Final Goals Check In

Hey loves!!!

It’s almost the end of the year and I’m excited at all that I’ve accomplished this year.  At the end of this month, I’m going to take a break from the website from now until the beginning of the new year while I work on creating some great new content for you all (including a giveaway in the new year). But until then, I wanted to give you a quick update on my 2017 goals. (You can read previous updates here – Q1,  Q2 and Q3 ).

Here’s an update on my progress on my blogging goals:

  1. As of today, I partially have achieved my goal to post on my site at least once a week.  Fell off a little this summer but trying to remain consistent now.
  2. I did officially create my podcast channel AND my YouTube channel. I plan to be an avid vlogger in 2018 so definitely make sure you are signed up for my YouTube channel by following me here.  You can also find me on Soundcloud by clicking  here.
  3. I kicked off my first giveaway in February and it was met with a great response rate. I also did another giveaway for reaching 1,000 followers on Instagram in Q2. I’m closing out the month with a holiday giveaway (so stay tuned) and then kicking off the new year with another giveaway (again stay tuned). Giveaways are only getting better and are offered on my social media platforms so be sure to sign up to follow me.
  4. I partnered with two other bloggers and hosted giveaways with them which helped me reach my network and collaboration goal for the year. I also did a joint Vlog with another blogger in April which was posted to YouTube! My first Vlog! You can view that here.
  5. I finished designing the first draft of one of my T-shirts and working on the second. The first should go on  sale at the beginning of the new year.
  6. I’m  still working on creating those blogging business cards which I need.
  7. I scheduled my first photo shoot in Q2 and have updated my website to reflect some of those new looks!

Wow. I’ve made some great progress so far in 2017! I am still working on my e-book and increasing my visibility and other goals but so far so good! My e-book is going to be next, I’m claiming it.

In terms of my personal goals, I have been grinding hard and being more consistent as well as working on my relationship with God.

My fitness has picked back up and I’ve been able to get at least 3 workouts in a week, with most weeks being 3 workouts. My boyfriend bought me a step tracking device and I’m excited to reach my 10,000 steps on most days (haha).

As I reflect over  what I’ve accomplished so far, I’m happy with what I’ve been able to achieve.  I still have more work to do but I think I’ve accomplished a lot of my goals for 2017!

Now what about you? How did you do with your 2017 goals.  Let me know through the comments section.  If you’ve fallen off, just add those to your 2018 goals and start over again!

~Many blessings,

Videllia

3rd Quarter Goals Check-In

Hey loves!!!

We are continuing our accountability of one another by double-checking our goals for the year!  As you remember, I shared with you all my goals for the year which you can read here here and gave you an update in Q1, and Q2.

As stated before, each and every quarter I’m going to revisit these goals to ensure I’m staying on track of my New Year vision and to make sure you keep track on your vision as well!

Here’s an update on my progress on my blogging goals:

  1. As of today, I partially have achieved my goal to post on my site at least once a week.  Fell off a little this summer but trying to remain consistent now.
  2. I did officially create my podcast channel AND I officially launched it this month! Whoo hoo for getting this accomplished in Q3! I am still learning how to edit, add sound and effects, etc. but if I kept waiting to get everything perfect, I would never get this accomplished.  It’s a work in progress but I am glad that it officially launched.  I’ve added a podcast tab to my site for you to check out all the latest and greatest episodes.  You can also find it on Soundcloud by clicking  here.  It will contain the same content as my blog posts but is for those out there who’d rather listen than read. I also plan to introduce a new series especially for women that you don’t want to miss!
  3. I kicked off my first giveaway in February and it was met with a great response rate. I also did another giveaway for reaching 1,000 followers on Instagram in Q2. I’d like to do one more giveaway this year, hopefully my new t-shirt in Q3 so be sure to follow me on Instagram for your chance of winning.
  4. I partnered with two other bloggers and hosted giveaways with them which helped me reach my network and collab goal for the year. I also did a joint Vlog with another blogger in April which was posted to YouTube! My first Vlog! You can view that here.So hold your head high gorgeous.Show the world you're fine.Don't give in to the heartache,because people would kill to see you fall! -Author Unknown (1)
  5. I finished designing the first draft of my T-shirt and hoping to complete and finalize it for sale this quarter.  Since I’ll also be turning 30 this quarter, I’m thinking about contributing 30% of the proceeds of the sales during a period of time to a charity.  I’ll have to figure out all of those details soon.
  6. I have finalized my site logo (I think – I’m always changing my mind haha) and still working on creating those blogging business cards which I need.
  7. I scheduled my first photo shoot in Q2 and have updated my website to reflect some of those new looks!

Wow. I’ve made some great progress so far in 2017! I am still working on my e-book and increasing my visibility and other goals but so far so good! My e-book is going to be next, I’m claiming it.

In terms of my personal goals, I have been grinding hard and being more consistent as well as working on my relationship with God. In Q2, I noted that my relationship with God had taken a back seat to everything else in life but not anymore.  I have consistently been spending time with God for over 2 weeks straight now and looking to continue to increase my daily time with God.  I also have joined a few bible study support groups as well!  I’ve also taken a few trips already (Orlando and Costa Rica) and getting ready to head to New York with my boyfriend.  I still haven’t taken a new class (like jewelry making) but it’s on my list!

My fitness has picked back up and I’ve been able to get at least 3 workouts in a week, with most weeks being 3 workouts. My boyfriend bought me a step tracking device and I’m excited to reach my 10,000 steps on most days (haha)

As I reflect over this third quarter, I am pretty excited about what I’ve accomplished so far.  I still have more work to do but I think I’ve accomplished a lot of my goals so far and I still have a little over three months to go!  I’ve also added a few additional goals – the biggest being to increase my Instagram following to at least 1,500 by end of year and to write my eBook.  What series would you like to see me write about?

Now what about you? How are you doing with your New Year’s Goals?  Let me know through the comments section.  If you’ve fallen off, it’s not too late to start! I’ll be checking on you again in the third quarter so best of luck!

~Many blessings,

Videllia

Being a Black Woman in Corporate America

I recently attended an accounting conference where the keynote speaker was Ms. Kimberly-Ellison Taylor. Ms. Taylor was named the first African-American chairperson of the AICPA, a very prestigious title. I watched how laughter turned to tears of joy for the crowd as they understood the historical significance of this event.  Blacks used to be seen as less than and now here were are, not only working in prestigious institutions but leading in them as well. It began to remind me of my own career journey.

I am a black woman in corporate America.  Yes, BLACK. As if being a woman is not already enough, I had to be “dipped in chocolate, bronzed in elegance, enabled with grace, toasted with beauty – yes a black woman!” (Dr. Yosef A.A. Ben-Jochannan)

I started my career in corporate America in Fall 2011 and I’ve learned several things that I want to share with other minorities as they begin their own journeys— three of which I’ve listed below.

The stereotype of a black woman precedes me.

In society, women as a whole are considered to be more emotional creatures. But being black on top of that? It’s like a double-edged sword.  Black women are often denoted in society as, well, let’s face it, “crazy.” Inside and outside of our race, we are stereotyped as being loud, boisterous, “ghetto,” etc.  So it’s no surprise that corporate America (sometimes) views us by the same token.

I remember getting upset with some last-minute instructions that my boss gave me a half hour before I was scheduled to leave.  Instead of verbally expressing my anger, I got silent as I tried to calm myself down so as NOT to have an attitude with her. Nonetheless, my boss told me that I had a bad attitude. However, that same boss went around, cursing about her superior (a partner) after the partner made her mad.  Yet she didn’t think she had an attitude?

How I Respond

I’ve learned that positivity is the key factor to ensure that stereotypes don’t precede me.  It’s unfortunate, but since people already see you as emotional (being a woman) and having an attitude (being black), you have to work twice as hard to display a positive image.  For me, this meant that I had to also learn to control my non-verbal reactions so that my mere silence wouldn’t be perceived as threatening.  Is it fair? No. Is it reality? Yes (though not in all situations).  We can’t do much to change corporate America’s preconceived notions but we can ensure that the stereotype stops with us.

My looks play more into my role than some of my non-African American counterparts.

Women are so objectified in society that it comes as no surprise that our looks play a huge role in our professional appearance by others.  But with black women, sometimes, this can be more challenging.

I am a black woman-all the way!  That means on some days I wear my natural hair, other days I opt for a sleek bun, and sometimes I will wear wigs/weaves.

There have been several occasions where my looks have come up in conversation with my non-black coworkers, specifically about my hair. One coworker asked me if she could touch my weave and if I took it off at night; one manager told me she liked my hair much better when I straightened it and my partner told me that I look so professional when I wear my hair in a sleek bun.  And to be honest, these comments greatly affected my confidence in the workplace. I had become insecure about rocking my natural hair for fear of not looking as professional as others.

How I Respond

As black people we are taught to suppress our emotions in order to be respected and not retaliated against.  However, in order to change some stereotypes, we can’t just ignore the ignorance of others – we have to educate them.  And that’s what I have chosen to do at my job.  Instead of being offended and upset, I now try to teach my coworkers the difference between black and non-black hair and why those differences are still acceptable AND are still professional.  We sometimes may be the only black women these people ever see so it is imperative that we do our part to minimize those stereotypes. I’ve had much success by educating my coworkers and I feel it’s created a more welcoming environment for me.

I have to work twice as hard for half the recognition and respect.

This isn’t just true of black women – this is true for most women. Women as a whole, oftentimes, have to work harder than their male counterparts in order to be measured by the same standards of success.  Being dipped in chocolate only means you have to work just that much harder.

No one likes to feel their work is not valued or they aren’t recognized for their successes but sometimes it’s easy to slip through the cracks.  There have been numerous times where credit for things that I’ve done was given to my coworkers and I just sat there and said nothing while my coworkers smiled brightly taking the credit as though they had done the thing all along.

How I Respond

One black partner at my firm told me this, “Videllia, while you’re out here playing checkers, your [non-black] coworkers are playing chess.”  Seeing the puzzled look on my face, he explained to me that I can’t be silent in my career. I’m going to have to actively take charge and make moves so that my skills and career successes are recognized.  I can’t just be basic; I had to learn how to be strategic, always thinking about my next move and that of my opponent (i.e. coworkers) so that I too can have a fighting chance at recognition within my company.

That was probably the best advice that I have ever received in my career. And look at me now.

I am a Manager in my firm at the age of 29.

I am actively involved in our firm’s hiring and recruiting efforts.

I am avidly using my intelligence to teach those in my firm who are ignorant to the black culture about the black culture. I don’t choose to get mad. I choose to educate.

I AM a black woman in corporate America.

~V.Davis

(This blog was first posted by Videllia as a blog contributor on fempotential.com on 12/6/16.)