Pursuit of Perfection

Pursuit of Perfection

By Da’Shika A. Street | Chief BABE

I once heard someone say if it was perfect when you launched it – you launched it too late. Now, let that sink in. I must admit, I have firsthand experience in doing a thing, refining the thing, and trying to iron out all the wrinkles before releasing it to the world.
The truth is the pursuit of perfectionism is a lonely journey to an unreachable destination. Not only is it unattainable, but oftentimes, we miss several beautiful landmarks along the way. Life is constantly evolving and passing us by while we are stuck in one place trying to perfect one thing. It’s a trap!

It took me a little time to realize I had placed an unrealistic expectation of perfectionism on myself which happened to be the very thing holding me back from operating at my best. Now that I’m aware of what’s been holding me back, there’s no stopping me. When I find myself slipping down this slippery slope, I follow a few key steps to get me back on track.

Identify Your Triggers
I tend to spend exorbitant amounts of time assessing all possible outcomes of an idea or situation before simply moving forward with the idea. This is where I tend to get stuck. I have developed a few checkpoints that I use to help me move forward and continue flourishing from concept phase to execution of an idea.
Dreamland: this space, also known as brainstorming, is where we welcome a flood of ideas and possibilities without restriction. When in dreamland, it’s a good idea to write down every idea or thought that comes to mind when thinking about the original concept. However, be careful not to get caught up daydreaming about all the splendor of the idea, all the people it’s going to serve, and how groundbreaking it is without just putting the idea in motion — as is.
Checkpoint: Find what sticks out. After dreaming and jotting down the ideas, try circling the 3-5 ideas or thoughts that stick out the most and use those as the foundation for shaping the bigger picture.

Formatting: This is where you’ll want to crack open your journal or a Google Doc and get to work. When writing it out, it’s important to avoid planning for every possible outcome (if not, doubt and negative thoughts can creep in and stifle the breath out of your fresh idea). Allow yourself the freedom of getting a concise idea onto paper. It does not have to be perfect – it just needs to be set in motion.
Checkpoint: Live in the moment. When we are in the moment, we tend to accept the freedom of thought, the freedom of action and the flexibility in accepting things as they are. It’s a space of little judgement and minimal reservation that opens us up to a world of endless possibilities (sometimes possibilities much greater than those that we had originally imagined). Embrace this space. Welcome it. Accept it. It’s in the moment that lasting impact is made.

Execution: What good is the plan if we fail to execute? Well, it’s still a good idea – but it may be one that will slip through the cracks if we don’t move on it. Too many times have I had an idea that I sat on only to discover that someone else released a similar thing. I find though, that this most often happens when I fail to effectively navigate through the project development phases that work best for me.
To avoid this, we’ve got to execute those ideas, visions and dreams. They wouldn’t come to us if it weren’t meant for us to carry them out. When we sit on our golden nuggets, it’s as if we’re telling the universe ‘no thank you – you can give this to someone else.’

I don’t know about you, but I want ALL of my dreams to materialize. But I can only experience them, if I’m willing to put in the work to bring them to life.

No matter what, listen to your heart and do what works best for you. Dive deep and discover the things that are triggering complacency in your life and holding you back from reaching your fullest potential. Once you discover those things – flip the script. Use them as a basis to build a plan of attack and move forward in your greatness.

For more insight on how to get on track and bring your dreams and business to life, join the Official BABE Tribe; my online community where I provide entrepreneurs and fearless female leaders with business tools, tips, and resources to start, grow, and maintain healthy lives and businesses. www.officialbabemag.com

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The Importance of Having a Winning Mindset

The Importance of Having a Winning Mindset

by Dawn Ademokunwa
 
Every deliberate action we take starts with a thought. While those thoughts can be individual, they also are part of a system of belief that shapes and guides them. This belief system is created by our personalities, experiences, fears and desires. It typically operates at a subconscious level. We don’t usually think about the things that have shaped us— we just act them out.
 
A mindset is the more conscious and malleable aspect of our belief system. A mindset is a choice that is yours to make. Individuals who we consider successful have cultivated their thoughts and actions to achieve success. In other words, they’ve adopted a winning mindset. Those that have not achieved the success they desire have adopted a mindset as well, whether they realize it or not.
 
Some people who have not found success are okay to go in whatever direction life takes them. Many take comfort in giving up responsibility, but they are probably not content— merely pacified or numb. Going with the flow does not promote growth or success. Those things occur by happenstance rather than design. A winning mindset provides a blueprint.
 
Developing a winning mindset takes time, dedication and effort, but it is clearly not impossible. There are examples of winning mindsets all around from politics to entertainment and social media— even your friends and family. People that have achieved success in their lives have found a way to make their thoughts work for them— and you can too. There are four basic components to developing a winning mindset: belief, action, discomfort and perseverance.
 
Dawn Ademokunwa is the host and producer of The NaturalPreneur Business School Podcast. A resource for entrepreneurs in the natural hair and beauty niches, helping them to grow their audiences and successfully monetize their passions online.
 
Visit The Naturalpreneur website: www.naturalpreneur.net
Follow on Instagram: @naturalpreneur
Download a FREE COPY of The Naturalpreneur Business School Podcast today!
 

How to Meditate for Beginners

How to Meditate for Beginners

How do you master the practice of meditation? The primary purpose of meditation is to improve your mental health through mindfulness. You are learning to be aware of your mind and your breathing.

While learning how to meditate is straightforward, many find it strange or even awkward to sit in silence and do nothing. Despite it seeming like a passive activity, meditating really is an active practice and a great way to train and tune the mind. It can even transform your perspective on life, helping you to cultivate new habits. Finding a place that’s quiet and feels calm is vital when meditating. Avoid any distractions that can make your mind wander or prevent your body from relaxing. While a little soft background music isn’t discouraged, we suggest avoiding it if you’re a beginner.

To build  a habitual meditation practice, you’ll need to practice a few times a week if possible. Additionally, set a time limit for every meditation session. For example, if you’re a beginner, start with short periods of 2 to 5 minutes and work your way up with time. Relaxation is a vital aspect of meditation, so always wear comfortable clothes. Inhale deeply and expand your stomach. Then breathe out, slowly drawing your stomach in. If you notice your mind starting to wander, bring it back by focusing on your breathing. Thoughts can arise that distract you. Don’t be too hard on yourself when your mind wanders. It’s a common occurrence. Just come back to centered, bringing your mind’s attention to the stillness and silence around you, the sense of your own heart beating and again, your breaths.

Pay attention to your body! If you are uncomfortable you may want to sit in a different position. Meditation is not just about the moment; it’s about practicing mindfulness every day and being able to calm and center yourself in any environment. The more you meditate, the less likely you are to feel stressed and agitated. Once you become comfortable and confident with your meditation practice, you will see and experience more benefits in your life.

4 Daily Success Habits to Boost Productivity

4 Daily Success Habits to Boost Productivity

Choosing your success may sometimes seem like an out of reach goal.  You may even wake up many mornings lacking clear direction or purpose. Long-term success ultimately boils down to GOOD HABITS, practiced regularly over the long term. The trick is choosing the right success habits to ground you to each day, putting you on track toward achieving those goals. Take a look at these simple, achievable daily habits for some ideas on how to jump out of bed and jumpstart your day for success.

Wake Up Earlier
If you’re already a morning person, you know how precious those first few hours of the day can be. The hours before the world, your partner, and the kids wake up and email notifications start going off can be among the most productive.  Set goals, meditate, sit quietly and sip your coffee or just fit in a little moment of self-care. I often spend my early morning time, soaking in a hot bath, readying myself for the day ahead. Even as little as one extra hour to yourself can have a huge impact on your whole day’s productivity.
 
Prioritize Focused Thoughts
Whether you prefer prayer, reading, or gardening, spending some time each day, focused on a task that increases your sense of peace is essential to productivity. Not only does it train your mind in a way that helps your brain to better identify and achieve goals, it also helps sharpen your perception, problem solving, and decision making skills. If this isn’t already one of your regular daily habits, you can start with just ten to fifteen minutes each day. See if you can spend a whole hour without breaking your concentration.
 
Choose Your Own Goals
Goal setting is important. Well all do it. But when those goals, are you clear about what, why, for whom you are working?. Everyone has a different path, and it’s up to you to choose yours. After all, what’s the point of boosting productivity if the end result is something that benefits everyone but you? If you find yourself running up against a wall, or frequently feeling burned-out or feeling all poured out. It may be time to take a step back and reevaluate your goals and motives and choose you first.
 
Stay Healthy and Mentally Sharp
The body and mind are intricately connected, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that physical wellness is an important step toward mental health. Be sure to exercise regularly, get in your daily dose of fruits and veggies, and drink plenty of water. Of course, don’t deprive yourself of a treat every once in a while. You deserve it.
 
#PracticeGoodHabits
 
The Good Habits Team
How the 2020 Pandemic Inspired Me to Take My Side Hustle to the Next Level

How the 2020 Pandemic Inspired Me to Take My Side Hustle to the Next Level

Back in August of 2019 I launched an online boutique selling clothing and accessories. My offerings were part of a small curated collection of items I’d found during my travels. Shortly after launching the online store and enjoying a fair amount of success, I began receiving ideas and visions about expanding the store. The vision was somewhat unclear and fragmented. It would come in pieces, almost like a puzzle baring the faces of women who seemed very familiar to me. Mostly brown-skinned women and girls who wore the look of youth on their faces but carried the timeless style, energy and wisdom of a thousand ages. We were all building something together. It wasn’t the first time I’d received a vision or idea. I get them all the time. This vision however, was different. There was something about it that felt and looked bigger than my usual inner visions. More than that, there was a different feel that accompanied the vision.  
The need to know more and further explore the idea felt stronger than it had in times past.  When I would ask for clarity in my prayers and meditation, a series of – call them “related” signs would show up in my daily experience that were  undeniable. Occurences I’d be foolish to write off as mere coincidence or happenstance. I was very intrigued but struggled to understand how the fragmented parts of my vision fit together to form a complete picture. Then I recalled a passage I’d read somewhere that said, you don’t need to have all of the answers, just get started. The answers will come.” I knew then that I needn’t concern myself with the outcome nor the reason. I was stimulated by a challenge which felt similar to the sort that comes with putting together a puzzle. For my part, I was to pay close attention and listen. The rest of the pieces would reveal themselves in time. 
2020 A Vision for Transformation Brunch
2020: The Year of Perfect Vision

They say it’s darkest just before the dawn. If there is any truth to the saying, we can only pray we’ve seen the worst as 2020 had us see some pretty dark moments. . Either way, I’m claiming it. Better days are ahead. Period!

Thinking back, the New Year started off with a bang. For so many it felt like it was going to be a magnificent year. I was several weeks out from hosting a women’s empowerment brunch, the website build was going well and I even had my sights set on the perfect launch date. 2020 was starting off fruitful and inspiring. By all accounts it was forecasted to be an epic year for women.

We had all gotten the memo, felt pumped and were off to the races. We would however, be called back to the starting blocks, abruptly and shortly after the first of many devastating blows.  -I like most, remember exactly where I was, and who I was with when we heard the news…. “Yo! Ya’ll heard what happened to Kobe?”

MAN PLANS, GOD LAUGHS.

Public Enemy’s 13th Studio Album title sums up 2020 perfectly. Man Plans, God Laughs. Allegedly the group’s frontrunner Chuck D. was inspired by a story he’d heard from basketball great Dr. J. -One that invoked the sentiment, “stay humble”. 2020 has indeed been, among other things,  humbling. Few among us knew the wild ride we were in for. The next few months played out like an unbelievable, science-fiction fantasy-thriller, horror movie.

Though it seemed the future had become more uncertain than ever, there was something else happening and it felt refreshing. I was spending more time at home, with family. I was learning to adapt. And I now had even more time to really manifest the vision. It hadn’t completely disappeared. It simply went out of focus for a time. Time enough for plenty of self-reflection and several adjustments to accommodate the “new normal”. There were so many lessons to learn during this time of isolation. Perhaps the most poignant for me has been, no matter what, you keep going. Times will get tough. But you   find a way to keep building and keep moving forward.

I BELIEVE in building a foundation of GOOD HABITS, the importance of community development and having each other’s back. She’s Got A Habit was created because we are stronger together – We Got This! 

Malinda Williams

IN HER OWN WORDS!

Malinda shares inspiration for SGAH with Rolling Out beauty editor, Tie Cooper.

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7 Highly Effective Habits of Wellness

7 Highly Effective Habits of Wellness

Every day is a chance to introduce or reinforce good habits for a better life. Here are some that will help you get on a path to greater overall wellness and make it easy to stay on track.

Daily Meditation

Meditation is a great way to start any day. While many people think of “meditation” as a very specific act– it can take many forms. Prayer, focused breathing and even reciting daily affirmations are all forms of meditation that helps you focus on clearing your mind and setting intentions for a new day.

Drink Water

Water truly is the best thing for you to drink. And you should indulge as often as you can. Try starting your day with a glass of water or when thirst hits you, reach first for the purest thing you can put into your body instead or sodas, juice or other flavored beverages. Start with flavored water if you have to, but the goal really is to drink as much water as possible throughout the day. It’ll keep you hydrated inside and out– thus staving off some of those dry skin moments that can arise.

Eat Real Food

Make sure to incorporate as many no-processed foods into your diet each day as possible. “Whole” foods are foods that are closest to their natural form with minimal– if any– processing. Whole grains (not bread), beans, nuts, fruits and vegetables are all great whole foods that are rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants. If you can’t make a meal exclusively out of whole foods, try getting 1 or 2 on your plate each time you eat. The goal is to be healthier– not stress you over food.

Practice Gratitude

No matter what’s going on in our lives, there is plenty to be grateful for. Make it an active practice by taking 10 minutes each day to write down a list of those things. It will help take some of the irritation away from your difficult days and put you on a track for even more things for which you will be giving thanks.

Pause

Find some time each day to do absolutely nothing. Not meditate, not watch YouTube videos, just– be. Allow your thoughts to wander, but try not to focus on any one thing– especially not anything upsetting. Take this time to breathe deeply for a minute or two or to perhaps take a 10 minute power nap. You’ll be at how taking a moment to intentionally relax, will allow more space and energy for productivity later in the day.

Get Moving

Balance is everything, right?! So adding as much movement into your day makes as much sense as taking time to pause. Many health experts say that daily moderate exercise is the key to longevity. Boost your metabolism, enhance your cardiovascular health and break the monotony of unending hours spent motionless (whether at a desk or on a sofa)…keep it moving.

The Good, The Bad and Ugly: Understanding How Habits are Formed

The Good, The Bad and Ugly: Understanding How Habits are Formed

Whether we recognize it or not, we use habits from the moment we wake up until the moment we go to bed. Many take the form of unconscious thoughts and behaviors that help form our daily routines. Forming good habits and breaking unwanted ones can be challenging– but not certainly not impossible. As a bonus, taking control of your habits can lead to a healthier happier and more fulfilling life.

Why Are Habits Important?

The human brain uses automatic behaviors to help increase its efficiency. This process allows us to complete everyday actions automatically without much if any mental effort. As a result, we’re able to focus our mental energy on more complicated or demanding tasks.

Some habits, such as looking both ways before crossing the street or putting on our seat are automatic and helpful. Others, like that daily danish at the coffee shop on the way to work are less so. Fortunately, bad habits and routines can be changed and as we form new, helpful healthy ones.

How Do We Form Habits?

Scientists and researchers have broken down the forming of habits into it component parts. In the book “The Power of Habit,” Charles Duhigg reviews findings by MIT researchers on the habit loop, a three-step neurological process that forms the basis of these automatic actions.

The habit loop involves these three steps:

  1. Cue: A trigger that prompts your brain to select a specific habit
  2. Routine: The actual behavior you perform as a result of the cue
  3. Reward: The positive reinforcement

Some researchers add another step to this loop—cravings. In the four-step model cravings, or desire, form the second step and provide the motivation for you to engage in the habitual behavior. While habit loops are helpful, sometimes your brain can form a loop without you realizing it– which can lead to developing unwanted routines.

There are different techniques that you can use to help stop unwanted habits and start good ones. Some automatic actions may respond better to different strategies, so try different methods to find what works best for you.

The Good Habits Team

Beginning the Journey

Beginning the Journey

Starting something new can be a scary prospect. Envisioning more, better and greater is the easy part. The “how” is where most of us become intimidated, get discouraged and overwhelmed by the details. A wonderful way to become unstuck is to remind yourself that all you have is today. And what can be accomplished this day, is all that needs your attention at this present moment. Taking one day at a time we’re able to accomplish the smaller, necessary steps on the road to the larger goal.

We are living in the age of information overload where life can seem overwhelming at times.  One way to combat those feelings is to make a list and prioritize. Start with one task at a time. Making lists is great way to simplify tackling the days responsibilities. If you get sidetracked or distracted, you can always refer to your list to get you back on track. If something doesn’t get done today, just add it the list for tomorrow or the next day.

Life will mirror our every thought and if we keep our thoughts positive, life will bring us better, more positive experiences. Whether you are on a continuation of your journey or completely staring over, go easy on yourself and celebrate every single milestone. You’ll begin to knock those tasks off the list, one by one, feeling more empowered with each day. You’ve come this far. Acknowledge where you’ve been, give thanks for the movement and continue forward as you grow yourself. And know that your are not alone. You got this…or should I say, “we got this” cause we really are in it together and we are on our way!

❤️Malinda