I have officially become that gal who never goes to the mall. I hardly ever (like, EVER) go to the mall anymore & almost all of my purchases comes from boutiques or online. Online because who doesn’t like presents when they get home (LOL!), and boutiques because let’s face it- the options are just better. Better quality, more uniqueness and wayy better items. Hence why I was in Rice Village last week grabbing some spring must haves. Trends change, as they always will- but boutiques carry more than “trendy” items. One of my favorite stores I love to visit in Rice,  Hemline, just got some of their new arrivals in and I am obsessed. I had such a hard time deciding what to get this time, which is pretty common for me anyways!

From dresses to the cutest shorts to the tops- all of the new arrivals are fab! I especially loved all of their new accessories they have currently, including some fun clutches. I’ve never liked clutches much, as I love carrying lots of stuff. This little one I found was the perfect balance of neutral and bright colors & I just had to have it! I also loved the weekender that I found- as again, I love my random pops of color. This one was huge- so perfect for someone on the go, and great for spring.

There’s also lots of fun dresses and some good accessories! I especially loved all of their necklaces as their assortment was really good! I’m normally pretty simple, so I don’t buy lots of jewely, but these were all fab! I really liked the smaller ones- they were perfect for layering! Needless to say,  If you haven’t had a chance to stop by Hemline in the past couple of weeks- I strongly suggest you go soon. You won’t be sorry!

Until Next Time!

-B

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Happy Wednesday! This week’s weekly inspiration comes from Proverbs 27:1-

“Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.”

Whenever I think about the future, I get really excited! I so look forward to the unknown (even if a bit scary) & look forward to all of the amazing things I know that God is going to do in me, my friends & families lives! Although it is good to be excited for the future, it is also not the best idea to get so so excited that you forget about the present. I always try to remind myself that if I get too ahead of myself, I might miss the beauty of my “now”.

This week, my challenge for you is to write something that you’re excited about that is happening in your life right now! For example, today- I wrote down how I absolutely love my job! Having a place of “work” that I love being at is truly a blessing, as it hasn’t always been that way for me. This week- take a few minutes to think about something that you’re thankful for NOW! Getting too excited about the future can blind you from all the amazing things happening in your present.

P.S.- Deets on this outfit can be found here

Until Next Time!

-B

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Shift dresses are my go-to to Mondays! They’re the perfect outfit for Monday blues & are the perfect mix of casual and not casual all in on (if that even makes sense!).  I love being comfy, as I’ve said many times before, and this dress is so comfy I wish I could wear it once a week. Even though I’m usually not a floral gal- I decided that dress was the “exception to my rule”. AKA- it was a total impulse buy and I have no regrets.

For this fit, I decided to take my shift dress up a notch by adding some wedges! This look is perfect for the office or brunch with the gals, but can also be dressed down by adding some casual shoes, such as converse. Back to the elephant in the room- I am for sure NOT a floral girl, but this dress clearly has flowers all over it. Even though I hate flowers, this dress was so cute I just couldn’t pass it up! To me- these flowers are colorful, but neutral. They don’t scream “Floral Here!” to the world and are not hot pink or anything. Nevertheless, this is as “floral” as I will ever go. Regardless of how “on trend” floral prints may be- I just can’t do it.

Last month was a busy one, and this one will be even busier, so I’m using my totes every day now! Normally- I switch up my bag every couple of days or so- but this tote which serves as my carryall has been working overtime! Basically- it’s my office, first aid kit, and everything in between. You would be beyond surprised if I even told ya’ll half of what I keep in my bag. Like honestly ya’ll- I try to prepare for anything (ha!). What’s something weird you keep in your bag?

Until Next Time!

-B

 

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Happy Finance Friday (Stacy here)! Who’s ready to leap into April- Me! Before I jump into all of the wonderful new adventures to come this season, I always make sure I check on my investments and conduct a review of my retirement accounts. My goal is to retire early and spend my latter days really enjoying the fruits of my labor. Lately, when I discuss saving up for retirement with my peers and pals the same questions keep popping up…

I’m in my 20’s that means I’m too young to invest, right? 

Of course not! You’re never too young to start planning for your future. Let’s face it, the average life expectancy for women in the U.S. is 81, 78 for men, so we’ll be around for many years to come. Why not start stashing away for long-term living. You’ll thank yourself later!

While we’re young, we have the opportunity to take risks and be more aggressive with investing as opposed to playing catch up when we approach retirement. Investing early is a fundamental step in wealth building.

How do I invest and where do I begin?

Most people begin investing with a company sponsored employee plan, 401(k). Many employers will match you dollar for dollar up to a certain percentage as a part of their benefits package. I recommend contributing 15% of your household income towards retirement. 401(k) plans come with a tax deduction at the end of the year, and the money you contribute is considered pre-tax dollars. This means you will pay taxes on this money upon retirement or if you withdraw funds from your IRA early.

If your employer does not offer a retirement package, you can open a Roth IRA with a financial institution. With a Roth IRA, you will contribute after-tax dollars to your retirement account. Upon retirement, qualified distributions from your Roth will be tax-free. Look at it this way, you already paid taxes on the money beforehand so Uncle Sam doesn’t hit you twice!

If you’re self-employed you can still contribute towards retirement by opening a SEP (Simplified Employee Pension), and like 401(k) plans, SEPs also receive a tax deduction. I recommend contacting a financial consultant who really understands the ends and outs of SEP accounts before setting one up on your own.

Who can I trust with my investments?

You can trust trained financial professionals to help you with your investments or a wise financial mentor. The best way to find a good financial representative is through word of mouth. It can be difficult to build, establish, and maintain a relationship with a stranger. Especially when they are responsible for handling your life’s savings. Investing is risky business but it’s essential for financial planning. The higher the risk the higher the return.

Think of investing like riding a roller coaster. With every good ride, there are highs, lows, bumps, and turns. You have to hold on, close your eyes, say a prayer, and just ride the wave. Don’t be discouraged by what you see on TV or read online about the economy. Research shows, markets always bounce back. You may have to shift your investment strategies or opt-out of specific plans but try not to pull out completely. I know it’s easier said than done but unless you have a major financial emergency and need to tap into your investments, I’d recommend sitting tight. After all, good things come to those who wait!

While saving up for retirement make sure to check your investment account(s) periodically. It’s important to track your progress and get a game plan for success! Remember the younger you are the more aggressive you can be, so don’t be afraid to take a few risks. We have plenty of time to recover. Don’t hesitate to ask questions and when in doubt hire a professional!

 Until Next Time!
-Stacy & B
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I for one have always wondered what it’s like being a coach of any kind! One coaching type that has always been interesting to me is career coaching. This weeks #BossBabe is Laura Okoroji, who shares with us not only why she loves career coaching, but also some of the challenges she faces having both her own business and full time job at Amazon as well!

Tell me a little about yourself. Where did you grown up, get your degree in etc? What is your current job?

I’m Nigerian American, lived in Nigeria as a child. and moved to the US pretty early in my life. I’ve spent most of my life in Texas (Dallas, Houston and now Austin) where I reside with my husband. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s in Organization Development and Human Performance. I’m also a certified professional coach! Currently, I am a Chief Motivation Officer and Career Coach for my company- iVenture Career Coaching and work in Diversity and Talent Acquisition (recruitment) for Amazon.

What made you decide to start your career?

I decided to launch iVenture Career Coaching to give my clients the advantage. As an HR professional, I noticed that many candidates did not know how to market themselves to align to the roles that were interviewing for. I want my clients to stand out as the candidate of choice-to give them to cutting advantage and enable them to land the job of their dreams! I’ve always known I was passionate about coaching and encouraging others to achieve and be their best selves. I went to school and received formal education as a Professional Coach through World Coaching Institute and I continuously work to stay on top of the changes & new developments in my field.

What inspires you on a daily basis?

It inspires me when my client lands the right job! The work I’ve been able to do through iVenture Career Coaching has helped clients land jobs at companies such as Chevron, Dell, Encompass Health, Nike, American Heart Association, Health Leeds  & more! When services such as resume writing, interview coaching, or job search strategy help me clients land the career they love- it makes me feel like the work I’m doing is impacting people! My clients also inspire m to always work towards your goals and never settle for a “No”.

What is your favorite bible verse & why?

My favorite Bible verse is “I have chosen the way of faithfulnes, I have set my heart on your laws” (Psalms 119:30). I love this verse because it reminds me that a a Christian to keep my mind on what God says and not what many says.

That He is faithful in his word.

What’s something you would tell your 20 year old self?

Just do it! I overthink & talk myself out of things a lot. I would tell my 20 year old self it’s okay to think through things, but analysis paralysis can stall your growth and delay your God given talents from shining.

What is your end goal with your business, what do you want to accomplish?

My goal with iVenture is to create a career education and e-learning firm that impacts the lives of my clients by placing them in careers they love. I also want to be able to provide the tools and education to help them reach goals that a stable career and growth afford.

What are the 3 most important things you would tell someone starting off in their career?

  1. Build real relationships
  2. Job shadow/Intern
  3. Always take initiative

What is your favorite thing to do regarding your field?

Encourage. I love to encourage my clients. Whether they are in jobs they hate or have been unemployed for some time, encouragement has a positive impact on their confidence! I love to encourage my clients to let them know that this too shall pass. I stand by their side & provide love and encouragement through the sometimes painful process of landing a job. I’m a tough love coach, but Corporate America is a tough place. 

What is your least favorite?

This rarely happens, but when I have clients that don’t want to put in the work. I understand it’s a challenge for people to change the way they interview or receive feedback or realize that their resume needs work. Having a resistant client is a hard part of the job.

What has been the most surprising challenge within your career?

It’s been a challenge managing both my corporate job and my passion. I’ve been able to do it by the Grace of God and practicing stringent time management techniques. When you really want something, you make it work!

Visit the website at iventurecareercoaching.com.

P.S.- I’m currently offering free resume reviews, email me at coach@iventurecareercoaching.com to take advantage of having your resume being reviewed for free!

Until Next Time!

-B

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