It’s Day 44 (reset) of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and as despite the fact that it very well may signal the end of a relationship, I’m disengaging from dysfunctional discourse with someone. All of my life, I’ve tried to be a person who avoids conflict. Most of time that manifests itself in me not voicing my feelings or opinions because they differed from those of others. And I don’t really mind doing that with an inconsequential choice or topic. It really didn’t matter to me what game we cousins played as children, so I let them pick. I like most foods, so I’m usually up for the whatever restaurant whoever I’m with prefers. More often than not, I don’t have a dog in the fight of the moment. Sometimes, however, when the stakes are high –– when it’s a crucial conversation –– I’m compelled to have a discussion, debate or even a mild disagreement (Though these all start with D, I don’t consider them to be Ds as in the challenges women face). When the stakes are high, I attempt to keep the goal of a crucial conversation –– to preserve the relationship –– in mind. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I’m perfect at it. But am I intentional about it? I can say Yes with assurance. So when I’m doing my best to use the tools in my belt –– Using “I” Statements, Active Listening, Positive Sentiment Override, etc. and the other individual is aggressive, argumentative and downright argumentative, as I’ve gotten older and hopefully grown in all the life domains, I consistently find myself disengaging from dysfunctional discourse.
The recent pounding I took from an individual about one of the above items not being an unplanned expense reminded me that not everyone has as many tools in their belt. If they’ve only got a hammer, everything looks like a nail. That’s not a judgment call or superiority on my part. It’s actually pity that even people –– me included –– who love the Lord and may even love the person with whom they’re embroiled in conflict –– are so intent on making their point that it becomes more important than the person and maintaining the relationship.
For now, I’m choosing to press pause on this one. Prayerfully, the person will be receptive to learning about other tools they can add to their belt. Until that happens, I’m dis-engaging from the dysfunctional discourse and lifting the person up in prayer while I continue working on my own communication skills. By doing so, I’m minimizing the communication barrier and maximizing beauty and my best life. I pray you’ll bePink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about adding communication tools to your repertoire as well. If you do, you can minimize communication barriers and live your best life, too.
It’s Day 28 (reset) of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and a picture taken last Thursday while I was teaching reminds me that I’m working hard as a Director and on the dance floor! Captured toward the end of class with my hair a disaster and make up destroyed, it’s clear I’m a sweaty mess! And so proud of it. Working hard to lead and serve the residents, staff and volunteers of a homeless shelter takes tons of energy. So much so that at times, I wonder where I’ll get the rest to instruct a class afterward. Then, following a mad dash to change my clothes and make the drive, I arrive and see the expectant faces of the students. This kicks my excitement into gear! And to top that, last Thursday the students surprised me with a belated 50th dance celebration and showed up from a few different gyms and YMCAs. That made me so exuberant that I kicked it up another notch, which shows on my face! It speaks to the effort I put in working hard as a Director and on the dance floor!
Women work hard! Being balanced takes intentionality. Far too often, we let our careers, family, other activities, etc. get us out of the habit of doing the things we love for self-care. Yes, I’m a paid Zumba instructor who appreciates the ancillary income, but I also dance to deal with my Ds –– barriers or challenges women face. For me these are mostly manifested in dysfunctional relationships and ongoing issues with being divorced. But oh, do I feel better when I’m dancing! The stress just melts away. Right along with my make up!!! Dance is a positive D and one of the main contributors to me being able to minimize my barriers in order to maximize beauty and my best life. Ugly sweat and all! So glad I was at least wearing my signature pink for the pic!
I pray you will be Pink Collar Savvy & Chicon Purpose and not only work hard on your job but that you’ll set a goal to work hard at a workout routine. Whether you’re getting one going for the first time in awhile or ever… I can attest from personal experience that the positive release of endorphins is worth it. They boost your emotions and can put a positive period on the end of the worst work day. Not to mention the cognitive, physical, social, and even spiritual benefits. No matter the playlist, there’s a part of me that’s connected to God in worship. I’m especially blessed that I receive financial gain from teaching dance classes as well. For me, it literally pays off to work hard as a director and on the dance floor!
It’s Day 309 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Challenge and I’ve spent the last few days practicing what I preach – as in minimizing my challenges and maximizing every chance I get. I’m not gonna lie about it – the devil has been busy throwing every D he can my way – dysfunctional relationships, discouragement, discrimination. It’s like what I say about coaching around the Ds – You name it, I deal with it in coaching. Well, you name it and I’ve dealt with it in my personal or professional life recently. But rather than letting the Ds get me down, I’ve let push me forward – to promote the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic brand, to grow the coaching agency and to promote my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, while working on the sequel, Hold On Her Heart. It feels good to be able to accomplish what I encourage my coaching clients to do: Minimize the challenges and maximize the chances!
After teaching Zumba yesterday, I did a complimentary life coaching session with a potential client and she found it so beneficial I didn’t have to ask for the commitment – she initiated. It’s exciting to see my list of clients grow slowly but surely – and they’re truly my target audience – professional women who are facing personal barriers that negatively impact their performance. By addressing their Ds, I prevent derailing and support them in living their best lives and being the best savvy and chic version of themselves. And I try to do it all to His glory. When there are tears during a session – often tears of release – because they can finally talk about their struggles – I know I’m living my purpose. Wonderful as it is that coaching clients “make the cash register ring”, that knowledge that I’m serving women is what I value as priceless.
As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose entrepreneur, getting a business up and going is not for the faint of heart. I probably work harder now than I did in my highest level position working for others. Though I’m sometimes viewed as someone who might not have gumption – that has more to do with my shorter stature and softer speaking voice than anything else – I do show initiative to make things happen. That characteristic is serving me well in trying to make Pink Collar Savvy & Chic work. And I need all the get up and go I can muster when the Ds threaten to make me feel like giving in instead. On my own, I can do nothing. But when I take my eyes off of the challenges, and focus on the chances I have to live the personal and professional life God has for me, I’m able to minimize and maximize on.
How about you? How are you being Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose to minimize the challenges you’ve faced in your personal or professional life lately? How are you maximizing the chances your’e been given on the home-front or in the workplace?
It’s Day 290 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and today I experienced one of those God-things regarding a stressful situation – It’s finally time to talk about it! I’ve been praying for wisdom and seeking guidance from trusted advisors concerning some difficult conversations I believe need to take place in order for the situation to improve. While God doesn’t speak to me audibly, He speaks loud and clearly through His Word, the Bible. There it’s apparent that truth – spoken in love – is always the right response. Seldom does sweeping things under the carpet or ignoring the elephant in the room ever resolve an issue. Contemplating thus, I drove to a meeting and heard the lyrics, We can’t see for the elephant in the room; we’ve got to talk about it! piping over the airwaves. Confirmation! Later the other parties involved in the situation made it clear that they feel it’s time to talk about it, too. Total confirmation!
Coming from a dysfunctional family (one of the Ds or barriers women face) where issues were dealt with using extreme avoidance or extreme aggression, I’ll admit I struggle with conversations that are fraught with conflict. God designed me to be an Abigail, or a peacemaker, but because I’ve often had to engage in fight or flight to protect myself, conflict tempts me to default to my old coping mechanisms – retreating completely or defending my position to the death (not literally though)! Through the grace of God, lots of work on myself, and eleven years with a man who models Christ’s unconditional love for me, I’ve learned new coping skills. My heart’s desire has always been to be the one to break the generational cycle of dysfunction in my family. It runs deep and wide. In and of myself, I know it’s impossible. “But with God, all things are possible!” – Matthew 19:26. These conversations will be hard, but we’re not getting anywhere ignoring the issues. It’s gotten to the point where it’s hard to see the love for the elephant in the room.
As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Christ follower, I read a devotional every day. Today it was about being a risk-taker. It discussed facing things that feel terrifying because we see the potential benefit. Even if that means a enduring a difficult transition to get there…Taking the risk requires courage and weighing the positives and negatives in order experience peace before we move forward. I did this recently with a dear friend, instead of avoiding the conversation, and thankfully it turned out well. That interaction gives me hope for this situation. I ask for your prayers as I take next steps because it’s far past time to talk about it.
Have you ever treated a difficult situation at home or work like the elephant in the room and ignored it? How were you Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose when you finally decided to address it?