The Travel Series: Work to Live or Live to Work?!? (Part 2)

Listen here to this podcast episode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cmrLU6joNuU

I recently got a chance to watch the new Netflix series, Emily in Paris, which transports me back to the time I lived abroad. Living abroad shift my perspective on the work-life balance. When I was living in Iceland and Italy, I was always aware of the importance of living in the moment. International living helps me grasp the difference between American and European culture.

In America, we live to work because our life rotates around the demands of work. This lifestyle encourages long working hours, making more money, neglecting family and friends, and taking fewer vacations. People who choose to live to work rarely take breaks to enjoy life but escape a life they hate. The feelings of low self-worth, needing validation, and other internal insecurities often plague their lives. Workaholism is the number one addiction in this live to work culture. 

However, European culture promotes a work to live culture. This lifestyle encourages working fewer hours to enjoy a quality of life, making less money to live a specific lifestyle, and utilizing vacation for a time of leisure. People who choose this type of living are happier, productive, and excel in their personal and professional lives because they spend more time enhancing their creative nature.

A work to live mindset has significant benefits than a live to work philosophy if you notice people live longer in other countries versus the U.S. because they promote the importance of a healthy work-life balance.

And so I want to give you a few tips on how to begin your work to live lifestyle.

  1. Prioritize your most important task you need to complete. Figure out the top three things you have to finish at your job so you will not spend time working overtime.
  2. Use your vacation time. Don’t let your vacation time build up instead be proactive by planning your vacation at the beginning of the year.
  3. Plan your exit strategy. If you are working a job that does not promote your ideal lifestyle start looking for different alternatives.

Be Bold.

In the rawest state I could finally see myself, my true self. No longer hiding behind weave extensions, braids or whatever I thought gave me beauty. I wanted to get back to the real me….the short hair me.

For as long as I known short hair has become a signature statement for me. I remember the first time the scissors hit my head at the young age of 15 in Detroit, where hair is a muse and a statement piece. I realized how much I identified with my short hair and how it gave me a boldness, sexiness and confidence to walk to the beat of my own drum.

Everytime I would try to grow my hair it really never worked out because I was always compelled to return to what really moved my soul…my short hair. I dated different guys who wanted me to grow my hair long and I attempted to do it; however, I never could fully commit to letting it grow. I found out that when you try to change the essence of who you are to please a man, society or whoever you lose your true identity.

So, again I found myself on this journey of growth, letting my hair grow back from an undercut hairstyle. This time I was seriously growing it back for myself because I wanted to have long hair. But I started to become tired of the weave extensions, weight being added to me. I did not want to hide anymore then there came an epiphany.

Guess what? Yep, I am sure you figured it out, I cut my hair again this year. I feel free, sexier, bolder and a little more confident to be me. I made a vow to myself to stop omitting pieces of myself, the things that make me who I am. I am proud to be a woman who can rock short hair. I believe short hair is beautiful and reveals the true beauty of a woman. Short hair is my natural state of being.

Recently, I read Alicia Key’s open letter on Lenny Letter  it was very inspiring as she discussed how she went through an evolution of letting go of the stereotypical ideas of beauty. She no longer wanted to hide behind all the things that made her different yet beautiful. I loved the letter because it resounded with my soul. We live in a society where being different can sometimes be looked down upon because being different is viewed as abnormal.

As I grow I have become bold in my conviction of being true to myself and not fitting into the status quo. Even, in love relationships I refuse to shrink who I am to be with a man who doesn’t love me for me. It has taken me a very long time to start loving myself and I can no longer comprise myself for the sake of others. I am aware that I matter; my happiness, peace of mind, my life and decisions matter. I can no longer settle for pieces of myself I need the whole version of me. When I show up whole then people are challenged to accept themselves too.

Tweet: Being bold is an act of bravery saying “this is who I am, take it or leave it”!

Reference: 
http://www.lennyletter.com/style/a410/alicia-keys-time-to-uncover/

June Theme: Be Bold. Be Brave. Be Brilliant.

The kids are beginning to get out of school and the smell of summer is right around the corner. As we invite the joys of summer we also welcome our series for this month. Our June series is entitled Be Bold. Be Brave. Be Brilliant. In this series we will talk about how being brave can help you live the life you always dreamed of. We will discuss what it takes to be bold and let go of anything that weigh you down. And last but not least will talk about the importance of recognizing your brilliance and using it to create the life you desire.