I’d Rather Have a Beer Than Have Style

I was inspired after reading an article on HelloGiggles.com titled, “What is Woman and How do I do That?” The writer talks about the pressures women go through when facing society’s vision of what a woman should look and act like. The following paragraph from the article sums it up perfectly:

If you wear jean cutoffs, you are running the risk of being considered a slut. If you are still a virgin at 24, then you are measured as a prude. If you put on heels, you are trying too hard but if you choose flats, you are lazy. If you have two drinks and are in a tight skirt, you must be “asking for it.”

I began reflecting on the many style choices in life I have made. I’ve gone from little girl who throws on whatever is laying around clean, to emo kid who always wears black, to my-breasts-finally-came-in-so-now-I-wear-cleavage-bearing-shirts, to preppy girl in heels, to I’ll-wear-whatever-is-on-sale, to now. My current style now is, well, a lack thereof. I guess you could say that I have reverted into the youngest version of myself, where I wake up and just throw on anything that still fits. I believe this is caused by the lack of money I have left after paying rent, student loans, and other various bills. Thankfully, I’m okay with not having to keep up with any style trends.

Beauty is painful

Beauty is painful

How much money do you spend on new clothes? How bad of a day do you have when you don’t like what you are wearing? How envious do you become of the woman who walks past you in her form-fitting outfit that looks like it came straight out of a magazine ad?

Why do we torture ourselves?!

It was only a few months ago that I decided that my looks weren’t as important as having money for some occasional fun time. I could look fabulous and have nowhere I could afford to go, or I could dress comfortably and have a couple drinks at a bar with some friends. Cheers!

I also believe that dressing up wastes a lot of time throughout the day. Think about it, you dress up and then spend the rest of the day reapplying lipstick, fixing your hair, looking at your butt in the bathroom mirror, trying to look graceful in your painful high heels, etc.

I don’t have the time or energy for that anymore. I wake up, throw on a pair of jeans that may or may not have already been worn before (they are not always dirty after one wear!), find a comfortable shirt with no stains, rips, or stretching, and then either a pair of flip flops or converse (depending on the weather). Simple! The comfort I feel is enough to give me the confidence I need to get through the day. Not to mention, not once do I ever think, “I need to check myself in a mirror!”

Ashton and Mila

Ashton and Mila

Ladies, men love it too! They may eye the woman in the skirt, but they stick around for the low maintenance woman who knows how to have a good time. Okay, maybe not always, but the ones who matter do!

The idea of shopping turns me off now. It’s amazing, and I’m so glad I feel this way. No longer do I feel confined by my clothes hanging in the closet. No longer do I stress about what I’ll wear tomorrow. No longer do I spend my paycheck away on clothes that falsely promise they will make society love me!

Women stress themselves out trying to decide what to wear each day. Clothing was invented merely to cover specific body parts and warmth. Now it’s used as a gateway to acceptance.

If our clothing doesn’t fit, we feel that we are fat (Even if you’re a size 3 trying to fit into a size 1. You’re not fat, just wearing the wrong size!). If we’re wearing overalls we’re out of style (like, soooo 1999). Which leads to ridicule for being stuck in another decade. If we try something daring and new, it’s weird and no one accepts it (until they see it in In Style magazine 3 months later).

Why should what we wear play a part in determining if we are socially accepted or not?

I’ll admit, I will dress up for an occasion or work. I’m completely fine with that. This post is referring to the rest of the time spent outside of work and special occasions. I’m going to step up on my pedestal now and say that I don’t care if society is impressed with my style or not. I’m wearing my t-shirt and jeans and there’s not a damn thing you can do about it. Now, please excuse me while I go to the bar to sling back a couple of beers.

Me enjoying a beer!

Me enjoying a beer!

How to Increase Happiness at Work

Photo courtesy of Flickr

Photo courtesy of Flickr

We all know the saying, “Happy wife, happy life.” I believe this is relevant to coworkers as well, considering that most of us see them more often than our own family.

While I was going to college, I worked at a natural food store. I absolutely loathed it. Everyone in that store was gossiping and looking for reasons to get someone else in trouble. What started out as a decent place to work quickly turned into a daily war zone.

Upon being hired, I had only good intentions; Make enough money at a simple job to get by until I graduated college and could land a real career in a big city. However, I befriended a woman whose ugly habits quickly rubbed off on me. She liked to talk about other coworkers as if it were the daily news. Anything I learned from her I would pass on to someone else.

“Did you hear so-and-so did such-and-such?” 

What I thought was simple chit chat was actually kindle for the fire. Pretty soon, everyone was involved in the gossip. Gossip then turned into ammunition. Coworkers were using it left and right to take people out to get them in trouble, or even worse, fired. I had become a person I was not proud of.

Imagine walking into work every single day knowing that someone is out to get you because they just don’t like you. It’s incredibly stressful, and I believe we can all relate on some level.

After I moved to Austin, TX and found a new job, I knew it was my chance to create a better me. I wanted to be happy and liked by every person I worked with. This, my friends, is how I believe you can do it:

1.)  Understand that you don’t know what everyone else has to go through

People have daily struggles. Don’t be one of them.

2.)  Mind your own business

The only information you need to be seeking is how to do your job right.

3.)  If someone says something negative about someone else, change the subject

The person telling the story will eventually understand that you aren’t comfortable talking bad about someone else. Anyone can respect that.

4.)  Bite your tongue

We all hear news that we have to get off our chest and tell someone else. Learn to suppress that feeling. Talking bad about another person, even to someone you can confide in, makes you look rude and untrustworthy.

5.)  Make an effort to acknowledge everyone you work with

Say good morning and goodnight. Ask how they have been lately and be on your way. These simple gestures will put smiles on people’s faces, which will associate you with good feelings.

6.)  Be a hard worker

Not only will this help you get far in life, it will also demand the respect of your peers.

7.)  Help out when you can

If you see a fellow employee struggling, offer your help. Someday the favor will be returned to you.

8.)  Try to bring out the best in everyone around you

Compliment others. Encourage them to do push themselves. Bringing out the best in others brings out the best in you too!

Following these simple rules will help to surround you with coworkers who care about your success. I am constantly astounded by the support I have received, simply because I am a nice person.

It’s never too late to turn a new leaf.

Why Companies Should Utilize Vine

Trending social media platform

If you haven’t made an account on Vine yet, I highly recommend that you do. This new video sharing app offers hours of entertainment 6 seconds at a time. Not to mention, some users have even become “Vine famous”. If you’re witty and charming, you may have what it takes. With a new social media platform on the rise, should businesses also be making accounts?

YES

6 seconds is all it takes to get a message across to a society with a decreasing attention span. It’s also free to post! Production put into making the short video may have some costs, but at most it’s very low-budget. Take a look at Trident’s vine post marketing Trident Layers:

https://vine.co/v/hwdPAHAv0ba

Since this app is relatively new, it has not yet been overwhelmed by larger companies, like Facebook and Twitter already have. Getting a head start will make you a pioneer in the new social media platform.

Brand advocates

Social media has made it easier than ever to find and establish brand advocates. Viewers can “like” and “share” your videos with all of their followers, making it simple to reach a larger audience. I also believe that companies can gain more brand advocates by creating contests on Vine that require contestants to make their own short video in relation to their company and/or product. Consumers like to feel a connection with companies. Connecting by videos can do so much more than plain text or pictures. The best part, 6 second vine videos hardly even feel like advertisements to viewers. Rather, it feels like entertainment

9 Not-So-Guilty Pleasures

Image

Photo courtesy of Flickr

We all have had those days that were so ugly we found ourselves stuck in a slump over an extended period of time. For me, those days usually begin at work. I go in with a great attitude that I will get a lot done and really accomplish something, and then something bad happens (a coworker gets too deep into your business, instructions aren’t clearly communicated and cause you to mess up a project, your boss delivers bad news, etc.). Whatever the situation is, you are so beaten down that you never want to try hard at your job ever again. It happens to the best of us.

These are the times where we turn to the simple pleasures in life. Our guilty pleasures that reaffirm, if only for a moment, that everything will be okay. I believe that we shouldn’t feel guilty about these pleasures. They help us keep our sanity, do no harm, and make us feel normal again.

1. Playing your favorite song on repeat.

It’s completely normal to have a song that grabs at you so much that you feel it was actually written for you. That song that you blast in your car and sing to at the top of your lungs while picturing yourself on stage in front of a roaring audience. For a moment, you feel like a rock star. Go ahead, play it again!

2. Movie marathons.

I’ve been known to spend all day in my pajamas watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Nothing beats snuggling up on the couch and re-living Frodo’s treacherous journey to Mordor with his devoted friend Samwise Gamgee and feeling your heart race in fear as the fellowship of the ring are battling Sauron’s army (even though you know how it will end).  Whatever your movie choice may be, feel free to indulge in it sometime.

3. Having your cake and eating it too.

Literally, have that piece of cake (or brownie, pie, etc.) you eye every time you’re at the grocery store shopping for healthy things to eat for the week. When I’m having a bad day, I make a stop at the cupcake food trailer and order a chocolate cupcake with cream cheese frosting. Mmm, mmm, mmm! Enjoy it and the sensational flavors that send your taste buds to heaven and back.

4. Cooking a meal from a recipe you found on the Internet.

Most of you would be lying if you said you never saw a recipe on Pinterest and thought, “I bet I could make that!” So, give it a try. Make that fancy dinner or divine dessert that makes you feel like a professional in the kitchen. If you’re like me, you end up with a messy kitchen and a blob of food that looks NOTHING like the picture.  But, maybe you have better skills than I do. Conquer that recipe!

5. Snuggling your pet.

There are times when I hug my cat and talk to her like she actually understands what I’m saying, giving her way more attention than she would actually like. WE ALL HAVE! On a bad day, it feels good. Interaction with an animal can be a really positive thing, and you shouldn’t feel weird if for that moment, you feel that your pet is the only one who can make any and all bad feelings go away.

6. Face-timing a friend or family member.

You’re separated by distance, and you need someone to vent to or talk about a topic other than your current problem. Phone calls work, but it’s even better to see their face, even if it’s on a screen. I’ll often face time with my mother, sharing wine time and getting advice I would have rejected 10 years ago during my rebellious teenage years.

7. Cleaning your apartment (or house).

My boyfriend finds it therapeutic to turn on some music and clean up the apartment when everything else in life is a mess. That accomplished feeling you get when you stand up and see that everything is sparkling clean makes all the work well worth it. Turn it up and start cleaning!

8. Dressing up for no reason at all.

What’s the special occasion? You! Whenever I need a confidence boost, I dress up for a day. I throw on my high heel boots, skinny jeans, and flowing top and hit the town. Feeling like a million bucks is sometimes enough to get you out of an emotional rut. It’s also been known to help motivate people to be better at certain aspects of their life, mostly in their profession.

9. Having a moment of solitude. 

Photo courtesy of Flickr

Photo courtesy of Flickr

You wake up, pour some coffee, and decide to step outside for a moment. The air is cool, the birds are singing, and you are smiling. You know in that moment, that everything will be okay. You are a strong person, and you know that no matter what happens, it will all work out.

In conclusion, do whatever it takes to make you feel better. Indulge in simple pleasures and always remember – it will all be okay.

Feel free to comment with some of the simple pleasures you indulge in below!

New Blog Name!

Hello my lovely followers!

I am going to keep this short and sweet. As you may or may not have noticed, I have changed the name of my blog from iKayDeeJay to The Broke Savvy Blonde. I felt that I needed a name that would relate to an audience, rather than just a username for a blog site title. I hope that you all may continue to enjoy the thoughts that I have to share with you all as I venture with this new blog name.

Now, I must get back to learning all about the blogging world and how to further my skills. Have the wonderful day that you all deserve!

Cheers,

The Broke Savvy Blonde