Shoot Your Shot

Well let’s have a little talk about going after what you want.  The other day I was leaving the gym and a man approached me and asked to take me to dinner. I politely declined.  I didn’t need to make a scene.  I told him no and didn’t put any effort to it.  Did he know I was married yes. Is that disrespectful yes if I would have said yes certainly.  The issue is that like he said so many married woman act single and miserable he had to shoot his shot.  I know friends who would have made a scene. They would have gotten all extra and for what?  I am a beautiful woman who has been shining on the inside so it’s showing up on my outside. It’s not the job of an outsider to keep my marriage its my own responsibility.  So he shoot his shot and I politely declined and walked off. Simple.  No drama.  Just a no and walk away.  FYI if that man hadn’t accepted the no then escalate. There is nothing in the marriage bible that says if a man approaches me that I must act like a circus animal because my ring will defend men from approaching.  The ring is a first set of back up but it’s up to me to love my husband and take my vows serious enough to back a man up and give him no chance. Your ring is mostly as a reminder for you to never let anything break the circle of love between you and your mate.  That is a free nugget.  Too many times women get offended that a man had the nerve to approach you like that man owes you or your husband a thing. He doesn’t.  You do, remember that? No different than a woman with your husband.  If we remembered that then maybe we would put a few unfaithful men and women out instead of dealing with just the outsider alone.  But that’s a blog for a different day.

In other areas of our life we have to shoot that shot.  We have to be willing to go after things that we want. I am doing that more often. I am moving forward and not being afraid to say no or hear no.  NO will not kill you.  It will only break you if you allow it.  I have been told no so many times that I just keep it moving.  No can hurt.  If you are really after something and it doesn’t seem to move at all, it will hurt.  But no breaks those who allow it.  In life you have to be strong.  You can show emotions but never let anything make you quit.  Fail while pursuing.  So for the many areas of your life that is dying for you to shoot your shot, do it.  Do not back down for any reason at all.  Shoot that shot and make no apologies.

So what are you looking to shoot your shot?  Is it in pursuit of your education?  Go after it.  Keep applying.  Lock in financial aid.  Do it!

Is it in a new job?  Hey do it.  The worst you will hear is a no.  Always ask when you hear a no what you can do better the next time, in due time it will pay off. I have a friend I think it took 5 years to get into a position but they are in it.  No will build you. No will make you who you were meant to be.

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Is it in love?  Then make yourself marketable.  What are you doing for yourself that would attract this dreamy guy you want? Are you what you claim you want? You want an honest man, but won’t pay your bills thus making you a person who can’t be trusted in their finances. You want a lovable man, but will not show love.  Everytime someone approaches if they can get past your mean demeanor you chew their head off.  You want someone who is willing to travel but you have no passport or no passport stamps.  How does that work again?

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Shooting your shot, takes courage, work, and dedication.  If you won’t dedicate yourself to yourself then you can’t expect anything else to attract to you either.

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Ask Toi: Do I Apologize to My Co-Worker?

The issue from the follower was where the co-worker had been irritating them to the point where the coworker wasn’t communicating well if they had been offended by the reader’s actions and stormed off…… Should the co-worker apologize or let it go?

Yes and no. If at any time there was an act done that you are aware of then apologize to the co-worker on the act that was committed.  I know some of my readers are saying but how do you know, you know.  You know you spoke out of turn, was disrespectful, etc-apologize for your actions.  If the co-worker is just in a mood and being reactive, I would say leave it alone especially if it’s not stopping productivity.  Some people are just pissy people.  Pissy people tend to be upset if the sky is not the right shade of blue.  There could be other factors going on that is making a co-worker be reactive.  It could not even be work related.  I think that as adults if its something is going on it needs to be discussed if its work related at the work place and then moved on.  This could be that the upset co-worker may not be able to communicate what he or she needs however in 2017 we have to be able to speak openly even in professional settings and move along so the end result of work can be accomplished.  You are at work to work, not to be friends.  Never kriss cross the two unless you have a real relationship that is outside of work, and even then learn to separate the two.  Only mature adults will have that ability to do so.

I went to Penn State and at no time before or after my time was there a mind reading class.  So if you haven’t done something you as the possible offending co-worker can think of, than you need to leave it be until the co-worker communicates.  If its something that is stopping productivity, give it a day and see if the work will pick up.  ONLY after the offended co-worker has calmed down and productivity has stopped would I approach a co-worker to take any steps.

How to Get Past the Annoying Co-Worker

So we all have them right?  Unless you are in business for yourself you have to work.  I was always taught if you don’t work, you don’t eat.  There are no handouts.  Let me say even if you have landed your dream job, having others who you have to interact with can get annoying.  It doesn’t mean you have to be at your wit’s end.

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I am a firm believer in life not to allow any one person to get into my spirit so much that the sight of them makes my eyes squint.  Now that is not to say that it hasn’t happened. It’s getting warmer out and although you would think that moods would be jolly people are people. These tips I am giving are the ones I use and reuse all the time.

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  1. Don’t take your work home-give yourself about 5 minutes or so after you get off or after you speak to a friend or spouse about someone at the job and then let it go. The more energy you give a person even if they are not in your presence the more they irk you.  Speak it and then release it and them.
  2. Know your supervisor.  Sometimes knowing who you have to report will help the situation.  There is always that co-worker that thinks he/she is your boss.  Speak up. You are only going to get more frustrated if you don’t.  You can professionally let people know where they can get on or off without being overly out-of-pocket. Little reminders of the such goes a long way trust me.  You have to professionally back people off of you.
  3. Don’t Speak what you won’t do.  If you are a talker and all you want to do is complain say that.  However never put out in the atmosphere what you are going to do if you don’t plan to do it.  People waste energy telling folks off and then don’t back it up.  In an office setting there should be protocol in how you handle conflict. Deal with the issue and attempt to set aside the emotions of the situation.
  4. Be cordial-stop thinking that you have to be your co-workers friend.  This false set of foolishness leads to more issues that can be squashed.  If you and the co-worker don’t hang out outside of the office, stop allowing them to be on your social media networks and crossing the friendship line with you.
  5. You are in control of you.  Adults should be their own person.  Learn that in some situations hi and bye works.  You are there to do your job or work on your projects.  When you forget that at times you get caught up.
  6. Don’t get caught up in office banter.  In order to have less problems learn when to disengage.

There will be tines when the list doesn’t work.  Gasp.  Yes people are people.  Find it inside of you to stay in control.  The biggest one is to learn to speak up.  It’s usually the ones who hold everything in, and complain the most who have the worst interpersonal skills.  They haven’t learned to walk in their adulthood.  That alone will solve a lot of office issues.  Never stoop to the annoying co-workers level.  Remain in control.  There’s a good chance they have rubbed others the wrong way as well.  Never let them see you sweat.  Since most of us don’t have bail money on deck, don’t lose control at work.  Walk away especially from work place violence-no one wins.  Take walks.  Take a break.

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No Accounts

So one of my favorite cousins had a conversation about no accounts.  When we first started talking it was about no account mammies.  Yes I said mammies.  No account mammies are the moms who have kids and don’t take care of them.  The moms who drop they babies off to big momma’s house and be in the club every weekend.  The ones that don’t ever even check on big momma to make sure she need anything.  Always expecting somebody to raise their kids but don’t raise them themselves.  The no account mammies are the ones that have kids and expect the state to take care of them.  These are the kids that get fished into homes other than the one they should be in.  No accounts have a reason for why they do what they do but most don’t take into consideration that at the end of the day a choice was made and a choice was taken.

My cousin and I have these talks all the time.  However the no accounts can really apply to anyone to be honest.  it’s not an attack on women or mothers.  It’s the reality of what happens when people who are too selfish to care about how choices and actions actually interfere with others.  So for the sensitive you might as stop reading now.  I will not sugar coat no account people.  They are all around us.  They could be in your close circle.  This is not to say that you must have a perfect life.  I know myself and others who have had lives that have been filled with tragedy, regret, etc but the choice to end up as a no account person is a personal choice.  I had a conversation with a person yesterday.  They said something that clicked to me.  Without getting into the details it boiled down to level of relationship.  Some people appear to be no account with you because they don’t even value you as anything worth doing better by.  Is that the person’s fault?  Some of it can be.  However could it be the way you allow certain things to be said or how you carry yourself in that relationship that makes the difference?

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We give the no accounts so much credit.  For instance the cash me outside chick.  She is a no account.  Sorry not sorry.  She is slated to make millions of this ghetto vernacular that black folks been accused of acting like but we get the wrong end of the stick.  To be honest she is a disrespectful child that needed her behind kicked  a long time ago.  Yes I said it.  I will not watch a reality show that glorifies her bad behavior.  She needs the right set of parents.  Now she making club appearances.  How?  She isn’t even 21 to enter these premises and making more than most hard-working citizens.  But the dummies of the world put their stamp of approval on her and bam she’s an instant hit.  Miss me with her and her antics.  I am not a hater.  I am on team make your money but if the only claim to fame is because you out here threatening to hit folks but every other time you getting your ass beat than I am in the wrong field.  She is out here making disrespect and foolishness cute.

No accounts care but mostly about themselves.  Have you dated a no account?  The one who every time you bring up stuff they disregard you?  The one that can’t seem to be on time except if it affects him or her?  The one who seems distant but you still working on him?  How much working on him or her do you need to do before you clock out permanently?  Even doctors get in and do what they have to do in surgery.  If the person you like has that much work to be done it may be time for you to consider that surgery time is not even worth it.  Like what are you really going to do with this person?  Convince them?  How is that working out?  Even in marriage the piece of paper that governs and holds your benefits of marriage together can’t make a husband or wife do what you want them to do.  After awhile working on the marriage becomes just exhausting but I know we aren’t supposed to say that because the ones striving towards marriage will feel some type of way.  This is real life.  The glitter and gold of all things eventually wear down.

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Let’s talk about the no account job you have.  Who makes it no account? Does working at McDonald’s make it no account.  Absolutely not. I really have to say this.  Nothing in this world irks me more to hear people who finally get a piece of job saying the most demeaning thing about fast food workers, or janitors.  Do you realize that people need to work.  Where they work has no bearing on who they are or what they can or can’t do.  I hear people say when people don’t have a job that they could have worked at (insert job) but the minute they do they have to deal with the most uppity attitudes because they sold you a burger.  Stop this mess. You have no idea where you can be doing what you have to do for yourself and your family.  This uppity mentality of telling people “he or she better pass me my damn sauce” needs to stop. No matter where you go you will find folks with bad attitudes that’s from the high-rise job to the lowest as well.  So don’t attribute raggedy to someone just because of their job title.  If you treated others well no matter what they do or who they are you yourself would be a lot further in life than where you are and that’s the truth.

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No account friends exist.  I am struggling in this department.  The reason for the struggle is that it has nothing to do with cutting people off.  It’s seeing the shift of friendship and waiting for the shift to complete itself.  No account friends are the ones who never have nothing nice to say.  You bring up something they make it about them.  Or tell you that they been there and then go into the ME fest.  Sometimes you need to just hear “let me know how I can help you.” Just because you did it one way doesn’t mean you have to speak ill about something and someone you call a friend.  No account friends start when friends forget to treat each other the way you want to be treated.  Not just when you feel needed and have a god complex that you are now saving the world.  No account friends have to be dealt with by cutting them out of your life.  Getting cut hurts.  So the emotions you feel behind it is real.  However what can you do with a no account friend? Nothing if your honest.  They don’t serve a purpose but frustrate the gifts, talents, and love you could be giving to another human being and get the same in return.

You have the power to end the no account cycle.  It doesn’t matter what your title in life is trust me being a no account person or continuing to deal with a no account person will only lead you into a place of continued frustration.  You will be dark and angry without knowing why and all along it was because you had all of the negative energy around you.  Take your life into your own hands in that you do what is absolutely best.  You have a right to be happy. Happiness is a state of mind.  However your struggle with the factors that you don’t think you can change.  Its going to hurt.  You will miss the negativity.  Yes you will.  You are used to it. Like for instance I was used to certain behaviors from others.  So the minute I took charge and ended it I still longed for it.  This is the part about change people don’t talk about.  They make it seem as if you change and then you just keep on trucking.  That’s not true especially when you been around something for so long.  However like my grandma would say to hell with it and folks.  You have to keep walking away, stay away, and command respect in your own life and how you deal with others and especially in how you allow others to handle you.  How you allow others to handle you is super important.  Often times when you allow folks to do anything the only one mad is YOU.  You know better.  You feel it’s not right.  You know you don’t like it than stop it.  It can be on a little scale or large one, end the mess today.  Take into account the no accounts in your life.

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People are walking around full of sorrow.  Some of it is from what they have done.  Let me give you a nugget for your past.  If you DID it already and have made strides to do better and changed your life around know two things.

  1. It’s over
  2. People do not have to validate your change.  You do not need an amen corner to push you along to the best parts of your life.  Walk alone if you have to but stop waiting for acknowledgement of change that may not come.

If you are walking around with sorrow in your heart because you lack friendship and you want to be connected as most of us do, put out the very personality and love you want to receive.  When it comes back to you tainted know that who you attempted to connect with or have been connected to is the wrong one. Another free nugget of wisdom, the amount of time you have been connected with a person or group of persons is never a reason to stay in a no account relationship.  Why do you think that people who have been married for 25 years end? It could be they held on for selfish reasons like making the kids happy.  It could  be that they weren’t financially in a place to end things.  This happens more often than you think.  Walking around in the wilderness of any relationship being faithful to it because of amount of years knowing it no longer served you is craziness.  Don’t get discouraged.  Keep on going. The right ones with the right spirit will link up and it will be like being thirsty in a desert and finding water for the first time.  Your issue is in the mean time of that happening.  Continue on your goals, fine tuning your crafts, finding your gift to the world and taking care of your home. Your home also means your spirit, your well-being, and what makes you whole.

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You having a boy?

Ladies, ladies, ladies, this is one of those questions that if you are expecting a bundle of joy you semi welcome.  Not when you step on the scale at the doctors and they tell you lost a total of 12 pounds and you been working hard to get it right is that question ever okay.

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For me unless it’s a woman who I know for sure is pregnant I don’t ask.  I consider it to be rude.  I don’t know what the struggle of that woman may be going through.  She could have gained weight and is struggling to conceive.  She could not want kids at all.  Another woman’s uterus is not my concern.  So today I am grabbing a few snacks and that is the question I am faced with.  IF you ever been around me you know my face speaks before my mouth does and I am sure that I gave the questioning woman the grizzly.  I said I have a son he’s 5.  She attempted to look off.  I said my youngest is 2 and I am working hard to get to my pre-pregnancy weight.  She looked off because she and I both know she looks dumb as hell right now. My issue with her is she sees me daily.  Did I get pregnant overnight? You just saw me and said I looked trim yesterday in my outfit but today I am pregnant?

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I ain’t even gonna front, I was humiliated and hurt.  Like WTF?!  Yeah I said it and I am sure you ladies who have been on the receiving end of that said it too.  Like wait I will have to wait until I am Instagram model ready to be considered snatched.  I am doing this on my own with the help of my gym and doctor.  I have no personal chef but have switched up my eating habits and choices.  I have no personal trainer either but I don’t let up and make sure I am consistent.  Even now typing I feel like I have to justify my size when actuality I have climbed out from where I was to where I am now.  I am more confident but even with confidence dripping off of me I wanted to crawl into a hole at the moment she wanted to know if I was having a boy.  Do you get what she was asking me.  Not only am I pregnant but I look pregnant enough for someone to guess the sex of this imaginary baby?! Oh Sweet Jesus what in the world?  I haven’t been a size 2 since my days at Penn State.  I have 3 kids all from c-section and no multiple births.  I am a healthy size 10 and I am okay with that.

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I really need some people to think before you speak.  Pushing things on folks that do not exist can really set them back.  Let’s be clear we all have our things we need to work on so let’s be more gentle with others around us.

Ask Toi: How would you deal with a co-worker who keeps taking your ideas?

The only way a co-worker can take your ideas if you tell them your ideas.  It’s simple in theory that you have to learn that you can’t share everything with everyone.  This isn’t just with work relationships but its a principle to apply to most people.  That doesn’t mean that you can never tell a soul what you are going to do, it just means discernment.

You don’t need discernment if the co-worker takes your ideas and uses it as his or her own.  That’s called don’t get burned again.  Like Maya Angelou has warned us all, if someone shows you who they are believe them.  I like a lot of my co-workers but unless I have gotten to the point to bring you around my inner circle or family than I keep work relationships at work.  That means yes we can go down to the lunch room and chat it up. Yes we can laugh at corny jokes.  What that doesn’t mean is you can be on my social media.  No you can’t talk about your man and his issues or at least you can but don’t look for me to spill my heart out to you.  It means I am a full team player between whatever my work hours say I need to be. However to sit and tell you things and I can clearly see you are about yourself is a huge NO NO.

You can either mention the breach in confidence if its brought to you but often times I would just leave that alone. I would silently mark them and disengage outside of work chit-chat that you are obligated to talk about.  I wouldn’t sit talking about anything with an idea unless your whole department is together and they hear it from you themselves. Trust me there is a club in most places of employment.  This means if you don’t pay your silent memberships you can be an outsider.  I know that no one wants to be an outsider and being connected can feel great.  The key is the right connections and not just connecting your caboose to any old body.  Learn to be okay being a team player and independent.  You are at work to get your money and make your own personal dreams come true.  Sometimes that may require some head phones and a smile.

Job Woes Week: Ask Toi-Bosses, Co-Workers and Social Media

I was asked if having your boss or co-worker on your social media is a big no no. I would say generally it really does depend on how you use your social media.  I use my social media platform whether that be personal or for my blog to promote positively.  It’s very rare that I go off or say anything that I’m not willing to stand on when it comes to my work life.  I don’t have anything on my social media that my momma can’t see.  By the way she’s on all of my social media platforms. My mom knows my personality and my online persona is way more calmer than she’s seen in real life.

Now if you feel the need to curse your boss or your co-workers out on social media you have a few options.  On Facebook you can always change who can see your posts.  You can customize your post to filter that type of backlash if you think one will come. Rule of thumb may be to not post anything no matter who the audience is that you would have a problem with coming back to you.  I have had many moments where I’ve been petty but I’m also the type that can and will let someone know if my posts were directed towards them.  Over a year ago I decided not to even take it there and just leave my posts as positive as I can.  I’ve elected to be way verbal in real life and move along but not everyone is there.  I know plenty who use social media to “say it with their chest.”  For some this works to avoid saying what they need to say in person.

If you want to separate your personal life from work life, then you can decline your boss’s or co-worker’s friend request.  They can’t use your lack of allowing them on your social media against you.  Keep in mind that the streets are always watching. Your boss or other co-workers could be monitoring your usage.  Don’t be fooled into thinking they won’t check what you post or the type of things you post.  I personally have past and current bosses on mine and it hasn’t been a problem.  For me my page reflects a large part of my life but not every aspect of it.  I’m human and I have good and bad days.  I don’t post messages about my marriage that are negative or about days when my kids get on my nerves I have to lock myself in a closet.  I actually haven’t had that bad of a day or if I have I work it out offline.

If you know you may have a persona that you don’t want your boss or fellow co-workers to see then leave them off and only socialize or interact with them offline.  How you interact offline is way more important than what you do online.  However if you are making racial, sexual, and slanderish comments or posts do know that in this day and age those posts have gotten many people fired.  So be careful. Screenshots of things can be damaging too.