Confessions of a Powerhouse: Maya K. Francis

As part of the Twenties Unscripted “Foundations of a Powerhouse” Women’s History Month series, I’ll also be running the “Confessions of a Powerhouse” series with more detailed features. The first feature is my blog fairy godmother (because she is not fond of the term “mentor”) Maya Francis. Maya and I started chatting on Twitter a few months ago until I decided to make it official…and shoot her an email. Since then, I have bounced ideas off of her about everything from the trajectory of Twenties Unscripted to getting over men. Maya is wise and straightforward. If you’re looking to be coddled, she is not your girl. But, if you want someone to give you the truth in a direct yet digestible way, well, then, Meet Maya.

Maya Francis
Maya Francis

Tell us a little bit about yourself.
At 30 years old (sheesh!) I am just as inquisitive now as I was when I was a kid. I’m a person who asks a lot of questions to try to make sense of things. I like to making order of things, which is probably how I fell into communications and writing – that’s all you do as a writer; try to make sense of the world. I am a woman who has learned to make peace with her contradictions and to thrive in spite (or maybe because) of them. I was born and bred in Philadelphia. I’m an Aquarius, I love good food, clothes, and long walks to the bank…

Oh, and a footnote: I work as a social media engagement and insights supervisor. I always talk about my job last because it’s a dangerous thing to lead with what you do instead of who who you are. Trust me.

You balance a job as a communications strategist with work as a freelancer. What is your key to finding balance in your life?
I’m not so sure that it’s balanced, so much as juggled. I have always had varied interests and I never allow my day job to lessen the room I have for other aspects of my life that are important to me, whether that’s pursuing other professional interests, or making time for the people I love. When I worked in New York, I had a boss who told me, “You know, working here, you won’t have time to see your friends or family. You’ll miss things and cancel on people.” We’re raised to pride ourselves on being workhorses to the point of absurdity, I think. There’s nothing cool about not being able to see your family. I’ve got a real gripe with “busy” culture. We’re confusing “busy” with “dedication” or “competence.” I don’t want to be busy. I want to be efficient. I want to produce dope shit efficiently and well. I think she thought she was mentoring me and putting me on game. But remember thinking, “What kind of craziness is that?” Here was a woman had all the indicators of being a ‘successful’ career-woman (her shoe game was elite!) but when she in the office late at night, it was very clear to me how incredibly empty it all was. Her work–managing the careers of other people–was all she had. Success, recognition…all of it was a veneer. I felt sorry for her.

So when I interview for communications jobs, I’m transparent with prospective employers about the the fact that I’m a writer, too. I ask open and direct questions about work-life balance. This allows me to communicate who I am as an employee so that they are able to fairly manage expectations on their end. When I was first starting out in my career I never said anything in the office about the writing I’d do off the clock (and sometimes on the clock, admittedly). And when my colleagues found out (because people always find out the things you’re hiding) I learned that having this other professional life can cause in-office resentments and even conflicts with peers and upper-management alike. Once, I was even asked to choose between the two. That won’t happen. I love brand work. And I’m never going to not be a writer. So I make folks aware up front about what my priorities are so they can make informed choices about whether or not I’m a good fit for them–and more importantly, I can find out information about whether or not their organization is a good fit for me.

As far as getting it done, I’m a person who has to write things down. If I don’t write something down it doesn’t exist to me. It’s a good way to keep myself accountable. To do lists, again, are about making order of things. I like structure. Probably the latent effects of a Catholic school education.

You’ve written for some amazing publications including xoJane, Clutch Magazine and Very Smart Brothas. What are 3-5 pieces of your writing that you’re most proud of?
Gosh, this is a hard question. I really liked the piece I did for xoJane about Black Twitter, mostly because I think that there’s such a fascination with how Black people live. I think that piece was my way of saying, “Black people love, live and laugh just like everybody else. Hush up about it.” The series of pieces I wrote about Travyon Martin are also ones I’m really proud of as well. There are probably others, too. It can be hard to remember things I’ve written. A lot of times, after it leaves my desk, I let myself become a little detached from my work. It helps from getting too defensive when I get criticism or feedback. Writing is a fleeting exercise at times.

As a writer for VSB, how do you approach the space as one of the few women writers for the site?
I try to make it clear that if I’m speaking about issues that affect women I am not here to speak for all women. I have a perspective and there are other women who may share in that perspective, but I ain’t speaking for everybody. I speak tell my own story as honestly as I can, and hope somebody can relate or connect.

What advice would you offer up-and-coming writers?
Sometimes it’s best to keep your blinders on. Don’t worry about what the person in the next lane is doing. Find your stride, set your pace, and when you look up, you might realize you’re farther along that you knew. Read. Allow yourself to become inspired by other folks’ creativity. Challenge your worldview. Find some writer friends and talk shit. You need allies in the war.

What has been the toughest thing for you to learn throughout the course of your career?
Consistency. I will hit a stride and let myself get lazy or comfortable. Other times, I’m just burnt out. Still learning how to sustain momentum without short circuiting.

One thing I love about you on Twitter is how you still manage to be witty and biting, but without ever crossing the line or seeming disrespectful. What’s your personal approach to social media?
Ha, thanks! I’ve always been the type to say what’s on my mind (for better or for worse, timing be damned.) I am just myself on social media. I don’t talk overtly about sex if I can help it, ’cause that’s just not who I am as a person. I guess that’s my strictest self-imposed rule, which is kind of interesting now that I think about it. In general, am pretty transparent about things, but at the same time try to be aware that there are people who know me in real life, so I don’t put out anything I wouldn’t be comfortable with folks knowing about me. I also cuss, ’cause I’m an adult.

I love to jokingly call you my blog fairy godmother, but you really are a mentor to me from afar. Who are some of your mentors? How do you suggest up-and-coming writers go about establishing organic mentor/mentee relationships?
Argh, I don’t want to mention folks by name ’cause I know I’ll forget someone. Let me see… Annette John-Hall, former Philadelphia Inquirer columnist is a mentor. Kenrya Rankin Naasel and Parlour Magazine’s Hillary Crosley have been a mentors for me in the consulting game. Demetria Lucas put me on when I first started. Mandy Stadtmiller at xoJane holds me down. Danyel Smith, who is the first writer I ever really locked in on, has been awesome to me. I’m very grateful for every one of these ladies. I also have dope peers who keep me sharp (and competitive.)

What are you currently reading?
“This Is How You Lose Her” was the last thing I’ve read. I’m (finally) getting to Helena Andrews’ “Bitch is the New Black.” I like memoirs. I like learning how other people have attacked this “life” thing.

What are you currently writing?
Piecing together this book of mine, which is easily the scariest thing I’ve ever done. Also trying writing a business plan for a venture I’m starting.

What’s next for you?
Lots of plans. My plans got plans. Plans for a podcast. Plans for the book. Plans for this new business venture. But hopefully, a little time to sleep, too.

Maya is a writer and communications strategist whose work has been featured in The Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Magazine. She has also written for Clutch Magazine, xoJane, Esquire, Ebony, The Root and more. Follow her on Twitter at @MF_Greatest and check out her writing damn near everywhere…but also on her blog Margins for Errors.

Review of GenTwenty’s Guide to College Success + A Big TU Announcement

Note: The review in this post is written in partnership with GenTwenty. Opinions are my own and are not influenced in any way.

There’s a quote I love in Amy Poehler’s “Yes Please” when she writes about being a writer in the middle of developing her book and making the mistake of asking published writers for advice.

“I made other terrible mistakes while I tried to write this book. I asked people who have already finished books for advice, which is akin to asking a mother with a four-year-old what childbirth is like. All the edges have been rounded and they have forgotten the pain.”

Guide to College Success ImageWhen I think back to my college days and even the earliest post-grad ones, I feel like that published writer or seasoned mom. My edges have been rounded and I’ve certainly forgotten the pain (and pleasure for that matter). But, I got to take a trip down memory lane when I read “GenTwenty’s Guide to College Success.”

Perhaps the grand disclaimer is that there is not any one definitive guide for college success, as is the case for any era, path or finite season in life. But, there are certainly words of wisdom to inherit from those who have been there, done that and are sporting the battle wounds to prove it. That’s what “GenTwenty’s Guide to College Success” is all about. The book came together under the creation and direction of GenTwenty’s founder Nicole Booz with the work of more than a dozen contributors.

I approached this book from many different perspectives–former college kid, (somewhat) recent grad and blogger/writer. Based on those three outlooks, here are some of my thoughts about the book as well as my favorite picks of essays in the book most related to that particular identity.

Former college kid perspective
Admittedly it’s tough to channel the wayward soul I was in college, but I do think if I were still a student, this book would be incredibly helpful. It covers the gamut in terms of the many issues that pop up in college and the potential shitstorms that follow. From choosing a major to studying abroad and even the ins and outs of small talk when you’re at networking events, the book offers up something for most scenarios in college. And, it also does so in a straightforward, digestible and relatable way. It’s way too easy for those have already endured the college experience to patronize students still in school, and I appreciate that “GenTwenty’s Guide to College Success” doesn’t do that.

My fave picks for current college students:

“Step 1A: Fueling Your Passions (And Not Your Parents’)
“Step 2: Creating Your X Year Plan” (especially the bit about not relying on college advisors to make decisions for you, yes!)
“Step 19: College Money Traps And How To Avoid Them

Recent graduate perspective
College students are definitely the target demographic for this book, but there are also gems for those just entering the hurricane that is post-grad life, particularly in the final “Planning For Your Future” section. The same way there is not a roadmap for college success, there also isn’t one for early adulthood, but there are definitely things I wish I knew more about ahead of time.

My fave picks for recent graduates

“Step 22: Understanding The Basics Of Credit And How To Build Yours”  (in the student finances section)
“Establishing Your Personal Brand”
“Building An Organic Mentor Relationship”

Blogger/writer perspective
Ironically enough, “GenTwenty’s Guide To College Success” resonates with me most as a blogger and writer–not because of any of the essays in the book, but because of how this book represents the clear sense of direction and brand awareness Nicole has for GenTwenty. There are a lot of books Nicole could have opted to publish, but this one is completely in sync with the mass of her audience. It’s organized well, easy to read and anchored with a solid cover design. A product like that will continue to propel GenTwenty’s brand.

My fave picks for bloggers/writers
“Managing Your Professional Twitter Account”
“Creating An Online Portfolio”
“Your Quick Speech: The Elevator Pitch”

If I could change anything?
The one thought I had while reading was that it would be cool if each essay had a suggested age/college year that piece was targeted toward. Something like “Recommended for Freshmen/Sophomores” italicized below the title or “Recommended for all.” The book is chock full of great tips, but everything isn’t always for everyone. That breakdown would make an already-wonderful book even more organized. Maybe we’ll see it for the second edition!

Much applause to Nicole and the GenTwenty team for a solid and well-done product. Head over to Amazon to purchase the book for a whopping $11.45 dollars!

And, now for a Twenties Unscripted announcement…

Spring 2015: Introducing the Twenties Unscripted Campus Reps Program!

I’m excited to officially launch and announce the Twenties Unscripted Campus Reps Program! In an effort to increase brand visibility and readership among college-age women, I’m expanding the tribe this year to include Campus Reps. Campus Reps will be my go-to girls, helping me to keep a pulse on what’s happening across campuses and how TU can be a part of that. They will keep my old ass young. And I love them for that.

To learn more about the program and apply, click here!

campus reps program flyer

Reader Question: There Aren’t Any Definitive Starting Points

“…Like yourself and all other people who possess a natural talent and gift, the fear of how other people will receive that gift holds me back, unfortunately. Erykah said it best- ‘keep in mind that I’m an artist and I’m sensitive about my shit. I have never shared my writing with anyone aside from my best friends (and you) and even they have only read one or two things that I produced…maybe you could provide me with some sort of insight or advice on where I should start since you’ve been in this writing game for a while.” –Tamara

I would love to tell you that there is a definitive starting point. I would love to tell you do not pass go, do not collect $200 dollars and start at some neatly carved-out square with your name beautifully written on it. I wish it were that easy. But, there are not any definitive starting points. There is not anything clear or clean cut about entering the writing world. There is not a rule book. There is not a manual. It’s you in the middle of a desolate field, shouting into the void and only hearing your own echoes. It’s you in the center of bumblefuck, without any guide or compass. Bumblefuck is where you start.

Sure, you can ask others, the same way you asked me. You can ask them how they got started. In fact, you should ask them how they got started. I’ve found that people who want to dive into the writing world ask questions. They’re voracious for knowledge and stories and dos and donts. I’m still the same way. I always want to ask before I make a move. Always want to look left, right, forward and backward before I leap. I always want someone to affirm that I’m not about to screw everything up. But, I have found the only person who can ever truly affirm that is me. My gut. My intuition. The voice in my head left humming after everyone else has said their piece.

The voice in your head that’s humming–that is where you start.

I could tell you to start a blog because that’s how I started. But, I would also have to tell you that blogs are very public beasts and every day I struggle with whether or not the term “personal blog” is an oxymoron. That public element is the only reason anyone outside of my mom cares about what I write. But, that public element is also why total strangers think they know everything about me. Blogs are you putting your shit on full display. Blogs are your dirty laundry hanging on a clothesline for the entire neighborhood to see.

But, as an artist who is sensitive about your shit, blogs are also a way to connect with other artists…who are sensitive about their shit. Blogs are you saying the things that others think and may be afraid to say aloud. Blogs are you being brave, audacious, forthright, candid, honest, authentic. Blogs are you committing to your art and having an audience hold you accountable to that commitment.

That commitment is where you start.

Bumblefuck, the voice in your head and a sense of commitment. Those are your not-so-definitive starting points. You don’t get a neat starting point. Just start. A starting point is something you only understand in retrospect, a light beam of a moment you remember as you’re speeding down the highway of your career and reminiscing about who you were before you zoomed away.

And, to address the first part of your question in the last part of my response…

I’m currently working on a poem I’m set to perform in two weeks called “World Under Fire.” It’s a political and personal piece. It’s autobiographical. It’s dense and intense. Last night I was reciting it and afterward I said aloud, “Man, I really hope people get this poem.” That fear about the reception of our art doesn’t go away. But, how people will receive your gift does not eliminate the fact that you, indeed, have the gift. If you want me to get all biblical on you, I would say to whom much is given, much is required. Artists bear the responsibility of sharing the work the world needs to see, hear and feel in order to survive. We keep the pulse of the world going when it’s dying, when it’s flat-lining, when there is not anything but seeping piles of shit every time we turn on CNN. We are not the brains of the operation; we are the heart.

Some people won’t get your art. Some people won’t like it. Some people are idiots and some people are cynics. But, gifts are not for all people to “get” or like. The recipe for your art is not for everyone’s palate. The fear is natural; the choice to let it hold you back, however, is limiting. You have it. Share it. Distribute it. Display it. Believe in it. Reveal it. Unveil it. Showcase it. Fight for it. Live loudly. Live boldly. Live unapologetically. Live with brass balls and a bursting heart. That is why you have the gift. Use it.

Xoxo,
Tyece

Writing Isn’t How I Make My Living, It’s How I Make My Life.

Recently, I received this email from a reader:

Hi! My name is Jamé, an upcoming Senior studying English at Howard University. Although being an English major teaches me to think critically and effectively, I have found that the creativity in my writing has suffered as a result of always writing in a voice that isn’t mine. I am a young woman as unique and strange as they come, so sounding like everyone else just isn’t my thing. Although I abide by the guidelines of my major, I recently started my own blog, TheBlondeMisfit.com, as an attempt to talk how I want about what I want when I want.

As a young, African-American female blogger, you have inspired me so much in my efforts to start a blog, many times being one of only a few people who made me believe I could do it. I am an avid of your website, and hope to one day be known for my website and all I hope to inspire through it. While it’s not about the money, I hope to one day make my living doing what I enjoy doing: writing.

Are there any tips you can give to a blogging beginner? I enjoyed your recent post to another young lady inspired by your work, and have taken those words to heart as if they were written for me.

Thank you for all you do, all you inspire, and for letting beginning artists such as myself know it’s okay to have our own identity in a world that seeks to make us sound like everyone else.

Jamé, the first thing about your email that caught my attention was the subject line: “Working For Yourself–Advice.” In the interest of full disclosure, you should know that I do not exclusively work for myself. I do not solely make a living from writing. In fact, I do not make a living from writing at all. At least not yet. Or, at least not the kind of living that rewards me financially. Writing is not how I make my living; writing is how I make my life. It is how I make sense of the gritty and mundane and uncanny jigsaw pieces life so frequently offers.

I’d be remiss if I dived into this response without first saying thank you. I never take it lightly when people say I inspire them. It still very much trips me out and I hope it always will. That phrase scares the shit out of me because I realize I am so much more responsible for the words that escape my lips or find their way onto my blog than I realize. It’s both frightening and humbling to understand your words have meaning and influence.

I checked out your blog first and it’s apparent that you don’t need my blobs of advice. You already have a strong understanding of what it takes to succeed in writing. A unique voice. A personality. Presence. Something to fucking say. The gall to reach out to other people when you have questions or want advice. Thick skin and the audacity to keep pushing in the face of rejection (37 applications!? See, that right there is evidence.) Even so, what advice do I have for beginning bloggers? It’s the same advice I’d tell myself because I’m still a beginning blogger. I have by no means made it or become something. I’m still very green in the game and am still navigating my way through the thorns of the Internet world. But, I will tell you what I know and I will try to tell it in a way that I have not yet written.

Consistency. Consistency, consistency, my God, CONSISTENCY. It is the one word I reiterate when it comes to blogging because it is what separates bloggers from people who just happen to have blogs. Consistency activates the springs in the trampoline that will catapult you to eventual success. People romanticize writing as this thing we do leisurely at the beginning of the day as sunlight pours through the window and we experience bursts of inspiration. Fuck that. Absolutely fuck that if blogging is your channel as a writer. If blogging is your channel, then consistency, not inspiration, better become your best friend. You have to decide what consistency means for you, but once you decide it, stick to it. For better or worse, I started to blog about four days a week, Monday through Thursday. Now, I have readers who expect a post four days a week, Monday through Thursday. If I’m going on vacation, I host a Guest Writers Week. If I know I want to go to happy hour one night, I pre-write or let my readers know not to expect a post. But, I try my hardest to maintain consistency.

Two years ago, I attended Blogging While Brown. It was my first blogging conference and I didn’t quite know what to expect. At the time, my blog was still hosted on Tumblr and thus had  “.tumblr.com” embedded in its URL. I will never forget a woman named Melinda Emerson (famously known as SmallBizLady on Twitter) looking at my business card and saying, “Invest in a dot com the minute you get home.” Before she said that, I always thought blogs were synonymous with Blogspot or Tumblr. It hadn’t even occurred to me that people bought domain space for their blogs. Hell, I didn’t even know how to do that. But, I educated myself very quickly and bought the domain for Twenties Unscripted a month later.

I know your blog is already a dot com, but I say all of this to say make the investment. Go to the blogging conferences (and take advantage of the student discounts while you’e still in school.) Host giveaways. Hire a graphic designer if you want collateral for an event. All of those things cost money, but they are so worth it. Do not expect people to help you for free; otherwise, their work will be done on their own time because it’s not being done on your dime. And, few things are more infuriating than an “I’ll get to it when I get to it” attitude when it comes to your work, your passion, the thing that keeps you up at night and gets you up in the morning. It’s much easier to spend the money and know that things will be done well and on time. My blog sometimes feels like a money pit, this place where I pour a substantial amount of my income, especially now that I’ve expanded my team and my goals. But, you have to invest blindly. You have to seize the faith to know the return on your investment is so much greater than your itsy bitsy brain could have ever fathomed.

Speaking of money, make some. Like I said earlier, I have yet to turn a substantial profit on my sincere, sassy and sometimes smart-assy take on growing up. And, to some people, it is crazy that I would pour this much energy into something that does not reap a financial benefit. But, those are the people who do not understand how much writing has saved my life. Those are the people who don’t understand writing is in my DNA. It is in my fingers and my toes and my chest and my stomach. Writing is in every single bit of who I am and to do it almost feels reflexive, the way most people breathe.

But, every day, I thank the cosmos that I have a job that pays me, keeps a roof over my head and keeps Sallie Mae off my back. I have a job that gives me purpose and people outside of my blogging world. In fact, in a twist of irony, it is the security of that very job that allows me to write so freely. It is that job that empowers me to focus on my writing sans deadlines or the painstaking reality that what I write translates into what is or is not in my bank account. Don’t underestimate the value of a day job. The place where your passion and paycheck collide is an intersection of two paths that take awhile to cross. Don’t berate yourself if it takes some time to make a living from writing. Earlier today, I read a quote from best-selling author Cheryl Strayed that said, “Don’t lament so much about how your career is going to turn out. You don’t have a career. You have a life. Do the work. Keep the faith. Be true blue. You are a writer because you write. Keep writing and quit your bitching. Your book has a birthday. You don’t know what it is yet.” I second, third and fourth Cheryl’s sentiment.

The final word you said that keeps sending ripples through my brain is identity, particularly as a black woman in the blogging community. It’s apparent to me that my path is more Issa Rae than Curly Nikki. I prefer wit and self-deprecation over traditional words of empowerment. But, wit and sarcasm are not just for Lena Dunham. In fact, I loathe the words “empowerment” and “self-love” and everything else that Internet has commodified. It’s my personal philosophy that we best connect to people who expose their vulnerabilities, their mistakes, their misgivings. So, that is the path I’ve chosen to forge. It’s the path that reflects my truth. But, I did not originally set out with this sarcastic-but-always-with-a-point identity. I just wrote. And, in due time, that identity revealed itself. You do not have to know precisely what you want to accomplish or who you want to be on the page tomorrow. But, eventually, you will know and it will be so apparent to you that you’ll never know how to write any other way.

Jamé, I have zero doubt that the identity you are forming as a writer is as unique as the accent in your name. Write. Create. Produce. Let the words run through your veins. You are not a beginning blogger. You are just a blogger, through and through. You are a writer. An artist. A young woman with a something to say and a world waiting to hear it. Let those become the words that sculpt your identity. Let those become the words that help you make your life, not your living, as a writer.

Xoxo,

Tyece

 

 

 

You Have To Start Taking Your Own Advice.

While I sat on the South Beach sand this past weekend, one of my friends said something that stuck out. I figured I’d grab a few writing gems while I was on vacation, whether it was from something someone said or from an experience I had. I’m not sure how we stumbled on the topic of giving and receiving advice, but my friend said, “Everyone is an expert on everyone else’s life.”

It was the kind of commented that elicited a “Yassss”, or at least it did in my head. Most of us usually find it easy to digest someone else’s circumstances and dish out what seems like the right solution, whether it’s a reappearing ex, a bothersome coworker or money woes. But, it’s much more difficult to take that same advice and apply it to our own lives.

When it comes to our own lives, we still usually know what we need to do. If you’re like me, you typically have an answer or solution in your head and then you go and vent to everyone and their grandmother in hopes that you’ll gain some reassurance about your solution. It’s a habit I’m trying to outgrow because [insert some quote about being your own person/not requiring acceptance/anything else that says you’re probably immortal in a world of insecure beings.] Usually, you already know what you’re going to do, but you still relish that chance to vent to the coterie of Important People In Your Life. Either that or spill it out in writing. Again, if you’re me, usually both.

Eventually you have to become the kind of person who takes your own advice. It’s a fact of life that I’ve had a head-on collision with since I’ve started this blog. I’ve learned that I have to embody my words, otherwise I’m just another vapid echo shouting through the paper towel roll that is the Internet. It doesn’t mean that I don’t fall flat on my ass in a lot of decisions I make. It doesn’t mean that sometimes it takes weeks or months for me to live out the very quotes that I blog, whether it means avoiding life’s low-hanging fruit, not explaining myself or whatever other hullabaloo I produce on any given day. It’s one thing to believe the words you write; it’s another thing to live them. But you have to do it. Because, if you’re the kind of person who says one thing and does another, you’re hard as all hell to trust or like or really even tolerate.

Someone brought it to my attention earlier today that it has been exactly three years today since I graduated college. That means a lot of things including, but not limited to, WHAT THE FUCK?! Beyond that, it also means I now have an inkling of what is good for me and what is not. And when I say “what”, that encapsulates all of the nouns–people, places and things. With each post grad year, I’m inching farther away from the island of “young, so I can play dumb” and crossing the bridge to “come on, son, you know better.”

But, as easy as it is to shell out advice to others, somehow the solutions seem a lot less black and white when we apply them to the sketches of our own lives. Somehow when it comes to what we want to do, we’re able to extract many more excuses. A lot more “buts.” A lot more “it’s complicated-s.” When we own the very bizarre page that is our mind, we suddenly add so many more footnotes to situations that do not merit much explanation.

But, it’s hardly ever complicated. It’s usually quite simple. We’re just masochistic creatures. We like to stick our heads really far up our asses and then feign confusion when all we have to show for ourselves is a pile of shit. Pun fully intended. So, no. It’s hardly ever complicated; we just like to complicate it. We are wired to make messes and mistakes more often than we are to get it right. But, eventually, what we know in our heads needs to align with what comes out of our mouths and what comes out of our mouths needs to align with how we act. I’m almost positive that if you can consistently accomplish this, you’ve reached self-actualization and we can all go home now. I would love to think that sort of consistent alignment in life is usually pretty simple. But, then you introduce your libido and heart to the equation and everything you ever knew melts to bullshit. I guess that’s a science lesson for a different day.

Xoxo,

Tyece