The weekly review- week 2

I’m Soiree, not sorry               Celebrating, unapologetically

The weekly review- Week 2

Approximately 14 days in and it’s slowly becoming habit- the daily blogging (or at least knowing what each daily post is going to be about- the literal posts may be delayed by a day or two) and continuing to build my mindfulness skill set.

I had to re-visit what my week 1 review said. Ironically, the two items which I struggled the most with last week were my 2 strengths this week- “physical activity” & “pay it forward”. As it happened, this was unintentional. I did not seek out to improve those 2 deficits this week. But just like magic, coincidentally, these areas were strengthened.

This week, I conquered winter running, a bucket list I’ve been procrastinating for years. And in a couple blog posts this past week, “kindness” & “paying it forward” really resonated.

Without getting in too much detail, this week has been bombarded with not so good news. But, …. what I can say is this….despite being bombarded with unexpected & unpleasant occurrences, finding those moments of kindness  given by others, as well as finding those pockets of moments to give kindness to others, has made life that much more bearable. I was also able to find a new hardcore physical activity (winter running) that allowed me decompress this week with life shenanigans. And maybe life, as my mantra says (celebrating unapologetically) , is about learning to deal with life’s both delightful & unpleasant incidences the best way you know how…and maybe, there really is no right or wrong way to ride out these delightful or unpleasant occurrences.

Here’s to week 3 #Soireeprojectgrowth

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Where does the story begin

I’m Soiree, not sorry
Celebrating, unapologetically

Where does the story begin?

We all have a story. And every story has beginnings. And when you’ve come a long way, it is beautiful to reflect how the journey began.
I saw this phrase painted on a wall two days ago (as featured in the picture above) ; & it was very symbolic of where my headspace was at.

Take a moment to appreciate all the highs and lows of how you got to where you are. It isn’t always about having a great ride throughout the whole duration of time. You wouldn’t be the person you are without the entirety of the whole. And maybe you wouldn’t be as strong or resilient if you didn’t have those bumpy moments. And when you have those great moments, they can be a reminder of what you have….. and what you can have. This applies to relationships, your career, your dreams, and everything else in between.

Life, and loss, makes you reflect how you currently spend your time on, & makes you appreciate what you want to make time for & what you don’t want to waste your time on.

Just as stories have beginnings, they too have an ending. But what I am learning is that endings can be the start of a new beginning or a new journey. Or maybe the journey is about continuing on the path but in a slightly different direction.

Beginnings –> endings –> create new beginnings
Funny how life comes in full circle.

The pleasantries of the unexpected

I’m Soiree, not sorry
Celebrating, unapologetically

The pleasantries of the unexpected

On my desk was an unexpected, (but pleasant )surprise. The best gestures are the ones that are done “just because”; when there’s no ulterior motivations behind the  gesture. In this day in age, where skepticism and doubt is almost the norm, it is sometimes hard to fathom that there are just genuine, kind souls that actually do exist. But the one thing my heart is opening up to more, especially now that I am trying to at least be cognizant, and ideally practice a daily act of ‘paying it forward’ , the more my mind is opening up to the idea that maybe there are all sorts of genuine acts happening all the time, if only I open up my eyes to see them.
The unexpected piece of knowledge that is starting to unfold within this #soireeprojectgrowth, is that there is soooooo much good in this world,….and that there is so much good to give;  & there are sooo many people doing good things for us all the time,…and yet they can often go unnoticed when our blinders are constantly focused and immersed in the non-stop, go-go-go of today’s cultural pace.

It’s not about seeing the world through rose-coloured glasses, it’s about seeing the world (and people) at face value for what they truly are.
I challenge you to find those unexpected pleasantries,…because maybe, just maybe, you will then realize how present “the good” is in your life (whatever that “good in your life is”); & how that goodness  can multiply exponentially.

The Bucket List

I’m Soiree, not sorry                                     Celebrating, unapologetically 

The bucket list

We all have a bucket list. It’s a list of all the things one wants to accomplish during the span of one’s lifetime. It’s  funny how experiencing a death of a loved one expedites your desire to get those items on your bucket list checked off.
One thing that is beginning to materialize these past few weeks, is that these bucket list items don’t have to be grand at all.
I am truly finding solace in finding at least one thing to be grateful for; or trying to find at least one way to pay it forward to ignite a random act of kindness; or identifying at least personal strength of mine. And the more I’m consistent with implementing these practices, the clearer it becomes to me that daily mindfulness practices such as these is essential. Maybe I had the idea of bucket list all wrong before. I always thought of bucket list items as large grand event occurrences ( ie. hike Mount Everest). Maybe if we see our bucket list as everyday, acts of kindness & gratitude, then maybe we will find a richness in our daily. Maybe if we shifted our expectations of our bucket list checklist as those beautiful, but often too rare, wondrous life moments, then maybe,…just maybe…..life won’t be that monotonous rigmarole pace we often complain about.

Sharing the spotlight

I’m Soiree, not sorry             Celebrating, unapologetically

Sharing the spotlight

Tell them they are great. Tell them that you notice the work they do. Tell them that it matters. And most importantly, tell them that you think of them.

Just because you let someone know they are doing great doesn’t mean it’ll get to their head. Just because you compliment someone else on the work that they do, doesn’t mean it takes away from how you, yourself, are also great. Telling someone they are wonderful doesn’t make you a suck up or a goody-two-shoes.

Allowing others to have the spotlight can bring so much joy to someone’s day, especially in the hustle bustle of the type of society we currently live in. A small gesture of giving something to someone because it reminded you of them, can be so empowering for others, and for you.

I often hear that people say that they are not in the business of what they do to be told they are doing great work. But I  am also a believer in that even if being told you are great is not the sole purpose of why you do what you do, it does not mean you still don’t deserve credit where it’s due every now and then.

Imagine if we lived in a world where giving and receiving compliments was commonplace. How much more beautiful the world would be.

I challenge you to allow yourself to hand the spotlight to people in your life every so often. Allowing others to shine makes you a star.

Opportunities a #girlboss sees, she shall seize

 

Boss: Know no bounds

(the blog for the aspiring novice entrepreneur boss)

Opportunities a #girlboss sees, she shall seize

I read a quote earlier in the week on the Forbes Instagram. “The opportunity of a lifetime needs to be seized within the lifetime of the opportunity”- Leonard Ravenhill.

So beautiful, & so true. Have you ever hummed & hawed on a proposition that was asked of you? That hesitation, perhaps, was some reservation you had about whether or not you would be able to manage a new project. Or perhaps it was the paralyzing fear that tends to come in tandem with new territory. I have been here many times before, only to learn that by the time I was ready say yes & take on the new challenge (which could vary from a few hours, days, or weeks), those opportunities & moments had already gone me by.

Just like milk or bread, opportunities have an expiration date, or shall I say, a shelf life. Given my experience, both as an aspiring girlboss & in my personal life, I’ve learnt that when something good comes your way, you jump on board…and figure out the details later on.

True story: I have one day off from the work week from my main gig. Reality is…that one ‘day off’ really has not been spent as a day off. I am constantly ‘hustling’ on my day off, whether it is taking a course/ attending a class, responding to emails, finalizing craft orders. I feel like I am busier than ever compared to when I was a full-timer at my main gig. One thing that has become truly apparent in the entrepreneurial business, is that each minute counts & that time needs to be maximized. Having your small business requires more time & energy than a traditional ‘nine to fiver’. If you want something, take it like you own it. Once it’s yours, you will have the time to figure out the details later on I can ascertain some of my successes to the fact that I am often the first one to say yes to project proposals without necessarily always having a concrete plan in place  at that given moment. With that being said, a lot of work must be put in after you have seized that opportunity.

So back to my original message, “opportunities that a #girlboss sees, she shall seize”, it’s really about grabbing the bull by the horns & owning it when it crosses your path, because it won’t always be there. All it takes is a few moments before someone else snags something that could’ve been yours….& wouldn’t that suck! Here are some tips that have aided me when I’ve seized the opportunities & needed to figure out ‘now how the heck do I execute what I’ve committed to?”

Expectations: Set specific expectations with the other party (if applicable) & confirm details on the product they are expecting from you. In my line of work, I do custom work, therefore rarely is there any duplication of items. I spend a lot of time confirming & re-confirming orders.

Time frames– deadlines, delivery pick ups, dates of parties, all dates to be specifically set up. A big part of this is also allocating an appropriate timeframe for you to execute your project & ensure there is ample time for it all to materialize.

Progress pics & update reports- I love sending progress photos to clients. I find it helps build rapport with customers; & gets them really excited. Heck, it gets me excited too! As we know, excitement builds momentum.

Consistency- Having a consistent time work schedule of when tasks will be executed & completed helps with the momentum of a project. Consistency also allow you to ensure you get the work done. Trust me, you will encounter issues & unexpected pitfalls.  Consistency & persistence becomes even more essential when these curve balls come your way.

DO NOT underestimate your own amazing-ness This is a biggie. In times of uncertainty & when pursuing some thing new, it is all too easy to get caught up in self-doubt. When that tiny voice of uncertainty begins to chime in, tell that voice it is unwelcome….& continue on with your day. Just remember, you are amazing….and others know it too!! That is exactly why you were chosen amongst the rest at what you do.

The last point is the most pertinent of all. You are amazing! & you deserve all the great opportunities that come your way. They don’t call you (girlboss) boss for nothing.

Yours truly,

SoireeFrillsCo.

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Boss-in-training: No-no bounds

(The blog for my growing girls, who I strive to raise strong fierce ladies & soon-to-be bosses. The ‘don’ts’, followed by the ‘dos’).

Embrace the fear

Dear Elle & Enne,

Never let fear or uncertainty stop you from doing something great.

Earlier last week was a pretty big milestone for you Elle. You started kindergarten, your start of an embarkment of a new adventure in the education system. That first day, you wanted me to stay the whole day (I’m sure, in part, because I made it to be such a big deal) & squeezed my hand a little bit harder when it was time for me to let go.

I told you that today was going to be a great day, and that you needed to find that “great” thing without mommy there. That day, I was so thankful you didn’t cry (because honestly, I think the insides of my heart was doing a mini cry because I was unexpectedly struggling with this transition). Kudos to you Elle.

And for you Enne, this was a transition for you. Since you saw your sister wearing her ‘big girl kindergarten’ outfit, you also insisted wearing a backpack too. And you also insisted on having your photo taken as well.

Don’t let scary changes stop you. Embrace all things that can be fearful, for it is in fear do we experience growth. Opportunities tend to be looming in places where people are brave enough to explore. Someone once told me to be the ‘trailblazer’ in initiating a trend (fine! This is literally in instances pertaining starting a food fine). Elle & Enne, my wish for you is to be that trailblazer. Zoom, off you go.

Love,

Mom

Celebrate each moment like it’s yo’ birthday

Boss: Know no bounds

(The blog for the aspiring novice entrepreneur boss)

Celebrate each moment like it’s yo birthday

The whole focal point of my small business is celebrating those special moments, both big and small. I am a big advocate for celebrations of all sorts of achievements & milestones.

For me, it goes hand in hand with the notion of being in the present moment, the here and now.

In this day and age, there is a day celebrating each type of imaginable event, food item, or activity that you can think of. Just the other week, it was National Unicorn Day (which by the way, I am slightly obsessed with unicorns); & I cannot wait till National Coffee Day, Running Day, or Burger Day.

Are celebrations cliché? Maybe. But what I love about celebrations is that it allows one to reflect on the accomplishments of that particular celebration. And course, gives a platform and reason say ‘cheers’ & ‘hip hip hooray’.

As I digress from the real topic at hand, my small business started out as a hobby to celebrate my kids’ birthday parties. It was during that first year of maternity leave I really felt I was in my “home zone” when I was creating all the party décor and embracing all those frilly details I had never really paid attention to before. I had always known that I was a creature of creativity, but I didn’t know how passionate I was about the arts & crafts until about 5 years ago.

As part of my business venture, I love being a small contribution to people’s happy celebratory moments. There isn’t anything more gratifying when the love you put into your work is also appreciated & loved by others. That is my biggest reason for pursuing this craft business.

As I age, & as I have witnessed some shifts in societal & cultural norms, it certainly gives me a greater appreciation of the importance of celebrating where we are today.

Ironically, it happens to be my birth month, more specifically, my birthday week. Or perhaps it is the other way, where I’ve become reflective on the topic because it is another birthday milestone for me. Either way, the month of April has really got me thinking about celebrations.

So in celebration of the general topic of celebrations, here are my top 10 reasons why celebrating is a must:

1. No one else is you; Only you is you. That in itself, is amazing. Afterall, there are billions of people on this earth; yet, no one else can replicate you.

2. You are here. Boom. Enough said.

3. Today is the present; and the present, as the word denotes, is a gift. Celebrate that gift.

4. If it’s a good day, take it. There is just too much negativity in this world that having a good day is a celebration in itself.

5. There is no such thing ‘waiting for the perfect time’. People wait for the perfect moment; or when things are better; or when a specific time comes (ie. Waiting till the 20th, 30th, 40th, 50th birthday). If we embrace the notion that there is no such thing as the perfect timing, perhaps we will all then be keen to make those celebrations happen.

6. Who wouldn’t want a celebration feast, snack, get together, or reason for a siesta? I don’t know about you but I find every reason to go for a specialty coffee or foodie outing.

7. Party decorations & party favours. My favourite reason of all. It is a great excuse to beautify a special space or event.

8. Pictures. I love pictures. Pictures are concrete proof of your existence through history. And people are more likely to take pictures during celebrations. And pictures make me happy, as do the rest of the world. Isn’t that why selfies and groupfies have become all the rage?

9. Parties are a great reason to dress up. Such a great excuse to dig up those outfits you have been dying to wear but didn’t necessarily have a function to wear it. Now is that time.

10. “Just because”. You don’t need a reason to celebrate. You can celebrate each moment like it’s your birthday party if you wanted to (hence, my letter board signage I posted on this blog post). The world is your oyster, and you can choose to celebrate each & every moment.

11. The extra reason. When celebrations are given a ‘date’ or anniversary’ in a calendar, people are more apt to celebrating that event. Write it down. And make it happy.

Motivation of the week: It’s my birthday week this week. And you can count on the stars that I am going to enjoy every bit of it & soak in all the glory for what it’s worth.

Always me,

SoireeFrillsCo.

Boss-in-training: No-no bounds

 (The blog for my growing girls, who I strive to raise strong fierce ladies & soon-to-be bosses- The ‘don’ts’, followed by the ‘do’s’)

Celebrating those milestones

Dear Elle & Enne,

I love celebrating every milestone ever achieved by you. Your first laugh, smile, coo, & word. I took photos of those moments when you had your first bite of cereal, when you first went swimming, or the first time you rode on an airplane. I have taken photos of you for almost each firsts in the first few years of life; as if an attempt to etch those moments in my brain forever.

Each of those moments are precious and worth celebrating. I love being your mom because you have given me my biggest reasons to celebrate in life.

Thank you for coming into my life. And for giving me yet another reason to celebrate in life. As long as I’m your mom, I will have plenty to celebrate.

Don’t ever think any achievement is too small to celebrate. Don’t let anyone tell you that something isn’t a big deal….because I will always tell you, IT IS A BIG DEAL.  Embrace life & life’s celebratory milestones; for that is what makes life worthwhile. (P.S. Yes, I am that mom who loves to ask on a daily basis what their favourite part of the day was, because there is always at least one thing to be grateful for each & every day). One day, when you become your own bosses (who am I kidding, these two kiddos already know whose boss, and it sure ain’t me most days, lol), you will learn that part of doing what you want & love means enjoying the journey along the way. When you celebrate your achievements & life’s happy moments, you will learn the value of what you bring to the table. & you my girls,  have so much to bring to that table.

Love, Mom.