The 2017 Elevation Awards

Hello Lovely,

If you’ve been following me on Instagram (or IG as the kids call it), you would have seen a few highlights from the first Elevation Awards Show at the Melia Resort in Nassau, Bahamas. On Saturday April 15th, 2017, the Life by Olivia team was there to capture and mingle with some of the young Bahamian artists who are making waves on the scene and changing the industry.   The Red Carpet activity started buzzing shortly after 5:30pm as scores of fashion looks graced the scene sporting various trends, cultural prints and bold coloured jackets. The talent was anything but shy! These game changers are making BIG statements with their accomplishments but still remain humble.

If you haven’t heard, the Elevation Awards is geared to be an annual award show created by The Elevation Media Group.  The Elevation Awards celebrates the accomplishments of Bahamians in music, acting, sports, community building and other fields of entertainment. We chatted with some of the big names that night, including musical artists Gary Francis, Dyson Knight, Keeya, and Jonathan Farrington. Each artist shared a word of wisdom with us. Gary advised any new artist trying to get on the scene that practice truly does make perfect. Dyson stated that his motivation for his career comes from seeing his music touch and inspire others. Keeya shared that the inspiration behind her #1 single Faded was about being a millennial girl trying to figure out the young guys on the dating scene. The video was created by an all Bahamian team with world-renowned director, Kareem Mortimer. While, Jonathan, who had to quickly jet back to Canada to perform at the Canadian Music Festival shared how placing second in the Canadian musical competition and being the only international competitor has helped his networking and boosted his determination to continue his career.

Hosted by the host of one of my favourite local TV Shows, “Chef it Up”, Ianthia Smith, kept the audience entertained with her quick wit, humour and engaging personality.   But the best part was the live performances. The Award Show provided nonstop entertainment with concert-like performances in all genres that brought the crowd to their feet and made inner karaoke superstars out of many! We were entertained by artists such as Keeya, Jive, Jonathan Farrington, DJ Counsellor, Sammi Star and Bantangy. My favourites were Jive for their performance of Rhythm, a  rap artist by the name of Eman who performed a raw piece that told us of his transformation from street life to Christian, and a spoken word piece entitled, “The Bahamian Dream”, which spoke to the realness of current events and politics that many choose to ignore; it was written by Michaela Munnings and performed by Zemi Holland.

The first of many to come, The Elevation Awards serves as inspiration to young artists to let them know that there is a place for them in society. I've heard the biggest complaint from young artist who submit their work to local competitions: "I was told it wasn't Bahamian enough." Artists should feel free to make whatever work makes them happy and sparks a change socially. The Elevation Awards is the right platform to do this and next year, they're coming back bigger and better than ever! And as always, Life By Olivia will be there to keep you covered. Because Life Could Use a Personal Touch!


Our Favourite TV Shows of All Time

Our Favourite TV Shows of All Time

There are plenty of new shows we're looking forward to watching this season, but today we're discussing the tried-and-true classics that are our all-time favourites to either binge watch, or watch on repeat and never get tired of. If you're looking for a series to get into, look no further! 

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6 Life Lessons I Learned from Watching Scandal

Now before you start crucifying me for taking life lessons from a television show about fixed political elections, marital affairs, government propaganda and cover-ups, sexual promiscuity and last but not least, illegal torture methods (now that I think about it there’s not much about this show that is legal), here me out. Shonda Rhimes has created a show with a strong (not perfect) black female protagonist, and while this is not the first nor the last show of this kind, there are still a lot of positive images we can take away from this show. (Even though when I now introduce myself to people, they're now like, "Oh like Olivia from Scandal"! At least they don't compare me to Olivia Newton John any more).


Now that season four has ended, here are 6 career lessons I’ve learned from watching Scandal. Warning: Major spoilers if you’re not up to date.


  • Never mix business with pleasure.

How many times do we see Olivia falling for the allure of a strapping man and losing focus of the mission because of it? Mixing business with pleasure is never a good idea. Not only does someone always get hurt, but you’re risking your professional reputation and everything you’ve worked hard for. Seal the deal first, but keep the communication lines open; just in case you may need them again for “something”.

  • As a Black Woman, “You have to be twice as good as them to get half of what they have”.

This is not meant to be a racially charged post, but to give career advice without acknowledging the elephant in the room is offensive and pointless. This quote came after Olivia was revealed as the President’s mistress. Imagine finding out your credibility is possibly down the toilet because of a few moments of unbridled passion. Not like a woman needs anything else to knock her down the corporate ladder. Pay gaps are a real issue in the workplace. Women are even treated differently in the workplace. Think outside of work for a moment. I can’t put air into my own tire or power steering in my engine without some guy approaching me, asking me if I really know what I’m doing or just doing it themselves (not even offering, just take control). On the job, men often think I can’t lift a heavy box on my own, or I’m encouraged to wait for a man to do it for me. Not trying to say that chivalry isn’t appreciated, but when it comes off as if I don’t know what I’m doing just because I’m a woman, then I’m offended. And being paid less to do the same job is even more offensive.

  • The ruthless don’t always win.

I remember being discouraged on the job when I worked with a woman who went out of her way to steal my job title and make me look incompetent. I decided not to fight it. I knew I wanted to excel and be awesome at my job, but the additional stress in fighting someone who made it their personal mission to put me down was a losing battle. I decided instead to wait for karma. Look at what happened to Andrew, and everyone who aided in the plan, who went to such great lengths just to force the President’s hand in a war. They say nice guys finish last, I say good things come to those who wait. Just continue to put your best foot forward, and keep a positive attitude. While there are times that you will have to be tough in order to get ahead, don’t go out of your way to earn the title ‘bitch’. That’s not very flattering.

  • Speak with authority and always make eye contact.

I always believe in looking someone in the eye when I speak. It’s actually something that really annoys my mother because I will run her down, and chase her around the house, just so I can stand in front of her to speak. I feel as if she’s not listening and really hearing me if she’s not at least looking at me.
Furthermore, if two people are speaking and one not only sounds like they know what they’re talking about, but like they have the authority to say it, and the other is shuffling, stuttering and avoiding eye contact, who would you believe? (It’s also a good way to tell if someone is lying or not). Olivia has poise and an elegant way of speaking that is almost haunting. I think she said it best, “I am very good at what I do, I am better at it than anyone else. That’s not arrogance, that’s fact.”

  • Know who is on your side, and who is in your way.

People will have their opinions. They can either be constructive or destructive. Know how to tell the difference, and be careful of who you let into your inner circle. Sure the company may be great, but you’ve gotta be able to trust the people you surround yourself with. If you wouldn’t tell a friend or associate about a job interview you have coming up because they may steal it from you, you need to realign yourself. Also be cautious of the people who feel like they always need to tell you what to do next. Because it doesn’t really matter what other people think you should be doing with your life. All that matters is that YOU know what you’re doing with your life. Right Fitz?

  • When all else fails, always have a backup plan.                        

In the nail biting wrap-up of Olivia’s kidnapping, we think all hope is lost when Olivia finds out that she won’t be sold to her friends like she hopes. But in the end, she knew better than all of us because she knew both parties who were bidding on her very well. Even when all hope seems lost, Olivia is thinking of another plan, another way out. Some people go into situations saying if this doesn’t work, I don’t have anything to fall back on. That’s silly. It’s one thing to go with faith, but also have faith in an alternative and your ability to survive regardless.


Is there anything you've learned throughout watching one of Shonda Rhimes' gut wrenching dramas? Sound off in the comment section below! Don't forget that you can connect with me through Facebook and Twitter, and feel free to ask me anything that may be on your mind or request something you'd like for me to talk about!