Monday Motivation | Great things happen when you stop operating from your current reality


Looking back at my goal achievement history. There were some intentions that I realized quickly and some that lingered on for years.  The older I get, the less time I want to spend waiting for something that could be achieved much more quickly.  The best way to predict the future is to learn from the past. Looking back, the biggest difference between the intentions that I could never seem to manifest and the ones that happened quickly was in how I operated.

To make it simple, we can classify our actions into two categories.

1.  Actions that sustain your current results.
2. Actions that bring about your desired results.

It's that straightforward.

By default, our actions fall into category #1.  What we routinely do creates more of what we're currently experiencing.  If we do nothing different, things will essentially stay the same.  Operating from your current reality will continue to feed your current results.

Someone who really intends to create a new reality should operate from category #2.  Let's talk a little more about what it looks like to operate from category #2.  Essentially, that person is bringing new thoughts and new actions into their life.  Think of your thoughts as fuel and actions as the vehicle.  If you want to get from point A (current reality) to point B (new reality) you will need both.
At times we focus only on positive thoughts and affirmations. That's great, but without the car, you aren't going anywhere.  If you want a different experience, start with new thoughts and beliefs. That will fuel your actions. Next you bring new actions into your daily routine.  The problem is that 24 hours in the day are already occupied in actions that support your current reality.  This means that you have to take explicit steps to allocate time towards creating your new outcome.

Maybe you have to wake up earlier.  Perhaps instead of driving straight home afterwork, you go to the gym, work at a coffee shop or attend a networking event. Anything new that you bring into your routine will generate new results.  That's a promise.  The best part is that you don't have to do much in the beginning.  As a matter of fact, I recommend that you take small, regular action at first then ramp up once you have solid a routine in place.

I'm currently enrolled in multiple coaching programs.  Over and over again, I'm seeing the results of what happens when people operate from their new reality.  It's mind blowing.  Countless lives are being changed simply by focus on "new reality" actions.  It's a joy to watch.  In my own business, I'm constantly trying identify the actions that keep me in my current income levels versus the new actions that lead me into the next level of results.

 When I reflect on my to-do list, I ask myself "am I also working on activities that bring about my desired reality?"  If the answer is no, I quickly readjust.  This makes the whole goal achievement process so much easier to predict. Better yet, this systematizes the reality creation process.


How to guarantee that you don't gain weight this Holiday Season.


How was everyone's Thanksgiving? Hopefully it was filled with lots of love, food, and family bonding.  Perhaps, in the enjoyment and the fellowship, we may have eaten a little more than we wanted to.  Yesterday kicked off the the holiday season. And for most of us, this means the start of holiday eating and inevitable weight gain.

Let's not go down that familiar path.  Instead, let's implement a sure fire strategy that will keep us from gaining excessive weight over the coming weeks.  No one wants to have to cram into an over crowded gym on January 1.  That's why it's critical to implement this no brainer technique starting today.

So here's the fool proof technique.  I call it the "at home vacation."  There are two types of vacations.

You go away to an exotic location, you eat excessively, and lay on the beach all day.  When you return home, you're several pounds heavier than when you left.

You go away to an exotic location, you eat excessively, and you walk everywhere.  When you return home, you are the same weight (or even lighter).

Just this week,  a friend of mine returned from Vegas, the land of all-you-eat-buffets.  They boasted of not gaining any weight even though they ate to their heart's content.  They attributed their succesful results to all the walking they did while there.

We've probably all experienced both types of vacations in our lives.

It's that simple. Just incorporate walking into your daily routine and you won't have to worry about ballooning in weight over the upcoming weeks.  The new year comes brings with it new opportunities and possibilities, the last thing I want to do is start a work out plan.  So I've decided to walk  45 minutes to an hour a day at a nearby park.  Normally, 30 minutes a day would be adequate, but I've decided to up the total time to a hour a day due to all the extra calorie intake.  While there, I'll plan my day, make phones calls, or listen to audio book.  And I know for a fact that I'll likely be fitter at the end of year than I am now.  The "at home vacation" strategy is awesome.

But don't take my word for it.


Instagram Beauty Secret | Diddy reminds us to step our skin care game up


I'll never forget it.  A decade ago, I was watching a string of informercials on a Saturday morning.  Back in those days, the Proactiv infomercials would run on a continual loop.  Puff Daddy (his name at the time) was featured on one of the advertorials. In his testimony, he said something that will forever be seared in my mind.  "It [Proactive] moisturizes my situation and preserves my sexy."

I thought that was hilarious.  I mean, who talks like that?!  I couldn't stop laughing.  Years later, I  realize the wisdom in his now infamous statement.  I was naive for laughing at his tagline (although it's still kinda funny).  He appeared in the informercial 10 years ago and he pretty much looks exactly the same.  So perhaps moisturizing his situation really did preserve his sexy after all.

Sean turned 46 the other day.  Before heading to his all star birthday bash, the mogul graced his Instagram feed with video footage of his pre-party beauty treatments.  Let's check it out.

(click video for sound)

I got a chance to catch up on a few episodes of my favorite shows over the weekend, but now I wished that I did an at home facial instead of sitting mindlessly in front of the computer.  Can you imagine how relaxing it would be to have your facial steamer opening your pores while you catch up on the latest episodes?  Thanks for the reminder Diddy!

"I want it all baby..."

In this short clip, Diddy proclaims his undying commitment to caring for his skin.  His personal esthetician seems to be using what looks like an alternate version of the NuFace Trinity facial tool.  It uses micro currents to ease the tension in your facial muscles while increasing collagen production.  NuFace also claims to increase blood flow to the face and improve facial contours.  Notice how she's targeting the area where we tend to experience deep laugh lines?   That's probably part of the reason he has no signs of jowl formation at nearly 50 years old.

"We're here to inspire you baby."

After an intense facial treatment, there's no better way to finish off than a moisture intense sheet mask.  Diddy has come to inspire us.  Sure, he's wealthy enough to be able to afford personal in-home spa treatments.  But we all can treat ourselves with a steam cleansing facial and an ultra hydrating sheet mask.  No excuses.

"I love you....I want to best for you."

Lastly, Diddy completes his day of beautification with a vigorous facial massage.  I've spoken on this topic in the past and believe strongly in the benefits.  As we age, everything tends to head south. You'll notice the woman massaging in an upward motion.  If we're consistent with this practice, our muscles respond.  We notice less sagging causing our face appears more toned.    I mean, look at this video taken just days ago. Does this look like the face of a man who's lived nearly 50 years?

I dunno about you, but  I'm convinced in the power for consistently taking care of your skin year after year.  The results of all that hard work will be very evident and could last a lifetime.  So, I urge all of you to moisturize your situation. Start today!  It'll preserve your sexy forever.


Moisturizer Mashup | Take your facial moisture routine to the next level


I've never been a big fan of facial moisturizers.  Yeah, I know it's an essential part of the daily skin  routine but I just wasn't completely sold.  But, as the years go by, I know that my skin will need the extra help.  Nowadays I'm used to products that serve multiple purposes and I expect nothing less from my moisturizer.  Instead of investing in a new moisturizer, I'm trying something new.

Inspired by what happened when I mixed my hair moisturizer and oil, I decided to experiment with blending my moisturizer and other beauty products to take things to a new level.

Layering your moisturizer over a serum is what we normally do.  And there's nothing wrong with that. But I noticed that my moisturizer had more staying power when I blended the two together.  This was very similar to the results I experienced in blending my hair moisturizer and oil together.  It's like a shortcut on those days when I don't have time to layer a dozen products before heading out the door.

Speaking of oil and moisturizer together.  This combination saved my skin last year when I traveled like mad and would step off a plane into brisk, cold temperatures.  Without the humidity, my skin freaked out.  Thank God I had a travel size bottle of CapriClear coconut oil with me.  That was the first time I felt compelled to use oil on my skin for non-cleansing purposes.  It was a game changer.
This year I'm gonna continue this legacy by spritzing a small amount of coconut oil into my moisturizer to give it that extra oomph.  Applying an oil/moisturizer mix works extremely well on the driest parts of the body like your hands and feet. Because sometimes, lotion alone just isn't enough.

Summer isn't the only time for glowing skin.  To give my skin a bit of a boost, I'm mixing in a few drops of illuminator drops into my moisturizer.  My first experience trying this technique went really well.  It gave me the most subtle glow without looking like I rubbed glitter all over my face. Unlike during the summer time when I tend to go a little heavy with bronzers, winter is the perfect time for a gentle glow.  Glowing, hydrated is a signature of youth because it speaks to the level of blood flow that reaches the skin.  When it's cold out, the body tends to redirect a majority of the blood flow inwards towards the organs.  Hence why our extremities get so cold.  So we gotta give our skin a little help. Continue on with your exfoliation routine and add this little secret technique so you can keep glowing all year long.

There I was trying to get the last little bit of Iman BB Creme out of the tube, hoping that I had enough to cover my whole face.  Then it hit me.  "What if I were to blend my foundation and moisturizer?"  Wouldn't that be almost the same thing?  Then, in just one step, I formulated my own exclusive brand of BB Creme simply by mixing moisturizer and foundation together.  This works especially well if your foundation is a thicker formula.  Not only is this a time saver but it could save you a little money as well.

Stay hydrated my friends.

Monday Motivation | Stop feeding the things that you don't want


The closer we get towards the end of the year, the more I tend to reflect back on the annual lessons learned.   This year was particularly unique because it's the first year that I ventured into full time entrepreneurship.  Several of my friends expressed their interest in living a life of having full control over their time.  But now, over a year later, most are in the exact same position they were in a year ago.

If I had to assess why they aren't closer to their desires than they should be, it's because they spent most of their time fueling the wrong outcomes.  It's critical to remember that our outcomes are created.  We directly influence most of our current outcomes.  We applied to the companies that employ us. We chose to live where we live.  We decide to what wear each day.  Throughout our day, we make thousands of choices which combine (and compound) to create & support our outcomes.

There are aspects of our lives that don't align with what we wish to experience.  We want something more, something different.  Our desires are clear, but our actions aren't aligned.  Instead of entering the creation process, our actions are continuing to feed our current reality.

It's really easy to constantly proclaim that you want something.  That requires very little effort.  The true test of whether you are feeding your desires is to look at your current actions.  Imagine your current results as a tree and your new, desired reality as a seed. When you talk about your desires, it's like holding the seed in your hand and talking about how it can grow into a mighty tree.   But if no actions are taken in reality, your seed remains above ground.

On the flip side, as you continue to act in your currently reality, you are watering and fertilizing the tree.  My advice to you is that you shift your focus to the tiny seed.  The seed will require much more work and attention before it even begins to sprout.  But it too has the potential to become a strong powerful tree.  Every single thing you desire for yourself has potential to become reality.  But if you constantly find yourself in a position where a year has gone by and you are still in the same place, it's because you haven't been doing the work of nurturing your seed(s).

That's ok. Because a seed that has been above ground for years can be planted and can still produce ample fruits.  All you have to do is reallocate your time and focus.  When you make plans for your day/week, how much of your time are you allowing to feed your seeds?  Because seeds are so small, it's easy to overlook them.  Each morning, before you start your day, ask yourself the following questions.  "What do I want for myself?"  Then ask "what can I do today to feed that new reality?"

 As we move into the new year, I urge you to fine tune your ability to create.  Let's stop talking about our seeds that still remain above ground.  Instead, lets place them in fertile soil and nurture them continuously until they become our new reality.

Decor Inspo || Coffee Table Ambiance


As you know, I'm preparing for my annual end of year ritual in preparation for 2016.  One of my intentions is to elevate my environment.  Ideally, I want my home to energize & inspire me.  I don't just want to live here, I want to feel amazing every time I step into my home.
I've got a long way to go, but I'm ready to take small steps that will allow me to  complete this large journey.  Currently, I'm inspired make over my coffee table.  It's the center of our home and alway should radiate beauty.
Adding delicate lighting to coffee table arrangements infuses a bit of warmth to the living space.  I'd love to have recessed lighting in my living room but this might just be the next best thing.
 Of course, safety is a high priority so invest in beautiful tea light holders to accentuate the soft light.  I really like these 7 hour tea lights that burn for most of the day.

Nothing heightens your coffee table more than candle light and fresh flowers.  Having fresh flowers all the time may not always be cost effective which makes ambient light a wonderful substitute.


New In | Sephora Beauty Haul


 I've craved Kevin Aucoin's Sensual Skin Enhancer immediately after stumbling upon Ashley Weatherford's skin care regimen.  I had no idea what to expect, but the name alone (sensual skin enhancer) made my mouth water.  This stuff is magic on my textured scars.  The consistency is super thick but it melts into the skin like butter.  Which is part of the reason it covers so well.  What I love most about this product is that it can be used in so many ways.  It can be a concealor, a highlighter or a foundation, depending on how you decide to use it.  Some skin enhancer lovers enjoy mixing with primer or moisturizer to thin out the texture.  A little goes a long way, so even though you get a small amount of product, you only use a tiny amount.  Sensual Skin Enhancer is so yummy that I grabbed two shades SX14 (lighter than my skin) + SX15 (an exact match).  I love both equally.

The last thing I needed was another shimmer product but Becca Skin Perfector has brought me out of retirement.  After watching rave review after rave review, I couldn't take it anymore.  Without a doubt this has to be one of my favorite purchases.  What makes Becca's Skin Perfector so amazing is the tiny particle size of the shimmer.  It blends with the skin incredibly well.  Therefore, you will not look like you have specks of glitter on your face.  It's the most flawless glow ever.  The shade I chose was Topaz.  My camera didn't do a great job of accurately capturing the shade. Topez is a much bronzier color, you can see a better representation here
My staple foundation for years was MakeUp Forever HD Foundation.  It did a marvelous job of covering my obvious acne scars.  But, good skin care practices and consistent exfoliation has really changed my skin. So I started looking for a great quality foundation with a more natural finish.  Nearly every comparison review of MakeUp Forever HD vs NARS Sheer Glow gave NARS the advantage.  NARS sheer glow is a perfect match for my skin and looks extremely natural on my skin. It looks like my skin, only better.  I love it as much as the Giorgio Armani foundation which was also on the wish list.  My only gripe is that I don't really like the packaging. I wish it came out in a pump.  Unlike what the name suggests, this doesn't give you dewy skin.  But it's definitely a non-dry formula which makes it a great foundation for fall/winter.  
 I haven't had a chance to use these WrinkleResist24 eye masks yet so I have no initial thoughts.  But Kat Von D's Tattoo Liner stole my heart after I first tried their sample size.  You get great color payoff and long wear for the price.  Definitely one of my faves.
I've already raved about Murad's Invisiblur.  I have needed this product for so long.  Sometimes, I can't be bothered with wearing foundation. I just want to go out, makeup free with only sunscreen.  None of my sunscreens would allow me to do that.  They all had a whitish tint.  Murad goes on the skin FLAW-LESS-LY and leaves absolutely no trace.  The only thing you notice is a slight blurring of the skin, making it look smoother.  Now, you can leave the house with only sunscreen on and look great.  I don't care how much it costs, Invisiblur is my knight in shining armor. What makes me love it even more is that it contains anti aging peptides to actually improve the skin.  In the past, I would put on sunscreen out of wasn't one of my favorite steps in my regimen. But now, I absolutely love applying my sunscreen because it actually ads value to the final look. Because it's also a primer, my makeup looks even better with it on.  I will say that Invisiblur does matte out the skin (without drying it) so anyone with oily skin might really like this.   I mean, what else can I say about Murad?  It's literally a dream come true product for me.


How to create your best skin ever this winter.


For most of my life, I suffered from chronic acne which seemed to get worse the older I got.  The only reprieve I experienced was during the fall and winter months.

My skin seemed to calm down a bit.  I could actually leave the house without feeling embarrassed by crazy break outs.   Fast forward to the present.  Excessive acne breakouts seem to be a thing of the past.  Nowadays my main concerns are primarily around the elimination of skin discoloration and deep scaring.

Because of the shift in seasons, I notice that my skin is behaving a bit more.  There's less congestion in my pores, and it's not as oily as usual.   It takes less work to keep clear.  Could this be a wonderful side effect of my recent bout of healthy eating? I sure hope so. My first thought was of how I could take it easier on my regimen for the next several months because I probably won't experience another major breakout until 2016.

Immediately, I began to challenge my limited thinking.  Instead of sitting back and coasting on my skin care until spring, why not get really aggressive and allocate all of my energy on finally achieving flawless skin? If I won't break out for a few months, then NOW is the time to get aggressive with treating discoloration. This is like invading the enemy camp ground while they're sound asleep.  Victory is a sure thing.

So here's the battle plan.  The strategy is to focus on deep exfoliation and intense moisture.  Ideally, I'd like to complete a series of oxygen facial treatments (once a month or bi-monthly) until spring.  Oxygen facials are perfect because they incorporate deep exfoliation and intense moisture at once.  I was watching a reality show recently where Naomi Campbell made a guest appearance before a big fashion show.  While there she made a single demand request that all the models receive an oxygen facial before the big show.  That's how phenomenal & necessary this facial is.

As soon as I run out of my current cleanser, I'm transitioning to Phace's low pH cleanser.  Hopefully this will keep the skin in perfect balance and ward off over drying.  Lately, I've started adding a couple drops of pure mandelic acid to my cleanser to test out the impact of daily chemical exfoliation.   So far, so good.

Of course winter is the perfect time to step our water drinking game up.  Beyond that, I'm committed to making sure I sweat regularly during the cooler months.  I completed a second infrared sauna session a couple days ago and I can't wait to go back. The amount of deep cleansing that happens during a sauna session is real.  Immediately after the intense sweat, I start scrubbing my skin for dear life.   I'm convinced that if I maintain this routine over the winter that my all over body glow will be in full effect by next summer.

So, as you can tell, instead of taking it easy this winter, I plan to go hard.  Now is the time to make huge progress and maybe our results will be multiplied because we don't have to work against our over active summer skin.  It's just a theory but I'm willing to try it out.  If your skin seems to calm down during the winter months, I urge you to take the proactive approach. Instead of easing up on your efforts, multiply them and create and absolute best skin of your life.

Nude Nail Colors I'm Absolutely Loving at the Moment


I have a pretty extensive nail polish collection. Part of the reason is because I was buying random colors that I wasn't really in love with.  Sometimes I would grab a handful of bottles at blogger events.  After filling two storage containers with nail colors I barely used, I changed my strategy.

From that point forward, I would only grab colors that I was obsessed with AND that went well with my skin tone.  No more wild experimentation.  Only colors that I would reach for over and over again.  Here's a list of my favorites thus far:

Essie Sand Tropez
No joke, I've purchased Essie's Sand Tropez at least 4 times.  The first time my eyes laid on this color was when "Basketball Wife" Draya Michelle posted it on social media immediately after her manicure.   Within 24 hours, Sand Tropez was in my hands.  I get the most compliments when I wear this color. Sand Tropez is thee perfect neutral nude.  I have lots of nude polishes but, hands down, this has to be my absolute favorite.
OPI's Taupeless Beach is another color that I purchased after first sight.  The image above caused me to get in car, drive to the store and with the intention of not returning home until I got what I wanted. Actually, I wasn't able to determine the true color of image above.  After a little research, I came to the conclusion that Taupeless Beach was that shade I desired.  I wanted a mauvey-grey polish for the longest.  Every time I wear this shade, I keep staring at my nails.  I totally understand why the woman felt compelled to prop her feet on her car door and snap this pic.  Taupless Beach makes me so happy. 
Revlon// Gray Suede
Random Snap of Revlon Gray Suede
Before Essie's Sand Tropez came into my life, there ways Revlon's Gray Suede.  This is another polish that I've repurchased multiple times.  It's a less gray/more nude version of Taupeless Beach. Unlike Sand Tropez, Grey Suede does have some pink undertones to it.
Speaking of pink. On my want list is OPI's Steady as She Rose.  I love pink nails but I still haven't found my every day pink nail shade.  Steady as She Rose may be the answer.  Since my local beauty supply store didn't have it in stock, I'll have to grab it online.  Is this not the prettiest soft pink shade you've ever seen?

Once I have Steady as She Rose in my clutches, I'll be on the look out for a pink shade similar to the one above.  I can't tell what shade this is so I badly need your help.  What's your favorite soft pink nail color that you can't live without?


Monday Motivation | Creating your End of Year Ritual


Happy Monday!  We're already midway through November.  In several weeks, 2015 will be over and we'll be entering into a new year.  This time of year is really special to me.  To me, the countdown to the approaching year makes me want to step up my level of action.  The procrastinator in me loves deadlines.  Which is why this time of year excites me so much.

In the past, I would work all year long then request vacation the last two weeks of the year.  My supervisors thought I was taking time off to visit friends and family. But in actuality, I was at home working long hours on my side business.

When January 3rd came around, I'd return back to work feeling very accomplished because of all the progress made.  Looking back, I would say that last two weeks of the year have made a huge impact on the results I'm experiencing today.  That simple act of intention is altering the course of my life.

I'm here to inspire you to develop your own End of Year Ritual.  Sometimes we fail to focus on our goals throughout the year.  This ritual helps you make huge progress by placing heaving focus on creating the life you want.  I've maintained an end of year ritual for years.  Some years, I'd dedicate the entire two weeks towards business building.  Other times, I'd create a consistent health and fitness routine.  One year, I decluttered my entire home from top to bottom.  My favorite year was when I invested the two weeks into developing a robust beauty & daily self care routine.

This end of year process allows you to take a look at your current status while identifying the areas in your life where you need to make the greatest amount of progress.  That way you aren't scrambling to make changes in your life on January 1, 2015.  That rarely works.  I prefer making the changes before hand, then making commitments on Jan 1 to continue this behavior into the brand new year.

I'm bringing up this topic a little early because this year, instead of creating the end of year ritual, I'd like to starting "living into" the end of year ritual.  Meaning, instead of using the end of the year to declutter, I'll declutter ahead of time and enjoy the experience of being in a clean/organized environment.  Instead of trying to lose a few stubborn pounds at the end of the year, I'll do it now, then I'll enjoy my new body by picking up a couple of dresses. My goal, the last two weeks of this year, is to live into my desired life for 2016.

 Living into an experience is a powerful tool in the creation process in so many ways.  I know the end of the year is super busy. The holidays are in full effect, you've got family in town, you're cooking meals for 100 people.  I get it.  But if we aren't careful, that time slips by and, before we know it, 2016 is here and we feel no closer to our goals than at the start of 2015.  Let's try something different this time and live into our destiny.