A Quality Often Overlooked Within a Relationship But Quite An Important One

There are many qualities to look for when in the pursuit of a meaningful relationship and everyone’s personal criteria and love map can vary. This can also change over time in which something you valued in your youth might not even be within your current criteria. Perhaps there was a quality that you thought was a high priority only to find that after experiencing it, you came to the realization it is not something you want anymore. My point is, there are many qualities that exist with some being more important than others just depending on the person you talk to or someone you choose to date. If you were to ask someone what they look for, common answers can include: Trust, intelligence, career driven, generous, wealthy, physically attractive, etc. However, a quality that I do not hear too many people talk about but I find to be quite an important one is examining a person’s emotional stability.

Emotional stability to me can translate into many things and is something you can really pick up most through a person’s behaviors and (re)actions (actions as well but I want to emphasize reactions). I do not think you can really ask someone how emotionally stable they are and expect a direct and honest answer in response. This is why you need to pay close attention to how a person behaves and reacts to really get a good assessment. More specifically, here are some things to consider:

– How does this person handle rejection?
– How does this person react (ex: anger, sadness, indifference, etc.) during a conflict?
– Is this person able to take accountability and apologize when they are wrong?
– How does this person cope with a failed relationship?
– Does this person have trouble letting go of any emotional baggage from their past?
– What happens when something does not go their way?
– How quickly can this person bounce back from a bad situation?
– How does this person react towards a major life crisis along with more trivial matters?
– How does this person treat their friends and family when there is a conflict?
– How are you treated when there is a problem within the relationship?

I can probably make a longer list but these are some questions to think about when you are in the process of getting to know someone new. You might not be able to get all the answers immediately but you should absolutely keep these in the back of your mind from the start and during the course of the relationship. Emotional stability is an important quality to look for because it is a fundamental component needed in building a healthy relationship which often will increase the chance of long term success.

When You Have to Pay, You Pay Attention – How I Became Financially Savvy With These 5 Money Principles

When it comes to personal finance, I think this is an area in life where people can always improve and there are definitely ways to plan ahead to ensure that you are on a road to a better financial future. I am fortunate in that I had strong parents who taught me very good money lessons at a young age which shaped me into the financially savvy person I am today. I would not say I am an expert but I can provide some basic money principles that work and it is never too late to adapt them into your life no matter what your financial status is right now. With the right practices put into place, you can achieve your money goals and become a financially independent individual along with passing these money principles down to your children and the people you care about most.

I want to start off by saying, this expression is absolutely true when it comes to money–“When you pay, you pay attention.” Meaning that when you have to pay for everything, you do very well pay attention to what you are spending your money on and every little cost along the way. As soon as I could get a job as a teenager, I was held accountable for paying for everything. My parents never paid my cell phone bills, car insurance, clothes, entertainment, etc. Although they were never poor and as an only child, they easily could have covered all these costs–they still refused to pay for these things. Think about it: If they provided me with all these basic necessities, what would be the incentive to go out and get a job? Their attitude from the start was, “If you want something, you need to work for it and figure it out yourself.” Their underlying message was that I had to work for things like everyone else in this world while also instilling their full confidence that I had the capacity to earn it all by myself without relying on their credit cards and bank accounts. Their tough love approach was effective as it provided me with a burning drive at a young age to work hard along with becoming money motivated for not only survival purposes but for everything beyond that. In other words, besides paying bills and basic needs, anything else I wanted that extends beyond that such as a nice vacation, I can create the resources to make it happen. ๐Ÿ˜‰ [Side note: It is for this reason, when people I know tell me their children are spoiled, don’t appreciate anything, and don’t work–my response is to cut them off financially. Sounds harsh but it is the dose of reality and tough love that is needed to build their autonomy, confidence, work ethic, and self worth while also doing them a huge favor in the long run. Trust me.]

My point in sharing this is to show how I became financially savvy at a young age because my parents taught me the value of money by having me always have to work for it. These are principles I have applied since my youth and that I continue to live by to this day.

Spend Less Than You EarnHow often do you see people spend money that they don’t really have? I see people do this all the time where they barely can pay their bills and do not really have a savings in the event that they need it for an emergency (such as the current pandemic) which is why I would rank this as the most important money principle. It is essential to spend under your means in order to prevent sinking into debt and giving yourself the opportunity to bank more money into your savings/investments.

Focus on Excelling in Your Profession – It does not matter what professional field that you chose as there is always room for you to build your career which typically means a higher salary over time. If you are extremely good at what you do, people will want to pay you for it and/or promote you so focusing on your career should be a main focal point for both personal development and financial growth.

Find Multiple Streams of Income – I suppose if you chose a career path that already provided you a hefty salary, there is not as much of a need to find multiple streams of income but I do believe this is something people often overlook and is a missed financial opportunity. Most people are content with just having their weekly job and will call it a day which in certain situations, I understand if the job is incredibly taxing and takes up the majority of your life where there is little room for free time. However, what if you found something that you loved to do and could also make a little extra income? Anyone can turn any small hobby into a few extra dollars or sometimes a ton of money (hey, why limit yourself? ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) and there are always people willing to pay for services that they may not like or have the expertise in but you do.

Save As Much as Possible (Every Penny Counts) – People often underestimate that every little bit saved adds up to a big amount of money over time. For example, if you enjoy getting a cup of coffee everyday, you might think it’s such a small expense, why not treat yourself every morning; however, so much money can be saved just by cutting back the amount of days you go a week or simply by making it yourself at home. My point is, every little bit saved is extra money in your pocket that can be used for bigger and better things for your future.

Make Investments to Grow Your Money Over Time – There are many things one can invest their money in, such as real estate but first and foremost, you absolutely need a retirement fund. I know it is something most people do not really think much about until they are actually getting closer to that stage of their lives but this is where you need to think long term and start investing NOW! I always contributed towards an IRA thanks to having a financially savvy mother who had me open an account when I was 18 years old (all my money of course, not a cent from my parents) but looking back, I wish I was putting in much more as I could be benefiting from all the compound interest. As I mentioned before, the good news is–it is never too late to start investing and now I maximize my IRA every single year because I am more consciously aware of investing and have the money to do so. Even if you are not currently in a position where you can maximize your contributions each year, remember that every little bit you invest now will grow into much more money in your future so anything is always better than nothing. The key is to start a retirement fund if you have not already done so and to consistently add what you can each year.

An Everyday Motto to Live By – “Fantastic and Only Improving”

I was watching the news the other day where I learned that Brooke Baldwin is leaving CNN in which I strolled onto her Instagram (I wanted to send her some well wishes) and found her wearing a sweatshirt that read, “Fantastic and Only Improving.” She explained that whenever she asked her security guard Ant Diggity how his day was, he would always respond with that exact phrase. I loved it so much that I just had to share it with my readers! ๐Ÿ™‚

What I like most about it is that it is declaring a firm positive state of mind of being fantastic (not just your typical, “good” or “okay” response). Then it is followed up by, only improving. This is really the key to living a fulfilling life full of abundance and leading to a path of growth, success, and happiness–which is by focusing on making self improvements and bettering yourself on a regular basis! No one is born perfect but at the very least, we can always strive for the very best things in life and make a commitment to be a better person each and every day.

So the next time someone asks you, “How are you doing?” Just look the person straight in the eye and reply with conviction, “Fantastic and only improving.” ๐Ÿ˜‰

[On a final note, I am snowed in today in NJ and was thinking about taking a nap; however, after writing this post, I am actually self motivated to do more productive things instead. It goes to show that you can stay motivated with the right mindset].

Pursuit of Independent Happiness – Why It Is Needed Within Your Personal Relationships

I know the title might sound like a bit of a contradiction. On the one hand, you should pursue your own independent happiness yet how can a personal relationship survive if you are only focusing on your self development and life goals? That’s a good question but I am here to provide you with an explanation as to why it is important to continue your pursuit of independent happiness for the greater good of your personal relationships.

Often times when people get locked into a serious relationship, there are sacrifices that are needed to be made to keep the relationship going which can include one or both partners being in a position that they are forced to put their personal goals in the back burner. In addition, usually one although sometimes both people might become too overly dependent on the other person as their primary source of happiness. This is where relationships can become unhealthy and ultimately fall apart over time. Why? You need two independently happy individuals. Each need their own set of life goals, interests, social lives, and things that they do that is completely separate from their partner. Together, they can build each other up and support each other but each person needs to still prioritize their own best interests and build a strong foundation from within above anything else as opposed to giving all this up once finding someone to share their life with. If you have one person on a path of success while the other is still “figuring it out,” I do not think this is an ideal match because being at two very different stages of life can create its own set of challenges unless the more successful partner is okay with this dynamic and can accept things as they are. Remember, any relationship has the potential to last but this requires the right amount of effort, patience, and commitment from two people who are willing to put in the work to preserve the longevity of the relationship.

If you find that you are not happy where you are in the current state of your life, then continue to work on it! Think positively by knowing that many great things in life take time to manifest and are worth the wait. Stay patient, determined, consistent, and stay on a focused path to get to where you need to go in your life to provide you the independent happiness you are striving for. Even if that means forgoing being in a relationship right now, know that investing the extra time in yourself is ultimately the best investment you could be making not only for you but for when the time is right for that special someone to walk into your life. ๐Ÿ˜‰ By the time you are ready, you can then actually offer them the very best version of yourself which is a key component in building a healthy, fulfilling, and everlasting personal relationship.

5 Thoughtful Valentine’s Day Gestures That Won’t Break the Bank

With Valentine’s Day quickly approaching, it is that time of year that people like to express their love and show gratitude towards their partner. Although we know that this should be done on an every day basis as opposed to focusing it only on one day, it is still nice to do something thoughtful for the person to show that you care. Some people like to spend a good amount of money on gifts but sometimes the nicest gifts are not of high monetary value. Here I will share a few thoughtful things you can do to make Valentine’s Day special that does not require overspending.

Make a Card Instead of Buying One – It does not have to be fancy or over the top but I always believe that a hand made card is always more thoughtful than buying one because it is one of a kind and made from the heart. You also do not have to be overly artistic to make one.

Create a Valentine’s Day Playlist – You can create a playlist with love themed songs or choose your partner’s most favorite songs. It can be played on Valentine’s Day but best of all, it can be played at any time.

Invent a “Love Potion #9” Drink – This is actually the name of a movie that came out in the 1990’s but according to mythology, a “love potion” is a drink that one drinks to fall in love. So why not for fun invent your own love potion drink for your partner that you can both enjoy together? It can be a special cocktail of their favorite flavors or maybe a unique fruit punch.

Take Selfies With a Polaroid – Creating and capturing memories are some of the most valuable gifts that you can cherish for years to come. I suggest taking the photos with a polaroid camera as the photos print instantly and then you have copies that you can each keep. If you do not have one, you can still take the photos with your cell phone or a regular digital camera and order prints directly from your phone.

Give a Scrapbook or Memory Box – Take the time to gather some mementos you might have including things such as photos, ticket stubs, business cards and/or brochures of places you went to, souvenirs, etc and put them together in a scrapbook or put them in a box to give to your partner. It is special because it is an accumulation of things that you both shared together and you both can continue to add more mementos over time.

Remember, no matter what you decide to do for Valentine’s Day, as long as you put some thought and add a personal touch to what you do, your Valentine is guaranteed to be very happy! โค ๐Ÿ™‚

The Hidden Meaning Behind A Person With “Commitment Issues”

As I always like to point out when you are out in the dating world, you have to remember that what someone says is not exactly what they mean. Even if you are bold enough to flat out ask the person where you stand or what their personal situation is, you are still often times going to be left in the dark. Most people communicate in a way that is vague AF and/or simply do not want to lay out their true intentions. The reasons for this could include that the person wants to keep you as a backup option (hate to say it but it can happen), has a busy life where dating is not their top priority, and/or more often than not, the person doesn’t know how to be honest if that involves hurting the the other person’s feelings. I find more women struggle with this than men do.

There might be a time you encounter someone with “commitment issues”–their words of course and not yours. I would say that if the person states commitment issues and follows that with a story in which they have cheated in their past (perhaps on multiple occasions), then that is a justified label and would make sense saying that because I would agree, a pattern of cheating does very well = commitment issues. Another situation a person could have commitment problems is if they have practically a zero dating record. As in, this person has never had a serious relationship or the relationships were all or mostly casual. That is definitely a commitment issue as well.

If the person does not provide a rational explanation behind their commitment issues, I would first and foremost suggest that you keep things moving or just keep the person as a friend rather than a potential romantic love interest because no matter what the true reason is, a commitment issue is NEVER a positive thing and definitely not a sign that you should stick around. If you are just looking for some added clarity, then you just need to read between the lines and dig deep as to what the real underlying issue is. I can easily list a few although it can be something else that is personal to that person or even a combination of the reasons listed below.

Emotional Attachment to Someone Else – There is a very high chance that if a person cannot commit to you, this is due to the fact that they are not over an ex or they already are currently emotionally invested into someone else in their present life.

Stuck in the Past/Fear of Getting Hurt – If the person was left deeply hurt by someone else, then this person might think that every person they meet has the potential to do the same thing so rather than move forward into the future and start fresh, this person is constantly living within their past and unfortunately just stays there.

Wants to Date Around and Not Settle on One Person – Not everyone is at the same stage in life where they want to settle down to one person and start a family. It can take longer for some people and some people want to casually date around before getting too serious with one person only.

Extremely Selective – Chances are, if a person is very selective, their dating history is very limited or non existent because they never find people they want to fully commit to. So the underlying problem is not that they cannot commit, they probably could if they were not so picky when choosing a mate.

Came From a Broken Home and/or Divorced Parents – This is extremely common where you will meet someone who grew up in a single parent household (so they did not see the love between their two parents) or witnessed their parents fighting which lead to a divorce and as a result left a painful imprint on the person’s heart and soul. It could also impact a person in a way where they do not want to commit to anyone because they have never seen what a healthy and happy relationship could look like.

Just Not Into You on a Romantic Level – Most people do not know how to flat out tell someone they are not interested so rather than coming forward with the truth, they will throw any excuse from the book to make it seem like it is not you and it is a problem on their end such as their “commitment issues” and etc. Trust me, when a person is into you, they are not going to shy away from the opportunity to commit to you and will not give you a bogus excuse to prevent the start of a committed relationship with you–bottom line.

Why Your Looks Are Everything and Nothing at the Same Time – How to Develop a Healthy Self Image

In my professional life, I chose to become a makeup artist. If I were to tell you that looks do not matter whatsoever, that would definitely be far from my perception of the reality because yes–looks do matter. There is no denying that when you take the time to look good, people are naturally more attracted to you and often times will treat you much better. I do not think people do this on a conscious level, it is a more subconscious behavior. Do I believe this is right? No, I do not but it is both reality and human nature. This explains why people invest a good amount of money into their looks which can range from buying the most flattering clothes, hiring professionals (aka myself as a professional makeup artist), or more drastic measures which could include permanent procedures and surgeries.

As important as it is to develop a healthy and desirable self image, it is important to recognize that looks are not everything. Your appearance might attract you the right professional and personal opportunities but there are other things to focus on besides your image. It is important to understand that we as individuals need to dig deep from within and work on building the inside. This can include your inner confidence, character, and expanding the mind through education and life experiences.

Also keep in mind from a relationship standpoint, as many are motivated to look good to attract a mate, looks also are not everything nor would you want to be with someone who is solely dating you because of what they see on the outside. Looks can easily fade over time so choosing a mate strictly based upon physical attraction is not ideal as you need spiritual substance, similar interests, and a strong foundation to keep the relationship going in the long run.

Another thing to consider is that realistically, from a good looks standpoint–people are a dime a dozen. In other words, there are plenty of highly attractive people out in the world and there are always going to be people who are more physically attractive than you (which just is dependent on the eye of the beholder). People can be born with it or they can put in the effort to enhance their natural beauty. Striving to obtain a look that is valued by society or taking an extreme measure to look perfect (such as plastic surgery) just is unrealistic and frankly, unnecessary.

What can you do instead to develop a healthy self image? From the outside, I truly believe in working with what Mother Nature gave you. It is important to embrace the looks you were given as it creates your personal identity. You might not like everything you were born with but I am sure you can definitely find things that you are happy with which should be more of your main focus than just fixating on the things you are dissatisfied with or would want to change.

  • In terms of making changes, there are things that are within your control such as incorporating a good fitness regime and a healthy diet. This is not only good for enhancing your physicality and youth but it is also great for your overall health and longevity.
  • The way in which you express yourself through your personal style is another way you can develop a healthy self image and while also setting yourself apart. This can be done based upon your choice of clothing, accessories, shoes, etc. You have the control to make these choices and no one else.

At the end of the day, you should put some emphasis onto your looks in a way that makes you feel confident and healthy. While looks can be everything when going for a specific job or opportunity, remember that looks are not everything. Working on your physical appearance can be and should be a component within your self development but just do not make it the end all and be all.

“The Best Way to Predict Your Future is to CREATE It”

I randomly stumbled across this quote for the first time yesterday although I am sure many people are familiar with it. I googled it to find that Abraham Lincoln said it: The best way to predict your future is to create it. Now I know that many can counter argue that you cannot really predict the future (Ex: Who knew we would be faced with a global pandemic?); however, that is not the point. What it truly means is that we can make the best everyday decisions for ourselves to create the very best outcome for our lives. Although there is no crystal ball to predict the future, we can still take the right action steps to create a brighter future. It is never too late to start either so if you find that you have made some mistakes or have not done the best job planning ahead, you can always start today.

For your information, I furthered my research on Abraham Lincoln to find that he experienced many failures before becoming the president of the United States at age 52. Yet we do not remember him for his failures, he is most remembered for his successes! (Which also goes to show that a setback or perhaps even a series of them is ultimately life providing a set up for something even better). ๐Ÿ˜‰

Success Does Not Happen by Chance – Consider Consistency and Commitment

When it comes to success and achieving it, people can define success in various ways. It could mean advancing in one’s career, being an amazing partner/parent, becoming financially independent, or fulfilling a personal goal. The question so much is not, “what is success” as it really can be translated differently depending on who you talk to. Instead, it is important to focus on “how do we ultimately obtain success” in life–whatever that looks like for you. While some people might believe that people are born successful or it can happen by chance, I do not believe this is often the case. Success highly relies on two other things instead: consistency and commitment.

Consistency – Consistency is an important key to success because this requires effort on a regular basis. If your goal is to start a weight training routine at a gym and you decide the first week to go five days a week, then for two weeks you don’t go at all, and then you go back on average about one day a week–how do you expect to achieve maximum results? Although the initial goal and plan to get fit is a good start, not having a consistent action plan is going to leave you falling short of achieving your end goal. If it is a challenge to develop consistent habits, start with baby steps and write out a plan first in which you can track your progress from a day-to-day, weekly, or monthly basis. The tracking component is beneficial for holding yourself more accountable and to see your results grow over time.

CommitmentHow committed are you to yourself and investing your best effort and time into your success? You absolutely need to make a commitment to yourself if you want to be successful because you are prioritizing yourself and your goals. You recognize your value and stay committed because the end goal and outcome of your success is important to you. Same example with trying to implement a new weight training program, if you make the commitment, it will become more automatic to follow-through with it than to slack and not take it too seriously.

There are many contributing factors in building success. Instead of believing it happens by chance, it is important to realize that consistency and commitment are higher determinants of increasing the likelihood of becoming a successful person.

3 Qualities Needed to Attract an Abundance of Wealth

Most people want more money and strive for financial security; however, many find themselves in bad financial situations. That could include having endured a hefty amount of debt, barely being able to pay the bills, or simply not being in a position to save and/or invest their money. No matter what your situation is right now, there are ways you can change your financial fate and be on the path of attracting more wealth. This first comes from within and examining your money mindset while adapting these qualities that can help you accumulate more wealth over time.

[Money] motivation– It is one thing to be motivated in various areas of your life but to become wealthy, you specifically need to be money motivated. By this, I mean you are driven to want to earn a lot of money, not simply being comfortable with having enough to get by each week. People who are money motivated are not interested in just having enough money to survive and often times you will never see someone who is money motivated ever broke. Why? They are so money motivated that the idea of being broke is not even an option or way of life. In their minds, it is an unacceptable so things never get that financially dire. Now a person might start off not having much money or perhaps poor which would propel this person to become money motivated. As a result, you often find these people to really maximize their money earning potential because it stems from their deep money motivation.

Responsibility – Responsible people tend to have the ability to save money and large quantities of it. Being able to save means more money in their bank accounts. I strongly believe that it does not matter as much how much a person can earn but how they ultimately manage their money. People who make less money still have the potential to accumulate wealth by simply being exceptional savers which means it might take them longer to become wealthy but at least they’re on the road to financial security. Whereas on the opposite spectrum, there is a reason why you see millionaires and lottery winners go bankrupt. This is a classic example of poor money management. Which translates to irresponsibility which is why it truly is essential to be responsible when it comes to your money.

Discipline – Discipline applies both ways when it comes to your overall money management. It applies to how you save and how you earn. If someone has enough money to buy something but says no, that requires a high level of personal discipline. This could apply to very expensive items but also inexpensive items that by not spending, a lot of money is getting saved over time. I always say that every dollar counts which is why it is important to save on both the little things along with high ticketed items. In regards to making money and elevating your earning potential, you also need a good amount of discipline to put in the time and work that is needed to make the money. You might feel overworked or just want some personal time off but thanks to being disciplined, you recognize the reward of earning the money than being lazy and not working for it. Discipline essentially requires a no pain, no gain mentality. You do what you have to do to earn the money but also preserve it by saving and investing it as much as you can, even if that means giving up material goods and services that you would normally spend your money on.

[On a final note, I can tell you from my personal life experience, that having these three qualities are highly effective in building wealth. I would not necessarily classify myself as rich (yet ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) but I can tell you that I live a good life where all my essential needs are met along with having both an emergency savings and retirement funds that I continue to grow thanks to having money motivation, responsibility, and discipline].