Birthday Behavior: 29 Tidbits from the Desk of Fashion Briefs
Today is my birthday! Today, I want to take a second to thank you for reading and being awesome supporters, and do something a little different. I compiled a little list of some of the most important things I have learned in 29 years , both personally and professionally, along with random facts about me. I hope you enjoy. So here we go:
1. YOU ARE GOING TO GET CRITICIZED NO MATTER WHAT YOU DO--SO DO YOUR "THANG!"
Honestly, this is number one for a reason. No matter where I have been in life, people have criticized me. If I had listened to every piece of negative feedback, I would not have birthed and continued to fuel Fashion Briefs. Instead, I would be crazy-- sitting in a dark cellar counting flies on the wall, and drooling, LOL! We’ve all been criticized at one time or another. You have to do what you have do to make yourself happy, and follow that passion planted deep inside of you. Rest assured, either way someone, somewhere will have something to say. If you don’t want to be criticized, say nothing, do nothing, be nothing that you aspire to be.
2. I am a first-generation Nigerian American. Both of my parents migrated to America in the '80s.
3. GRIND HARD, BE DIFFERENT, AND MAKE YOUR OWN SELF PROUD.
Society loves to highlight celebrities, athletes, and CEO. But the minute you try something different, you realize the world wants you to be plain— they love celebrating, but nobody likes seeing how the sausage is made. For that reason, it is no surprise that we tend to do what everyone else does. DON'T FALL INTO THAT TRAP!!!
Second, when was the last time we actually said, “I’m proud of this”? For most of us, it’s been months…or even years. We’re socially conditioned to not say we’re proud of something we’ve accomplished or to downplay it.
I think that if you focus on doing something interesting, you get really good, and you tell people about it, then one day you wake up and realize you’ve accomplished something meaningful.
I never started Fashion Briefs to turn into this big thing. I didn’t even know it would be a business! I just wanted to post my outfits and share tips, and my friends and family encouraged me to blog about it. Next thing we know, almost 3 years later, and it is a full fledged business, and I am proud of what FB has accomplished!
4. I am a "tall-y;" a "glamazon" as I like to call my self. My height is 5'9".
5. PROTECT INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY.
Intellectual property is defined as creations of the mind. Every business has some intellectual property, whether that is the secret recipe for your restaurant, the special method used for creating your product, or simply your business name or logo. There are specific steps you must take in order to protect your business’s intellectual property, which can be protected through copyright (written and artistic content), trademark (logos and slogans), or patent (inventions). Take those steps—or someone might misappropriate your intellectual property, and, ultimately, your business.
6. I love luxury labels. Actually, I'm obsessed with them. Even so, I'm also obsessed with bargain shopping like crazy. I rarely EVER pay full price for ANYTHING.
7. START WITH A SMALL IDEA, ZONE IN ON IT, & BECOME REALLY, REALLY GOOD AT THAT IDEA. Not only does that help develop your idea/business better, it helps to lead to bigger opportunities. Always try to focus in on the niche & expand outward.
8. If you are starting a business, GET YOUR FINANCIAL MATTERS IN ORDER!
First, open bank accounts and obtain credit in the name of your business, and keep those accounts separate from your personal accounts. Failure to do so may result in a court finding that your business is not a separate legal entity, resulting in you becoming personally liable for debts or lawsuits against the business. Second, ensure you pay all necessary taxes—employment taxes, income taxes, sales tax, etc. Third, get insurance. Certain insurance (auto, worker’s comp., etc.) is usually required by law in order for you to operate your business, but other forms of insurance, while not legally required, are typically be advisable. Fourth, manage your receivables. If someone doesn’t pay you and there’s no basis for the non-payment, pursue them—either using a debt collector or an attorney.
9. Exercise daily. I'm not just talking about your body--I mean your body, mind, and soul. Yes, work out your body, even if it is just 20 minutes of cardio. But do not stop there: read and/or write daily (no, Facebook doesn't count.) Pick up a book; read an article.) Pray and meditate daily. Seek the Creator as your source of daily guidance.
10. I am an organizer junkie. I'm CDO (kinda like OCD, but the way it should be. LOL!)
11. Know the 5 highest priorities of your life.
12. I am a mother.
13. Improve your work every single day.
14. I used to model. I modeled for clothing lines, hair care lines, etc. I wanted to move to NY or LA and model full time but decided to stay in college and get a degree.
15. YOU NEVER KNOW.
Do not judge until you have walked in someone’s shoes. People assume that they know everything about me because, since the launch of Fashion Briefs, I share more of my life through social media. They don’t. In fact, they don’t know 90% of my past or my current life. I have had MANY bumps in the road as I am sure you have. No one has all of our struggles, and that is okay. Just be careful because you never now what the next person is, or has, been through.
16. Write thank you letters to those who have helped you.
17. Create unforgettable moments with those you love.
18. Be authentic.
19. FIND AND HIRE A REALLY GOOD ACCOUNTANT/LEGAL ADVISOR.
I know, I know. Amazon, Books-a-Million, and Barnes and Noble have hundreds of books on business, However, having a relationship with a trusted advisor, such as an accountant and attorney, is invaluable! They should do more than complete your tax returns every year. Seek the individuals who have decided to be proactive with their business clients by performing tax planning and not just simply tax compliance. Not only will they know what deductions are yours for the taking within the tax code, they'll also provide you with a detailed plan on how to minimize your taxes and establish procedures to protect you from an IRS audit.
20. My weakness is sweets! I don't care for candy, but I love any bread-y type of sweet. Cakes, cinnamon rolls, donuts, cupcakes, soft cook.......ies. Oh sorry, I started daydreaming of sweets and got sidetracked, LOL!
21. YOU CANNOT CHANGE PEOPLE.
Leave it to God. Trying to control and change people into something they are not is counterproductive and pointless. It is a waste of breath. People are who they are. Some may change on their own; and some will never change. The age-old saying is true: when someone shows you who they are--believe them. Don't try to mold them into your ideal. Don't give them the benefit of the doubt. Take them for who they are and deal (or not deal) with them accordingly.
22. Be passionate. About every single person or thing you endeavor in. If you are not ready to handle them or it passionately, keep your hands off.
23. Use impeccable words.
24. I used to write poetry. My dad is an author, so I'm sure I got it from him. It's crazy because I actually forgot that I wrote poetry until just now that I am typing this. I should start back on it this year. Hmmmm....
25. NO ONE IS GOING TO DO ANYTHING FOR YOU.
If you want something to happen, get off your behind and make it happen! A fairy godmother is not going to come create a dream career for you because you went to an amazing college or came from a "good home." Life is what you make of it. If you want to be a business owner, go for it. If you want to be in a better relationship, work on yours or get out. If you want to do good in the world, then do good. It’s not going to fall into your lap. Opportunities don’t just fall from the sky. YOU have to make it happen.
26. I am obsessed with anything leopard print, gold, or pink. (Literally anything--I have a leopard print candle lighter and gold office supplies for crying out loud. LOL!)
27. Innovate and iterate.
28. Building and growing a business can be one of the most rewarding experiences, for you personally and for your family. Now I know everyone is not meant to be Sam Walton but there is nothing like having your own, so consider it. Think of one good thing you are good at and enjoy doing (think about one of your hobbies)--it could be as simple as gardening or refurbishing furniture--and monetize it.
29. Be the best person you know and make your life matter.
I hope you enjoyed reading this! For my birthday, I do not need any presents. But there is one request that I do have: If you have enjoyed Fashion Briefs, please do me a favor and leave a comment on how Fashion Briefs has helped you. That would be the best birthday gift of all!
Lots of Love,