the way I want it done. I always struggle with letting go of control and trusting that my team really can do the job. The best way to ensure your vision is brought to fruition is to train those around; this will eliminate the need to micro-manage and correct anyone.

Being a Girl Boss is all about being true to yourself. We all have struggles and we all have moments where we cross that fine line into bitchland. The key is to know when to reel it all back in, re-evaluate and always knowing how to accept when you yourself have messed up. Because no matter how important what you have to say is, no one is going to hear you if it comes out wrong.

XoX,

5 WAYS TO TAKE A BREAK IN YOUR DAY

Hello Lovely,

Sometimes you just need to take a break. Over the years, I've mastered the art of constructive procrastination. It may seem like I'm not doing anything (and a lot of times I really do feel like I'm not doing enough) but everyone around me is still amazed at how much I can accomplish on a daily basis. I may have mentioned before that I perform best between the hours of 10-1. Something within me just awakens midday and then crashes again right after lunch. But as we all know, the workday doesn't end at 1 so there's a lot that still needs to be done. If you have an office job or work in a strict environment, taking a break is usually frowned upon. However, what many employers should learn is, the busier and more chaotic your day, the more important it is to take a break (or two!) at some point in the midst of all the craziness for both your mental and physical well-being.  Here are 5 ways to take a break in your day when you need just 15 minutes to clear your head, get out of the kitchen or just up and out of the desk chair.

Go For a Walk

Did you know that “Prolonged sitting, particularly in work settings, can cause health problems..." So what should you do? Go for a walk of course! Walks are great because they not only get you moving physically but there’s something about the change of scenery that jolts my mind into thinking differently or creatively about whatever is on my brain at that time. There are many ways you can take a walk that doesn't look like a waste of time. Walk to the prnter, the water cooler, the bathroom or drive somewhere just to eat your lunch.

Read Something Not on a Computer Screen

Can you remember the last time you read something not on your phone, computer or e-reader? It’s scary, huh? I think our eyes need a break from screens as much as our legs need to move and our brains need to think about something other than work. There are some days my eyes actually burn from being overworked. Reading something like an actual book, magazine, newspaper or cookbook even is not only a great mental break (and forces you to think about something else besides work) but a much needed reprieve for our eyes.

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Eat a Snack

 I’m a big believer in snacks being substantial. 100 calories isn’t going to do me any good and I need a decent balance of protein/carbs/fat to feel satiated. I usually snack around 11 to keep me going until lunchtime. My favourite snacks include apple slices, cheese and crackers, or a peanut butter sandwich. Keep your metabolism going to keep up the energy.

Take a Nap

This is my favorite kind of break. I keep a pillow at my desk whenever I just need 10 minutes of peace and quiet. During my downtime, I like to take just a few minutes to refresh and reflect. A lot of times, I don't actually fall asleep but the relief of closing my eyes for a few moments helps my brain to shut off for awhile or come up with a new way of looking at the problem. If taking a nap isn't an option, try daydreaming. It can be surprisingly productive .

Clean Something

Yes, I’m telling you to clean something as a way to take a break and refresh yourself. Here’s the thing, cleaning is normally looked at as a chore we all hate doing. The things to clean (your desk, the bathroom, the kitchen…) all pile up throughout the week and before you know it, you’re spending half your weekend and/or downtime cleaning. When I feel myself needing a break in the day, I’ll pick a small area, room or surface to clean, give myself 10-15 minutes and get it done. It completely breaks the mentality of cleaning being a chore and instead makes it a welcome break in your day. Not only do you give your brain some downtime, your house or office gets cleaned in the meantime and you free up a substantial part of your weekend. Boom.

Power Woman of the Week: Ria Georgina

The Bahamian Icon Awards may be over, but hype hasn't died yet! If you were on the Red Carpet at the Bahamian Icon Awards, then you probably heard the same name, over and over again!

Three nominees graced the red carpet in custom designs by none other than the fabulous Ria Georgina! Her designs were the most stunning and talked about, all night! I have the pleasure of calling her a friend so scoring this interview wasn't difficult but it was still a privilege to be able to sit down with her and talk about her and her brand! So let’s take a minute to meet the woman behind the dress!

If you were on the Red Carpet at the Bahamian Icon Awards, then you probably heard the same name, over and over again!

Three nominees graced the red carpet in custom designs by none other than the fabulous Ria Georgina! Her designs were the most stunning and talked about, all night! So let’s take a minute to meet the woman behind the dress!

 

Her full, government name, according to her passport, is Kenria Geoginia Smith (side eye to the government worker who butchered her intended middle name of 'Georgina' so perfectly). At the young age of 29 she has been operating under the brand name Ria Georgina, since 2012. Kenria’s (Ria for short) grandmother used to sew and passed it on to her mother, whom she mostly learned the basics from. As she got older and started to gain more interest in fashion, she started to experiment with different techniques, purchase textbooks and everything else she pretty much learned from trial and error and, of course Youtube. I sat down with this Power Woman this week to talk about her Red Carpet debut and gain insight on who she is and what’s next for her brand.

How did it feel to design for 3 Bahamian Icon Nominees?   

It really didn't hit me until I started working on Leanne's dress (I had less than 24 hours to pull that together lol). I knew Leah and Leanne from Facebook, and Wendy is one of my newer clients, but I love all of their energy, so it felt pretty easy breezy as opposed to 'Holy crap, these are ICONS'.   It was my first red carpet as well, so watching the red carpet and the show was kind of surreal, especially when Leanne was asked who she was wearing and she said 'Ria Georgina'. I legitimately almost jumped out of my skin.

What is your personal development plan?  

I'm not a big planner, especially when it comes to things like running a business. I literally have no idea what I'm doing, but I know that I would be miserable if I were doing anything else.  For now, I just want to build my clientele and continue doing what I love and see where it takes me.

What is your guilty pleasure? 

Hmmm, probably the combination of the Love and Hip Hop series (all of them lol) and Twitter. It's so ratchet but I can't stop watching/tweeting. It's hilarious.

Who was your favourite person to design/style for and why? 

 And NOW you're trying to get me into trouble.   Generally speaking, I love designing for women who know what they want, come with reference photos, but are open to trying something different. I love when I can get to that sweet spot where the client trusts me completely, it's really quite the compliment.

What are the top three life lessons you've learned that have been the most helpful in your career?  

The main lesson I've learned is that not everyone is as honest as you may be. Just because I would never commission someone to make a dress and drop off the face of the earth without paying for it, doesn't mean that someone else won't. I had that happen to me more times than I'd like to admit.   I've also learned that if you don't love what you do, it won't matter how much money you make. I worked for a handful of people before finally deciding to try it on my own, and the same thing usually happened; I'd be happy the first few weeks because I could finally save up for something I may have wanted, but once I got it, I kind of felt unfulfilled, like I was missing something important. Money is nice to have in abundance, but to be honest, if the world never ran on currency, I would still be doing what I do now.   The third thing is that your client should NEVER see you panic. There are times when something is a bit too snug, or too short, and I can visibly see the panic in my clients' eyes. I always keep a cool head and reassure them that it's not the end of the world, and that it can be fixed. Because in most cases, it can. Things go wrong all the time, but it's the way that we handle it that people usually remember.

Name someone you would really like to work with. Why?  

I have a designer bucket list that I constantly add to, but if I had to pick one person right now, it would be Emma Stone. She's one of my favorite redheads and I love that she likes to stand out on the Red Carpet. Plus she would be so much fun to hang out with.

What are the top three life lessons you would pass on to someone else?   

First, I would advise them not to take failures and the word 'no' as the end of the road. None of these things are permanent unless we let it be.  Also, I'd tell them to not let the way the world treats you change you for the worse. If you are a positive person, hold on to that. If you're a video game enthusiast way into your 30's, own it. The world needs diversity.   Finally, I would encourage them to travel and learn as much as you can about as many places as you can, while you can.

You run into a potential client in the elevator/coffee shop and you only have 60 seconds to sell yourself. Go!

Hmmm. Well at least 20 of that 60 seconds would be wasted on me just going back and forth in my head about whether or not I should even approach them. If it's someone who's in the public eye, I'd ask them if they were so-and-so and then I'd say something like 'Awesome, I really appreciate what you do for (insert charity here). My name is Kenria Smith, I'm a local designer and stylist, and I'd love to work with you for your next event.' Then I'd give them my card and let the rest sort itself out. I'm not an aggressive human.

 What's next for Ria Georgina?  

I'm currently working on some pieces for an upcoming music video (I won't say who yet), and after that, I will be winging it. I'm open to whatever opportunities this profession has waiting for me.