Dear Decade,

As I am sitting here writing this last blog post of 2019, I am in awe at how far I have come in this decade. Honestly, even in the last few months of this almost expired year, life has taken me in, and has given me lessons that I never thought could be taught to me. For these lessons I feel blessed, because no matter how many times I had to try and fail, I still tried. And child, don’t even get me started on the L’s. No amount of losses that I THOUGHT I took could ever compare to each lesson I learned that will mold and shape my future. That in itself has made me all the more grateful.

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At the start of this year, I had everything that I thought was making me happy. Ya’ll know… the usual things like money, fast friends, etc. If you guys have any older spiritual influences in your life like I do (Hey Saints!), then you will have heard the expression, “The devil comes dressed as everything you’ve ever wanted.” And sure enough, he did. My personal demons at the start of this year had me in such a dark place. I was feeding off of my own false happiness because at the time, it ‘looked’ like what I thought I was missing. And then I was self-diagnosed with a spiritual food poisoning. I was sick to say the least. Here’s a lesson for you, kids: Happiness fades, but joy is forever. The happiness that I had become to know and love so well, would often be tampered with by those things and people who were responsible for giving it to me in the first place! My faith was tested so many times, and in full honesty, it also wavered. But believe me when I say that throughout the rest of the year, I became to be the prodigal daughter. Faith can be renewed!

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At the beginning of 2019, I think I was ashamed to be my true self. I would shut down my own ideas before giving them the slightest chance to flourish, and all because I was fearful! Comparison is truly the thief of joy. Here’s a news flash for you friends; do whatever feels right to you and makes you happy. You will never truly live your own life if you are living to meet the expectations of others. Shall I go on with even more content for this topic?

I had the degree. I had the job that was paying me more than enough, and yet I was miserable. I took a leap of faith to find a job that would better suit my education. I am not even ashamed to say that I recently quit that job too, because I have never been happier! I was super afraid to be unemployed, but I think I was even more afraid to hear the opinions about me, a college graduate with no job. And then I realized that I was the author of my own life, and decided that my joy was worth far more than the opinions of others.

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I started this blog while at my last place of employment, and it gave me the freedom I had been missing for so long. Although media and writing has been a silent passion of mine, it is now coming out loud and clear, love. Being able to build my own platforms that allow me to do whatever I feel represents me the most was my biggest aha moment of this past decade. I am literally doing what I LOVE. I had a professor in college who had a lecture about life. Topic: “You can literally do whatever the fuck you want. Literally.” It was a cool lecture back then, but it’s really hitting hard right now. After expounding on my first passion, which is writing, I began hosting my podcast. It is currently streaming on Anchor, Spotify, and Apple Podcasts. I am also now moving into music management, but I will have to keep those details for later on in 2020.

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Growing up, myself and others alike were always force-fed this asinine idea that showing the slightest bit of personality on Al Gore’s internet would ban you from making any type of living. I wish that whoever stumbles upon this article can somehow imagine me rolling my eyes at this point. In the latter part of this decade, as well as the future moving forward, so many people made a name for themselves by just truly being who they are. Who knew that sharing your personality with complete strangers on the internet could possibly make you a millionaire? Well now I am claiming that next spot!

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Each obstacle in 2019 that was overcome, has now become my blueprint for 2020. I have learned to speak life over any situation, whether good or bad.

In lieu of me sharing my own manifestations with you all, maybe this blog post will inspire someone to do what they have feared for so long. Every person in life will go through some type of hard time, or experience some type of struggle. The differences in each of us will determine whether we will go through it, or grow through it. I encourage you to grow! Make every day of this new year and new decade be everything YOU need it to be.

Want to stay connected with me? Follow me on Instagram @myrichambition and Facebook @ My Rich Ambition

What College Didn’t Teach You: The Post-Graduation Journey

College may have been the best time of your life, or it could have been one of your biggest challenges to date. You met some really cool people along the way, and yet, there were those who you also had to leave behind. This day didn’t come by surprise! You dedicated your time and hard work FOR YEARS, and today is the last day of your college career. You hair is laid for life, or your haircut is on fleek (hey fellas!) Numerous clips of you shaking the hand of your institution’s president, in exchange for that incredibly expensive piece of paper, have played in your head repeatedly. Everything up to this moment has unfolded exactly how you planned. Your tassel has now been moved from right to left. Your degree is secured, and you’re free to party until the sun comes back up. The sun just came up… so now what?

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Maybe you will go back to school? More degrees, more money, or so they say. I’m still doing research on that. There are those of us who will be gainfully employed only days after graduation. (Pat yourself on the back, great job!) There will even be a select few of us who will get to travel abroad, and indulge in perfect freedom before having to dive into the real world of adulting. And then finally, there are those of you like myself: young and just trying to figure things out.

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Up until about 30 seconds before I graduated, I felt like I had everything under control. I have always been the person who operates according to plan. And then college graduation approached, and every plan went out the window. My job at the time was paying me pretty decent, and even though it wasn’t in my field, I stayed with it for a while. I didn’t have a solid next move.

I told my parents approaching graduation that I just wanted to be genuinely happy and financially stable no matter what I did next. There were a lot of days that I was mentally unhealthy during the end of my senior year, and I feel that at this time, living my best semi-unstructured life is working for me. Reaching a higher place in life is a top priority, and I am still actively looking for jobs in my field. I am also chasing my dreams by hosting this blog as well as a podcast. As of now I’m happy. Working towards building a greater financial stability. But happy. And eventually, I will land that job. Speak things into existence kids, it works.

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You see, kids, college prepares you for many, many things. We learn lessons about our future occupations, while gaining a comprehensive outlook on this well-rounded education. But no amount of school work will prepare you for the real life lessons you get from college. All the math equations in the world couldn’t help you figure out why you’re short on the rent this month. Or why all of those sure fire resume building tips still haven’t landed you a job yet.

College taught me to never give up. Ever. So what you don’t have that office job you set your heart on. Or the internship you held each summer didn’t land you the job you thought would surely be yours. No testimony without a test right? You have so much life to live. And when it feels like you haven’t done enough, just remember you haven’t been grown long enough yet. Keep swimming.

Young Bosses on the Rise

One of my favorite parts about my blog is my dedication to young black entrepreneurs in the Huntsville area. I myself am a small business owner. I know how hard it can be to start. I know it’s even harder to keep going when at first you don’t see results.

My initial goal was to interview, and blog about as many businesses each week as possible but…. inconveniently have an 8-5 right now. Bills gotta be paid y’all!

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One of the hardest parts for me as a small business owner has been gaining exposure. I honestly don’t have a large following on my personal social media platforms, and paying for promotion from influencers with larger audiences is getting a hard no from my wallet. I even thought about doing promotions on my own page to gain followers. (Terrible idea by the way.)

This morning before work, I saw an Instagram post that really grabbed my attention. It said something along the lines of, “If you work for money, it will never come, but if you do what you love, the money will follow.” And then it clicked!

Via RCA Records UK

It’s hard out here, but there is enough money for everyone. Why not work together to get there? Starting on November 8, I will feature a small business each week FOR FREE. Your choice of caption, and photos. So let’s connect! The world is waiting to hear about your unique business.

If you would like to stay updated with this weekly segment, follow my social media channels:

Instagram: myrich.ambition

Facebook: My Rich Ambition

Rhythm and Flow

Before I get started, did y’all watch Rhythm and Flow on Netflix? If not, y’all can exit stage left until further notice. There will be some spoilers!

Via advancedscreenings.com

Netflix’s first ever hip-hop talent show, Rhythm and Flow, premiered earlier this month. Judges T.I., Chance The Rapper, and Cardi B went on a search to find rap’s next super star. Each judge visited their hometown (Atlanta,Chicago, and New York) to see what their city had to offer. They also identified with a person that they felt stood out the most during their visit home. The show was actually filmed in Los Angeles, so guest judge, Uncle Snoop Dogg, helped to choose some candidates from his hometown as well.

Like any competition show, you get a background story on a few of the contestants. You know every competition has to show a few story lines here and there, chile. Like I stated previously, each judge had a person that they felt was a strong candidate. I myself had my favorites. And I have my reasons, too. This show was beyond entertaining! You could go from laughing out loud to being in a living room concert within five minutes, y’all. My list ranges from the most underrated, to my all time favorite. Let’s get to it:

5. Sam Be Yourself:

Via SamBeYourself on Instagram

My boy Sam is EASILY one of the most underrated contestants on the show. Y’all know I’m always rooting for the underdog. Although Sam Be Yourself May not have been the best fit to be the next biggest rap star, he does have the work ethic, and the talent to take him even further. Like seriously, he plays the guitar, piano, makes beats, and the list goes on people! I see many producer credits in my crystal ball for this young man. Detroit definitely has another native to be proud of.

4. BigMouf’ Bo

Via bigmoufbo_official on Instagram

Sorry to everyone else, but this girl was one of my favorites, just based on personality alone. During her rap battle episode, Bo got into an argument with another contestant after she thought someone was laughing at her. From my standpoint, it seemed to be a matter of miscommunication, HOWEVER it made for great TV. (I’m laughing just thinking about it). Like, I was in tears, y’all. She was eliminated shortly after, but she definitely used the time she had to make people remember her.

3. Flawless Real Talk

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As it turns out, Flawless Real Talk isn’t so new to being in the spotlight. The Rhode Island rapper was featured on BET’s HIP HOP Awards Cypher just last year. Now I’m going to keep it a buck with y’all, and say I thought Flawless was a little weak in his earlier performances. He definitely proved himself as the competition began to escalate. His performance with Jhené Aiko covering ‘Stay Ready’ was EVERYTHING.

2. Beanz

Via Netflix

I was so disappointed when Beanz didn’t make it further in the competition. She definitely deserved to be in the top 5 contestants. Honestly y’all, when she said she was a monster, I doubted her. Never judge a book by its cover! She ATE during her cypher challenge.

1. D Smoke

Via D Smoke on Instagram

Y’all should have known I would save the best for last! From beginning to end, D Smoke showed the talent of a true artist and performer. He undeniably deserved to be the winner. In fact, I knew he was going to win the moment he rapped in Spanish. Yes, y’all. A bilingual rapper. I have to be honest here… his finale performance killed everybody’s. He went from being a Spanish and music theory teacher in Inglewood, CA to being a rising superstar. Congratulations to this man!

I was definitely here for this first season of Rhythm and Flow. I know Netflix is really going to bring the heat with a second season. All I ask is that they keep the same panel of judges. (Like my opinion matters). If you haven’t watched the show yet, don’t worry honey, it’s still on Netflix. You call also stream the top 8 finalists’ performances on Tidal, and download the soundtrack on Apple Music. You’re welcome.

Reply in the comments below with your favorite.

Who Ate All the Red Velvet?

This week I appear to be seamlessly taking L’s. I mean L’s across the board, y’all. Are you wondering which one hit me the hardest? This is kind of an emotional time in my life, so I feel your understanding and patience from wherever you are in the world, and I appreciate you. Y’all… Publix is SOLD OUT of their Premium Red Velvet Cake ice cream.

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I know, I know. Third world problems, right? WRONG! I channel every fiber of Drake’s whole being when I say, I’m upset. Seriously. Please don’t judge me, y’all. It’s just really that good. So good in fact, that last night I went to the four closest Publix stores near my house. (That last statement was made with absolutely no shame.) Let’s retract for a moment. I think I need to explain how this whole thing happened.

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Truth Is I’m Tired

Y’all. Today is really one of those days. I’ve been nearly asleep at my cubicle all day long. Each hour of the 8 hours I worked was met with my own drowsiness and lack of motivation. And by now, you’re probably thinking, “Why would I care?”. Truthfully, I probably wouldn’t care either! (You can laugh now guys, I am)

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But seriously. I know someone, somewhere in the world is feeling exactly the same way. Having those Monday vibes on a Tuesday? Me too, friend! Sorry not sorry to say I’m about to play devils advocate for a moment: Let’s just try again tomorrow! What? Did y’all think I was coming to deliver a sermon about pushing through your tiredness?

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It’s okay to rest every now and again. Everything works with moderation, right? Maybe your body wants to rest, or in most cases, NEEDS to rest. Skip the gym tonight, sweetie. Put that chicken back in the freezer and order a pizza. You know you didn’t want to cook anyway!

It’s really okay y’all. The world will still need saving tomorrow.

Siri. Play Over It by Summer Walker.

If At First You Don’t Succeed

Today is the first day of October. A new day, and the beginning of a new month. And with the beginning of this month, I get to celebrate an awesome victory. After weeks of studying, today I have finally gained my health insurance license to be a registered health insurance producer in Alabama, as well as 22 other states.

Now first let me just say, I by no means was expecting to be pursuing the current career path that I’m on right now. And I definitely didn’t know I would need to pass a state exam to continue on in this career. Sweetie, when I say I was done studying after undergrad. Or so I thought. The joke was definitely on me.

A visual representation of me when my employers told me I had to study

School has always been my strong suit. Not to brag, I lacked in other areas (shout out to all the sports teams I was never good enough for). But what all the other kids who thought I was smart never knew about me, was how anxious school made me feel. Taking tests made me feel like a brick was on my chest. In fact, I’ve failed a few tests, and done mediocre on A LOT more, just because of how anxious I tend to get. History sure repeated itself, because the same thing happened to me about two weeks ago when I failed my first exam attempt. Yeah, you heard me right. And by three points! Can y’all believe that?

The overachiever in me was sad for about 10 minutes, and then I pulled myself together. I always strive to do my best, and I beat myself up every time I feel that I have fallen short. Fortunately, I do believe that everything happens for a reason. My employer allowed us two attempts at their expense. Even though it seemed like my first attempt was a failure, I gained an opportunity for additional study time, and I knew what to expect when taking the test this time around.

You see, although my victory may have seemed delayed, it was for the better. Failing the first time around allowed me to improve myself. I could study more, and because I knew what to expect this time around, I had a better grip on my anxiety. You see kids, the moral of the story is this: Delayed does NOT mean denied. My pastor in church one day said something along the lines of, “God teaches us that sometimes we can’t have those things that we want the most when we want them, because we may not be ready to handle them just yet”.

Be patient y’all. Keep pushing toward your goals and dreams. It is better to try, fail, and try again, than to live life without trying at all. Go your hardest in everything you do. Don’t allow those small setbacks to KEEP you back. Because eventually, there will be a new day. Another chance to try your best. A new first day of the month.

P.S.

Wake up, wake up. It’s the first of the month!