A Season of Transition

Since I am such an early bird with most things, of course it’s only fitting that I have already begun thinking about my goals for 2017.  Don’t get me wrong, I most certainly DID NOT hit every goal and do every single thing I set out to do.  However, I did find that when I hit 2016 with a plan, I actually accomplished some things like paying off my car! Yay me! Nevertheless, I will admit, this was an extrinsic goal. As we are quickly approaching the holidays and the New Year, I have realized I have some internal goals -particularly as they pertain to my personal life. Taking a deep, intrinsic look at yourself can be tough.  However, if you truly want to accomplish a “soul detox”, you have got to get real with yourself.  And that’s what I am doing-getting real with the one I am with All Day, Every Day.  Me, Myself and I. Here are some things you may consider before you go off making lists and checking them twice…

Luggage: In the post “The Bitter Bag”, it is suggested if new wine is to be poured and kept, it must be poured and stored into new wineskin. Some of us are still holding on to last year’s disappointments with a tight, relentless grip. There are some who may be carrying more years than only the last one.  I liken this to a carry-on bag.  On your evolution flight, you have packed a carry –on with the same old foolishness.  Before you round out this 2016, I suggest you begin RIGHT NOW determining what you will faithfully release to God. Then, begin actually releasing it.  Go into 2017 knowing you’ve already begun the process of healing.

 Own Your Junk: Look at your contribution to situations. No more thoughts of “this would have never happened if s/he had or had not done xyz”.  Get real with yourself about your contribution ( or lack thereof) to what may just be a vicious cycle.  Then… DO SOMETHING positive about it.  Don’t keep rehashing the issue; start thinking of the solution and implementing it.

 Accept: Accept that all closure is not going to come exactly as you desire. You may not get that last conversation, that reason or that final hug and/or kiss good bye.  Some things we must accept and in all things we must trust God’s hand will move each piece where it belongs.  In this season of transition, we must learn to accept some things just as they are; not as we desire for them to be.

Good Running Shoes: As you transition in this season, I encourage you to RUN towards your goals, your hopes, your dreams, your destiny!

If you would like to join me in preparing for this season of transition, please comment and let me know at least one thing you will enter into 2017 knowing you have begun the process.

Sincerely,

Your Restyled Mom…who is claiming her season.

Level Up Friends

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of speaking with a friend who shared how God spoke to her. In her obedience to the Master, she was able to quit her job and become self-employed.  I am sure these types of testimonials are not rare; however, seldom do these things happen within my inner circle.

But wait….there’s more.

She went on to tell me how God’s abundance started flowing in once she quit her full time, well paying job.  This friend spoke of how she told God all about her student loan debt, debts in general, Financial Peace University and how this left her feeling uncertain about the decision to quit her job. Why am I bringing this uncertainty portion to your attention? It’s because you need to know that God loves when you detox and tell Him everything (I mean ereThang)…that’s like the super duper extent of everything! When she told God of her fear yet remained in him (John 15:5), He blessed her by having her student loan debt forgiven PLUS speaking engagement offers rolling in.  ALL IN THE SAME DAY!!!

So how does this relate to “Level Up Friends”?  Well I am glad you asked.

While I do believe in having friends from all walks of life, I strongly believe in having friends who build you up spiritually.  My friend did not know it at the time, but I was having a minor faith walk battle myself, and to hear her testimony reminded me of just how awesome GOD IS!  Not just his awesomeness but also how much he wants to bless our obedience and dependency in Him alone.

Level UP  friends will encourage you (sometimes unknowingly); will lovingly yet sternly call you out on your stuff; will have your back but won’t condone foolishness; will be your iron to sharpen you back up (Proverbs 27:17); will pray for and with you; will push you to never settle on complacency; will remind you to stop being a distraction to yourself; will always remind you there is NOTHING GOD CANNOT DO and keep praying for His will to be done and not your own.

Who ya with?! I encourage a lot of you to re-evaluate some of your friendships and determine whether these relationships are God ordained or sly distractions deterring you from the person who God truly desires for you to be.

I hope this message spoke to someone and you share it with your Level Up crew.

Sincerely,

Your Restyled Mom…whose #squadgoals have been met.  To God be the glory!

P.S. Guess who’s back 😉  More blog posts coming…

Trying to Come Back…

I’ve been missing in action for a few months now.  Being a full time working, single mom is a tough gig.  I prayed and specifically asked God for increase in my job and guess what?!  He increased me in my job!  Go figure.  However, I am not complaining, not one bit.

Now, I am returning to Restyled Mom with the hopes that I can find my balance.

As a matter of fact, I’ve been reading a great book – “Fervent” by Priscilla Shirer.  So here on this page, I share my specific prayer that God will allow me to graciously return to Restyled Mom with the Holy Spirit leading the charge.

Today, Restyled Mom community I pray the Holy Spirit to lead, guide, and intervene.  Today, I pray a prayer of right now.  Right now God will take the charge and open windows of blessings to your soul as you open yourself to Him and his leading.

Get specific in your prayers and while you are making your comeback, from wherever you are in this moment, know that you’re not alone.  I’m making mine too!

Sincerely,

A Restyled Mom…who is getting real specific and coming back.

#TuesdayExchange Spotlight On…

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Today’s #TuesdayExchange is all about the fashion!

I am pleased to offer your fashionista taste buds the delightful, well thought out stylings of Renae Antoinette’s The Ultimate Style Diary. I’ve always known Renae to be stylish but when you read her style blog and see how she fuses pieces together -you’ll want to solicit her services.  Not everyone can take Chanel and mix it with JCP (JCPenney) and it all look so chic, polished and dare I say…affordable.  Affordability isn’t always associated with glam, but Renae does a fine job of giving you high end pieces methodically interwoven with great, affordable finds.  And this Restyled Mom, who just so happens to be a single mom, is always up for looking “datable” (lol) while still being able to pay for my child’s next extra-curricular activity.

Be Stylish and Enjoy!

Sincerely,

Your Restyled Mom…who is stepping up her style game!

The Most Wonderful Break Up You Need to Experience

break upI have a wonderful, fashionably aware friend, whom we will refer to as Melissa. Melissa is aware of all the latest trends in beauty and fashion.  She seems to know a little bit about a lot, and I adore her style sense.  Unfortunately, my friend is not money aware.  Actually, let’s put it like this, she does not seem to be money aware until the money is almost gone.  Melissa was laid off from a well-paying contract job as a project manager.  Within the one year of her contract, Melissa earned close to six figures.  However, and I think you know where this is leading, Melissa was not saving at her maximum potential.

So what is this maximum potential? For a single woman, with no kids, no rent/mortgage to pay (the parents were accommodating), Melissa should have been saving at least half of her income and living off the rest.  Notice I said at least.  If Melissa could have factored in her bills (i.e. student loan, car note) and lived off a budget, she probably could have saved more than half her earnings.  Wouldn’t it be awesome to have an emergency fund built with HALF your income?  Here’s where I get really real and sisterly with my good friend when I say…It’s time to break up.

Breaking up should not be hard to do when you’re broke or when you are trying to reach goals (no matter what your income level). Break up with the monthly beauty box, which ranges from $10-25 or more a month.  This equates to approximately $120-300 in savings for the year.  That $30/month gym membership, which truly is super modest, it is costing you $360/year.  Calculate just those two yearly totals and you get approximately $460 saved for the year.  How about putting that on the student loan, credit card and/or car payment?  Break Up…

If you are financially stuck, I strongly suggest you break up with some of your “stuff” you think you cannot live without. Break up with that gym membership, grab a resistance band from your local sporting goods store (usually about $5) and go online to find awesome workout plans.  Break up with that beauty box for a moment and apply those monthly payment as extra towards your debts.  Break up with that car if you must –downsizing may result in an upsize to your bank account!  I broke up with cable and opted for high-speed internet and streaming services.  This break up has allowed for an increase to debt reduction, as well as paid for the little ones extra curricular activities -without adding a strain on the budget.

I am not saying totally go cold turkey and have nothing, but I am saying begin investing in your financial future; invest in your debt freedom; invest in your financial legacy that will be passed to your kids.  Experience the Best Break Up Ever!

debt (money management international)

Picture: Money Management International

What are you willing to break up with? Share, share, share…let’s break up together!

Respectfully,

Your Restyled Mom…who is encouraging this break up

Downplay-itis…Effects & Cure…Because Love Awaits You

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Within my circle, it has been discussed how men are intimidated by a strong woman who has herself together and sing Beyonce’ songs like “Who Run the World”. As the conversation looms on, I hear women with brains and beauty saying they will downplay their higher education and/or accomplishments (i.e. Master’s degrees, PhDs, CEOs, lead engineers, etc.)  I myself can say I am guilty of this awful disease; I will call Downplay-itis (an inflamed down play of yourself).  I have accomplished great things along life’s journey, but feel I must downplay myself so as to not be intimidating.

Here are the Top Side Effects and Cures for Downplay-itis AKA Downplaying Yourself:

  1. Side Effect: You are not offering your true self. You are constantly acting, rehearsing your lines and hoping to get it right. Cure: On a first date, maybe even a second date, don’t go into a whole resume submittal detailing all of your degrees and/or accomplishments. Though some dates are similar to an interview..the whole getting to know you thing, THIS IS NOT AN INTERVIEW! Yes. You are the bomb.com. But NO. Do not give it all away on the first date –intellectually or physically. While I am in no way saying be ashamed of all you’ve done, I am saying hit the highlights then allow your date to interject. If asked for further details, by all means expound and share. Allow it to all happen organically.
  2. Side Effect: Downplay-itis, while dating, will potentially carry over into your professional life as well. After an interview, how many times have you wished you would have mentioned all those great attributes you possess and accomplishments you have achieved? Well my friend, THIS IS THE TIME! Cure: Write out every magnificently awesome thing about yourself as well as the things you want to improve and/or achieve. Figure out which to offer up on a date and which are best for landing that job! Too much work? Well look at some of your past failed dates and past interviews then get back to me and tell me how it could have been better. Put in the time to knowing yourself better. This may be the very thing you need to lead you to your greatest opportunities to grow in various areas of your life. This is a great lead in for the third side effect.
  3. Side Effect: You stunt your own personal growth and you merely exist. For a butterfly to become the beautiful creature that is meant, it must go through stages (known as metamorphosis). Though there may be more for you to achieve, it may be hard to see the path to get there if you are downplaying the path you have already travelled for the sake of being “the right woman” for a gent. How can you go through the needed growth stages to become the woman you desire if you do not own the woman you presently are? Cure: Acknowledge and Accept that you are a woman of many accomplishments –some big, some not as big. Nevertheless, they are YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS! For me, I worked two jobs and paid for grad school out of my own pockets. So when and if the topic comes up…uhhh yeah!..I’m gonna enthusiastically tell you about that experience, but will always remain humble (Also see the first side effect).
  4. Side Effect: You miss out on your gifts. Don’t mistake the companionship of a significant other as the main gift. Downplay-itis will cause you to miss out on the gift of being inspiring to yourself and most importantly –inspiring to others! There is someone needing to hear and know what and how you have achieved all that you have thus far. However, when one suffers from Downplay-itis, this person’s achievements will either be viewed as trivial and/or not worth obtaining. In turn, an additional side effect will ensue, where an onlooker may become deterred from his/her own path of greatness. Cure: Be true to who you are. You never know whose watching and taking notes.

Let’s enter this “Love Month” (aka February) with the mantra “The gent in my presence will choose to either be proud or intimidated. It is not for me to choose his degree of comfort within himself so as to accept the comfort I have with myself.”

Sincerely,

Your Restyled Mom…who is applying The Cure

The Intense Facts Why Some Single Moms Don’t Want to be Married!

As we enter this month of love , my thoughts quickly turn to dating, being single and most importantly- being a mom (who just so happens to be single).

I have reached my thirties, have a beautiful daughter, a nice home and make a decent living. In comparing my life as a single woman without a kiddo to my current life as a single woman with a kid, I see the differences between what I want, what I need, and the healthy balance between the two.  However, I don’t have one thing -a husband.  Unfortunately, I have friends who tend to remind me about my non-husband factor. 

These friends feel with each closer move to the 40 club, there is an pressing need for me to be married -hence the dating game aka the “set up” commences.  Don’t get me wrong, I am in no way opposed to being set up on a blind date. What I am opposed to is the attempt to set me up based solely on a number soon approaching. I am opposed to comments such as, “You’re not getting any younger”; “You’re so picky and won’t ever get married”; or my favorite “He’s not all that attractive but no one is at your doorstep sooo…”. Yes, these are just a few of the insensitive lines I get to hear.  They even go so far as to say, “I thought you would’ve been married by now.” -as if they are questioning what I have done wrong along the way.  I have even found myself saying to one ‘friend’, “Excuse me, I didn’t know I should have kept entertaining the guy who failed to mention he had a wife!”  I presume since it wasn’t the air ripped from her lungs, it’s such a hard thing to remember.

This is what I want these “friends” to allow to resonate in their souls.

  1. I am not some desperate woman who will simply settle on a man with a pulse. I am first, a mom; and second to that is my being single.
  2. It is my daughter who is watching me and looking to me for guidance. It is my daughter whom I cherish and whom I will protect. To these ‘friends’ who think more of my age, I implore you to think less of my age and more of my child, myself, and OUR well being. Think of what will be in our best interest instead of the credit you want to take for setting the new Mr. & Mrs. ‘Us’ up or the speech you want to give at the wedding. wp_ss_20160121_0003
  3. Dig a little deeper in your little “Millionaire Matchmaker, Patty Stanger” set her up role and actually THINK of someone who is BEST for me and I for him.

To my friends who met their soul mates when you all were twelve years old and now are “living the dream”, I wish you the best. I sincerely do. I only ask one thing of you

When you think of me and the next blind date/set up/match making…whatever you want to call it, think about the fact that I have a daughter watching my every move. Think about my heart and how it has been broken so many times.  Now, think about the heart I have to protect (besides my own).  It’s not that I have no desire to be married, but tell me…should I wait or just go on your impulsive, “she needs to get married so let me set her up” …date?

Sincerely,

A Restyled Mom…who just so happens to be single…and willing to WAIT!